How to make gluten free cauliflower pizza

So for lent I decided to give up gluten and I’m shocked at how well I’ve managed to keep it up. Me and my housemate have used it as a great excuse to actually have a go at different recipes we’ve seen all over Instagram and wanted to try for ages like courgette pasta and cauliflower pizza dishes. Sweet potato brownies is next on the agenda so I will keep you posted!

This gluten free alternative is a great healthy option for dinner parties, a sharing evening meal and even better when there are leftovers for lunch the day after.

I was so surprised how much the cauliflower base started to look like dough as it cooked in the oven and it really didn’t take too much effort. The only difference was that it didn’t turn out quite the same shape as a pizza as we’d have liked… but it was a our first go. There is room for improvement!

We topped one with veggies and the other with pesto chicken – both very scrummy and we recommend to try!

Read more: Gluten free chocolate cake recipe

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Ingredients

  • 1 head cauliflower, stalk removed
  • 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian herbs
  • A few grind of cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Break and chop the cauliflower into small florets and pulse in a food processor until fine.
  3. Steam and drain well. (We put it on top of kitchen roll to help get the moisture out)
  4. Once you have let the cauliflower cool, combine it with the rest of the ingredients.IMG_1599
  5. Transfer to the middle of the baking sheet. What I would recommend – that we didn’t do and should have done – is spread it into a circle to try and resemble a pizza crust.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes.
  7. Add desired toppings and bake an additional 10 minutes.

Top it up

For the veggie one we covered the base with tomato passata, chopped peppers, sweetcorn, red onion and grated cheese.

For the meaty one we fried the chicken in a little coconut oil and pesto before topping on to the tomato passata, onion, sweetcorn and adding cheese.

Read more: Baking cake with veggies

The might not be circular shape but I think they look pretty damn close to squared-shaped pizzas! Can you even tell from the pics that the bases are made from a vegetable? I hope you try this at home and enjoy experimenting with gluten-free options as much as we have.

Love Leeanna xo

How to make Gluten free chocolate cake

For lent I have decided to give up all gluten. I didn’t realise quite how hard it would be to resist the urge for things like noodles, crackers, cakes, biscuits… and all the rest! But I’ve felt so much better already since doing it. I’ve stopped suffering from bloating and nausea after eating what felt like every meals!

But now that I have found a way to eat chocolate cake on a budget AND with no baking skills I think I will survive!!

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I couldn’t believe how well this recipe turned out. Honestly it tasted like the best chocolate cake I’d ever eaten and it was completely flour free. While giving up eating gluten, I wanted to avoid spending a lot of money of gluten-free alternatives like flour because they can be pretty pricey. But with this recipe you use exactly the same ingredients as you usually would for baking- you just don’t add any flour into the mix!

So you won’t feel guilty on your budget or bloated on your tummy! YAY.

Read more: Gluten free raw snickers cheesecake recipe

How to make the flourless cake?

Ingredients:

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  • 120g dark chocolate
  • 120g butter (You can use a dairy free alternative too)
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 50g cocoa powder (I used the dark cadbury Bournville one)
  • 3 beaten eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Read more: Baking with veggies: Courgette, orange and pistachio loaf

Method:

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  1. Preheat the oven to 150 C / Gas 2. Grease a cake tin of your choice and dust with cocoa powder. They texture is very much like a brownie consistency so will also work as a tray bake.
  2. In a heatproof bowl gently simmering over boiling water, melt the chocolate and butter. Remove from heat, and stir in sugar, cocoa powder, eggs and vanilla.
  3. Pour into the dish and bake in for 30 minutes. Let it cool in the tin for 10 minutes, before turning it out onto a wire rack and leaving it cool completely.

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Read more: Guilt-free Summer Berry Cake

Top tips:

  • Re-heat leftovers in microwave for 20 seconds
  • Top with vanilla ice cream, strawberries and toffee sauce for the tastiest dessert ever!

Mmm. Just writing this blog post makes me want another slice! I hope you have just as a success with this recipe as I have.

Love Leeanna xo

Guilt-free Raw Snickers Cheesecake

Who doesn’t love a chunky snickers bar or a naughty slice of cheesecake?! Well there is a lot to love about this tasty combo of the two with it being gluten-free and refined sugar-free. It’s all-natural wholesome ingredients with no added sugar will help satisfy those sweet-tooth cravings and keep you satisfied for longer.

IMG_2158To replace the processed sugars of a normal snickers bar, I made this dessert a healthier alternative by using a raw and sugar-free recipe which is just as indulgent and fulfilling as the original. I was so shocked this actually turned out tasty and my whole family enjoyed it too. You can’t go wrong with a dessert of chocolaty healthy goodness- the perfect pud if you’re having friends over!

Raw Snickers Cheesecake

Ingredients

Base:

  • 1 1/2 cups of cashew nuts
  • 1 cup of desiccated coconut
  • 8 pitted Medjool dates
  • 2 tbsp of Agave Nectar

Peanut Butter Caramel layer:

  • 8 pitted Medjool dates
  • 1/4 cup of peanut butter (you can use a reduced fat one too)
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 tbsp Agave Nectar

To decorate:

  • 1/4 bar of melted dark chocolate

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Instructions

For the base:

  1. In a food processor, crush up the cashews into small pieces.
  2. Add in coconut dates and agave until a sticky dough forms.IMG_2159
  3. Press the mixture into a round dish lined with clingfilm and put in the freezer for a good hour.

For the caramel:

  1. Blend all ingredients, adding the almond milk a little bit at a time.
  2. Once a smooth caramel consistency has formed spread over the base.
  3. Drizzle with melted chocolate in any pattern you desire.
  4. Pop it back into the freezer until it has hardened and viola a deliciously healthy dessert for everyone to have a slice of.

After trying my first ‘raw’ creation I will definitely give some other treats a go. I hope you enjoy this easy-to-make recipe and test it on your friends at home.

Love Leeanna xo

#MotivationMonday: Guilt-free Summer Berry Cake

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The past couple of weekends have been totally all about birthday celebrations and filled with delicious food, birthday cake and far too many bottles of prosseco and pitchers of cocktails! After all of these constant naughty treats, me and my housemates have developed a huge appetite and seem to be constantly hungry and constantly snacking on all the left over naughties in the house! Probably because we’re starting to truly feel the hangover…

Knowing and watching me fail at trying to complete my New Year’s Resolution to learn how to cook, one of my gifts from the girls was a recipe book by Amber Rose filled with healthy baking ideas for tasty sweat treats like cakes, tarts, jams, custard and puddings. Flicking through this Love Bake Nourish book, we have already bookmarked probably every page to try at some point! Our mouths were watering just looking at all the beautiful pictures!

Now that the celebrations of me turning the big 20 are over, we thought we’d give one of the recipes a go so we could munch on something healthier than our naughty stash of crisps and chocolate.

But of course it still needs to be tasty! So for my first go at attempting a recipe from the book, I chose the Summer Berry cake to use up all of our strawberries. Anything with fruit always makes me feel like i’m nourishing my body and doing it some kind of good.

Ingredients

Cake mix:

  • 160g wholewheat spelt flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 20g cornflour
  • 180g unsalted butterIMG_1944
  • 180g maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs
  • Zest of half a lemon

Topping:

  • 180g fat-free greek yogurt
  • 2 tbsp light honey
  • Punnet of strawberries/blueberries/raspberries

The steps in this recipe are so simple to follow without needing loads of equipment – exactly what I need!

  1. Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees and grease a cake or loaf tin, whichever shape you’d prefer the cake to turn out like.
  2. In a large mixing bowl cream the butter until pale and fluffy, before slowing sifting in the flour a little bit at a time and beating in the eggs one at a time.
  3. Fold in the rest of the flour, baking powder and cornflour before adding the syrup, vanilla and lemon zest.

Top tip: If you think your mixture is too stiff just add a couple of tablespoons of milk.

     4. Pour your delicious-smelling mixture into the cake tin and bake for 40 minutes. The cake will start to look golden brown and smell amazing!

Top tip: Make sure you leave it cool for at least a good 40 minutes before you decorate with your topping.

     5. For the fruity topping, just mix the yogurt and honey in a bowl and spread on the cake as you wish before covering it with as many strawberries as desired. So simple but soooo tasty!

And wholla you have a tasty, refined-sugar free healthier cake for your family and friends to munch on! Delicious with your afternoon cup of tea.

I’d never used spelt flour before, I don’t think I actually even knew it existed! But in the book it’s a very popular ingredient in the recipes and Amber Rose highly recommends it for its texture and nourishing goodness.  I did a bit of research into the benefits of this type of flour and the reason it’s healthy is because it provides a number of nutrients including several B vitamins, lots of fibre for improving digestion and its lower in calories than wheat. Yay we can bake healthy!

And another health benefit that makes this recipe refined sugar-free is the alternative sources of sweetness by using maple syrup and honey. Maple syrup contains minerals, especially manganese and zinc, and at least 24 different antioxidants, helping your body with things like keeping bones strong and improving your metabolism. And honey is apparently good for improving athletic performance, whilst cotnaing antioxidants which help reduce the risk of some cancers and heart disease.
So could even be a pre-workout treat! Still best to eat both sweetners in moderation though! 🙂

Hope you give it a go at home and enjoy this recipe as much as we did!

Love Leeanna xo

Summertime Healthy Dinner Inspiration

I’ve mentioned it a few times on my blog and am gradually fulfilling my New Years’ resolution to learn how to cook. Well i’ve recently made substantial progress and finally cooked my first ever meal for my family so I thought I ‘just have to blog about this’ huge step of my life! They were very wary to start with but gave me a chance and left the kitchen to me.

I decided to make a few different dishes- something everyone can pick at and food that’s healthy. Well really I thought if anything goes wrong, at least there might be one good dish still standing haha! It’s so nice that the evenings are light again and being at home is great because we have a lovely garden to sit outside and eat together. So I went for a BBQ-esque summer time meal- food that can be cooked on the barbecue or just as well in the oven (gotta be prepared for the English summertime weather!)

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On the menu:

  • Soy sauce and honey marinated chicken
  • Light Halloumi cheese, cherry tomato and mixed pepper skewers coated in lemon, olive oil, chili and mixed herbs
  •  Roasted sweet potatoes drizzled with olive oil, rosemary and lots of black pepper (bake for a good half hour/45 mins to get them crispy)
  • Grilled asparagus wrapped in parma ham- so easy to chuck on the BBQ on hot days
  • Tomato and cucumber salad tossed in lemon juice, olive oil and seasoning- Tasted lush with the chicken!

I even made a garlic mayo to go with the sweet potato wedges! So easy to do- I just mixed 2 tablespoons of mayonnaise with 1 crushed garlic clove, a squeeze of lemon juice and some black pepper. It tasted sooo good with the sweet potato!

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I’d only tried the Cypriot cheese for the first time on Friday so I think my family were very impressed that I actually manged to cook a good dish with it! Everything went down a treat which made me happy! I can actually cook, yay!

If you’re like me and not quite the Jamie Oliver or Nigella Lawson just yet, surprise your family and friends with these dishes this Summer. Light, easy and very tasty.

Happy cooking!

Love Leeanna xo

Exclusive Book Review: Farfetch curates food

I am very excited to share with you my first ever book review. As much as I love to read I just never get the time to finish any book off… unless i’m on holiday then I can read a marathon of books because I actually have the time while i’m sunbathing and relaxing in bliss! But I couldn’t resist getting stuck straight into this book from Farfetch and was delighted to be offered an exclusive look at it because it is right up my street!

FarFetch

Farfetch Curates Food is the first in the series of books which look into the creative fields that are synergistic with fashion. The grand alliance between fashion boutique market Farfetch and publishers Prosper and Martine Assuline brings a book with a unique twist. Fashion and food is brought together through the exploration of all things trendy in the modern edible world with distinctive viewpoints and recommendations from both the fashion-trained and tastemakers.

Just browse through your social media sites and you can see exactly how food and drink has become such a huge trend. Just scrolling down my instagram feed this morning, amongst the cringe mirror selfies and beach hot dog legs, I saw all these artfully styled stacks of pancakes, plates of huge hangover breakfasts and healthy smoothie creations.

IMG_1603I love how this book mirrors this popular ‘foodstagramming’ phenomenon with the bright, bold eye-grabbing pictures of delicately styled dishes of cuisine from around the world. Not only does it make you want to devour the book with a knife and fork, it looks as if all these food shots could adorn the walls of an art gallery.

I’ve never been the best cook- it’s something i’m trying to work on but I have always loved to eat! So reading this book did make me rather hungry and also quite inspired to be more creative and inventive with my cooking. Hey who knows… I may even host my own dinner party and serve my guests some of Tommy’s margaritas.

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It’s always an awesome feeling when you find a new favourite restaurant close to home, somewhere you least expect or where none of your friends have heard of. It means you have a regular hot spot where you know you can get good food and a special place to take your friends or to celebrate special occasions. Well what I love about this book is that it has gone out and found all the best restaurants to visit across the globe to save us from trying any bad ones first.

Throughout the book, charismatic enthusiasts from all over the world share their own distinctive viewpoints on food, offering recommendations of restaurants to try around the world, what to order and what to wear when you make your visit! I have picked out the top meals they have now tempted me to want to try!

For breakfast…

I’ve been to Spain soooo many times and I am still yet to try the famous Churros Con Chocolat. I’m a chocoholic AND I can speak the lingo (I think I got it right) so I really don’t know how I haven’t eaten any.

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Well… thanks to Alejandro Gutierrez, the PR manager and buyer at Elite, I am now even more excited to visit Marbella this year and will definitely be stopping off at the recommended hot spot for the sweet treats! Great to know they are the perfect hangover cure to!

The well-known shopping destination for Marbella’s cosmopolitan crowd, was one of the first multibrand department stores and offers some gorgeous goods from Victoria Beckham sunnies to statement retro clutches.

And for lunch…

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The high-street blogger and food enthusiast, Man Repeller, has given me a great insight for when I achieve my dream of living in New York City. Now I know exactly where to grab a healthy lunch in the big apple whilst following her recommended dress code. My god I wish I had this fashionista’s amazing life! I will be sure to follow her tips and wear my fanciest sunnies while i’m eating my oatmeal in The Butcher’s Daughter.

Afternoon tea…IMG_1605

If you’re going to eat cake you have to do it properly and have it in Paris. Oh my god I remember walking down the streets of the gorgeous city two years ago and just drooling at the windows of all of the patisseries. The chefs over there really do help the city live up to its name as the ‘world’s pastry capital’. Their eclairs and strawberry tarts are divine!

Reading what some of the pastry chefs of the capital have to say is fascinating and the way it’s written in the book gives you so much detail of what these culinary enthusiasts are like- in a real journalistic way.

From reading this book I have learnt some very important things…

For those dreaded Monday mornings- everyone should take note of The steps to the perfect cup of coffee.

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I will also take away this message with me: There is no better way to explore a new geographic environment and get a sense of different cultures than to taste the traditional cuisines.

I will definitely take this on board when I go jet-setting around the globe and hopefully end up in some of the spots recommended by top fashionistas and chefs… but I think I will still stray from tasting any fried scorpions or insects no matter what the country’s delicacies are!

There is so much more to learn from this book and I really do recommend giving it a read especially if you like to jet set around the globe, try the latest trends and like to be inspired by arty and foodie pictures.

Love Leeanna xo

#MotivationalMonday: Healthy snacking

Sometimes I just get those days where I feel really hungry all day- often it can be because of a sheer lack of boredom or because I’ve done lots of exercise and not re-fueled. But trying to snack on something that isn’t really unhealthy like biscuits and crisps or foods that aren’t so boring like an apple or grapes can be very difficult!

So I’ve been experimenting with some recipes and found a couple of snack ideas to satisfy your cravings and give an energy re-boost whether it’s for your elevenses, a post-work out treat or an afternoon pick me up.

These healthy snacks are completely guilt-free and SO easy to make!

Coconut Macaroon Balls

These tasty treats are free of gluten, dairy and refined sugar, making them a perfect mid-morning or afternoon snack! Me and my housemates loved enjoying these with a cup of tea and snuggling up on the sofa on Sunday evening.

INGREDIENTS

DIRECTIONS

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180c. Heat up the the almond milk in a saucepan and then mix the agave, honey, vanilla, salt, chia seeds and cinnamon together on a low heat.
  2. Take it off the heat and fold in the desiccated coconut and coconut flour until fully combined.
  3. Roll them into balls and place them onto a greased baking tray or dish lined with baking paper.
  4. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes then let cool. DELISH!

This recipe makes 12 macaroons which can be kept in an air-tight container. My mum and sister are coming down to stay with me tomorrow so i’m very excited to show off my new-found culinary skills and give them these healthy treats to taste!

Raspberry Cocoa Energy Bites

These are super quick and easy to make and are yummy yummy yummy if you are a bit of a sweet tooth like me and can’t get enough of chocolate.

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INGREDIENTS

  • 1 tbsp of coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp of almond butter (or any other nut butter you’rd prefer)
  • 1 tbsp of cacao
  • Frozen raspberries

DIRECTIONS

  1. Melt the coconut oil
  2. Then just mix all the ingredients together and shape them into balls

It’s that simple! I topped mine with some desiccated coconut just to make it extra sweeeeet.

I hope you enjoy these guilt-free recipes. Happy snacking!

Love Leeanna xo