Man-thing and I went bright and early for a little 4km power walk this morning, with him trailing pitifully behind (for once) moaning about a “hangover” from marking students’ papers. I, however, was enjoying myself immensely up and down the streets, making all the dogs behind bars very jealous. We missioned to the shops on the other side of town thereafter, and I spend close to R1,000 on food stuffs. :s Cacao, rye flour, nutritional yeast, chia seeds…it’s a veritable feast-to-be, all potential and delight. My bank account is still whimpering, however. Still! I’m trying to sell our exercise bike so I can convert the under-the-stairs cupboard into a second pantry – I think after a year of solid cooking and baking I’ve proved to myself that, no matter the lack of 100% success, this is the best and most long-term hobby I could ever have plunged into. Hurrah!
To celebrate life and pumpkin, I ended up making Chocolate Covered Katie’s pumpkin bars. I had just enough for the 1/2 cup pumpkin puree left over from making her crust-less pumpkin pie….basically I was stuck on the pumpkin tab for a long, long time!
Shockingly, very few, if any changes were made! I did use the apple sauce eventually instead of the oil, I used rye flour, because that’s my new thing for baking. SO squishy and fluffy and HOMG! When it came out of the oven I was all sceptical because it doesn’t look much like Katie’s on the face of it, but if I had zero self-control and there were zombies at the door, this is what I would eat.
ALSO!!! I finally went wild and bought egg replacer, since Chia seeds aren’t reliable in the stores as a product, and flax eggs make me feel funny. This, THIS! I added a TBSP with two TBSPs water for the egg and it fluffed like a whisked egg! White! Fluffy! I am so utterly delighted! I was squealing and carrying on downstairs in the kitchen to such a degree that Man-thing even send down some very knowing comments, so tolerant is he of this sort of nonsense. Anyway, amazing. Had to share. Yes. I foresee the ability to make various shiny stuffs, and perhaps even Man-thing’s most secret favourite thing…macaroons!
Oh, what’s that deliciousness atop the glory, you ask?
Saddle up! I’ve made my first proper cashew cream cheese frosting. Yessir!
1/2 cup cashews, soaked for a while (I used boiling water and cut it down to 1 hour of sogginess)
1 TBSP agave
1 TBSP coconut oil
1 TBSP almond butter
1 tsp vanilla essence
Blended…and blended some more…and then scraped down…and blended more! It’s so amazing, delicately sweet, and I can just visualize all the goodies I’m going to sliver this over – figs, chai-infused rye muffins…even oven crisped eggplant slices, because why not, ask I?
I did keep it in the freezer for 10 minutes or so, but impatience got the best of me yet again. Still, I expect these will be even *better* tomorrow!
Man-thing was my tester for this, as I was taking snaps, and before I next knew, all three slices were gone! He is delighted to the core! He was swooning this much over the over day’s upside down strawberry bites, which he finished in less than two days (mind you, there were 18 of those bites!). Ergo, I can safely say it is something that others will enjoy. The portions (or at least, how I cut it – I suck at measuring out slices/numbers) are rather on the flimsy side for South Africans, so they can get 2-3 as a little bite. Still, success! Loving life now to the maximum through food, even if I get moments of high aggression in the kitchen :p *shameface*