Sunday, 21 September 2014

Pretty Pink Cheesecake (Strawberry and Beetroot)

I've been asked to make a pink cake for a local charity event next week, so had a little experiment in the kitchen yesterday with some natural foods to give me the desired colour. Beetroot, cherries, raspberries and strawberries are the obvious choices for lots of colour... Ended up with a mix of strawberries and beetroot. Beetroot offers such a very strong colour, but used on it's own I figured it would completely overpower the taste of the whole cake, as it gives a powerful hit of 'earthiness'! 

I bought some gorgeous little heart cake pans the other days, so decided on a cheescake mix rather than a baked cake. Ideally going for lots of raw desserts, treats and snacks now his month particularly as I'm doing 30 days (90%) raw.

Really happy with the way it turned out, and it's pretty easy to make, that's the way I like recipes! 

Ingredients :

Base :
1 cup dessicated coconut
4-5 dates
1 tbsp raw, organic, fair trade coconut oil
1 tbsp raw cacao powder

9tbsp almond flour/ground almonds
1 tsp vanilla extract (or one scraped vanilla bean pod)
1tsp cinnamon (optional)
1 beetroot chopped and peeled
A handful of fresh strawberries 
Raw honey - to taste (depends on the amount of beetroot) 
1 tbsp coconut oil (as above)
Sprinkle of Xanthan gum (you can add more and whizz up again if it's too runny)
Coconut cream - add gradually to achieve the desired consistency 

Dessicated coconut
Freeze dried strawberries 

Method :

Whizz up all the base ingredients in a Nutribullet or food processor
Press mixture into a greased cake pan or muffin cases or similar- I used heart shaped mini pans and it made three.
Put in the fridge to set

Topping : add all the ingredients to a food processor and whizz up until smooth. If very very thick add some more coconut cream, if too thin and runny add another sprinkle of Xanthan gum.

Spread over the base and smooth down.

Decoration : whizz up the coconut and freeze dried strawberries , so the strawberries 'stain' the coconut.
Sprinkle over the top.

Cool in the fridge, and eat and enjoy! 
Stay healthy! 

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Raw For 30 Days Days 1 and 2

I've been experimenting with raw food over the last six months, and the main reason for this is because I've been listening to my body. I've been lucky enough to travel to NYC, Greece and Poland in the last six weeks and whilst it's been Amazing the food hasn't always been what I would normally eat. 

So I feel a little out of kilter, a little sluggish, a little full of 'stuff'... and that doesn't sit well with me. Hence the 30 days Raw experiment. I'm not saying I'm going raw full time, in fact I pretty much know I won't ; there are some foods at the moment I don't think I can live without forever... But I'm always up for a challenge. I know if nothing else, at the end of 30 days I'm going to be so full of CLEAN food, and that has to be a good thing! 

I made the mistake of thinking it would be easy just to switch to a fully raw diet, but here we are in the middle of day 2, and I'm feeling a bit stuck. Yesterday for day one, I literally ate juices and smoothies all day to kick start my system. I can make all sorts of variations of these in my sleep so no problem there. I was hungry last night but I'd cut my calorie intake dramatically and did weights and cycled. Bed by 9pm, and not a minute too soon. 

Today I've been to the supermarket, and started automatically reaching for the things I'd normally buy... lentils, mung beans - can't eat because they need cooking (unless they're sprouted apparently) , pro biotic organic yoghurt , I usually get sheeps yoghurt, but supermarket yoghurt is definitely not raw! Butter... Noooo I can't eat butter! I'm definitely sourcing raw butter. 

Bought some nuts, and a bit of fruit and veg .. Feeling a little despondent. In the end I went to M & S and bought a ready made salad; cucumber, carrot, and  lots of different lettuce leaves just because it felt like a 'treat'! I did make home made pesto to liven it up a bit. No pine nuts in Wetherby so I bought cashews, and whizzed them up in my Nutribullet with oil, garlic and basil. Very nice!!! 

I felt great after lunch, but craved something sweet. Thankfully I had a few small squares of my home made, home devised, blackberry coconut fudge. ALL RAW! Yeah! With a nettle tea that hit the spot. But I have no idea at this moment what I'm going to have to eat later. Yep I'm already thinking about tea ! 

To help me out I've downloaded an ebook by the smoothie Goddess  (no, not me although I'd like that title!) on how to transition to Raw in 21 days. That's my bedtime reading for the next week.

I'll crack it; I know I will. My mind is made up- 30 days 100% Raw.