Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Chocolate Mini Loaves

I adapted the carob brownie recipe from the Nourishing Traditions cookbook into a quick chocolate bread. My version isn't as sweet and includes cocoa instead of carob, as I believe cocoa is a healthy food when procured from a good source. It is also gluten free and can easily be made dairy free with substitutions of coconut oil and alternative milk. 
*I recommend soaking the buckwheat flour overnight with the half and half and a tbsp apple cider vinegar or yogurt, and then mixing as normal, but being in a pinch, I skipped it this time.

Preheat oven to 350F to get started.

Mix these ingredients together in a large bowl with a whisk:
1.5 cups whole buckwheat flour
.5 cups arrowroot flour/powder
.5 cups cocoa powder
1.5 tsp baking powder
1 tsp sea salt

 In a stand mixer bowl (or separate bowl with hand mixer) cream together:
.75 cups butter 
.75 cups turbinado sugar (brown or sucanant sugars would work also)
.5 cups dextrose (or more sugar)
 After creaming butter and sugar, add 
4 eggs (or just 3 for a denser brownie-like bread)
2 tsp vanilla extract 

When mixed, add:
1 cup of half and half (or milky liquid of your choice-  subbing half amount of milk for cold strong coffee might be tasty!)
Then slowly add in the flour mixture until it comes together. Don't forget to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl. :) 

Bake in well oiled mini loaf or jumbo muffin pans for 15-25 minutes, checking for desired level of doness. You can also bake in a regular loaf pan, just adjust cooking time up accordingly. 

I made this recipe in a Duncan Hines brand pan that had 8 mini loaf cavities. I got about 13 loaves from it, and so based the nutrition facts on them. I put estimated nutritional information on My Fitness Pal, with the name of Kati's Chocolate Bread. 

Friday, March 21, 2014

Overnight GF Buckwheat and Oat Waffles

Gluten Free Buckwheat and Oat Over Night Waffles (big freezable batch)

These are filling and full of protein, fiber and healthy fats, especially if you melt butter to drizzle on top like we did! And you can omit the oats for more buckwheat or another flour/grain of choice if you wish. I think these are pretty exciting, since they seem to be more satiating for the sons than similar waffles made exclusively with coconut or nut flours, and they may be less expensive to make. 

*You will want a blender or food processor, and a waffle iron for this recipe (you can make pancakes too, just add about a half cup more buckwheat for that). 

To do the day before (morning, noon or night)
4 cups buckwheat flour (pre-milled or ground from groats)
2 cups of gf rolled oats (I used Trader Joe's)
2 tbsps raw apple cider vinegar (or lemon juice, just add an acid medium) 
Enough filtered water to just cover

Combine in a ceramic or glass container, then set on counter with a towel covering the top or put in the oven to soak (This is really easy, because you can mix it, then forget about it until the next day)! I turned my oven light on during the soaking for a more stable temperature. The grains should soak up most of the water. You can give it a stir every once in awhile to make sure it isn't drying out. You may notice bubbling, which is fun to see as it means everything is doing what it is supposed to do. 

The next day:
The mixture should be the consistency of thick porridge, but not clumpy and dry. If this happens, you could add a small amount of your liquid of choice, until the desired consistency is reached. If your mix is a bit too soupy, carefully pour off excess liquid. 

For the waffle baking, you use:
12-14 eggs 
2 tsp aluminum free baking powder
Dash of salt ( I used Himalayan pink salt)
Soaked mixture
Splash of vanilla
10 drops of stevia 
Preheat your waffle iron and oil it with butter, olive or coconut oil. Then, put half the eggs in the blender, along with half of all the other ingredients. Mix for a few moments or so, until everything is combined well. 
Pour into waffle iron and follow the usual baking instructions. Repeat with remaining ingredients. 

If you are planning on freezing extras, wait until the waffles are cooled completely
before putting in the freezer. 

You may soak the mixture in the refrigerator if the thought of leaving stuff out bothers you. I would just start it in the morning (or even two nights before!) as the breaking down of the grains will take a bit longer in a colder environment.

This recipe should yield around 12 deep style waffles. I have calculated the approximate nutrition information (using 14 large eggs) over at Fitness Pal for those tracking stats like me. 

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Hulk Cereal and Bar option

Today I gave the sons some trail mix as breakfast cereal, with coconut milk and blueberries on top. My eldest asked for more about five minutes after I told him that was all he would get (it was a lot!) I explained to him that the cereal had lots and lots of energy (calories- I am not afraid of calories, but I believe they should not be ignored completely) in it and he said "like the Hulk has lots and lots of energy?" I told him yes, it was the kind of cereal the Hulk would eat since it had so much energy in it. I offered a mandarin or some carrots if he was still hungry and he declined. 

What I put in our "Hulk" cereal:

*Dry roasted salted almonds (from Trader Joe's)
*Roasted and salted shelled sunflower seeds (also from TJ's)
*Coconut flakes (from the bulk bags at Natural Grocers) 
*Generous handful of chocolate chunks (once again, from TJ's)

For the proportions, I probably used an equal weight of almonds and coconut flakes, with a little less sunflower seeds. I just rolled and shook the mix around in a sealed jar. You can eat it dry or turn it into Hulk cereal with a bit of milk! You could even soak it overnight in yogurt or kefir for some grain-free muesli.  

You can sub out the chocolate for raisins, diced apricots, banana chips or even pecans or walnuts. It is a versatile type of thing.  Yummy, very filling and energy dense, to keep those little Hulks going full power until lunch! 

Recipe option: taking the mix, slowly add some type of liquid sweetening syrup and/or plant protein butter until it holds together. Press into a parchment lined pan with some overhanging on the sides and bake on 250 F for 25-30 minutes (or use a food dehydrator after shaping in a pan, but it may take longer). Be careful not to burn! Cool and cut into bigger bars for meals and smaller bars for snacks on the go.