Monday, February 4, 2013
Tuesday, December 11, 2012
German chocolate + fudge = best idea ever. I wasn't specifically going for german chocolate but I'm not complaining that I ended up where I did. This does require a bit of prep and refrigerator wait time. The end result is amazing, though, so I recommend being patient! This recipe makes around 12 small fudge pieces depending on your pan size.
2 c. dry cashews, soaked for at least 2 hours
1/2 c. cocoa powder
1/4 c. coconut oil, liquified
1/4 c. dates, pitted
1/4 c. liquid sweetener (I used maple syrup)
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
pinch of salt
- Place all ingredients in food processor and blend until smooth, scraping the sides down every minute or so. Also, feel free to add your liquid sweetener in slowly and taste as you go. I like a richer fudge taste but everyone has different preferences!
- Place parchment paper in a pan of any size. The smaller you go, the thicker your fudge will be. I chose an odd shaped pan that I have that's slightly larger than a bread loaf pan.
- Spoon thick mixture into pan. It will be hard to spread at this point. Spread as much as you can and pop mixture into freezer.
- Place used food processor to the side. Do not wash it just yet!
German Chocolate Topping
1/2 c. liquid sweetener (I, again, used maple syrup)
1/4 c. coconut oil, liquified
1/4 c. cocoa powder
1/2 c. walnuts or pecans (I used a mixture of both)
- Using the same food processor you just used, place all ingredients inside. Having a little bit of the leftover fudge inside your bowl is a good thing!
- Blend until mixture is just mixed and nuts are just barely broken down. This should only take a few seconds.
- Take your fudge out of the freezer. This should have hardened up slightly and will be much easier to spread. Use your hands or a clean spatula and spread it out evenly and smoothly.
- Spoon your topping onto your fudge and smooth this out as well.
- Pop into the freezer for at least 30 minutes then in the refrigerator for at least an hour until eaten. This is actually best after sitting chilled overnight, but I suppose an hour will do if you just can't wait!
This recipe is nice because it's easy to play around with. Next time, I may try adding an avocado or two and making a thicker fudge. I didn't want to add in shredded coconut to the topping because of all the coconut oil but feel free to do so if you don't mind all that coconut! This fudge is also very decadent so eat slowly and enjoy every bite.
I'm actually eating a piece as I type this. Mmm.
Monday, November 26, 2012
In the previous years, before dinner, we visited Downtown Disney. We have annual passes now so we decided to not only go to Downtown Disney but also Disneyland and California Adventure. The park was so beautiful and luckily not too busy. I can't wait to go back for Christmas!
How was your Thanksgiving?
Thursday, November 8, 2012
Tuesday, October 9, 2012
I love making variations of healthy cookies. I eat them for breakfast, as a snack, or just when I am craving something sweet. I really like these because they're sweetened with dates and taste absolutely delicious. This batch is super easy to make in a food processor. I forgot to write down how many this recipe makes, though! Duh! I think it was around 18 small cookies.
2 1/2 c. old fashioned rolled oats
3/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
8 - 10 medjool dates, pitted and soaked for at least an hour
4 tbsp. almond milk
1 tbsp. molasses (I used blackstrap)
3 tbsp. oil or melted margarine
add-ins (I added chocolate chips)
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- Grind up your oats, baking soda, and salt in your food processor. I like my oats somewhat whole so I only processed this mixture for a few seconds.
- Add in your dates, milk alternative, molasses, and oil. Blend this until it becomes a sticky mixture.
- Stir in your add-ins until mixture is well incorporated.
- Place cookie-sized discs onto a greased cookie sheet. These won't spread when baking so shape accordingly.
- Bake for 10 minutes, leave on cookie sheet for 2 minutes while cooling, then transfer to a cooling rack.
- Eat 'em plain, dunk 'em in milk, spread some peanut butter on top... the possibilites are endless. These things are pretty addicting.
Thursday, September 20, 2012
We've really been trying to make more food items at home rather than buying them. I've been making a lot of burritos, soups, bread, salsa, etc. I thought today I could try something that I haven't done before -- granola bars. These were my first attempt and they turned out quite nicely I must say. This recipe makes enough bars to fit in a 9 x 13 pan (I cut 18 bars).
3 c. old fashioned oats (or 2 c. oats and 1 c. puffed cereal)*
1 c. nuts or seeds (I used a combination of chopped almonds, sunflower seeds, and sesame seeds)
1 c. chopped dried fruit (I used only dates)
1 c. liquid sweetener (I used 1/2 c. coconut nectar and 1/2 c. maple syrup)
1/2 c. nut butter (I used all natural chunky peanut butter)
2 tbsp. Earth Balance
1 tsp. vanilla extract
optional toppings (I used chocolate chips)
*if making gluten-free, make sure your oats are certified GF.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- In a 9 x 13 pan, toss in your oats and nuts and mix thoroughly. Heat this in the oven, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes. If using puffed cereal, you'll add this in at the end with the dried fruit.
- Meanwhile, using a small pot, heat your liquid sweetener, nut butter, and Earth Balance on medium heat until just melted. Add in your vanilla extract. Make sure to stir this occasionally as well.
- When your oats and liquids are ready, mix them together in a large mixing bowl. Add in your dried fruits and stir in. You can just use a spoon for this.
- Lower heat to 300 degrees.
- Place parchment paper in your 9 x 13 pan and spoon in your mixture. You'll want to flatten your mixture down to make even bars. It was easiest for me to use another piece of parchment paper on top and press down with my hands.
- Press in your optional toppings now. You can use a variety of things -- chocolate chips, peanut butter chips, coconut, etc. The possibilities are endless! I only used a small amount of chocolate chips since the dates are sweet enough as is.
- Bake for 15 minutes and then let cool in pan completely.
- When everything is cooled, take your parchment paper with the mixture out. If you find that your parchment paper is sticking, heat up your pan for about a minute and place your mixture back into the pan. Let sit for a minute or so and your paper should come right off! I find that this happens with unbleached parchment paper sometimes.
- Cut bars into whatever size you prefer. I cut 18 bars -- 6 x 3.
- Individually wrap each bar in plastic wrap or just keep them in an air tight container. Be aware that these may stick to each other! I am storing mine in the refrigerator since I used chocolate chips; however, this isn't necessary.
- Eat up!
These things are great for school or work lunches or just a lazy snack at home. They are perfectly sweetened with a touch of saltiness from the peanut butter. These would taste great with almond butter, too. The great thing about granola bars is that you can make so many combinations! This will definitely be my go-to recipe from now on.
Thursday, September 13, 2012
This dish is perfect for a cool fall day. For us living in San Diego, however, we just have to deal with eating delicious fall dishes on super hot days. The days have been very warm recently. I am hoping it cools off a bit so I can bust out my fall clothes!
This soup is very easy to make. This serves 2 very large portions or 4 small ones.
1 large butternut squash, sliced, seeded, and chopped into 1" chunks
1 carrot, roughly chopped
1/2 large onion, roughly chopped
6 cloves garlic
1/4 tsp. ginger
salt, to taste
2 tbsp. olive oil
1/2 c. - 1 c. milk alternative (I used unsweetened almond milk)
- Toss all ingredients except for the milk into a large pot. Cover your pot and heat on medium heat until your squash and carrots become soft and your onions turn translucent. You may want to stir every so often so your ingredients are evenly cooked.
- When your squash looks like it's breaking down quite a bit, add in your almond milk. I would start at 1/2 c. Depending on your own personal taste, you may want a thicker or thinner soup.
- Use a hand blender and blend your soup until it's super creamy. If you want to add in more milk, do it here.
- Keeping soup covered, let simmer for 10 minutes or until ready to serve.
This soup is awesome. Butternut squash has such an amazing flavor that you don't need much else. Serve with crackers, freshly made whole wheat bread, or as is. In any case, you'll most likely inhale this soup like I did.
Friday, September 7, 2012
When strawberries go on sale for $0.99/carton, I can't help myself but to buy some! That is normally how my cooking and baking go... I find fruits or vegetables that are on sale or that just look really delicious there in the store, bring them home, and experiment away. It seems to work for me!
This pie is awesome. There is some prep work involved before you start anything. Make sure you soak your cashews and dates in cold water for at least 2 hours (I used the same bowl for this). You'll also want to dice your strawberries and freeze them. You can buy frozen but they probably won't taste as pleasant.
1 c. raw almonds
1/2 c. raw walnuts
1/2 c. unsweetened shredded coconut
2 tbsp. raw coconut nectar (or any liquid sweetener)
1 tbsp. coconut oil, melted (plus about a tsp. more for the pie pan)
- Using your fingers or a pastry brush, spread a little bit of melted coconut oil on the bottom and sides of your pie pan.
- Place all ingredients into food processor. Blend this until it becomes a crumbly mixture.
- Push crust mixture into pie pan. It won't be the same consistency as a regular pie crust -- you'll want to press it in and up the sides to form the crust.
- Pop the crust in the freezer while you prepare your pie filling.
2 1/2 c. strawberries, frozen
1 1/2 c. cashews, soaked
3 large dates, soaked and pitted
1/4 c. melted coconut oil
1 tbsp. raw coconut nectar (or other liquid sweetener)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
pinch of salt
- Place all ingredients into food processor. Let this run for a few minutes, scraping down the sides every minute or so. You'll want this to be perfectly creamy so be patient!
- Spread pie mixture into your prepared pie pan and top with fresh strawberries.
- Pop in freezer for at least an hour then keep stored in the refrigerator.
Holy crap, this pie was awesome! It has the consistency of a mix between a pudding pie and a cheesecake. The strawberry flavor is so strong and so amazing that it hardly needs any sweetener! The crust turned out a bit more crumbly than I thought it would and I would probably add 1 tbsp. extra of coconut oil next time. Otherwise, this was perfection in a pie pan!
Wednesday, August 29, 2012
I made these cupcakes the other day. It was one of my coworkers last day at work and a friend moved in next door. What a bittersweet day! I decided to make cupcakes for both of them. I used the above recipe for the cupcakes and sort of winged the icing. I used that icing recipe as a base but added things as I saw fit (I like to taste and add accordingly). I also used half shortening and half margarine for a stiffer icing. Mmm.
These cupcakes were perfectly moist with just a hint of almond behind the chocolate flavor. I think that the almond icing complimented them perfectly. I recommend not topping these with a bunch of icing because they're rich enough as is. I just spread a tablespoon or so on top of each.
I love cupcakes, especially when there's chocolate and almond involved.
Posted by Emily at 1:25 PM
Thursday, August 2, 2012
Wow, it's been almost a month since the last time I posted! I've just been busy gettin' married. I wanted to make this post about all the awesome vegan food we had at our wedding, but the photos aren't ready yet. In the meantime, I'll share with you all this awesome pizza Michael and I made the other day. We occasionally get BLTA (bacon, lettuce, tomato, avocado) sandwiches at local eateries so I thought I'd make it into a pizza instead! This is without the lettuce and with added onions and red peppers. It was awesome. I used the avocados from the centerpieces from the wedding (yes, our centerpieces were all veggies!). We don't usually eat fake meat products but this bacon doesn't really taste like the real thing. It's actually pretty darn good! I can't remember the brand but it's the kind in the red box.
Here's a preview of our wedding photos. Chuk Nowak is such an awesome friend and photographer. I recommend checking out his work.
I hope everyone is having a fantastic day! I know I am!