31.5.16

Spelt Vegan Carrot Cake with Cashew Frosting

Sorry it took me a bit longer to share this recipe on my blog. See below the recipe for this healthy spelt vegan carrot cake with a cashew maple frosting. It got the thumbs up from my husband. Very easy to make and perfect for a rainy autumn afternoon. This cake is also quite low in sugar with only 1/2 cup. 

Life has been busy lately. James is crawling non stop. (they are 8 months 1/2 now!) He is very cute exploring the home. But always goes toward the cords and the books... Eloise is very close to crawling but hasn't moved forward yet. Hopefully not long now. Even though I will regret having 2 babies on the move. But at the moment, I feel sorry for her as she looks at James going everywhere and she gets frustrated.

What I have been loving lately:
  • Dirty chai lattes (chai with a shot of coffee because #mumlife!);
  • Going to the park in the afternoons and going on the swing with the twins;
  • Reading, having 2 sick babies and the cold weather is the perfect excuse for staying on the couch with a good book;
  • Gwyneth Paltrow's Zucchini & Leek soup from It's All Easy cookbook (have made it twice in 2 weeks);
  • Playing on snapchat (follow me for lots of pics of the twins: claireandtwins);
  • Running, I have gone back into running and planning another fun run at the end of June - a 10Km run and maybe a 14km run in July and a half marathon in August!?


Spelt Vegan Carrot Cake recipe:

Ingredients:
  • 2 cups of wholemeal spelt flour;
  • 2 tsp baking soda;
  • 2 vegan eggs or eggs (2 tbsp ground flaxseed + 6 tbsp water)
  • 1/2 cup of coconut oil melted;
  • 1/2 cup of coconut sugar or any other sweetener;
  • 1/2 cup of walnuts;
  • 2 large carrots grated or 3 small;
  • 1 1/2 tsp of cinnamon;
  • 1/2 tsp of mixed spices;
  • 1 tsp of nutmeg;
  • 1 tsp of vanilla paste or powder;
  • 1/2 cup of almond milk or any other milk;
  • pinch of salt;
Vegan Cashew Maple Frosting:
  • 1 cup of raw cashews soaked 1/2 day;
  • 1/4 cup of water;
  • 1/2 lemon juice & zest;
  • 2 tbsp rice malt syrup or maple syrup;
  • 1 tbsp melted coconut oil;

Steps:
  1. Soak cashews for the frosting;
  2. Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees; 
  3. Line a cake tin (round or square) with baking paper;
  4. Mix the ground flaxseed and the water in a mug and leave to thicken on the side;
  5. In the meantime, mix the dry ingredients together, the flour, the baking soda, the spices and the coconut sugar;
  6. Add in the coconut oil,  the vanilla, the almond milk and the vegan egg mixture and mix well. 
  7. Fold in the grated carrots and walnuts. 
  8. Pour into your cake tin and put in the oven for 30 minutes or until cooked. 
  9. For the frosting, I wait for the cake to be cooked and cooled down to make it. 
  10. Drain and rinse the cashews, mix in a blender with the sweetener of your choice, the lemon (you can also use do terra lemon essential oil drops), the water and coconut oil and blend until very smooth.
  11. Once the cake has cooled down, spread the frosting on top and add seeds, or walnuts on top. 


9.5.16

My First Mother's Day + Gluten Free Vegan Chocolate Cake Recipe


Yesterday I celebrated my first Mother's Day with my twins. I felt very emotional the whole day. I am so blessed with my twins. I am so proud to be their mother. I am a really lucky mum.

I also ran my first Fun run since giving birth. It was actually my first Fun Run since 2013! I stopped running when trying for a baby and when I was pregnant. I was amazing to be able to run again. I did the Mother's Day Classic 8km Run which I have run twice in the past dreaming of the day I would run it as a mother. I also felt emotional during the run thinking I was a mother this time and seeing my husband and my twins cheering me on! I ran pretty well and really enjoyed it. I did it in 47min 19 sec only 4 minutes slower than my PB in 2013!



But let's talk about this chocolate cake I made for myself to celebrate my first Mother's day! Gluten free, vegan and refined sugar free topped with fresh raspberries and rose petals for a beautiful look. I look forward to the day the twins will make me cakes!

Recipe for my Gluten Free Vegan Chocolate Cake & Cashew Frosting.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of almond milk;
  • 1 tsp of baking powder;
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda;
  • 1 tbsp of apple cider vinegar;
  • 1/2 cup of almond meal;
  • 1 cup of gluten free flour (I used GF flour from The Source Bulkshop)
  • 1 tsp vanilla powder;
  • 2 tbsp of melted coconut oil;
  • 1/2 cup of maple syrup;
  • 1/2 cup of coconut sugar;
  • 1 cup of raw cacao powder;
  • pinch of salt;
Frosting:
  • 1/2 cup of cashews soaked a few hours in water;
  • 2 tbsp of almond milk;
  • 1 tbsp of maple syrup;
  • 2 tbsp of cacao;
  • 2 tbsp of coconut oil;


Instructions:

  1. In a bowl soak the cashews in water for a minimum of 2 hours;
  2. Preheat your oven at 180 degree and line a cake tin with baking paper;
  3. In a bowl mix the apple cider vinegar with the almond milk and leave to sit for 5-10 minutes;
  4. Add in the baking powder, baking soda, coconut oil, almond meal and the flour.
  5. Mix gently (Don't over mix or it will make your cake too dense) and add vanilla, cacao and maple syrup & coconut sugar. 
  6. Pour into your cake tin and cook for 30 minutes at 180 degrees.
  7. While the cake cooks or while you wait for it to cool down, drain and rinse your soaked cashews and mix in a blender with the melted coconut oil, almond milk, cacao and sweetener.
  8. Spread generously over the cake.
  9. Top with berries, rose petals, coconut flakes or any other toppings. 

  

4.5.16

"Eat, Pray, Love" - 3 Days Getaway in Ubud.

I have just come back from a short 3 nights getaway weekend in Ubud, Bali for my little sister birthday. She is turning 22 this month and currently visiting us in Perth. I thought it was a great opportunity for us to travel to Ubud together. It was our first trip together and a great way to bond.

It was also a great way for me to relax after 7 very busy months as a twin mum. It wasn't easy leaving the twins home with their dad though. I had anxiety about it for the whole week before. I knew my husband would do a great job but it was hard leaving them. I enjoyed my 3 days in Ubud but was happy to come home to my little twins. 

I loved my time in Ubud (my second time only in Bali) so relaxing and beautiful. I liked that it is less touristic than Seminyak where I went on my first trip. I, of course, also loved all the healthy cafes and I wish I had been able to try them all! Maybe next time...

Our weekend was the perfect balance of local Indonesian food, healthy cafes, visiting Ubud centre and relaxing by the pool. We also made the most of the spa at our hotel and avoided the Monkey Forest as we are not big fans of monkeys!


Read below to see where we ate, where we stayed and what we visited. (I used Eat, Pray, Love as I am a big fan of this book/movie and in the love part, Elizabeth stays in Ubud.)


EAT.

Alchemy - we had lunch there on our first day. I had the raw cauliflower and papaya sushi. Sooo good. Charlotte had the my thai salad and we both had a slice of their raw lemon & coconut cheesecake. The best cheesecake I have ever eaten. The crust was amazing.

The Elephant - We went there for dinner on our last night. It is a vegetarian restaurant.  I wish I could have tried their lunch and breakfast too. The view of the jungle was amazing. We ordered some vegetarian gyozas, garlic bread & eggplant dip and for mains their coconut noodle soup. The coconut soup was really delicious. Goes in my top 10 favourite dishes of all times! Not too spicy, with noodles, tofu and lemongrass. I must try to recreate it at home. We also had some raw cakes. I recommend the raw mango cheesecake. 


Kokolato Vegan Ice-Cream - Located on Dewi Sita. Perfect treat after some shopping in Ubud. Great to cool down too! We both had a scoop of the coconut & cacao ice creams.


Down To Earth Cafe & Market - we shared the brown rice tempeh sushi, spring rolls and Indian samosas. I also had a glass of Cocobiotics.


Ubud Markets for local fruits - Around and inside the Ubud markets, lots of women sell Mangosteens, Bananas, Yellow Passion fruits and other local fruits. I love the local little bananas and the mangosteens. You have to barter the price but I recommend getting lots to snack on in the afternoons.
Juices - I loved all the fresh juices available everywhere and in our hotel. My favourite was the papaya juice with lime!

Young Coconuts - you can find them everywhere for sale. Around 20,000 rupiahs each. They taste so much better than the coconut waters we get in Australia. Perfect to rehydrate on hot humid days too.


PRAY.

As we only had a few days we decided to visit only 2 temples, the UBUD Palace and Tirta Empul Temple. Ubud Palace is conveniently located opposite the market. You must visit the market there. Perfect spot to buy a few souvenirs like the sarongs!

Tirta Empul is around 35 minutes away from Ubud (we got a cab to take us there, wait and take us back to our hotel for 300,000 Rupiahs). Hindus perform bathing rituals in the holy water. Tourists can also partake in the rituals but we decided not to. We hired sarongs to enter the temple and walk around. I really enjoyed visiting this temple.


LOVE.

Where we stayed: Puri Sebali Resort. 20 minutes away from Ubud Centre but well worth it. The view from the pool and our room was amazing and it was very peaceful and relaxing. The hotel is surrounded by rice paddies and we took a short walk in the rice paddies on our last morning. You also have a view from the pool on the rice paddies and coconut palm trees. We avoided going to the famous Tegalalang rice paddies as I had been there before.






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