Hi Foodsoulutions Friends! First, a big thank you to all of my new blog followers! I so appreciate your interest in my recipes and of course, please feel free to share! It's my true pleasure to inspire you to cook more and eat for your health!! Remember it's food-S.O.U.L.-utions (Seasonal, Organic, Unrefined, Local) and it should feed your soul!
We are nearly half-way through August and I really want to make the most of Summer!! So I've been staying close to the farmer's markets and cooking with the season! My favorite way to do this is to simply shop the market and see what inspires me. I like to choose two or three vegetables and one or two fruits per week that I want to really enjoy and appreciate. From there, I play with the ingredients and come up with simple recipes that showcase those items. This way, I stay in enjoyment mode instead of going into overwhelm --this is key!
One way to safeguard your enjoyment of the shopping is to buy an appropriate amount of produce. Only bring home as much as you can carry and put away without feeling overwhelmed or over-flowing your refrigerator! If you keep the shopping simple and enjoyable you'll be more likely to repeat it and build your home cooking muscles!
If you are cooking for your family or larger crew, or even just for you, make lists before you go, this really helps! The list could be for specific items you need, or it could be for recipe or meal categories like "soup" "salad" "snack." This is useful because it can help you stay on track for what you need to prepare that week while leaving plenty of room for creativity and improvisation!
If you notice yourself getting overwhelmed at any point in your shopping or cooking process, simplify. Fresh ingredients from the market already taste great! The energy of your enjoyment is the secret ingredient that will bring out the magic in your food and nourish you and those around you beyond the ingredients themselves. Remember, it's your responsibility to make it a food-SOUL-ution, so keep it simple!
For this week's recipe, I'm sharing something that is figgin delicious and you're definitely going to want to make this as soon as possible! It's super simple and you do not have to be a baker to pull it off --I promise! It's gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free and has no refined sugar, yet is totally delicious and will satisfy all your desire for a gourmet summertime dessert. I think it would be perfect to serve as an afternoon snack with a nice iced coffee (or Iced coffee replacement, as would be my preference :-)). Either way, you are going to love it --so feed your Summer soul!
Figgin' Delicious Fig & Chocolate Cake (Grain-Free and Vegan)
1 C blanched almond flour
1/2 C raw cacao powder
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
4 large eggs
1/4 C full fat coconut milk
1/4 C maple syrup
1+ tsp vanilla
1 basket fresh figs
1 T balsamic vinegar
1. Preheat oven to 325F. Line 9" baking pan with parchment and grease with coconut or olive oil. Set aside.
2. In medium sized mixing bowl, mix together dry ingredients: almond flour, cacao powder, salt and baking soda.
3. In small mixing bowl, whisk eggs and add in coconut milk, maple syrup, and vanilla.
4. Slowly pour the wet ingredients into the dry, and mix together with a fork until batter forms. Do not over mix.
5. Pour batter into the parchment lined baking pan. (Use a spatula to get all of the batter into the cake pan.)
6. Wash and dry the figs. Slice the figs in half. Gently press the figs into the cake batter so that the fig circles are just above the surface of the batter. Use as many fig halves as you can fit on the surface of the cake!
7. Carefully sprinkle a small amount of sea salt over each fig circle and then follow up with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar over each fig circle.
7. Bake on 325F for 25 minutes. Check for doneness at 25 minutes (toothpick should come out clean). Do not over bake, this will take the moistness out of the cake!
8. Allow cake to cool at least 10 minutes before serving. Enjoy!