Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Spiced pumpkin and white chocolate loaf

Hellooo, 
It's super rainy and wet here today but that did not stop me from having an awesome day off work. I went out for brekky and ate amazing avocado on toast with lime and black salt and 2 soy lattes. After that my boyfriend and I went to the gym. Then I baked pumpkin bread and let it sit to cool while I went to Bikram and sweated my ass off. It was a pretty nice day off.  
I do love work though. I got a new job and I am now a baker at a vegan bakery!! Its pretty perfect for me. Put my headphones in and listen to podcasts about aliens and stalkers and bake all afternoon! 

I bought a whole bunch of sweet williams white chocolate from the cruelty free store the other day so I could coat my amazing almond balls with it. They only came in a huge bag so I have heaps left over. 
Since then I have tried them in a whole bunch of things and they taste great.
The texture of them was just not right in a batch of biscuits I made but they are a pretty great product apart from that. I wanted to use them up today so I added them to my loaf!





Using Pumpkin in sweet things is something that we just do not do here in Australia. Lately it has been catching on and very rarely you might see some dessert on a menu that uses pumpkin but hardly ever. You can't even really buy it ready made in a can. You have to boil and puree your own. (which really is not that hard, you guys are lazy  :) )


This loaf is very moist and spicy and I used agave to sweeten it rather than pounds of brown sugar. 
Its pretty easy to whip up too.

It kind of looks not cooked here but I promise it is! All the chocolate chips sunk to the bottom so its really moist and sweet at the base! 


Spiced pumpkin and white chocolate loaf 

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups pureed pumpkin 
3/4 cup agave syrup 
1/2 cup vegetable oil 
2 teaspoons baking soda 
1 1/4 cups white flour 
1/4 cup wholemeal flour 
1 tablespoon cinnamon 
1 teaspoon nutmeg 
1 teaspoon all spice 
1/2 cup non dairy milk, i used rice 
3/4 cup vegan white chocolate chips
a pinch of salt 
Method:

Pre-heat oven to 180 C
Sift dry ingredients into a large mixing bowl and combine. 
In another bowl add rice milk, agave, oil and pumpkin and mix well until free of lumps. 
Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet mixing well but not beating. 
Place in a well greased loaf tin and bake in oven for about an hour and 10 minutes. 
Cover it with foil and return to oven for 10 more minutes or until skewer comes out clean. 
Serve warm with vegan margarine or a dust of icing sugar!






Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Almond Peppermint patties

I had a kitchen disaster the other day.
I made chocolate mayonaise cupcakes!!!
It sounds very weird and well... it was but I didn't come up with it. I followed a recipe I promise.
I used a vegan mayo I found in the supermarket and some weird chemical reaction happened and
they were like a ball of rubber!! hahah I think you could even bounce them off the floor.
You really have no idea how many kitchen stuff ups I have.

These peppermint patties were not a disaster, they were amazing!




Almond peppermint patties


Ingredients:
1 cup of raw almonds
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1/3 cup confectioners sugar
1/4 cup melted coconut oil
2 teaspoons peppermint essence (depending on how strong the brand is)
100 g dark vegan chocolate
1 Tablespoon coconut oil extra
Mint leaves for decoration

Method:
Soak almonds in cold water for at least 2 hours (more time if you have it.)
Drain almonds and blend in a blender till sandy texture. (I have a specific nut attachment on my food processor and it was totally easy to do in that)
Add coconut and sugar and blend.
When the almonds, coconut and sugar are well combined, add 1/4 cup coconut oil and peppermint essence and blend.
Mixture should now hold together well if squeezed.
Roll into balls and flatten into small disks. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Melt chocolate and coconut oil and dunk cooled almonds disk and place on grease proof paper.
Place a mint leaf on each pattie while chocolate is still wet.
Refrigerate for at least an hour.



This is pre- chocolating! 



This is during chocolating



 I remember eating peppermint crisp biscuits when I was a kid. I absolutely loved the cheapo home brand ones that were about $1 a pack.
I woudlMake myself a cup or super sweet, milky tea and dunk those bad boys in!
I haven't eaten one since becoming vegan until eating one of these this afternoon.
These were deelish!





Post chocolating!!






xxxx

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Vanilla Passionfruit Cake

I have become obsessed with passionfruit in a can.
Is that really bad?

I can't get enough of it. So sweet and sour and really cheap. Don't get me wrong I love the real deal too but you can't always get them.

I bought a few cans of  it the other day and I have been trying out some recipes. This is a super dooper moist cake as it is made with olive oil and I iced it with a cream cheeze frosting and covered it in passionfruit. If you don't like passionfruit you could easily add any other fruit!


Vanilla Passionfruit cake

Ingredients:

1 cup plain white flour
1/2 cup olive oil
3/4 cup white sugar
1 teaspsoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup non dairy milk- I used soy
1 Tablespoon vanilla
1 teaspoon cider vinegar
1 Tablespoon corn flour
pinch of salt

Frosting:
1/4 cup toffuti better than cream cheese
1/4 cup nuttelex of other vegan margarine
1/4 cup soy milk powder (if you can get hold of it)
1-2 cups icing confectioners sugar depending how thick you want. I wanted mine runny!
1 small can passionfruit

Method:

Pre-heat oven to 180 celsius
Whisk together vinegar and milk in a bowl. Add vanilla and oil.
Combine all dry ingredients and give them a good stir making sure there are no lumps.
Mix together wet and dry ingredients and pour into greased round cake tin.
Bake in oven for 25-30 minutes.

Frosting:
Beat all ingredients together in a mix master until super smooth and creamy.
Ice cooled cake and slather with passionfruit and syrup.


Everything seems so special when it is covered in passionfruit! I love the way the gold looks against the pale frosting here too. 











 Im on a diet so if anyone wants to come over and save me from myself that would be awesome!!
xxxxx




Monday, 24 March 2014

Sweet onion tarts with cream cheeze and thyme

I have been busy lately which is a nice change but it means I can't cook as much as I want. I have a free day today so I am getting way into it!
I make these tarts when ever I have friends over because everyone loves them and they are easy to make but look impressive. They are also great because you can make them any size you like depending on the event.
The ones I made today are pretty big so I would serve them as an entree with a tomato and herb salad.
YUM YUM YUM!




Holy moly I love these. Don't they just look enticing?
Sweet, slow cooked onions with creamy toffuti cream cheeze, tangy balsamic glaze and loads of fresh thyme. They are crunchy and flaky and so satisfying!



Sweet onion tarts
Makes 4

Ingredients:
1 sheet Vegan puff pastry (borgs is vegan)
2 brown onions
1 teaspoon salt
2 Tablespoons oil
Balsamic glaze
A bunch of fresh thyme
2 Tablespoons toffuti better than cream cheese
2 teaspoons brown sugar

Method:
Pre- heat oven to 180 degrees.
Slice onions quite thickly and place in a pan with oil and salt. On a very low heat cook the onions for about 20 minutes, making sure they don't catch.
Add a tablespoon of balsamic glaze and sugar. Continue cooking until soft and brown.
While the onions are cooking prepare the pastry. Cut pastry into 4 circles. Make a smaller circle about a cm from the edge. Don't cut the second circle right through. This will help the pastry rise around the onions.
Place the cooked onions in the inner circle of your pastries and spread over some thyme.
Place in oven for about 12 minutes or until nice and golden.
Once removed, wait till tarts cool slightly and spread over about a teaspoon of cream cheese per tart.
Drizzle over balsamic glaze  and scatter over more thyme.
Sprinkle over some good quality salt flakes and serve warm.

These are also good served room temperature.




I have only eaten half of one of these because I am trying to be good but they are just sitting on my bench calling my name. It is taking some serious will power not to devour the whole bunch.







I literally could  not stop photographing these little beauties. They are just so photogenic.


Please make these! xxxx

Sunday, 9 March 2014

Gluten free, Chocolate, Zucchini, Nut butter Brownies!!!!!!!!!!!

My boyfriends Mum gave me an enormous zucchini from her garden last week and I had heard of using them in brownies for the moisture so I winged this recipe and........................................................................................................
......................................................................Excuse my French but this shit will blow your mind!
I cannot even explain how rich and moist these brownies are.
They are gluten free, and vegan and they taste like absolute heaven. The zucchini gives them so much moisture and texture but you can't taste it at all. 







Chocolate, zucchini, nut butter brownies

Ingredients:

2 cups grated and squeezed zucchini 
1/2 cup coconut flour 
1/3 cup agave or maple syrup
2 teaspoons vanilla 
1/4 cup cocoa 
1 cup nut butter 
2 teaspoons of  baking powder 
1/2 cup vegan choc chips 
2 teaspoons egg replacer mixed with 4 tablespoons water 



Method:

Pre-heat oven to 200 degrees
Place all ingredients into a blender except choc chips. 
Blend on high until smooth. 
Add choc chips and stir well.
Place in a lined lamington/ brownie tin and bake in oven for 45 mins.
These brownies really need to be stored in the fridge as they are very moist and crumbly. 
They will harden up in the fridge after a couple of hours.  



I was loosing light to photograph so I cut into these a little early and they were still warm. They taste even better when they are still hot but they are hard to handle.



You can use whatever nut butter you like in these, I used a maple infused peanut butter but a cashew or macadamia would work amazingly. I think some chopped nut through them would work really well too but I didn't have any lying around



Oh so pretty! 
You should make these, I promise you won't be disappointed.
Oh and serve them with some Toffuti vanilla ice cream or coconut whipped cream.



xxxxxx


Saturday, 1 March 2014

Roast cauliflower, olive and almond salad....Jim's second favourite

So every second of the day I am thinking about food!
As soon as I finish one meal I am thinking about the next. 
I am always concocting new recipes and ideas. Food is just irresistible to me.

My boyfriend on the other hand is either  dying of hunger or couldn't care less. I ask him what he feels like for dinner and he says "I don't feel like anything, you know that". He doesn't look forward to food or crave things and I just think that is totally weird and wrong! 

Anyway it means I get to make whatever I want for dinner and he won't complain.

He said that this salad was his favourite so that a pretty big deal.
It must be good! ;)




Exciting news,
I am currently working on my own line of vegan marinades and sauces!
I will hopefully have them for sale on this blog within 3 months. How exciting is that!!!!!
This salad is dressed with my tahini dressing so if you like this recipe check back and buy some in a bit.






Cauliflower, olive and almond salad

Ingredients:

1 Head cauliflower
1 can chickpeas drained
2 Tablespoons olive oil
Large handful of slivered almonds
20 green olives

Tahini dressing

Method:

Chop cauliflower into florets and place in a large bowl with chickpeas.
Pour over olive oil and place on a baking tray in a hot oven for about 30 minutes or until cauliflower is starting to brown and chickpeas begin to crunch.
Set aside to cool.
Place almonds in a dry pan and heat over a low heat until browned.
Chop olives in half.
Combine cooled cauliflower and chickpeas with olives and almonds.
Drown in tahini dressing.



When it comes to green olives I always buy the cheapo ones. I think the safeway brand of stuffed green olives are the best. So salty and full of flavour.
I think they are only about $2 as well.



xxxxxx


Friday, 21 February 2014

Peanut butter, brown sugar, protein balls

Peanut butter is one of my favourite things in the whole world!
When I was a kid someone told me that it was full of fat and really bad for me. For some reason
that stuck in my head and for years I avoided it, Which was hard because both of my brothers eat it out of the jar with a spoon.
It has really only been since becoming vegan that I got into it IN A BIG WAY!

I love to make tofu satay with lots of lime juice and chilli but its also amazing in a cheeze cake or these protein balls.




Peanut butter, brown sugar, protein balls

Ingredients:

2 cups rice bubbles
1/4 cup oats
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup golden syrup
2 Tablespoons melted coconut oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup peanut butter
2 Scoops of vegan protein powder (i used rice protein)

Chia seeds, flax and shredded coconut to roll in!

Method:

Place all ingredients except chia, flax and shredded coconut in a large bowl and combine well.
Make sure the peanut butter is well combined.
Roll into 2 bite balls and roll in chia, flax and coconut. Refrigerate.
These last about 5 days in an air tight container.

Note: 1. Sometimes the mixture is very sticky and other times it seems dry. I don't know why but if it is not holding together add more peanut butter and mix again.
          2. If you don't have protein powder omit it and add another 1 3/4 cups of oats and add 1/4 cup more golden syrup. They are great just as energy balls.





These are great with a big glass of non dairy milk. When it comes to soy milk I only drink BonSoy.
I really don't think any other brand comes close to beating it. Other brands have a very strong soy taste but I find BonSoy is creamy and mild. It is a bit more expensive that other brands but totally worth it.



I usually have one protein shake a day, usually for breakfast but sometimes after the gym.
I do love them with frozen banana and coconut cream but sometimes its nice to get your protein in other ways.
These have rice protein powder in them but the peanut butter adds protein too.
They have plenty of good fat in them and would be a great snack for kids.




xxxx