Isa Chandra’s Chocolate Zucchini Bundt Cake

This is yet another from the “Isa Does It!” cookbook. I am completely won over by her very simple, delicious and vegan recipes. As I am sitting mid-air on the way to Germany, I try my best to remember the days which I guiltlessly ate this chocolatey sweet moist cake first thing in the morning. There is absolutely no taste from the zucchini. All of the goodness of that beautiful vegetable adds to the moistness and the healthy-fibre of the cake.  Continue reading

Dark Chocolate Almond Brownies (Vegan)

It looks like spring is slowly approaching.  Some days the breeze is warm…yes, I said warm! Please don’t fall back to the cold dark days, Toronto.  It’s been a while since brownies last made an appearance in the kitchen which is why I am just popping in to share my all-time favourite vegan brownie recipe. I found the Almond Joy Brownies from Hangry Tales  and have made some changes over the many times I baked them. Check out Hangry Tales for many delicious  and healthy recipes 🙂 The coconut flour gives the brownies a unique distinction, but if you don’t have it at home feel free to substitute with ground oats.  This recipe is slightly more dense than a regular brownie, and the melted chocolate adds a subtle richness. At the same time, I think it has the perfect amount of sweetness and does not have the tooth-sticking gooey feel as it is a little more crumbly. I hope you enjoy it!   Continue reading

Rosemary Chocolate Chip Cookies

Rosemary is one of the must pungent and aromatic herbs. It is said that rosemary in Latin (rosemarinus)  means “dew of the sea”. It’s no secret that my love for fresh herbs and gardening is growing, especially after seeing my host family’s beautiful herb garden in Monaco. They grew mint, sage, rosemary, basil, thyme, chives and a few others. I wish I could find a picture of it now but I may need to do some reorganizing of my files first. On a taco night dinner we had, host dad made a mojito for me using fresh mint from their garden and coconut water instead of alcohol. It was my favourite drink of the summer. Continue reading

Coconut Matcha and Spiced Date Balls

Something that hasn’t appeared in the kitchen for a while are date balls. There is usually a package of dates lying around but the thought of pulling out the blender has been a long shot. Not today! I am inspired by the many holiday recipe posts, especially CaylaCooks’ date balls post. These date balls can also be molded into a container and sliced into bar shapes like Larabars for on-the-go snacks.  Continue reading

Toronto Vegetarian Food Festival 2013

As terrible as it is already being a slow blogger, there are far too many things get put off and on hold. After coming back home I developed a serious cold.  A sandpaper-like throat, cracked voice, sniffles…the ones that usually only appear once or twice a year for me. I’m suspicious that it might have had something to do with sitting next to the guy with the flu on the plane for 9 hours. Other than that, September has been so great. Some of the highlights of the weeks..

Cravings let loose. Bibimbap —check. Although it is usually eaten with rice, surprisingly it’s even better in a sandwich.
Mango slushi makes everything better. I was literally as happy as in the picture.

The Toronto Vegetarian Food Festival took place in the beginning of the month by the harbourfront.

It was such a blast seeing the event with a good friend. We were already full from the samples but still got a few small items for dinner and dessert. Continue reading

Dutch, German and Canadian Girl Time

A bit of a re-cap of the weekend.

Being at a church again just what I needed. The atmosphere of the Eglise Protestant Baptiste in Menton was so friendly and welcoming. If you know me, putting feelings into words is not my forte. But there was something so heart pounding yet calming about it. I really enjoyed that there was a lot of worship and singing.  Some familiar but mostly new, we sang in French so it was good practice too.
At one point the lady sitting beside me broke into tears, although I had only just met her 15 minutes earlier, I put my hand on her back and gently patted her as she took time to collect herself. I was also on the edge of letting loose tears, but if I did I’m not sure how long it would have lasted. I guess it was emotional and touching to be back in a church and to be feeling close.
Dutch, German and Canadian at one table. After morning service, we stayed in Menton for lunch. It was incredibly hot. I cannot handle the heat, all I could think about was taking a dip in the sea. Continue reading

Vegan Chocolate Truffles

I only realized now as I write that the video had the recipe in the description box. I wish Laura (from the video) mentioned her measurements as she was making the recipe. My measurements were approximately estimated, but they worked out too. The coconut shreds are replaced by the medjool dates.

Vegan Chocolate Truffles
Adapted from Taste Made

1 1/2 cup walnuts, soaked in water overnight
7-8 medjools dates, pitted
3  to 4 tbsp cocoa powder
pinch of salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp maple syrup
3-4 tbsp coconut oil

cocoa powder for dusting

1. First blend the walnuts to small pieces. Add in dates and the rest of the ingredients. Blend until desired consistency. I like to leave some chunks of walnuts for a crunchy bite.
2. Refrigerate for 30 mins or until the batter is firm.
3. Roll 1 tablespoon of batter into balls. Roll in cocoa powder.
4. Keep refrigerated.

Here I was thinking of a way to make these look nice.
Of course, just throw on some garnishes.  Some ideas for garnishing: cayenne pepper, matcha powder, sea salt, dried tea flower.

St. Jacob’s Market

As mentioned in the last post, I made Kristin’s Almond Joy Brownies this week. It is super healthy, delicious and chocolatey. I will be making these again. The recipe called for agave but I regret buying my agave nectar in a hazelnut flavour because it tastes nothing like it and is not the greatest. I opted for brown sugar instead. Even though my brownies were slightly crumbly, it was still dense and moist. Last night we went to Vincenzo’s an Italian grocery store. We chose an assortment of salads and some spanakopita for dinner. I love this Italian shop!This morning we headed to St. Jacob’s Market and a nearby outlet mall.  Hello Gordan Ramsay, nice to see you here.
There was a huge diversity of shops and food.
I love this picture of Jona! I can’t help myself from laughing every time I see this. We sampled many different foods, a chocolate mint fudge, peanut brittle, hummus and tabbouleh, cheese, popcorn and more. We had some smoothie and lastly the famous St. Jacob’s apple fritters. It’s not the usual Tim Horton’s apple fritters, they had a special ring of apple inside the donuts.

Vegan Ice Cream Sandwich with Banana Soft Serve

I made these ice cream sandwiches about two weeks ago and put most of them away in the freezer because the weather was cold. Today is even more humid than yesterday therefore it calls for ice creams sandwiches. Who doesn’t like a cold little indulgence on such days?

While I was searching for a new vegan cookie recipe, I found Katie’s Copycat Chocolate Brownie Vitamuffin recipe. I highly recommend Katie’s recipe, it even incorporates pumpkin puree.
I cut back on a few tablespoons of sugar and I am pretty sure I added a bit too much salt, my first batch came out a tad unpalatable. My cookies were a little plain to taste, but it also was not worth throwing away.  Luckily I always keep chopped frozen bananas in case I need them in smoothies. The amount of bananas use in the recipe made more than enough for 6 ice cream sandwiches. Extras can be frozen in a plastic wrap-lined container.

They are super easy to make. Now I have no excuse to buy frozen treats from grocery stores. Continue reading

Chocolate Coconut Banana Popsicle

The weather is starting to heat up and these popsicles are the perfect treats. What’s better than a healthy fruit popsicle with a chocolate coconut coating?  Kick those sugar, fat and additive loaded store bought treats away, I guarantee this one will be just the thing to quench your taste buds.

Despite that bananas are high in sugar, they also contain a good amount of fiber including the prebiotic inulin that helps to keep the digestive tract healthy. From the book “100 Foods to Stay Young”, bananas are beneficial for heart health due to its high levels of potassium, vitamin C and vitamin B6. Helps kidney function and eliminate fluid retention to reduce puffiness.  Continue reading