Do It Yourself

by Jemma on April 26, 2012

in Recipes

As a bride to be and on a very tight budget I’m very much swayed these days to patching things up rather than buying new and reinventing old things to bring new life into them.  Where my food is concerned I have also reigned in my budget and with many health foods which I love, but don’t consider essentials I have turned to making my own.

Of course, I love, love, LOVE natural fruit and nut bars, but on a budget and still wanting to lead a healthy lifestyle I have put them on the treat list for now.  At the moment I am running quite low on snack bars I decided to make some of my own.

In the past I have regularly made the amazing and delicious snackage phenomenon that are fudge babies of different variations:

Tropical Fruit Baby’s

On Monday I decided to make some Chocolate Orange Protein Truffles in homage to the chocolate orange Nakd bar- one of my faves!

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Ingredients (makes 8 truffles)

  • 1 cup of dates

  • 1/3 cup of raisins

  • 1/4 cup of walnuts

  • 2 tbsp. of vegan chocolate protein powder

  • 1/2 tsp. of Sicilian orange extract

First roughly chop the dates in to smaller pieces and place in a food processor along with all of the other ingredients.  Blitz all of the ingredients until then are well combined and resemble small bread crumbs.  Then take heaped tablespoon potions and roll in to balls.

I wrapped mine in cling film and left them to firm up in the fridge where I left some for later in the week and stashed the remainder in the freezer for a rainy day.

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I used these natural dates which needed stoning as it was all I had in my cupboards, but I think any variety will do.  For me personally I think the best way to approach DIY foods, especially on a budget is just to experiment with store cupboard ingredients that you already have at home rather than going to buy more (unless you have to!).  In terms of the nuts used I would usually opt for cashews or almonds but again I am all out and the walnuts work great as an alternative.

Other DIY foods that I love, but cannot go without would include:

Homemade hummus:

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Raw Chocolate Covered Tropical Bites

Soup:

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Coconut Spiced Vegetable Soup

After realising that my food processor is actually better than I gave it credit for nut butters have also been another DIY favourite of mine from  walnuts, macadamia nuts an walnuts.  You can even get adventurous by adding spices and dried fruits to make a whole range of different nut butters of your choice.

Another DIY favourite of mine is making almond milk at home, which is great on cereal and in teas. You can also make homemade milk all using the same method* from seeds and whatever nut you have at hand.  I am hoping to make a homemade spiced hazelnut milk some time soon.

I do like to get in the kitchen and make things from scratch where my very limited culinary abilities allow.  I think it gives a kind of satisfying edge when you are eating your own homemade goods with the knowledge that you made it yourself.  Also, they are a far sight cheaper than shop bought items, which makes foods like this very budget friendly.

If you are looking for some budget savvy meal then check out my previous Budget Busting Meals series where I created some affordable meals that were also healthy and delicious! :D

Coming up on the blog tomorrow I have a little giveaway for all of you DIY foodie Goddesses’ WATCH THIS SPACE!

Are you all for doing it yourself or would much prefer to just buy from the supermarkets?

Do you have and DIY food recipes that you would like to share?

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{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

Phil April 26, 2012 at 1:00 PM

I am definitely all for doing it yourself – recently I started doing the whole buying dried chickpeas and soaking them/cooking them myself instead of buying canned. You get SO much more for your money!

All your recipes look so good, it’s amazing how well you can eat on a budget if you’re prepared to be flexible :) x

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Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 28, 2012 at 5:49 PM

Thanks Phil! :D x

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porridgeandparsnips April 26, 2012 at 1:04 PM

Mmm, those chocolate orange truffles look great, one of my favourite flavour combos!

I usually make fudge babies and other baked good type snacks myself – they’re not difficult to make and Nakd bars are so expensive to buy regularly, so I make batches of snacks and store them in the freezer instead. I also make most of our meals more or less from scratch, but things like houmous and nut butters – I can and have made them before, but most of the time I tend to buy.

I’m actually sitting here reading blogs whilst eating a divine raw chocolate tart that I bought at the food festival I went to recently…that is next on my list to recreate at home! :)

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Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 28, 2012 at 5:50 PM

That tart sounds incredible! :D

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Alex @ therunwithin April 26, 2012 at 2:21 PM

These recipes look great, I am dying to make some of this. Definitely starring this post for future reference!

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Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 28, 2012 at 5:49 PM

Thanks!

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Maria April 26, 2012 at 3:07 PM

I prefer to make things, but I do like the convenience of buying things too, so I have a balance I suppose. I tend to make meals from scratch, but then maybe buy snack foods. Although I do have some mint chocolate date balls in the freezer- thanks for reminding me! The chocolate orange combo sounds lovely.

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Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 28, 2012 at 5:48 PM

It is nice to have a balance between the two. :D

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Laura@keepinghealthygettingstylish April 26, 2012 at 4:10 PM

I make almost all of my own things now and have done with a lot of stuff since I started my Big Budget challenges 2 years ago, I think its a great way to save money and is so much healthier as your skipping a lot of the additives that end up in processed bought foods

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Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 28, 2012 at 5:48 PM

I love making my own stuff too especially as a way to save money and to be healthy.

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eatinglikeahorse April 26, 2012 at 9:52 PM

I make just about everything myself, within reason. Once I’d been diagnosed coeliac, I had to, really, and now I like to, which is a bonus! It’s nice to be able to make GF versions of things I used to love, at a fraction of the price of the free from ranges, much healthier and much cheaper!
those chocolate orange fudge babies sound fab :-)

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Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 28, 2012 at 5:47 PM

It’s great that you are able make foods to suit your own diet- it definitely makes things cheaper! :D

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amylovesfood April 26, 2012 at 11:33 PM

As i am a poor new mommy on maternity leave (i’ll put my violin away)… i have been making most things from scratch – i actually feel a lot healthier for it as i know exactly what is in my food. Although things take a little longer to prepare it works out so much cheaper! I am loving all of the above recipes! x

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Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 28, 2012 at 5:46 PM

Yes you can escape a lot of nasties by making things yourself. :D

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Kate April 27, 2012 at 12:15 AM

Sometimes I’m so pushed for time that the only feasible option is to buy from the supermarket. But with more time (like a couple of days off work at least), I am more than happy to make from scratch, often lots at the time. I love to make hummus!

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Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 28, 2012 at 5:46 PM

It can be hard to make everything from scratch when you are pushed for time. Hummus is the best to make at home.

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Lauren (@poweredbypb) April 27, 2012 at 1:31 PM

I love making things myself, it’s so much cheaper than buying at the supermarket, plus it often tastes better, and you have total control over what ingriedients go in, so no hidden nasties. I like making my own bars or balls, with whatever combo of dried fruits/nuts/seeds I have at the time. I also like making my own nut butter, hummus and nut milks.

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Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 28, 2012 at 5:45 PM

I totally agree withit being cheaper and the taste being better

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Sarah @ the Brain and Body April 28, 2012 at 2:41 AM

Those protein balls look fantastic! I made something similar awhile back, but should really make some more :)

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Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 28, 2012 at 5:44 PM

Thanks Sarah!

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Love Live & Learn April 29, 2012 at 10:22 AM

This was great to read, I love that you make so many things from scratch! I have yet to make hummus but it’s on my list of things to try my hand at :-) I’ve made a lovely babaganoush before though!

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