Cheeky Choccie Chunk Cookies

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I am constantly on the search for a paleo chocolate chunk cookie recipe that comes close to my fond memories of Cookie Time cookies and this is a pretty good contender.

I used block chocolate that I roughly chopped into chunks, but you could use whatever form takes your fancy, chips, drops – the world is your oyster.

 

INGREDIENTS

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract (the real stuff please, no imitation essence here thanks!)

1/4 cup coconut oil, melted and cooled

1/2 cup coconut sugar

1 cup almond flour

1/4 cup coconut flour

1/2 teaspoon of baking soda

90g dark chocolate chunks (we’re talking at least 70% cocoa, yum)

 

DIRECTIONS

Pre-heat your oven to 180ºC.

Sift your flours and baking soda into a large bowl.  In a mixing jug whisk together the egg, coconut oil, coconut sugar and vanilla extract, then mix into the flours in the bowl to form your dough.

Next fold in your chocolate chunks (I found that I had to scrunch them in with my hands as the coconut oil means the batter is not very sticky).

Using your hands shape roughly tablespoon amounts of the dough into cookie shapes and place on a baking tray lined with baking paper.

Bake for around 12 minutes, but start to check them after 10, you want them to be turning deliciously golden brown.

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SACHERTORTE REIMAGINED

sachertorte reimagined

This is a serious Chocolate Cake (note the caps).  I personally don’t think this needs the jam and ganache topping that a Sachertorte traditionally has, however if you want it I’ve included directions for that as well.

Inspiration for this recipe comes from the Green & Black’s Chocolate Recipes cookbook.  This is currently the only brand of chocolate that I buy and it is glorious.  If you know of a better one please tell me, I’d love to check it out, but if you haven’t tried Green & Black’s yet, I’d urge you to give it a go!

INGREDIENTS

200g 85% cocoa solids chocolate

6 eggs

Tiny pinch of salt

310g coconut sugar

150g ground almonds

1 ½ tsps decaf instant coffee

DIRECTIONS

Pre heat your oven to 180C and line your cake tin with baking paper.

Gently melt the chocolate (easiest if broken into small pieces) in a bowl suspended over a pot of simmering water, don’t let the water touch the bottom of the bowl.

Separate 5 of the eggs, beat the 5 yolks and 1 whole egg with the sugar until thick and creamy.

In a separate bowl beat the 5 egg whites with a tiny pinch of salt until it will hold a firm peak.

Add the ground almonds, coffee and melted chocolate into the egg yolk mixture and stir well.  Next comes the trickiest bit, combining with the egg whites.  The easiest way to do this is to take a large spoonful of the egg whites and generously beat them into the egg yolk/chocolate mixture to loosen it, then very carefully and gently fold the rest of the egg white mix in a spoonful at a time until fully incorporated.

Pour into your cake tin and put in the over.

Bake for 20-25 mins then cover with tinfoil and bake for a further 25-30 mins.  Check that it’s cooked by inserting a wooden skewer into the cake, if it’s clean when it comes out, it’s cooked, if it’s a little gooey, it ain’t.

This is where I leave it, it’s scrumptious served with a dollop of yoghurt or cream, coconut or otherwise.  However if you want to go all out ‘traditional’ Sachertorte leave the cake to cool on a rack while you melt 6 Tbs sugar free jam (such as St Dalfours) over a low heat.  Strain out any bits and then brush over the cake.  Melt 100g 85% cocoa chocolate over a saucepan of simmering water add 40g unsalted butter and stir until smooth and glossy and the consistency of thick cream.  Pour over the cake and leave to set.

GINGER CRUNCH

ginger crunch

From the recipes I post I’m sure you’re able to tell that I rather like my treats and am not particularly ascetic, after all you only get one life (as far as I know any way) and I’m damned if I’m not going to enjoy it while still trying to do the best for myself and my family that I can.  So it’s always doubly gratifying when I can make something that tastes ah-ma-zing and still be nourishing for my body.

Ginger is said to be good for digestion and helping to combat nausea, which makes this slice an awesome option post-prandial or after you see Fat Bastard caressing himself in Austin Powers.  And of course it’s refined sugar free, dairy free, gluten/grain free etc. etc.

Credit where credit is due, inspiration for this recipe comes from Dr. Libby Weaver’s Book, Sweet Food Story.

INGREDIENTS

Base:

1 Cup ground almonds

1 Cup desiccated coconut

1/3 Cup buckwheat groats

¼ nut butter

½ Cup melted coconut oil

¼ Cup maple syrup

3 Tbs fresh, finely grated ginger

Pinch of salt

Topping:

1 Cup nut butter

1 tsp vanilla paste or extract

¼ Cup maple syrup

¼ Cup water

1 tsp lemon juice

4 Tbs ground ginger

150g Cup melted cacao butter

DIRECTIONS

Pre-heat your oven to 160C.

Put all the base ingredients in a food processor fitted with an ‘S’ blade and processes until combined.  Scrape out into a lined slice tin and bake for 25 mins.  Then remove and allow to cool completely.

To make the topping put all the ingredients in the food processor and gently (low speed) process until combined.  Pour evenly over the base and place in the fridge to set, 1 – 2 hours.

Keep in the fridge and take as required.

SALTED CARAMEL & CHOCOLATE SLICE

salted-caramel-and-chocolate-slice

I will warn you now, this is addictive. I’ve got into the habit of making it every week, dangerous stuff!  Good thing is it’s quick and easy.  It’s one of those gloriously low maintenance recipes that require no more effort than a little gentle melting and turning the knob on the food processor, love it.

 

INGREDIENTS

Base

1 Cup ground almonds

1 Cup desiccated coconut

½ Cup mixed seeds

1 tsp vanilla extract, I urge you to use the real thing, not a flavoured essence

½ tsp ground cinnamon

6 squidgy dates, I use Medjool, but you could use dried dates and soak them in hot water to soften

1 – 2 Tbs water

Salted Caramel

1 Cup melted coconut oil

½ Cup nut butter

1 tsp vanilla extract

Good grind of salt, I use pink Himalayan

1 Tbs maple syrup, the real thing please

Chocolate Topping

100g dark, dark chocolate, I use Green & Blacks 85% cocoa

½ Cup melted coconut oil

 

DIRECTIONS

Put all the ingredients (start with just 1 Tbs of water) for the base into a food processor fitted with an ‘S’ blade and pulse to combine.  You want it to start turning ‘rubble-like’ and clumping together, if it’s looking too dry add the 2nd Tbs of water and pulse again.  Once it’s come together turn it out into a slice tray lined with baking paper and pop in the freezer to firm up.

For the Salted Caramel layer, add all the ingredients into the food processor (don’t worry about cleaning it) and whizz till smooth and combined.  Take the base out of the freezer, pour over the caramel and return to the freezer.

For the Chocolate topping, wait until the caramel layer is set then very gently melt the chocolate and the coconut oil together and stir until glossy and smooth.  Pour over the caramel layer and return to the freezer for half an hour to set firm.  Then cover and move to the fridge.

This is very heat sensitive so you need to keep it in the fridge.

Yum.

Nutty Cacoa Mousse

choc mousse

 

Holy crap!  I did not realise how full on having two little people would be… to all those people out these with more than two, I am in awe of you.

So baby bear is now 10 months old and little bear is nearly three.  Amazing how time flies when you’re trying to get some sleep, do some laundry, get some sleep, get nutritious food into everyone, get some sleep, moderate how much of a bombsite your house looks like, and did I mention get some sleep?  Any way suffice to say at the end of the day it’s nice to have a little something to look forward to and for me the last week or so it’s been this cheeky little nutty cacao mousse.

This is really so easy I feel a bit of a charlatan calling it a recipe so let’s go with suggestion. The below makes enough for one so just multiply as required.

 

INGREDIENTS

2 heaped dessertspoons of yoghurt – coconut, organic dairy, whatever takes your fancy

Heaped teaspoon of nut butter – I’m currently using almond

1 teaspoon of raw cacao powder

Optional – drizzle of maple syrup

 

DIRECTIONS

Beat everything together until it’s combined and has a lovely light texture. That’s it, enjoy!

 

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the new Baby Bear in the house

 

Boiled Orange, Carrot & Almond Cake

boiled orange cake

This is a lovely dense, moist cake, with an amazingly vibrant orange flavour.  It does require a little pre-work but I promise you it is worth it.  Grandma Bear has lots of oranges on her trees at the moment and this is made with the small blood oranges which I don’t like eating fresh.

I tend to start this this day before making the orange puree and then leaving it in the fridge overnight, but whatever works for you.

If you can bear to leave it this is actually better the day after baking, but it’s still really good just cooled as well.

INGREDIENTS

350 – 375g orange puree

250g ground almond meal

150 – 175g grated carrots

Large handful of well washed and dried sultanas

1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon of baking soda

50g coconut sugar

2 large eggs

DIRECTIONS

To make the orange puree, take approx. 4 small oranges (organic if you can get them because you’re going to be eating the skin) give them a cursory scrub and cover in a pot with cold water.  Bring them to the boil and then turn the heat down to keep them simmering for 2 hours.  Let them cool completely and then rip into chunks, removing any seeds you find on the way, and puree in your food processor or with a stick blender.

To make the cake, pre-heat the oven to 180 C on normal bake.

Combine the orange puree, eggs and sugar and beat until smooth and creamy.  Gently stir together all remaining ingredients into a big mixing bowl then add the orange, egg, sugar mix in to and stir until just completely combined.

Tip into a cake tin lined with baking paper, I use a 25cm round spring form tin, and bake for 1 hour.  Depending on your oven you may want to start checking the top after 45 mins or so to see if you need to cover with foil to stop the top burning.  Trust me the cake is so moist it will need the full hour of baking.  To test for done-ness stick a wooden skewer in the middle, it should come out reasonably cleanly with just a few moist crumbs sticking to it.  It if looks like it’s got cake batter on it, keep baking for a bit longer.  When cooked remove the cake from the oven and leave to cool completely in the tin before turning out.

LET’S CELEBRATE CHOCOLATE CAKE!

choc cake

I’m back!  Did ya’ miss me?  Don’t worry, I know you did, but it’s all OK now.

keep-calm-i-am-back

If you saw my last post you’ll know my absence has been due to rampant pregnancy induced nausea and I can’t even begin to tell you how ecstatic I am to be back on the food wagon!  Please keep the garlic and coffee away from me still though…

My first foray back into the kitchen was for Grandma Bear’s birthday.  This is not strictly Paleo as it does use butter, but it is also quite delicious.  I gave it another crack for our office morning tea and there was not a crumb left over.

INGREDIENTS

200g dark chocolate, my favourite is Green & Blacks 85% cocoa

150g butter

½ Cup coconut sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

4 eggs

1 ¼ Cups ground almonds

2 Tablespoons cacao powder

Pinch of salt

DIRECTIONS

Pre-heat your oven to 160°C and line your cake tin with baking paper.  I use a springform cake tin and this makes the removal of the cake so much easier.

Gently melt the butter and chocolate together in a glass bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (don’t let the water touch the bowl).  This is easiest if you chop them up into bits first.

Remove the bowl from the heat once they’re both melted and mix through the almonds, vanilla, sugar, egg yolks and cacao powder.

In another bowl whisk the egg whites and salt until stiff peaks form.  Next bit mildly technical, but you can do it!  Take one spoonful of the beaten egg whites and beat them into the chocolate mixture.  This will loosen it and make it easier to gently fold the rest of the egg whites in.  We need to try and maintain the aeration in the egg whites as that is what provides the lift to the cake.  The best motion to do this is a ‘cut’ rather than a ‘beat’.

Once all the egg whites have been incorporated gently pour into your prepared cake tin and bake for ~40 mins.  You want the texture of the cake to be sort of fudgy, so you’re definitely not looking for a clean skewer if that’s how you test the done-ness of your cake.

Enjoy with some coconut yoghurt or cream.  Birthday candles are optional, but they do add a rather jaunty, festive note 🙂