Banana Coconut Pancakes

Posted by on Aug 14, 2014 in Breakfast, Food + Drink | 2 Comments

Pancakes 2

I have been cooking gluten-free for a while now, but have found the experience of cooking pancakes frustrating.  I’m talking pancakes that are healthy, without any weird ingredients.  All the recipes I find either lack in taste, or don’t come together and fall apart when flipped.  I am happy to tell you that I have found THE BEST GLUTEN FREE PANCAKES EVER.  So good that yes, THEY WARRANT ALL CAPS YELLING AND LOTS OF EXCLAMATION POINTS!!!

Pancakes 3
This recipe is adapted from Food & Wine, and contains just a few whole food ingredients.  As with most coconut flour recipes, it contains a lot of eggs.  But, don’t be put off by this – the finished pancakes don’t have an eggy taste.  And, suprisingly – they don’t taste overly banana-ish either.  Their light, fluffy interior is a bit reminiscent of a ricotta pancake – but it’s totally gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free and possibly even paleo.

Pancakes 1

So, here it is, a pancake that almost everyone can enjoy.  We like to have them with berries, bananas and maple syrup – but the toppings are only limited by your imagination.  Just don’t try to make a huge Uncle Buck style pancake – since there are no grains or flour in the recipe, they can be a little bit fragile – but keep them small and you’re golden. Literally.  (more…)

Rhubarb Oat Muffins

Posted by on Jul 1, 2014 in Breakfast | No Comments

Rhubarb Oat Muffins 1

I am not at all a morning person.  I’m talking super cranky, dishevelled hair, squinting at the sun through half-open eyes and cursing the birds for expressing themselves the only way they know how.  Part of this is due to my coffee addiction, but I’m told I’ve been like this all my life, so I assume that there is a genetic component at play as well.  I get up at the last possible moment and breakfast has to be something quick that I grab on the way out the door along with my beloved latte.  These muffins definitely fit the bill in a nutritious way –  they are gluten, dairy and refined sugar free, and are made with a delicious combination of whole-grain flours.

Rhubarb Oat Muffins 2

The subtle sweetness of the maple syrup combined with the tartness of the rhubarb is a lovely combination. The pecans and nut oil add an extra flavour dimension, as does the cinnamon.  I made these with fresh rhubarb, but have also made them with frozen rhubarb – both turned out great, but you might just have to drain a bit of liquid from your frozen rhubarb prior to using it.

Rhubarb Oat Muffins 3

Rhubarb Oat Muffins
Makes 12 largish muffins

Adapted from Naturally Ella

Rhubarb Compote

  • 150g rhubarb, washed and chopped
  • 40mL maple syrup

Combine rhubarb and maple syrup in a medium saucepan and cook over medium heat until rhubarb breaks down, about 10-12 minutes.  Set aside to cool.

Muffins

  • Rhubarb Compote (see above)
  • 200g rhubarb, washed and chopped into smallish chunks
  • 115g oats
  • 80g buckwheat flour
  • 80g gluten-free flour blend (this one works well, but feel free to experiment!)
  • 1/4 teaspoon xanthan gum
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 small pinch sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 70g toasted pecans, roughly chopped (or another nut of your choosing)
  • 175mL maple syrup
  • 75mL walnut oil (olive oil, grapeseed oil, or whatever oil you have on hand will also work!)
  • 2 large free-range eggs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line your muffin tin with parchment paper cups.  Pulse oats in food processor until a flour forms.  It doesn’t have to be very fine – sometimes having a few larger chunks of oats in your muffins is nice.  Combine your oats, buckwheat flour, gluten-free flour blend, baking soda, baking powder, xanthan gum, sea salt and cinnamon in a bowl and set aside.  Combine maple syrup, walnut oil, rhubarb compote and eggs in another bowl, whisking to blend.  Mix wet and dry ingredients until just combined, add rhubarb chunks, then fold through pecans, reserving a few for garnish.  Scoop batter evenly into muffin tin.  Scatter reserved pecans and whole oat flakes on top of muffins for garnish.  Bake for 15 – 20 minutes, until muffins spring back when pressed, or a cake tester comes out pretty much clean.

Cool, and store in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

 

 

Roasted Balsamic Strawberry Granola Parfaits

Posted by on Jun 24, 2014 in Breakfast | No Comments

Balsamic Strawberry Parfaits

It might sound a bit weird, but strawberries and balsamic vinegar are a classic combination.  There is something about the tartness of balsamic vinegar that plays off the sweetness of the strawberries and brings out the best in both.

Parfait 2

Roasting the strawberries and balsamic intensifies the deliciousness of this combination even more, and layering them with your favourite granola (ahem…) with rich creamy yogurt will definitely up your breakfast game.
Parfait 4 The recipe works well with the delicious local strawberries that are in season right now, but can also elevate horrible, white cored super market specimens to something sublime. Either way, this is a special breakfast treat which would be lovely to serve to guests, or quickly snarf in the privacy of your own company.

Roasted Balsamic Strawberry Granola Parfaits

Roasted Strawberry Balsamic Sauce

  • 1 punnet of strawberries, halved (approximately 450g)
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup of organic cane sugar (you might want to use less if your berries are very sweet and ripe.  Other types of sugar – eg. coconut – would also be delicious, but might change the colour of your sauce – if that type of thing matters to you.)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Toss strawberries with balsamic and sugar of your choice.  Spread on a baking sheet and roast for 8 – 10 minutes.  Let cool.  Put cooled berries in your food processor, reserving a few to garnish your parfaits, and blend into a sauce.

To Assemble

  • Your favourite granola (not naming any names, but I can think of a good one!)
  • Your favourite yogurt – plain or vanilla would work best
  • Roasted strawberry balsamic sauce
  • Reserved strawberries for garnish
  • Mason jars, martini glasses, parfait cups – whatever vessel you’d like to serve your parfaits in!

Layer ingredients – I like to start with yogurt, and then sauce, and then granola – and repeat.  End with yogurt, and then top with a sprinkle of granola and garnish with reserved strawberries.  I’m not giving exact amounts because it can really vary on the size of your serving vessel, and the personal preferences of the parfait maker/eaters.  Some people love more yogurt, others enjoy the crunch of a big layer of granola.  And, you can never have too much of this sauce!  These are best eaten within a few hours of making, but are also fine the next day – the granola just loses a bit of it’s crunch.  If you have any sauce left, it can be refrigerated and kept for about a week.  It goes really well with ice cream – but I can also imagine a zillion other uses – on top of a piece of plain pound cake with whipped cream, swirled through yogurt, or even added to your favourite libation to make a delicious cocktail.