Blondies are incredibly easy to make, they’re known as the cake-ier and fluffier counterpart to brownies. If you’re not a big chocolate fan but you love sweet things then you can always switch up the white chocolate that is commonly used in blondies with nuts or caramel. However, the recipe I’m about to share with you incorporates white chocolate and salted caramel all in one *drools*.

Ingredients:

  • 225g melted butter/extra for greasing
  • 150g plain flour
  • 225g caster sugar
  • 225g white chocolate (chopped up)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 pot of caramel sauce
  • rock salt

Method:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180C.
  2. Grease a 20cm square cake tin with butter.
  3. Whilst you are slowly melting the butter in a pan, beat the eggs and sugar in a bowl until the mixture goes pale and fluffy.IMG_9479
  4. Slowly add the melted butter into the mixture, mixing as you go.
  5. Once this has all mixed together, sift in the flour bit by bit, folding as you go with a spoon.
  6. Add the chopped white chocolate to the mix.IMG_9482
  7. Pour the mix into the greased cake tin, ensuring that the white chocolate is evenly spread throughout the mixture.thumb_IMG_9483_1024
  8. Cook for 30 mins.

Topping:

  1. When you take the tin out of the oven, the mix will seem overly risen, but leave the blondie for at least 20 minutes to allow it to cool. IMG_9485
  2. Spread the caramel sauce on top of the blondie (heat up the caramel on the hob if it is too hard to spread) and finish it off with your desired amount of rock salt. I bought my own caramel sauce as Bonne Maman never disappoint, but make your own if you’re feeling creative!IMG_9484
  3. Voila! Cut into sections and you’re ready to go.

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Don’t be fooled by the “chocolate mousse” title, this is a healthy version of your regular chocolate pudding.

Serves: 3

Ingredients:

  • 2 medium sized ripe avocados
  • The zest of one orange
  • The juice of one and a half large oranges
  • 2tbsp honey
  • Either 3tbsp of high quality cocoa and 20g of melted 85% dark chocolate (I’d recommend Green & Black’s dark chocolate) OR if you can’t find a health food shop nearby for good quality cocoa, 2tbsp of good quality hot chocolate powder will do and 40g dark chocolate

You will need:

  • A food blender
  • Three ramekins
  • A fine grater

1. First of all, cut the avocado’s in half and remove the stone. Next, shell out the flesh with a spoon and place into the blender.

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2. Extract the orange juice using a fork or a juicer. Using a grater, grate the zest off of the orange and leave in a separate bowl to place on the chocolate avocado mix at the end.

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3. By now you should have your honey, cocoa (or hot chocolate powder) and orange juice prepared.

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4. Next, add the honey, cocoa or hot chocolate and orange juice, then blend

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4. Once this has blended, melt your dark chocolate by placing it in a glass bowl and putting it on top of a pot full of simmering water – how you would normally melt chocolate! Then drizzle the melted chocolate into the blender and blend. If you want to add more orange, more dark chocolate or more honey to your mix to accommodate your tastebuds then you can experiment with the flavours.

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5. Add the mix into ramekins and add the zest on top of the dessert and leave in the fridge to cool for an hour.

Each serving offers around: 324kcal, 22.6g fat, 30.5g carbohydrate, 12.2g protein, 9.3g fibre

Enjoy!

Oats are always my “go to” when I’m in a rush or needing some comforting warmth. However, when I woke up this morning with a horrendous cold, I knew I had to up my health game, so I cooked myself up a lovely bowl of oats with a nutritional twist.

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Packed full of protein, energy and antioxidants – this 340 calorie breakfast is one for a busy work day or a day when you wake up feeling like you need a health boost, like me!

Oats

Benefits; Slow release energy, filling, good portion of protein and fibre, good for cardiovascular health & lowering cholesterol levels.

100g contains; 389 kcal, 7g fat, 66g carbohydrate, 11.0g fibre, 17g protein

I used 40g

Manuka Honey

Benefits; Proven to be effective in fighting infection – perfect if you’re coming down with a cold.

100g contains; 348 kcal, 0.1g fat, 86.9g carbohydrate, 0.2g fibre, 0.2g protein

I used 1tsp

Pumpkin Seeds

Benefits; Packed full of magnesium, contain a wide variety of nutrients including manganese to copper, protein and zinc. They contain plant compounds known as phytosterols and free-radical scavenging antioxidants, which can give your health an added boost.

100g contains; 618 kcal, 49.1g fat, 10.7g carbohydrate, 6.0g fibre, 30.2g protein

I used 2g

Blueberries

Benefits; Believed to have the highest level of antioxidants of any fruit or vegetable.

100g contains; 57 kcal, 0.3g fat, 14.0g carbohydrate, 2.4g fibre, 0.7g protein

I used 20g

Chia Seeds

Benefits; They’re loaded with antioxidants, they are low carb – almost all the carbs are fibre, they expand in your stomach and keep you fuller for longer, high in quality protein – around 14% of each portion is protein and they are also high in Omega-3 fatty acids.

100g contains; 447 kcal, 35g fat, 4.5g carbohydrate, 37.5g fibre, 20.4g protein

I used 4g

Almond Milk

Benefits; Not only is almond-milk cholesterol free, according to the American Heart Association, monounsaturated fats, such as those found in almond milk, are good for your heart if you substitute them for saturated fats, such as those found in cow’s milk. It’s also low in calories, so it’s good if you’re on a diet.

100ml contains; 24 kcal, 1.1g fat, 3.og carbohydrate, 0.2g fibre, 0.5g protein

I used 200ml

Dried Cranberries

Benefits; I added these more for the sweetness factor that anything else but cranberries are proven to prevent Urinary Tract Infections which can be highly unpleasant and potentially quite dangerous for women in the long run.

100g contains; 347 kcal, 0.7g fat, 82.8g carbohydrate, 3.8g fibre, 0.4g protein

I used 10g

Bananas

Bananas are an excellent source of vitamin B6 and contain moderate amounts of vitamin C, manganese and dietary fibre. Ripe bananas were also found to contain serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine.

100g contains; 89 kcal, 0.3g fat, 23.0g carbohydrate, 2.6g fibre, 1.1g protein

I used 60g

This brekkie is perfect for a cold winter morning and it will keep you going throughout your day!

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So, this has to be my favourite dessert of all time! My mum has made it for me on countless occasions and I have her to thank for this recipe. As opposed to English cheesecakes which are often heavy and thick and made using Philadelphia or other cream cheeses, this cheesecake is whipped full of air and made using low fat quark.

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The final product – berries optional

Ingredients

Base

75g butter

15 digestive biscuits

Filling

5 egg yolks

140g (5oz) vanilla sugar  *make in advance* – Scrape the vanilla out of two vanilla pods into a container with 140g sugar, then mix the vanilla and sugar together, add the used vanilla pods to the sugar mix and leave to infuse.

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Vanilla sugar

1/2 kg (1lb.) quark

1 tablespoon cornflour

5 beaten egg whites

1 tsp. vanilla essence

4-6 oz. berries of your choice to cover the cheesecake (optional)

Nutritional Information: One serving (1/8th) without icing sugar or berries = 263 calories, 33g carbs, 12.4g protein, 9.8g fat

Making the biscuit base

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Cake tin with removable bottom, measuring 23cm wide x 7cm high

  1. Butter up the cake tin until the whole tin is covered. It’s important that you use a cake tin with a removable bottom, so that when it comes to removing the cake from the tin there are no disasters!
  2. Crush 15 digestive biscuits in a plastic bag with a rolling pin or any other kitchen utensil that can do the job. Make sure they are crushed to a fine mixture.
  3. Melt 75g of butter in a pan, make sure it doesn’t boil or burn, then turn the heat off and add the crushed biscuits to the melted butter and mix well until completely blended together.
  4. Pour the biscuit & butter mix into the cake tin and using the bottom of a big spoon, compact the mix into a layer that should be around 1cm thick.
  5. Leave to cool in the fridge for at least an hour.

Making the filling

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees Centigrade.
  2. Cut a section of greaseproof paper that is 14cm high and 74cm wide, then fold it in half length ways and cut it down the middle. This will be used to line the cake tin when the biscuit mix has cooled.
  3. Cream the egg yolks and vanilla sugar until a golden smooth mixture has been made.IMG_7897IMG_7905IMG_7906
  4. Add the quark, cornflour and vanilla essence and whisk thoroughly.
  5. Whisk the egg whites in a separate bowl, if you haven’t already done so, until they become so stiff they can create peaks.
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    Egg white

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    Whisked egg white with stiff peaks

  6. Last of all, add the beaten egg whites by folding it in to the mixture slowly, adding the egg whites bit by bit. Make sure you don’t stir or whisk the egg whites into the mixture, only fold to keep adding air to the mixture – this is what is going to give it it’s fluffy and light texture.
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    Fold in the egg whites with a spatula to add air

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    The finished filling

  7. Take the cooling biscuit base out of the fridge. Line the circumference of the tin with the greaseproof paper, ensuring that the waxy side is facing inwards. Place the greaseproof paper on top of the biscuit base so it is resting. Don’t push the greaseproof paper in between the biscuit base and the tin and don’t leave a gap between the greaseproof paper and the tin. Make sure your greaseproof paper pieces overlap by at least 1-2cm to ensure that the cake mixture won’t stick to the tin.IMG_7916
  8. Pour the mixture into the cake tin on top of the biscuit base, making sure that the sides don’t collapse or move.
  9. Bake at 180 degrees Centigrade for 45 minutes. IMG_7921.jpgIMG_7922
  10. Take out and leave to cool for half an hour minimum. Don’t be alarmed, it will come out absolutely huge and probably looking a little charred on the top. However, you must leave the cheesecake to cool for at least half an hour. In this time it will deflate to around half the size and the “burnt” looking topping won’t taste burnt at all.IMG_7907
  11. Add around 3 -4 handfuls of berries if you wish, we used mixed berries but you can use whatever you want. The sour berry flavours compliment the sweetness of the cheesecake, you could even be adventurous and make a raspberry coulis which would also work wonderfully as a sauce to accompany the cheesecake. IMG_7935.jpg
  12. Finally, dust over some icing sugar to finish off the cake.
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    Delicious!