Today I bring to you a "Christmas Special": a dessert with a Christmas touch.
This month I'm going to share with you some Christmas suggestions that you can use as alternatives to the traditional dishes of the season, that always taste good but leaves feeling sluggish, with low energy and with a huge guilty feeling...
I'm going to try to share recipes with you guys that keep all the Christmas flavors, but with some twists that make them healthy and ethical, so we all can enjoy the season without giving up the flavor and the pleasure but also not giving up on our health and vitality.
We're going to reach the 26th December completely satiated and happy and also feeling great with ourselves and our bodies, avoiding the extra pounds that usually come with Christmas season...
Today's recipe is a Sweet Polenta, a very simple recipe that is tasty and comforting.
It calls for nuts and you can use whatever nuts you like (I used a mixture of almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts and cashews) or replace them by seeds (such as pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds) to keep it nut-free). Instead of raisins, you can use other sweet dried fruits, such as dates, apricots, plums or figs.
The final sprinkle is also up to you. I used carob powder because I love its aroma but you can chose to use cacao powder, cinnamon, shredded coconut or even leave it natural.
You must adjust the amount of agave to your taste. I used 3 tbsp and it was not very sweet but I found that it quite balanced because of the sweetness of the raisins.
Can you tell by the photo how greedy I was with the portions?...I have to confess that I ate both servings as dessert this lunch...and it felt so good!
Christmas Special: Sweet Polenta
Preparation Time: 2 minutes
Cooking Time: 10 minutes
Difficulty Level: Easy
Cost: ~2,95 € (in Portugal)
Nutritional Information (per serving): 172 Kcal, 3.7 g protein, 28.8 g carbs, 5.7 g fat
1/2 cup Organic Corn Semolina (~100 g)
2 cup Water (500 ml)
1/3 cup Nuts of your choice (~50 g) (I used a mixture of almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts and cashews)
1/3 cup Raisins (prefer without any additives)
3-5 tbsp Agave Nectar or any other sweetener, to taste
1/2 Vanilla Bean (the inside of it, or use vanilla powder, paste or extract, optional)
1 tbsp Carob Powder (or cacao powder, cinnamon or shredded coconut, optional)
1. Chop roughly the nuts and place them in a non-sticky pan. Place it over medium heat for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently, to toast the nuts. Remove from heat and reserve.
2. Place the water in a small pot and bring it to a boil. Once boiling, add in the semolina and cook it while stirring constantly until it gets thick (about 5 minutes).
3. Add in the agave, vanilla seeds, toasted nuts and raisins and stir well. Remove from heat.
4. Transfer the mixture into a swallow dish and let it cool down at room temperature. The polenta is going to get thicker and firmer as it cools down.
5. Sprinkle it with the carob powder (or cacao powder, cinnamon or shredded coconut, if desired) and serve it in slices with the shape you most desire.
I hope you enjoy this Christmas dessert suggestion. Don't forget to comment below!