Black Forest Biscotti

Are you someone who likes camping? I’m definitely not. But I know lots of folks dig it (for some reason), and portable foods to bring along are a must. These fall into that category: an easy-to-take-with-you, allergen-friendly recipe that kids’ll love for those times when they’re attending camp during these (finally) warmer months!

For National Allergen Month, I’m celebrating again with So Delicious Dairy Free to create a top 8 allergen-free, vegan recipe that everyone will love whether they’re away on the campgrounds or not. These fit the bill: they have a double dose of chocolate, are studded with dried cherries, and have an underlying creaminess from the Culinary Coconut Milk. They’re inspired by black forest cake (my favourite), which, of course, definite coincides with the great outdoors. (Get it? Forest?)

You can see my last celebration with So Delicious here, with my Banana-Tahini Caramel-Chocolate Pudding Pie.

One more thing: So Delicious Dairy Free has a cool campaign going on until May 12th called the #140Difference – The World’s Shortest Grant Application. They’re seeking people toTweet/Facebook/Instagram them their ideas for projects that protect the earth and animals, as well as ideas/programs that support those with food allergies or plant based eaters. The  best part? They’re giving away $30,000 over 3 weeks, granting awards daily. You can check out more here.

Biscotti are one of my favourite things to make–second only to cake–and these are among my top picks (hello, chocolate). They’re freezer-friendly, too, if you want to double the batch, but I can tell you they probably won’t last very long.

So Delicious - Black Forest Biscotti

Black Forest Biscotti

 

1 cup sorghum flour
1/2 cup teff flour
1/3 cup tapioca flour
1/3 unsweetened cocoa powder, preferably dark
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
1/4 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup So Delicious Original Culinary Coconut Milk, plus more as needed (about 2 tablespoons)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/3 cup nondairy chocolate chunks
1/3 cup dried cherries (tart or sweet)
1/3 cup nondairy mini chocolate chips
2 teaspoons coconut oil

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Put the sorghum flour, teff flour, tapioca flour, baking soda, xanthan gum, and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk well to combine.

Put the brown sugar, 1/2 cup of the culinary coconut milk, and the vanilla extract in large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer. Using a handmixer or the stand mixer, beat until well combined. Add the flour mixture. Beat until the mixture begins to stick together (it might take a couple minutes), adding up to 2 tablespoons additional culinary coconut milk, as needed. Turn off the mixture and use your hands to mix in the dried cherries and chocolate chunks. The mixture will be stiff.

Transfer the mixture to the baking sheet. Divide it in half, and form each half into a log, about 3 inches wide, 8 inches long, and 1 inch high. Bake for about 30 minutes, until the top is firm to the touch. Let cool 10 minutes. Using a sharp knife, cut the logs into 1-inch slices.

Lower the temperature of the oven to 300 degrees F. Put each slice on the baking sheet, cut-side down. Bake for 15 minutes. Turn the slice over so the other cut side is on the baking sheet. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, until firm to the touch. The biscotti will continue to harden as it cools. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Once the biscotti is cool, put the nondairy chocolate chips and coconut oil in a small bowl. Microwave on 30 second intervals, stirring in between each one, until the chocolate has melted. Use a fork to drizzle the mixture over the top of the cooled biscotti. Cool completely before serving or storing.

(Disclosure statement: I received monetary compensation and free product coupons from So Delicious Dairy-Free for taking part in this campaign. I only, however, promote and partner with companies I love and use regularly in my own kitchen. As always, all opinions and recommendations expressed are completely my own.)

Roasted Green Bean and Arugula Salad with Cherry Vinaigrette

Still picking those last-of-the-season cherries? Think past dessert and try this vinaigrette instead. They add just the right amount of sweetness to the smokiness of the roasted green beans (which, by the way, are also great on the grill).

salad-1

Roasted Green Bean and Arugula Salad with Cherry Vinaigrette

For the vinaigrette:
2/3 cup pitted cherries
Juice from 1/2 a lemon
Zest from 1 small orange
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 to 2 teaspoons agave nectar
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
Fine sea or Himalayan salt to taste
Fresh ground pepper to taste

For the green beans: 
1 pound green beans, trimmed and cut in half
2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
Sprinkle fine sea or Himalayan salt
Sprinkle of fresh ground pepper

For the salad:
12 ounces baby arugula
1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons hemp seeds

To prepare the vinaigrette, put all the ingredients in a blender or food processor and whizz until smooth. Add additional agave nectar if you’d like it sweeter. Refrigerate until needed.

For the green beans, preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Put the  green beans on a baking sheet and toss with the olive oil. Sprinkle with the garlic powder, salt and pepper. Bake for about 15 minutes, stirring halfway, until the green beans begin to brown and becoming tender. Remove from the oven and set aside.

Put the arugula and onion in a large serving bowl. Toss with the green beans. Add the vinaigrette — you may not use it all, just use how much you’d like. Taste for seasonings then sprinkle with hemp seeds. Serve at room temperature.

salad 3

Summer Squash Stuffed with Cherries, Rice and Pecans

Adding fruit to savory dishes is one of my favourite ways to use them; they add a pleasant sweetness, which plays well with the neutral taste of summer squash. The stuffing mixture also works well in peppers and eggplants, or on its own as a salad (sautéing the leeks first).

Summer Squash2

Summer Squash Stuffed with Cherries, Rice, and Pecans

1 cup brown/wild rice mix
2 large summer squash or zucchini (about 1 foot long)
1/2 cup pecan pieces, toasted
1 cup pitted cherries, chopped
2/3 cup chopped leek greens
2 tablespoons fresh thyme
Fine sea or Himalayan salt to taste
Freshly ground pepper to taste

Make rice according to package directions. You can do this step in advance.

Meanwhile, using a melon baller, hollow out summer squash or zucchini. Reserve innards for another use (like the Fruit-Infused Ratatouille). Place squash or zucchini on a baking sheet.

When rice is finished, preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Mix the pecans, cherries, leeks, and thyme with the rice, adding salt and pepper to taste. Scoop the mixture into the squash and zucchini.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the squash and zucchini are soft, leeks are tender, and the cherries begin to omit juices. Serve warm or at room temperature.