Breakfast, Lunchbox, Treats & Snacks, x For Freezer x

Lemon Shizzle Cake

Botox Baking

This sticky citrus cake is practically belching with age-defying vitamins like E, C and plant-based calcium.

Its fantastical glow comes from a spice called turmeric, more recently referred to as poor man’s saffron. Turmeric delivers a cargo of anti-inflammatory artillery for squeaky bones and damaged skin. Not bad for a cáca milis.

We use ground almonds in place of flour to bump up this cake’s nutritional points. Almonds are seriously nourishing, so keep a stash of almond butter and medjools dates in the glove compartment. You’ll soon learn to love traffic jams. Better still, a slice of this lemon drizzle cake will have your lips fizzing in the tailback on the M50.

 

lemon shizzle cake II

For a cake, it has impressive quantities of that difficult-to-find mineral, magnesium. This mineral is known for its prowess in supporting adrenal function and marriages (helps circulation and PMT). An almond’s stash of vitamin E will also help your body wage war against damaging free radicals. Vitamin E is celebrated as the ‘beauty’ vitamin. Nice one.

 

Lemon Drizzle Cake:

6 tablespoons light agave or honey (90ml)
6 tablespoons cold pressed macadamia or coconut oil (90ml) or melted ghee
4 eggs
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
300g ground almonds
Zest of 1 large unwaxed lemon
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon unrefined salt

For the drizzle:

Juice of 1 large lemon or 2 smallies
3-6 tablespoons light agave or raw honey

 

Preheat oven to 170 Celsius. 180 Celsius is a little too hot and will brown the cake. Line an 8×8 brownie tin with non-stick paper such as If You Care brand (the best on the market).

Blend everything in a food processor or electric blender. That’s it!

Pour into your prepped tin and bake for 25 minutes, removing before it browns in the oven. Leave to cool in the tin.

Now for the shizzle. Warm the lemon juice with agave or honey. Pour over your cake. A few piercings from a fork will help. Admire your brilliance and let your nostrils samba.

 

lemon

 

Special thank you to Emine Ali Rushton

for christening the cake with a cracking good name!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Treats & Snacks, Vegan &/or Raw, x For Freezer x

Mojito cheesecake and raw honey

Fist. Bumping. Gorgeous.

This is a fresh, nostril-dancing, creamy dessert. 

You can store individual slices in the freezer for up to 3 months. But it’s not designed to yield leftovers.

 

hive sharing brookfield farm

 

I found the most extraordinary bee sanctuary in Tipperary, where the apiarist practically reads the bees bedtime stories. 

The hives are located on a biodynamic farm and produce the most fragrant nectar known on this side of the cosmos. 

You can check it out here, and explore the sweetest idea of “hiveshares”. I feel like imploding with pride when I stumble across dedicated Irish farmers or artisans like Ailbhe and Arno. They make Ireland’s cultural tapestry much richer, and so deserve our adulation and support.

 

So what’s the difference between regular jars of honey on our supermarket shelf, and raw honey?

Raw local honey might sound a little bombastic, but I have a sense it’s already in your cupboard (popular Irish brands include Tara Hill honey from Wexford or Kilarney Clover). 

Local means you’re high-fiving your town’s economy as well as escaping industrial heat treatments which can diminish the honey’s excitement. Just ask your regular health store to point out the local ones, and taste the difference.

Hay fever veterans swear by it. Local honey often contains manageable amounts of pollen from your postcode in it, preparing you for the sneezy season. There’s immune-boosting propolis too, and some serious anti-viral, anti-fungal and anti-bacterial artillery.

 

How is it made? 

Female bees collect nectar from various plants, shrubs, trees and flowers and turn it into an alchemist’s dream. Using special enzymes, (that’s diplomatic speak for frothy gob) the nectar turns into liquidy honey and housed symmetrically in honeycomb. Then the bee dance begins (as illustrated in my toddler’s Dr Seuss book). 

The female honeybees flap their wings with a fervour usually reserved for an underage Limerick rave. This dance helps to evaporate the water content from the nectar and turn it into the licky sticky elixir as we know it.

 

brookfield farm honey

“Honeycomb is altogether miraculous,” says Sarah Britton, founder of My New Roots. “To behold its sheer geometrical perfection is like a religious experience, and to see evidence of the deep, clear intelligence that built such a structure is humbling.” Stunning sentiment. Raw honey is very special – certainly one of life’s greatest pleasures along with itching, sneezing, and submitting to chilli. 

Commercial manuka honey can be heat-treated, making it somewhat controversial. Maddening, right? This honey hails from New Zealand’s manuka foliage, thought to hold particularly high anti-microbial properties. 

I find raw local honey more potent than most commercial brands of manuka. If you can get raw manuka, then lucky you! Applied topically, manuka honey has shown promising results treating MRSA sores. It’s worth remembering not to cook with manuka honey either, as the heat will destroy much of its superhuman powers. Manuka prefers an empty belly for its health benefits to kick in, so stir it through warm water with a nip of lemon as a tonic.

 

mint boys

 

Mojito Cheesecake

Alarming amounts of nutrition for a dessert. Feel the vitamins fox trot to your toes. This cheesecake is adapted from the Hemsley sisters version that use cacao nibs and coconut instead of rum and mint. I like their recipes – smart, simple and sassy.

 

For the base:
 
About 2 cups (280g) cashews
8 Medjool dates, stones removed
touch of sea salt
Splash of white rum (optional)
 

For the creamy centre:

3 ripe avocados, stone and skin removed (200g)
25g packet of fresh mint, leaves only
juice of 3–4 limes
4–6 tablespoons raw honey (use light agave for vegans)
3 tablespoons unscented coconut oil, melted

 

To make the base, blend the nuts, dates and sea salt in a food processor (not a blender) with a splash of rum or water. When it starts clumping together into a cookie dough ball, you’re good to go. Press into an 18cm pie dish or springform tin (the special ones for cheesecakes). Bring the dough up the sides like a posh flan if you fancy, making sure you support the elbow of the base – the part where the base meets the sides. Freeze.

 
Meanwhile, get going on your ‘cheesecake’ filling. Purée the avocado flesh, mint, the juice of three limes, 4 tablespoons of honey, the melted coconut oil and some Frank Sinatra at full speed until savagely smooth. I use my blender for this bit. Taste. If it needs more zing or kick, add another squeeze of lime juice to the mix. If you prefer more sweetness to rock your taste buds, then add an extra bit of honey. Spoon the filling over the frozen base and freeze until firm. Before serving, allow to defrost for 30 minutes so it is not rock solid. It should be sweet and creamy, and hard and clawing.
 
Good stuff!
 
 
 
If you want to meet the people behind Irish artisan products, especially our outstanding portfolio of cheeses on this island, please come along to Sheridan’s food festival in Meath this weekend. More details here. See you Sunday!
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

Breakfast, Treats & Snacks, Vegan &/or Raw, Videos, x For Freezer x

New video: Bee Pollen

 

Ever wonder what the fuss is all about? 

A load of wind? Or vegan’s viagra?

Allow me to explain, and to give an honest evaluation of the superfood du jour bee pollen.

 

 

You’ll find an INCREDIBLE bee pollen recipe here for your breakfast, or a sneaky treat to restore energy levels at the office right here.

Until next week, my budding health geeks! Not subscribed? See the groovy bar to the left and join me in my crazy-assed kitchen journeys …