Gluten and dairy free carob truffles

I did it! Another triumph in the kitchen! I took an old fashioned favourite and turned it into a treat my middle son can eat! He’s going to be one very excited little kiddywink when I surprise him with these truffles tomorrow afternoon when he gets home from his father’s 🙂

I wracked my brain for ages to come up with a dairy free alternative to sweetened condensed milk and just last week, whilst reading a post on a Facebook page, I had an epiphany! So here it is…..

300g of dairy and gluten free shortbread biscuits (I used Orgran)

1 cup of raw cashews crushed (in the food processor until they are quite fine)

1/2 cup of carob powder

1/2 tsp of ground vanilla bean (or 1tsp vanilla extract)

1/4 cup of rice malt syrup

1/4 cup of maple syrup

1/4 cup (55g) nuttelex (or other dairy free spread)

naturally coloured sprinkles for rolling in (or for a less festive look, more crushed cashews)

Crush the biscuits until they’re fine crumbs then mix with the crushed cashews, ground vanilla bean and carob powder (if using vanilla extract, add that with the wet ingredients). Heat the syrups and nuttelex until just melted (1 minute in the microwave) then stir through the dry ingredients and mix well. Allow to cool for a few minutes then roll into teaspoon sized balls and coat in natural sprinkles or crushed cashews. Place in the fridge to set.

Df gf carob truffles

Prawn Curry

My big guys were at their father’s yet again and all “not-hubby” wanted for dinner was a curry with rice, basmati rice. Who was I to argue? Just so long as it wasn’t too spicy as “belly baby” doesn’t seem to like overly spiced foods these days, and it was a seafood curry of some sort.

I found a curry in a book some time ago that I have made a few times, but of course I always change it slightly. I find that most curries in regular cookbooks lack something…usually a bit of oomph. Now I’m no spice expert, but I do know when a curry is lacking something and I can generally work out what it is. I think most recipes keep it quite mild and almost bland so as not to offend too many Western tastebuds. Well when the kids aren’t around, I like my food to be anything but bland…just not too spicy hot at the moment. So here is my adaptation of the prawn curry from one of my rarely used cookbooks. Oh, by the way, it is far from Failsafe. Another thing, if prawns aren’t your thing, you can use chicken fillets, firm white fish like rockling or you can even make into a vegetarian dish by using potatoes, cauliflower, snow peas, aubergine (eggplant), capsicum. I have even made it with a mix of prawns and white fish.

1/2 kg of raw prawns (peeled)

knob of butter or ghee or just some oil if you want a dairy free option

1 large onion diced

4 cloves of crushed garlic

1 tbsp fresh grated ginger

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (or to taste. I normally use at least half a teaspoon)

2 1/2 tsp of cumin

1 1/2  tsp of ground coriander

1 tsp garam masala

1/2 tsp of turmeric

1 can of chopped tomatoes (about 425g)

200ml of coconut cream

1 finely chopped green chilli

handful of roughly chopped fresh coriander

salt to taste

Heat oil or butter in a medium saucepan then sautee the onion until just tender. Add the garlic and ginger and cook a further minute. Toss in the dried spices and cook until fragrant (about a minute or 2). Add the prawns and tomatoes, bring to the boil then reduce heat and simmer gently for about 10 – 15 minutes or until prawns are cooked through. Add the coconut cream, chilli and salt and heat through but do not boil, then add the coriander. Serve over fluffy basmati rice.

Vanilla coconut ice cream

Oh it’s all becoming far too much effort! But making frozen desserts isn’t 😉 I’m now 31 weeks pregnant and really starting to suffer. I’m getting too old for this pregnancy game and my pelvis is really not coping too well. That said, my pelvis has been doing really well (as long as I take it easy) and I’ve barely used the crutches my physio has put me on for the duration of the pregnancy, but I haven’t been doing much either, thus reducing my need to rely on them so heavily.

Meals around here have become a little boring and I’m shuffling through a small selection of easily prepared dinners and opting for take away when the big guys are at their father’s. So no inventive new dishes to write about. In fact, I have hardly anything in the cupboard if I should wish to create something new and different. I haven’t done a proper grocery shop in a couple of months because I can no longer push a trolley without aggravating my pelvis so I must shop in small doses where I can put everything on the pram. And I refuse to pay the ridiculous prices for home delivered groceries, as convenient as it is, besides, I can’t read any labels if I shop online and hen feeding kids with food intolerances, that just doesn’t work. So I apologise for my lack of posts but I’m sure you all understand and can find it in your hearts to forgive me.

I recently discovered the most amazing product at my local health food store a couple of weeks back, ground vanilla beans. It cost me just $11 and a little goes a long way. It tastes so much better than vanilla extract and has no alcohol in it and is much cheaper and easier to use than whole vanilla beans. Just a quarter of a teaspoon (or less) is equivalent to 1 vanilla bean but I LOVE vanilla so I’ve been doubling the dose.after stumbling across this, I will never again bother buying vanilla beans or use vanilla extract in cooking…I suggest you go and hunt some down for yourself 😉

800ml of coconut cream

3/4 cup of rice malt syrup

1/2 tsp of ground vanilla bean (or 1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped, or 1 tsp of vanilla essence)

Place all ingredients in a bowl and whisk until combined. Pour into ice cream machine and churn until the desired consistency is reached.

Yep, it’s that simple!!