I grew up eating berry mousse on a regular (summer) basis. For those of you not familiar with the concept, it’s berries mixed with an equal amount of sugar and some egg white. It tastes absolutely delicious, but just imagine how much sugar goes into that 1 to 1 proportion! It’s insane. This recipe is nothing like that. Because there’s zero sugar. No dairy, no eggs, no gluten etc. And not only does it taste just as good, but it’s also ICE CREAM. And being ice cream is one of the best things one can be.
I’ve tried making banana-based ice cream before, and it’s a treat. Mix in some cacao powder and you’ve got chocolate ice cream. Throw in walnuts and – you got it! – walnut ice cream. But this raspberry version is my absolute favorite. Bananas are naturally sweet, so there’s no need to add anything else. Raspberries are just a little sour, which makes the combination easy on the taste buds. Oops, I just gave away all of the ingredients…
- 1 ripe banana
- 2 handfuls raspberry
- Cut the banana in slices. Wash the raspberries and remove greens. Freeze fruit for 3-4 hours.
- Add the frozen banana in a food processor and mix until it becomes creamy, scraping off the walls as necessary.
- Add the raspberries and continue mixing until the fruits blend together perfectly and have a soft serve consistency.
- Serve immediately.
- This recipe makes 2 small portions. Use the same proportions to make more ice cream at once, depending on the size of your food processor.
One month left until Christmas! That makes it the perfect moment to start baking your advent calendar. Wait, what? Baking it? Yes. Get the butter and sugar working on the sweetest countdown to Christmas. I think it makes sense, it looks simple and pretty, and it’s a real treat. Here is what you need to make your own:
You will need:
- biscuit recipe (see below)
- numbers cookie cutters
- thread and needle
- tree branch
Number shaped biscuits recipe
- 80 g unsalted butter
- 3/4 cup caster sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tbsp vanilla essence
- 1 1/2 cup flour
Begin by mixing the butter and sugar together. If you don’t have a mixer, you can do it by hand. When you get a creamy composition, add the egg and vanilla and continue to mix. Slowly add in the flour, mixing continuously. Add a pinch of salt and refrigerate the dough for a few minutes.
Preheat the oven at 180°C. Roll the dough to about 5 mm thick and cut out the number shapes. For the advent calendar, you need the numbers from 1 to 24. Pierce each number with a toothpick at the top for hanging. Bake for about 10 minutes or until slightly golden. They’re done faster than you might think!
Start by making the number-shaped biscuits. You can use whatever recipe you like, as long as it doesn’t involve the dough growing (that would ruin the letter shapes). Don’t make the dough too thin. Cut out the numbers from 1 to 24. Pierce each number with a toothpick at the top, so you can hang them later.
When the biscuits are done and cooled off, use a needle to thread each one. For the double digits, use a single thread for both numbers.
Find a pretty tree branch and hang it to the wall with string. Tie each number to the branch, in the proper order. Adorn with lights or fir branches and you’re done!
You may or may not know this, but I’m a big Miffy fan. I have no idea why – I am, after all, a grown-up, and this bunny hasn’t been part of my childhood in any way. But I can’t resist her cute, minimalist features. When I visited her homeland last year, I went out of my way to find the Miffy store, and came back with as much stuff as I could carry. So you can imagine my excitement when I found Miffy shaped cookies on a blog! I immediately bought the cookie cutters from Amazon and they arrived yesterday. I’ve already made a second batch of bunny cookies and I love how they turned out. Wanna try? They’re absolutely perfect for Easter!
- 80g unsalted butter, room temperature
- 2 tbsp peanut butter
- 1/2 cup caster sugar
- 1 small egg, room temperature
- 1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
- In the bowl of a mixer, put the butter, peanut butter and caster sugar, and mix well until the composition is light and fluffy.
- Add in the egg, and mix until well incorporated.
- Sift in the flour, progresively. If the mixer can no longer handle the weight of the dough, continue forming it by hand.
- On a well-floured surface, roll out the dough in a thin layer. Cut the cookies in shapes and place on a lined tray.
- Place the tray in the fridge for 15 minutes, so that the cookies don't lose their shape from the heat (you can skip this step if your cutters don't feature any details). Meanwhile, preheat the oven at 160 degrees Celsius (320 Fahrenheit).
- Bake the cookies for about 10 minutes or until the sides start browning slightly.
- You can replace caster sugar with granulated sugar, although the cookies might end up more irregularly shaped.
- When you roll the dough, keep in mind that the cookies don't have any baking soda, bicarbonate or yeast, so they won't grow. The thickness of the cookies will be the same before and after baking. For the same reason, you can place them very close to each other on the tray.
I think every year I mention that I don’t celebrate Valentine’s Day – but since I’ve done so many posts on the topic already, doesn’t that count as celebrating? That’s for you to decide. Either way, these chocolates would make a thoughtful homemade gift for the occasion. But that doesn’t mean they aren’t equally tasty on any other day of the year! The only condition is that you have to love dark chocolate. For some (unknown to me) reason, some people don’t treasure it as much as I do, so don’t go offering these around to just anyone. Which I’m sure you wouldn’t do, you know better.
I’ve recently ventured into – well, not chocolate making per se, but rather chocolate improving. Ever since buying my first ever coconut oil, I found countless possibilities for the stuff, including making chocolate richer and tastier. And if that’s something you’d be interested in, check out the easy chocolates recipe below:
- one tablet (100g) dark chocolate
- 1 tsp coconut oil
- dried fruit (I used a Pina Colada tea mix)
- Break the chocolate into small pieces. Together with the coconut oil, melt in the microwave or in a double broiler. Stir to get a homogeneous consistency.
- Set 10-12 silicon cupcake molds on a tray, and pour hot chocolate in each one, barely covering the bottom of the mold.
- Sprinkle some dried fruit on each chocolate, and allow to cool. Move the tray to the refrigerator, and keep there for at least an hour before taking the chocolates out of their molds.
- Before adding the fruit, you can trickle a couple of drops of your favorite liqueur on each chocolate. I used strawberry liqueur.