Easy Superfood Chocolates – vegan or dairy free recipe for Easter

Our friend chef and nutritionist, Christine Bailey, has come up with this brilliant but simple chocolate superfood recipe for Easter. Take a look…

Superfood chocolates especially for Easter
Superfood chocolates especially for Easter

My children love making homemade chocolates and as they follow a  dairy free diet this is a perfect way to create something scrummy and healthy for Easter. I love to cram in lots of superfood powders too – these are a great way to energise and nourish your body.  You could also mix in some other flavourings too – such as mulberries, goji berries, crystallised ginger or chopped nuts.

For more of my great healthy treats why not get my new Ebook – Paleo and Gluten Free Treats available from my website shop www.advancenutrition.co.uk

Makes about 20 chocolate   

100g raw cacao butter
2tbsp coconut oil
4tbsp raw cacao powder
2tbsp lucuma powder
2tsp maca powder
2tbsp raw honey or sweet freedom
1tsp super greens powder

1. Melt the cacao butter and coconut butter very gently – you can do this in a pan or over a bowl of simmering water.  Stir it as is dissolves.
2. Whisk in the remaining ingredients until smooth.  Pour into chocolate moulds and place in the fridge to set.

(Recipe copyright Christine Bailey MSc, MBANT, CNHC Qualified Nutritionist and Chef)

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Christine’s Strawberry Cream Valentine Tarts – recipe

A perfect  celebratory dessert – creamy, rich and sweet. Ideal for Valentines Day: Christine Bailey’s Strawberry Cream Valentine Tarts

strawberry cream tarts1

Completely gluten free, grain free and vegan. Top with a fresh sliced strawberry or chocolate heart for a truly romantic treat.

Christine is a well known nutritionist, chef, presenter and author of many healthy recipe books.  Her latest book Nourish is a cancer care recipe book written in collaboration with the Penny Brohn Cancer Centre. Christine will be running a cancer care cookery demonstration on May 5th at CNE, Wokingham.  For more information and to book visit advancenutrition.co.uk/cookerydays

Preparation time: 15 minutes
Freezing time:2 hours 30 minutes
Suitable for: vegetarians, suitable for vegans, Dairy Free, Seed Free, Soy Free, Gluten Free, Egg Free

Serves 6

Base:
125g pecan nuts
75g pitted, soft dates
2tsp melted coconut butter
Filling:
250g cashew nuts
200ml Vanilla Rice Dream
225g Strawberries, chopped
3tbsp maple syrup
Pinch of Himalayan salt
115g melted coconut oil

1. Grease 6 metal rings and line the sides with a strip of baking parchment. Place on a lined baking sheet.
2. To make the base grind up the pecan nuts in a food processor until very fine.  Add the dates and coconut oil and process to form a sticky dough. Divide the dough between the metal ring bases and press down firmly to form a crust.
3. Place in the freezer for 30 minutes to harden
4. To make the filling place all the ingredients in a blender and process until smooth and thick.  Divide the filling between the metal rings.  Return the rings back into the freezer and freeze for 1-2 hours until firm.  Carefully remove the rings and place the desserts on individual serving plates.
5. Place in the fridge and allow to defrost for an hour before serving. They can be kept in the fridge until needed.
6. Top with berries or a chocolate heart to serve.

Vegan pancakes without eggs? Easy peasy recipe!

Vegan pancakes without the eggs are easy when you have the know how…

veganpancake5oz plain flour
2 tbsp sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
300ml water
1 tbsp oil
icing sugar for dusting
selection of fresh fruit

1. Add the dry ingredients to a bowl, make a well in the centre and add the wet ingredients. Whisk until blended.
2. Add a small amount of oil to a frying pan and place over medium heat. Check the oil is hot by adding a drop of batter, if it spits then it is ready.
3. Pour a scoop of batter into the pan. Brown on both sides.
4. Move pancake to plate. Arrange fruit on top shaped in a smile and serve with a sprinkling of icing sugar.

Try this creamy dairy free ingredient in your Christmas cooking… (recipe included)

Amazake is a deliciously sweet and creamy dairy free alternative
Try this deliciously sweet and creamy dairy free alternative for your desserts

If you’re looking for a cooking alternative to milk, you might want to try amazake. It’s so deliciously thick and creamy it is hard to believe its made from dairy free ingredients!

Amazake is a non-dairy ingredient for desserts and drinks, made purely from whole grain rice. It is naturally sweet flavour and has a thick creamy consistency. Plus it’s gluten free too

Try using amazake for making pancake batter, muffin mixes or dairy free French Toast. Or you can mix it into your fruit smoothie. Also available, with their own distinctive flavours, are oat and millet amazake.

Try this Orange amazake dessert Recipe…

A light, but satisfying dairy-free dessert for serving all year round.

(serves 5)

– 1 jar (380g) Clearspring Amazake
– 350ml (1 jar) water
– 1 tbsp (30g) Clearspring Malt Syrup
– 100ml carrot juice for colouring (optional)
– Juice of 1 orange + some of the rind, grated
– 1 tbsp Clearspring Kuzu (thickener)
– A pinch Clearspring Traditional Sea Salt
– Slices of orange to garnish

1. Mix all the ingredients except for the kuzu and bring to the boil whilst stirring.
2. Dissolve the kuzu in a little water then add to the hot liquid stirring until thick.
3. Serve into individual dishes, cool and garnish with the orange slices.

Raw Cacao & Pecan Cake recipe (gluten, dairy, soya and egg free!)

There’s a great new book coming out that really should be on your Christmas list.

It’s called ‘Meals That Heal‘ and it’s not only informative, it looks beautiful and has lots of exciting recipes for you to try. We asked the author, Karen Maidment, a health and nutrition specialist to tell share one of her recipes with us…

“As a health & nutrition specialist, personal cookery coach and author of Meals That Heal Anti Inflammatory Healthcare & Free From Cooking, real foods that are also healing are my number one priority.

“Thanks to Goodness Direct us free from foodies can purchase mouth watering delicious ingredients without the fear of food sensitivity associated pain.

“This gorgeous recipe combines some of my favourite super foods, raw cacao, coconut oil and raw honey allowing you to reveal in this decadent treat completely guilt free, enjoy!”

cacao and pecan cake, gluten free, dairy free, soya free, egg free

Raw Cacao & Pecan Cake

Free from gluten, dairy, soy and egg!

Serves 8
Preparation time: 15min
Cooking time: 45-50min

170g/6oz organic Dove’s Farm Gluten Free Plain Flour
110g/4 oz organic raw cacao powder
110g/4 oz organic coconut sugar
2 tbsp organic raw honey
1 sp organic vanilla extract
1 tsp Organic Dove’s Farm Baking Powder
1 tsp Dove’s Farm Organic Bicarbonate Soda
250ml Organic Biona Coconut Milk
170g/6oz Organic Biona Coconut Oil
125g organic pecan nuts

1. Preheat the oven to 170°c, 340°f, gas mark4
2.  In a large mixing bowl sift the flour, cacao powder, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and sea salt.
3. Place the coconut oil, milk, sugar, vanilla and honey in a saucepan and melt on gently on a low heat.
4. Make a well in the middle of your dry ingredients and pour the melted wet ingredients in. Mix using a whisk (electric or hand) until there are no lumps.
5. Using a rolling pin smash the pecan nuts (inside a bag) into small bite size pieces. Sprinkle 2/3 of the nuts into the mixture, combining with a wooden spoon.
6. Grease a false bottomed cake tin thoroughly with coconut oil and pour your cake mixture in. Sprinkle the rest of the nuts onto the top of the cake.
7. Bake in the middle of the oven for 45-50 minutes until a skewer comes out clean from the centre of the cake. NOTE: if the top of the cake starts to burn simply cover with a sheet of greaseproof paper.
8. Once cooked carefully work your way around the edge of the cake with a knife to loosen, and then using an oven mitt gently push the cake up from the bottom and out of the tin. Set on a wire rack to cool. Once slightly cooled remove the cake tin base from under the cake.
9. Dust with a little icing sugar.

Berry Chia Breakfast Pudding recipe and a chance to Win The Functional Nutrition Cookbook

Our friend and nutritionist, Christine Bailey, has another book out. This time it’s in collaboration with fellow nutritionist, Lorraine Nicolle. The book is called The Functional Nutrition Cookbook: Addressing Biochemical Imbalances through Diet (published by Singing Dragon on 15 September 2012).

This unique cookbook, with a CD-ROM of printable recipes, doesn’t just help you get round health problems, it helps you know what food you can eat to counter-act the complaints.

You can make a real difference to issues like gastro-intestinal problems, a weak immune system and hormone imbalances through diet. Recipes are provided for each imbalance and there’s even a chapter on how to age healthily.

I’ve got a copy of this book to give away, so if you’re interested in winning a copy, send me an email with your name and address (UK addresses only, competition closes 20.9.12).

Berry Chia Pudding Breakfast
Berry Chia Pudding Breakfast

Try the Berry Chia Breakfast Pudding recipe

This recipe is taken from Christine’s new book. It uses Chia seeds, which are a rich source of omega-3 (alpha linolenic – ALA) fatty acids and antioxidants. They are great for adding to desserts, smoothies and bars, as well as for this grain-free breakfast pudding. Rich in soluble fibre, they form a gel when added to water or juice that helps slow down the rate of digestion, keeping you feeling full throughout the morning. In addition, the sesame seeds in the tahini contain omega-6 (linoleic acid – LA) fatty acids.

Serves 4
50g / 1 ¾ oz / ½ cup chia seeds
250ml / 8floz / 1cup 100% unsweetened pomegranate juice
2tbsp tahini
12 soft pitted dates, chopped
Pinch of sea salt
Pinch of cinnamon
225g / 8oz raspberries

1. Place the chia seeds in the juice and leave to soak for 20 minutes. The seeds should swell up and thicken the liquid.
2. Place all the ingredients but only half of the raspberries into a blender. Process until smooth and creamy. Stir in the remaining raspberries.
3. Spoon into bowls and serve

Organic macaroni and tomato recipe

The practice of combining tomatoes and pasta did not become commonplace in the Western diet until the early 1800s.

The Italian chef, Francesco Leonardi, who was servant to Empress Catherine II of Russia, was the very first person to record its use back in 1790. But the earliest mention in France is in 1807 and not in America until 1847. Today it is so well known we automatically assume a can of spaghetti will mean pasta covered in tomato sauce.

organic tomato macNonetheless, the best way is still to make it yourself. While records of the recipe do appear in British cookbooks in 1908, it is not as often prepared as it is in the USA where it is affectionately known as Tomato Mac.

The recipe is simple. I suggest using Eunature’s organic pasta and tomatoes because of their attention to flavour, making their pasta with spring water and harvesting Italy’s sweetest tomatoes for immediate processing without any preservatives.

You need 500g of macaroni, 1 can of chopped tomatoes, 3 tablespoons of butter (or margerine) and salt; and perhaps some parsley, salt and pepper to taste.

1. Simply cook the pasta with plenty of salt.
2. Drain the pasta and return to a low heat.
3. Stir in the tomatoes, add 3 tablespoons of butter and melt and mix until the sauce is consistent.
4. Remove from the heat and add the salt, pepper and parsley to taste.