WELL BEING & OTHER STORIES

Recipes, rituals and other stories to realign the body and mind

BREAD

COCONUT BANANA BREAD WITH RAW CHOCOLATE AVOCADO SPREAD

Sugar Free, Gluten free, Brunch, Breakfastdanielle copperman2 Comments
IMG_4898.JPG

Banana bread is one of those things. One of those things that makes the house smell good and warm, and welcoming for days. One of those things that tastes like what I imagine it must be like to eat a slice of love. One of those things that, upon consumption, wherever you are instantly feels like home. One of those things that actually tastes like home. One of those things you eat and then realise you haven't been listening to conversation or taking in anything around you, because for a moment, it was just you and that slice of warm banana bread and nothing else mattered. Banana bread is one of many things then, I guess. 

For me, banana bread reminds me of my home home - the place i grew up - and of my eldest sister, who was always greatly attached to it. I remember we'd have it at every picnic and for every birthday, smothered with our Aunty's dizzyingly good cream cheese frosting. This recipe, as always, is unlike your conventional banana bread. There is no wheat, dairy, refined sugar or grains, and you can work it around your own requirements - for example using all buckwheat flour to replace the ground almonds for a nut-free variation, or playing with the sweetener quantities to suit your taste. You don't really need sweetener at all in this recipe, as banana's are incredibly sweet themselves (and so are you). This bread is perfect as a breakfast treat, and if you make it one sunday evening when you've time to spare, it can last you the rest of the week, making an instant breakfast on-the-go, the perfect energy-rich snack or an offering if you have guests over for a cuppa. Lovingly spread it with Raw Chocolate Avocado Spread (recipe below), and kids will be all over it, without a care in the world that it contains fruit and super foods and is actually good for you! 


INGREDIENTS
Makes One Loaf

80-90g Coconut Oil (the more you use, the denser the bread will be)
2 Eggs
60g Coconut Palm Sugar (or 4-5 tablespoons agave/maple syrups/coconut nectar)
3 Ripe Bananas
80g Chopped Medjool Dates (optional - can also use goji berries, raisin etc but these are all high in sugar, so use in moderation. Can also use chopped raw chocolate chunks or cacao nibs)
75g Chopped Walnuts or Pecans (optional - adds a nice texture)
90g Wholemeal Buckwheat Flour 
100g Ground Almonds
2 Tablespoons Ground/Milled Chia Seeds
50g Desiccated Coconut
3 Tablespoons Whole Golden Linseeds
Pinch of Salt or a few drops of Tamari
1/2 Teaspoon Bicarbonate Soda or Baking Powder
1/2 Teaspoon Lemon Juice
1 Teaspoon Cinnamon
1 Teaspoon Mixed Spice
1/2 Teaspoon Cardamom / Nutmeg /  Spices/Herbs of choice
Toasted Buckwheat (kasha) to top (i really recommend this - it adds an amazing crunch to the bread)

+ Note - for a lighter bread, use one extra egg, and replace the buckwheat flour with ground almonds. 
 You can also experiment with making this bread into a savoury sandwich bread. Simply reduce the sugar quantity to 2 tablespoons, use only 1 banana and 2 grated courgettes, and add plenty of fresh herbs and a tablespoon of nutritional yeast.

METHOD

Preheat the oven to 170c.

Break the bananas into a bowl and then mash them until they become smooth and thick, but not lumpy. Measure the coconut oil, eggs, sugar, vanilla, salt and herbs and spices of choice into the bowl and mix using an electric whisk (you can also do this in your blender to ensure a smoother mixture, and less effort!). Once the ingredients are coming together, add the bicarbonate soda or baking powder and the lemon juice, then the buckwheat flour, ground almonds, milled chia seeds, golden linseeds and desiccated coconut. Whisk a final time, and then stir in the chopped dates, along with any nuts/seeds/cacao/chocolate of choice.

Sprinkle with the toasted buckwheat, and nuts/seeds if you wish. Place in the preheated oven for 1 hour 20 minutes. The outside becomes so crispy whilst the inside remains dense, spongy and moist, and full of flavour and texture.

Serve with Raw Chocolate Avocado Spread (below), pure tahini mixed with honey or coconut nectar, Berry Tahini Cream, Organic Butter, Ghee or Coconut oil -  toasted or warm from the own.


RAW CHOCOLATE AVOCADO SPREAD/FROSTING/SPOON-IN-JAR SNACK

INGREDIENTS
Makes roughly 10 servings as a spread. Store in an airtight container and use on cakes, porridge, pancakes, fruit and, well, literally anything.
 

1 Cup Coconut Oil, melted
1 1/2 Ripe Avocados (must be soft and almost squashy in order to blend)
16-18 Tablespoons Raw Cacao Powder
5 Tablespoons Agave
Pinch of Himalayan Pink Salt or Tamari

Optional
1/2 Teaspoon Ground Cardamom, Cinnamon or Orange Oil/zest 

METHOD

Simply place all of the ingredients into a blender or food processor and blend. I find it helps to gently scrape layers of the avocado in to the blender, rather than large chunks of the flesh. You may need to scrape down the sides of the blender after 30 seconds, to ensure everything gets combined evenly, and you aren't left with any lumps.
 


TAHINI BERRY SPREAD

INGREDIENTS
Makes 2-4 servings

4 Tablespoons Smooth Tahini
1/2 Teaspoon Agave/Honey/Coconut Syrup
Handful Fresh Raspberries/Blueberries/Blackberries (or a combination of each)

METHOD

In a bowl, stir the tahini with the agave or your sweetener of choice, and gently mash the berries in, a couple at a time. Alternatively, you can whizz everything up in a blender, for a smoother variations.

+ Use less tahini if you want more of a jammy consistency/flavour.

COURGETTE AND SPINACH CREPES

Snacks, Vegetarian, Lunch, Gluten free, Dinner, Brunch, Breakfastdanielle copperman1 Comment

When i was a child, i thought that pancakes literally came from heaven. i made them every weekend and used to dowse them in maple or golden syrup, peanut butter, or sugar and lemon. It began to be less about the pancakes and more about the toppings.

They are delicious, and the best thing about them is how easy they are to make. I used to make 3 ingredient crepes which just involved whisking the mixture and pouring it into the pan. As my tastebuds and nutritionally hungry mind have developed, i have found ways of making these pancakes with as many ingredients as possible. And by that, i don’t mean artificial additives. I add fruit and vegetables to my pancakes these days, and substitute white flour and cows milk for creamy nut milks and nutritious, fibrous, high-protein seeds (amaranth, millet, buckwheat, quinoa) or their flaked versions. I also add as many super foods as possible, and only sweeten the pancakes with natural, unrefined syrups or coconut palm sugar. Although these green crepes are savoury and i don’t use any sweetener at all, you could very easily make them sweet, as the crepes themselves have a very neutral flavour, and don't taste as spinach-y as they look! You could top them with fruit, natural syrups of your choice or raw nutella, but I prefer these for lunch or dinner, topped with vegetables, salad, tahini and other dressings.

Happy pancake day! 

INGREDIENTS
(makes 10-12 large crepes)

220g Buckwheat Flour
3 Eggs
2 Cups Coconut Milk or Almond Milk
1 Cup Water
1 Tablespoon Coconut Oil, melted
Pinch of Himalayan Pink Salt
2 Large Handfuls Spinach or Watercress
1 Tablespoon Fresh Basil Leaves
1 Cup Courgette, grated or spiralled
1/2 Teaspoon Spirulina or Chlorella
1/2 Teaspoon Charcoal Powder, optional
Coconut Oil, for frying

METHOD

Simply place all of the ingredients into a high speed blender. Add the milk and the eggs first to avoid the flour becoming a lump and clogging the blade. Blend on a high speed for about 1-2 minutes, until the mixture is smooth and becomes a pale green. Once completely smooth, heat a heaped teaspoon of coconut oil in a frying pan. When it has melted, pour the crepe mixture directly from the jug of your blender (less washing up!) and spread the mixture out evenly across the pan by moving and rotating it gently. Don't use too much mixture at once of the crepe will be too thick and cakey. Pour in enough to cover the middle of your pan, leaving about 2 inches between the edges of the pancake and the sides of the pan. Then spread the mixture to make it slightly larger, and thinner. Cook for about 3 minutes, then flip with a spatula and cook on the other side. The pancake should begin to brown and crisp ever so slightly at the edges. You may need to flip it over several times to get it exactly right and cooked through.

Repeat until you have used all of the mixture, or store any leftover batter in the fridge, in a jug covered with cling film or an airtight container. I'd advise you to cook them all at once though, so you'll always have the foundations of a healthy snack, breakfast, lunch or dinner, when you're short for time.

+ Serve with Chanterelle Pate, Tahini Avocado Cream or simple mashed avocado, Carrot Sesame Dressing, Red Pepper Houmous, Pure Tahini and fresh or steamed vegetables. These are also amazing with Pea Houmous, Bean Slaw and Celeriac Broccoli Slaw.

CARROT SESAME DRESSING

INGREDIENTS

2 Carrots, grated
Juice of 1/2 Orange
1/2 Teaspoon Lemon or Lime Juice
1/2 Teaspoon Tamari or pinch of salt
4 Tablespoons Olive Oil 
1 Tablespoon Cold Water
2 Tablespoons Sesame Oil
1/2 Teaspoon Ground Ginger or fresh ginger, grated
1/4 Teaspoon Ground Turmeric or 1/4 teaspoon grated fresh turmeric
2 Tablespoons Goji Berries, optional (can substitute for 1/2 teaspoon honey)

METHOD

Soak the goji berries, if using, in a small bowl in just enough boiling water to cover them. Let sit for 5 minutes, to soften. Place all of the other ingredients into your blender, adding the goji berries once they become soft, and blend together on a high speed for 2-3 minutes, until the carrot is no longer lumpy, and the mixture becomes smooth and thin.

Season to taste.

+ Thicken with tahini if you want a thicker dip/dressing. Or blend 1/2 ripe avocado in with the rest of the ingredients.

SEED AND NUT BREAD ROLLS

Snacks, Gluten freedanielle coppermanComment

Following the great success of my miracle bread I wanted to have a go at a different bread recipe. The miracle bread was easy to make and i had a lot of feedback from people who have given it a go. I miss bread all the time and whatever gluten free bread i find in stores is usually full of things like rice flour, potato flour, tapioca starch, sugar, preservatives and flavourings. This recipe is made primarily from nuts, seeds and vegetables, meaning even in small doses it will help increase your omega 3 intake for the day as well as the amount of protein in your diet. With essential fatty acids and Soup is not the same without a warm piece of toast, and burgers (with organic meat and no fillers) are never as good wrapped in lettuce. So, I thought, it’s about time I made some bread rolls.

This recipe is quite similar to my Miracle Bread although it uses eggs and vegetables as well as buckwheat flour. The vegetables increase the nutritional levels of these rolls and the eggs, as well as helping to merge the other ingredients together, increase the protein levels of the recipe. Initially I was going to keep this recipe plain so the rolls could be enjoyed sweet or savoury. The recipe will make a delicious sweet version if you omit the green vegetables and perhaps the herbs, and if you add a little sweetener such as agave or coconut nectar. I would recommend adding chunks of raw or dark chocolate or cacao nibs too, to increase the flavour. The texture of these buns is quite similar to that of a muffin or a scone almost. I think they are perfect toasted as a bun with grilled chicken or steak sandwiched in the middle. They also act as a perfect bread muffin for your eggs to sit on, and if toasted enough are perfect with a bowl of steaming, rustic soup.

INGREDIENTS

2 Eggs
2 Tablespoons Chia Seeds
1/3 Cup Sunflower Seeds
1/4 Cup Pumpkin Seeds
3 Tablespoons Sesame Seeds and Flax Seeds (optional)
1/4 Cup Ground Almonds
1/3 Cup Buckwheat Flour
2 Tablespoons Psyllium Husk Powder
2 Tablespoons Coconut Oil, melted
1 Cup Water
1/2 Cup Sweet Potato, boiled and mashed or blended into a puree
Handful of Spinach or Kale, chopped
As much Asparagus as you like, chopped (or other vegetables - tomato would be nice)
1 Garlic Clove, chopped
Salt
Sumac
2 Tablespoons Nutritional Yeast
1/2 Tablespoon Arrowroot (don’t worry too much if you can’t get hold of this)
Fresh Rosemary
Dried Herbs of Choice (Mixed herbs, basil, rosemary, oregano)

METHOD

Preheat the oven to 175c. Measure the chia seeds, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, flax seeds, ground almonds and nutritional yeast and pour into a blender. Grind together into a flour and then transfer into a large mixing bowl. Add the rest of the dry ingredients (the psyllium husk, buckwheat flour, arrowroot, garlic and herbs). Mix together with a wooden spoon and then stir in the melted coconut oil. Next, add the eggs (make sure you have whisked them in a separate bowl before adding). Stir until combined and then add the pureed sweet potato and mash the mixture with a potato masher or a wooden spoon. Gradually add the water bit my bit to loosen the mixture. You may not need much of the water at all but 1/2 a cup will improve the consistency of the mixture if it seems too dry. Add the chopped greens or if you are making sweet bread rolls/buns then add chopped dark or raw chocolate or cacao nibs, or dried fruit - whatever you prefer. 
Leave the mixture to sit for half an hour in the fridge and then shape into bun shapes or large, slightly flattened balls, at least an each apart on a baking sheet. (Line a baking sheet with baking paper and lightly grease the paper with coconut oil as the dough may stick - and removing that paper is impossible).
Cook for 50 - 60 minutes, until the buns are crispy on top but doughy in the middle. Use a knife to test the middle of the buns and if it comes out clean then they are ready. The buns will continue to cook once removed from the oven, so even if you think they seem too doughy, go with it or you’ll end up with dry, crumbly biscuits.

Best enjoyed straight from the oven spread with coconut oil or mashed avocado. They also make a perfect dinner party starter and are great for packed lunches or quick snacks.