Chocolatey Chocolate Bunt Cake

Chocolate makes me go down memory lane every time I eat it.

I remember being 3, 4, 5 years old blowing out dozens of candles (or at least I thought there were dozens of candles on my cake) wishing to be a princess, a ballerina, or even famous actress.

But that’s not important right now.

This isn’t like any other chocolate cake. This cake, and the icing on the cake is….yup, you guessed it…GOOD FOR YOU! You would never guess but there are carrots, pineapple and Greek yogurt in this cake! AND it uses oil, not butter! Can life get any better than this? I don’t think so. Fine, if you compare this to celery, celery is probably healthier…but who wants to eat celery? Not me! If you prefer celery to this cake, please leave my blog and never return.

Do me a favour: if you make this cake for children, don’t tell them these things. They won’t eat the cake, and I guarantee you will end up eating the whole thing, which is no good. I mean, it is goooood, but no one wants to eat an entire cake on their own.

For the cake, here’s what you need:

1 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup organic cane sugar

1/3 cup vegetable oil

1 ripe banana, mashed

1 tsp vanilla

2 eggs

2 cups finely chopped carrots

1/2 cup canned crushed pineapple

2 cups flour

1/3 cup cacao powder

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

1 1/2 tsp baking soda

1/3 cup chocolate chips

1/4 cup Greek yogurt

Icing:

1 package light cream cheese

1 cup frozen strawberries

3/4 cup icing sugar

1/2 cup cacao powder

Preheat your oven to 350 F. 

Butter and flour a bunt pan. Make sure to do this well because you really do not want your cake to stay stuck in the pan. 

In a food processor, combine brown sugar, sugar, oil ,banana, vanilla, and eggs until smooth. Add carrots and pineapple and process until they all seem well combined. 

In a bowl, sift the flour, cacao powder, baking powder, baking soda. Stir these ingredients into the food processor with the wet ingredients. Add the chocolate chips and Greek yogurt.

Put the batter in your buttered bunt pan. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, until a knife inserted in the cake comes out clean.Let is cool a little before removing it from the pan. 

For the icing, blend all the ingredients together in a blender or food processor. Feel free to add or subtract certain ingredients! If you want more sugar, go ahead. 

Ice your cake, make everyone jealous at your dinner party (you know you will), and enjoy!

 

 

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Maple Banana Pancakes

Everyone likes pancakes. Those who say they don’t like pancake is because they haven’t tadted good pancakes, ergo they haven’t tasted my pancakes.

My pancakes are legendary.

Why?

Because my pancakes are carb free!

SAY WHAT?

Tis true, fellow healthy eaters. It is possible to indulge in a plate filled with banana pancakes without feeling bloated or guilty or too stuffed. I can’t all the credit. While I was in Nicaragua watching a rodeo (as we all do on a regular basis), I began to speak to one of the girls on the trip with me. The rodeo was quite long and boring, so we had a lot to talk about. And what is my favourite subject? Obviously, it’s food. We exchanged recipes and she told me about these pancakes and I was salivating. I quickly hurried back to my room to write it down, and tried making them the week I returned from South America.

Well, lemme tell you…they have become my staple weekend breakfast! They are easier to make than normal regular and they’re filled with protein so they keep you going all morning!

I like eating them with greek yogurt, berries, and maple syrup or simply with peanut butter.

To make one serving, you need:

1 banana

2 eggs

1 tbsp flax meal (because it’s good for you)

1 tsp maple syrup

1 tbsp coconut oil (canola oil works well too)

Mash your banana in a bowl. Beat your eggs in another bowl. Combine the two and add the maple syrup and flax meal.

In a pan, add the oil, let it melt and add your mixture! You can probably make 4 or 5 smaller pancakes. Flip after 2 minutes, or until they seem cooked to your liking.

Set the table with your desired condiments and dig in!

You won’t be disappointed, and if you are, I don’t know what to tell you.

Enjoy!

Non Potato Cajun Fries

We all love French fries once a while. Crispy, thin, tender inside, with a side of ketchup or mayo. Served either in a brown bag at Five Guys or on a nice plate in a restaurant… I am salivating just thinking of it!

Here is a way to satisfy that potato fries craving without actually having potato fries!

You’ve heard of rutabaga?

Neither had I.

It’s a kind of turnip that, when you chop it, season it and pop in the oven, looks just like potato fries! Much less starchy, just as delicious! But remember, I am in no way to stop having real fries once a while…just not everyday!

This works really well with parsnip as well.

To make a nice batch, you will need:

2 or 3 rutabaga, washed

Salt

Pepper

Cajun Spices

Garlic Powder

2 tbsp Olive oil

Sauce:

1/2 cup Greek yogurt

Garlic powder

Cajun Spices

Preheat oven to 450 F.

Slice your rutabaga in a French Fry form. Fat or slim, it depends on your preference! Just try to make them all relatively the same size. 

Place them in a bowl and add the olive oil. Toss them well so that they all have some oil on them. 

Season with salt, pepper, and of course, the cajun spices and the garlic powder!

Bake for about 30 minutes, or until they  seem ready to you. While they bake, prepare your dipping sauce by adding the spices to the yogurt. 

Serve with the dipping sauce and enjoy!

Grilled Zucchini and Feta

It’s grilling season!!!!!!!!!!!

I love grilling food on the barbecue. It means summer has finally arrived! Everything tastes better when it’s grilled (properly, obviously). Veggies, meat, more veggies… it’s all yummy!

These are amazingly light and delicious, and they are simple to make! The problem with vegetables is that people don’t like them when they’re boring.

Solution: make vegetables interesting! It’s really not as difficult as you think. Roast them or grill them and it will taste like a gourmet meal!

To make enough for 4 people, you will need :

2 zucchinis

1/2 cup reduced salt feta cheese

Salt and pepper to taste

1 tbsp olive oil

Thyme

Cut your zucchinis down the middle.

Brush with olive oil.

Sprinkle with thyme, salt and pepper.

Let sit for 30 minutes.

Turn on your barbecue. Place your zucchinis on the grill for about 30 minutes, turning halfway through (you may need more time).

When they are done, sprinkle with crumbled feta cheese.

Serve immediately or wait until they are cold!

Enjoy! xx

Easy Peasy Fruity Sorbet

This is far too easy to even be called a recipe.

Here is a sorbet you can make at home, with whatever you fruit you want. You can double, triple, even quadruple this recipe! Everyone likes their frozen treats, but not everyone likes them the same way.

I personally do not like them too creamy, so you can add more milk to the recipe if you wish!

Sorbets are a really good option to have at an ice cream parlour, but this recipe has no processed sugar so it’s like a treat at home.

You can also turn this into a morning smoothie bowl and add granola, more fruit, cacao nibs, nut butter…really anything works! Ice cream for breakfast? Yes please!

To make one big bowl, you will need:

1 cup frozen fruit of your choice (I chose strawberries and peach)

1/2 cup almond milk (any milk is good)

1 tsp maple syrup (optional)

Slices of strawberries to decorate

Flaxseed to decorate

Put your fruit and milk in a blender. Blend until there are no lumps. 

Decorate with whatever tickles your fancy.

Enjoy!

Dollops of Date Heaven

If you make a menu for your guests, you should always start with what you will cook for desert, and then work your way up to the appetizer. It’s just more fun that way.

Here’s a secret: some healthy desserts are better than non healthy desserts! That’s right, I went there.

Granted, some of them are TERRIBLE. I wouldn’t serve them to a sewer rat. They can be dry, they can be tasteless, and they can be enough to throw you off healthy cooking for life.

Thank goodness some of them are delicious, full of flavour, simple and  immensely addictive.  These little date balls are rich and wonderful, but they don’t leave you with that nasty feeling you have after having had one too many pieces of buttery cake (even though I will never stop eating buttery cake, I’ll just eat a little less).

These have become one of my favourite homemade desserts, so I just had to share them with you!

Your desert consists of a sinfully delicious mixture of dark chocolate, dates, and graham crackers. Only 3 ingredients, no baking necessary, and your guests will be dying to have more than one. Sugar free, dairy free, guilt free and amazingly tasty! It’s a winner in my books.

This recipe makes 6 servings.

Here is what you need:

½ cup unseeded, chopped dried dates

½ cup dark chocolate chips (semi-sweet is fine too)

1 cup of graham cracker crumbs.

½ cup water

A pinch of cinnamon (optional)

Combine the water and date in a small pot and bring to a boil. When you see little bubbles, that means your water boiling: it is time to turn the heat down to medium heat for about 5 minutes, or until it looks like there is no more water in your mini pot.

Put your boiling hot dates in a bowl and squish them with a fork.

Add your chocolate chips and stir until the chocolate has melted.

Add the graham cracker crumbs in the bowl and mix it all together until the crumbs take the same color as the chocolate. If you want, you can now add some cinnamon.

Roll your mixture into individual balls (you should have 12 at the end of this step) and pop them in the fridge for 20 minutes.

You can now lick your fork (I know you wanted to).

These taste amazing with a glass of milk or coffee. Bon appétit and don’t forget to share them!

 

 

Spinach Makes it a Green Smoothie

You all must know, I was tremendously reluctant to try a green spinach. I thought it would taste like a disgusting mixture of leafy greens and perfectly wonderful fruit that does not taste so wonderful when combined with spinach and maple syrup.

I was wrong.

To all your skeptics out there…skepticism is a wonderful thing! Don’t let anyone tell you that you’re a prude or that you’re no fun. That is simply not true.

Skepticism, when used in moderation (much like food), can be very useful in creating a critical mind that does not settle for what everyone else wants.

Now, with that in mind, get over yourselves and try my green smoothie.

All green smoothies are not delicious. You really have to make sure that the fruit you use is sweet enough and that it blends well with the leafy green of your choice. Bananas and mangos are pretty safe to use, but add a sweetener of your choice if you like it extra sweet like me.

I had this for the first as a snack when a friend of mine told me how she made her smoothie. I trusted her a person, so I thought I would trust her as a green smoothie maker. Turns out, it was really tasty! I tweaked it a little bit to my liking, and now I try to have it once a week when I have those ingredients in my fridge.

This keeps me going for at least 3 hours and it’s a terrific boost! If you’re planning on working out right after having this, don’t. Make sure you have some carbs in you before working so if you really want this, add 1/3 cup of granola in the smoothie.

To make one smoothie, you will need:

1 cup spinach

1 cup mango, frozen or fresh,

1 tbsp flaxseed

1 tbsp peanut butter (or any other nut butter)

1 tsp maple syrup

1 cup unsweetened almond milk

Put all your ingredients in a blender.

Turn on your blender (crucial step).

When everything is well combined, pour into a glass and sprinkle with some granola on top.

Enjoy and have a great rest of your day!

Seriously Stuffed Sweet Potato

I made this last night and I could not wait to post this recipe. I’m serious. It was one of the most delicious meals I have ever made, HANDS DOWN.

I love sweet potatoes (I love a lot of things in case you didn’t notice that), I love Mexican inspired dishes (and by Mexican, yes, I mean beans and cheese) and I love baked potatoes! It was just clear to me that I simply had to make this after seeing so many people posting pictures of it online.

The big killer in this recipe is the cheese. You’re probably thinking that putting cheese is not healthy at all. Although you have a point, it’s important to remember that there are more and more low fat cheese options out there! Low fat everything is not necessarily good because your body does not fat, but low fat cheese and yogurt are good to go in my book!

This is ridiculously easy to make, but the sweet potatoes need to bake for 50 minutes, so the best thing is to pop them into the oven right you walk in the door after a long day at school or at work.

For 2 people, you will need:

2 sweet potatoes

1 cup kidney beans

1 onion, chopped

2 little sweet peppers, chopped

Cayenne pepper

Salt

Pepper

2 cloves of garlic

1 tbsp. olive oil

1/2 cup low fat Tex Mex cheese

Preheat your oven to 425 F.

Poke your sweet potatoes all over with a fork and put on a cooking sheet.

Bake for 50 minutes or until the potatoes seem tender.

When there is about 10 minutes left to your cooking time, heat your oil in a frying pan and add your onion and garlic. Cook for about 1 minute and then add your onion, peppers, and beans.

Toss them around for about 3 minutes on medium heat.

Add salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper to your liking.

By now your potatoes should be ready!

Take them out of the oven.

Cut them, take some delicious looking orange flesh out of their bodies (gruesome, n’est ce pas?) and put in a bowl. Don’t ever let any sweet potato go to waste! That is a crime against food. Make sur you take enough out to be able to fit your beans.

Fill both potatoes up to the rim and then add the cheese on the top.

If you need more cheese, don’t be shy!

Pop them back into the oven for about a minute to allow the cheese to melt.

Serve with salad.

ENJOY CARAMBA!

Dijon Chicken on the Grill

Grilled chicken is one of the easiest things to make, and it’s so wonderfully versatile. You can marinate it or coat it with whatever ingredient you like depending on your mood of the day.

One day, I was in a Dijon mustard mood.

I have no shame in saying that I am a mustard snob. I absolutely hate French’s mustard because once you go Dijon, you never go back.

The taste is strong yet subtle, if that makes any sense at all. It makes the simplest meal taste like it was fit for a king.

Barbecue season is around the corner, so these little guys are a perfect quick dinner for the family! Serve it with salad for a light meal, or with my eggplant fries and salad for a perfect meal.

For 4 people (and some leftovers), you will need:

1 pound of boneless chicken thighs

1/4 cup Dijon mustard (regular and a l’ancienne preferably)

Salt and pepper

Flatten your chicken thighs. 

Coat your chicken thighs with the mustard. You don’t want to drown them in mustard, but you do want to make sure that each piece is nice and covered in Dijon goodness.

Season with salt and pepper and put in a bowl.

Turn your grill on!

Once it is heated and ready, put the thighs on the grill and cook for about 5 minutes of each side (it may be more, but I don’t want you to overcook it! Thighs are more difficult to estimate a clear cooking time). 

Make sure your chicken is not pink when you cut through it and you’ll be fine.  

Once they are cooked, remove them from the grill and serve them immediately.

Enjoy! xx

Peanut Butter Banana Boat

As I may have said before, bananas, chocolate and peanut butter are three of my favorite ingredients EVER.

Combined together, I can’t describe just how good they taste.

For those of you who have to live with an allergy to peanuts, I am deeply sorry. I have no idea how you survive, and I admire you for leading wonderful lives despite the tragedy in your life.

I, on the other hand, could not survive without peanut butter. It’s an addiction, I am not afraid to admit it.

It turns out that peanuts are actually really really really good for you, which makes me really really really happy!

Filled with healthy fats, antioxidants, they’re good for your heart, so long as you don’t finish the jar in one sitting (easier said than done).

The best thing to do is to buy natural peanut butter, because that means that it isn’t filled with useless ingredients that may be doing you more harm than good! The less ingredients on the label, the more your body will thank you in the long run.

This is one of the easiest desserts I have ever made.

When I feel like something sweet and salty and fruity and delicious, I make myself one of these.

For 2 servings, you will need:

1 banana

2 tbsp peanut butter

3 squares dark chocolate

First, cut your banana but not completely! We’re looking for a boat structure to our dessert.

Fill each half with one tablespoon of peanut butter.

Put your chocolate in a little cup and microwave for 30 seconds at a time until it all melts (I like to reduce the power level of my microwave to do this, to make sure my chocolate doesn’t burn).

When it is melted, pour it evenly on each banana boat.

Put in the freezer for an hour, or until it has the consistency you want.

Take out of the freezer and enjoy!

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