Sunday, 12 February 2012

Tasty flat bread wraps

Today I wanted to share with you my recipe for wraps. Ok I know this isn't the most exciting food item in the world, but please stay with me, I'm confident this will become one of your most useful recipes ever!

A few years ago, we used to buy those pre-made corn tortilla and flour wraps you can buy in the supermarkets, they were so handy to have around the house. They definitely make for a useful lunchbox filler as you can put pretty much anything in them. They also work well for dinners: you can layer them up with fillings to make tortilla pies, use them as pizza bases, as accompaniments to curries, dhals and stews, the possibilities are endless!

Thing is, next time you're out shopping just check the ingredients out on those...... There is a whole list of sugars, dextrose, preservatives, E numbers, Emulsifiers... The ingredients list is way too long for a product that should contain a handful at most!

Here though is the solution.....You can make your own wraps with tasty and nutritious flours in super speedy time at home. I like to use spelt or kamut flours, but a good organic fine wholemeal flour also works very well. They really are very easy to make with minimal ingredients and after cooking can be wrapped in a cloth and kept a day or two - simply sprinkle with water and pop in the oven to warm through when you want to eat them. They are also freezable so it is worth double or tripling the recipe to keep some handy in the freezer for emergencies.

I should like to point out that this recipe is not mine. Although I use a different flour and oil to the original recipe, the remaining ingredients and measurements are exactly the same. But that's ok, why mess with perfection?! This is by far the best recipe for a wrap I have come across and it comes out of my well loved and well used 'Pure & Simple- cooking for a busy lifestyle' cook book by the Brahma Kumaris. I would recommend you check their books out, for never have I tasted such amazing food (all vegetarian) than that of the Brahma Kumaris retreat centres. It is so beautiful, and of course a large part of this is that they put their calm and peaceful energies into the food while they make it. I know this sounds a little like I'm mad, but trust me it makes a difference. Have you ever heard of the water and subsequent rice experiments by Masaru Emoto? If not google them and prepare to be amazed! Our thoughts and moods are reflected in the results of the foods we make. The one time our sauerkraut didn't turn out right, was on a day when we were not in a calm and peaceful state of mind when it was made. We had to throw the entire batch out! We never had to do that before or since, so for me that's a sure sign :)

So here is the tastiest most versatile wrap recipe, go make it with happy thoughts and you'll be amazed!

 2 cups of whole spelt or kamut flour (or fine organic wholemeal as in original recipe)
1/2- 1 tsp fine sea salt
2 tbsp organic soy or coconut yoghurt
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3/4 cup of warm water

Mix the four and salt together in a large bowl. Add the oil and yoghurt and mix with a spoon til evenly distributed through the flour (try to break up any large 'clumps').
Gradually add the water a little at a time, mixing until it comes together as a smooth dough. You may need to add slightly less or more liquid depending on your choice of flour so add it slowly, you can always add more flour but if you add it all at once and it goes sticky it is harder to fix!
Knead the dough on a lightly floured surface to get it nice and smooth, just for a couple of mins. Cut the dough into 8 even sized pieces.
Roll these out on a floured surface to about 2mm in thickness.

Heat a heavy bottom pan, we like to use an iron skillet- and when it has reached a hot temperature, add the rolled dough.
Cook until you start to see large air bubbles in the dough, about a minute- and turn the flat bread over. Cook for another 30 seconds and remove. Keep these stacked on a plate and covered with a cloth to stop them drying out while you make the rest.

Add 1-2 tbsps fennel, cumin, poppy or caraway seeds to the flour to add texture and extra flavour.
Add 2-3 tbsp chopped fresh coriander or parsley to the flour for a herby flat bread.
Lightly fry them in a tbsp of virgin coconut oil instead of cooking in a dry pan.

Sunday, 5 February 2012

Banana Ice cream in the best juicer ever....(frosty food for a frosty day!)

 April 2016- Update! I'm still working my way through my older recipes on the look out for bee products and eggs which I used up until 3 years ago. This recipe mentions bee pollen. As a Vegan, I cannot recommend that we use bee products, as ethically it itsn't sound. I recommend that for sprinkles you try cacao nibs which are amazing! Will be updating this recipe shortly. With love.

We've got snow! The girlswere up early and jumping on our bed they were so keen to get outside! So today we got to make snow men and snow angels and have snow ball fights, and make a fab snow man! It was all very fun and totally enjoyed seeing how excited the girls were (and our cat Chaak who went a little insane and wasn't sure if he should attack it or eat it).

My recipe today is carrying on with the frozen theme - home made banana ice cream - made in our amazing juicer!

We have a Samson 6-in-1 juicer and it really is marvellous. First of all you can juice in it. Obviously. But this juicer is a slow speed single auger, masticating juicer. In other words, it juices so gently that it results in a higher quality juice with less oxidation, therefore expanding the life of your juice!

It juices fruit and veg and even tougher things like wheatgrass. You can make nut butters in it, puree baby foods, make sauces, make pasta, frozen sorbets and Ice creams and with the extra optional attachment make cold pressed oils. How is that for value for money? It is (perhaps) my favourite thing in our kitchen!!

To make vegan 'Ice cream' in the juicer is really very simple and you only need 1 ingredient. How brillaint is that? It is almost too simple to declare it as a recipe, but also simple enough it would be mean to keep it to myself! So here's what you do.....
First of all you need frozen bananas. Peel and chop them into pieces and freeze overnight, or for a few hours until hard. Remove them about 5 mins before you want to make the 'Ice cream' to soften ever so slightly. After the 5 mins, you just run them through the juicer and it comes out like creamy delicious ice cream. It is such an amazing treat and takes no time at all to make.

For a good sized serving, allow 1-2 bananas per person. You can top it with anything you like, fruit purees work very well, but if you're in a rush, do as we do and sprinkle with a little raw blackcurrant powder and some bee pollen. The blackcurrant gives a delicious tang as well as being a huge source of vitamin C (great for the winter) and adding to the healthiness of the pudding. The bee pollen freezes on contact with the frozen banana and becomes super crunchy, just like a sprinkle! Only healthier, and actually tastier :) Try it out next time you fancy a treat and see for yourself!

It is totally possible to make banana ice cream without a juicer if you don't have one, just freeze as before, but leave out for about 8 mins to soften slightly. Then blend  in a food processor till smooth, but be careful not to over-do it or it will lose its ice-creamy texture!!