Recipe time and Spring Workshop reflection

I shared some wonderful yoga practices on the weekend in my Spring into Action workshop. It was a lovely group and we all really enjoyed being able to immerse ourselves in 3 hours of yoga rather than a shorter class which often goes by so quickly that it sometimes feels like you are just getting into the practice and it is over. Not that I have anything against classes, they are the best way to fit in a regular practice, it was just nice to be able to spend more time in everything we did and explore some practices that don’t often make it into classes such as meditation and chanting.

Spring was certainly in the air despite it being a rainy morning as we were visited by some lovely parrots, playing in the elm trees outside Harvest Yoga and squawking loudly. We paused in our practice to admire their colours and antics, hopping from branch to branch and swinging on the smaller twigs.

Something else we all enjoyed was morning tea together and the recipes were requested so I am sharing them here with a wider audience. I like making these sweet treats for workshops as they cater to a lot of the more common food allergies and intolerances as well as being very easy to make and absolutely delicious! Talk about ticking all of my boxes.

I hope you enjoy these and sharing them with friends as much as I do…

Julie’s Currant Cake

I got this recipe from a fellow Volunteer Breastfeeding Counsellor when I worked for  the Australian Breastfeeding Association, she used to bring it to our meetings and it was always popular. It is sugar free and vegan (unless you spread it with butter but you can use a vegan alternative or have it without, it is still delicious) and very easy though it does need overnight soaking so you need to plan ahead a little.

1 cup currants

1 teabag, plain black tea is fine but I like to use different herbal flavours as well, I used cranberry and pomegranate for the workshop cake

1 cup boiling water

1 cup self raising flour

Place the currants and teabag in a bowl, pour over the boiling water and leave overnight. The next day sift the flour over the top and stir it through. Pour into a non stick or greased loaf pan and bake for 40 minutes at 180C.

It’s that easy, it is a very moist and yummy on its own or spread with butter.

Chocolate Fudge Balls

This recipe came from a fellow yoga teacher, Anahata, whom I did my prenatal training with. It is gluten free, sugar free and easy though the rolling into balls can be time consuming.

45gm cocoa or raw cacao powder

120 gm raw cashews or other nuts – I often cheat and use ground hazelnuts or almonds to save time

260 gm dates, I chop them up first or my food processor struggles with their dense stickiness but if you have a more powerful food processor than me you might not need to. 

1 tsp coconut oil (this wasn’t in the recipe as given to me but I find it makes rolling them into balls a lot easier as the mixture is less crumbly)

Desiccated coconut (optional)

Grind cashews or other into fine powder using a nut grinder. Place the cashews, cocoa powder and dates into a food processor and blend well. The mixture will be very thick and dry – don’t add water or it will be too sticky. Roll into balls (small as these are rich) and roll in desiccated coconut. These are delicious!

Hope you enjoy these as much as we did at the workshop.

Love and light,

Belinda

xxx

Cranachan

One of my passions which I have not yet shared via this blog is cooking. I have always loved to create in the kitchen and often experiment with different recipes, tweaking them over time to make them just right for me.

Cranachan was something I first came across in a restaurant and fell in love with – it was yummy!

I tried to recreate it at home and searched the internet for a recipe but didn’t find one that was as nice as what I’d had. It is a Scottish dessert which might explain why I like it so as I have some Scottish heritage many generations back. In the traditional recipes I found the oats are soaked in whiskey but as I don’t like giving alcohol to my children I find them not really family friendly. In the recipe below it is easy to serve the kids dishes up then add whiskey to the grown ups mixture.

On a shopping tour last year I purchased Fresh & Tasty Puddings and Desserts from R&R Publications Marketing Pty Ltd and was overjoyed to find a cranachan recipe within its pages. I have tweaked it a little and the final result is the recipe below, if you try it out let me know what you think or any other changes you make to it.

Cranachan with Raspberries

30gm butter

40gm brown sugar

1/2 tsp cinnamon (this is my addition, not in the original recipe but I find it adds that extra something)

125gm rolled oats (can make up part of this with quinoa flakes as well for added protein)

200gm ricotta cheese (or a mixture of half ricotta and half cream cheese at room temperature)

150 ml thick cream

2 tbsp honey

1-2 tbsp whiskey

250gm raspberries

Heat the oven up to 180c.

Put butter, brown sugar and cinnamon in a large saucepan and place over a low heat until butter has melted. Stir in the rolled outs then spread evenly over a baking tray and cook for 15 minutes, stirring halfway through. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.

Beat the ricotta until smooth then stir through the cream and honey. At this point I serve up the kids bowls then add the whisky to the remaining mixture and place in the adults bowls. If you are not serving to children you can just add the whiskey to the mixture with the honey. I use individual glass bowls as it looks nice but you could make it in one big trifle bowl for a party as well.

Divide the oat mixture onto the top of the ricotta and place the raspberries on top of the oats.

When I first tried this in a restaurant it had more layers so you could make thinner layers of everything if you felt that way inclined. I have also come across suggestions of bringing the different mixtures to the table seperately and allowing everyone to help themselves to portions of each.

You can trickle extra honey on top but I don’t usually bother.

Our family love this dessert, my hubbie has requested it as a weekly menu item but I think he’d get sick of it over time if I did that. My eldest son went shopping with me on the weekend and requested that I buy the makings of cranachan again so it definitely went down well with him.

Enjoy.

Love and light,

Belinda.

xxx