Like I said, this trip inspired me. A lot. Our friend eats raw food and while we were there, so did Peter and I. I found eating raw food surprisingly diversified, digestible and filling. That doesn’t mean that I didn’t feel like I had to eat a lot to feel full – but for me that’s kind of a mental thing I need to get over. I am probably not going to go Green for Life, although I did find the book very interesting and sensible in a lot of ways. For now, however, I do feel like trying out some of the nutritious deliciousness our friend introduced us to.
My favorite – which I had tried and failed at before – was her almond milk.
Here’s how it goes:
- Take about two cups of almonds (makes about five cups of almond milk, less if you like it creamier), and let them soak in water over night.
- The next day, pour the water out, and pour boiling water over the almonds. Only let them sit for about a minute, this is just so that you can peel them more easily.
- Rinse the almonds.
- Put the almonds into a blender, add a little bit of water at first, blend.
- Gradually add more water until you’re satisfied with the texture.
- I added nothing else when I made this this morning. Our friend usually put in a banana (both for sweetness and texture), sometimes some agave syrup.
As for the health benefits and more detailed information, I unsurprisingly found something on my favorite health/food/diy blog.
I deviate from recipes a lot. But this time I went so far (not all on purpose … unforeseen turn of events demanded improvisation!) that I think it’s fair to claim I made this one up. Kind of.
It started out with wanting to try to make scones but substitute the flour for ground almonds and hazelnuts. Then I thought: why not add some cocoa, and make them chocolate scones? Then I thought: why not use the hemp milk that Peter made instead of regular milk? The first batch sort of melted into one cake on the baking sheet (I later cut them into cookies but it got kind of messy). So for the second batch I poured the batter into muffin forms. Hence, I call them muffins. Gluten-free but not really low-carb (the sugar, I suppose you can exchange it for a low-carb sweetener), and due to the hazelnuts obviously not for those allergic to nuts. Do almond only, I guess.
For 12 muffins you need
- 2 3/4 cups (6,5 dl) ground almonds and hazelnuts (I went half and half)
- 1/2 cup (ca. 1dl) sugar
- 2 tsp baking poweder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 3/4 cups (2 dl) firm butter, cut into small pieces
- 1 cup hemp milk (just search „hemp milk recipe“ – you’ll get a variation of the same: this, this, or this, … Peter used dried dates as sweetener)
- add raisins/fruit if desired (I didn’t, maybe next time – I imagine banana would taste great, and make the muffins even more juicy)
- I also added some psyllium (don’t know how much, though, maybe about a tablespoon), which is used in a lot of gluten-free cake recipes to make whatever you’re baking more fluffy, and keep it from getting so dry and compact
Mix the dry ingredients, cut butter into crumbs, add, stir in milk, knead until the texture is smooth. I let the batter stand for a couple of minutes (I think that it gets a little more „doughy“, less „liquid“ – I suck at speaking bake – my apologies!). Use spoons to fill the batter into muffin shapes, bake at 400°F/200°C for about 30 minutes.
Oh yeah: did I mention that they tasted really great? Well, they do.
The hazelnut chocolate cake deliciousness from earlier reminded me of one of my favorite homemade things. Homemade nutella. I came across this recipe when I got into the low-carb thing. I am not that strict about it anymore as I was then but I still use birch tree sugar.*
Obviously you can use any sweetener you like – and it’s still home-made nutella. In all fairness: it doesn’t taste exactly like nutella. In my opinion, it tastes better. Plus, it’s easy, fast to make, with no exotic ingredients (except the coconut fat), and some might even say: healthy. I don’t know if I would go so far considering that I probably eat way too much of it at once. I would however go so far as to say that – as anything home-made, and thus made with love and care – it is a healthier alternative to the stuff from the store.
- 2 cups of ground peeled hazelnuts
- ca. 4,5 to 5,5 tbs of sweetener (just use how much you like)
- 3 tbs cocoa (the raw stuff for baking, not the sweetened ready-made stuff for chocolate milk)
- coconut fat – I start out with 2 tbs, see how the texture turns out, and add till it’s right
- a dash of vanilla
Just put everything into a blender and, well, blend. Add whatever you feel needs adding according to your preference. Done. It lasts … well, I don’t know, in our household never long enough for me to actually figure out a best before date.
* Birch tree sugar is a form of xylitol, which doesn’t up the blood-sugar level so much. I like it best out of all the alternatives because although the sweetness is different from the taste of sugar, I don’t feel „cheated“. Stevia just tastes like licorice to me, so that’s no real alternative if you ask me. I make sure I buy it at a health food store because xylitol can also be made from – guess what – GMO corn.
This one is for Dina. It’s a recipe based on „Nötiga bananmuffins“ („Nutty banana muffins“) out of Yogamat (which would translate to „Yoga food“) by Anna Gidgård and Cecilia Davidsson. The book’s design is very appealing and makes you want to try out every single one of the recipes: lots of pictures that fill entire pages, and the photography is beautiful. Not that much background information, though. I always like knowing what certain recipes/ingredients are good for, but hey – there’s other books for that.
As most of the times, I didn’t exactly stick to the recipe. The blueberries were not in it but I happened to have them, and I like the combination of banana and blueberry. Oh yeah, did I mention this is gluten-free/low-carb? Well, it is. So here it comes:
For 15 muffins you need:
- 3 dl (ca. 1 1/4 cup) almonds
- 3 dl (ca. 1 1/4 cup) hazelnuts
- 1 dl (ca. 1/2 cup) coconut oil (or butter)
- 2 bananas
- 1/4 ts ground pepper
- 3 ts cinnamon
- 3 ts cardamom
- blueberries (I don’t know how much I used, go with your gut)
- a pinch of salt
Preheat oven to 175° C / 350° F. Use a blender to process the almonds and the hazelnuts into flour. Add the coconut oil, the bananas and the rest of the ingredients to the flour. Mix well. Use two spoons to place the batter into small muffin forms. Bake for about 35 minutes. Done!