Vegan recipes

Hey everyone, I was on holiday for a couple of weeks therefore posts were few and far between however I am back and am overly excited for this one. Taking some time out of my surfing schedule whilst away, I wrote up this little gem in hopes of leaving you all with a sweet taste in your mouths.

If you're new to the vegan scene you may have no clue what the hell nicecream is however I'm 99.9 percent sure you may have come across extremely aesthetically pleasing images of vibrant goodness on instagram, these bowls that replicate the pristine beauty of a dessert are known as 'nicecream'.

It will become very apparent how passionate I am about these creations but you'll soon come to realise why when you taste them. I can assure you breakfast time will never be the same again...

To put it simply, nicecream is just frozen bananas yet due to its marvelous natural properties, when blended it reaches that soft serve consistency of normal icecream. In fact in my opinion it possesses an even creamier, smoother texture than the non-vegan stuff!

There are so very many combinations I could shed light on however I'd be here all day so here are some of my favourite flavourings to which you can experiment with as much as your heart (and your belly) desires.

The foundations...

To make the standard nicecream you will need about 3/4 medium sized, ripe bananas (no green, patches you should be able to count the brown spots!) the riper the banana the better the taste and texture. You can of course choose to use more bananas if you want an even thicker, creamier bowl however I wouldn't recommend less than about 3 bananas because it'll leave you yearning for more!

Chop those bananas into fairly small chunks and place in a freezer-safe container or bowl and pop in the freezer for at least 4 hours or overnight as I usually do. Then once they are frozen remove them from the freezer and let them defrost a little to make them easier to blend. After they have melted a bit put them into your blender/food processor (I use my trusty nutribullet) add a little soy milk (or oat, hemp, nut, whichever you're feeling in the mood for-even water, just something to make blending easier). Don't add too much liquid however because it will leave your nicecream more like a smoothie bowl than that soft serve consistency we are aiming to achieve.

You may find some difficulty mixing the nicecream as I sometimes do, just be patient and either add more liquid, mix it around with a spoon manually a couple times or let the bananas thaw a little more before returning to blending.

You will know the moment it's done because there'll no longer be any lumps as the nicecream will be completely smooth (hopefully not runny) and thick enough to still hold some shape. It is now ready to display in a bowl and top or perhaps be mixed further with some flavourings.

Here comes my favourite part...

The combinations

There are of course many different directions you can take the basic nicecream with so I'll just show a few of my go-to recipes that you can then replicate yourself.

Raspberry coconut bliss

One of my favouriteeee amalgamations of flavours since the sharpness of the raspberries alongside the soft sweetness of the bananas compliment the nuttiness of the coconut so perfectly to create-as the title depicts- a hevenly bliss.

Freeze 3/4 medium sized bananas with 200g raspberries overnight then allow them to defrost 5 minutes, then blend with 200ml coconut milk. Serve in a bowl and top with sliced bananas, chunks of raspberries and desiccated coconut.

More-ish mango

This one really lives up to its name because once you start eating you'll realise it's gone within seconds and you will find yourself craving more constantly! A mellow, tangy mango and crunchy, nutty paradise drizzled with sugary date nectar.

Freeze 2/3 medium sized bananas with 300g chopped mango overnight. Allow the fruit to defrost 5 minutes then add to the blender with 200ml non-diary milk (or water) and mix thoroughly. Pour into bowl and top with peanuts and a little date nectar, swirl around and enjoy!

Berry blast

This beauty I just discovered this morning! Perhaps the most scrumptious version of nicecream yet, these juicy berries alongside rawnola will provide you with a fresh scent of summer and satisfaction.

Freeze 2/3 medium sized bananas with 200g mixed berries (I used grapes, blackberries, blueberries and strawberries). Allow to defrost 5 minutes then mix in the blender with 200ml non-diary milk. Serve and top with sliced banana, strawberries, chia seeds, desiccated coconut and rawnola- I'll describe my rawnola recipe at the end of the post.

Biscuit crunch

This one was purely discovered on a whim since I was feeling pretty ill one morning and desperately needed a pick-me-up so I thought to myself 'what am I craving?' Then I dreamt of a creamy caramel bowl of goodness with little specs of golden biscoff biscuits and this flavour was born.

Yes, it tastes as good as it looks.

Freeze 3/4 medium sized bananas overnight then take out in the morning and defrost for 5 minutes. Melt 2 tablespoons biscoff biscuit spread in a pan so that it liquidises then add to the blender with the bananas and 100ml non dairy milk, blend until smooth. Top with crushed up biscoff biscuits et voila.

Those were few of many different types of nicecream you can explore, I will most likely post more in the future as I discover new kinds, here's a few ones worth the mention.

Date caramel

Cherry bakewell

More berry blast

Choco bananas

Rawnola recipe

Add a handful of dates to a mixer with 1/2 cup oats and process, if the product is too dry add more dates (one by one because their stickiness can go a long way). If it's too sticky, add more oats. Break up into little bits and put in the fridge ready to eat.

Thank you for reading and sorry for the absence, I will try to be more regular with my posts from now on. Hope you enjoyed this and contact me if you tried any of these or made your own variations, I'd love to see them! 

Helen X 

Move your blog to Nouw - now you can import your old blog - click here!

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Go getter, Mindfulness
It's the first day of August today so suitably the first day of your new adventure!

From the title this post may seem a little heavy going or completely life-altering however in reality is a much simpler, gentler journey than meets the eye.

I began to wonder how I would go about starting this project after my friend Eve (whose blog link you can find on my page) and I talked over growing ourselves and the stages to be tackled to get to where we want to be. She once-more inspired me to take action rather than just questioning over and over what to do and instantly I knew how to initiate this transition, write a blog post!

So here I am and here goes...

By the term 'upgrading yourself' I don't mean literally changing every minute aspect of your life, no not at all! In essence, what I mean is to introduce you guys to the baby steps I'm embarking on towards a better me, those steps in which you can take towards a better you.

Of course we must learn to love ourselves for the genuine people we are however developing ones character through experiences and a little cleansing will in fact speed up the process and should satisfy our natural desire to get more from life along the way.

There are about 8 steps however they are more like guidelines and are hardly strict, you can choose whichever order you want to complete them in and whatever pace, remember life is not a track race, it's a marathon.

Step 1) Detox

Time to clean everything and when I say everything I mean EVERYTHING. Sort out wardrobes, chest of draws, desks, bed-side tables etc. Just get rid of all the unnecessary items you own, put them in boxes to go into the loft or donate them to charity stores and children's homes. A tidy work space = a tidy mind.

Step 2) Create a journal

A journal or as us Brits call it 'diary' is essential to record all the important or random goings on that whiz around your head. They are brilliant to refer back to when you're out of material and can inspire you to come up with even more ideas! They are also incredibly useful to write your deeper thoughts and can really ease a dilemma you may be facing or perhaps solve it.

Step 3) Start a new project

Whatever it might be, perhaps a club, an instrument, designing a room or outfit, painting a mural... start doing it!

Step 4) Set a goal for that project

Where do you see yourself in a couple of months time relative to that motive?

Step 5) Work out how you are going to reach that level

Utilize your diary to figure it out and allow it to aid you in visualizing this journey. The details of how you will get there are not vital but may come in useful for the next stage.

Step 6) DO IT!

Start this new project, not tomorrow, not next week or month. Start TODAY (unless you're reading this post at about 11pm then maybe get some valued hours of zzzz and begin in the morning).

Step 7) Keep family and friends informed

You don't need to notify everyone on what changes and advancements you are making however telling those few special people who are progressing alongside you will be extremely beneficial in the long run as you can advise each other and provide one another with fresh ideas/outlooks on both your pathways.

Step 8) Talk to me

I am always here to help and I myself would really appreciate support too! We are a community with fabulous diversity that must aid each other as often as we are able especially as we are all gifted with individual abilities.

Lets do something with our mindfulness. Lets grow together.

Helen X

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Vegan recipes

From my experiences, finding that perfect pancake recipe is quite a minefield, they are either too soggy, don't cook, burn simultaneously or worse don't resemble the taste of a pancake in any shape or form.

Vegan recipes can be astonishingly rewarding for the taste buds however few and far between are not so nice and could leave you scarred, never wanting to try vegan food ever again.

This delicious recipe I accumulated from my search will not refrain you from going plant-based, instead will encourage you even more to convert!

-Disclaimer this is not my recipe and I will link the original one at the end of this post-

Let's get to the baking!

You will need:

-245g plain flour

-135g ground flax meal

-2 Tbs granulated sugar

-2 tsp baking powder

-1 tsp cinnamon (optional)

-1/4 tsp salt

-420-470ml non-dairy milk

-1 Tbs vanilla extract

-1 Tbs lemon juice

-any additional toppings you see fit (I chose strawberries, blueberries, desiccated coconut and a homemade chocolate sauce I will describe briefly later)

Start by mixing all the dry ingredients together (the flour, flax meal, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon and salt) in a large bowl.

Next mix together all the remaining wet ingredients in a medium sized bowl (milk, vanilla extract and lemon juice).

Put a frying pan over medium temperature to preheat.

Then mix in the wet ingredients to the dry stirring quite a lot (be careful not to overmix) add a little extra non dairy milk if the batter is too thick.

Put a little coconut oil or vegan butter into the previously heated pan and add a ladle full of pancake mix to it, you can cook several pancakes at once if your pan will allow you.

Cook the pancakes until they appear to be thickened and golden at the edges then flip them over and cook for a couple minutes more, depending on your preference.

Stack up a couple like I did in the picture and top with various fruits, any combination to your liking, the world's your oyster or should I say pancake!

To make the vegan chocolate sauce:

Blend together in a food mixer (I used my nutribullet) date syrup, cacao powder and a little water to loosen it up then drizzle over your stack and enjoy!

Helen X

Original recipe: http://livlifetoo.yummly.com/2014/01/heart-healthy-fluffy-vegan-pancakes.html

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Go getter

Hi guys!

It is fairly evident that I'm new to the whole blog writing scene however have found myself extremely motivated to begin various projects, starting a blog being a pivotal one of them.

Oddly, in fact, it had never properly occurred to me to start writing blog until my lovely friend Eve (who has recently started her own wonderful blog which I'll link further down this post) suggested I did. Suddenly everything clicked into place and I was able to see vividly how I can spread beneficial messages and thoughts to others. My posts will mainly revolve around such topics as Veganism and the power of the plant-based lifestyle alongside nurturing ourselves through self growth and love.

I may also involve travel posts and perhaps beauty, the overall purpose of my words being that of motivation and pursuit of happiness.

I hope people will enjoy my blog as much as I shall enjoy writing it, I can't wait to experiment and challenge myself and in turn others.

Thank you so much for reading, any tips and comments would be highly appreciated!

Helen X

Eve's blog: http://evescurls.blogspot.co.uk/

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