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Apples, Breakfast, Clean Eats, Dairy-Free, Dessert, Granola, Healthy

New Fall Favourite: Hasselback Apples

October 16, 2015

hasselback apples // bakeaholic.ca

hasselback apples // bakeaholic.ca

Over the summer my love for yoga blossomed. I had maybe taken one yoga class before March of this year, when on a whim I decided I wanted to join a yoga studio up the street. It’s about a 5 minute drive up the road, or a 10 minute run.

They had a new member special for one month and I decided to buy it over spring break. At the time I was thinking about the future, and how i wanted to zen my way through wedding planning and be totally blissed out by the time the wedding day came around. I’d like to this this helped a little, seeing as how I was miraculously calm on the actual day and day before it. 

I knew I would have two weeks off at spring break, so I could go to the early morning classes. And, since it was a month unlimited I took as many classes as I could. I tried all of them, but really love flow, alignment flow, and power and strength classes. The yin and restore classes, or the ‘seated position’ classes where you hold a pose for 3-5 minutes are too slow for my liking. I can hardly get through holding some of the poses without thinking ‘omg, omg, omg’ in my head before finally being able to let go of the pose. 

Seriously – how long is three breaths??? I swear I can take 3 breaths quicker than others, because when they say ‘and hold for three more breaths’ I’m like annnnnnd done – except its like a whole other minute longer. oops.

Some days I can zen out way longer than others, by the time savasana is over i have almost fallen asleep. And now, I love moving through vinyasa’s. downward dog is my friend some days, and others i swear i can’t hold any longer, but somehow make it until we go through a vinyasa. 

Over the summer i bought the unlimited summer membership and again, could go to the early classes. After the wedding I bought a 10 class pass and I’ve made my way through it over the last month. Although since I’m back at work I don’t get to go to all the morning classes I love, but when I do have a morning off I’ll be sure to go to my favourite class. 

I like to think that yoga and baking are my relaxation techniques. I can zen out on the mat, but also in the kitchen – and these little beauties will most certainly be making their way into our regular fall dessert routine – post yoga. 

Having made hasselback potatoes before, I’m not sure why I haven’t used this technique in more recipes. I had seen hasselback apples online before on pinterest, and on instagram, and I’m not sure why it took so long to try them. 

They’re simple, few ingredients, and taste quintessentially like fall. It’s like a personal apple pie, without the buttery crust. These are perfect for dinner parties since you can prepare them beforehand, and finish them after eating, and they’re simple enough that you can make them for a crowd. hasselback apples // bakeaholic.ca

hasselback apples // bakeaholic.ca

hasselback apples // bakeaholic.ca

hasselback apples // bakeaholic.ca

hasselback apples // bakeaholic.ca

hasselback apples // bakeaholic.ca
hasselback apples // bakeaholic.ca
hasselback apples // bakeaholic.ca

Hasselback Apples
baked apples topped with a cinnamon oatmeal crumble
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For the apples
  1. 2 large firm apples, peeled and core cut out carefully (I like to use ambrosia apples, or other firm apples, not granny-smith)
  2. 2 tablespoons coconut sugar
  3. 2½ tablespoons coconut oil or butter, melted
  4. cinnamon
optional (but totally recommended)
  1. non-dairy ice cream - cinnamon, vanilla bean
For the Crumble
  1. 3 tablespoons coconut sugar
  2. 5 tablespoons rolled oats
  3. big dash of cinnamon
  4. 3 tablespoons melted butter or coconut oil
  5. walnuts (optional)
Instructions
  1. 1. Preheat oven to 375°.
  2. 2. Take the peeled and cored apple, and cut most of the way through (not all the way though) each apple half in thin slices. Place apple halves, cut sides down on a baking sheet with parchment paper. Combine the butter or coconut oil, cinnamon and sugar for the apples together. Brush or spoon mixture evenly over apples.
  3. 3. Cover pan with foil; bake at 375° for 20 minutes. Remove foil. Bake at 375° for 10 minutes or until apples are tender. Remove from oven.
  4. At this point, you can leave the apples for later before moving on to the next step. Turn off the oven until you are ready to bake again. You can prepare the apples this far until you are ready to eat.
  5. 4. Combine remaining crumble topping mixture - coconut sugar, rolled oats, cinnamon and coconut oil or butter in small bowl. Spoon oat mixture evenly over apples, trying to get it into the crevices of the slices.
  6. Bake at 375° for 10 minutes. Turn broiler to high and broil 1-2 minutes. Serve with non-dairy ice cream.
Notes
  1. You can make this recipe for any number of guests, by adding more apples and adding to the crumble topping. I like to add walnuts to the crumble, but you can leave this out if there are any allergies.
Adapted from Cooking Light Magazine
b a k e a h o l i c http://www.bakeaholic.ca/

 

 

Breakfast, Clean Eats, Granola, Healthy, Pumpkin, Vegan, Wheat Free

Pumpkin Spice Granola

September 23, 2014

pumpkinspice

pumpkin spice granola alicia bakeaholic

As soon as fall has officially arrived I’m way too excited to begin baking all things pumpkin. There is no better smell than pumpkin spice – ginger, nutmeg, cinnamon – all baked into a warm comforting pumpkin baked good. Pumpkin can be made both sweet and savoury and is so versatile when working with it. 

Fall is one of my most favourite seasons – the colours, cool days, candles, and holidays (Thanksgiving, Halloween) make it even better. 

I had to seriously stop myself from buying any sort of halloween or Fall paraphernalia from the Home Sense store in August. Now that it’s officially Fall, I feel I can let myself Fall fully with no inhibitions. Sorry, Adam. But really, they start bringing out those halloween and thanksgiving decorations in the summer, and by the time the holidays actually roll around all the decor has been packed up and its suddenly Christmas in October. 

Thankfully pumpkin is the ingredient of both halloween, thanksgiving and christmas so we can happily eat it for months. I don’t think I ever get sick of eating pumpkin, I even love adding it to my chili. 

I had actually seen this pumpkin granola recipe in April, when another local Vancouver blogger, Jennifer from Foodess, had posted it – pumpkin goods know no boundaries. I was all for pumpkin in April.

pkmp

I knew I needed to make it come Fall, and It turned out better than my tastebuds imagined. I changed a few things, subbing in brown rice syrup for maple (feel free to use either), adding in pumpkin seeds and cooking it for a little longer, leaving it in the oven, to really crisp up the clusters. I found it was just as crunchy as store-bought, only obviously much better. The spice is perfect, and not overly sweet.

spiced

I loved her idea of storing it in the freezer, it makes for a nice cold bowl of granola and milk, plus it prolongs its shelf life (that is, if you don’t eat it all in a week) – And as she says, most pumpkin granola is actually just ‘pumpkin spice’ with no trace of real pumpkin puree, whereas this recipe uses a whole cup. Feel free to make a half batch.

Happy Fall :)

Pumpkin Spice Granola
Serves 24
Crunchy, spiced pumpkin granola clusters with dried cranberry for added sweetness.
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Ingredients
  1. 1 cup pumpkin puree (not pie filling)
  2. 1½ tbsp ground cinnamon
  3. 2 tsp ground ginger
  4. ⅓ cup canola oil / coconut oil
  5. ½ cup coconut sugar / brown sugar
  6. ⅓ cup brown rice syrup
  7. 1 tsp vanilla extract
  8. 5 cups old fashioned large flake oats
  9. 1cups natural almonds - pulsed slightly
  10. 1 cup pumpkin seeds
  11. ¼ cup ground flaxseeds or whole
  12. 1-2 cups dried, sweetened cranberries
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the pumpkin, cinnamon, ginger, oil, sugar, brown rice syrup and vanilla extract. Stir in the oats, almonds, pumpkin seeds and flaxseeds.
  3. Divide mixture between two large baking sheets lined with parchment and bake 45-60 minutes, stirring occasionally and checking frequently, until the almonds are golden and toasty and the granola is dry.
  4. Turn off oven and leave baking sheets inside, propping door open slightly. Allow the oven to cool down with granola inside to create dry, crunchy granola.
  5. Remove from oven, sprinkle cranberries overtop and mix in.
  6. Store in airtight containers for up to a week - or freeze in large freezer bag.
Notes
  1. Crunchy granola keeps well in the freezer, remove and eat with cool milk or yogurt.
Adapted from Foodess
Adapted from Foodess
b a k e a h o l i c http://www.bakeaholic.ca/

 

Clean Eats, Dairy-Free, Granola, Healthy, Wheat Free

Quinoa Coconut Bars

January 24, 2014

Quinoa Coconut Bars // Bakeaholic.ca

Today I wanted to share our engagement story because I had said I would. And, because it was a month yesterday since Adam proposed. I had honestly thought maybe we might get engaged in the spring this year – definitely not in December. It wasn’t a surprise for many of our friends and family though, I’m sure. As they had said upon hearing of our news, “About time!!” I guess it was the next step for us – we had been together 4 years and bought a new house just last year together. And of course I had thought about it as well – but it did not go quite as I had thought it might, which is why I was so shocked when he asked. 

We had looked at rings on a trip to vegas (ahem – no vegas weddings) for fun, which was more than 2 years ago. We never seriously considered anything, I was still in school and wanted to wait, rather just looked for fun. 

I had jokingly told Adam that when he did it (propose) I had a few things to consider – an engagement wish list if you will. I had asked that it be: not at night (too dark for an engagement), not outside (again, dark at night and cold), not in public (not one of those giant Will You Marry Me flags after a flash mob or something), and not on And/Or near a major holiday or birthday, including and most certainly not a Christmas engagement (I just thought it was so cliche and everyone does it then!) (no offence to those who got engaged on christmas.. :) This might sound incredibly bossy – and I’m sure it is 😉 but those who know me know I over plan everything (I am a teacher after all) and I had a vision of what I thought my engagement might be. Although I know the girl isn’t supposed to have a say in the matter. 

Well – Adam sure showed me.

SO – what did Adam conjure up for his proposal? To start, our Anniversary is December 23 (our first date), so we always have a tradition of visiting Stanley Park to ride the Christmas Train as it was one of our first dates. However, 4 years ago Adam, being a guy, didn’t realize you might need to pre-buy tickets to such a popular Christmas event, so we showed up and it was sold out. Thus, we make it a point to pre-buy our tickets each year for our Anniversary and actually get to ride the train.

It was a regular anniversary night, or so I thought. We were getting ready and Adam kept bugging me to ‘bring your good camera’ which he hates bringing anywhere because it’s so bulky. I though OK fine. We brought the big good camera. I hadn’t noticed, though he said later on “weren’t you wondering why I was wearing a tie?” – we get dressed up for our anniversary, but not super dressy – seeing as how we are only going on a miniature train ride. 

I was actually quite sick feeling the entire weekend before our engagement. Adam had kept saying “just feel better for Monday” (our anniversary.) I had made reservations at a restaurant downtown, but thought I might feel too sick to eat a seafood dinner so we cancelled them. Then, on the way downtown we thought no we better go, so we re-booked them. As a point to not get me hangry before dinner Adam decided we better grab a quick snack beforehand (he knows me well). This lead us the the Wendy’s drive-through downtown to grab a junior hamburger. Right, pre-dinner snack. After that we were actually quite full. So, we cancelled dinner reservations, again.

We walked around downtown browsing the stores and looking at the Christmas decorations. I had forgotten my toque so Adam bought me one as it was quite chilly out. We made our way Robson Street and walked through the Fairmont to see the Christmas Trees. Adam asked if we wanted to grab a drink or an appetizer from the lounge, but I declined. We walked until we found ourselves at the urban fare market and decided to nibble on a slice of pizza. A burger and pizza. How romantic we are. 

Before heading towards Stanley Park for the Christmas Train we ended up at a favourite bakery to grab a doughnut as a ‘dessert’ for the train ride. We stood in line for almost an hour waiting for our turn, nibbling on the doughnut and taking some pictures of the pretty lights. We boarded the train and rode along with the other passengers taking in the twinkling lights and music. 

After the train had ended he kept insisting we get a picture afterwards, somewhere nice and quiet. I had said sure, although we never really take pictures on our anniversary. So we walked around for a minute when a lady and her daughter had asked me to take their picture in front of the pond in the park. I said sure, and then Adam had said “Could you take ours?” She said yes, and I gave her my cell phone (even though we had carried around the bulky good camera all night.) Adam, as nervous and corny as ever had said something about dropping something (from the camera I assumed), then dropped down on one knee and held out a small blue box. 

I. Was. Shocked. 

Immediately I began crying. I could never have imagined this was how he would propose. Fortunately the woman who was taking the picture knew exactly what he was about to do and switched my phone from camera to video and recorded the entire proposal. By the time I looked up there was a crowd of 20 people standing around us, 2 firefighters (they put on the event) and, last but certainly not least, Santa Claus himself had joined us. Oh yes.

It was outside, in public, at night, on our anniversary a day before Christmas Eve and it was absolutely perfect. I was completely shocked and incredibly happy. Looking back I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way. Adam knew that I would never in a million years be expecting it at that moment so he knew it would be the perfect surprise. 

And I was. 

Quinoa Coconut Bars // Bakeaholic.ca

 Now, for a healthier snack than our engagement dinner (though a burger, pizza and a doughnut all sound good too.) I discovered the company GoGo Quinoa last week and shared the Quinoa Rice Crispy recipe earlier this week. After perusing their website I found a whole bunch of delicious recipe I wanted to try. This was definitely one of them. They’re healthy, crunchy and chewy and the perfect snack on the go. These will most certainly become a staple in our household. 

Quinoa Bars // bakeaholic.ca

Quinoa Coconut Bars // Bakeaholic.ca

Quinoa Coconut Bars
Crunchy, chewy Quinoa Coconut Bars are perfect for a snack or even a quick morning breakfast on the go (just omit the chocolate drizzle)
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Ingredients
  1. 3/4 cup quinoa, uncooked
  2. 3/4 cup oatmeal, uncooked*
  3. 1/4 cup quinoa flakes
  4. 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  5. 1/2 cup almonds, chopped
  6. 1/2 cup crunchy natural peanut butter
  7. 3/4 cup honey
  8. 4 Squares Dark Chocolate, melted
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Line a 8x8" baking dish with parchment paper.
  3. Place quinoa, quinoa flakes and oatmeal onto a cookie sheet lined with baking mat or parchment paper and bake for 8 minutes, stirring once.
  4. Meanwhile, add peanut butter and honey to a small saucepan and heat over medium-low heat until melted.
  5. Remove quinoa and oatmeal from oven and mix with nuts and coconut in a large bowl.
  6. Pour peanut butter and honey sauce over the mixture and stir to combine.
  7. Press into the 8x8" baking dish and bake for 18-20 minutes, until edges are just slightly browned.
  8. Allow to cool for 45 minutes then cut into 12 pieces.
  9. Drizzle tops of each bar with the dark chocolate and allow to cool until set.
  10. Store at room temperature in an airtight container.
Adapted from GoGo Quinoa, Super Healthy Kids
b a k e a h o l i c http://www.bakeaholic.ca/