Monthly Archives: May 2015

Gluten and lactose free, honey sweetened shortbread

coconut shortbread

This recipe is genius… and super quick!  It uses coconut flour.  I found the original recipe here I doubled up the ingredients: 12 tablespoons coconut flour 8 tablespoons coconut oil 3 tablespoons honey (add according to how sweet you’d prefer) 1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence Method: Melt the coconut oil.  Mix all ingredients together till the mixture forms a dough, form small balls and place on a baking tray, flatten with fork, and bake for 15 minutes in preheated oven at 180 C. Prep time in total was 25 minutes (5 minutes mixing and placing on baking tray, 15 minutes baking). This recipe makes about 14 cookies.  The texture was good, and sweetness enough for me, but I think butter would work better than coconut oil.  Coconut oil gives it a kind of wild aftertaste.  It was  nice and crumbly 🙂 I am addicted to cookies, which does not work well with my otherwise healthy lifestyle.  White flour and regular sugar has a bad effect (bloatedness, acid reflux, indigestion), so its an absolute dream come true for me that there are alternatives.  I’ll be trying this out with butter and post an update soon.  I’ll also be trying a rice and corn flour shortbread soon.


Rice flour wrap

A while ago, I ate at an Ethiopian restaurant for the first time.  The food was divine, but what really got me excited is that they serve their food with this savoury pancake.  Made with rice flour.  After Googling a bit, I’ve since discovered its called injera and traditionally made with teff flour.  They make it with rice flour here (Cape Town) to cater to the taste of the non Ethiopian I suppose.

Well, the rice flour is easy enough to find.  I searched and searched for recipes simple enough for me to not lose my religion over.  I came across a few recipes that required making a sort of dough.  Whichever variations, alterations I tried with this, no matter what, it came out a soggy flop in the frying pan.  Made a nice kind of toasty porridge though.  Well, then I gave up for a while.  Those recipes made me believe that one needs to use hot water to prepare a rice flour thing.  And these always turned into an unmanagable dough which became nothing more than porridge when fried.  So don’t believe any of those recipes.  They are lying through their gluten free teeth!

After that, I gave up for a while.  until just now.  I came across a recipe here with real reviews.  Real good reviews. So I decided to follow the example of the people in the reviews and tweak it a bit.  I didn’t want a sweet pancake, but I thought, it couldn’t hurt to add a teaspoon of honey.  Well, below is a list of the ingredients:

1 cup rice flour

3/4 cup cows milk (replace with coconut milk or other options for lactose intolerance)

1 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon honey

1 egg

2 tablespoons cooking oil

Method:  mix together flour, milk, honey, salt, and baking powder in bowl.  separately beat egg and oil together lightly then add to the flour mixture and mix gently.  I guess it should turn out fine to just add all the ingredients and mix /whisk lightly till the mixture is smooth.

Heat a pan/griddle to medium heat and scoop a ladle of the batter into the pan, let fry for 30 seconds and turn over.  Remove from pan, its ready to eat!

Result, simply divine!  well, it wasn’t as thin as injera, but to be honest, I liked it better.  It was nice and fluffy and was more like a fluffy, bready wrap, than a pancake.

It could be sweetened and eaten as desert.  I personally would sweeten with my choice of natural topping, like bananas, honey, cranberries, blueberries, strawberries etc.  I imagine it would be beyond delicious.  Maybe I’ll try that soon,

I however filled mine with a sliced boiled egg, lightly salted and drizzled with olive oil and gobbled it down in an eyewink!  It was the best wrap I have ever tasted. I toyed with the idea of frying only one.  I was afraid if I fried it all, I would eat it all.  In the end I fried it all.  I ate it all too of course.  Basically, in future, I will be using this as a general wrap/flat bread, eating it with stews, avo, curry, salads, whatever planet earth can provide.

In future, I will see how it goes with aniseed, and perhaps some dry herbs, seeds perhaps.  Give it a try … its delicious.  I will also see how it goes with a dollop of coconut milk in the batter.  I imagine it will be quite rich and delicious.  I will let you know!  It may be a good idea to replace the milk completely with coconut milk to make it lactose free too.  That would be wonderful for the lactose intolerant.

Ps, Even though I finished the entire batch I feel bloated at all!  I love it!  And took about 15 minutes to prepare in total.  Now thats my kind of recipe 😉


Mixed veggie, sprout and avo special – Quick and wholesome lunch idea

The trick, to always packing a healthy lunch quickly, is to make sure you always have a supply of quick prep things available.  My two favorites are sprouts and frozen mixed veggies.  I always have a supply of sprouts (click here to see how easy it is to make your own) … well almost always, and mixed veggies … always in my freezer.

What I do is, just steam the mixed veggies the night before, mix that in a lunch box with a handful of sprouts, add sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, whatever I remember I have, and then pack in 2 boiled eggs, and an avo separate with that. Drizzle over some olive oil, and a teeny bit of salt.  Pack a knife and spoon 🙂 Eggs I have with some of the mixed veg and sprouts for brunch and the rest for lunch! Yay for 5 meals per day!


Butternut soup – Know what you’re eating

I came home last night, and the friend who is staying at my place was so sweet, she’d used the butternuts I’d cooked up the night before to make some deliciously fragrant butternut soup.  I am not a good cook, so I’m always asking people how they prepared this or that.  And if it seems doable enough, I may try it out some day.  She said, She’d cooked up onions and potato and put that in with the butternuts, and salt (oh shit), pepper, and STOCK (oh shit).  Salt overload.  What the fuck is inside stock? Does anyone even know?  I freak out when people use stock.  What’s wrong with a few spices, some herbs and the natural flavors of the actual ingredients (veggies, meat, fish, chicken etc)?  Is that not enough?  Using stock AND salt … Hello high blood pressure!  Hello water retention!  Hello swollen ankles!  Hello Gout!  Hello!  If you insist on using stock take the time to make stock, it would be better to make your own, so that you know exactly what is in it.  Personally, I’m too lazy to do that. The butternut soup was delicious by the standards of the oversalted toungue.  Bordering on way too salty and otherwise flavour overkilled for me (could have been a pot of the worlds ingredients all mished together and boiled, with no single ingredient identifiable – except the salt).  Instant heartburn.  She offered me panini, which I knew was probably a bad idea, but I was too weak to refuse.

If I made butternut soup, I’d do it this way:

Liquidize 2 cooked butternuts, with 2 cooked potatoes, perhaps a cooked sweet potato  might be nice to toss in as well, 2 browned onions, 2 tablespoons of braised garlic, MAYBE one tomato, teaspoon paprika (my favourite spice).  If I was feeling like a meaty pot, I’d braise some meat pieces (whatever I had in my freezer), with the onions and and pop that in as well.  Cook that up with a liter (or two) water till it thickens to a medium consistency.  If I was feeling especially inspired I would top with some coriander or parsely.  Let whoever put in their own salt or pepper.  I personally use very little or no salt for obvious health reasons.  I am tasting it already!  Mmmmm

Ps.  There’s nothing wrong with adding cream!  Fat is good for you, in moderation of course, and much safer than a salt or sugar overload.