Posts in Category: At Our Table
That’s it that’s all. I had a whole whack of ripe bananas to get rid of again. Okay, I purposefully purchase bananas in excess so that I can make nana ice-cream, banana bread, muffins, cakes, smoothies, popsicles, etc. They are pretty much the perfect food, adding sweetness, texture/consistency and elasticity to baked goods and creaminess to blended desserts.
So. Onto the bars. They make a great snack, quick breakfast on-the-go, or dessert crumbled up with coconut or regular yogurt or that banana ice cream I mentioned. Or straight up ice cream if you’re feeling hardcore and your body doesn’t hate you after eating dairy …
We go through popsicles around here like nobody’s business in the summer. I could buy them … but why would I when I can make them on my own at a fraction of the cost, in mere minutes, chock full of superfood goodness? The days are long and activities of many these warm, luxurious days and my kids need all of the extra energy and dense nutrition they can get. I used their favourite fro-yo combo (mixed berry) as the base inspiration for these healthy little treats and added some of our vanilla shakeology into the blender with some frozen berries, coconut water and coconut yogurt. You can of course, make them without coconut water and use regular dairy yogurt too!
But I wouldn’t skimp on the superfoods because every parent of young children knows that the blender is the best way to sneak healthy ingredients into their busy little bodies every chance we can get …
Or all the ways, basically. You can put whatever fruit you want in this loaf recipe. You can add cacao or not. Versatile, moist and fluffy … this is a recipe that I played around with a LOT in my little test kitchen until I perfected something that rivaled my old Betty Ctocker banana bread recipe chock full of grains and white sugar.
Not only is it versatile in how you may choose to mix up a batch (or double batch as it were, since I never bake in single batches hence not ever posting single batch recipes when it comes to baked goods), but there are so many ways you can eat it too! Plain is always a good start. We’ve also played around with smearing some almond butter on it with sliced strawberries or slicing the loaf lengthwise, three times, to layer with coconut whipped bream and fresh berries. Last night I brought a loaf to a BBQ and halved and sliced it up to serve with some fresh cherries for dessert.
Banana bread is a quintessential anytime food. Breakfast, snackage or dessert … it hits the spot. I have yet to try it topped or wrapped with bacon. I don’t want to hear about it if you decide to do that. Blasphemy.
My Top 3 Ways Are …
→ With (2 c.) seasonal fresh or frozen fruit added and poured into muffins trays instead of loaf pans
→ Loaves topped with a maple sugar, himalayan pink sea salt nut and dried fruit crumble (walnuts or peacans with dried cherries and a little bit of maple or coconut sugar)
→The addition of raw cacao to make dark chocolate banana loaves! (Add 1/2 c. of raw cacao powder to the double batch recipe below and remove a 1/2 c. of the almond flour.)
As my paleo baking adventures evolve I’m discovering that most cakes, breads, muffins and other such niceties taste better when left alone for a few hours. Never straight out of the oven. There’s just something about that magical science of baking wherein all of the ingredients really bond and cuddle up to one another to create the perfect texture. This bread in particular is best the next day! I’ve gotten into the habit of whipping up a double batch at night, whenever I have enough brown bananas, for everyone to enjoy in the morning …
When one is craving a hit of something sweet and salty one downs a salted caramel something or other. That used to be one of my fave treats from Starbucks and no more. My version has 16 grams of protein, probiotics, adaptagens, super foods like maca root, chia and goji berry (to name a few of the 70) and the vitamin equivalent of 5 dense green bowls of salads. Just a wee bit better, yea? Plus, it isn’t full of sugar and artificial ingredients.
If you’re craving something decadent, you don’t have to indulge and pay for it with having consumed a ton of fat and calories as well as a bunch of crap. I think the shining glory on this here frothing cup of goodness is that the salted caramel sauce is made with medjool dates, hot water, coconut oil and pink himalayan sea salt. That’s it. Faux caramel sauce without (once again) a ton of crap. And damn, but it tastes good. So there’s also that …
When I first laid eyes upon Yotam Ottolenghi’s latest cookbook, ‘Plenty More’, I knew I had to have it. Cookbooks, in general are the one type of book I splurge on. Usually I suss books out at the library, loan them out and then buy them if I really love the read and plan on revisiting it. Or if I simply want it for my collection. Collecting books is a beautiful, somewhat lost art, what with the internet and kindles and whatever other devices you millenials use.
Myself? I am every bit the techie, for the most part.
But when it comes to books, there is nothing that can replace the feel and smell of a book. Flipping through the pages, stacking them up on my nightside table, tyring to find the last page I was on, falling asleep with that warm, smokey paper smell … it’s a ritual really, one that I savour.
Cookbooks though, that’s a whole other entity. They are meant to be revisted repeatedly, until pages curl and covers become worn and splattered with all previous endeavours and adaptations of favourite recipes. When Trevor got diagnosed with gout, being the holistic wellness seeking bio-hacker that I am (say that three times fast!), I of course went on a mission to learn everything I could about vegetarian cooking. I’ve dabbled with it of couse and my love for vegetables is vast. However vegetables were never the regular highlight of our meals, especially since I went *soft* Paleo. (As in eating right for my body type and avoiding the onset of diabetes with foods that land high on the glycemic index.) Clearly, meat was. Happy meat, yes – but purine laden meat none-the-less.
It’s been a few months now since Trevor’s (finally) diagnosis, and he’s back to eating meat about three time a week TOTAL, which is still is HUGE cut-back for Mr. Meat & Potatoes. So I thought I was onto something when I discovered this caulitflower bread recipe that I made serious test kitchen designs on. I knew I could make it paleo and (thought) it was something that we could eat! Sadly, this beauty bread isn’t the best for Trevor, since cauliflower is high in purines. Purines are what cause a person’s uric acid levels to sky-rocket (if you’re a person with gout), and all horrid that uric acid gathers around joints and crystalizes to cause seriously painful and debilitating flare-ups.
Now that we have things under better control over here regarding his flare-ups, we might get adventurous and try this out again, caultiflower used to be a staple in our house, we used to enjoy it so many different ways, so. When I have time, I cook it still, however I want to while also preparing an alternative for him, but that’s rare, becasue LIFE. No time for that tom foolery on the regular.
Gout, in case you haven’t gleaned by now, sucks the big one. However this bread/cake does not! I fact, I think I’ll make it and bring with me for my weekend away for a dear friend’s birthday. Having healthy, tasty options on hand is always a must when travelling. Onto this recipe already, right?
Almond butter is sexy. I don’t have to think hard about a descriptive for it … this is immediately what comes to mind. Maybe it comes from the making of it, prior to the consuming of it. For its simple generosity and various uses. The way it coats ones mouth so that you are invited to let your tongue roll around its thick, creamy texture, luxuriating in the mouthy feel of it.
The satisfaction that it brings as a vehicle to many a slice of fruit, vegetable, chocolate chip and spoon. Spooning is mandatory. I’ve become rather smitten with making my own, you see, because I can. Because it’s cheaper than purchasing, especially in raw, organic form. I reject all other forms unless it involves coconut oil, a dash of sea salt and maple syrup. I like it how I like it.
I also prefer to soak my nuts prior to roasting them (which is a whole other post, this soaking of the nuts and seeds thing), which isn’t for everyone. So feel free to skip this step. It’s not an absolute thing. Neither is adding the coconut oil and you could also sweeten it with stevia, dates or nothing it all! It doesn’t need much, whichever you choose.
Almond butter has become a popular choice with the kiddos around here too, bye bye sugar laden peanut butter. I’ve also started making sunflower seed butter so that Wyndham can take it to school to dip his fruit and veggies as he pleases.
Those with food restrictions causing them to eat a paleo or gout friendly diet that is. (The two of which aren’t like two peas in a pod.) Currently the largest divide in my life resides in the kitchen wherein I’ve been trying to warp my schedule constraints to fit double prep and avoiding double prep where I can. Being avid bone broth consumers in our household, you can bet we’ve undergone some discombobulation with the recent addition of Trev’s gout diagnosis. If you’er wondering why, I’ll get to that soon.
What does a family (me specifically) do when most of they eat revolves around organic and or/local free-range hormone free meat and fresh veggies and fruits? Minimal grains and carbs — when one of those family members is suddenly told to steer clear of meat (and booze and other things) and to fill the void with lots of grains and good carbs? (To be clear, I’m not strict about it. I truly believe that food is to be experienced, savoured and shared with loved ones. There are so many cuisines that I couldn’t have, share or introduce my kids to if I never, ever consumed grains, dairy or carbs again. Lets just say I am more than moderate about my intake.)