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Tag Archives: Detox

The Low FODMAP Vegan: Gluten-Free, Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

The worst thing about being on this low FODMAP diet is not knowing what to make when you have a craving and don’t stock 20 different types of gluten-free flour in your house. I had Sourghum and Tapioca flour – which i’ve been trying to make use of – i’ve made chocolate brownie bites, banana muffins, and now, chocolate chip cookies.

The more I eat them, the more I love them. But they didn’t come easy – I had a few disasters along the way as I was adapting a recipe to my own needs and disregarding things like the wet : dry ingredients ratio. I suppose I better start at the beginning…(you’ll have to excuse the awful photos, i still havent mastered the art of food photography – i’ll get back to that one at some point!)

I started with the following ingredients:

1/2 cup Olive Oil
1 cup brown sugar
1 tsp egg replacer with 3tbsp water
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
3/4 cup sourghum flour
1/4 cup tapioca starch
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup chocolate chips (dairy free if you can, i used dark chocolate chips)

I used my new stand mixer with a paddle attachment and creamed together the oil and sugar. Added the egg replacer and vanilla. Beated well. In a separate bowl, combined the dry ingredients. Added the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mixed for a minute to incorporate. Stir in the chocolate chips. Droped by the teaspoonful onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Baked for 8-12 minutes in an oven pre-heated to 180C until the sides and top are golden brown.

So far it looked good..

Ok so it did look a bit on the shiney side..too much oil maybe? I gave it a go anyway and put them on my baking sheet oh so carefully…

Ok now it really looked greasy…and they really kind of…smooshed into each other and spread way too much. I didn’t take a picture of it in the baking tray..I was way too dissapointed with the look, but when I tasted them – all I wanted was more! So how was I meant to rectify this?

I added another 1/4 cup of sourghum flour, put it back in the mixer with the paddle attachment, wizzed away for a bit until it was all incorporated, and then tried again, this time – they turned out better – didn’t spread as much, but resulted in slightly cakey cookies that tasted awesome. Even my dad liked them and you wouldn’t be able to tell they were gluten free. By no means are they the best GF, Vegan chocolate chip cookies in the world, but definately a great first try!

The ones at the top of the plate in the picture are the smooshed out ones that just crumbled in your hands – way too oily. The lower ones are far less oily – much tastier.

I’ll keep trying though!

Rxx

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Posted by on February 6, 2012 in Baking, Cookies, Gluten Free, Low FODMAP, Snacks, Vegan

 

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Pre-Christmas Shed..

So a lot of my friends are recently engaged, or have recently gotten married, and amidst all they talk about over the months and weeks leading up to the wedding, and during the planning, the most prominent topic is the pre-wed shed. This is the worst crash diet of all – practically starving yourself to shave off those extra pounds so you can fit into that amazing wedding dress you bought which is 2 sizes too small at the moment…so that you lose enough weight just for the day..just for the photos.

Well. I’m taking a leaf out of their book today – minus the starvation. My sister arrives in just over a month, and you all know what that means – carrot cake. THE carrot cake. So with a month to go, and most of the big birthday bashes out of the way (sorry guys – i love you, but the last month has done some serious damage) we’re going to try the pre-christmas shed.

I never work well with long term goals, I know you guys know that. So for now, i’m going to focus on the next 2 weeks – the trickiest part. Where your body craves the fatty unhealthy foods you are depriving it of, where those chocolate cravings creep in, and the caffeine addiction gets the better of you (especially in soy gingerbread latte season!!).

As I sit here, sipping my green tea, thinking about the 0.2g of fat i lose in each cup (guesstimate – I can’t remember how much it is so please don’t take my word for it)..I wonder if I really am up for the challenge.

Bring. It. On.

Rxx

 
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Posted by on November 14, 2011 in Vegan, Weight Loss

 

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38 Days

38 Days – that’s how long my vegan “stint” lasted this time. It’s no secret that i’m not a full-time vegan. As much as I would like to be, it’s incredibly difficult in a city like Hong Kong, especially for a foodie like me. I always struggle with what to do and where to go to eat out. As much as there are fabulous vegetarian restaurants and one in particular is a vegan favourite – they are few and far between and life as a vegan if you eat out, get’s very repetative – same places, same dishes – i’m not that kind of girl.

So i’ve opted for a semi-vegan lifestyle – vegan lunches and non-vegan dinners. Eventually, when I find myself willing to spend more time working out a vegan menu at home, it will mean vegan full time again – when? I don’t know. For how long? Again, i don’t know. But the challenge awaits.

In the meantime, a new challenge – to lose weight. I find, that everytime i do a vegan “detox” when i come off it, i put on all the weight i may have lost as fast as lightening. So i’ve decided now a food diary is the way to go. This inherently makes me feel guilty if/when i snack on anything as I don’t want to write down any seemingly unhealthy foods, so if i’m writing down everything that i’m eating, i can’t eat any inherently bad foods. Not as easy as it sounds.

Additionally, a lovely friend of mine signed me up to a 1-month trial at a gym – complete with Bollywood aerobics and Yoga…so attempting to frequent that, get into a routine, then hopefully – not give it up. The classes provide the structure and the motivation that I lack because once you get home after a long day – the last thing you want to do is change into trainers and trackies or swimmers and head down to the gym/pool. Even though they’re only a stones throw from home. Instead, the structure of going to classes (not close to work or home mind you but that’s another story..) seems to work. I just hope it lasts.

I am the kind of person that gets more motivated when I see results, and so far…no results. Reducing portion sizes at both lunch and dinner, limited healthy snacking during the day – let’s see how we go. I’ll keep you posted. But do bare in mind that this is no longer my whole-ly vegan blog…it shall return one day, just not today.

If you do however, need advice on being vegan…I can still give you that – so don’t hesitate to ask or post questions.

I leave you now..with some fabulous gluten-free / vegan cookies I discovered awhile ago and didn’t get round to posting:

They are fab, available in Hong Kong and I would totally buy them again – bonus point: you can’t really tell they’re gluten free.

I also experimented with some gluten free vegan chocolate cupcakes…but that’s another post altogether.

Rxx

 
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Posted by on May 25, 2011 in Baking, Chocolate, Cookies, Gluten Free, Vegan

 

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The Mind Speaks

I’ve tried to write this post a thousand times to be sure to get it right, but I somehow can’t seem to get the right words out..silly isn’t it?

I spent a long time giving my best friend grief about his blog and how he seemed to always wait until he had written some kind of essay before he posted something – and I went into so much detail as to how it was his blog and it didn’t matter if he posted 2 lines or 200 lines at a time, it just mattered that he was writing because he wanted to.

I wholeheartedly feel that personal blogs exist for exactly that purpose. They provide us with the oppotunity to speak our minds with no judgement.

So without further adeu…here I am speaking my mind…albeit about veganism or rather being vegan-ish.

It’s no secret to all of you that I have yo-yoed significantly between the realms of vegan and non-veganism. I struggled through the initial adaptation to the lifestyle, loved it once I got accustomed and then completely turned against it once a carrot cake with incredible cream cheese frosting was sat in front of me. It was a complete 360 degree turnaround.

But here I am once again, determined to try it again. Will it be another detox, or will it be a for-life change? I have yet to find out..but once again I am delighted to share my journey with you.

Tomorrow marks day 1 of the vegan diet/detox/lifestyle change. I look forward to feeling great and full of energy once again!

Rxx

 
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Posted by on March 13, 2011 in Vegan, Weight Loss

 

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Step 1: Meal Planning (Day 1)

So, I mentioned previously that I felt the need for structure. And I googled and googled vegan meal planning, but there wasn’t anything that I liked, or that would fit my lifestyle, or so I felt. So I guess I have to devise my own (I was counting on that quick fix google never fails to provide me with, but alas, I have to put the effort in). I started thinking about what I like to eat, and what I wanted to include, and most of all, what the reason for the seesawing was.

To be honest, I love food. I love meat too. So when temptation drew me in, I caved. But this time, no. This time, I’m remembering how great I felt, how much energy I had, and most importantly, how much I loved cooking! (If my mother reads this she’s going to think I’m nuts because my motto has ALWAYS been “I only cook because I have to eat”, let’s hope she doesn’t see this then!)

Where do I begin with this planning then? At the beginning I guess – first meal of the day – breakfast. Well for a start I’m not a breakfast person so I guess I’ll just have to stick some fresh fruit in there…so that brings me to lunch. During the week I need something that can be prepared the night before, and stuck in a box in the fridge ready to be dragged to work and microwaved or eaten cold at lunch time. I’m a huge fan of cous cous so a simple cous cous salad would work for me here. Then there’s dinner. Something quick, easy and doesnt require a lot of faffing or time between starting to make it and it being set on a plate in front of me. That’s why I like the sound of this tomato and onion tart – looks easy enough, not requiring huge amounts of ingredients and hopefully will taste great!

That’s one day out of the way, I’m off to pull out all my recipe books and fill up the rest of the week! I’ll be back shortly with my findings…

Rxx

 
 

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For the love of…Brownies

It’s been about a month since I baked anything, let alone anything worth mentioning on the blog. I’m not really sure what got into me, April has been crazy. My weekends have been filled with birthday celebrations (family, friends and my own), and weekdays have been filled with..well..work. I lead a boring life! I started getting these horrible cravings…for sweets, and no matter how many chocolate bars or how much ice cream I had it just wouldn’t do the trick, so I decided to bake.

I decided to bake the most amazing chocolate brownies I have ever tasted! (ok, so i’m boosting my own ego here but hey, I think I have a right to!)  THey were *almost* perfect – so soft and gooey on the inside, and cake-like on the outside. The only problem was they started to fall apart when I pulled them out of the tray. So they don’t look like the kind of brownies that you get in a restaurant, but they are very rustic, home cooked and full of chocolatey gooeyness…enough to satisfy anyones cravings and go perfectly with a dollop of vanilla ice cream..

Ingredients

  • 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups sugar (use what you wish, my preference is usually raw cane sugar..)
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Method

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  • In a large bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt. Pour in water, vegetable oil and vanilla; mix until well blended. Spread evenly in a 9×13 inch baking pan.
  • Bake for 25 to 30 minutes in the preheated oven, until the top is no longer shiny. Let cool for at least 10 minutes before cutting into squares.
  • Ok so I didn’t follow this recipe EXACTLY, i had a little less sugar, and a little less cocoa powder, and I added a whole lot more chocolate buttons…BUT, that’s the beauty of experimenting – you do what works for you! Next time i’m probably going to add walnuts…and yes…there is going to be a next time for baking these 🙂

    The Verdict: I LOVE THEM!!!!

    R xx

    As per tradition, a photo from the handy dandy blackberry:

    They turned out to be more like Molten Chocolate Brownies when warm...still YUM!

     
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    Posted by on April 29, 2010 in Baking, Chocolate, Dessert, Indulge, Recipes, Vegan

     

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    For the love of…Cookies

    My sister is fantastic. Seriously. My mother thinks my sister and I have switched places because I’ve been doing copious amounts of baking recently, because my sister is the baker in our family. She is honestly amazing, she sent me a few vegan cookbooks amongst which was Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar, and my mouth simply started watering.

    This book features a selection of mouth watering recipes for all kinds of cookies you never imagined would be vegan, including vegan style oreo cookies! Now that really excited me, especially with my new found oreo cookie cupcake fetish!

    So over the weekend I decided to refrain from baking cupcakes in order to try out a vegan version of traditional chocolate chip cookies and I was happily surprised!

    These were whole wheat chocolate chip cookies that were perfectly chewy in the middle, and crunchy on the outside. The kinds you dream about dunking in a glass of milk (soy of course) and enjoying as a midnight snack!

    Once again as proof I did actually bake, my handy dandy blackberry provides you with an image:

    I do promise I will be investing in a camera soon – I just havent found one I liked yet! For now the handy blackberry will have to do!

    The Verdict: I would recommend you buy this book in a heartbeat! I’m excited to try out more cookie recipes along side my cupcakes!

     
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    Posted by on March 24, 2010 in Baking, Chocolate, Cookies, Dessert, Food, Recipes, Vegan, Weight Loss

     

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