Yes, that’s right. Homemade Nutella – with beets instead of nasties. The Nutella advert always annoys me – insinuating that it is great for kids as it is made with mainly hazelnuts and cocoa powder when it is really mainly sugar and oil. Not for my kids.
This one, however, really is actually filled with nuts and cocoa, as well as beets! No emulsifiers or added fat. So if you smear a bit on your toast you get a bit of veg and healthy nuts. Yay! It’s so rich and delicious that I’d even use it as icing.
This is really easy to make – particularly if you buy de-skinned hazelnuts. If not, after roasting them, I found the easiest way to remove the skins was to rub them, still warm, between two damp microfibre cloths. It wasn’t a huge job, but if you can avoid it you might as well. Puree the nuts and beetroot as long as you can to get it smooth, but since this is homemade, don’t expect it to be quite as plastic-smooth as store-bought.
Excuse me kale, budge up a bit, will you? Cauliflower is taking its place on the front row now. All glamorous, with its leaves hiding a goodness-riddled, brain-shaped (shhhh, whisper it:) superfood, like a burlesque dancer hidden behind her big raunchy feathers.
Home from the vegetable market, I unfurled my knobbly white pearl and obviously my first thoughts were: 1950s-style bundt cake! Who wouldn’t associate the two?
Cauliflower goes surprisingly well with a number of sweet-associated flavours: almond, chocolate(!), nutmeg… so putting it into a cake isn’t a completely wild idea. As ever, the vegetable taste melts into the background and it gives nutrients, structure and moistness (seriously, will someone please come up with a suitable synonym for moist).
I’ve had some pretty rubbish lattes lately. Shamefully, I made them myself at home with instant coffee and microwaved skinny milk.
I’m so sorry, coffee. You deserve much more love than I give you. We had those two messy breakups when I had people growing inside me and I turned to the warm embrace of hot chocolate, but now we’re foolishly back together and I’ve already grown bored of your superficial charms.
So I’m looking for something new. Something warming and creamy and not chocolatey. Something made with veg.
The blogosphere already vaguely introduced me to Korean sweet potato lattes but they were never in my thoughts at the same time as my potato cupboard (yeah, I have one of those: a wicker basket on the shelf below my 97 bags of different flours. It’s a dark cupboard. I found an old tuber of unidentifiable parentage trying to escape from it last week with its newly-grown spindly horror legs).
This is a vibrant take on traditional apple pie. The kale flavour cooks out of the pastry and leaves an amazing colour in this sweet, subtle lemon crust.
Everyone has a preferred type of apple pie filling: big chunks, thin slices… For this one the cooking apples stay chunky while the eating apples melt into applesauce giving a nice difference in texture. Feel free to slice the apples however you wish to get your desired filling. We’re all friends here and I believe there is a law that you must only like apple pie how your mother made it. She will, however, forgive you for messing with the pastry and be proud of you for eating your greens.
Carrot cakes tend to be spicy and autumnal with cinnamon and nuts, but I’m desperate to see the first glimpse of spring so I’ve made these carrot cupcakes light and bright with a citrus tang. Carrots are probably the least curious of the vegetables to go into desserts so these cupcakes won’t surprise anyone quite as much as pea and lemon cupcakes or spinach pastry, but they will surely be pleased with the moist texture and unusual, refreshing take on carrot cake. Grating the carrot finely will ensure that lovely bright colour and smoother texture of the cake.