Fail-proof sauerkraut

I recently went to a workshop a couple of weekends ago with fermentation expert Sandor Ellix Katz.

Since I discovered the benefits of fermented foods on gut health, I’ve wanted to make my own fermented vegetables but never got around to it {I blame the delicious local brands!}.

So off I went to Sandor’s workshop to see how it easy it’d be and to get some inspiration. And, oh my, let me tell you, I was not disappointed. I even discovered how I could make fermented chilli sauce!

Now, before I share the ridiculously easy and fail-proof method for making sauerkraut, here are some sauerkraut fermenting principles that I know a few of you may appreciate.

The basic principles of making sauerkraut

To make sauerkraut {sour cabbage} the aim is to encourage the growth of lactic acid producing bacteria {these are the good guys} — which need moisture and an anaerobic {no oxygen} environment to grow.

To create that environment, the dry salting method is used — where salt is massaged into shredded cabbages to extract plenty of juice from them.

The lactic acid released from the bacteria already present on the vegetables creates an acidic {sour} environment, which further encourages more lactic acid producing bacteria to grow. The resulting acidic environment kills off other, dangerous bacteria, protecting the sauerkraut from spoiling.

Keeping the sauerkraut submerged in the liquid also keeps it from developing mould on top. {If any white mould does form, it can be scrapped off from the top. If any bright, coloured mould is present, the sauerkraut will need to be thrown out. This is rare.}

You don’t need any special equipment, like a crock, to make sauerkraut in the home. Homemade kraut can be stored in a glass jar. Avoid plastic and metal {including stainless steel, unless you’re using food grade stainless steel}.

This is the very bare bone principles of making sauerkraut. To learn more about fermentation, the different ways of pickling {fermenting} vegetables, and the different fermented foods you can make I recommend Sandor Katz’s books, Wild Fermentation and The Art of Fermentation.

You may also find these resources helpful:

Now let’s make some kraut!

My version of fail-proof sauerkraut

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Makes 1-litre jar | 20 minute pre time + fermenting time | raw, gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan, pale-friendly

Note: work with approx. 1–1.2 kg vegetables to fit it into a litre jar

  • 1 kg cabbage, finely shredded
  • 1 large daikon radish, grated or chopped into thin sticks
  • 50 g ginger, finely sliced or grated
  • 2–4 chillies, chopped, or to taste {optional}
  • ~ 1/2 tbsp pure salt, plus any extra for taste

Mix together the cabbage and daikon in a big bowl and sprinkle over the salt.

With clean hands mix the salt into the vegetables with a squeezing action. You’ll need to do this for a few minutes until they bruise and start to become wet. The aim is to draw out the moisture to make a juice brine. Do this to a point where you can take a handful of the vegetables, squeeze it like a sponge and clearly see the juice dripping from it.

Then check salt for taste and adjust accordingly.

With a clean spoon, stir in the ginger and chilli.

Next, pack veggies tightly into a clean, 1 litre glass jar. Fill to the top, then push down with your hand so you can keep filling the jar. Keep packing in this manner until you have all the vegetables in and submerged under the vegetable juice brine. {I folded a cabbage leaf and pushed it down on top to keep the vegetables submerged.}

Once packed and submerged, place lid on jar and store on kitchen bench {somewhere in sight}, so that you can release the pressure daily {open the lid and place it back on}.

Taste your kraut every few days. When it is as sour as you like it, it’s time for you to eat it. Put it in the fridge at this point to slow further fermentation, and enjoy with anything that you like. {Note: I started mine last Tuesday, so a week ago, and I’m still fermenting mine. It’s not yet as sour as I would like it to be.}

You can also watch the short video {3 minutes} in this article to see how Sandor makes sauerkraut.

Variations

Different vegetables

Since the dry salting method is used for making sauerkraut, it’s best that the primary vegetable be finely shredded cabbage {because you can draw a lot of water out of it and keep the veggies submerged in the juice brine}. You can make kraut just with cabbages or mix in secondary vegetables, such as grated carrot, radish, turnip, fennel chopped celery, onion and beetroot. There are no veggies that you could not add — it depends on your tastes. Dark green vegetables like kale, broccoli and silverbeet {Swiss chard} can be added too, but because of their high chlorophyll they’ll have a very strong taste — so use them in smaller amounts. Just make sure your vegetables are either grated or finely sliced.

Different flavours

Instead of adding ginger and chilli, you can use anything that takes your fancy and in any combination. I’m going to try one with caraway seeds, and another with ginger, turmeric, chilli and garlic.

Roasted zucchini salad

You can’t go wrong with the combination of zucchini, fetta and mint. It’s summer on a plate.

Here’s a recipe I made recently that was too good not to share with you. As usual, I have suggested variations at the end, and ideas on how to make this light side salad a complete meal.

Recipe

IMG_6473Serves 1–2 | Cooking time 45 mins {effort time 10 mins} | GF, DF-O, VGN-O

  • 2 medium {400 g/0.88 lb} zucchini {squash/courgette}
  • cold-pressed olive oil {for roasting zucchini}
  • ¼ – ½ tsp chilli flakes
  • 8 black {Kalamata} olives
  • ¼ – ½ small red onion, finely sliced
  • 50 g/0.11 lb feta
  • small handful fresh mint leaves, torn
  • 1 tsp goji berries or sulphur-free currants
  • sea salt & black pepper to season
  • cold-pressed olive oil & lemon juice to dress {or this Middle eastern dressing}

Preheat oven to 180°C/355°F {160°C/320°F fan-forced}.

Line a baking tray with unbleached baking paper.

Cut zucchini into quarters lengthways, then dice {roughly into 2cm/0.8 inch pieces}.

In a bowl, toss zucchini pieces with a little olive oil and the chilli flakes.

Roast for 30–35 minutes until lightly browned and the flesh becomes creamy.

Allow zucchini to cool slightly, then assemble the salad.

Toss together the zucchini, olives and onion.

Crumble the feta on top, and scatter over the mint and goji berries/currants.

Drizzle over choice of dressing.

Season and toss before serving.

Variations

Dairy free & vegan

Skip the feta and serve with a dollop of cashew sour cream

Complete meal ideas

This is a concept I explain thoroughly in the full-edition of my ebook Nourished. It’s about making a meal nourishing and satiating, so feel satisfied and a re less likely to crave for more food unnecessarily. If you’d like to make this side salad a complete meal, here are some serving suggestions or salad additions:

  • Protein: boiled/poached eggs, grilled fish/meat, or add a cooked legume {e.g. chickpeas/garbanzo beans} and a grain {e,g, quinoa, brown rice} to the salad
  • Carbohydrate: add quinoa, pumpkin or sweet potato
  • Fat: egg, meat, avocado, more feta or nuts
  • Leafy greens: rocket {arugula}
  • Mindfulness: eat the salad sitting down, without any distractions. Chew. Breathe. Enjoy.

Zesty chai-spiced fruit mince balls

These special balls are my no-bake, no-flour answer to fruit mince pies. They are way healthier, and are only sweetened with dried fruit ~ enjoy!

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Makes 25 balls | Preparation time 20 minutes | Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Vegan

Cooking notes

I recommend using fruit that’s free of sulphur/preservatives to minimise the preservative load. 

This recipe calls for coconut butter, which you can make yourself or buy. If buying, some brands are Artisana, Niu and Biona. {Note: Niu and Biona call it creamed coconut; also don’t use Loving Earth coconut butter as it is actually coconut oil.} If you cannot get your hands on coconut butter, then use 1/3 cup nut butter or hulled tahini {sesame seed paste} instead.

  • 4 dried pear halves
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 5 medjool dates, pitted
  • 5 dried figs
  • ¼ cup coconut oil
  • 1½ tsp cinnamon powder
  • ½ tsp dried ginger powder
  • ½ tsp ground cardamom
  • pinch clove powder
  • pinch grated nutmeg
  • zest of 1 citrus fruit {orange, lemon or lime}
  • ½ cup desiccated coconut
  • 1 ½ cups walnuts or pecans {use activated if you prefer}
  • ½ cup melted coconut butter

If you store your dried fruit in the fridge, then first allow the fruit to come to room temperature {so that they soften}.

Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, gently toast the spices in the coconut oil for a couple of minutes until fragrant. Set aside to cool a little.

Next, roughly chop the dried fruit and add to your food processor. Pulse until you get a chunky fruit mince.

Tip in the remaining ingredients {including the coconut oil with the toasted spices} and pulse until combined. I like to leave the nuts a little chunky.

Tip the ball mixture into a large bowl. Take a heaped tablespoon of the mixture at a time and roll into walnut-sized balls. You will end up with about 25 balls.

Refrigerate balls for an hour or so, until they become firm.

Share with your loved ones {they make perfect Chrissie gifts too} — and refrigerate any extras in an airtight container. They will keep for weeks.

Roast beetroot & tamarind curry

I must say, I do love the earthy sweet taste of beetroot. The thing is, I had never eaten beetroot {nor did I know what it was} until I moved to Australia at the age of 13. It simply wasn’t a vegetable that people grew in Fiji.

When I had first encountered the lovely purple beet, I thought it a weird vegetable. It was too purple to eat! It’s an wonder that I gave it a try. And when I did try it for the first time ~ in what I’m sure was a cheese and vegetable sandwich at the school canteen ~ it was the canned variety. Fortunately I discovered farmers markets and the real stuff {and that they come in other gorgeous colours too!}, and I have never looked back.

I love raw beetroot grated into salads, and roasted for all sorts of deliciousness ~ from frittatas to my choc-beet {red velvet} cupcakes, move over red food colouring {or any food colouring for that matter}!

Nutritionally, beetroots are rich in iron, folic acid, potassium, magnesium and vitamin C. They’re also a unique source of phytonutrients called betalains, providing antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and detoxification support.

Oh, and did you know that you can eat the beet greens too? Beet greens are particularly high in vitamin A, iron and calcium. You can check out my post on beet greens here ~ it’s the most popular post my blog.

Besides being über good for you, beets are yummy and real, so these are good enough reasons to eat them in my books!

So today, I have a delicious and easy beetroot curry for you. Have a go at making it, and share your thoughts and variations in the comments below.

Roast beetroot & tamarind curry

roast-beetroot-curryServes 4–5 as a side | cooking time 75 minutes {effort time 15 minutes}

This recipe is gluten-free, and dairy free and vegan if you use olive or coconut oil.

  • 4 medium {700 g/1.5 lb} beetroots
  • 2 tsp tamarind pulp*
  • 1 heaped tbsp ghee/olive oil/coconut oil
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 small knob {15 g/0.033 lb} ginger, finely grated
  • 1 small red chilli, finely chopped {or 1 tsp chilli flakes}
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 3 tbsp water
  • sea salt, to season
  • fresh coriander {cilantro}, to serve

*you can find dried tamarind pulp in Indian and some Asian grocery stores

Preheat oven to 180°C/355°F {160°C/320°F fan-forced}.

Lightly coat beetroots with some oil and tightly wrap in foil. Roast in oven for 50 minutes.

Meanwhile, add the tamarind pulp to a small prepping bowl with 2 tablespoons freshly boiled water, and set aside.

When the beets are ready, remove from oven and unwrap them from the foil. When cool enough to handle, scrape off the skin with a paring knife ~ it should come off easily.

Dice roast beetroots into 2 cm/1 inch chunks, and set aside.

Heat the ghee/oil in a saucepan over medium heat.

Add the mustard seeds. When they begin to pop, add the cumin seeds, ginger, chilli and turmeric.

Turn the heat to low, and sauté spices for a minute or so before adding the beetroot. Stir well to coat the beetroot with the spicy goodness.

Continue to sauté for another couple of minutes, then add 3 tbsp of water.

Next, squeeze the tamarind pulp with your hands to remove as much of the flesh as possible into the soaking water, then discard any seeds and remaining fibre. What you’re left with is the ‘tamarind extract’.

Add the tamarind extract to the beetroot curry, and allow to simmer on gentle heat for 5 minutes or so. Add more water if you’d like it saucier.

Season and serve as a side with fresh coriander sprinkled on top.

Zesty asparagus

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Asparagus has a short season — all of spring, and that’s pretty much it. If you’re lucky, you may see it in early summer.

If you see it any other time of year, consider it shipped over from another country.

Oh, and by the way, did you know that white asparagus is the same variety as the green asparagus grown in Australia? It just gets grown in the dark to avoid sun exposure — it’s the sun that helps asparagus to develop its green {chlorophyll} colour. Pretty nifty, huh?

Since it’s asparagus time now in my hometown, I’m taking advantage of it. I’m lucky that I can get my hands on organic asparagus from a lovely couple — Jo and Trevor — at the farmers markets.

I enjoy asparagus when it is cooked very simply — in a frittata, steamed or pan-fried — and especially when paired with eggs.

I once recall ordering asparagus in Orlando Florida {USA} over 10 years ago. When it arrived at the table, my face fell. It had been heavily crumbed {with packet breadcrumbs} and then deep-fried. None of its vibrant green was visible. My instant thought was: why do this to such a beautifully light and fresh vegetable?

Here’s my version.

Recipe

Serves 2 | Cooking time 5 minutes | dairy-free, gluten-free, vegan

  • 1 bunch asparagus {about 12 spears}
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 2–3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • ½ tsp chilli flakes
  • zest of half lemon
  • freshly squeezed lemon juice, to taste
  • sea salt, to season

Wash and dry the asparagus spears.

Snap off the woody tips {they snap off easily; it takes off about 2 cm/1 inch}.

Chop the spears in half.

Heat olive oil in a fry pan over low–medium heat.

Add the garlic, chill and zest. Sauté for a few seconds.

Next, add the asparagus spears. Sauté for about 3–4 minutes, or until cooked to your liking. I like mine firm and a little crunchy.

Squeeze over some lemon juice and season.

Serve as a side to any main dish. I enjoyed mine with a couple of boiled eggs and a sprinkling of dukkah for a quick, easy and delicious breakfast.

Variation

Not a fan of asparagus or it’s not in season ~ try this recipe with broccolini or broccoli. Yum!

Crunchy cauliflower tabouleh

cauliflower-tabouli-1

This recipe was inspired by a raw cauliflower tabouleh I had a few months ago at a Melbourne café.

I never thought I would enjoy raw cauliflower, but when it was presented this way ~ where the florets are processed into tiny pieces so they resemble  cauliflower rice, and drizzled with a delicious dressing, I was sold.

Recipe

Serves ~ 2­–3 as a side | cooking time ~ 20 minutes | Dairy-free, Gluten-free, Vegan

Dressing

  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tbsp cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice, or to taste
  • 1 tsp maple syrup or honey (optional)
  • ½ tsp sea salt

Tabouleh

  • ½  small­–medium cauliflower
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar, fermented & unpasteurised
  • ¼ cup almonds, roasted
  • 1 heaped tbsp dried cranberries, chopped
  • ½ bunch coriander/ cilantro {leaves and stems}, roughly chopped
  • sea salt, to season

First, make the dressing:

Lightly dry roast cumin in a fry pan over gentle heat until fragrant {about 3-5 minutes}. Shake the pan often, so the seeds don’t burn. Cool for a few minutes, then grind in a mortar and pestle.

Pour the ground cumin in a glass jar and add the remaining ingredients. Shake well and set aside for the flavours to marry while making the tabouleh.

Now make the tabouleh:

Roughly chop cauliflower into florets.

Either lightly steam florets for about 5 minutes, or keep raw.

Blitz florets in a food processor until it resembles tiny cous cous like grains. Tip into a salad bowl.

Add the apple cider vinegar to the cauliflower and thoroughly mix in it in. Let it stand for 5 minutes.

Next, process the roast almonds for a few seconds, or you can chop them. You want large chunky pieces. Tip into the salad bowl.

Mix in the remaining ingredients.

Dress and season to taste.

Variation

Don’t like fresh coriander ? Use flat-leaf parsley instead

Serving ideas

This tabouleh makes a delicious side dish, and pairs well with Middle-eastern and Indian flavours. It already has healthy fats from the nuts and dressing, and some carbohydrates from the cauliflower ~ all it needs is some protein to turn it into a complete and filling meal. To do that you can serve it with:

  • a couple poached or soft-boiled eggs {preferably pastured & organic}
  • grilled or pan-fried sustainable fish, such as Blue-eye trevella
  • pan-fried haloumi
  • roasted or grilled meats {preferably grass-fed & organic}
  • crispy fried tempeh {for a vegan option}

Add some wholefood carbs if you feel you need more sustaining energy ~ such as roast sweet potato or quinoa.

Top it off with a sprinkling of dukkah for added deliciousness.

This recipe is from my ebook Nourished. You can get a copy of it here.

A power-plant salad

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Serves 2 | Cooking time 15–30 minutes | Gluten-free & Vegan

Orange & Cumin Dressing

  • juice of ½ orange {~ ¼ cup}
  • 1 tbsp cold-pressed olive oil
  • 1 tbsp macadamia nut oil {or just use 2 tbsp of olive oil}
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar {unpasteurised & fermented}
  • ½ tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 clove garlic crushed
  • ½ tsp sea salt, or to taste

Lightly dry roast cumin in a pan on gentle heat until fragrant.

Allow to cool, then grind in a mortar and pestle.

Pour the ground cumin in a glass jar and add the remaining ingredients.

Shake well and set aside for the flavours to develop while you make the salad.

Salad

  • 1 cup cooked quinoa*
  • ½ cup cooked Puy {French green} lentils*
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 4 cups packed baby spinach leaves
  • 1 tbsp cold-pressed olive, macadamia or coconut oil
  • flesh of ½ large avocado, sliced
  • ½ cup grated carrot
  • ½ cup grated fresh beetroot
  • 1 tsp dulse flakes {or ½ a nori sheet, shredded}
  • a handful of walnuts, chopped
  • sea salt & cracked black pepper to taste

*If you haven’t got pre-cooked quinoa and Puy lentils ~ then cook ½ cup of quinoa and 1/3 cups of lentils separately. If you haven’t cooked quinoa before, follow the instructions here. For the lentils, cook them in 2 cups water and drain when ready. This will take around 15 minutes.

Combine the cooked quinoa and lentils in a bowl. Season with some salt and pepper.

Toast the sesame seeds over gentle heat in a fry pan, until lightly golden and set aside.

Sauté the spinach in the oil for 2–3 minutes, until wilted. Season with salt and pepper.

Now put together your salad ~ you can either layer the ingredients, or toss them altogether in a bowl:

  • If tossing in a bowl ~ add in ½ the dressing. Adjust the seasoning, and serve the remaining dressing on the side.
  • To layer ~ place the quinoa and lentils on the bottom, with the spinach on top. Followed by the avocado, carrot and beetroot. Sprinkle the toasted sesame seeds, walnuts and dulse flakes {or shredded nori} on top. Serve with dressing drizzled on top with extra on the side. Season with salt and pepper.

Variations

  • Different grain ~ try brown rice, buckwheat groats or millet
  • Different legume ~ any cooked legume that you like will work
  • Different green ~ try cooked beet greens or silverbeet, or steamed broccoli
  • Dressing ~ you can sub lemon juice for the orange, and skip the cumin and/or garlic if you don’t like these flavours. Feel free to add any spices or herbs that light up your tastebuds!
  • Vegetarian ~ feel free to add some goats fetta, pan-fried haloumi or an egg cooked anyway you like

To learn how to make your plant-based meals nutritionally balanced, healthy and delicious, I recommend checking out my ebook with 93 wholefood recipes and healthy eating information.

What to do with ‘cauliflower rice’ + cauliflower pizza

Have you heard of cauliflower rice?

I first discovered it almost 2 years ago when I attended a vegan cooking and yoga retreat in Hepburn Springs {a lovely part of Victoria}.

I met a lady at the retreat who enjoyed eating raw vegan foods. When she told me she uses raw cauliflower rice as a rice substitute for nori rolls, I thought she was a genius!

Of course, now I see it everywhere. People on a paleo diet ~ meaning they’re on a hunter-gatherer diet, avoiding all types of grains and legumes ~ are in love with it too.

If you haven’t heard of cauliflower rice, may I introduce you to it?

It really is rather ingenious and so easy to make.

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Take a head of cauliflower, and cut it into florets. Then blitz the florets in a food processor until it resembles grains ~ et voila, what you have on your hands is cauliflower rice.

You can use cauliflower rice raw or cooked ~ I prefer it cooked, as it has a milder taste and is easier to digest. You can use it in all sorts of ways ~ as you would use rice, cous cous or quinoa even.

You can make pizza bases with cauliflower rice too. Yes, I was sceptical at first, too, but having made it twice now, I know it works and tastes delicious! It’s the perfect example of getting more bang for your calorie.

Before we get onto the pizza base recipe, however, here are some ways you can enjoy your cauliflower rice by replacing the grain component:

  1. nori rolls {if you want your cauliflower cooked, lightly steam florets first and then process when cool}
  2. middle-eastern inspired pilafs
  3. fritters/patties
  4. tabouleh instead of cous cous  {if you want your cauliflower cooked, lightly steam florets first and then process when cool}
  5. fried rice
  6. soups
  7. as a rice side to curries, stews and casseroles {just steam first before processing into rice}

{Note: A traditional grain offers to two macronutrients ~ carbohydrates and some protein {which when combined with a legume gives you a complete protein}. So if you are on a vegetarian or, more importantly, a vegan diet, you will need to take this into consideration when substituting a grain with cauliflower rice.}

Now let’s eat some pizza.

Recipe

cauliflower pizzaRecipe adapted from The Green Kitchen cookbook

Serves 2 | Cooking time 45 minutes | Gluten-free, Grain-free, Dairy-free option

  • 3 cups cauliflower rice
  • ¾ cups besan {chickpea} flour or almond meal
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp dried thyme {or a mix of dried herbs}
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese {optional}

Preheat oven to 190 C / 375 F {170 C / 340 F fan-forced}

Line a baking tray with parchment paper

Mix the ingredients in a bowl until the mixture loosely holds together

With wet fingers spread the mix into a thin-ish, even shaped base onto the lined baking tray

Bake for 25–30 minutes, or until golden

Spread cooked base with your choice of toppings and bake for another 5-10 minutes

For my first cauliflower pizza, I spread the base with my roasted red pepper and tomato sauce {I had some in the freezer which I defrosted in the bench about an hour beforehand} then topped it with roast pumpkin, steamed broccolini, homemade dairy-free pesto {had some in the freezer}, labne, shaved red onion, and olives. I added some organic prosciutto for the husband. Colourful and delicious!

You’ll find more variations for the base in my ebook Nourished, including a vegan one, and with different flours other than besan. 

Chocolate & beetroot muffins

I had some millet flour that was sent to me from the kind folks at Kialla Pure Foods. I had been meaning to try millet  flour for some time, plus I wanted to make a gluten-free muffin without using a nut meal {you may have noticed that all of my gluten free muffins or cakes on this site have some kind of nut meal in them.

So when Kialla Pure Foods sent me some millet flour, it was time to experiment. Which, thankfully, turned out well, so I could share these muffins with you.

Recipe

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Makes 12, 1/3-cup capacity muffins | This recipe is nut, dairy and gluten-free

Topping mix

  • ¼ cup sunflower seeds
  • 2 tbsp desiccated coconut
  • 2 tbsp rapadura or coconut sugar

Dry mix

  • 1 cup brown rice or sorghum flour
  • ¼ cup millet flour
  • ¼ cup true arrowroot starch
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • ¾ cup rapadura or coconut sugar {coconut sugar is less sweet}
  • 2½ tsp gluten-free baking powder

Wet mix

  • 1 cup finely grated beetroot {~200 g, medium-sized beetroot}
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/3 cup {80 ml} melted coconut oil
  • 3 eggs
  • ½ cup coconut milk {125 ml} with 2 tsp {10 ml} apple cider vinegar

Preheat oven to 180C/350F {160C/320F fan-forced}

Place muffin papers into a 12, 1/3-cup capacity muffin hole tray

Make topping by mixing all the topping ingredients together in a bowl, set aside

Thoroughly combine dry ingredients in a large bowl

In a separate bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients

Pour wet mix into the dry and mix by folding in until fill combined {will be quite runny}

Spoon mixture into lined muffin holes

Sprinkle generously with topping

Bake for 25–30 minutes, until a skewer comes out clean

Cool in tray for about 5 minutes, then remove and cook on wire rack

Enjoy with your loved ones

Keeps for up to 4 days, or you can freeze for longer storage.

Variations

  • dairy version ~ if dairy is not a problem you can use natural yoghurt, instead of coconut milk, omitting the vinegar; and melted butter or ghee instead of the coconut oil
  • nut version ~ you can use a nut meal instead of the millet flour, a nut milk instead of the coconut milk, and/or macadamia oil instead of the coconut oil; you can also add ½ cup of chopped macadamia nuts to the mix for some texture.

 

Cream cheese & labne – a video

In this 6-minute slide show video, I show you just how easy it is to make cream cheese and labne {Middle-eastern yoghurt cheese} from some real yoghurt.

You will never have to buy Philadelphia cream cheese with its gums and preservatives again!

And you can use cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil instead of canola oil, which many companies use to store their fresh cheeses, such as fetta. The reason they do this is for aesthetic reasons ~ so that the oil doesn’t become solid or cloudy when in the fridge, which happens to olive oil as it is a monounsaturated fat.

So I say make your own soft cheese in oil, using good quality olive oil. {For fetta, you can buy it in vacuum sealed packs and then cube and store in olive oil that has been infused with chilli or lemon and herbs.}

Without further ado, here’s the video.

 

If you’d like to use your cream cheese to make a cake frosting, may I suggest a cake for you? How about this banana or this carrot cake? Both my recipes. Both divine!