Recipe: Almond Bread from Cooking Pot

photo (16)Here’s one of the most delicious almond bread recipes I’ve tasted. My friend Dominika made it for me to try at our playgroup – it wasn’t for everyone because it isn’t vegan, but all the same I only managed to get one slice before it vanished off the plate! It was very yummy. This recipe makes a moist loaf of grain-free bread, which I am very excited about. The other almond breads that I have made have been so dry that even a cup of tea isn’t enough to make them palatable … this one has eggs and cottage cheese in it, which makes it so tasty and light. It slices well and I think it is going to be a great morning toast with butter, a yummy morning tea with peanut butter, and a delicious accompaniment to lunch with a bit of labne spread. Dominika has shared the recipe with me and said I could share it here too. Some things are too good to keep to yourself.

CookingPotlogo

I’ve just been involved in a great big recipe share with Dominika and many friends which has culminated in a great new phone app called Cooking Pot. This is the first time I’ve ever endorsed a product other than my own on the blog, but I’m excited about this one because I know it has lots of awesome recipes in it like this almond bread one. It’s been created by my friends Dominika and Justin and they’ve been collecting and compiling lots of amazing recipes to help you plan your meals, or to help you use up those left over ingredients in the fridge so that you are not wasting food. Dominika and Justin have two little girls, they grow their own vegetables and raise chickens in their backyard (and a guinea pig or two). The health of their family is their priority, and so all these recipes on their Cooking Pot app are there to create awesome meals with wholesome ingredients. I’m pretty proud to say that many of my recipes can be found on Cooking Pot too – and my recipes have been created with the best of health-full intentions so I’m happy to endorse it!

shopping

Cooking Pot has many uses:
– you can select the ingredients you want to use and find a variety of recipes to match
– after selecting the recipes you want for the ingredients you have, Cooking Pot will then compile a shopping list for the rest of the ingredients you will need, and you can add to this so it is pretty handy to take with you when you do your shopping.
– you can browse the recipes according to different labels – you will find recipes for all kinds of different needs: food intolerance,vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free. More recipes are being added all the time.
– having recipes at your finger tips allows you an easier way to plan your meals for the week – and a great way to find something tasty at the end of an exhausting day when you are not feeling inspired about dinner.
You can read more about it, and download it by going to the website, itunes, or the facebook page. Cooking Pot is available for iPhones or iPads. I think iPads would be great in the kitchen … use a recipe stand to prop it up, and easy to wipe clean. Much better than bringing my laptop in, which is what I sometimes do when I can’t be bothered to write a recipe down! I’m not a very neat cook 🙂

iOS Simulator Screen shot 15.12.2012 6.04.20 PM (1)

Almond Bread

(grain-free, sugar-free)

INGREDIENTS
    2 1/2 cups almond meal
    1/4 cup olive, hempseed or sunflower oil
    1 tub (7 oz) dry curd cottage cheese or farmer’s cheese
    1 tsp baking soda
    1 Tbsp hulled hemp seeds
(I didn’t have any hemp seeds so I used 1 T flax and 1 tsp chia unground – use what you have)
    1 tsp flaxseeds or ground chia seeds
    1/4 tsp good salt
    3 eggs
METHOD
Mix all ingredient together and bake at 180C for 1 hour.
If toothpick doesn’t come out clean reduce to 130C and bake till done.
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Recipe: Polka-dot Cake

IMG_2787In all my efforts to make cakes and muffins and cupcakes without grains and sugar this has to be the simplest and most satisfying cake I’ve made. I made it today – very spontaneously to celebrate Fete des Rois, or Festival of the Kings, because today is Epiphany. Epiphany is the end of the Advent story when the three wise men arrive to pay their respects to the Holy Baby. They treated Jesus as they would an earthly king by falling to the floor and presenting him with expensive gifts.

Had I given myself more time to organise it I would have had a crown ready and perhaps some games but that was not to be today. You can read about our past Fete des Rois celebrations. Today, however, I had forgotten all about it. January 6th, already? How did that happen? I didn’t realise until the afternoon so I quickly made up this cake for afternoon tea. I couldn’t find the right recipe I wanted in all my books and scribblings because they were either too complicated or I didn’t have the ingredients –  so I cobbled one together with the ingredients I had and it worked.

The traditional French galette des Rois is an almond-cream filled puff pastry type thing with the feve baked inside. The feve is traditionally a hard bean and whoever finds it in their slice becomes King or Queen for the day. My friend has been making a few delicious gluten-free versions of French regional cakes for our past fete des Rois celebrations. Today I thought an almond cake would do the job, and for the feve I used a date because I didn’t want my two-year old to end up accidentally choking on something small.

The cake was pretty colourful! I had intended to make the polka-dots with blueberries dropped in to the batter just before cooking, like a clafouti, but in a real Mother-Hubbard moment I discovered we had no blueberries or cherries or any other suitable fruit, not even any dried fruit except for the dates. All we had was Dad’s stash of Christmas candies and so I decorated the cake with candy covered chocolate polka-dots …. I know!! Not exactly sugar-free, paleo or GAPS but very pretty and very tasty. WITH the blueberry polka-dots this cake makes a very delicious breakfast served with yogurt and fresh fruit. Incidentally it can be made without the baking powder so it can be suitable for GAPS and paleo too. It might not rise but it will be more flat like a clafouti, which is how I make it for breakfast.

In any case the cake rose and cooked beautifully and we had a delicious afternoon tea with a bit of fun to go with it. As it happens I don’t think I will use a date again because when I cut the cake, I cut the date in half and then two people ended up with the feve in their slice – so we had two Kings this year!!

Here’s the recipe:

IMG_2788

Polka-Dot Cake

(grain-free and sugar-free … almost!)

INGREDIENTS

250g almond meal

1/3 cup honey/maple syrup

100g coconut oil

6 eggs

2 tsp vanilla essence

1 tsp baking powder

blueberries or cherries / (in this case I used Smarties!)

something to use for a feve – don’t use a date! A large (clean!) coin, a dried bean if you don’t have little kids eating the cake, perhaps some trinket from the Christmas crackers?)

METHOD

Mix all but the last ingredient together and blend well.

Add the feve to the mix and pour it all into an oiled spring-form cake tin, making sure that the feve is well hidden and then drop in the berries/cherries/things you are using for polka-dots in a pleasing pattern.

Cook at 170C for about 25 – 30 minutes … sorry I didn’t pay attention to how long it was in there for. I took it out when the top was a light brown colour and the knife came out clean. Mine was in about half an hour I think.

Recipe: Blueberry Crostata

This recipe caught my eye on Pinterest. Click on the picture above for the link to the original post. I love recipes that look simple and are also simple to make. This one is basically a pie crust and blueberries. Can’t go wrong!

I made my pie crust with spelt flour and coconut oil, which made it a bit crumbly … but still very delicious. I used maple syrup instead of sugar, left out the flour (instead I kind of mashed the blueberries a little bit after they were cooked so they all stuck together in the crust better) and I used dabs of coconut oil on top of the blueberries instead of butter.  It was really delicious! I managed to save a slice to take a photo of.

 

I love the rustic look of it too. Can’t you picture yourself on the couch, wrapped up in a snuggly blanket eating hot crostata with cream?