In the last six months my hubby, Paul, has had some belly issues. He had some pretty bad pain for a while there, bad enough that he took himself off to the docs to get checked out (that’s really saying something!). After a few tests and pokes and prods they came back and let us know that he’s just fine but more than likely has irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Maybe that’s the answer they give you when they don’t know what else to say? Anyway, he’s been trying to eat a little healthier to help with this issue, which suits me just fine.
So, when Weet-Bix contacted me and asked if we’d like to try their new Gluten Free Weet-Bix it sounded like the perfect fit. You see Paul has eaten Weet-Bix for breakfast for as long as I’ve known him (that’s almost ten years now). But lately he’s been eating fruit instead and he really misses his cereal fix in the mornings.
Since our goodie pack has arrived I’ve been eating Gluten Free Weet-Bix for breakfast on my work days with milk and a sliced banana – it’s a perfect quick breakfast on a busy morning. I can honestly say that if I wasn’t told that it was a different product, I wouldn’t notice any difference in taste to the good old Weet-Bix that I’ve been eating since I was a kid. It’s slightly darker looking in colour, but otherwise, same-same!
I decided to put this Gluten Free Weet-Bix to the test and use it to make a Weet-Bix Slice. Do you remember this slice from your childhood? I do! This recipe is SUPER easy to make. Just don’t do what I did and travel in a hot car for an hour before serving it to party guests on a hot Aussie afternoon. Keep it chilled until serving time, mmmkay?
Gluten Free Weet-Bix Slice
For the slice:
1/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup rice malt syrup
125g unsalted butter, melted
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
1 cup coconut flour
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1 cup crushed Gluten Free Weet-Bix ( 4 Weet-Bix)
For the topping:
100g milk chocolate
100g dark chocolate
1 tablespoon coconut oil
Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celcius. Grease and line a slice tin.
Combine all the slice ingredients in a bowl then press into the prepared tin. Bake for 20 minutes.
Melt the chocolate and coconut oil in a bowl over a pan of simmering water until smooth. Pour over the cooled base and refrigerate until set. Cut into squares using a hot knife and serve.
Gluten Free Weet-Bix is made from sorghum grains, an ancient grainthat originated in north-eastern Africa.It has all the usual benefits of Weet-bix, it’s low in sugar, high in carbohydrates, a great source of fibre, Vitamins B1, B2 and B3, high iron AND it’s gluten free. It’s available from all supermarkets right now.
I’m still trying to change my ways with food and sugar. It’s a long process after a life time of eating lots of sweet things, always eating dessert and constant yo-yo dieting to fight the impact of all the sugar, fat and large serves. I will admit that last weekend I made a proper, hardcore, old school chocolate caramel slice. I made it to take to my nephews birthday party because it’s my very favourite party food. I ate about threesix eight squares in one day. Small squares! Party sized squares! But still. That’s a lot of sugar and butter in one go. I felt like I had a hangover the next day. And now my pants are a little tight. Ugh!
With the support of my friend and nutrition super star, Tatum, from Make It Look Easy, I’m trying to quit with the dieting, stop overeating and follow an 80-20 style of living. 80% of the time is all the good stuff, 20% of the time I enjoy socialising and sipping a champagne or sharing party food or a sweet-something after dinner. Perhaps eight slices of caramel slice is a little more than the 20% accounts for… but baby steps, right?
With this health focus in mind (and inspired by the blogging adventures of Katie 180) I’ve been playing with recipes to see how I can modify them and pump them with a little more nutrition. That’s how this Peanut Butter Choc Chia Slice was born! Here’s the low down on the ingredients:
I love oat-y things – porridge, muesli, oat biscuit and slices. So it makes sense that any baking I do includes oats. They are packed full of goodness (go Google ‘oats nutrition’ if you want nutrition info, I’m no nutritionist).
I only have white flour in the pantry at the moment, so I used that but it’s such a small amount in this recipe that that’s all good. If you have any in your pantry you could substitute with your flour of choice (wholemeal, almond, coconut etc).
I have been given some organic rice malt syrup to try out, thanks to Pureharvest, and decided to throw that in instead of sugar. But if you’ve got sugar, use sugar! Just use a little less of it than a traditional recipe calls for (eg. the half a cup in this recipe is fine).
I used natural, smooth peanut butter, which is awesome for baking. It gives a fab peanuty flavour. I will admit it’s not going to give you that stuff-of-your-childhood-sugar-salt-peanut hit on your toast in the morning, but my taste buds are adjusting to it.
I used 70% dark chocolate and cut it up into small pieces, instead of my usual milk chocolate chips. The more intense flavour of the chocolate is delish against the peanuty oaty goodness of the slice.
Chia seeds! Cos they be a super food, yo! Um, yeah, go Google ‘chia seeds nutrition’ for more info on that.
Peanut Butter Choc Chip Chia Slice
1 1/2 (150g) cups rolled oats
1/2 (75g) cup plain flour
1 (3g) teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 (15g) Tablespoons chia seeds
1/4 cup coconut oil
1/2 (180g) cup rice malt syrup
2 eggs, lightly beaten
3/4 cup (200g) natural peanut butter
1 teaspoon (3g) vanilla extract
70g dark chocolate, cut into small pieces
Preheat oven to 180 degrees C (350 degrees F). Grease and line a medium slice tin. Mine is 30cm x 15 cm and 3cm deep.
In a medium bowl, stir in the oats, flour, baking powder and chia seeds.
In a separate microwave safe bowl, melt the coconut oil in the microwave until it’s runny (but not hot) then stir in the rice malt syrup, eggs, peanut butter, vanilla and chocolate. Combine with the oats and flour mixture.
Press the slice mixture into the prepared tin and bake in the oven for approximately 15-20 minutes, or until golden.
Allow to cool for five minutes before removing from the tin and cooling completely on a wire rack (or stuff some in your face while it’s still warm!). Cut into bite sized pieces and store in the freezer for healthy baked treats on demand (dude, defrost that before you eat it).
The good news is that if you eat more of this stuff and less of the gooey, sugary caramel slices you will fit in to your pants. And that’s important for wellbeing and happiness and a reduction in wardrobe tantrums. It’s a proven fact.
You can catch up on my previous ‘Finding My Style’ posts here:
Happy birthday to me! It was my birthday on Friday and to celebrate I made this delicious Pineapple, Lime and Coconut Cake. I chose it because it’s a little bit light but still moist and sweet.
Birthdays are a time for reflection, and I found myself thinking of Ryan a lot. It’s almost two months since he passed away. He’s never going to get another birthday, he’s never going to see another of his children’s birthdays. I tried not to get caught up in my own melancholy too much. I tried to be grateful for those birthdays that Ryan did have.
I was very lucky to have lots of family visiting and sharing my birthday with me. We shared chicken and chips and kept it simple. I’ve been given not one, not two but three vouchers for amazing spa treatments, which are just what I need right now :) I’m very grateful for those!
I’m also grateful that my mum and dad made me all those years ago and that I survived being born nine weeks early. I’m grateful to all my parents, all four of them, and the role they each continue to play in my life.
I’m grateful for lunches with friends.
I’m grateful for bunches of bright, happy flowers.
I’m grateful for pineapple. And lime. And coconut.
Pineapple, Lime and Coconut Cake
adapted from Weight Watchers Magazine, November 2013
100g butter or low fat spread
1/2 cup (110g) caster sugar
2 tsp finely grated lime zest
440g can crushed pineapple
2 cups (300g) self raising flour
200g light cream cheese
1 Tablespoon icing sugar
1 teaspoon coconut essence
1 Tablespoon shredded coconut, toasted
Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
Lightly spray a 20cm round cake tin with oil and line the base with baking paper.
Beat the sugar, butter/spread and lime in a bowl until light and fluffy.
And the eggs, one at a time, beating well.
Drain the pineapple, saving 1/2 cup to add to the cake mixture.
Add the pineapple and 1/2 cup juice to the cake mixture then gently fold in the flour.
Pour the mix into the tin and bake for 40-45 minutes.
For the icing: Beat the cream cheese, icing sugar and coconut essence until light and fluffy. Spread over the cooled cake and sprinkle with the toasted coconut.
What are you grateful for? Share with me using the hashtag #52weeksofgrateful on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. Or leave a comment below.
In honour of my brother Ryan, I welcome Bekka from Just for Daisy and her guest post about one of Ryan’s great passions in life – CAKE!
Cake is something we do a lot of around here. Miss Daisy (3.5yo) shares my passion for baking and is becoming quite independent in the kitchen. She’ll confidently crack eggs, measure flour and pour milk without assistance. So we bake several times a week. Understandably, the more people we can dish it out to the better! Usually we’ll send almost all that we’ve made off to our neighbours and keep a small serve for ourselves… much better on the hips that way!
One of our latest favourites has been Strawberry and Apple Crumble Cake. The combination of the sweet fresh strawberries, tart apples and the crumbly topping is divine! And this cake can be whipped to perfection and taste just like a white chocolate mud cake… yes, that smooth.
Strawberry and Apple Crumble Cake
200g butter, chopped, room temperature
3/4 cup caster sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs, room temperature
1 cup self raising flour
1 cup plain flour
3/4 cup milk
1 apple, sliced thinly
1/2 cup plain flour
1/4 cup brown sugar
Cream butter, sugar and vanilla in food processor or with electric beaters until creamy and pale. Lots!
Add eggs one at a time and process ’til smooth.
In a separate bowl combine flours. Fold in butter mixture and milk.
Spoon batter into a greased/lined springform pan. Smooth the top.
Arrange apple slices on top. Then strawberries. I like to push some strawberries into the batter so you’ll see them when the cake is cut! :)
In a small bowl crumble the butter into flour with your hands until fine. Add brown sugar and stir well.
Sprinkle the sugar mix evenly over cake.
Bake in preheated 180’C oven for 1 hour or until a skewer comes our clean. Cool in pan then transfer to a wire rack or plate!
You will not be disappointed with this cake… and I bet it would taste equally wonderful with other fresh berries or even without them as a delicious Apple Crumble Cake!
Here are some of our other favourite cake recipes that you will enjoy: