Coconut Pancakes

After making a batch of ‘normal’ pancakes and despising the gluey texture of wheat flour, I made a batch of these delicious alternative ones, and will definitely be making them again!  Recipe care of Alexx Stuart

Whisk 3 eggs well in a med/large mixing bowl
Add the following and let it stand until the mixture is thick (a minute or two):
~ ½ cup coconut flour
~ 1/2 teaspoon aluminium free baking powder
~ 1/2 tsp coconut sugar
~ pinch vanilla extract / or cinnamon (optional)
Add ¾ cup almond milk and whisk until you have a batter texture

Heat a medium frypan on a medium/low heat
Place a dot (about 5c piece size) of coconut oil in the pan
Place 2-3 dessert spoons of the batter in the pan (depending how many you want to make!)
Fry for two minutes each side and make a stack in a low oven to keep warm

coconut pancakescoconut pancakes

Tips:
~ You may need to turn the pan heat down to low so that the pancakes don’t burn on the bottom before they are cooked at the sides and ready for flipping
~ I liked them cold with some jam/compote/berries and yoghurt

Categories: Breakfast, Healthy, Sweet | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Coconut Lemon Yoghurt Bread

Looking for delicious ways to use my coconut flour, I came across this recipe from Wholefood Simply’s site which worked perfectly first time.  It has a souffle sort of texture, and the lemon zest really makes it, so don’t leave it out!

Preheat your oven to 175 degrees Celsius
Line a small loaf tin with baking paper (mine is 20cm x 8cm)
Combine the following in a medium bowl:
~ 1/2 cup coconut flour, sifted
~ zest of one lemon
~ 1/2 cup desiccated coconut
~ 1 teaspoon ground cardamom/cinnamon

Beat 3 eggs for a minute and add to the dry ingredients bowl – the mixture will be quite stuff
Add in the rest of the ingredients to the bowl:
~ 1 cup natural yoghurt
~ 1/4 cup rice malt syrup
~ pinch of salt
~ 1/2 teaspoon concentrated natural vanilla extract
~ 1 teaspoon bicarb soda

Spoon the mixture into the loaf tin
Bake for 45 minutes – after 30 minutes, cover with foil for the remaining 15 minutes, so that the top doesn’t burn
Remove from the oven and allow to cool before taking out of the tin
This is great toasted and served with butter, or at room temp with berries and greek yoghurt

coconut bread lemon yoghurt

 

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Bread-free stuffing (for chicken/turkey) (GF)

A great side dish for a roast chicken or turkey without the bread – I have only made this in a loaf tin, rather than actually stuffing a chicken/turkey with it.

Place the following in a med-large bowl:
~ 1/4 cup chopped dates
~ 1/4 cup dried apricots, chopped
~ handful of cranberries (you could use sultanas/raisins)
~ handful of chopped pistachios (or almonds, macadamias etc)

In a medium fry pan, saute the following for around 5 minutes until the onion is soft:
~ 1 red onion, diced finely
~ 2 sticks celery
Add the rest of the ingredients and saute for another 5 minutes:
~ 1/2 granny smith apple, grated
~ any herbs – I find fresh thyme, sage and rosemary work well
~ salt and pepper

Add the onion/apple mix to the dried fruit and nuts
Stir through a beaten egg so that the mixture is wet
Mix in about 1/4 cup almond meal to start with, then keep adding almond meal until the texture is thick and sticky
Place in a lined loaf tin, or small casserole dish
Bake at 180C for 30 minutes (keep an eye on it – if the top starts to brown quickly, then place a piece of baking paper / foil over the top)
Allow to cool slightly then divide up to serve with turkey or chicken

 

 

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Slow Cooked Pork Belly

I always thought there was great mystery to cooking pork belly, slow enough to be tender but not too long as to dry it out.  Turns out the slow cooker does all the hard work and all you have to master is the crackling at the end!

pork belly chinese slow cooked

Mix the following in a medium jug:
~ 2 tbsp brown sugar
~ 1/2 – 3/4 cup chinese cooking wine (from asian grocer)
~ 2 star anise (whole)
~ 1 cinnamon stick

Place your pork belly in the slow cooker (mine was about 1.8 – 2 kgs)
Pour over the above mixture
Slow cook on medium for 5-6 hours
TIP:  During the cooking, check that the cooking wine doesn’t evaporate entirely, but the belly shouldn’t be immersed in it either

About half an hour before you are ready to serve, heat your oven to 240C
Take the pork belly out of the slow cooker and place on a flat baking tray
Score the fat with a super sharp knife, either vertically or on an angle – be careful as the fat will be hot so it may spray out when pierced!
TIP: You could score the fat before the slow cooking, but it may mean the belly falls apart entirely during the cooking, so I left mine in tact until crackling stage

Grind sea salt generously over the scored fat
When your oven is piping hot, place the tray with the belly in the middle rack for 15 mins
TIP: Check after 10 to make sure it isn’t burning – all you want is for the top to crackle and then it is ready

I served this with a red cabbage/carrot/coriander salad and some blanched broccoli.

pork belly chinese slow cooked

pork belly chinese slow cooked

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Watercress & Pomegranate Salad

Quick, easy and refreshing for summer

~ half bunch of watercress, roughly chopped
~ juice of half a lemon
~ seeds and juice of 1 pomegranate
~ mint leaves – about 10 or so, torn

Place watercress on the bottom of the bowl
Squeeze the lemon juice over the top
Add the torn mint and bang out the inside seeds and juice of 1/2 (or a whole) pomegranate.

watercress pomegranate salad chicken patties quinoa

Served with Thai Chicken Patties and Quinoa Pomegranate

Categories: Healthy, Salads | Tags: , , , , | 2 Comments

Coconut, Chia & Almond Muffins

coconut chia almond muffin blueberry

These are a great wheat-free, dairy free, protein packed muffin – they last really well in an air tight container as well.  I have also made this as a single cake, which is easier to get out of the tin!
I’ve adapted this recipe from one I found on The Chia Co’s website, as I didn’t have all the ingredients required, so improvised here and there.  You could use raspberries instead of blueberries, swap macadamias with walnuts or leave both of them out completely!

In a small-med bowl, mix all the dry ingredients together:
~ 1/3 cup coconut flour
~ 1/3 cup buckwheat flour (I used Orgran’s buckwheat pancake mix)
~ 1/4 cup almond meal
~ 1/4 cup shredded / desiccated coconut
~ 1/8 cup coconut sugar
~ pinch of cinnamon
~ 1/2 tsp baking powder (since my buckwheat flour mix had baking powder in it already, I only used 1/4 tsp)
~ 1/2 tsp sea salt
~ 1/4 cup macadamias, chopped

In a medium bowl add the wet ingredients (in this order!)
~ 3 eggs – beat for 1 minute with an electric beater so they are light and fluffy
~ 1/3 cup coconut cream
~ 2 tbsp chia seeds (you can soak these for 5 minutes in 2 tbsp water so they are of a gel consistency)
~ 1/3 cup rice malt syrup – I used Pure Harvest brand which I got in the health food isle of Coles for around $3-$4
~ 1 tbsp honey (or alternatively add another tbsp of coconut sugar to the dry ingredients)
~ 1/5 cup coconut oil, melted
~ 1 tsp vanilla bean paste

Add the dry ingredients to the wet and fold until combined (don’t overmix!)
I also added about 1/4 cup frozen blueberries for a different variety
Spray 10-12 muffin/friand pans with coconut spray 
Bake at 160C (fan forced) or 175 (regular) for 25 mins
Half way through, when the muffins have browned slightly on top, cover them with baking paper for the remainder of the cooking
Allow to cool for 10 minutes before popping them out of the tins

coconut chia almond muffin blueberry

Categories: Healthy, Recipes, Sweet, Vegetarian | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Banana Choc-Coconut Mug Cake

I was curious about this phenomenon of the mug cake that I have seen popping up around the place.  Armed with some very ripe bananas from the work fruit box and some coconut flour (my tiny packet has taken forever to get through!), I did some recipe research so I could throw together my version of the mug-cake.

choc coconut mug cake banana

The outcome was made with the following ratios:

Mix the following in a bowl until smooth:
~ 1 medium banana, mashed
~ 1 egg
~ 1 dessert spoon of almond milk
~ 1 tsp agave nectar (you could use honey or rice syrup)
~ drop of vanilla paste
~ sprinkle of chia seeds

Once you have a smooth mixture, add in:
~ 1.5 dessert spoons of coconut flour (be careful, you only need a little as it absorbs a lot of liquid!)
~ 1 tsp cocoa (you could also sub this with cacao)

Mix with a fork until the batter is smooth
Spray the bottom of a med/large mug with coconut oil spray
Place a square of dark chocolate on the bottom of the mug
Pour the batter over the top and microwave for 90-100 seconds
Turn over into a bowl and enjoy!

Here are some of the products I used for the recipe:
choc coconut mug cake banana

Categories: Healthy, Sweet, Vegetarian | Tags: , , , , , | 2 Comments

Moroccan Rice

This is a great accompaniment to slow cooked Moroccan lamb, full of flavour!

Cook 1 cup Jasmine rice in 2 cups chicken stock (or water), while it is cooking you can prepare the rest of the dish:

You will need:
~ 1 brown onion, finely diced
~ 2 tbsp olive oil
~ couple of handfuls of natural almonds, chopped roughly
~ 1/4 tsp ground cumin
~ 1/2 tsp ground coriander
~ 1/8 tsp ground tumeric
~ handful of raisins/sultanas
~ small bunch of coriander leaf, chopped roughly
~ handful of cashews
~ juice from 1/4 orange

While the rice is cooking, fry the onions and oil in a pan for a few minutes on med-high heat
Add the almonds and spices and keep stiring the mixture until fragrant
Add a bit more oil if the mixture starts to get a bit dry
Add the raisins for the last few minutes
When the rice is cooked, stir through the onion/almond/raisin mix
Add the coriander leaf, cashews and orange juice and mix thoroughly

moroccan nuts rice almonds sultanas raisins

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Healthy Beef Meatballs

Just by adding a few things to a traditional meatball/rissole recipe gives them some great flavour and extra nutrition!

Mix the following in a large bowl:
~ 400g lean beef mince
~ 1 small red onion, finely diced
~ 1 medium carrot, grated
~ 1 medium egg
~ 1/2 tsp ground cumin
~ 1 tsp ground coriander
~ 1/2 tsp sweet paprika
~ 1/2 tsp crushed garlic
~ 1/2 tsp crushed chilli (however much you like really!)
~ 1/2 tsp tomato paste
~ few drops of Worchester Sauce
~ salt & pepper

The mixture should be relatively wet, so to reduce the wetness I added quinoa flakes (around 1/4 cup total) until the mixture was a good consistency to roll into balls
Roll the balls in flour (I used Orgran plain flour as it is wheat free)
Place them on a baking tray lined with baking paper
Spray with Coconut Oil Spray and bake at 180C for 20-25 mins (turning half way)
I served with some blanched broccoli and green beans

beef meatballs quinoa

 

beef meatballs quinoa

Categories: Dinner, Healthy, Meat, Recipes | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Balsamic Roasted Fennel

I have only ever made cream of fennel soup with a fennel bulb so it was great to find another use for this delicious vegetable!  Thanks to Eat Drink Paleo for the recipe inspiration!

Place the following in a large bowl:
~ 1 Fennel bulb (I only used half for 2 people as a side dish) – slice the bulb in half length-ways then slices width-ways
~ A good lug of balsamic vinegar (probably about 2-3 tbsp)
~ 3 tbsp olive oil
~ sprinkle of salt and pepper

Mix the fennel through the balsamic coating
Place the slices in a roasting dish (I also drizzled the remaining liquid over the fennel)
Bake for 25 minutes at 180-190C
During the last 5-10 minutes, toast 1/2 cup crushed cashew nuts in a pan to sprinkle on top before serving.

roast fennel balsamic cashew salad

roast fennel balsamic cashew salad

Categories: Recipes, Salads, Vegetarian | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

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