Sunday, November 20, 2016

Vegan Caramel Three Ways

Vegan caramel three ways. Vegan caramel three ways. Should I say it again?

I could. I am a little sleep deprived at the moment and having trouble focussing. The elf has recently dropped her daily naps and I am solo parent with the husband on site for work a lot. I could boo-boo in to my britches however, I have contributed to my own fatigue. I am on a Gilmore Girls bender. I don’t know how it happened. I started watching old episodes in a bid to cling back some “me time” at night with the elf going to bed earlier but it has backfired, I am a Gilmore addict now. Doh! Damn that Lorelei and Rory. And that stupid Stars Hollow.
It’s OK though. I have regrouped enough from Rory being dumped by Jess to bring you vegan caramel three ways. It was tough I tell you. I was just getting over Dean…

These three vegan caramels are distinct. Each one has its own personality and is suitable for different uses. Date caramel is thicker and naturally sweeter than the others and is the easiest to make in a pinch.

I use the fruit caramel in the elf’s yoghurt for a sweet treat. Being made from pears (I have used apple also) it is, well…fruity. It is lovely spooned over ice-cream or swirled through “creams”. My inner kitchen ninja developed this one – I wanted to create a caramel that I could at least say had fruit in it for the elf. Guilt assuaged. However, for the purists, you can’t go past the coconut milk vegan caramel. It is the cat’s pyjamas. It is my favourite simply because it is naughty and decadent. Even photographing it was a challenge. There were a few swoon moments. Who would have thought a vegan caramel could make your knees shake? It may be  fatigue but my inner cheerleader wants to believe it was my cooking. You know what, let’s just go with that.
These vegan caramels are sweet, naughty and delicious the way caramel should be. Super easy to make they are a sweet tooth’s dream. Enjoy, x.

10 medjool dates, pitted and chopped
1/4 cup almond milk (optional for creaminess)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
water as needed

Combine ingredients in a food processor and blitz until smooth
Add water as needed to help combine 1 tablespoon at a time
Keep in the fridge for 3 – 5 days

2 pears, peeled and cubed
3 tablespoons coconut oil, separated in to 2 and 1
1/4 cup coconut or any unprocessed sugar
1/4 cup maple syrup or agave
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Heat 2 tablespoons of coconut oil in a small pan.
Add the cubed pears and stir.
Add the coconut sugar and stir well. Turn down the heat and cook for 15 minutes. Remove from heat to cool.
Put the pear mixture, a tablespoon of coconut oil, the maple syrup and vanilla in a processor and blitz until smooth.
Keeps in the fridge but will need to be reheated in a pan to refresh.

1 400 ml can of coconut milk
1 1/2 cup coconut sugar
Combine ingredients in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and allow the mixture to simmer for around 15 minutes. Stir occasionally. Remove from the heat and allow to cool a little before using. Stores in the fridge, covered for 5 days.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Vegan Stuffed Mushrooms Recipe

Vegan stuffed mushrooms are easy to make and packed with fresh herb-y, garlicky, citrus-y deliciousness. These little guys are great served as party finger food, a starter or a light main dish when paired with a fresh salad and crusty bread. What makes this vegan stuffed mushroom recipe stand out from others is the addition of parsley-lemon dressing to brighten and pull together all the flavor.

Despite that fact, I have not attempted too many vegan stuffed mushroom recipes. While I do love a delicious, summery stuffed tomato, stuffing little button mushrooms always seemed too fiddly and not worth the effort. That is until I found these larger grilling mushrooms at my local supermarket.

For the vegan stuffed mushrooms

  • 14 medium to large white mushrooms (mine measured 5 – 6 cm / 2 – 2.5 inches)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil plus more for brushing the mushrooms
  • 3 shallots, finely diced
  • 5 – 6 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
  • 3 tablespoons chopped walnuts
  • 3 tablespoons chopped sun-dried tomatoes
  • 3 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt plus more for sprinkling the mushroom caps
  • Pepper, to taste
  • For the parsley-lemon dressing
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped parsley
  • 1 clove of garlic, diced
  • The zest of half a lemon
  • 1/2 tablespoon red or white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • Pinch of salt and pepper, to taste
  1. Start with the dressing to give the flavours time to develop. Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and taste. Adjust the level of acidity, saltiness and lemon to your liking. Set aside.
  2. Preheat the oven to 175°C (350°F).
  3. Remove the stems from the mushrooms and dice them finely. Brush the mushroom caps on both sides with olive oil, sprinkle the insides with a bit of salt and pepper and place them bottom up in a baking dish.
  4. Heat a medium-sized pan over medium heat and add the 1 tablespoon of oil and diced shallots. Fry until transparent then add the sliced garlic. Fry until soft and fragrant then add the chopped mushroom stems. Fry until browned, stirring occasionally, then remove the pan from the heat. Stir through the remaining stuffing ingredients.
  5. Fill each mushroom cap with the stuffing and bake for 15 – 20 minutes or until the mushrooms are brown and soft. If the tomatoes or parsley begin to burn, cover the pan loosely with tin foil.
  6. Serve with the dressing on the side to drizzle over the mushrooms.


Friday, November 18, 2016


Light and airy pizza crust is topped with perfect marinara and a heavy sheet of mozzarella! This pizza is almost identical to the famous slices sold on the streets of New York, and better than any delivery! So without further ado, meet your new favorite pie :)

Cheesy Pretzel Twists

These cheesy pretzel twists are legit out of control from their hot, buttery, golden exterior to all that glorious coarse salt and the moment you break it apart or take that huge giant bite… I think you know where I’m going with this…

The Best Strawberry Chocolate Cake In The World

Strawberry Chocolate Cake is like the best chocolate covered strawberries you’ve ever eaten!!! Moist chocolate cake topped with fresh strawberries, rich chocolate mousse, chocolate ganache and chocolate curls on top. This is serious chocolate fix, plus the cake looks pretty darn impressive! But I’ll tell you a secret, this show-off cake is quite simple to make!

Thursday, November 17, 2016

50 Interesting Facts About Organic Food

  1. Organic food is food that has been grown or processed without synthetic pesticides, chemical fertilizers, irradiation, industrial solvents, or chemical food additives.h
  2. The organic food movement began in the 1940s in response to the Green Revolution. The Green Revolution marked a significant increase in food production due to the introduction of high-yield varieties, the use of pesticides, and better management techniques.g
  3.   Buying locally reduces environmentally costly “food miles”   
  4. When organic food travels long distances to market (food miles), it creates pollution that may offset any positive environmental effects of organic farming. However, buying local food, which may or may not be grown organically, helps reduce the environmental costs associated with food miles.h

Asiago Chicken Pasta with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Spinach

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Asiago Chicken Pasta with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Spinach

Peanut Butter Lovers Brownie Bars

 Here’s how these delicious Peanut Butter Lovers Brownie Bars come together:


Spinach Artichoke Stuffed Chicken

Best Lasagna In The World

Just the World's Best Lasagna!

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Banana Cake with Brown Butter Frosting

Prep time - - Cook time

Total time -

Oreo Cheesecake - No Baking

You wouldn’t judge someone if they ate half a cheesecake in just a couple of days, would you? I’m asking for a friend.

Creamy Garlic Parmesan Mushrooms

 Creamy Garlic Parmesan Mushrooms are sautéed in a butter garlic until tender and then tossed in the most AMAZING creamy parmesan sauce.  These are great as a side, on top of meat or eaten by themselves and ready in under 10 minutes!