A few weeks ago, my sister-in-law’s mom, Lucy, made dinner for a big family get together.
Lucy is from Chile, where there’s no such thing as being a locavore. Everyone is naturally a locavore & buys & eats produce from the local outdoor market. I think people there would laugh if we tried to explain what a locavore is.
“You know, someone who buys food that was produced locally.”
I can just imagine, the puzzled expression they might have.
I imagine their response: ”What do you mean? Where else would you get your food?”
I lived in Chile with Lucy for 4 months prior to getting married. I was spoiled with homecooked, fresh meals, daily. I remember the sleepy bushy haired man selling avocados from a stand in front of the house, the huge open-air markets filled with heaps of mangoes picked from the tree that morning. Lettuce heads, peppers, potatoes, corn, squashes, carrots, oranges, lemons, grapes, bananas. Bins filled with black beans, fava beans, navy beans, spices, nuts, & herbs. An endless variety of fresh produce, to touch, to smell, to buy & eat.
Vegetables are often the star of Chilean dishes & Lucy knows how to prepare & cook them in a way that satisfies the eye & pleases the stomach.
Cilantro, lemon, oregano, & cumin are some of ingredients she uses to add flavor & zest to foods. Often, the meals Lucy cooks are vegetarian or vegan. Not a deliberate choice, it just happens that produce, legumes, & grains (like rice) are inexpensive & plentiful, so they are more often than not, the bases of her delicious fare.
Lucy made stuffed cabbage (filled with cooked vegetables & rice), & stuffed zucchini, with a simple Chilean salad of lettuce, sliced cucumbers, lemon juice, a little olive oil & salt.
For dessert, I made raspberry black forest brownies. They are more cake-like than brownie-like, but not quite light enough to be cake.
I know, there are literally over one ba-jillion gluten-free brownie recipes out there.
But how about gluten-free AND vegan? Further, what about black forest brownies?
A traditional black forest cake uses dark cherries. Instead, I use raspberries, but the brownies have a reminsicient taste from days when I did eat wheat, dairy-based black forest cake–rich, moist dark chocolate with a hint of sweet fruit.
A brownie is no brownie without ice cream beside it, so I made some easy, rich raspberry ice cream to pair with it.
The kids begged for more. Hyrum said it was the best ice cream I’ve ever made, which made my mother-heart swell (gotta take those compliments when I get them).
The raspberry extract makes the ice cream, so I recommend getting yourself some before you attempt this.
Gluten-free, vegan brownies topped with dark chocolate glaze & fresh raspberries.
- 1 1/4 c. white rice flour & 1 3/4 c. GF all-purpose flour
- OR use 3 c. white wheat flour
- 1/2 c. unsweetened dark cocoa powder
- 1 1/2 TBS. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/2 c. applesauce
- 1, 12 oz. box Mori-Nu Firm Tofu
- 1/2 c. non-dairy butter (I used Earth Balance)
- 1/2 c. turbinado sugar
- 1/4 c. stevia in the raw (or additional sugar)
- 2 c. milk (almond or soy work well)
- 1 TBS. pure vanilla
- 1 TBS. raspberry extract (optional)
- 1/4 c. dark cocoa powder
- 1/4 c. powdered sugar
- 1/4 c. agave nectar
- 1/2 c. raspberries
- 1/2 c. chopped walnuts (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350 F.
- Sift dry ingredients (except sugar & stevia) in a large bowl with a wire wisk or sifter. If you use wheat flour, instead of white rice flour/gf flour mix, make sure not to over mix the wet & dry ingredients, when you get to that step.
- In food processor, or by hand, cream butter & sugar.
- Add applesauce, tofu, milk, & extracts. Blend until it's smooth.
- Beat dry ingredients & wet ingredients together. Unlike a mix made out of gluten, you cannot overbeat the ingredients. Blend until smooth.
- Pour batter into a nonstick 13 X 9 pan, or a 13 X 9 glass pan (make sure to use non-stick spray).
- Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until it passes the "toothpick test."
- For the glaze, place cocoa & powder sugar in a small food processor. Add agave & blend on high until smooth.
- Glaze brownies & top with fresh or frozen raspberries &/or chopped walnuts.
It's often easy to replace oils in baking. However, since this is supposed to be a rich dessert, I used some non-dairy butter in addition to applesauce, because I didn't want the brownies to taste like apples. You can replace the non-dairy butter with additional applesauce, but I cannot guarantee the end product!
Additional Nutrition Info (does not include walnuts): Per serving, 5 g protein, 2 g fiber, 30 g carbs, 138 mg sodium
A rich, creamy, non-dairy raspberry ice cream.
- 4 c. plain full-fat soy milk
- 1 c. cashews
- 1 TBS. raspberry extract
- 1 c. raspberries
- 3/4. tsp. xantham gum
- 1/8 tsp. salt
- 2 c. ice cubes
- Blend on high until smooth, all ingredients except ice cubes & 1/2 c. raspberries.
- Add ice cubes & blend until very smooth.
- Pour mixture in a 13 X 9 glass casserole dish.
- Add remaining raspberries.
- Place dish in freezer & let freeze for an hour.
- Stir mixture around, then return to freezer for additional hour.
- Remove, mix, & return to freezer for another hour.
- Remove, mix thoroughly, repeat until desired firmness is reached.
- Homemade ice cream is best when eaten fresh, so eat immediately, or remove ice cream from dish & store in an airtight container for up to 3 days in freezer.
Additional Nutrition Info: Per serving: 4.5 g protein, 26 g carbs, 1.5 g fiber, 57 mg sodium.
Want more ice cream ideas?