Goddess Granola

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So many variations of granola have come around (like my quinoa granola) but nothing really compares to the classic. Something about the combination of the crunchy oats and fragrant nuts just warms your soul any time of year. Like I previously mentioned in my last granola post, most granolas from the grocery stores have added chemicals, refined sugars and oils to make a really average tasting product.

If you don’t have a lot of time in the morning, this is a nourishing breakfast that can be brought in a container or baggy. Its also a great alternative to sugary breakfast cereals kids are starting their day with. Take for example Harvest Crunch. From reading the cover, most parents would think they are giving their children a fantastic nourishing breakfast. The box says that it’s full of fibre, has 100% whole grains and is made using ‘natural’ flavours. So why did they need to add the wheat, brown sugar, barley, modified milk ingredients and sunflower/canola oil? To make an awesome tasting granola all you need is a combination of oats, fat and sweetness, so choose the right kinds! I use certified gluten-free oats, maple syrup and coconut oil as a base. Then the flavour combinations are endless… add almond or coconut extract. Add peanut butter! What about raisins and cinnamon? You can be your own granola god or goddess…ps. this also makes a really beautiful and thoughtful gift!

We all have an extra 45 minutes when we are doing useless sh*t. Instead of surfing the web, flipping tv channels or texting; use those 45 minutes to make some fresh granola. Your house will smell amazing and your body and tastebuds will thank you. Feel free to add different nuts, dried fruit or extra superfoods such as chia, flax or buckwheat. Top on coconut yogurt, smoothies or have it straight out of the container by the handful (warning: you won’t be able to stop). I had mine with warmed vanilla almond milk, chia and a fresh pear. As always this recipe is gluten, dairy and refined sugar free (and vegan)! Bon appetit!
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Ingredients:

• 4 cups certified g-free oats (or large flake oats for those who aren’t g-free)
• 1/2 cup coconut oil (melted)
• 1/2 cup pure maple syrup (NO Aunt Jemima s.v.p.)
• 1/2 cup hazelnuts (crushed)
• 1/2 cup cashews
• 1/2 cup almonds (slivered, or crushed)
• 3/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes or shredded coconut
• 1 tsp cinnamon
• 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
• 1/2 tsp sea or pink himalayan salt

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a large baking/cookie sheet with parchment paper.

2. Whisk maple syrup and melted coconut oil until combined.

3. Add oats, cashews, almonds, coconut flakes, cinnamon, vanilla and salt and stir until combined.

4. Spread granola evenly on cooking sheet.

5. Bake for 35-45 minutes depending on your oven. Stir every 10 minutes. Remove when golden brown. Let cool and add any dried fruit you like! Store in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.
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Squeaky Clean Chocolate Coconut Torte

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If you love mounds, you’ll absoloutly love this chocolate coconut torte. If you have been eating clean you might have found one of the most difficult areas to satisfy is that sweet tooth. After so many chia pudding combinations, or super creamy banana ‘ice cream sundaes’ you one day might say f*** it, I want a real dessert.

I hear people say that a lot. I don’t just want fruit, I want a real dessert. The irony is, those so called real desserts are made up of so much fakeness that you’d be ready for a nap after reading the ingredients (if you can even pronounce it). Even if you don’t want to go the gluten and dairy free route… I beg you to buy real. Go to your local farmer or market and buy fresh eggs, cream and butter. When there is an entire brand that is named ” I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter” don’t you want to ask.. well then, what the eff is it? Let me enlighten you on what it is…Water, Liquid Soybean Oil, Salt, Sweet Cream Buttermilk, Xanthan Gum, Soy Lecithin, Polysorbate 60, Lactic Acid, (Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Benzoate, Calcium Disodium EDTA) as Preservatives, Artificial Flavor, Colored with Beta Carotene, Vitamin A (Palmitate).

Sooooo delicious right? And what is evil butter made of? Milk. Im not saying to eat a stick of butter. It is full of milk fat. But if it comes down to you choosing between that fat free butter spray or a pat of butter… choose the butter. Just do so in moderation. Much more on this later…

Back to the torte… I am glad to say that you don’t need to ‘fall off the wagon’ or suffer to enjoy a real, restaurant quality dessert. Full of healthy fats and antioxidants you would never think a dairy free dessert could be so rich and creamy. I promise you that even if you think you are the WORST baker in the world, this torte is foolproof. Make it as a decadent passover addition or for an impressive dessert for guests, all made in 30 minutes or less. You can even make it the night before! No one will ever know it is gluten, dairy and refined sugar free. Top with hazelnuts and coconut flakes or even fresh raspberries, the possibilities are endless. You and your guests will be left satisfied and feeling guilt and tummy-ache free. Bon appetit!

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Crust Ingredients:

• 2 cups unsweetened shredded coconut
• 1/2 cup of coconut sugar
• 2 large egg whites
• 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
• pinch of salt

Filling Ingredients:

• 12 ounces chopped 70% cocoa chocolate (I like Purelife dairy/gluten free chocolate)
• 1 cup coconut cream (remove water from coconut milk – best from a can)
• toasted hazelnuts
• unsweetened coconut flakes
• ** or berries, other nuts or coconut whipped cream!
• pinch of sea salt

Directions:

• Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
• Coat a 9-inch tart pan with coconut oil cooking spray.
• Combine all crust ingredients in a mixing bowl and then press into tart pan using the bottom of a measuring cup.
• Bake crust for 10-15 minutes or until golden.
• While the crust is baking get started on the filling. On a double boiler melt the chocolate and coconut cream until combined. Place in a bowl and leave in the fridge to cool down and become thicker (30-40 minutes).
• Remove the crust and let it cool. Pour cooled chocolate into crust, top with remaining ingredients (don’t forget the sea salt!) and let set in the fridge for at least two hours. Serve cold or at room temperature… you might need a glass of almond milk for this one!
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Salted Caramelized Chocolate Matzoh

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With a clean diet, holidays can be a little tricky and also terrifying. I think it is important to remember that holidays only come around a few days a year, so a little refined sugar won’t kill anyone once in a while. Neither will a little butter, chocolate, or an extra helping of pasta. However for myself and all those other gluten/lactose intolerant people out there, those indulgences (even if rare) can lead to miserable, uncomfortable and utterly painful feelings that really make the whole thing not worth it. But I also don’t want to feel deprived, or have FOMO (fear of missing out) so I feel it is my duty to help all of you out there with digestive issues and/or allergies. I not only want you to feel included, but to also feel that you may be even having something better than all those gluten/dairy lovers (it will be our little secret).

Once a year for about a week, Jewish people all over the world are unable to eat bread or anything leavened. The two ritual seders often result in dry tasteless cakes, and crumbly constipating cookies. Chic? I think not. You would think that with their awful texture and flavours that maybe, just maybe, you were eating something healthy. Well, sorry to break it with you, but even with no bread, you are eating blood sugar spiking, fibre-less flour mixed with water. That is what matzoh is. The desserts still contain modified oils and flour. Oh and loads of refined sugars without really tasting so great. Like I said, life is short so go for it if it truly satisfies your passover sweet tooth. But why settle? Luckily, Ive been able to transform the my favourite caramelized chocolate matzoh (aka maztoh brittle) into a perfectly CEG (Clean Eating Goddess) treat. Free of refined sugars, gluten and dairy, those of you trying to get a little healthier will be satisfied by this treats new makeover. The “salted caramel” is made of dates, vanilla and coconut milk. The chocolate glaze is used with 70% cocoa and the toppings are endless. I used coconut, hazelnut and chopped peanuts*** but anything goes! Full of antioxidants, fiber and healthy fats this dessert or snack will satisfy any sweet tooth and make you forget all your passover woes.I hope you enjoy!

***peanuts are a legumes and are not kosher for passover for some. If your making this for guests please double check!

Cook note: It is best to make these closer to the time of serving because they can tend to get slightly soggy. If you can’t make these so close to serving time, then please store in the fridge!

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Serves 5-8

Ingredients:

• 10-12 dates (pitted)
• boiling water
• 1 tsp vanilla extract
• good pinch of sea salt
• 1 tsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
• 6-10 pieces of gluten free matzo
• roasted chopped hazelnuts
• roasted chopped peanuts
• roasted coconut flakes
• 12 ounces of 70% cocoa (I like Purelife chocolate chips that are gluten and dairy free)

Directions:

1. Cover dates in boiling water until submerged for 15-20 minutes. (keep water)

2. Remove pits (if your dates are not pitted) and place in the food processor. Add lemon, vanilla, and a pinch of salt and blend. Add the water from the dates until reached desired consistency. Store in a jar in the fridge until needed.

3.Toast nuts in a dry pan or oven for 10 minutes or until golden. Keep a close eye or they will burn!

4. Melt chocolate in a double boiler or microwave.

5. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and lay out your gluten free matzoh. Using a butter knife, spread on as much caramel as you’d like to each piece.

6. Using a small spoon, spoon the chocolate and drizzle from high distance. Sprinkle sea salt and add toppings of choice.

7. Break matzo in pieces and serve ASAP.
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