Tag Archives: sugar free

raw vanilla coconut fig slice …

Because of our long hot dry summers (and Mediterranean climate) figs grow very well in South Australia.

My mum has a couple of huge fig trees in her backyard and, without fail, every year there’s always a heavy crop of figs for us (the family) to enjoy. That’s if the birds don’t get to them first!



One of the joys of growing figs is being able to eat them fresh from the tree! Or better yet – making a dessert with them.


This recipe is courtesy of Secret Squirrel.

Walnut Fig Base
½ cup walnuts
¼ cup almonds
2 tablespoons desiccated coconut
2 tablespoons flax seeds (I used psyllium husk instead)
½ cup dried figs
½ cup medjool dates
½ tablespoon water
½ teaspoon cinnamon

Vanilla Coconut Cashew Cream
½ cup cashews (soaked in water overnight)
½ cup coconut milk
½ cup desiccated coconut
2 tablespoons maple syrup
½ teaspoon vanilla bean paste

Fresh figs to decorate
10.5cm x 20.5cm loaf tin

1) Walnut fig base – add all ingredients into a food processor and process until the mixture sticks together when pressed between the fingers.




2) Line tray with cling film. I used baking paper.
3) Pour mixture into tin and carefully press firmly using the back of a spatula until base is completely flat and even.


4) Put into the freezer to set, whilst you make the vanilla coconut cashew cream.
5) Vanilla coconut cashew cream –  add cashews to a food processor and process for a few minutes.



6) With the food processor still running, slowly add the coconut milk, maple syrup and vanilla bean paste.


7) Keep processing until the mixture becomes very smooth and creamy.


8) Add desiccated coconut and pulse to combine.



9) Pull the walnut fig base out of the freezer and fill with the coconut cashew cream layer.


10) Put back into the freezer for 2 hours to set. Slice can be kept in the freezer until serving. (Let it defrost for approximately 15 minutes for cream to soften).
11) Decorate with fresh figs, slice carefully with a sharp knife and enjoy this delightful treat with your family and friends.


The family loved the fig slices. They went even so far as to say that it was one of the better desserts that I have made. Big call. But the slices did look amazing (vibrant colours) and the combination of the dried figs in the base and the fresh figs on the top was delicious!



“To eat figs off the tree in the very early morning, when they have been barely touched by the sun, is one of the exquisite pleasures of the Mediterranean.” ~ Elizabeth David, An Omelette and a Glass of Wine.



rainbow paddle pop slice …

I saw this recipe on Instagram and was immediately drawn to the colours. So pretty!

It’s a rainbow paddle pop slice and is based on the popular Rainbow paddle pop. A paddle pop is a milk-based frozen dairy snack made by Streets and sold in Australia, New Zealand and a few other countries.


I made these slices for Tuesday night’s family dinner night. Needless to say, they were a hit – even if we are in the middle of winter! My cousin said they were her favourite raw dessert. Mind you, she says that each time I make something new :)


(This recipe is courtesy of @sobeautifullyraw).

1 cup almonds
1 cup coconut flakes
1 cup pitted dates

3 cups cashews, soaked overnight and drained
1 cup non-dairy milk
2/3 cup rice malt syrup
2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste
2/3 cup melted coconut oil
extra water – if needed
Pink, blue and yellow vegan friendly food colouring

1) Blend the almonds and coconut until a fine meal forms (using a food processor).




2) Add the dates last and blend until it forms a dough.



3) Press into a lined loaf tin and freeze.


1) Blend everything apart from the coconut oil in a high powered blender until smooth and creamy. (I used the food processor and I used almond milk as my non-dairy milk).



2) Add the oil last and blend until well combined and smooth.


3) Split into small bowls and colour into your desired colours using natural food dyes of your choice. (Use basic colour mixing methods. A quick Google search will help if you don’t know what colours to mix).



4) Using a spoon, spoon the colours randomly over the base until you’ve used all of the colours up.


5) Using a knife, swirl the colours around. Give the whole loaf tin a shake to flatten the slice. Freeze the slice overnight.


6) Slice with a hot, wet knife and enjoy! Keep it in the freezer and just defrost slices as you need.



“God puts rainbows in the clouds so that each of us – in the dreariest and most dreaded moments – can see a possibility of hope.” ~ Maya Angelou

vegan peanut butter and jam brownies …

Peanut butter and chocolate is the best food combination. Ever. I’ve said that a million times before. So what happens when you add extra ingredients and flavours? More deliciousness! :)

This recipe is courtesy of Green Press.

These brownies are a mix of textures and flavours.

Chia seeds are loaded with antioxidants and are high in protein and omega 3 fatty acids. And they are one of the few trendy ‘superfoods’ that are actually worthy of that term.

I made these for a birthday party and the guests liked them. These sweets were different to what they’re used to. I usually measure the success of my desserts by running a taste test  past my nephew 4 year old Jake. Kids can be so fussy these days. Guess what? Jake liked these brownies  – they must be alright then ;)

Chia Jam
3 cups date paste (blend 2 cups dates with 1 cup water)
3 cups mixed berries (fresh or frozen)
4 cups water
250g chia seeds

1) Blend all the ingredients together.

2) Place in a container and stir 250 grams of dry chia seeds through your mixture.

3) Allow to soak for three hours.

Brownie recipe
3 cups walnuts
1/2 cup raw cacao
1.5 cups dates (soaked in water)

Chia jam (see recipe above)
Peanut butter

1) Line a brownie tray with baking paper.
2) Blitz walnuts in a food processor until finely ground.

3) Add cacao and process again.

4) Add the dates and process until all combined.

5) Press the mixture firmly into the line pan using a spatual to smooth the mixture. Put in the fridge for an hour to firm up.

6) Remove from fridge and spread peanut butter on top. Set in fridge for further 15-20 minutes.

7) Spread chia jam on top. Set in the fridge for about 20-25 minutes.

8) Slice and serve. Enjoy!

“It’s like peanut butter and chocolate. Each is great, but they’re better together.”

yeast free and gluten free hot cross buns …

I have already made hot cross buns twice this week – the raw ones (raw vegan hot cross buns) and the gluten free ones (gluten free and dairy free hot cross buns).

Then I saw a recipe for yeast free and gluten free hot cross buns. Had to make them! This recipe is from Gluten free Grain free.

1 cup almond meal (if you are unable to have nuts (see notes below for nut alternative))
2 tablespoons chia seeds
3/4 cups arrowroot/tapioca starch
3/4 cups dried dates (remember to check ingredients if you are using chopped fruit of any kind) – I used mixed dried fruit
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1 teaspoon bi carbonate of soda (baking soda)
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
3 eggs
pinch of salt
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons olive oil (can use butter or coconut oil )

1) Preheat oven to 175C.
2) Soak the chia seeds in water whilst preparing the dry mix.

3) Put all of the dry ingredients (including the dates) into the food processor and process until the dates are broken into small bits. As I was using dried mixed fruit which was already in small bits I didn’t add the fruit to the processor.

4) Pour dry mixture into a mixing bowl.

5) Add eggs, soaked chia seeds, apple cider vinegar & olive oil. I also added the mixed dried fruit.

6) Combine everything well until there are no lumps (except the bits of fruit).

7) The mixture will be thick – don’t be tempted to add any more liquid.
8) You can use a muffin tray (with muffin liners), a cupcake baking tray (with cupcake papers) or a lamington tin and then cut them into squares. There are no rules.

9) Bake for 25 minutes until the hot cross buns are firm to the touch and bounce back when lightly pressed. The top will be lovely and golden in colour.
10) Remove from the oven and turn out onto a cooling rack. Note: my oven was fan forced so the temperature was set at 160C. The hot cross buns were ready after 20 minutes.
11) The crosses – you can make the cross using Labna (dripped yoghurt), royal icing (icing sugar, water and lemon juice) or coconut butter. I opted for the icing sugar option.

There is no added sugar in this recipe – if you like more sugar – try a cup of dates first.  If you prefer a bit sweeter though – a dash of honey will be just right.  Or half a banana.

Nut free – replace 1 cup of almond meal with 1 cup of pumpkin seed meal.

The family and I will able to enjoy them tomorrow (Easter Sunday) after the church service. The family will be able to choose from the 3 types of hot cross buns on offer – they’ll be spoiled for choice :)

The story of Easter is the story of God’s wonderful window of divine surprise.” ~ Carl Knudsen

raw vegan hot cross buns …

With Easter days away, now might be the time to make some hot cross buns. Not your traditional hot cross buns but a raw and healthy version.

[A hot cross bun is a spiced sweet bun usually made with currants or raisins and marked with a cross on the top, traditionally eaten on Good Friday in the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, the Caribbean, South Africa, India, and Canada.]

This recipe is courtesy of This Rawsome Vegan Life.

1 cup almonds
1 cup oats
1 cup dates
1 cup raisins
1 teaspoon vanilla powder
½ teaspoon cinnamon powder
½ teaspoon ginger powder
Water, as needed

½ cup cashews
2 tablespoons coconut oil
Juice from 1 lemon
½ teaspoon vanilla powder
Water, as needed

1) Put the almonds and oats in a food processor and process until they become a rough flour.

2) Add the rest of the ingredients – except the raisins – and add water as needed until it all begins to stick together. Taste and adjust accordingly.

3) Add the raisins in by hand and mix well.

4) Roll into balls and place on a baking sheet or dehydrator tray, then press them down slightly.

5) Cut a cross on the top of each one.

6) Put in the dehydrator (or your oven at its lowest temperature) for about 2 hours or until they hold together. Alternately, just leave them as-is! I used the oven.

1) Blend all the ingredients until smooth, adding water as needed to get the desired consistency. It took a while to get the consistency that I wanted.
Note: I added a tablespoon of maple syrup, during the blending, because I found the lemon juice a bit overpowering.

2) Drizzle on crosses on the buns and enjoy!

If you like, you can sprinkle with cinnamon.

This recipe is such a simple recipe and is a delicious alternative to the hot cross buns you buy in the shops. They are little bundles of nuts, fruits and spices, with a chewy texture, that taste like the ‘real’ ones.

Buona Pasqua a tutti! (Happy Easter everyone!)

“Hot cross buns! Hot cross buns! One a penny, two a penny, Hot cross buns!”

raw bounty bar …

This simple recipe comes from the August 2014 edition of Woman’s Day. I was flicking through the magazine, at the doctor’s, and saw the recipe. It looked interesting so, instead of ripping the page out (like you used to do in the past – not that I ever did that!), I took a photo of the recipe.


These slices are a raw version of the bounty bars – a chocolate bar manufactured by Mars, Incorporated.

Ingredients – sugar, desiccated coconut, glucose syrup (sources include wheat), milk solids, cocoa butter, cocoa mass, invert sugar, vegetable fat, emulsifiers (471, soy lecithin), humectant (glycerol), salt, natural flavour (vanilla extract) and peanuts. Mmm …. healthy – not!

1 and 1/2 cups shredded coconut
1 cup fresh pitted dates *
1 cup almond meal
2 tablespoons light agave syrup or rice malt syrup
2 tablespoons raw cacao powder
2 tablespoons chia seeds

1 cup soaked cashews **
3 cups shredded coconut
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup light agave syrup

1/2 cup raw cacao powder
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup light agave syrup

* Soak the pitted dates in warm water for 10 minutes then drain before adding to the food processor.

** Cover cashews with water, soak 2 hours and drain well before use. This creates a soft creamy texture for the filling.

1) Lightly grease and line a 20cm square pan with baking paper.
2) In a food processor, combine coconut, almond meal, dates, syrup, cacao and chia together. I used maple syrup instead of the agave syrup.

Note: Because I was reading the recipe off my phone, I left out the cacao! Oops!

3) Process until mixtures forms a sticky crumbly dough.

4) Press mixture evenly and firmly over base of pan.

5) Chill until required.

1) In a food processor, combine all ingredients, pulsing until well chopped and mixture binds together.

2) Spread evenly over base, pressing down with a fork.

1) In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients. Whisk together until smooth.

2) Pour over slice. Spread evenly over surface.

3) Chill 30 minutes until set.

Just like a bounty bar only healthier! Guilt free too! Enjoy :)

“You can’t eat coconut without breaking its shell; you can’t succeed without breaking the cycle of failure.” ~ Vinita Kinra


raw orange chocolate cheesecake …

Recently, someone at work brought in oranges and had left them in the kitchen for whoever wanted them. I wasn’t interested in taking any until I spotted this recipe from Rawmazing. So to the person who left oranges – thank you very much!

Apart from having to soak the cashews for 3 hours this recipe produces a cheesecake in no time at all.

1 cup almonds
1/4 cup cacao powder
3 dates

3 oranges
2/3 cup agave (or liquid sweetener of your choice) – I used honey
2 1/2 cups cashews (soaked at least 3 hours)
3/4 cup coconut butter
1/2 teaspoon sweet orange essential oil (optional as it is not raw but still healthy)

Tip – pre-soak the almonds and dry them as soon as you get them.

1) Combine all ingredients in the food processor and process until ground fine.

Mixture should hold together when pressed. If it doesn’t, add water, 1 tablespoon at a time until texture is achieved. Set aside 1/4 cup.

2) Press remaining into bottom of 6″ spring form pan.

3) Place in refrigerator.

1) Grate the zest off of all the oranges. You should have at least 3 tablespoons. Be careful to only get the orange part as the pith (the white) is bitter.
2) Squeeze the juice out of all the oranges. You should have about 2/3 cup.

3) Place cashews, liquid sweetener, coconut butter, zest, essential oil and orange juice in the food processor and process until very smooth.

4) Pour over crust, sprinkle extra crust on top and refrigerate for at least 4 hours before serving.

On the night that the family had this cake, it was smooth and creamy. And delicious. Chocolate and orange is a great flavour combination. It tasted even better the next day when it had a set a bit more.

Who doesn’t love a guilt-free cheesecake? Especially one that is super quick to make.

“The only way cheese is dessert is when it’s followed by the word cake.”  ~ Michele Gorman, Single in the City