Archive for dessert

Saturday, June 15th, 2013

Coconut Cherry Chocolate Ice Cream

brownie waffle smallFor the first two years of my married life, my husband and I were vegetarians. We did not eat a lot of dairy, but, while we lived in Providence, RI, we did visit the Ben & Jerry’s store occasionally. And we always went on Free Ice Cream Day. Wahoo! We were always happy to join in with all those willing to stand in line forever and get free ice cream. It was awesome! During those months we tried a few different kinds of ice cream that we loved, but we did land on a few favorites. One of them was Cherry Garcia. We have enjoyed many varieties of non-dairy frozen treats, but nothing has replaced Ben & Jerry’s Cherry Garcia ice cream until now! I was so excited to find this recipe! This is super easy to make and I only made a few minor changes to this, mostly making it a lot bigger instead of just one serving, so that we can have it again and again!  I used coconut yogurt instead of soy, which seemed to make it super rich and creamy, and I added more of everything else, so my ratios are not the same as the original. This is super easy to make but you have to plan a head because it takes a while to freeze. I have to say that this is the most delicious ice cream/ frozen yogurt that I have ever eaten. I know that is a big statement, but it is true. My family cannot get enough of this either. You can scale down this recipe if you don’t want any hanging around, or you can eat a little at a time and enjoy it knowing that there is more waiting for you in the freezer. Oh, and the chocolate waffle that is in the picture is SO great with this ice cream, so I will add this recipe next.

Coconut Cherry Chocolate Ice Cream

3 16 oz. cartons of So Delicious Coconut Yogurt ( I used two plain and one vanilla)

1 1/2 tsp. salt

3/4 c. sucanat

3/4 c. almond milk (other nut milk varieties would work fine)

2 tsp. vanilla

2 c. fresh cherries, pitted and roughly chopped

3/4 – 1 c. semi- sweet chocolate chips, chopped

Mix the yogurt, salt, sucanat, milk, and vanilla until well combined. Add the cherries and chocolate and mix well. If using an ice cream maker, put it in that container and follow the manufacturer instructions. If you don’t have an ice cream maker, or don’t want to mess with one, ( I have one, but chose to try this without and it worked out great) put this mixture into an airtight container and put it in the freezer. Take it out and stir it every few hours. It will get more and more frozen which will makie it kind of hard to stir. I started in the morning about 9am, and ate it about 6pm. It was ready before that, but you should plan on about 6 hours from start to finish.


Thursday, June 6th, 2013

Coconut Lemon Walnut Cookie

coconut lemon walnut cookiesmall

If I had not mentioned it before, you should know that I love homemade cookies. Yes, everyone in my family knows that I can pass up candy any day, its not even tempting in the least. But if there is a cookie in the room I will find it. I have to work REALLY REALLY hard to pass up a cookie. However, I do know a good cookie from a bad one and when a good one comes along, it is important to pass the recipe along for others to enjoy. The inspiration for this cookie came from Doron Peterson and the Sticky Fingers Cookbook. I scaled down the size of the recipe and then cut down on the fat and the sugar and added walnuts. These are still plenty sweet and of course they are super delicious or I would not be sharing them in the first place. If you don’t have lemon oil, this recipe will still be good, but the lemon flavor will obviously not be as strong.

Coconut Lemon Walnut Cookie

1/2 c. Earth Balance, softened

3/4 c. sucanat

3/4 c. brown sugar

1/2 tsp. vanilla

1-2 drops lemon oil ( I used two)

2 tsp. lemon zest

1  1/4 c. shredded coconut

1/3 c. almond milk (other milk would be fine)

1/3 c. canola oil

2  3/4 c. all-purpose flour (GF flours would work here as well)

1 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. salt

3/4 c. chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare cookie sheet with parchment paper.

Mix earth balance and sugars together til smooth. Add the vanilla, lemon oil, lemon zest and mix til fluffy. Add the coconut and stir. In a separate bowl, combine the canola and almond milk. Add this to the sugar mixture and blend. In another separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Mix well and then add in the walnuts. Combine with the wet ingredients and mix until a dough forms. Make walnut sized balls and place on cookie sheet 2 inches apart. Flatten them a little bit and put the pan into a hot oven and bake for 12-15 minutes, or until lightly browned on the edges. Let cool slightly before eating so you don’t burn your mouth.

Saturday, May 18th, 2013

Vegan Rhubarb Pecan Muffins

rhubarb muffin small

Over the years, we have had great friends that have given us rhubarb from their garden. The first time we were given such a gift, I was in love with the beautiful pink and green, but frankly, I did not know what to do with it besides make pie and I didn’t even have a recipe that I liked for that. I am ashamed to say that I let it go rotten before I used it. However, I didn’t take long to educate myself on the wonders of rhubarb, and now I look forward to this season all year long. Rhubarb has a lot of great qualities, such as, it is a good source of vitamin K and vitamin C, as well as potassium and calcium. What I also love about it besides the color and tart flavor, is that you can wash, chop, and put it in a bag to save in the freezer. I have had such an abundance in the spring that it lasted through the whole year in the freezer!

This muffin recipe is really old. I got it out of the NY Times years ago, which stated that it was taken from “Rise and Dine Canada”. Anyway, I have changed it to make it healthier and it is a family favorite. I make these muffins in really large batches and after they cool I put many of them in the freezer so we don’t eat them for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Taking a few out of the freezer at a time for an afternoon snack is the best.

Vegan Rhubarb Pecan Muffins

1 1/2 c. whole wheat flour

1/2 c. all purpose flour

1/2 c. to 3/4 c. sucanat (depends on how sweet you want these to be)

1 1/2 tsp. baking powder

3/4 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. baking soda

3/4 c. pecans, chopped

3/4 c. orange juice

1/4 c. canola oil

egg replacer for 1 egg ( I have used 1 tbsp. flax seed mixed with 3 tbsp. water OR 1 1/2 tsp. egg replacer mixed with 2 tbsp. water)

1 1/2 c. rhubarb, chopped

2 tsp. orange zest

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and prepare muffins tins (makes about 12)I always zest an orange or two first and then juice them to get fresh orange juice. Set this aside for later. In a large bowl, add the flour, sucanat, baking powder, salt, baking soda, and pecans. Mix well. In a separate smaller bowl, add the orange juice, zest, oil, and egg replacer. Stir well. Add in the rhubarb and mix the wet and the dry together and stir by hand until just combined. Don’t overmix! Quickly spoon batter into muffin tins, filling cup 3/4 full. Put in hot oven and bake for 25-30 minutes. The tops should be barely brown and they should pass the toothpick test. Don’t burn your mouth on the hot rhubarb!

Thursday, May 16th, 2013

Vegan Frog Eye Salad

We have been having a lot of celebrations at our house lately. This is what we call our birthday season, because we celebrate six birthdays in five months. So I spend more time in the kitchen creating more desserts than normal. Plus, at our house, if its your birthday, you get to choose what to have for dinner. So yesterday was my sons birthday and as part of his birthday dinner, I made one of his favorite salads. The Frog Eye Salad gets its name from the main ingredient, acini de pepe pasta, that is shaped like little round balls, or frog eyes! It is really more of a dessert, because it is so sweet, but we call it a salad so we can still have dessert afterwards. This is a dish that is traditionally made with eggs and so for years I rarely made it. Still, this is not a healthy dish by any means, but for a special occasion, this vegan version is a fun treat. This idea is from Sharlene W. at I only changed it a little bit. And it is not hard to make. I never use pudding mixes, so I was not sure how long to mix it to make sure it would set up in the refrigerator, but it did not take long, and it turned out great. My family loved it and could not tell that the recipe had even changed.

Vegan Frog Eye Salad

1 box acini de pepe pasta, 12 oz.

1 20 oz. can pineapple tidbits, drained, but save 1/4 cup of the juice

1 3/4 c. milk (I used almond/coconut, but I think any kind of milk would work)

1/4 c. sucanat

1  3.5 oz. box instant vanilla pudding mix

1  8 oz. can crushed pineapple,  drained (I used 20 oz.)

2  12 oz. cans mandarin oranges

mini marshmellows ( I did not add these)

I added:

1 c. coconut

2 c. cool whip

Cook pasta in boiling water til al dente, about 8-10 minutes, drain and rinse with cold water. Set aside.In a large bowl, add 1/4 c. pineapple juice, milk, sucanat, pudding mix. Beat for about 2-3 minutes. It will be very runny, but don’t worry it will set up in the refrigerator. Add in the pasta, crushed pineapple and the tidbits, mandarin oranges. Stir to blend the ingredients. Cover bowl and chill in the refrigerator for five hours. ( I only did this for just over 2 1/2 hours) Stir in the coconut and the cool whip. Serve!


Tuesday, May 7th, 2013

Vegan Crepes

I used to love crepes. I made them with sweet fillings and savory fillings and I made them for parties, or for a treat, or for brunch, or for whatever occasion I could think of. I used to make them with mostly egg whites, so I justified eating them as not that big of a deal bad for you. I still believe that crepes made with egg whites are not so bad, but I completely stopped using eggs a long time ago and that was the end of my crepe making. Until recently, when I began experimenting with creating an eggless crepe.  I looked at several recipes and tried a few, and found that making eggless crepes is a task that you have to get used to. It was kind of hard the first time, just getting used to how the batter would respond.. But this recipe, inspired by one I found on Huffingtonpost Taste, works well and with a little patience you too can have vegan crepe love. The first few crepes of every batch I make are not so great in appearance, because they are really hard to know when to flip and then get out of the pan, but then after two, you will get the hang of it and cooking these will get easier and they will look good. These are super good with Rosemary Red Potatoes, Vegan Hollandaise Sauce, and Tofu Scramble.

Vegan Crepes

1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour

1/2 c. whole wheat flour

2 c. coconut milk ( I used light)

2 tbsp. sucanat

4 tbsp. canola oil

1/2 tsp. salt

2 tsp. baking powder

1 c. cold water

2 tsp. vanilla

Mix all the ingredients together and blend well. Cover the bowl and put the batter in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. I use a cast iron pan to cook them. Medium heat with spray on the pan. Start with a small amount of batter (1/4 c.) for the first one so you can get the hang of it. After the batter bubbles and you can see the edges start to turn brown, use a metal spatula to carefully turn it over. Don’t worry if your first few tear, you will get better at making these and love them!


Wednesday, May 1st, 2013

Orange Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies

Oh this recipe is so good! It was inspired by the cookie recipe in Veganomicon that I wanted a little bit healthier. The combination of orange and chocolate go so well together and these cookies are some of my favorites. I double this recipe and keep the dough in the refrigerator sealed in a container and it really lasts a longer than you would think. This way I can make fresh cookies in many small batches and I won’t be tempted to eat more than I should! It is great to have a treat ready to put in the oven at a moments notice if you need something for a party, or a neighborly visit, etc. and this is a good one.

Orange Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies

2 c. all-purpose flour

2/3 c. cocoa powder

1 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 c. canola oil

1 1/4 c. sucanat

4 tsp. ground flaxseeds

1/2 c. almond milk (soy would be fine too)

2 tsp. pure vanilla extract

3 tsp. finely grated orange zest

1 tsp. almond extract

1/2 c. chocolate chips

3/4 c. almonds, chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large bowl, sift together the dry ingredients together: flour, cocoa, soda, salt. In a separate bowl mix together the oil and sucanat. Add in the flaxseed, milk, vanilla, almond, and orange zest, and mix well. Add the wet to the dry and stir until well combined. Add in the chocolate chips and almonds. When the dough gets hard to stir with a spoon, just use your hands to mix thoroughly. You can chill the dough now, or roll 1-inch balls and then flatten slightly onto the prepared pan. Space them at least one inch apart because they will spread some. Bake for 10-15 minutes, depending on if your dough has been chilled or not. Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 9th, 2013

Key Lime Pie

I wanted to make something yummy for Easter last week. We had dinner with my in-laws, so I got to make what I wanted as a side dish, or dessert. They are all very patient with our vegan contribution. I finally decided on a very tasty salad and this key lime pie, which is adapted from Doron Petersans, Sticky Fingers’ Sweets. When we found out that my sis. in-law had already planned lots of dessert, we decided to leave it home and EAT IT ALL OURSELVES! Oh, this is so good. I have been using lots of natural sweeteners lately, like pure maple syrup, so this tasted SUPER sweet to me. We added blackberry jam as a topping which was delicious.

Key Lime Pie


6 tbsp. non-hydrogenated vegan margarine (I use Earth Balance)

1 1/2 c. graham cracker crumbs

2 tbsp. sucanat

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Melt the margarine and then add the graham cracker crumbs and sucanat together. Put this into a 9 inch glass pie pan and press evenly around the bottom and sides. Bake this for 9-10 minutes. Let this cool while you put the pie filling together.

Key Lime Pie filling

1 1/2 tbsp. cornstarch

1/2 c. key lime juice

2 c. vegan cream cheese, softened

1 c. sucanat

1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

In a saucepan dissolve the cornstarch in the lime juice over medium heat, stirring constantly until it comes to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until it thickens, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and let it cool. In a medium bowl, mix the cream cheese until it is smooth and add the sugar continuing to mix until smooth and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the cooled lime juice mixture and vanilla and mix again until smooth. Pour this into the cooled pie crust and refrigerate for about 2 hours or until it is set. Enjoy!

Sunday, February 24th, 2013

Chewy Pie Crust

I have tried many recipes for a low fat pie crust over the years and found some that were better than others. This one from The Engine2Diet is great for  pairing up with refrigerator pies, like chocolate mousse, or fresh fruit pies. This has a chewy texture because of the dates that hold it together. I always use raw unroasted nuts for these recipes to lower the fat content.  I found it such a tasty combination that I had to try not to eat it plain and save it for the mousse!

Chewy Pie Crust

1 c. pitted dates

1/3 c. walnuts

1/3 c. cashews

1/3 c. almonds

1 tsp. vanilla extract

Put all the ingredients in a food processor and blend until everything is mixed and sticking together. Press into a pie pan. This is now ready for the pie filling of your choice.

Sunday, February 24th, 2013

Easy Basic Chocolate Mousse

Last weekend I wanted to make something new. I had been looking through The Engine 2 Diet book for ideas and came across this recipe that was so good I didn’t change at all.  Your friends and family will never guess that this is made with tofu. It was super easy and delicious.

E2 Basic Chocolate Mousse

1 package Silken Lite tofu

2 Tbsp. cocoa powder

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1/3 c. pure maple syrup or agave nectar

Blend add the ingredients until smooth. ( I used my food processor) Refrigerate until chilled.

Sunday, February 10th, 2013

Yummy Chocolate Chip Cookies

I love to make these cookies because they are fast and delicious! Just a few ingredients makes them easy to put together. When I make cookies, I do experiment with using different flavors of chips and I found that these are especially good with cinnamon chips.

Yummy Chocolate Chip Cookies

2 c. flour

2 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

1 tsp. cinnamon

3/4 c. sucanat

1/3 c. canola oil

1/4 c. water

1 tsp. vanilla

1/2 c. choc. chips ( or any kind you would like)

1/2 c. chopped walnuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 350

Mix the dry ingredients together then mix the wet ingredients together well and then mix together until just wet. Line a cookie pan with parchment paper and spoon 1-2 Tbsp. of dough onto pan. They only take about 8-10 minutes to cook, but I take them out before they look done because they stay soft and chewy. If they are hard, they have cooked too long.