Banana & Blueberry Walnut Cake – Unprocessed – Extracted-Sugar-Free

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The last banana/walnut cake I had eaten was been pretty delicious, but unfortunately I found out it had some maple syrup and coconut oil, and was risen using baking powder. This means extracted sugar, fat and an artificial salt. That was too bad! But…on the good side, it was based on whole oats and bananas. That kept me pretty excited to make an irreproachably clean one since that day, and at long last, I did! See above!

“But…walnuts?”
We had walnuts (and others nuts) in the pantry that we have been barely touching since learning about how nuts are actually not all that great for health despite their being “whole-food fats”, especially when they’re so easy to abuse. It was a matter of time until we’d figure out ways to finish our stock in a way that wouldn’t be detrimental to our health…you know…like a raw cake! I can’t think of a better use for walnuts than in this cake. Even as little as 50g in one whole cake loaf makes a gorgeous difference. Trust me, you will feel the walnut taste! It’s wonderful without too.

muffin_inside_610“Rising a cake without baking powder nor baking soda?”
Yes Ma’am, Yes Sir!
How to use the walnuts being sorted out, I still had to figure out the right good dough consistency to improve on my previously tacky/goey cakes, and tadaaa…

Yeast just works. You just need to embrace a different relationship to time, and opt-out from instant-everything…Spend some quality time with your loved ones, or enjoy a long hot bath with your favourite music, while this beauty takes its time to rise.

Also, leave the sponge cake expectations in the dungeon, along with refined flours and artificial rising agents (mineral salts) it requires…Those are not food. Yeast is food that can rise other food.
Be thankful for that and make the best of it.

So here is a beautiful cake that uses only whole foods for sweetness, no oil, nor any artificial or sodium-containing ingredients.
This is as unprocessed as it gets folks…and I intend to keep it that way!

Banana & Blueberry Walnut Cake – Unprocessed – Extracted-Sugar-Free
 
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Author:
Recipe type: low-fat, whole-food, plant-based, no oil, sweetness from whole fruit, no salt
Serves: 1 loaf cake
Ingredients
  • 3 cups of wholegrain rolled oats (300g)
  • ½ cups chickpea flour or besan (40g) – relax, it doesn't give a chickpea taste 🙂
  • 3 tsp instant yeast (or 4 tsp of activated dried yeast, activated in as little water as possible)
  • 5 very ripe bananas (600g of banana flesh)
  • 1 + ½ cups frozen blueberries (180g) optional)
  • ⅓ cup walnuts (50g)
  • Sweet spices to taste (optional, I used 1 tsp of a mix of ground star anise and cinnamon that was sitting around)
  • For sweetening: 1 cup of currants.
Instructions
  1. Blend the rolled oats into a flour. Pour in a mixing bowl.
  2. Add chickpea flour, spices and instant yeast (if you're using that) and combine well.
  3. Peel and mash your bananas with your clean hands.
  4. Use some of the banana mash in the blender with ½ cup of currants and blend, add more banana mash if it's too dry.
  5. Pour back in the mixing bowl, if you're using activated dried yeast add it now, and mix with hands until you get a uniform dough.
  6. Add the frozen blueberries, the other ½ cup of currants (whole), and the walnuts and mix another couple of minutes to incorporate them nicely.
  7. Line your loaf tin with baking sheet, pour batter and let sit until it doubles volume. This will most definitely more than an hour because the frozen blueberries will keep the batter cold for a while, which prevents the yeast from making babies and bubbles. You might be able to save time by thawing first, the blueberries might get mashed and look messier.
  8. When the dough has risen, pre-heat oven at 180°C (360 °F) and bake for about 40 minutes. Use a knife or toothpick, when the cake is done baking, there will be some streaks almost transparent. It it comes out full of whitish dough it needs more baking.
  9. Let cool and enjoy.
Notes
If you are recovering cardiovascular disease or allergic to nuts, just skip the walnuts. I put blueberries and sweet spices so that it still remains exciting without walnuts.
We've had this plain and with our whole-food lemon and orange marmalades. It's delicious!
Finally, this works as a muffin batter too.

 

[Recipe] Black Lemon Marmalade – Sweet – Sugar-Free

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Sugar-free doesn’t mean sweet-less!
When I first advised my family to quit extracted sugars, their first reaction was “But it must be really bland!”. Classic! But far from it!

I want sweetness, I love sweetness, my palate needs sweetness to be satisfied. I just want it to come from health-promoting whole plant foods, rather than disease-causing extracts of sweet whole foods. I won’t develop here, on what sugars to avoid and by what to replace them. Instead I’ll give a recipe to proof the concept in one of the sweetest human-made foods you can have: a jam. Or more precisely, marmalade.

Here, currants are chosen because they have a more neutral taste than raisins and sultanas.

Doesn’t look exactly like a marmalade? The heck with it! Tastes wonderful to me! Blind-test this on your friends to it, I bet they won’t know the difference.

Spread this on a chapati and with a nice cuppa…Mhhh…
Damn it I’m hungry now! 😀

[Recipe] Black Lemon Marmalade – Sweet and Sugar-free
 
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An easy, whole-food sugar-free lemon marmalade that's sweet, bitter, and slightly sour. Everything the marmalade love is here, using only real foods, not their extracts.
Author:
Recipe type: low-fat, whole-foods, plant-based, sugar-free, oil-free, salt-free
Cuisine: International
Serves: 200g
Ingredients
  • 1 large lemon (or two small ones otherwise) with a thick peel if possible, organic or spray-free
  • 100g of (dried) currants! (not raisins or sultanas, not "blackcurrants", "redcurrants" or "white currants", use currants!).
Instructions
  1. Peel the lemon, cut peel in small cubes
  2. Once peeled, cut the lemon in half, keep one half (we won't use the other half). Remove seeds. Cut in small bits as well. Rinse your hands (so the acidity doesn't burn).
  3. In a pot, add the raisins, diced peel, and the cut lemon flesh with 1 cup of water.
  4. Bring a boil, and let simmer on low heat for 2 hours with a lid on.
  5. Set timers to check regularly enough to stir, mash (with a potato masher or a clean glass jar), or add water if the bottom starts to stick. The texture should be that of a thick marmalade, not too liquid. Open lid to let excess water evaporate if needed. Never scratch the bottom if it burned.
Storage
  1. Preserves in the fridge for at least 1 week. Can be frozen (try in ice-trays to take out only the small portions you need) but I can't vouch for texture yet at this point. You might try to sterilize it with various jams sterilization methods.
Notes
Feel free to play around with various combinations of (organic or spray-free) lime, lemon, oranges and other citrus fruit.
Feel free also to play around with how sweet, sour, or citrusy you want it by adding respectively, currants, citrus flesh, or peel.
Warning: The peel or some limes is unbearably bitter, I've experienced that problem with limes that had a very thin peel.