Raspberry Maca Cheeze Cake over a Cacao Pecan Crust

In the spirit of Mothers Day I decided to mix two of my favourite things! Raspberries and chocolate! I always try to out do myself every year with my Mothers Day cake, and I know my beautiful Mother appreciates it!

I’ve always been more for the rich decadent flavours while my Mum loves the light and fruity so since we are both mothers and should be celebrated I decided we would both get a little of what we love!

As with all of my cashew based cakes this recipe is quick and easy and requires no cooking! So if you’re reading this men, you too can dazzle you Mother, Wife, special someone, or well, anyone really!

Enjoy Natasha xoxo

Raspberry Maca Cheeze Cake over a Cacao Pecan Crust

The Cacao Pecan Crust

Ingredients

  • 1 Cup Raw Pecans
  • 1/8 Cup Cacao Powder
  • 6 Medjool Dates
  • 1/4 Cup Water

Method

  • Toss all ingredients into a food processor
  • Process until dough ball forms
  • Press into the base of an 8″ spring form cake pan

Raspberry Maca Cheeze Cake Filling

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 Cups Raw Cashew Pieces
  • 1 1/4 Cups Dairy Free Milk
  • 1/4 Cup Coconut Oil
  • 1/3 Cup Maple Syrup
  • 2 Tsp Maca Powder
  • 1/4 Tsp Sea Salt
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 1/2 Cup Fresh or Frozen (thawed) Raspberries

Method

  • Add all ingredients into a high-speed blender
  • Blend until smooth an creamy
  • Pour over Pecan Cacao Crust and tap to remove any bubbles
  • Place in freezer or fridge for at least an hour to set
  • Garnish with fruit and flowers

 

 

 

Basic Tofu Scramble

There are so many complicated tofu scramble recipes on the internet these days but very few base recipes. With that in mind, one of the best things about cooking is the opportunity to be creative! With my base tofu scramble recipe the sky is the limit, you can take it South and make a beautiful zesty Mexican scramble, or East if you add a little curry powder for a rich Indian flair.

No matter your taste, there are so many options available when making a tofu scramble. So I encourage you to take the base and make it special, I’d love to hear about the creations you come up with!

My scramble today is just the base recipe topped with heirloom tomatoes, asparagus, sea salt flakes, pepper, almond feta, and sprouts!

A quick note about black salt, for me this is an essential ingredient in a tofu scramble as it gives a true egg flavour, I encourage you to try it!

Enjoy ūüôā

Natasha xoxo

Basic Tofu Scramble

Vegan              Gluten Free    Oil Free      Serves 4-6     Prep and cook time 20 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 Block of Firm Organic Tofu
  • 1/4 Cup Water (or 1 Tbsp of oil)
  • 1 Medium Shallot
  • 1 Large Garlic Clove
  • 1/2 Tsp Turmeric
  • 3/4 Tsp Black Salt

 

Method

  • In a frying pan cook Onions and Garlic in Water until Onions are soft and translucent, you can use oil over water for more flavour if you like.
  • Add Turmeric and Black Salt, mix and evenly Coat onion and Garlic mixture
  • Crumble tofu into small pieces and coat with spices and veg
  • Add more water if drying out or starting to stick to pan
  • Add any additional spices or veggies of choice
  • Cook on medium/ low until tofu has absorbed most of the liquid
  • Serve and garnish with veggies, spices, vegan cheese
  • Enjoy!

 

Dark Chocolate Oatmeal

On those mornings when I am not in the mood to battle picky children, my go to breakfast is always Chocolate Oatmeal! Yes it’s a sneaky Mom hack, but it works! The kids are always bouncing in their seats as I prepare this dish truly thinking they are getting a treat rather than a decent breakfast.

Now don’t get me wrong, this isn’t an every day breakfast in our house as it does have a reasonable amount of maple syrup, but I do feel good about the nutrient rich Cacao Powder and the benefits of Oats so all in all it isn’t too bad ūüėČ

Not only just a favourite with the kids, adults love it too! Try garnishing with dates and sea salt flakes for a salted caramel version!

Natasha xoxo

Dark Chocolate Oatmeal

Gluten Free Vegan                  Serves 6               Cook Time 7-10 Minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 Cups Rolled Oats (I used Gluten Free)
  • 4 Cups Water
  • 1/4 Cup Maple Syrup
  • 1/3 Cup Cacao Powder
  • 1/8 Tsp Sea Salt

Method

  • Combine Oats and Water in a large pot, bring to a boil and reduce heat to medium / low
  • Add Cacao powder, maple syrup, and sea salt, stir well until cacao powder dissolves
  • Cook for 7 – 10 minutes, until water is absorbed by oats and desired consistency is reached
  • Garnish with fruit, seeds, nuts, cocoa nibs, coconut, dates, or sea salt.

 

Moroccan Spiced Lentils

In a push to try and be as conscious of healthy eating as possible, I have been focusing my families dinners around the whole foods plant based lifestyle. Whole foods eating is free from anything processed and that includes oils and sugar, sounds like a challenge? Well, it wasn’t as bad as I thought and what resulted was delicious as a bonus.

I love a good cooking challenge so taking away a few common ingredients can certainly throw a wrench into dinner unless you know a few hacks!

  1. You can avoid oil completely and cook your onions and garlic in water, who knew?
  2. Did you know cinnamon is naturally sweet and can give your dish a hint of sweetness when you are craving a sugar fix?
  3. Combining tomatoes with cinnamon only brings out the sweetness of the tomato and creates a lovely ethnic flavour.

I was so pleased I wrote down this recipe when I created it because all six of my children loved it and asked for seconds! If you’re a parent you’ll appreciate a dinner that gets approval from all of the kids. Someone always has a complaint, but not this time!

I’d love to hear some of your whole food plant based hacks in the comments!

Natasha xoxo

Moroccan Spiced Lentils

Whole Foods Plant Based                Serves 6              Prep time: 10 minutes      Cook time: 30 minutes

Oil Free        Vegan      Gluten Free       Sugar Free

Ingredients

  • 1 Medium Red Onion
  • 2 Garlic Cloves Crushed
  • 1/4 Cup of Water (for cooking the onion and garlic in)
  • 1Tsp Paprika
  • 1/2 Tsp Cumin
  • 1/2 Tsp Ginger
  • 1 Tsp Cinnamon
  • 1 Tsp Sea Salt
  • 2 Tsp Salted Lemon Skins (optional, often used in Moroccan cooking)
  • 1 Can Diced Tomatoes (Large size, 796 ml)
  • 1 1/2 Cup Red Lentils
  • 1 1/2 Cup Water

Method

  • Dice onion and crush garlic.
  • Add 1/4 Cup water to pot with garlic and onion, cook on medium / high heat until onions are clear in colour.
  • Add Spices and salt and mix.
  • Add diced tomatoes, red lentils, and water. Stir.
  • Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to simmer and cook for 30 minutes until the lentils have absorbed the water.
  • Serve over jasmine rice and garnish with lemon and dill.
  • Enjoy!

 

Blood Orange Chocolate Mousse Cake

While I’m more of a savoury girl, I do have a soft spot for mousse tarts and cakes. One of my favourite combos is a lovely blood orange and chocolate mix, think Terry’s Chocolate Orange that pops up at Christmas time, but a fully veganized version… in cake form!

I’m all about simplicity, yet there is something to be said for quality and presentation. This cake truly has it all, quick and easy to prepare, delicious gourmet flavour, and easy to garnish. I especially love this cake for an afternoon tea with the ladies as it’s always a crowd pleaser.

Enjoy,

Natasha xoxo

Blood Orange Chocolate Mousse Cake

The Base

Ingredients

  • 1 Cup Raw Peacans
  • 5 Soft Medjool Dates (pitted)
  • 1/8 Cup Water

Method

  • Place all ingredients into a food processor and process until a smooth dough ball forms
  • Remove dough and press into the base of an 8″ spring form cake pan
  • Use oil on fingers from pressing to grease the side on the pan

Chocolate Blood Orange Mousse

Ingredients

  • 1 Cup Raw Cashew Pieces
  • 3/4 Cup Dairy-free Milk
  • 1/4 Cup Blood Orange Juice
  • 1/4 Cup Coconut Oil
  • 1/3 Cup Cacao Powder
  • 1/8 Tsp Salt
  • 1/3 Cup Maple Syrup
  • 2 Tsp Blood Orange Rind

Method

  • Place all ingredients into a high-speed blender and blend until smooth and creamy
  • Pour over base and place in freezer or fridge to set (30-45 minutes)
  • Garnish with Blood Orange, Flowers, Fruit, Seeds

Delicious Vegan Creamy Cashew Alfredo

Who doesn’t love a delicious bowl full of pasta smothered in a creamy sauce? This was one of the dishes I missed the most when going vegan and I spent a long time trying to create the perfect vegan hack to a stellar Alfredo. Now, after much trial and error I am so excited to share this recipe with you and hope you will love it as much as I do! This recipe is 100% kid approved and totally gluten free if you used a gluten free pasta.

Enjoy, Natasha xoxo

Creamy Cashew Alfredo Sauce

Ingredients

  • 2 Cups Raw Cashew Pieces (I don‚Äôt soak, but you can ?)
  • 2 Cups Of Water
  • 1 1/2 Tsp Onion Powder
  • 3/4 Tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1 1/2 Tsp Salt (I use Himalayan pink salt)
  • 1/4 Tsp Ground Pepper

Method

  • Toss it all in a high speed blender and blend until smooth and creamy.
  • Pour over your favourite pasta of choice, its amazing over gluten free pasta too!

Wild Berry Maca Smoothie Bowl

One of my favourite words at breakfast is ‚ÄúEASY‚ÄĚ, this is partly because I have six kids to feed but also because I‚Äôm really not much of a breakfast person and usually can’t be bothered to make a big production out of making myself something to eat in the morning.¬†

I love a breakfast that I can make by simply tossing everything into a high-speed blender and hitting liquify! My Wild Berry Maca Smoothie Bowl is a simple yet nutrient-packed breakfast that will kickstart your day the right way!

Have kids at home? This recipe is absolutely kid approved and will leave their tummies happy and their brains ready for a busy school day! Leave me a comment and let me know how you enjoyed this recipe!

Natasha xoxo

Wild Berry Maca Smoothie Bowl

Ingredients

  • 3 Small Over Ripe Bananas
  • 1 Cup Wild Blueberries (frozen or fresh)
  • 1 Cup Black Cherries (frozen or fresh)
  • 1 Tbsp Maca Powder
  • 1/4 Tsp Cinnamon
  • 2 Cups Almond Milk

Method

  • Toss everything into a high-speed blender and liquify until smooth and creamy!
  • Pour into large bowl and garnish with nuts, berries, edible flowers and seeds if desired.

SaveSave

Creamy Vegan Mushroom Risotto

One of my favourite dishes as a vegetarian was a nice creamy risotto, and like many, before me, I was one of those people who said ” I’d go vegan, but I could never give up cheese, ” and with that, I believed I could never give up risotto. Giving up dairy initially felt like a major sacrifice but after learning more about the dairy industry, and the adverse effects dairy has on the human body it became easier.

I recall a year after going vegan I was at a Sunday brunch at a popular winery where I live, and I came across a massive plate of cheese. Smoked gouda…. one of my past favourites was calling to me, so after a year dairy free I figured what would one cheese cube hurt and I had love smoked gouda so much. So I took a small piece much to the surprise of my also vegan husband who asked if I was sure I wanted to break a year of solid veganism. I decided I just had to have that one little piece and I popped it into my mouth; the flavours startled me. The cheese that I had enjoyed for years tasted nothing like I remembered and had a more oily texture and to be honest really grossed me out.

That was my moment of confirmation, I no longer needed or wanted dairy. A funny thing happens when you go vegan, your taste buds change and natural flavours start to appear that are of such a beautiful quality it leaves you wondering how you’ve lived so long with a blind tongue. I always find it funny when I hear people refer to a vegan or plant based life style as bland when it is quite the opposite!

You don’t need to sacrifice your health or flavour to enjoy a beautiful risotto, this recipe has been a labour of love for me, and I have spend years trying to get it just right. I’m so excited to finally share it with you!

Natasha xoxo

Creamy Vegan Mushroom Risotto

Prep Time: 10 mins

Cook time: 22 mins

Vegan, Gluten Free, Dairy Free

Ingerdients

  • 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1/2 Small Onion Diced
  • 2 Cups Chopped Mushrooms (mix a variety for a gourmet flair)
  • 1 Large Garlic Clove Pressed
  • 1/2 Tsp Dried Thyme or Basil
  • 3/4 Cup Arborio Rice
  • 2 Tbsp Wine (any kind will work)
  • 1 Cup Vegetable Broth
  • 1 Cup Dairy Free Milk (I use Cashew Milk)
  • 1/8 Cup Nutritional Yeast
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Method

  • In a pot fry the diced onion in olive oil until it is clear.

  • Add pressed garlic and mushrooms and cook on med/low until the mushrooms have softened.

  • Add Arborio rice and fry on low until the rice is evenly coated in oil, then add wine and stir.

  • Once the wine has mostly evaporated add the veggie broth, dairy free milk, and nutritional yeast, and herbs.

  • Bring to a boil, then reduce heat, cover and simmer on low for 22 minutes.

  • Add salt and pepper to taste, serve and garnish with vegan parmesan.

ENJOY!

Super Simple Coconut Curry with Cardamom Basmati Rice

IMG_5318

As a mother feeding a family of eight a simple yet delicious dinner is always appreciated, the problem is there aren’t many recipes out there that are super low maintenance but will satisfy even a fussy one year old in the process. I always try my hardest to avoid anything processed if I can and spend a good part of my day cooking to ensure I know exactly what my babies are putting into their bodies.¬†My concern over what my children were consuming kick started my journey into recipe creation and has since become a passion of mine.

Since my transition from a vegetarian to a fully plant-based lifestyle which happened a little over three and a half years ago, I have been trying to recreate my favourite vegetarian recipes in a more eco-conscious and cruelty free manner. You see, when I went vegan I had zero support aside from my husband Mark who made the change with me. I had no idea what I was doing only what I desired to accomplish and I truly felt like a fish out of water.

I had always been known for my baking and cooking skills and now I felt like I no longer could create the fun and unique dishes I once had. Boy was I wrong! I was shocked to discover as many other who have made this transition will say that I had never really understood the beauty of food until I became a vegan. The flavours, true natural flavours of vegetables and fruit untainted by artificial chemicals were out of this world!

IMG_5321

The culinary world was at my finger tips and my kitchen was about to become my sanctuary of creation. I poured myself a glass of red wine (vegan, of course) put on my playlist of crooners such as Frank Sinatra and Tony Bennett and would pour my heart and soul into creation! Cooking is really quite simple once you develop a passion for it and make the decision that you are willing to try new things and forgive the times when recipes fail… that will happen at times and its okay!

This recipe that I’m about to share with you was a recipe of instinct and intuition. I believed that the ingredients would combine beautiful and simply on the rushed evening I threw this dish together for the first time and it came out perfectly! I was tickled to discover that such simple recipe could taste so lovely and be prepared so easily and quickly. All of the kids loved it and ask for it time and time again. I can always tell when a recipe creation is a success when there is utter silence at the dinner table because all six children are enjoying their meal.

So here it is just for you from my kitchen to yours, I hope your family will love this recipe as much as mine does!

IMG_5319

Super Simple Coconut Curry

Prep Time: 10-15 mins                                                         Serves 4-6 (Depending on tummy size)

Cook Time: 30 mins

Vegan, Gluten Free

Ingredients

  • 1 Medium to Large Onion Diced
  • 3 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 2 Large Garlic Cloves Crushed
  • 1 Tsp Ginger
  • 1 Tsp Turmeric
  • 1 Tsp Cumin
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp Curry Powder
  • 1 Tsp Himalaya Pink Salt or Sea Salt
  • 1 Can of Coconut Milk
  • 4 Cups Chopped Baby Potatoes
  • 1 Cup Corn (Fresh or Frozen)
  • 1/2 Cup Rasins
  • 1/2 Cup Raw Cashew Pieces

Method

  • Add Diced Onion and Olive Oil to a pan¬†and fry until golden.

IMG_5306

  • Add Crushed Garlic, Ginger, Turmeric, Cumin, Curry Powder and Salt to Fried Onion and mix.

IMG_5310

  • Add Coconut Milk to Spiced Onion mixture and stir until combined.

IMG_5305

  • Add Chopped Baby Potatoes, Corn, Raisins, and Cashews to Coconut Milk Spice mixture and cook (stirring frequently) on medium/high for 25 mins until potatoes are soft.

IMG_5313

  • Once cooked mix thoroughly as the oil in the Coconut milk may separate a little and sever over rice.

IMG_5314

  • Enjoy!

IMG_5320

Cardamom Seed Rice

Prep Time: 2 mins                                                                                                                         Serves 4-6

Cook Time: 18-22 mins

Vegan, Gluten Free

Ingredients

IMG_5308

  • 2 Cups Basmati Rice
  • 4 Cups Water
  • 1 Tsp Onion Powder
  • 1/2 Tsp Cardamom Seeds
  • 1 Tsp Salt
  • 2 Tbsp Vegan Margarine (I use Earth Balance)

Method

  • Add Rice, Water, Onion Powder, Cardamom Seeds, Salt and Margarine to a large pot.
  • Bring to a boil.
  • Reduce heat to low and simmer covered for 18-22 mins.
  • Fluff rice with a fork once its ready.
  • Enjoy!

IMG_5317

There you have it, a simple yet delicious dinner in less that 40 mins. I always get the sauce going then start the rice and find that they will both be ready at the same time. This is a very light curry that is great in the summer with a glass of white wine or in the winter with a glass bold red wine. I always garish with Watercress or Pea Shoots for a nice finishing touch just to add a little flair.

This dish has also been a guest favourite on the nights we decide to entertain and has received rave reviews. I guess the secret is out as this dish is¬†far less effort to create as the flavour would have you believe. I hope you enjoy this simple and quick dinner on those rushed nights when you’d prefer not to be cooking at all.

Warmest Regards,

Holly ūüėČ

IMG_5320