Tag Archives: Gluten-free

Pumpkin Spider Web Donuts

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It’s tradition for me to fly out to Vegas every Fall to spend quality girl time with my dear friend/beauty professional/plant-based nutritionist/writer, Ashley Diana, and to collaborate on some fun Halloween recipes!  This is our third year and going strong.  Normally, our Halloween Extravaganza includes a gazillion recipes for you to put on a fabulous party, but this year we kept it simple and are thrilled to bring to you four amazingly delicious and easy recipes that you could actually enjoy all year long, so long as you have pumpkin spice and a can of pumpkin puree in your pantry ;-).

Pumpkin Spider Web Donuts, Spider Egg Donuts Holes, Pumpkin Spice Cashew Milk, and a Goulish Martini.

Why the short menu this year?  So many exciting things are happening in our lives!  Ashley is expecting a baby in just a few weeks, she just launched her Marvelous Milkshakes at Violet’s Vegan Restaurant, and in addition to my business growing (workin’ my magic in the kitchen pretty much 24/7), planning for my brand relaunch from My Eclectic Kitchen to Yvonne’s Vegan Kitchen, I flew out to celebrate the arrival of Ashley’s baby.

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Ashley’s closest friends and I put on the most beautiful baby shower, and I almost can’t believe I made all the desserts, including a 2-tiered cake.  It was a jam-packed weekend filled with so much love, boisterous laughter, and delicious food, leaving us feeling like superheros when all was said and done.

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So, let’s begin.  Here’s how it works.  She and I brainstorm ideas, I create the actual recipe, and Ashley styles, photographs, and edits the photos. #TeamWork

I actually make these donuts and sell them around Los Angeles in the fall.  If you feel like just picking up a donut, click here to find out which stores carry my goods.  Give them a call first to see if they have any more in stock.  Lastly, if you want to make this recipe into donut holes, check out our Spider Egg Donut Hole recipe, here!

Hope you enjoy!

 

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PUMPKIN SPIDER WEB DONUTS

Time: 45 minutes

Yields: 7 Donuts

INGREDIENTS

    • 2T + ½ Cup Oat Flour
    • 1/2 Cup Potato Starch
    • 2 Tablespoons Arrowroot flour
    • ½ teaspoon xanthan gum
    • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
    • ¾ teaspoon baking powder
    • ½ teaspoon baking soda
    • ½ Cup coconut sugar
    • 1 Tablespoon flax meal
    • 1/2 teaspoon + 1/8 tsp pumpkin pie spice
    • ¼ Cup Pumpkin puree
    • ¼ Cup oil Grapeseed or almond butter(smooth)
    • ¼ Cup filtered water
    • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Chocolate coating

  • 2 cups chocolate chips
  • 3-4 Tbsp coconut oil

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven at 350 degrees F.
  2. In a medium bowl, add all the ingredients together and mix until combined
  3. Scoop batter into donut pan and bake for 12 mins
  4. Allow donuts to cool completely
  5. Place chocolate chips and coconut oil into a deep small bowl. Place in microwave and cook for 35 seconds. Remove bowl, mix the chocolate and oil together, then place back in the microwave for 35 more seconds. Mix completely.
  6. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Dip each donuts, allowing excess chocolate to fall back into bowl and place the chocolate-coated donuts onto parchment paper.
  7. Allow the donuts to set in refrigerator for about 30 minutes.
  8. Decorate with decorator icing. Can buy it from the store or make it with 1cup powdered sugar and about a Tbsp water.

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Strawberries and Cream with Figs Cheesecake

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This recipe is dedicated to my lovable and ferociously charming nephew, Logan.  I made this for his 5th birthday. He’s a big fan of all things sweet, zebra, and the color red.  With this in mind, I designed this cake accordingly.

Since my good friends at Melissa’s Produce sent me dried figs and the sweetest Harry’s Berries strawberries, I wanted to put them to good use in this recipe. I threw some figs into the crust mixture and I’m so glad I did because the combination of cheesecake and this crust was more enjoyable than my typical vegan cheesecake date-nut crust.  I grew up loving Fig Newtons, so the texture of the figs in this crust is quite nostalgic for me.  I also added strawberries to the cheesecake, which not only produced a gorgeous color and design when sliced into, it also compliments the dried fig.  Dried figs and strawberries together make a lovely flavor combination.

To give Logan some zebra stripes on his cake, I drizzled on some chocolate magic shell, and then decorated it with freeze-dried berries and a dried fig slice.  Not only is this cake pretty, it’s incredibly delicious!

I hope you and your loved ones enjoy this recipe as much as we did!

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Strawberries and Cream with Figs Cheesecake

Serves: 8

Time: 1 day

Diet: V, GF, GFV, DF, SF, R

Ingredients

 

Crust:

1/4 cup raw almonds

¼ cup raw pecans

1/4 cup soft Medjool dates

¼ cup dried figs

¼ tsp sea salt

 

Filling:

1 ½ cup raw cashews, soaked for at least 3 hours, overnight is best

2 lemons, juiced

2 tsp vanilla extract

1/3 cup raw coconut oil, melted

1/3 cup raw coconut nectar (or maple syrup)

 

Other Ingredients:

1 cup strawberries

 

Chocolate Magic Shell, optional:

6 Tbsp coconut oil, melted

6 Tbsp cacao powder

1 Tbsp coconut nectar (or maple syrup)

1 tsp vanilla extract

4-5 drops stevia

 

Optional Toppings:

Freeze-dried berries

Fresh or dried figs

Cacao nibs

 

Directions

1.  Place nuts, dates, and figs in a food processor with sea salt and pulse to chop to your desired fineness.  I prefer a finer crust over a chunky one.  Test the crust by spooning out a small amount of mixture and rolling it in your hands.  If the ingredients hold together, your crust is perfect.  If not, try to mix it with your hands until the mixture comes together.  Scoop out crust mixture into a 6”x6” square pan, lined with parchment paper. Or you can use a 6″ spring-form pan (if you don’t have a spring-form pan, use a 6-inch cake round lined with plastic wrap) or line a cupcake tin with plastic wrap to make 6 tartlets.  Press firmly, making sure that the edges are well-packed and that the base is relatively even throughout.

2.  If the coconut oil is solid, place the oil in a small saucepan on low heat until it becomes liquid.

3.  In the blender, place all of the filling ingredients except for the berries, and blend on high until very smooth.  This may take a couple minutes.

4.  Pour about 2/3 of the mixture into the crust and smooth with a spatula.  Add the berries to the remaining filling and blend on high until smooth.  Pour onto the first layer of filling and smooth with a spatula.  Place in the freezer until solid, about 3 hours.

5.  To serve:

a)  The cake- Remove from freezer 30 minutes prior to eating.  Run a smooth, sharp knife under hot water and cut into slices.

b) The tartlets- Remove the tartlets from the freezer 30 minutes before serving and remove plastic.  Place them on a plate and serve when defrosted topped with fruit.

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6. Prepare the magic shell in a small bowl. Combine all of the ingredients, whisking them together with a fork. Sweeten to taste. Either use a spoon or a piping bag, or a plastic sandwich bag to add the magic shell to. If using a piping or sandwich bag, with scissors cut a small piece off the tip of the bag and then drizzle over the cake as you wish. Since the cake is cold, the chocolate will solidy quickly. Decorate thereafter with whatever toppings you chose to use. and keep refrigerated until ready to serve. Store in the freezer if you don’t plan to eat it all in one night.

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Enjoy!

(Note: Crust will appear thinner when you make it.  I took these photos after I decided to make a thinner crust.  It’s better with a thinner crust!)

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Giveaway with Tastes Happy :)

 

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It’s giveaway time!  One of my family friends, Amanda Kim, recently opened an organic and gluten-free bakery in Washington state, called Tastes Happy! They sell food you can feel good about, using local, organic, non-gmo ingredients.  All of their goods are free of refined ingredients and they have allergy-friendly options, too.  An added bonus, they use eco-friendly packaging and labels!

I teamed up with Tastes Happy to give away the following to one lucky participant:

1) Toasted Coconut Granola

2) Chocolate Chia Granola

3) Cinnamon Raisin Granola

4) Pear Cranberry Spread

5) Pear Spread

6) Apple Cranberry Spread

7) My Eclectic Kitchen iPhone App or eBook

8) My Eclectic Kitchen organic cotton tote bag

(Yes, they are vegan!)

The granola is really yummy and perfect to top your nana ice cream, smoothie bowls, banana crunch pops, #cocoyo with! The spreads are perfect for toasts, crackers, to enjoy with vegan cheese, or to add to cocoyo, or #parfaits.

Super easy to enter. Simply:

(In Instagram)

1) Like this post, http://instagram.com/p/ynSTKXAjhV/?modal=true

2) Follow @tastes_happy and me,  @yvonne_deliciously_vegan

3) Tell us something about yourself

4) Tag 3 friends

Contest is open worldwide and ends on February 9, at 11pm.

For those who cannot wait to get their hands on Tastes Happy goodies, visit their website, www.tasteshappy.com to check out their product line, and use coupon code, ECLECTIC for 10% off your order!

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Thanksgiving Giveaway Contest

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With Thanksgiving around the corner, Gina Ragnone  aka @GranolaBitch on Instagram (my friend and owner of vegan restaurant Fala Bar and Gigi’s Remix), and I partnered up to give thanks to our readers by offering you a chance to win an amazing giveaway!

One lucky winner will receive all that is in this photo, which includes:
-Nutribullet PRO 900 series magic bullet
-PhilosophieMama’s PhilosophieLove Green Dream superfood protein powder and Berry Bliss superfood coconut butter
-Lorna Jane Active by Lorna Jane Clarkson – Nourish book, fitness towel, two pairs of socks (one for barre/Pilates), and a move nourish believe bracelet
-Essential Livingfoods Superfood smoothie mix
-Agent Nateur toxin-free hand mixed deodorant
-Bites of Luv vegan and gluten free cookies and raw bar
-Gigi’s Remix by Granola Bitch vegan snack mix (best snack, ever!)
-My Eclectic Kitchen iPhone recipe App or eBook
-Nutiva hemp seeds
-Himalania Supersnacks goji berries
-Raw Revolution raw snack bars
-TerrAmazon cacao nibs and cacao powder
-Raw Cocoroons

Simple contest rules. In Instagram or Facebook:
1. Follow @granolabitch and @yvonne_delicously_vegan
2. Repost this photo and tag @granolabitch, @yvonne_deliciously_vegan, and #GinaYvonneGiveaway
3. Tag 3 friends in the post, below, or on our giveaway posts in Facebook or Instagram.
4. Tell us something you’re thankful for!

The giveaway contest is open worldwide and you can enter everyday! We will pick a winner via the hashtag by November 14th at 11pm | PST and announce it on Saturday the 15th!

GOOD LUCK & many thanks for participating!

(See original post on Instagram via @yvonne_deliciously_vegan or @granolabitch)

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“Caramel” Candy Apples

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Although caramel apples typically make an appearance in the Fall, I foresee these caramel apples being made in my kitchen all-year-round!  The “caramel” in this recipe requires little cooking and does not result in a sticky goo!  It is simply made from sweet potatoes, dates, vanilla, and almond milk!  They are a perfect clean and healthy snack or dessert that even your dentist will even approve of!

Once the apples are coated in the “caramel” and topped with chopped walnuts and cacao nibs, it will be difficult for you to hold in your smile.  These caramel apples will release the inner child in you.  They are not only nourishing, but they are so fun to make and eat!   I hope you enjoy these!

 

I want to give Vitacost.com a huge thanks for kindly sending me ingredients that inspired these!  Click on the ingredient links to purchase the same ingredients I used to make the “Caramel” Candy Apples.  Click here for Vitacost.com savings. 

 

 “Caramel” Candy Apples

Servings: 6-8

Time: 45 minutes

Diet: V, GF, GFV, DF, SF, SRF

 

Ingredients

6-8 apples

6-8 popsicle sticks

 

Caramel:

3/4 cup sweet potato, cooked

8-9 soft medjool dates, pitted

2 tsp vanilla extract (no alcohol)

4 Tbsp almond milk (or any non-dairy milk)

 

Topping:

1 cup walnuts, chopped

½ cup cacao nibs

 

Directions

Caramel:

1. If you don’t mind using a microwave, making this is a snap. Rinse 2 sweet potatoes or one very large sweet potato (enough for 1 cup of cooked sweet potato), place on a plate with about 4 Tbsp water. Cover with a damp paper towel and microwave for about 5-6 minutes, or until fork tender. Alternatively, steam or bake the sweet potato until fork tender. Steaming on the stovetop is quicker than baking, so if you don’t have a microwave, I would recommend steaming it. Bake at 450 degrees F for 50 minutes, flipping it halfway through. Steam for 15-20 minutes on the stovetop.

Note: I prefer peeling the sweet potato after it has been cooked because it’s time-saving. When it is cooked, cut it lengthwise in the center and open it. Spoon out 3/4 cup of the tender flesh.

2. In a high-powered blender, add the almond milk, vanilla, dates, and sweet potato and blend until smooth.

3. Place the “caramel” into a medium bowl.

 

Assemble:

1. Line 2 large plates or a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2, Remove the stems from the apples. Place the apples stem-side down and push the popsicle sticks into the top of the apple (opposite of the stem-side).

3. Place the chopped walnuts and cacao nibs onto a plate and mix.

4. While holding onto a popsicle stick impaled in the apple, with one hand, use a butter knife to spread the “caramel” around the apple, about 1/18’ thick. Then sprinkle the walnut/cacao nibs onto the “caramel” while turning it.

5. Place the finished “caramel” apples onto the lined plate or baking sheet and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving.

 

 

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Sunshine Cookies

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This recipe is dedicated to my incredibly talented and sweet nephew, Kian, who has a severe peanut allergy.  Since most of my cookie recipes contain some sort of nut, I feel bad that he can’t eat all of the treats my other 14 nephews and nieces get to enjoy.  So I made this special recipe just for him.  It is a nut-free version of a peanut butter cookie!  Instead of peanuts, I use sunflower butter.  He is not allergic to coconut sugar, but if someone in your household is allergic to coconut, please substitute with vegan sugar.  I also added mini-chocolate chips because everyone in my family loves chocolate chips!

Kian has yet to try these cookies since I don’t see him often, but my other nephews and nieces have tried and they think these cookies taste just like peanut butter cookies.

Interestingly, when sunflower butter and baking soda mix, it results in a green color.  Sometimes when I’m in a rush and over-measure the baking soda, the center of the cookies turn a green color.  Don’t be alarmed, though.  I have read that it is perfectly safe.   If you reduce the amount of the baking soda by just a tad, you might not get the green result.  My 4- and 5-year old nephews made a batch last night and they were so small, they didn’t turn green in the center.  At least we didn’t notice any green!


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I want to give Vitacost.com a huge thank you for kindly sending me ingredients that inspired these cookies!  Click on the ingredients links to purchase the same ingredients I used to make my Sunshine Cookies.  Click here for Vitacost.com savings.

Lastly, I want to thank Kimberley Flanary (@back_to_eden_healing on Instagram) for helping me name these special cookies!  I hope Kian, and whomever you know with nut allergies, will find a bit of sunshine in these cookies!

Enjoy!

 

Sunshine Cookies

Servings: 8

Time: 15 minutes

Diet: V, GF, SF, NF

 

Ingredients

Dry Ingredients:

3 Tbsp sorghum or oat flour

1/8 tsp sea salt

3/4 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp xanthan gum (optional. makes cookie less crumbly)

1/4 cup coconut palm sugar

Wet Ingredients:

1/2 cup sunflower seed butter

2 Tbsp unsweetened applesauce

1 tsp vanilla extract

Other Ingredients:

3 Tbsp mini vegan chocolate chips

 

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

2. In a small bowl, add the dry ingredients and whisk together.

3. In a medium bowl, add the wet ingredients and mix.

4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix to combine.

5. Mix in the mini chocolate chips.

6. Scoop 2-Tbsp cookie balls onto a half-sheet pan lined with a Silpat mat or parchment paper, and press down to flatten them ever so slightly with your hand.  You will make 8 cookies.

7.  Bake for 8-10 minutes, depending on powerful your oven is.

8. Allow the cookies to rest on the pan for about 3 minutes before transferring them onto a cooling rack.

 

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Introducing The My Eclectic Kitchen YouTube Channel!

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Greetings, Friends!

I started something pretty exciting, a My Eclectic Kitchen YouTube channel!  This channel will be linked to my cookbook app and website!

I am very excited about the release of the ‘My Eclectic Kitchen’ app this month as well as my newly established YouTube channel!

Check out my first videos, below, and feel free to subscribe!

Note: If the picture quality is blurry for you, adjust the viewing settings. It can be watched in HD.

 

How to Make Banana Crunch Pops

 

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How To Line A Loaf Pan With Parchment Paper

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Spring and Easter Sweets and Treats!

Some of the things that I enjoy most about Spring are that we have more daylight, warmer weather, fruit trees and flowers in bloom, and Easter. In celebration of Easter or the magical wonders of the Spring season, I want to share a few of my favorite sweets and treats that have been proven to please everyone, vegans and non-vegans alike!

The first dessert is my husband’s favorite.  It is reminiscent of a New York-style cheesecake– my Vanilla Bean “Cheese”cake with Mixed Berry Compote.  It looks sinfully delicious and, yet, there is nothing really sinful about it.  Unlike the original, cholesterol-ridden version of this “cheese” cake, my version is vegan, gluten-free, and raw.  It does not contain any cholesterol and its powerful vitamins, minerals, and enzymes still remain intact.  Eating a slice of this is like eating a healthy handful of nuts and fruit.

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Another favorite of mine is my Nutty Creamy Chocolate Cake.  My non-vegan friends are awestruck when they take a bite into this silky smooth piece of deliciousness– they cannot believe there is not one drop of dairy in this luscious, creamy cake.  I have been told many times that this tastes like a decadent truffle cake.  At some point, I may even change the name to “Chocolate Truffle Cake” since it is so fitting.

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These Dreamy Creamy Vegan Berry and Vanilla “Cheese”cake Tartlets are the size of cupcakes, and they are even better than cupcakes.  The combination of the vanilla and the berry cream with the sweet date and nut crust in these tartlets is incredible.  I gave these as gifts to some friends who aren’t vegan, and they raved about how amazingly delicious they are.
photo-117As you can probably tell from my favorite sweets so far, raw vegan cashew “cheese”cakes, are high up on my list.  I have yet to meet one person who doesn’t appreciate the silky smooth, decadent, and delicious vegan “cheese”cake!  This next recipe is basically a raw vegan cashew-pistachio “cheese”cake with a whisper of rose and kiss of cardamom.  I made this beauty, filled with popular Middle Eastern flavors: rose, pistachio, and cardamom– for my in-laws who are Persian-American.  They not only were impressed by the aesthetics, but loved the flavors and textures.  I call this a Creamy Pistachio Rose Dreamcake.

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I’m a big lover of chocolate, so of course, I need to add a chocolate brownie to my list of favorites.  These are my favorite Black Bean Brownies.  If you make them for your loved ones, play the guessing game.  Have them try your vegan and gluten-free brownie first, then tell them to guess what the secret ingredient is!  Best served chilled as a stand-alone treat or served with a scoop of vanilla ice “cream” for brownie a la mode.
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My next favorite are Raw Goji-, Cranberry, and Coconut Truffles.  They are the quickest to make, and they go fast–either in your fridge at home (by you) or displayed in front of a crowd of guests.  These truffles are chewy with the perfect amount of sweetness from coconut, coconut nectar, cranberries and goji berries.  I am shocked that the pickiest of eaters will pick one of these up and go back for seconds and thirds.  These are great to give out as gifts, too, packaged in recycled jars, tied with pretty ribbon.

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Thin Mint Cookies are loved by all.  My friends and family, and my readers who have made them for their families have told me they are even better than the original Girl Scout version.  Within the snappy chocolate coating lays a crisp chocolate mint cookie.  They are minty fresh.  If you and your loved ones enjoy mint and chocolate, you will be in heaven with these cookies!

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My Yayfair Chocolate Candy are a delight, and are a lot of fun to make, too.  This is my vegan version of what used to be one of my favorite nuts and chews candies from See’s Candy Store– the Mayfair candy.  This recipe tastes like the real thing, only it’s not bad for you.  No cholesterol or refined sugar.  It’s simply chocolate candy with dried cherry, walnuts, hemp seeds and vegan date “caramel.”  It’s raw and such a wonderful, guilt-free treat!          IMG_6522

Last but not least, everyone’s favorite, the classic Chocolate Chip Cookie or Chocolate Chai Cookie.  These are easy to make and they are divine.  Amazingly, the texture of these cookies is soft, like a Keebler soft-batch cookie. The key ingredients are the garbanzo flour and coconut sugar– the combination of the two helps achieve its soft, chewy texture.  I love the flavor of the Chocolate Chai Cookie and must warn you that they are addicting.  Since they are so popular among my readers and within my circle of friends and family, I usually give these cookies as gifts.

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I hope this post has given you some good ideas for what to cook up this weekend!  If you haven’t tried any of these sweets and treats, a good time to try them is now!

I love seeing your My Eclectic Kitchen recreations!  Please continue to tag #myeclectickitchen and @yvonne_deliciously_vegan on Instagram, or tag ‘My Eclectic Kitchen’ on Facebook when you post photos of your re-creations!  Who knows, I may feature your post on Instagram and Facebook!

One last thing, if you are interesting in an Instagram shout-out, don’t forget to enter my Instagram Shout-out Contest!  Ends this Friday, April 18th.  Simply:

1) repost any of my photos

2) follow @yvonne_deliciously_vegan and tag #YvonnesShoutoutComp

I hope you are having a wonderful week so far!

In Love and Health,

Yvonne

 

 

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Chocolate Candy With Dried Cherry, Walnut, Hemp Seeds and Vegan Caramel

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In the United States, there is a popular candy store called See’s Candies, which can pretty much be found in any busy shopping mall.  Growing up, my parents would receive many boxes of See’s Candies Assorted Nuts and Chews chocolates for the holidays, hide them, and every so often take a box out for all their six children to enjoy.

Looking back, I can see how being the youngest in my family could have shaped my taste in chocolate candy, specifically See’s Candies chocolates. My sisters, older and bigger than me, would move swiftly toward the chocolate box and strategically choose candies of their choice leaving me with the undesirable ones.  This explains my exuberant passion for the candies that my sisters considered revolting.  For example, just this past holiday season, I noticed that my two favorite candies from See’s Candies happened to be the ones that were left in the box and untouched–Scotchmallows and Mayfair chocolates.  The Scotchmallows are “a layer of caramel with a layer of honey marshmallow covered in rich, dark chocolate.”   The Mayfair chocolates are “creamy soft center with walnuts, cherries and vanilla covered in smooth milk chocolate.”  I don’t quite understand why my sisters find those two flavors undesirable.   To me, they are awfully delicious and fun to eat!  In my pre-vegan days, I would stop in at See’s Candies just to buy one piece of either the Scotchmallow or Mayfair chocolate.  So good!

Most recently, I went to the mall and when I walked past See’s Candies I was reminded of my beloved Mayfair candy.  Since See’s Candies does not offer a vegan variety, I decided to create my own version.  I’m calling it Yayfair because my name starts with a ‘Y’ and I like the word “yay!”   This recipe tastes like the real thing, only it’s not bad for you.  No cholesterol or refined sugar.  It’s simply chocolate candy with dried cherry, walnuts, hemp seeds and vegan date “caramel.”  It’s raw and such a nice, guilt-free treat!

Here’s the recipe. I hope you enjoy it!

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Yayfair Chocolate Candy

Makes 9 – 10 candies

V, GF, GFV, ND, R

Ingredients

Filling:

4 large and soft medjool dates (if not soft, soak in filtered water overnight in the refrigerator and drain the water), pitted

1  1/2 tablespoon almond milk

1/2 tsp almond extract (or vanilla extract, no alcohol)

pinch fine sea salt

1/2 cup dried cherries

1 cup walnuts

2 Tbsp hemp seeds

 

Coating:

7 Tbsp cacao powder

3 Tbsp coconut oil, melted

3 Tbsp cocoa butter, melted

1 Tbsp maple syrup

4 drops liquid Stevia and more, as needed

 

Decoration:

1/4 tsp hemp seeds

 

Directions

1. Place the dates, almond milk, sea salt, and almond extract (or vanilla extract) in the food processor. Process until smoothish, somewhat like caramel. Taste the mixture. Adjust the almond (or vanilla flavor), if you wish.

2. To the food processor, add the walnuts, dried cherries and hemp seeds and pulse a few times. You will still want texture from the nuts and cherries, so be careful not to over-process.

3. a) Scoop mixture into a silicone ice cube tray, adding just enough of the mixture to each mold to make a cube with equal sides. Flatten and level the top with your fingers.

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b) Alternatively, if you don’t have a silicone ice cube tray, line a loaf (bread) pan with parchment, using cooking spray to keep the parchment in place. Add the mixture to half of the pan and flatten, smooth out the top.

4. Place the candies in the freezer until frozen, about 3-4 hours or overnight.

If you are placing the candies in a loaf pan, remove from the freezer after 30 minutes and cut into 9 – 1  1/2 inch cubes, or however many cubes you wish.   Place back in the freezer to freeze completely.

5. When the candies are almost frozen, make the chocolate coating. In a small bowl, mix together all of the coating ingredients and adjust sweetness by either adding more stevia or maple syrup.

6. Prepare for coating the candies with chocolate:

a) Line a small sheet tray (1/4 sheet tray) with parchment paper.

b) Take out a fork and a large spoon to assist you with coating the candies with chocolate.

c) Remove the candies from the freezer and quickly punch out the candies from the silicone ice cube mold.  Alternatively, remove the cubes from the bread pan and parchment.

Note: When you start coating the candies, you will need to move quickly since the frozen candy will freeze the chocolate almost immediately.

7. If you’re right-handed, hold the fork in your left hand (opposite if you’re a lefty). Place the candy on the fork. Hold the spoon with your left hand. Quickly dunk the bottom of the candy in the chocolate. Wipe the bottom with the back of the spoon and very quickly, spoon chocolate all over to coat the candy. Remember, to work quickly or you will see layers of chocolate coating. Quickly, place the candy on the lined sheet pan and sprinkle hemp seeds lightly on top of the candy before the chocolate sets. Repeat until you are done coating the candies with chocolate. If the coating chocolate in the bowl starts to set, gently heat it so it’s easier to work with. If you run out of chocolate, make a little more.

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8. Store in refrigerator to set and until ready to serve.

Enjoy!

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Persimmon Cookies and Muffins!

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Have you ever used one batter to make cookies and muffins?  Before today, I didn’t think that was possible.  Well, guess what I did?  I made persimmon cookies and persimmon muffins using the same exact batter!  Sounds too good to be true?  I’m telling you…it can be done!  And, with this recipe both pastries turned out great!

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If you have a persimmon tree, just inherited a huge bounty of persimmons like I did, or can find them at the market, I recommend making these cookies and/or muffins.  Your family, friends, and coworkers will love you for it.

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Last weekend at my twin nephews’ birthday party, I shared these cookies with guests while discreetly conducting a taste test.  The common reaction was, “this doesn’t taste like a vegan and gluten-free cookie.  It’s delicious!  Can I have another one?”  It is these types of responses that warm my heart and make me happy doing what I do.

These are some of the best vegan and gluten-free cookies and muffins that I have had in a while. They’re not the crispy type of cookies or muffins.  Rather, they are actually quite moist from the addition of the applesauce and persimmon.

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If you love the taste and smell of the holidays, you sure will be pleased with these.  While baking, your house will be filled with the most intoxicating holiday spice aroma.  You can taste all of the warm and familiar flavors of the season and the sweetness of the raisins, while getting a nice crunch from the walnuts.

I hope you and your loved ones enjoy them as much as my loved ones and I do!

Persimmon Cookies and/or  Muffins

Makes 27-28 cookies or about 12 muffins

Ingredients

2 cups oat flour (gluten-free) or 2 heaping cups of rolled oats (gluten-free)

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 cup coconut oil

1 cup coconut sugar

1 tbsp chia seeds

3 tbsp applesauce, unsweetened

1 cup persimmon pulp (from ripe, soft persimmons)

1/2 tsp vanilla extract(no alcohol)

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp ground nutmeg

1/2 tsp ground cloves

1 cup raisins

1 cup walnuts, roughly chopped

 

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F

2. If you don’t have oat flour and only rolled oats, place a heaping cup of rolled oats into a high-powered blender.  Blend on high until you have a flour-like consistency.  Remeasure the flour to ensure you have 2 cups exactly. Place in a large bowl. Add the baking powder and baking soda to the oat flour, mix well.  Set aside.

3. You will need to use the same blender (don’t need to wash it), just remove any remaining oat flour and save to use later.  Place the coconut oil, coconut sugar, chia seeds, applesauce, persimmon pulp, vanilla, sea salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves into the blender and blend until fully incorporated and chia seeds are pulverized. Stop the blender maybe 2 times to scrape the sides of the blender, ensuring all ingredients are getting blended together.

4. Using a rubber spatula, add the wet mixture to the dry mixture and mix well.  Fold in the raisins and walnuts.

5. On a half sheet pan lined with parchment or a silicon liner, scoop 1 ounce (or 2 tbsp)-sized cookies.  Press down on the cookies with your hand to flatten into a cookie shape, or use the side of a rubber spatula to flatten since they are a bit sticky.

**alternatively, add 2 scoops (or 4 tbsp) of batter to cupcake cake liners. Make sure to press down and flatten the muffin.

Bake cookies for 12-15 minutes.  Bake muffins for 25-28 minutes.  Repeat until all cookies and muffins are baked.  Cool cookies and muffins on a cooling rack. Enjoy!

 

 

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