Sun Butter – The Best Thing on Sliced (Low Carb) Bread

Sun butter

I’m going to be honest hear and tell you that I have never been much of a fan of peanut butter. *Gasp* (I know, right?) Peanut butter is one of those things you either love or you hate – there is not much space for in between.

I think I am not a fan because it never made me feel good when eating it.

BUT, I must tell you that I simply LOVE sun butter – isn’t it such an amazing name? Sunshine in a bottle, sunshine on toast, sunshine in my life… And that’s exactly how I feel when I eat it, with a spoon straight from the bottle, or smothered on some homemade seed loaf, thick with butter…. YUM!

And it’s really easy to make. YAY!

Sun Butter (Makes 250 mls)

Ingredients:

2 cups sunflower seeds
3/4 tsp sea salt
1 Tbs xylitol
2 tsp coconut oil

Method:

Heat oven to 180 degrees Celsius
Toast sunflower seeds on a baking tray in the oven until golden brown (about 5 – 6 minutes)
Transfer seeds to a food processor and add salt
Grind the seeds in the processor for about 15 – 20 minutes, stopping every 2 minutes to scrape down the sides
Add the Xylitol and coconut oil after about 10 minutes
It takes a while for the sunflower seeds to release their oils. You are looking for a creamy consistency, so don’t stop until you have achieved this
The seeds will first break down and look like powder and then they will start to bind together to form a paste – keep blending until it has become smooth, creamy and easy to spread
Store the sun butter in a sterilised glass container in the fridge – because the sun butter is made with coconut oil, you may need to bring it to room temperature before using
Serve on low carb bread or toast, with green apple slices, or eat straight from the jar, like I do 🙂

 

Pan Fried Fillet of Fish with Avo and Coconut Veloute topped with Avo and Horseradish Ice Cream and Sweet Chilli Sauce

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It’s official, avo has taken over my life! I eat, dream and think about it constantly (this is not a bad thing :p)… And yay, all that thinking paid off as I finally figured out how to put my savoury ice cream to good use! 😀

This is my third and final entry into the “More than just guacamole!” Afrikado Blogger Challenge, held by ZZ2 Farming and it is quite a mouthful!

Pan Fried Fillet of Fish with Avo and Coconut Veloute, topped with Avo and Horseradish Ice Cream and Sweet Chilli Sauce

(Serves 2)

Avo and Horseradish Ice Cream:

(It’s a good idea to prepare this the night before)

Ingredients:

  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup milk (I used lactose free)
  • 3/4 cup double thick cream
  • Flesh of 1 ripe medium sized avocado
  • 2 1/2 tsp lemon juice
  • 3 1/2 tsp horseradish (I wanted to use fresh, but couldn’t find it anywhere. Eventually I found prepared horseradish, which didn’t contain vinegar or sugar)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  • Whisk egg and milk in a pan on the stove, over low heat, until it forms a loose custard – be careful not to split or curdle
  • Strain to remove any residue and add mixture to a blender
  • Add double cream and mix
  • Add flesh of avocado and mix until smooth. It should thicken immediately
  • Add horseradish, lemon and salt and pepper (gradually add these as the horseradish can become quite overpowering) and taste
  • It is very important to keep tasting
  • Once you are happy with the flavour, freeze for a minimum of 4 hours

Sweet Chilli Sauce:

Ingredients:

  • 2 – 3 Tbs water
  • 2 Tbs chilli (if you are using fresh make sure it is finely chopped or you can use dried)
  • 2 Tbs Xylitol (sugar substitute)
  • A pinch of salt
  • Juice of a lemon

Directions:

  • Add water, chilli, Xylitol and salt to a pan
  • Cook on low heat until sauce thickens
  • Add lemon juice and cook further, on low heat, you don’t want the lemon to go bitter
  • When it takes on a reddish tinge and Xylitol becomes quite sticky remove from pan and allow to cool
  • Flavour should be sweet, tangy, with a hint of heat

Avo and Coconut Veloute:

Ingredients:

  • 1 Tbs butter
  • 1 small white onion, finely diced
  • 2 more Tbs butter
  • 2 Tbs cornstarch (original recipe calls for flour, I replaced this)
  • 1 1/2 cups fish or chicken stock (I used Fish Stock Concentrate from Woolies as it contains no yeast, gluten or sugar), heated in a separate pan
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk, preferably cold (to cool down the sauce so not to cook the avo)
  • Flesh of 1 ripe medium sized avocado, mashed (preferably cold, to cool down the sauce so you don’t cook the avo)
  • 10g parsley, finely chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  • A veloute is a white sauce that is made with stock instead of milk
  • Fry onion in butter until translucent
  • Add 2 more tablespoons of butter and the corn starch and stir until it forms a roux. Cook out for a few minutes on low heat
  • Gradually add the hot stock and keep stirring until the sauce thickens
  • Allow to cool for a bit before adding the coconut milk and the mashed avo
  • blend well
  • Sieve to remove the onion so you are left with a smooth sauce
  • Return to stove on very low heat, to gently heat through
  • Add parsley and salt and pepper to taste
  • Finish off with a dollop of butter and a squeeze of lemon juice

Other ingredients:

  • 2 fillets of firm fish, with skin still on (I used Jacopever, which I was assured was on the green sassi list)
  • Mashed potato
  • Micro herbs

overall Directions:

  • Make ice cream as illustrated above and freeze for 4 hours. Remove from freezer about 10 minutes before plating
  • Make chilli sauce (can also be prepared the night before)
  • Make your mash (an excellent way to make mash is to bake the potatoes in their skins. Once they are cooked, remove skins and then mash with a fork, this will result in a fluffy mash with no lumps. Add butter, a little milk, salt and pepper)
  • Make veloute as illustrated above
  • Pan fry your fish fillets. Score the skin to make it look pretty (cutting through the skin only, diagonally about 3 times, a few cms apart). Season the skin with salt
  • Add some oil to a pan and heat. When the pan is hot add the fish, skin side down
  • Season the flesh side with salt
  • The fish will want to curl up a bit, press it down so that it cooks evenly for a few minutes
  • You will notice that the flesh will change colour (become whiter)
  • When the colour change is about 1/4 of the way up the fish, flip over and cook for a further few minutes on the other side
  • Add a bit of butter to the pan and spoon over the fish to give it a nice golden colour
  • Remove fish from pan

Plating:

  • Add your mash to the centre of the plate
  • Pour your veloute around it
  • Place your fillet of fish on top of the mash
  • Add a dollop of the ice cream on top of that
  • Finish off with a drizzle of chilli sauce (not too much, as it is supposed to lift the dish, not kill it) and a few micro herbs

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And there you have a stunning fish dish zinging with a multitude of flavours. Wow your guests are your next dinner party 🙂

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An Avo Extravaganza! A Duo of Avo – Starter

Avo Ritz Mousse and Avo Risotto Ball SweetLikeCandi

Wow, I just love avos! Can’t get enough of them – I love everything about them, the colour, texture, taste and the fact that they are so versatile!

I entered the “More than just guacamole!” Afrikado Blogger Challenge, held by ZZ2 Farming because I simply could not pass up such an awesome opportunity.

I really wanted to push myself with this challenge, beyond my comfort zone and then, just a little bit more. I can honestly say that this has been one of the best experiences I’ve had so far – it taught me so much about myself; what I am capable of, that not getting it right the first time is actually an amazing blessing, how to pair ingredients, plate up and most importantly how much fun I have in the kitchen – even when hours go by – there is nothing quite like the sense of achievement at the end of the day, when you’ve pushed yourself to your limits and come out the other side with a dish that you are utterly proud of. What a rush! 😀

This is the dish that I have created – it is a starter of avo, done two ways, and I think it really does show the versatility of this delicious super food!

Avo Ritz Mousse accompanied by an Avo Risotto Ball in a Sesame Seed Crumb

There are quite a few processes to this dish, but the great thing is that everything can be made the night before so that when it comes time to serve, it is virtually stress free.

Avo Ritz Mousse with micro herbs and caper berries:

(Makes 4 Individual Mousses)

Ingredients:

  • 200g cooked prawns, flash fried in butter, salt and pepper to release juices, plus 8 extra for garnish
  • 75g cream cheese
  • 75mls homemade tomato sauce (ingredients below) *Retain the remainder of the sauce for plating with the risotto ball
  • 75mls homemade mayonnaise (ingredients below)
  • Flesh of 1 ripe medium avocado
  • Juice of half medium sized lemon (or to taste)
  • 12 chives, chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 leaf gelatine (follow directions on packet)

Tomato Sauce:

  • 4 tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 1 Tbs Xylitol (sugar substitute)
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • Juice 1/4 lemon
  • Salt to taste

Mayonnaise:

  • 1 egg yolk
  • 75mls Canola oil (for Banting use Coconut Oil or Macadamia Nut Oil)
  • 1 1/2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp mustard powder
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 1/4 tsp Xylitol (sugar substitute)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Tomato sauce: (Can be made the night before)

  • Roughly chop tomatoes
  • Add all ingredients to a pan on the stove
  • Cook on low heat until tomatoes are soft and falling apart (about 20 minutes)
  • Strain sauce through a sieve
  • Place liquid back on stove and reduce by half
  • Taste and make sure that it is tangy, slightly sweet, salty and a bit spicy
  • Adjust seasoning if needed
  • Chill tomato sauce in the fridge until ready to use

Mayonnaise: (Can be made the night before)

  • The secret to making the perfect mayo is patience!
  • Add the canola oil, literally one drop at a time, to the egg yolk and whisk after every addition
  • Adding the oil slowly will ensure a thick mayo that doesn’t split
  • Once the yolk has become a pale yellow and the mixture has thickened, you can add the lemon juice
  • And whisk again
  • Slowly add the rest of the ingredients (don’t have a heavy hand with this, you want the mayo to have a subtle flavour)
  • Finish adding the oil, you can be a bit quicker, and whisk
  • You may want to add a tablespoon of hot water to loosen the mayonnaise
  • Chill in the fridge until ready to use

Other directions:

  • Make sure all mousse ingredients have cooled
  • Blend mousse ingredients until smooth, except for the gelatine
  • Only add the gelatine at the end, following directions on the packet
  • Taste and check for seasoning
  • The avo is the star of this dish, therefore it shouldn’t be overpowered by the other ingredients
  • Once you are happy with the flavour, transfer to small molds covered in clingfilm
  • Chill for a minimum of 4 hours

Avo and Mozzarella Risotto Ball with Sesame Seed Crumb, Spicy Tomato Sauce and Basil Oil

(Makes 8 balls)

Ingredients:

  • 1 Tbs butter
  • 1 Tbs oil with little flavour (like Canola)
  • 1/2 onion, finely diced
  • 250g Arborio rice
  • 500-600ml chicken stock (I used a yeast-free, mock chicken stock made by Earth Products)
  • Zest of half a lemon
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • Flesh of 1 ripe medium avocado
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 75g Fior di latte mozzarella (or 8 small cubes)
  • +/- 50g sesame seeds for coating
  • Canola oil for frying

Directions:

  • Make risotto:
  • Fry onion in the butter and oil until translucent
  • Add the rice
  • Slowly add the stock and stir after every addition to release the starch
  • The risotto should have quite a dry consistency so that it is easier to roll into balls
  • It should take about 20 to 30 minutes until it is cooked and absorbed all the stock, but still has a bit of a bite
  • Add the lemon zest, paprika, salt and pepper and leave to cool
  • Add the avo once cooled
  • Check for seasoning,but make sure that the avo is not overpowered by the rest of the ingredients
  • You might like to chill the mixture so that it is easier to work with
  • Roll into nugget-sized balls with a cube of mozzarella placed in the middle
  • Coat the balls in a thin layer of sesame seeds
  • Chill the balls in the fridge until ready to serve
  • Fry the balls in oil until the sesame seeds turn golden and they have heated through to melt the mozzarella inside

Basil Oil:

  • 15g basil, chopped
  • A good glug of good quality olive oil
  • Squeeze of lemon
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Combine all ingredients and strain through a sieve
  • The oil should be a bright emerald colour
  • Add a few bits of the basil for texture

Spicy Tomato Sauce:

  • With the remainder of the tomato sauce from the mousse, add some olive oil to loosen and give it a nice sheen
  • Add an extra dash of paprika for added oomph

Serving:

  • Malba toast: Freeze a loaf of good quality sour dough bread and slice paper thin, bake in an oven at 180 degrees until the bread has become golden and crisp (will only take a few minutes)
  • Micro herbs: I used red chard, beetroot and mustard
  • Caper berries
  • Prawns flash fried in butter, lemon, salt and pepper until they become beautifully dark pink in colour
  • Place the malba toast in a rough stack in the centre of a large plate
  • Gently remove the mousse from its mold and place on one side of the malba toast, in the centre
  • Dot a few micro herbs and caper berries around the mousse and place the prawns on the top (just before serving so that they are still warm)
  • Add the risotto ball into the centre of the other side of the malba toast (fry the ball just before serving so that it is still warm)
  • Add a stripe of tomato sauce and a drizzle of basil oil onto the plate on either side of the ball
  • And there you have a sophisticated little avo number!

In my opinion, all components marry well together. There is a discovery at every turn as you journey around the plate. Flavours burst and tantalize the taste buds. I’m so excited for you to try this! I hope you enjoy it as much as I do 😀

To follow the fun of the competition follow @ZZ2Farming and #Afrikado on twitter or check their facebook page.

Avo Ritz Mousse and Avo Risotto Ball2 SweetLikeCandi