Okay, big news. A Calculated Whisk is going paleo for one month. There. I said it. Now if I go and try to post some kind of insane ice cream cupcake cookie sandwich, you guys will call me out on it. Right?
Nobody tells you this, but the ugly downside of starting a food blog is you EAT so much of the delicious food you make that your figure kind of falls by the wayside. I love desserts, obviously, but you can only have so much. It’s time for a change. In the past I’ve lost a lot of weight following the Zone diet, but this time I wanted to try something different.
I’ve been hearing so much about paleo, and it makes sense to me that eating the foods we evolved eating would be the healthiest way to go. I checked out this website for the Whole 30, and thought I would give it a try. I got The 30 Day Guide to Paleo Cooking: Entire Month of Paleo Meals, and I’m ready to go. The book is great, but I always think it’s more fun to create my own recipes. So, here it is! My first paleo breakfast. It tastes great, and I didn’t feel like anything was missing since it’s so filling, rich, and creamy.
Oh, and by the way! I’m on an exercise program, too. I’ve started barre3‘s 28 to Great. That’s six days of workouts a week (they have an awesome online library of 10, 30, 40, and 60 minute videos) for four weeks. I’ve done two workouts so far, and they are exhausting. It’s really targeted muscle work and I can tell it’s going to have an impact.
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Chocolate truffles are so easy to make, it’s amazing that places like Godiva get away with charging so much for them. If you want yours to be even more like the ones at the chocolate shop, you can melt your favorite milk or dark chocolate and dip the chilled truffles in it instead of rolling them in cocoa powder and confectioner’s sugar. Use a fork to remove the truffle once it’s covered in melted chocolate. Let the extra drip off, and place the truffle on wax or parchment paper or in a candy cup. This is a deliciously rich, fancy, no-bake dessert that will impress anyone. Chocolate truffles also make a great gift wrapped up in a cellophane bag or placed in a decorative box or tin. This recipe makes about 20 truffles.
Vegan Coconut Almond Truffles
Here it is…another fabulous vegan dessert! You
have to try this. It’s easier than easy, and super delicious. No
cooking is involved, and it comes together in less than five minutes.
So, I told you it’s vegan. Can you guess what
the secret ingredient is? I will give you one hint: it’s not avocado
(although I have been wanting to try this recipe for chocolate avocado pudding).
Here’s a picture of the process:
Have you figured it out? It’s coconut cream!
Isn’t that crazy? Maybe you already knew about this whipped coconut
cream miracle, but I had no idea until I saw this photo tutorial
the other day. Today after dinner (I tried to make shrimp korma—it was
pretty good but I want to tweak the recipe before I share it with you) I
had an extra can of coconut milk and a hankering to try it. But, I
felt like it would be lame to just make and eat a bowl of whipped
coconut cream. So, I searched for a dessert featuring this amazing
stuff, and found and adapted this recipe from
Baking Chic. If you have a can of coconut milk, go put it in the
refrigerator right now so you can make this tomorrow. If you don’t have
a can of coconut milk, go out and buy one, then put it in the
refrigerator so you can make this tomorrow. If you’re in a big hurry,
put your can in the freezer so you can make this in half an hour.
Ingredients (serves one):
Cream from one can of coconut milk, chilled
1-3 tablespoons cocoa, to taste
1-3 tablespoons sugar, to taste
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Open the can of coconut milk, and spoon the hardened cream off the
top. Save the liquid for something else, like a smoothie. Using an
electric mixer, whip the coconut cream until fluffy. Mix in sugar to
taste and vanilla. The original recipe called for three tablespoons of
sugar, but I thought that would be way too sweet once I saw how little
cream I had (maybe the yield varies by can). Mine was perfect with a
tablespoon and an extra teaspoon of sugar. Set aside a few tablespoons
of the whipped cream to use as a topping. Mix in the cocoa to taste (I
used a tablespoon and a half). Serve the chocolate mousse with the
reserved whipped cream on top.
I love cupcakes! I love them so much that I
named a kitten after them (she was the size of a cupcake when I found
her, so it totally makes sense). To go with my lemon kick, I decided to
create these lemon coconut cupcakes. The bird’s nest idea comes from
Martha and can be found here, and the recipe is inspired by Ina’s in the Barefoot Contessa cookbook and Gaby’s found here.
I know this may not be getting out there in time to be part of your
Easter dinner, but with regular decorating these could be enjoyed
Ingredients (makes 18 cupcakes):
1/2 lb butter (2 sticks) at room temperature
1 3/4 cups sugar
2 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon lemon zest
3 teaspoons lemon juice
5 eggs at room temperature
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup coconut milk
3/4 cup sweetened shredded coconut
Lemony Cream Cheese Frosting (makes enough for 18 cupcakes):
1/2 cup plus 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temp
8 oz. Neufchatel cheese (or cream cheese), at room temp
Zest of one lemon
1/8 tsp. almond extract
1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
To fill and decorate:
1 cup lemon curd(about half a recipe)
1 cup toasted sweetened shredded coconut
1 recipe cream cheese frosting
Cadbury mini eggs or other candy eggs
1. Preheat the oven to 325. Cream the butter and sugar in an stand
mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. With the mixer on low, add the
eggs one at a time, then add the lemon zest and juice.
2. Sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
3. Add the dry ingredients to to the mixer in three parts, alternating with the coconut milk, and mix just until combined.
4. Fold in the coconut.
5. Divide the batter among the cupcake cups, and bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Cream the softened butter and cream cheese together. Sift in the powdered sugar. Add the lemon zest and extracts and mix well.
When the cupcakes are done, cool them completely. Use a paring knife
to cut a cone-shaped piece out of the top of each cupcake, making sure
not to cut all the way down to the bottom. Use a small spoon to fill
the empty cones with lemon curd (and have fun eating the little
cone-shaped pieces of cake! No one is going to miss those!).
Transfer the frosting to a large ziploc bag, and cut off the tip of one corner to make a dime-sized hole. Pipe a circle of frosting onto the outer edge of each cupcake. Sprinkle toasted coconut on top to cover. (To toast coconut, cook it in a dry skillet over medium-low heat until golden brown, about 8 minutes. Don’t turn your back on it because it burns easily.) Then, place 3 Cadbury mini eggs in the middle of each nest.