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Chocolate Cashew Frosting

I had made this frosting when I made the vanilla cake some time ago. However, for some reason I had forgot to write it down. So now I am having to recreate it, and write it down this time.

  • 1 c raw cashews, soaked
  • 1 c vegan chocolate chips, melted
  • 1/4 c maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp, vanilla paste
  • 1 tsp cornstarch
  • pinch of salt

Blitz ingredients in a blender until creamy.

Pour into a large bowl and chill. Make sure it is completely chilled. (I got a little impatient and did not do this, and it was not as fluffy as I would have liked. Learn from my mistake.)

Whip chilled chocolate mixture until light and fluffy. Frost cake. Refrigerate.

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Share. Eat. Enjoy.

 

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Banana Chocolate Chip and Walnut Muffins

Once again I let some bananas go past their prime. That is why we have muffins today. Muffins with chocolate chips and walnuts, and they smell amazing right now. I am trying really hard to ignore the smell, but I can see them baking in the oven right this moment and I am losing this battle.

Just took the muffins out of the oven and they look beautiful. Hurry and cool off, please.

This is a simple recipe. You have wet ingredients and dry ingredients, and then you combine the two together. Voila, you now have a wonderful muffin batter.

Dry Ingredients:

  • 2 c GF all-purpose Flour Blend
  • 1 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp Himalayan salt
  • 1 c maple sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon, ground
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg, grated
  • 1/8 tsp ginger, ground

Combine all dry ingredients and whisk until well combinedDSC_0041 47Wet Ingredients:

  • 4 bananas, mashed yet still chunky
  • 1/3 c applesauce, unsweetened
  • 1/4 c almond milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice

Combine all wet ingredients and stir until well combined.

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Mix-ins:

  • 1 c chocolate chips
  • 1 c walnuts, chopped

Stir in mix-ins into dry ingredients. Stir until mix-ins are covered with the flour mixture. This helps the mix-ins from sinking to the bottom of the muffins.

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Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Add wet ingredients to the dry and fold until it is well mixed.

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Spoon into greased wells of a muffin tin.

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Bake for 25-30 minutes.

Remove from oven and let muffin rest for about 10 minutes before removing from muffin tin.

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Continue to cool on wire rack, if you can. That did not happen in my house.

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Share. Eat. Enjoy.

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Chia Pudding Parfait

I have made Chia Pudding numerous times, yet I have not posted a recipe. These parfaits with the Chia Pudding are great for making a large quantity. This makes 6-8 generous servings.

Parfaits are great for breakfast, snacks, or even desserts. Make them in a mason jar and they are perfect for grab-n-go.

Strawberries are in full season here in Florida. In our area there is a Strawberry Festival that has just started up this past weekend. There are strawberries everywhere, even in this parfait. You can use what ever fruit that is in season. That is what is nice about this parfait, it is good anytime of year.

  • 2 c unsweetened soy milk
  • 1/2 c chia seeds
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup, plus extra if desired
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2c in season fruit
  • homemade granola for topping

Whisk together soy milk, chia seeds, maple syrup, vanilla extract and salt. Set aside for 15 minutes.

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Stir chia mixture after 15 minutes.

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Cover chia mixture and refrigerate for 8 hours to overnight.

Assemble parfaits: Blueberries, Chia Pudding, Strawberries and top with granola.

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I made one to eat right away in a pretty little glass and the remaining I made some in mason jars.

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Note: Some people do not like the texture of Chia Pudding. A remedy for that is to put it in a smoothie and blitz it all together. By this you are still getting all the fiber, protein and omega- 3 fatty acids. No wonder they call Chia seeds a super food.

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Chocolate Covered Cookie Dough Bites

I was inspired to make these because I have read about or seen different things about cookie dough. The kind of dough that you can eat before baked and not be afraid of salmonella.

My youngest, who is going to be 25 loves cookie dough. Cookie dough ice cream was his favorite for a long time, and it maybe still. I guess you can say he inspired me to make these. Love you Josh.

This is so simple to make. there is a little hands off time in the freezer, but otherwise it is a snap to make.

Dough:

  • 1 can chickpeas/garbanzo beans, drained, rinsed
  • 4 dates soaked in hot water, drained
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1/4 c chunky peanut butter
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp water
  • pinch of Himalayan salt

Combine dough ingredients into blender.

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Blitz in blender until dough is creamy.

Spoon/dip dough onto a sheet pan lined with a silicone mat/parchment paper.

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Put into freezer for about an hour to let the dough set up.

Chocolate Coating:

  • 1 c chocolate/chocolate chips

Add the chocolate chips to a microwave bowl.

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Microwave chips in 30 second increments. Stir and repeat until chocolate is melted and smooth.

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Remove sheet pan with dough bites from the freezer. Dip each dough bite into melted chocolate and put back onto prepared sheet pan.

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Refrigerate coated dough bites until chocolate is set.

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Store in a sealable container in the refrigerator.

Share. Eat. Enjoy.

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Vanilla Cake

I have been wanting to make a vanilla cake for sometime. The first time I made this cake I did not bake it long enough and the batter was too wet and doughy. It can be tricky when you are baking with gluten free flour. Ugh it was so disappointing I had to throw it out.

The second time I made the cake it fell apart, yet the flavor was good. Well, third time was a charm. I used my own flour blend, which made all the difference.

I baked the batter in 2 8-inch rounds, one for today and I will freeze the second round. You could also double the recipe and make this a show stopping tall cake for a special occasion. Since I baked this for me and my honey for Valentine’s Day, one round is enough.

Dry Ingredients:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease or parchment line baking dish/pans.

Sift together dry ingredients: flour, xanthan gum, sugar, baking soda, and salt.

Wet Ingredient:

  • 1 1/2 c oat milk, unsweetened
  • 1 c applesauce, unsweetened
  • 1/4 cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp pure vanilla

In a separate bowl combine wet ingredients. Mix thoroughly.

Add wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix completely.

Pour batter into baking pans evenly.

Bake for 30-35 minutes. Do the toothpick test (toothpick should come out clean). Remove from oven and cool completely.

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Note: You can also bake this in a 13×9 baking dish, it may take a little longer to bake.

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Strawberry Cashew Frosting

  • 1 c cashew, raw, unsalted
  • 3/4 c water, hot
  • 1 tsp vanilla powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 1/2 c strawberries, sliced
  • 2 tsp organic sugar
  • 3 tbsp Confectioners sugar, plus more as needed
  • 4 oz. vegan cream cheese

In a small bowl combine strawberries and sugar. Let set in refrigerator for about 45 minutes.

DSC_0046 20 Add cashews and water into blender. Let stand for about 45 minutes, or until cashews are softened. Drain water. Add vanilla powder and salt to cashews. Blend until creamy.

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Add strawberry mixture. Do a taste test, if needed add confectioners sugar. The confectioners sugar will sweeten as well as thicken the frosting.

Share. Eat. Enjoy.

 

 

 

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GF Blueberry Muffins – Vegan

I am learning how to make muffins all over again. Because now they are gluten-free and vegan. It is a learning curve, each type, whether gluten-free or vegan each have their own set of challenges. You first have to have the right blend of flours for gluten-free muffins, and then you need different kinds of leaveners and binders for vegan muffins. When you combine the two it can be rather tricky. However, I like a challenge when it comes to baking or cooking.

These muffins have a secret ingredient that gives these muffins an incredible rise and doming. They are so pretty.  The secret ingredient is aquafaba. Aquafaba is the liquid from canned garbanzo/chick peas. It is like liquid gold, so do not throw it out. It will keep in your refrigerator for a week, or you can freeze it. Freeze it in tablespoon measurements. In any case they will whip up beautifully, just let the liquid come to room temp before you whip up the aquafaba.

By whipping the aquafaba you are incorporating a binder and a leavener all in one ingredient. This miracle ingredient will make all the difference in your vegan baking.

Dry Ingredients:

  • 2 2/3c GF All-purpose Flour Blend
  • 1 c organic sugar
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp Himalayn salt
  • 1 1/4 tsp xanthan gum

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Grease muffin wells. Set aside

Whisk together dry ingredients in a large bowl.

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Stir-ins:

  • 2 c blueberries (1 cup is just not enough)

Stir blueberries into dry ingredients.

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Wet Ingredients:

  • 1 c almond milk yogurt, plain
  • 2/3 c oat milk
  • 7 tbsp apple sauce
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Whisk together all wet ingredients in a separate bowl.

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Stir in wet ingredients into dry ingredients until all dry ingredients are wet.

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Aquafaba Whip:

  • 3 tbsp aquafaba liquid
  • 1/2 tsp cream of tartar

In a medium bowl whip aquafaba and cream of tartar using a handheld mixer. The stand mixer does not work very well due to the little amount of liquid to whip.

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Whip aquafaba until you have stiff peaks.

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Fold whipped aquafaba into batter by thirds.

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Spoon batter into prepared muffin wells.

Bake for 22/30 minutes (12 well tin/6 well tin), or until toothpick comes out clean. Remove from oven and let cool.

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Share. Eat. Enjoy.

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Note: Because there is 2 c of blueberries the batter makes 6 bakery size (6 well tin) and 3 home size muffins (12 well tin).

 

 

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Oatmeal Apple-Cranberry Cookies

I have been craving cookies for about a week. Then I started thinking about the Apple-Cranberry Crumble I made recently and decided that the crumble would make a phenomenal cookie.

So here you go, this is my take on and Apple-Cranberry Crumble in cookie form. The cookies are cooling as I write this – Oh, they smell so good. Just a couple more minutes and they will be mine. I am a happy girl right now.

These cookies are gluten-free (of course) and vegan. I have been doing a lot of experimenting and cooking/baking with plant based ingredients, as you will notice by my blog. I am really enjoying the challenge of coming up with scrumptious eats and treats that are plant based.

  • 1/3 c almond butter
  • 1/2 c applesauce, unsweetened
  • 1/2 c maple sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2/3 c oat flour
  • 1/3 c sorghum flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp Himalayan salt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon, ground
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg, freshly grated
  • 1/8 tsp ginger, ground
  • 1 apple, grated
  • 1 c oats, rolled
  • 1/2 c dried cranberries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line sheet pan with parchment paper or silicone baking mat.

In a large mixing bowl mix together almond butter, applesauce, maple sugar and vanilla.

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Add oat flour, sorghum flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger. Stir until well mixed.

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Mix in apple, oats and dried cranberries.

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Spoon out into mounds onto sheet pan.

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Bake for about 10 – 12 minutes. The longer they are baked the crisper the cookie. I prefer soft chewy cookies.

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Remove from oven and cool on pan for 5 minutes, then transfer to cooking rack. Let cook completely.

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Greens, Fruit and Nut Smoothie

I have always liked smoothies, but I am not a big fan of drinking my calories. So I do not make them very often. I now consider them more of a treat or if I am not really hungry, but I want something light and refreshing for a quick meal.

This smoothie is nutrient dense, flavorful and surprisingly filling. I like that it has a clean, not overly sweet taste. You can always add sweetener of choice if you like yours a little sweeter.

  • 1 c Cascadian Raspberry, Cherry & Berry Blend
  • 1 handful of Baby Kale Blend (Chard, Baby Kale, Spinach)
  • 1 banana
  • 1 tbsp Chia Seeds
  • 1 tbsp Almond butter
  • 1 c Almond milk

This is so easy. Put all the ingredients into your blender.

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Blitz on proper setting for your blender until smooth and creamy.

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Serve. Drink. Enjoy.

 

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Turtle Bars

I try to make one treat for the week. Something that is not too elaborate, yet hits the sweet spot when we have got to have a little nibble of something sweet. This particular sweetness is a little different for me to make. I am trying to expand my culinary boundaries.

These Caramel Bars hit all the spots: sweet, salty and crunch. The shortbread base is the platform for the caramel (sweet). The pecans add the salt and crunch. And there definitely has to be some chocolate. There it is a Turtle Bar.

Shortbread Crust:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Combine all ingredients into a food processor. Pulse ingredients until they resemble a meal with pea size pieces of margarine throughout the flour mixture.

Press mixture into a parchment lined 8X8 baking dish. Bake for 20 minutes. Set aside refrigerator to cool.

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Caramel:

  • 3/4 c maple sugar
  • 2 tbsp molasses
  • 1/4 c vegan margarine (or butter)
  • 4 tsp almond milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

In a small sauce pan over medium heat combine: maple sugar, molasses, margarine and milk. Stir occasionally, bringing all the ingredients together. The sugar should be dissolved and the margarine is melted.

When the ingredients have come together turn heat up to bring mixture to a boil. Keep stirring during this time so that it does not burn. Boil for 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla.

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Pour caramel over cooled shortbread layer. Refrigerate until caramel has set.

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Chocolate Layer:

  • 1/2 c pecans, roughly chopped
  • 1 tsp of Kosher or Flaked Salt
  • 1 c chocolate chips

Melt chocolate chips either over a double boiler or in the microwave. If using the microwave, stir every 30 seconds, until melted.

Pour melted chocolate over caramel. Spread evenly. Sprinkle pecans and salt over chocolate. return to refrigerator to set the chocolate layer.

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When the chocolate is completely set lift out the bar by the parchment paper. Cut bars into squares.

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Share. Eat. Enjoy.

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Apple-Cranberry Crumble

Recently my husband and I were having a conversation about what our favorite pies were. To be honest I think we decided that we have a lot of favorites depending on what time of year it is. There was really no clear cut favorite. Then the conversation morphed into crumbles and cobblers. Still there was no real favorite.

Because of all that talk of pies, crumbles and cobblers I had to make something for us. This is an old recipe (originally an apple pie) I have had for more years than I can remember. I did update it to a more healthy crumble with a little twist. It is in the oven right now and it smells amazing. I can hardly wait for it to come out of the oven and cool.

Serve this with your desired topping and enjoy.

Filling:

  • 6 tbsp vegan margarine, divided 3/3
  • 2 1/2 pounds apples, use your favorite that is a firm apple, peeled, cored, sliced
  • 1/2 c maple sugar
  • 1/4 c cranberries, dried
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon, ground
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg, ground
  • 1/8 tsp ginger, ground
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp arrowroot or cornstarch

Melt 3 tbsp of butter in a large dutch oven over medium heat. Add the apple wedges and sauce until slightly softened but holding their shape. Add maple sugar, cranberries, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger; stir.

Mix together lemon juice and arrowroot. Stir into apple mixture. Remove from heat. Pour apple mixture into 9×13 baking dish. Dot remaining margarine onto apple mixture.

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Crumble Topping:

  • 1/2 c GF rolled oats
  • 1/2 c walnuts, chopped
  • 4 Medjool dates, chopped
  • 2 tbsp GF flour mix
  • 2 tbsp vegan margarine cut into peas size pieces
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/8 tsp ginger

Mix together all ingredients. Spoon crumble onto apple mixture.

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Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake for 40 minutes. Let cool about 10 minutes before serving. top with your favorite topping: whipped cream, whipped coconut cream, or ice cream.

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Share. Eat. Enjoy.

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