25 June 2014

Date Paste

With dates on special this week it was a good time to stock up on these yummy sugar substitutes and make some date paste for quick easy uses. 









 















Date Paste:
- 560g fresh medijool dates
- 700ml of semi hot water (some filtered tap, some boiling)
Soak dates in water for about an hour (keep water after soaking).
Remove seeds and blitz the dates using a few Tbsp's of the soaking water to form a creamy smooth paste (add water gradually until you get the consistency you want).

Use this paste to replace sugar in many things like smoothies, pancakes, porridge, cakes basically anything you want! Stores in fridge for a week or so or even in the freezer for a few months! 


* EDIT - originally I said it stores in fridge for a week.  I currently have some in my fridge that I made nearly 4 weeks ago and its still fine!  Use your own discretion as you will know by smell and sight if its turned. *

ENJOY!  :-)

23 June 2014

Creamy Chicken Pie with Spelt Shortcrust Pastry

I made the Quirky Cooking Spelt Shortcrust Pastry over the weekend for my creamy chicken and vegetable pie. Another awesome recipe which is in her new wonderful cookbook (highly recommend her book, I am so in love with it!!!)





 

















To make the pie, blind bake pastry base first.

Filling for my pie: (made in my bellini, instructions should work for thermomix also)
- 50g butter
- 50g spelt flour
- 500g milk

Cook at 100° for 13mins speed 1 with butterfly attachment.
Remove butterfly, then added:
- small handful of grated cheese (mix of tasty and parmesan)
- salt, pepper and parsley
- 250g of shredded cooked chicken (I have some already cooked and pre-shredded ready for times like this or lunches)
- couple handfuls of your choice of vegetables, I used broccoli, carrots, peas, corn
Mix on speed 1 for a few minutes until all combined.
Pour into pastry base and roll put pie lid.

Brush lid with milk so browns up nicely.
Bake at 180° for approx 20-30mins
Let rest for 5-10mins before cutting up.


ENJOY! :-)

15 June 2014

Chocolate Beetroot Cake and Mixed Nut Nutella

It was a chocolate kind of day here so I got to the kitchen and invented a Chocolate Beetroot Cake to use up some leftover beetroot I cooked from last nights dinner. Very yummy and full of better ingredient options for those wanting to watch out for sugars etc.






















Chocolate Beetroot Cake

Ingredients:
  • 125g fresh medjool dates, pitted
  • 240g fresh cooked and cooled beetroot 
  • 50 cacao or cocoa powder
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 180g spelt flour
  • 200g sour cream or greek yoghurt
  • Splash of vanilla
Method:
  1. Preheat oven to 180° and prepare a cake tin.
  2. In a bellini, thermomix or high powered blender, blitz the dates up so they are well combined, speed 9 for approx 10 seconds.
  3. Add beetroot and eggs and mix to a mostly smooth puree, speed 8 for approx 15 seconds. 
  4. Add remaining ingredients and mix until well combined, scraping down sides as needed, speed 8 for approx 20 seconds. 
  5. Pour into prepared tin of choice and bake for 20mins or until a skewer comes our clean. 
  6. Allow to cool before decorating. We used our giant donut tin and decorated it with homemade strawberry vanilla & chia jam and whipped cream in middle and used my new nutella spread on top!
OMG this was a really nice Sunday afternoon yummy treat that is full of good wholefoods and no refined sugars.  And here is my nutella spread that I made for the icing.  It's a twist on standard nutella...a mixed nut twist!



 



















Mixed Nut Nutella
Made 2 jar fulls

Ingredients:
  • 50g rapadura
  • 60g cashews 
  • 60g almonds 
  • 60g macadamia nuts
  • 60g hazelnuts 
  • 60g brazil nuts
  • 100g chocolate pieces of your choice
  • 30g cacao powder
  • 150g coconut milk (I used my homemade one)
Method:
  1. In a bellini or thermomix (or high powered blender) mill rapadura for a few seconds on speed 9.
  2. Add all nuts and chocolate pieces and grind up speed 9 approx 15-20 seconds.
  3. Add remaining ingredients and cook at 60° for 6mins on speed 3.
  4. Pour into sterilized jars.

And don't waste those little bits left in the bowl, add some milk and cook for 5mins at 80° speed 3 for a nice hot chocolate drink!

I was inspired by Quirky Cookings nutella spread and used some of her recipe steps for my recipe base. This is so yummy you could use as a spread, as cake icing or simply add it to ice cream, either way its a nice version with no nasty additives!


ENJOY! :-) 

14 June 2014

Cashew Coconut Raspberry Slice

Its Saturday morning kitchen time! Made this yummy cashew coconut raspberry slice based on the  'Vegan Coconut Cream & Strawberry Bliss Balls' from Nutritionist In The Kitch.

I used raspberries instead of strawberries and was feeling too lazy to roll balls so I turned it into a slice and drizzled chocolate over the top. If you use right type of chocolate on top, these are gluten free, vegan and oh so yummy!






















Cashew Coconut Raspberry Slice
Made approx 28 small pieces

Ingredients:
  • 1 cup raw cashews
  • 2 cups shredded coconut
  • 2 tablespoons agave nectar
  • 1 Tbsp water
  • Handful of frozen raspberries
  • 50g chocolate of your choice
Method:
  1. In food processor, bellini or thermomix, blitz up the cashews, coconut, agave until a thick soft batter forms.  Add the water if looking a bit dry.
  2. Add the raspberries and give a SHORT, QUICK pulse to just mix through but still leaving pieces chunky.
  3. Press into a silicone slice form.
  4. Melt chocolate in microwave and drizzle over the slice.
  5. Allow to set in fridge before turning out and slicing up.
TIP:  Hide these from your husband as they will disappear fast LOL
 
ENJOY! :-)

10 June 2014

Cacao Coconut Brownie Slice

** EDITED ** If you want a sugar free version of this go and check out my new and improved version you can find here.


Original Post
So I was having an afternoon just waiting around the house for a delivery and saw a recipe that I thought looked really yummy.  Off I trotted to make it but in the end I changed it up a bit and ended up nothing like the way it was supposed to be, but still yummy thankfully!  So here is my semi healthy brownie slice using some healthier option ingredients, sweet treat without the guilty (or as much guilt!)






















CACAO COCONUT BROWNIE SLICE
Ingredients
  • 2 egg white
  • 150g rapadura
  • 90g coconut oil 
  • 4 tablespoon water 
  • Splash of vanilla 
  • 130g almond meal (I made my own first before starting recipe with raw almonds)
  • 1/2 cup coconut flour  
  • 30g cacao powder 
  • 1/2 tsp bicarb soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
Method:
  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees and grease/line a slice tray (I just use a silicone tray, much easier to get slice out of!).
  2. Using a bellini or thermomix, whip egg whites and sugar with the butterfly attachment for 3mins on speed 4.
  3. Remove butterfly and add remaining ingredients and mix together for 20 seconds on speed 5.
  4. Scrape down sides and remix again if need be.
  5. Pour into slice tray and bake for 15-20mins (may still seem a bit soft to touch but will firm up upon cooling)
  6. Allow to cool down slightly before turning out onto a board and slicing up.





















As usual there was always a few teaspoons of mixture still left in the bowl that I couldn't get out, so using a tip I picked up from Jo at Quirky Cooking, I blitzed some milk up to move the leftovers around and cooked it for a few minutes and had myself a yummy semi crunchy hot chocolate drink for afternoon tea!  I've done back to back stuff before to save wastage (eg: make satay sauce after making peanut butter) but never thought to do this, OMG brownie hot chocolate is my new fav drink!!!!

ENJOY! :-)



08 June 2014

Making my own cream and then butter

A few weeks back I was poking around the internet and just searching random things and came across this site that said you could make your own cream.  Hmmm I thought, that would be cool.  I found lately I haven't been making much homemade butter etc as in my neck of the woods the pure cream isn't cheap unless the shop is marking some down for quick sale (in which case I scoop it up).

Anyway I thought it would be cheaper to make my own cream so I can make my own butter.  Now most people probably thing why bother, but not me, I like to try these things out.  Plus I didn't believe the site as I'm a 'see it to believe it' kind of gal.  So I read the post and thought 'really? butter and milk makes cream, then I can make butter'.  I know, I know it seems like such a strange thing to want to do but I did anyway.

I did a bigger batch than the post specified as figured why not.  Plus the post only mentioned using it for a pasta sauce, I wanted to test it out to see if I could whip it and make butter and you wouldn't believe it.... but it worked!!!!

Here is what I did with my trust Bella (aka Bellini, aka fake Thermomix)
Into the jug went:
 - 250g unsalted butter, cubed
 - 250g lite milk
4 mins @ 90 on speed 2 (did an extra min than original post due to the larger quantity)
Then 30 seconds @ speed 8 to emulsify it
Poured it into a jug and set in fridge





















500ml of yummy pure pouring cream

4hrs later I pull the jug out of the fridge and followed a new butter making techniquire I learned from Jo at Quirky Cooking and 10mins later I had 600g of spreadable butter plus 200ml of buttermilk! It whipped so much faster than the shop bought cream. Sometimes the shop stuff takes nearly 10mins to whip and churn to butter, this was churned in 3mins!!!






















Total expenses:
250g butter     = $1.49
250g milk       = $0.25
200g olive oil = $1.10
$2.84 for 600g of REAL SPREADABLE butter... THANK YOU BARGAIN SAVING!!!!

Normally that would have cost me approx $5.50 so I see that as a saving.  Most people might not have the actual time available to warrant doing it this way but I do and I'd rather save $$$ if its only costing me time.  My next experiment will be to use the homemade cream into ice cream...  stay tuned!!!!

02 June 2014

Homemade Chewy Muesli Bars

Made these #yummy #homemade #healthyish #muesli bars today based on a recipe found at 'Mixing It Up' with a few alterations using ingredients I had on hand. Full of goodness and completely delicious! #lovemybellini #tastethelove








 















Homemade Chewy Muesli Bars

- 70g #buckwheat groats
- 1 Tbsp #chia seeds
Mill for 20 seconds, speed 9 and set aside
- 100g #apple, no core
Chop for 8 seconds, speed 5, scrape down sides, add
- 100g dried #apricots
- 100g #dates
Pulse together with apple 3-4 time to chop dried fruit, add milled seeds from earlier plus
- 90g oats
- 2 Tbsp #LSA
- 70g cheerios (or any dry cereal)
- 35g #coconut
- 40g raw sugar
- 2 Tbsp mixed seeds
- 40g #coconutoil
- 2 eggs
- 40g honey
Blitz together for 20 seconds, speed 5.
Make sure all dry ingredients combined so mixture is wet all thru
Press into slice form and bake at 180° for 20mins. Allow to cool before turning out and slicing up.