Lavender Fudge Cheesecake

2015-07-19 14.43.06Limitations. They can be fantastic when they are real and accepting them puts you in a better place. Accepting the reality of an injury and the time needed to heal, has been a nourishing limitation for me. And I’m generally better off when I accept my body’s regenerative need for sleep, in the spite of the fact that I’m feeling inspired and would like to stay up all night being creative.

But then there are those pesky pretend limitations that go around masquerading as real limitations, creating walls inside our mind that we project out into the world in the form of obstacles that simply don’t need to be there. I wonder how many hurdles spook us because they seem higher than they really are? Some perceived hurdles are just smoke and mirrors, all bluff and hot air, invented by fears and beliefs inside us that we are barely aware of.

I was asked to make a magic cake last night, by my spirit guides, whom I refer to collectively as ‘Spirit’. They love dancing around in the kitchen with me and tossing magic about; a pinch of this, a cup of that and a powerful sprinkle of higher healing intentions for good measure. For me, the kitchen is one of my creative playgrounds*, and I love inviting my magical inner child to play in this sacred space with me.

“What is this cake for?”, I asked them.

To clear limitations, they replied.

“Tell me more”, I asked them, like a child nestling in front of a warm fire, waiting for a particularly good story to spill forth from a loved ones lips. Except in this case, my nestling was actually more like rummaging, as I happily explored the deepest, darkest corners of my kitchen pantry in search of inspiring ingredients. It’s incredibly liberating, after a back injury, to be able to do this without help.

As far as ingredients went, Spirit had only given me two firm instructions: Lavender and Sesame Seeds. The rest of it I could make up as I went along. Sesame seeds just reek of wonder and magic don’t they? I mean, seeds on their own do, because they are these intense, tiny little packages of potential, packed tight with super-charged nutrients for the sudden beginning of new growth, new beginnings. Like a suitcase packed full of goodies, hidden under the bed, just waiting for the right moment for a new adventure to be unleashed.

But it’s not just the seed part that makes sesame seeds glow in the eyes of my magical inner child: it’s the ‘Open Sesame’ story-connotations from the tale of Aladdin’s magic lamp. My inner child sees sesame seeds as keys to unlock surprises, gifts, treasure…. all of which is hidden within me. A way to unlock the wall of my own perceived limitations so I can reach past them and unleash the sleeping light in my shadows.

This cake will help you see through mountains, because these mountains are actually molehills in disguise. The lavender will clear your third eye so you can see clearly again. Your mind has become lost in a maze of tangled thoughts, creating complexity that blinds you to the underlying simplicity. We seek to liberate this creative simplicity from within you so that you may be free to express your deepest truths in beautiful, pure, joyful ways. Blessed Be.

Ohhhh, that sounds like fun! Sure enough, I had a startlingly lucid, simple idea last night after making this cake and I hadn’t even eaten it yet! I hesitate to say “brilliant” idea because you might laugh at me and call me arrogant, but if I let that fear hold me back, I won’t have as much fun in life, so I think I’ll let the fear go. Besides, the idea was brilliant: that doesn’t mean I am! haha!

By the way, I had three crystal spirits hovering around in the kitchen while making this cake, helping to weave the magic: Blue Agate, Pink Agate and the Picasso Stone. I’ll write about these soon


RECIPE (delectably scrumptious and magi-licious)

BASE

1 cup macedamia nuts

1/4 cup toasted buckwheat groats

1 tablespoon of unhulled tahini

8 pitted medjool dates

Put all of these ingredients in your food processor and crush/blend until the mix looks like cooked cake crumble or fresh bread crumbs. To check whether you need more dates, pinch some of the mix between your fingers to see if it squeezes together and holds together if you roll it into a ball in your hand. A taste test at this stage helps too! Is it sweet enough for you? If your base chakra is balanced, you will balance excessive sweetness and sweet-indulgence with healthy limits, self-discipline and an ability to nourish yourself from within. 

“Why do they have to be medjool dates?” my husband asks.

“Because they are THE dates. The manna from heaven!”, I replied. They aren’t just sweet, they make everything stick together. It’s got to be sticky enough to firm a fairly firm base in the bottom of your dessert dish, without being too sweet. Add coconut oil or prunes for extra moisture if your food processor isn’t powerful enough to pull this off. Not water- that makes the cakes icy instead of creamy. These are freezer cakes, so keep in mind that they won’t shrink and pop neatly out of a cake tin when you turn it upside down, so be clever about the dish you choose to put your mix into. 

MIDDLE

(This is so much fun! Are your fingers twitching yet!?)

1/2 – 1 *banana

1 cup of walnuts

1 cup of cashews

12 pitted medjool dates

Vanilla essence or seeds (a splash or 1-2 seedpods)

*Bananas are surprisingly strong in aroma and taste, so their use needs to be careful, if you don’t want it to over-power other flavours, but they do give you more bulk without needing extra nuts. If you don’t like the taste of banana in this cake, replace the banana with another cup of nuts

Blend everything in the food processor. Keep going until it clumps together and becomes fairly smooth. I actually prefer texture in most of my meals/dishes, so I don’t make it completely smooth. More moisture does help with smoothness so if you prefer your cakes this way, add coconut oil or use cashew butter instead of cashews. 

Remove 1/4 of the mix and put it aside (in the freezer) to use as the base for the ‘icing’ (the top layer). It’s important to have some icing on your cake sometimes because it makes you feel special and pampered. 

Now add 1 tablespoon of cocoa or cacao powder to the remaining mix and blend again. (Use even more if you really love chocolate and your food processor is tough!) Yum! Spread this mix over the base layer and put your dish into the freezer. 

TOP

1 tablespoon of melted cacao butter

1 tablespoon or more of lavender flowers

You can adjust the lavender quantity and add more, but lavender is powerful, so a little bit goes a long way. Stir these ingredients into the 1/4 mix you had set aside in the freezer. If you want some more vibrant colour in this layer, mash/stir/blend in some blueberries.

Spread this mix over the middle layer of your cake and your cake is finished! Put your cake in the freezer over-night and serve the next day. These cakes can last months in the freezer, but do keep them covered. 

My daughter (the tea-tasting expert) suggests having a cup of lavender or cocoa husk tea with this cake. We love cake with tea! The flavour balancing is so much fun!

Enjoy

Love Om (and Spirit)


*I sometimes wonder if my love for sacred play and the way I weave my interests in psychology, neuroscience and neurotheology throughout this play, is a family trait. How lovely to discover one of my father’s sisters has been cut from the same divine cloth! My auntie Kay has a beautiful healing approach based on a blend of healing, psychology, philosophy, mindfulness, performance improvisation and the playful wonder of possibilities….

Berry Bliss Cake

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI made this cake to align my heart chakra, third eye and base chakras.

I am calling forth deep passion stirring in my heart, awaiting rebirth, like a flower bulb hidden under layers of snow in the winter, waiting for spring to come. I feel this passion grow legs, beautiful anchoring lines that guide my path forwards.

I see with the eyes of my heart, a single thread of passion cast forth like a beam of light from my third eye into the unknown, seeking what will nourish the growth in my heart.

I feel a deep strength rising up from my base, like a foal who suddenly finds her legs and unfolds upwards to stand tall, gazing at me unflinchingly.

I call forth horse energy to guide and nourish me. I see myself walking down an ancient pathway into a place of gathering. There are many others. We sing as we walk. Bowls are balanced on our heads, filled with water and flowers for blessing. We wash each other’s faces clean from the dust of travel. We cleanse our third eyes and the backs of our necks and we offer this old energy to the stars, that it might be made new again.

Now we stand in a circle and pray to the heavens. A child is born amongst us, at the centre of the circle in a flash of star-light. She is horse energy and she is me. We run alongside each other, we pace, we step, we nudge, we glide…..

I feel a deep patience and knowing welling inside me. I feel stillness that runs deep; stillness full of potency and grace.

We are One.


If you would like the recipe for this cake, visit my vegan site.

The Forgiveness Cake

Fiona 11-11-14 138Yesterday a friend and her daughter came over for lunch, and they brought with them a few slices of this beautiful cake. It not only looked amazing, it tasted incredible too. I really loved the magic in this cake and could feel its effects on me even before it arrived, while it was being dreamt up and concocted over the weekend. I also felt a beautiful connection with the sacred geometry work incorporated into the cake, taught to my friend by a lovely lady named Starina.

I asked Fiona if she would mind if we created a blog to share with others, featuring the cake, her recipe and a link to Starina’s star symbols, and she said yes! So here is a story from Fiona, with photos scattered throughout, and a link to Starina’s work at the bottom. Fiona’s journey has very much mirrored my own this year, and it has been such a gift to receive this cake and the symbol embedded within, at the perfect moment, from two such beautiful women. This has transformed my heart.  Continue reading “The Forgiveness Cake”

Wholesome Cake

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThis is the first ‘magic’ cake I have made in months. It was a bit tricky finding the resources I needed while travelling throughout Europe, so for the most part I just surrendered and went with the flow. And when I first came home, my sciatic injury, which had flared up due to travel, drained me of any spare energy I might have had for creating magic in the kitchen. I eased my way in slowly, first with some tahini ice-cream biscuits, then some vegan cheese and finally this, a return to form with a new creation.

“What shall I make it for?”, I asked my husband. Sometimes, when I make desserts, they are just desserts. But I was in the mood for a little kitchen spell-craft.

“Structure. Support.”, he replied.

“Do you mean physically, on a musculoskeletal level?”, I asked, “For my hip injury?”

“Yes. A healing cake.”

I agreed, and set this intention as I gathered the ingredients, but as I went along, it felt like there were other layers or aspects to this cake. It needed to be simple and humble. It needed to be wholesome and to feel like comfort food. It also needed to have a light-hearted, uplifting mood to it, something that gave me hope.

I like the word wholesome. It seems innocent and mature at the same time, full and round without being pretentious or too self-conscious, luscious without being cheap and tacky, simple yet satisfying.

When I eat this cake, I feel like I am reconnecting with the simple things in life, as though I am following a trail of crumbs back into my centre, back into the warm light within that sustains me.

When I made it, I used brazil nuts for the base because they are so solid and strong. This seemed to match nicely with my husbands ‘structure and support’ intention. While making it, I visualised my auric field and my musculoskeletal system realigning themselves.

I pre-soaked the dates. This is the first time I have soaked anything. I instinctively felt as though I needed the softness of the water and I loved the way the dates swelled in the water, like an oasis in the desert drinking in nourishment. When I de-pipped the soaked dates, the flesh parted gently in my hands, as though I were peeling back layers of the aura and removing blockages with great ease. I kept the bulk of the soaked dates for the body of the cake, which needed to be softer, smoother and more moist, but I added three of them to the base to tie it all together.

If you would like the recipe for this cake, please visit my vegan site. 

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I have been having a love affair with bananas lately, so they had to be in the cake. They fit the brief: simple, wholesome, light-hearted and nourishing!

There is something almost buttery or pancake batterish about this mix. I really enjoyed licking the bowl afterwards! The sunflower seeds are the really special ingredient here. They added a chewiness and body to the cake that it might not otherwise have had. Sunflower seeds full of sunlight to go with my yellow bananas. Delicious. As with the brazil nuts in the base, this ingredient is honouring the ‘structure and support’ intention for this cake. When I was a child, we had giant sunflowers in the garden and I loved harvesting the seeds.

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Mocha chocha zebra cake

When I’m not inventing cakes, I’m making variations on Emily von Euw’s cakes. I consider her my cake teacher! This is a cake I made using one of her recipes. It’s a favourite of ours; probably the most more-ish recipe I’ve found so far (so I don’t make it too often because we might eat too much and then it wouldn’t be incredible any more.) I used stevia as the sweetener, and organic decaff. I love the marbled pattern it got this time. Usually, the idea is to put the cake in the freezer to harden a little before you add the last layer. It’s actually more fun when you don’t, because they mix together in interesting ways, hence my zebra pattern! I love zebras. If you like the look of this recipe, you might want to buy Emily’s book, Rawsome Vegan Baking. Or you could come eat some for free at my clinic while attending one of my ‘Cowspiracy: the sustainability secret’ private screenings. Yes, I’m bribing you with cake. It’s shameless isn’t it?OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

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Passion Cake

I’ve just made a new cake!

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This one is gorgeous. It’s a passion cake, stirring fire in the belly and raising it to the heart chakra. This cakes ignite passion in the following ways:

Aphrodisiacal, sexual passion

I made sure this cake connects the base and heart chakra together, so I doubt it would stir sexual fire without there already being an existing love between two parties. The base chakra is lots of fun but personally, I think it’s fire is more balanced when it’s connected with the heart chakra. It can be a little heart-breaking, as a practitioner, listening to the following stories from clients about disconnection between the heart and base chakra:

Continue reading “Passion Cake”

The Chill-out Cake

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThis is a calming down cake. It helps you feel really easy going and relaxed about things without being a push-over. And it’s especially good for helping us let go of anger and frustration. You can learn more about Lavender and the aura frequency of the cake by reading an earlier blog called Lavender and the Watchful Blue aura.

The recipe is on my vegan site. 

Self-reliance Cake!

I totally love this cake! (I’m eating it now). I’ve had it twice now and both times it has made me feel as though my aura was becoming stronger, more grounded and more separate from the world around me, in a good way (better boundaries and personal space). It makes me feel more self-reliant, so I’ve called it the self-reliance cake.

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI made it with a student’s daughter in mind. She has a cashew allergy. This cake only has macadamia nuts in it, along with some other pretty cool ingredients like slippery elm powder, acai berry powder, Rhodiola tincture, bananas, marigold petals, turmeric, dried pear, frozen and dried banana, dates, and blueberries.

I don’t use slippery elm powder very often, even though I love it lots, because it’s one of those endangered herbs…. at least, it was last time I checked. I might have to get updated! This herb comes from the inner bark of the slippery elm tree and from memory, and in some instances the entire tree gets destroyed to harvest the powder.

Slippery Elm is a mucilaginous herb. Herb high in mucilage content are demulcents. The word ‘demulcent’ describes a herbal action…

Demulcent herbs are soothing. They heal the inside of our digestive linings by covering them in a gooey texture (think of mushed up bananas and yes, bananas are mucilaginous herbs too!).

Continue reading “Self-reliance Cake!”

Crown Chakra Cake

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI made this cake to test whether I could create a purple colour, using blueberries, and a purple taste, by adding specific herbs from my naturopathic dispensary. I created two layers. The first layer I made was the yellow looking layer you can see poking out of the middle of the cake. Prior to freezing, this layer was actually looking like a grey, overcast purple sky, or wet concrete with purple sky reflected on it. It was murky and rubbery looking, with a strange, pasty consistency. But it tasted good! I had fun making this layer, even though it didn’t look right, and I have no idea how it turned yellow during the freezing process. I totally love the alchemy of ‘not’ cooking. Haha!

This first, rubbery ‘grey’ layer contained pecans, macadamia nuts, cashews, coconut oil, blueberries, dates, and two herbal tinctures: hawthorn berry and buchu leaf. These herbs, especially hawthorn, have a ‘purple’ scent and flavour to them: floral, light, mystical, wispy… with red berry undertones. Hawthorn Berry is a heart chakra herb, primarily, but as with most herbs, it has various layers or facets; many different sides to its nature and many applications for use. Hawthorn is a herb I use to tone and nourish people’s hearts and cardiovascular systems. It contains incredible plant chemicals that give the herb cardiotonic and blood pressure lowering properties. Like many berries, it contains bucket loads of vitamin C and bioflavonoids- these tone up all the elastic blood carrying pipes in the body, as well as oxygenating and nourishing the micro-capillaries that perfuse our tissues. Vit C is a marvellous food for the adrenal system, helping us respond to stress with vibrancy and bounce (bouncing back from set-backs!)

Hawthorn is used in chinese medicine as a digestive tonic, for food stagnation issues…. in other words, it helps us break down and digest our food, encouraging the digestive system to get up and go do its thing, rather than lolling about languidly under the weight of stodgy food, or food that we can’t digest easily simply because it doesn’t agree with us. So many of us are eating things that don’t agree. Part of the problem is the idea that only some people have food sensitivities- sure, some are more sensitive than others but the reality is, no-one can digest all food with equal ease across the board- we ALL have foods we would be better off leaving alone….and there are common culprits when it comes to foods that befuddle the digestive system- like refined sugar, wheat, dairy and animal proteins in general, just to name a few.

Most of us don’t actually listen to our bodies, and many of us have no idea that there is a connection between food and health… which astonishes me because it certainly isn’t rocket science! Take a good rocket, put crap fuel in it and watch it go no-where. It isn’t that hard to put two and two together. But having said that, being able to identify food sensitivities isn’t always so simple. Reactions can be delayed and we can become so used to chronic symptoms that we just ignore them, put up with them, accept them and even think they are ‘normal’… or normal for us, at least. Given the same unhappy toxic food over and over again, the body becomes exhausted and while drowning in a sea of miserable symptoms it can’t shout loud and clear to let you know it’s grumpy about the things you are eating… it just puts up and shuts up and tries its best to adapt. So we put up with sub-standard health for a large swathe of our lives, ‘managing’ the symptoms by suppressing them with medications, and then we crumble into more serious chronic illness as we age and wonder why. Mind you, you are allowed to get sick and you are allowed to age… nothing wrong with that! I’m just talking about being kind to your body, listening to it and giving it a break from continuous onslaught so it doesn’t wear out quite so fast.

As I was saying, food sensitivities can be tricky to pick, for many reasons. Eliminations diets can help, checking family history can help and then there’s always the delightful Dorte with her bioresonance machine: I love referring people to her for food testing. It seems pretty accurate! Wherever you are, you can get help from a local naturopath or herbalist who specialises in this area and then start experimenting to leaving particular foods out of your diet and noticing how you feel. As with most cleansing processes, we can feel a bit yucky at first. Sensitivity foods can also be addiction foods- they break down strange, creating funny chemicals that our body can become hooked on… or to put it another way: your body has spent a long time trying to work our how to co-exist with a crappy food and when it sudden’t gets taken away it can be confusing for it at first! (a bit like giving up cigarettes)

Hawthorn is a feminine plant, toning the Yin in the body and belonging to the rose family. As herbalist Peter Holmes puts it “Herbal medicine since the Renaissance days has seen the rise of more Yang, active remedies….A subtle gentle, yet highly effective remedy like Hawthorn berry simply found no part in the trend to quick, radical, heroic fixes.” What does he mean by ‘heroic’? He’s talking about a specific tradition or attitude in medicine, especially naturopathy… one that is very different from the Wise Woman tradition. The heroic tradition is obsessed with toxins, detoxing and cleansing, often in very forceful ways. Heroist healers love stimulants, enemas and purging. I’ve never liked these approaches. I’m much more of a wise woman herbalist. The wise woman approach is more spiritual, holistic, gentle, nourishing and loving.

Buchu is a herb used for healing and supporting the urinary system. It’s warm, drying herb that tones bladder and kidney Qi. It’s always been one of my favourite herbs because I love its smell! Buchu strengthens and relaxes the bladder, and is anti-bacterial. It relieves incontinence, urinary and vaginal infections, and prostate troubles, amongst other things. Like Hawthorn, it promotes digestion, but it can also resolve mild digestive infections. This herb is indigenous to South Africa, specifically the Hottentot tribe.

After I made my sticky grey-purple layer, i put that aside and had another go. This time I started again with blueberries, added cashews and coconut oil and kept it simply. I got a lovely red-purple layer. I used this as the base for my cake. I few hilarious messy moment later, I realised that if I mixed the two layers together, it somehow gave me an incredible purple colour: the colour I was looking for!

My husband totally loves this cake. The ‘rubbery’ layer, once frozen, is really beautiful- the texture is indescribable… perhaps I could say ‘very creamy and silky’.

Here is a channelled message from this cake:

“I am here to centre you. Many things will go wrong in life but pay them not too much heed. It’s in the muddling through, the unwieldy grappling with our errors and unwanted outcomes that we turn new corners and arrive in unexpected, but wholly happy places. You cannot find these happy places if you give up too easily. Life is always changing. Never feel as though you have arrived in a corner and there is no where to go. I will take your hand and show you the secret passageway that leads to Somewhere Else. There are hidden oasis’s of peace, calm and contentedness hiding behind the rubbish piles and broken china in life. Give me to people who are desperate for change and yet frightened of it at the same time. I will set them free.”

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Blessed Be