Banana-Beet Chocolate Cake (GF)

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rich and delish

 

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just so you see how everything isn’t perfect! Still tastes good.

I found this recipe, modified it to suit my baking tastes, and boy is it good! Deliciously moist for a gluten-free product and keeps that way for days (covered).  I made mine in a non-stick bundt pan which gives it a nice appearance, and, as with all the recipes here — if it’s not a ‘keeper’, I don’t blog it.  Easy, easy, easy.  You can eat this as is – plain, and it’s great, but dress it up for any occasion and there will be no complaints from anyone– gluten-free or not.  Just make it.  I think you’ll actually be healthier after you eat this, too. 😉

Banana-Beet Chocolate Cake

adapted from a recipe from www.greenkitchenstories.com

Serves 8

Ingredients:

1 ripe banana, grated

1 medium cooked beet, grated (if you don’t have a beet, use 2 bananas instead of one)

1/3 cup coconut oil, melted (or butter)

1/2 cup (real) maple syrup

2 eggs

1/2 tsp vanilla

2 cups almond flour

1/3 cup cocoa powder

1 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp. sea salt

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 F.  Grease a bundt pan or 8 x 8 inch baking pan. (I used non-stick as well). Dust pan with a bit of cocoa to prevent sticking.

Mix together in a medium sized bowl – banana, beet, coconut oil, maple syrup, eggs and vanilla. Blend well.  In separate bowl, mix almond flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt and when combined, add to wet ingredient and mix until well incorporated.

Pour batter into greased bundt pan or an 8 x 8 inch baking pan.  Bake for 45 minutes or until tester comes out fairly clean. Remove from oven, let cool and then loosen cake and pop out onto a cake platter or plate. Cool. Serve plain or with whip cream, yogurt, chocolate sauce, berries – get creative and enjoy.  Keeps for several days, covered.  (but won’t last that long).   Cheers! Enjoy.

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easy ingredients

mix together grated beet, banana, egg, oil, vanilla and syrup

mix together grated beet, banana, egg, oil, vanilla and syrup

baked in bundt pan, tastes great plain

baked in bundt pan, tastes great plain

it's this good.

it’s this good.

everybody enjoys this cake

everybody enjoys this cake

 

 

 

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Walnut-Date Chews (gluten free)

Walnut Date Chews

Walnut Date Chews

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These are the best cookies if you want to avoid too many carbs, refined sugar, gluten, egg and dairy! Even if you aren’t avoiding these things, they are the best cookies. You know how after dinner you just want a little sweet? This fits the bill with absolutely no guilt and all pleasure.  It’s based on ‘bliss ball’ recipe but I’ve refined and adapted it to be even more blissful. I sometimes even crumble one on my yogurt in the morning.  They are a snap to make,  so get going.

Walnut-Date Chews

makes 16-20 cookies

Ingredients:

2 cups walnuts

1/3 cup dates, diced (make sure they are soft – reconstitute them with boiling water if they are hard )

2 tbsp maple syrup

2 tbsp coconut oil, melted

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/4 cup dark chocolate chips (optional)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350F.  Prepare baking sheet with silpat or parchment paper. Set aside.

Place walnuts in bowl of food processor and pulse 5 or 6 times until roughly chopped.  Sprinkle dates over top and pulse 5 or 6 more times.  Add vanilla, maple syrup, coconut oil and salt.  Continue to pulse until walnuts and dates are finely minced and a nutty ‘dough’ has formed.  You may have to take the top of and move the mixture around, pressing it down, then pulse a few times, then repeat until it’s evenly processed.

Using a 1 tbsp scoop,  scoop balls of nut mixture onto cookie sheet.  Shape into flat-topped circles.  If using, place 2 chocolate chips on each cookie. (just for fun and a little hit of chocolate–so good).  Cookies only need to be about an inch apart, you can fit them all on one sheet.

Place in preheated oven for 9 minutes. Remove from oven and cool. Enjoy! Store in airtight container for 1 week, or freeze for up to a month.

process until fairly fine

process until fairly fine

these are the best dates

these are the best dates

1 tbsp of dough

1 tbsp of dough

bake at 350 for 9 mins

bake at 350 for 9 mins

 

YUM

YUM

 

 

 

 

Cranberry Lemon Ricotta Cake

Cranberry-Lemon Ricotta Cake

I couldn’t resist a basket of freshly harvested organic cranberries at the farmer”s market this morning.  Since I was making this ricotta cake today, I simply topped it with some of these tart little jewels. Check it out – this recipe is adapted from a traditional Italian recipe and I’ve modiified it so that it contains less sugar, spelt flour (which is a non-gmo ancient wheat grain), and  added a bit of vanilla.  So, the cake maintains it’s moist lemony goodness, but is Canadianized with cranberry and pear.   This will be really good for Thanksgiving dinner or  If you want an everyday cake to have on the counter for the weekend, or a birthday cake for a loved one or an excellent dessert for a dinner party – it’s really versatile because it’s just damn good.  The gluten-free version can be found here: GF Ricotta Cake,  You can also find a pictorial tutorial at that link if you have questions or need direction. Continue reading

Flourless Any Fruit Crumble

Flourless Any Fruit Crumble

Flourless Any Fruit Crumble

I’m on my usual springtime extreme health kick so my recipes will be healthy ones.  That’s not to say that they won’t still be awesome because I like to think that I specialize in making healthy stuff taste great and / or finding recipes that do.  So. If you are also being super healthy with your life, and you should be…you will understand the need for the occasional desserty  item.  I like this recipe because it satisfies the post-dinner sweet craving and  I can add a little bit of it to my morning yogurt – the entire recipe has 2 tablespoons of maple syrup and a little bit of carbs in the form of oatmeal (or quinoa flakes), so I”m pretty sure you can handle it.  I used blueberries and it tastes totally awesome. Continue reading

The Best Chocolate Brownies

Gooey Chocolate Brownies with Ice Cream, chocolate sauce and pecans

Gooey Chocolate Brownies with Ice Cream, chocolate sauce and pecans

Chocolate Pecan Brownies - great on their own too

Chocolate Pecan Brownies – great on their own too

I think one of the first recipes anyone makes when they’re young is brownies.  There are a million different recipes and variations.  This one I refer to as ‘the best’ because it’s dense, chewy and rich– with intense chocolate flavour.  The technique is a little more complex than a basic brownie, but not difficult and the result is worth it.  Eaten alone these are extremely delicious, but assembled on a large plate with some ice cream and a chocolate drizzle kicks it up a level and can easily be served as an elegant dessert.  The recipe calls for “UNSWEETENED” chocolate – usually in a blue box – so don’t mistake it for bittersweet or semi-sweet.  Try it out – this recipe is a keeper. Continue reading

Grandma’s Christmas Pudding – A Heritage Recipe

Grandma's Traditional Christmas pudding

Grandma’s Traditional Christmas pudding

This recipe comes to me via my Aunt Julia.  I was eager to try it as something I’ve never made before and I was excited to recreate my grandmother’s recipe.  I had to track down a ‘pudding mold’ and luckily, my friend Julie loaned me hers and included an appropriate sized pot to steam it in.  So. This ‘pudding’ is really what  Canadians would consider more of a ‘cake’, however, this pudding is cooked by method of steaming instead of baking.  The result is a moist Christmas pudding rich with nuts and fruit and just the smell alone will bring back memories of  childhood Christmas dinners. Continue reading

Healthy Nutty Balls

Heathy Nutty Balls

Heathy Nutty Balls

 

I’m a confirmed cookie addict and since cookies make me fat, I was thrilled when my friend, Marleen, made these nutty balls at a luncheon at her house.  Since then, I’ve been experimenting with the recipe ratios and making various flavours of nutty balls.  They are a delicious yet healthy snack (and gluten free), and even if you eat three of them a day, you won’t gain weight! I know this from experience.  Also, I love how I can eat this and not feel guilty–it’s got lots of omega-3’s and fibre.   So, play around with different types of nuts, flavourings  and coatings.  Try adding dried fruit and or cocoa.  I don’t stray from the maple syrup as a sweetener– I just think it’s so much healthier for you than sugar.  So. If you want or love a sweet treat after dinner or at midnight, make a batch of these and keep them in the freezer– they are best served very cold. Cheers. 🙂 Continue reading