Monday, May 21, 2012

Banana-berry Frozen Yogurt

There's every chance you may possibly polish off a full tub of this creamy frozen yogurt one go, I know I've made a solid effort at doing so before now. This dessert truly is utterly yummy. The fact it is super healthy, and even easier to make only makes it more delicious too. In fact, it's so easy to make, the only equipment you need is a freezer! (A blender would help too, but this recipe can get by without one.)

  • 2 ripe bananas  (the softer the better but not brown)
  • 4 pots or 1 big pot berry flavoured vegan yogurt (I used banana/strawberry flavour)
  • 1/2 cup strawberries

  1. Peel & slice the bananas. Place them in a ziplock baggie, and put them & the small tubs of yogurt in the freezer for 2-3 hours.
  2. Slice the strawberries into small chunks.
  3. Take the banana out of the freezer transfer to a plastic container & mash with a fork (this is where the blender would come in very useful). The banana slices should still be soft enough to mash, but they may need to sit out on the side for a few minutes.
  4. Empty the part-frozen yogurt pots into the container, & mash in with the bananas. (Again, a blender would be useful to do this).
  5. Stir in the strawberry chunks.
  6. Put the lid on the container, and put back in the freezer to harden.
  7. Serve with a couple of whole fresh strawberries. Enjoy the yumminess! :)

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Spinach, Tomato & Avocado Socca Pizza

One of my favourite treats for dinner time before the doctor told me I needed to go gluten free was pizza (with vegan cheese of course). I didn't make it very often though because I was very conscious it wasn't the healthiest choice, (plus I always got really ill afterwards... at least now I know why). I actually really loved it cold the next day. Please don't judge, it really is delicious! I tried indulging with store bought 'gluten-free' pizza bases instead. But I found them quite boring. I didn't really like the taste, and they kept breaking up on me, which got a bit frustrating. After all, isn't half the fun of pizza that you can pick up a slice and nibble on it?

 I went out with friends to a gluten-free cafe in LA one afternoon, and tried this amazing flat-bread type thing made from chickpea/garbanzo flour, called Socca. It was really delicious, and I could pick it up without it crumbling too! So, I got to thinking how yummy would this be if I added veggies & cheese and turned it into a pizza? And it was, it really really was! So here it is, my gluten free, vegan, 'non-crumbling' pizza.... enjoy foodies! :)

For the Socca batter:
  • 1 cup garbanzo bean flour (basically super-food processed chickpeas)
  • 1 1/4 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • sprinkling fresh ground black pepper
  • 1  teaspoon garlic fresh crushed or powder
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • drizzle of extra virgin olive or coconut oil for the pan
For the topping:
  • 3 tablespoons organic tomato paste/salsa/sauce or pesto, whatever you fancy & have in really. I used the paste (make sure it's gluten free & vegan)
  • Handful spinach leaves
  • 2 tablespoons vegan mozerella shreds (optional)
  • 1/2 avocado sliced.
  • Whatever other pizza toppings you like or have in (some of my favourites are red onion, olives, eggplant, mushrooms)

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place the skillet in it to warm up.
  2. Add the oil for cooking. While the oil is heating mix the socca batter in a large bowl or jug. Try and whisk any lumps out.
  3. Make sure the heated oil is covering the whole skillet, and pour in the batter. Bake for 25-30 minutes until it turns golden brown.
  4. Take the socca out of the oven, using a plate, carefully flip the pizza crust. Put it back in the skillet and bake again for about 5 mins.
  5. Spread the pizza base with the tomato paste. Top with the sliced avocado and what ever other veggies you fancy.
  6. Lightly sprinkle the vegan mozerella shreds around, and broil until the cheese just starts to melt.
  7. Place the spinach leaves on the top & broil for 1 minute.
  8. Let cool slightly, slice into pizza wedges & serve! Or, alternatively, if you're like me eat the left overs cold the next day.

The bigger the skillet the thinner & crispier your pizza base will be. This is personal preference, but I think socca tastes better when it's slighty doughy still in the middle.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Baked Nacho-style Kale Chips

Craving potato chips but not really wanting to induge because you don't want to be naughty? Well that will no longer be a problem with my yummy Nacho-style crunchy Kale Chips. You can indulge in firsts, seconds, & even thirds if you feel the need, completely guilt free!

This recipe is made baked in the oven, purely because not everyone owns a dehydrator. But, if you are following a raw diet, you can substitute the olive oil for the juice from 2 lemons & 1 cup of cashew nuts (soaked for 2 hours) blended together, and the vegan cheese for nutritional yeast.

  • 2 bunches kale
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon chilli powder
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder or fresh crushed (both will work)
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt flakes
  • 5 tablespoons vegan parmigiano style powder cheese

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Wash the kale, trim & discard the stems. Tear the leaves into chip-sized pieces.
  3. Place the kale in a large bowl & drizzle with the oil. Toss the leaves with the chilli, garlic & salt, until thinly coated.
  4. Place the kale on the baking sheets in a single layer. (You may need to repeat the baking process again to avoid the kale being on top of each other, depending on how big your oven is).
  5. Bake for about 12-15 minutes until the leaves start to go brown at the edges, be careful not to let them burn as the chips will get slightly bitter. Turning them part way through.
  6. Remove them from the oven, sprinkle with the vegan cheese, and then let them cool for a few minutes to make them crunchy.
  7. Serve... & eat! :)
You could also serve the baked kale straight from the oven as a side dish.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Blackberry Chia Jam

Continuing on my quest for healthy & delicious gluten free, vegan yumminess for my favourite meal of the day (breakfast, for those of you are wondering), I found this.... Chia Jam! It is so quick & easy to make, and crazy healthy compared to store bought jams & jellies. It's raw, contains no added sugar (just the natural stuff from the blackberries), plus it has the added nutrient packed extra of the new super seed, chia!

  • 1 cup blackberries
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • agave nectar or stevia to taste

  • Mash the blackberries with a fork (if they are frozen, be sure to let them thaw first).
  • Transfer the fruit into a jar, mix in the chia seeds & water.
  • You may not need any but you could add a drizzle of agave nectar or a few drops liquid stevia, it just depends how sweet you want the jam.
  • Refrigerate for about an hour.
  • Toast a slice of your favourite gluten free bread, spread with your fresh homemade chia jam & serve. Delicious and oh so healthy!

If toast isn't your thing, you could have it on oatmeal, pancakes, vegan yogurt/ice cream,  or even on it's own as a snack. This also tastes amazing on one of my favourite brown bag/ picnic lunches... almond butter, grilled banana & jelly sandwich. Or as an extra treat, serve it warm & toasted, think grilled cheese meets pb & j, but a way way healthier and good for you version!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Chocolate Chocolate Chip Coconut Bites

My 'not-so-naughty' Chocolate Chocolate Chip Coconut Bites... indulging my sweet tooth healthily & beautifully.

  • 1/2 cup raw cashews
  • 15 medjool dates
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened raw cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup vegan chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup almonds
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes

  1. Process the dates in a food processor until they become a sticky dough like consistency.
  2. Add the nuts & cocoa powder, and pulse in the food process until evenly mixed. Don't over process, you want them still a bit crunchy. They aren't as fun to eat if the nuts are processed too finely!
  3. Transfer the mix to a bowl, add the chocolate chips & coconut and mix until combined fully.
  4. Now it's time for the fun bit, slightly messy, but very fun all the same. Break off chunks of the dough and roll into bite-size balls, placing them onto a baking sheet.
  5. Refridgerate until set, if you can resist eating them straight away.
Utterly yummy, and oh so good for you. Your skin will glow, your step will be springy, & your smile will be beaming! :)

If you like these little gems... you will love my Peanut Butter Cashew Cookie Bites!

Zucchini Pasta with Pesto & Tomato


(serves 2)
  • 2 large zucchini
  • Handful mini tomatoes, halved
  • 2 tablespoons vegan basil pesto (double check its dairy & gluten free)
  • 1 clove crushed garlic
  • Sprinkling freshly ground black pepper
  • Vegan cheese (I used the powder-like parmigiano stlye kind but vegan mozzarella shreds would work well too)
  • Drizzle of extra virgin olive oil

  1. Take the top and bottom off the zucchini, & then carefully slice it into your pasta style strands. I did mine a similar size to spaghetti, but I've made more tagliatelle ribbons before too.
  2. Sprinkle the zucchini with freshly ground black pepper, and place in a steamer for about 3-4mins until it's soft.
  3. While that's cooking, heat the oil in a skillet & saute the tomatoes with the garlic (taking care not to let the garlic burn).
  4. Transfer the pasta to a bowl & gently toss it with the pesto, (trying not to break up the pasta), add the tomatoes & garlic.
  5. Divide the pasta into dishes & sprinkle with cheese, serve warm.
Simple! An Utterly Yummy (& majorly healthy and good for you) dinner made in 15 minutes, that will make your stomach smile. Enjoy foodies :)

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Buckwheat Breakfast Crumble

Breakfast is most definitely my favourite meal of the day! It's also probably the meal that has got most predictable for me since going gluten free. I seem to have fallen into a pattern of having pretty much the same thing most mornings. My go-to options have become gluten-free toast with almond or cashew butter, gluten-free oatmeal with blueberries or a fresh juice (preferably of the green variety). Not that there is anything wrong with any of these options, infact they all super yummy & chock- full of goodness.... I just fancied a bit of a change!

Cue, my Buckwheat breakfast crumble.

I'd not tried raw buckwheat groats before, but I'd heard very good things about them. They are full of fiber, minerals & protein don't you know?! I also wanted to try something a bit diffrent & innovative not just using the regular gluten- free subsitutes. It took me a couple of attempts to get the groats to the right consistency the first time I made it, but once I had perfected them, this quickly became my new favourite breakfast/brunch dish! So, here it is....

(this serves 1, but you could just as easily double or triple it & serve it 'family-style' in a bigger dish)
  • 1/2 banana
  • 2 tablespoons raspberries
  • 3 tablespoons blueberries
  • 4 or 5 chopped strawberries
  • 2 tablespoons gluten-free oats
  • 1 tablespoon raw buckwheat groats
  • 1 tablespoon almonds
  • 1 tablespoon raw organic honey
  • 1 tablespoon raw almond butter

  1. Rinse the raw buckwheat groats, then soak them in water over night.
  2. Rinse them again, let them dry, and put them in a food processor.
  3. Add the gluten-free oats, almonds, & honey to the food processor, pulse it until just combined, (you don't want the mixture processed too fine).
  4. Slice the banana, and top with the berries in a bowl.
  5. Spoon the almond butter ontop, (you can stir it into the fruit if you like too).
  6. Sprinkle on the buckwheat/ oat mixture and serve.

I'm not on a strictly 'raw food' diet, however I do like experimenting with raw recipes every now and and then. This was one of those experiementations. But equally, it could be baked in the oven and served warm. I just make it like this for it's convinience because I'm always rushing around in the mornings to yoga or work, and don't always have time to bake something. It would also be so delicious served as a healthy dessert with my Coconut ice cream melting over it.

Let me know what you think in the comments below xo

Monday, May 14, 2012

Cheesy Tofu Scramble

I went out with some friends for brunch at the weekend, and had the most delicious tofu scramble... I was truly inspired, so I decided to create my own version.

  • 1 block firm tofu
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil (other oil would work too, I just prefer coconut oil for the health benefits & taste)
  • 1/2 medium red onion
  • 5 mini tomatoes
  • 1 handful chopped spinach
  • 4 small mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoons vegan cheddar cheese (I use 'Daiya' cheddar style shreds)
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1 teaspoon crushed fresh garlic
  • freshly ground black pepper

  1. Press & drain the tofu between two plates to get most of the moisture out (it takes about 10 mins), crumble it into small cubes.
  2. Melt the coconut oil in a skillet. Add the onion & mushrooms.
  3. When they are a nice golden color (don't let them get too brown), add the garlic and reduce the heat.
  4. Add the spinach & tomato to the skillet first, and then the crumbled tofu.
  5. Sprinkle on the nutritional yeast and the freshly ground black pepper.
  6. Stir fry for 3-4 mins until the scramble is cooked through, sprinkle on the cheese (keeping the scramble on the heat until it melts) and serve. At the cafe, it was served with fresh fruit on the side.
  7. Enjoy foodies!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

No-bake Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough

Who doesn't love milk & cookies? And (if I may say so myself) my gluten free, vegan nuggets of loveliness are delicious ones! Both chewy and crunchy, these taste even better dipped in a glass of almond milk, and the fact they are super healthy only make you love them more.

These are already no-bake but if you are following a 'raw' diet, they can be easily adapted. I made them for one of my friends, substituting the vegan chocolate chips for raisins. This version of my cookies works really well for breakfast when your in a bit of a rush too. You could also add a couple of tablespoons cocoa powder if you're wanting a much needed chocolate fix without the choc chips!

  • 1 cup gluten free oats
  • 1/2 cup medjool dates
  • 1/4 cup almonds roughly chopped (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/2 cup vegan chocolate chips (more or less depending on how chocolatey you like it)
  • Glass of almond milk to serve

  1. Food proccess or blend the medjool dates, add the almonds & repeat until mixed evenly through.
  2. Add the gluten free oats honey, and cinnamon to the mixture and pulse until just combined.
  3. Pour the cookie dough mix into a bowl, add the chocolate chips and combine (with a spoon if you don't like to get messy).
  4. Shape the dough into bite-size balls or alternatively you can flatten them into patties, placing them on a lined baking sheet.
  5. Refridgerate for about an hour, then.... enjoy!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Butternut Squash and Cashew Nut Roast

Butternut squash is one of my favourite veggies, and not eating meat or dairy, a main source I get some protein from is nuts. YUM! (This is a great holiday recipe too, I had it at both Thanksgiving and Christmas)

Makes 2 portions
  • 1/2 large onion finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic crushed
  • Extra virgin olive oil or nut oil (for roasting)
  • 1 cup peeled, de-seeded & cubed butternut squash            
  • 3/4 cup raw cashew nuts chopped roughly               
  • 1/4 cup raw peanuts chopped roughly                   
  • sage (to taste)
  • sea salt & fresh ground black pepper

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 420 degrees.
  2. Drizzle the squash with some oil, sprinkle with salt & pepper, the optional sage & roast for 30 mins, until it starts to look slightly golden.
  3. Fry the onion until golden brown in a skillet (using a drizzle of the oil), remove from heat & add garlic, let cook slightly taking care it doesn't burn.
  4. Turn the oven down to 370 degrees.
  5. Lightly mash the onions & garlic together with the butternut squash.
  6. Add the chooped cashews & peanuts, combine well, form into two patties about 1inch tall.
  7. Bake for 60mins at 370 degrees. Flip the patties half way through, covering with foil if they start to get too brown.
  8. Allow the patties to cool slightly before serving to avoid them breaking up.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Chocolate Chia Pudding

Move over every other seed on the shelves at the market, chia are here and they mean business!
These wonderful little seeds are still fairly new to me, but with them being packed with fibre, omega-3s, protein, & anti-oxidants, how can a vegan, foodie, gluten-free girl resist?!

(serves 4)
  • 2 cups almond milk
  • 2/3 cup chia seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (be sure to check it's gluten free)
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa or carob powder (more or less depending on how chocolatey you like it)
  • agave nectar or honey to sweeten (to taste)
  • Rasberries to garnish (mint leaves or coconut shavings would look/taste cool too)

  1. Combine the almond milk, chia seeds, & vanilla in a bowl, or shake in a glass jar (making sure the lid is on tight).
  2. Refridgerate for 4-8hrs (overnight is best).
  3. Stir in the cocoa or carob powder, refridgerate for 1-2h).
  4. Stir, spoon into bowls, drizzle with agave nectar or honey if you fancy, & decorate.
  5. EAT and delight in the yumminess.
Little tip- feeling a chill? warm it through! It's delicious hot too.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Salt & Vinegar Roasted Chickpeas

This are my yummy alternative to potato chips, and they are so much healthier & better for you too. I have to limit myself, & I've only made them a couple of times, purely because I can't stop popping them in my mouth!

  • 2 cups chickpeas (I used canned- Trader Joe's & Wholefoods both sell them, but I guess dry would work just as well. Make sure you soak and prepare them according to the packet instructions).
  • 3 cups white vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon coarse sea salt (more or less depending on personal taste)

  1. Preheat the oven to 420-425F.
  2. Place the vinegar & chickpeas in a pot and bring to the boil. Add an extra sprinkling of sea salt & remove from the heat. Let the chickpeas marinate for 30-40 mins.
  3. While the chickpeas are marinating line a baking sheet with tin foil (or you could use a disposeable foil tray).
  4. Drain the chickpeas, taking care not to bash them around too much, &  place them on the baking sheet.
  5. Drizzle with olive oil & sea salt, toss them around until they are fully coated.
  6. Roast them in the oven for 20mins.
  7. Take them out, toss them around, roast for another 20mins. Keep a lookout as you dont want them to get burnt. Crunchy is good, burnt isn't!
  8. Leave them to cool. Enjoy!

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Coconut Ice-Cream

If like me you have a huge sweet tooth (& a bit of a thing for desserts) this ice-cream recipe is for you. It is so simple to make. It's also a way for you to indulge healthily, so you don't need to feel guilty either! I use agave nectar too, as I try to avoid sugar. One downside to this recipe is that you do need an ice-cream maker, but you can pick them up really inexpensively now. Plus, you will love this recipe so much, you will definitely want to make it again and again. It's perfect for a treat snuggled up on the sofa watching a film. It's a bowl of love and yumminess!

  • 1 can coconut milk (it's best to avoid lite varieties as this makes the consistency too solid)
  • 1/2 cup dessicated coconut
  • 1/4 cup agave nectar
  • 'goodness' sprinkles of your choice, examples i've used- vegan chocolate chips, fresh bluberries, or cacao nibs

  1. Soak the coconut in the coconut milk for a few minutes in a bowl.
  2. Add the agave nectar to it.
  3. Take the freezer bowl out of the freezer & assemble and turn on the ice cream maker.
  4. Pour in the coconut milk mixture.
  5. Now you just have to sit back and let the ice cream maker do it's thing! It's that simple!!!
You can either eat it as soon as it's ready, when it resembles a softer 'frozen yoghurt' style texture, or you can transfer it to a different container and let it harden in the freezer for a while. Make sure you let it thaw for a few minutes before you eat it though.

Then all you need to do is sprinkle on your 'goodies' and serve! And there you have it yummy (&healthy) homemade gluten-free vegan ice cream, and cheaper than a tub from the market too.

I've also made this recipe with fresh mango. Which was a super delicious and refreshing alternative. If you want to give it a try as well, all you need to do is take one mango, puree half of it, & add it to the ice cream maker straight after the coconut mix. Then while it's freezing, cube the other half of the mango and add it in about 2 minutes before it's ready, and it's done. Simple!


Welcome to my health & wellness blog, and my first post!

I truly believe in a vegan, gluten free lifestyle, and I want to share my passion for it with you. I've been vegan for a while, but since switching to gluten free I can honestly say i feel fantastic, on the inside and out!
Aside from all the horrible gluten allergy symptoms going away, my skins clearer, I have more energy, and just in general alot happier & more smiley!
In my blog I want to share my journey with you, from innovative recipes that satisfy the foodie in me, to my latest fitness finds! I hope you enjoy this blog as much as i have writing it :)

Love Lucie xo