Fudgy carrot banana cake

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I made this carrot banana cake for a picnic at the park this weekend and it’s been getting better and better as it’s been sitting in the fridge. It’s very moist and almost a fudgy-like consistency.

Ingredients:

2 large carrots grated
2 large ripe bananas mashed
3 TBS flax meal + 1/3 cup rice milk mixed together and set aside to ‘gel’. This will be the binding agent
1/8 cup melted coconut oil
1/2 cup coconut sugar
Dash of maple syrup
2 tsp vanilla

1 cup flour (I used chickpea flour, any combo of flours will work though)
1/2 cup quick rolled oats
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg

Handful of crushed walnuts

Combine the wet ingredients. Combine the dry ingredients. Mix together. Pour into a greased cake pan or loaf pan.
Bake at a low temp for about an hour.

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I highly recommend a cashew frosting made by blending a cup or so or soaked cashews + lemon juice + a couple medjool dates + vanilla + cinnamon!!

Creamy tahini vegetable porridge

Good morning all and a quick post to say that I have concocted one of my best porridge combos to date.
I just don’t feel complete without at least one serving of veg with my breakfast. Usually I have a green smoothie which has heaps of veg in it but on a cold rainy morning, porridge is usually where it’s at, so I like to get creative and add in veg where I can.

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Meet creamy tahini porridge with zucchini and carrot!!

1/4 cup oats
1/2-3/4 water/soy milk/what have you
Sprinkle of chia seeds
Sprinkle of ground flax seed
Sprinkle of coconut flakes
About 1/4 of a grated zuchini and 1/4 of a grated carrot
1/2 banana chopped
1 heaped tablespoon tahini
Sweetener to taste. I used some stevia, and a little honey
Drop of vanilla
1 scoop wheatgrass powder
Walnuts
Hemp seeds
Coconut sugar

Bring oats and water to a boil and turn down to low. Add a bit more water/milk and the grated veg and stir for a minute or so before adding the rest of the ingredients, saving the walnuts, hemp seeds and coconut sugar to sprinkle on top.

Don’t be freaked out about adding veg to your porridge! This almost tastes like carrot cake batter! It’s creamy and sweet with a perfect variety of textures.

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Banana bread (or muffins)

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A fruit bowl full of over ripe bananas can mean one thing and one thing only…banana bread. Or banana muffins in my case as I thought they would be a great snack to bring on the plane on Friday (yayyyyyy we’re coming home for Christmas!!!). Stay tuned for more plane snack food posts in the next couple of days; I’ve got a few yummy/portable things in mind.
This is my trusty recipe that I developed a few years ago and is adapted ever so slightly every time I make it. It is exceptionally healthier than traditional banana bread (white flour, butter, sugar yuck!!!) and is just as good, no wait, better. And I’m not just saying that. Everybody loves this banana bread, you will too!

Vegan/GF banana bread or muffins:

Wet ingredients:

2 TBS flax meal mixed with 2 TBS non-dairy milk or water ( this replaces the eggs as a binding agent whilst providing some omega’s and fibre)

1/4 cup coconut oil (or veg oil)
3 very ripe medium bananas
1/4 cup agave nectar (or brown rice syrup or honey-you might have to use a bit more though as agave is particularly sweet)

Dry ingredients:

1/3 cup teff flour
1/2 cup brown rice flour
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/3 cup quinoa flakes
1/2 TBS corn starch
1/2 TBS baking soda
1 heaped tablespoon protein powder (optional)
Cinnamon, nutmeg to taste (I use lots!!)
Optional add ins: Walnuts, dark choc chips, pear chunks. I just added a handful of crushed walnuts.

*you can use any combo of flour you like. I used teff because it’s super high in iron and brown rice as it’s a light flour to balance out the heaviness of the teff. Amaranth, buckwheat, quinoa flour would also be good options.
*if you don’t have quinoa flakes just use more rolled oats
*I added some hemp protein powder to give them a little more staying power, obviously not essential to the recipe

Method:

Combine the flax and water and set aside.
Mash the Bananas in a medium sized bowl and add other wet ingredients and combine.
Combine the dry ingredients in a medium bowl.
Add the flax ‘gel’ to the wet ingredients and stir.
Add the wet bowl to the dry bowl and stir it up!!
Whack in a greased or lined loaf tin or muffin tin and bake in a moderate to low oven (I did about 180) for forty minutes to an hour. The muffins are a bit quicker…

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There’s nothing quite like the smell of freshly baked banana bread!!

Ooey gooey cinnamon buns

20121204-111415.jpgOoey gooey satisfying warm aromatic cinnamon buns; and unlike their sugar, butter, white flour laden cousin, the traditional cinnamon bun; these bad boys are high in protein, fibre and low in fat with no added sugar. The winner is clear, in my books at least!
I found the recipe here and just adapted it slightly. I’ve been searching for a healthy cinnamon bun recipe for ages and wasn’t ballsy enough to try and make one up so I was stoked when I stumbled upon the great recipe!

Combine the dry ingredients:

1 cup almond flour or hazelnut meal (or combo)
1/2 cup brown rice flour
1/2 cup amaranth flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp xanthan gum
2 tsp soy lecithin granules

Combine wet ingredients:

1/4 cup room temperature coconut oil (not melted our the dough will be too wet)
1/4 cup apple sauce (I simple blended one large apple in my food processor)
2 TBS maple syrup
1/2 TBS vanilla extract

Filling: blend in food processor until combined but slightly chunky still:

2/3 cup mix of dates and raisins
1/4 cup mix of honey and maple syrup
1/4 tsp vanilla
1 TBS cinnamon

Method:

Add the combined wet ingredients to the combined dry ingredients. Mix with a wooden spoon until a dough ball forms. Place the dough in your fridge while you are Preparing the filling.

Roll your dough out into a square-ish shape onto baking paper. Cover with your date/raisin filling and a handful of walnuts and slivered almonds, if you wish.

20121204-111515.jpgCarefully roll up. I had trouble with this as it was a really hot day which makes the dough hard to work with but I just kinda rolled and ‘mooshed’ it together with my hands and they turned out great despite a few cracks in the dough. I ended up placing mine in the freezer for a few minutes halfway through rolling and then finnished with the colder dough which helped.

With a sharp knife slice the dough, about an inch and a half each roll. Place in a baking tray and bake in a moderate oven for about fifteen minutes or until turning golden. Check at the ten minute mark for sure! Mine baked surprisingly quickly.

20121204-111621.jpgThey are delicious straight out of the oven but if you want to take them to the next level here are some rad frostings options:

Caramel frosting (the one I used, inspired by the This Rawesome Vegan Life blog, makes a lot but it’s so good just as a spread on its own that you won’t mind having too much!!):

2 heaped tablespoons of honey
1 tsp of vanilla
Handful of brazil or cashew nuts
10 soaked dates
1 heaped tablespoon tahini
1 heaped tablespoon almond butter
1 1/2 TBS coconut oil

Blend until creamy

Cashew cream frosting, this frosting I made to go with my raw cinnamon buns which are also to die for.

Blend until smooth:

1 cup soaked cashews (I had mine soaking while I was making the buns)
1 TBS coconut oil
Juice from 1/2 a lemon
Dash of cinnamon
1 TBS toasted coconut (I had this leftover from the creamy coconut rice I made the night before, not essential but recommended for sure!)
Dash of stevia or other sweetener
About 1/8 cup water to thin

20121204-111712.jpgAlso, they are great leftover. We have been eating them for three days now! Just store in the fridge and heat up under the griller for a couple minutes! Perfect, healthy quick breakfast or snack!

*A note about baking with gluten free flours:

The gluten in regular flour is what acts as such a great binding agent, unfortunately though gluten is really hard to digest which is why lots of people have allergies to it. This is what makes gluten free baking a bit more of a challenge. The xanthan gum and soy lechithin in the recipe act as the binding agent, holding everything together nicely. The soy lechithin also softens the bread a bit. The buns will probably still work if you leave it out, but will be more crumbly.

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Enjoy!

A random and massive amount of meals

My oh my, we have been eating very very well around here, so well infact that even though I have been blogging regularly I have a whole heap of juicy photos/recipes/ideas to share.
I recently just got instagram and i’m loving it for the fact that I can take a quick pic and share it instantly rather than having to write a whole post about it!! If you want to see more of what we’re eating, follow me at henrileee (three e’s !!).
Anyhoo…onto the food.

1.

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Pizza!! Made on a super easy chickpea flour crust
And with some tantalising toppings

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The base was smothered in a homemade walnut basil rocket pesto. Toppings included Brussel sprouts drizzled in balsamic reduction and grilled. Roasted red pepperes, artichoke hearts, and asparagus and mushrooms (on my side only, Ali is a weirdo)…

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We then drizzled the whole thing in creamy homemade hummus that was given a “cheezy” kick with the addition of miso paste and nutritional yeast flakes.
“my god, why don’t people put hummus on pizza more often?!”-Ali

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Hyped.

2.

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Kick-ass open faced sandwiches! If you do make the pizza, which you should cause it’s crazy good, you may just have leftover toppings and be able to create this masterpiece the next day for lunch!! Check it:

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SO GOOD!!! I maybe almost liked it more then the pizza?? Maybe…

3.

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Some pretty rockin porridge bowls happen in our house. Def no boring old oatmeal and brown sugar that’s for sure!
This was a high protein bowl of cooked banana chia seed oatmeal complete with hemp protein powder, cacao, natural peanut butter, Walnuts, cinnamon and topped with fresh strawberries!
This takes all of ten minutes tops to cook, add in the delicious/nutritious extras and stir. I simply don’t think there is one good reason why anyone should be eating those Pre-flavoured oatmeal packets when you could be putting this bowl of superfoods into your body nearly just as easily!! Get into it!! The possibilities are endless with porridge!

3.

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This is a giant hash brown made with grated potatoes mixed with some chopped onion and garlic, flax meal, a bit of rice milk, nutritional yeast, paprika and salt and pepper. Scooped into a big pan and fried. Once it’s golden on the Underneath carefully flip. cook the other side and then cut in half and top with black beans, tomatoes, green onion, spices such as cumin and coriander, avo slices and a dollop ofcashew cream .

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4.

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Eggplant spaghetti. Another beautiful summery meal enjoyed in the evening sunlight!
Slice eggplant and marinate it in himalayan rock salt, lemon juice, pepper and paprika for as long as possible. It was marinating all day while we were at work and I think it really helped with the tenderness.
Drain any excess liquid and place in a fry pan with a bit of coconut oil, purple onion and garlic. Cook till slightly browned.
Add sliced zucchini and cook till zucchini is warmed.
Add to freshly cooked pasta: rocket, olive oil, lemon juice, paprika, walnuts or pumpkin seeds, the sautéed veggies and more garlic if you dig ze garlic as much as I do!

5.

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Still with me?! Hopefully because this little number is seriously off the charts good. I somehow managed to dream up and pull this off whilst being extremely hung over and sleep deprived. Sometimes miracles do happen.
I started by mixing up a marinade for the tempeh which was a bit of honey, a bit of tamari (soy) sauce, a bit of ketchup and paprika and pepper.
Slice the tempeh and place it in a bowl with the marinade covering all the surfaces.
Slice pumpkin very thinly and cook in a fry pan with water just covering it. Once the water is absorbed the pumpkin should be tender. Add coconut oil, cumin, coriander and paprika and fry. Once browned on both sides add sliced rounds of purple onion and continue to cook on low.
‘crumb’ the marinaded tempeh in a mixture of flaxmeal, nutritional yeast and sesame seeds and grill on low.

The first sauce is kind of a hummus sans chickpeas. Sorry, I didn’t measure at all but it was about three garlic cloves, a small handful of cashews, a tablespoon of tahini, juice of half a lemon, some green onion, 3 tablespoons of olive oil and water to thin.Blend until smooth.
The sauce on top is just a tomato chutney I made by blending fresh tomats with sundried tomats, some sweetener and some apple cider vinegar!!

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Once the tempeh is cooked on both sides and the pumpkin and purple onion are good to go and you have whipped up your sauces (sounds like a lot of work but it’s worth it!! And if I can do it hungover on five hours of sleep, you can too!) arrange the garlic sauce in a nice big puddle, I’m sure there is a better way to phrase that but puddle will have to do!! Put your crispy crumbed tempeh on top followed by purple onion, pumpkin, spinach and a dollop of tomato chutney. There is just one pictured, I def ate two stacks. I’m pretty sure I needed/deserved it!!

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“I think this is the best breakfast I’ve ever had.”-Ali, whom I dragged out of bed at ten am to join me in the deliciousness.

6.

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Alright, last one then I’m out. We had this very random lunch, if you can call it that, the same day as the tempeh breaky stack above. It included a cold banana smoothie and raw cookie dough balls. Awesome? Yeah, I know.
To make the smoothie, blend 2 big frozen bananas as well as cinnamon, a bit of honey, icecubes to make it even colder and non-dairy milk to thin. So refreshing!!
For the cookie dough balls:
In the blender combine 1/3 cup natural peanut butter, 2 TBS coconut oil, 1/2 tsp vanilla, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 cup softened dates.
Empty blended ingredients into a bowl and add 1 1/4 cup flour of choice ( I used oat flour), a sprinkle of coconut flakes, raisins and sunflower seeds.
Roll into balls and chill before serving.

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Ali gives a big thumbs up for cookie dough lunch!

Hope this offers up some food inspiration!!! Kind, pure, healthy food=happy healthy body, mind and soul.

I love breakfast…

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…sweet breakfast, savoury breakfast, big breakfast, bigger breakfast, breakfast for lunch, breakfast for dinner. I really LOVE breakfast!
So here is a round up of a few of my fav’s:

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Juice-pulp Pancakes with blueberry compote!
We used to have green juice every morning but the pulp overload got to be a bit much and I hate throwing out all that beautiful fibre, so now we usually juice once or twice a week and I either make muffins or pancakes with the juice pulp!

1cup flour (I used brown rice flour and a bit of oatmeal)
2 tsp cinnamon
Pinch of nutmeg
1tsp vanilla
2 tsp baking soda
2 TBS flaxmeal
1 cup non-dairy milk
2 tsp veg or coconut oil
1 FREE RANGE egg whisked
2 TBS honey
1 cup juice pulp (if you don’t have juice pulp then grated carrot, zucchini or chopped spinach would probs work well)

Combine all ingredients and cook in a skillet over medium-low heat a good five minutes on each side. These bad boys are THICK so you want to make sure they cook through. Don’t expect a light fluffy pancake. These are dense but delicious and filling.

Blueberry compote is simply frozen berries heated in a pot for a few minutes 🙂

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Eff YEAH is all I can say about this. Well, I guess I can also say: thin sliced grilled smokey tempeh, poached free range egg, ripe avo, juicy baby tomatoes, crispy lettuce and dill honey mustard.

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Mmmmmmore pancakes!!! This is a very different recipe from the above.
These pancakes contain just three ingredients. One mashed banana, Two free range eggs and one heaped tablespoon of brown rice flour. The original recipe didn’t have the flour, just the eggs and banana. I tested it both ways and it’s better with the bit of flour in there. Also add cinnamon etc to your liking.
Super quick, high protein, low fat. The cashew cream gracing the top of these pancakes is blended cashews, date paste and lemon juice. And the granola???

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Why, that’s just a bit of cinnamon bun granola

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The star of the show here was the hash browns. Par boiled potats chopped and fried in coconut oil with black beans, purple onion, basil, tomato and green capsicum. The tempeh which I covered in a tomato sauce glaze and then grilled until crispy was pretty fricken good too.
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Blueberry madness!!! This is simply buckwheat groats soaked over night, rinsed and then blended with frozen blueberries, cinnamon, stevia and a bit of apple cider vinegar (gives it the kind of sour yogurt like taste. Ps if you haven’t heard of the health benefits of apple cider vinegar, look it up now!!!)

So there ya go!!! Happy breakfast!!

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Pps. Please buy free range. It is the least we can do for using these beautiful birds for their eggs. It actually makes me physically angry when I see people buying caged eggs…or worse when I’m at a friend or someone’s house and they have cage eggs. Stop being a selfish ass hole. If you can’t afford free range eggs than DON’T BUY EGGS. I’ll stop now cause I’m actually getting pretty worked up as I type.

Hearty breakfast smoothie

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I am a firm believer in breakfast. The bigger the better usually. I don’t think I have ever missed a breakfast in my life. Not only does eating first thing (after a glass of warm water with lemon and cayenne to wake you digestive system up) rev your metabolism for the rest of the day it boosts your energy and squashes 3:00 treat cravings. I also like to pack in as many nutrients, fibre, protein and iron as I can to get a good start to the day.

Hearty green breakfast smoothie:

1/2 cup cooked quinoa
1 frozen banana
1 small bok choy
1 large handful kale (taken off the stem, steamed and cooled)
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
1 TBS flax meal
1 TBS natural peanut butter
Cinnamon (don’t be afraid to really give ‘er on the cinnamon front, it adds such a nice flavour and sweetness while lowering blood sugar levels)
Stevia for added sweetness if desired
4-5 Ice cubes and water

Blend everything up, add the ice cubes and blend until smooth, slowly stream in cold water until it’s the consistency you like.

Calories: 880
Protein: 32.37 grams
Fat: 39 grams
Fibre: 15 grams
Iron: 8 mg

This smoothie pretty much contains half of everything you need in an entire day; including nearly half of your calories (based on 2000 calorie a day diet and half your fat (the good kind NOT the yucky saturated kind). This may freak some people out, but most of the calories and fat comes from the quinoa, sunflower seeds, peanut butter and flax; all beautifully nutrient rich food that I wouldn’t eliminate for the sake of a “low fat smoothie”. Instead, why not use all the energy and protein your giving yourself by drinking this smoothie to get outside and go for a walk or jog before work? You’ll feel so much better for it! If you’re worried about using nearly half a days calories on breakfast, don’t be. You just need to use your calories wisely…You could, for example, have a hearty lentil and vegetable soup for lunch and a tempeh salad with mixed greens and vegetables for dinner with a couple healthy snacks thrown in and still be under the 2000 mark, (what i’m planning on eating for the rest of the day 🙂 yummm)

So to sum up…Don’t be afraid of good fats; your metabolism will love you for the morning energy boost and your whole body will be going crazy for all the nutrients and minerals you’re flooding your body with.

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Cheers!! To breakfast!!!

Tempeh dippers vs chicken nuggets

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I just can not get over how simple and good this stuff is. These bad boys I simply fried in coconut oil with some paprika, pepper, honey and nutritional yeast and dipped in ketchup and Tamari sauce. The texture and dip-able nature of these tempeh strips remind me a lot of chicken nuggets.

I would like to take a moment to compare the nutritional value of the two foods…

Per 100 grams:

Calories:

T-160
C-297

Protein:

T-19g
C- 15g

Fibre:

T-6g
C-0.9

Calcium:

T-50 mg’s
C-0 mg’s

Sodium:

T-4.8mg
C-574mg

Fat:

T-3.6 g
C-18 g

Cholesterol:

T-0 mg
C-55mg

Iron:

T-2
C-5

Tempeh = less calories, more protein, more fibre, more calcium, way less fat, way less salt, no cholesterol, no dead birdies.

Now, that nutritional info is based on store bought frozen nuggets; I’m sure home made wouldn’t be quite so bad, but I feel like WAY too many people take the easy route and feed themselves, or worse, their kids, the quick and convenient frozen nuggets.

These tempeh dippers literally take less then five minutes from opening the package to slicing and cooking. Can you get any more convenient?!?

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Get dippin’ !!!

Pumpkin cashew ‘cream’ pie

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We had a bit of a belated and small thanksgiving dinner last night, which was of course finished off with delicious decadent pumpkin pie…surprise surprise, it’s also healthy!

For the crust:

1 cup almonds
1 cup walnuts
3/4 c dates
1/4 c raisins

Process until crumbly and sticky. Press into pie shell and set aside in the fridge.

For the filling:

2 cups soaked cashews
2 cups cooked pumpkin
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla
4 tsp cinnamon

Blend until creamy and pour into prepared pie shell and smooth out with a spatula. Squeeze the juice of 1/2 a lemon on top and sprinkle with nutmeg and extra cinnamon. Arrange pumpkin seeds around the rim 🙂

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YUM!!!!
Oh by the way. Both the crust and the filling made a bit extra so I made some mini pies in little crescent tins. After that I STILL had extra filling so for breakfast we made pumpkin pie porridge…

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…with left over cranberry sauce!!!! Double YUM!!!!

Hope everybody in Canada had a thankful thanksgiving!!

Grilled tempeh, new fav food

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Grilled tempeh exhibit A…with scrambled tumeric and mushroom eggs, dill mustard, avocado, capsicum, tomato, sautéed purple onion and rocket all rolled together in a rice wrap and finished off with some tomato sauce. Eff yeah.

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Grilled tempeh exhibit B…in a fresh salad with balsamic reduction and olive oil dressing.

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Grilled tempeh exhibit C, similar to exhibit A but Sans wrap.

So to sum up, Tempeh rocks!! I can’t believe I have been a vegetarian for twelve years and just recently started eating it!

Tempeh is basically the non-processed version of tofu. It’s just whole soybeans fermented and formed into a block. It has a nutty flavour and a slightly chewy texture (in a good way), so for those who find tofu bland with an off putting texture, this stuff is quite the opposite!!

With all three meals above I simply sliced the tempeh and grilled it in a pan with some coconut oil, paprika and pepper. That’s it!!!! And it’s so so yummy.

Tempeh, among other benefits, is full of iron, is a complete protein and helps aid digestion (because it’s slightly fermented.)

Bottom line, get some tempeh, throw it in a pan, I promise you you’ll love it!!