Monday, March 18, 2013

Raw Cacao Treats

Everyone has a view on eating and what is and isn't good for you. Personally I've changed my mind several times – tried this and that and on more than one occasion given my opinion on what I believe are the best foods to eat. I'm very opinionated when it comes to the food,and what we should and shouldn't eat and even more so when it concerns the health of our children. My closest girlfriends think I'm a bit of a know it all about all thing's food related,'Eddy the expert'.I can't help myself, the health of all children is foremost in my brain, they are our future I want them to be well, not just mine but my kids future partners and then hopefully their children.
Everyone needs to watch the documentary 'The perfect human diet' if not only for the simple facts of human evolution and how all the facts about what we should put in our bodies are there in black and white. It's scared the pants off me. You could say it made me wake up, to a certain extent.
In our house at the moment I am trying really hard, not just with myself and Max but also with the children to eat very limited processed foods. I'm working overtime trying to make sure we all eat the best food possible for their growing bodies and our ageing ones. Max and I are eating very clean,unprocessed foods, no wheat, no grains. We 'are' eating animal fats and meat from pastured/grass fed free range animals, lots of vegetables, soaked activated nuts, raw milk cheese and cultured butter, coconuts, berries, pastured eggs, coconut butter etc...
I am trying really hard to limit processed foods from my kids mouths (without giving them a complex),of course I'm not naive, I know they will eat stuff I don't approve of but the majority of what they eat is great. I know I've won when my middle daughter is physically repulsed by all fast food chains, gold star for me on that one!
Jemima, all by herself came to me on Friday and said she wasn't going to eat sugar 6 days out of 7. That's huge for a 13 year old to come to that decision all by herself.
I've personally have had to change my eating habits drastically. I was pushed into it, thankfully. When Wilco's leg was broken my back problems reoccurred. This was in part from putting on 35kg in my first pregnancy some 13 years ago, almost doubling my weight(at the time). 
The time has come for me to get back to pre pregnancy weight and heal my bad back and find my core strength. This is going to take me somewhere between 6-12 months and my diet plays a big part in my recovery. It won't be easy. I will have a day here and there off, but 90% of the time I'll be on. My day to day eating will be documented on instagram if you want to follow me.
I'm going to need a few healthy treats to keep me going.
We were in Byron a few weeks back and I discovered fresh Almond milk.
Iced Almond milk coffee to be exact at The Roadhouse. This will be treat NO.1

So I decided I'd make my own. 
How hard could it be? Not hard at all! 
Almond milk would have to be the easiest thing to make - no jokes.
 Soak 1 cup of organic almonds overnight in a little filtered water and a pinch of salt, then rinse them well the next day
 Pop them into a blender with 2-3 cups of filtered water (depending on how creamy you like your Almond milk)
Blitz till it's white and the almonds have broken down as much as possible
put it through a sieve or wring it out in a piece of Muslin
Till all the milk is extracted
With the leftover pulp make a cake. I'll post that next week.
My other delicious treats have been inspired by Sarah Wilson's new book. It's incredible and an eye opener I'm sure, for many people. Changing the way I'm eating has meant finding something that I can have when I'm craving the enemy and her Raspberry ripple recipe was just what I was looking for.But of course I couldn't just leave it the way it was, I've been experimenting ever since and all my creations have been delicious.
 Sarah Wilson's Raspberry Ripple the Michelle Schoeps Organic way:
What you'll need:1 small cup of blueberries
1 small cup of frozen raspberries
a decent handful of activated pecans
1/2 cup of coconut flakes - toasted
1/2 teaspoon of ground vanilla
1/2 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon of best quality salt
2 heaped tablespoons of raw cacao powder
80g cultured or raw butter
1/2 cup coconut butter
2 - 3 tablespoons of rice malt syrup, maple or honey
Arrange your berries
Toast the coconut. Then brake it up a bit to scatter over the berries and nuts 
before finally pouring over the chocolate. 
Melt - butter & coconut butter together
add sweetener of your choice
mix well and then mix in the cacao powder, cinnamon, vanilla and salt
Pour this liquid over
 the yumminess arranged on your brown grease proof paper in your plate and pop it in the fridge to set.
We slice slivers when needed and stop our self from eating the whole thing.
That's when I decided I'd make tiny cupcake sized ones, the size of a little chocolate.
Get a mini muffin tray and fill all 25 holes with mini cupcake cases
in each cupcake case place....
2 little or 1 larger - blueberry and raspberry
1 pecan broken a little
a flake of 2 of toasted coconut
and then the liquid/cacao mix.
Pour into each case filling just before the top.
I also made 
Chocolate Coffee Pralines
In a processor put 1/2 cup of pecans and 1/2 cup of hazelnuts
1/2 cup desiccated coconut
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon of vanilla
1/2 teaspoon of Himalayan salt
1 teaspoon of fresh coffee grounds (I used decaf)
blitz till fine crumbs appear
Melt your butters together (same measurements as in Sarah's recipe), add the sweetener of choice and cacao
and then in a bowl mix the dry and wet together
again put in mini cupcake cases and stick in the fridge
(These recipes make roughly 25 mini cupcake sized raw cacao treats, feel free to 1/2 quantities and make half a tray of two different flavours)
and then the last one...
For fussy Frank I made a chocolate crackle version.
Simply melt the butters together add a pinch of cinnamon and vanilla along with the cacao, 1/2 cup of desiccated coconut and good pinch of salt,  sweetness of choice - mix well
add a cup of brown rice bubbles (available at most supermarkets and health food stores)mix well (you might need to add a few more rice bubbles, depending)
put into mini or normal cupcake cases in muffin trays and in the fridge they go.
Frank likes these because they're not as full on or rich as your'normal' chocolate crackles.
So for the time being this is what I'm playing with and its both delicious and fun.
©Michelle Schoeps 2013
All photos taken by Michelle Schoeps

I AM FOOD  just the most exquisite book in every way