It’s a rainy Sunday and I just finished watching “Julie & Julia”. I love that it’s not as hot today, in fact I am feeling extremely comfy in my sweater! The movie is awesome, I really like Meryl Streep, but the topic of the movie also really hits home for me. I know many people don’t truly understand why I am blogging, and why I find baking and cooking so soothing. To be honest, I can’t really explain it myself….but somehow, if I manage to bake a cake that ends up just as I want it to, I feel better no matter how the day has gone.
The past couple of weeks have been so crazy that I feel like I’ve lost a bit of my inspiration concerning new recipes. I am not sure why that is, perhaps because it has been so extremely hot that the idea of spending hours experimenting in the kitchen just wasn’t as appealing as it is during winter months. Or maybe I just needed to focus more on other things, like hanging out with my friends and going apartment hunting. Whatever the reason, I have come up with a few ideas for the next 4 weeks – after which I am going to start teaching at my new School, which I am extremely psyched about.
For the next 4 weeks, I really want to focus on being kind to myself. I feel like I often lose touch of what I want for the sake of following a certain eating or workout regime. I know that’s a recurring theme on my blog, but I want this blog to be about a real person, not a manufactured, perfected image of myself. I have been struggling to find balance with food a lot lately, simply because I find myself craving “unhealthy” foods more often these days, for whatever reason. I also haven’t been moving as much as I’d like to, so I really want to get back on track. Most importantly, though, I want to focus on listening to my body and what it wants. I think that’s the hugest challenge for me…I often try to force myself into workouts when my body obviously needs a break, and those kinds of workouts never have the same effect on my mood as the one’s I really want to do.
To help get me back to posting more regularly, I want to introduce “Track it Tuesday” for the next 4 weeks, which means every Tuesday, I’m gonna photograph all the meals I eat and upload them for you. This is not meant to be a means of controlling myself, but I feel like those are the types of posts that show best that I am not at all solely focussed on eating healthily. I love veggies, fruits, nuts, and my entire way of eating, but I also love burgers, pizza, and “unhealthy” fries. I love chocolate. Getting a proper mix of it all is what balance is all about, right? Stay tuned for this weeks first post. I chose Tuesday simply because I wanted to do something different from “What I ate Wednesday”, which I have found a lot of food bloggers do.
After all this rambling, though, I also want to share a recipe I came up with yesterday. Four weeks ago, I already tried to bake a cake using chickpeas as the base, but, sadly, that didn’t turn out at all. The chickpea dough simply wouldn’t firm up, so I ended up with a gooey, sticky, sweet mess. I absolutely hate it when recipes don’t work out…I have been working on a dairy-free cheesecake recipe for so long that I feel like I am never going to get it right.
Yesterday, however, I tweaked the recipe for the chickpea cake a little and added a favorite combo of mine: Peanutbutter and apples. Just in case you hadn’t noticed, those two go together perfectly, as anyone who has read my post on “Guilt-free Peanutbutter Whip” will already know.
This may be made from chickpeas (and, I am not going to pretend you can’t tell there is no flour involved), but the peanutbutter and apple slices really cover up any “bean” taste. The texture is soft and gooey, and the apple slices on top make it all look so pretty! These are vegan, low-carb, protein-rich, and low-fat!
Peanutbutter Apple Chickpea Slices
- 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed (400g)
- 1 heaped Tbs. ground flax
- 1/4 cup agave syrup
- 1/4 cup peanutbutter + 1 tsp.
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. baking powder
- 1/4 tsp. baking soda
- 1 apple, half grated, half sliced
- a sprinkle of cinnamon
- coconut oil for the baking tin
1. Preheat your oven to 175°C (350°F).
2. Place the chickpeas in a food processor and pulse until they are completely smooth and creamy. Add the agave syrup, peanutbutter (excepting 1 tsp.) and mix again.
3. Add all the dry ingredients to the “dough” (excepting the cinnamon), and mix thoroughly. Then, stir in the half grated apple.
4. Spread the dough into a baking tin/form (use coconut oil to keep it from sticking if you don’t have a non-stick baking tin), then spread the apple slices on top. Drizzle the teaspoon of peanutbutter on top, and sprinkle with cinnamon.
5. Bake for 25 minutes, then allow to cool for at least 15 minutes before attempting to remove the slices from the form. The cooler the slices are, the more they will firm up.
Note: Keep refrigerated!
Of course, you could mix in some chocolate chips as well, or some chopped walnuts/raisins. The slices taste delicious, lightly sweet and yet still tart due to the apple. The best thing is: You don’t need to feel guilty about eating these AT ALL, as there is no oil, butter or refined sugar involved. If the dough isn’t sweet enough when you taste it, feel free to add more agave syrup, though. I personally don’t like my baked goods to be so sweet, but I have weaned myself off of sweet things for a while, so make sure you add enough to make the dough seem sweet enough for you!
Okay, that’s it for today…stay tuned for Track it Tuesday, and hopefully many more recipes soon. I feel some new savory recipes coming on, so be excited for that!
And, you know, go make these Chickpea Slices to enjoy for breakfast to morrow morning. 🙂