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BROWNIE HEARTS WITH AÇAI BERRY GLAZE (GF, DF)

BROWNIE HEARTS WITH AÇAI BERRY GLAZE (GF, DF)


BROWNIE DESSERT WITH ROSES AND CANDLE

To be honest, Valentine's day does not feel so relevant to me. I'm the kind of person that appreciates the little gestures on unexpected moments and days, the spontaneity of surprising someone and showing affection without the pressure of a commercial date or tag. However, just like last year I shared this beetroot, cocoa and roses cake, this year I'm coming up with a recipe that could be perfect for this or any other day. Seems to me like the perfect occasion to share a sweet chocolatey treat. Cause it doesn't get any better than chocolate, don't you agree? 

I find funny making them with a heart shape, as said it could also be used to offer to you beloved one any day, whether it is your partner, bestie, pet, neighbour or what the heck...to yourself. And loving one self  with chocolate is true love. 😁

BROWNIE DESSERT IN A PORCELAIN DISH, GREY LINEN TABLEWEAR, ROSES

I've made this brownie so many times, brought it to birthdays, baby showers... and I can proudly say everyone loved it. I've been modifying the recipe, tasting with different flours, sweeteners, chocolates...and I think I've found what I was looking for. After experimenting with several flours I must say I found the secret of the yummiest brownie I ever had, and that's because of the chestnut flour. It gives an amazing flavor and texture that makes it irresistible, you can trust me when I say you'll eat more than one piece. 
I'm aware that finding chestnut flour can be problematic but no worries because any other flour will work as well. 

For the glaze I used the same recipe as for this bundt cake but this time I added some açai berry powder that works very well as natural colorant. The glaze is optional, however if you decide to make it don't forget to anticipate the soaking time of the cashew nuts, they will need at least 3 hours or ideally overnight covered with water.

BEFORE AND AFTER THE BROWNIES

As I wanted to make small portions with a heart shape I used the quantities you'll see below but if you prefer a thicker brownie just double the ingredients or use some baking powder.
I use a cookie cutter but if you don't have one, have a look at this post to learn how to do it yourself using a can.

So here's the recipe for these gluten and dairy free brownies with no refined ingredients.

BROWNIE HEARTS IN A METALLIC DISH, DRY FLOWERS AND CANDLE BACKGROUND

BROWNIE HEARTS WITH AÇAI BERRY GLAZE RECIPE

INGREDIENTS ( 20 cm squared pan)

  • 100 gr. chestnut flour (or any other)
  • 25 gr. buckwheat flour 
  • 2 Tbsp. pure cocoa powder
  • 80 gr. coconut sugar or brown sugar
  • 70 ml. coconut oil, melted
  • 3 organic eggs
  • 200 gr. dark chocolate, chopped into small chunks
  • 1 handful of walnuts and pecans, chopped
  • 1 tsp. black salt flakes

For the glaze

  • 1/2 cup plain raw cashew nuts (soaked for at least 3 hours)
  • 3 Tbsp. honey
  • 2 Tbsp. coconut oil, melted
  • 1 tsp. lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. vanilla paste
  • 1 pinch of pink Himalayan salt
  • 1 Tbsp açai berry powder
  • Water
BROWNIE HEARTS IN METALLIC DISH WITH GREY LINEN TABLECLOTH, ROSES, PETALS AND EUCALIPTUS BRANCH

BROWNIE HEARTS IN WHITE PORCELAIN TRAY

BROWNIE DESSERT WITH HEART SHAPE

ELABORATION

Of the brownie

  1. Preheat oven to 180ºC.
  2. Prepare a 20 cm squared pan with baking paper.
  3. Pour the ingredients into the Thermomix or electric blender and mix at high speed for about 30-40 seconds.
  4. Pour over the pan.
  5. Place in the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes depending how you like it.
  6. Remove from the oven and allow to cool. 
  7. Then use the cutter to make hearts or squares.

Of the glaze

  1. Wash and rinse the soaked cashews.
  2. Place in the blender along with the lemon juice.
  3. Blend at high speed, add some water if necessary. Add the salt, honey, coconut oil, vanilla and blend until you get a creamy unctuous texture.
  4. Add the açai berry powder and mix well. (I just used half of the glaze to get 2 different colors)
  5. Garnish as you like and done!
BROWNIE HEART IN A WHITE PORCELAIN DISH, ROSE PETALS

BROWNIE HEARTS IN METALLIC DISH, GREY LINEN TABLECLOTH, ROSES, PETALS AND EUCALIPTUS BRANCH
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RED LENTIL AND PARSNIP SOUP WITH SAFFRON

RED LENTIL AND PARSNIP SOUP WITH SAFFRON


BOWL OF SOUP WITH SPOON, SALT FLAKES, BAY LEAVES



We are half way through the winter and I've realized that despite my unconditional love for soups, this season I haven't posted any new recipe yet. This stormy, cloudy, snowy freezing weather we are having lately made me think it's the perfect time to share this creamy and comforting soup. It makes a perfect one-dish meal with no complications that is very satiating thanks to the lentils.

DISPLAY OF INGREDIENTS, RED LENTILS, BAY LEAVES, PARSNIPS, TURNIP

BOWL OF SOUP, BLACK SESAME SEEDS


The red lentils, that actually are more orangey or yellowey to be honest, are a variety that normally has no shell, what makes them more easy to digest. They don't require to be soaked, their cooking time is shorter than the rest of lentils depending if you buy them split or whole and they will normally get done in less than 30 minutes.

Unfortunately that lovely orange color disappears when cooking them. I like how they combine with the parsnip which brings that earthy and anise-like flavor.  

INGREDIENTS, RED LENTILS


Do you know where the saffron comes from? I find very interesting knowing the origin of the condiments and spices we use... The saffron comes from a purple flower, only 3 orangey pistils are removed from them and are handed with extreme care to keep the threads intact. Then they are packed in a small glass jar for a better preservation. 
Saffron is by far the most expensive spice in the world, around 5.000 euros per kilogram. Yes you heard right. You can sometimes find it cheaper but if you do, be careful because it's probably not authentic saffron.


So here's the recipe!

PARSNIPS, MARBLE CUTTING BOARD AND KNIFE WITH WOOD HANDLE

SAFFRON THREADS

RED LENTIL AND PARSNIP SOUP WITH SAFFRON

INGREDIENTS (Serves 4)

  • 1 1/2 C. red lentils (375 gr.)
  • 3 parsnips
  • 10 saffron threads 
  • 1 medium size potato
  • 1 turnip
  • 2 black garlics
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Salt flakes
  • Pink pepper
  • 100 ml rice or soy cream
  • 2 Tbsp. coconut oil 
  • Water or vegetable stock 

BOWL OF SOUP WITH BAY LEAVES, SPOON, SALT FLAKES IN BLUE CERAMIC FLAKES

ELABORATION

  1. Wash and rinse the lentils. Place them in a saucepan, pour water abundantly and some salt. 
  2. Bring to a boil and when it starts simmering lower to medium heat and cook for about 20-25 minutes or until you see they are done (mine took 20'). Once cooked, reserve.
  3. Peel and cut into small pieces the parsnips, turnip and potato. Use another pot and drizzle some coconut oil and sautée for about 10-15 minutes. 
  4. Roast slightly the saffron in a pan at medium heat for 2-3 minutes and then mash it using a mortar and a pestle.
  5. Pour water over the vegetables (you can use the cooking water of the lentils that is left) until you cover them and add the black garlic, saffron, bay leaves, salt, pepper and cook for 20 minutes or until everything is well done. 
  6. Remove the bay leaves and add the lentils. Blend at high speed until you get a thin purée. Give it a taste and add salt and pepper if needed. 
  7. Add the rice cream and mix well. Serve with some cream , chopped hazelnuts, salt flakes, black sesame...

INGREDIENTS PARSNIPS, TURNIP, SALT FLAKES IN BLUE CERAMIC SPOON

BOWL OF SOUP, BLUE CERAMIC SPOON, BLACK SESAME SEEDS

SOUP, SPOON

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MANGO, RASPBERRY AND CARDAMOM PARFAIT (GF, DF, VG)

MANGO, RASPBERRY AND CARDAMOM PARFAIT (GF, DF, VG)


MANGO, RASPBERRY AND CARDAMOM PARFAIT (GF, DF, VG)

MANGO, RASPBERRY AND CARDAMOM PARFAIT (GF, DF, VG)



I have kept this recipe for quite a few months and kind of forgot about it... It was my approach for a recipe contest wherein I had to use almond milk, so I decided to share it with you now. Better late than never... 


It is so easy to make you won't believe it. Mango and raspberries appear to be one of those extraordinary combinations and along with the aromatic touch of cardamom it just works wonderfully.


MANGO, RASPBERRY AND CARDAMOM PARFAIT (GF, DF, VG)


As you may have figured out parfait means perfect in french. It is a cold or frozen dessert made by several layers of ice cream, whipped cream, cream... There are many variations of it so this is my version using home made jam made with fresh fruit and some chia seed pudding. The idea is to create perfect different layers in a glass, cup or glass jar so it makes it visually pretty.

I love making this parfait because of its simplicity and also because it is very versatile since it may be prepared as a healthy breakfast, a snack or a nice and quick dessert. I like making different combinations, sometimes with yogourt or with some granola to add some crunch to it... I've also made it with coconut milk and the result is super creamy, unctuous, yummy and it makes a perfect contrast with the raspberry tanginess. 


So here's the recipe...


MANGO, RASPBERRY AND CARDAMOM PARFAIT (GF, DF, VG)




INGREDIENTS (Makes 2)

- 1/2 ripe mango
- 15-20 raspberries 
- 250 ml. almond or coconut milk
- 3 TBSP. chia seeds 
- 1/2 lime
- 2 TBSP. maple syrup 
- 1 tsp. cardamom powder 
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla paste 
- Chopped almonds 


MANGO, RASPBERRY AND CARDAMOM PARFAIT (GF, DF, VG)


ELABORATION


  1. Soak the chia seeds with the almond milk, cardamom, vanilla and 1 TBSP. maple syrup for about 30 minutes, mix it well to ensure all seeds are covered with the milk. Reserve.
  2. Mash the raspberries with the lime juice and 1 TBSP of maple syrup. Reserve.
  3. Mash the mango and set aside.
  4. Pour layer after layer in a glass or jar, first the mango jam, then some chia pudding, then the raspberry jam and successively. 
  5. Garnish with a few whole raspberries and some chopped almonds. Done. 

MANGO, RASPBERRY AND CARDAMOM PARFAIT (GF, DF, VG)

MANGO, RASPBERRY AND CARDAMOM PARFAIT (GF, DF, VG)

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WHITE BEAN, KALE AND SQUID STEW IN COCOTTE

WHITE BEAN, KALE AND SQUID STEW IN COCOTTE


WHITE BEAN, KALE AND SQUID STEW IN COCOTTE

WHITE BEAN, KALE AND SQUID STEW IN COCOTTE

WHITE BEAN, KALE AND SQUID STEW IN COCOTTE



Winter is now here for real, with its short days and eternal nights... Here's an excellent dish for those wintery cold days wherein a nice smoldering bowl is what we crave for. This one is a wholesome, one-dish comforting meal, like a cozy hug to warm up ourselves and enjoy spoon after spoon. 



I usually use a white spanish bean called "judiones" which means something like big beans, they are actually quite huge and flat, really tasty, however you can use any other type of white or other bean. I love adding a green touch using kale, and I find the whole combination with the squids quite awesome and yummy. I also like adding some seaweeds to the stew so it gives a sort of sea-like flavour plus all the amazing properties they have. Here I've used a mix of 3 dry seaweeds: nori, dulse and sea lettuce but you can surely use any other type you like.  

I enjoy cooking this type of soups and stews with my cocotte. Same as any other slow food it is made at medium heat and that's what gives it an unbeatable flavour. This pot keeps the temperature for a very long time when you keep the lid on, which is very convenient if you want to prepare it in advance.


So here's the recipe!



WHITE BEAN, KALE AND SQUID STEW IN COCOTTE

WHITE BEAN, KALE AND SQUID STEW IN COCOTTE

WHITE BEAN, KALE AND SQUID STEW IN COCOTTE



WHITE BEAN, KALE AND SQUID STEW IN COCOTTE 
RECIPE

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 jar of cooked organic white beans, drained
  • 10 small squids cut into slices
  • 1 buch of kale leaves, chopped 
  • 1 handful of dry seaweeds  
  • 1 onion, chopped 
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped 
  • 1/2 tomato
  • 1 TBSP. tomato paste 
  • 1/2 TBSP. sweet paprika 
  • Extra virgin olive oil 
  • Pink Himalayan salt
  • Ground white pepper 
  • 2 bay leaves 
  • 1 splash of white wine 
  • Fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1L vegetable or fish stock 
WHITE BEAN, KALE AND SQUID STEW IN COCOTTE


METHOD

  1. Drizzle some olive oil over the pot and sauté the onion, tomato, garlic and paprika until golden. 
  2. Add the squids, a splash of white wine and cook a few more minutes. 
  3. Add the kale leaves, seaweeds and the stock, bring to a boil and after a couple of minutes reduce to medium heat.
  4. Cook for 30 to 45 minutes and then add the beans. Leave for another 15 minutes.
  5. Serve with some chopped fresh parsley and drizzle some extra virgin olive oil. 


WHITE BEAN, KALE AND SQUID STEW IN COCOTTE

WHITE BEAN, KALE AND SQUID STEW IN COCOTTE

WHITE BEAN, KALE AND SQUID STEW IN COCOTTE


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GRAPE, TANGERINE AND MATCHA DETOX SMOOTHIE

GRAPE, TANGERINE AND MATCHA DETOX SMOOTHIE



GRAPE, TANGERINE AND MATCHA DETOX SMOOTHIE



January is as they say the hardest month of the year. But it also is the month to go back to our routines, new starts and hopes, goals and promises to take care of ourselves... The perfect excuse to start loving and pampering ourself a little more.
 The moment to give our body's a break after Christmas and make a reset, cleanse and include new healthy habits in our life.
The perfect timing to not only include them as a healthy practice but to make them part of our daily routine.


GRAPE, TANGERINE AND MATCHA DETOX SMOOTHIE

These smoothies have been present in my diet for quite a long time now. I don't get tired nor bored as I love trying new combinations. The sensation is so good when drinking them that it has become a pleasure preparing them and enjoying how good they are in so many levels. 

So here's the first recipe of the year, a gift to the body, a good injection of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, fiber, diuretic, detoxifying, anti-inflamatory properties and so on... All with good seasonal fruit...

Who else is in?



GRAPE, TANGERINE AND MATCHA DETOX SMOOTHIE


INGREDIENTS



  • 4 tangerines
  • 30 green grapes, without seeds
  • 2 pears
  • 1 TBSP matcha tea 
  • 1 piece ginger, peeled
  • 1 piece fennel
  • 1 tbsp. hemp seeds 
  • 1/2 tbsp. chlorella 
  • Fresh turmeric, grated 
  • 10 fresh mint leaves 
  • Water 
GRAPE, TANGERINE AND MATCHA DETOX SMOOTHIE


PREPARATION
  1. Put all the ingredients in the blender and blend at high intensity.
  2. When smooth, add water to your taste depending on the thickness you desire and blend again a bit.
  3. Now it's ready to drink or keep in the fridge in glass jars with a lid.

GRAPE, TANGERINE AND MATCHA DETOX SMOOTHIE

GRAPE, TANGERINE AND MATCHA DETOX SMOOTHIE


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