Tempting Fudge “Ice Cream” with Magical Peanut Butter Shell

Posted by on August 19, 2010 | 31 Comments

Ah, the things I do to taste the latest dairy-free foods. Cooler box packed into the car, we headed down to Reno, and the nearest Whole Foods. Of course, the trip to a town that is 45 minutes (and an “over-the-mountain” trip) away was about more than Whole Foods, we had errands to run. But I never pass up the chance to stop in to buy a few things since we visit less than once a month.

On this trip, I opted to pick up some hemp-based ice cream. I was leary when I first heard about it, but it seems to be getting rave reviews, even from dairy-consuming columnists. We decided to get two pints, and I let my husband pick. He chose Mint-Chip (yes!) and Chocolate Fudge (Really? Are you sure you don’t want the Vanilla Bean?).

Tempt Dairy-Free Hemp Ice Cream

After silently whining about his choice for a few minutes, I realized I could dress up the chocolate ice cream with … hmmm, some peanut butter perhaps?

As it turned out, this stuff tastes pretty awesome, so I really didn’t need a topping. It has a rich fudgsicle flavor with a pleasant chocolate fudge ribbon throughout. Ours did melt slightly in transit, so I think it was more hard packed than a freshly purchased pint. But even so, not the least bit of ice … this stuff was truly dense and rich!

Of course, a hard-shell topping of sweet peanut butter never hurts, and this combo was magically delicious …

Chocolate Fudge Temp Dairy-Free Hemp Ice Cream with Peanut Butter Magical Shell

Alisa’s Magical Peanut Butter Shell

Recipe adapted from my book, Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook.

This is a mini-version of a recipe in my book. I make little batches most of the time because I always forget about leftoveres like this. If you opt to make more, it should actually keep on the counter for a couple of days. If you store it in the fridge, simply reheat to melt when ready to use.

This recipe is Vegan, Dairy-Free, Egg-Free, Gluten-Free, Soy-Free, optionally Peanut- and Nut-Free, and optionally Refined Sugar-Free.

  • 2 Teaspoons Creamy Peanut Butter or SunButter (for nut-free)
  • 1.5 Teaspoons Coconut Oil
  • 1 Tablespoon Powdered Sugar or Powdered Coconut Sugar (I ground coconut sugar in my spice grinder)
  • Few Drops of Vanilla Extract (optional)
  • Tiny pinch of salt (omit if using salted PB or SunButter)

In a small dish, melt together the peanut butter or SunButter and the coconut oil (I just place them in the microwave for 10 to 15 seconds if needed). With a fork, whisk in the sugar, vanilla, and salt, if using.

Scoop ice cream, drizzle PB mixture overtop. Watch the magic happen.

Yields enough for 2 ice cream sundaes

Chocolate Fudge Temp Dairy-Free Hemp Ice Cream with Peanut Butter Magical Shell

Peanut Butter Truffles and Cheap PB Cup Molds

Posted by on August 6, 2010 | 35 Comments

This past week I was honored to do a guest post on Maggie’s blog, Say Yes to Salad, in honor of her much-anticipated marriage. I chose to write about the peanut butter truffles we made by hand (about 300 of them!) for the favor at a good friend’s wedding.

This post is related to that post, but there’s a little more to it. First, I wanted to add that recipe to my personal online blog collection (it is also in my book, Go Dairy Free, for those of you who have it). The recipe is below, Enjoy! Second, I wanted to share a new fun and “I don’t care what my husband says” cheap baking / un-baking item.

You see, I have wanted some little candy molds for a while, and was hoping to find some silicone ones because they are so darn easy. So when I spotted a dozen of these gems at Cost Plus World Market for just $2.49, I tossed them without hesitation into our basket …

candy molds

They are mini-muffin / cupcake cups. An application which I may use them for in the future, but they also make perfect candy molds, particularly for turning those peanut butter truffles into peanut butter cups …

PB Truffle Cups

As mentioned in Maggie’s post, my husband and I have been together for over 14 years now, and we grow closer each day. In fact, for almost all of those years, we have not only lived together, we also work together! Yes, we are rarely apart. He is actually just up the stairs typing away on his computer now. People often wonder how we do it. It’s easy … we still act like kids. We call each other names, joke around, play argue … keeping it light lets us vent while having fun. So I have a point with this.

When I put those little muffin cups into our basket, the following conversation ensued:

Husband – What are those?!!

Alisa – Muffin cups that I can use as candy molds. They’re only $2.49.

Husband – $2.49 for those? That’s ridiculous … way too much. Husband proceeds to remove molds from basket and put them back on the shelf. Snickering of course.

Alisa – But I need them!

We continue on through the store, and I sneak the molds back in the basket when he isn’t looking. We get up to the counter to checkout, and husband spots molds in the basket, removes them and hands them to the clerk …

Husband – We don’t need these, they are too expensive. You can put them back on the shelf.

Alisa – Agh … but! I want them.

Husband – laughs and purchases molds of course. I mean come on, they’re only $2.49!

A week later I made the peanut butter truffles in the candy molds, and of course, when he saw them in the fridge, my husband said, “I’m going to eat these since I had to pay dearly for the molds to make them!” Alisa calls husband “affectionate” name and both leave the room laughing. Husband happy with his reward …

PB Truffle Cups

 Yes, these types of conversations occur pretty much daily in our house.

 

Peanut Butter “Truffles”

This recipe is from my book, Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook

Casually elegant, these glorified peanut butter cups earned me rave reviews at a close friend’s wedding. For party favors, we wrapped a few little treats up in tulle and placed one on each guest’s plate. All night long, people I had never met approached me with recipe requests for “those incredible truffles.” While I would love to gloat on my innovation and labor, the recipe is embarrassingly easy …

Ingredients

  • 2 Cups Powdered / Confectioner’s Sugar
  • 3/4 Cup Smooth All Natural Peanut Butter
  • 1/4 Cup Dairy-Free Margarine or Shortening, Softened
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Salt
  • 6 Ounces Semi-Sweet or Dark Chocolate Chips
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Shortening

Method

Combine the sugar, peanut butter, margarine or shortening, vanilla, and salt in a medium-sized mixing bowl, and blend until smooth.

Pinch off pieces of the peanut butter mixture and roll them into balls that are 1/2 to 1 inch in diameter. Since you won’t be baking them, the thickness of the filling is really up to you.

Place the peanut butter balls in a single layer on baking sheets lined with wax paper or non-stick baking mats (I flatten them slightly to keep them from rolling around), and freeze until they are firm, about 15 to 20 minutes.

While those are chilling, Place the chocolate and 1/2 teaspoon of shortening in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave on HIGH in 30 second intervals (just 2 to 3 should suffice), stirring vigorously between intervals, until the chocolate has just melted and is smooth. Be careful not to overheat the chocolate, as it can scorch easily.

Remove the peanut butter balls from the freezer, dunk them in the melted chocolate to coat, and return them to the baking sheets to dry.

Place the truffles in the refrigerator or freezer to chill for 1 hour, or until the chocolate coating is firm. The truffles should keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Yields approximately 2 Dozen “Truffles”.

Apricot-Raspberry Crumble Bars

Posted by on July 5, 2010 | 13 Comments

My home is still overflowing with apricots from our CSA, so I knew they would make their way into some sort of dish for our “neighborhood” 4th of July BBQ.

Last year we moved into a small group of tall condos that share a very nice common backyard. Since it is a tourist town, we only have a few permanent neighbors, while the rest are vacation homes. But almost everyone is in town for the 4th of July to enjoy the mountain air and the beaches … so it seems they have started an annual barbecue tradition as a way for everyone to meet up … even past owners of the condos! Yep, even those who have moved onto new places showed up to visit old friends and neighbors. We were honored to have been invited.

Perhaps we will receive a repeat invite next year, since these apricot-raspberry crumble bars seemed to go over quite well …

apricot-raspberry crumble bars

 

Fruity Crumble Bars

Feel free to use the fruit and/or berries of your choice (peaches, blueberries, cherries, apples, blackberries, etc.). You can vary the sugar in the fruit filling based on the fruit you use and how ripe it is. I only used 3/4 cup for the apricots and raspberries, but the filling came out a bit too tart – I would use a full 1 cup for those next time.

This recipe is Dairy-Free, Nut-Free, and Soy-Free.

  • 3 Cups All-Purpose or Whole Wheat Pastry Flour
  • 1/2 Cup White Sugar
  • 1/2 Cup Firmly Packed Brown Sugar
  • 1 Teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Salt
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1 Cup Dairy-Free Margarine (I used Earth Balance Soy-Free)
  • 2 Tablespoons Orange Juice or Milk Alternative
  • 4 Cups Berries and/or Finely Diced Fruit (I used 3 cups diced apricots, very well packed and one 6-ounce pint of raspberries (about 1-1/3 cups))
  • 2 Tablespoons Orange Juice or other Citrus Juice
  • 1 Teaspoon Orange Zest (optional)
  • 3/4 to 1 Cup White Sugar (see notes above)
  • 1 Tablespoon Cornstarch

Preheat your oven to 375ºF and grease a 9 x 13-inch baking dish.

In a mixing bowl, or in your food processor, combine the flour, sugars, baking powder and salt.

In a small dish, whip together the egg and vanilla.

Add the margarine and egg mixture to the flour mixture, and cut it in with a fork or pastry blender (this can also be done in a food processor). Thick crumbs should form.

Remove 2 full cups of the crumb mixture (about half) to another bowl and set aside.

Add the juice or milk alternative to the remaining crumbs and combine. It should make a thick dough. Press the dough evenly into your prepared baking dish.

In a medium-sized bowl, combine the fruit, juice, zest (if using), sugar, and cornstarch. Spread the fruit mixture over top of the dough in your baking dish, and sprinkle it all with the reserved crumbles.

Bake for about 45 minutes, or until it is slightly browned on top.

Optional: If you want to ensure the flavor of your fruit filling, go ahead and cook the fruit / berries over medium-low heat, along with the juice and zest, sweetening to taste. Thicken with the cornstarch. 

Yields dozens of cakey, crumble-topped bars

apricot-raspberry crumble bars

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I had (have) a tone of apricots, but I threw in the raspberries just so these bars would qualify for this week’s Blogger Secret Ingredient (BSI) Event!

Soft Serve-Style Peanut Butter Cravings

Posted by on June 15, 2010 | 25 Comments

I just noticed that most of the smoothies on my blog include banana. Believe it or not, I do take the occasional banana break using mango, avocado, or other fruits for thickening power, but I am not going to apologize for my love of this sweet and highly accessible fruit. In fact, I am going to share my current favorite breakfast today that features, you guessed it, one big, sweet banana.

Dairy-Free, Soy-Free, and Vegan Peanut Butter Shake / Smoothie

Why the obsession with bananas? Of course, the taste is awesome … and nothing naturally thickens and sweetens a healthy dairy-free smoothie/shake like frozen, ripe banana chunks. But my love runs deeper than mere aesthetics.

My whole life I have had a problem with severe calf cramps. Mid-stride during soccer matches (as a child and adult) they would suddenly seize leaving me frozen and writhing in pain. I frequently awoke in the middle of the night with extreme cramping (yes, my poor husband has been startled awake by my sudden outbursts on many occasions). But about five years ago I started my smoothie habit, eating at least one large banana every day. And what do you know, those calf cramps vanished. I mean *poof* – for good. The only time they have returned is mid-winter one year when I took a banana hiatus. Never again.

Many people argue that bananas aren’t actually the best source of potassium (a known cramp fighter). They are a “good” source, though in reality not a true top contender. But perhaps it is something more than just potassium … perhaps it is the whole nutrient banana package that somehow works.

Though one might think consistent change would be needed to keep things interesting with the old banana, to me it is a comfort food and I have comfort smoothies. I used to be completely loyal to the True Blue Smoothie, but the past year has brought on an intense love of peanut butter. You may have spotted my addiction via the Uber-Rich Peanut Butter Ice Cream with Peanut Butter Chunks (definitely a good recipe for this time of year), my PB & J Thumbprints (yes, no bake!), or the Nutty Oatmeal Blender Waffles (I couldn’t resist tossing PB in my favorite waffles).

These are all nice treats, but on a daily basis, my cravings are quite simple. Very simple in fact. Below is my favorite smoothie “recipe” for the past year (and we are talking the whole year – notice the snow in the background of the photo below – that was actually May though). I hesitated on posting it because it is so basic and so loose, but I love it, I CRAVE it. I usually go for max PB and make the smoothie super-thick (almost soft-serve style), with as little milk alternative as possible.

Dairy-Free, Soy-Free, and Vegan Peanut Butter Shake / Smoothie

 

Peanut Butter and Banana Cravings Smoothie
This really isn’t a recipe in the strictest sense of the word, but rather a simple idea. I always vary the amount of banana and pb depending on my cravings, and sometimes a dash of stevia is in order. If I think I need something nutrition-wise, one or more of the add-ins listed may make their way in.

  • Frozen Ripe Banana Chunks (I use about two handfuls – at least one large banana, maybe a bit more sometimes)
  • 1 to 2 Tablespoons Creamy Natural Peanut Butter (I use unsalted and sometimes add a tiny, tiny pinch of salt, but salted could be good too)
  • 3/4 Cup to 1-1/2 Cups Unsweetened Vanilla or Plain Almond Milk or Coconut Milk Beverage (feel free to use your favorite milk alternative – regular sweetened versions will of course up the indulgence factor nicely and you can even use chocolate!)
  • 1/8 to 1/4 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
  • Sweetener to taste (optional – I use a dash of stevia or a little maple or honey if the banana is under-ripe, but otherwise, I go without)

Place the frozen banana, pb, and 3/4 cup of milk alternative in your blender. If you have a powerful blender, whiz away. Less powerful like mine? Pulse to break up the ingredients, and then blend. If it is too thick, add milk alternative a little at a time until it blends well and reaches your desired consistency.

If you have a wimpy blender, avoid the temptation to throw a bunch of liquid in too soon. Too much and the blades won’t catch all of the chunks – they will simply whiz around. You can always add more liquid once it is smooth. I prefer my smoothies spoonable, so I add as little as possible.

Blend in the cinnamon, sweetener if using, and any other add-ins you desire (see some of my suggestions below).

My Favorite PB & B Add-ins:

  • A Scoop of Chocolate Superfood Mix (Kidz or Adult) from Amazing Grass
  • A Big Fistful of Spinach
  • Some Ground Flaxseed
  • Cocoa or Carob Powder  (1 teaspoon to 1 tablespoon)
  • Protein Powder (we like pure egg white protein powder or vanilla hemp protein powder, but your favorite will do)

Yields 1 nutty serving

Dairy-Free, Soy-Free, and Vegan Peanut Butter Shake / Smoothie

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Marvelous Maple Cashew Chocolate Chip Cookies (Gluten-Free & Vegan!)

Posted by on March 22, 2010 | 29 Comments

Unfortunately, an onslaught of review requests these past few months kept me from getting to one of my newest gems, The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook by Alissa Segersten and Tom Malterre. But ever since I finally cracked it open, I haven’t put it down. It is dusted with flours and splattered with oil, and already deemed a staple in my kitchen.

Since this is a recipe blog, not a review blog, I only share those cookbooks here that inspire some delicious recipes, and this one certainly has. Beyond helping me with my new CSA load with a recipe for Balsamic Roasted Beets and another for Collard Wraps, I quickly gained appreciation for the healthified desserts in this cookbook .. and in typical Alisa-fashion, I jumped straight to the cookies!

Gluten-Free and Vegan Maple Cashew Cookies

The Cashew Coconut Cookies were the first to catch my eye. My husband isn’t a big fan of coconut, but I knew an easy swap for chocolate chips would win him over. And as I taste-tested the dough (come on – you always have to taste test the dough, right?!), I thought it was very good, but perhaps just a touch too healthy for our current cravings. The dough had a mild shortbread sweetness, while we were both craving a sweeter treat. So I made a few adjustments and additions, and viola! My slightly less healthy, but still quite virtuous Maple Cashew Chocolate Chip version.

Just so you know – I did try to “gluten” these cookies in a second batch, since I know that many of you don’t have a problem with wheat (all of the recipes in The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook are gluten-free), and may not have the flours and xanthan gum on hand. I replaced the brown rice flour with whole wheat pastry flour and removed the xanthan gum. I kept the starch since these are egg-free. The cookies worked, but just weren’t as good in my opinion; they were a wee bit too sweet and spread a bit more. I actually really like them the gluten-free way. But, if I were to trial them again with wheat, I would probably switch to cornstarch or arrowroot for the tapioca (it seems those starches yield a softer product) and would reduce the maple syrup by a tablespoon or two. It was a bit overpowering with the wheat, but a nice contrast with the brown rice flour. Just wanted to give you a heads up on that, in case you feel like experimenting!

Here is a pic of my wheaty results – I split the wheat batch, trialing some with raisins (pictured), some with cranberries, and some with chocolate chips – the chocolate chips won hands down.

cashew wheat maple cookies

And yes, even though there are no known problems with wheat/gluten in my household, I always keep various gluten-free flours and starches on hand. It started several years back with some recipe-testing for a few gluten-free / casein-free companies … but I quickly learned that the different flours offer new textures and flavors that are yummy in their own right. So, I just sort of kept stocking them. Fortunately, brown rice flour, tapioca starch (see my sub note above) and xanthan gum can now be found in most major grocers with ease.

 

Maple Cashew Chocolate Chip Cookies

I adapted this recipe from The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook by Alissa Segersten and Tom Malterre. These cookies have a unique but addictive flavor that is maple-rich. Once allowed too cool, they are very cohesive, particularly for gluten-free gems, yet they still have a nice cookie dough-esque texture that I simply adored.

This recipe is Vegan, Dairy-Free, Wheat-Free, Gluten-Free, Soy-Free, Peanut-Free, and Refined Sugar-Free.

Preheat your oven to 350ºF.

Place the nuts in your spice grinder (or food processor) and pulse until you get a powdery /coarse flour-like consistency. It is okay if a few little cashew bits remain, but if you go too far with the grinding, the cashews will turn into a nut butter.

In a mediume bowl, combine the cashew flour, brown rice flour, tapioca, baking powder, xanthan gum, and salt. Briefly set aside.

In a mixing bowl, blend the oil, maple syrup, sugar, and water. Blend in the flour mixture until you get a nice dough. Stir in the chocolate chips.

The dough may seem a bit sticky / greasy, but I still found it fairly easy to loosely shape into balls and place on the cookie sheet (I line mine with a silicone baking mat). If the dough is just too much to handle, pop it in the fridge for about 10-15 minutes, it will firm up quickly. Flatten the dough balls a bit – these cookies don’t spread much as they cook, so what you see is what you get.

Bake the cookies for 12 minutes. Remove them to a wire rack to cool for at least 15 minutes. If your husband’s greedy hands try to pop them off the baking sheet while hot, they will be crumbly, but they do firm up quite a bit as they cool.

Yields 18 to 20 cookies

gluten-free vegan maple cashew cookies

Dairy-Free, Soy-Free Pumpkin Pie Perfection

Posted by on November 5, 2009 | 121 Comments

Was that dairy-free AND soy-free I said? Yes, I just couldn’t bear another tofu pumpkin pie recipe, so this year I went for a soy-free version that is oh so easy and delicious. Even better, both the filling and the crust use everyday pantry ingredients. Okay, hopefully you don’t keep eggs in your pantry, but you get the idea.

Speaking of eggs, I did attempt to make this pie egg-free / vegan using Bryanna’s recipe as a guide, but no go. The cornstarch-y texture and taste were both too “off” for our tastebuds. However, some good ol’ Ener-G eggs may do the trick. I have never used them, so I can’t vouch, but if you want a tofu-free, egg-free pumpkin pie, it may be worth a test!

If you do use eggs in baking, I can attest that this pumpkin pie recipe is a definite winner. It tastes fantastic and is a great make-ahead option. Growing up, I remember how the famous Libby’s Pumpkin Pie recipe would leave you with a soggy crust when stored overnight, but this recipe keeps a nice firm crust, and refrigerating it allows the flavors to meld … actually both my husband and I preferred it after a night of chilling …

Delicious Dairy-Free Soy-Free Pumpkin Pie

 

Dairy-Free, Soy-Free Pumpkin Pie

This recipe is Dairy-Free, Soy-Free, Nut-Free, and optionally Gluten-Free. See my notes above on egg-free / vegan.

  • 1/2 Cup Brown Sugar, firmly packed
  • 1/4 Cup White Sugar
  • 1 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Ground Ginger
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Ground Nutmeg or Allspice
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Ground Cloves
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
  • 2 Large Eggs
  • 1 15-ounce Can Pumpkin Puree
  • 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1 Cup Canned Coconut Milk (this is the stuff sold in the Asian section of most grocers – I use the full-fat version, but have received feedback from people that the Lite canned version works well too)
  • 1 Unbaked Pie Shell  (see below for my regular or whole wheat recipe, or for a gluten-free option, try this recipe, substituting soy-free Earth Balance for the butter)

Preheat your oven to 425ºF.

Combine the sugars, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg or allspice, cloves and salt in a small bowl. In a large bowl, beat the eggs. Beat in the sugar mixture, pumpkin, and vanilla until smooth. Fold in the coconut milk.

Pour the filling into the unbaked pie crust and bake for 15 minutes. Reduce the temperature to 350ºF and continue to bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until a knife inserted comes out clean.  It may be a bit wobbly still, but it will firm-up as it cools.

Allow the pie to cool on a wire rack for 2 hours (Be patient! This is important).  Serve or refrigerate until ready to serve.

Easy Peasy Pie Crust

  • 1-1/2 Cups All-Purpose or Whole Wheat Pastry Flour (I used ww pastry flour, and it was still excellent)
  • 1-1/2 Teaspoons Sugar
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
  • 6 Tablespoons Grapeseed or Vegetable Oil
  • 3 Tablespoons Cold Water

Combine all of the ingredients, and press the dough into a 9-inch pie pan.  Fill and bake as directed above.

Yields 8 dee-licious slices

Dairy-Free Soy-Free Easy Peasy Pumpkin Pie

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Uber-Rich, Dairy-Free Peanut Butter Ice Cream with Sweet Peanut Butter Pieces

Posted by on September 22, 2009 | 36 Comments

I admit it, I am one of those people who is either leaping into seasonal foods three months too early, or dragging my feet into the new food season. Case in point, I bought an ice cream maker in September. Yes, I know today is officially the first day of fall, but at $15, who could resist this end-of-the-season deal?

Refusing to store this appliance without any use, and since it is still pretty toasty here, I gave it a couple test drives this past week. My first batch of blueberry ice cream was a little too low fat. It turned out too icy for our tastes. So I went to the other extreme. If you are fat-phobic, click away now. If not, carry on.

I wasn’t sure about posting an ice cream recipe as we are heading into fall, especially since I still want to tinker with this one a bit (perhaps toning down that ultra-creamy texture!) and I had already packed my ice cream scoop (no photo-worthy mounds of ice cream), but HEAB said “Never too late for ice-cream recipes,” so here I am (she is the nut butter goddess after all, who am I to argue?).

The PB chunks are a version of the Peanut Butter “Chips” from my book, Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook. The “Chips” are fairly firm and would probably be teeth-breakers in ice cream, so I softened them a bit to still be relatively firm yet forgiving in the ice cream. You can see the chunks throughout … I went overboard a bit …

pbicecreamclose

Uber-Rich, Dairy-Free Peanut Butter Ice Cream

This recipe is Vegan / Vegetarian, Dairy-Free, Egg-Free, Gluten-Free, Soy-Free, and optionally Free of Refined Sugars, but definitely NOT Fat-Free

  • 1 14-oz Can Whole or Light Coconut Milk (I used whole – whoa rich! Light would tone it down a bit and mellow the coconut flavor)
  • 1/3 Cup Creamy Peanut Butter (or to taste, I used lightly salted)
  • 1/3 cup Agave Nectar, Maple Syrup, Brown Sugar, or Honey* (or to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1 Batch Dairy-Free Peanut Butter Chunks (recipe below)

Combine the coconut milk, peanut butter, agave (see note below for honey), and vanilla in your blender, and blend until smooth. Place the mixture in your refrigerator and allow it to thoroughly chill before proceeding. Use this time to make sure the canister of your ice cream maker has been thoroughly chilled in the freezer, and that the container you will pack the ice cream in for keeping is also chilled.

Pour the mixture into your ice cream maker, and follow the manufacturer’s instructions (this recipe is rich enough, that you may have success simply freezing it and stirring occasionally until frozen if you don’t have an ice cream maker).

While that is whirring away, make the PB chunks. The recipe below makes a lotta chunks. If you want to start with less, half it.

When the ice cream is done, pack it into your chilled container, and drizzle the top with as much of the melted PB Chunks as you desire, creating a thin or thick layer. Freeze until mostly firm. The PB chunk layer will be solidified, break it up with a spoon and stir into the peanut butter ice cream. Freeze until completely firm. Spoon into bowls, enjoy.

* If using honey, you will need to heat the mixture slowly in a saucepan until the honey dissolves. Unlike agave, honey is a bit temperamental about dissolving in cold liquids.

Ice Cream-Friendly, Dairy-Free Peanut Butter Chunks

Recipe adapted from Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook

  • 1-1/2 Tablespoons Coconut Oil
  • 3 Tablespoons Creamy Peanut Butter (I used lightly salted)
  • 2 Tablespoons Agave Nectar or Honey (don’t sub sugar here, you want soft chunks)
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract

Combine all ingredients in a small saucepan over low heat, and stir until everything is melted and combined.

This makes a lot of PB chunkage, so you may only want to use 1/2 or 3/4 of the recipe for the ice cream quantities in the recipe above.

 

Blog Events:

I submitted this recipe to Fight Back Fridays at Food Renegade

I submitted this recipe to Wellness Weekends on Diet Dessert & Dogs

Sinful Cinnamon-Apple Sauté (Breakfast or Dessert?)

Posted by on April 22, 2009 | 25 Comments

Actually, this little dish isn’t sinful at all, but that title just sounds so good doesn’t it? Well, this saute does produce tender, juicy apples with a wonderfully rich, sweet, and cinnamon-y syrup, rendering it indulgent enough for a healthy dessert.

Cinnamon Apple Saute

However, I had it for breakfast. I ate it on its own as a part of my multi-course Sunday grazing. But, this simple recipe (just 10 minutes!) is incredibly flexible when it comes to serving options. You can:

  • Serve the apples with your favorite yogurt (mine being this one), stirring a bit of the resultant cinnamon apple syrup into the yogurt if desired.
  • Top waffles with the apples and resultant cinnamon-apple syrup.
  • Spread nut butter on a bagel, toast, or rice cakes, and top with slices of cinnamon apples (one of my faves).
  • Serve over rice or other grain (I don’t know why I just thought of this one, but it really sounds good).
  • Sprinkle the apples with ground flaxseed or your favorite granola (homemade if you can!).
  • Top the apples with a scoop of ice cream (this one and this one being my picks), drizzling some of the resultant syrup over top of everything for a sundae flare. Oh what the heck, sprinkle on some granola too!
  • You say you’ve finished the apples, but have a little bit of leftover syrup? Use it to sweeten your favorite tea! Problem solved.

Okay, now that you are brimming with ideas, lets get to the kitchen …

 

Simply Scrumptious Cinnamon-Apple Sauté
Recipe adapted from the October 2007 issue of Natural Health Magazine

This recipe is Dairy-Free, Egg-Free, Gluten-Free, Nut-Free, optionally Vegan, and optionally Soy-Free

  • 2 Medium Apples (around 3/4 to 1 lb), sliced 1/4-inch thick (no need to peel!)
  • 1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice (fresh squeezed if you have it)
  • 1-1/2 Teaspoons Oil or Margarine (I used coconut oil)
  • 1 Tablespoon Honey or Maple Syrup (I used honey, but I think maple syrup may be even better)
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
  • 1/8 Teaspoon Ground Nutmeg
  • Generous Pinch of Salt (especially if using oil rather than margarine)

In a medium sized bowl, toss the apple slices with the lemon juice and briefly set aside.

In a large skillet, melt heat the oil or margarine over medium heat. Add the honey or maple syrup and the vanilla extract, giving everything a quick stir. Add the apples, and stir to coat them with the sweet sauce. Sprinkle on the cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt, and once again, stir to ensure the apples are evenly coated.

Cover, and allow the apples to cook for 3 to 5 minutes (or until desired tenderness) checking in to stir once or twice.

They are ready! Enjoy them as is, or see the beginning of this post for some serving options.

Cinnamon Pears Option: Use 2 medium pears instead of the apples. Pears are generally softer than apples, so you will only need 2 to 3 minutes of cooking time once covered.

Yields 2 Yummy Servings of Apples

Cinnamon Apple Saute

 

My Earth Day Note: One of my Earth Day resolutions is to try to eat more seasonally. While I was sure that apples were a fall fruit, it seems the crops are brimming right now. I purchase organic apples, since they are a top “pesticide crop.” An abundance of northwest apples (as local as it gets for this area) allowed me to purchase a bag of these beauties (Fuji I believe) for less than a dollar a pound.

 

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