Just about every week I make a batch of fruity seedy biscuits, to use up almond pulp from homemade almond milk. I posted a recipe last year, but thought I’d give you an updated recipe to show you the variation which has become my favourite: the short version is that it involves cocoa powder, dates and some cranberries. With no added sugar, these biscuits are tasty little slow-release energy bombs to power me through busy afternoons at work.
These go into the food processor:
- pulp from 1 cup of almonds (leftover from making almond milk)
- 1/2 cup self-raising flour
- 1/2 cup dried fruit: I like medjool dates with a couple of tablespoons of cranberries
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- about 3 tablespoons raw cacoa powder (or cocoa powder)
- pinch of salt
These are mixed in later:
- 1/4 cup rolled oats,
- 1/4 cup mixed seeds (I use pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds),
- 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil or canola oil,
- 1 tablespoon of apple sauce (or more if the mixture needs help sticking together)
Preheat the oven to 180 C/350 F. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
Place the almond pulp, flour, baking powder, cacao/coca powder and salt in a food processor. If the dates are soft they can go straight into the processor: otherwise, soak them and the cranberries in some warm water for a couple of minutes to soften, then drain and add to the processor.
Process the mixture until the fruit is broken up and the mixture starts to clump together. The mixture should be moist and hold together if you press it.
Transfer the mixture to a large bowl and add the remaining ingredients. Mix well: I usually use my hands, to work the moisture through the mixture evenly. Form the mixture into a big ball.
From the ball of mixture, rip off biscuit-sized pieces and roll into balls, squish down a bit, and put on the baking tray. Bake for about 8 – 10 minutes or so, until they are starting to brown on top. Leave to cool on the tray for a couple of minutes, then transfer onto a cooling rack.
This recipe is the first thing I have cooked from from Nom Yourself by Mary Mattern. The cauliflower is dipped in batter and then fried. There’s a very tasty orange sesame sauce. The recipe includes instructions for a chili mayo sauce, but I didn’t make that. Instead, I thought we could do with some greenery in the meal, so I included some broccoli and snow peas in the stir fry. This was a pleasing meal.
The other day I was working from home and didn’t have a plan for lunch. There was some leftover cooked brown rice in the fridge, and half an onion that needed to be used. So I slow-cooked the chopped onion, dry-fried some pumpkin seeds and then mixed together the rice, onion, pumpkin seeds, chopped semi-dried tomatoes and some chopped kale from the garden. I stirred it around until the kale wilted. At the latest minute I decided to add a few halved grape tomato, which I stirred through until they were just a little warm. It was a very tasty impromptu lunch.
My partner and I both accidently bought lettuce within two days of each other (baby cos, and iceberg) . So naturally I decided to make san choy bau for dinner. I used this recipe from veggieful.com, which was simple to make, but very very tasty. Actually I didn’t find it very easy to get the outer leaves of the iceberg lettuce off in one piece, but a little tear doesn’t matter: you can still roll the leaf around the filling and enjoy. The kids liked this dinner too, though they’re normally not huge fans of the humble lettuce. So that was a good result all round.
The other day I went to a new hairdresser, just around the corner, for a cut and colour. While I was waiting for my colour to “cook”, I was offered a very yummy Greek biscuit, homemade by the mother of the owner (who was also cutting hair there). I asked whether it contained any dairy and she assured me no, it’s just orange juice and olive oil.
The biscotti were delicious, so I decided to make my own. A bit of googling I found this recipe from cookmegreek.blogspot.com.au. Sure enough, it’s mainly orange juice, olive oil and flour. You make the dough, bake it for a while until it looks like this… (below).
Then you cut it up and bake it again for a while until the slices are golden brown. My loaf was a little crumbly when I cut it, and the biscotti were crumbly, but they were very tasty. I used wholemeal flour, as I usually do: I don’t know if that affected the crumbliness. I also used the half-and-half option in the recipe (half olive oil and half vegetable oil, rather than all olive oil). These were fun to make and we all enjoyed eating them.
I decided that it was time to have another go at making vegan pavlovas: individual pavlovas seemed easiest. This time I reduced my chickpea liquid the day before, as suggested in this recipe from The Blenderist which I followed.
I didn’t start with all the liquid from one can of chickpeas: in the past I’ve ended up with way too much meringe, so I only kept about 2/3rds of a can’s worth of liquid. Then, I forgot to measure the liquid before I reduced it, so I had to just guess when to stop: it’s possible I reduced it too far! The net result was that I ended up with enough meringue for 3 individual pavlovas, as shown here. The kids got one each and my partner and I shared the third one: such parental sacrifice. I tried to whip some coconut cream and it did thicken up a bit, but I have never had much luck getting very well-whipped coconut cream. (Do I give up too early, or is there some trick? Any advice gratefully received.) The pavlovas are topped with passionfruit pulp, kiwifruit and strawberries.
The pavlovas were a little flat, so these looked like a cross between pavlovas and pizzas! We were more interested in how they tasted, and they tasted very nice. Due to the thinness of the base, I didn’t achieve the soft fluffiness that I remember from (egg-based) pavlovas of my childhood: my dream would be to produce a base which has a crispy shell and a mallowy fluffy centre. Perhaps if I had divided my meringue into two larger portions, I would have ended up with thicker bases and some fluffiness would have resulted? I will try again someday, but meanwhile there’s always these pizzalovas to enjoy.
This is a satisfying and very tasty curry: coconut chana saag from Isa Does It, also available online from the Guardian’s website. The traditional spinach is replaced by kale: I used tuscan kale. This is an easy recipe to make, and the only change I made was to leave out the cayenne pepper so that I could be sure child #1 would eat it. We’re getting into brown rice at the moment, but this would be good over basmati rice as well.
I’ve just noticed that this makes two orange-coloured kale-containing posts in a row. I’d better do something sweet for my next post (-: