It’s been a while since I’ve written about my health/healing experiments – so I’d thought I’d do a little update. I’m pleased to say that it’s been over 6 weeks since coming of conventional anti depressants – and I actually feel like I am in a good place. I’ve found during other past attempts at withdrawing from ADs, that I usually feel good up to this point, and then at around the 6 week mark, experience a huge mood crash (probably as the drugs would still be somewhat in my system up to this point).
Through healing with homoeopathy I have had a significantly different experience this time. I have been through a few “aggravations” or healing crisis, which have brought up a lot of past symptoms/ailments – both physical AND emotional – but that has happened for a reason…. it’s all a part of the healing process you see. I suppose the ADs have been masking a lot of symptoms, and it’s perfectly natural that they come up and are addressed head-on during this journey. I actually feel as if I am moving forward this time – not teetering in a fragile place between falling back into AD-use or emotional turmoil.
Anyway, I truly feel that I could not have done this without the support of homoeopathy – I am definitely a convert of this therapy. I KNOW I will continue to use it myself, and treat my family with remedies.
Another aspect of my healing process has been (obviously) diet – I haven’t written much about my recent diet-experiments since my little foray in an 80/10/10 style of eating. I really loved the fruitarian way of eating for a short period of time – unlimited fruit during Summer came naturally as the abundance of delicious tropical fruits made the diet very easy. For the first few weeks my energy was excellent, but this way of eating didn’t have staying power for much longer than that in my opinion. After an initial energy boost, my endurance started to wane, and I began noticing other not-so-glamorous side effects of the fruit-heavy eats. My digestion started to go a little “off” and I noticed dark circles under my eyes. I began to see WRINKLES! Oh the horror! I put this down to the low amounts of fat I was eating, and rectified the situation immediately – as soon as I had increased the amounts of fat I was eating (primarily coconut oil) my digestion became more productive, and my skin texture improved immensely.
All in all I think that the 80/10/10 diet is a great way to eat for short periods of time. If you are like me, and cannot comprehend the idea of a liquid detox (juices only) then I reckon that this is a perfect way to help “re-set” yourself after a period of indulgence. The initial stage is brilliant – increased energy, good mood/skin/digestion – but it isn’t something that (in my opinion) should be sustained for more than say 2 weeks. If you read my blog a lot, you will know that I have the attention span of a squirrel, so even though I love fruit a LOT, I did get a little bored eating in the 80/10/10 style. I missed COOKING, and all the techniques and dishes that go with the territory – plus I love to eat out, and the restrictions that this diet involves really cuts out a lot of options in social situations.
Anyway, to help me feel motivated and creatively inspired (aka happy) I need more food-scope then just slicing an apple or peeling a banana (however convenient that may be). I’ve naturally fallen back into a more varied style of eating – a balance of cooked and raw – lots of fruit & veggies, moderate beans/legumes, minimal grains and lots of fat. Works for me (until I get bored once again and go off on another eating-tangent).
The most exciting news of late (diet related) however, doesn’t concern me at all. After (finally) agreeing to watch “Forks over Knives,” with me, Viper has decided to adopt a plant-based diet. He has cut out all animal products, including cheese and milk – to say I am over the moon is the understatement of the year. I am going to keep you all updated with his transition into a vegan diet, as I think the male perspective is an interesting angle – at the moment his only complaint is that he is constantly hungry – good thing I love to cook, right?
The following recipe came about from me trying to use up scraps before we head off to New Zealand – fridge scrapings at it’s finest. It’s a take on the traditional kofta ball – although not deep fried (soaked in oil), because I can’t stand deep fried things, plus I don’t have a deep fryer. There you go.
Healthy Baked Kofta
(Vegan: gluten/wheat/soy/seed/refined sugar free)
- 1C chopped veggies (I used grated carrot and broccoli – but most vegetables should work just fine…. grate any root vegetables so they cook quickly)
- 1/4C + 2T chickpea flour
- 1/4C crushed cashew nuts (I just bashed them in a mortar & pestle until they reached a chunky bread crumb consistency)
- 1/2t ground cumin
- Pinch of cayenne pepper
- 1/2t tabasco sauce
- 1t whole grain mustard
- 1/4t ground coriander seed
- 1/8t sea salt
- 1/4C water
- Combine all ingredients, mixing well. Let mix stand in the fridge for about 10 minutes to help it firm up.
- Wet hands, and pat into balls (about golf size).
- Bake in the oven at 160 degrees for 15 minutes, then turn balls over.
- Return to the oven for a further 15 minutes.
- Serve with some of my Spiced Apricot Relish, or a nice mango chutney.
Makes 6 Kofta – they are quite spicy, so omit cayenne and tabasco if you are not fan of heat.
These are really quick and easy – plus a great way of using up leftovers – which always makes me happy.
So on all fronts, things are looking good – my emotional health is on the up, and my family’s diet is improving 10-fold. I’m so excited to be able to cook ONE meal for all of us now – plus exploring vegan food WITH Viper will be such a treat.
I’m quite excited. I’m delving into the world of homeopathy next week – without knowing too much about it (aside from having used a few over-the-counter remedies that I know aren’t of top quality). Sometimes it’s good to dive head first into a new thing, without the time for too many pre-conceived ideas concocted or judgements to be cast.
Basically, what really spoke to me about homeopathy (in what little I have read/heard on the topic) was that it looks deeply into who you are - on all levels – mental, physical, temperament and so on. You know I love ANYTHING that follows a holistic approach, yes?
I’ve experimented with all sorts of natural therapies in my time – reiki, naturopathy, herbalism, crystal healing, seeing a chiropractor, accupuncture – and they have all had their benefits in different ways, some more effective than others. I think being open to alternative healing is the first hurdle – if you make up your mind that it isn’t going to work, or it’s hippie mumbo jumbo, then of course you aren’t going to get the results.
What are your thoughts on natural therapies? Do you seek alternatives over conventional medicine/therapy? Ever tried homeopathy?
While I am seeking holistic healing, Misty, of course will go to kindy…. and needs a well stocked lunch box. His kindy is nut-free due to allergies, and so this little treat was fashioned out of what I had on hand in the cupboard. It’s basically raw, but then I went and toasted the coconut and sunflower seeds, because seriously – the flavours are so much more pronounced when you do. Feel free to keep everything raw if you wish though.
Caramel Buckwheat Bites
(Vegan, gluten/wheat/nut/soy/corn/refined sugar free)
- 3/4C sprouted, dehydrated buckwheat groats (or you could sub in 2/3C quick oats if you like – use certified gluten free if you are sensitive to gluten) If you’re unfamiliar with the sprouting process, here’s a How-To.
- 3/4C toasted coconut
- 1/2C toasted sunflower seeds
- 1 & 1/2T coconut oil (liquid)
- 2T rice syrup (or maple syrup, coconut syrup, raw honey – most liquid sweeteners will work)
- 10 pitted medjool dates
- 1/8t sea salt
1.In a dry fry pan, gently toast your coconut and sunflower seeds (separately) until lightly browned and fragrant. Set aside to cool
2. Chuck buckwheat groats in a food processor, and whizz until they are a reasonably fine powder.
3. Add in all other ingredients and pulse until a soft dough is formed.
4. At this point, you can roll into balls, or flatten into a lined baking tray for bars. Rolling the dough out between 2 sheets of baking paper with a rolling pin (or empty beer bottle as I did this morning) works well too. This would also make a yummy tart base for a raw(ish) dessert.
5. Chill in the fridge for at least 20 minutes. Slice into bars (if you haven’t made balls).
6.Store in the fridge.
I made 3/4 of the mix into bars, and the rest into little snack bars for Misty. The photo above was the very last ball, as he munched all the rest for breakfast.
In other news, Misty has worked out how to climb out of his cot. His method involves doing an unsupported headstand in the centre of his cot, hooking his feet over the bar, and launching up so his legs go over the side. Then he simply does a sort of upside down push-up and gets himself up and over. Nap/bed time has become quite interesting. Sheesh.
*I am submitting this recipe to Healthy Vegan Fridays*
Viper is back to work, I’m back to making lunches. It’s quite a lot of effort, really, as I make it all from scratch. Packing lunches would be quick & easy if you just stuck to packaged snacks and the likes, but we all know that’s not really my style now is it? Anyway, I feel like I’ve been cooking for the masses – pasta salad, Mexican wraps, potato and zuccinni frittata, tea cakes and the following energy-boosting snack bar. He’s a hungry boy, our Viper.
Takes me back to my days at school and what I would have for lunch. My Mum is a pretty awesome baker and made a lot of our snacks herself (which, until you are doing it yourself, you never truly appreciate the effort that goes into it). We (my older sister and I) were never allowed those little packets of chips or anything like that, so I would say our lunch boxes were filled well with REAL food. When I got older, I had to start making my own lunch, which made for some interesting fare. I’m pretty sure I was very lazy back then, and my attempt at creativity would be Marmite and iceberg lettuce on a sandwich (which is actually REALLY good – alfalfa sprouts too). Peanut butter and jam was always a staple sandwich-filler as was cheese and Marmite (again, don’t knock it to you’ve tried it). We always had fruit – apples, pears, bananas – I’ve been a fruit bat for a long time.
What were/are your lunch box staples? Any crazy sandwich combos you are willing to admit to?
Anyway, the following bars are an easy-to-whip-up, tasty alternative to the processed candy bars masquerading as “healthy” snack bars on the supermarket shelves…. plus they are a lot cheaper which is always a bonus. Good for energy without the refined sugar crash.
Nut Free Oatie-Chocolate Energy Bars
(Vegan, wheat/soy/nut/corn/refined sugar free – gluten free* option below)
- 1/2C dark raisins
- 1/2C + 2T quick oats – *(if you want to make this gluten free you can sub in 3/4C dessicated coconut instead).
- 10 pitted soft dates
- 1t vanilla extract (optional)
- 3T coconut butter
- 1/4t sea salt
- 100g chocolate, roughly chopped or same amount in chocolate chips (I used an organic milk chocolate)
- Pulse all ingredients together except chocolate in the food processor until it all comes together in a very soft dough.
- You can either throw chocolate pieces into the food processor and pulse a few times, or remove dough and fold through yourself.
- To make bars, simple press into a baking tray or similar lined with baking paper.
- Pop in the fridge until set.
- Slice into bars, and store in the fridge.
These are great rolled into balls for little hands (and mouths) too – Misty always needs to grant approval, being my second in command in the kitchen of course.
It’s stone fruit season here. All those glorious gems – apricots, peaches, plums – and my personal favourite, nectarines. I went a little crazy and bought far too many of the latter….. my dehydrator has been running constantly, and my jars have been filling up with sweet sweet fruity jewels.
Sorry to disappoint, but I have no exciting tale of my planned New Year’s Eve’s adventures, or a list of melodramatic achievements I wish to pursue next year. Honestly, I don’t understand the hoo-ha that goes along with New Years – especially the whole resolution thing. It’s a grand idea to set goals and have aspirations, of course, but I don’t need a shiny new year to do that. All I can say on the subject of New Years is I am blessed to be here for another one. I hope you all enjoy your celebrations, nonetheless – I think I will go to bed and enjoy the extra hours sleep and lack of a hangover tomorrow.
Misty is on another one of his “I will only eat if it is a liquid in a bottle, therefore I shall not eat, but DRINK,” kicks. In an attempt to get something solid in his system, I whizzed up some little fruity truffles – all the goodness of breakfast in ball form. I know most of you won’t be in the midst of stone fruit season – if you don’t have access to dried nectarines, dried peaches or apricots would be lovely as well.
(Vegan, nut, soy, wheat free, refined sugar free)
- 1C dried nectarinej
- 20 soft pitted dates
- 3/4C quick oats
- 1/2C flax seed meal
- 2T liquid coconut oil
- 1/2t cinnamon
- 1t vanilla extract
- 1/4t sea salt
- Pulse everything together until a soft dough is formed.
- Roll into balls and chill in the fridge until firm.
- Store in the fridge.
…..these balls were finally pronounced “Oh Yum!”
Tell me about YOUR exciting NYE plans as I don’t have any. Maybe I can live vicariously through the tales of others?
Seriously, I truly feel like I am getting dumber and dumber the older I get.
There was one stage when I actually thought I was quite smart (this was when I was about 16 by the way). I did well at school, got good marks and considered myself reasonably “intelligent” – whatever this means. From there on, however I think my brain has been declining in it’s form and function.
This week alone I have managed to burn pasta (!?)…. forget to pick up Viper from work….not understand my tax return AT ALL….spend hours trying to cut fabric which I could have simply ripped (I worked that out after awhile, but really – I should be more on the ball)… and stare blankly at bank statements trying to look as if I know what the hell is going on with interest rates and the likes.
I watched a documentary a few months back with was pretty interesting. This will take you to the show…. but the main gist was about exploring different TYPES of intelligence. From physical intelligence, to creative, to scientific and so on. Basically, the argument was that the general IQ Test is limited in it’s scope…. it only tests one type of intelligence. I’ve never actually taken the IQ Test (shudder shudder) but this documentary gave me hope, that although I’m not an academic or an obviously “intelligent” person…. there may be some sort place in the “intelligence-scope” where I could excel.
I AM pretty good at fridge scraping. Take a few sad looking lemons, (thanks for the inspiration, Kari!) a few odds and ends from packets and jars, and I have a sweet treat that (surprisingly) even Misty enjoyed.
- 1C puffed amaranth (or puffed quinoa/brown rice/buckwheat would work…. anything “puffed”)
- 3T grated and melted cacao butter
- 1T (solid when I measured) coconut oil
- 10 large dates (around 1/2C)
- 1/4t sea salt
- 1T lucuma powder (or maca would be a good sub here… or just additional coconut flour)
- 3T coconut flour
- Zest and juice from 2 lemons
- Pulse all ingredients together in a food processor until a soft dough forms.
- Wet hands and roll into balls.
- These will harden in the fridge.
Aside from a Lemon Meringue tart I made for my Father in Law, this is my first lemony-sweet-treat creation. I will always favour the chocolate route when it comes to snacks…. but I decided to throw caution to the wind and give citrus a chance.
The verdict? Delicious! I am a convert to the zest, for sure.
Even if I can’t solve some crazy physics problem, or understand Algebra (what is WITH all the letters? I thought maths was about numbers?) at least I can create tasty treats.
I know a lot of people find health food stores overwhelming and confusing.
I admit, some are rather scary, particularly when you visit one run by angry hippies (I thought hippies were meant to be all ‘peace and love, man’ not grunting at you, while giving you the evil eye for asking where the tahini is).
I find health food stores overwhelming in the sense of ‘Oh my golly gosh I am so excited what what WHAT shall I buy…. ?’ Fiddle dee dee, heel click, etc (right, Hannah?) I think it’s the same feeling Viper gets when he walks into a record store, or some sort of power-tool selling merchant.
Anyway, it’s the same as any type of shopping – there are certain things that you totally need to/should invest in, and others you can leave out of the basket. I know it’s sort of frightening buying new products, especially when they are pricey – you don’t want to end up with a sack of flour that the smell alone makes you vomit in your mouth just a little- plus it cost you half of your rent for the week.
I wish I had the same knowledge when it comes to make up… getting off track here, but I am trying to find make up to make me look semi-presentable for my up coming nuptials. Just thinking about walking into the shiny, bright (blinding) lit, heaven-sent WHITE make up section of a department store makes my upper lip start sweating, and I get itchy. Shudder.
Let’s stick to the health food store, shall we? Here’s a list of my favourite Health Food Store staples…. things that you may have seen around, but are unsure whether to try or not.
- Coconut oil… this should be a staple in everyone’s pantry – frying/baking/raw food/body care – the possibilities for this product are pretty much endless. If you are not a fan of the fragrance/taste coconut go for the REFINED variety as it is odourless.
- Tempeh… A great source of protein, with the benefit of being fermented – good cultures for the tummy and digestive system. It IS a bit of an acquired taste though – slightly bitter, nutty, almost meaty. Great in curries, satay, as a “steak”…. again, so many options. I really want to give this recipe a try.
- Miso Paste… This sauce is one of my favourite ways to use miso paste. I have been known to even spread the stuff straight onto bread when I have a mega salt craving. This is delicious made into a traditional Japanese style broth with wakame, Spring onions, silken tofu and shitake mushroom. Plus it keeps forever in the fridge, and is cultured.
- Nutritional Yeast… Savoury, flavourful, completely addictive. Sprinkle on anything and everything. Use in dips, sauces, as a “cheesy” substitute (but it is NOT cheese)… go crazy. Oh and it’s ridiculously good for you and high in protein. Awesome.
- Chia Seeds… Added to porridge, granola, sweet puddings…. use to replace eggs in vegan baking. Crazy good for you.
- Celtic/Himalayan sea salt… It makes things taste better.
- Coconut flour… A fun alternative to traditional baking flours… brings a really unique texture, plus who doesn’t love coconut? Great in raw “baking.”
- Cacao powder… Intense chocolate flavour plus huge amounts of antioxidants – what more could you ask for?
- Flax seed… Like chia, it can be used to create an “egg” in vegan cooking. Omega 3s ahoy…. see recipe below.
- NuNaturals Stevia (I buy through iherb.com as it is not available in the stores here in Aussie)… The best stevia product I have tried. Great for anyone wanting to cut down on refined sugar.
- Lucuma powder… A superfood that brings a natural sweetness – a sort of soft creamy citrus flavour with hints of maple? So hard to describe, but it is one of my favourites. It actually comes from a Peruvian Fruit and is a great source of B3 and iron.
- 3T ground flax seed
- 1/2C water
- 1/2C pitted dates (packed in to the cup measure)
- 1/2C almond meal
- 2T granulated sweetener (xylitol, coconut sugar, rapadura etc) OR 15 drops stevia liquid**
- 1/2t vanilla extract
- 1C oats
- 1t ground cinnamon
- 1/4t sea salt
- 2T pysllium husks
- 1/2C sultanas (or cranberries, raisins – whatever dried fruit you like)
- Combine ground flax, water and dates in a mixing bowl and leave for 15 minutes to soak.
- Chuck everything else apart from the sultanas into the food processor with the flax mix and pulse until well combined.
- Transfer into a mixing bowl, fold through sultanas and leave the dough to rest in the fridge for about 10 minutes (this allows it to become less stocky and easier to handle).
- Shape into “cookie” shapes (or roll into balls if you like).
- Store in an air tight container in the fridge.
Viper didn’t love these. He isn’t into things that are healthy for you AND taste “healthy”. These DO taste healthy – but oddly, I LIKE things that taste healthy. Funny that. Anyway, I think these are a great option if you can’t sit down to a bowl of cereal – easy enough to eat in transit, plus they keep my crazy toddler subdued for a few moments.
If you are on Viper’s side of the fence in regards to snacks that taste “healthy” – be quiet and go make some popcorn balls (Viper’s favourite).
The words relaxing and toddler don’t really go together. Usually, I relax when I sleep. Even when Misty is napping, I run around like a crazy woman, cleaning the house/trying to blog/washing/dusting/cooking/trying to tire out Boosty playing fetch/weeding the garden – you know how it goes. I am Lou the mini tornado, trying to do a million things at once, but not really achieving anything.
You definitely get pretty good at multi-taking though. Eating lunch while sewing…throwing the ball over the fence to Boosty while I clean out the car….singing and dancing with Misty while peeling carrots…. delivering the clean washing to each room via “driving” Misty around in his little car. Yip, it’s a busy little household.
Basically, my “recipe” for a little relaxing involves a bath and the above bowl. When I need a little “time out” (which involves Misty) we run a bath with some lovely smelling oils (lavender and patchouli because, yes, I am a grandmother-hippie) …. grab about 1/2C oats, 1T raw honey and 1t coconut oil. Mix this concoction with a little hot water and you have the most lovely face/body scrub ever. Smear it on your face, and leave it there whilst you enjoy your luxuriously relaxing bath (read: Misty jumping up and down in the bath, splashing and throwing toys at me) Misty thinks this is delicious – I’m not admitting to it (who am I kidding?) but this could almost qualify as breakfast. Anyway, it keeps Misty entertained, and if I close my eyes and imagine really really hard, it is almost like a spa treatment (Ha.)
For now, though, it’s back to “bean sludge.” I know I have been really hammering out these weird bean recipes…. but I promise I’ll give you a break after this one. This recipe is for those who are a little unsure about the “sweet bean” phenomenon. You will most likely proclaim me to be off the hook loopy, but I’m OK with that: beans, popcorn, chocolate. I’ve also endeavoured to make this dried fruit AND nut free, as there tends to be somewhat of an overkill of these ingredients in a lot of vegan/no bake cooking. I for one LOVE dried fruit/nuts, but I thought I would try leaving them out for once.
Fudgey Chocolate Popcorn Bites/ Balls/Bars (No Bake)
(Vegan, gluten/wheat/soy/nut/refined sugar free)
- 5C plain air popped pop corn
- 3T unsweetened protein powder (I used vanilla)
- 4T coconut butter*
- 3/4C pinto “bean sludge”
- 1/4t sea salt
- 1t lemon juice
- 3T raw cacao powder (if you use plain cocoa powder, increase this amount as cacao is stronger)
- 3T + 1t granulated sweetener (xylitol/coconut sugar/rapadura/raw sugar etc – OR 20 drops of stevia liquid) Increase this is you have a super-sweet tooth.
- Pulse all ingredients together in a food processor until a soft, crumbly “dough” forms.
- Squeeze tablespoons of the mixture in the palm of your hand, form into little balls or cookie shapes…. alternatively turn out the dough onto a sheet of baking paper, place another sheet on top, and roll out flat. Chill in the fridge for at least an hour, cut into bars.
- Store in the fridge.
*You can sub 2T nut butter and 2T coconut oil here if you wish.
Not the most attractive looking things in the history of the world, but I don’t care as long as they taste good.
We’ve gone a little crazy over popcorn in sweet treats in this household – Viper has even given up his milk-sweetie-chocolatety-sugary treats in favour of popcorn balls (!) That’s a win for me.
The bean sludge doesn’t add any “beanie” taste (Viper couldn’t tell that these had beans in them) – it just acts as the “glue” that sticks the whole lot together. In combination with the coconut butter, a rich, fudgey texture is created… which is really addictive.
I love popcorn, but it frustrates me.
How can I eat and eat and eat it, yet be even hungrier than when I started eating it? It’s like eating air, but air that ramps up your appetite. I suppose that’s why they serve is doused in butter? Maybe the fat fills you up? Anyway, I like popcorn au naturale – with some sea salt of course. If I’m feeling adventurous I may sprinkle with ground wakame, cayenne and nutritional yeast, but usually plain is where it’s at for me.
I wanted to make some sort of energy-boosting snack this morning, but I am sick of all my “staple” components – oats, buckwheat, quinoa etc – I needed a change, something different.
Enter popcorn…. it’s actually quite the healthy option according to a bit of research that has been done in the States:
Popcorn was found to have a high level of concentrated antioxidants because it is made up of just four percent water while they are more diluted in fruits and vegetables because they are made up of up to 90 percent water.
Researchers discovered one serving of popcorn has up to 300mg of antioxidants – nearly double the 160mg for all fruits per serving.
They also found that the crunchy hulls of the popcorn have the highest concentration of antioxidants and fiber.
Research or not, popcorn is Yummo, and I wanted to include it in a vegan snack. Honestly, I could eat the whole batch of these in one go, but they DO stick to your ribs more than plain popcorn. I’ve listed some substitution ideas in the recipe below, but I highly recommend sticking to the recipe – these little balls actually taste like caramel popcorn, which can only be a good thing, right?
Caramel Popcorn Snacking Balls
(Vegan, gluten/wheat/soy/nut/refined sugar free)
- 3C air popped popcorn*
- 10 medjool dates, pitted
- 1/4t sea salt
- 2t lucuma powder (if you don’t have this, appropriate substitutions could be maca, mesquite, cacao/cocoa, or even protein powder)
- 2T coconut butter (other nut butter should work instead of coconut, but I would omit the water)
- 2t water
- 1/2t lemon juice
- Whizz everything together in a food processor until a soft dough forms.
- Roll into balls or you could press into bars if you are that way inclined.
- Store in the fridge.
This dish was inspired by my place of work… Madam Tojo’s (and NO I do not work in a brothel). The dish we serve involves creamy (dairy) labneh and crispy pancetta (pig) – not the ideal things to rock up to a vegan potluck party with.
Anyway, this is my contribution to this fantastic little soiree – please join the party and use the links at the end of the post to “eat” your way through the party. I hope this inspires some of my non vegan readers to embrace the idea of trying out a vegan dish on your family. I think this event is evidence enough for you non-believers that vegan food IS creative, delicious and healthful all in one go.
Massive, huge and enormous thanks must go to the wonderful Annie of An Unrefined Vegan for putting in so much work to get this event off the (cyber) ground. You’re a star, Annie!
Slow Roasted Peaches with Vanilla “Labneh” and Sweet Balsamic Toffee Syrup
- 3/4C raw almonds, soaked overnight (or for 2 hours at least)
- 10 medjool dates, pitted and soaked in half a cup of water (soak at the same time as do do the cashews)
- 1/4t sea salt
- 1 vanilla pod, scraped of seeds (or 1t vanilla bean paste)
- 1T raw lucuma powder
- 2T coconut flour
- 1T coconut oil
- Rinse and drain cashews. Reserve the soaking water from the dates.
- Blend all ingredients together, form into balls and chill in the fridge.
- 1/2C balsamic vinegar
- 2T brown rice syrup
- In a small saucepan, bring vinegar and rice syrup to a gentle boil.
- As soon as it is bubbling, turn the heat down as low as it will go.
- Simmer very gently for about 20 minutes, or until the mix has reduced to around 1/3C.
- Pour inot a jug and chill in the fridge.
- 8 white peaches (or any peach/nectarine/stone fruit)
- A few tablespoons of maple syrup for drizzling.
- Ground cinnamon for sprinkling
- Cut each peach in half, and remove the stone.
- Drizzle with ample syrup, and sprinkle with cinnamon.
- Place on a baking tray and roast at 150 degrees C for about 30 minutes, or until the peaches are just starting to ‘give’ but are still holding their shape firmly.
It’s really up to you how you would like to serve this… I tend to favour the peaches warm and the “labneh” and balsamic syrup cold… it kind of gives the senses a bit of a kick.
- Fresh mint
- Pinch of sea salt
- Pinch of ground cinnamon
I can’t imagine how hard this time of the year (really, any time of the year, but Easter in particular) is for parents of kids who suffer from EE. All those colourful foiled-wrapped treats every direction you turn. It’s hard enough trying to keep my chocolate fiend aka Viper away from them, let alone trying to explain to a toddler why they can’t have a tasty eggy treat like everyone else.
I remember my sister would hoard her eggs for months after Easter and taunt me with them at her leisure…. I was part of the “eat-every-single-egg-on-easter-and-feel-very-sick-afterwards” movement.
“When they’re gone, they’re gone,” was Mum’s wise words. That they were. Gone.
I was never a fan of the marshmallow eggs though. I still ate them, but I didn’t really like them… when you’re 9, you will take sugar in any form, whether you like it or not. We came up with the most disgusting way of consuming these not so popular marshmallow monstrosities though…. zapping them in the microwave until they became a melted puddle of sticky, sugary, stringy goo. Scape ‘em of the plate with a spoon. If you nuked them too long, they would burn onto the plate… or hideously burn your mouth. Either way, my Mother was not impressed.
However disgusting and sugar filled my memories of Easter are… they are that – memories. Fond reflections of eating myself into a sugar coma…. to not be able to experience the simple joy of an egg shaped chocolate(s) every year is just unimaginable.
I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately, and knew I needed to come up with something for my Buddy EE. The following recipe may not be as pretty as it’s commercial counterparts…. but it’s something. Something to enjoy making and eating, and maybe feel included just a little in such a food focused holiday.
The following is obviously a recipe for those with extreme allergies… it’s actually really yummy though. You can play around with colours/flavours to your heart’s content. Chuck in a few blueberries for a purple hue… use chocolate coconut butter or add some cocoa to the filling. It’s a really fun hands-on (messy) activity to do with the kiddos.
- 1/2C coconut flour
- 1 medium sized apple, peeled, cored and roughly chopped
- 1T sugar (or more to taste)
- 2-3T coconut oil… start with 2T, you may need to add more depending on the size of your apple. Increase amount if dough feels too crumbly, and won’t squeeze together.
- 1/4t sea salt
- Coconut butter for dipping
- 1/4t ground tumeric if you want a “yolky” colour
- Pulse all ingredients together in a food processor (except the tumeric). The mix seems very crumbly, but when you squeeze it firmly in the palm of your hand, it will stay together….. the handling of coconut flour does take a bit of practise, but that’s part of the fun!
- If you want to make the “yolk” just take about 1/4 of the mix, and stir through 1/4t ground tumeric. I just made a little ball of yellow, and smooshed in the middle of a handful of the plain white. Yeah I’m not so much of a perfectionist.
- Place “eggs” in the freezer for an hour.
- Once you eggs are solid, it’s time to get messy. Grab your coconut butter (if it’s solid, just zap in the microwave until nice and runny)and be prepared to get it everywhere. I didn’t have a set method with this… just kind of slopped it around and rolled the eggs around in it. Tasty mess nonetheless.
At the end of the day, scrambled eggs are fine by me too. Thanks must go to Misty for donating his bath toy for the photos.