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Exotic treats with Erbology ingredients

Ever get into a rut with your recipes? It’s nice to have an assortment of dishes at your fingertips to rely on – but every now and then I like to get creative in the kitchen and try new ingredients. It’s been a while since I’ve had the chance to do this, so when Erbology sent me a box of marvellous and unfamiliar things, I felt immediately inspired and came up with a canopy of exotic treats.

Exotic treats from Erbology

Aloe Chia Dessert Recipes

These exquisite aloe chia desserts are a treat for your tastebuds and your gut health. They are packed full of digestion-soothing, anti-inflammatory nutrients and fibre. At the same time, they are fragrantly flavoured and refreshing.

Aloe vera juice contains about 75 active substances, such as aloin, emodin and bradykinase. Many of these are impressive anti-inflammatories, as well as being anti-viral, antibacterial and generally soothing. No wonder, then, that aloe vera juice has been found to be effective for IBS, and is often recommended for other digestive complaints. It’s also blood sugar balancing, which can be helpful at dessert time!

Aloe vera juice is also cooling, so for people with a cold constitution or digestion, I’ve created a recipe with ginger to add some fire. Ginger, of course, has its own anti-inflammatory properties.

Chia seeds contain mostly soluble fibre, which is why they swell when any liquid is added. Plums are rich in insoluble fibre. Together, they help with both constipation and loose stools, as long as you are well hydrated. Fibre also feeds your gut flora, helping to maintain a healthy microbiome, which helps to regulate inflammation and other aspects of your immune system.

I’ve also use classic tummy-soothing mint and chamomile in these recipes, both for their flavours and their calming properties.

Plum, coconut and mint (serves 2)

Aloe chia dessert: plum, coconut and mint

1 plum
2 tbsp chia seeds
4 tsp finely chopped fresh mint leaves
1 cup coconut drink (or any plant-based milk)
3 tbsp aloe vera juice
2 tsp unrefined maple syrup (optional – coconut drink is usually sweet enough)

  1. Chop the plum into small pieces
  2. Add the chia seeds and mint
  3. Stir in the coconut drink and aloe vera juice (and maple syrup if required)
  4. Pour into 2 glasses or small dishes and leave for at least 20 minutes
  5. Decorate and serve

Plum, ginger and chamomile (serves 2)

Aloe chia dessert: plum, ginger and chamomile

1 plum
2 tbsp chia seeds
1 tsp dried ginger powder
1 cup cooled chamomile tea
3 tbsp aloe vera juice
2-4 tsp unrefined maple syrup to taste

  1. Chop the plum into small pieces
  2. Add the ginger
  3. Stir in the chamomile tea, aloe vera juice and maple syrup
  4. Pour into 2 glasses or small dishes and leave for at least 20 minutes
  5. Decorate and serve

Aronia recipes

Aronia berries look a little like blackcurrants, and are also rich in vitamin C. They are known for their exceptionally high content of protective antioxidants, mostly polyphenols. These actively help maintain the health of your heart and blood vessels, skin, and tissue throughout your body.

Aronia Royale

Aronia royale

This is an alcohol-free take on the celebratory kir royale. Kir royale uses a blackcurrant liqueur and champagne, whereas my mocktail uses the exotic-sounding aronia juice together with maple syrup and sparkling water. It’s refreshing, and a perfect summer mocktail.

To make the aronia syrup, mix 3 parts aronia juice with 1 part maple syrup.

Pour about 4-5tsp into each glass and top up with sparkling water.

GingAronia dessert (serves 2)

GingAronia dessert

1 avocado
1 cup coconut cream (from a tin)
2tbsp aronia powder
2tsp ginger
2tsp cinnamon
3-4tsp raw honey or unrefined maple syrup

Simply blend thoroughly and then chill till ready to serve. This spiced mousse-like dessert will be a hit at any dinner, and makes a delicious quick snack for peckish afternoons. It contains a host of anti-inflammatory and antioxidant compounds to keep you healthy and support your immune system.

Sea Buckthorn Powder

Sea buckthorn is amazing for your skin and cardiovascular health. Its citrus flavour complements the carrot cake-inspired ingredients for this incredibly tasty flapjack.

Sea buckthorn and carrot flapjacks

Sea buckthorn and carrot flapjacks

200g oats
3-4 medium carrots, grated
4tbsp sea buckthorn powder
6tsp ground cinnamon
2tbsp sultanas or raisins (optional)
8-10 dates soaked in hot water for 20 minutes, then drained
100g coconut oil
3tbsp blackstrap molasses

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (Gas mark 4)
  2. Blend together the coconut oil, dates, molasses and cinnamon
  3. Stir into the oats, then stir in the rest of the ingredients
  4. Spoon into a greased dish and press
  5. Bake for 35-40 minutes in the centre of the oven
  6. When cool, slice into squares

Tigernut granola

Tigernut granola with cocoberry cream

Finally, I was intrigued to try Erbology’s tigernut granola range. I was not disappointed: somewhere satisfying between chewy and crunchy, big on taste, free of refined sugars and full of interesting ingredients. I paired their nopal cactus granola with some cocoberry cream, which is essentially:

Coconut cream (from a tin)
Strawberries – chopped small

That was my favourite breakfast of the week. I also admit to snacking on small handfuls of granola from time to time…

So there you have it, a cornucopia of exotic treats, courtesy of Erbology and my imagination.

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