SWEET POTATO TURTLE CAKE

Happy New Year guys! 2018 was quite a year! Hope 2019 is amazing for you all!

2018 had SO many highs and lows. On the plus side the highs were finding and buying our baking school a mixed use property which is REALLY hard to find here in Central East Austin (and when you do it’s super expensive), I still pinch my arm that I found this UNICORN property and that it’s in a great neighborhood and it was affordable. Now we need to remodel and get a commercial permit. I am blessed to have met the right people. It does take a village to create the first healthy baking school in the world. 

We also celebrated our 5 year wedding anniversary in NYC which was awesome!!!

On the low side: I was diagnosed with pre diabetes. As many of you know I have had hypoglycemia for 27 years but in November I had a messenger come on the form of a lovely student who has diabetes and works for One Drop a wonderful company that created a very cool glucometer that my student so kindly sent me as a present. So when it arrived I pinched my finger and tested my fasting blood sugar and it came out to 186 I was horrified to say the least because I had never crossed the 100 line. So basically in 6 months I had become pre diabetic. My A1C (A1C is a blood test that reflects your average blood glucose levels over the past 3 months. TheA1C test is sometimes called the hemoglobin A1C, HbA1c, glycated hemoglobin, or glycohemoglobin test. Hemoglobin is the part of a red blood cell that carries oxygen to the cells.) was 6.3 (a diabetic’s is 6.5 an above). So I rushed of to the doctor and had more blood work done and was diagnosed as pre diabetic. Word of advice here: after going to a specialist in diabetes most doctors will tell you the “normal” range as if this is the ideal or the ok place to be, be ware it’s not. I am still working on lowering my numbers and pinch my finger every day. It has been challenging to control and lower my blood sugar because: 1. I am a healthy pastry chef 2. I do a LOT of recipe development and taste many recipes 3. I have a sweet tooth (more than I would like to acknowledge). 3. I am a HUGE foodie and savor the world.

What has helped me lower my blood sugar is: 1. Sleeping 8 hours 2. Eating a plant based keto diet (5 cups veggies/ mostly greens) reducing carbs a lot and not eating after 6 pm 3. walking 10,000 steps every day 4. No added sugars 

Hope these tips help you as I do get a lot of messages from diabetic and pre diabetic and hypoglycemics. 

So here is a recipe I love and so many of you have asked me for. It’s not KETO but  paleo and here is my perspective: eat clean and if you are going to have a dessert make it paleo or keto.

 

 

 

5.0 from 1 reviews
SWEET POTATO TURTLE CAKE
 
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I love this Sweet Potato Turtle Cake! I actually prefer sweet potato desserts to pumpkin ones! This cake is a perfect balance of textures, spice, chocolate and pecans I hope it will become your go to recipe for a great paleo cake
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 1 medium loaf cake
Ingredients
  • 2 large eggs I love and use Vital Farms organic and pasture raised
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup sweet potato puree (roast a medium large potato with skin until soft/ peel and blend)
  • ⅓ cup maple syrup
  • ½ cup refined coconut oil, melted or avocado oil
  • ¼ cup coconut sugar
  • ½ cup arrowroot (60 gr)
  • 1 cup (110 gr) almond flour (always scale for best results)
  • 58 gr cassava flour
  • ½ teaspoon Himalayan pink sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda I used and love Bobs Red Mill (at high altitude use ½ teaspoon)
  • ½ teaspoon Ceylon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • Pecan muscovado crumble:
  • 50 gr chopped pecan halves
  • 12 gr grass fed butter such as Kerry Gold
  • 12 gr Light or dark moscovado sugar
  • Maldon Salt to taste (aprox ¼ teaspoon)
  • Mix all ingredients
  • ½ cup 70 % Chocolate chunks such as Guittard, Valrhona
Method
  1. Pre heat oven to 350 F, grease and line a large loaf pan (or 3 small loaf pans) with paper. In a large bowl: whisk all the wet ingredients: sweet potato, oil, maple syrup, coconut sugar: mix with a whisk. In another bowl: sift all the dry ingredients: flours, salt and baking soda. Add to wet ingredients and use a plastic spatula to finish mixing. Pour batter into prepared pan. Sprinkle pecan moscovado crumble on top.
  2. Bake for aprox 50 mins or until a toothpick comes out clean. You may need to lower the baking temperature to 340 F so it doesn’t over brown. Towards the end of baking add the chocolate chunks. Let cool, un mold. Cool completely and cut with a serrated knife.

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HEALTHY CONDENSED MILK

Paleo, vegan, keto, healthy?

Even more than that I believe 95% of the time that health tastes better. I know that is hard to envision and taste but ever since I can remember healthier ingredients and wholesome products have always tasted better, not to mention that they make me feel better. And being such a FOODIE that is a big claim. Because I do savor the world: ALL THE TIME. I honestly have met few foodies like me.

And sometimes I wake up dreaming about a recipe like this one! I literally dreamt about it..  formula and all.. So I had to make it ASAP. Which I did because when you follow your gut magic happens ALWAYS. Plus I am loving my Thermomix and using it for everything because it makes life easier and I can multitask more and I only need one appliance. If you haven’t gotten on the Thermomix band wagon you are missing out! It has been called a GENIUS FOOD PROCESSOR by Dr Oz, the next frontier of cutting edge technology.  Which I kind of saw coming 13 years ago since I bought my first.

So if you cook and bake you need a Thermomix ASAP! Get yours here: and when you add it to your cart be sure to select the 6 month interest free option with PayPal

 

HEALTHY CONDENSED MILK
 
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Healthy condensed milk! So perfect! Just 3 ingredients. So simple! Vegan, Paleo, Keto, Low Carb, no added sugar.
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 1 cup
Ingredients
  • 2 cups coconut milk powder I used Enature brand (you can buy a dairy free vegan creamer powder also: just check the ingredient list so that there are no funky ingredients) most can be found on Amazon
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 generous pinches of Maldon Salt or any flaky sea salt
Method
  1. Sift coconut milk, put in a Thermomix and add water, salt and vanilla and mix at medium low speed. Cook at 80 C until thick. Put in a sterilized Mason Jar. Alternatively you can make this in a stainless steel pot and mix at medium heat. But making it in your Thermomix is so much easier, faster and you can almost forget about it while you do something else.

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PALEO CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES

When I discovered Stir sweetener my baking life literally changed. I was scrolling through Instagram and I found Stir by chance, I was immediately drawn to the brand, LA look and the ingredient list. It was just what I was looking for: a natural sweetener with benefits: coconut sugar +  prebiotic fiber that lower the glycemic index. This sweetener has been my favorite for a long time and it bakes so well! It is a perfect 1:1 substitution to sugar by volume not by weight. I loved Stir from the moment we met but even more awesome was meeting Leila the owner who besides being lovely (and gorgeous!) is also a foodie and a great baker and she shared with me her life changing chocolate chip cookie recipe made with Stir (grab that recipe on her Instagram account) which I immediately ran home to make (I just substituted flour for spelt flour). It then became my go to chocolate chip recipe and since I have been baking many paleo recipes I converted it to make these paleo chocolate chip cookies.

Use the best chocolate and ghee for this recipe! They taste better freshly made! Check out my YouTube video here:

 

PALEO CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES
 
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These have become a signature recipe in my classes and workshops! They are amazing freshly baked!
Author:
Serves: 10
Ingredients
  • INGREDIENTS: MAKES: 10 large cookies (55 gr each)
  • 75 gr cassava flour I love Ottos Cassava flour
  • 30 gr almond flour I use the one from Costco)
  • 34 gr arrowroot
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda at high altitude use ⅛ teaspoon
  • ½ cup ( 112 gr) ghee, room temperature (make sure ghee is not too soft) I love Bulletproof or Tin Star Foods
  • 1 cup Stir Sweetener
  • ½ teaspoon himalayan sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg, organic, pasture raised, at room temperature
  • ¾ cup 70 % chocolate chopped into chunks such as Guittard, Valrhona or Cemoi (if you freeze the chocolate chunks before baking it helps these retain their shape)
  • Pinch of Maldon Salt to sprinkle on every cookie before baking
Method
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F degrees. Prepare a baking tray with a Silpat (silicon liner). In a large bowl mix ghee + Stir with a whisk by hand until well combined.
  2. Add the vanilla and eggs and mix until incorporated. Combine dry ingredients: flours, baking soda, and salt in a separate bowl. Whisk together until blended. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture on low until blended. Don’t over mix.
  3. Add in chocolate chunks and mix. Shape cookies with a #24 scoop. Drop onto a cookie sheet lined with a Silpat. Refrigerate for about 10 mins. Bake 7-8 min for chewy cookies, 9-10 min for crisp cookies. Remove from oven and cool for 10 min on the hot cookie sheet. Remove and place cookies onto cooling racks or perforated baking trays to cool completely.
  4. You can make half the recipe perfectly well.

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PALEO MATCHA CAKE

I had my worst hypoglycemia episode in 2005 just before moving to Chicago. I had sold my Pastry Workshop in 1 hour and was ready to change my life to move to Chicago to pursue my dreams to study a Pastry program abroad. It was a very stressful 2 months to say the least. I fainted and blacked out in the movies and my blood sugar was at 45 .. the lowest level ever. I could not even get on a wheel chair and I felt terrible for weeks. After seeking help, I ended up finding a holistic doctor, an iridiologist and a healer who learned with the chamanes from Chihuahua. He told me I needed to re frame my life completely and that I needed to do something totally different. He told me I was pre diabetic and that I should not eat: dairy, gluten, commercial meat or chicken, farm raised fish or sugars. So besides changing the way I ate and lived (I was 100 % focused on work and my professional life was EVERYTHING) I had to create a new way of baking.  I was determined to create 1 recipe that I could eat. So in one of my consulting projects I had tasted the famous Matcha Cake from Carolo and I knew I wanted to recreate it in a healthy way: eliminating flours, grains, refined sugar and this new version of that original recipe is now grain free and paleo! 

My husband Erin loved it and he secretly ate 3 pieces! Which is the best review I can get. Because as you can imagine he has become a picky foodie! The best part of this cake is that it is:

Moist, super easy, light, pairs with many fillings, can be made so many ways: naked cake, cupcakes, travel cake, sheet cake.

Subscribe to my YouTubethen check the video for the step by step to make this recipe! Enjoy! Happy Baking! If you make this recipe please share on Instagram and tag me @chefvanessamusi #noblebaking so I can share your creations.

 

PALEO MATCHA CAKE
 
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Make this cake! It's life changing! Moist, fresh, spongy, lasts for many days, fill it with berries, apricots, chocolate ganache, whipped cream. Even non matcha lovers will love it! If you DON'T love matcha turn it into a lemon or orange cake.
Author:
Serves: 1, 6 inch cake
Ingredients
  • ½ cup pure maple syrup
  • 3 large eggs, preferably organic, pasture raised
  • 5 gr vainilla
  • ¾ cup of my paleo flour blend see below
  • 50 gr fine blanched almond flour (I get mine at Costco it’s so good and much cheaper!)
  • 4 gr aluminum + gluten free baking powder such as Rumford (at high altitude use 2 gr)
  • 3 gr fine sea salt
  • ¼ cup avocado oil
  • ¼ cup coconut cream from can (full fat, well stired)
  • 1 tablespoon culinary grade organic matcha powder (see notes for orange or lemon version)
  • Filling:
  • ½ cup fresh raspberries, cherries, blackberries or blueberries
  • Whipped Coconut Cream:
  • 2 cans of coconut milk (the best ones are Whole Foods 365 brand organic) chill for 2 days unopened in your fridge. Open and remove the thick part ONLY!
  • Add 1 pinch vanilla powder (not vanilla extract as it will turn brown) add a pinch of ses salt I like Maldon Salt.
  • Store cream well covered in fridge until ready to use it keeps well for about 3 days.
  • Coconut milk powder or coconut creamer to use as healthy confecioners sugar
Method
  1. Grease 2, 6 inch round cake pans with coconut spray and line with parchment paper. Preheat convection oven to 345 F, a regular oven to 350 F.
  2. Sift flours and baking powder, salt and matcha.
  3. In a KitchenAid mixer with a whisk, beat eggs, vanilla and maple syrup, beat until airy and lemon color. Add the oil and mix until combined. Add coconut cream and mix. Add the sifted flour. Mix to combine. Don’t over mix.
  4. Pour batter into prepared pans. Bake for aprox 15 mins until a toothpick comes out clean approx. 25-30 mins depending on your oven. Remove from oven, let cool on rack.
  5. Remove cakes from pans. Cool on rack. Fill cake with cream, fill with berries and decorate the top with coconut milk powder.
Notes
My Paleo multipurpose flour: mix then measure
1 cup fine blanched almond powder
½ cup arrowroot starch
¼ cup coconut flour
¼ cup tapioca starch (called tapioca flour / not to be confused with cassava flour)
Sift flours and mix with a whisk.
Measure how much the recipe calls for. Save the rest.

For lemon or orange version: remove matcha, and add zest of 2 lemons or 1 orange, change coconut cream for orange juice (for lemon version mix ½ lemon juice ½ coconut cream)

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PALEO BANANA GRANOLA BREAD

Have you guys seen the banana granola bread trending on Instagram lately? It’s quite a thing.. So many have jumped on the band wagon of combining timeless breakfast comfort foods.

I had seen so many photos and posts and made a few recipes from other bloggers which I didn’t love. So when Graceland Fruit  (the dried fruit experts since 1973) asked me to make a recipe for them using their new amazing NO sugar added cranberries which I love, I was beyond excited! Of course I had so many ideas and endless applications!

I suggested this breakfast banana bread and they loved the idea. I am so happy that we now have whole soft no sugar added cranberries. I literally have dreamed about this since 2001 when I first discovered Graceland Fruit via Maricu in Mexico City. My first healthy recipes always incorporated dried fruit and back then the only options available had added sugars. Having hypoglycemia means I really try to limit added sugars. So I am thrilled that we now have an option and stay tuned because more no added sugar fruits are coming and they also have a line of organic dried fruits! To buy these fruits check out their website.

So after making MULTIPLE banana breads in my life .. I am sure you have also, I pulled my best #paleo banana bread and adapted it to add Graceland Fruit cranberries and also made another version because why not? A good recipe always leads to another great recipe!

This banana bread is moist, not too sweet, and most of all the texture is really spongy and light, you would never guess it’s: paleo which by definition means: gluten free, grain free, dairy free and also low in natural sweeteners. I love this recipe because you can make: muffins, donuts, cakes and even savarins. This is a sponsored blog post and all opinions are my own. Thank you all for supporting the brands I love!

Huge thanks to Graceland Fruit for featuring my story on their  side kick profile!

 

PALEO BANANA GRANOLA BREAD
 
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My go to #paleo banana bread with granola. So simple and a total crowd pleaser. I have made it many times for events, networking and people love it!
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 3 small or 1 large
Ingredients
  • 2 large eggs I love and use Vital Farms pasture raised organic
  • ½ teaspon vanilla extract such as Nielsen Massey
  • 3 medium ripe bananas, pureed (1 cup)
  • ⅓ cup maple syrup
  • ½ cup avocado oil
  • ¼ cup Stir Sweetener
  • ½ cup arrowroot (60 gr)
  • 1 cup (110 gr) almond flour
  • 58 gr cassava flour I love Ottos Cassava Flour
  • ½ teaspoon Himalayan pink sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda I used and love Bobs Red Mill
  • ⅓ -1/2 cup Graceland Fruit no added sugar cranberries
  • ¼ cup pistachios I love Trader Joes
  • Topping:
  • ⅓-1/2 cup cashew butter my favorite is Georgia Grinders
  • ½ cup aprox Paleo Coconut Cashew Granola from Purely Elizabeth
Method
  1. Pre heat oven to 350 F, grease and line a large loaf pan (or 3 small loaf pans) with paper. In a large bowl: whisk all the wet ingredients: banana, oil, maple syrup, Stir sweetener mix with a whisk. In another bowl: sift all the dry ingredients: flours, salt and baking soda. Add to wet ingredients and add half of the cranberries, use a plastic spatula to finish mixing. Pour batter into prepared pan. Sprinkle the rest of the cranberries and pistachios on top.
  2. Bake for aprox 45 mins (for large pans) or about 20 mins for mini loaf pans or until a toothpick comes out clean. You may need to lower the baking temperature to 340 F so it doesn’t over brown.
  3. Let cool, unmold. Cool completely. Glaze with cashew butter, and top with the granola.

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PALEO SHORTBREAD

Who doesn’t  love Alison Roman’s Salted Butter Chocolate Chip Shortbread that went viral on the web. I mean every baker made that recipe! #bakergoals right? Find her recipe on her new book Dinning In which also became a Best Seller. Then I was also inspired by the famous Capello’s cookies and wanted to merge those 2 ideas together in this recipe. Watch my YouTube video on how to make this recipe. I adapted these cookies from Yummy Mummy Kitchen. 

Paleo Shortbread
 
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This Paleo Shortbread is amazing! So simple and made with the best ingredients. I love the endless applications and it makes the best edible cookie dough! Recipe adapted lightly from Yummy Mummy Kitchen
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 12 cookies
Ingredients
  • 2 cups almond flour (220 gr) I suggest you scale this amount
  • 2 tablespoons arrowroot flour (no substitutions)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda (at high altitude use ½ teaspoon) I love Bobs Red Mill
  • ¼ teaspoon himalayan sea salt
  • 5 tablespoons melted refined coconut oil (sub half of the oil for cashew butter and you have a great cookie dough also)
  • 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract or ½ teaspoon vanilla paste
  • ½ cup GUITTARD dark chocolate CHIPS 63 % (Just use these trust me)
  • Maldon Salt or Jacobsen salt flakes to sprinkle on top
Method
  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the almond flour, arrowroot, baking soda, and sea salt. Make a well in the middle. Add the melted coconut oil, syrup, and vanilla extract. With a
  2. rubber spatula or wooden spoon, stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until completely combined. The mixture will be crumbly but should stick together when pressed between your fingers.
  3. Place the dough onto a sheet of plastic wrap and form a log with your hands. Wrap tightly in the plastic and place in the freezer for 20 minutes to firm. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  4. Unwrap the dough and cut into ¼-1/2″ thick slices. Place on a perforated cookie sheet lined with parchment or a Silpat. Bake for aprox 8-11 minutes, or until lightly golden brown.
  5. Remove from tray and let cool on a perforated tray.
  6. Store in a recycled salad container (the ones that have washed spinach) at room temperature for about 4 days.

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