Dark Chocolate Chunk Almond Butter Brownies

Happy December Everyone!

I associate the holiday season with rich chocolate desserts more then anything else.  So while others have visions of sugar plums dancing I tend to dream of chocolate waltzing.  Bad joke?  Alright, I’ll stop before I hurt myself.

At the beginning of November I decided to challenge myself and create a few delicious dessert recipes that were decadent yet still moderately healthy treats. Eating well is a lifestyle not a diet which includes clean high quality foods that support your body without leaving you feeling deprived or overwhelmed.  To me, this includes desserts.  You don’t need to have an all or nothing approach when it comes to eating.  Simple swaps and little adjustments can make a big difference in your health and how you look and feel overall.  I created these recipes for my clients and for you, to give you options during the holiday season and beyond. For those of you who are intimidated by baking please note that I am not a baker by any means, I just really like to eat.  It’s also important to me to know what is in my food. These recipes are simple, easy and require minimal skill, ingredients or effort.  My kitchen is literally in a closet and I have zero counter space, yet these recipes still came together beautifully – if I can do it, I have faith that you can too.

First up: Dark Chocolate Chunk Almond Butter Brownies

These dark chocolate chunk brownies are the most perfect dessert that I have ever baked.  Rich, dense, moist and oh so good.  Did I mention that they are gluten free and refined sugar free?!?!

Cue happy dance

This amazing recipe has officially become my go to dessert recipe when I need a sweet treat.

Please note: All of the ingredients that I used when making these little bites of heaven were organic, but I understand that buying organic that can be a little pricey, so just try to keep your ingredients as clean and as high quality as your budget will allow.

Ingredients:

4 madjool dates (pitted and mashed)

1 cup of pure dark maple syrup

1 365g jar of creamy almond butter

2 medium organic eggs

1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk

1/2 cup raw cacao powder

1 heaping tablespoon of chunky almond butter

pinch of pink Himalayan sea salt (or regular sea salt)

1 tsp baking soda

1 cup of organic dark chocolate chunks (minimum 70%) plus some more for the top

What to do:

Pre-heat oven to 320

Line 8 X 8 pan with parchment paper

Beat the maple syrup and dates until creamy (I used a blender for this part to ensure that the dates were completely integrated)

Mix in the creamy almond butter, this will make the mixture extremely thick so slowly add in the almond milk to loosen up the batter and make it easier to mix

Slowly add the eggs

Add raw cacao, baking soda and salt and mix well until fully incorporated

Stir in the chunky almond butter and the chocolate chunks

Pour the batter into pan and top with extra chocolate chunks

Bake for 35 – 40 minutes

If you can resist eating some straight out of the pan before the brownies have cooled you are officially my new hero.  I on the other hand burned the inside of my mouth – it was totally worth it.

Enjoy! XXS

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6 Reasons Why You Should Include Ghee In Your Diet

Ghee has been used for centuries in certain parts of the world but it has only recently become popular in western culture.  Commonly used in Ayurveda it is believed to help purify and cleanse the body.  For those who aren’t familiar with ghee it is clarified butter traditionally made from cows milk that has had the water and milk fats removed.  Nutritionally rich like coconut oil, ghee is a great fat to cook with.  Here are my top six reasons why you should consider adding ghee into your diet:

  1. Ghee has a high smoke point and is very stable to cook with.
  2. Ghee is lactose and casein free which makes is a great fat for people who struggle with digesting lactose.
  3. Ghee helps to support weight loss.  The medium chain fatty acids in ghee help to burn other fats that are in our system, and it is believed that ghee helps to jumpstart our digestive system.
  4. Ghee contains butyric acid which is helpful in maintaining a healthy colon.  Butyric acid has been shown to help people suffering from IBS and Crohn’s disease.
  5. Ghee is rich in fat soluble vitamins A, D and E.  Fat soluble vitamins are vitamins that require fat to be present in order for the body to absorb them.  They help to support various biochemical functions within the body and maintain a healthy metabolism.
  6. Ghee helps to create a more alkalizing environment within the body, which in turn helps to reduce inflammation particularly in the digestive tract.  Chronic inflammation has been linked to many diseases including cancer, arthritis and Alzheimer’s disease so it is important to try to reduce the level of inflammation within the body.

Ghee has a buttery taste that adds great flavour to many dishes.  Remember though- moderation is key. Just because something is good for doesn’t mean that you need to overdo it.

What is your favourite oil to cook with?

I hope that you have a great day!  XXS