Vanilla almond choc-chip cookies

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I baked cookies. Honestly, I probably shouldn’t have because I’ve already eaten 3. It happened. The recipe is from The Whole Pantry app, which if you’ve not discovered yet I highly recommend. It’s full of tasty, healthy recipes and general goodness.

All of these healthy hints are perfect when trying to change your eating habits, as I have been since returning from Europe (we’ve now been home longer than we were gone, that means it’s time to plan the next trip, right?) I’ve been focusing on real, whole foods, nothing processed or refined. The only time that feels a little difficult is when you want a treat. But not anymore!

These babies tick a whole heap of boxes… Paleo- check! Vegan- check! Gluten free- check! Refined sugar free- check! You can even make them nut free, by substituting sunflower seed meal in for the almond meal. There are only a handful of ingredients, and they come together and are ready for the oven in less than 10 minutes flat. IMG_4799Dry ingredients meet wet ingredients… the warmed up honey and coconut oil smelled absolutely incredible. IMG_4801Crumbly but combined. At this point you have to exercise some serious self restraint to not eat the whole bowl like this. I managed to hold off until I had twelve cookies ready to go- then I ate the remaining mixture and was tempted to eat one two cookies raw. IMG_4802Ready for the oven. I put them in for 10 minutes to start with, and they didn’t need anymore (keep an eye on them just in case). They’ll be super soft when you pull them out of the oven but they firm up as they cool.

I will most certainly be making these babies again. I briefly considered making a second batch today- it may still happen…

Vanilla almond choc-chip cookies (from The Whole Pantry app)

Ingredients:
1.5 cups almond meal
2.5 tbsp coconut oil, melted
0.25 cup cacao nibs
2 tbsp maple syrup (I used honey due to my lack of maple syrup)
1 tsp vanilla
0.25 tsp sea salt (I forgot this…)
0.25 tsp baking powder

Method:
1. Preheat your oven to 170*c (340*f)
2. Combine all ingredients in a bowl (I melted my coconut oil and honey together first)
3. Mix it up
4. Portion onto a lined baking tray, press down slightly
5. Bake those suckers for 13 minutes (as I said mine only needed 10, but I may have a hot oven)
6. Leave them to cool- yes this is necessary, they’ll fall apart if you try and sneak one early
7. Eat ’em! IMG_4791

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Play with your food: Paleo banana bread

Banana bread is one of those things that pretty much everyone has a soft spot for. I am no exception. It’s sweet. It’s smells incredible. It’s so easy to eat I can inhale half of one in little more than five minutes (I’m guessing I could of course… I’ve not actually tried, recently). When I took gluten and sugar off the menu I thought my days of banana bread were over. I mean what is banana bread without its gluteny, sugary goodness? Turns out, banana bread is pretty amazing in all forms.

Over the past few months I’ve been doing some reading up on the Paelo diet and lifestyle. I really like the sound of it, although I’d find it difficult to forgo my natural greek yoghurt and cheese altogether. So when I found this recipe on Move Nourish Believe I had to give it a try.

With all of the ingredients on hand I got to baking… I just made a few tweaks:

1. Instead of honey I used rice malt syrup
2. All of my pumpkin and sunflower seeds ended up in the mix, so I sprinkled some cocoa nibs on top

IMG_1562Ready for the oven. I initially thought that a tablespoon of cinnamon was waaaay too much, the raw batter was super cinnamonny, and I am a fan of the stuff. However, after a some quality time inside the oven (longer than the recipe called for)…

IMG_1563The flavours mellowed and blended leaving me with a kick-ass banana bread, if I do say so myself. Perfect as a snack, slathered with butter, or make it breakfast with some yoghurt and fruit. Either way, it’s delicious!