Tag Archives: dairy-free

Recipe: Salted Chocolate Coconut Ganache Torte with Chocolate Cashew Crust

Chocolate Cashew Crust Ingredients:

  • 2 c. unsalted cashews
  • 1/4 c. cocoa powder
  • 2 Tbsp. coconut butter (or coconut oil; if not worried about dairy, butter might be a good substitute)
  • 1/4 c. maple syrup
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp. fine Himalayan sea salt

Crust Instructions: Add cashews to food processor and pulse till coarsely chopped. Add remaining ingredients and pulse until thoroughly combined. Press into greased 8″ round (or square) pan (I use Trader Joe’s coconut oil spray and wet my hands slightly to press the crust on the bottom and sides of the pan; you could use a spring-form pan, if desired). Chill in freezer until ready to fill.

Chocolate Coconut Ganache Filling Ingredients:

Filling Instructions: Bring coconut cream to low boil over medium-low heat. Empty chocolate chips into a large glass bowl. Pour boiling coconut cream over chips, let sit for 2-5 minutes, then whisk gently till smooth. Add vanilla and whisk gently until combined. Pour into chilled crust. Return to refrigerator to set and chill for at least 2 hours.

Top with any or all of the following: 

  • 1/4 – 1/2 c. coconut flakes
  • 1/4 c. roughly chopped, unsalted cashews
  • 1/2 – 1 c. whipped coconut cream (or whipped cream, if not concerned about being dairy-free)
  • 1/2 – 1 c. fresh berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, or a combination would be nice; or you could serve this on the side)

Serving Instructions: Serve chilled in small slices or petit-four sized squares. Just before serving, sprinkle with 1-2 tsp. coarse, pink, Himalayan sea salt (if you do this earlier, the salt may dissolve into the dessert). It looks especially nice on top of whipped cream or whipped coconut cream, since it’s a beautiful pink! Serves 12-24 (depending on how large you cut). Bonus: This recipe is gluten free and dairy free! Bon appetit!

Journey Journal: Days 154-158

This week, breakfast mostly consisted of either kiwi or mango, almonds, and coffee with coconut milk. Occasionally I’d have a bowl of GF Chex Cereal with coconut milk too. For the first week of GF-DF June, we did pretty well! And I didn’t really miss bread or flour that much at all.

Day 154: Monday, June 3, 2013

  • Lunch: Leftover Stirfry (teriyaki chicken with jasmine rice, carrots, mushrooms, daikon, and broccoli)
  • Dinner: Curried Beef + Rice + Roasted Broccoli and Cauliflower
  • Dessert: Coconut Milk “Ice Cream” with Banana, Peanut Butter, Cocoa Powder and Vanilla – so yummy!

Day 155: Tuesday, June 4, 2013

  • Lunch: Leftover Curry, Broccoli, and Cauliflower
  • Dinner:  Spinach Omelets
  • Dessert: Leftover Coconut Milk “Ice Cream”

Day 156: Wednesday, June 5, 2013

  • Breakfast: after last night’s dessert, I put the “ice cream” in the fridge instead of the freezer and ate it for breakfast–it was thick and creamy like chocolate pudding but healthy like a smoothie!
  • Lunch: Salad with Dried Dates, Slivered Almonds, Grape Tomatoes, and Celery Seed dressing
  • Dinner: Made Homemade Hummus with Spinach wrapped in corn tortillas

Day 157: Thursday, June 6, 2013

  • Lunch: Layered Corn Tortillas with Leftover Hummus, halved grape tomatoes, and sliced bell peppers
  • Dinner: Grilled Lemon Pepper Salmon + Coconut Lime Rice + Mango and Red Onion Salsa

Day 158: Friday, June 7, 2013

  • Lunch: Leftover Salmon + Coconut Lime Rice + Mango Avocado Salad
  • Dinner: Picked up a Rotisserie Chicken and made a quick batch of Warm Red Potato Salad (sometimes you just have to cheat)

Journey Journal: Days 152-153

Day 152: Saturday, June 1, 2013

Day One of Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free June! So far so good. Started with breakfast of a two-egg omelet with roasted tomatoes and garlic and caramelized onions, a glass of orange juice, and a press of coffee with coconut milk. During the morning, Bryan and some of our guy friends helped out on a yard work project at Frontline Missions. So to thank them for their hard work, we grilled them a lunch of teriyaki chicken thighs and shrimp, and grilled pineapple. I tossed together a spinach salad, and they shared a loaf of sourdough bread from Simple Gifts–Old World Artisan Breads (made by our friends Dave & Cathy Miller–I did not have a piece because I knew if I said “I’ll start gluten-free tomorrow” that tomorrow would never come). After lunch, the guys played a game and I took a nap. After my nap, I went on a 5 mile walk/run. It was just what I needed to get my mind ready for worship on Sunday. Then for dinner I heated up some leftover steak, caramelized a red onion, and threw it into some corn tortillas with some spinach. Then I cooked up a sweet potato with some garlic, thyme and tarragon.

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Day 153: Sunday, June 2, 2013

Grabbed a banana and some orange juice on our way out the door for church. For lunch, Bryan made us “breakfast tortillas” with scrambled eggs, sautéed spinach and mushrooms, salsa, and bacon in corn tortillas. Delicious! Did a workout video for about an hour. Then for dinner, we made a chicken teriyaki stir-fry with jasmine rice, carrots, mushrooms, daikon, and broccoli (I topped mine with a little bit of chopped cashews). We steeped a pot of Oolong tea and turned on some classical music as we listened to the raindrops and rumbles of thunder outside. A good ending to a good weekend.

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Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Month of June!

For the last several months, I’ve been weaning myself off of dairy products–milk, cheese, ice cream, butter–all of it! And I’ve felt tons better! (And I mean TONS!) For instance, normally, I have horrible seasonal allergies, and this year was supposed to the worst in three years for our region–but being off dairy, my body was able to fight the allergens and I only had to take an allergy pill about three times all season! On top of that, my stomach has felt better. I didn’t even realize I felt bad, but those couple of days that I would add it back in as a “test,” I definitely felt it. So, I have noticed a beneficial difference, and–as much as I can–I’m going to try to stay off of dairy for good.

I thought I would miss cooking with butter, but between olive oil and coconut oil, I really don’t miss that too much. I thought I would miss cheese, but I’ve noticed that I am enjoying the flavors of different fruits and vegetables and grains on their own without it. Having said that, the one thing I’ve missed the most is probably mac-n-cheese…but I only miss it when I see someone else eating it. So, I found this recipe that is pretty much like it but uses cauliflower, dijon, nutritional yeast and garlic for the flavor instead, and I used soy milk instead of milk. It’s not quite the same, but it’s enough the same that I don’t feel like I’m missing out…and it’s has quite a bit fewer calories than its original counterpart!

In the meantime, I’ve also had quite a few friends find out they are not only allergic to dairy but also allergic to gluten. So, rather than go to an allergist, I thought I’d run my own experiment. This month, I’m going to try to be dairy-free AND gluten-free, and see how it goes. Now, for the record, I have nothing against dairy or gluten or wheat, and I believe God gave us all things richly to enjoy! But, we also live in a fallen world–and that means our bodies have weaknesses, including allergies for some. Plus there is research that suggests the nutritional content of our food is significantly different from that of our Old Testament ancestors. Needless to say, I am one of those flawed, fallen creatures with a weakened body. No, I’m not sickly or anything. In fact, I’m pretty healthy, but I want to be as healthy as I can be and be a good steward with the body God’s given me–flawed as it may be. So, I’m trying to fuel it with the type of fuel it needs and runs best on (kind of like not putting gasoline in a Mercedes Benz when it needs diesel to run best).

One thing I’m learning is that having allergies doesn’t have to be a death sentence…or a death sentence to enjoying good food! I love pure, raw, unadulterated produce! As close to the earth as it can come! And I’m not sure I would have figured that out without experimenting with these foods apart from the common allergens. I’ve also learned that cooking for those with food allergies can be a means of hospitality and care for my brothers and sisters in Christ or as a means of showing love and grace to unbelievers I come in contact with.

So, I’m starting by compiling recipes! One list I came across that seems to have a good smattering of recipes in different categories like breakfast, breads, side dishes, desserts, etc., is from Gluten Free Goddess’s blog. It has quite an extensive assortment. Another thing I did was create a board on Pinterest for GF-DF (gluten-free, dairy-free). Feel free to follow it, as I’ll keep adding new recipes as I come across them.

Screen Shot 2013-06-02 at 10.22.48 PMJust look how colorful some of these recipes are!! Yum! I can’t wait to try them!

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And I found these helpful, snapshot, meal-planning ideas on Pinterest too:

Do you have a favorite gluten-free, dairy-free recipe? Share in the comments, please! And enjoy the journey!

Journey Journal: Days 52-53

Day 52: Thursday, February 21, 2013

Actually woke up rested and had time to fix a real, hearty breakfast this morning before work. Made an egg sandwich with sautéed onions and peppers. Lunch was with my dear friends Shannah and Annette. We met at Shannah’s and had a delicious lunch together, which turned out to be vegan without trying. I don’t think I could be vegan all the time, but occasionally, a meal like this is refreshing and rejuvenating.

picture courtesy of http://www.verybestbaking.com

I brought some pumpkin black bean soup that had fresh onions, peppers, garlic, cumin, and tomatoes in it, made with vegetable bouillon (similar to this recipe); Annette brought homemade bread made with olive oil, along with some homemade strawberry jam, and a fresh corn, red pepper, and carrot salad, using vegan mayonnaise and basil; and Shannah made baba ghanoush (roasted eggplant, tahini, parsley, lemon, garlic, etc.), which tasted amazing by itself or on the bread.

Bryan and I went for a walk after work before dinner and had a really good conversation about future direction, dreams, and trusting God. Dinner was a salmon patty on top of sautéed greens, with a dessert of almonds and blueberries topped with whipped coconut cream, and a square of dark chocolate. So yummy!

Day 53: Friday, February 22, 2013

Down another pound this week, which surprised me since it’s been such a busy week and I haven’t been able to make it to the gym as frequently. Fortunately, I was able to help with setup at church some, which always counts as a workout. Had a very light breakfast today of peanut butter toast–I was saving up for lunch with my friend Mandy. We went to Brick Street Cafe, and I splurged–cheesy vegetable quiche with creamy tomato dill soup, and half a slice of the sweet potato cake with cream cheese icing.  I’ve been off dairy for about a month now, so I wanted to try to eat some and see if it made a difference. (Verdict: I need to stay off dairy pretty much permanently–though the cake was definitely worth it for a special occasion!). Dinner was a bowl of the pumpkin black bean soup, a small sandwich with salmon, spinach, and a touch of mayo on hearty bread, and a side of green pepper strips! Looking forward to sleeping in tomorrow, followed by good coffee…and housecleaning!

Dairy-Free Chocolate Bars (and a Guilt-Free Chocolate Treat!)

The most important ingredient in chocolate is not milk, but cocoa! And the more cocoa the better, if you ask me. Dark chocolate comes in all shapes and sizes, but I prefer somewhere between 70% and 85%. That percentage is the percentage of cocoa to total ingredients. Since I’m trying to be dairy-free right now, I didn’t want to have to stop eating chocolate in general, so I’ve been doing a little research and here are a few bars that fit into this new-to-me lifestyle:

My Favorite Dairy-Free Dark Chocolate Bar!

My Husband’s Favorite! (I like it too!)

My Favorite Organic Brand! (I also love the Espresso Dark Chocolate Bar from Green & Black’s.)

And if you’re wanting a high-protein snack with a little chocolate kick, consider chopping up about 3 or 4 squares into these “Raw Cookie Dough Bites” from A Dash of Compassion‘s blog. The recipe in the link makes about 12 one-inch cookie dough balls. I used honey instead of agave nectar, and they were deliciously guilt-free! Plus, they make a great on-the-go breakfast, if you’re in a hurry, since they’re just nuts, oats, a little honey, cinnamon, a pinch of salt and some dark chocolate. Feel free to substitute raisins for the chocolate if you want them to be even more nutritious!

Journey Journal: Days 30-32

Day 30: Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Doing better with the no dairy routine. I’m either drinking my coffee black or having it with unsweetened almond or coconut milk. I think I prefer the coconut the best. Had a delicious, mixed greens salad with strawberries and slivered almonds for lunch, along with a whole grain wrap with turkey, lettuce, tomato, green peppers, avocado, and Polynesian dressing. I will definitely do that again! Had a good workout after work, followed by  a quick dinner of scrambled eggs, mushrooms and onions in a whole grain tortilla. Then went to shepherding group for a time of prayer and refreshment.

Day 31: Thursday, January 31, 2013

Well, after realizing the elliptical we bought was missing parts, waiting for the parts to come in, being told the parts are no longer available, and getting offered a different model with no extra charge, we finally got our elliptical delivered today. Unfortunately, it is much larger than I expected and looks hideous in literally every room of the house. So, we have to decide if we’re keeping it because we’ll use it, or if it needs to go and we need to keep looking. Meal choices were good today, but I’m feeling a little frustrated and foggy–will talk to my nutritionist tomorrow. In the meantime, Bryan made me curry for dinner with rice and green beans and field peas, and we watched Whisper of the Heart (animé), followed by hot tea and homemade oatmeal raisin cookies (watch the movie and you’ll understand the food choices). It was a good evening.

Day 32: Friday, February 1, 2013

Good day at work, and good workout at lunch with my friend Leigh. Battered some fish cubes in a combination of GF-flour and pecan meal, and served with steamed rice with coconut oil, and veggies. Actually really enjoying using coconut oil. And I like all the health benefits it offers!

My nutritionist responded and said that feeling fatigued and foggy is normal during a detox/cleanse (aka, taking herbs, drinking lots of water, and getting off of dairy). She said the side effects should go away within a week and to let her know if they don’t subside. She also recommended extra sleep and water, and Epsom salt baths. That makes me feel better! So, I’m not setting my alarm for Saturday morning–since we have no plans till after lunch…other than making homemade pancakes and fruit salad for an at-home brunch date.

Benefits of Coconut Oil

Since I’m trying to eliminate dairy from my diet, I needed to find a good replacement for butter, and I don’t really want to use too much vegetable oil, if I can help it. So, I was bought a jar of Trader Joe’s Coconut Oil this week and have started trying it. It was delicious in rice! And we tried it to cook pancakes this morning, and it worked really well too! Here are some health benefits I found:

Free Gluten-Free eCookbook!

Whether you have allergies or not, you will want to check out the 42 healthful recipes found in this resource! Thanks to my cousin Liz for letting me know about it! Contains Vegetarian Gluten-Free Meals, Gluten-Free Desserts, Gluten-Free Meals with Meat and Fish, and several that are Dairy-Free as well as Gluten-Free. Recipes for Gluten-Free Snacks, Salads and Breakfasts also included. Download a free copy of this 59 page Gluten-Free eCookbook today by clicking the link below!

http://www.favediets.com/master_images/FaveDiets/42-Easy-Gluten-Free-Recipes-Free-eCookbook.pdf

The recipe on page 21 has me dreaming of cooler weather: Raw Pumpkin Pie. There’s a recipe for Healthy Chicken Nuggets on page 30. And, personally, I can’t wait to try the Savory Quinoa Hash on page 50. Download and enjoy!

(Compliments of www.favediets.com. If a pop-up comes up asking you to enter your email address, you can just click “close” and continue to download. Only enter your email address if you want regular updates on FaveDiets’ site.)