Bliss Balls For Beginners – 21 Sugar Free, Dairy Free, Gluten Free Recipes

I’ve finally done it! Eighteen months in the making and here I have for you Bliss Balls For Beginners.

Bliss Balls For Beginners offers 21 recipes to get you started on raw, healthy, good-for-you snacks loved by adults and children. They are fast, easy, no bake, no cook recipes that put treats on the table in under five minutes and keep in the cupboard for weeks. Dairy free, gluten free and sugar free options will make sure you have empty trays at each party, with no sugar crashes or bad ingredients.

Bliss Balls – they can be squares or shapes too – are unbaked, uncooked balls of yumminess, perfect for children to make and particularly perfect for times when there’s a call for treats: Halloween, Christmas, Easter or birthdays.

Bliss Balls make for lovely gifts – like healthy truffles. They are easy for children to help with too.

Some of my favourites from the book are the chocolate coconut ‘Bounty’ balls, the chocolate orange balls, carrot cake balls and my absolute favourite: the Christmas Cake Bliss Balls – all raw and full of healthy and nutritious ingredients!


in GBP:

in USD: Balls For Beginners


BUY THE KINDLE VERSION IN US $Bliss Balls For Beginners


Bliss Balls For Beginners

Have a thought, question or idea or would like to write a review on this eBook? Please email me at diaryofafirstchild (at)

Making Chocolate With Disney Cakes And Sweets

I love a good recipe book. Actually I love going through a recipe book and gleaning great ideas to adjust and adapt to our family’s way of cooking and eating.

People often comment about how much I do with my girls, and how busy we always are, but the truth is, a lot of it comes from outside inspirations – like this morning: we made Fruity Chocolate Chunks from Issue 1 of the Disney Cakes And Sweets Collection. It was a fun activity I probably wouldn’t have thought of on my own.

The girls had a lot of fun with it. We didn’t have a single one of the ingredients in the original recipe, but they recommend substitutions too, so we made milk chocolate with hazelnuts and candied orange peel.

I used my Thermomix to temper the chocolate to a perfect 37 degrees Celsius, which was also ideal because it means the chocolate never got too hot for the girls to handle. 

While the chocolate was doing it’s thing, I gave Ameli the job of crushing the hazelnuts. I could have done it in seconds in the Thermie (or a food processor), but I decided to stretch the activity as long as I could. I put the hazelnuts into a cake pan and gave her a mallet, covering it with a napkin and let her hammer it. An easier option would be put it all in a ziploc bag and hammer it that way, but the girl had fun anyway.

Next up, we sprinkled orange peel over the hazelnuts and mixed them together in a silicone tray before pouring the perfectly tempered chocolate over it.

While the kids licked the chocolate off the spoons and bowl, I popped it in the fridge for a couple of hours.

A little while later, we had perfect chocolate snacks, easy, simple and fun. And they’d make lovely gifts too!

There are a few more recipes from issue 1 that Ameli’s asked if we can try, as well as Winnie the Pooh icing guides and a Mickey Mouse cookie cutter, both of which Ameli can’t wait to use! I’m sure you’ll see more of our adventures in baking and sugar craft soon!

{Festival of Food Carnival} Recipes From The Garden

It’s time again, and this month we’re celebrating grow your own, or local food, whether that’s from your garden or from your local farmer’s market, veggie box or similar.

Unfortunately the late start to our spring and summer seasons here in the UK have not been good to our garden, and one of the only crops I’ve successfully reaped so far has been the Kale, so over at Keeper of the Kitchen, I share a simple, summery salad of kale and parmesan.

Co-host for the Festival of Food Carnival,Jennifer, gives us a gorgeous looking Grilled Fennel and Tomatoes with Basil dish. This recipe brings together some of the freshest, most vibrant flavors from her garden into a simple dish that even her wee-one adores.

In a guest post at Hobo Mama, Sam shares a garlicky, sweet, salty, and tangy topping for salads, sandwiches, pasta, and burgers and pairs it with a delightful dish that will help you use up the tomatoes and spinach fresh from your garden or farmers’ market. Such a versatile topping can never go wrong.

Lindy at Poppy Soap Company shares a recipe for Grilled Peaches with Balsamic Vinegar which pairs well with protein heavy meals as a decadent and easy side dish.

Angela from Earth Mama’s World scored some ‘imperfect’ veggies from a local farmer’s market and turned them into a perfect rosemary roasted veggie dish. That just looks a picture of health, really!

Amy at Anktangle details two different methods of preserving hearty summer greens (such as kale and chard) so you can enjoy the variety—and nutritional benefits!—year-round. This is definitely one for my Kale crops!

Last but not least, Destany at They Are All of Me creates low fat, healthy mock ups of some of her favorite restaurant dishes, using whole foods and ingredients from her garden.

Do you have recipes from your garden that you’d like to share with us? Add them to the link up below! We’d love to try them!
Stay connected! Be sure to “Like” the Festival of Food Carnival Facebook page.

5 Great Recipe Ideas For Poorly Kids (Guest Post)

Despite our best efforts at natural immunity, sometimes our children get sick. Whether they go to school or not, just being around other children seems to make them vulnerable sometimes! Written in collaboration with Supersavvyme, this guest post has great ideas for foods that help fight colds and inflammation, and recipe suggestions for incorporating them into foods for poorly little people.

When children head off to school, they’re especially susceptible to catching coughs and colds from their friends and class mates. If a sick day under the duvet covers beckons, here are five tasty and nutritional recipes that will boost the immunity of your child when they’re feeling under the weather:

Easy Salmon Fishcakes – Serves 5

Salmon is rich in Omega-3, which reduces inflammation and prevents respiratory illnesses.

In a bowl, mix 1 (418g) tin of salmon, 2 beaten eggs, 4 tbsp dried breadcrumbs, 4 tbsp instant mashed potato flakes, 1 diced onion, 1 crushed clove of garlic, 1/4 tsp dried dill, 1/4 tsp celery salt, salt and pepper. Form the mixture into 5cm balls, and flatten into patties about 1cm thick.

Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat. In batches, cook patties about 5 minutes on each side, until lightly browned, and serve.

Garlicky Spaghetti – Serves 4

Garlic contains allicin, which helps fights infection and bacteria.

This is a great store cupboard meal that can be rustled up easily, and with just a few ingredients. Cook 400g spaghetti according to the packet instructions, drain and reserve 2 tbsp of the cooking liquid.

Over a low heat, crush and sauté 8 garlic cloves in 100ml olive oil until golden but not browned. If your child likes hot food, add 4 chopped and de-seeded red chillies, and the reserved liquid. Add spaghetti and season with 2 tsp chopped flat leaf parsley, salt and pepper. Toss until the spaghetti is coated in the mixture and everything is well combined. Serve with grated Parmesan cheese.

Easy Chicken Soup – Serves 6

When chicken cooks, cysteine is released- this amino acid has a chemical resemblance to a widely prescribed bronchitis drug, and has similar congestion relieving results. The soup’s salty stock also keeps mucus thin the same way cough medicines do.

Melt 55g butter in a saucepan over a medium heat and soften 2 sliced onions, 2 sticks of celery finely chopped, and 2 diced carrots. Stir in 25g plain flour and cook for 2 minutes. Add 2 pints of chicken stock and bring the mixture to the boil, whilst stirring. Season with salt and pepper, then simmer for 10 minutes, until the vegetables are tender.

Add 450g cooked chicken and heat through. Season again, and add 1 tbsp parsley to serve.


Yoghurt contains probiotics, which keep the gut free from intestinal bacteria that can cause unwanted diseases.

Avoid artificially sweetened or “fat-free”: go for natural yoghurts to best support your child’s health. If they don’t like yoghurt, try freezing home-flavoured yoghurt in lollipop moulds. Or serve yoghurt sweetened with honeyor even try this yoghurt cake.

Sweet Potato

Sweet potatoes contain beta-carotene, a form of vitamin A, which is vital for healthy skin, which of course is designed to protect you from bacteria and viruses.

These are a great alternative to the classic jacket potato, and can be served with any topping your child fancies. They are also good steamed or roasted, or as an alternative to pasta – or if you fancy cooking a new recipe, you could try this Sweet Potato and Spinach Bake.

Once you’ve cooked up a storm in the kitchen, make sure you take the pain out of washing up and other household chores with the great money off coupons you can take advantage of online.

Gardening: First Harvest

The sudden and long awaited turn in the weather this last week has finally meant I’ve been able to move all the large vegetable pots off the table in the conservatory and out into the garden.

This has had a down side as now we’re back to fighting snails again, as well as the ever hungry slugs and aphids we were already dealing with. Turns out an adult snail can demolish two courgette plants in one night. Oh joy.

On the up side, the last remaining courgette, the one I bought ready to be repotted, is growing at a beautiful rate and I can see some flowers headed this way. It’s first flower was beautiful but the courgette itself was tiny, no bigger than my baby finger. It pretty much rotted while I was waiting for it to grow.

The fated aubergine, or egg plant, has also been victim of the snails, and its leaves are looking paltry – but there are some buds showing too, so hopefully, hopefully.

The tomatoes we got from Heinz are finally doing really well. They seem to have grown every time I look. No flowers yet, and no tomatoes but again, I’m hopeful!
I harvested all the Kale this week, and made an incredible salad that I really loved. I’ll post the recipe on Keeper of the Kitchen this week.

It seemed to like being harvested though because new leaves are popping up all over the place, which is great.

I also had the first potato harvest this week. By the time I got to planting the potatoes, they had long roots already and I didn’t have much hope for them, or much soil, so I dumped them all on one bag and let them get on with it.

I thought I’d have a rummage for some new potatoes a few days ago and proceeded to break most of the foliage. Who knew potatoes were so fragile?

I did manage to find some new potatoes though – my first ever potato harvest, so they accompanied dinner tonight. Yum.

We’ll see what happens to the potatoes from here on out though. I did find as many exploding rotten ones as ready to eat ones though, and I’m curious about that. Why has that happened? Is that to do with the slugs? Have I left them too log? I do wish I was doing this with someone who knew what they were doing.

The apps on my phone are pretty useless. They’re telling me I should be reaping like mad right now! Which, clearly, I’m not.20130707-222135.jpg

I’m glad we’re doing this in the pots though, rather than straight in the ground. It’s made meeting the needs of my seedlings so much easier. It’s like attachment gardening.

Only you eat your babies if you’ve done it right.



Festival of Food: Smoothies And Mocktails

I don’t know about where you are, but we’ve had a simply rubbish summer so far. There was one good week, really and the rest has been rain, rain, rain, rain and more rain!

None the less, Jennifer and I set the challenge for the Festival of Food writers to share their Smoothie and Mocktail recipes, and they did not disappoint!

Jennifer, in true Hybrid Rasta Mama style, shares 5 “Real Food” Style Simple Syrup Recipes For Mocktails, a collection of homemade simple syrups that include fresh ingredients and no refined sugars. You will fall in love with them all!

I’m not quite as well behaved this month, and over on Keeper of the Kitchen I share a yummy, sweet, refreshing Summer Mint Cordial. This mint cordial is sure to bring some cool to your summery afternoons.

Sam takes the reigns at Hobo Mama again this month, and offers a vegan, dairy-free, sweetener-free smoothie with just four natural ingredients that’s sure to refresh both kids and adults. I think I’m trying this one for breakfast!

Bianca at The Pierogie Mama shares a few delicious smoothies that use avocado as an ingredient – great for healthy fats and a  hit with toddlers too, she tells us. 

Jennifer at True Confessions of a Real Mommy shares Frozen Green Dream which includes her favorite trick for a quick, satisfying smoothie your kids will run for a cup of. 

Finally, Lindy at Poppy Soap Company shares an energizing and refreshing morning grapefruit smoothie. I might have to try that one tomorrow. 

Do you have a yummy summer drink recipe to share? Link up below if you do! 

Gardening – It’s Like Watching Water Boil, But More Exciting

I’m so glad I decided to plant the sunflower seeds the same day as the tomato plants, because for days and days nothing happened. We opened the growing thingy each day to find nothing, except one random weed that popped it’s head out. I was beginning to think the Heinz Grow Your Own tomato plants were a fail. I did find another bag of seeds though, so thought I’d try again.

20130505-222540.jpgThe sun flower seeds sprouted and one of the two of them shot right up. It’s pretty cool though. The other may or may not have had a fight with a pigeon. I’ve stuck it back in the ground, but I’m not sure it’s grown at all since then. At least it hasn’t died. That’s progress, right?

It’s been a bit of a rubbish week, weather wise, so I haven’t really been out in the garden much, and left my ‘failed’ tomatoes where they were, and I’m glad I did.  When I got back to them, there were four little plants smiling up at me. I’m not sure if Ameli was more excited, or me!

We’ve replanted the sunflower plants, and will be replanting the little tomatoes soon. In the meantime we’ve also planted some potatoes from the Grow Your Own potatoes scheme that was advertised earlier in the year – did you know there’s a potato council? It’s a little like the Ministry of Magic, eh? – but I took more than a month to open the box, by which time all the eyes had sprouted and now I’m not sure if they’re actually going to grow or not. We’ll see, I guess. I’m still really hopeful for something more than herbs from our garden this year!

Anyway, I have yet to plant the next bag of tomato seeds. They’re a different variety, so hopefully between the two we’ll have a good harvest, and once again I’m really hoping I didn’t leave it too late!


Festival of Food Carnival: Child Tested Recipes

It’s Festival of Food time, and I’ve decided to share our Frozen Yoghurt recipe with you over on my new Keeper of the Kitchen blog.

As part of the carnival, my co-host Jennifer at  Hybrid Rasta Mama shares Coconut Milk Popsicles, a super easy creation that is customizable. Seems Jennifer and I have similar ideas on yummy healthy summer snacks for our little people!

Lindy over at the Poppy Soap Company shares some super tasty, super easy Granola Delight Bars inspired by her sweet son. Don’t these just look perfect for lunch boxes and lazy afternoons spent picnicking? 

Mercedes at Project Procrastinot shares a comfort-food recipe sure to be a future family favorite. Don’t miss this Grown-Up Mac & Cheese for You and Baby to Love. I wonder if this could convert my I – don’t – like – cheese – sauces husband?

Finally, Jorje at Momma Jorje has fun throwing together Monster Smoothies with her girls. The key is in the flexibility and you can use pretty much whatever you have available. 

Do you want to join us next month, when we’ll be talking Summer Smoothies and Mocktails. If so, follow our Facebook page to find out when the call goes out!

 Do you have previously published child-loved recipes? Share them in our linky below!

End Of The Box Fun Food Pasta

Have you ever opened your store cupboard to find that each pasta container has too little pasta left to make up a meal?

That’s what happened to me tonight, so I ended up making different pastas! There was gluten free and normal, white and whole meal, long, spirally, and shells.


I popped each pasta into its own pot, with some food colouring, which I was sure Ameli was going to love if it worked.

Once cooked, I drained it then decided the blue and red needed more colour, so added a few more drops to each (drained) pot and stirred it in.

Finally, I mixed the green, red and blue pastas together, mixed in some herbs, seasoning and olive oil, and served to a very excited toddler, who for the first time ever, asked for more food!


Carrot Soup And Butternut Squash Soup {{ Thermomix Recipes }}

*These recipes are written for the Thermomix, but can be made in any high speed blender. I cooked them in the Thermomix, but you can cook them on the stove too.

As soon as my vegetable stock was made, the day I received my loaned Thermomix, I set to work making two soups: first a Carrot soup, and then a Butternut Squash soup.  (And the beauty of the Thermie is that I did this in between putting my children to bed. That’s impressive.)

I am terrible at following recipes, but just these two times, I thought I’d make a special effort and follow the recipes from the Every Day Cookbook exactly, but I only kind of did, and here they are:

Carrot Soup And Butternut Squash Soup {{ Thermomix Recipes }}

Recipe Type: Soup
Cuisine: Winter
Author: Luschka (Every Day Cookbook)
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 5
This soup could not be any simpler or faster. It tastes fresh and wholesome when just made, and even better the next day.
  • 40 g red split lentils
  • 1 thinly peeled strip of lemon skin
  • 2 cm fresh ginger
  • 300 g carrots, cut into chunks
  • 1 small onion, peeled and cut in half
  • 50 g butter
  • 120 g cream
  • ]½ tsp sea salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • a few sprigs fresh coriander
  • water or stock as needed
  1. Grind lentils, lemon peel and ginger 20 seconds/Speed 10.
  2. Add onion, carrots, butter and stock paste or stock cube if using. Chop a few seconds/Speed 4½.
  3. Add water or stock to the 1 litre mark on the bowl. Cook 15 minutes/100ºC/Speed 2.
  4. Add coriander, salt and pepper. Add cream and milk (if using).
  5. Pureé 1 minute/Speed 10 until smooth.
Calories: 195.1 Fat: 17.1 g Carbohydrates: 9.5 g Sugar: 2.8 g Sodium: 108.8 mg Fiber: 2.7 g Protein: 2.1 g Cholesterol: 54.7 mg

The original recipe for this next soup calls for pumpkin, but we had Butternut Squash at home, so it became a Butternut Squash recipe instead, and it was totally fantastic.

Carrot Soup And Butternut Squash Soup {{ Thermomix Recipes }}

Recipe Type: Dinner,
Cuisine: Soup
Author: Luschka
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4
A thoroughly delicious soup. Warm flavours and so easy to make!
  • 1 onion
  • half a butternut squash, cubed
  • 1 carrot, roughly chopped
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 500g vegetable stock (2 cups, roughly)
  • Thyme, to garnish
  • cream, to garnish
  1. Place onion into bowl and chop for 5 seconds at speed 7.
  2. Add butter/oil and saute for 3 mins at 100 degrees on speed 1.
  3. Add pumpkin and carrot and garlic and chop for 15 seconds at speed 7.
  4. Add stock and cook for 20 mins on 100 degrees at speed 1.
  5. Swirl some fresh cream over the top of the soup, and add a few sprigs of thyme to garnish (but be sure to eat it, it’s the perfect herb for this soup!)

I think my favourite thing about Thermomix soups is that they come out so creamy and smooth, they look like you’ve emptied a pot of  cream into them, even if you’ve added no cream at all. Yum, yum, yum.