Persimmon Maple Bread Pudding

I have a serious problem. I go out for bread pudding once a week. It’s so unhealthy, yet I can’t get enough. So, when I had some over ripe Japanese Persimmon laying around, I decided to work it into a home made version using Essene bread (look for it in the frozen section of your supermarket) instead of that processed, white bread they use in restaurants. It has a grainier texture but at least it’s not all empty calories.

Be sure your persimmon is ueber-ripe. It should feel very heavy, begin to look wrinkled, with the stem part turning brown. Obviously, you can substitute other juicy fruit or even apple sauce or pumpkin puree.

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INGREDIENTS:

- 6 ounces Sprouted Multigrain Essene Bread
– 1 cup Vanilla Almond Milk
– 1 tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar
– 2 medium Eggs
– 10 g Chia Seeds
– 250 g Persimmon, diced (1 large)
– 1/4 cup maple syrup
– 2 teaspoons cinnamon

Cut the bread into 1-inch cubes and set aside.

Mix almond milk and vinegar, allow to curdle. Beat in eggs and maple syrup, season with cinnamon. Pour mixture over bread cubes and add chia seeds. Toss well to coat. The mixture will look quite wet at this point. Be sure to let it sit 30 minutes or overnight to allow the chia seeds to gel.

Pre-heat oven to 350 F and give the bread pudding another toss to redistribute the moisture. Bake 60 minutes or until set. Serve warm.

SERVINGS: 4

Coconut Pumpkin Filled Buckwheat Pancakes (Gluten-Free)

Ever had left over canned pumpkin and wondered what to do with it? I’ve added it to pancake & waffle batter and never quite liked the mushy texture, so I thought: Why not use it as a topping? These pancakes are gluten-free, and can be made vegan by subbing the egg with an additional egg replacer. Trust me on one thing though: you do NOT want to substitute the coconut flour, as it turns these babies into fiber-rich, airy and light little pillows of joy. The picture doesn’t do them justice.

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INGREDIENTS:

- 45 g Buckwheat Flour
– 25 g Coconut Flour
– 1/4 teaspoon Baking Powder
– 2 eggs Ener-G egg replacer
– 1 large Egg
– 7 drops Stevia
– 150 – 200 ml water
Filling
– 10 g Dried coconut, unsweetened
– 1/4 cup Pumpkin Puree
– 2 teaspoons Maple Syrup

Sieve the flours and baking powder into a large mixing bowl. Add the beaten egg, egg replacer, stevia, water and mix thoroughly. Rest the mixture for about 5 minutes and add a little more water if it looks too thick, as the coconut flour tends to soak up a lot of the moisture (hello fiber).

Mix all the ingredients for the filling together in a separate bowl and keep in your oven warming drawer if you like.

Heat a large non-stick pan over medium heat. Lightly grease the pan with a little bit of oil. Ladle a scoop of the mixture and cook for 3-4 minutes, until the top looks fairly dry. Flip and finish cooking.

Spread half of the filling on top of your first pancake, then top with another pancake. Spread the remaining filling in top, then finish with your third pancake. Dust with powdered sugar and serve immediately.

SERVINGS: (1) Makes three large pancakes

Low Sugar Banana Marmalade

Simmering clove spiked lemon halves along with the bananas make this a very grown up banana jam. Spread it on toast, pancakes, waffles or crepes. Or go crazy and spread it on tilapia.

INGREDIENTS (makes about 2 to 2 1/2 cups):

- 5 medium Bananas, finely sliced
– 1 small Apple (preferably granny smith)
– 1- 2 tablespoons Sugar
– 1 whole Lemons, halved
– 1 cup Water
– 1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon
– 2 whole Cloves

Place the whole lot into a large pan. Cut open the lemon, squeeze in the juice. Spick the lemon halves with cloves and add them to the pot as well.

Bring to a rapid boil for 5 minutes then turn down the heat and let it simmer gently till it becomes thick, this should take about 30 minutes. If the mixture looks too watery, uncover and simmer until enough water evaporates.

Remove the lemon halves and spoon into jars. If you like a creamier marmalade, you can also use an immersion blender at this point or mash it with a potato masher. Keep in the refrigerator.

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Vegan Lentil Taco Filling

These were a big hit at a Mexican themed potluck recently. Carnivore approved. Scoop the filling into warm soft shell tacos and top with your favorite fixings. We like shredded lettuce, tomato, fresh cilantro and avocado.

INGREDIENTS:

- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
– 1 medium yellow onion, diced
– 3 cloves garlic, minced
– 1 pinch Sea Salt
– 1 1/2 cups brown lentils (dry)
– 3 cups Vegetable Broth (or water)
– 1/4 cup tomato paste
Seasonings
– 1/2 teaspoon cumin
– 1 teaspoon chili powder, or more to taste
– 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
– 1/2 teaspoon Sea Salt
– 1/4 teaspoon Red pepper
– 1 teaspoon oregano

1. In a saute pan over medium heat, heat the olive oil. Add the onion, garlic, and a pinch of salt. Cook, stirring frequently, until the onion is softened and translucent, about 4 minutes.

2. Add rinsed lentils, mixing well until heated through, about one minute. Add vegetable broth to the lentil mixture and mix well, scraping up any browned bits on the bottom of the pan. Reduce the heat and cover the lentils, allowing them to simmer. Stir occasionally to avoid burning the bottom of the pan, until the lentils are tender, about 20 minutes or so. Do NOT add the tomato paste until the lentils are at least 80 % tender; The acid from the tomatoes will prevent them from softening properly.

3. Remove the cover, add tomato paste and seasonings and allow the lentils to simmer until the mixture thickens, about 5-6 minutes.

4. Transfer the lentils to a large bowl and let sit for a minute or two to cool. Using a potato masher, gently mash the lentils to your desired consistency.

5. Assemble the tacos by placing a few tablespoons of the lentils in each taco shell and garnishing as desired.

SERVINGS: 6

Super fast blender chocolate mousse

No dairy, no added sugar, raw, vegan, grain-free, did I miss anything? This whips up in 5 minutes, is delicious and loaded with superfoods! Enjoy it chilled, or even use it as frosting for your favorite cake or cupcakes.

Makes 2 servings.

- 130 g Hass avocado, 1 small
– 1/2 medium Banana, optional
– 2 tablespoons raw unsweetened Cocoa Powder
– 2 tablespoons Vanilla almond milk
– 6 whole Prunes, pitted (Newman’s Own makes great ones)

Add prunes to blender with the almond milk and puree into a paste.

Add remaining ingredients and blend. Spoon into serving cups and top with berries if desired.

Super Easy Baked Polenta

I hate standing over a saucepan and constantly stirring polenta, just to have it burn, or (best case scenario) cake on. Baking it takes longer, but eliminates all that hands on work and lets you prepare your main dish while the polenta does it’s own thing. Substitute nutritional yeast with your favorite cheese for non-vegan version.

INGREDIENTS:

- 1 cup Polenta, Medium grind (Bob’s Red Mill whole grain corn meal is perfect, do NOT use finely ground polenta unless you want to eat glue)
– 1 cup Almond Milk (or other non-dairy milk)
– 3 cups Water or broth
– 1/2 teaspoon Salt
– 1/4 cup Nutritional Yeast

Combine all ingredients in a casserole dish.
Bake in pre-heated oven at 350 degrees for one hour. Stir half way through.

SERVINGS: 6
SOURCE: Veganized from Cooking Light

Curried Lentils and Turnip Greens

Feel free to substitute turnip greens for any others, like kale, spinach or collard greens. I was lazy and used frozen chopped greens. The sesame butter a.k.a. tahini adds a bit of richness, but can be omitted. Nice served on top of brown rice, potatoes or polenta.

INGREDIENTS:

- 1 large Onion, finely chopped
– 1 teaspoon Ginger, minced
– 3 cloves garlic, minced
– 2-3 large tomatoes, diced
– 1 lb. Turnip Greens
– 1/4 cup Vegetable Broth
– 1 1/4 cups Lentils, dry
– 1/2 teaspoon Cumin
– 1/2 teaspoon cardamom
– 1 pinch Red pepper
– 1/2 teaspoon Garam Masala
– 1 tablespoons Sesame Butter, or other nut butter (optional)
– Salt to taste

Heat a non-stick pot over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook, stirring often, until it softens and begins to brown. If it starts to stick, add a tablespoon of water or broth at a time.

Add ginger, garlic, and cumin, and cook for another minute or two, until the cumin becomes fragrant. Add 2 1/2 cups water or broth and bring to boil. Add soaked lentils and cook until almost tender, about 25 minutes.

Add tomato and cook for two more minutes.

Stir in the greens and 1/4 cup broth and cover tightly. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the greens are tender but still bright green, about 3-5 minutes.

Add remaining seasonings, cover and cook on low for about 5 minutes. Stir in tahini and add salt to taste.

SERVINGS: 6
SOURCE: Adapted from Fatfree Vegan
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