Butternut Squash & Walnut Muffins

I planned to make my Spiced Carrot & Walnut muffin, but I only had one carrot and loads of butternut squash.  I was also out of coconut sugar so used a supermarket-friendly combo of a few dates and some maple syrup - I make these for a low-sugar on-the-go breakfast so you may want to add a few more dates if you like things sweeter.  

I also substituted some of the almond flour for teff flour, it’s not strictly paleo but like quinoa it’s a borderline gluten-free grain that’s packed full of nutrients, so I don’t mind a bit every now and then - if you don’t have/ want to use grain flour substitute with almond.

  • 2 cups grated butternut squash
  • 1 large grated carrot
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup chopped dates
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 1/2 cup coconut flour
  • 1/2 cup teff flour
  • 1 tbsp tapoica flour (optional, helps texture, can substitute with teff/ coconut)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp allspice
  • ¼ tsp ginger
  • 1 tsp cinnamon 
  • Optional handful of seeds (I used sunflower and pumpkin)
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 3/4 cup large raisins 
  1. Roughly chop squash and carrot, place in a blender/ food processor with the other wet ingredients and pulse till you get a grainy batter (alternatively grate the veg).
  2. Put the walnuts and raising to the side, add the rest of the dry ingredients and blend/ mix well.
  3. Stir in the raisins and walnuts.
  4. Spoon into muffin cases (I use Sainsbury’s cupcake cases but they’re huge - makes 12).
  5. Bake for around 30 mins at 170c fan (190c conventional, 375f), they’re ready when a metal skewer comes out relatively clean.

Notes: This batter is runnier than usual as the squash/ carrot are quite juicy, don’t be alarmed, the muffins may take a little longer to cook though.  If you’re using teff the muffins will have risen but may look as if they need more time (based on normal paleo muffins) - don’t be fooled, they will firm up better almond flour muffins so don’t need as long - I have fallen for this before and ended up with tasty, but slightly dry muffins!

Fairy cake sized mini-muffins take around 10 mins less and make for great snacks.

#100happydays day 13: chillaxed Sunday - flourless carrot & walnut muffins done; flourless banana, date & pecan muffins done; full snack supplies; walk with Craig; afternoon coffee, muffins & magazine; evening wine, pjs & Breaking Bad finale (at Forest Avenue)

#100happydays day 13: chillaxed Sunday - flourless carrot & walnut muffins done; flourless banana, date & pecan muffins done; full snack supplies; walk with Craig; afternoon coffee, muffins & magazine; evening wine, pjs & Breaking Bad finale (at Forest Avenue)

Tags: 100happydays

Daily Super Green Smoothie
I don’t usually post my daily green smoothies because I pull the veg drawer out the fridge, throw as much good stuff as physically possible into my blender and hope for the best - after 10 months I’m winning more often than I’m failing!
I find it more convenient to make smoothies in the evening whilst I’m making tea, that way they’re ready to go in the morning.
The below makes about 1.5litres which I decant into two stainless steel bottles for mid-morning and late-afternoon at my desk.  Stainless steel helps greatly in the office fridge as it saves my colleagues stumbling upon bottles of green liquid amongst the milk!
The above picture isn’t mine, it’s from here, which looks like a pretty tasty smoothie recipe too.  I didn’t take photos as I only decided to jot down the ingredients and approximate quantities mid-afternoon when I decided I really liked today’s concoction - but the above is what it looks like.
I try and minimize fruit and aim for a 2:1 veg:fruit ratio, today’s was pretty tasty, here’s what was in it:
Spinach (large handful)
Kale (large handful)
Celery (1 stick)
Gem Lettuce (4 leaves)
Avocado (1/2)
Cucumber (3” chunk)
Fresh Parsley (3-4 sprigs - I keep mine in the freezer)
Granny Smith Apple
Kiwi
Lime Juice (1/2)
Flax Oil (1 tsp)
Spirulina (1/2 - 1 tsp)
Maca (1/2-1 tsp)
Fresh Pineapple Juice (200ml)
Coconut Water (200ml)
Ice Cold Water (200ml)
1. Put everything in a high-powered blender and blend on high for around a minute.
2. Try a teaspoon of smoothie, it it’s too thick add some water, if it’s too bitter add some almond milk/ coconut water/ lime juice.
3. Decant into bottles for on-the-go vitamins!

Daily Super Green Smoothie

I don’t usually post my daily green smoothies because I pull the veg drawer out the fridge, throw as much good stuff as physically possible into my blender and hope for the best - after 10 months I’m winning more often than I’m failing!

I find it more convenient to make smoothies in the evening whilst I’m making tea, that way they’re ready to go in the morning.

The below makes about 1.5litres which I decant into two stainless steel bottles for mid-morning and late-afternoon at my desk.  Stainless steel helps greatly in the office fridge as it saves my colleagues stumbling upon bottles of green liquid amongst the milk!

The above picture isn’t mine, it’s from here, which looks like a pretty tasty smoothie recipe too.  I didn’t take photos as I only decided to jot down the ingredients and approximate quantities mid-afternoon when I decided I really liked today’s concoction - but the above is what it looks like.

I try and minimize fruit and aim for a 2:1 veg:fruit ratio, today’s was pretty tasty, here’s what was in it:

  • Spinach (large handful)
  • Kale (large handful)
  • Celery (1 stick)
  • Gem Lettuce (4 leaves)
  • Avocado (1/2)
  • Cucumber (3” chunk)
  • Fresh Parsley (3-4 sprigs - I keep mine in the freezer)
  • Granny Smith Apple
  • Kiwi
  • Lime Juice (1/2)
  • Flax Oil (1 tsp)
  • Spirulina (1/2 - 1 tsp)
  • Maca (1/2-1 tsp)
  • Fresh Pineapple Juice (200ml)
  • Coconut Water (200ml)
  • Ice Cold Water (200ml)

1. Put everything in a high-powered blender and blend on high for around a minute.

2. Try a teaspoon of smoothie, it it’s too thick add some water, if it’s too bitter add some almond milk/ coconut water/ lime juice.

3. Decant into bottles for on-the-go vitamins!

Give this experiment a go and count your blessings :)
http://100happydays.com/
#100happydays no.1: Lunch with mum (at The Foodstory Cafe)

Give this experiment a go and count your blessings :)

http://100happydays.com/

#100happydays no.1: Lunch with mum (at The Foodstory Cafe)

Tags: 100happydays

Blueberry Chia Breakfast/ Dessert

I blended this together this morning in the hope of satisfying my porridge cravings - it did, it also filled me up for hours.  It’s unusual for me to not sneak veg into breakfast somewhere, but berries are antioxidant rich and relatively low GI, plus there’s a heap of fibre in here and coconut oil to slow the release of natural sugars into your bloodstream.

The quantities used make three portions (breakfast for me and two jars for snacks).  I used frozen blueberries and frozen cherries today, but any dark berry would work fine (forest fruits - blackcurrants and blackberries in particular). Hemp has a nutty flavour but if you don’t have hemp seeds/ protein, you could use dedicated coconut/ coconut flour instead. Reserve just over 1/2 a cup of berries to add to the bowls after blending. I like my porridge with chunks in it, which I recreated by adding some coconut flakes, pistachios and/or cacao nibs mixed through it for a but of crunch, I might add walnuts next time - enjoy experimenting!

Ingredients

- 500ml Almond Milk

- 1 banana

- 1 cup blueberries

- 1 cup cherries

- 1/3 cup Flax seeds (whole or milled) 

- 1/3 cup chia seeds (whole or milled)

- 2 tbsp hemp seeds or hemp protein (optional)

- 1 tbsp coconut oil

- 1 tbsp raw honey

- 1 tbsp cinnamon

1. Reserve 1/2 a cup of berries and sprinkle evenly amongst serving bowls/ snack containers

2. Blend the remaining ingredients in a high-powered blender until smooth

3. Pour the mixture into bowls and sprinkle with flaked almonds, coconut, cacao nibs, pistachios - whatever you fancy.

Bedtime dairy free superfood hot chocolate
 Blending hot almond milk with coconut oil gives this hot chocolate that rich, creamy latte texture that almond milk alone lacks - enjoy!

Bedtime dairy free superfood hot chocolate


Blending hot almond milk with coconut oil gives this hot chocolate that rich, creamy latte texture that almond milk alone lacks - enjoy!

Paleo Gingerbread Cookies

Ingredients

- 1 1/4 cups ground almonds

- 1/2 cup almond butter

- 1/4 cup date/ maple syrup

- 2 tbs blackstrap molasses

- 1/4 tsp baking soda

- 1/2 tbsp ground ginger

- 1 tsp allspice

- 1/4 cup chopped crystallised ginger (optional, not strictly Paleo but very tasty)

1. Mix dry ingredients in a large bowl, in a separate bowl mix the wet ingredients, then add wet to dry and mix well.

2. Knead the dough and roll out to approx 1/2cm thick.

3. Cut into shapes approx 4cm in diameter (I chose hearts and stars) and place on a lined baking tray.

4. Bake for 5-7mins at 150c fan.

5. Cool on a wire rack.

Cacao Beetroot Muffins

Cacao is full of antioxidants and pairs deliciously with beetroot, I’d love to make brownies but in a quest for on-the-go work snacks muffins win hands down. I’ve tried various recipes and they’re usually pretty soggy as beetroot is quite liquid, hence the number of beetroot brownies available. I’ve also reduced the amount of honey/maple syrup used in other recipes to keep my snacks low sugar. If you do decide to increase the sweetness remember to add some additional coconut flour/ milled flaxseed to balance the consistency.

Ingredients

- 3 cups of grated beetroot (raw’s better, cooked is fine)
- 4 eggs
- 1/2 cup coconut oil
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 3/4 cup raw 100% cocoa powder
- 3/4 cup coconut flour
- 1/4 cup milled flaxseed 

Optional extras
- 1 cup roasted hazelnuts (roughly crushed)
- 1/4 cup cacao nibs
- 1/2 cup chia seeds 

1. Blend wet ingredients (beetroot, eggs, oil, maple syrup, vanilla extract) in blender/ food processor.
2. Add the dry ingredients (baking soda, sea salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cocoa powder)
3. Add the coconut flour and flaxseed, mix until well incorporated.
4. Mix in optional extras if using
5. Spoon into muffin cases, makes around 10 full-size
6. Bake for 30-35 mins on the top shelf of the oven at 160c fan (180c conventional, 360f)

Cacao Beetroot Muffins

Cacao is full of antioxidants and pairs deliciously with beetroot, I’d love to make brownies but in a quest for on-the-go work snacks muffins win hands down. I’ve tried various recipes and they’re usually pretty soggy as beetroot is quite liquid, hence the number of beetroot brownies available. I’ve also reduced the amount of honey/maple syrup used in other recipes to keep my snacks low sugar. If you do decide to increase the sweetness remember to add some additional coconut flour/ milled flaxseed to balance the consistency.

Ingredients

- 3 cups of grated beetroot (raw’s better, cooked is fine)
- 4 eggs
- 1/2 cup coconut oil
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 3/4 cup raw 100% cocoa powder
- 3/4 cup coconut flour
- 1/4 cup milled flaxseed

Optional extras
- 1 cup roasted hazelnuts (roughly crushed)
- 1/4 cup cacao nibs
- 1/2 cup chia seeds

1. Blend wet ingredients (beetroot, eggs, oil, maple syrup, vanilla extract) in blender/ food processor.
2. Add the dry ingredients (baking soda, sea salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cocoa powder)
3. Add the coconut flour and flaxseed, mix until well incorporated.
4. Mix in optional extras if using
5. Spoon into muffin cases, makes around 10 full-size
6. Bake for 30-35 mins on the top shelf of the oven at 160c fan (180c conventional, 360f)

Paleo Gingerbread Loaf with an Omega 3 boost
I’m trying to come up with a substitute for my usual Christmassy gingerbread latte, I hoped this would curb my ginger cravings and it exceeded expectations – the challenge became trying not to eat it all at once!
I’ve been experimenting with using milled flaxseed instead of flour/ almond flour in baking, it’s high in omega 3, whereas almonds are higher in omega 6. I based this on a recipe by Life as a Plate – have a look at the blog as it gives a breakdown of the nutritional content of blackstrap molasses – naturally sweet, low GI and with a whole host of mineral qualities.
Ingredients
- 3 eggs (beaten) - 2/3 cup blackstrap molasses - 1/2 cup coconut oil (melted) - 1 tsp vanilla extract - 1 tsp maple syrup - 1 cup almond flour - 2 cups ground/ milled flaxseed/ flaxseed meal - 1 tsp baking soda - 1/2 tsp baking powder - 1/2 tsp cardamom - 2 tsp ground ginger - 2 tsp cinnamon - 1/4 tsp ground cloves - 2/3 cup crystallised ginger roughly chopped (naughty optional treat, not strictly paleo due to sugar content)
1. Beat the wet ingredients, in a large bowl (eggs, molasses, coconut oil, vanilla and maple syrup) – steer clear of using your blender for this one or you may have molasses at the bottom forever!2. Combine the dry ingredients in a separate bowl and slowly add to the wet, mixing continuously.3. Pour into a lined loaf tin and bake for 25 mins at 175C/ 165C fan/ 350F, THEN reduce to 110C/ 100C fan/ 225F for a further 30-35 mins, or until a skewer comes out clean.4. Tip out onto a cooling rack and try to resist the urge not to cut it before it’s cooled down.5. Enjoy with a cup of tea, you may or may not wish to share (probably not).

Paleo Gingerbread Loaf with an Omega 3 boost

I’m trying to come up with a substitute for my usual Christmassy gingerbread latte, I hoped this would curb my ginger cravings and it exceeded expectations – the challenge became trying not to eat it all at once!

I’ve been experimenting with using milled flaxseed instead of flour/ almond flour in baking, it’s high in omega 3, whereas almonds are higher in omega 6. I based this on a recipe by Life as a Plate – have a look at the blog as it gives a breakdown of the nutritional content of blackstrap molasses – naturally sweet, low GI and with a whole host of mineral qualities.

Ingredients

- 3 eggs (beaten)
- 2/3 cup blackstrap molasses
- 1/2 cup coconut oil (melted)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp maple syrup
- 1 cup almond flour
- 2 cups ground/ milled flaxseed/ flaxseed meal
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp cardamom
- 2 tsp ground ginger
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ground cloves
- 2/3 cup crystallised ginger roughly chopped (naughty optional treat, not strictly paleo due to sugar content)

1. Beat the wet ingredients, in a large bowl (eggs, molasses, coconut oil, vanilla and maple syrup) – steer clear of using your blender for this one or you may have molasses at the bottom forever!
2. Combine the dry ingredients in a separate bowl and slowly add to the wet, mixing continuously.
3. Pour into a lined loaf tin and bake for 25 mins at 175C/ 165C fan/ 350F, THEN reduce to 110C/ 100C fan/ 225F for a further 30-35 mins, or until a skewer comes out clean.
4. Tip out onto a cooling rack and try to resist the urge not to cut it before it’s cooled down.
5. Enjoy with a cup of tea, you may or may not wish to share (probably not).

Simple Sweet Potato Wedges

One of the few things remaining in the fridge on return from a 2-week holiday, going to the supermarket hungry isn’t a wise move, these worked perfectly!

- 2 sweet potatoes roughly cut into wedges 3/4” thick
- Cold-pressed rapeseed/ olive oil
- Black pepper
- Smoked paprika, cayenne pepper if desired

1. Steam the potato wedges on the hob for 10mins - this makes them fluffy inside.
2. Drain off the water and cook for a further minute or so to evaporate remaining water.
3. Drizzle with oil, pepper and paprika/ cayenne (if adding), lightly mix with a spatula to make sure the wedges are coated evenly.
4. Pour into a roasting tin with a wire rack on the bottom - the rack will ensure the wedges cook evenly and drain excess oil from the wedges.
5. Bake at 160C fan for 30 mins, 1/2 way through check the wedges and turn any if necessary.
6. Enjoy with salsa, guacamole, homemade mayo (or Stokes Real Mayo for a treat) X

Simple Sweet Potato Wedges

One of the few things remaining in the fridge on return from a 2-week holiday, going to the supermarket hungry isn’t a wise move, these worked perfectly!

- 2 sweet potatoes roughly cut into wedges 3/4” thick
- Cold-pressed rapeseed/ olive oil
- Black pepper
- Smoked paprika, cayenne pepper if desired

1. Steam the potato wedges on the hob for 10mins - this makes them fluffy inside.
2. Drain off the water and cook for a further minute or so to evaporate remaining water.
3. Drizzle with oil, pepper and paprika/ cayenne (if adding), lightly mix with a spatula to make sure the wedges are coated evenly.
4. Pour into a roasting tin with a wire rack on the bottom - the rack will ensure the wedges cook evenly and drain excess oil from the wedges.
5. Bake at 160C fan for 30 mins, 1/2 way through check the wedges and turn any if necessary.
6. Enjoy with salsa, guacamole, homemade mayo (or Stokes Real Mayo for a treat) X

Cacao Hazelnut 1 minute mug pudding (2 minute cake) - Paleo friendly 
If I’m in the rare mood that requires chocolate cake in a mug, I’ll be in the mood to eat it instantly, with a spoon, probably burning my tongue in the process. What satisfies more than a cake, a pudding! The consistency of this pudding is similar to a chocolate fondant pudding; it’s easy to overcook a mug cake, so if your microwave is on a dial and not 100% accurate, at least if you aim for a pudding the worst you’ll end up with is a tasty cake. I added hazelnut butter as it’s my new favorite food but if you don’t have any you could substitute with another nut butter or coconut oil.
- 3 tbsp cocoa powder
- 3 tbsp ground almonds
- 1 1/2 - 2 tbsp raw honey
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 egg
- 1 tbsp coconut oil (or macadamia or other mild oil)
- 1 tbsp cinnamon
- 2 tbsp chopped hazelnuts
- 1 tbsp hazelnut butter
- Pinch of salt
- 2 tbsp chopped dates (optional)
- 1 tbsp cacao nibs/ dark chocolate buttons (optional but highly recommended!)

1. Mix all ingredients in a cup, beat with a fork for 30secs
2. Cook in the microwave for approx 1 minute (750W microwave); add or subtract 10 seconds depending on microwave wattage and preferred consistency.  It should be squidgy but not too runny on the top - remember the bottom is likely to be slightly more cooked than the top so don’t cook for too long on account of the initial appearance.
3. Eat with a spoon!
Notes: The above ingredients are paleo-friendly and can be substituted to suit your preferences and contents of your cupboard.
If it’s too dry add some coconut oil or heavy raw cream.

Cacao Hazelnut 1 minute mug pudding (2 minute cake) - Paleo friendly

If I’m in the rare mood that requires chocolate cake in a mug, I’ll be in the mood to eat it instantly, with a spoon, probably burning my tongue in the process. What satisfies more than a cake, a pudding! The consistency of this pudding is similar to a chocolate fondant pudding; it’s easy to overcook a mug cake, so if your microwave is on a dial and not 100% accurate, at least if you aim for a pudding the worst you’ll end up with is a tasty cake. I added hazelnut butter as it’s my new favorite food but if you don’t have any you could substitute with another nut butter or coconut oil.

  • - 3 tbsp cocoa powder
  • - 3 tbsp ground almonds
  • - 1 1/2 - 2 tbsp raw honey
  • - 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • - 1 egg
  • - 1 tbsp coconut oil (or macadamia or other mild oil)
  • - 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • - 2 tbsp chopped hazelnuts
  • - 1 tbsp hazelnut butter
  • - Pinch of salt
  • - 2 tbsp chopped dates (optional)
  • - 1 tbsp cacao nibs/ dark chocolate buttons (optional but highly recommended!)

1. Mix all ingredients in a cup, beat with a fork for 30secs

2. Cook in the microwave for approx 1 minute (750W microwave); add or subtract 10 seconds depending on microwave wattage and preferred consistency.  It should be squidgy but not too runny on the top - remember the bottom is likely to be slightly more cooked than the top so don’t cook for too long on account of the initial appearance.

3. Eat with a spoon!

Notes: The above ingredients are paleo-friendly and can be substituted to suit your preferences and contents of your cupboard.

If it’s too dry add some coconut oil or heavy raw cream.

Spiced Carrot & Walnut Muffins

I based this on Paleomom’s Carrot-Parsnip Muffins, I’ve had complaints of too much cake in the house so I wanted to make a more savoury muffin using veg that still had some sweetness to it.  I use coconut sugar as it’s less sweet and has a lower GI, but you could substitute with muscovado sugar or agave nectar, which are more readily available if you wanted (if using agave increase the coconut flour slightly to balance the consistency).  I thought they needed tweaking but the review panel thought they were perfect so here’s the recipe.

- 2 cups grated carrot
- 1 cup grated courgette
- 4 eggs
- ½ cup coconut sugar
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 ½ cups almond flour (or other nut flour)
- 1 tbsp coconut flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- ½ tsp allspice
- ¼ tsp ginger
- ¼ tsp nutmeg
- ½ tsp cinnamon 
- 1 cup chopped walnuts
- 1 cup large raisins/ sultanas/ chopped dates
 
Finely grate carrot and courgette, it will take a while, you could always roughly chop and pulse in a blender/ food processor but I opted for the old fashioned way.
Mix wet ingredients (eggs, carrot, courgette, oil, and vanilla) in a large bowl to form a batter, I pulsed the batter in the blender for a minute to get some air into the mix.
Mix dry ingredients (coconut sugar, almond flour, coconut flour, baking soda, cream of tartar and spices) in a small bowl.
Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and stir until combined into a very thick batter; fold in walnuts and fruit.

Spoon into muffin cases and bake for around 35 mins at 170c fan (190c conventional, 375f), they’re ready when a metal skewer comes out relatively clean.
Notes: This batter is runnier than usual as the carrot/ courgettes are quite juicy, don’t be alarmed, the muffins may take a little longer to cook though.  Fairy cake sized muffins take around 10 mins less and make for great snacks – my batch made 6 full-size muffins and 8 mini-ones.
The second time I made these I didn’t have enough courgette so I made up the amount with grated butternut squash, tasted delish!

Spiced Carrot & Walnut Muffins

I based this on Paleomom’s Carrot-Parsnip Muffins, I’ve had complaints of too much cake in the house so I wanted to make a more savoury muffin using veg that still had some sweetness to it.  I use coconut sugar as it’s less sweet and has a lower GI, but you could substitute with muscovado sugar or agave nectar, which are more readily available if you wanted (if using agave increase the coconut flour slightly to balance the consistency).  I thought they needed tweaking but the review panel thought they were perfect so here’s the recipe.

  • - 2 cups grated carrot
  • - 1 cup grated courgette
  • - 4 eggs
  • - ½ cup coconut sugar
  • - 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • - 1 ½ cups almond flour (or other nut flour)
  • - 1 tbsp coconut flour
  • - 1 tsp baking soda
  • - ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • - ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • - ½ tsp allspice
  • - ¼ tsp ginger
  • - ¼ tsp nutmeg
  • - ½ tsp cinnamon
  • - 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • - 1 cup large raisins/ sultanas/ chopped dates

 

Finely grate carrot and courgette, it will take a while, you could always roughly chop and pulse in a blender/ food processor but I opted for the old fashioned way.

Mix wet ingredients (eggs, carrot, courgette, oil, and vanilla) in a large bowl to form a batter, I pulsed the batter in the blender for a minute to get some air into the mix.

Mix dry ingredients (coconut sugar, almond flour, coconut flour, baking soda, cream of tartar and spices) in a small bowl.

Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and stir until combined into a very thick batter; fold in walnuts and fruit.

Spoon into muffin cases and bake for around 35 mins at 170c fan (190c conventional, 375f), they’re ready when a metal skewer comes out relatively clean.

Notes: This batter is runnier than usual as the carrot/ courgettes are quite juicy, don’t be alarmed, the muffins may take a little longer to cook though.  Fairy cake sized muffins take around 10 mins less and make for great snacks – my batch made 6 full-size muffins and 8 mini-ones.


The second time I made these I didn’t have enough courgette so I made up the amount with grated butternut squash, tasted delish!

Cacao, Pecan, Date Truffles
I made these truffles with extra-thick shells to take as energy snacks for a mountain biking at the weekend, so I added 1/2 cup of ground almonds to the below recipe to keep the centre firmer than usual and avoid them getting squished! The truffles shouldn’t melt at room temperature as they’re covered in dark chocolate with high cocoa solids, but I’d recommend keeping them boxed up in the fridge and taking out 30 mins before eating.
- 1 cup coconut flour- 2cups chopped dates (mejdool dates work best)- 1cup pecans- 1/2 cup coconut oil- 2 tbsp raw honey/ agave- 1 cup cocoa powder- Approx 200g good quality dark chocolate (at least 75% cocoa solids)
1. Roughly grind/ chop the pecans and dates (if your food processor has a coffee grinder attachment this is perfect for small batches)2. Set the chocolate aside and blend the rest of the ingredients into a rough dough/ paste - either in a food processor, blender or with your hands in a big bowl3. Roll into balls between 2-3 cm (1/2- 1”) diameter, put in the freezer to firm up for 10-15mins4. Meanwhile melt 1/2 the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of water (don’t let the bowl touch the water and once the water’s boiling turn the heat right down to avoid scalding the chocolate - google bain marie for info). If using a microwave keep an eye on it and stir frequently as it will burn quickly if left alone.5. Coat each truffle in the chocolate (use wooden toothpicks to swirl them in the bowl) and return to freezer. The remaining chocolate will probably be a bit grainy from dipping in the raw truffles, see notes below.6. After about 30mins repeat step 5, as the truffles already have a coating of chocolate this layer should be smooth, extra thick chocolate coating.7. Place in the fridge until set, about 30mins.
Notes:
Mix dried berries, nuts and seeds into leftover chocolate and spoon into fairy cake cases for grown-up chocolate krispie cakes #wastenotwantnot

Cacao, Pecan, Date Truffles

I made these truffles with extra-thick shells to take as energy snacks for a mountain biking at the weekend, so I added 1/2 cup of ground almonds to the below recipe to keep the centre firmer than usual and avoid them getting squished! The truffles shouldn’t melt at room temperature as they’re covered in dark chocolate with high cocoa solids, but I’d recommend keeping them boxed up in the fridge and taking out 30 mins before eating.

- 1 cup coconut flour
- 2cups chopped dates (mejdool dates work best)
- 1cup pecans
- 1/2 cup coconut oil
- 2 tbsp raw honey/ agave
- 1 cup cocoa powder
- Approx 200g good quality dark chocolate (at least 75% cocoa solids)

1. Roughly grind/ chop the pecans and dates (if your food processor has a coffee grinder attachment this is perfect for small batches)
2. Set the chocolate aside and blend the rest of the ingredients into a rough dough/ paste - either in a food processor, blender or with your hands in a big bowl
3. Roll into balls between 2-3 cm (1/2- 1”) diameter, put in the freezer to firm up for 10-15mins
4. Meanwhile melt 1/2 the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of water (don’t let the bowl touch the water and once the water’s boiling turn the heat right down to avoid scalding the chocolate - google bain marie for info). If using a microwave keep an eye on it and stir frequently as it will burn quickly if left alone.
5. Coat each truffle in the chocolate (use wooden toothpicks to swirl them in the bowl) and return to freezer. The remaining chocolate will probably be a bit grainy from dipping in the raw truffles, see notes below.
6. After about 30mins repeat step 5, as the truffles already have a coating of chocolate this layer should be smooth, extra thick chocolate coating.
7. Place in the fridge until set, about 30mins.

Notes:

Mix dried berries, nuts and seeds into leftover chocolate and spoon into fairy cake cases for grown-up chocolate krispie cakes #wastenotwantnot

Spiced Apple Carrot Muffins
I made these up for my in-laws and added a lot of sultanas and raisins for added variety and sweetness - the recipe suggests 1-2 cups as it’s based on personal preference; similarly you might prefer more/less honey.
2-3 large carrots (grated) 2 large apples (peeled and chopped into rough chunks 1/4”) 2 cups of sultanas/ large raisins/ chopped dates 2 tbsp cinnamon 1/2 tbsp nutmeg 1/2 tbsp ginger 4 tbsp coconut/ rapeseed oil 100g coconut flour 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda 1 tsp baking powder (gluten free) 4 eggs 1/2 cup raw honey/ agave nectar (to taste)
1. On the hob brown the chopped apple on a low heat with 1 tbsp of the coconut oil and half the cinnamon and nutmeg. Once brown add in the sultanas/raisins/ chopped dates 2. Combine remaining ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend for a couple of minutes (resultant mixture will be a weird orange colour, don’t be alarmed!) 3. Combine the mixture in a large bowl with the spiced fruit and mix well 4. Spoon into muffin cases, makes about 10 muffins 5. Bake for 30-35mins at 160c (fan)/ 180c (conventional)/ 375f 6. Leave to cool on baking rack

Spiced Apple Carrot Muffins

I made these up for my in-laws and added a lot of sultanas and raisins for added variety and sweetness - the recipe suggests 1-2 cups as it’s based on personal preference; similarly you might prefer more/less honey.

2-3 large carrots (grated)
2 large apples (peeled and chopped into rough chunks 1/4”)
2 cups of sultanas/ large raisins/ chopped dates
2 tbsp cinnamon
1/2 tbsp nutmeg
1/2 tbsp ginger
4 tbsp coconut/ rapeseed oil
100g coconut flour
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp baking powder (gluten free)
4 eggs
1/2 cup raw honey/ agave nectar (to taste)

1. On the hob brown the chopped apple on a low heat with 1 tbsp of the coconut oil and half the cinnamon and nutmeg. Once brown add in the sultanas/raisins/ chopped dates
2. Combine remaining ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend for a couple of minutes (resultant mixture will be a weird orange colour, don’t be alarmed!)
3. Combine the mixture in a large bowl with the spiced fruit and mix well
4. Spoon into muffin cases, makes about 10 muffins
5. Bake for 30-35mins at 160c (fan)/ 180c (conventional)/ 375f
6. Leave to cool on baking rack

Watermelon smoothie with a kick

Watermelon’s tricky in a smoothie, it’s very pulpy and add a hint of green veg and the colour’s pretty unappealing!  I usually aim for less fruit, more veg in my smoothies to keep the fibre high and the sugar low, with at least 2 veg per smoothie to up my intake.  Until now that meant watermelon was off the menu - I like to eat healthy and experiment, but turning up to the office swigging from a bottle of light brown liquid just isn’t socially accepted!  
1/2 watermelon (I was using mine up so threw it all in)
8 blackberries
1 cooked beetroot
1-2 sticks celery
Approx 300ml Coconut water or almond milk
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
Blend together, add more/ less coconut water/ almond milk to achieve preferred consistency.  This smoothie is refreshing without the pepper, mint might be nice, but a wee bit of pepper gives it a warm kick without being spicy.

Notes: I always make enough smoothie to take to work and drink at my desk throughout the day - mixes up the water/ green tea cycle, curbs cravings, keeps me hydrated and scores bonus veg and fibre points (as long as the fruit and sugar are kept to a minimum!)

Watermelon smoothie with a kick

Watermelon’s tricky in a smoothie, it’s very pulpy and add a hint of green veg and the colour’s pretty unappealing!  I usually aim for less fruit, more veg in my smoothies to keep the fibre high and the sugar low, with at least 2 veg per smoothie to up my intake.  Until now that meant watermelon was off the menu - I like to eat healthy and experiment, but turning up to the office swigging from a bottle of light brown liquid just isn’t socially accepted!  

  • 1/2 watermelon (I was using mine up so threw it all in)
  • 8 blackberries
  • 1 cooked beetroot
  • 1-2 sticks celery
  • Approx 300ml Coconut water or almond milk
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

Blend together, add more/ less coconut water/ almond milk to achieve preferred consistency.  This smoothie is refreshing without the pepper, mint might be nice, but a wee bit of pepper gives it a warm kick without being spicy.

Notes: I always make enough smoothie to take to work and drink at my desk throughout the day - mixes up the water/ green tea cycle, curbs cravings, keeps me hydrated and scores bonus veg and fibre points (as long as the fruit and sugar are kept to a minimum!)