Vegan Almond Oat Coconut Cookies

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Cookieeeeeeeeessssss.

THE best.

Do you like cookies?

Is that even a question?

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These cookies have been inspired by Girl Scout Samoa Cookies and Fudge Stripes Shortbread cookies. It’s like the two had a baby cookie 😀

My cookies have oat flour, almond flour, coconut oil, coconut, vegan butter and maple syrup as main ingredients. They are crumbly and soft on the inside and crunchy on the outside. And because they’re made with healthy ingredients don’t feel bad to have them for snack. In fact, I highly recommend it.

Oh, and the chocolate drizzle? A must! All homemade, so no worries.

I kept mine in the fridge because I wanted to make sure the chocolate stays solid and because I like it to be cold. They got a bit chewier, but not too much.

Enjoy and let me know if you make them!IMG_1564-1

Ingredients
  1. 2 cups of oats, blended into flour
  2. 2 cups of almond meal (I used dry almond pulp I had left over from making almond milk)
  3. 1.5 cup shredded coconut
  4. 10 tbsp ice cold water
  5. 1/4 cup COLD coconut oil
  6. 1/4 cup COLD vegan butter
  7. 1/4 cup COLD maple syrup
chocolate for drizzle
  1. 1/2 cup coconut oil
  2. 1/2 cup cocoa butter
  3. about 1/2 cup cacao powder
  4. 1/4 cup maple syrup – more or less based on preference
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. Combine oats, coconut and almond meal in a bowl and add cold coconut oil and vegan butter.
  3. Mix with hands fast because you don’t want the butter and oil to melt. This will form a crumbly dough.
  4. Add ice cold water and mix into a dough.
  5. Then add maple syrup and mix again. The dough will become pretty wet, but that’s ok.
  6. Cut off about a quarter of third of the dough and roll with a rolling pin or pastry roll into a thin, cookie-like thickness. If the dough is sticking to the roll too much, press into cutting board with hands.
  7. Keep in mind that the dough will not rise so roll/cut into the exact desired size.
  8. Use a flower shaped cut out to make cookies, baking 12 cookies per sheet. I yielded 22 cookies but you may end up with more or less based on the thickness of the dough.
  9. Bake for 15 minutes until golden brown. If you’d like more crunch bake in 5 minute increments until they get as crispy as you like.
  10. Let cool on cookie rack.
  11. While the cookies are cooling make chocolate by melting the oil, butter and melting syrup and adding cacao powder, while mixing, until nice and thick. See notes.
  12. Enjoy with loved ones!
Notes
  1. Keeping the oil, butter and syrup cold will help with the dough sticking together. Once you have a dough formed with all ingredients you don’t have to worry about it falling apart because the oats will absorb water and therefore keep everything intact.
  2. I drizzled the top first, let cool off in the freezer and then I dipped the bottoms, flipped them upside down and put in the freezer again. Once solid I stored them in a sealed container in the fridge.

 

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Vegan Banana Pudding

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This pudding, you guys…. I have no words! I experimented and it worked and it’s the best pudding I’ve ever had. No joke. I was so surprised when I tasted it and had to consume the whole cup right away. And then another a bit later with chocolate chips I made that same day. And then I knew I had to make sure to tell you all about it. (Btw, the little spots you see from outside the cup are just air bubbles.)

This pudding is one of the smoothest things I’ve ever had. Please don’t think I’m weird, I’m just really happy with how it turned out 🙂

I have also tried edible flowers for the first time. I have to admit I was weirded out, but gave in and tried them and they tasted like radishes 🙂 Cute for decoration on this pudding, but don’t eat them with this. Stick to salads with them in.

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When I was little, my mom used to make instant pudding because that’s what was cool then. Instant food was in and everybody was doing it. I remember banana, strawberry and chocolate pudding poured into glasses filled with fruit or round lady fingers. Yum. It was good. Not healthy, or nutritious, but we all loved it.

But now, I can have both yummy and healthy at the same time. This pudding is so easy you’ll want to make it right away. Ingredient count? 3. I know you don’t believe me, but it’s true. It’s also gluten free, sugar free and oil free. And super good for ya.

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I bet you’re wondering what makes it purple. The most amazing and healthy vegetable ever. Yes, I said vegetable. Purple sweet potatoes! So good for you!

 

They have:

Antioxidants ✅

Iron ✅

Calcium ✅

Healty Fiber ✅
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Ingredients
  1. 2 cups of sweet purple potato, steamed
  2. 2 bananas
  3. 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
Instructions
  1. Peel the potatoes and steam until soft.
  2. Let the potatoes cool down a bit, but not until completely cold.
  3. Put all ingredients in a blender and blend for about a minute until SUPER smooth.
  4. Pour into glasses and let chill.
  5. Enjoy with loved ones!
Notes
  1. If you want it sweeter and more banana-ish add a banana. Super ripe bananas are the best since you don’t have to use that many.
  2. I usually first blend almond milk with potatoes, then I add bananas to preferred taste.
  3. When you use warm potatoes the pudding stiffens up nicely as it cools in the fridge. If it’s not pour-able after blending then you need more almond milk. I made that mistake once and it was too hard and very potato-ey 😀 You shouldn’t have a hard time pouring into jars.

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Green Series: Vegan Matcha Cheesecake with Spirulina Sprinkles

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Aaand, another cheesecake is here 🙂 Yes, it is and it’s been too long. I love vegan cheesecakes because they’re an amazing snack full of nutrition and flavor. So simple and so delicious. This cheesecake is only 5 ingredients. Yes, it’s that easy. Can you believe it? You better.

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Remember how I told you I didn’t really like dates until I decided to step outside the box and try them? Well, I’ve been loving them ever since. I love dates filled with peanut butter as a snack at work.

Dates and almonds are the only two ingredients you need for the crust! I couldn’t decide what to use as toppings/sprinkles until I realized my beloved Organic Burst Spirulina granules were the perfect match – they’re green which matches matcha (ha), they look like sprinkles AND they are filled with amazing health benefits. You can’t go wrong with them.

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And matcha – I’ve been wanting to try matcha for so long! Its amazing health benefits were one reason (antioxidants and energy boost, just to name a couple). Also, I’m a sucker for anything colorful, so there. Unusually looking foods are my favorite. I love to shock, what can I say. Not that matcha is that shocking, but it did create a green cake, so kinda. I took this to work and the response was overwhelmingly positive, even by meat eaters 😛 I love this cheesecake as a snack or a treat. So go and make it and let me know if you love it as much as I do.

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Crust
  1. 1 cup dates, soaked 15 minutes
  2. 1 cup raw almonds
Filling
  1. 1/2 cup almond milk, unsweetened
  2. 2 cups raw cashews, soaked for at least 4 hours
  3. 1 tbsp matcha (I accidentally bought sweetened one, but if you have regular sweeten with preferred sweetener)
  4. Optional, but highly recommended: Spirulina granules
Instructions
  1. Put almonds and dates into food processor and blend until dough forms.
  2. Press into cake form, I used a 9 inch. Put into freezer while preparing filling.
  3. In a high speed blender (or food processor) put the filling ingredients and blend until super smooth.
  4. Pour over the base and put into freezer for at least 2 hours.
  5. Share with loved ones frozen or chilled. It will hold form out of fridge too.

2 Ingredient Blueberry Icecream

I make banana ice cream a lot. A LOT. People always ask me what I use to make it and almost never believe me when I tell them it only has one ingredient. After a little explanation they become believers. Banana ice cream is really the simplest frozen treat you can make. It only requires frozen bananas and desired toppings. I try to make sure I have 2-3 bananas in my freezer at all times. Depending on your freezer they stay pretty nice for about a week, or even longer. If you don’t make ice cream, you can always use them in your smoothies, so nothing is wasted.

For this one, I used blueberries and bananas, but feel free to mix whatever frozen fruit you like as long as you make sure there’s at least one banana to get the nice and creamy consistency. Heck, add some spinach while you’re at it.

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As hard as it is to believe, you really only need bananas for the basic banana ice cream. The secret? Food processor. A blender won’t do it. You can try, but you will most likely need to use milk in order for the blender to be able to chop it all up. And in the end, the consistency won’t be as creamy as it could be.

So, here’s what to watch out for while making it in a food processor:

1. At first, your machine will dance on the counter as if it was Saturday Night Fever.

2. Then all the bananas will get chopped up and it’ll look like shaved ice (even more so if there is other fruit because it’ll give it more of a sorbet look).

3. Next, a huge mass forms and it will go around, looking as if it was pole dancing. No biggie, keep going.

4. Last stage is when that big mass breaks down and looks like a soft serve. It’ll be all pretty quick so make sure you don’t walk away. You’re done!

Some people add sweeteners, but, honestly, if you freeze ripe bananas there’s no need. Unless you have a super sweet tooth 🙂

And toppings? Anything you’d like. Nuts? Sure. Chocolate? You better! Sprinkles? Go for it. The chocolate I used is the same as my previous recipe minus the crispy rice.

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Ingredients
  1. 1 frozen banana
  2. 2 cups blueberries
Instructions
  1. Just one step – throw it in a food processor and watch it do the dance until ice cream forms.
  2. Enjoy with loved ones!

Vegan Crispy Rice Chocolate (GF)

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Chocolate.

The best food ever.

There’s never enough of it.

And yet, as I’m sitting here, trying to write about it I’m drawing a blank. Full on blank. Maybe everything has already been said about it. I mean, we all know how amazing it is, right?

I’ve been recently making it with cacao butter and I love it. It keeps its consistency better and it smells like heaven too. Sometimes I go crazy and I feel like a real chocolatier – I stir, I pour into molds and I even wrap my chocolate bon bons into foil. That’s right. That’s how much I like it. And guess what? My son started to eat the chocolate I make once he saw it wrapped in a foil so now I won’t ever stop doing it. It’s actually kind of therapeutic for me, just like making almond milk. Has anyone else experienced that?

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Here I go – complaining I can’t write anything and now I’m blabbing.

Recipe of the day is crispy rice chocolate! It’s simple and totally customizable.

You can fill the chocolate with whatever you’d like – nuts, dried fruit, etc… Let me know if you make it and you like it! I’m on Instagram most often so tag me 😉 IMG_0564-1

Ingredients
  1. 1/4 cup cacao butter
  2. 1/2 cup cacao powder
  3. 1 tbsp coconut oil
  4. 1 tbsp gluten free crispy rice cereal – I used Nature’s Path
  5. 1 tbsp maple syrup or other natural sweetener
Instructions
  1. Put cacao butter, coconut oil and maple syrup in a small pot on a low/med heat to melt and combine. Make sure it doesn’t reach the boiling point.
  2. Add cacao powder until the mixture becomes nice and creamy.
  3. Pour a little into a chocolate mold, cover with crispy rice and add another layer. If the cereal floats just push it down with your fingers.
  4. Let cool in the fridge for 30-60mins.
  5. Break apart and enjoy with loved ones!

Buchty – Slovak Jam Filled Pastry Veganized

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You know that one thing your grandma made you just love? This is it for me – buchty. I remember coming home after playing outside all day and warm buchty were waiting for me – the smell of them and the heat and steam of the oven filled the whole kitchen as I walked in. The memory takes me back whenever I want to and that’s the magic of it.

This whole week seems to be me reminiscing about my childhood and my grandma 🙂 Since I’m talking so much about her, here’s a visual of this beautiful woman:

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Buchty (plural) are something between a pastry and a bun, filled with jam, nuts or poppy seeds. They are the best snack in the afternoon with your tea or coffee. Soft and fluffy on the sides and inside and crunchy on top and bottom – that’s a perfect buchta (singular). To fill them I used the jam I posted about before this. IMG_0395-1

OK, so this is not one of those super healthy posts – I get it. But what’s life without a variety? 🙂

I have swapped all ingredients for their better versions and the jam I used is raw with barely any sugar. I was able to do so without sacrificing the texture, taste and the look. So here you go, a little taste of Slovakia for you.IMG_0404-1

Ingredients
  1. 3.5 cups unbleached flour
  2. pinch of salt
  3. 1/4 cup maple syrup (room temperature)
  4. 2 tsp yeast
  5. 1 cup unsweetened almond milk (warmed up a bit, not boiling)
  6. 8 tbsp melted vegan butter + more to grease the buns
  7. 1 flaxseed egg
  8. coconut oil to grease the bowl
  9. Optional: confectioner’s sugar for top
  10. Fillings: jam, nuts, poppy seeds, cream cheese – possibilities are endless.
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, mix flour and salt and make a well in the center.
  2. Warm milk (not boiling) and pour half of it into the well. Add maple syrup and yeast and let sit for about 10 minutes to activate the yeast.
  3. In a separate bowl make flaxseed egg and let it sit while the yeast is activating.
  4. Add melted butter to the rest of the milk and mix. Then add the flaxseed egg a mix again.
  5. After the yeast has activated, add the milk-butter-egg mixture to the bowl with flour.
  6. Put the dough on a cutting board and knead like you’ve never kneaded before until the dough is soft and springy. Hands are the best, but if you’re like me, you’ll use a mixer 🙂
  7. Wash the bowl the dough was in. Coat it with coconut oil and put the dough back in. Let rise for about an hour, or until it doubles in size.
  8. Preheat the oven to 380F.
  9. Butter a large baking dish and set aside.
  10. Quarter the dough, then divide each part into 4 parts. See notes below.
  11. Take one piece of dough, flatten into a circle, fill with filling of choice (I did jam), pinch together to seal and brush each piece with melted vegan butter.
  12. Put into baking dish pinched side down.
  13. Use up all the dough and let the buns sit 20 more minutes.
  14. Bake for 25-35 minutes, until the top is golden brown.
  15. Let cool and sprinkle sugar on top.
  16. Enjoy with loved ones!
Notes
  1. The original recipe calls for dividing the quartered dough into 8 small pieces, but my buchty came out very small, hence I’d cut into 4 pieces.
Adapted from Grown to Cook

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Vegan Chocolate Covered Popcorn

I’ve been waiting SO long to make chocolate popcorn. Honestly, I have no idea why.

I make chocolate all the time.

I make popcorn all the time.

So what’s the deal? I guess I was missing cute cartons that say “popcorn” on them because once I bought them I made it 😀

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Have you ever made your own popcorn? SO easy. Always fresh, warm, crunchy. It’s the best. If you follow me on Instagram, you know how much fun I have making it.

When I was little, there was no store bought popcorn. Not that I’m that old, but I grew up in a country in Eastern Europe (politically, otherwise it’s central) and there was nothing like that available. So, we made our own. And that was the best part! It was a ritual – make popcorn, watch a movie.

So now, even though I’m grown up and can buy a popcorn in a bag (which I sometimes do), I prefer to make my own. The way your house smells when you make it (granted you don’t burn it :D) is amazing.

And who doesn’t like chocolate covered popcorn? Get out of here, no way you don’t 🙂 So here you go, for your enjoyment in those quiet evenings with your loved ones, I give you chocolate covered popcorn.IMG_0207-1

Ingredients
  1. 1/2 cup popcorn
  2. 1tbsp coconut oil
  3. pinch of salt
  4. 1/4 cup cacao butter
  5. 1tbsp maple syrup
  6. 1/4 cup raw cacao powder, or as needed
Instructions
  1. Make popcorn by putting dry corn and coconut oil in a tall pot.
  2. Turn heat on high and wait until it starts popping.
  3. When the popping gets fast, turn off heat and wait until it stops completely. Empty into a bowl, add a bit of salt and let cool off. Make sure you don’t over-salt to create a good balance with chocolate.
  4. Prepare chocolate by melting cacao butter and maple syrup over medium heat. Stir while melting.
  5. Once it’s melted, add cacao powder little by little until a thinker cream forms.
  6. Wait until it cools off completely, but not enough to start hardening. You can check this by stirring occasionally.
  7. Pour over cooled popcorn and pop into freezer for a couple of minutes until it hardens.
  8. Enjoy with your loved ones!

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Vegan Orange Mint Scones with Orange Icing

IMG_9922-1I mentioned already that I love orange infused anything. Or mint. I do, I really do.

And when you put both of them together – SIGN ME UP!

IMG_9934-1When this idea came to my mind it was a given I was making it that same day. I mean, come on, you can’t not make them. So crunchy and fluffy at the same time…The almonds get roasted so nicely and their smell and crunch is addicting. Secret? I made sure that when I was making almond flour I didn’t grind it up all the way. I stopped processing about half way where I normally would so that way, I had some flour, some small pieces and then bigger chunks. YUM! I wish I could have you taste that through computer 😀IMG_9949-1

Orange and mint. Forever an amazing combo. I wanted to make sure that the scones have a balanced flavor or orange and almonds with a hint of peppermint and, boy, did I luck out! Imagine this: the flavors enter your taste buds one at a time so you get to experience all of them separately and then they all blend together for an amazing mix of deliciousness. Oh my gosh, I honestly can’t even describe how amazing these are! Thank goodness I only made a small batch because I ate my share right away.

Have them with your favorite cup of tea or coffee and you’ll see your day will be better right away 😉

Enjoy!

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For scones
  1. 2 flaxseed eggs
  2. 1/4 maple syrup
  3. 1 cup almonds
  4. 1 cup flour – I used whole wheat
  5. 1 1/2 tsp organic orange flavor
  6. 1/2 tsp organic peppermint flavor
  7. 8 tbsp COLD vegan butter
  8. 1tsp baking powder
  9. 1/4 tsp baking soda
For icing
  1. 1/4 confectioners sugar
  2. 3 tbsp vegan butter, melted
  3. couple of drops orange flavor
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400F.
  2. Make flaxseed egg, let sit for about 5 minutes.
  3. In another bowl, mix orange and peppermint flavor with maple syrup.
  4. Add all of the dry ingredients and flaxseed egg and mix well.
  5. Add cold butter and quickly mix/knead with hands until everything is mixed together.
  6. Put a sheet of parchment paper on a flat surface and add dough.
  7. Press down until until a flat circle forms, about one inch high.
  8. Cut into triangles and put on a baking sheet along with the parchment paper.
  9. Make sure you pull the scones away from each other, about an inch because they’ll rise during baking.
  10. Bake for 17 minutes, or until the toothpick comes out clean.
Icing
  1. Melt butter, add orange flavor and slowly add sugar until you get the right consistency.
  2. Drizzle on scones and wait until it hardens.
  3. Enjoy with your loved ones!
Adapted from My Baking Addiction

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Green Series: Vegan/Gluten Free Brownies

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Ok, let’s talk brownies. Who doesn’t like them? Probably only people who can’t eat chocolate because they’re allergic or whatnot. Don’t you wish you could eat these for breakfast, or lunch, or dinner? Well, you can! These brownies have only goodness in them. The chocolate chips are the only “bad” thing and even those are vegan, so there. No one can make you feel guilty about eating these because they only contain good things. If you follow me on Instagram, you know how much I love Lola’s brownies made of chickpeas. That’s right, chickpeas. They are so soft and yummy and healthy and I honestly haven’t met anyone who said they didn’t like them after they tried them! The original recipe can be found in Lola’s book, or here.IMG_9814

This post marks the first one of the “Green Series” that I decided to start. I’ll make a green looking something or other, here and there just for fun. And health benefits, of course. And I’ll make sure it tastes good too, just like these brownies here. I have a number of recipes in mind so stay tuned because I’m very excited! If there’s something you’d like to see, let me know 🙂 Here, I introduce you to Raspberry Spinach Brownies:

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Shall we talk raspberry, blackberry and spinach combo? Let’s, because that’s what makes these brownies absolutely amazing. I’ve been playing around with the idea of making these brownies green for a while and I knew I’ll use spinach for its moisture and mild taste. But that left me with green brownies and no particular taste. So I searched my brain for a fruit that would do it and I had no idea that my first choice would be so delicious! When I smell raspberries, I think about my grandparents’ garden full of fruit and vegetables you can only imagine. I’m talking apples, pears, plums, raspberries, currants, carrots, kohlrabi, potatoes and the list goes on and on… It was heaven! Spending my summers sitting in a cherry tree, stuffing myself until I couldn’t breathe – I loved it. Raspberries, for some reason, evoke the most emotions in me. Maybe because my mama loves them so much it’s in our blood 😀

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I used a mix of raspberries and blackberries to get a perfect combination of sweet, sour and tart. I think that’s what gives this the kick it needs from all of the other ingredients. The bursting raspberry flavor is addicting! I tried it with blueberries and strawberries as well and the taste was more mild, much like the original recipe so if you want to make the original recipe but don’t want to use beets, feel free to use spinach/strawberry/blueberry combo to get a pretty similar taste 😉

TIP: when you make the dough it’ll look pretty pink and not very green, but that’s normal. The pink color will get absorbed into the parchment paper during baking and when they come out they’re green 🙂

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Ingredients
  1. 2 1/2 cups oats
  2. 1 tsp baking powder
  3. 1 1/2 cup mixed raspberries and blackberries
  4. 1 giant handful of spinach
  5. 1/2 cup garbanzo or black beans
  6. 1/2 banana or 1/4 cup coconut oil
  7. 1/3 cup maple syrup
  8. 1/2 cup almond milk
  9. 1/2 cup vegan chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. In a food processor or a high speed blender, process the oats and the baking powder until flour-like consistency. Set aside.
  3. Put all of the wet ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth.
  4. Fold into the dry ones until combined.
  5. Mix in some of the chocolate chips and leave some for the top.
  6. Pour the dough into a baking dish lined with parchment paper and sprinkle leftover chocolate chips on top.
  7. Bake for 20 mins and let cool on a cookie rack.
Notes
  1. They go in pink, they come out green – don’t worry, that’s normal.
  2. Also if you cut them too early they’ll be pretty mushy. Wait a bit until they cool down for easier cutting.
Adapted from Lola Cooks

Bublanina – Traditional Slovak/Czech cake veganized

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 As many of you know, I am not from the US. It took me years and a lot of stubbornness to embrace where I’m from while loving the new place I moved to. I would say my desire to reconnect to my roots became the strongest when my son was born. (Pssst, he helped me make this :)) I realized the importance of keeping our cultural values and I make sure to continuously let him know where our family is from. Slovak cooking is traditionally very “heavy” and “food coma-ish” – lots of starch, dairy and flour, but it all has its historical significance .

However, I do miss all of the food as it connects me to my family whom I miss a lot. You know how a scent takes you back in memories to a specific time and place and you know exactly who you were with and what you were doing? That’s what this does to me. I can’t have my family with me, but I can keep the memories well alive with the food.

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This cake is so simple to make you won’t believe it. You only need 10 minutes, hot oven and 8 ingredients. Simple! Yummy! Make it now! The best thing about this cake is that you can use whatever fruit you’d like. I used blackberries last time and blueberries now, but let your imagination run wild. At home, we used cherries and plums most often since they were in my grandparents’ garden. Next time I’ll make it with raspberries, I think.

Ingredients
  1. 3/4 cup maple syrup
  2. 2 flaxseed eggs
  3. 1+3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  4. 1/4 cup cashew or almond meal
  5. 1 tsp baking powder
  6. 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
  7. 3/4 tsp vanilla extract
  8. 1 cup almond milk.
Instructions
  1.  Make flaxseed eggs and let them sit for a couple of minutes.
  2.  In the meantime, mix everything else in a bowl.
  3.  Pour into baking dish and bake for about 30 – 45 minutes on 350°F, or until the toothpick comes out clean.
  4.  Serve to loved ones.


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