Archive of ‘fruit’ category

Almond crust ultimate clafoutis

Baked custard or egg things are pretty much my ultimate desert of all time – my tastes have definately changed from anything chocolate to anything custardy! My biggest boy is learning to love all the best things too and we call this custard pie.

Stritctly a clafoutis is with whole cherries but whatevs plums, nectarines or any stone fruit work a treat. This recipe is very adaptable but don’t try leave out the cream as it won’t be tasty. Also turn the oven off when the centre is still very jiggly and leave it to coast for a bit so you don’t get an overcooked grainy rubbery custard.

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Clafoutis with plums and crunchy almond crust

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Clafoutis with fresh peaches and plums.

If you are low on time you can skip the crust or use prepackaged pastry but it is reallllly good.

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Apple Cinnamon Chocolate Grain Free Cookies

Reuben loves baking. He has perfected the art of scooping and leveling, weighing and his favourite part mixing – or turning on the ‘pink mixer’. If we are enjoying some downtime at home and I ask him what he would like to do his response is always  “bake something Mummy?” and the next response “cookies?” the boy loves cookies and how can I blame him. I’m always trying to come up with some protein cookie creation to subside a bit of the sugar hit – some are fails and some are successes – these are SPECTACULAR. My past attempts at grain free cookies have always been disappointing, too much coconut flour makes things chalky and too much almond flour makes them dense but these are perfect.

I can’t wait to make them again – and in the grand scheme of ‘health’ foods they aren’t too bad. Relatively low carbohydrate, completely grain free and packed with protein and good fats. Perfect for growing toddlers and mummies too! Almond flour, coconut, grated apple and egg come together with some butter and a touch of brown sugar. These could be easily adapted to dairy free by replacing the butter with coconut oil and the chocolate with dairy free chocolate.

 

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Ingredients
  • 1 1/4 cups almond flour
  • 50g chopped dark chocolate (I used lindt 85%)
  • 1/2 cup dessicated coconut (shredded coconut)
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • scant 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 apple – grated
  • 1 egg
  • 40g butter (3 Tbsp) melted
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
Instructions
  1. Stir together almond, chocolate, coconut, baking powder, cinnamon, salt and sugar.
  2. In a separate bowl whisk together egg, grated apple, butter and vanilla, then add to dry ingredients and mix until just combined.
  3. Preheat oven to 180C (375F) degrees.
  4. Scoop dough onto tray (I used a medium ice cream scoop) and flatten slightly.
  5. Bake until edges begin to brown, 5-9 minutes.

 

 

 

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Banana Cream Cheese Centered Muffins

So it’s probably no surprise to many of you reading this that I am a massive, massive fan of cream cheese! Cheesecakes, and well, cream cheese on anything and everything makes me happy. Especially pizza! Anyway I digress – these are just a tweak of these strawberry muffins from my site but man are they good!

yummo banana cream cheese muffins cupcakes delicious

Banana Cream Cheese Centred Muffins

75g melted butter (5 and a half tablespoons if you’re visiting me from the states!)
1 large egg
3/4 cup milk
2 ripe bananas
2 cups flour
3/4 cup sugar
4 tsp baking powder
1 teaspoon of your favourite ground spice (I used cinnamon and a bit of ginger)

125g (5oz) cream cheese

so tasty mini banana cream cheese muffins flag

Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius (350 F) . Prepare your favourite muffin pans.

Mash the bananas and add the melted butter, egg and milk. Mix well – if you have a stand mixer you can do this all in one step dump in the whole bananas and it will mash and mix it all for you.

Sift all the dry ingredients together (flour, sugar, baking powder and spice) add them to the wet ingredients and *JUST* mix until combined. If you overmix it then your muffins will be tough and chewy instead of soft and tender! I just sift it all directly into the bowl with the wet ingredients.

Fill muffin tins 3/4 full and then add a big spoonful of cream cheese to the center – the bigger the better I say!
Bake for 6-10 minutes for mini, 10-15 minutes for normal and 15-20 minutes for texas or giant muffins. They should be gently golden and spring back when lightly touched next to the cream cheese. YUMMMM xx
half eaten banana cream cheese muffin om nom nom laurasaur

 

Easy banana oat cookies

Charlotte has just reached 6 months and im starting to think about feeding her solids! These are perfect for the weaning stage.

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I used to make these cookies for Reuben all the time – they are a great fnger food especially if you make them into a skinny rectangle shape so they are easily gripped!

He still loves them now, and if we make them in a bowl with a fork he can make them all by himself! You do not need a blender. The riper the bananas the better. If you are making them for a toddler not a little baby you can add raisins, nuts, peanut butter or even chocolate chips as a special treat.

Saturday Crafts

I’ve been so slack at updating, my blog WAS broken but it’s miraculously fixed itself tonight finally. I’ve also developed a mean sewing addiction which is soaking up any spare time I have !

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Apple and feijoa crumble pie and a fabric covered letter for Charlotte’s room. xxx

Lemon yogurt cake

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My gorgeous Aunty Robyn gave me this cake tin tonight, and to celebrate my pimping new oven straight from the 80s I baked this amazing cake. It’s amazing because it involves nothing fancier than a normal cake but comes out looking so fancy pants!

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Check it out! This oven was in my parents house when they bought it over 24 years ago!! It has fanbake! And a lower oven! Haha. This is a pretty exciting day for me let me tell you…

The cake is Alison Holst’s lemon yogurt cake which you can make it the food processor in less than 5 minutes. Nice and easy, even when you have a crying baby strapped to you in a sling and a toddler demanding your attention 😉

Green Power!

Spring has finally arrived in London, and it’s so lovely to feel the warmth of the sun on my skin again! I’m so looking forward to long summer days in the sun… just as soon as we get rid of Reuben’s chicken pox!!!

I’ve been on a bit of a health kick recently, my sister in law stayed with us for a few weeks and her self discipline with food really motivated me to get my eating habits back into what I consider ‘healthy’. Obviously healthy means different things to different people, but what works for me is a variant of paleo or basically low carb with minimal processed foods.

Ever since Reuben was born breakfast has been a real struggle, but I’m happy to say it’s been a week and a half now and I feel like we are winning! Neither of us has had any cereal, instead opting for this delicious smoothie. I call it a green smoothie, Reuben calls it ‘cah coh’ (chocolate) or just makes his usual hamster noise.

What we blend:

Scoop or two of whey or hemp protein isolate
1/2 a frozen banana and maybe a handful of frozen blueberries
about 3 cups of spinach (we just fill the blender to the top)
Few spoonfuls of full fat greek yoghurt (how much gets in depends on how much is eaten by Reuben in the process)
Water

That smoothie must not have had any cocoa powder in it as it turns it brown (duh).

It’s so easy, quick, and the only way I have ever found to get spinach or kale into Reuben. Don’t tell anyone but sometimes we have this for lunch or afternoon tea too……..

In other news, I’m a bit upset that my husband snapped away rare pics of me and little R snuggling and playing all day today and… the card was not in the camera. Damn you ‘shoot without CF card’ setting! Damn you to hell.

Berry Clafoutis

I don’t think this can rightfully be called a Clafoutis as Wikipedia tells me that a Clafoutis is a baked cherry dish.

I’ve no doubt this would be delicious with cherries. The best variant I’ve made has been lemon and blueberry. Personally I think any traditional fruit combo would work here. Rum and raisin anyone?

your fruit of choice, enough to scatter over your baking dish
4 eggs
1 c sugar
1/2 c milk
1/2 c cream

1 T freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 T lemon zest
3/4 c all-purpose flour
Pinch of salt

Preheat the oven to 180°C.

Place the berries in the bottom of an oven proof dish. I used a 24cm flan dish but you can make it in anything, your baking time will differ though.

Whisk eggs and sugar together until pale. Add milk, cream, lemon zest and juice and whisk together.
Add the flour and salt and whisk together gently.

Pour over the berries/fruit. Place in the oven and bake until the middle is golden and just bounces back when pressed, about 25 minutes.

I like this warm and still enjoy it the next day.

You can see why we only have half a layer of berries in our clafoutis….

 

Paleo/Low Carb/Gluten Free Banana Cake

This

Cake

Is

AMAZING.

I try and eat paleo all the time (that’s another post in itself), and it makes me so sad because I love cake. So much. Until now everything I’ve tried to bake that loosely conforms to the “rules” of paleo has tasted either like a bit of a brick or a combination of wallpaper and baking soda. So pretty much I used to just give up and make evil refined sugar cake.

This cake is AMAZING. So satisfying thanks to the dense almond flour, the coconut gives it a real good crumb, the perfect amount of sweetness (once you eat low carb for a while then you will start to find regular baked goods way too sweet) and best of all made with completely natural ingredients with no refined carbohydrates or nasty vegetable fats. And so easy! One bowl – well two really because you have to melt the butter in something but just whack everything in and mix. You don’t even have to worry about over or under mixing. I actually prefer this to my all time favourite, white sugar and white flour packed banana cake recipe. CRA-ZY.

I’ve adapted this recipe from Paleo Gourmet

3 cups almond flour
1/2 cup desicatted coconut
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup butter, melted and cooled
2 tsp raw honey *this amount is up to you. 2 tsp won’t  be enough for some but I recommend starting with it and seeing how you go.
3 large eggs
1 tablespoon real vanilla extract
80g very dark chocolate chopped or chips (we use lindt 85% or 90%)
4 very ripe bananas, mashed
1/4c raisins or sultanas (optional)

 
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees/180 celcius.  Line a 8″ square tin with baking paper.

In a large bowl, mash the bananas. Mix in the eggs, melted butter, honey, chocolate bits, raisins and vanilla. Add the almond flour, coconut, salt, and baking soda. Mix everything really well.

Bake for 20 to 35 minutes, until the cake is golden brown and springs back to the touch.

 

I’ve calculated the nutritional info as one cake makes 12 servings which are really very generous servings.

Each piece has 9g of protein, 25g of fat and only 7.5g of sugars. If you’re into calorie counting (you shouldn’t be) – 322 calories per serve. And those sugars are coming from fruit and a touch of natural honey, nothing else.

*Disclaimer – I know a lot of people will consider bananas to be not paleo and yes they are high on sugar/starch, and I certainly wouldn’t recommend eating a ton of them but they are a far better alternative than sugar or any sweetener ever in my books.

 

Pecan Pie Date bars / make your own nakd/lunabars

If you don’t know what these are, go and buy one. And at the same time buy 2 x 500g packs of stoned dates (£1.34 from tesco each) and some pecans (£4.49 for 300g… ouch more than I remember) and then you can make 37 of your own (pretending you make them exactly 35g each) for £7.17 opposed to £26ish.

You can  make these way way cheaper by using cashews instead of pecans – I just way way prefer pecans. There are infinate variations, add other dried fruit, add cocoa, cinamin, spices, whatever you fancy. I think this would be a great project for little ones to help out with, such a fun texture to mash up and relatively mess free. And they are making food!

You will need –

A food processor
Dates (I use 1kg of dates per 300-400g of nuts)
Nuts (pecans are our favourite, cashews work equally well)
Any extra ingredients you want – cocoa powder, chocolate chips, dried fruit etc.
A willing taste tester always helps:

Chop the nuts in your food processor. You don’t want to grind them into dust, just into nice chunky pieces that should look something like this:

Then tip them into a bowl (use a large bowl to save on washing up later, one that you can fit everything into), and put all the dates in the food processor (you might have to do this in batches, depends on how powerful your processor is.
Blend/Pulse the dates until they are really mashed up, they should start sticking together into a ball. Often you will hear a really nasty sound while doing this and it is probably because there is a pit (stone) or two in your bag of dates. Usually best to stop processing and fish it out because it can scratch up your bowl pretty bad. The dates should eventually look something like this:

Next step is to grab handfuls of the dates and knead them into the chopped nuts. It’s a bit trial and error at first but you will quickly figure out the amount of nuts you can incorporate into the dates. I just use my hands and fold/knead lumps in. You don’t want to mix too many nuts in or else it will crumble when you make them into bars. At the same time you don’t want to put too few in or else it will just be a sticky date bar. Mine look something like this when they are finished:

Mmm attractive. Insert gross joke here. Once you have incorproated all the dates into the nuts or vice versa you want to start shaping them into bars. You can really make any size or shape that you want, depending on your needs. I tend to make my bars quite large, as Reuben loves these and would quite happily eat them all day if I let him. That way I can have one in my bag as an emergency meal…

I lay out a piece of clingfilm and roll a log in between my hands, then flatten it onto the clingfilm, and wrap it up:

Then the most important step – squash it really hard with a book:

And that’s it!

I store mine in the fridge, I think they would be fine unrefridgerated but I have no idea of their shelf life… after all they are just dates and nuts. Enjoy!

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