13 oct. 2017

Gluten-Free Tahini Orange Cookies

I posted a quick video on my Instagram stories last weekend to give you a glimpse of what I was preparing for my next blog post. Well, the cookies are finally here!...and oh man these are hands down one of the best cookies I've ever baked and I'm sorry if you've heard this from me before but I had to say it; they deserve to be on my top 5 cookie list. These tahini orange cookies are yummy, ridiculously easy to make, completely plant-based and so spiced and irresistible. Also, let me have a little 'damn, I'm proud of myself' moment cause I managed to make them gluten-free and they are not the typichal super crumbly gf cookie. They hold together pretty well and doesn't spread like crazy so you can easily choose if you want them more on the cakey side or crispier and thinner just by pressing down the dough a bit more. The ones you see in the pictures were delicately crispy on the edges and cakey on the inside.
This is the perfect recipe to prepare when it's rainy and you don't wanna go outside and prefer to stay all cozy at home wearing your favorite pair of fluffy socks. Nothing is better than the smell of freshly baked cookies and while these are still in the oven you'll notice that your home is filled with a lovely orange, ginger and cinnamon aroma. Diptyque's candles are too expensive, I know they make your living room look 'très chic' and do smell great but forget about them! Bake cookies instead and your belly will thank me later. ;-)
Now I'm off to continue with my Halloween recipe mission and check if my sister bought the right food coloring (she's the best assistant Cinnamon Girl could ever have, btw). Can you guess which color I'm looking for? ;-)

Gluten-Free Tahini Orange Cookies
(yield: 12 cookies)

1/3 cup smooth tahini paste.
1/4 cup coconut sugar or panela (unrefined whole cane sugar).
2 tablespoons extra virgin arbequina olive oil.
1 tablespoon maple or agave syrup.
Zest of one orange.
2 drops organic orange essential oil.
1/2 cup rice flour.
1/4 cup oat flour.
2 tablespoons cornstarch.
1 teaspoon baking powder.
1/2 teaspoon baking soda.
Pinch of salt.
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon.
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger.
1/4 cup oat milk or almond milk.
- To decorate:
Raw white sesame seeds and black sesame seeds.

Preheat oven to 180 ºC (350 ºF) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a medium bowl combine the tahini, coconut sugar, oil, maple syrup, orange zest and essential oil. Stir together with a wooden spoon until well combined.
In a large mixing bowl whisk the flours, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices. Use a hand whisk to aerate the dry ingredients.
Stir the dry mixture into the wet mixture and mix using a wooden spoon again or a sturdy silicone spatula. Gradually add in the oat milk until you get a soft dough that holds together well.
Scoop the dough into a generous tablespoon and roll the dough with your hands to create perfectly round balls. Distribute onto the baking sheet and slightly press down the dough with the back of a spoon or the palm of your hands to flatten a little bit.
Sprinkle with the sesame seeds tapping with your hands so the seeds adhere to the dough.
Bake for 15 minutes until edges are golden brown. If you want to make them crispier bake for 2 more minutes.
Let cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes and transfer to a cooling rack later.
Store in an airtight container at room temperature.

5 oct. 2017

Spirulina Energy Bites

Remember that green energy ball picture I posted on Instagram back in august? Well, here's the full recipe (finally!). These spirulina energy balls are super easy to whip up and packed with wholesome ingredients; plus they have such a cool bright and deep emerald color. Some will think they taste like seaweed or something like that but worry not, medjool dates, almonds and pure maple syrup are the main ingredients and only a small amount of spirulina powder is needed.
If you haven't heard about this algae before you should do some research because it's one of the top superfoods. I recently discovered it and am starting to take supplements, so far I feel it's boosting my energy....which is something fantastic for those of us who are always on the go and doing a million things in one day. Food blogging ain't easy my darlings!
While writting this blog post I found this article that might help you know more about the health benefits of this tiny green miracle. 
If you can't find spirulina powder or you want a more fancy energy bites recipe there's quite a nice collection of raw bites here on the blog so simply type the words 'energy bites' or 'raw' in the Search box.
Hope you are all having a good week, it's almost friday guys, you can do this! ;-) 
What are your plans for the weekend? I feel like I'm starting to get a cold so probably will get all cozied up, drink some ginger + lemon tea and watch Once Upon a Time's season 7 premier...and I'll probably bake some cookies too! ;-)

Spirulina Energy Bites
(yield: 19-20 balls)

8 Medjool dates, pitted.
1 cup raw blanched almonds.
1 tablespoon organic spirulina powder.
2 teaspoons pure maple syrup.
A pinch of pink Himalayan salt.

Place the almonds in your food processor and pulse until a flour forms. Add in the pitted dates, spirulina, salt and maple syrup. Process until a sticky dough forms, it'll be a tad bit softer than the regular energy ball dough and your hands will get dirty and green (sorry!).
Scoop out the mixture using a 1 tbps measuring spoon and roll into balls using your hands. Transfer to an airtight container and let them rest in the fridge for at least 30 minutes so they will firm up.
Store these energy balls in the refrigerator because they get too soft at room temperature.

28 sept. 2017

Adzuki Brownies

I wanted to share this new post with you several days ago but (as it's happening way too often lately) I've been extremely busy doing four recipes for a client (some of them will appear on the blog too) and also I spent a whole week celebrating my birthday. Not that I threw a big party and I need to recover or that I went to a remote island with my friends like some celebrities do; but I celebrated it with small things that make me happy each day: a brunch with my sister + some shopping, cake time with the family, watching movies every night (something I can't do on normal weekdays), etc. You know, pampering myself a little bit because I'm always putting myself in last place...will I ever learn?!
So let's talk about these brownies: I've tasted adzuki brownies before but never tried them at home until I realized I had too many packets of adzuki beans so it was mandatory to do some recipe testing. Those who are familiar to vegan and healthy baking must heard about these type of brownies before. Adzuki beans are a great secret ingredient (not so secret now) to make brownies more dense and gooey, and add an extra nutritional boost cause they have a good dose of plant-based protein. So now you can have your brownie and eat it too!
I wanted to cover them with some tahini-caramel frosting but ran out of ingredients...so maybe it's a good excuse to repeat this recipe and share a fancied-up version in the near future.
Please note, it's super important that you wait until the brownies are completely cold before cutting, even better if you let them harden a little bit in the fridge. I was running late and you know that I always shoot in natural light so I had to cut them when they were still warm.
They taste seriously good and no one would ever notice any weird taste, trust me, I'm a professional brownie eater and have published quite a lot of brownie recipes here on Cinnamon Girl.
Next step: make the fudgiest gluten-free vegan brownies. Stay tuned!

PS: are you guys already thinking about Halloween recipes?

Adzuki Brownies
(yield: 16 portions)

1 1/2 cups cooked adzuki beans.
2 tablespoons coconut sugar.
200 g (7 ounces) dark chocolate, 70 % cocoa min.
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, arbequina variety.
1/3 cup pure maple syrup.
Generous 3/4 cup (80 g) almond flour.
3/4 cup (95 g) organic all-purpose flour.
3 tablespoons carob powder.
1 tablespoon lucuma powder.
1 tablespoon baking powder.
Pinch of salt.
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla powder.

- You can replace the coconut sugar with panela (unrefined whole cane sugar).
- If you can't find carob powder use pure cocoa powder instead. Do the same to replace the lucuma powder (a total of 4 tablespoons of cocoa powder).

Put the adzuki beans and the coconut sugar in your food processor and process until pureed and soft.
Melt the chocolate following the double boiler method and set aside to cool a lil bit.
Preheat the oven to 180 ºC (356 ºF) and lightly grease a square pan with nonstick cooking spray, also line the bottom with parchment paper. My brownie pan is 20x20 cm.
Pour the melted chocolate, olive oil, and maple syrup over the adzuki mixture and process until completely soft and combined.
In a medium mixing bowl sift together the flours, carob powder, lucuma, baking powder, salt, and vanilla, stirring with a wire whisk until combined.
Add the wet mixture to the dry mixture and mix with a silicone spatula until a thick, glossy batter forms. 
Spread the batter evenly into the prepared pan and bake for 15-17 minutes, do not overbake brownies cause they won't be moist and fudgy on the inside. Keep in mind that they'll rest in the pan so the cooking process will continue.
Remove from the oven and let the brownies cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then unmold and cool completely before cutting into 16 equal portions/squares.
Sprinkle a bit of carob powder on top of the brownies, the sweet taste of carob makes a great contrast with the intense bittersweet chocolate.
Store the brownies in an airtight container at room temperature and if you want to keep them fresh and fudgy for longer they keep really well in the fridge.