Eggnog Biscotti

Hellllooooo!

I am still here I promise!

This whole moving thing has proven to be more disruptive than I originally anticipated. Just trying to establish myself in my kitchen has been a part-time job. So throughout the last several weeks I have been relying on my “old” and favourite recipes. Not a lot of new creations happening for me right now but luckily old favourites are comforting and easy. There has been a lot of avocados and pasta dishes in my mouth lately 🙂

As I write this it has occurred to me that perhaps there is only so much creativity that can happen in one person’s brain at one time. Moving into a new space has required a certain level of creativity but I am also re-creating my work situation and well… actually my entire life situation! It’s exciting and at times, overwhelming.

My taste buds are looking forward to getting back in the kitchen to create new dishes for myself and my family. Until then I have decide to share with you a few of my favourite recipes from other bloggers, foodies and/or food professionals that are perfect for this time of year.

If you are a vegan then you need no introduction to ohsheglows.com. Angela posts incredible food ideas on her blog and will someday very soon be in every vegan’s cookbook collection. Her Eggnog Biscotti recipe is one that I have been making over the past few years for my loved ones at this time of year. When I say it is amazing, I truly mean it is A-MAZ-ING! I make as many batches as I can and yet still I always seem to not have enough. I always hide a few pieces for myself and only hand them out to a select few at Christmas time.

On a very important side note: If you have previously received these from me and are not receiving any this year, don’t worry, we are (probably) still good! I decided a few weeks ago to do only what is necessary to get me through the holiday season this year…and baking didn’t make the cut. So I apologize if you were hoping for a batch but I should be back to my MarthaStewart-self by next Christmas 😉

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I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do (actually maybe you can control yourself and eat a few less than I do).

I will be back in a few days to share another holiday recipe…

Vegan Eggnog Crunch Biscotti

Crisp, nutty, and chewy, with a lovely eggnog flavour, this biscotti will have you in the mood for the holidays in no time. In addition to using toasted nuts, I added some dried sweetened cranberries to give it a nice chewy texture. I bought some rectangular holiday tins from Loblaws, but you can also find tins at Michaels and some bulk food stores like Bulk Barn. It makes a lovely gift! See below for nutritional info.

Yield: approx. 17 pieces

Dry Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup chopped nuts, toasted (I used a mix of walnuts and pecans)
  • 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup natural cane sugar
  • 2.5 tsp freshly ground nutmeg (or 1.5 tsp pre-ground)
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground cinnamon (or 1/2 tsp pre-ground)
  • 1.5 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • Scant 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup dried sweetened cranberries

Wet ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup canola oil (or melted coconut oil)
  • 1/2 cup + 1.5 tbsp vegan eggnog (I use Vitasoy Holly Nog)
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract

Eggnog Glaze:

  • 1 cup organic icing/confectioner’s sugar
  • 2 tbsp vegan eggnog
  • 1 tsp freshly ground nutmeg (or 1/2 tsp pre-ground)
  • tiny pinch of kosher salt & cinnamon, to taste

1. Preheat oven to 325 and toast chopped nuts for 10 mins. Remove and cool. Preheat oven to 350F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. In a large bowl, mix the dry ingredients. In a smaller bowl mix the wet ingredients. Add the wet to dry and mix with a spoon until it starts to come together. Now use your hands to squeeze together the dough and mix it completely, being careful not to overmix.

3. Divide the dough in half and place on prepared baking sheet. With palm of hand, press down each half to flatten. Place a piece of parchment paper over top of one half and roll it out into a log (approx 10 inches by 5 across and 1/2 inch thick), using your hand to shape as necessary. Repeat with the second log.

4. Score the logs with a knife and bake for 30 mins at 350F. Remove from oven and reduce heat to 325F. Cool for 5 mins on stovetop and then slice the logs. Gently flip pieces onto one side and bake at 325F for 10 mins. Remove from oven, flip, and bake another 5 mins at 325F. If you like the biscotti SUPER crisp, bake another 5 mins.

5. Cool for 1 hour on a baking rack and then store in a glass container. To prepare glaze, whisk all glaze ingredients together in a medium sized bowl. Place glaze into a baggie, snip off the very end, and “pipe” over top.

Nutritional Info (makes 17 servings, per biscotti, without glaze): 161 kcals, 7 grams fat, 22 grams carbs, 1 gram fibre, 10 grams sugar, 2 grams protein.

(with eggnog glaze, makes 17 servings): 190 kcals, 7 grams fat, 31 grams carbs, 1 gram fibre, 17 grams sugar, 2 grams protein.

Read more: http://ohsheglows.com/2011/12/06/vegan-eggnog-crunch-biscotti-giveaway/#ixzz2nYyoo0e6

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Pumpkin Bran Muffins

Who doesn’t LOVE homemade muffins!?!

I do.

Now if someone could just bring me some that would be fantastic! 🙂

So here I am in my new home trying to get my life back to its new normal. I have spent the last week and a half painting and moving. That’s right I said MOVING (who likes moving?…oh ya no one).  I am exhausted but content. Hopefully within this next week I will get back to doing what I do…sharing food ideas on Instagram (@figbasil) and creating new recipes with you all. I am looking forward to sharing some holiday sweets and appetizers in December.

Until then, my lovely friend Stacey has given me an amazingly delicious looking muffin recipe that she created just for my Fig and Basil readers. A huge thank you to Stacey for this!

Check it out and let me know how it turns out. Also go find Stacey’s blog at http://www.staceydeering.com

Have a great week! Emily

Stacey’s post:

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Anyone who has children knows that baking of some kind is almost a parental requirement, whether it’s a birthday cake, cookies or muffins. While some muffins can be loaded with sugar, refined oil and refined flour this recipe is the exact opposite. I try and find ways around refined ingredients without compromising taste.

This pumpkin bran muffin is dairy free, wheat free, gluten free and low fat. The quinoa and almond flour are high protein flours and loaded with oat bran, they are high in fiber. Oat bran is a soluble fiber which helps to clear the digestive system. The pumpkin puree adds a great nutritional boost, high in vitamin A and beta carotene.

Sweetened with pure maple syrup and molasses, unrefined sources, they are not overly sweet. I like to serve them with coconut butter, which is naturally sweet, and warm tea.

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Pumpkin Bran Muffins

Vegan, Gluten Free, No Refined Sugar

Yield: 12 muffins

Author: Stacey Deering, RHN, staceydeering.com

Ingredients

1 cup oat bran (gluten free if required)

1/2 cup quinoa flour

1/2 cup almond flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

3 tablespoons ground flaxseed

6 tablespoons warm water

3/4 cup pumpkin puree

2 tablespoons molasses

3/4 cup almond milk

3 tablespoons pure maple syrup

2 tablespoons coconut oil, warmed

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1/2 cup raisins

pumpkin seeds for garnish

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Place paper muffin liners in a 12 hole muffin pan.
  2. Combine the oat bran, quinoa flour, almond flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and sea salt in a medium bowl.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine the ground flaxseed with warm water, stir and let sit for 5 minutes. Then add in the pumpkin puree, molasses, almond milk, maple syrup, coconut oil and vanilla.
  4. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until mixed well. Stir in the raisins.
  5. Divide the batter equally into the prepared muffin pan and sprinkle pumpkin seeds on the top of each muffin.
  6. Bake for approximately 20 minutes.

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Homemade Dairy-free Ice Cream

With summer peaking its head out and pulling us outside into the our backyards, gardens and whatever other warm weather pleasures you enjoy, there is one thing that seems to be synonymous with summer….ice cream!

It is a food that is on many people’s “favourite food” list, adults and children alike.

But the reality is that many people have dairy sensitivities and the remainder of the people have dairy sensitivities and don’t  know it 😦 These sensitivities do not just show up in the form of an upset stomach, there are numerous ways your body can react. Asthma, behavioural issues, mood swings, constant skin irritations (rash, psoriasis, acne) and headaches just to name a few. There is no doubt that dairy is hard on our bodies with all the use of antibiotics and growth hormones used by the dairy industry, harder to digest than even red meat. And don’t even get me started on the treatment of dairy cattle, forced to lactate continuously when their natural biology only requires them to produce milk during and after pregnancy (just like humans!).

But seriously, I intended this post to be light and fun…how am I doing so far?   😉

When you can find a recipe that requires less than 5 ingredients, takes about 10 minutes to make and is incredibly delicious, you must go for it! I first found a version of this frozen banana treat last summer and it has been a hit in my house since then.

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FYI- I bought all of  these organic bananas for around $4.00 from my local organic market. Because they were overly ripe they gave me a reduced price.

The directions are pretty straight forward—-peel banana, freeze banana, put ingredients in food processor, stir in favourite toppings and eat. That simple.

Feel free to experiment with different combinations and try reinventing your favourite dairy ice cream at home.

This week I managed a few batches with 3 different combinations; strawberry (everyone 1st choice), Mint Chip and Maple Walnut.

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A new trick I tried this year was putting the ice cream into mini mason jars before putting them in the freezer so that they were already portioned out for the kids (and myself). It also makes it easy to grab if you are heading outside in the backyard or to the park for a refreshing and healthy snack!

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I have a few flavour ideas that will definitely be created sometime this summer, like Raspberry Cardamom, Maple Peanut Butter, Mango Coconut…and maybe something with pine nuts…I will let you know how they turn out! 

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I hope that this simple recipe finds its way into your home (and your belly) this summer.

And if you haven’t already, come join me on Instagram @figbasil for daily food photos and meal inspirations.

Enjoy.

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Strawberry Dairy-free Ice Cream

Active Time: 5-10 mins plus time to freeze bananas

Ingredients:

4-5 ripe bananas, peeled and frozen

2-3 tbsp any nut or seed milk ( I used flax milk but you could use soy, coconut, hemp, almond)

8-10 fresh strawberries, pureed

8-10 fresh or frozen strawberries, cut into small pieces

Method:

  • Place your peeled bananas into an air-tight bag and place into freezer until completely frozen. I like to leave them in overnight.
  • When you are ready to make the ice cream, remove the bananas from the bag and chop into larger chunks. Place in a food processor with your milk of choice. Pulse a few times and then put on high speed to puree the bananas into a smooth, creamy texture

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  • Pour in pureed strawberries and pulse for another minute.
  • Scrap banana mixture into bowl and gently fold in the strawberry pieces.
  • You could eat immediately but depending how long you have had the bananas out of the freezer, I like to throw the completed ice cream back into the freezer for another 10-20 minutes to get a harder consistency. It stores in the freezer for a very long time…but honestly I actually don’t know how long cause we have never had it in there for longer than a few days 🙂