Almond Choc Chip Balls

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May 032016
 

Russell Hobbs

A few weeks ago I picked up a few big bags of almond meal at an excellent price, ready for plenty of cooking, baking and of course eating with the kids in the school holidays (calories don’t count when you’re on holidays right?). During term I have to abide by the school’s no-nut policy so it was nice to be able to cook whatever we wanted for a change. These were two of our favourite creations, both made in the Russell Hobbs Colour Control Multi-Processor:

Raw Almond Bliss Balls

Almond Choc Chip Balls

1 2/3 cup Natural Almond Meal (Blanched is OK too but natural is slightly healthier)
2 tbsp Virgin Coconut Oil (Melted)
3 Medjool Dates
1/4 tsp Himalayan Pink Rock Salt
1/4 tsp Bicarb Soda
1/2 tsp Organic Vanilla Bean Paste
3 tbsp Dark Choc Chips

Russell HobbsTo make my super easy Almond Choc Chip Balls I set up my Colour Control Food Processor with the titanium coated blades and added all the ingredients except for the choc chips. Using speed 3 (Blending) I combined the lot to create a mixture that appears very crumbly but will stick together when you squeeze it, this will take about 30 seconds. Toss in the choc chips and give it a quick whizz to combine, but not actually chop the chocolate.

Using your hands press the ‘dough’ together to create 12 yummy Almond Choc Chip Balls, when made by little kids’ hands they may not be perfectly round but they’re just as tasty. Pop them on a plate and in the fridge to firm up. Enjoy!

Raweo

Raweos
Raw ‘Biscuits’
1/2 cup Natural Almond Meal
1/2 cup Organic Coconut Flour
4 medjool dates, pitted
4 tbsp Virgin Coconut Oil (Melted)
1/4 cup Raw Organic Cacao Powder
1/4 tsp Queens Vanilla Bean Powder
Pinch of Himalayan Pink Rock Salt

Raw Filling
1/2 cup Coconut Butter (Make it yourself like I did or save time and buy ready-made)
2 tbsp Coconut Cream
2 tsp Maple Syrup
Pinch of Queens Vanilla Bean Powder

For several months I have been wanting to try my hand at some homemade Raweos (a healthy take on the famous Oreo cookie), they look so good and very indulgent. There are lots of different Raweo recipes available online so I mixed and matched a little to create a recipe that would work with the ingredients I had in my pantry and fridge already.

Raweo Processor

Making the biscuit layers was a simple food processor job (speed 3, blending), initially I thought the mixture was too crumbly but once compressed it was just sticky enough. I placed the biscuit mix on a tray between two layers of baking paper and rolled it with a rolling pin to create a nice slab for easy cutting. The outside of the slab was quite crumbly so I picked up the loose crumbs and added them to the middle, then rolled the slab again until the whole slab was sticking together. I was able to cut enough shapes for 11 sandwich biscuits (22 halves). Pop your tray in the fridge so the biscuits can firm up a little.

Raweo Biscuit

As I did not have ready-made coconut butter on hand to use for the sandwich filling I decided to make my own, it’s definitely cheaper than using store-bought but also a lot more time consuming. Lots of food bloggers say that many food processors tend to struggle with small quantities so I used twice the amount of coconut flakes, that way the blending would be easier and I could use the left-overs for another recipe.

Coconut Flakes

Blend, scrape down the sides, blend again, scrape down the sides, blend more, scrape down the sides, you have to be patient but eventually the dry flakes will transform into a paste that resembles a thick and creamy peanut butter. This could well take around 10 minutes or even longer, depending on your processor, the quantity you are working with etc. As you can see my huge processing bowl full of coconut flakes eventually looked a lot emptier, great to see my food processor was up to the task.

Coconut Butter

To my freshly made coconut butter I added the remaining ingredients and blended them in the processor to make my biscuit filling. All that is left is to sandwich the biscuit together with the filling and your raweos are ready. I was really pleased by how they turned out and they looked really special, perfect for a birthday or to serve to guests with a nice drink.

Note: Quite some time went into making these yummy raweos (mainly due to me making my own coconut butter) so I think next time I would make a double batch, just to make my efforts more worthwhile. They were absolutely delicious so my hungry tribe gobbled them up in no-time, that’s the downside of having such a big family!

Mar 152016
 

Russell Hobbs

A few weeks ago I made the mistake no one on a diet should make: I went to the supermarket on an empty stomach. I admit it took some self control but I made the (diet)wise decision to pass the confectionary aisle and picked up something from the health food section instead. I decided on a nice ‘raw coconut rough’ superfood bar which turned out to be absolutely delicious but sadly also very expensive…

As I sat in the car slowly enjoying my special treat I studied the packaging and read it only had 7 ingredients. It got me thinking that if I could source those ingredients I could try and replicate the same product at home so it would be more suited to our family budget. I found all the ingredients at my local supermarket and health food store (bulk is the way to go with a large family!) and got out my Russell Hobbs food processor.

Russell HobbsThe high gloss Russell Hobbs Colour Control Multi-Processor (RRP $149.95, 850W) with stainless steel finishes is a stylish and versatile kitchen appliance designed for chopping, shredding, grating, whisking, whipping, blending and beating. It comes with a large 1.7 litre processing bowl, 1.5 litre blending jug and a range of accessories to help you take your homecooking from simple to chef.

Raw Coconut Rough Russell Hobbs

To make my Raw Coconut Rough I used the extra strong titanium coated blades (much harder than uncoated stainless steel) to easily cut through and chop the coconut flakes. The processor has four different speed settings to suit all your prepping needs and you can see by the colour of the handy light-up ring which setting the machine is on, to get my mixture to the right consistency I used a combination of speed 3 (blending) and P (chopping, processing).

Raw Coconut Rough Slice

The only downside of making my own snacks in my food processor is that it does take a bit of washing up. You have to take all the pieces apart for a thorough clean (by hand or dishwasher) afterwards, so the best way to make the dishes worthwhile is by making a few big batches at the same time. After making my Raw Coconut Rough I also made a batch of Raw Almond Bliss Balls, hubby and the kids go crazy for these.

Raw Coconut Rough

The Russell Hobbs Colour Control Multi Processor comes with a generous 2-year warranty for extra peace of mind.

To find out more about Russell Hobbs, to browse the range and to locate a stockist near you visit www.russellhobbs.com.au.

Here’s my homemade Raw Coconut Rough recipe and the products/brands I used:

Raw Coconut Rough

  • 4 tbsp Raw Organic Cacao Powder (Power Super Foods)
  • 1 tbsp Raw Organic Lucuma Powder (Loving Earth)
  • 3 tbsp Raw Organic Coconut Oil
  • 1/2 tsp Organic Vanilla Bean Paste (Queen Fine Foods)
  • 3 heaped cups Coconut Flakes (try the ‘bin’ section at your health food store for best value)
  • 15 Medjool Dates (pitted)
  • pinch of Himalayan Pink Rock Salt

With the measuring part done the rest is smooth sailing, just throw everything in your food processor and blitz to combine (there should be no big coconut flakes left!). It may take a while to come together and don’t forget to scrape down the sides from time to time. Once everything is combined it may still look a bit crumbly, but if you can squeeze it and it stays together well it will work.

Line a large baking tray with baking paper with plenty of baking paper hanging over on the side. Place your mixture on the baking paper and fold the ‘overhanging’ baking paper over the top. I used a rolling pin to flatten the mixture and smooth it to cover the entire tray, my slab was about 7-8mm thick but obviously there may be some variances. Pop your tray in the freezer for an hour or so.

Your raw coconut rough slab should now be quite solid and not as sticky so it is very easy to cut. I cut mine in little bars weighing approx. 30g each. Remember that due to the dates the sugar content is quite high even though they are natural sugars, so you don’t want to make your bars much bigger than this. I feel this is the perfect size and chocolatey snack to keep me going. Keep in the fridge, enjoy!

Jun 072015
 

Russell Hobbs

While Mother’s Day was weeks ago and the celebrations may seem like a distant memory (my children’s promise not to argue has long been forgotten!) I am still enjoying some Mother’s Day treats every day. I have told you before that I am not a big fan of Mother’s Day gifts that are only useful for boring chores, like a new vacuum or iron, and prefer a little luxury myself. Lucky for me I was I was very spoiled with a practical AND luxurious gift that makes a daily task easier with very little effort:

Russell Hobbs Aston

This season Russell Hobbs has come to the table with the super stylish stainless steel Aston collection perfect for a modern family kitchen, meet the Aston Toaster and the Aston Kettle.

Russell Hobbs Aston ToasterAs soon as I laid eyes on the Aston 4-slice Motorised Toaster (RRP $149.95) I packed up our old, rattly, dented toaster and banned it to the trash pile. Finally a nice, large toaster that enables me to make toast for all 4 kids at once, it even has extra long slots to allow for odd sized bread (you know the yummy artisan loaves that never fit!).  Of course the bigger capacity does mean a larger footprint on your kitchen bench but it looks so good I don’t mind leaving it on display.

Our old toaster, which served us well for quite a few years, had become increasingly unreliable. Sometimes bread would burn, other times it would be pretty much cold. Toast would get stuck or only come up half way. The knobs were wobbly and would hang in between settings. The Aston Toaster on the other hand has a beautiful illuminated digital display with countdown timer that tells you exactly how long is left for your perfect slice of toast.

Aston

The fact that the toaster is motorised (yet not noisy) means there is no need for rattly knobs, simply select the toast button and the breads goes down automatically, once ready a beep will sound to let you know the toast is coming up again. Other handy functions include a defrost setting, a wholemeal/multigrain and setting and even a crumpet setting, whichever your choice of breakfast Aston will toast it evenly and to perfection every single time.

Russell Hobbs toaster

The Aston 4-slice Motorised Toaster comes with a generous 2-year warranty for extra peace of mind.

To find out more about Russell Hobbs, to browse the range and to locate a stockist near you visit www.russellhobbs.com.au.

Russell Hobbs – Colour Control Blender

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May 022014
 

Russell Hobbs

These lazy Easter holidays were fun while they lasted but now it’s time to get back into the school routine. With four young children (5 years and under) our mornings are usually quite hectic, they all still need help with getting dressed, making/eating breakfast and packing bags so it’s a race against the clock to get the twins to school on time. I’m always on the hunt for ways to make the morning rush less stressful, here’s my latest discovery that reduces our breakfast time (and mess) dramatically.

Russell Hobbs Blender

Like most people I used to make the kids toast for breakfast, it sounds quick but it is actually quite time consuming and messy. Our very unreliable 4-slice toaster is rather temperamental (we call it moody), toasting results are never the way you want them so it takes a few shots and we need 2 rounds of four slices to feed the tribe. Then I need to butter the toast (three with normal margarine, one with dairy free spread), cut it in kids sized portions and serve it on plates. To be honest I don’t know why I bother with plates because more crumbs end up on the ground than on the plate. Some of the kids pick, pull and peck, leaving the crusts, others take half an hour to eat half a slice. I won’t even start on the simple cup of milk that goes with the toast!

Breakfast Smoothie

Putting the fast back in breakfast

Since we’ve swapped our toast for smoothies breakfast is finally breakFAST. The Russell Hobbs Colour Control Blender ($99.95) has a huge 1,5 litre glass jug which is perfect for a big family like ours. We have tried lots of different smoothies during the holidays but this breakfast drink is by far our favourite: Fill the jug with delicious almond milk, some ripe bananas (fresh or frozen), a few weetbix and some probiotic powder and combine it all on Speed 2, specifically created for making perfect smoothies. It’s quick, simple, healthy (and suitable for all our kids), incredibly tasty and they slurp it up in a flash!

Colour Control Light RingAs part of the Russell Hobbs Colour Control range the blender is fitted with the unique Colour Control technology. The ring around the base lights up in four different colours, each representing a different speed suitable for a particular food type: Speed 1/Blue is ideal for purees (very handy for making baby food), Speed 2/Purple is perfect for our smoothies, Speed 3/Green is the go-to speed for soups and Speed P (Pulse)/Red crushes ice.

Of course this is just a guide, there are plenty of other food types you can make in your blender like cakes mixes and cocktails, dips and marinades, milkshakes and mayonnaise and much more. I love relaxing with a yummy mixed berry milkshake on a Saturday evening, much healthier, faster and cheaper than getting a take-away version!

Obviously I like the sleek and modern gloss black base and stainless steel details but the Colour Control Blender is more than just a pretty ‘jacket’, it has a powerful and reliable 850 watt motor and features strong and durable titanium coated two-tip blades that stay sharper for longer and offer excellent blending performance on all speeds. I also appreciate the strong suction caps at the bottom that keep the blender in place so you don’t need to hold it and kids can’t easily pull it off the bench. Priced at $99.95, and backed with a generous 2 year warranty, I think it is great value for money and a perfect choice for families who want the convenience of a good quality blender to make quick and healthy meals and snacks but don’t want to spend a fortune on yet another kitchen appliance.

Russell Hobbs Colour Control Blender

To find out more about Russell Hobbs, to browse the range and to locate a stockist near you visit www.russellhobbs.com.au.