Elements for Life: brownies and hot choc (+ discount code!)

T’is the season to eat chocolate falalalalaa-lalalala. (Please tell me you sang it in your head.) But let’s be honest, when is it not the season to eat chocolate? Chocolate is an all day, everyday kind of thing.

This blog post has been long coming, but I’m queen at procrastinating, it’s almost shameful. You’d think that writing about brownies and hot chocolate would be something I wouldn’t want to postpone, but without making excuses for myself, I rather just watch, photograph and eat the chocolatey goodness than write about it. Honestly though, I’m drooling behind my laptop screen just looking at the pics of all this yumminess.

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IPumpkin walnut loaf (gluten free)

Pumpkin is such an autumn cliché. One leaf falls from a random tree and boom! everything is pumpkin flavoured. For a long time, this had been such a turn-off to start using pumpkin and pumpkin spice for me. Usually I’m turned off by everything that is hyped.

However, I admit to being wrong for neglecting pumpkin for such a long time. It’s actually a very versatile and very convenient ingredient. I am experimenting with so many different pumpkin recipes now, I even made pumpkin pancakes. Who am I? Giving in to these trends.

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Apple cinnamon bread with hazelnuts

Apple bread or apple cake, what’s in a name right? It does not really matter how you name this cinnamon-y apple loaf and I’m sure you will think so too after you’ve eaten a slice. Cinnamon, apples and hazelnuts, does it get any more autumnal? Not for me. So get baking, make yourself a cup of tea and cuddle up under a blanket and enjoy the taste of autumn.

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Oven baked pumpkin French toast

Here in Italy, the temperature is still feeling very summery for me, but the leaves have started falling (yes!). I’m not even going to try and hide my excitement for autumn, but I do like that it is still pretty warm here.

Why do I like autumn? Well, the fruit and veggies change. I’m a big fan of autumn fruits and veggies.

As a very lucky coincidence, pumpkin is pretty cheap here. So I almost always have some lying around, waiting to be covered in cinnamon and ginger and roasted in the oven. And as an even happier coincidence, my bread was a bit stale this morning. I had been craving French toast for a couple of days now, so there really was no doubt about what I was going to experiment with this morning.

Now, this is no quick recipe. Not at all. Mostly due to the fact that I am by no means a pan princess. Baking things in a pan, they are sure to be burned. And burned food doesn’t taste very yummy nor is it pleasant to wash out burned pans (take it from an experienced girl).

Since it’s made in the oven, it’s not your typical French toast either, but it is very delicious and I highly highly suggest you try it out for your next weekend brunch.

 

oven baked pumpkin French toast

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Print

Ingredients

  • 150 grams of pumpkin – peeled and cut into slices
  • 1 +1 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 1/2 + 1/2 teaspoon of ginger powder
  • nutmeg to taste
  • 200 ml of plant milk (like almond milk)
  • 2 tl flax or chia seed
  • 1 teaspoon of coconut sugar or maple syrup
  • 4 slices of wholewheat bread*
  • your favourite toppings (for example: plant yoghurt, peaches, goji berries, …)

 

Directions

  1. Preaheat the oven for 200°C.
  2. Spread the pumpkin over a lined baking sheet and sprinkle on 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon of ginger powder and some nutmeg to taste.
  3. Put the pumpkin in the oven and bake for 35 min or until soft.
  4. Once the pumpkin is baked, take it out of the oven and let cool for a few minutes.
  5. Add to a blender the baked pumpkin, the milk, the flax or chia seeds, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon of ginger powder, the coconut sugar and blend until smooth.
  6. Pour the mixture into a deep dish and let it thicken for 10 to 15 minutes.
  7. While waiting for the mixture to thicken, preheat the oven for 200°C.
  8. Dip the slices of bread in the mixture. Make sure the bread is soaked and entirely covered with the mixture, but do shake the slices to get off the excess pumpkin mixture.
  9. Put the pumpkin covered bread slices on a lined baking sheet.
  10. Bake in the oven for 25 minutes, flipping them half way through.
  11. Take out of the oven and top with your favourite autumn fruit and some yogurt.

*I cut mine into halves, but you can use the entire slices or cut it into whatever shape you like (like heart shapes if you’re really romantic, or stars, …)

Crunchy autumn muesli mix

If there is anything I need muesli to be, it’s crunchy. Muesli needs some crunch. If there is no crunch to it, nah thanks then. But I still need my oats. So that’s where the spelt flakes and the puffed rice come into play. And since variety in texture is everything, the addition of raisins and crispy apple makes of this muesli the purrrfect autumn brekkie for those days where you just want to hear the crispy leaves under your feet and enjoy those heavenly rays of autumn sun.

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Breakfast cake

Honestly, this recipe is genius if I may say so myself. I just threw my brekkie favourites together, put the mixture in the oven and it turned out so damn tasty! This cake is made of all healthy yummyness: soy yoghurt, oats, banana, chocolate and peanut butter. They’re already extremely on their own, but when combined ànd in cake form… that’s what I call brekkie perfection. And let me just tell you, a perfect day starts with a perfect brekkie. So what are you waiting for? Preheat your oven, get baking and set yourself up for a splendid tomorrow morning!

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