Baking Wednesday – Caramel Slice

Howdy Y’all,

Happy Hump Day! So yesterday was rainy and I was trapped inside with Little L (argh!!) One thing she loves and often asks to do is bake. I read recently in a blog about an app I have been meaning to try called Hippy Lane. The app is recipe-based but only contains health-conscious recipes. They promote that the sweet treat recipes are gluten free, vegan, dairy free, and contain no refined sugar. Trying to find recipes that have these bases covered but still taste delicious is a challenge. This app is very sophisticated and styish and the photographs are beautiful.  I had a very quick gander through my pantry to see what ingredients I had and Little L and I selected the recipe for  Caramel Slices. Where I am from it is referred to as millionaire’s shortbread and  it is delicious and I thought this would be a great introduction to its yumminess for Little L. So here is how it went:-

Recipe

Summary

Creamy, delicious bars of gold. These caramel slice bars are just like the real thing with a crumbly biscuit base, smooth caramel center and silky chocolate top, you will be taken to choc caramel heaven with each bite. Free of dairy, gluten and sugar, you can enjoy them guilt-free.

Ingredients

Base

1 1/2 cups (225g) cashews

1/2 cup (40g) desiccated coconut

8-10 medjool dates, pitted

3tbsp rice malt

Caramel

1 cup (150g) medjool dates, pitted

1/4 cup (60ml) coconut oil

1/2 cup (125ml) tahini or almond butter

1/2 cup (120ml) rice malt syrup

1 tsp vanilla powder

Pinch salt

Chocolate

1/3 cup (36g) cacao powder

1/2 cup (120ml) coconut oil, liquid

1/4 cup (60ml) maple syrup

1/2 tsp carob powder (optional)

Steps

  1. To make base, reduce cashews to small pieces in the food processor.
  2. Add coconut and pulse.
  3. Add dates and rice malt, and process until combined and sticky.
  4. Press base into tin lined with baking powder and freeze.
  5. Making caramel by processing all ingredients until smooth.
  6. Spread caramel over base and freeze.
  7. For the chocolate, whisk the ingredients until well incorporated.
  8. Spread chocolate evenly over slice and freeze.
  9. Remove from freezer 30 minutes before serving.

 

Lifestyle Lady Findings

  • Firstly I could not find rice malt so I substituted agave syrup.
  • I used almond oil instead of tahini.
  • I did not have vanilla powder so I substituted for vanilla essence.
  • As you know I am yet to buy a brownie tin, but that would be the ideal size to make these in.
  • Call me lazy but I loved the ease of the prep and that it needed no baking. It was an ideal recipe to do with a toddler. They can lick the spoon and not get poisoned!
Little L and I really enjoyed making these, it was a great rainy day activity. It is seldom that I get excited about an app and this one has me very eager to try more. It is well worth the $2.99 price tag. When it is raining and half way through the week who wouldn’t want a slice of chocolate gold?
Enjoy,
Ta ta for now,
TLL x
PS. message from Mr L: TLL had to lock these away to stop me eating the whole lot! :@)  Will be taking them to work to dilute the waistline expansion.

How much water?!

Now I preface this with I am constantly on a lifestyle change. I’m always trying to be healthier. I feel that we are constantly barraged in life with images of what it is to be “healthy.” Whether its TV/radio ads or talk-shows telling us all about the latest fads. I am not a faddy person, I’m quite straight forward and matter of fact, I have always believed “everything in moderation.” That does not mean I’m always great at getting the balance right, as displayed by my waist line that I always want to be a little smaller, but baby steps… Since living in Texas and its very hot climate, I have tried hard to work towards drinking more water. Hearing so many experts telling us what is the correct amount to drink, it has always baffled me that a lady of 5 ft 4 inches would be told her water intake was to be the same as a 5 ft 11 inches lady (but as my darling Mr L would remind me, science is not my strength.)

Now, shock horror, I am a British gal who does not drink tea. I am quite sure that my passport will be rescinded should the authorities hear of this on unpatriotic grounds. After all we Brits are known for drinking tea; a cup of tea is a cure for all ailments in life if you grow up there (perhaps that is where I have gone wrong!) Even worse, I did not drink coffee until I hit 30, yes and now I like my coffee black and strong and any form of espresso is my go-to (I do not do things by halves – what’s the point?) Recently I have found myself drinking a little more diet soda than I was wanting, and I am well aware that all the hidden sugars are appalling for you; and since Little L was born  I was thinking to myself MUST DO BETTER! I have not eradicated them entirely. I have not gone cold turkey, which might have been my usual approach, but I have vastly cut down and therefore my water intake has increased. I like water but it can get a little dull, so I needed something where I could measure and ensure I was getting enough. Welcome Camelbak – this flask is the bomb! It was an impromptu Target purchase (my Target obsession will be a later blog.) I love it – it is 1000ml, which is great, and I set myself goals to ensure I drink and I am finding that I do. I give myself a little treat when I hit my targets – Yay! Now I’m not going to say I have lost 50 pounds and my skin is that of a 12-year-old, but I am seeing slight improvements. My skin does feel better, I do have more energy, I feel less sluggish and I crave sugar slightly less. I am also finding I want less diet soda and when I drink it, it has lost its appeal and tastes too sweet. I have always loved fizzy water and that is my go-to evening drink on non alcohol nights. I have recently tested the La Croix range and although I can’t say “I’m Crazy In Love” I know they are better for me and if it means I am one step closer to “healthy” (and the Beyoncé body) I’m in.

Any tips for increasing your water intake? Any drinks you love?

Ta ta for now

TLL x