Middle Eastern Lentils with Roasted Cauliflower, Sweet Potatoes & Dukkah

Middle-Eastern Lentils with Roasted Cauliflower, Sweet Potatoes & Dukkah

Middle Eastern Lentils with Roasted Cauliflower, Sweet Potatoes & Dukkah

Apologies again for the irregular posting. As I mentioned last time, I’m away in Geneva this month interning so have a lot going on. I’m missing sharing recipes with you (and my kitchen of course!) but I’m having a great time here and learning lots.

Olives et al "Love a Dukkah" hamper Today I want to introduce you to Olives et al. This British company was founded by a young couple who went on an adventure through the Mediterranean, Middle East and North Africa and brought back the flavours, ingredients and recipes they discovered. They very kindly sent me one of their gorgeous“Love a Dukkah” hampers, packed with goodies to try. Included in the hamper were:

Olive Oil – Egyptian Style Spiced Dukkah Aromatic Rub – Moroccan Inspired Tapenade Marocaine with Preserved Lemons- Sunshine Rosemary & Garlic Olives – Very Deli Herbed & Pitted Olives

This would make a lovely present for a fellow foodie friend.

Olives et al Dukkah

I’ll be sharing another recipe I made using one of the ingredients soon but today is all about the dukkah.

Have you tried it yet?

If you’re unfamiliar with it here’s a little info for you. “Dukkah” originates in Egypt and comes from the Arabic word “to pound”. Makes sense really since it’s made from toasted and crushed nuts, seeds and spices. Olives Et Al makes theirs from roasted almonds, hazelnuts, cumin, coriander, sesame and spices which they roast and grind themselves. It’s often served before a meal – everyone sits around dipping hunks of bread into olive oil, then into a plate of dukkah before munching.

I’ve been using dukkah in my cooking for a while- I love it sprinkled on top of a chickpea flour pancake with grilled peppers and onions, or over salad, and you might have caught my recipe for Roasted Carrot Hummus with Dukkah in the Spring edition of Fresh Vegan magazine

Roasted Cauliflower and Sweet Potatoes

When you thought vegetables simply roasted in coconut oil with s+p couldn’t get any better- add dukkah and you’ve got something even more magical!

Middle Eastern Lentils with Roasted Cauliflower, Sweet Potatoes & Dukkah

I especially adore roasted cauliflower  at the moment, and sweet potatoes of course never need any justification. For a complete meal, I served them on a bed of simple Middle Eastern lentils  and chard and sprinkled it all generously with the dukkah. It really is a wonderful ingredient to add that extra layer of flavour to a dish

Middle Eastern Lentils with Roasted Cauliflower, Sweet Potatoes & Dukkah

Middle-Eastern Lentils with Roasted Cauliflower, Sweet Potatoes & Dukkah
Serves 4
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For the vegetables
  1. 1 Small head of cauliflower, broken into florets
  2. 2 Small sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
  3. 2 Tbsp Coconut oil, melted
For the lentils
  1. 1/2 Tbsp Coconut oil/ olive oil
  2. 1 Onion, diced
  3. 2 Cloves of garlic, minced
  4. 1 tsp Ground cumin
  5. 1/2 tsp Cinnamon
  6. 1/2 tsp All spice
  7. 1/2 C Puy lentils (Green are also fine but watch the cooking time as they can get mushy)
  8. 1 to 1-1/2C Water
  9. 1/2 tsp Salt
  10. 1/2 Bunch swiss chard OR kale, chopped ( approx 2 C)
  11. 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  12. Pepper
  13. Dukkah to serve
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 200C/400F.
  2. Toss the sweet potato and cauliflower in the melted coconut oil and spread in a single layer in a roasting dish.
  3. Cook for 20-30 minutes, until the vegetables are firm but tender and the cauliflower is getting nice and crisp around the edges.
  4. Meanwhile, warm the remaining coconut/olive oil in a pan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes. Add the garlic and spice and cook for a further minute, stirring. Add the lentils and water (start with the lower amount and add more if necessary).
  5. Bring to a boil, turn the heat down, cover and simmer for 15 minutes.
  6. Add the chard/kale and salt and cook for a further 5 minutes approx, until the lentils are cooked, greens are wilted and most of the water has been absorbed. Add the lemon juice and pepper to taste. Check for seasoning.
  7. Remove the lentils to a serving dish, top with the roasted vegetables and sprinkle generously with dukkah.
  8. Serve dukkah on the side so individuals can add more to their own serving.
Coconut and Berries http://www.coconutandberries.com/

Middle Eastern Lentils with Roasted Cauliflower, Sweet Potatoes & Dukkah

Have a browse on the Olives et al website, I’m sure you’ll find something which takes your fancy. I’ve got my eye on their new Smoky Chipotle Chili Olives and the gorgeous olive wood dishes to serve them in. As well as an impressive, award-winning range of handcrafted gourmet foods, Olives et al has delis in Sturminster Newton and Poundbury, Dorset, together with its very own café offering global cuisine (with veg options!)

How do/would you use dukkah?

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Raw Caramel Apple Swirl Smoothie

Raw Caramel Apple Swirl Smoothie

Raw Caramel Apple Swirl Smoothie

My birthday fell during a particularly busy week for me this year- last week, when I was getting myself organized to go off to Geneva for a month-long internship (That’s where I am now!). I was actually away the previous week too so I was rather frantically trying to get caught up on work and life as well as get prepared for the next trip.

I don’t usually do a lot for my birthday anyway but this year I didn’t even have the time to make a cake! Instead, I celebrated by drinking this rather delicious (and slightly extravagant) smoothie for breakfast.

Raw Caramel Apple Swirl Smoothie

In my last post I told you about my very happy recent discovery of Windy City Organics products and used their Rawmio Chocolate Hazelnut Spread in my raw cookie recipe. Today’s recipe features one of their Dastony nut butters. Just like the Rawmio spreads these are divine! What really makes them stand out is how amazingly smooth they are, far more so than any other nut butter I’ve had.

Raw Caramel Apple Swirl Smoothie

I knew my birthday smoothie had to be a little over-the-top and, after I’d ruled out chocolate, (as I’d just finished my Raw Chocolate-Hazelnut Thumbprints), I hit on caramel as a delicious and  still decadent alternative. 

This caramel is ridiculously good folks! It makes more than you “need” for the smoothie* but a good portion of it somehow disappeared when making it….

I opted to use naturally caramel-ly dates and the beautiful Dastony almond butter to make it lusciously rich and sweet, enhanced with just a few other simple ingredients.

I drizzled it all over my smoothie glass and then over the top of the frosty drink to get a little in every sip and give it its name- “Raw Caramel Apple Swirl Smoothie”.

*If you do have extra caramel it’s fantastic as a dip for fruit, drizzled on pancakes or ice cream, or you could try my Raw Chocolate-Hazelnut Strawberry Jam Thumbprints substituting this caramel for the raw strawberry jam. 

Raw Caramel Apple Swirl Smoothie

Raw Caramel Apple Swirl Smoothie
Serves 1
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Raw Caramel
  1. 5 Medjool dates, pitted and chopped
  2. 1 Tbsp Coconut nectar
  3. 2 Tbsp Raw almond butter
  4. 1 tsp Vanilla extract
  5. 1/8 tsp Salt
  6. 1/3 C- 1/2 C Almond milk
Smoothie
  1. 1 Large/ 2 Medium apple (s), cored, chopped and frozen
  2. 3/4 C- 1 C Almond milk
  3. 1 Tbsp Raw almond butter
  4. 2 Medjool dates, pitted and chopped
  5. 1/2 tsp Vanilla extract
  6. 1/4 tsp Cinnamon
  7. 1 Tbsp Lucuma
Instructions
  1. For the caramel, blend all the ingredients in a high-powered blender, scraping the sides down until completely smooth. Soak your dates in water in advance to soften them if necessary (I used my Tribest personal blender and didn't need to.
  2. Set aside.
For the smoothie
  1. Blend together all the ingredients in a blender.
To serve
  1. Generously drizzle some of the caramel all around the inside of one or two glasses (I used a squeeze bottle). Pour in the smoothie and drizzle with extra caramel.
Coconut and Berries http://www.coconutandberries.com/

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Raw Chocolate-Hazelnut Strawberry Jam Thumbprints

Raw Chocolate-Hazelnut Strawberry Jam Thumbprints


Raw Chocolate-Hazelnut Strawberry Jam Thumbprints

Cookie time! It’s been weeks since I shared a cookie recipe here. I know I said I’m typically more of a muffin girl, but the truth is I love them both! And these Raw Chocolate-Hazelnut Strawberry Jam Thumbprints definitely got me excited about cookies.

Rawmio Chocolate Hazelnut Butter

I recently got the chance to try a few products made by Windy City Organics, a US company specializing in raw, vegan and organic products. You may have heard of Rawmio and Dastony before, two brands of raw nut butters, and if you haven’t been lucky enough to have tried them yet you’ll just have to believe me when I say these are the best nut butters EVER.

They’re so so smooth, it’s hard to believe they’re raw. The Rawmio Chocolate Hazelnut Butter is honestly like liquid silk! Rawmio actually make another product called “Rawmio Hazelnut Silk”, which is White Chocolate Hazelnut Butter, so I can’t even imagine how heavenly that one must be. 

I’ve got another recipe coming up using one of the Dastony nut butters…but for this recipe I used the Rawmio Chocolate Hazelnut Butter.

Raw Strawberry Date Jam

Who doesn’t love strawberries and chocolate together?!

I decided to make a raw strawberry jam to fill my little chocolat-ey cookies, but you could use your favourite berries, or, if you’re not fussed about keeping them raw, you could simply use a good-quality jam from a jar. You might have tried raw jam made with chia seeds before and I’ve made my own blackberry version before. I made this one smooth and thick rather than chunky-style though by blending the berries with the chia seeds and adding dates to thicken it further and add that jammy sweetness.

Raw Chocolate-Hazelnut Strawberry Jam Thumbprints

These cookies are super fudgy and quite different to your typical nut/date based raw cookie. I based them on my Raw Berry Cream Brownies (my most popular recipe to date!), using coconut flour as the base which gives them their unique texture.

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Hope you enjoy!

Raw Chocolate-Hazelnut Strawberry Jam Thumbprints
Serves 6
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Raw Strawberry Jam
  1. 5-6 Medjool Dates, pitted and diced
  2. 1 Tbsp Lemon juice
  3. 1 C Strawberries, washed, hulled and diced
  4. 1 Tbsp Chia seeds
  5. 1/2 tsp Vanilla extract (optional)
  6. Pinch of salt
Raw Chocolate-Hazelnut Cookies
  1. 1/4 C Rawmio Chocolate Hazelnut Butter (Original), melted
  2. 2 Tbsp Coconut sugar
  3. 3-4 Tbsp Almond milk
  4. 1 Tbsp Ground flax
  5. 1/16 tsp Salt
  6. 1/4C + 1 Tbsp Coconut flour
  7. 2 Tbsp Almond flour/ground blanched almonds
  8. 1/2 Tbsp Raw cacao
Instructions
  1. Make the strawberry jam first. Blend together all your ingredients in a high speed blender until perfectly smooth. You may need to scrape down the sides several times to get everything incorporated. Refrigerate while you make the cookies.
  2. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the chocolate hazelnut butter, coconut sugar, almond milk, flax and salt. (To melt the chocolate hazelnut butter, which is solid at room temperature, place the jar in a bowl of hot water or in a dehydrator for a few minutes).
  3. Stir together the remaining ingredients in another bowl.
  4. Add wet to dry and stir together to combine well. It will be very thick but shouldn't be dry. If it is, add almond milk 1 tsp at a time until desired consistency is reached.
  5. Divide the mixture into 6, roll into balls and flattened with the palm of your hand. Use your thumb to make small indentations in each of the cookies and fill with a small amount of the strawberry jam.
  6. Drizzle with more Rawmio chocolate hazelnut butter for extra deliciousness!
  7. Store in the fridge.
Notes
  1. If you are using another brand or homemade chocolate hazelnut butter it will likely be much thicker than Rawmio, and more or less sweet so you may need to adjust the amounts of almond milk and coconut sugar accordingly.
Coconut and Berries http://www.coconutandberries.com/
 

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 US folk, you can buy Rawmio products here. You can also buy direct from Windy City Organics- just get in touch for a shipping quote. I gather they’re also working on getting more stockists worldwide so fingers crossed that happens soon!

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Vegan Persian Frittata

Vegan Persian Frittata

Vegan Persian Frittata

Writing my “All about Chickpea Flour” post earlier this week gave me the chance to delve through my recipe archives and rediscover some forgotten favourites. I’m constantly creating new recipes so I don’t often repeat old ones, despite how successful they are.  Amongst the recipes I highlighted were my Tofu Omelettes (Pesto-Ricotta with Cherry Tomatoes) and I couldn’t get the idea of making something similar out of my head. 

I’ve made vegan frittatas before, including my Roasted Vegetable one, but thought I’d add a little bit of a Middle Eastern twist this time as it’s been a long time since I’ve experimented with those flavours.

Vegan Persian Frittata

I feel like recipes with foreign names often sound more complicated than they necessarily are and frittatas are definitely one of them, even vegan-style! I use a simple base of tofu and chickpea flour which I spiked with ginger, garlic and fresh herbs. I sprinkled it generously with tangy, lemony sumac for a little extra jazziness.

You can either bake the frittata in the oven or cook it on the stovetop if you don’t have an oven-proof pan. 

Vegan Persian Frittata

Vegan Persian Frittata
Serves 4
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Ingredients
  1. 1 Tbsp Olive oil
  2. 1 Onion, chopped
  3. 1 Clove of garlic, minced
  4. 2" Fresh ginger, peeled and minced/grated
  5. 1 Large courgette OR 2 small, sliced into half moons.
  6. 1 350g/12oz pkg Silken tofu
  7. 2 Tbsp Nutritional yeast
  8. 1 Tbsp Olive oil
  9. 1/3 C Almond milk
  10. 1/4 tsp Turmeric
  11. 1/2 tsp Black salt (This gives it the "eggy" taste. Highly recommended)
  12. 1/2 C Chickpea flour
  13. 1 Tbsp Arrowroot
  14. Salt and pepper to taste
  15. Fresh parsley
  16. Sumac
Instructions
  1. Warm the olive oil in a large pan (oven-proof if baking)over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes until soft.
  2. Add the garlic and ginger and continue to cook for another minute, stirring.
  3. Add the courgette and cook for a further 8-10 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, blend the silken tofu through to the black salt in a blender. Add the chickpea flour, arrowroot and salt and pepper and blend briefly again.
  5. Fold in a handful of chopped parsley.
  6. Spread the vegetables evenly in the pan and pour the frittata batter over, spreading with a spatula so it is evenly distributed.
  7. If cooking on the stovetop (this is what I did) cook over medium heat for 15 minutes. Carefully slide onto a plate, flip the frittata and cook the reverse side for a further 15 minutes. It should be browned and firm to the touch.
  8. Alternatively, place the pan in the oven and bake for approx 30 minutes at 180C/350F
  9. Sprinkle liberally with sumac and fresh parsley to serve.
Coconut and Berries http://www.coconutandberries.com/

Vegan Persian Frittata

 For a light dinner, I served the frittata with a green salad and to carry on the Middle-Eastern feel I made another salad with beetroot and pomegranate. This one is a little sweet, a little tangy and a little spicy! It would be a tasty addition to a full-on Middle Eastern feast.

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Beetroot-Pomegranate Salad
Serves 4
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Ingredients
  1. 3-4 Medium beetroot
  2. 3/4 C Pomegranate arils
  3. 1/8 tsp Chili flakes
  4. 1 Tbsp Pomegranate molasses
  5. 2 Tbsp Lemon juice
  6. 1/2 Tbsp Olive oil
  7. Salt and pepper, to taste
  8. 1/2 C Chopped fresh parsley OR coriander
Instructions
  1. Scrub the beetroot, cut off the greens, wrap loosely in tin foil and bake at 200C/400F for 45 mins-1 hour, until very soft.
  2. When cool enough to handle, rub the skins off with your fingers. They should come off easily if the beetroot is fully cooked.
  3. Dice the beetroot and add to a bowl with the pomegranate arils. Mix the chili flakes through to the salt and pepper in a small bowl/jar. Pour the dressing over the salad and stir through the fresh herbs.
Coconut and Berries http://www.coconutandberries.com/
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Vibrant Life Cleanse Program & Cookbook

"The Fresh Way"- Vibrant Life Cleanse Program & Cookbook

You may remember me talking about a 3-day juice cleanse I did back in January. That was my first insight into the world of cleansing and juicing and I loved it!

Vibrant Life Cleanse Program & Cookbook

Since then I’ve been wanting to incorporate more fresh juice into my diet, the  snag being I don’t have a juicer and purchasing fresh pressed juice can be really expensive. BUT, turns out I could have been juicing at home all this time even without a juicer! I recently got a copy of Leanne Vogel of The Healthful Pursuit‘s new Vibrant Life Cleanse Program & e-Cookbook which taught me I could just make juice with my blender and strain it through a fine sieve or nut milk bag. Revolutionary I tell you!

It’s a beautiful book with 55+ original juice and smoothie recipes, each with its own gorgeous picture,  7-, 9- and 11-day cleanse programs, plus all the tools you need to cleanse with success (meal plans, shopping lists, other resources). 

Sample Cleanse- Vibrant Life Cleanse Program & Cookbook

My concern going into the previous cleanse I did was being hungry but as you can see from the example above, you’ve got 6 large juices a day, including a nourishing nut milk so you’ll be flooding your body with nutrients and in no way starving!

I haven’t had the chance to follow a cleanse program from the book yet but I definitely hope to when I can take some time off cooking. I have tried a few of the recipes and been super impressed. 

The book’s divided into smoothies and juices, all with fabulous names I might add- who wouldn’t want to drink a “Sangria Sunset” juice? Or a “Dark Chocolate Fudge” or “Coco Cabana” smoothie?! 

As I was so excited about the prospect of being able to make my own juice I’ve only tried recipes from that section so far. 

"The Fresh Way"- Vibrant Life Cleanse Program & Cookbook

First up was “The Fresh Way” juice. A delightful and indeed  super “fresh” tasting grapefruit, cucumber, ginger and greens combo.

"Creamsicle Hemp"- Vibrant Life Cleanse Program & Cookbook

Next, I opted for one of the “Nourishing Milks”. Leanne incorporates these into the cleanses as a great way to add some healthy fats and a little extra energy into your diet during this time. I was already a fan of nut milk but especially love the fresh flavours included in the book. 

This was the “Creamsicle Hemp”. A very creamy, slightly sweet milk with a hint of orange. 

"Puckered Beet"- Vibrant Life Cleanse Program & Cookbook

I think juices with beetroot in will always be my favourite. The “Puckered Beet” was an immediate must-try for me and it didn’t disappoint. Isn’t that deep purple beautiful? You can tell it’s brimming with goodness just looking at it! 

Leanne has kindly allowed me to share this recipe with  you.  Hope you like it as much as me.

(N.b. Pictures are all my own)

“Puckered Beet” Juice
Serves 1
Beets add a brilliant red glow to just about all juices and smoothies. If deep red is your favourite colour and just makes you feel good, add a bit of beet into everything! Your liver will thank you.
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Prep Time
5 min
Prep Time
5 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 ½ (300 grams) large beets
  2. 1 orange
  3. 1 lemon, skin removed
  4. 1 bunch beet greens
Instructions
  1. Using your juicer, juice ingredients in the order they are listed.
  2. Transfer to a glass and serve immediately.
  3. To store:pour into a glass container and keep in the fridge for 1-2 days. Alternatively, pour into a plastic container and freeze for up to 1 month.
Coconut and Berries http://www.coconutandberries.com/
 So, whether:

1.  You’re already a juicer,

2. You haven’t juiced before but you’d love to try a cleanse, or

3. You want to incorporate a juice or smoothie a day into your daily routine,

The Vibrant Life Cleanse Program & Cookbook has got everything you need to safely guide you and bring you the results you’re hoping for. 

This book has really got me excited about smoothies and juices and I can’t wait to delve into it more. 

Click here to view more details , or 

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One final thing! Starting TODAY (April 1st), Leanne and her team are running 1 giveaway/week for 8 weeks to celebrate the book’s launch . Great prizes up for grabs including blenders, juicers, dehydrators, high-tech kettles and more! Here’s the full schedule

(Disclaimer:  I was provided with a free copy of this ebook for review purposes but, as always with my reviews, my opinions are entirely my own and I truly love this book! This post also contains affiliate links: if you choose to buy this ebook using one of my links, i do make a small profit. Thanks in advance for your support!)

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