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I’ve got some pretty fantastic people in my life, case in point: my roommates who put up with me and my idiosyncrasies on a regular basis, and who are kind enough to chauffeur me around on occasion, including when my flight kept getting delayed and finally ended up getting in at around 2am. Similarly, my mom, who took it upon herself to make aforementioned roommates a ‘gratitude pillow’ for their efforts. I love my parents, but sometimes the things they do baffle/embarrass me a bit. The pillow, while a lovely gesture, has an embroidered square on the back denoting it as a gratitude pillow to them from my mom and the date which we got a bit of a chuckle out of.  Anyways, the next time I had a flight, I deemed it a perfect opportunity excuse to make cookies (although really, is there ever a bad time to make cookies!?)  which were then dubbed ‘gratitude cookies’ (my poor mother!).

I am still not incredibly confident with my skills at gluten free baking, so I adapted this recipe from the ever fantastic Karina over at The Gluten Free Goddess. They turned out pretty darn fantastic if I do say so myself, and they stayed nice and moist for several days post baking, which is a welcome surprise for gluten free baked goods.

1 cup sorghum flour
1/4 cup millet flour
1/2 cup potato starch
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup coconut oil + 1/4 cup coconut spread + coconut milk (or 3/4 cup coconut oil) *See note*
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon Egg Replacer whisked with 1/4 cup coconut milk until frothy
1 1/3 cup old fashioned rolled oats
1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2 cup sliced dried tart cherries
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350F. Combine dry ingredients (sorghum flour through cinnamon) in a large bowl until thoroughly mixed. In a small bowl, mix wet ingredients (coconut oil through egg replacer) until fully combined.  Stir into dry ingredients. When fully combined, stir in oats, coconut, cherries, and chocolate chips until evenly distributed throughout dough.
Scoop dough into tablespoon or so sized balls and place on silpat, or parchment lined baking sheet. Press down to flatten and bake for about 12 minutes, or until just golden around the edges, cooking for a few minutes longer if you prefer a crunchier cookie. Allow to cool on the sheet for a few minutes before removing to a baking rack or plate.
Enjoy or bestow upon others as a token of your appreciation (but don’t forget to test one a few before you send them off!  😉 )

*Note* I wanted to use unrefined coconut oil to impart a coconut flavour to the cookies, however I only had refined oil on hand, so I used a combination of oil and coconut spread (which I think was basically coconut butter-quite dry) mixed with a bit of coconut milk to make it smooth. If you have unrefined coconut oil, feel free to use just that.

I’m also submitting these to Slightly Indulgent Tuesday over at Simply Sugar and Gluten Free.

Kathleen

Whew, VeganMofo is certainly a feast for the eyes! I have come across so many delicious looking things that I really want to remember, particularly with holiday goodies on my mind. I figured that a post of what I’m drooling over right now was in order (both for me and you- I always have a devil of a time trying to remember where I saw that delicious looking recipe)

First up, macarons!! How cute would chocolate macarons with pepperming filling be on a holiday tray? Or, peppermint and chocolate, chocolate and orange… (heh, do we sense a theme here with the chocolate?) I also think it would be fun to experiment with this recipe as a meringue; I was all exciting when I came up with the brilliant idea of a pumpking meringue pie, only to Google it and find out that alas, I am not quite the culinary trailblazer I had envisioned. Nevertheless, plenty of ideas about this one.

Cranberry Chocolate Tartelettes, yes please! How pretty and unique would these be on a holiday cookie tray, or baked up into a big tart for an end of meal showstopper?

Cranberry Gingerbread. Yum! I love fresh cranberries and this recipe is refined sweetener free and gluten-free!!

Chocolate Chestnut Tart. I love chestnuts and while I have never had them combined with chocolate, I am betting it’s a delicious marriage. Also, how pretty would this be sitting on the dessert table at a holiday meal? Or a slice of this while cozied up in front of the fireplace with hot chocolate/tea  and a good movie/company? Mmmm…

German Gingerbread Cookies, how adorable and the flavour combination sounds amazing!

 

Coconut Macaroons. I love me a good coconut recipe, and these look like the perfect way to try to replicate the non-vegan macaroons I used to love.

Not so vegan but on my list of things to veganize!!

Pomegranate White Chocolate Mousse. Sounds delectable! Love the stark contrast between white and red; I’m thinking making some mousse with just the white chocolate, and some pomegranate and swirling them in bowls/tartelettes.

Hope my American readers have a wonderful Thanksgiving with plenty of tasty food!

-K

A cookbook that’s been getting a lot of attention recently is Vegan Soul Kitchen, by Bryant Terry. When I finally splurged on some cookbooks last month, this was definitely near the top of my to-buy list. Flipping through it,  I was thrilled to find that nearly all the recipes appealed to me – more often than not the ingredients called for are affordable, fresh and healthy, and ones I usually have on hand. So far I’ve made 5 recipes from the book, and each has been better than the last. The Citrus Collards with Raisin Redux recipe is a fast, unique, and delicious way of preparing leafy greens, and has inspired my boyfriend to declare collards his most favourite variety of greens. The Shaved Cucumber Salad with Citrus-Cilantro Dressing has only a few key ingredients, and yet is one of the most tasty things I’ve eaten in a while. The Blackened Tofu was so easy to prepare, and I can think of many, many things I would want to dredge in the blackening spice mixture. The Succotash Salsa that is served with the tofu was so good that I made it again the day after in larger quantities to have as a cold salad for lunch. Despite all these great dishes I only managed to snap a picture of one of the recipes:
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This is the Agave-Sweetened Orange-Orange Pekoe Tea. I know what you’re thinking – you don’t need a recipe for iced tea! I thought that too, but this drink made it into the ‘Top Six’ section of the book, so I gave it a try. Let me tell you, it did not disappoint – this is -hands down- the best iced tea I have ever had. Amazon’s preview function actually includes this recipe (and two others!) for those without the book. Hint: I halved the recipe, used more water, and omitted the agave nectar, choosing instead to sweeten each glass individually (and I’m sure I used far less than what was called for in total).

The verdict? Bryant Terry really knows his way around flavours and food, and I cannot wait to try more things out of VSK.

To make up for the lack of photos, here are some pictures of new (to me!) and exciting foods that I’ve tried recently:
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A champagne mango! I’d never seen any varieties of mango besides the ubiquitous ‘green’ variety. (Kent? Tommy Atkins? How do you tell!?) This little guy had a wonderfully smooth texture, but was pretty tart.

img_10551A young coconut! I haven’t tried opening it yet – wish me luck! *upon opening*: it was rotten! Who knew that coconuts turn purple when they spoil? Not me!
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Fava Beans! These things are huge – look at them compared to my hand! I’d never seen these before, and they are probably the first un-shelled fresh beans I’ve ever encountered (besides edamame- but even then, those are always frozen). These are destined for a multi-bean salad this week.
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Kombucha! I heard about this for the first time when LazySmurf blogged about it. I’ve had ulcers in the past, and am currently dealing with a recurring flare-up that has been giving me grief. The health claims about kombucha form a rather lengthy list, and I was skeptical – but decided to try it. After having a single bottle of kombucha over two days, my stomach feels better than it has in weeks. The sensation after drinking it is very strange – the best way I can say is that my stomach feels hot. Also, it also seems to alter my appetite. (this is a good thing!) I had a small glass of it this morning with an apple, and at 1 PM was still not hungry. (inconceivable!) Apparently this works the opposite way too – if you need to gain weight, it stimulates appetite. I’m not sure if I buy into this entirely, but it does seem to be helping me, and it certainly can’t hurt.

……and in case you think I’m a deodorant eschewing, hemp-wearing, meditating, dreadlocked vegan hippy (not that those are necessarily bad things!) that’s touting her new found cure-all, I promise that’s not the case. The deepest I’ve delved into homeopathic solutions thus far is a few drops of oregano oil here and there…… and vegan deodorant still counts as deodorant, thank you very much!  : )

-E