Grain-Free Cranberry-Orange Scones

One of my favorite breakfast treats growing up were scones. Maybe it’s my English roots, I’m not sure, but there has always been something that I loved about eating them. It also didn’t help that my mom loved them as well and every time we’d go to get some coffee, when I drank coffee, she’d get a scone and I’d always ask for a ‘bite’ and end up eating half of it.

Once I started to become a lot more health conscious I realized how bad scones can be for you and stopped eating them for the most part. Once I went vegan, it was definitely so long to my crumbly friends.

As I continue to explore what health and a healthy lifestyle means to me I have come to realize that I can still enjoy one of my all-time favorites but just a different version of it. And to be honest, I think this one tastes a whole lot better!

In walks my Grain-Free Cranberry-Orange Scone! Don’t get me wrong, I’m not going grain-free. I think grains are an extremely important part of our diet but I just got a huge bag of almond meal and wanted to give it a try for a lighter, more airy texture.

cran-orange scone

These guys are just that. Light and airy and delicious. I love the citrus with the hint of almond and of course the tartness from the cranberries.

cran-orange scone 2

As I continue to explore vegan baking I am constantly impressed with what you can actually make and I’ve come to prefer a vegan treat over a non-vegan one.  Aside from tasting better, I know I am doing my body a special favor by a) eliminating all animal products and b) eating a tasty treat!

cran-orange scone 3

I’m excited to play around with other possibilities using the base of this recipe, almond meal. I’m thinking I see some kind of vegan chocolate chip scone in my future. Here is the recipe for these Cranberry-Orange Scones for your enjoyment!

Grain-Free Cranberry-Orange Scones
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Breakfast
Serves: 8
Ingredients
  • 3½ cup almond meal/flour
  • ¼ cup 100% pure maple syrup
  • Juice of one lemon plus 2 tbsps
  • Juice of two small oranges or 1 cup
  • 1 tbsp baking soda
  • 2 flax eggs (2 tbsp ground flaxseed mixed with 4 tbsp water. Allow to sit in refrigerator for 15 minutes to thicken up)
  • ½-3/4 cup dried unsweetened cranberries
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Mix all ingredients in a large bowl. If the mixture is a little on the wet side add a little more almond meal/flour until it’s a consistency that wont stick.
  3. Shape into a ball then put onto greased baking pan. (I grease using coconut oil)
  4. With the palm of your hand start to flatten the ball out slightly.
  5. Using a pizza cutter or knife, cut the scone mixture into 8 pie shaped pieces and separate so they each have room to grow bigger.
  6. Place in oven and bake for 12 minutes. I ended up baking for about 15 minutes but start with 12 and add time if necessary.
  7. Enjoy!

Enjoy your weekend! The weather is suppose to be in the upper 80′s here which is big for Oregon!

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Mushroom, Mango and Green Olive Ceviche wtih Homemade “Cheesy” Crackers

Mushrooms, Mangoes and Green Olives? I know, it sounds like an interesting food combo but trust me, it is delicious.

Mushroom Ceviche2

When David and I were in Medellin, Colombia this past February we Googled vegan restaurants in the area just out of curiosity and low and behold, there actually was one! Colombia is a pretty big meat eating country but we seemed to luck out in the bigger cities by having at least one or two restaurant options that were vegetarian or vegan.

At this particular restaurant we went to in Medellin their menu was written all in Spanish (obviously) and because it’s a somewhat newer thing for English speaking tourist, there wasn’t too many places that had English versions of their menu.

But we managed and one of the appetizers was a Mushroom Ceviche and out of my deep love of mushrooms, I had to try it. I quickly tried to remember the Spanish words for various vegetables so I knew what was in it and to my surprise, I did pretty well.  There was also a little GF symbol next to it I knew it was gluten-free as well and I’d be safe to order it.

When it was delivered to our table a little while later we were extremely happy with what was served. I would have never thought mushrooms, mangoes and green olives would work together but they most definitely do and I jotted down the other ingredients and decided I needed to make this when we returned to the states. And that is exactly what I did and served it with my  ‘Cheesy’ Gluten-Free crackers. Recipes are below and I hope you enjoy as much as we did!

Mushroom Ceviche

crackers

Mushroom, Mango and Green Olive Ceviche with Homemade ‘Cheesy’ Gluten-Free Crackers
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Appetiser
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • For the Ceviche:
  • 8 oz mushrooms {whatever kind you like best}
  • 1 mango
  • 1 can sliced green olives {I got mine from Whole Foods. Their brand of green olives are amazing!}
  • ½ large cucumber
  • ½ red onion
  • 1 yellow or red pepper
  • 2 tbsp chopped cilantro and basil
  • Juice of two limes
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • For the Crackers:
  • 1 cup almond meal
  • 1 cup brown rice flour
  • 2 tbsp ground flax seed
  • 4 tbsp whole fax seed
  • 4 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 2½ tsp thyme
  • 2 tsp black sesame seeds
  • ½ tsp rosemary garlic blend
  • 2 tsp caraway seeds
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • water {you will slowly add a tbsp at a time until you get a doughy consistency)
Instructions
  1. For the Mushrooms:
  2. Slice mushrooms thinly and place in bowl.
  3. Chop all other veggies into small bites and place in bowl with mushrooms.
  4. Add the juice from the limes, the chopped basil and cilantro.
  5. Salt and pepper to your taste.
  6. I served this pretty much right away but know that it will only get more flavorful the next day.
  7. For the Crackers:
  8. Turn oven on to 350 degrees
  9. Mix the brown rice flour and the almond meal together in a bowl.
  10. Add all other ingredients and mix until completely combined.
  11. Slowly start to add one tbsp of water at a time until the mixture is a dough-like consistency.
  12. Grease baking pan with coconut oil or spray. Roll dough out on brown rice covered cutting board and lift onto baking dish. This can easily be done by folding one half of the dough onto of the other half and using a spatula to life. Once on the pan, unfold.
  13. Using a pizza cutter or knife, cut into cracker size pieces, making sure there is some space in between each one to grow a little in size as they bake.
  14. Place in over and bake for 12 minutes. Check crackers at this time. If they aren’t done, bake for a few more minutes.
  15. Remove and allow to cool.
  16. Enjoy!
  17. *Tip – You can also serve with some avocado on the side to accompany your ceviche.

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Roasted Spicy Garbanzo Beans

David and I love to snack whether it’s homemade baked chips and my famous guacamole or hummus and celery or carrots, we are snackers {that may not be a word but I’m going with it}.

Sometimes though it’s easy {if it’s kept in the house} to reach for the unhealthy snack option instead of the one that’s good for you. I try not to keep too much of that in the house and instead make healthy snacks we can take a handful of as we walk by, like these Roasted Spicy Garbanzo Beans.

Garbanzo beans, or chickpeas, are so great for you because they are packed with protein, fiber, maganese, iron and folate. So if you are trying to get preggers this is a GREAT snack for you! These little round legumes are pretty inexpensive as well so you can load up on them without it really affecting your bank account.

You can make hummus with them, add them to salads, throw them in soups, and of course, make these delicious Roasted Spicy Garbanzo Beans. Here is the recipe so you can try them for yourself. Enjoy!

Roasted Spicy Garbanzo Beans

Roasted Spicy Garbanzo Beans
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Snack
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • 1 can garbanzo beans
  • 1 tbsp cumin
  • 1-2 tsp chili powder
  • 1-2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1-2 tsp onion powder
  • Juice of one lime
  • Dash of salt and pepper {to your taste}
  • Dash of hot sauce of your choice {I use Tapatio}
Instructions
  1. Begin by turning your oven on and setting it do 200 degrees.
  2. Open your can of garbanzo beans and drain and rinse thoroughly. Pour beans into a bowl and mix in all other ingredients. I taste a few of the beans to make sure the spices are to my liking. If you need to add more of one or two feel free to do so.
  3. Spray a baking pan or dish with non-stick spray or grease with oil and pour the contents in the bowl into the dish or pan. Make sure you pour the remaining juice from the bowl to get the beans nice and coated.
  4. Bake for about 60 minutes. Check them often. Let them go a little longer then you think they should to make sure they are nice and dried out.
  5. This can be done at a higher temperature in less time but you run the risk of burning them. I’ve done both ways and cooking them at a lower temp allows for them to dry out inside more evenly.
  6. Enjoy!

Do you have a roasted garbanzo bean recipe you like to share? Leave a comment below with a link to your site so we can all check it out! Or, leave the recipe in the comments!

Happy Friday and have a great weekend :)

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Carrot Cake Oat Cake with Cashew and Date Frosting

It’s no secret that I have a huge sweet tooth. I was all about chocolate for many years but I suppose my taste buds are changing cause this last year or so all I want are cookies, cakes, pastries and tarts. I thought that once we went vegan all my decadent cravings were going to have to be ignored forever. Truth be told, indulging my cravings is easy as ever and to be honest, I prefer the way vegan desserts taste. Although not technically ‘good’ for you, I feel better knowing they aren’t loaded with butter and other dairy products.

The other problem is I can’t have gluten. I mean I can, I don’t have celiac, but all sorts of unpleasant things happen to me so I do my absolute best to avoid them when possible. So when we are craving something sweet I have a few things I have to consider.

I came across this recipe on The Wellness Warrior, one of my favorite go to blogs for all sorts of nutritional and health information, and altered it to what I was craving, carrot cake.

This recipe is so easy and super fast to make.

What you will need:

{I only made 1/4 of what the recipe called for as I was only making it for D and I} 

4 c. G/F Oats

2.5 c. Grated Carrots

4-6 Mashed Bananas

1.5 tsp Vanilla Extract

1.5 tsp Cinnamon

1 tsp Nutmeg

1/4 c. Honey

1. Mash up all the bananas until there are no clumps.

2. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well.

3. Pour into a greased baking dish and bake for 15-20 minutes at 350 degrees.

For the Frosting;

Soak 1/2 c. cashew and 1/2 c pitted dates  in water for an hour.  Drain and put in mixer along with 1 tsp vanilla extract and blend. You may need to add a little nut milk or water to get a smoother, creamier consistency.

Enjoy!

I’m linking up to the following: Allergy Free Wednesdays

the best dang lemon bars (and they’re gluten-free)

I’ve really been into lemon desserts lately which is unusual because I’ve been known for years to devour anything chocolate and gooey and it was always my go-to sweet. Maybe my taste buds are changing or perhaps it’s the hot summer day mixed with the refreshing taste of lemon I love. Whatever the reason, I’m okay with it and I am excited to play around with the taste of lemon in future sweets.

I made these gluten-free lemon bars for a work party we had at our place yesterday. Since a majority of my co-workers are taking the gluten-free road as well, I thought I would try this recipe out on them. Success!

I originally found this recipe on Gluten-Free Nosh but changed a few things to fit my liking which basically meant adding more lemon of course!

My recipe is as follows:

For the crust:

1 cup butter (two sticks)

1/2 powder sugar

2 cups gluten-free flour (I use Bob Redmills)

Filling:

4 eggs

1 1/2 cups sugar

The juice from AT LEAST two lemons

1 tablespoon cornstarch

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

2 tablespoon lemon zest, grated

The How To:

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Butter your 13x9x2 inch baking dish.

2. Mix butter, powdered sugar and gluten-free flour. Make sure you cut in the butter until it is small pea-sized lumps coated with the flour and sugar mixture. Pour into buttered baking dish and pat down making sure all sides are even. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove and set aside.

3. In another bowl beat eggs adding the rest of your ingredients. Pour mixture over your baked crust. Return to oven and bake for 15-20 minutes.

4. Let cool.  It works best after they have cooled a decent amount, to then put them in the freezer. Right before you serve them, cut into the size you like and sprinkle powdered sugar over the bars. Serve to your mouth-watering guest. Enjoy.

gluten-free calzone

David and I love pizza. And when I say love, I mean we’d eat it regularly if it were a little healthier for us. The other problem is, I eat gluten-free. David, the angel he is, has been very accommodating to my weird dietary needs and also very willing to explore alternatives to traditional pizza crust. This past weekend we decided to have a ‘lazy’ day watching movies (The Lord of the Ring since I’d never seen it) and make pizza.

We’ve done this before using Bob’s Red Mill GF Pizza Crust Mix. I know, I know. I’m a country girl now. I should be making the crust from scratch. Well, here’s the thing. Why making something from scratch if it’s just as good coming out of a bag? Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE the idea of making everything from scratch but this pizza crust happens to be extremely good and plus, it was our ‘lazy’ day. If there was a pizza joint in Newberg, OR that served GF pizza, we’d probably would have just ordered it.

As we began to prepare the dough I suggested making calzones instead. I love calzones almost as much as I love pizza. It’s like a little pocket full of surprise whenever you bit into it. So calzones it was…

The problem today was David and I wanted slightly different toppings, or insides if you will. David wanted it to be pretty simple. Pepperoni, salame, olives, mozz cheese, and his homemade tomato sauce. Me on the other hand, I wanted the whole shebang. Pepperoni, salame, olives, mozz cheese, pepporchinis, and jalapenoes and David’s magical sauce.

Okay, this should be easy. We’ll just make TWO! And that is exactly what we did.

We began by following the directions on the back of the bag. When the dough was ready, David made his homemade special sauce. It’s a secret. I could tell you but then you all know what that means…

David making his homemade special sauce

Okay, I’ll tell you…

Can of tomatoes, few cloves of garlic, olive oil, fresh basil, salt and pepper

David rolled out the dough because I was having difficulties doing it myself (I’m still learning how to be a true country girl after all) and began putting on the fixings.

We baked the calzones until the tops were golden brown. About 25 minutes or so. When finished, they needed to cool for about 10 minutes before we could devour them.

About to go in the oven

Just out of the oven

And then...we ate