Tag Archives: Homemade

Avocado Fudge

Happy (Canadian) Thanksgiving!!!

It was such a treat to have a 3-day weekend … and to add awesome to that, our instructor postponed our test! It was supposed to be tomorrow, but we still have a TON to learn about Fats, so now we have until Thursday!

This let me get some bookkeeping done with weekend, and a bit of recipe testing, too!

I made my Mom’s Chocolate Chip Cookies, but swapped the regular white sugar for coconut sugar, and swapped the margarine for butter … meh – they are NOT the same!

I also made some Coconut Bars, but instead of bars, I used a mini muffin tin, so I have Coconut Bites! The original recipe calls for strawberry protein powder, but I swapped for the seasonal release of Chocolate Mint. These turned out AWESOME!

Today I tried out an Avocado Fudge recipe. The original calls for 4 scoops vanilla protein powder, but I wanted to try it with our seasonal release of Pumpkin Spice! So I swapped 3 scoops for PS and used 1 scoop vanilla.

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The full recipe was a MAJOR test for my food processor. It made the motor REALLY smell! So next time, will opt for making 2 half batches instead.

Also, the ingredients call for honey, but the recipe didn’t indicate WHERE to add it! So I completely forgot it!! Was a wee bit concerned how sweet these brownies would be, but was delighted that they taste GREAT!

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Ingredients:

  • 2 large avocados, pitted & peeled
  • 4 scoops vanilla protein powder
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder, unsweetened
  • 1/8 tsp sea salt
  • 2 1/2 cups walnuts
  • 1 1/2 cups dates, pitted and chopped
  • 3 tsp honey

Instructions:

  1. Add the avocado through salt (let’s say through honey!) to food processor and process until a smooth consistency is reached
  2. Add 1 cup of walnuts and 1 cup of dates; process until smooth
  3. Add 1 cup of walnuts and remaining dates; process until smooth
  4. Add remaining walnuts and pulse to combine
  5. Prepare 8 x 8 baking pan with parchment paper; fill with mixture
  6. Press firmly with back of spoon; freeze for at least 3 hours (putting in the fridge isn’t enough – needs freezer)
  7. Remove from pan and slice into desired size pieces (I opted for 4 x 6 = 24 pieces)

Will I make this recipe again – yes, ABSOLUTELY!!!

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Takeaway Taco Salad

During the last bit of 2016, I was wondering what I would do to challenge myself in 2017. And since I’ve recently (re)found my love for cooking, I thought that a great challenge would be to test a new recipe at least once per week!

I’ve looked through and flagged many pages in 6 of my top choice cookbooks (in no particular order):

  1. The UnDiet Cookbook, by Meghan Telpner
  2. Whole Foods to Thrive, by Brendan Brazier
  3. Oh She Glows Everyday, by Angela Liddon
  4. Forks Over Knives – The Cookbook, by Del Sroufe
  5. Minimalist Baker’s Everyday Cooking, by Dana Shultz
  6. Thrive Energy Cookbook, by Brendan Brazier

For Week 1, I decided to try a simple-looking recipe … Takeaway Taco Salad from The UnDiet Cookbook.

The base recipe has only 8 ingredients, with 2 sub-recipes with 6 ingredients each.

The first sub-recipe is Cashew Cream Cheese and is noted to be “the perfect dairy-free, creamy, cheese-y alternative” and can be made thinner to resemble sour cream. I’m always skeptical on cheese alternatives …

Well yet again, (author) Meghan has proven herself and her recipe to be great! This recipe makes about 1 cup of “cream cheese” and is noted to only last refrigerated in an airtight container for 4 days … so I’ll be finding ways to use this!

The second sub-recipe is Tahini Dressing and I’ve made this a couple of times before with the Dressed to the Nines Sweet Potato recipe, so I know it’s awesome!

On to the base recipe! The theory of this recipe is to pack it into a mason jar and have it ready to go … on the go! But I’m trying it at home, so I’ve simply placed the ingredients in a bowl in a pretty fashion so that I could take a picture:

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Then I poured them all into a larger bowl, added the called-for amount of Cashew Cream Cheese (1 TBSP), mixed it up … then checked the recipe for how much Tahini Dressing to use. But it wasn’t specified.

So I opted for approximately 2 TBSP of Tahini Dressing and mixed it up. Once all combined, I poured it back into a more reasonably-sized bowl and dug right in!

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The recipe makes 1 serving … something I absolutely ADORE since I’m only one person and live with no others!

You’re only required to use 1/4 avocado … so I know I’ll have this at least 3 more times to use up the whole avocado. But I think this recipe could very easily come into regular rotation!

I made the dressings this morning so they could marry and thicken in the fridge during the day. But honestly – this recipe was so very easy!

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Blogmas Day 17

BLOGMAS DAY 17

This blogmas is coming to you from the future … because I was in bed early with a headache and didn’t get to blogging!

Saturday! I didn’t do much – it was quite a boring day by most people’s standards!

In the morning I cleaned the kitchen. I went to the grocery store to pick up some black beans.

In the afternoon I made the Dressed to the Nines Sweet Potatoes from Meghan Telpner‘s The UnDiet Cookbook (seriously LOVE this recipe!)

I’ve signed up for a 1-month free trial of CraveTV so that I can watch the 1st season of The Affair. I can get season 2 and the current season 3 on demand through my TV provider.

I’ve been battling a headache since about Wednesday and yesterday it became much more apparent. I still feel it this morning, so I don’t plan on doing much of anything today (except laundry … I MUST do laundry!)

Advent Calendar Day 17: Chocolate Covered Almond

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“Sweet, crunchy and totally addictive, chocolate almonds are a classic for a reason. Whether you want to satisfy a sweet tooth, need an afternoon pick-me-up or are looking for the perfect holiday treat to serve your guests, the answer is always an almond covered in a thick layer of chocolate. And this rich and nutty black tea is every bit as tasty. It’s got cocoa, carob and tons of yummy almond bits, plus an energizing shot of roasted yerba mate to add a warming toasted almond flavour. This little indulgence is so good, you won’t even realize you’ve gone back for seconds.”

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I brewed this tea as per normal … water from my metal kettle that was sounding warm, but not boiling. Then I popped in a few ice cubes to cool it further so that I could drink it now and not have to wait 30+ minutes for it to cool! I smell the chocolate but don’t necessarily smell the almond. But this is a very enjoyable tea!

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Recipe Taste Off – Sweet Potato Dishes

A quick look back on contestant number 2 (“Loaded Sweet Potatoes” from the Oh She Glows Every Day cookbook) … after the “Avocado Cilantro Crema” married all its flavours together overnight, it was much more flavourful. Again, as with contestant number 1 (“Dressed to the Nines Sweet Potatoes” from The UnDiet Cookbook), the leftover serving was quite a bit better.

Tonight I tested out a recipe from Minimalist Baker’s Everyday Cooking cookbook …

Contestant Number 2: Thai Baked Sweet Potatoes (picture as shown in the cookbook)

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I’ve done my best to make these recipes exactly as detailed. One difference I had to make between this recipe and my version is the chickpeas … I substituted in black beans instead as chickpeas don’t agree well with my digestive tract.

Again, this recipe was easy to follow. It called to rub the sweet potatoes with grape seed oil before baking, but given how the other sweeties turned out without oil, I opted to omit this oil.

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The book lists a sub-recipe for “Ginger Tahini Sauce” inside the main recipe and it was also very easy to follow. It called for 1 – 4 TBSP hot water to “thin” the sauce and I used 2 TBSP, but honestly, it didn’t really need any water. The tahini & ginger created quite a bit of sediment, so I ended up using a sieve to make it smoother. An after-thought would be to throw these ingredients into the Vitamix to get it mixed up well, and next time I think I’ll use the suggested tahini alternative of peanut butter.

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There was the perfect amount of beans to cover each of the servings, and just the right amount of sauce, too.

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As I posted this picture, I realized I opened my bag of sesame seeds but totally forgot to put them on the dish!!! #BlondeMoment #IWasStarving

This was a very nice dish. I prefer this one over “Loaded Sweet Potatoes” (contestant number 2), but I think I still prefer “Dressed to the Nines Sweet Potatoes” (contestant number 1) overall!

I had a couple of observers that seemed pretty interested in all 3 recipes!

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This first batch of Recipe Taste Off has been VERY successful and I am looking forward to the next batch which will consist of Soba Noodle recipes!

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Recipe Taste Off – Sweet Potato Dishes

The other night I made the 1st of 3 sweet potato dishes (“Dressed to the Nines Sweet Potatoes” from The UnDiet Cookbook). I had the second serving for lunch the next day and it was almost better than fresh the night before!

Tonight I’m on to the next recipe by Angela Liddon and her Oh She Glows Every Day cookbook …

Contestant Number 2: Loaded Sweet Potatoes (picture as shown in the cookbook)

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This one looks great … let’s see how the recipe turns out!

This recipe was easy to follow. It called for EVOO to saute the garlic & onions, but I was low on it, so I used coconut oil (as I have a huge “tub” of it from Costco!).

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Inside the recipe is a sub-recipe for “Avocado Cilantro Crema“. This was easy as well, but I had to use 3 TBSP more water than the 1 TBSP it called for as it was just a little thick, but light, for my Vitamix and wouldn’t stay down with the blades to become creamy.

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I cooked the sweet potatoes for a full hour and they were perfect this time. Now to assemble this dish!

The amount of crema that was made seemed like a lot, but the recipe didn’t indicate that you only use a portion of it, so I used half per serving. Same went for the black bean mixture … the recipe called for a whole can, whereas the other recipes call for 1/2 can.

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Ok … so there was a LOT of toppings on this spud, and it was a bit over-powered by the crema. But it was tasty.

It’s got a different taste than “Dressed to the Nines Sweet Potatoes” (Contestant Number 1) but it’s also got a completely different dressing being avocado instead of tahini/tamari.

I would recommend this recipe, but suggest making or only using half the crema and beans. Also – the cookbook picture has the sweet potato topped with a white substance, but it was not mentioned in the recipe.

At this point, I’m a bigger fan of “Dressed to the Nines Sweet Potatoes“.

Friday I’ll likely make up the last of the 3 recipes in this Recipe Taste Off and provide my comments and suggestions!

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Recipe Taste Off – Sweet Potato Dishes

Last week I attended the Vancouver Sun’s annual book sale and snagged Meghan Telpner‘s “The UnDiet Cookbook” for a whopping $2.00!!!

Then after work on Friday, I stopped by Indigo on Granville Street to view a couple other cookbooks. I ended up spending a few tens of dollars and picked up Dana Shultz‘s “Minimalist Baker’s Everyday Cooking” and Angela Liddon‘s “Oh She Glows Every Day“.

I spent a great deal of time on Saturday morning looking through each of these cookbooks and found that on a couple, possibly a few occasions, they had similar recipes. So what else is one to do but a Recipe Taste Off!

The first match up features the following 3 recipes:

  • Dressed to the Nines Sweet Potatoes ~ The UnDiet Cookbook
  • Loaded Sweet Potatoes ~ Oh She Glows Every Day
  • Thai Bakes Sweet Potatoes ~ Minimalist Baker’s Everyday Cooking

So I make a list of the ingredients for all 3 recipes, determine what I already have on hand, and reduce my list to the few items I have to pick up. Turns out, 6 medium sweet potatoes can run a person upwards of $10 LOL

One of the recipes is already set to serve 2 and since there is only one of me, I decided to make all three recipes to serve 2 …

Contestant Number 1: Dressed to the Nines Sweet Potatoes (picture as shown in the cookbook)

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Damn, right!? Ok let’s get this show on the road!!

The recipe was very easy to follow. The amount of coconut oil that is called for to cook the onion and garlic seemed like a bit much, but it worked out perfectly.

I also had to make the “Tahini Dressing” in this cookbook as it was called for as the drizzle on the sweet potato. And this also super easy recipe is absolutely DELICIOUS!!! Holy Hannah it’s got flavour!!!

The sweet potatoes could have cooked for another 10 – 15 minutes longer, but I’d already cooked them the “maximum” 60 minutes as outlined in the book … and I was starving! Plus it all smelled so good, I couldn’t wait any longer.

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Once assembled, and photographed – of course!, I dug right in. I’m really glad I started out with this recipe as it lived up to its typed hype!

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I would absolutely recommend this recipe (& cookbook) and cannot wait to try some of the other recipes!

Just a couple of nights from now I’ll dig into the next Recipe Taste Off contestant! Stay tuned …

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