Convenient Flatbread

There’s no meal I love more than some sort of legumes served with flatbread. Black bean soup or red beans and rice with corn tortillas, dosas (bonus: legume flatbread!) and dhal, Ethiopian injera with lentils… you get the idea! 

There are many I haven’t quite managed to replace since going gluten and dairy free a few years ago, including chapati, pita and naan. I tried a gluten free naan recipe over the summer and it was dry and we didn’t really eat it.

Last week I tried again, after making dhal and not having time for dosas. I found a ‘paleo naan’ recipe that avoided gluten free flour and we made it two days in a row. Our neighbour even requested the recipe after Honey shared some with her as they sat talking on our stoops (front steps for British readers). The recipe needs to be doubled for two people because we got 1.5 medium pancake sized pieces from my first batch. 

While it won’t taste like naan to you if you’ve had gluten-filled naan recently, it’s worth making!

  • It’s delicious
  • It’s quick to make
  • It’s versatile 
  • It’s supple and absorbent when using to sop up food 

The recipe from My Heart Beets calls for a 1:1:2 ratio of almond flour: tapioca flour: coconut milk.

  • I made coconut milk by power blending shredded coconut and water instead of opening a can. 
  • I added a sprinkle of yeast, onion seeds, and minced garlic. 
  • I also used smoked salt flakes for added depth.
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Elderberry Harvest

On my walk home from work on Monday, I noticed that the elderberries were perfectly ripe. Since I had time and the berries were dry in the beautiful sunshine, I searched in my backpack for something to collect them in. Finding a gallon-ish size ziploc, I filled up the bag. 

As I removed the berries from the stems, I began loading batches into the dehydrator. I had planned on using some fresh that night for syrup but it took all evening to remove the foraged berries so I dehydrated all 2.75 pints worth. 

After dehydrating, I ended up with 3 cups, or 266g! I did a quick price check at the place I’d otherwise have to purchase dry elderberries and 266g charged at £3 for 50g would have cost me over £15. Considering the tree I foraged from is still dripping with berries, so both bird and human needs are met, that is a win in my books! 
The recipe I use is by Wellness Mama available here. In the past, the syrups (mostly the rose hip because the elderberry is Too Good to use slowly) I’ve made have spoiled because I use regular honey instead of raw honey. I’ve read that putting in 2 Tbs in a batch helps, so that’s my plan from now on. 

Forgotten Photo Friday: Handmade, Sugar-free Chocolate Bars

Over the past year, Honey has reduced the amount of sugar she eats and now noticed that chocolate bars taste different to her. For Christmas, I chose a day when she would be away all day and late into the evening and made her chocolate.

I wanted to use a recipe that would create a hard chocolate that did not need to be refrigerated, was tempered (and thus shiny!), and sweetened with honey. I found the perfect recipe on Living Healthy with Chocolate. I used the silicone moulds we used to make our lotion bars for a nice chunky mouthful of chocolate.

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Dehydrator Cookies

I made delicious, chewy cookies that looked like this. I thought of them as human scooby-snacks. Using the coconut flour with the almond pulp was based on my cupboard but it turned out to be perfect. They reminded me of the coconut caramel from caramel delights Girl Scout cookies, so I’m planning that!

I don’t have a cookie press, so they were supposed to look like this:

I’ll definitely make a double batch next time because these were gone in a few days. Here’s the recipe from Excalibur Dehydrator’s instagram:

Fudgesicles, Vegan (and Sugarfree)

A character in a book I’m reading bought a pack of fudgesicles, so I began craving them. 

‘No biggie’, I thought ‘be logical’. And so I was. I came home, grabbed some ingredients, put them in the power blender, and created the perfect vegan and sugarfree fudgesicle!

1 can of full fat coconut 

2 mejool dates

2-3tbs cocoa powder.

Crunchy Banana Chips

I dehydrated bananas. I delayed trying because ‘the internet’ seems to be worried about soggy dehydrated bananas, saying it’s impossible to make them crunchy or offering detailed tutorials to avoid the problem. 

It’s not that big of a deal. Just slice and dehydrate. Two and a half bananas fit on each of my trays.

We enjoyed these on our weekend hike and I’m going to make enough for granola. 

Flaxseed Crackers

I’ve finally gotten around to making flaxseed crackers and they were so simple, I can’t believe I waited so long. I was inspired to try after eating Whitworth’s flaxseed crisps, which were the crispiest crackers I’ve had since going gluten free. 

I made a batch in my dehydrator and based the flax, chia, and water ratio on this recipe

Dehydrator flaxseed crackers

Using She Paused 4 Thought’s set up of 1C flax, 1C water, 3Tbs chia soaked for at least 20 minutes, I added: 1 tsp seasalt, smoked paprika, and nutritional yeast. I spread it on a dehydrator sheet, set the dehydrator to the ‘fruit’ setting, and flipped it  over after a few hours when the edges had dried and stuck up a bit. I then dehydrated it overnight and it was crispy.

Next time I make this, I will grind about 3/4 of the flaxseeds first and lime & chilli is my next flavour! 

Pumpkin Pie for All

Pumpkin pie has always been my absolute favourite holiday dessert, the highlight of my Thanksgiving and Christmas plates waiting to be gobbled up.

Over the years, I’ve made a range of pumpkin pies: from the the traditional pie loaded with gluten, eggs, cream, and sugar, to the  sugar free pie still loaded with gluten and dairy. Last year I was determined to not give up eating my star dessert, so I researched raw desserts and made a few.

After that, I experimented with ingredients and came up with this winning pumpkin pie recipe. Not only is this pumpkin pie edible by the widest range of dinner guests, it is much easier and quicker to prepare. The Absolute Best Pumpkin Pie: gluten, dairy, and sugar free, vegan, and raw.

Ingredients for filling: 

  • 1 1/4 C soaked (overnight) cashews. Measurement is post soaking.
  • 1/2 C maple syrup (or honey, if not vegan)
  • 1 C cooked (cooled) pumpkin puree
  • 1/3 C  coconut oil
  • 2 tsp of your favourite pumpkin pie spices

To prepare:

  • Prepare your choice of raw pie crust (generally blended dates and nuts, pressed into the tin). My go-to recipe is from My Wholefood Life.
  • Puree filling ingredients and add to your raw pie crust and refrigerate for up to several hours. If you are preparing this the night before or more than 4 hours before, keep the filling separate until about 2 hours before the meal and refrigerate. This keeps the crust from going soggy the next day when you’re eating ‘leftovers’.
  • Serve proudly and enjoy the creamy, fresh, pumpkin-ey deliciousness you’ve created!

 

Fermented Lime Pickle

I love sour, spicy, salty, and tangy things. If it tastes salty or vinegary, I’ll probably like it. Mustard, hot sauce, vinegar, pickles (and their juice!), pickled onions, kimchi, sauerkraut, you name it and I can’t get enough. An Indian restaurant in town makes very good lime pickle with limes and some other veggies and I devour it in two days following an order so I thought I’d try my own.

I used the fermented lime pickle recipe from India Cookbook by Pushpesh Pant, which we received as a wedding present. The first step in the process is to steam the limes and garlic and let it ferment for two days in the sun. I was a bit worried when I finished steaming the mixture because it reminded me of a faint basement scent…but I trusted in the process. I fermented mine for two days on the counter and then moved it to a windowsill near a radiator for a third as it didn’t seem changed enough. I stirred it each night.

Changes I’d make to stage one next time: add more lime juice and ensure that everything is covered in liquid; chop the limes up instead of the slicing called for in the recipe.

The second stage involves cooking more seasonings and fermenting in the sun again for two days. I used the windowsill for three and think that was the winner. Two days would probably work in the summer. The first photo is of the completed lime pickle before I decided to chop it further in a food processor, and the second photo is post-processing. It turned out spicy, tangy, strong, and addictive. I think it’s great on its own on a rice cake but also find it nice with some blackberry jam. Here’s the honey sweetened blackberry jam, or the sugar version. It’s also delicious mixed in with hummus.

Fermented Indian Lime Pickle condiment in a glass jar.

Homemade fermented Indian lime pickle on rice cakes with homemade garden blackberry jam.