Sweentened Condensed Cashew Milk (Paleo, Vegan)

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Sweentened Condensed Cashew Milk (Paleo, Vegan)

For the first time this week I made herbal coffee from scratch and wanted a non-dairy, non-dairy creamer solution. I didn’t think my sweetened condensed hemp milk would do the trick because the herbal coffee needed an extra creamy option. Because I use cashews in my most creamy non-recipes, u thought they would do the trick and my sweetened condensed cashew milk came to be.

My Foodie-in-Crime came upon it in the fridge and asked what it was. His eyes lit up and he used it to pour over blueberries and his berries and cream was delicious. He also added a bit of oatmeal and an instant, delicious breakfast / snack was born. I used some in my Portuguese Sweet Bread recipe because I was out of my other homemade milks and it was a nice add.

As you can see, my slightly sweet alternative to half-and-half is as versatile as your imagination, so give it a try and see what you come up with and please leave comments on Hou use it or plan to use it.
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Sweentened Condensed Cashew Milk

2 cups filtered water
1 cup cashews, soaked & drained
4-6 Medjool dates, pitted

Soak cashews either overnight with a pinch of sea salt or place then in a saucepan pot with enough water to cover them & boil for about 8 minutes.

Drain cashews. Place all ingredients in a high speed blender. Blend until smooth & creamy. I use a Blendtec & the “Whole Juice” setting. Enjoy!

Don’t forget to leave a comment about how you use this versatile recipe.

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Mãe’s Azorean-style Pancakes Paleofied (Vegan version also)

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Azorean-style Pancakes (Paleo & a Vegan version)

Yesterday I made a berry jam in my bread machine and thought it would be lovely to enjoy it on a Saturday morning with the Mini-Foodies as I had often enjoyed homemade jam with my Mãe’s  (Mom’s) Azorean-style pancakes. And so this morning in honor of my Mãe and Valentine’s Day, I made her pancakes to share with her grandbabies. They were a hit!

Because one of my dearest friends is vegan and happens to be my Mãe’s goddaughter, I like to try out vegan versions of my recipes and recipes I modify from my Mãe’s kitchen. I did so with this one. The flavor is excellent and Mini-Foodie approved, BUT they are a bit more difficult to flip than the paleo version which contains an egg.

These are Azorean-style which means they are not fluffy like the traditional American flap jack. I’ve never been a fan of the American version because they are too thick and I always felt like they are too dry “requiring” too much syrup to make them palatable. This is my personal bias and I prefer a more xrepe-like pancake.

What I like about these is that they are thin, flexible and can be enjoyed with jam, nut or coconut butter, fruit or good ole maple syrup or even honey. If you wish to eat them in a savory manner, then use about 2 tablespoons of sweetener rather than 4-5.

If you like a fluffier pancake, then add about 1/2 teaspoon baking soda and less salt so they rise a bit as they cook.

Ingredients
1 cup milk (nut, coconut, hemp…water works too)
1 egg or flax egg
4-5 Tbsp coconut sugar, honey or maple syrup
2 Tbsp avocado oil
1 cup paleo all-purpose flour (or other safe-for-you flour)
1/2 tsp sea salt

Method
If making the vegan version, make flax egg.
Heat griddle. Mix wet ingredients. Add dry ingredients wet. Whisk or mix with a fork until lumps are gone. Make pancakes on griddle. Keep an eye on them as they brown quickly. Enjoy warm or cool with your favorite topping.

Paleo Low Sugar Marshmallows

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In this recipe inspired by childhood memories and Wellness Mama, I’ve made a gooey marshmallow that has about half the sugar content of a conventional recipe.

While I haven’t yet mastered the art of beautiful marshmallows, I think this recipe is a winner in the flavor and texture categories. All 3 Mini-Foodies agree and I don’t feel bad about sharing this treat with them because I use a nutritionally dense gelatin and less sweetener than most recipes. It’s a win-win.image

1 1/4  cup water, warm
1 tbsp Marshmallow Root
4 tbsp grass fed gelatin
1/2 cup honey (or maple syrup)
1 tsp vanilla bean powder*

Grease an 8×8 inch baking dish with coconut oil.

Combine 1 cup warm water with 1 tbsp Marshmallow Root. Allow to sit 5 minutes. Stir & strain.

Pour ½ cup marshmallow water into stand mixer. Add gelatin. Whisk slightly to incorporate & to avoid lumps. Set aside.

Pour remaining marshmallow water & honey (or maple syrup) into a small saucepan. Add vanilla (&/or cacao powder). Slowly bring mixture to a boil; allow to reach 240 degrees or boil while stirring constantly for 8 minutes.

Slowly pour sweetened marshmallow water into hardened gelatin mix. Turn mixer on at medium as liquid is added, then turn to high. Whip for 8-10 minutes or until a stiff cream consistency with some peaks form.

Pour whipped marshmallows into prepared pan.  Smooth evenly. Or use for rice or millet puff treats.

Let sit until set. (In my house, the taste testers get to them as soon as they can.)

Cut in pan using a well oiled knife or pizza cutter.

Store in an airtight container.

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SERVING IDEAS: these are lovely in hot cacao, homemade s’mores, with millet puffs (make them like the rice marshmallow treat), and on their own.image

*Experiment with safe for you flavors such as mint or raw cacao.

Recipe inspired by: http://wellnessmama.com/6423/healthy-marshmallows/

Paleo Lemon Pineapple “Gel-O”

What do you when life gives you lemons?

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Make lemonade. Make lemon curd. Make Azorean-style lemon tea for a sore throat.

How about lemon “gel-o” with pineapple just like mom used to make with a package of Jell-O and a can crushed pineapple? Yes please, but leave out all the packages and their non-food ingredients and it’s a go!

Here’s the recipe I used inspired by my friend Devon plus some nostalgia.

Paleo Lemon Pineapple Gel-O

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2/3 cup lemon juice, freshly squeezed
1 cup frozen pineapple tidbits, crush if desired
4 tbsp grass fed gelatin (Red Lakes, red bottle)
Sweetener to taste.

Heat lemon juice & pineapple on stove until hot. Add sweetener followed by gelatin. Blend well so that gelatin does not clump. Pour into a loaf pan. Refrigerate 1 hour.

Cut into squares & enjoy a gut healing treat.

Notes:
-For some fun, experiment with fruits such as various berries or place in  molds for gummies for the kidlets or the kid inside.

-Have LOTS of lemons? Double the recipe & use an 8×8 pan.

Gingerbread Loaf (Paleo, Vegan)

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Vegan & Paleo Gingerbread Loaf

This gingerbread is full of flavor. Because it is also vegan and uses fruit as a binding agent, the baked bread is a bit spongy, but the flavor is outstanding for a spicy quick bread.

When I first made this bread, I also served it with my Chocolate Avocado Pudding and blueberries. My ever creative Mini-Foodie 2 took a bite with all three making a trifle like bite. Her reaction: “This is yummy mama, you should try it!” I did and she was right.

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Vegan & Paleo Gingerbread Loaf with Chocolate Avocado Pudding & Blueberries

If you prefer a less spicy bread, be more conservative with the ginger and allspice. But if spicy and flavorful are you idea yummy gingerbread, then use generous measurements.

2 cups all-purpose Paleo flour
2 1/2 tsp baking soda
3-4 tsp ground ginger
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp sea salt
3/8 cup coconut  sugar
3/4 cup applesauce or pumpkin puréed (or a combo)
1/8 cup  honey or molasses
3/4 cup water
2 tbsp crystallized ginger, finely chopped (optional)

Preheat oven to 350◦F. Whisk flour, baking soda, spices, & salt together in a large bowl. Set aside. In a medium bowl, combine sugar, applesauce &/or pumpkin, & honey or molasses. Pour wet mixture into dry mixture. Add water & mix slightly. If using, add chopped ginger. Stir until incorporated, but not overmixed. Pour batter into a standatd loaf or 2 mini-loaf pans filling each 3/4 full. Bake 55-60 minutes or mini-loaf 40-45 minutes or until an inserted  toothpick comes out clean & bread no longer has wet dough appearance in center.

Recipe inspired by:
http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/member/views/VEGAN-GINGERBREAD-MINI-LOAVES-50174736

Paleo, Vegan Soul Cakes

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Soul Cakes are a Halloween tradition, for more details: see: http://oakden.co.uk/soul-cake/

My version below is both paleo and vegan and it can be enjoyed by those who are also gluten free and corn free. The paleo all purpose flour I use does contain almond flour, a starch and coconut flour and therefore those with sensitivities to these ingredients should source safe ingredients. If you are able to have gluten, then regular all purpose flour should work.

2 1/2 cups paleo all-purpose flour

3/8 cup coconut sugar
3/4 Coconut oil

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp ground nutmeg

1/4 tsp allspice

1/4 tsp sea salt

1 1 flax egg

2 tsp apple cider vinegar

raisins, optional

Preheat oven to 400ºF. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.

In food processor, pulse dry ingredients. Add coconut oil until crumbly. Pour flax egg & acv through feed hole. Pulse until combined.

For easy-don’t-need-to-be-perfectly-shaped cakes: make balls, flatten & impress a cross. If using raisins, decorate each cake.  Bake 10-12 minutes or until golden brown on the edges.

If you would like to roll the dough, then chill it for 20 mins. Then toll, cut & bake as indicated above.

I want to thank my beautiful cousin Debora Anderson for taking the photo. Check her work out at “Debora Anderson Photography” on Facebook.

Paleo, Vegan Coconut Flour Pinwheels

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Ingredients
1 cup coconut flour
4 tbsp psyllium husk
1/2 cup coconut oil
1-2 tbsp sweetener, or to taste
1 tsp vanilla powder
1/2 tsp sea salt

2 cups boiling water

Filling of choice such as: applesauce & nut butter, fruit & nut butter, pumpkin butter, safe for you jam or jelly, lemon curd

Chocolate for topping (optional)

Directions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Linea cookie sheet or jelly roll pan with parchment paper.

Mixfirst 6 ingredients. Addwater. When completely mixed & dough forms, Flatten dough on prepared cookie sheet or jelly roll pan to desired thinness.

Bake about 15-18 minutes or until dough is dry. Remove from oven. Allow to cool.

When cool enough to handle, top with filling. Roll pinwheel. Cut into slices of desired thickness.

If using chocolate, top either before or after slicing depending on desired look.

Notes: for the pictured pinwheels, I filled half with pumpkin butter and half with applesauce.

I want to thank my beautiful cousin Debora Anderson for taking the photo. Check her work out at “Debora Anderson Photography” on Facebook.

Paleo, Vegan “Twigs” Bars

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Do you miss candy bars? Or maybe you want a whole food dessert that is reminiscent of an old favorite, you know, the ones with a shortbread cookie and a caramel layer dipped in chocolate.

At my house we call my version “Twigs” and the Mini-Foodies really enjoy them and I don’t worry about them eating their fair share because they are made from REAL food!

Shortbread
For the shortbread, I used my Paleo Graham Crackers. Score them into the shape you want the candy bars to be.

Caramel
For the caramel layer, use a safe for you caramel. Here, I used an equal parts date & cashew caramel where the ingredients were soaked and then blended in the food processor. Top the shortbread with caramel.

Chocolate
Melt or make a safe for you chocolate and top the caramel layer. Alternatively, the candy bars can be dipped in the chocolate. While I really enjoy a well dipped candy, it is labor intensive and since we all enjoy rustic food in my home, I went with the rustic approach by using the topping method.

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I want to thank my beautiful cousin Debora Anderson for taking the photo. Check her work out at “Debora Anderson Photography” on Facebook.

Paleo Rosas do Egito or Florones

Ingredients

 1 egg

1 tsp coconut sugar

1/2 tsp vanilla bean powder

1/2 cup milk (hemp)

1/2 cup paleo all-purpose flour

1 pinch of salt

avovado oil for frying

sugar (powdered) & cinnamon for dusting

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Directions

Mix first 6 ingredients. Batter will be like that of a crepe.

Heat oil in a small, deep pot. Use enough oil to enable the mold to be fully immersed without touching the bottom of the pot.

Allow oil to begin boiling.

Preheat mold by immersing it in the oil.

Allow excess oil to drip off.

Dip hot mold in batter, it should hiss. Be careful to not allow batter to reach top of mold so that it may be removed whole when cooked.

Fry each rose until golden, between 30-60 seconds.

Remove mold from oil allowing excess oil to drip. Remove rose using a fork onto a paper towel.

Mix sugar & cinnamon. Dredge or dip rose in mixture. Enjoy.

Where you can buy a mold:

 http://www.paradishop.com/ibili-774300-molde-para-hacer-florones-castellanos-inox.html

 http://www.bueni.es/casa-jardin/molde-flor-sarten

Paleo Cinnamon Graham Cracker

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Who doesn’t like a graham cracker, right? Unfortunately for those of us who are corn allergic and gluten free, there are few options on the market for us. I have also found that many recipes are a bit complicated and / or don’t work out. A few months ago I began making graham crackers at home when I received the book Super Paleo Snacks by Landria Voigt and needed to use the almond pulp left over from making almond milk. I became accustomed to using a wetter dough than Voigt’s which took longer to back to crispiness, bit also allowed me to control how soft I could make them as well as better manipulate the thickness.

As with all my recipes, I have reduced the sugar content by at least half and so if you prefer a sweeter cracker, feel free to add more sweetener. Honey works well in this recipe too, but I prefer the flavor added by the maple syrup. I do not recommend using agave syrup because it’s fructose content is high and it it highly processed.
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1 cup almond flour
1 cup almond meal
1/2 cup arrowroot flour
1/2 cup tapioca flour
3 tbsp maple syrup
3-4 tbsp coconut oil
1 tbsp Cinnamon
Water as needed for consistency

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Preheat oven to 350F. Line a jelly roll with parchment paper.

Blend all ingredients except water in food processor. Add water to desired dough consistency. Dough should be just wet enough to not be crumbly. It will be dense.

Roll out dough using your hands & to desired thickness. Using a pizza cutter or knife, score into squares or rectangles. Bake 10-15 minutes or until desired crispness is reached. Be careful not to burn. It is helpful to flip the crackers halfway through.

*** Notes: These crackers can be made as teething cracker and even a pie crust.