Steaks de Coliflor a la Parilla con Chimichurri (comer con amigos muy queridos en la naturaleza)

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Cuando viajas, vives en diferentes ciudades, y ademas tienes amigos que les gusta hacer lo mismo, el resultado es amigos dispersos por el planeta a los cuales ves poco y por separado, y tratar de juntar a todos en un lugar puede ser una misión imposible. Por suerte estos amigos, que con los años se reducen en cantidad, pero aumentan en calidad, son tan divers que cada vez que se puede, se toman un avión y y deciden ser parte de locos encuentros en algún lugar lindo del planeta. Y este fin de semana fue así. Amigos del alma reunidos para “meditar”, comer y hacer yoga en el hermoso Samaipata. Pongo “meditar” entre comillas porque no hubo tal, y la idea fue rápidamente reemplazada por cervezas y vino, que sinceramente nadie puede rechazar.

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Cabaña en la naturaleza, fuego, comida, charlas, anécdotas, risas y mucha comida. Ya saben como son estas reuniones. Lo genial fue que se formo un super equipo de producción artística que resultara en un video hermoso que pronto verán. Mis amigos son unos genios artistas y cada cual es un personaje en el grupo, distintas ideas, distintas personalidades. Muero por ver el resultado final ! Pronto pronto esperen noticias.

 

IMG_8654IMG_1172Que comimos? Todo al fuego fue la consigna. Todos los hermosos vegetales orgánicos y locales que encontramos en el mercado, las frutas, las sobras. Nos faltó poner el vino al fuego ! La magia del fuego, que ademas de darle un sabor increíble a todo, genera un circulo a su alrededor para compartir mucho mas que solo una comida. Lo hacemos desde que descubrimos el fuego, sentarnos alrededor y compartir conocimientos, sabiduría, canciones, ideas. Hay algo en el fuego muy mágico. Que ganas de vivir en el campo y ser host de encuentros como este !

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Yo he estado obsesionada con los steaks de coliflor hace un par de semanas, y pues se dieron las condiciones perfectas para hacerlos. Una vista increíble, animales y una huerta orgánica alrededor, y un grupo de comensales muertos de hambre que comió feliz aunque me olvide de muchos pasos e incluso de ponerles sal ! Jajaja. Pero si te dan comida hecha con amor y ademas tienes hambre todo sabe bien no?

Y si estas en la ciudad ? Prepáralos un domingo en un asado con los amigos ! O en tu casa si quieres mimarte con una cena para 1. Solo prende el horno, calienta bien tu mejor sartén y usa la licuadora para hacer el puré.

Steaks de  Coliflor con Chimichurri y Puré rústico de Coliflor y Ajos asados

4 personas

Ingredientes:

Para los steaks y chimichurri:

  • 2 cabezas grandes de coliflor
  • 1 ramita de perejil, lavado y finamente picado
  • 1 ramita de cebollín, lavado y finamente picado
  • 2 dientes de ajo, pelados y finamente picados
  • 1 trocito de jengibre, pelado y finamente picado
  • 3 limones, jugo
  • 1/2 pimiento rojo, finamente picado
  • Sal y pimienta al gusto

Para el puré:

  • Flores de coliflor, que saldrán al cortar las dos cabezas grandes de coliflor para los steaks.
  • 1 cabeza de ajo, entera
  • 2 cucharas de aceite de oliva
  • Jugo de 1 limón
  • Sal y pimienta al gusto

 

Preparación:

  1. Cortar las cabezas de coliflor en dos por el centro, con el tallo hacia abajo. No remover el tallo ya que este sujetará nuestros steaks. Luego, comenzando por el centro hacia afuera, y cortando de arriba hacia el tallo, cortar rodajas de coliflor de 1 cm de espesor aprox. Por cada coliflor a mi me salen 2 a 3 steaks, luego al llegar a las puntas, como ya no tienen el tallo que los sujete, simplemente cortar las flores que quedan, en trozos pequeños y separarlos.
  2. Juntar todos los ingredientes del chimichurri en una fuente grande, sal pimentar a gusto y colocar los steaks en esta preparación para que se marinen aprox 20 minutos.
  3. Mientras tanto, cortar ambos extremos de la cabeza de ajo entera y envolverla en papel aluminio con el aceite de oliva. Colocarlo en el horno pre calentado a temperatura media, o si estas usando la parilla, colocarlos directamente a las brasas por aproximadamente 15 minutos. Remover y dejar enfriar.
  4. Mientras los ajos de cocinan, y los steaks se marinan, colocar una olla mediana con agua hirviendo y sal, las flores que nos quedaron de coliflor y hervirlas por 5 a 10 minutos, hasta que queden suaves al tocarlas con un tenedor. Escurrir y reservar.
  5. Sacar los ajos del horno o de las brasas y pelarlos y ahora hay dos opciones: Puedes colocar los ajos con las flores de coliflor cocidas, el aceite de oliva, sal y pimienta y jugo de limón a una licuadora y procesar todo hasta obtener un puré suave, o utilizar un pisa puré y obtendrás un puré mas rústico. Es cuestión de gustos y posibilidades.
  6. Cuando nuestra parrilla o sartén esté bien caliente, colocar los steaks  y cocinarlos aproximadamente 10 minutos por lado, hasta que queden bien dorados y crujientes, y suaves en el centro.
  7. Servir los steaks con el puré y el resto de chimichurri encima. Pueden acompañarlos también con una ensalada fresca.

Si se animan, coloquen frutas en la parilla para el postre ! Nosotros pusimos rodajas de piña y rodajas de naranja y fueron un hit ! Caramelizadas y tibias, deliciosas !

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Gracias a todos mis amigos queridos por hacer este viaje conmigo ! Se los ama ❤ Negro faltas tú en la foto.

PD: Cayara, la próxima no te salvas.

Boloñesa Vegana de Hongos y Nueces

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Escribiendo en español, vamos a ver como nos vá.

Ayer hacía un calor insoportable en esta ciudad, y estamos en invierno ojo, salí muy tempranito a correr, hice yoga y llegué a casa sofocada, molesta, de mal humor, empapada de sudor como si acabara de salir de la ducha. Necesitaba remediar la situación. Cerré mis cortinas, prendí el aire acondicionado, puse clásicos de piano a todo volumen y Boom ! relax instantáneo, abrí el refrigerador, vi mis ingredientes y me gritaron: Spaghetti Boloñesa ! (o era mi estomago el que gritaba?) Así que me puse manos a la obra, hay que darle al cuerpo lo que el pide.

Lo mejor de todo? La receta pide vino tinto, asi que lo abrí, y me serví una copa, y por un momento me senté a contemplar lo afortunada que soy, tomando vino un miércoles en la mañana totalmente relajada, mientras cocinaba algo delicioso, y poder decir que esto es mi trabajo, bueno no lo es aun porque nadie me paga por ello, pero para mí sí lo es, mientras habrá gente atascada en el trafico tratando de llegar a sus trabajos, o escuchando a sus jefes respirando en sus nucas.

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Así que si deciden hacer esta receta, les recomiendo eso, pónganse ropa cómoda, abran una botella de vino, pongan su música favorita a todo volumen y déjense llevar por el ambiente, por los increíbles aromas de su sartén, y háganlo con mucho amor. Hay que poner el alma en la cocina para que los alimentos nos llenen el cuerpo y alma.

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Ah y por que estoy escribiendo ahora en español? Necesitaba probarlo, por algún motivo  mi cabeza fluye en inglés, es rarísimo y no se como explicarlo, no hay un motivo razonable, quizás porque toda la información sobre comida que leo y veo y escucho está en inglés y he adquirido sin querer un lenguaje gastronómico ajeno a mi lengua. Así que también creo necesario generar contenido en nuestro idioma. Perderé a mis seguidores anglo parlantes seguramente, pero por otro lado ahora podrán leerme mis tías 🙂

 

Pasta con Boloñesa Vegana de Hongos y Nueces

4 personas

Ingredientes:

Para la pasta:

  • 400 gr. pasta de su preferencia (yo usé spaghettis)
  • 2 lt. agua
  • 2 cucharadas de sal
  • 2 hojas de laurel
  • 2 cucharadas aceite de oliva

Para la salsa:

  • 250 gr. hongos frescos de su preferencia, cortados en cubos pequeños (yo usé champiñones)
  • 100 gr. de nueces picadas
  • 1 zanahoria grande o 2 pequeñas, lavada y cortada en cubos muy pequeños
  • 1 cebolla blanca grande, lavada y cortada en cubos muy pequeños
  • 3 tomates medianos bien maduros, cortados en cubos muy pequeños
  • 2 dientes de ajo, pelados y  finamente picados
  • 1 ramo de albahaca fresca, finamente picada. Reservar algunas hojas para decorar
  • 1 cucharada de orégano seco
  • 1 cucharada de romero seco
  • 2 hojas de laurel
  • 1 taza de vino tinto
  • 1 taza de agua
  • 2 tazas de puré de tomates (no confundir con extracto de tomate)
  • 2 cucharadas aceite de oliva
  • 2 cucharadas de azúcar moreno
  • Sal y pimienta al gusto

Para la receta de parmesano vegano hacer click aquí 

Preparación:

1.  Calentar una olla grande o sartén profundo y cuando este caliente agregar el aceite de oliva, luego agregar los hongos y saltearlos hasta que queden dorados, agregar las zanahorias y la cebolla, cocinar por unos minutos y agregar el tomate, las hierbas secas, sal y pimienta, dejar cocinar por unos minutos y agregar el vino tinto, cocinar hasta que el alcohol del vino se evapore, unos 2 minutos aprox.,  agregar el azúcar, el puré de tomates, el agua y la albahaca fresca. Tapar y dejar cocinar a fuego lento mientras se cocina la pasta, aprox. 20 minutos

2. En una olla grande, poner a hervir los 2 litros de agua con la sal, una vez hervida el agua, agregar la pasta y cocinar hasta que quede al dente. Escurrir el agua y agregar el aceite de oliva.

3. Acá hay dos opciones, puedes mezclar toda la salsa con la pasta y servir, o colocar la pasta en los platos y encima la salsa, es cuestión de gustos, a mi me gusta mezclar una parte de la salsa con la pasta en la olla, servir y luego a cada plato agregar un poco mas de la boloñesa encima. Servir como prefieras y rociar en cada plato el parmesano vegano y las hojas de albahaca

Disfrútalo con buena compañía, buena música y un vaso del vino que mas te guste 🙂

Vegan Chocolate and Peanut Butter Banana Bread – Also GF

I’ve been absent from this blog for a while and there is a reason, it is a good one. Let me tell you more (not sure if you care though but it’s my blog and I can write whatever I want right? Dont feel offended, i do care if you read it).

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So a lot has happened in the last couple of months, I moved to a new house with my dearly beloved cat Tarantino, my new place is super tiny but cute and I love it a lot, but i had an internet curse for the first month, i swear i was about to give up and resign myself to go back to the old days where you could live without internet, expect i couldn’t so i was spending entire afternoons in a Starbucks drinking tons of shitty coffee and downloading movies like a crazy, specifically House of Cards entire seasons. But finally one day i saw the light ! That green tilting light coming from a router in my own house.

Then, I started an associate degree course in Holistic Nutrition ! Yei ! So at the beginning i had a hard time organizing myself. My teachers are literally blowing my mind away, I’ll tell you more about this eye opening experience latter on, but by now my habits have changed completely, i get out of bed at 6:00 am voluntarily, i watch the sunrise, do yoga, meditate, take a sun bath and then i move on with my daily routine, meaning i feel soooo energized now and have tons of time to do everything, so yesterday i pulled up this delicious bread in the blink of an eye.

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My other problem is the pictures: I can’t find the right place, surface and light yet to take my pictures in this new house, I guess it’s just a matter of time until i find a corner with the perfect light and texture, but in the meantime please don’t criticize my photos, don’t be shallow and go beyond surface, i swear this Choc Banana Bread will satisfy all your sweet and chocolate cravings, without the negatives for your body !

Therefore, this  recipe comes to you from a new, renovated and more awake person, a kinder and more reflective, active, energized, conscious, spiritual and healthy mind, body and soul. I hope  you can feel a little bit of that energy with this loaf of love.

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GF – Vegan Chocolate and Peanut Butter Banana Bread 

makes 1 loaf

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups of quinoa flour
  • 1/2 cup raw cacao powder
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 1 tbsp linseed or flax seeds
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 3 very ripe bananas
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp peanut butter (if you want to make your own click here for recipe)
  • 1 flax egg (I’ll explain what this is in the prep. section)
  • 3 tbsp cane syrup, you can also use maple syrup

For decoration:

  • 1 banana, cut long trough
  • 1 tbsp peanut butter
  • 1 tsp cane syrup

Preparation: 

1.  Pre heat your oven to 250 C, grease a loaf baking tray or use a non stick one.

2. In a medium bowl, mix together all the dry ingredients, including the seeds. Prepare your flax egg by mixing 1 tsp of chia seeds and 1 tsp of flax seeds with 2 tsp of water, leave it to rest while you prepare the rest.

3. In a larger bowl, mash the bananas with a fork and add the coconut oil, the peanut butter, the syrup,  water and the flax egg, mix with a wood spoon or spatula until you have a smooth puree, then add all the dry ingredients and mix very well.

4. Pour your preparation on your loaf tray and add the banana slices on top. Bake for 45 minutes, or until a knife comes clean after inserting it on the center.

5. Remove from the oven and let it cool, then remove from tray and cool completely in a rack.

6. For the peanut butter drizzle, heat together the peanut butter and cane syrup in a small pan on low heat until melted and liquid. Drizzle over your cold loaf.

Mexican Vegan Hot Chocolate – Champurrado

 

IMG_7802 It’s really cold here folks and that can only mean one thing: HOT CHOCOLATE. Hot chocolate brings comfort immediately, takes you back home if you are far away, to your grandma kitchen, to your childhood memories, it  warms your hands and your heart, and this drink came to me for the very first time just when I needed that.

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Last year I backpacked trough central America, and Mexico was the last stop in my journey before moving to NYC, and I was sooo excited to get there, but my arrived wasnt smooth at all. I was in Tikal – Guatemala and i bought a door to door bus ticket to Palenque – Mexico, but the journey was sooo bizarre and scary. An old school bus came to pick me up to my hostel at 3 am, so it was still dark,  then we picked a german guy that never spoke to me  and it all started. 8 hours trough a rough dirt road across the thick jungle and not at soul around, no cars crossing, no villages or little houses, no farms, no nothing,  and then out of nowhere, two guys appeared on the road side, we picked them up and they were wearing suites and suitcases (it was like a hundred degrees hot and it was the jungle !) It was so suspicius…i got scared. Then they went off the bus again in the middle of nowhere. The bus dropped us after 8 hours in a river shore, and the bus driver told us that a boat would come soon to pick us up and left. Again, no people around, not a soul ! After a couple of hours a small boat came, we crossed the river, and we where in Mexico ! A car picked us and dropped us a couple of hours later in another weird spot. When was this going to end? They told us to wait for another bus. I was scared as shit ! but there was nothing left to do. I decided to relax and enjoy the landscape and just give myself entirely to destiny. Finally, 16 hours later, i was in Palenque. Oh God ! Thirsty, dirty, sweating, hungry, i entered the first food place i saw and the owner told me: Welcome to Mexico, with a big smile ! Finally i could relax and smile back at him. He gave me a big cup of hot Champurrado without even asking, and told me: Esto es lo que necesitas (this is what you need), and even though the weather was hot as hell, the cup of Champurrado tasted like heaven. It was the best feeling ever, and the best hot chocolate of my life. So i asked everything about this drink and the guy happily gave me the recipe. Viva Mexico !

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You will never have a hot chocolate as creamy and rich as this, and the addition of spices and whipped coconut milk on top is just unbeatable. I made it a couple of times modifying and experimenting with vegan milks, until I finally came up with this modification. Hope you enjoy it, and if you are in the other side of the planet enjoying warm weather, blend this with a few ice cubes and enjoy a delicious chocolate, cold,  creamy smoothie !

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Mexican Hot Chocolate – Champurrado

makes about 6 cups

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup (30 gr) corn flour (not corn starch !)
  • 1/2 cup raw brown or coconut sugar + 2 tsp for the whipped coconut cream
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 200 gr dark organic chocolate, roughly chopped + a few shaved for decoration
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 pinch grounded nut meg
  • 3 cups water
  • 2 cups coconut milk, divided and chilled for at least 2 hours
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Preparation: 

1.  In  heavy bottom pan, whisk together the corn flour, the cocoa powder, the sea salt and nut meg, then add the 3 cups of water and bring to a boil on medium heat, whisking constantly to avoid lumps. Add the cinnamon sticks.  Once it simmer, reduce heat and add the chopped chocolate and the coconut milk. Simmer until thick and smooth. Don’t let it boil too much because it will get too thick. Remove cinnamon sticks before serving.

2. For the coconut cream, put the coconut milk, sugar and vanilla extract in a bowl and whisk until it forms soft peaks. Use an electric mixer.

3. Serve the hot chocolate in individual cups, add the whipped coconut cream on top and decorate with shaved chocolate or cocoa powder. Enjoy.

You can chill the mix and reheat it adding more water or coconut milk. You can also make a morning  smoothie blending it with ice cubes.

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That’s my cat Frida. She knows it’s a mexican drink, so she had to pose for the photo 🙂

Sushi Sandwich – Onigirazu

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I don’t like Tofu. I hate Tofu. That’s it, I said it. Why im telling you this? Well, every time I crave for some Asian recipe, or go to an asian restaurant, the vegan or vegetarian option has Tofu, so I have to eat it making faces and i don’t really enjoy it, and i really wish i could. Of course there are plenty of asian recipes that don’t include tofu, but us,  south americans,  just can’t conceive that idea, so this days im trying to build asian inspired dishes that are flavourful and eye-catching with no tofu at all !

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And then I saw pictures of Onigirazu on Pinterest and i fell in love immediately, where have you been all my life? It is the perfect sandwich ! It has all the sushi elements we love but in a sandwich form, and  we love sandwiches too! The best part is that the possibilities are infinite, you can put anything, i really mean anything you like inside. I saw lots of tutorial videos on YouTube this week about Onigirazu folding and i saw one of a guy putting fried chicken on it ! so if you are a carnivore you can definitely go beyond the raw fish here.

The ingredients I choose to put on mine are simply my favorite vegetables, most of them raw for extra benefits and crunchinesss. They are super portable so they are perfect for your office lunch, your picnic, your hike snack, you name it, and you can keep them in the fridge for several days (properly wrapped).

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I also made two different dressings. One is an avocado tahini dressing and the other is a spicy Siracha vegan mayo. Did I ever tell you I suck at eating hot spicy food? I do ! I’m terrible, i have no tolerance for it, and i hate it. It’s also embarrassing because hot spice is an everyday thing in my country, and i seem to be the only freak who can’t it eat, im also a family embarrassment. My family is super proud of how hot they like food and how strong their tongues are, so im on a special tongue training. I am adding little by little chiles or ajies  to my food, and i think that by the end of this year I’ll be a proper Latin chile eater.

Please fell free to put tofu on your Onigirazu, don’t let my hate for it ruin your sandwich. Maybe my next tongue training will be eating tofu until I like it.

Folding your Onigirazu (thanks mom for being my hand model):

Onigirazu – Sushi Sandwich

makes 4 sandwiches

Ingredients:

  • 4 nori sheets
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • 4 radishes, sliced
  • 1 cucumber, sliced
  • 1 carrot, sliced
  • 1 handful baby spinach
  • Cling film to wrap

For the sushi rice:

  • 1 cup sushi rice
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt

For the baked sweet potatoes

  • 1 medium sweet potato, peeled and sliced
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup or sugar cane syrup (miel de caña)

For the pickled red cabbage:

  • 1/2 small cabbage, sliced thinly
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup rice vinegar
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed

For the Siracha dressing:

  • 3 tbsp  Tahini (store-bought or you can make your own. Recipe here )
  • 2 tbsp Siracha (add more if you like it really hot)
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 3 tbsp water
  • 1 tsp salt

Preparation: 

1.  Start with the pickled cabbage. Put the sliced cabbage in a glass jar. Mix the rest of the ingredients in a small pan and take to a gentle simmer. Pour this mix over the cabbage and let it rest for at least 30 min uncovered.

2. For the sweet potatoes, preheat the oven to 150 C / 390 F. Mix all the ingredients in a small bowl and coat the sweet potato sliced with this mix. Use your hands. Place the sliced in an oven tray and bake for 15 minutes or until fork tender and slightly brown.

3. For the sushi rice: Rinse the rice in a strainer or colander until the water runs clear. Combine with water in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover and cook for 12 minutes. Turn off the heat and let it rest covered for another 10 minutes. Uncover and transfer to a mixing bowl. In a small saucepan, combine the rice vinegar, sugar and salt. Cook over medium heat until the sugar dissolves. Cool, then stir into the cooked rice little by little, mixing it with chopsticks. When you pour this in to the rice it will seem very wet. Keep stirring and the rice will dry as it cools. Let it cool completely.

4. For the Siracha dressing: Put all the ingredients in a mixer or a high-speed blender, and mix until creamy and smooth.

5. Assembly: Cut a piece of cling film, slightly bigger than your Nori sheet and place it over a cutting board. Place your Nori sheet on top with the bright side down, and one corner pointing at you (see pictures above).

6. Wet your hands (keep a bowl with water close to you) and place a handful of cooked rice on the middle, forming a compact square, then put a layers of the other ingredients on top. I did mine using different ingredients on every sandwich. Layer them as you wish. Once you finish your stack, fold the right corner of the Nori sheet to the center, wet the edge of the left corner and fold it to the center, repeat the process with bottom and top corners. Dont forget to wet the ends of each corner to “glue” them together. (see pictures above). Finally wrap you package with the film and put something heavy on top, like a plate. Let it rest while you make the other sandwiches.

7. To serve, remove the film and cut in half with a wet sharp knife. Add the Siracha dressing on top or serve it on a small plate to dip your sandwiches on it 😉

Seeds and Nuts Vegan Bread

My passion has always been making bread. Kneading dough, playing with it, feeling it between my hands, bury  my hands in the  flour, the smell of fresh bakers yeast, shaping the dough…. I love everything about it. And the smell of fresh bread in the oven  is the best smell ever ! Nothing beats that smell, but since vegan and trying to avoid gluten these days, i haven’t had the opportunity to experiment with gluten-free breads, until i found this recipe that immediately attracted all my senses. Even though there is no kneading work involed (so super easy to make !) and has no flower or yeast at all, still smells amazing in the oven, and tastes even better.

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I used to have a small bread bakery with my mom right after I graduated from cooking school, and it was an exhausting job. Waking up really early in the morning and sleeping late, cause that’s what happens when you have your own business, no matter how small it is, you have to put all the dedication on it. Anyway, i was really young and working with my mom and being the boss of her was kinda estrange, and for some other reasons we decided to close it. But we keep all the fun tools and of course the skills ;). I must admit i was very very happy with the muscle i developed in my arms, i felt like Madonna (just in the arms though) haha.

Back to present time, my passion for bread is intact and I still have to experiment with gluten-free flour and different ingredients to create a nice and crunchy bread that can resemble a fresh baguette, but for now this one is satisfying my craving for bread in the morning. It makes excellent toasts so just add avocados, honey, nut butters, vegan ricotta, you name it.  It is also fully packed with tons of nutrients, proteins and omegas, and if you have a nut allergy, you can just skip the almonds and replace them with the seed you like the most. It will give you energy for the rest of the day, you can also toast it and pack it as a snack to have on the way, and it will make an excellent sandwich.

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Please make sure to follow the recipe exactly. believe me, I tried to experiment a little and it didn’t work well in the beginning. This recipe was inspired by the My New Roots recipe. 

 

Nuts and Seed Vegan Bread

makes 1 loaf

Ingredients:

  • 60 gr sesame seeds
  • 100 gr almonds or any nut you like ( i used brazil nuts)
  • 100 gr sunflower seeds
  • 100 gr pepitas (pumpking seeds)
  • 100 gr flax seeds
  • 35 gr chia seeds
  • 150 gr quinoa flakes
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup or honey
  • 45 gr coconut oil, melted
  • 400 ml water

Preparation: 

1.  Put the sesame seeds, almonds, sunflower seeds and pepitas in a baking tray and bake for 5 -10 minutes on low heat until slightly toasted. Remove and let cool.

2. Meanwhile, whisk together all the wet ingredient in a small bowl, and the rest of the dry ingredients on a bigger bowl, add the toasted seeds and nuts and then the wet ingredients and mix well with a wooden spoon. It has to be a thick mix but you have to be able to move it. If it is too thick add a little bit more water, spoon by spoon. Too much humidity can ruin your bread.

3. Line a loaf pan with parchment paper on all sides. Scrape the dough in to the pan and press with fingers. Smoth the  surface with a wooden spoon. Cover with a kitchen towel and let rest for at least 2 hours, If you can, let rest overnight.

4. Preheat oven to 150 C. Place the oven rack on the middle and place your loaf. Bake for 1 hour, then remove your loaf from oven, remove it from the pan and place it directly on the oven rack upside down. Bake for another 20 -30 minutes. If you notice that it is too brown, reduce heat. Remove from oven. It should make a hollow sound when tapped if it’s cooked. Let it cool completely (I know it is hard) before slicing.

This keeps  in the fridge for up to a week. You can also cut slices and freeze them for up to a month. This will guarantee easy fresh toasts 😉

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Vegan Ceviche

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There are some dishes that go beyond frontiers and countries, that change according to geography and weather, and at the same time gather the identity and diversity of people of a whole continent, I think one of those dishes is Ceviche. You can go around Latin America and you’ll find this dish in almost every country, and it is as diverse as Latin people.  The main ingredient is fish and seafood, using the local produce, changing spices and ingredients. Go to Central America and this dish will have a more tropical Caribbean flavour, go to Peru and you’ll find and exquisite signature peruvian dish accompanied with sweet potatoes and crunchy corn called “canchitas”. Probably every country you visit is gonna be proud of the ceviche they make, and it’s gonna be different and unique every time.

I remember being in Little Corn Island, in Nicaragua, and having Palm Heart Ceviche by the turquoise Caribbean sea. Oh what a wonderful meal, and I though that it was perfect for making it in Bolivia, because we are landlocked, so no fresh seafood, but yes lots of palm hearts, so this variation represents this portion of earth. We also have tons of different and colorful potatoes so they make a great addition to the dish.

You may imagine Bolivia as a country full of mountains, really high altitudes, deserts and llamas, but the city I am right now has tropical rainforest weather, lots of humidity and mosquitoes of course, also lots of palm trees, so many times a week I wake up craving for fresh meals, and this ceviche is just perfect to represent the vibe around here.

You can travel trough food, I mean what could taste more Latin than palm hearts, limes, cilantro, avocados and colorful different potatoes?

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Also, did you know that in every single country of Latin America we have a different word for popcorn? So if you decide to make a trip trough Latin America, make sure you learn the local word for it. In Bolivia it is called “pipoca” 😉

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Vegan Palm Hearts Ceviche

makes 5 portions 

Ingredients:

  • 400 gr fresh palm hearts
  • 1 large red onion, finely sliced
  • 200 gr fresh corn (2 medium corns)
  • 3 red chilis, finely diced, seeds removed
  • 1 large avocado, sliced
  • 1 bunch fresh cilantro leaves
  • juice of 10 lemons
  • sea salt and pepper to taste
  • mixed potatoes for the chips (as many as you want)
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil

Preparation: 

1.  In a large bowl, mix the lemon juice with salt and pepper and add the chopped palm hearts. Place the bowl in the fridge for 1 hour to marinate them.

2. Meanwhile, cut the potatoes with a mandolin  or slice them really thin with a knife and place them in the oven with coconut oil and sea salt on medium temp. Bake them for 15 – 20 minutes, or until gold and crisp.

3. Bring a small pan with salted water to boil, add the corn and cook until fork tender. About 10 minutes.

4. Remove the bowl with the palm hearts from the fridge, add the chilis, the chopped cilantro, the cooked corn, the sliced onion and mix. Add more salt and pepper if needed.

5. For the potato chips, I used “papas nativas”, sweet potatoes and tapioca. Feel free to use any potatoes you have or like.

Serve in individual cups or small dishes and top with the avocado slices. Accompany with the potato chips. Enjoy 🙂

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Vegan Fudge Brownies – Raw and Gluten Free

I swear that if I see another rainbow unicorn smoothie bowl on my Instagram feed, I’ll close my account. My soul is dark and I cant stand all that rainbow fake beautiful food. I mean, if you have that for breakfast, do you wake up at 5 am to prepare it? We are adults right? I thought that over certain age you crave for some adult food. You start appreciating espresso, dark chocolate, spicy food, sour dough bread, not rainbow unicorn Frappuccinos!  Don’t get me  wrong, they look cute and so, but my stomach says no, And it’s not that i lost my inside child. Ask my friends and family.

Maybe I just lack the skills to make them. Maybe I’m just jealous, but after seeing tons of pink food I decided that i needed something black to feed my soul. Dark chocolate fudge brownies? Yes please ! plus vegan, gluten free and raw. That’s my kind of food. In the meantime I’ll keep trying to prepare a smoothie colorful bowl in less that 30 minutes and maybe you’ll come back in a few months and I’ll be totally into the rainbow frenesi ! If so, please stop me and make me come to my senses.

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This brownies are the perfect antidote, and you’ll make them in less than 15 minutes I swear. All you need is a little patience to keep them in the fridge for 2 hours before eating them, but believe me, they’re totally worth it. They are gonna melt in your mouth, and maybe in your fingers if you live in a hot city (in that case eat with a fork).

Now that I think about it, maybe this darkness comes from my difficult week. I got my period, i got the flu and i can’t find a place to rent in the beautiful country side village i told you some weeks ago. So yes, maybe it’s just frustration, but i truly believe that from crisis come the most creative ideas and solutions, and that being in a state of crisis is so necessary for the human existence. So this brownies are for you with all the love from my dark frustrated heart. Make them !

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Vegan Fudge Brownies

makes about 10

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 organic coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup nut butter (you can see recipes for nut butters here)
  • 1/2 cup raw organic cacao powder or cocoa
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 3 tbsp organic molasses / agave syrup / honey
  • 1 pinch salt

 

Preparation: 

1. In a large bowl, whisk together all the ingredients. If your coconut oil and butter are too solid, you can melt them by submerging them in hot water. For this recipe, I used the Brazil Nut + Espresso beans butter that I made last week. You can use any nut butter you like. Transfer the mix to a deep tray and put it in the freezer for 2 hours. Remove from freezer, cut in squares and enjoy !

You can dust your brownies with some cacao powder, spread some chopped nuts or  some Chocolate Macadamia butter on top.

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Nut Butters ! Brazil Nut + Espresso – Macadamia + Chocolate – Chai + Sunflower seeds

So im not really into the sweet, I always prefer salty savory things to eat, but when saltines and sweet are mixed together with toasted nutty flavor, you got me totally hooked. When spending time in NY, I always had a spoon or two of peanut butter from the jar, and then I discovered almond butter and OMG. It became a must on my grocery shopping list. Now you now I’m in Bolivia now so no nut butters available. Time to make my own ! And im so glad  i have to, cause it’s super easy and off course cheaper than store-bought.

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Nut butters. Brazil Nut + Espresso, Macadamia + Chocolate and Chai Sunflower seeds

It’s something that anyone can enjoy, vegan or not. The possibilities are endless and you can combine them with almost everything ! Fruit, Yoghurt, crackers, pancakes, you can also add a spoon to your smoothies. Now here I wanted to play a little bit with the flavors. You can off course just make them plain and the will still be delicious, but when you add some flavour you like (coffee in my case) it tastes like heaven.

I decided to try classic combinations, but you can go beyond and make also spicy ones. If you make Tahini for example, you can add some harissa paste or dry chilis. You have the recipe for Tahini here. But today let’s focus on the sweet ones.

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Nut Butters. Brazil Nuts +Espresso, Macadamia Nuts + Chocolate, Chai Sunflower seeds butter

My bff told me yesterday she was making raw vegan crackers on the dehydrator, so I really hope she makes some of these butters and eat them together.

I’m using a lot of Brazil nuts lately I know, but that’s because on this side of the world they are cheap and available. Almonds are some weird, expensive novelty, but if you want, you can use any nut you like. And for those one’s out there who have a nut allergy, I made one with sunflower seeds. So no one is excluded here !

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Brazil Nuts + Espresso butter, Macadamia Nuts + Chocolate butter, Chai sunflower seeds butter

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So here it is:

Brazil Nuts + Espresso  butter

makes about 250 ml

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cup raw brazil nuts
  • 2 tbsp fresh ground espresso beans
  • 1 tbsp organic molasses (you can replace with agave syrup / honey / maple syrup)
  • 1 tsp organic coconut oil
  • 1 pinch sea salt

Preparation: 

1. Put the nuts in a large oven tray. Toast them in the oven on low temperature for about 10 minutes, or until golden brown. Be careful here because nuts tend to burn really fast, so keep an eye on them. Remove from the oven and transfer the nuts to a high-speed blender or food processor. I use a blender. Slowly start to blend the nuts on low-speed until they come to crumbs, slowly increase the speed and the butter will start to form. Now be patient here and resist the temptation to add any liquid, just add the coconut oil and keep blending while increasing the speed. This is gonna take about 15 minutes. If you feel your blender or food procesor is gonna explode, you can make a pause and turn it off for a while. Once you reach a creamy consistency, add the espresso and the molasses with the blender on, and continue for 2 more minutes. Now turn it off and transfer your butter to a glass sealed container. You can store this in the fridge for up to a month.

Macadamia + Chocolate butter

makes about 250 ml

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cup raw macadamia nuts
  • 3 tbsp  raw organic chocolate grated or organic cocoa powder
  • 1 tbsp organic molasses (you can replace with agave syrup / honey / maple syrup)
  • 1 pinch of salt

Preparation: 

Repeat the steps from the Brazil Nut butter preparation. In this case I skipped the coconut oil because Macadamia nuts have more oil and i was able to blend them easily. Also you will notice that the consistency is more liquid. This one tastes like nutella but better and healthier 😉

 

Chai Sunflower seeds butter

makes about 250 ml

Ingredients:

  • 1  1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds
  • 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tbsp ground cloves
  • 1 tbsp ground ginger
  • 1 tbsp ground cardamom
  • 1 tbsp organic molasses (you can replace with agave syrup / honey / maple syrup)
  • 2 tbsp organic coconut oil
  • 1 pinch of salt

Preparation: 

Repeat the steps from the Brazil Nut butter preparation. In this case I added more coconut oil because the seeds are a little bit harder to blend and also you will be adding more dry ingredients in the end. Feel free to add a little bit more if you want, just add it little by little.

 

Enjoy 🙂

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Tropical Granola – Gluten Free + Brazil Nut Milk

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So what do vegans eat for breakfast? How do you survive without milk or yoghurt? Honestly I miss greek yoghurt a lot and i’m working on making my own coconut yoghurt (recipe soon hopefully), but nut milks? they’re just delicious. And granola. I know that in some countries you have tons of options, but here not so much. All granolas are full of sugar and off course gluten, and you just can’t buy nut milks in your local grocery store or super market, or nowhere! I don’t have a total gluten free diet because it is really hard, but i try to avoid it as much as i can. Lucky for us, we have delicius nuts like Brazil nuts (they should be called Bolivian nuts cause we export them more than Brazil), seeds and Andean grains, like quinoa and amaranth, wich are super nutritious and delicius, and also super cheap here. And right now im living a tropical weather green lush city, so i was inspired by that and all the amazing fruits we have to make this tropical granola with brazil nut milk. Enjoy your breakfast outside, or even in bed and bring some tropicalia to your mornings with this recipe. Plus it is so super easy, you’ll never buy granola again.

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In other news, I found a place where i could rent a cabin in the woods. It is a place called Samaipata and it’s a dream come true. Beautiful weather, mountains, coffee plantations, local wine production, organic farming and tons of hippies from all over the world, wich means peace and vegan small places :). Still looking for a cabin there so wish me luck and hopefully you’ll see new post on the blog from this beautiful place.

Every time I make nut milks i end up with a lot of the “meat”  after straining the milk and i keep on saving it on the fridge but don’t know what to do with it yet. Any ideas? Please let me know in the comments below because i refuse to throw it away.

This granola is also full of good seeds, so it’s really good for your digestive system. You can replace the puffed quinoa and amaranth for puffed rice or gluten free oats if it’s hard for you to find them, also you can replace the grapefruit peel for orange peel or any other dehidrated tropical fruit you want, like bananas or pineaple.

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Brazil Nut Milk

Makes 1 Lt.

Ingredients:

  • 500 gr. raw brazil nuts
  • 800 ml filtered water
  • Optional: vanilla extract / dates / honey / agave syrup

Preparation: 

  1. Soak your nuts for 8 hrs. or the night before. Place them in a high speed blender with the water and if you want to add some flavor or sweetnes, add the dates / honey / syrup of your choice. I make my milk just plain. Blend and strain in a clean piece of cloth. Transfer to a glass bottle and refrigerate for up to 3 days.

If you want to make it easier, you can soak your nuts and keep them in the freezer, so anytime to want to make milk you’ll already have the soaked nuts and you’ll have fresh milk everytime you want.

Tropical Gluten Free Granola

Makes about  500 gr.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup puffed quinoa
  • 1 cup puffed amaranth
  • 1/2 cup chopped raw brazil nuts
  • 100 gr chopped dehidrated mango
  • 100 gr chopped dehidrated grapefruit peel
  • 100 gr  dry coconut flakes
  • 100 gr chia seeds
  • 100 gr flax seeds
  • 100 ml melted coconut oil
  • 50 ml sugar cane syrup / agave syrup
  • Dash of vanilla extract
  • Pinch of sea salt

Preparation: 

  1. Preheat the oven to low temperature. In a larg bowl, mix the cereals, the brazil nuts, the seeds and the coconut flakes. In another bowl mix the coconut oil, the syrup, vanilla and salt. Pour this mix over the cereal mix and stir until it is all well distributed  and place in an oven tray. Bake on low heat for 15 – 20 min, or until it is slightly gold. Remove from oven and let cool off. Once it’s cool  add the chopped dry fruits and mix well. Place in an airtight glass jar and store in a fresh place for up to a month

You can enjoy this granola with nut milks, or plain milk or yoghurt if you consume dairy. Also pretty yummy with fresh fruit or in desserts. I enjoy mine with fresh pieces of Papaya. Great for digestion !

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Creamy Vegan Cauliflower Pasta.

When in doubt, stress and anxiety, eat cheesy creamy vegan pasta. Nothing more comforting than  that, and besides its been rainy for 3 days in a row, so this is like sunshine in a plate. At least it makes me feel like there’s sunshine inside me.

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I’ve been having a tough  week, lots of hard decisions to make, new  plans to do, and being on the state of not knowing what to do with my life really puts me in a very anxious state. I can’t sleep at night and im having anxiety attacks, I have dark circles around my eyes and a really bad mood, and the weather ain’t helping. So I need  carbs with cashew creamy sauce !

I was supposed to be planning a trip to Europe right  now but it is not easy when you are an “unemployed” south american tourist and European embassies are bureaucratic and question your ability to travel the world while being a young single women (they were really surprised by the fact that I can afford to travel). The thing is: I worked very very hard for a long time, saved some money and then quieted my job to travel the world. But I guess being a backpacker is a privilege that doesn’t have to do with just money, but with the continent you were born. White privilege i would say. So Europe: i don’t want your visa ! F**ck you !

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Anyway, now I really feel like going to the  woods and staying in a cabin by myself (meaning no humans around, just  lots of dogs, cats, horses, and many other animals) for a couple of months and focusing on this blog, on learning and writing more recipes, working on my  (poor for now) photography skills. I just don’t know where that place is. So if you have any suggestions of places in south America, please tell and help a conflicted girl on the edge of despair.

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Back to the food. I finally managed to make a cashew creamy sauce that satisfies my heart  and soul, so I’m sharing this simple recipe with you guys. I hope it also makes you feel warm and loved and help you move on with daily struggles you may have. Cause food is love. Also this vegan parmesan mix is amazing ! It’s my first time making it and I absolutely fell in love with it. Believe me, you’ll be using it in lots of preparations.

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Creamy Vegan Cauliflower Pasta

Serves 2

Ingredients:

For the Vegan Parmesan

  • 1/2 cups raw brazil nuts
  • 1 pinch garlic powder
  • 1 pinch onion powder
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 pinch black pepper
  • 1 pinch dry italian herbs

For the Pasta:

  • 1 cup raw cashews, soaked for 8 hours
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 small white onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 3 garlic cloves with skin
  • 250 gr gluten-free fettuccine (or any pasta you like)
  • 250 gr cauliflower, cut into small florets
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • Bay leaves
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Tin foil

Preparation: 

Vegan Parmesan:

1. Put all the ingredients on a food processor and mix until resembles bread crumbs. Taste and add more salt / pepper to taste. Reserve. You can add Nutritional Yeast to this mix if you want and it will give it a cheese flavour. Here in Bolivia is impossible to find. You can storage this mix in a sealed glass jar for up to a month.

Pasta:

1.Preheat the oven to 150 degrees. Meanwhile bring a large pot with water to boil               with salt a the bay leaves.

2. In a pan, heat 1 tbsp of olive oil, add the onions and salt and cook until translucent.        Add the white wine and simmer for 3 min. Remove from heat and reserve.

3. Put the cauliflower florets in an oven tray with olive oil and salt. For the garlic cloves make a small tin foil package, add the cloves and olive oil, close the package and bake with the cauliflower for about 15 min or until golden brown and cooked. Remove the garlic cloves from the tin foil and reserve. Be carefull here with the steam coming out of it.

4. Cook the pasta following the package instructions. Meanwhile, in a high-speed blender, mix the cashews, water, cornstarch, garlic cloves, onions, salt and pepper. until completely blended.  Transfer this mix to a large pan and cook until creamy and thick, removing constantly to prevent lumps forming. Add the cooked pasta and cauliflower and mix gently.

5. Serve and top with the vegan parmesan. Enjoy.

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licking the plate

Vegan Ice Cream Affogato

Ice cream is another thing I absolutely adore and can’t imagine my life without it. Me and my best friend even made a song to honor ice cream, because it is really important to us. If you know me, you probably heard me singing it, specially if you had drinks with me. So, I made vegan ice cream this week ! and i am proud ! I must admit that i love eating ice cream on cold weather conditions. In bed and with a movie and after pizza, but that’s not the case here right now. This city is freaking hot, but i enjoyed it anyway, maybe cause i had it with hot espresso. Yes, i like hot coffee on hot weather.

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The process was quite interesting. First, I could not find raw cashews here. Everywhere they are toasted and salted, so my ice cream had some intense nutty flavor. If you can find raw cashews it is better, but the salt wasnt bad at all cause you need to add some salt to ice cream anyway, so i just adapted to my ingredients. With the coffee though is another story. We have great coffee beans in Bolivia and the coffee drinking  culture (fancy espresso and Ice Latte) is starting to grow. Not sure if it is a good thing or not, cause you know: gentrification,  but i am really glad i can find great coffee beans, cause off course i am a coffee addict. Who isn’t these days?

Another thing is: I don’t have an ice cream machine, so i had to churn and whip my ice cream a few times every hour on a friday night, so i  decided to have some drinks  with a friend while waiting and off course i ended singing the ice cream song.

Also, my ice cream soul mate / best friend is getting married this weekend ! So this is a tribute to her and our amazing friendship.

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So, just dropping this great recipe of vegan ice cream, that you can use for any kind of desert, make affogato like I did, or just eat it with a spoon right from the fridge. It is rich, creamy, it has the right amount of sweetness and it doesn’t have an overwhelming coconut flavor, like other vegan ice creams I had. To me, it came along perfect with espresso, toasted coconut flakes and grated raw cacao.

 

 

Vegan Ice Cream Affogato

Serves 6

Ingredients:

For the ice cream:

  • 2 cups raw cashews, soaked overnight
  • 2 cups coconut milk, chilled
  • 1/2 cup sugar molasses (miel de caña) / maple syrup
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 tsp coconut oil, melted

For the Affogato:

  • 6 shots of espresso
  • toasted coconut flakes (I toast them in the oven for around 5 min on low temp.)
  • grated raw cacao

Preparation: 

Ice cream:

  1.  Blend all the ingredients in a high-speed blender, except the coconut oil, until creamy and smooth, then add the melted coconut oil and mix until it is all well integrated. Transfer to a chilled metal bowl. Freeze for around 2 hours. Remove from the fridge and put back in the blender. Mix until creamy, like smoothie texture. Repeat this process 2 more times every 30-60 minutes. Or if you have an ice cream machine, follow your machine instructions.

Affogato:

  1. Prepare 6 shots of espresso on your espresso machine. Serve ice cream on individual cups and pour over the espresso, top with the coconut flakes and the grated raw cacao.

 

Enjoy !

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