Banana Pancakes (Paleo) with Vanilla Cashew Cream, Raspberries and Maple

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The other morning we ran out of milk, so instead of going to the shops to get more I decided to make some brekky with stuff we already had in the house. I’ve been trying to be a bit more creative with the healthier options lately, but I had a craving for pancakes, plus we had a fresh bunch of bananas (my favourite fruit) so banana pancakes it was!

Although I don’t follow any special diets, I have made these banana pancakes before and turns out they are Paleo. These are so easy to whip up, with only 2 ingredients…. bananas and eggs! (and a few add-ins to make them tastier and fluffier!). These lovelies remind me of banana fritters but more pancake-y (ha), and while they don’t beat the usual pancakes they are pretty tasty!!

I have only ever made cashew cream once, and that is in my Peppermint Slice (the healthy version), and today I wanted to be a bit healthier and makeover the usual pancake toppings of cream or icecream. And it was pretty good. I was fairly skeptical about it being too bland, but nothing a bit of vanilla and a splash of maple syrup couldn’t fix! To top it off I added a little extra drizzle of maple syrup (the real stuff!!) and some raspberries. (YUM)

Here’s how….

Banana Pancakes (Paleo) with Vanilla Cashew Cream, Raspberries and Maple

Pancake recipe found on Our Best Bites
Cashew Cream adapted from The Healthy Chef

BANANA PANCAKES

1 large banana, mashed well

2 eggs, beaten
1/2 tsp of baking powder
a pinch of cinnamon
2 tsp vanilla extract
Mash all the ingredients together in a bowl. I actually used a hand held stick blender to get the batter fluffy and smooth. Cook in a small frypan with some coconut oil. These pancakes will be a bit fragile so it may take a little bit longer to cook on one side before flipping!

VANILLA CASHEW CREAM

1 cup of cashews, soaked

1 cup of water, plus extra for soaking
Vanilla extract/paste, to your liking
a small drizzle of pure maple syrup, optional (But I find it adds a bit of flavour, not much is needed!)
Place cashews in a saucepan with water (enough to cover the cashews) and boil for 15 minutes- if you want to get this done instantly… otherwise… soak cashews in water for 4 hours or overnight if preparing ahead.
Place all ingredients into a bowl and blend with a stick blender, or place in a food processor until smooth.

ASSEMBLY AND TOPPINGS

Pancake….Cream….Rasberries…Pancake… and so on to create a stack! Or assemble however you wish!
Other toppings that would be lovely are…. banana slices, strawberries, mango, kiwi fruit or blueberries, whole fruit jams, stewed fruit, fruit puree or coulis.
You could also add protein powder (maybe vanilla, chocolate or unflavoured) to add an extra kick and flavour!
Other options are adding different spices or cacao/cocoa to the pancakes, mix in or sprinkle with chia seeds, desiccated/shredded coconut, LSA or buckinis!
Get creative a make up your own combinations!!

Eat, share and enjoy,

Kirra xo

Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Balls

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I feel a bit silly making this blog and then not go post for like 4 months!! But, uni is a busy busy thing and that’s just what happens I suppose!! In saying this, I did actually make an effort today to make a new recipe post! (yay!). I felt a bit creative and decide to get my healthy bake on, wanting something yummy and ‘chocolatey’ (not a word but never mind that!), which is pretty much how I feel everytime I bake! Drawing some inspiration from Wholefood Simply’s Choc Peanut Butter Bars, I decided I would whip up some chocolate peanut butter balls of some sort. And I had this protein powder I wanted to use in something, so I hoped to chuck a bit of that in somewhere! Hope you enjoy this recipe! Try it for yourselves!! 🙂 P.s. I will try to keep up with my blog as I do love spreading my baking love!! (even though not many people probably read my blog!! Thanks to those who do!!! xoxo)

Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Balls

Recipe Adapted from Wholefood Simply‘s Choc Peanut Butter Bars (yuuuum)
1 1/2 cups desiccated coconut
1 1/2 cups dried pitted dates (or probably half if using medjool dates, not sure)
1/2 cup + 1 tbsp natural peanut butter (I used crunchy- can’t beat crunchy peanut butter!!)
3 tbsp cocoa
2 tbsp chocolate protein powder of your choice (I used a pea protein powder)
a pinch of salt
2 tsp vanilla extract
chia seeds, to roll the protein balls in
Blend everything except the dates in a blender. Gradually add a few dates at a time until all are blended through. You may need to add more dry or wet ingredients to get a texture that binds together when pressed, just experiment really!! As long as it tastes nice for you and you can easily roll them into balls. Roll into balls, whatever size you’d like them to be, mine were about 1/2 a tablespoon size roughly. Roll in chia seeds, more coconut, cocoa or anything you like!! You could even try cacao nibs!

Eat, share and enjoy,

Kirra xo

Peppermint Slice (The healthy version)

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When discovered my secretly- ‘good’ -for-you version of caramel slice I was a little bit excited. Healthy AND yum. So I experimented some more, with inspiration from  Ascension Kitchen  once again (Where I discovered the raw caramel slice) and before you knew it, my own version of a raw peppermint slice was complete.

I made this a couple of weeks back, but because I am started up uni again, I haven’t had time to sit down and upload some more recipes. So i’m just doing it now! 🙂

I’d say this is quite a rich slice, very minty, but a good balance with the chocolate topping. It’s smooth and creamy, with the cashew filling, and has nice crumbly base that is to die for. Except you won’t die from this slice, not from a heart attack anyway, as this is another awesomely healthy slice. om nom nom.

Peppermint Slice (The healthy version)

(Adapted experimentally from:  Ascension Kitchen’s Raw Chocolate Peppermint Slice)

BASE

1/2 cup white flour (or another substitute of your choice, just make it up!!)
1/4 cup cocoa
1 cup cashews (or other nuts)
20 dates (less probably if using medjool date- they’re a bit juicier)
3 tablespoons coconut oil
1/4 cup desiccated coconut
1/4 cup oats
1 tsp vanilla extract

MINT CASHEW CREAM FILLING

1 cup of cashew (soaked overnight in water- put in covered bowl in fridge)
1/4 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste/extract
Peppermint extract/flavouring, to taste

CHOCOLATE TOPPING (same as the caramel slice!)

1/2 cup maple syrup (or other)
2/3 cup coconut butter, melted
4 tablespoons of cocoa
Vanilla, to taste
For the crust: Place dry ingredients into a food processor and blend until floury and combined. Add in coconut butter and vanilla and blend to combine also. Finally, gradually add in dates and process again in the food processor. Stop and test the base-  it should be okay when it looks like it has come together to form a crumble like consistency, but sticks together at the touch.
Press into a lined slice tin and refrigerate/freeze until firm.
For the filling: place all ingredients into the food processor or use a hand held stick blender and blend until smooth. Pour onto base and set in fridge/freezer as with base.
For the topping: Again! all in a food processor or blend with a stick blender until just smooth. Spread onto refrigerated slice and set.
Store in the fridge and cut into squares to enjoy.
There you go! Another healthy twist on a yummy slice!
Eat, share and enjoy,
Kirra xo

Secretly-‘Good’-For-You Caramel Slice

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I enjoy exercising and healthy eating, and I work really hard at that. Saying this though, I enjoy baking sweet things probably a bit more, even if it does stress me out at times, because  I haven’t ‘eaten properly’ or in a more positive light ‘indulged in something’- No regrets though! I love good old fashioned baking (and the sweetness that comes with it!!), but I also like to try and recreate yummy things, with a lighter twist, just to have SOME healthier options!

I have been looking on the internet at ‘raw’ cooking and it’s a bit overwhelming. It requires a lot of stuff I don’t have, or probably couldn’t afford, for the amount of cooking I do. But I really wanted to give it a crack. I made caramel slice recently so I thought ‘maybe I could make it healthier??’ And people, it has been done!!  I went recipe hunting for ‘raw caramel slice’ and came across some terrific blogs/sites such as This Rawsome Vegan LifeTegan Westra and Ascension Kitchen (I hope to learn from their wholesome ways of baking!!!) and each version of their caramel goodness looked amazing.

I was able to come up with my own version of Caramel slice, looking at the ingredients I had and comparing them to other recipes.  I would say my version’s raw, but I bent the rules and added flour and oats… I and don’t think that’s truly raw (I don’t know the rules!).. but I am experimenting!!

I was so surprised with how my slice turned out. The flavours are so delectably rich, and smooth and creamy, you wouldn’t even know it’s a good-for-you type of slice! (plus, no bake!! Perfect for heatwaves in Australia, when using the oven is just not going to happen!)

I’ll stop this big spill here and give you the lowdown on how to make my version of this lovely stuff.

Here it is!!! (are you excited?!)

Secretly-‘Good’-For-You Caramel Slice

(Adapted experimentally from: This Rawsome Vegan Life’s Chocolate Cream Caramel BarsTegan Westra’s Raw Caramel Slice and Ascension Kitchen’s Raw Chocolate Caramel Slice)

BASE

1/2 cup white flour (or another substitute of your choice, just make it up!!)
1/2 cup almonds
3/4 cup dates
2 tablespoons  coconut butter* (plus a bit extra if base is slightly dry)
1/4 cup dessicated coconut
1/4 cup oats
1 tsp vanilla extract

CARAMEL FILLING

1 cup of cashew butter** (I followed this recipe from The Healthy Foodie here, as I had never made it before!!)
1/2 cup coconut butter
2/3 cup pitted dates (I used pitted sayer dates?? Had them in the cupboard, but many recipes call for medjool dates, I wouldn’t know the difference, ha! All about experimenting!)
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste/extract
1 tablespoon of maple syrup (or another sweetener e.g. honey, agave syrup etc)

CHOCOLATE TOPPING

Side Note: Okay I have to admit, I adapted this after a fail… I included cashew butter in this initially, only to find in turn in a thick  lump of chocolately mess, separated from most of the oil, so I omitted the cashew butter the second time around and the problem was solved, apart from the minor separation of the oil when it set in the fridge but hey, it tastes/looks pretty good for a first go!!
1/2 cup maple syrup (or other)
2/3 cup coconut butter, melted
4 tablespoons of cocoa
Vanilla, to taste
For the crust: Place dry ingredients into a food processor and blend until floury and combined. Add in coconut butter and vanilla and blend to combine also. Finally, gradually add in dates and process again in the food processor. Stop and test the base-  it should be okay when it looks like it has come together to form a crumble like consistency, but sticks together at the touch.
Press into a lined slice tin and refrigerate until firm (or freeze for a while then transfer to the fridge to if you’re impatient like me!!) 
For the filling: place all ingredients into the food processor or use a hand held ‘whizz stick’ as I call them ( more commonly known as a held food processor/puree/blender stick) to blend all ingredients until smooth. Pour onto base and set in fridge/freezer as with base.
For the topping: Again! all in a food processor/use a whizz stick to blend. Do this until just smooth I as think if I continued it may a separated more. Spread onto refrigerated slice and set.
Store in the fridge and cut into squares to enjoy.
Experiment and try for yourself, and keep posted, I hope to make more of these ‘good-for-you’ slices/other yummy healthy things!! 🙂
Eat, share and enjoy,
Kirra xo
NOTES:
* My coconut butter was melted, due to hot weather. May/may not make a difference in consistency, probably not, as you’ll refrigerate anyway.
** whole cashews take up more space in a measuring cup than the butter form does, so you may need extra to make the full cup, but don’t stress too much if you only have the cup full of cashews as is, it’s all about not being too strict on measurements here!