Victoria Cupcakes – Paleo Style

This is a very simple sponge cake recipe.  The recipe can be prepared a week before and then kept in the freezer.  Then the cake or cupcakes could simply be eaten as is.  They are so light!  Or, to make them more extravagant, dress them with double cream (which in our house we consider as fat, choose a brand that labels the fat content at about 51% or more – if you can find it) or a processed mixture of double cream and berries.  To make the cakes pictured, I had a girlfriend help me make some cool fondant crossfit equipment.  The fondant toppers were simply to look at and were not encouraged for paleo consumption.

CrossFit Victoria cupcakes

CrossFit Victoria cupcakes

Ingredients

250g organic free range eggs, beaten (about 4 – 5 lg. eggs)

1 tsp vanilla extract

2 Tbsp almond milk

250g organic butter slightly melted or in warm weather room temperature

250g 1 mashed banana and agar nectar combined

225g almond meal

1 tsp guar gum

1 1/2 tsp gluten-free baking powder

30g coconut flour

Method

Preheat the oven to 195°C /175°C fan/Gas 5.  If using two traditional sandwich tins (20cm) grease them and line the bases with baking paper.  If using cupcake tins, consider the environment and use silicon pattypans that can be washed and used over again.

Blend the eggs, vanilla and milk together with a fork in a small bowl.

Using a hand-held electric mixture on a high setting, cream the butter (about 3 mins) in a large bowl.  Then gradually add the banana and agar nectar continuing to mix with the mixer.  Next, gradually add the eggs, vanilla and milk mixture on a medium setting, mixing well between each addition.  Don’t worry if it curdles slightly, just turn the mixer up to a high setting again.  This will be fine in the cakes.

Sift together the almond meal, guar gum, baking powder and coconut flour.  Then using a large metal spoon fold the wet and dry ingredients together (fold gently, so you don’t knock the air out).

Spoon the mixture into the prepared tins, smoothing to the edge with the back of a dessert spoon.  Try to keep the cakes the same size.  Bake for about 20mins checking from 15mins depending on your oven.  You will know they are ready when they are golden and they shrink from the sides of the tin.

Remove the baked cakes from the oven and cool in the tins for 10 mins before turing the cakes onto a metal cooling rack.  Leave the paper or silicon wrapping on them as this will stop them from shrinking.

Optional –  Prepare the cream mixture by processing together in a blender one tub of double cream (with the most fat content you can find) and 3 punnets of strawberries or other fruit in season.  Just prior to serving, once the cakes are completely cool, smooth evenly the cream on top of the individual cupcakes or one sponge cake.  On top of the sponge cake carefully place the other sponge cake on top and press down lightly to join the two.  Dust with organic coconut desiccated and serve.

Rum Balls

Well, Christmas is coming and you may need to take a plate to a friends gathering.  This twist on a christmas favourite will make a pleasant surprise for everyone.   We can normally adjust many meals to suit our diet, but the desserts are usually the most difficult whilst out.  So take these rum balls and the child friendly version on a plate and you can share them.

Ingredients

200g Raw Cacao Nibs

300g Organic Raw Brazil Nuts

150g Organic Raw Macadamias

250g Medjool fresh dates deseeded and chopped (fresh as they are very sticky and bind the ingredients together)

1 tsp ground sea salt

1 1/2 Tbsp raw honey (raw honey has crystallisation around the top of the jar)

3 Tbsp rum

Organic desiccated coconut (if you can’t get organic desiccated coconut, buy shredded coconut and then process it down to a desiccated consistency)

3 Tbsp sunflower seeds

Method

In a food processor process cacao nibs (reserving 3 Tbsp) and nuts until fine and slightly buttery.  Decide what consistency you like.  Traditionally rum balls have this mixture very fine.  To gain this consistency you will need to wipe down the sides of the processor bowl often to keep grinding all of the mixture.

Add in chopped dates and only 1 Tbsp of the honey (reserve 1/2 Tbsp), process until well combined.

Divide mixture in half.

Process the child friendly half of the mixture with the remaining honey, cacao nibs, sunflower seeds and salt.

If it is to sticky to be rolled into balls, place the mixture into the freezer for 30mins.

Whilst the mixture is hardening prepare the adult rum balls. To this half of the mixture add 3tbs of good quality rum and process together.

Then swap this mixture into the freezer if needed and roll the chilled (and now not as sticky mixture) into big marble sized balls and coat by rolling in desiccated coconut.  Place on a tray lined with baking paper and keep in the freezer until ready to be eaten.  Do the same next with the adult rum balls and remember to place the balls separately so the children don’t accidentally eat the adult balls.

Makes 50 small balls

Serves –  A whole party

Ham and Egg Wrap

When it’s hard to snack on good food, usually one of the problems is that our fridge or lunchbox isn’t organised.  So it helps if you can plan ahead and think through your daily meals.  Make some delicious dressings when you have time and buy some fresh vegetables that you feel comfortable to put together quickly.  Boil more eggs than you need and keep them for a quick snack.  Sometimes I make mayonnaise, which is a big favourite in our house, and then it can be added to liven up many dishes like an egg dish.

Ingredients

1/3 cup of mayonnaise (make it yourself here) remember to add the oil at the end, very slowly

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

2 tsp wholegrain mustard

5 boiled free range eggs, peeled and chopped 

One baby cos lettuce, leaves separated 

250g sliced free range ham

4 peaches sliced

Method

Mix together mayonnaise and mustard.  Add eggs and mix to combine.

Lay lettuce down on the plate.  Top with ham and egg mixture and roll lettuce leaf to enclose the filling.  Serve up with peaches or other seasonal fruit

Optional – Add more pepper to your liking.  You may like to chop the lettuce and serve the lettuce and egg mixture wrapped in the ham.  Our family prefers the lettuce wrap option.

Serves – 4.

Asparagus Soldiers

Eating paleo, a key thing to do is to get in your kitchen and cook.  The recipe I’m sharing with you this week, I found in a Coles magazine and thought, “How fun does this look to cook!”  I was excited to cook this with my girls, as this recipe was a fun science experience.  And then… they could dip their soldiers in the runny egg, which is a cherished childhood memory of mine.

Ingredients

48 asparagus spears

48 slices of prosciutto (nitrate free if you can get it)

1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

4 free range or emega-3 enriched eggs

4 kiwi fruits 

Method

Hold asparagus as close to the end as possible and break the asparagus so the woody end breaks away.  Throw out the woody end and place the long good pieces into a large heatproof bowl and cover with kettle boiled water.  Let them rest in the water for 1 minute, then move them into iced water for 2 mins.  Drain and pat dry with paper towels.

Wrap each asparagus spear in a slice of prosciutto, spiralling it down the spear.  Heat the oil in a large frypan on medium, and cook wrapped spears for about 2 mins, in batches, turning often.

Whilst the spears are cooking, cook the eggs.  Use a small saucepan, cover the eggs with water and bring to the boil.  As soon as the water begins to roll, cook them for two mins.  Quickly remove the eggs and place in eggcups (remember we want to dip the eggs).  Tap around the egg and slice off the egg top.  Serve with the asparagus soldiers and kiwi fruit on the side.

Optional – Serve with an additional egg per serve and some broccolini.  Or, add a  black coffee, my husband thinks this addition makes this recipe a perfect treat!

Serves – 4.