Saturday, January 23, 2010

Royal berry tartlets and cranberry-orange cookies

Once again my good friend was coming over for tea. I've mentioned before that she has several allergies. As such, they wouldn't be too problematic, but combined with my gluten-intolerance and milk allergies it becomes challenging. Again, it wouldn't be if I would go for conventional baking.. but you know me, my desserts are always raw even if I sometimes enjoy cooked meals.

I came up with a crust that would work for both of us, given that it had to be nut-free, gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free and raw. Then I thought I'd make a strawberry shortcake out of it, but I wasn't sure if she was allergic to strawberries.. then I remembered that it is fairly common, and thought I wouldn't risk it. Well, I thought I'd use blueberries instead, but I've made quite a few raw blueberry pies in the past... long story short: I made a pie filling out of blueberries, raspberries, figs and dehydrated orange peel. Only to realize soon after, that she is allergic to nearly all fruit, except bananas. Luckily it turned out she could handle the small touch of organic orange peel, and got no reaction from the figs either.

As if there weren't enough problems to begin with, I was short of time. I went to work early and didn't have time to prepare anything in the morning. I told my husband to soak some flax seeds for me, but neglected to tell him how much water I wanted in them... well, there was too much and hence I had to make a much bigger batch of "dough" than I had in mind. This is how I ended up making a batch of 12 tartlets and about 20 cookies.

The "dough":
1 C soaked flax seeds
2 C water
1,5 C coconut flakes
1,5 C sprouted buckwheat
10 dried dates
vanilla agave + honey, to taste
pinch salt and cinnamon (salt is essential!)

Soak flax seeds in water for at least an hour, preferably overnight.  Blend with dates, buckwheat and seasoning. Remember to taste the dough!

Royal berry filling:
1,5 C raspberries
1 C blueberries
12 dried figs
vanilla agave
0,5-1tsp dehydrated, ground organic orange peel (peel your oranges, dry in room temp/dehydrator, grind in a food processor)
2 tsp lucuma, optional

Blend all ingredients together, taste and adjust sweetness.

Fill as many pie shells with the dough as you like (spread with wet hands), set in fridge for an hour or too. Make filling after you have put the shells in the fridge, and chill it. Once the pie shells have set, assemble and chill until served. They are best, when you let them warm up just a bit in room temp before serving.

We had extra filling, but it is amazing on it's own. You could enjoy it just with some raw chocolate, on raw pancakes, etc etc... Feel free to substitute the crust for your favorite raw crust, especially when making for skeptics it might be a better idea to make a sweeter, nuttier crust. Because it didn't have any oil, this dough didn't really "set" like a nut crust with cocoa butter/coconut oil would. This means it softens in room temperature. It also tastes more "healthy" than delectable, but if you like a less sweet, nut-free crust this is pretty good. More than likely though, the next time I make these I will make an almond-pecan crust with coconut oil and vanilla agave.

Cranberry-orange cookies
The dough, left-over from making the tartlets
Chopped almonds (soaked and dehydrated if possible)
Organic, sugar-free dried cranberries (eg. apple-sweetened)
Orange peel

Fold chopped almonds and chopped cranberries into the dough with a large spoon/spatula. Add flavorings and sweetener, if desired. Dollop onto dehydrator sheets, spread into thick round cookies. Dehydrate! Mine were in for about 12 hours, after which they were warm and crunchy on the outside but nice and chewy on the inside. The quality of the cranberries really makes a difference, I used Eden Foods cranberries, which are big, juicy and dark in color.


Yaelian said...

Lovely sounding berry pie:-) It must be hard to try to make something for someone with so many allergies.

Okriina said...

Sounds delicious!

Anonymous said...

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Aletheia said...

Yaelian, thanks :) That's certainly true, and it is especially challenging when you yourself are used to raw desserts and your guests are not.

Okriina, thank you!

FosterMcnealy, you welcome.

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