food

Raw Paleo Carrot Cake Squares

Raw Paleo Carrot Cake SquaresRaw Paleo Carrot Cake Squares

I have always been both heavily obsessed, and inspired by DAMY & Clean Eating With a Dirty Mind both pages literally make me lick the screen – no joke!!! Those two blogs will just blow your mind with the amazingly naughty yet delicious creations that they come up with. Before I had Anya I used to love making raw desserts – especially raw cheesecakes and I guess I wanted to perfect my own raw & Vegan dessert. I guess that’s why I came up with this gorgeous raw carrot cake.

This recipe calls for some rather juicy and succulent dried pineapple to be used in the base instead of just plain old medjool dates, and as much as I love medjool dates I do feel that they can end up overpowering the taste of most recipes rather than complimenting the overall flavours. The whole cake is packed full of flavour and juiciness – even the frosting stays solid enough to not melt off unlike most cashew cream cheese frostings I have tried out before. In fact I actually think that this is better than regular baked carrot cake!

This raw carrot cake is a total doddle to make, you actually can’t go wrong; all you need is a food processor, a small brownie tin (I used an 8.5″ x 6.5″ tin), some clean hands and maybe a little taste tester to help along the way. This recipe will also require you to soak your raisins in some orange juice and also your cashew nuts in a bowl of water (for the frosting) overnight. It is best to do the same with your pecans and walnuts too but they will need dehydrating before use which can be done by transferring onto a large baking tray and cooking in the oven on the lowest heat until sufficiently dry enough. The choice is yours!

Yields: Roughly 6-8 squares

Preparation Time: 15 minutes

Setting Time: 1 hour

Ingredients:

For the base:

1.5 carrots (peeled & chopped)
1 cup dried pineapple
1/2 (packed) cup pitted medjool dates
1/2 cup dessicated coconut
1 tbsp coconut oil
3 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp Himalayan pink salt
3/4 cup pecans (activated)
3/4 cup walnuts (activated)
Juice 1/2 orange
1/3 cup raisins
1/2 carrot (peeled & finely shredded)

For the faux cream cheese frosting:

1.5 cups cashews (soaked overnight)
Juice 1 lemon
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup coconut cream (solid part of a chilled can of coconut milk)
1/8 coconut oil
1/8 cup cacao butter (melted)
1/4 tsp vanilla powder (optional)

Optional toppings:

1/4 cup walnuts (crushed)
1/4  carrot (spiralized/shredded)

Method:

  1. The night before making place a can of coconut milk into the fridge and leave your raisins to soak in the orange juice overnight in an airtight container, be sure to store them in the fridge until needed. You will also need to soak your cashews in a bowl of water with 1 heaped tsp of Himalayan pink salt. Make sure that you cover them with enough water so that there is about an inch of water above the nuts. Cover with cling film and leave in a cool dry place overnight. In the morning drain and rinse your cashews thoroughly. Set aside until later.
  2. In the bowl of your food processor add all of the ingredients for your base except for your pecans, walnuts, and orange juice soaked raisins. Pulse the ingredients a few times before processing until smooth. Be sure to scrape down the sides frequently with a spatula to ensure that everything gets processed thoroughly.
  3. Add in the nuts and pulse until some of the nuts have processed smoothly and the rest have left small chunks.
  4. Stir in your orange juice soaked raisins and shredded carrot.
  5. Line a brownie or small cake tin (I used an 8.5″ x 6.5″ tin) with some greaseproof paper and transfer the mixture in. Using your hands ‘knuckle in’ the mixture until nice and even. Place into the freezer whilst you prepare your faux cream cheese frosting.
  6. Clean the bowl of your food processor and add in all of your ingredients for your frosting. Pulse a few times before processing and process until completely smooth. Make sure to scrape down the sides frequently in order keep your mix really smooth!
  7. Remove the base from the freezer and pour over your cream cheese frosting. Using a spatula spread out the frosting evenly. Sprinkle over your crushed walnuts and place the tin into the freezer, leaving to set for around an hour.
  8. Remove the tin from the freezer when set and carefully lever out the sides of the carrot cake using a large sharp knife. Cut into 6-8 large squares.
  9. Top each square with a small amount of spiralized/shredded carrot and tuck in!!!

Raw Paleo Carrot Cake SquaresRaw Paleo Carrot Cake SquaresRaw Paleo Carrot Cake SquaresRaw Paleo Carrot Cake Squares

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Paleo Black Sesame Banana Bread

Paleo Black Sesame Banana Bread Paleo Black Sesame Banana Bread

Nothing like a good old bit of Banana Bread right?! Wrong! You mean nothing like a good old bit of Georgie’s Banana Bread! I am not even ashamed to say that I have eaten half of this loaf already and that there is only a small slither of it left (in a good hiding place).

The kids and my significant other told me that this is even better than Banana Bread, that it is just too good to be true – I agree with them. This is perfection in a loaf. It is light and fluffy yet moist, it springs back when you give it a little poke and it’s flavours are intense but not over powering. This my friends is some rather sophisticated Banana Bread you got going on here.

Although I have stated that you will need a food processor you could make this by hand the traditional way but it won’t come out as smooth. You will also require a 9″ x 5″ loaf tin. If at anytime you find that the top of the loaf is browning too quickly cover the tin loosely with tin foil, shiny side facing upward, this will prevent it from burning.

The best part is that this is both gluten and nut free! This is one of my first bits of Paleo nut free baking and boy has it paid off. Just divine! It is great served with a cup of coffee or even a matcha latte!

Makes: 1 small loaf (10-12 slices)

Preparation Time: 5-10 minutes

Cooking Time: 30-40 minutes

Ingredients:

For the banana bread:

2 medium ripe bananas
2 eggs
100g raw unsalted grass-fed butter (or coconut oil)
100g coconut sugar
75g Sukrin Sesame Flour
75g tapioca flour
1/4 cup black sesame seeds
1 tbsp baking powder
1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda

For the sugar ‘crust’:

2 tbsp coconut sugar
1 tbsp raw honey (melted)
1 tsp black sesame seeds

Method:

  1. Start by pre-heating your oven to 180C/Gas Mark 4.
  2. Line a 9″ x 5″ loaf tin with baking parchment and grease. Set aside until needed.
  3. Combine all of the ingredients for the banana bread into the bowl of your food processor and process until smooth. This will take no longer than 5 minutes.
  4. Transfer into the lined loaf tin and place into the oven. Cook the loaf until it is hot in the middle but a toothpick does not come out clean. You want your loaf to be on the verge of being ready.
  5. Remove the loaf from the oven and pour over and spread your sugar crust mix.
  6. Return the loaf to the oven until fully cooked – this time your toothpick should come out clean and hot to the touch.
  7. Remove the loaf from the oven and leave to cool for 5 minutes before carefully turning out and leaving to cool completely on a wire rack.

Paleo Black Sesame Banana Bread Paleo Black Sesame Banana Bread

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Paleo Bagels

Paleo BagelsPaleo Bagels

So it was my protein fast today and I had a bit of a craving for bagels (probably because 1/4 of my blood is Israeli) … So I just went ahead and made some… like you do! I remembered that I had some potato starch that was given to me rather generously from the lovely Molly over at Perfectly Paleo who I have promised to make some gnocchi for (and I will sorry Molly) but I couldn’t help but give it a go in my dough. Potato starch is renowned for making bread nice and doughy.

This has to be my best bread dough that I have ever made – you don’t have to turn this dough into bagels if you don’t want to, you could make a braided bread loaf, and I’m pretty sure these could even be turned into doughnuts with a little bit of tweaking. But anyways, yes, bagels…

I sat there and contemplated over a few ways of making this dough and it was a big scientific experiment for me, I used xanthan gum to add to the chewiness and also vitamin C to aid with the rise.  This dough kneads like real dough, it also rises pretty much like real dough which is a first for me – I managed to squeeze double the rise which I think is pretty amazing for a Paleo bread! This recipe will require you to boil the bagels first and then to plunge them into a cold water bath before baking – but it’s all worth it just to get that awesome bagel flavour and chew that we all love!

So hell yeah! I bring you gluten-free, grain-free and bulls**t free bagels!!!

Enjoy!

Paleo BagelsPaleo Bagels

Makes: 6 medium bagels or 8-10 mini bagels

Preparation Time: 1 hour (plus 1-1.5 hr rise time)

Cooking Time: 50 minutes

Ingredients:

For the yeast mix:

60 ml boiled water
3 tbsp coconut sugar
90ml almond (or any nut milk of your choice)
1 tbsp dry active yeast

For the bagel mix:

1 cup Sukrin Almond Flour
3/4 cup potato starch
1/2 cup tapioca flour
1/4 cup coconut sugar
1 tbsp milled chia seeds
1 tbsp baking powder
2 tsp xanthan gum
1/2 tsp vitamin C
1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1/2 tsp Himalayan pink salt
1 egg
1 tbsp coconut oil (plus 2 tbsp extra for kneading)
1 tsp almond extract
1 tsp apple cider vinegar

For the boiling mix:

Medium sized pan 2/3 filled with boiling water
1/4 cup raw honey
2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp Himalayan pink salt

Optional toppings:

2 tbsp poppy or sesame seeds

Method:

  1. Firstly prepare your yeast mix. In a measuring jug pour in your freshly boiled water and stir in the coconut sugar until dissolved. Add your almond milk and mix well. Finally stir in your active dried yeast until fully dissolved and leave for 10 minutes until it forms a very frothy head.
  2. In a large mixing bowl combine all of the bagel mix ingredients except for the egg, coconut oil, almond extract and apple cider vinegar. Stir the ingredients until everything is mixed thoroughly.
  3. Pre-heat your oven to its lowest setting (50C usually).
  4. Add in your egg, coconut oil, and almond extract. Stir your yeast mix and pour into the bagel mix. Now add your apple cider vinegar. Using a wooden spoon (or even a handheld whisk) mix until it forms a very tacky dough.
  5. Oil your hands using the 2 tbsp of coconut oil that are remaining. Break a small amount off and work into the dough. Knead your dough repeating the coconut oil process until you have no oil left. Remove the dough from the bowl and knead on a clean and lightly floured work surface. Knead for around 10 minutes until you have a nice smooth dough.
  6. Place the dough back into the bowl and cover with a damp towel or oiled cling film.
  7. Turn your oven off and place the mixing bowl onto the lowest shelf of the oven and shut the door. Leave the dough to rise for at least 1 hour. If you feel that the oven is losing heat then turn it back on and heat it back up to 50C and turn it off again. You want to let the dough rise until it has roughly doubled in size. If after one and a half hours it is no longer rising don’t leave it to rise any longer as it probably won’t. If you want a more authentic bagel dough you can leave it overnight to ferment and then cook in the morning if you wish.
  8. Once risen remove the dough from the bowl and knead on a lightly dusted surface for 10-15 minutes until the dough is silky smooth. Divide the dough into 6 pieces.
  9.  Now it is time to place your pan of water, honey, bicarbonate of soda and salt onto the stove and bring to the boil.
  10. Whilst the water is coming to the boil roll your pieces of dough into balls and shape into circles that are about 1″ thick. With a well greased index finger, push it through the centre of your dough circle and begin to spin it around onto the work surface. Flip sides and do the same until you have something that resembles a doughnut. You want the hole to be fairly large and the dough expands upon boiling. Repeat the process until you have made all 6 bagels.
  11. Fill a large mixing bowl with very cold water. This is necessary to plunge the bagels into after boiling to help make them even chewier although you can skip this step if you wish.
  12. Pre-heat your oven to 180C.
  13. By now your water should be boiling. Lower 2 bagels into the pan as carefully as you can and set a timer for 3 minutes. Once your time is up flip the bagels using two chopsticks and boil for a further 3 minutes. Remove your bagels using the chopsticks and drop into your cold water bath. Repeat the process until all of your bagels are cooked.
  14. Line and lightly grease a baking tray and place on your bagels. If you wish to top your bagels you can do with poppy seeds or sesame seeds, or anything else that takes your fancy that is!
  15. Place your bagels into the oven and cook for around 10-15 minutes or until they are golden brown and the inner ring of the bagel is no longer tacky to the touch.
  16. Serve toasted with lashings of butter and some smoked salmon!

Paleo BagelsPaleo BagelsPaleo BagelsPaleo Bagels

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