Cabin Fever Brownies (Vegan and Gluten Free)

First, let me clarify that these brownies are vegan and gluten free not by choice, but due to necessity or maybe laziness I should say…

I’ll explain… I had made homemade almond milk since I recently bought a masticating juicer (which btw I adore) and I had done some research on how to make almond meal and flour with the leftover pulp, so I decided to make almond flour, pretty easy, and using the pulp of a cup an a half of raw almonds I had used to make the milk, I had just enough (one tablespoon left) almond flour to make these decadent brownies. It came out a little coarser that the store bought stuff, but it made them super nutty anyway.

almond flour

So here I go with my freshly made almond flour surfing the net to find a  nice recipe to use it all. And I happened to find these delicious sounding recipe by the wannabechef, but as it turned out, I didn’t have any butter, or enough chocolate chips (I only had a handful of those), I had no eggs… well I did, but everything was down in my shop, where I make all the baked goods and truffles for my etsy shop, buuuuut… with over a foot of snow already piled up outside and more coming down, I didn’t want to make the 20 step trip to go there… (talking about being lazy and not wanting to go outside). So I had to work with what I had in hand and let me tell you the results were simply out of this world besides making this recipe, gluten free and vegan also 😉 what’s not to like uh?

I swapped the butter for coconut oil, some chocolate chips for cacao nibs and the egg for ground flax seeds and water. Here is what came out of my lazyness:

Cabin fever brownies (vegan and gluten free)g

Pretty good looking and great tasting brownies!!!

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 30 minutes

Ingredients (Makes 1 8 x 8 pan):

3/4 cup almond flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder (normally I would have used my lovely organic raw cacao powder but it was also in my shop so instead I used extra brut cacao Barry, super nice, rich and dark colored)

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

3/4 cup sugar

3 tablespoons ground flax seed added to 9 tablespoons of water (substitutes 3 large eggs) soaked for 5 minutes

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 teaspoon instant coffee granules (optional)

1/2 coconut oil (since I didn’t have any butter around)

4 oz 72% cocoa mass dark chocolate finely chopped (I used Trader Joe’s brand)  or a scant 1/2 cup chocolate chips

2 tablespoons cacao nibs (it added a crunchy, bitter, delicious chocolate flavor to them)

just a handful chocolate chips to sprinkle on top

cacao nibs

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Mix together the almond flour, salt, cocoa powder, and baking powder and set aside.

In a separate bowl, melt together 4 ounces of chocolate or a scant 1/2 cup chocolate chips with the coconut oil.

While the chocolate is melting, beat together the egg substitute, sugar, vanilla and coffee granules if using.

Slowly pour the melted chocolate and oil into the egg/sugar mixture while whisking until fully incorporated. If using eggs don’t go too fast so that the raw eggs don’t cook upon contact.

Add the chocolate mixture in with the dry ingredients and mix completely.

Pour the batter in an 8 x 8 pan.

Sprinkle the top with the handful of chocolate chocolate chips I had and gently press it into the batter.

Bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick poked into the center comes out clean. Let these cool completely before cutting in.

Gluten free Vegan almond flour brownies

 I have to confess I couldn’t wait, so I had a big piece with super cold milk…. Uuuuuuh! Cabin fever heaven on a plate! 😉

Also the coconut oil made them soooo yummy, you can really smell and taste a slight hint of coconut. Love it!

These really made this snowed in day a looooot better!

Almond flour brownies (vegan and gluten free)

Enjoy!

Popped Amaranth

Amaranth, Kiwicha, Ataco, Caraca… You may have heards some of these names, it’s all the same wonderful plant. Some say it is the most nutritional plant in the world! Super high in protein (17%, higher than wheat, rice, corn) calcium, folic acid, vitamin C, and it’s also celiac friendly. When toasted, the seeds, have even more protein. Also high in lysine, an essential amino acid,  double the amount found in wheat, triple the amount found in corn, and the same amount found in milk.

Amaranth

Although it’s flavor and texture when cooked may not appeal to everybody, I have to say that popped it’s simply delicious, super easy and quick to make. A fun pop corn substitute to make especially with kids, their faces are worth to be seen when the little grains turn into fun mini pop corn.

Simply take a small heavy bottomed pot with lid (of course, otherwise you’ll be wearing it, and it will be aaaaaaall over your kitchen 😉

amaranth

Heat it pretty high (no oil needed) and then add about a tablespoon of seeds, move the pot so they are evenly distributed and cover with lid. In about 10-15 seconds they’ll be ready to eat. Repeat until you make desired amount. Feel free to sprinkle salt, sugar, grated cheese, or any topping you might like, or eat them plain, they are simply delicious and nutty. My favorite is popped amaranth drizzled with dark chocolate… Nom, nom.

popped amaranth

Enjoy!