Sweet Snacks

img_20170110_202237206Got a sweet tooth but tired of feeling guilty about your snack choices? It’s so easy to reach for that chocolatey cereal bar that claims to be low fat and only 99 calories but the reality is these products are packed with additives and have barely any nutritional value. There are so many natural options on the market now but at 3 or 4 pound a pop I feel it’s worth trying to make your own, think of the money you could save in the long run.
The recipes I’ve come up with require minimal effort and no baking what so ever.

Energy Bars.
Gluten Free, Vegetarian, Vegan option available.
– 1 Teaspoon of Coconut Oil.
– 1 Cup of Oats.
– 1 Handful of Cashew Nuts.
– 1 Handful of Dates.
– Dark Chocolate for drizzling, dairy free if vegan.

Method:
1. Blend together the oil, oats, cashews and dates.
2. Spread mixture out flat onto baking parchment.
3. Melt chocolate in the microwave and then drizzle over the spread mixture.
4. Place in the fridge to set, once set, cut into bars.

Protein Balls.
Gluten Free, Vegan.
– 200g of Pecans.
– 75g of pitted Dates.
– Desiccated Coconut for rolling, optional.

Method:
1. Blend together pecans and dates.
2. Mould mixture into balls and roll in coconut.
3. Place in the fridge to firm up.

Berry Bites.
Gluten Free, Vegetarian, Vegan option available.
– 1 Cup of Granola depending on size of tray used, if vegan Lizi’s Granola is a good brand to use.
– 2 Cups of mixed frozen berries.
– 3 Tablespoons of Greek Yoghurt, if vegan Alpro or Provamel are good brands to use.
– 1 Tablespoon of Honey or if vegan use Maple or Agave Syrup.
– Desiccated Coconut for sprinkling, optional.

Method:
1. Use a baking tray with raised edges, line with tin foil then line the bottom with granola.
2. Blend together the berries, yoghurt and honey then pour over the granola and sprinkle with coconut.
3. Place in the freezer to set, around 3 hours.

Banana Bites.
Gluten Free, Vegetarian, Vegan option available.
– 1 Banana.
– Peanut Butter for spreading.
– Dark Chocolate for drizzling, dairy free if vegan.

Method:
1. Cut banana into discs, sandwich two discs together with peanut butter and repeat, lay out on baking parchment paper.
2. Melt dark chocolate in the microwave and then drizzle over the banana, place in the freezer to set.

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Recipe Review

img_20170210_214246183When it comes to the weekend and trying to stay healthy I’ll admit…I struggle, my ultimate weakness being southern fried chicken, I mean really…who can resist that glorious blend of 11 herbs and spices…not me!
Imagine my delight when I stumbled across a recipe by the Hemsley Sisters called Pablo’s Chicken, a gluten free, reduced fat version. It’s easy and cheap to prepare, most of the ingredients you’ll probably already find in your store cupboard, an added bonus is that with the use of baking parchment…minimal washing up. This spice mix can be made in batch to be used whenever you fancy and choose any cut of chicken you like, breast if you fancy a burger, strips if you fancy goujons etc and serve with whatever you like. It’s the ultimate fake-away dish, give it a whirl this weekend.

Pablo’s Chicken
Serves 3, Gluten Free.
– 180g Ground Almonds.
– 1 Egg.
– 6 Pieces of Chicken, thighs and legs or whatever you fancy.
– Salt and Pepper to taste.
– Low cal cooking spray.
Spice Mix
– 3 teaspoons of Paprika or Cayenne.
– 1 teaspoon of dried Thyme.
– 1 teaspoon of dried Oregano.
– 1 teaspoons of Garlic powder.
– 1 teaspoon of Onion powder.

Method

1. Mix the ground almonds and spice mix together in a bowl, in a second bowl, beat an egg.
2. Dip the chicken pieces one at a time in the egg, then coat in the spice mix.
3. I did find this recipe left a lot of spice mix left over, place this in a container and save for next time.
4. Lay chicken on a baking tray which has been lined with baking parchment, coat in low cal cooking spray, sprinkle with salt and pepper.
5. Bake in a preheated over at 180C for 45 minutes or until golden.