raspberry coconut cookies

raspberry coconut cookiesraspberry coconut cookies

Yesterday my sweet little helpers and I had the pleasure of spending the entire afternoon in the kitchen.  Not only did we manage to make one gigantic mess but we stirred together these gorgeously golden raspberry and coconut cookies.

And I have to say these cookies are absolutely delicious.  Chockfull of nutritional oats, shredded coconut and wholewheat flour and sweetened with a mix of rapadura sugar and maple syrup these little babies are not only delicious but a great little treat to pop into the lunch box.  The original recipe called for 1 cup of rapadura (or coconut sugar) I cut this amount in half and only added a half cup of sugar to the dough but on tasting the cookies I think the sugar could be cut down further, so if you’re that way inclined please feel free to do so.  1/3 cup or even 1/4 cup of sugar would suffice.  Also if your unable to find rapadura or coconut sugar, brown sugar can be used too.

Thankfully these cookies only take 10 or so minutes to bake to gorgeous goldenness, because as they bake the most gorgeous aromas of coconut, maple syrup and caramelised raspberries waft from the oven and certainly get tummies rumbling.

In terms of baby led weaning, the texture of these cookies makes them perfect for blw beginners as they are soft enough to nibble on with ease yet firm enough to withstand tight little grips.  Mr H. smashed his way through one of the cookies, along side a fresh strawberry for afternoon tea.

Although I haven’t tested it myself I also imagine these cookies would freeze and thaw beautifully.  So if you do go ahead and bake  a batch please feel free to wrap the leftover cookies, pop into a freezer safe container and stash in the deep freeze for up to three months.

To create your own batch of raspberry coconut cookies simply…

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wholemeal lemon, ricotta & chia muffins

wholemeal lemon, ricotta & chia muffinswholemeal lemon, ricotta & chia muffins

I adore winter.  It truly is my favourite season.

As the days shorten and the weather turns frosty there is nothing I love more than retreating home to spend long lazy afternoons nestled by the kitchen bench slow cooking beautiful cuts of meat or baking up a storm.  Filling our home with hearty warming dishes during these frosty winter months delights me like no other.  I treasure these precious moments with my little family and love nothing more than spending an evening snuggled under a warm cozy throw watching movies and sipping my favourite glass of red.

There is, however, one down side to my love and adoration of winter and that is the nasty colds and flus that always seem to come with it.  The last two weeks have been hijacked by one very nasty flu and unfortunately my little babies felt the worst of it.  After lots of cuddles, a little pain relief, plenty of rest and a good dose of pumpkin soup I am very happy to say we’re all well and truly on the mend.

That said, to ward off any future winter born bugs I’ve been incorporating plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables into our diets as well as a gorgeously green smoothie most mornings (I’ll be sharing our smoothie recipe next week).  I’ve also made a conscious effort to incorporate as many healthy ingredients into our baking repertoire as well.  My latest love is H2CoCo’s delicious organic virgin coconut oil.  I’ve been using it in lieu of olive oil when I cook and have even managed to incorporate it into our baked goodies including these apricot pistachio quinoa bars and blueberry banana and chia loaf.

wholemeal apple muffins

Today’s wholemeal lemon, ricotta and chia muffins also use the organic and 100% raw and natural oil.  The coconut oil not only provides the muffins with gorgeous moisture to create a very tender crumb but gives the muffins a slight coconut flavour that works beautifully with the lemon and ricotta.  The kids absolutely adored them for morning tea and gobbled up a muffin each along with a few sliced perfectly ripe strawberries.

To create your own batch of wholemeal lemon, ricotta & chia muffins simply…

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raspberry oat bars

raspberry oat barsraspberry oat bars

I did the unthinkable yesterday and ventured solo to Ikea with my two lovely little cherubs.

By some miracle they both behaved (very uncharacteristically) like angels.

So I took advantage of their great moods and shopped, shopped and shopped whilst Harry giggled at Grace as she pushed him in the trolley through the maze of furniture and homewares.

We did stop halfway though for a lovely snack and my little shoppers were so happy to munch on these raspberry oat bars I’d packed into our lunch box.

These bars are delicious and couldn’t be simpler to prepare.  Just pop the ingredients into a food processor and blitz.  Once the batter is nestled in the tin gently press a few raspberries into the bars and bake for 20-25 minutes or until gorgeously golden.

This recipe makes 16 bars that will vanish all too quickly.  They really are delicious.  And did I mention this recipe contains no eggs and no sugar!  These bars are instead sweetened by a couple of ripe bananas and a handful of mejool dates.  The vanilla extract and ground cinnamon also provide the bars with a good hit of gorgeous flavour.

The texture of these bars is soft and squishy yet firm which makes them wonderful for baby led weaning beginners as they will withstand their tight grip.

My little ones also enjoy these bars for breakfast.  I serve them alongside a little fresh fruit and they are gobbled up in no time.

To create your own batch of raspberry oat bars simply…

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zucchini pancakes w’ tomato & basil salad

zucchini pancakes w' caprese saladzucchini pancakes w' caprese salad

These zucchini studded pancakes spiked with fresh basil and lemon zest make the perfect baby led weaning simple supper, especially when served alongside our beautiful caprese salad.

And these gorgeously golden pan fried babies couldn’t be simpler to prepare.  I was easily able to whip these up with my two little cherubs dancing around my feet in well under 15 minutes.  Simply whisk the wet ingredients into the dry, add the shredded zucchini, basil and lemon zest and get frying.

To serve alongside our pancakes I decided to put together a family sized super simple caprese salad because after a naughty mother’s day lunch we were all in need of a good hit of nutritional yumminess.  This salad is a simple arrangement of ripe juicy tomato slices, pieces of creamy bocconcini and torn basil leaves drizzled under a light blanket of pesto lemon dressing.

If you’re looking for a meat free dinner idea I really can’t recommend these pancakes enough.  They are light, fluffy and totally scrumptious.

To create your own batch of zucchini studded pancakes and tomato basil salad simply…

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raspberry swirl teacakes

raspberry swirl tea cakesraspberry swirl tea cakes

To celebrate the arrival of Her Royal Highness Princess Charlotte of Cambridge we did a little princess inspired baking and came up with these raspberry swirled teacakes.

These pink hued babies are absolutely delicious and a complete breeze to prepare.  My little princess and I stirred these darlings together and had them nestled in the oven baking away to gorgeous goldeness in less than ten minutes.  To accompany the teacakes we rippled a little of our raspberry sauce throughout a tub of vanilla bean specked greek thick yoghurt.  The combination of teacake, raspberry swirled yoghurt and fresh berries creates a lovely little dessert fitting for any princess.

We made a few changes to the original teacake recipe to ensure these raspberry swirl teacakes are also full of nutritional goodness.  We opted for wholemeal flour instead of regular plain, we also added a cup of almond meal which is high in protein, low in carbohydrates and low in sugars.  We also left out the white sugar and instead sweetened our batter with a half cup of maple syrup instead.

In terms of baby led weaning these little teacakes make a wonderful treat when served alongside a good dollop of yoghurt and a handful of fresh berries.  The shape and soft texture of the teacakes also make them wonderful for baby led weaning beginners.  Mr H. had no problem demolishing his teacake for morning tea.  These teacakes also freeze beautifully.  Simply wrap individual portions, pop into a freezer safe container and stash in the deep freeze for up to three months.

To make your own batch of pink hued raspberry swirl tea cakes simply…

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wholemeal blueberry pikelets

wholemeal blueberry pikeletswholemeal blueberry pikelets

These wholemeal blueberry studded pikelets are absolutely delicious and made even more amazing when smothered in our homemade blueberry sauce.

I decided to whip these up for the kids morning tea early Tuesday morning as it was a little too cool for our usual morning walk and let’s just say the natives were getting restless.

Whenever I’m out of ideas to keep the kids happily entertained I always retreat to the kitchen.  With Grace perched on the kitchen bench and Harry nestled beside in his high chair they are happily entertained stirring, mixing, cracking eggs and baking for an hour or so.

These blueberry pikelets with blueberry sauce were a huge hit.  Not only did they keep the kids entertained whilst we stirred and cooked the blueberry studded batter but they gobbled them up ferociously once just cool enough.

The combination of the yoghurt and wholemeal flour in this recipe creates the most lovely and tender pikelets.  This lovely texture however can make the pikelets a little more tricky to flip.  My advice is to cook the pikelets over a low-medium heat and to cook them nice and slowly.  Once bubbles start to appear on the surface of the pikelet it means the pikelet has started to cook throughout the centre and is ready to be gently flipped.  I made flipping a little easier on myself by not overloading the pan, spacing the pikelets 3-4 centimetres apart and by using my trusty metal spatula.

Our blueberry sauce was a last minute idea I had and I have to say I’m glad that we went to the effort.  Not that I can really call it an effort.  We simply popped the blueberries, maple syrup and a dash of water into a saucepan and cooked over medium heat for a few minutes, just until the sauce had thickened slightly.  Once cooled, I drizzle and swirled the blueberry sauce through a pot of thick and creamy greek yoghurt and topped each pikelet with a dollop.   The kids gobbled them up and even asked for more.

These recipe yields approximately 24 pikelets so I decided to divide the cooked pikelets into two and freeze half.  To freeze, simply wrap individual portions (2 pikelets in each) in a little clingfilm, pop into a freezer safe container and stash in the freezer.  The pikelets will be fine nestled away in the deep freeze for up to 3 months.  To defrost, I simple remove them from the freezer, allow to thaw and if needed pop them in the microwave for 15 seconds or so just to reheat.  I find packing a lunch box so much easier with a freezer full of homemade baked goodness.

If your little one is just beginning their baby led weaning journey pikelets are a great recipe to begin with.  Not only are they made with wholemeal flour and contain very little sugar (if you wish, please feel free to replace the brown sugar with equal amounts of maple syrup) but they’re also chockfull of fruit and the perfect shape and texture for blw beginners.

To create your own batch of blueberry spiked wholemeal pikelets simply…

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wholemeal carrot muffins

wholemeal carrot muffinswholemeal carrot muffins

It’s no secret Miss G. loves to cook and now that she fully understands her little brother enjoys her culinary creations too, she adores her time in the kitchen that little bit more.

Today, with Mr H. happily playing away on his play mat my budding little chef and I decided to stir together a super simple batch of wholemeal carrot muffins.

These muffins are not only delicious (and full of nutritional goodness) but couldn’t be simpler to bake.  Simply whisk together the wet ingredients, stir through the dry ingredients then gently fold through a couple of cups of gorgeously bright shredded carrot.  Once nestled in the oven these orange hued little darlings take just over 10 minutes to bake to golden gorgeousness and smell amazing thanks to our spice mix of cinnamon, nutmeg and ground ginger.

I also love the fact that we managed to make these muffins using no sugar.   Instead, the grated carrot adds most of the needed sweetness along with a little maple syrup.  Our gorgeous spice mix also did a lot to flavour the wholesome muffins.

Once baked and cooled, Mr H. was more than happy to tuck in.  Along with a few fresh strawberries the wholemeal carrot muffin quickly disappeared thanks to his very unique eating style.  I don’t quite remember Grace eating like this at his age but Mr H. loves to crumble the muffin and lick the crumbs off of his little hands.  It’s so cute to watch, the intense look on his face just melts my heart.

wholemeal carrot muffins

These muffins are also perfect to freeze.  Simply allow the muffins to cool to room temperature, wrap individual portions, pop into a freezer safe container and stash in the deep freeze for up to 3 months.  I often pop frozen muffins straight into our lunch box and by lunch time they are perfectly thawed and ready to enjoy.

To create your own batch of wholemeal carrot muffins simply…

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