Perfectly Chewy Flour-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies

Flour Free Chocolate Chip Cookies

YO.

You guys.

I think this is the recipe that got the biggest “WOW” from my main squeeze AND a request for these cookies on Christmas. I don’t know why the Christmas request but I’ll take that as a compliment.

My time in South Africa is coming to an end so I have been doing my best to use only what we have left in the cupboards. Especially being the one who really bakes and cooks in this household, I don’t want to waste money on extra supplies I know won’t be utilized once I’m outta here.

Tonight after dinner I was craving something sweet. I have some ingredients but as we’d already used cassava flour at dinner this evening, I didn’t want to make ANOTHER thing with cassava flour (Lets be honest, it makes me a little gassy. Not cute.)

(If you are looking for a delectable gluten-free recipe using cassava flour try my Coconut Crusted White Fish or 2 Ingredient Gnocchi. Something sweet? Give these Secret Ingredient Brownies a try!)

I’ve experimented with mug cakes, mug cookies, no-bake bites and all. That just wasn’t gonna cut it. I had heard that there are some people in the paleo and keto communities who were making cookies and no-bake bites with JUST nut butters.

How very interesting. I have a big ol’ jar of OhMega almond butter calling to me from the the pantry. The time has come. I wanted some old fashioned cookies and milk, dang it!

I did not want to make a whole batch because: DANGER. But just a couple for me and my man on this drizzly night in? Yes please.

This small-batch recipe is delicious and perfect for portion control, so if you’re looking for a healthier swap for those flour-filled, white sugar-laden chocolate chip cookies, THIS IS IT.

These cookies are fantastically chewy with delectable crispy edges, and go perfectly with…well…just about anything. You would never know they are completely free of flour and dairy.

Now, my personal opinion is that you could lessen the sugar down to 1/4 cup and they would still be nice and sweet, especially if you don’t have a lot of wiggle room in your daily sugar intake. Using coconut sugar or brown sugar is best because it caramelizes better than white sugar, giving you a chewier cookie. I also recommend using almond butter due to the more neutral taste, but I am also not a huge fan of peanut butter cookies. These babies don’t taste overly nutty and will seriously transport you back to your mom’s Tollhouse best.

This recipe makes 4 solid-sized cookies. Run—don’t walk—to your kitchen and you could be in warm, gooey, chewy, chocolate chip cookie heaven in less than 15 minutes.

 Flour Free Chocolate Chip Cookies

What You’ll Need:

  • 1/2 cup Almond butter
  • 1/3 cup coconut sugar (but try 1/4 cup for a slightly less sweet, but still delish cookie)
  • 2  TBSP beaten egg—either use one egg and save the rest for tomorrow brekkie, or use liquid egg beaters!
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup dairy free chocolate chips

How To:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and stir with a spatula until well combined.
  3. Drop the batter (about 1.5-2 inch in size) and smooth into round blobs so they are even. Leave about 2 inches between cookies because they spread a little.
  4. Let bake in oven for about 10 minutes or until edges are brown.
  5. Remove and allow cool on the baking sheet for 2-5 minutes. Doing this lets these cookies firm up a bit.
  6. Serve and enjoy!

And that’s it! Delicious, chewy, and decadent chocolate chip cookies without a speck of flour in sight! You can make the cookies smaller or double the recipe for a bigger crowd!

Try them out and tell me what you think!

Taco Chili

Taco Chili

We had a bit of a dreary day here in Pretoria. Dark and rainy days like this make me want to curl up with something hot and hearty. When I was little we always had cans of chili in the pantry that made for a quick weeknight dinner. Actually, on of my favorite simple meals my mom used to throw together was beef chili poured over a base of spaghetti noodles.

To some that may sound odd, but take it from me, it was delicious.

These days I’m not much of a pasta person, but I still love my chili. Not only is it versatile (vegetarian, paleo, 3-bean, the list never ends), but it only requires one pot and very little work! You can cater to your own specific tastebuds or dietary preferences and really make it your own.

Perhaps best of all? Very little cleanup afterwards!

My taco chili has all my favorite Taco Tuesday flavors, minus the shell. It is warm and filling, it’s got a little spicy kick, lots of veggies, as well as black beans and ground 100% lean beef. You could change this recipe and use ground turkey or chicken, or omit the beans to make it completely paleo.

Try this out for yourself! This one pot wonder got a huge thumbs up from my fiancé and we were able to live off of it for the rest of the week as an easy protein-packed lunch or dinner option. You can eat it over rice, on its own, or top it with your favorite guacamole and scoop it up with corn chips!

(*A note from the chef: don’t skip the avocado. I might be avo-biased, but some sliced avocado on top of this nostalgic bowl will give you a delicious dose of your omega-3s, skin-feeding carotenoids, and fiber to aid in digestion. Trust me and add the avocado, ok?)

This healthy dish is too easy to pass up! Get to it!

What You’ll Need:

  • 10 oz lean ground 100% beef
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 cup button mushrooms, diced
  • 2 red or yellow peppers, diced
  • Can of crushed tomatoes
  • 1 TBSP crushed garlic
  • 2 TBSP tomato paste
  • 1.5 TBSP chipotle paste
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander (cilantro)
  • 1/2 tsp salt (or more to your liking)

How To:

  1. In a large pot add some of your oil and the onion, peppers and ground beef. Let it cook for about 7-10 minutes until beef turns brown.
  2. Add mushrooms, tomato paste, crushed tomato, garlic and the rest of the spices and stir until well combined.
  3. Allow to simmer for 20-30 minutes or until your chili reaches desired consistency.

And that’s it! So easy, right? Aside from chopping up your veggies, 3 steps and you’ve got yourself a huge pot of smokey goodness just waiting to be devoured.

This taco chili is simple yet satisfying. It is a fabulous healthy dinner option that won’t break the bank or require hours in the kitchen. Stir up a big pot for yourself and tell me how you customize it!

Copy-Cat Pannekoek — South African Pancakes

South African Pannekoek (Pancakes)

One of my very favorite dishes my future mother in law cooks is pannekoek, or “pancakes” in English.

Now my American self hears “we’re having pancakes for dinner.” and I’m immediately thinking “Cool! Bring on the bacon!”

As dinner is served I’m completely perplexed because not only were these so-called “pancakes” NOT a stack of fluffy buttery goodness, they were in a casserole dish rolled up into little tubes filled with savory mince meat! And then they were topped with the most perplexing ingredient of all:

Cinnamon sugar.

This dish can only be explained as rolled up savory crepes. The cinnamon sugar sprinkle though? I don’t know where that came from, but let me tell you:  It. Is. Incredible.

In South Africa they sell these little rolled up crepes all over the place. Gas stations convenience, grocery stores for a quick takeaway snack, served in restaurants (done both sweet and savory), and cooked for a family dinner. They are not the typical pancake that I know, but in all honestly I prefer the South African pannekoek to our own American pancakes—or flapjacks as they’re called here.

I could eat an entire pan of these babies all by myself. The light and airy pannakoek filled with a warm and savory mix of mince…What’s not to like?

South African Pannekoek (Pancakes)

I heard yesterday was National Pancake Day, and though I have yet to find that written anywhere, I decided to attempt a copy-cat version of my future MIL’s famed dish.

We’re having pannekoek for dinner!

Though it took some practice, they turned out so well!

If I were to make this dish again, I would consider adding zucchini or peppers to the mince to make it more veggie-ful. The cocoa gives this mince a darker flavor, and the coconut palm sugar adds a bit of sweetness. The sugar is optional, but the cocoa really makes this mince smokey and well-rounded. And you’ll notice, I did not sprinkle my pannakoek with cinnamon sugar, but you are more than welcome to do so!

These little rolls of deliciousness are full of protein, can be made dairy free and paleo, and also happen to be gluten free. They are fairly easy to make once you get the hang of crepe making in your nonstick pan! If you’re looking to try a South African favorite, give these yummies a shot!

South African Pannekoek (Pancakes

What You’ll Need

For the Pannakoek Batter:

  • 1 cup gluten free flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup regular or nut milk (plus a little extra if your batter starts to thicken)

For the Mince

  • 2 TBSP oil of choice. I used pure butter but you can also use olive oil, ghee or a neutral flavored coconut oil.
  • 1 white onion diced
  • 1 cup button mushrooms diced
  • (5oz) lean bacon diced
  • 10 oz lean ground 100% beef
  • 1 TBSP crushed garlic
  • 1 TBSP balsamic vinegar
  • 1 TBSP tomato paste
  • 1 TBSP Coconut palm sugar or brown sugar. (optional)
  • 1 tsp garlic powder 1 tsp cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt (or more depending)
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • Pepper to taste
  • Add 1 cup of diced zucchini to up the veggie content!

How To:

  1. In a large pot, warm the butter (or oil) and add onions and mushrooms. Let them cook, stirring every so often, for about 5 minutes. Until onions are translucent.
  2. Add diced bacon and ground beef to the mix and break up with a spatula. Stir occasionally for another 5-8 minutes until the beef begins to cook through and brown.
  3. While your meat is cooking, start on your pannekoek batter. Combine flour and egg and stir until combined.
  4. Add 1/2 cup of milk to the batter and stir until there are no lumps
  5. Add the other 1/2 of the milk and stir again. Your batter should be quite runny with no lumps. If it is too thick, you will not be able to make the pannekoek thin enough.
  6. Back to your pot of meat! Add spices, garlic, tomato paste, vinegar, cocoa and coconut palm sugar and stir until everything is well combined.
  7. Turn heat to low and begin making your crepes.
  8. Heat a medium sized non-stick pan and coat with a small drizzle of oil. (medium heat)
  9. Using a ladle or a small measuring cup (i used my 1/3 cup), spoon some of your pannekoek batter into the middle of the pan and tilt your pan round and round until the batter coats the entire bottom of the pan all the way to the edges. This could take a minute to get the hang of!
  10. Allow pannekoek to cook for about 3-4 minutes on one side. Check with a spatula to see if it is beginning to brown.
  11. The edges will start to peel away from the sides of the pan as it becomes ready. Now the fun part. FLIP! It’s ok, you can use your hands and the spatula.
  12. Let it brown on the other side for another 2-3 minutes or so, and then transfer to a large plate or work surface.
  13. Spoon some of your savory mince in a straight line towards one side of your pannakoek.
  14. With your hands, begin to roll the pannakoek up into a thin tube and transfer to a baking tray or rectangular casserole dish.
  15. Continue with the batter, making thin crepes, spooning your mince onto the cooked pannakoek and rolling them up until all the batter is used.
  16. You may have some leftover mince depending on how thick your individual pannakoek turned out!

I was able to make a tray of 12 savory pancakes with this recipe. I transferred my finished tray of pannakoek to a preheated oven just to warm them back up before serving.

For the future I will consider adding more veggies to this mince, but this dish got a huge thumbs up from my fiance regardless. This is super filling meal and is also fantastic for breakfast the next morning!

Serve it alongside a green salad or veggie of choice (here I’ve made my own crispy roasted broccoli) and you’ve got yourself a delicious South African-inspired dinner.

Happy Pancake (Pannekoek) Day!

Juice Pulp Carrot Cake Bars

Juice Pulp Carrot Cake Bars

Though I found my juice cleanse experience very interesting, the one thing that continued to bother me was the amount of juice pulp and leftover in the juicer. Presumably, a lot of this pulp is supposed to be thrown out, but I decided to try a couple recipes that could make use of these nutritious, full-of-fiber, leftovers

You’ve already seen my recipe for gooey chocolate brownies (and if you haven’t, run—don’t walk—to see how this delicious recipe can fool even the most devout chocolate fan) and I was determined to do one more bake-off with pulp before the juice pulp I’d saved went bad.

I thought “What’s another sweet treat that can incorporate veggies?”

Duh. Carrot Cake.

I don’t know about you but I LOVE carrot cake. Love it. I love all the textures, different takes on the recipe, creamy frosting… In all honestly, I like it even more than chocolate cake!

What’s fantastic about the juice pulp we have is that it is so finely ground, it feels almost like flour itself! A usual carrot cake recipe calls for grated carrots and sometimes fruits like apple or pineapple. I used leftover carrot, beet, apple and kale pulp. Yes, sounds a little weird, but because the pulp is so soft and perfectly mixed, it worked great in a warm and nutty carrot cake.

I am all about making yummy foods that pack a serious nutritional punch, so I kept this recipe gluten and dairy free. It is not sugar free however, but if you were attempting to make this fully paleo, you could substitute coconut sugar in place of regular.

Instead of normal flour, I made use of my cassava flour and used a recipe for a creamy coconut frosting from Cotter Crunch that worked perfectly. It is lightly sweet and creamy, and will hold up best if you choose to store your cake bars in the fridge or freezer. Delish!

These juice pulp carrot cake bars are firm enough to hold in your hand, but soft enough to still be enjoyed with a fork as a slice of cake. Somewhere between cake and a blondie. They are sweet and full of warm, cinnamon spice, yet still boast a full cup of veggies. We really enjoyed them!

If you’re like me and you’re trying to find uses for your juice pulp, this is definitely a worthwhile recipe to try out!

Juice Pulp Carrot Cake Bars

What You’ll Need:

  • 2/3 cup butter (about 5 oz)
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup juice pulp
  • 1 cup cassava flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/3 tsp pumpkin pie spice (Allspice would be great too! I just didn’t have any!)
  • 1/4 cup sliced almonds (you could use walnuts or other nuts that you have on hand!)
  • 1/4 cup crushed coconut flakes (optional. I like the textural difference)

How To:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and line and grease a baking pan with parchment paper. I used a 9X9 pan.
  2. In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until there are no lumps.
  3. Add vanilla and eggs. Mix again.
  4. Add spices, baking soda, flour and pulp and mix well. Do not over mix, just enough for everything to be well incorporated.
  5. Fold in your nuts and coconut.
  6. Pour into a lined and greased 9X9 pan and use your spatula to spread evenly.
  7. Bake at 350 for about 25 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Top with your desired frosting (seriously, try this delicious coconut cream frosting) and go to town!

Juice Pulp Carrot Cake Bars

These juice pulp carrot cake bars are a great sweet treat to have around the house or to bring to a party. We kept ours in the frozen and I personally loved them straight from the freezer in this hot weather!

I definitely couldn’t have just one!

Try them out for yourself! How are you using your extra juice pulp?

Paleo One-Pot Chicken Fajitas

Paleo One Pot Chicken Fajitas

If there is one meal both my fiance and I are crazy about, it is FAJITAS.

I don’t know if it is so many years docking in Mexico or what, but if I had one go-to crowd-pleaser meal, it would be fajitas. I made a huge batch of fajitas for a group of 8 South Africans and there was not one empty tummy in the bunch. They are fun and everyone can personalize theirs in whatever way they want! 

Now that I’m leaning more on the paleo side, I haven’t bought tortillas in a long time. That means our make-your-own fajita nights have been missing from the weekly menu lineup. I tried to make my own corn tortillas once and it was an enormous fail.

Never again.

But recently I bought a bag of cassava flour. Cassava flour cooks and bakes most similarly to wheat flour, unlike many of the paleo alternatives. It also has a mild taste. I turned to Pinterest (of course) to see what other things I could use it for, and lo and behold, a recipe from Paleo Gluten Free Eats inspired me. It was time. Fajita night would live again.

I whipped up a batch of my paleo one pot chicken fajitas and we went to town! Top with some homemade pico de gallo and fresh avocado…Magic.

These are paleo, gluten free, grain free, and Whole 30 approved! What are you waiting for?

Paleo One Pot Chicken Fajitas

Paleo One Pot Chicken Fajitas with Easy Homemade Tortillas

What You’ll Need

For the Chicken Fajitas:

  • 4 chicken breasts
  • 2 peppers sliced into strips (I used red and yellow)
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1.5 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp chipotle paste
  • 1 tbsp fresh cilantro (optional)
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (optional if you don’t like it spicy!)
  • 1 can crushed tomato

For the Tortillas (Via Paleo Gluten Free Eats)

  • 2 cups cassava flour 
  • 1 cup coconut milk (I used canned)
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tsp sea salt
  • 2 tsp garlic granules
  • 1 tsp cracked black pepper to taste
  • olive oil for cooking

How To

Chicken Fajitas:

  1. In a large pot, fill with the can of crushed tomato. Heat over medium/high heat
  2. Add peppers, onions, chicken breast and spices to the pot. Lightly stir so everything is covered.
  3. Once it boils, give everything another stir, reduce the heat to medium and cover. Let simmer for 30 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. (Make tortillas while you wait. See below)
  4. Remove chicken breast and shred with a fork (you can also do this directly in the pot)
  5. Add chicken back to pot and turn heat to low, stir everything and add more spices if you desire.
  6. Serve immediately along with your tortillas, sliced avocado and salsa!

Tortillas:

  1. While the chicken simmers, combine all tortilla ingredients into a large bowl and mix with a spatula until combined.
  2. Split the dough into 10 even parts and roll into balls
  3. One a piece of parchment, roll the dough into thin tortillas. You can use your hands or a roller. Be sure to dust surfaces with a little cassava flour because the dough sticks a bit!
  4. Heat a large nonstick pan over medium heat. Once the surface is hot, add olive oil to coat.
  5. Slide the tortillas into the pan and cook for about 2-3 minutes on each side.
  6. Once cooked to your desired consistency (soft or crispy) remove and place on a paper towel lined plate while you finish your chicken fajitas.

Paleo One Pot Chicken Fajitas

You can make the tortillas beforehand and keep them in the oven if you don’t want to worry about it while the chicken simmers. You can freeze the tortillas for later use and you’ll definitely have extra fajita meat for a taco salad, mixed in your eggs, or for a leftovers lunch.

There you have it! Paleo, gluten free, dairy free fajitas that will please even the most particular tastebuds.

2 Ingredient Gluten Free Gnocchi

Gluten Free Gnocchi

I might not be much of a pasta person, but I can demolish a bowl of pillowy-soft gnocchi in about 10 seconds flat.

Gnocchi is not actually a pasta, it’s a delicious little dumpling! It is used in delectable dishes all over Italy and during my time there — if I wasn’t already indulging in an enormous Neapolitan pizza– gnocchi was on the menu.

I love the texture of these little bubbles of chewy happiness, but as we attempt to clean up our diet, pastas aren’t really kept in the pantry.

Gluten Free Gnocchi

After finding ways to use this bag of cassava flour though, I thought “What are some dishes we don’t normally have in the house that I can make with cassava flour?” If I was going to attempt Italian, you better believe it would be gnocchi I try first.

This simple gnocchi is made with only cassava flour and sweet potato. It is slightly sweet with all the added vitamins of sweet potato. I just love it! The first time I attempted it, my gnocchi fell apart in the boiling water. It is imperative that you don’t use too much flour, but that you still use enough to get the right consistency. My biggest note here is to make sure you add the flour a little at a time to control the stickiness of your dough. Keep adding flour and kneading the dough until it is dry, almost like children’s PlayDough, This will ensure your gorgeous little dumplings come out perfectly.

Gluten Free Gnocchi

This recipe requires a little more work, but I promise it is worth it! It yields enough gnocchi to feed 3-4 people depending on serving size. In small Italian portions, it serves 4! As a reminder, cassava flour is great for people following gluten-free, grain-free diets, but it is still high in starchy carbohydrates. It is a tuber after all!

Gluten Free Gnocchi

2 Ingredient Gluten Free Gnocchi

What You’ll Need:

  • 2 medium large sweet potatoes– about 1 lb of flesh
  • 1 3/4 cup cassava flour (a little more for dusting workspace)

How To:

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees C (or 375 degrees F)
  2. Pierce sweet potatoes with a fork and place on the middle rack of your oven. Make Sure you have a drip tray placed underneath them or they will drip onto the bottom of your oven.
  3. Roast sweet potatoes for about 45 minutes, leave them in the oven as it cools down. (I roasted mine the night before and stored them in the fridge over night and it still works great!)
  4. Scoop out innards and discard skin
  5. Mash really well with a fork. You want as few lumps as possible! You can use a ricer if you have one!
  6. Add in 1st cup of flour (about a 1/2 cup at a time) and fold in.
  7. Repeat until all flour is used.
  8. Dough should be dry and won’t stick to hands. If it’s still sticking, add a little more flour.
  9. Dust your workspace with cassava flour
  10. Knead with hands and form a mound. Use a little extra flour if necessary.
  11. Slice into 4 even sections (I did 8 because we don’t have a lot of counter space for rolling!)
  12. Roll with hands into long even snakes.
  13. Cut into small pieces.. an inch or smaller. I measured with width of my finger tips. Take each piece, cut side out and line it up on the end of a fork.
  14. Lightly press down with the tip of your thumb to create a small indent. (See picture above)
  15. One side of your gnocchi will have fork grooves, the other will have a small thumb indent. Apparently this is for holding some of the sauce. Dust with a little extra flour every now and then if you need.

To Cook:

  1. To cook your gnocchi, bring a pot of water to boil.
  2. Drop in your gnocchi (15- 20 at at time)
  3. Let them boil until they float to the top. About a minute or so
  4. Let them float for about 30-45 more seconds and remove a few at a time with a slotted spoon.
  5. Drop your gnocchi directly into a pan with prepared sauce or save for later.

 

Gluten Free Gnocchi

For this dish, I dressed my gnocchi in some browned butter with salt and pepper, garlic, chopped bacon and sage.

It. Was. Lush.

Watch out for another post explaining the other sauce we like: Dairy-free Tomato Cream Sauce. Also delicious poured over your beautiful little dumplings.

You can dress these in simple tomato sauce, simple butter and salt, pesto…The options are endless!

Try this recipe for yourself and see how you go!

Secret Ingredient Gooey Chocolate Brownies

Juice Pulp Chocolate Brownies

If you’ve been following along, my fiance and I just completed a 3 day juice cleanse filled with tons of fresh vegetables and fruit. But what I noticed upon the first glass of juice was how much juice PULP was left over to be seemingly thrown in the trash. What a waste!

Not only is there a TON of pulp wasted with every glass of juice, the pulp is perfectly fine and soft….what can I do with all this fibrous goodness?

Bake with it, of course!!

The first thing I thought would be to create something along the lines of zucchini brownies, but in this case, it would be juice pulp instead of zucchini. I also had a brand new bag of Health Riot cassava flour just begging to be used. Cassava flour is made from the cassava root and though I haven’t experimented with it before, I understand it bakes up similarly to normal white flour. I decided to give it a whirl!

These brownies are sweet and gooey, gluten free, dairy free, AND have 2 entire cups of juice pulp hidden inside! They can be easily made paleo by using coconut sugar or your sweetener of choice, and you can use most of the different pulps that come out of your juicer. I happened to save a mixture of beet, carrot, apple and kale pulp and it worked perfectly! I sifted out a couple of the bigger pieces just to be safe. You could also use zucchini, cucumber, pear…whatever you’re juicing!

After letting these babies cool for a moment, I served a still-warm piece to Wouter and he took a bite.

*BIG GRIN*. I asked him,

do you know what the secret ingredient is?

He was confused.

Maybe there’s coconut in here?

There is no coconut (though you could use it), but I think he was noticing the coconut milk. He had NO idea. When I told him it was our veggie pulp he was so surprised and delighted!

And then he had a second piece. Success!

These brownies are a little on the cakey side, but we didn’t mind. If you want them to be more dense, you can experiment with more oil, one less egg, or brown sugar! But rest assured, they are DELICIOUS and INDULGENT, with just a dash of health!

Juice Pulp Chocolate Brownies

What you’ll Need:

1 cup cassava flour

1/2 cup cocoa powder

2 cups juice pulp (I used beet, carrot, green apple, and kale)

2 eggs

1/2 cup canned coconut milk

3/4 cup sugar

1 tsp baking soda

1 TBSP Vanilla extract

1 cup dairy free chocolate chips

More chips for sprinkling

How To:

  1. Preheat oven to 180 C or 350 F
  2. Line and spray a 9X9 pan
  3. In a large bowl mix together the eggs, coconut milk, sugar and vanilla until smooth.
  4. In separate bowl, sift the cassava flour, cocoa powder, and baking soda together. Make sure there are no lumps.
  5. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet and stir together until just combined. Do not over stir.
  6. Fold in the juice pulp and the chocolate chips. The mixture will be quite thick, not too liquidy.
  7. Pour batter into the lined pan and use your spatula to spread evenly.
  8. Sprinkle more chocolate chips on top.
  9. Bake for 28-30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. My personal opinion is that you’d rather under bake these than over bake them.
  10. Allow to cool on stove top and then cut into bars.

You can freeze the extras for a treat later in the week!

Enjoy!

(I froze the rest of my brownies and they are delicious straight from the freezer! Super chewy!)

Juice Pulp Chocolate Brownies

So there you have it! Brownies that save all your extra juice pulp from going to waste. Yes I know it is funny to be making sugary treats right after a juice cleanse, but hey, it’s all about balance! Feed these to friends, to your little ones, or to your partners who might not be getting enough vegetables in their every day diets.

What are some ways you use your leftover vegetable juice pulp?

Find your avocado!

One-Pot Paleo Chicken Korma

One Pot Paleo Chicken Korma

I began blogging almost exactly 7 years ago. I started writing during my study abroad in London, writing about the area we lived, the places we visited, and the food we ate. And boy, did I eat. London was home to some of the most incredible cuisines, but my very favorite had to be Indian. My best friend at the time (who is Indian) introduced me to the different flavors and showed me the right way to eat them all. I was hooked. My very favorite type of curry was the local favorite: Korma, and all the unique varieties that were available. I have seen that some people don’t consider this a “curry” as I believe it is native to London, but either way, I have dreamt of a bowl of this sweet and creamy magic ever since. Every Korma I’ve had since has never quite measured up.

That being said, I loved all these different curries so much I took them home as souvenirs… In the form of an extra 20 pounds.

I regret nothing, this food was orgasmic.

Since then I’ve had these warm flavors on the brain, but I’ve never really tried anything in the kitchen because I know making curries can be quite time-consuming as well as very calorie-dense. Also,  I can’t guarantee I would have any left over after all the “tasting” I’d have to do. This last weekend however, we took a trip to the once-a-month Banting Market in Pretoria and were able to get some sausages from a vendor we really like. His meats are quality and very pure. The flavors are strong, clean, and I know the meat is locally sourced.

We got our usual fare and then he showed us a new batch he’d tried: a curry chicken sausage. This got me thinking. I knew I had some frozen butternut squash leftover from a previous recipe, and this curry chicken sausage was making me crave those flavors.  I wanted to attempt a Korma that was lighter on the tummy and filled with healthier additions, but that would still please my fiancé’s taste. BOOM. This big pot of happiness was born!

Instead of cream as the base, I used this butternut squash! This pureed squash is SO warm and naturally sweet, with the addition of coconut milk, garlic, tomato paste and a tiny bit of heat, who wouldn’t love it?? (My fiancé says this might be his favorite dish yet!)

I finished this off with our fabulously yummy curry chicken sausage and of course, lots of veggies. This korma is paleo (if you are unsure if peas are paleo click here. If you’d rather be safe, feel free to omit them!), can be Whole30 compliant (omit the peas), dairy-free, gluten-free, can be made vegetarian, and is full of healthy fats and protein. It has loads of fresh vegetables, takes minimal preparation, and can be finished in an hour.

Perhaps best of all, this can all be done in one pot!

Try it out for yourself and tell me what you think! Excuse me while I go have another bowl.

One-Pot Paleo Chicken Korma

What You’ll Need:

500g butternut squash (pumpkin)
400g Chicken (you can use whole or sliced chicken breast)
350g cauliflower florets
250g cut green beans
250g green peas
1 can/400ml Coconut milk
1 TBSP crushed garlic
2 tsp tomato paste
2 tsp Korma Spice (Turmeric, Cinnamon, Salt, Coriander, Fennel, Cloves, Cumin, Cardamom, Chili, Black Pepper, Curry Leaves)
1/2 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp Cape Malay Curry Spice (Salt, Coriander, Garlic, Turmeric, Ginger, Cumin, Onion, Cinnamon, Chili, Fennel, Cloves, Bay Leaves, Curry Leaves)
1/4 tsp coriander (cilantro) powder
2 tbsp currants (optional)
2 tbsp cashews (optional)

How To:

  1. Place butternut in a large pot and cover evenly with water. About 1.5-2 cups.
  2. Bring to a boil and simmer until butternut is soft, about 20-25 mins
  3. Remove from heat and drain most of the water…I left about 1/4 cup in with the butternut
  4. Use an immersion blender (or drop contents of pan into a food processor and blend til smooth)
  5. Add 1/2 can coconut milk, spices, tomato paste, and garlic and blend again until smooth. This will be the curry.
  6. Place curry back in your pot, keep heat on medium and place chicken and vegetables into the pot with the curry.
  7. Simmer on medium/high heat for about 30 minutes until the chicken has cooked through. Check every so often to give a little stir and to make sure it doesn’t boil over!

Makes 4 big servings.

**If you use full chicken breasts, you’ll need to remove them and slice before serving. But you can also slice the chicken beforehand and it will cook the same. I usually do the whole thing and slice afterwards, but it is all a matter of preference.

1 Serving= 475 Calories, 18.9g Fat, 39.6g Carbohydrates, 41.5g Protein.

 

One Pot Paleo Chicken Korma

And there you go! This can all be done in one pot, and if you wanted to lessen the fat in this Korma, you could halve the coconut milk, use a nut milk, or even omit any kind of “milk.” I think this curry sauce would also be very nice with the addition of onion (boil it and blend it with the butternut), but I cannot say for certain.

I am super proud of this recipe and will absolutely be making it again! I hope you enjoy!

Bon apetit!

De-LITE-fully Simple Chicken Lettuce Cups

De-LITE-Fully Simple Chicken Lettuce Cups

If you have ever ordered the P.F. Changs lettuce cups, high five my friend, you know where its at.

If you haven’t, the time has come for you to reward your tastebuds with delectable, carb-less, magic.

Though those little babies come sans pita bread, taco shells, or another form of fried wheat, they are incredibly yummy, filling, and satisfying! Best of all, my fiancé is obsessed with them.

Not specifically the P.F. Changs kind (note to self: take him there when we’re back in the USA), but a kind he had onboard the ship we used to work on.

I decided to try out my own healthier version a few months back! We found ground chicken (very hard to find here in Pretoria) and Wouter had been asking for me attempt our own at-home lettuce cup version, so off I went. We have minimal resources for asian sauces and spices, so I make due with what I have in the cupboard. Feel free to try out different spices and/or sauces to make this dish fit your tastebuds. Using the chicken mince made this dish a little lighter, adding lots of veggies gave it a nutritional boost, and minimal cooking time makes it that much better. There is something so satisfying about the warm savory flavor of the mince, and the crispy cool crunch of the fresh lettuce cups. This meal is light on the tummy AND the conscience, and it is also very filling!

So what are you waiting for?

De-LITE-Fully Simple Chicken Lettuce Cups
De-LITE-fully Simple Chicken Lettuce Cups

What You’ll Need:

1-2 TBSP olive oil
Head of green or butter lettuce. Can even use romaine lettuce boats!
500g ground chicken
1 onion diced
250g button mushrooms diced
250g McCain frozen veg (diced carrot, pea, corn)
—you caan use fresh if you want!
1 green onion chopped
1 TBSP Crushed Garlic
1 tsp garlic powder
1/4 cup liquid aminos (soy sauce is fine too!)
1 tsp powdered ginger
1/2 tsp chili flakes
About 1 tsp or so of corn starch to thicken (optional)

How To:

  1. Heat pan on medium heat and add oil.
  2. Add diced onion, garlic and mushrooms to pan. Cook for 3-5 mins.
  3. Once they’ve softened add McCain veggies (or your own fresh veg) and about 1/2 of the liquid aminos
  4. Sauté all veggies for 5-7 more minutes, stirring occasionally
  5. Move veggies to the side of pan and add ground chicken
  6. Add the rest of your liquid aminos and season with powdered garlic and ginger
  7. Cover and cook for 5 mins
  8. Remove lid and break up chicken with your spatula.
  9. Stir every 3 mins or so until chicken has browned to your liking
  10. Add seasonings of choice and mix in some corn starch if you want the liquid in the pan to thicken up a bit. (I personally like this addition because it makes the mixture a little less likely to drip out of your lettuce cups!)
  11. Sprinkle green onion over the top.

Serve with lettuce leaves. Spoon mixture into the lettuce cups and go to town!

De-LITE-Fully Simple Chicken Lettuce Cups
This is a fun dinner that requires a little bit of action and we really love it! Feel free to change things up, use different meat or different vegetables, try new spices or add avocado! Personally, I think this dish would be phenomenal with some water chestnuts and bamboo shoots, but alas, I had none. C’est la vie.

Enjoy this easy peasy meal that won’t break the bank or your New Years goals. Eating light can be easy and delicious!

 

Quick and Easy Cauliflower “Fried” Rice

Quick and Easy Cauliflower Fried Rice

I don’t know about you, but I am a Pinterest addict.

I will start searching for “how to cook steak perfectly” and end up with a recipe for  “The best gluten-free, sugar-free, dairy-free lemon bars.” I don’t know what it is but I always fall down that rabbit hole. On this particular day though, a little “pin-spiration” went a long way.

I have seen so many recipes on that site using cauliflower rice (or riced cauliflower) and I’ve had it on the brain. I’ve used it in place of potato or as a simple and plain side dish. I love it, but my fiancé is not as impressed. He wants it to feel and taste like the rice he knows and loves. Oh well, more cauli-rice for me.

This last Tuesday he had a boys night planned. This was my time. Tonight would be the night for cauliflower. I whipped out a bag of frozen riced cauliflower we hadn’t used. I knew I wanted something a little lighter, something that followed the Whole30 guidelines (much of what I make happens to be Whole30 compliant!).

I opened the fridge to see what we had, did a quick Pinterest scroll for some inspiration, and then magic was made.

We were going out for my birthday dinner the next night and needed to use up some items in the veg box. What did we have?

Celery
Mushrooms
Spinach
Eggs
Shredded Chicken

This meal was so easy, so last minute and yet, so unexpectedly delicious that I wasn’t originally going to post about it. But after a few requests for a recipe, here goes!

Quick and Easy Cauliflower Fried Rice

What You’ll Need

3 cups riced cauliflower (this recipe was made with frozen riced cauliflower)
1 cup raw spinach
3/4 cup mushrooms chopped
3 medium stalks celery, finely chopped
1 cup chicken breast, diced (i started out with shredded chicken and diced it!)
1 egg
Oil for pan
1 TBSP crushed garlic
1/4 cup coconut aminos (or 2-3 tbsp of soy sauce/liquid aminos if you’re not worried about Whole30. Remember, soy sauce and liquid aminos are MUCH saltier than coconut aminos!)
1 tsp ground ginger (optional)
Salt and Pepper to your liking
Drizzle of Sriracha if you like it spicy!

How To:

  1. Heat a large pan on medium heat, add oil.
  2. Put garlic, chopped mushrooms, and chopped celery into pan and allow to sauté for 3-5 minutes
  3. Throw in your riced cauliflower and chopped chicken, stir until warm.
  4. Add spinach and stir until well incorporated.
  5. Push rice mixture over to one side of pan and crack in the egg (away from the mixture)
  6. Allow egg to cook thoroughly. You can pop the yolk if you’d like. Flip to cook other side.
  7. Once the egg is cooked, roughly “chop” it with your spatula and then stir it into the cauli-rice mixture.
  8. Cook the entire cauli-mix for a few more minutes, season to your liking and then enjoy!

**Note: my cauliflower was already riced and frozen, so it didn’t require much cooking to make it soft. If you are making your own cauliflower rice, see below!**

 

Making your own riced cauliflower:

  1. Remove leaves from one head of cauliflower and break into smaller stalks.
  2. Add cauliflower pieces into a food processor and process in 1-second pulses until the cauliflower is diced into small rice or couscous-like granules. You will have tons of extra riced cauliflower to save for a different recipe!
  3. Heat a pan on medium heat and add oil.
  4. Add raw riced cauliflower to pan and stir until evenly coated. Cover and cook for 3-5 minutes.
  5. From here, you can follow the directions above, just remember to stir frequently so the cauliflower continues to cook and soften. It will cook evenly along with the mushrooms and celery!

 

Quick and Easy Cauliflower Fried Rice

 

A lot of people are not huge fans of cauliflower but I LOVE it. I think it is one of the most versatile vegetables and it truly takes on the flavor of how you cook it and what you cook it with. Cauliflower is low in calories and macronutrients, but has tons of vitamin C, vitamin K, vitamin B6 and tons of other vitamins and minerals. Studies show it has properties that can stall the early development of cancer cells, boost your cardiovascular health, and improve digestion with all the healthy fiber and high water content. If you don’t care too much about the science behind cauliflower, make this dish anyways because it is delectable and healthy!

This cauliflower rice recipe can be modified in so many ways and it is QUICK. It is full of protein, slow-burning fiber, and if you add that gorgeous avocado (like I did), lots of healthy fats to keep you full for the rest of the day! Add other veggies such as peas or carrots, try different spices, and use whatever protein (pork, tofu, etc.) you have on hand. You can have it as a full meal or serve to your family as a light and healthy side dish.

Though my fiancé didn’t love cauliflower rice the first time I served it, I know this recipe would’ve tickled his chicken-fried-rice-loving tastebuds. I’m sure boys night was a blast but I know he’s feeling a little jealous of the delectable meal he missed!

Try it for yourself and tell me what you did to make this bland vegetable come to life!