National Chocolate Day!!!

Today is a good day! In fact is a great day! Today it is National Chocolate Day! Must celebrate! And to help you do that, please feel free to use: 15DISCOUNT coupon code when ordering from my etsy shop 😉 to get 15% off your entire order.

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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!

Gluten Free Pumpkin Cinnamon Chocolate Ganache Cookie Sandwiches

Fall is here full force… everywhere, out the window, in the stores… so I felt like baking a pumpkin pie with my son, and the recipe only called for a cup of pumpkin puree, so I needed to make something else with the remaining pumpkin puree. I had just got a brand spanking new bag of gluten free flour from Trader Joe’s so I decided to make these lovely, soft baked pumpkin cinnamon and sugar cookies gluten free which by the way are also egg free. Here is what you’ll need to make your house smell insanely good 😉
Gluten Free Soft Baked Pumpkin Cookies (about 2 dozen)
 
2 cups gluten free flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 unsalted butter softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup pumpkin puree
1 tablespoon ground flax seed
3 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Gluten Free Pumpkin Cookies
For the outer coating:
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
In a ramekin get ready the egg substitute, by mixing the ground flaxseed with the water, letting it sit for about 5 minutes or until it thickens.
In a medium bowl, combine the dry ingredients but the sugars and set aside. In an electric mixer bowl, beat the softened butter, sugar and brown sugar, medium speed for about 2 minutes until creamy and fluffy. Add the pumpkin puree, egg substitute and vanilla, and beat until combined. With the mixer on the lowest speed slowly incorporate the flour mixture until well mixed. Cover the bowl with clear plastic film and refrigerate for about an hour.
Preheat oven to 350 F. Make the coating for the cookies and scoop and roll the cookie dough into 1 tablespoon sized balls, roll them in the coating sugar mix and place them on parchment paper lined cookie sheets. Flatten them gently with your fingers and bake for about 10-12 minutes. Remove and place in a cooling rack.
Meanwhile make the chocolate ganache
Gluten Free Pumpkin cookie sandwiches
Chocolate Ganache
 
4 oz good quality dark chocolate finely chopped
1/3 heavy cream
1/2 tablespoon butter
Place chocolate in a small bowl, bring cream just to a simmer, pour over chocolate and let it sit for about 5 minutes. Add butter and stir until smooth.
Gluten Free Pumpkin Cookie Sandwiches
Make the cookie sandwiches with desired amount of ganache making sure it’s at room temperature, add as much or as little as you want.
Decadent and sweet.
Enjoy!
gluten free mordisco

Death by Chocolate Gluten Free Zucchini Cake

It’s summer time and that means loads and loads of cucumbers that we devour in humongous salads every night (although they say cucumber is no good at night time… we don’t have any problems with it), but it also means lots and lots of zucchinis. We love it grilled, added into soups, creams, traditional zucchini breads with nuts and cinnamon… but I also wanted to add it into a chocolate cake (of course, we all know that everything is better with chocolate, and cheese too… LOL), and since I am in gluten free mode, I wanted to make it gluten free too! and let me tell you I was pleasantly surprised… it turned out super moist, and chocolatey.

zucchini chocolate cake

Here is what you’ll need for the cake:

1/2 cup softened butter
1/2 cup coconut oil melted
1 3/4 cups sugar
1 teaspoon gluten free vanilla extract
1 teaspoon gluten free baking soda
1/2 teaspoon gluten free baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs room temperature
1/2 cup Greek yogurt
2 1/2 cups Gluten Free All purpose flour
3/4 cup raw dark cocoa
2 cups shredded zucchini (about 12 ounces)
1/2 cup chocolate chips
zucchini chocolate cake gluten free
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a 9″ x 13″ pan with parchment paper.

In a bowl mix together all the dry ingredients.
In a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter, coconut oil, sugar, vanilla.
Beat in the eggs.
Stir in the yogurt, incorporate the dry mixture, mixing till smooth. Finally, fold in the zucchini and 1/2 cup chocolate chips.
Bake for 30-35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
Let cool completely on rack before cutting.
gluten free chocolate zucchini cake
Chocolate Ganache Topping

This is so ridiculously simple (only two ingredients) yet soooo good, that I feel bad when people tell me that it’s so good that probably I don’t want to share the recipe… and of course I don’t have the heart to say no… LOL
6 oz heavy cream
9 oz chocolate chips
Heat heavy cream in a saucepan over medium heat until simmering.  Remove from heat and pour over the chocolate chips.  Wait 3-5 minutes then stir to combine. It won’t be too hot, so pour over cake and smooth with spatula.  Allow frosting to set for about 30 minutes before serving… if you can, that is…
Spatula licking optional, but highly recommended!!!
gluten free chocolate zucchini cake
It’s incredibly good and hard to believe that it’s gluten free…

enjoy!

Classic Ebelskivers with Simple Chocolate Syrup

Now, breakfast has to be my favorite meal, and if I can have it later, after a great night of sleep and cook it at my own pace, while everybody else is still asleep… it’s simply perfect! Well… all these conditions happened to happen yesterday, Sunday morning. We were going to do the vegetable garden later so I knew I didn’t have to worry about too many calories in our breakfast, we were going to get our workout latter, and oh boy! we sure did! 🙂

Since I was all by myself in the kitchen I decided to make these delicious treats that everybody loves in our home. I made these guys basic, we all like different toppings and stuffing for them so I just made them plain, this way we were able to add our favorites: powder sugar, maple syrup, mango jelly, etc…  I had mine with this simple chocolate syrup and raspberry jam! Breakfast heaven on a plate!
I’d like to tell you a little bit about their history: Denmark is among other things famous for it’s apples (ebler) therefore the name, because the literal translation of ebelskiver is: sliced apples, but every Danish home has it’s own recipe (some use yeast, some baking powder… endless possibilities…), and some don’t even include apples at all, like this one, so they are totally customizable according to one’s own taste.
I’ve read a lot of legends about ebelskivers, but this one is my favorite, so here it goes…
The legend says that Vikings coming back from a fierce battle, obviously hungry and with no pans on which to cook, they placed their damaged shields over the fire and cooked pancakes in the indentations.
Nowadays, I simply went to amazon and bought mine, a cute little cast iron one for only $11.00
danish pancakes

Classic Ebelskiver Recipe

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 eggs (separated)
1 cup of milk (I happened to have some buttermilk, so I used half buttermilk and half milk)
3 tablespoons of butter melted and slightly cooled
Makes 4-7 servings, about 21 ebelskivers
Preheat the oven at 200 F. For the batter, in a bowl whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. In a small bowl, lightly whisk the egg yolks, then whisk in the milk and the 2 tablespoons of melted butter. Add the yolk mixture to the flour mixture and with a wooden spoon stir until well blended. Keep in mind that the batter will be lumpy.
In a clean bowl, with an electric mixer on high (or by hand, about 3 minutes) beat the egg whites only until stiff (but not dry) peaks form. With a spatula, fold about 1/3 of the whites into the batter to make it lighter and then incorporate the rest until you can’t see any white streaks.
Brush the wells of your pan with some of the remaining melted butter over medium heat, and when the butter starts to bubble, add 3 tablespoons of batter into each well.
Cook until the bottoms are lightly browned and crisp, 3-5 minutes. Using two bamboo skewers, turn the pancakes and cook for about another 3 minutes until the second side is lightly brown.
Transfer the finished pancakes to platter and keep them warm in the oven while you make the rest of them. Sprinkle them with powdered sugar.
danish pancakes with powdered sugar

I made a double batch so I place half of them in a zip lock bag and froze them, they do freeze beautifully.

For the simple Chocolate Syrup
4 tablespoons of good quality unsweetened cocoa powder (the better the quality the better the results, of course)
2 tablespoons of heavy cream (for a vegan syrup feel free to use coconut milk), plus 1 tablespoon of water mixed together (if not use regular milk or even water)
1 1/2 of powdered sugar
In a bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients, and slowly stir in the liquid. Whisk until you get a silky and smooth glaze, literally it takes a minute to make. Adjust the liquid until you get a pourable consistency syrup.
ebelskiver with chocolate syrup and raspberry jam
They turned out perfect! and to me… there’s nothing better that chocolate and raspberries together, so I devoured a couple of them before anybody woke up… well, maybe more that a couple… 😛
danish pancakes
Give them a try, you won’t regret it… and like I said, the possibilities are endless when it comes to ingredients to add or toppings to pair them with.
Thank you Vikings! 😉
Enjoy!

“Fake” Doughnuts

I had to share this with you guys… this is not really a new recipe, in fact is the SAME batter recipe I made last, it is the super fluffy waffle recipe(minus the grains)!!! Yes, believe or not it is, and it comes out pretty good! 🙂
The thing is that my son Alex wanted waffles, so there I go, I start getting the batter ready and he happened to walk by the self where I keep our little donut maker, and of course right away he says: Mommy!!! I don’t want waffles, I want donuts!!!! Right now please!!!!
I tried to convince him that we’d make them next time, and it was not working, so it just crossed my mind… why not try to make these cute little doughnuts with the waffle batter? I was not convinced at all but I gave it a try, and let me tell you… they are goooood!!! Of course as all of you know: everything is good with chocolate. So here they are… please give them a try if you happened to have a mini donut maker, I promise you won’t be disappointed 😉
Only keep in mind just to add a little dollop of batter, you don’t want them to overflow
"Fake" Doughnuts

“Fake” Doughnuts

Here is a super simple and easy chocolate glaze recipe:

4 tablespoons of good quality unsweetened cocoa powder (the better the quality the better the results, of course)
2 tablespoons of heavy cream, plus 1 tablespoon of water mixed together (if not use regular milk or even water)
1 1/2 of powdered sugar

In a bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients, and slowly stir in the liquid. Whisk until you get a silky and smooth glaze, literally it takes a minute to make. Adjust the liquid until you get a dippable consistency glaze.
Dip these cute guys and let them set for a few minutes to harden slightly, if you can that is…
With a child next to me I had to make them with sprinkles which by the way made them even look cuter!!!
Of course like any other kind of doughnuts these are better enjoyed the same day you make them. We couldn’t almost let them set… we ate them right away!
Enjoy!!!