Tag Archives: walnuts

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.



healthy eatmore fudge chocolate squares …

A healthy no bake paleo dairy free and gluten free dessert for you to try! These amazing and delicious little treats are made with whole unprocessed ingredients.

These fudge squares are a healthier version of the Eat-more chocolate bars. FYI, the Eat-more is a chocolate bar made by Hershey. It made up of chewy dark toffee, peanuts and chocolate.

This simple and quick to make recipe is courtesy of Nutritionist In the Kitch.

1 cup pitted dates
1/2 cup almonds, unsalted
1/4 cup walnuts, unsalted
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 ripe bananas
4 tablespoons natural almond butter
1/4 cup more unsweetened cocoa powder
4 tablespoons unpasteurized honey (strict vegans can use agave)

1) Put dates in a bowl with warm water, allow dates to soak for 30 minutes, then drain.

2) Mix together dates, almonds, walnuts, and 1/4 cup cocoa powder in a food processor until well blended.

3) Spread mixture in a 9×5 baking pan (8×8 is okay – which is what I used) until evenly distributed, and press down gently with a spoon.

4) Mix together bananas, almond butter, honey, and the other 1/4 cup cocoa powder in the food processor until well blended.

5) Spread mixture over bottom layer until evenly distributed.

6) Place in freezer for 30 minutes.

7) Cut into 16 squares.

These squares will melt if left at room temperature for too long so keep them chilled. Re-freeze whatever you don’t eat, and enjoy at another time!

These treats are a mix of textures – chewy, crunchy and gooey. It hits the sweet spot that’s for sure.

“Chocolate is cheaper than therapy, and you don’t need an appointment.” ~ author unknown.

gluten free caramel walnut slice …

it was thursday night and, being pressed for time, i searched quickly for a no bake slice that i could make for my mum’s friday morning quilting class. i came across this recipe on the gluten free scallywag blog.

i didn’t find a no bake slice but i found a fairly easy recipe.

* this recipe was adapted from the australian women’s weekly cakes & slices cookbook. my mum has this book :) this softcover book was published in 1989, has 128 pages and colour photos of every recipe.

the recipe and accompanying photo can be found on pages 112 and 113.


this book, which i consider to be a classic and i highly recommend it, is currently available on ebay if you want to get yourself a copy.

i’m digressing …

ingredients – base
160g (1 cup) gluten free plain flour
125g melted butter
95g (1 cup) dessicated coconut
70g (1/3 cup) caster sugar
1/2 teaspoon gluten free baking powder

ingredients – topping
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
150g (3/4 cup) brown sugar
95g (1 cup) dessicated coconut
60g (1/2 cup) chopped walnuts

1) preheat the oven to 170c.
2) line a lamington tray with baking paper. (the tray i used was 16.5cm x 26cm).
3) combine all ingredients (flour, coconut, sugar and butter)

and press evenly into the prepared tray.

4) bake 15 minutes.

5) for the topping, whisk together the eggs, vanilla and sugar until the sugar is dissolved.
6) add in the remaining ingredients and mix together.
7) pour over the baked base and bake for 20 minutes.

8) cool in the tray before slicing and serving.

the smell in the kitchen during the baking process … mmmmm

this recipe was super easy and the slices were made with a minimum of fuss. i had all but one of the ingredients in the pantry – the walnuts. it’s a good thing that my local foodland supermarket is down the road.

on advice from my mum i cut down on the amount of the sugar. i wasn’t too sure about doing that but mum does know best.

the next morning, whilst i was at work, i received the following text message from my mum – “ladies love your slice and want the recipe. i think it’s sweet enough.”

fyi, did you know – walnuts are nicknamed “brain food” – they have a very high content of omega-3 fatty acids, which help support brain function.
(photo courtesy of istockphoto)

“the nutcracker sits under the holiday tree, a guardian of childhood stories. feed him walnuts and he will crack open a tale.” ~ vera nazarian, the perpetual calendar of inspiration