Vanilla Mascarpone Fruit Tart {Spelt Crust & Sugar Free}

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As I may have mentioned, I’m in the process of studying for the bar exam at the moment. So as you may have noticed, I have been spending a lot of time in the kitchen lately. Why? Because to me cooking and baking is one of the best relaxations. The problem is, though, that when I get and idea about what I could create next or when I come across a recipe that I could make healthier and/or sugar free, I can’t stop thinking about it until I actually make it. I can’t really explain what happens in my brain but it’s like a million light bulbs would turn on at the same time and a billion hamsters would start running and I’m just going through possible ingredient swaps and shopping lists and plating ideas, all at the same time. As you can imagine, this can be quite disturbing when what I should be doing is thinking about the laws and how to memorize them all. The only solution to this problem is that I make the dish I came up with ASAP. The same was with this mascarpone tart recipe – “What can I change? Will it work? What can I add? Will my boyfriend and family like it? Will I like it? How should I decorate it? How should I photograph it?” This is why I made it yesterday evening and I got all the answers – all the changes worked and everybody loved it! It was half gone in the first 30 minutes. Continue reading

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Concord Grape, Blueberry & Apple Galette {Gluten & Sugar Free}

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It’s been more than a year now, I believe, since I’ve attended two cooking workshops by Barbarella – Green Chef. Her workshops were vegan (which I am not – to the joy of my boyfriend (that was a very funny story, by the way, because we just started dating at the time of the workshops and he got really scared that I was vegan, since he wasn’t sure how that would work out with him being a true carnivore)) but she never forced anyone into being vegan. Most of us, who attended her workshop, were not vegan, actually. She is really creative, though, and as such, a true inspiration for all of us aspiring chefs. I got a lot of ideas from her recipes and I guess the inspiration lasts even a year and so later. This galette is one of the products of that inspiration. Continue reading

Breakfast Donuts {Sugar Free & Oven Baked}

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I bought a donut baking tray a while back because I saw so many donuts on Instagram in a short period of time. Of course I had to make them myself as well, don’t you agree? The tray was far from cheap (given that it’s just a baking tray with 6 donut shaped spaces) but I decided it was a good investment. After all, it did come with a jam applier, donut shape cutter and a book of recipes (which I then realized was only in French, but hey, who knew)! My boyfriend told me that I was only going to use it once at most (like all other special baking appliances and accessories) so I had to prove him wrong. This now was the third time I used it – ha! 😀

I recently remembered I had it after I talked about it with my friend over coffee the other day. So off I was, searching for a good sugar free recipe that I could give a little twist to. Since I still had some protein powder in my pantry (from the time I “stole” it from my boyfriend beacuse I needed it for something) and since protein powders tend to give sweetness to the dish, I decided to look in that direction. This is how I found a recipe on the bodybuilding.com site.

Since I didn’t have the coconut flour (and also because I don’t really like it so I didn’t want to use it), I had to change up the recipe a little by adding quite a lot of additional walnut meal as well as spelt flour, because the coconut flour is known to be very absorbent and is therefore required in much smaller amonuts for the same amount of liquid ingredients. I also added vanilla and blueberries for flavor and some baking powder because I wanted them to rise really nicely. Keep in mind, that these donuts are almost not sweet (probably depends on the protein you use as well), so they are a perfect base for your choice of toppings. Feel free to add a few tablespoons of Sukrin or Xylitol to the mix to make them sweeter, though. You can also replace the listed ground nuts with any kind of ground nuts, or use coconut flour like in the original recipe. The final healthiness and calories of a donut will mostly depend on the topping you choose. Continue reading

Super Delicious {Sugar Free} Cheesecake

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I am one of those people who are constantly thinking about what new they could create in the kitchen. I mostly start with what I already have at home and build from there. We’ve all bought food before for a meal or special occasion that we in the end ended up not using. It’s always better to buy more than to run out of food when hosting a lunch or a get together, right? So what to do with the extra ingredients now just lying around in your fridge or pantry, ingredients that you don’t really use on a daily basis? Come up with a way to use them, of course!

What I had in stock were my healthy chocolate chip cookies. I myself really liked them, but my family found them to be too healthy (with the exception of my boyfriend who loves them! ❤ ). Since I knew I wasn’t going to eat 30-something cookies myself, I had to come up with a way to secretly use them in another dessert and see if my family would “buy it”. Since I’ve always wanted to make a cheesecake and I now had healthy, wheat and sugar free cookies on my hand, it was an obvious choice. It just happened to be that the other “leftover” ingredient I had in my fridge was cream cheese. So I started searching for a recipe, and let me tell you, it was not an easy job! So many different alternatives, bake, no bake, only cream cheese, cream cheese and sour cream.. What they all had in common, though, were Graham crackers and sugar. The two things I did NOT want to use. I ended up choosing a recipe by The Kitchn for two reasons: it had the most extensive, step by step instructions for the perfect cheesecake (which, by the way, are so perfect in the original recipe that I suggest you just follow them to the word by following the link above and you should be fine) and, more importantly, it looked really good in the photo. Let’s face it, we all eat with our eyes as well. Continue reading

Healthy Chocolate Chip Cookies {for Breakfast}

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I’ve been on a no sugar (or better put: no desserts) “diet” since I came home from Macedonia (you guys have seen what I ate there and what the wedding looked like!) but I just couldn’t stop myself from doing some baking. It’s such a nice way to relax and take a break from studying. A few days ago I came across a recipe by Teresamisu for healthy chocolate chip cookies. After going through the ingredients I decided I wanted to give it an additional health twist by completely removing any kind of sugar (except the one coming from the fruit) since I’ve been reading on how coconut sugar (or other sugar replacements) is not that much better for us than regular sugar. Since bananas are naturally sweet and are often used as sweeteners, they seemed like an obvious choice. I also added some dried figs and gave it a try. Continue reading

Banana Blueberry Muffins {Sugar Free}

IMG_5941Special occasions always call for dessert. Tomorrow, another big (and a little scary) occasion is about to take place – my last panel session at the commercial department of the Higher Court of Ljubljana as judicial trainee. I think it is only right for me to treat the judges and judicial advisers of the panel with a little (sweet) treat since they’ve accepted me really nicely and have been a big part of my life for the past three months.

I’ve been thinking about what to bring them – it had to be practical (i.e. not requiring any forks, knifes or spoons), it had to look good and most importantly taste delicious. After coming to a decision to make muffins, it was time for me to decide which. I wouldn’t be myself if I didn’t decide to go with a recipe I’ve never tried before. Go big or go home, right? So the only thing left to decide was whether I should make a regular muffin to please the crowds or stay true to myself and make a healthy version. In the end, my desire to actually taste what I baked prevailed, and I went for these delicious blueberry banana muffins. I added some Sukrin and spices to the original recipe because the muffins still needed to be sweet and the bananas just didn’t give them enough sweetness. I think these muffins are a perfect compromise – healthy, but still a crowd pleaser. So keep your fingers crossed for my last day tomorrow and for these muffins to be a big hit! Continue reading

Sugar Free Apricot & Peach Jam

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I always loved jam! It goes so well with bread, pancakes, Kaiserschmarrn.. The thing about store bough jam, though, is, that it usually contains a lot of sugar. And not the good sugar provided by the fruits, but added, refined sugar. Homemade jams are usually not much better, apart from the fact that they taste a million times better and contain no preservatives or hidden ingredients. This is why I was so happy when I saw a recipe on Facebook the other day by Alenka Košir for a sugar free jam. She uses sukrin or erythritol to sweeten it and agar-agar to provide the jelly like consistency. Continue reading