Triple Coconut Chocolate Caramel Bars

Rich dark chocolate and tropical coconut flakes sitting atop a soft oatmeal crust and covered in homemade dairy- and refined sugar-free condensed milk make these Triple Coconut Chocolate Caramel Bars irresistible. They require only eight simple ingredients, are gluten-free as well as easily turned vegan and can be refined sugar-free.

Bienenstich_Coconut Caramel slice

How about we play a little association game for a moment? I’ll give you – or actually, myself – a keyword, you follow up with the first thing tagt comes to your mind. Ready?

Cooking? Fun. Hard to fail.

Baking? Unpredictable.

With cooking I’ve found that you can hardly mess things up really bad. Sure, you can burn food, accidentally go too heavy-handed on the spices or … But in most cases, some tinkering around will still help you turn a fail into an edible dish.

Baking, however? You’re not the main player anymore. Handing control over to the oven that – if not on good terms with you – can merge ingredients that taste amazing on their own and in unbaked state into … oddly shaped puddles of goo that might still taste good but nobody wants to eat. Can you tell I’m not too fond of baking? What can I say: I like predictability. Prior to recent experimentation I’d have never guessed no-baking could be that much fun and as evidenced in the past weeks have enjoyed sharing some recipes from this category, too.

Coconut Caramel Bars_4

Yet I also remembered how much I’d liked baking from childhood on – following recipes obviously – and didn’t want to let the oven win that easily. And – heureka!  – these bars were born. Let’s talk about them: triple coconut. Meaning three times the creamy/tropical/natural sweetness/give me more factor. Plus – as odd as I find saying it with the nut in there – these are therefore nut-free, too!

While these bars are truly catering to the sweet tooth, most o their sweetness comes from unrefined sugar and only a small amount of refined in the chocolate. Dare I say these little treats are the bee’s knees ;)?

Coconut Caramel Bars_3

Long story short: this recipe sounds more difficult than it is. Yes, we’ll be making our own non-dairy and refined sugar-free condensed milk. No, this is not hard. Can you stir a few ingredients together and keep an eye on them every now and then for half an hour? It’s the perfect thing on a Saturday afternoon while you do a few sudokus, catch up on your Bloglovin’ feed or just have a little kitchen dance party.

Triple Coconut Chocolate Caramel Bars

For the non-dairy condensed milk:

  • 1 can [400 ml] coconut milk [light might work; I used ¾ light, ¼ full-fat]
  • ¼ cup [80 g] honey or maple syrup for a vegan version
  • a pinch of salt

For the crust

  • ¾ cup old-fashioned or quick oats (60 g)*
  • 2 tbsps coconut milk
  • 2 tbsps coconut butter, melted
  • 2 tbsps unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 tbsp honey or brown rice syrup [40 g]
  • ½ bar [1.75 oz] dark chocolate, chopped
  • 2 tbsps dried cranberries**
  • ¼ cup coconut flakes
  1. For the condensed milk, combine coconut milk, honey and saltin a medium-sized saucepan and bring to a boil.
  2. Lower heat and let simmer for about 25-30 minutes, stirring occasionally. The mixture should reduce to ~1 cup of liquid,. To determine this, keep a heat-proof measuring cup by the stove to check.
  3. When the milk has reduced, let it cool down and then transfer it to the fridge. For the best result chill the condensed milk in the fridge overnight or at least six hours.
  4. Grease an 8 x 8-inch pan and set aside.
  5. Prepare your crust by pulsing the oats ina blender to yield a coarse flour. Mix with shredded coconut, honey, coconut butter and honey.
  6. Press crust mixture into the prepared pan. Top with chopped chocolate, cranberries and flaked coconut. Pour the non-dairy condensed milk on top, spreading it to cover the whole crust.
  7. Bake at 320 F/160 Celsius for 20-25 minutes. Check in between to make sure it doesn’t burn [oven temperatures vary!]. The condensed milk should be bubbling and thickening .
    Let cool completely before slicing.

* use certified gluten-free if necessary

** use another kind of dried fruit like mulberries or raisins for a sugar-free version

Coconut Caramel Bars_2

I’m linking up with Allergy Free Wednesdays#RecipeOfTheWeek,#StrangeButGoodGluten-Free Fridays,Tasty Tuesdays,Healthy Vegan Fridays, Meatless Mondays.

 

Happiness-inducing today: It’s Spring! Okay, not meteorologically yet but the temperatures hit 13 °C today! Sunshine = endless smiles, even on a long day of work.

 

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What’s your favourite form of coconut?

Cooking or baking?

 

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Chocolate Coconut Caramel Cups [vegan & paleo]

Rich dark chocolate encloses a layer of slightly sweet coconut crumbles mingling with naturally sweet date caramel. An easy and quick to prepare treat suitable for vegans, gluten-free and paleo eaters alike – there’s a refined sugar-free option, too.

Another chocolate creation already again? Why, yes. Valentine’s Day is around the corner after all so you can never have enough chocolate on hand. Though if you’re like me – or any other normal human – you don’t need a special occasion to eat chocolate. Its existence is reason enough to eat it. In fact, I don’t care much about Valentine’s Day. If you love somebody you shouldn’t need a special day dedicated to prooving just that. I’d much prefer to be surprised rather than either well, not surprised as it’s a given on that date or disappointed if my significant other forgot about Valentine’s Day while every other lady was showered with treats. A sweet letter, homecooked dinner or any other little treat saying “I love you” throughout the year would make feel much more loved. Bonus points if that surprise involves chocolate.

Chocolate Caramel Cups_6

Okay, onto the star of this post now. After trying date caramel for the first time here it made my mind spin for other uses of it. The same goes for my rediscovery of coconut butter. When I saw the cutest silicone molds at a store the decision was pretty much made. Side note: I’m awful at resisting cute kitchen accessoires, plates, towels/you name it. At least I used them right away …? It’s my excuse to postpone working on this bad habit. Don’t judge.

What these Chocolate Coconut Caramel Cups are? Naturally sweet date caramel layered with crumbly coconut filling for a tropical touch enrobed in deep dark chocolate. They are the perfect balance of sweetness with some crunch from the coconut leaving you satisfied without the sugar shock. A no-fuss little treat made in almost no time.

Chocolate Caramel Cups_8_

The recipe below yields three chocolate caramel cups – perfect for savouring all by yourself sharing with your valentine?! – but is easily doubled or tripled for a larger get-together. Many of my recipes result in small batches as I’ve found this to be a rarity. A large yield is awesome if you’re feeding a crowd but I’d personally would rather double a recipe than eat one and the same thing for a week. More room for further experimentation … mmmh.

Chocolate Coconut Caramel Cups

  • 1/4 batch of this date caramel
  • 1 1/4 oz/35 g of dark chocolate  [unsweetened for a sugar-free version]
  • 1 1/2 tbsps coconut butter
  • 1 tbsp unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1-2 tsps agave (adjust to taste)
  1. Melt the coconut butter.
  2. Stir in the agave sirup, adjusting the sweetness to your preference. Mix in the shredded coconut.
  3. Melt dark chocolate.
  4. Add a teaspoon of melted chocolate on the bottom of each cupcake liner. Spread well. Let the chocolate harden in the fridge for at least 15 minutes.
  5. Place a generous teaspoon of date caramel on top of the chocolate and pat down to even it out.
  6. Add a teaspoon of coconut filling on top and smoothen out as good as you can. No need for perfection here.
    Finish off with enough melted chocolate to completely cover the filling. Let harden in the fridge again before serving.

 

Chocolate Coconut Caramel Cups_10

I’m linking up with Allergy Free Wednesdays#RecipeOfTheWeek,#StrangeButGoodGluten-Free Fridays,Tasty Tuesdays,Healthy Vegan Fridays, Meatless Mondays.

 

Happiness-inducing today: Getting a little walking in right in the morning. No day can feel completely bad if you start it with a bit of movement and fresh air.

 

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Do you prefer recipes yielding larger or smaller batches?

What are you thoughts on Valentine’s Day?

 

Healthy 5-Ingredient Snickers Truffles [vegan, paleo, refined sugar-free]

Lusciously sweet and creamy caramel studded with salted peanuts and covered in chocolate: all the flavours of the traditional candy bar combined in one healthy truffle. Easy to prepare, vegan, gluten-free and with a paleo option these are a treat everybody can enjoy.

Raise your hands if you like caramel? Okay. Salted peanuts/ cashews[aka crack]? Okay. Chocolate? Great. Lots of refined sugar? No hands?? Okay, me, neither. But if you do like all the flavours in Snickers bars I do have a treat for you today.

Date caramel truffles_3

See, I’m not necessarily opposed to refined sugar and it’s part of my diet every day. However, I don’t fancy eating too much of it and the additional ingredients in store-bought candy bars are far from tasty-sounding, too. Into the kitchen we go then. These truffles are

Sweet.

Salty.

Creamy.

Crunchy.

Refined sugar-free. Vegan. Paleo.

Covered in chocolate. We can never forget about the chocolate.

 

Date caramel_spoon

If you’ve been around the blog world for any amount of time you will be familiar with the many different kinds of balls bites made from nuts and dates with various add-ins. Confession: I’m not a fan of those. Granted, I obviously haven’t tried every kind out there and some sound pretty good. It must be mix of childhood “trauma”/lasting rebellion [growing up eating bars made from dried fruit and nut while others had chocolate bars isn’t fun] and the fact they don’t saturate but only make me hungrier. Not a good choice for a snack. However, I recently started playing around with dates caramel and that is something I could get used to. After using it in this recipe that – while delicious – was rather time-intensive I wanted to see if I could come up with a quicker way to bring together all of the amazing flavours used here. Much to my pleasure: yes, I can. As can you so next time you’re craving salty-sweet crunchy and creamy Snickers just make these and feel good eating as many as you want.

Date caramel truffles_1

I’m also very happy to announce these are mum- and coworker-approved which is a rarity around here. For one as I don’t usually venture into sweet territory with my recipes and I’m not exactly going to bring Cauliflower Curry to share at the office. And then as I trust my own tastebuds enough when it comes to savoury fare not inviting any other judges. These healthy Snickers truffles, however, got a major sign of approval and I already have a request for another batch. Nothing to complain about here. Make these for your family or coworkers and not have them guess the treats they’re eating actually aren’t all that sinful.

Date caramel truffles_2

 

Healthy 5-Ingredient Snickers Truffles

  • 250 g [a scant 9 oz]* soft dates* [don’t need to be Medjool]
  • 2-4 tbsps coconut butter [the more the creamier the taste ]
  • Optional: warm water*
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • 1 oz roasted salted peanuts/cashews for paleo version, chopped
  • 1.5 oz dark chocolate [use unsweetened if you want to keep these refined sugar-free; I used an 80 % bar]

 

  1. In a high-speed blender or food processor, combine dates, salt and coconut butter. Blend until relatively smooth. A few smaller pieces of dates are no big issue. If your caramel doesn’t become as smooth as you like add in warm water 1 tsp at a time.*
  2. Put the date caramel into a bowl and mix in salted peanuts.
  3. Using 1 tsp [more for bigger truffles] at a time roll caramel into balls.
  4. Melt chocolate either in the microwave or using a double boiler.
  5. Dip the caramel balls into the melted chocolate and set onto a parchment-lined baking sheet or plate. Using a fork works best for this
  6. Transfer truffles to the fridge for the chocolate to set.

** this was one bag of dates for me. I only used half the caramel for a small batch of truffles as my blender (Vitamix) doesn’t work for blending smaller amounts at a time. The remaining ingredients listed are for using half the caramel so either double them or  keep the same if your blender allows for making smaller batches of caramel.

***add water 1 tsp at a time if the blending process takes too long or doesn’t yield the desired smooth consistency. However, adding too much water will make the caramel hard to handle later on so use sparingly.

I’m linking up with Allergy Free Wednesdays#RecipeOfTheWeek,#StrangeButGoodGluten-Free Fridays,Tasty Tuesdays,Healthy Vegan Fridays, Meatless Mondays.

Happiness-inducing today: Seeing the first pictures of my newborn nephew. I’m officially an aunt now!

 

Stay in touch!
Pinterest: MissPolkadot21
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How do you feel about refined sugar? As mentioned I follow the balanced approach. If I can avoid it – looking at you, storebought sauces or bread! – I do but nobody will ever separate me from my chocolate.

Date caramel: what are your favourite uses for it?

 

 

Week in review: The Clean[ing] and Fast Edition

Alternative title: the post I promised Meg to write weeks ago already but never got around to because a) Monday’s aren’t a good posting time for me, b) I keep forgetting what I did throughout the week [I know …] and c) I often have a hard time recognizing what I do as accomplishments. Though our list-making and all around fabulous host is right:

Week in review

Without further ado here’s my list: I …

Participated in the Bloggers Gonna Blog Instagram challenge every day of the week. Finally upping my Instagram activity and connecting with new people – win-win! Though I did miss blogging a little a lot. But I’m thankful for what was possible in this week of changes and worries so no further complaints.

Almost finished the book I started last week. I have a loose goal on the number of books I want to read this year as I used to be a huge book worm but somehow haven’t lived up to my reputation in past years. Non-screen reading time is highly beneficial for mind and soul so it’s an endeavor worth tackling.

Book_reading

Did a semi-thorough cleaning spree of my pantry. Semi-thorough because I didn’t have to heart to discard a few items but the overall look is still more organized. I need to leave room for improvement the next times I tackle this, right?

Cleaned my fridge. It took way less time than half a year ago still. Doing it regularly is worth the effort because it makes you overthink your spending habits [= buying less] and fridge organization.

Cleaned the fridge at my parents’ office. Can you tell it was the week of cleaning?

Shoveled snow for two hours on Monday. Okay, so actually one and a half but I took a break to warm up inside in between. Hello, sore arms.

Winter_snow_sun

  • Started a new job that is the main reason I wasn’t as active in the blog world as I’d planned to – and also the only reason I’m mentioning it here. Hoping I won’t sound like a negative Nancy: congratulations are not necessary. It’s neither a job in my field nor one I’m particularly fond of.But helping a relative out at his office as well as having a job to begin with is what matters here. I’ll still keep searching for a more exciting gig
  • Speaking of spending habits: my grocery bills for the week ended up being the lowest they’ve been in – I think – months. This is a huge feat for me as I tend to stop by the shops for just two or three items almost every day which adds up by the end of the week. Here’s to continuing the lucky strike!
  • On the topic of lucky strikes and reminiscing Christmas: I beat my parents in a game of Yathzee. With an all-time highscore of 304 points at that.

Kniffel

  • I made these vegan Snickers bars for my sister and her husband. While not into New Year’s goals, my sister randomly told me she intended to eat less sweets. Being the good sister I am 😉 I obviously needed to come to her rescue – and preparing any kind of treat is never really altruistic, no? Also, this gave me the final push I needed to …
  • Set up my Vitamix again. Only took me … many months. Awful for a blogger, right? My excuses were that a) it uses a lot of energy, b) I’m more often than not too lazy to clean it [don’t pretend I was the only one] and c) I didn’t have enough counter space to set it up permanently. It was mostly for the last reason but I…
  • Cleaned up my spice arrangement at that moving it to a cupboard and – viola! – counter space freed up. Celebrating the Vitamix’ reappearance in my life I made coconut butter.

Coconut butter

  • And date caramel [twice]. They don’t call dates nature’s candy for nothing and I have high hopes of creating a new recipe with it this week. It’s been too long.
  • I ate the remainders of said date caramel straight from the blender.

And that sums up my first Week In Review. A week that started slow and then flew by fast hence the title [the cleaning part should be self-explanatory ;)]. Have a good start to your week!

Happiness-inducing today: Many kind messages – via Instagram, mail and messenger – arriving throughout the day as well as a short chat with an old aquaintance who stopped by for a visit.

 

Stay in touch!
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Tell me three [or more] achievements from your past week!

When was the last time you cleaned your fridge? No shame if it’s been some time because it’s only become a regular task for me in past months.

Have you tried date caramel before? I’m tempted to steal a spoonful [or two … or three] from the fridge in a second.

 

 

Playing with recipes [Polenta Mushroom Chili Bake]

Hearty vegan cocoa chili with a meaty texture from added mushrooms layered with slices of creamy polenta. Healthy comfort food at its best.

When I first started out cooking I’d follow recipes to a T even if that required buying an ingredient I wouldn’t regularly get and probably not use again afterwards [cue pantry shelf warmers]. These days, however, I agree with the food wisdom that recipes are really just guidelines that can either be followed or played around with. For me, it tends to be the letter. Don’t have a white onion? Use a red one. Out of wheat flour? Sub spelt. Or when a dish is seriously good but – just because that’s the way your mind works like – you need to add that one ingredient for a little something-something extra.

Polenta bake_V

I’ve mentioned before that I’m all about textures and a huge fan of mushrooms. Needless to say when I feel like adding some more body or dare I call it stick-to-your ribs ‘meatiness’ to a chili they’re my go-to. Same applied here. About the zucchini? Consider it the strange but good part of this recipe. The actual reason, though, is my need for some greenery in every lunch. Yes, the mushrooms are technically the vegetable part of this recipe but since they were my ‘meat’ here 😉 I needed that extra green to complement the decidedly hearty chili.

Polenta bake

Okay, now please forget what I just said about recipes as guidelines. This does not apply when it comes to polenta. I’m not easy to please when it comes to this little grain/ corn. Polenta prepared with just water and a pinch of salt? Bo-ring. It’s all about adding more flavour and (!) creaminess. Not necessarily with the need to get out the cream or cheese though if that tickles your fancy: go for it. I chose to keep the dish vegan here by cooking my cornmeal with some non-dairy milk and adding just a bit of coconut butter for an extra rich flavour. If you decide not to listen to me and just cook your polenta in water: fine. Just don’t come complaining to me about how tasteless it is ;).

My tweak to this recipe is that you don’t need to bake the polenta. Which is an added bonus because you can prep the polenta in advance and keep it in the fridge. Then just slice it when you’re ready to assemble the dish – making it a weeknight-compatible casserole.

Polenta bake

Don’t let the seemingly long ingredient list intimidate you. A lot of them are spices and at least salt and pepper don’t actually count as ingredients. I know at least Davida will agree. This dish comes together much faster than you might think and still looks just that smidgen fancier than your average bowl of chili.

Polenta Mushroom Chili Bake [adapted from Coffee & Quinoa]

For the polenta:

  • scant 1/4 cup of polenta/ cornmeal
  • 1/2 cup each water
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened non-dairy milk [I used soy because that’s what I had on hand but any unsweetened should work or just cow’s]
  • dash of salt
  • pepper to taste
  • 1/2 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp coconut butter

 

For the chili:

  • 1 small red onion, diced
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  •  6 oz cremini mushrooms, sliced thinly
  • 1/3 cup each kidney beans and chickpeas
  • 2 tbsps of corn
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp coriander
  • 1/4 tsp oregano
  • 1/8 tsp of smoked paprika
  • a pinch of cinnamon
  • 1 tsp dark cocoa powder
  • 1 piece of 99 % chocolate [or a chocolate with at least 85% cocoa], chopped roughly
  • 1 tsp of chia seeds
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/3 cup grated zucchini [optional]
  • optional: grated parmesan

 

Start by preparing your polenta [at least 2.5 hours in advance]:

  1. Bring water/ milk to a boil. Add salt and stir in polenta. Reduce heat and stir until the polenta has thickened.
  2. Stir in the nutritional yeast, coconut and pepper to taste.
  3. Pour into a small bowl, smooth out the top and set aside to cool.

For the chili:

  1. Saute the onion until it begins to brown. Add the garlic and saute another minute.
  2. Pour in the tomato sauce, spices, cocoa and chocolate.
  3. Let the chili simmer on low to medium heat for about 20 minutes, stirring every now and then to ensure it doesn’t burn.
  4. Remove chili from heat and stir in the chia seeds. Let the sauce thicken slightly.
  5. Meanwhile, turn the bowl of polenta upside down to pop out the molded block. Slice into four even rounds.
  6. Layer about half of the chili in your baking dish. Add the shredded/ grated zucchini.
  7. Top with the polenta slices and the remaining chili as well as the cheese if using.
  8. Bake for about 20 minutes at 180 °C/350 °F.
  9. Serve sprinkled with nutritional yeast.

Notes:

I kept this recipe vegan but also gave the dish a try adding cheese on top. It’s delicious both ways.

Chili_Polenta Bake

I’m linking up with Laura, Kierston and Healthy Vegan Fridays today.

Happiness inducing today: Chatting with my colleague while working on a rather boring task.

Stay in touch!

Twitter: @MissPolkadot21
Pinterest: MissPolkadot21
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Do you follow recipes closely or just use them as guidelines?

What is your favourite dish featuring polenta?

 

 

Meet my new best food friends [BFFs]

First my blogiversary reflections on Monday, then continuing the birthday shenanigans with cake bread pudding and a gifts yesterday and now another double [foodie] party. Celebrating three days in a row?! I can’t say I ever did that before but it feels pretty good. Especially when there’s lots of good food involved. I’ll admit I’m a little bugged to notice it’s the last time we can use Jenn’s adorable Halloween-themed What I ate Wednesday logo and I completely forgot to create any spooky snacks. Sorry, Jenn, I promise I’ll try harder next time. Just like last week I’ll also join Vegan Wednesday again. Make sure to hop over to both Jenn’s and Regina’s link-ups for even more foodie inspiration.

WIAW_halloween button

Some cravings make perfect sense. It’s freezing outside, raining cats and dogs and all I want it a bowl of chili. I think all of us have that one go-to chili recipe that they know by heart and whip up whenever the temperatures drop to a chill. Mine is a Bulgur Chili coming from a cooking magazine and has been in my rotation for years. Only guess what I didn’t have on hand when last Thursday turned out to be nasty and practically scream for chili? Bulgur. And time or patience to wait for grains to cook. Luckily Michelle must have sensed this because she posted her recipe just that day. Problem solved.

Chili

You know me and my ways, though, so I obviously subbed around a bit and was pleasantly surprised by how close to my favourite recipe this got.

Some of my cravings are not only strange but completely unseasonal. Ice cream in Fall when it’s no more than 54 degree outside? Well, I told you yesterday I wasn’t a cake but an ice cream girl and as long as I can pull on a sweater while eating it I won’t give up on my favourite treat. The bowl below was a homemade healthified version of Cookie Dough ice cream.

Cookie Ice Cream

However maybe my cravings had quite a simple background … Maybe they just have to do with one of my new BFFs [best food friends]? Or better yet the urge to put one of them to the best use …

Do you remember me asking for food processor recommendations and mentioning I’d been eyeing the Vitamix for ages [and we’re really talking years here]? Well, shortly after that post I remembered I’d seen other German bloggers receiving a Vitamix on lend to test it and dared to give it a try, too. I’ll admit I didn’t hope for much figuring there might be a too high request. Maybe it was blogiversary luck 😉 but I got a reply only few hours later and the very next day a Vitamix was on its way to me.

Vitamix

I promise I will try not to gush too much about the Vitamix during the next five more weeks he’ll be my guest. But just to explain my slight, no, okay, incredible excitement about it let me tell you that I’ve never worked with anything more than more or less mediocre handheld blenders all throughout my life so far. Just a funny story here: when I first started reading blogs and recipes directions mentioned the use of ‘food processors’ for blending I had no idea what bloggers meant and kept using my handheld blender. Because what else would people use for blending, right ;)?! That is, until I saw a picture of one of those mysterious processors on a blog. Yet I had still to happen upon either a food processor let alone a Vitamix in any of my relatives or friends’ houses. They just aren’t common over here.

[Disclaimer: Perfekte Gesundheit offered to send me the Vitamix for free to review for six weeks. All opinions on the Vitamix are my own and I wasn’t compensated by the shop.]

Kabocha Curry

Looking back at the meals I remembered to take pictures of – because I’ll admit some days I just forgot – there was another best food friend around: cauliflower. Can you tell it was on offer? What can I say: I’m simply trying to budget where I can :). Luckily cauliflower is a versatile ingredient and good vehicle for many dishes like the not-so-pretty but delicious spin on the Kabocha Squash Lentil Curry. It has quickly become one of my favourites though how could anything containing kabocha disappoint? Forgive me for not peeling the squash and the dish resulting in a lovely green/grey-ish colour. Taste beats looks any day. Fact.

Coconut butter

Okay, so just a little more Vitamix excitment. I mentioned wanting to make my own nut butters so this was obviously one of the first uses of my new kitchen toy. Coconut butter had been on my grocery list for months but I just couldn’t convince myself to splurge on it. And now? Organic coconut butter for a fraction of the price at the store. That and the amazing flavour? Swoon. Now I just need to find a way to stop myself from eating it straight from the jar … dangerous.

Don’t forget to enter my blogiversary giveaway! Sorry it’s a little confusing to enter the Rafflecopter widget on another page but I hadn’t considered free WordPress pages didn’t support these kinds of plugins.

Happiness inducing today: A girl I recently met on the train [we just started chatting and she happens to be new in town] suggesting to meet up for a coffee later this week.

Happy Wednesday!

Do you plan your meals according to what’s on offer at the store?

What are some of your unseasonal cravings?

Tell me: what are some must-try recipes for the Vitamix? Aside from smoothies [sorry, not a fan]. I’ve been thinking of vegan ‘cheezy’ kale chips [cashew-based cheese], some kind of raw nut-based dessert, …?