These two items are completely opposite in nature, and that is okay with me!
First the caprese salad, which I am currently quite taken by. It is so simple and quick to make and tastes wonderful. Tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, basil, a drizzle of olive oil, fresh ground pepper and coarse sea salt. Yum!
The second photo shows the ‘best ever chocolate oatmeal no-bake bars’ which I found at mommysavingmom.com. Again, this recipe is quick and simple and delicious. I left out the nuts, raisins or dried cranberries, more for my kids’ sakes than my own, although I would never add raisins anyway. I think dried cranberries would be very good in this though. I did not have quite enough peanut butter, so I used half peanut butter and half almond butter. I have a child who detests peanut butter, so I am waiting with bated breath to see if he will like these bars. Of course, he also is not a big chocolate-lover, so it might not really matter. And these bars are quite chocolaty! I think that I might use even more oats and coconut in the future to cut down on some of that chocolate goodness.
Here is another recipe from Damy Health. I used almond butter instead of the cashew butter, but I don’t think it really made a difference.
My non-chocolate loving son tried one before I got around to making the frosting. He did not like it, which isn’t so surprising since he doesn’t really like chocolate. He said they tasted too healthy. If he only knew!
My daughter tried one without frosting and couldn’t wait for one with frosting.
These brownies are small and rich without being overly sweet. I didn’t pile on the frosting, so there was a fair bit leftover.
Here is another recipe from Elana’s Pantry. I did not have any dried apricots on hand, so I omitted them from my version. My sesame seeds were a mixture of white and black, but I don’t think that made a difference. The recipe was simple to make, and I am pleased with the overall texture and durability of the bread. I thought I had pressed the almonds into the top of the loaf, but most of them fell off in the process of removing the loaf from the pan.
The first slice was good, though a bit bland. I can imagine it being quite delicious with a bit of jam. The bread is dense and satisfying despite its small size.
This is another wheat-free brownie recipe from Elana’s Pantry. I really enjoyed her brownie recipe that I blogged about last month, but that recipe requires an entire jar of almond butter and I am not prepared to go through that much almond butter on a regular basis.
I followed this recipe as it is written, although I would likely try substituting honey for the agave syrup and coconut oil for the grapeseed oil if I were to make it again. The only change I did make this time was to completely ignore the walnuts, because my kids tend to not like nuts in their brownies. I don’t mind nuts in my brownies, so that might be something else I would change-up in the future.
These brownies are very rich and gooey, kind of cake-like. While they are indeed delicious, I think I actually prefer the recipe with the almond butter.
So, my attempt at making a wheat-free shortbread did not go as hoped for. Live and learn!
On the other hand, these brownies are amazing! The recipe comes from Elana’s Pantry, which tends to be reliable when it comes to producing tasty, healthy wheat-free baking. The recipe is simple and easy to make, although it could be a little pricey because you need a lot of almond butter, like almost an entire small jar, which runs around $7-10 around here.
The good news is that this recipe fills a 9×13 pan. Also, you could play with the flavours by using different chocolate chips. I used a combination of white chocolate chips and mint chocolate chips (not exactly the healthy choice but they work well enough for me). I used honey instead of the agave syrup.
I was surprised by how high the batter rose up while baking, and I also found that the brownies required the full 40 minutes of bake time. Even then, I think I could have baked them a bit longer, but the toothpick came out clean, so I pulled them out. They sank quite a bit as they cooled, but they still taste delicious. They are chewy, gooey, and you really don’t miss the flour at all!