Golden Linseed Oat Cookies – Full of Omega-3 and Great for Baby Led Weaning

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As you all know by now, I usually make sure to make a batch of something sweet but healthy once a week (ish!) so that I don’t have to give Braxton anything processed or filled with sugar. I don’t give him sweet things every day (apart from fruit), but I do like to give him things like this every few days now he’s nearly 1. It keeps him quiet for 5 minutes, that’s for sure! 🙂 But the main point is that I like to make sure I fill any snacks I make with superfoods.

Making cookies like these is a great way to be able to add things like linseeds, which are a great vegetarian source of the Omega 3 essential fatty acid, Alpha-Linolenic Acid (ALA). Our bodies can’t make ALA, so it is ‘essential’ that we get them from our diet. These essential fatty acids also have anti-inflammatory properties, so aside from making sure he gets essential fatty acids in his diet, I’m also giving him anti-inflammatory properties which, in our situation, is imperative.

Suffice to say these were very well received! Soft on the inside, slightly crisp on the outside and easy for Brax to chew. Sweet but not too sweet and of course, free of gluten, wheat, dairy, refined sugar or eggs.

Ingredients (makes 12 cookies)

1 cup ground almonds
1 ½ cups organic rolled oats
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
Pinch Himalayan salt
5 tbsp coconut oil
1/3 cup maple syrup
4 tbsp almond butter
¼ cup almond milk
1 tbsp golden linseeds

Method

Preheat the oven to 180c and line 2 baking trays with baking paper and grease with coconut oil.

Mix all the dry ingredients, except for the linseeds, in a bowl.

Add all the wet ingredients to the blender and blend until combined.

Pour the wet mixture into the dry ingredients and mix well. Add the linseeds and mix.

Form into balls with your hands and press down on them on the prepared baking trays and bake for 10 minutes.

Put the baking sheets with the cookies on them on a wire rack or on top of some towels on the work surface (the surface they cool on shouldn’t be cold) to cool away from the heat of the baking trays so they don’t crisp up too much. Once cool put in an airtight container.

Love & health,
Lauren

Raw Vegan Bounty Bites

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My favourite EVER chocolate was Bounty – I’m obsessed with anything coconut so this really is an indulgence for me. I made these a few years ago before starting the blog but never photographed them or wrote down the recipe so thought I’d try to perfect them now so you can all share in their splendor! They are simply mouth-watering; so delicious but also kind of light and fluffy so they don’t make you feel sick. Everyone here loved them, hope you do too.

Ingredients

2 cups desiccated coconut
¼ cup ground almonds
½ cup coconut oil
The cream from the top of a can of full-fat coconut milk
¼ cup maple
1 tsp vanilla extract

Chocolate coating:
3 tbsp cacao powder
¼ cup maple syrup
1 tbsp cashew butter
¼ cup coconut oil (add more if it is too thick)

Method

Melt the coconut oil then mix all the ingredients except the chocolate in a bowl.

Line a plate or baking tray with baking paper then roll the mixture into small balls and put them on the prepared plate and put it in the freezer for an hour. (the baking paper will stop them sticking to the plate)

Make the chocolate sauce while it’s in the freezer. Take it off the heat once ready, take the balls out the freezer and immerse them, one by one, into the saucepan and coat them with the chocolate then put back on the plate. They will be best if you coat them twice, so once you’ve done them all once, re-immerse them.

Put them in the fridge to chill and store them in an airtight container in the fridge.

Love & health,
Lauren

 

Vanilla Berry Ice Lollies

Vanilla Fruit Ice Lollies

If there is one thing I miss about dairy, it’s ice cream! Especially during hot summer days; there’s nothing better. So I decided to make my own. I’ve made smoothie lollies before and fruit lollies but I wanted something creamier, like good old-fashioned ice creams and I came up with this idea. It literally couldn’t be easier, you just need to buy yourself some ice lolly moulds in preparation. I bought BPA free ones from Amazon.

I added some edible flowers in here just to make them look more colourful, but you don’t have to do that.

Braxton loved these so much I have to make some more! They are dairy free, refined-sugar free and therefore, totally fine to give babies. They kind of taste a bit like Mini Milks, remember those?? 🙂

If you like it sweeter add the Natvia (click on this page to read more about Natvia sugar substitute and why it’s so awesome and great for diabetics).

Ingredients (makes 2 large lollies)

1 tub Rebel’s Kitchen vanilla coconut yoghurt (or plain coconut yoghurt with 1 vanilla pod scraped in)
Half cup almond milk
About 8 blueberries, squished
2 strawberries, cut in thin slices
Half tsp Natvia for added sweetness

Method

Mix the yoghurt, almond milk and Natvia in a bowl then pour the mixture into the lolly moulds and put them in the freezer for 15 minutes without adding the lolly stick.

They should have firmed up just a little bit and now push the fruit down into them and space them out.

Add the lolly sticks and put back into the freezer for 4 hours.

Remove and enjoy!

Love & health,
Lauren

Pea & Edamame Fritters (for baby led weaning and generally humans who like food!)

Pea Edamame Fritters

You all know how much I love my weekly Abel & Cole organic food delivery and last week, I got a bag of peas in their pods which was such fun. I also had some edamame in the fridge so decided to add them and make some fritters as they are great for baby led weaning and I do like to give Braxton some food he can hold with each meal even if I am spoon feeding him also.

Ingredients

Half a cup of fresh podded peas (you could use frozen if you can’t get fresh of course)
Half a cup of edamame beans (shelled)
2 eggs
1 tbsp chia seeds
4 tbsp buckwheat flour
Handful chopped parsley
Handful chopped mint
Half a lime
Some coconut oil

(see below for optional dipping sauce)

Method

Beat the eggs in a bowl and add the chia seeds.  Mix, and leave to soak for 5 minutes. While they are soaking, add the peas and edamame to a saucepan of boiling water and boil for 5-7 minutes, until they have softened but not overcooked.

Drain the peas and edamame and add them to the egg mixture then add the buckwheat flour, parsley, mint and lime. You can add a little Himalayan salt if you want or keep it salt free for young babies.

Heat some coconut oil in a pan then spoon about 2 tbsp of the mixture into the pan. It will be too runny to shape it into patties, you just have to spoon it onto the pan how it is and it will take shape. Do a few at a time but don’t fill up the pan too much, you can do it in stages. They only need around 3-4 minutes on each side and remove when they are golden on both sides.

I made a little dipping sauce to dip them into by putting quarter cup olive oil, half an avocado, 6 brazil nuts, handful pine nuts, handful of mint and some Himalayan salt into the blender.

Health & happiness,
Lauren

Sauteed Suffolk Summer Squash (and some childhood memories of Suffolk)

Sauteed Summer Squash

My wonderful mummy went to visit her best friend in Suffolk last weekend. We used to spend our summers there with them. They called us The Tarmac Kids as we came from London and they lived in this amazing little village with about 10 houses, a post office that sold old fashioned penny sweets and a sweet old fashioned phone box. As kids we’d spend our days climbing over haystacks, finding little streams, collecting tadpoles and writing children’s stories about all the animals, all the while Mum sitting at the kitchen table talking to Aunty Vicky while she made jam. We’d go there at Christmas and enjoy sitting around the huge Christmas tree drinking hot chocolate and playing games. Aunty Vicky would throw a big party the week before Christmas for the whole family. We’d eat, play games, wear PJs and have the best time. They are some of the best memories of my life and I still enjoy going there to visit. It’s strange because as kids we all played together and now we all have kids of our own and I hope to take Braxton there soon and give him some of the amazing memories that I had.

Anyway, Mum went to one of their lovely farmers markets when she was there and brought me back some beautifully vibrant summer squashes and some redcurrants and said, ‘here, do something with these’! So I did! And this turned out really yummy.

Ingredients

2/3 summer squashes (depending on how much you want)
1 red pepper
2 spring onions
Generous handful parsley
1 tsp coconut oil
Himalayan salt & black pepper

Method

Peel and chop the squash, removing the soft seedy bit from the middle and put it in a bowl. Chop the red pepper into medium sized pieces and add this to the bowl with the squash.

Chop the spring onions and parsley and set them aside in another bowl.

Heat the coconut oil in a large frying pan and add the squash and red pepper. Give it a good mix then turn down to a low heat and cook until the squash has softened, around 10 minutes.

Once soft, add the spring onion and parsley, salt and pepper, mix, and give it another 2 minutes.

Serve and enjoy!

Love & health,
Lauren

Mint Chocolate Energy Balls & Some Info On Essential Oils

Mint Chocolate Energy Snack Balls

I’m loving my essential oils at the moment – I’ve really been getting into EOs since finding that Frankincense helped my postpartum arthritis flare as it’s such a great anti-inflammatory. I made a Frankincense oil rub for my joints by mixing it with coconut oil (this is called using a carrier oil to dilute the EO a little) which I rub on twice a day. I add it to my diffuser so that it lets out the steam into the room and I take it internally. You can’t ingest all EOs, only high-grade ones. The Frankincense I use is from a company called Free Your Senses but another great company where you can buy a box of 10 EOs of your choice is doTERRA. You can really do so much with them: you can use them as perfume instead of putting the highly toxic perfumes on your body, you can use them in cooking, make creams, lotions, bath wash, deodorant and oils, you can diffuse them, and I even use the doTERRA lavender oil with coconut oil on Braxton’s feet each night before bed to calm him, especially if he is teething.

In this recipe I used doTERRA peppermint oil.

This is a great post-workout snack as it’s so high in plant-based protein. It’s also a great snack generally for the whole family as a ‘treat’ with no nasties.

Ingredients

1 cup almonds
1 cup dates
2 drops doTERRA peppermint oil
2 tbsp raw cacao powder
2 tbsp maple syrup
Pinch of Himalayan salt
Quarter cup pistachios (to roll in)

Method

First, as always, soak your almonds overnight. This is very important. Also, soak the dates for about 2-3 hours to soften them. All soaked in purified water.

Drain the almonds and pat them dry with a bit of kitchen roll and put them in the blender. At this time, drain the dates and leave them draining in the sink while you blend the almonds.

Turn the blender up and blend until the dates form a meal, and start becoming a bit buttery. Spoon it away from the edges and the blade, then add the dates and blend until totally incorporated.

Now add the peppermint oil, cacao, maple and salt and blend again. Tip into a large bowl, mix with your hands if you need to to get the last bits incorporated.

Get a plate ready and now start rolling them into small balls and place them on the plate. Once you have finished the mixture and all the balls are rolled, ground your pistachios in a pestle and mortar. They shouldn’t be ground too finely as you still want decent size chunks.

Roll each ball into the pistachio mix so it is completely covered and return to the plate.

Once they are all covered with the pistachios, put the plate in the fridge for a couple of hours before serving. You can keep them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks and you can also keep them in the freezer and defrost in the fridge an hour before you want to eat them.

Love & health,
Lauren

Orange, Cardamom & Fig Cake

 

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I have been making a gluten / dairy / refined sugar-free chocolate orange cake for years and it’s a favourite of my husband and his family. It’s the dessert they request from me most often. I’ve recently discovered my love for cardamom in cakes and I thought, what tastes go better together than orange and cardamom? So I amended my chocolate orange cake slightly to add cardamom and figs.

This cake is gluten free, dairy free and refined sugar-free but it is not vegan as it uses eggs.

It may seem like it would be a difficult cake to make but it’s actually really easy to throw together, the only bits that need a little bit more attention are the figs that will be on the top of the cake, and grinding the cardamom seeds but to honest, neither of these things are difficult, just a little more time consuming.

I made it this weekend for dessert for a BBQ we were hosting and it went down a treat.

Orange Cardamom Fig Cake 2

 

Ingredients

2 large oranges
6 free-range eggs
250g ground almonds
200g coconut palm sugar
1 tsp baking powder
Pinch of Himalayan salt
The seeds of 10 cardamom pods
5 or 6 fresh figs

To garnish:
A drizzle of honey or agave nectar
Flaked almonds

Method

Preheat oven to 180 degrees.

Put the oranges in a saucepan big enough to be able to cover them with water. Boil for about an hour or until very soft and you can see the skin opening.

Cut into quarters and leave to cool on the chopping board for about 10 minutes. Remove seeds.

Put them in the food processor / blender and blitz until they become a pulp. Add the eggs while the food processor is still working (on a low speed until you put the lid back on) as this will aerate the eggs. Blend well and leave it to the side for the moment.

In a large bowl mix the ground almonds, palm sugar, baking powder and salt. Then open up all the cardamom pods, put them in a pestle and mortar or coffee / spice grinder and grind until they are no longer whole. Once ground, add to the flour mix.

Now spoon the orange mixture into the dry mix and mix really well. Make sure to get all the flour from the bottom and sides of the bowl. Set aside for a moment.

Cut a sheet of baking paper to fit a 23cm springform cake tin and place it at the bottom of the tin then grease generously with coconut oil on the paper and the sides of the tin.

Cut the figs into fine slices and layer them over the bottom of the tin. Once totally covered, add the cake mixture and put it into the oven for 40-45 minutes. Your fork should come out clean but wet – this cake has to be moist.

Remove from the oven and leave to cool on a wire rack for at least an hour – this is important. Once cool, slowly release the buckle of the cake tin and remove, then put a large plate on top of the cake and slowly turn it upside down to release the cake onto the plate. Remove the baking paper.

Sprinkle a handful of flaked almonds on top and drizzle with honey or agave and serve.

Enjoy!

Love,
Lauren

Summer Lunch Salad

Winter Lunch Salad

I’m going to give my mum the credit for this one as she came round and made it for me! So yummy and so full wonderful nutritious organic fruits and vegetables and it really filled me up.

Ingredients

Handful fresh spinach
5 radishes
Some asparagus (we only had tinned but best to use fresh, steam first)
Half an avocado
Half a pear
2 boiled eggs
Handful pomegranate
Tsp organic natural maple syrup
Tsp balsamic vinegar

Method

Chop all the veg and put it on a plate then pour the dressings over and add a bit of Himalayan salt if you like. That simple!

Enjoy!

Love,
Lauren

 

 

 

Organic Spelt Soda Bread

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I love bread! There, I said it. Who doesn’t? When you try to live a healthy lifestyle you can’t really eat many breads because they all have so many preservatives in them, as well as other nasty ingredients. As you all know from my previous few posts, I’ve started weaning my baby, and although I am spoon feeding him some food, I’m trying to do as much baby led weaning as possible – or as much as he tells me he is comfortable with… So I’m looking for as many options as possible of foods that he can hold and feed himself. Toast is a great breakfast option but store-bought breads are so full of rubbish that I really don’t want him to have them.

I saw one of Paul Hollywood’s baking shows and he was making classic soda bread. It looked so simple and I thought, I must be able to substitute the white and wholemeal flours for spelt flour, so I gave it a go and also added some other ingredients to suit my own taste.

It turned out delicious – perfect actually, if I do say so myself!

Although spelt is ‘classified’ as wheat, it’s actually not wheat at all. It’s an ancient grain that has been cultivated for thousands of years and has nothing man-made in it and although it technically has gluten in it, the molecular make-up of the gluten in spelt flour is very different to that of normal wheat flour. it is more soluble and therefore more easily digested and less likely to cause an intolerance. And from gluten to dairy… It’s not often I eat dairy but if I can get a nice cheese from a farmer’s market I’m a happy bunny and this bread is perfect with a lovely bit of cheese on top, (there is also dairy in the recipe) and let’s add to that a glass of organic wine, seeing as we’re already being naughty! Alternatively, a good dollop of almond butter will taste amazing too.

Ingredients

2 cups (a normal mug is fine to measure a cup)
Pinch of Himalayan pink salt
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
284ml carton of organic buttermilk
1 tbsp agave nectar or honey
1 tsp cinnamon (optional)

Method

Preheat the oven to 200c and line a loaf tin with baking parchment and grease with coconut oil.

Sift the spelt flour through a sieve into a large bowl. Discard the tiny bits of brown left over in the sieve. Add the salt, bicarb and cinnamon and mix well.

Now add the buttermilk and agave, mix it in with the spoon by folding, then use your hands to really knead it all together. You’ll have to do this fairly quickly as the buttermilk will start reacting with the bicarbonate of soda. You could sprinkle some flour onto the work surface and knead it there instead of the bowl. I find this makes it easier.

Once it’s thoroughly mixed in, shape it into the loaf tin with your hands.

Take a knife and cut a fairly deep cross into the top, then sprinkle with some more flour and put in the oven for 30 minutes. When ready the base should make a hollow sound when you tap it.

It should fall easily out of the loaf tin, then place it on a wire rack to cool a little, but you can cut into it while it’s still warm – and you’re going to want to!

Enjoy!

Love,
Lauren

Blueberry Porridge Bars for Baby Led Weaning

 

Blueberry Porridge Bars BLW

Ok guys, I don’t have time to write a super long post today but been looking for things to give my baby that he can feed himself as we’ve started on solids and I’m trying to do as much baby led weaning as possible. So instead of porridge these are basically porridge, but baked! With organic blueberries for antioxidants, acai for extra super-duper anti-oxidants and chia seeds for extra protein.

Porridge Bars

Ingredients

320g organic jumbo oats
1 punnet of blueberries
250ml almond milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
100ml maple syrup
1 tbsp. chia seeds (optional)
1 tsp acai berry powder (optional)

Method

Preheat oven to 180c and grease a square silicone baking tray with coconut oil.

Add the oats, almond milk, vanilla and maple to the food processor until it’s all combined. Once combined add the blueberries, acai and chia seeds and pulse until the blueberries are evenly distributed but not all totally mushed (some of them can be mushed!)

Spoon it into the cake tin and bake for 10-12 minutes.

Wait until completely cool before you slice into bars.

These will last for a maximum of 4 days before they start growing other stuff!! Keep in an airtight container. I usually make mine on a Sunday and Wednesday is the last day I can use them.

Enjoy!

Love,
Lauren