violets

with love from bali

Raw Salted Chocolate Fudge Tarts

If I can jump ahead to the last day of the retreat in Ubud, I think I said the word brilliant at least 12 times in quick succession as I met eyes with each of the 16 amazing women I was sitting in circle with for the last time. What a big, big space we’d laughed and cried and danced our way through together over the week. No fixing or pretending things were fine, just sitting with whatever came up and gently adding love into the rough edges of any given moment that needed it. Holding space for each other and breathing in the rawness of every story each of us shared. It’s the most extraordinary thing, the moment the harshness of confrontation slips into the liberation of surrender. What a thing to bear witness to, whether in yourself or in others; it dissolves all the nonsense so gently, but so absolutely.

There’s so much more. There always is, right? Thank goodness my beautiful friend Beata is planning another retreat next year. She’s a marvel at this work and I couldn’t love her more for the effort she went to to accommodate all of us in her heart for a whole week. The incredible souls she introduced us to. The amazing experiences she created. Big space. Filled with grace. I wish everyone was on their way for tea right about now so I could put these on the table and keep the circle going.

 

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Raw Salted Chocolate Fudge Tarts

makes 6 x 10cm tarts

 

1 1/2 cup raw organic cashews

1 tbsp raw organic cacao powder

1 tbsp organic mesquite powder

2 tbsp organic raw cacao butter

water

 

1 cup organic medjool dates, soaked for 2 hours

1/4 cup organic tahini

2 tbsp organic cacao powder

1/2 tsp Himalayan salt

1 organic vanilla bean, scraped

 

fresh violets

 

To make the bases, put the cashews, cacao powder and mesquite into a blender and blitz until you have a flour mix. Add the melted cacao butter and blitz again. Add a little water until you have a crumbly mix that just pulls together. Using your fingers, push the chocolate pastry evenly into non-stick, removable base tart tins, making sure to use enough pressure to pack it into the very edges of the base and up the sides. Put into a dehydrator for 4-6 hours, or simply refrigerate for an hour if you don’t have a dehydrator. Remove the bases from the tart tins.

To make the fudge, drain the dates, but keep the soak water aside to use if necessary. Blitz the dates in a food processor with the remaining ingredients, adding the date water to reach a fudgy consistency.

Fill the bases with the fudge and top with fresh violets if you can find some. Dust with coconut flour for extra prettiness.

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velvety sunshine

blueberry & violet flapjacks with whipped honey

The garden has been doing a brilliant job of deciding our meals lately – lots of greens and herbs, and fennel tips, and lovely little baby onions, broccoli and sorrel – really good. But it’s almost like Spring arrived in its complete form all in one day yesterday, and the only thing I could see were flowers. The bees were loving it. Sitting having a cup of tea on the verandah, we actually had to talk up to hear each other over the buzz of bees going from the lavender hedge to their hive and back. It was like having tea with a bunch of chanting Buddhist monks – such an incredible vibration to hang out in.

Even though it was Wednesday yesterday, we were claiming it as Sunday to try and make up for lost time over the weekend. And although I can’t say we eat flapjacks each and every Sunday, it just seemed like a Sunday kind of breakfast, so a hankering began.

Walking back inside to start the process the violets jumped out at me so they became part of things, and having recently read that they’re high in vitamin C, I thought why not ramp that up another notch with blueberries too?

Violet and blueberry flapjacks sounded like a good combo, and they really were, but the surprise addition was a super quick experiment in whipped coconut honey. Throw some coconut oil and honey into a food processor and try your hardest not to put it on everything. Wow. Velvety sunshine.

 

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Blueberry & Violet Flapjacks with Whipped Honey

 

For the flapjacks – makes 6-8

 

1 cup fresh or frozen organic blueberries

1 1/2 cups organic GF whole flour mix (or plain flour of your choice)
1/3 cup of organic raw mesquite flour
1/3 tsp sea salt
1 tsp GF baking powder
2 1/2 cups organic soy milk

2 tbsp organic chia seeds

 

For the whipped honey

 

4 tbsp organic raw coconut oil

3 tbsp organic raw honey

 

To serve

 

1/2 cup fresh organic violets (Viola odorata, not African violets!)

extra blueberries

 

To make the flapjacks, add about 2/3 cup of water to the chia seeds and stir until they gel.

In a large bowl mix the flours, baking powder and salt together.

Mix the milk and chia seeds together and stir through the dry ingredients.

Add the blueberries at the last stage to gently fold through so they don’t break up and turn everything an odd shade of grey.

 

Heat a griddle pan or flat based sandwich press and drop spoonfuls of the flapjack mixture onto the hot surface. Leave to cook for a couple of minutes until you can easily slide a spatula under the flapjacks to flip them over. Cook on the other side until they are cooked all the way through.

 

To make the whipped honey simply put the coconut oil (unmelted) and honey into a food processor and blitz until smooth.

 

To assemble the flapjacks, pile them up with the extra blueberries, then top with a generous spoonful of whipped honey and sprinkle the violets all over to finish. Pretty and delicious. And good for you, believe it or not!

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