Tag Archives: nuts

Kids creating in the kitchen

A Sweet Treat

What better way to teach your kids about nutrition than to get them in there and get them creating. I have a three year who loves colour and mixing. So once or twice or thrice a week we get in the kitchen and I let her go for it. Today unlike any other day she wanted to make buckini slice, but as a lover of nuts she was determined to get every type in and incorporate her new favourite spread coconut butter.

M’s Coco-ini slice

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1/2 cup activated buckwheat groats
1/4 cup of mixed activated nuts
1 big handful of activated macadamia nuts
1/4 cup activated sunflower seeds
1/4 cup activated pepitas
1 Tbsp sesame seeds
1 tsp chia seeds

1/3 cup coconut oil
1-2 Tbsp of Rice Malt Syrup or Maple Syrup (we used a combo as there was not much of either left)
1/3 cup toasted Coconut butter- Melt coconut butter until it is a thick paste (our butter is rock hard in this weather)

First heat the coconut oil on the stove and add sweetener. Take off the heat and whisk until it turns opaque. Set aside to cool slightly.

Using a tea towel, mortar and pestle or jar, smash the nuts (especially the macadamia nuts.

Combine with seeds and buckwheat in a bowl.

Add coconut butter and caramel together and stir through dry ingredients.

Pour into a lined tray and pop in freezer for 30 mins. But seriously taste before you out it in as you’ll want to.

Break into snack size for the kids and yourself and store in the fridge to keep it extra crunchy.

Flax Crackers

Sometimes you just want to have a dry biscuit. Remember those Salada’s or Savoy’s? Since I was making guacamole and salsa on the weekend for a party I needed something to dip into them other than veg sticks. I remembered an old recipe that I hadn’t made in ages, Flax Crackers.

Flax (aka as linseed) is  an edible oil and a nutritional supplement. Flax is high in fibre and known to assist in digestion. When mixed with water (or soaked) flax takes on a jelly like consistency making if perfect for a dehydrated cracker. Mixed with super foods like chia, sunflower seeds, pepitas and sesame seeds, this cracker recipe is a powerhouse of nut free goodness.

Flax Crackers

 

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100-200g of flax seeds (linseed)
2 Tbs Chia seeds
1/2 Cup mix of seeds (pepitas, sunflower seeds, sesame)
1/2 tsp Himalayan salt
1 tsp of Spices (cumin, cayenne, cinnamon, paprika)

 

Soak flax  and chia in just enough water to cover.
Soak other seeds in their own bowl.
Soak both for minimum 7 hours.
The flax and chia will have absorb the water, drain off water from other seed bowl and combine with flax and chia.
Add salt and spices.
Spread evenly on a lined baking tray
Place in a preheated oven at 60c and dry for 8 hours or until the crackers are snap-hard.
You can check after 4 hours and flip to speed up process but I tend to leave and come back at the end.
Test the centre of the tray for the hardness as the edges will dry quicker, once the centre is snap-hard it’s done.
Break into what ever size you like.
Store in a glass jar for up to 2 months.

 

 

Raspberry Tart

I’ve always wanted to call this a ‘cheesecake’ because it reminds me of my childhood and my great aunts cheesecake but for the matter of being honest I’ll stick with tart.

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What You’ll Need

Base:

6 medjool dates

1/4 cup shredded coconut

1 cup macadamia nuts

Top:

2 tubs of raspberries

2 cans full fat coconut cream (separated)

1/4 cup 100% pure maple syrup

 

Method:

Place coconut cream in fridge for a couple of hours before you are going to make. You want the water and the thick cream to separate. In a rush? purchase Ayam brand coconut cream, it’s the purest form and can be already separated.

 

Base:

Pit medjool dates

Add dates, coconut and nuts to food processor.

Blitz on high until a semi-dough forms

Press into spring loaded tin and place in freezer to set

 

Note- you can also use this recipe as coconut rough, bliss balls and base for any slice

 

Top:

Scrape coconut cream off the top of tin

Place raspberries, coconut and maple syrup into food processor

Blend on high until combined

Pour mixture on top of base and put back in freezer to set

Decorate the top as you fancy and ‘yummo mummo’ as my daughter would say.

Local Suppliers

Sometimes I feel bad for finding a consumer product then reinventing it and making it my own homemade version, then I think about the cost of these products and how much I am saving by doing it myself?! It’s a bittersweet feeling really. I feel for producers trying to earn their keep for themselves and probably family so I try to buy locally owned and produced products as well as make my own.

Today I’m giving a plug to wholly granoly. They make the yummiest granola and for every dietary requirement you could think of. I bought the ‘free free free’ version on the weekend. It is gluten free, fructose free and preservative free. It was gone in three days as the husband fell in love with it and I caught him munching a bowl at nighttime every night.

So considering he loved it so much I decided that I would try and make it and see the price difference as to whether it is a great product to keep buying regularly and whether it’s a ‘when they come to market once a month’ kind of product.

Below is my GFP free Granola recipe;

What you’ll need- I didn’t measure just shook, poured

Almonds

Cashews

Pumpkin Seeds

Sunflower seeds

Quinoa flakes

Shredded coconut

Chia seeds

Macadamia nuts

Walnuts

brown rice puffs

amaranth puffs

Rice Malt Syrup/ Coconut Sugar or syrup

Cinnamon

Coconut oil

What I did-

Firstly I activated my nuts (so I soaked them, dried them, left them in the oven on low low temp for 24 hours) check out my post of activating nuts and why I do it.

Then I laid all the ingredients (but puffs, syrup and oil) onto lined baking trays.

Popped the oven at about 150c and let them roast.

After about 10 mins (once I smelled the roasting nuts and coconut) I gave the tray a good shake and turned the nuts so that they would be crunchy and golden on both sides.

This is when I added the magic flavours. Depending on the amount you make coat the dry ingredients with syrup (or sugar) oil and cinnamon.

Bake for another 10 mins and you will smell caramalised nuts and cinnamon

I tried a few nuts to see if they were done to my liking (crunchy-not soft, sweet and roasty)

I shook the tray if they weren’t done then checked again after another 5-10 mins.

I took tray out and left on bench to cool, transferred to jar and stored in pantry.

Safe to say that it was more cost effective to make it myself as I have these ingredients on hand all the time and buy bulk. But I will buy from wholly granolly and I will recommend buying them too especially if you are time poor and love granola but since changing your diet realized you can’t eat your favourite any more.

Activating Nuts

What does activating nuts and seeds mean??

Activated nuts and seeds have been made bio-active by a very simple process of soaking in salted water for a pre-determined period of time, draining them and then dehydrating them at a very low temperature in the oven or dehydrator. Nuts and seeds contain what is called phytic acid which prevents them from sprouting prematurely and stores lots of important nutrients. According to research when we consume phytic acid it reduces our body’s ability to absorb these nutrients. They also contain enzyme inhibitors which force the body to work over time to produce the enzymes necessary for digestion. This process makes our bodies work harder and digestion is longer & harder. It’s an unnecessary impact on our body.

Soaking nuts and seeds begins the process of germination thus breaking down the phytic acid and enzyme inhibitors. This in turn make the nutrients a lot more readily available. There is also research to suggest that soaking your nuts and seeds for long periods of time actually increases their nutritional value, so why not do it?

 

I will give you my brief explanation of activating nuts and then let you try, make your changes and perfect your technique.

 

Activating Nuts

Cover nuts with water, add salt. Leave for the designated time on bench.
Drain, dry and put in oven or dehydrator. I use the oven as I’m not lucky enough to have a dehydrator. You want the lowest setting on the oven possible, wedge the oven door with a wooden spoon and leave the oven to do its stuff overnight if possible. You want dried nuts, not cooked so the lower the temp the better. I believe a dehydrator needs to be at about 50 so go with that.

 

Walnuts, Pecans, Peanuts, Pine nuts, Hazlenuts
Soak: Salted water (1-2 teaspoons), overnight (or approximately 8 hours)
Dehydrate: 12-24 hours or until noticeably dry and crunchy

Almonds
Soak: Salted water, overnight
Dehydrate: 12-24 hours. In my experience almonds take longer than the other nuts, for me around 15 hours. You really need to make sure they are very dry otherwise you will notice them going mouldy very quickly.

Cashews
Soak: Salted water, 3-6 hours. Be careful with cashews – they can go slimy if left too long so keep an eye on them
Dehydrate: 12-15 hours

Pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
Soak: Salted water, overnight
Dehydrate: 12 -24 hours, typically i find 12 hours to be enough.

Sunflower seeds
As with pumpkin seeds though typically I find they are well and truly ready within 12 hours.