Monday, December 22, 2014

30 Holiday Worthy Recipes from Fragrant Vanilla Cake

I feel like Christmas is approaching way to fast this year, and I did not have time to make nearly as many goodies as I would have liked.  However I still have plenty to share with you today...30 in fact, in this line up of holiday worthy recipes I have compiled from my blog.  I have even more, but these are my favorite.  As you can see there are a lot of cakes, because those are my favorite Holiday go to dessert, but there are plenty of other goodies for everyone here, no matter what your tastes are. So if you are still trying to decide what to make this weekend, maybe I will spark a few ideas into your head, or just enjoy the raw Holiday food porn!  Links are underneath the photos to the recipes.

Raw Chocolate Cranberry Pecan Rugelach

Raw Red Velvet Cookies

Raw Chocolate Dipped Coconut Caramel Cookies

Pomegranate Maple Caramel Cakelettes

Raw Pomegranate Chipotle Brownie Bites 

Raw Matcha Dark Chocolate Pomegranate Cups 

Raw Eggnog Truffles 

Raw Cranberry Pomegranate Cacao Crusted Tart 

Raw Sticky Toffee Date Puddings 

Raw Dark Chocolate Ginger Lava Cakes 

Raw Cranberry Pomegranate Cacao Crusted Tart 

Raw Sweet Potato Caramel Pecan Cheesecake 

Raw Eggnog Cheesecake with Chocolate Swirl and Gingerbread Crust

                                                         Raw Rose Pomegranate Dream Cake

Raw Snickerdoodle Cookie Dough Ice Cream with Caramel Swirl 

Raw Winter Black Forest Cake Ice Cream

Raw Vanilla Mint Ice Cream Snowballs 

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Raw Peppermint Striped Cheesecake

Christmas is in the air...well not really here, considering was super warm here in Minnesota last weekend, like 50 degrees warm.  Which is almost unheard of here since it is supposed to be blanketed in snow and 20 degrees this time of the year.  So, the air does not feel like winter lately.  But Christmas spirit is in the air, how about that?  I am definitely not complaining about the temperatures. It is perfect as far as I am concerned for running outside right now, and I will take a brown Christmas instead of white as long as Christmas joy is not taken away.  Which is is not.  I am happy, and I was in the mood to make something Christmasy last weekend in the form of raw cheesecake.  

I had already made an eggnog one, and so I thought why not a colorful peppermint one?  I love brightly colored food as long as it is natural color.  My Dad used to get these Holiday silk (Peppermint cream) pies from Baker's Square when I was little and they were so good, but they had lots of artificial things in them I am sure including red and green coloring.  This would not have that artificial stuff, but I wanted it to taste similar to that filling that I used to love.

Lucky me, the filling turned out tasting even better than that pie.  I colored it with beet and spinach, so no artificial stuff in sight here.  I decided to make this a zebra style cake...and this was only my second attempt at it, but it turned out pretty good if I do say so myself!  The best part about this cake though is how delicious it was.  I am talking crave worthy.  I haven't made anything peppermint in a long time and this made up for that.  I hope you are all having a wonderful Holiday season so far!

Raw Peppermint Striped Cheesecake
Makes one 6 inch cake

2/3 cup raw sprouted buckwheat groats (or additional coconut)
1/3 cup ground flaxseed
3/4 cup dried finely shredded coconut
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
10-12 soft medjool dates, pitted and chopped (if they are not soft, soak them in water until they are and drain them well)

4 cups young coconut meat*
1/2 cup coconut water
2/3 cup raw coconut nectar, raw agave nectar or raw honey
1/2  teaspoon sea salt
1 tsp peppermint extract
1 Tbsp pure vanilla extract and seeds from half a vanilla bean
2/3 cup raw coconut butter (warmed to liquid)

1 handful spinach leaves
1 small chunk red beet

Lightly coat a 6 inch spring form removable bottom pan with coconut oil. To prepare the crust, process flax, coconut, buckwheat and sea salt in a food processor until fine crumbs, then add the dates and process until the mixture holds together when squeezed between your fingers (if not holding together, add more dates). Firmly press crust into the bottom of the prepared pan, and set aside.
To make the filling, in a high speed blender or food processor, combine coconut meat, water, coconut nectar, sea salt, mint and vanilla in a food processor and blend until smooth and creamy. With the processor running, add the coconut butter and process for a minute until blended.  Divide the mixture into 2 bowls and add one back to the blender.  Add the spinach and blend until smooth. Pour back into the bowl.  Rinse out the blender, then add the other bowl and the beet to the blender.  Blend until smooth then pour back into the bowl.  
To assemble cheesecake, spoon 1 Tbsp of the green filling onto the center of each crust, followed by the pink filling, in the same spot. Continue to do this until the pan is full (it will create a striped look in the finished product).  Place in the freezer for about 4 hours to firm up. Store in the fridge.

*If you do not have access to young coconut meat, you can substitute 4 cups raw cashews soaked for 4 hours and drained.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Fragrant Vanilla Cake Holiday Gifts Guide

I am a big fan of home made Holiday gifts.  Sure you can go out and buy presents, but to me it means a lot more when someone puts their time and love into making something special for me.  If you have the time, it is so worth it to make your own creations to give your friends and family.  I have quite a few things on this blog that I think would make wonderful gifts or stocking stuffers, so I thought I would share them with you in case you need ideas of things to make.  Some of them are edible, and some are body care related but I think there are things everyone can appreciate on this list! I hope you draw some inspiration from my ideas.

This stuff works to soothe the most chapped winter skin, I use it during the cooler months when my skin is parched and it actually helps it heal.  Not only that, it smells like dessert when you put it on, and it looks like vanilla frosting.  It would be a wonderful gift for anyone who you feel needs pampering.

These are one of my favorite things lately.  I recently made them, and although I gave some away, I kept many for myself and it is a good thing since I am going through them fast.  They smell so delicious.  The flavors are brownie batter, vanilla maple, rose grapefruit, and lavender orange.  You can mix and match to create your own flavors, and everyone can use a little protection from chapped lips this time of the year.  

Not only does this scrub smell amazing, but it helps to fight cellulite thanks to the coffee.  It leaves the skin feeling smooth and invigorated, and it has the aroma of an almond latte!  There is nothing like the smell of coffee in the morning, and this would be perfect for the coffee lover in your life!

Leave the refined sugar to body care this Holiday season.  This scrub honestly smells like a lemon coconut lavender macaroon.  I am one of those people who likes to put things on her body that smell like dessert, and this is just that.  It leaves your skin silky as the sugar gently polishes.  

This cookie dough butter is my latest addiction. It seriously tastes like sugar cookie dough, and it is wonderful in smoothies, with fruit, or just out of the jar.  It is simple to make, and anyone with a sweet tooth in your life would love this special treat!

If you have anyone in your life who is a fan of chocolate peanut butter cups, you need to make them this.  It is simply heavenly, and is the peanut butter lover's answer to nutella.  I made some for my boyfriend and it was devoured in no time.  

This granola is wonderful for a quick breakfast or snack, and it is gift worthy when put into mason jars tied with a bowl.  It a good excuse to have chocolate for breakfast and is wonderful on top of a smoothie bowl.  Plus it packs a superfood energy boost, which we can all use. 

A little spice in my breakfast makes me happy, and this granola is just that.  A little sweet with the addition of apple, this is a wonderful gift for the busy person in your life that may not have time to make their own breakfast in the morning.  

Chocolate, chocolate and more chocolate is what these guys are made of.  They keep well, and are free of refined sugar so much healthier than the store bought ones available.  These are perfect for the brownie lover in your life.  

This is the most heavenly fudge I have ever made.  Think nutella in fudge form, but even more heavenly.  You show up with a tin of this to a Holiday party, and everyone will be happy.  

These are perfect for the spice lover in your life.  A little bit of chipotle in these gives them a kick, the maca a little bit of a boost in the romance department, and the cinnamon rounds out the sweet flavor.  

These guys are eggnog in truffle form.  The chocolate is wonderful with the creamy sweet eggnog flavor.  If anyone in your life is an eggnog lover, you definitely need to give them a tin of these.  

 Although this is not a home made gift, I need to add it to my gift list, because I think it would make a wonderful gift for the person in your life who enjoys good food.  I am one of those people who collects recipe books, and I love receiving gifts like this!