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Be your own health ‘influenzer’ this winter + My bestest ever vegetable broth recipe

Written by Lee on . Posted in Blog, Blog Breakfast, Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Blog Snacks, Dairy Free, Vegetarian, Wheat Free, Winter


Is it just me or does it feel like we’re never truly prepared for winter? It’s like winter arrives and we’re always so shocked that our sun-loving country has turned wintery and cold. June has barely begun but winter has well and truly arrived in Australia and it’s safe to say it's fffreeezzzing.

Apart from the nippy weather, many of us start to notice change is in the air when the local chemist has started advertising flu vaccines to prevent seasonal influenza and more throats become scratchy and noses sniffly on our morning commute.

To stay on top of things this winter and become your own health ‘influenzer’, why not look towards supercharged foods to bulletproof your immune system? Rather than relying upon regular cold and flu medication, which can weaken your immune system’s ability to respond naturally to illness, try leaning towards natural ways to boost immunity and fight of colds and flu.  

One of the first places to look when building immunity is your gut, where 70-80% of your immune tissue resides.  Because your gut is often the first entry point for pathogens, you’ll want to ensure that you have enough friendly gut flora (the good bugs that are allies for immune cells) to prevent pathogens and infections from being absorbed through the gut lining.

As well as a healthy balance of microflora, you’ll want the gut lining to be robust to assist in nutrient absorption.  The best way to ensure good gut health is to eat a diverse diet, filled with anti-inflammatory, fibre-rich, prebiotic and probiotic rich foods. Plus my Heal Your Gut powder.

This month I'd love to share some of my favourite foods that are wonderful for supercharging your winter immunity. The grocery items I’ve used are available at Sprout Market.  You can find out more about Sprout Market here

Turmeric

One of my must have natural medicine-chest items for winter immunity is turmeric.  Whenever I use turmeric, I like to think of it as nature’s golden fairy dust. It has recently gained popularity and rightly so!

Turmeric’s dazzling golden colour is derived from curcumin, a natural antioxidant that helps fight off and repair damaged cells. Turmeric is also a powerful secret weapon when it comes to good health. I love using turmeric because it’s so versatile. You can enjoy this supercharged spice in anything from drinks, bakes, smoothies, curries, stir-fries to main meals.

Turmeric not only holds an abundance of antioxidants; it also has anti-inflammatory properties. An easy way to incorporate some turmeric this winter is to add it into hot drinks. If you haven’t tried it yet, you must get into my Anti-inflammatory Toddy Drink, a wonderful warmer for boosting your immune system and best of all, it tastes super delicious! If you’re willing to give up your morning coffee, this golden goddess is a serious pick-me-up. If you’re pinched for time in the mornings, Sprout has a coconut latte version here

And you can pick up the individual ingredients for the recipe too;

During winter, the days are shorter and the nights are longer (cue guitar solo here). Cold and early nights mean we can often become more susceptible to caving into unhealthy food cravings. A fast food diet comprised of takeaway food can lead to poor digestion. This means that when food is broken down by enzymes within your stomach and pancreas, some food molecules can still remain in your small intestine.

The small intestine is the place where nutrient absorption occurs. These molecules are then able to pass through the gut wall into the bloodstream, which can result in bloating, irritation, inflammation, fatigue, aches and most importantly, low immunity to colds and flu. A good way to help maintain the integrity of the gut is to eat an easily digestible diet with non-aggravating foods that don’t damage the lining of the gut.

Gelatin is one of my winter immunity boosting ingredients and an excellent source of special proteins, which help to seal the gut wall and greatly improve the integrity of the gut lining by restoring the mucosal layer. One of gelatin’s gut healing attributes is to absorb water and retain fluid in the digestive tract, which is required to promote transportation of waste and healthy bowel movements. When you optimize your gut health, this can also help with nutrient absorption.

A simple gut healing dessert to fill up on is my Almond Milk Jelly Cup. Generic vanilla custard can have your tummy doing backflips and somersaults, because of the refined sugar and cream, so in my recipe I use powdered stevia.

Hearty Broths

Some main meals to grab hold of to boost immunity and fight off colds and flu this winter are garlic filled tummy warming broths, soups and casseroles.  These tasty recipes have become a staple in many households (mine included!) because of their numerous health boosting qualities.

At the heart of a tasty casserole is a homemade broth or stock.  Want my supercharged tip? Make lots of broth and keep leftovers in the freezer, it can supercharge any dish for that restaurant quality finish. 

Beyond adding delicious flavour and being used as the base of sauces, stocks, soups and stews, broths also act as a supercharged “tonic” and are wonderful for adding a dose of healing nutrientsperfect for empowering your health.  You’ll love my Bestest ever roasted vegetable stock recipe please try it and let me know what you think! You enjo have it as a warming drink too.

Apple Cider Vinegar is a worthwhile component to any broth recipe, known for its ability to nurture the sick and nourish the body. Fats in meat-based broths pair well with vinegar since it helps to draw out all those valuable minerals in the bones into the broth. Raw apple cider vinegar is a good choice since it’s unfiltered and unpasteurized. 

If you’re pressed for time, you can buy your own ready-made stock. Just be sure to check the ingredients list to make sure there are no hidden nasties! I’ve tried these stock mixes myself and love that they're made the traditional way, plus they’re delicious and nourishing all at once.

Pantry items to stock up on are;

Coconut is an ideal ingredient to boost the health of your digestive system. Coconut oil has wide-spreading medicinal quantities to improve immunity and it’s anti-fungal, anti-viral, anti-microbial and has anti-bacterial properties.

The transition to winter has resulted in many simple raw meals being replaced with warmer, flavorsome comfort foods. Soups can be supercharged with a range of nutritious ingredients that’ll ensure your immune system is powered up whilst you remain cozy indoors, snuggled up on the couch.

If you haven’t had a chance to try my pumpkin and coconut soup, you should! It uses coconut oil as base along with garlic and onions, both well known for their immune boosting properties, next just add some pumpkin and coconut milk, ginger, stock and nutmeg; it’ as easy as pumpkin pie!

I’m using onion in the recipe as it contains significant amounts of quercetin – responsible for the protection and healing of damaged cells, as well as garlic which acts as a natural antibiotic.  Ginger is a great immunity-boosting tool, to help to reduce fevers, soothe sore throats, and encourage coughing to loosen mucus from the chest. The chemicals, shagaols and gingerols responsible for that ginger kick when you eat it, are what help to stimulate blood circulation and open up sinuses allowing you to breathe more clearly.

Soup ingredients to add to your trolley are;

Kombucha

Fermented foods like kombucha are another beneficial way to increase your good gut bugs when your gut is healed, primed and ready. Not only is kombucha a delicious way to introduce some cultured foods into your diet, it also easily replaces any soft drinks. 

Try my Homemade kombucha recipe.  Or if you’re worried that the fermenting process is too much like a complex lab operation rather than a kitchen recipe (it’s really easy once you get into the flow of it!) and you simply don’t have the time, kombucha is offered in plenty of flavors and readily available in stores. My personal favourite is Remedy’s Ginger and Lemon.

I’d love you to try these supercharged ingredients for boosting immunity and let me know what you make with them!

Lee xo

Brussellin’ into winter with Supercharged Sprouts

Written by Lee on . Posted in Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Gluten Free, Nutrient Rich, Organic, Vegetarian

The other day I was standing in the middle of my local supermarket and was stuck; bewildered by all the choices I could possibly make; especially in the tea aisle; there were about thirty five different types!

Instead of diving straight into the fresh produce as I normally would, I decided to observe my fellow shoppers and see how they made what was going to be one of the toughest decisions of the day: paleo bread or white bread? Organic brown rice or regular white rice? Organic apples or non-organic apples? stevia or steeeevia 😉

I noticed that people stopped and peered at the organic food, checked the price tag, proceeded to pick their jaw up off the floor and then trundle towards the non-organic produce.

With so many available products in the supermarket, for many of us we tend to end up choosing the cheaper, mass-produced options. 

I've recently partnered with Sprout Market, a new online grocery market, and the perfect helper to make healthy living affordable and accessible for everyone; especially people who don't have natural ingredients available at their fingertips. Sprout Market is a membership-based community that is focused on sharing organic and natural products with Australians at low prices.

With that thought in mind and as I picked up my usual Brussels sprouts, a new recipe idea overcame me and I knew I had to get into the kitchen and share it with you ASAP.

Cue: my delicious Honey + hemp oven roasted sprouts with goat's cheese. 

Brussels sprouts are rich in many valuable nutrients such as fibre and calcium. They help to cleanse the body (in the nicest possible way) and are loaded with antioxidants - Say hello to glowing skin!

I've also added hemp seeds into the mix because they're nutrient-dense and add a delicious crunch.  Hemp seeds have a perfect balance of proteins, essential fats, vitamins and enzymes. Hemp provides a wide range of health benefits, including sustained energy, increased immunity, lowered cholesterol and decreased blood pressure.

And let’s not forget the delicious combination of goat’s cheese and honey, two prime ingredients that marry beautifully together. I’m practically drooling at the thought of it are you?. A sweet drizzle of honey so perfectly complements the freshness of goat's cheese. I really hope you make this one.

If you're looking for affordable ingredients such as Manuka honey, good quality hemp seeds and lots of organic spices Sprout Online Market is a great place to start. For first time orders they have a 10% off plus free shipping Supercharged Special. (Full disclosure, I am an ambassador for Sprout Market).

For less than $5 a month ($59.95 annually), you are provided with a cream of the crop selection of quality food, supplements and products from some of the best brands at up to 60% lower than their RRP. Every product is categorised and tagged, with labels like vegan, paleo, GMO-free and more, to make it easier for everyone to select and shop according to their dietary needs.

Now, everyone can gain access to organic and natural products with prices that work with their budget.

I’m also delighted to announce that Sprout is 100% green, using biodegradable materials to package your goodies and ship them out to you wherever you are in Australia.

With that said, I can think of no better way to start the ball rolling than with some brussellin’ now that we are well on our way to winter and the wind is blowing a kale outside.

Honey + hemp oven roasted sprouts with goat's cheese 

Serves: 4

Ingredients
• 400g Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved (or whole if small)
• 4 garlic cloves halved
• 3 tablespoons olive oil
• 1 tsp cumin
• 1/2 tsp turmeric
• Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
• 2 tbs raw honey (I used Manuka)
• 1/2 cup walnuts
• 1/2 cup goat's cheese


To serve (optional)
• Squeeze lemon
• 2 tbs Superseed sprinkle mix (I used Pimp my Salad Brand)
• 2 tbs hemp seeds

Method

Preheat the oven to 190°C and place Brussels sprouts and garlic and into a large roasting dish, sprinkle with oil, season with cumin and turmeric, salt and pepper and honey and toss to coat.
Roast for about 30 minutes, and halfway through stir then, at the 20 minute mark add the walnuts. Return to the oven until crispy and caramelised.
Remove from oven and crumble on goat's cheese.
Squeeze some lemon juice if using then sprinkle with super seed sprinkle mix and hemp seeds and serve. 

Baked Fish with Flaxseed Crust

Written by Lee on . Posted in Autumn, Ayurveda, Blog, Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Dairy Free, Eat Right for Your Shape, Sauces, Seasonal, Spring, Sugar Free, supercharged food, Wheat Free, Yeast Free

fish

Fish is one of the most beautiful proteins, and I'm always looking for interesting and flavourful ways to enjoy a simple piece of fish. Whether it’s steamed, sautéed, fried or baked in the oven, there's just so much you can do with fish; and taking on the wisdom and culinary genius of Ayurveda means that you can take hold of an impressive pallet of healthful, balancing ingredients that will not only bring fish to life flavour-wise, but will target your unique dosha in order to bring healing and balance to your entire wellbeing.

This Baked Fish with Flaxseed Crust is one of the most beautiful dinner recipes in my book Eat Right For Your Shape. You only need a handful of ingredients, but do make sure you source them well, especially the fish! Head to a good local fishmonger who sells it fresh, as an un-fresh fish can take a potentially beautiful food experience into something disappointing, if not horrible!

The recipe is beautiful for pacifying Vata (Air) and Kapha (Earth) doshas. In balance, airy Vatas’ are full of creativity and flexibility, however a diet too high in cold foods or absent of oils and healthy fats can bring imbalance to Vata’s leading to dry skin and hair, constipation, digestive problems, malabsorption, fear and anxiety. This warming fish meal with heating and grounding ingredients like black pepper and ginger will bring Vata’s back down to earth and also provide some lubrication and digestive support through the use of ghee.

Kapha’s are super nurturing peace makers in balance, but can be cold, heavy and static when eating a diet that is too high in dairy and heavy proteins, making fish an excellent choice.

Kaphas need light, warm and spicy foods to uplift and generate more digestive fire without weighing them down. This Crusted Fish really ticks all the boxes as its light protein and the use of warming spices like pepper, ginger balanced with the light mint and coriander chutney means that they will be pacified against the tendency towards weighty conditions like depressed mood, sluggishness in digestion and weight gain.

I love this recipe because you can turn a plain fish fillet into a crispy yet moist and flavourful delight covered in a special crunchy flaxseed crust that you mightn’t see every day. Flaxseeds are also an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids that will help to lubricate Vatas’ dry intestinal tract.

Baked Fish with Flaxseed Crust

Serves 4

Turn a simple fish fillet into a crispy yet moist and flavourful delight covered with a special crunchy flaxseed crust. Flaxseeds are an excellent source of omega-3 fa􏰅tty acids and will help to lubricate vatas’ dry intestinal tract.

  • 4 rainbow trout fillets, bones removed
  • 2 tablespoons ghee, melted
  • 50 g (13⁄4 oz/1⁄2 cup) flaxseed meal
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon Celtic sea salt
  • freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
  • Serve with brown rice and Coriander and mint chutney 
  • lime halves, to serve

Preheat the oven to 175°C (345°F) and line a baking tray with baking paper.

Place the fish skin side down on the prepared baking tray and brush with the ghee. Combine the flaxseed meal, rosemary, salt and pepper in a small bowl, then spoon the mixture over the fish and press it down gently.

Bake for 25–30 minutes or until the crust is golden brown.

Serve on brown rice with coriander and mint chutney on top and lime halves on the side.

Coriander and Mint Chutney

Serves 3-4

  • 65 g (21⁄4 oz) mint
  • 80 g (23⁄4 oz) coriander (cilantro) leaves
  • 1 green chilli, seeded
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon tamarind paste
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 6 drops liquid stevia
  • pinch of Celtic sea salt

Combine all the ingredients in a blender until smooth.
The chutney will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for 2 days.

6 Reasons I Love Sardines + Sardine Mash Pot Recipe

Written by Lee on . Posted in anti-inflammatory, Blog, Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Digestion, Dinner, gut health, Heal Your Gut, healthy gut. digestive health, Learn, Lunch, Nutrient Rich, Recipe Book, Sugar Free, Super Foods, supercharged food, Supercharged Food Menu

sardine mash pot

Why on earth should I eat sardines? Now before you turn your nose up on these commonly rejected tinned swimmers, you may be surprised by the answer. In fact there is not just one answer to this question. There are several reasons why a good old can of sardines should make an honoured appearance in your pantry.

Sardines might not immediately seem like the most joyous of foods, but they’re so insanely beneficial you’ll be sure to fall in love with them. They’re rich in omega-3 fatty acids and energy-boosting vitamin B12, as well as minerals such as calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium and zinc. This mash is an inexpensive and nutrient-dense meal for when you feel like a boost.

Here are the top six reasons why I love sardines, and why they're one of my favourite supercharged foods for good health.

1. A superior source of omega 3’s

Everyone needs more omega-3 fatty acids in their diets due to the use of processed vegetable oils in foods, and feeding livestock on corn and grains, rather than green pastures. Sardines are a wonderful source of high-quality omega-3 fatty acids. Research is showing that omega-3 fatty acids, particularly EPA may help to support the tolerance of probiotic strains within your gut microbiome; making sardines an excellent gut health superfood.

2. No worries about mercury

The small size of the sardine means that it has less opportunity to pick up and accumulate mercury. The skinless and boneless sardines are even lower in mercury, with up to 50% less mercury than regular sardines because the mercury is stored in the sardine’s spinal cord. Many people say they also taste better. Larger fish, even salmon contain significant more concentrations of mercury than the tiny sardine.

3. High in vitamin B12

A Vitamin B12 deficiency, even a mild one, can cause symptoms including nerve damage, poor mental function, problems with oxygen uptake into cells, and depleted energy. One can of sardines provides a whopping 338% of your daily Vitamin B12 needs!

4. Anti-inflammatory

The numerous benefits of omega-3 fatty acids are related to their ability to act as an anti-inflammatory, making them a super effective treatment and prevention of hundreds of medical conditions. Omega-3 rich sardines have a remarkable ability to help defend against mood disorders like depression and anxiety, ADHD, arthritis, infertility, heart disease and inflammatory gut conditions like ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.

Sautéed Scallops with Mushrooms and Spinach

Written by Lee on . Posted in Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Dairy Free, Dinner, Fast Your Way to Wellness, Fasting, Heal Your Gut, Lunch, Organic, Recipe Book, Seasonal, Supercharged Food Menu

sauteed scallops picture

For many people, seafood is a restaurant food. Few people know how to prepare it at home, hands up if thats you! As for me, I used to be one of them. But I promise you- with an open mind, you too can create restaurant quality seafood meals in the comfort of your own home. It won’t cost you an arm and a leg, and if you have a good connection to your local fish monger, you can capitalize on the freshest ocean catch available.

You really can’t beat the light oceanic flavours of top quality, fresh seafood. The warmer weather beckons for feasts of seafood with friends and family.  It’s also a guilt free celebratory food- it’s seriously nutrient dense, and the perfect light meal option during periods of intermittent fasting. This gorgeous and light recipe is from my new book Fast Your Way to Wellness.

Seafood is the ultimate health food.  Dr Weston A Price, a dentist and researcher who travelled the globe studying traditional and native diets in the 1930’s and 40’s,  discovered that those who ate seafood had thriving health and wellbeing; thicker bones and better skeletal structure than traditional groups who just ate red meat.

It’s hardly surprising that seafood is one of my top supercharged ingredients. There are plenty of studies that link fish consumption, particularly oily fish to a reduction in cardiovascular disease. Foods from the ocean are wonderful sources of macro and trace minerals, and especially high in fat soluble vitamins A & D.

One Pan Roasted Fish & Vegetables

Written by Lee on . Posted in Blog, Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Candida Friendly, Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Heal Your Gut, intermittent fasting, Nutrient Rich, Sauces, Seasonal, Summer, Wheat Free

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There’s only one word I can use to describe this one pan meal from my brand new cook book Fast Your Way to Wellness and that is Delicious!  

I cannot tell you how many times a good old one-pan has rescued me from the potential stress of last-minute dinner guests, and tired weeknights where it would be ever-so-easy to order in.

With a kitchen filled with plenty of veg and a variety of proteins, herbs and spices, there’s always the possibility of a creative and delicious one-pan that will satisfy the belly and nourish your body.

This particular meal is of the seafood variety, so it’s perfect for warmer days, and a great way to tick off your fish quota for the week.

Interestingly, in all my years of studying, researching, reading, and searching for supercharged foods, seafood has recurred as one of the most healthful ingredients humans can fill their bodies with. Studies show that people who consume fish regularly have a lower risk of heart attacks, strokes, and death from heart disease. More studies have shown that people who serve fish up on their plate have lower rates of cognitive decline, and scientists believe that it may increase grey matter in the brain, protecting it from age related degeneration. Grey matter is the stuff that acts as the major functional tissue in your brain; containing the neurons that are responsible for storing your memories, processing information, and basically making you human!

Fish is a dream to cook with, as it provides protein in a lighter form, it digests beautifully, is versatile, and is high in one of my most highly adored nutrients for inflammatory conditions: omega 3 fatty acids.

Fish oils are one of your best whole food sources of anti-inflammatory fatty acids. There are two types of these fatty acids in fish oil; EPA and DHA. These guys are total legends, as they inhibit the signals of inflammation within the body.

Fast Your Way to Wellness Book + Mint and Ginger Prawns Recipe

Written by Lee on . Posted in All, Autumn, Blog, Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Blog Salads, Candida Friendly, Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Heal Your Gut, Healthy Home, Nutrient Rich, Organic, Seasonal, Spring, Sugar Free, Summer, Supercharged Food Menu, Wheat Free, Yeast Free

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Lose weight, supercharge your energy and feel great with my brand new cookbook!

I’d love to introduce you to my latest book; one that is so close to my heart and part of my own weekly lifestyle. It’s called Fast Your Way to Wellness and it’s fast becoming my favourite book (please don’t tell the others). You can order a copy over here.

I like to think of the new book as one that can be read in conjunction with my bestseller Heal Your Gut; you can think of it as your very own all-in-one fasting resource. It’s the perfect read for everyone – from the fasting newbie to those who are committed to their own fasting regimes or even for the fasting curious.

Intermittent fasting, meaning a calorie reduction for two days a week, is scientifically proven to help you lose weight and improve your overall health. I want to show you how fasting can fit in with your lifestyle, how you can eat abundantly using real foods for fasting, and how you can enjoy your food too!  The most important thing is that you can fast on wholefoods and make it a healthy fasting day instead of reaching for low calorie junk food.

As I’m sure you’re aware by now, I’m all about good gut health! If you want to feel your best physically and emotionally (and let’s be honest – who doesn’t?) gut health is key. Eating fibre rich veggies, digestible foods and sipping on delicious drinks and smoothies are all amazing ways to keep your gut health at bay but sometimes, your digestive system also needs a bit more of a rest.  This is where intermittent fasting comes in. Intermittent fasting gives your body some time to heal, so it can carry on being supercharged and fabulous!  Dramatically reducing calories on two days per week not only kick-starts weight loss, but also rejuvenates the body’s systems, repairs cells and restores vitality.

Here are just a few facts to show you why I live by intermittent fasting:

It reduces blood pressure, reduces inflammation, increases fat burning, improves beneficial gut bacteria and normalises your hunger hormone for better appetite control.

Coming from someone who’s personally experienced autoimmune issues, I’ve seen how much I’ve benefited from intermittent fasting.

When writing Fast Your Way to Wellness, I was keen to share everything I know about fasting and health with you and, most importantly get you on your way to looking and feeling the best that you can naturally.

The book is a gentle guide to different fasting methods to suit your own plans. I share my personal tips for what I do when I get cravings, how I manage my portion sizes and what foods are best for fasting and non-fasting days. I’ve created over ninety new delicious recipes to nourish and sustain you throughout your fast days and keep you motivated.

While many ‘fasters’ often eat low-calorie junk foods or skip meals altogether, Fast Your Way to Wellness provides easy and flavourful meals that will keep you satisfied and happy.  My tasty, nutritious recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner and portable snacks include calorie counts, and the menu plans will help get you in the swing of planning your fasting days so they sail by effortlessly. You'll reap the benefits of increased energy and vitality — the bonus will be watching those numbers on the bathroom scale go down, and stay down.

One of my favourite new recipes from the book is a Mint and Ginger Prawns with Coleslaw.  Prawns are delicious summertime food, packed with protein to fill you up. In fact, did you know they have approximately the same amount of protein as chicken or beef, yet half the calories? This means they’re ideal for a fast day!

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At only 202 calories per serve (846kJ), it just shows that fasting can be satisfying to your tummy and tastebuds.

Prawn, Mint and Ginger Prawns with Coleslaw

Serves 2

  • 1 small carrot, grated
  • 180 g (61/4 oz/1/4 small) cabbage, finely shredded
  • 180 g (61/4 oz/1/4 small) red cabbage, finely shredded
  • 2 kale leaves, stalks removed, roughly chopped or torn
  • 1 spring onion (scallion), thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 150 g (51/2 oz/10 medium) peeled and deveined prawns (shrimp), tails left intact
  • mint leaves, to serve

Dressing

  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lime zest
  • 1 teaspoon lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon grated ginger
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 2 teaspoons wheat-free tamari
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped mint

Combine all the dressing ingredients in a small jar, then seal and shake well.

Combine the carrot, cabbages, kale and spring onion in a serving bowl.

Heat the oil in a medium frying pan over medium heat. Add the prawns
and cook for 1–2 minutes on each side, until cooked through.

Put the prawns on top of the vegetables, pour over the dressing and serve topped with the mint leaves.

You can purchase the book here.

Supercharged Summer Popsicles ☀️

Written by Lee on . Posted in anti-inflammatory, Blog, Blog Breakfast, Blog Lunch, Blog Snacks, Breakfast, Dairy Free, Dessert, Desserts, Gluten Free, Heal Your Gut, Heal Your Gut Powder, Heal Your Gut Powder, Kids, Kids' Recipes, Nutrient Rich, Push Ups and Icy Poles, Seasonal, Spring, Sugar Free, Summer, Vegetarian, Wheat Free, Yeast Free

PopsiclesIn the searing heat of summer, I want my food to be refreshing, full of supercharged ingredients, and speedy to prepare. Balmy evenings and the dry warmth of the summer air begs for our energy to shift from the comforting presence of the stove and lengthy food preparation, towards simple alfresco food solutions that can be enjoyed by adults and children alike.

In the warmer parts of the year, my priorities shift away from indoor activity, to more outdoor, social engagements; morning yoga sessions and beach walks followed by throw-together breakfasts, inviting friends over for a shaded outdoor lunch of simple, seasonal ingredients, and family gatherings where common sense, last-minute entertaining or pot luck offerings are regularly required.

When enjoying the food of summer, I always tackle my food planning with a two-fold approach. Firstly, and most importantly, I focus on healing, supercharged ingredients that are full of the season’s well-curated nutrients that support immunity, energy and vitality that the summertime requires. Secondly, I love to embrace speedy simplicity by taking hold of the ritual of batch cooking, one pan options, and easy-peasy snacks and refreshments that allow less time in hands-on food prep, and more time enjoying the outdoors and the presence of those I love.

For summer breakfasts, you can’t go past a glorious granola topped with a mountain of seasonal fruits. My Cranberry and Walnut Granola is my favourite go-to. I find great contentment mixing and baking a large batch of this scrumptious stuff during a Sunday batch-cooking session. You should smell the aroma! The blissful scent of sweet cranberries and roasting nuts will fill the air of your home, comforting your mind with the assurance of nourishing breakfasts sorted for the week ahead. I love to immerse my granola in homemade almond milk topped with fresh organic farmer’s market fruits. You can’t beat passionfruit, mango or raspberries!

One pan meals minimise the need for hands on time in the kitchen, and you don’t have to miss out on flavour with a throw-together dish. My Seven Minute One Pan Salmon with Greens is one you could do blindfolded, and always delivers the light, fresh oceanic flavours of salmon, plus the anti-inflammatory benefits of this high omega 3 fish. It’s also surrounded by seasonal greens that are important for oxygenating the blood to increase energy levels for outdoor cricket or rugby and trying to keep up with chasing around my three step sons during the holidays. 

But if I were to uphold one of the greatest summer recipes that I know of, I’d have to wave my banner for these no-fail popsicles. For the amount of effort required to whip up a batch of these darlings, it never ceases to amaze me how many times they have brought a sense of delight to both adults and children on a sweltering summers day.

As guests drizzle in through the holidays, I love to have a few variations of this basic recipe stored up in my freezer to bless unexpected guests. At the point of their presentation, it’s beautiful to watch the kid come out of everyone in response to the offer.

When whipping these up, you can use the basic variation, add cacao for a cheeky chocolate flavour, or try some of these seasonal variations:

  • Blend in some mango chunks and scatter some whole macadamias into each mould
  • Drop a handful of chopped strawberries into the mix before pouring into moulds for a strawberries and cream popsicle
  • Stir the pulp of two passionfruit into the mix before pouring.
  • Blend in a handful of blueberries and the zest of one lemon.

The best thing about this recipe is that it utilises simple non-perishable food items that can be kept on hand for use at any moment. Aside from being conveniently canned, coconut milk is also highly nutritious and rich in fibre, vitamins C, E, B1, B3, B5 and B6 and minerals including iron, selenium, sodium, calcium, magnesium and phosphorous. It’s also dairy free, so your popsicles will still impress friends or children with dairy allergies.

My Heal Your Gut powder is included in this recipe but is an optional addition. However I always love to prioritise a scoop, as it’s a simple way to cram in its remarkable gut healing benefits of improving detoxification, aiding nutrient absorption, increasing the health of hair skin and nails, and boosting hydration in the hot weather. You can read more about the benefits of the HYG powder and purchase it here.

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Popsicles

Makes 6-8 popsicles 

Ingredients:

  • 2 cans of organic coconut milk 
  • seeds of one vanilla bean (or alcohol free vanilla/ vanilla powder) 
  • 2 Tbsp HYG Powder
  • 10 drops of stevia (or to taste) 

For chocolate version add in 1 tsp of cacao powder

Method:

  1. Blend all ingredients in a blender.
  2. Pour into popsicle mould and leave in freezer for 3-4 hours. 

*These are best eaten at this time, as if left overnight or too long in the freezer, the coconut milk sometimes splits. 

Make them and let me know how you go!  Viva la holidays 🙂

Lee xo

Christmas Tree Fudge Brownies 🎄

Written by Lee on . Posted in Blog, Blog Lunch, Blog Snacks, Christmas, Dairy Free, Dessert, Gluten Free, Nutrient Rich, Organic, Seasonal, Spring, Sugar Free, Summer, Vegetarian, Wheat Free, Yeast Free

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Merry Christmas  everyone!

Thank you all so much for your support and inspiration this year. I'm extremely grateful to be able to share my blog and recipes with you throughout the year and thank you for your continued feedback.  May the coming year bring you health, peace, tranquility and above all else, contentment.

As a token of my appreciation, I'd love to share this final delicious recipe for 2016.  Why not celebrate the holidays with my fun and festive Christmas Tree Fudge Brownies?  They're super easy to make and look pretty on the Christmas table too. I hope you'll love them!

Here's what you need

Ingredients:

1/4 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup rice malt syrup
1/2 avocado
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups almond meal
1/3 cup raw cacao
1/2 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt

Method:

1. Combine avocado and coconut oil and mash until smooth
2. Stir in rice malt syrup and eggs
3. Add all dry ingredients and stir
4. Pour into a lined brownie tin and bake for 25 minutes at 170C

To Make Avocado Frosting:
Combine 1/4 of an avocado with 1 tbsp of non dairy milk and 3 drops of stevia, pass though a sieve to get lumps out.
Scoop frosting into a the corner of a snap-lock bag and twist to hold mixture in the corner.
Use scissors to cut a very small part of the corner off, and there you have a DIY piping bag!
Pipe zig zags onto the brownie trees and decorate them how you please!

96d1feb7-bcb7-4a05-85a8-231453ed00f3

Have a wonderful Christmas!

Love Lee xo

A Sustainable Christmas + Recipes

Written by Lee on . Posted in Blog, Blog Breakfast, Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Christmas, Seasonal, Shopping List

xmas

image via pinterest

Christmas is a time of joy, the sharing of generous gifts, lavish hospitality and the warmth of celebrations shared between family and friends.

The moment December hits, I feel the anticipation for Christmas rising within me, and a yearning to experience the sensations of the festive season drives me into the mode of planning meals, decking the halls and imagining all the ways that I can express the Christmas spirit through delicious foods, gifts and home adornments.

Have you ever thought, however, about the impact of Christmas on our planet? Christmas is the peak time for consumerism, and sadly many of the gifts that are shared are of the plastic and cheap variety. And purchases that emerge out of our buy-buy-buy culture don’t serve the planet from an environmental point of view.

If you’re buying clothes, some of the outlets have questionable ethical standards, and foods are purchased and consumed in large quantities, out of season, and often wasted.

This is the not so pretty side of Christmas, but how about this year we approach the silly season mindfully, consciously and with sustainability in mind? I believe we can do it!

This year, I don’t have a Christmas present list for myself, but if friends want to bestow presents, I’m letting them know that plants or herbs for my garden are always welcome. I’ve also highlighted a couple of things in the Oxfam catalogue too. By the way, if you’re on the lookout for natural gifts for a healthy lifestyle then you might like to read my Healthy Gift Giving Guide here.

I’d love to share with you a few of my top tips for approaching Christmas sustainably and ethically this year.

Make your own Christmas tree

wooden-twig-tree

You might think that sparing a live tree might be better for the environment, but fakies of the plastic varieties generally only last around six years, and you can guess where they end up….. landfill!  The best option for a sustainable Christmas tree is to put your thinking cap on and create something unique, from materials around you. Why not gather driftwood and arrange it as a tree, adorned with hanging seashells? Or pot a native Australian pine? The sky is the limit, and you can create something completely unique that will be a topic of interest for your guests. I make use of the large banksia tree in my garden and decorate it with fairy lights and second hand finds.

DIY gifts

Tamari Nibble Mix

Why not steer clear of the consumerist bandwagon and opt for gifts that are upcycled, homemade or DIY. A fun thing to do is to invite some friends around for a ‘crafternoon’, scouring pinterest for creative gift ideas. Think jars of deconstructed dry-mixes for baked goods such as brownies or cakes, with a handwritten recipe attached, or home made wall hangings, knitted or woven goods, or upcycled trash to treasure items made from op-shop finds. Steptoe and Son style :). You can also tap into the experience economy by avoiding a physical gift, rather opting for workshops, bread baking classes or cooking schools in your local area.

Meal plan sustainably

buckwheat

Avoid the supermarkets as much as possible, rather seeking to support small local businesses. Order organic meats and hams that are grass fed, free range and free of chemical nitrates. Enjoy ocean caught and local sustainable sea foods from your fishmonger. Hit up your farmers markets in the lead up to Christmas and stock up on seasonal fruits and vegetables, or visit co-ops locally to purchase organic nuts, seeds and dried foods in quantities you need. Plan your meals ahead of time. By working off a plan you can avoid food waste, and find ways to re-use the leftovers in the week after Christmas.

My blog and recipe books are full of seasonal delights that will tantalise the tastebuds this Christmas. You can read more about them here.

When it comes to menu planning here are a few ideas to mull around with in the lead up to creating your Christmas lunch or dinner...

To begin, some of my favourite starters include Pistachio Stuffed Mushrooms, Smoked Salmon and Pistachio Terrine or a classic chicken liver pate.  Red Capsicum and Hazelnut and Basil Pesto work well as beautiful dips with Lemony Herb Crackers or Cheesy Star Crackers.

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To balance out the indulgence I love to make sure my table is abundant with fresh salads full of antioxidant rich ingredients. My Kale, Strawberry, and Avocado Salad and Warm Beetroot, Carrot and Pear Salad are always crowd pleasers. 

Kale strawberry and avocado salad

For the main course, I can’t go past a classic ham, and this Gluten Free Christmas Ham with Rosemary will drop the jaws of all your guests.

When it comes to dessert, Supercharged Christmas Cake is a after dinner winner, and no Christmas table is really a Christmas table without the presence of mince pies; these Cranberry Mince Pies are to die for. xmas cake LRLast but not least, every Aussie Christmas feast must have a nanna inspired trifle, and my Layered Quinoa Trifle will satisfy your sweet tooth, even after filling yourself to the brim with feasting.

Layered Quinoa Trifle

For my absolute top picks, here are a few of the sustainable and supercharged Christmas courses that will be gracing our family table this year from my eBook The Renewable Table.

I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and happy and sustainable holiday season 🙂

And now for the recipes..

Mexican lamb shoulder with cumin, oregano and pomegranate glaze

screen-shot-2016-11-14-at-5-36-22-pmServes 8

Ingredients

  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped 

  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon 

  • 2 tsp ground cumin 

  • 1 tbsp. dried oregano 

  • 1 lemon halved and pips removed 

  • 1 tsp Celtic Sea Salt 

  • 1 tsp black pepper 

  • 2kg bone-in lamb shoulder joint 

  • 2 brown onions, cut into wedges 

  • 1 whole quorn of garlic unpeeled 

  • 1litre pomegranate juice 

  • 1 lemon juiced 

  • 3 tbsp. apple cider vinegar 

  • 2 tbsp. rice malt syrup 

  • 250g full fat natural yogurt 

  • Seeds from 1 fresh pomegranate 

  • Small handful mint leaves, chopped 


Method 


To make marinade place garlic, cinnamon, cumin, oregano, lemon and rind, salt and pepper and blend until
smooth.


Place the lamb in a large
baking dish and spoon the
mixture on top and massage
in with hands. Let marinade in
fridge for between 2 and up to
24 hours.


Heat oven to 160°C/140°C
fan/ gas 3. Place lamb into
pan and garlic and onions
surrounding the lamb, then pour
over the pomegranate juice and
lemon and apple cider vinegar.


Cover the lamb with foil
and cook for approx. 4 hrs, checking every hour and re- basting with the juice.


When ready and after four hours, remove
pan from the oven and carefully remove lamb and pour juice into a saucepan on the stove
over a medium heat. Replace lamb into baking tray and place back into the oven whilst you are making the syrup.

Add rice malt syrup and cook until bubbly and a thick syrup is formed adding more rice malt syrup if necessary. This should take about 20 minutes. Once it is ready, remove foil from lamb, pour it over the lamb and return to oven for 20 mins until the lamb becomes crispy on top.

Pistachio minted cranberry quinoa

scvegetarian quinoa saladServes 4-6

Ingredients

  • 1 zucchini (courgette), sliced
  • 1 eggplant (aubergine), cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 4 garlic cloves, whole
  • 80 ml (21/2 fl oz/1/3 cup) cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil, plus extra, for drizzling
  • Celtic sea salt
  • 270 g (91/2 oz/1 cup) cooked quinoa
  • juice of 2 lemons
  • 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
  • 1 bunch of mint, leaves only, plus extra, to serve
  • 1 bunch of coriander (cilantro), leaves only, plus extra, to serve
  • 1 pomegranate, seeds only
  • 2 avocados, peeled, stones removed and sliced into wedges
  • 4 small spring onions (scallions), chopped 125 g (41/2 oz/1 cup) slivered almonds

Method

Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F/Gas 6).

Place the zucchini, eggplant and garlic on a baking tray, drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and roast for about 35 minutes.

Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.

Meanwhile, place the quinoa in a bowl with the lemon juice and zest and the olive oil. Combine well.

Place in a salad bowl with all the other ingredients and serve topped with extra mint and coriander leaves.

Festive Almond, cinnamon and rhubarb cake

screen-shot-2016-11-14-at-5-24-39-pmMakes one cake

Firstly make stewed Rhubarb

Ingredients

  • 750gm rhubarb trimmed and chopped into 2-3 inch pieces
  • 75g coconut sugar or sweetener of choice
  • 1 small orange, zested and juiced 1 inch knob ginger grated 1 tsp vanilla bean powder
  • 1⁄4 cup water

Method

Place in large saucepan and place remaining ingredients over the top.

Bring to a boil and simmer gently until soft, about 10 minutes until rhubarb is cooked but still holds it shape.

Take two cups of rhubarb for Xmas recipe and set aside and place remaining rhubarb in fridge for use on Boxing Day.

Ingredients

  • 60g butter 

  • 1 tsp finely grated lemon rind 

  • 1 1⁄2 cups (300g) coconut sugar 

  • 2 eggs 

  • 2 cups almond meal 

  • 1⁄2 tsp baking powder 

  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda 

  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon 

  • 1⁄2 tsp grated nutmeg 

  • 1⁄4 tsp sea salt 

  • 1⁄2 cup coconut cream 

  • 2 cups cooked rhubarb 


Method 


Preheat the oven to 170°C/340°F Gas Mark 4 and grease an 18cm round cake tin.


In a bowl beat butter, rind, coconut sugar and eggs and stir in almond flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and coconut milk and stir to combine.


Add rhubarb and fold in lightly.


Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and bake for 45-55 minutes, or until the cake springs back when pressed in the centre.

Sprinkle with topping mixture.


Let cool and then turn out onto a wire rack to continue to cool. 


Lee xo

Supercharged Poke Bowl

Written by Lee on . Posted in Autumn, Blog, Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Blog Salads, Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Nutrient Rich, Organic, Seasonal, Spring, Sugar Free, Summer, Wheat Free, Winter

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Acai bowls and Buddha bowls step aside! There’s a new nourishing bowl popping up in trendy cafes, instagram feeds and mouths throughout the world – the Poke bowl; pronounced poh-keh.

What is a poke bowl?

Poke is a Hawaiian dish which also has a heavy Japanese influence, and is characterised by the use of raw, sashimi-style fish. Poke originates in Hawaii and can be translated to mean ‘cut or slice’, referring to the way the fish is prepared.

The fish is usually marinated in a variety of fresh herbs and spices, soy sauce and sesame oil, and can be served sprinkled with fresh ginger, sesame seeds and fresh chilli.

In Hawaii poke isn't generally served on top of white rice, but there are different versions of it springing up around the world mainly atop sushi rice and brown rice.   I’ve opted for quinoa in my supercharged version of this coastal dish. Quinoa is gluten free, high in protein, high in fibre and contains magnesium, vitamin B12, iron, potassium, calcium, phorphorous, vitamin E, antioxidants and essential amino acids! I’ve also swapped out soy sauce for a healthier tamari variety.

When you’re buying the tuna, remember that fresh is best! Try and purchase a cut with minimal white lines, as this is connective tissue and can make the tuna chewy. The tuna should be firm to touch, with little to no odour and it should have a deep red/purple hue. The fish offers an array of healthy amino acids and essential omega-3 polyunsaturated fats. Modern adaptations of poke also call for salmon, crab and octopus. 

This wholesome and wholegrain dish is bursting with tangy oriental flavours and enticing aromas and can be enjoyed on a balmy summer evening or by the fireplace on a crisp winter night.

It's healthy and simple and downright supercharged!

poke-1
Recipe:


Quinoa:
2 cups quinoa, rinsed
3 cups water
Few slices of ginger (optional) 
1/4 cup chopped coriander
Optional: add some sliced ginger to the pot at the beginning to infuse throughout cooking.

To cook quinoa:
Add quinoa and water to a pot. Bring to boil and let simmer until fluffy.

Sesame macadamia coconut topping:
1/2 cup macadamias, roughly chopped
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1/4 cup coconut flakes

Roast all ingredients in a pan until fragrant and set aside.

Poke:
1/3 cup tamari
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tbsp sesame seeds
2 tbsp chopped shallots
1 clove garlic crushed
Large knob ginger grated 
Zest and juice of half a lime
1/2 - 1 long chilli 
3-4 sashimi grade tuna, cut into cubes

To make poke: 
Combine all ingredients except tuna in a bowl and stir. Add in tuna and toss to coat. Let sit in fridge for 20-30 mins to let the flavours absorb.

To assemble:
Stir coriander through quinoa before serving. Add quinoa to bowl. Add poke on top of the quinoa. Top with avocado, prepared macadamia topping and extra coriander! 

E ʻai kāua!
(Let’s eat!)

Give it a go and let me know your thoughts in the comments section below.

Lee x

Spicy Lamb Koftas

Written by Lee on . Posted in Autumn, Ayurveda, Blog, Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Blog Salads, Dairy Free, Dinner, Eat Right for Your Shape, Gluten Free, Healthy Meals, Kids' Recipes, Lunch, Lunch Box Ideas, lunch box ideas, Nutrient Rich, Organic, Salads, Seasonal, Spring, Summer, supercharged food, Supercharged Food Menu, Wheat Free, Winter, Yeast Free

kofta

In need of a little umph and energy?

These Spicy Lamb Koftas from my Ayurvedic bible Eat Right For Your Shape are the perfect energy building food.

Lamb's gamey taste will remind you of the strong blood building qualities of red meat which also helps you build internal heat; a serious requirement of the flighty vata, who tends to feel the cold and become destabilised physically and emotionally. Vatas out of balance caused by a lack of warmth, grounding and digestive fire will be prone to dry skin, poor circulation, muscular aches and pains and arthritis.

Koftas are such a comfort food; even their name is filled with an ultra-cosy vibe. Their hearty nature will warm up your metabolism, so you feel warm from the inside out but can be eaten any time of the year. Rosemary & cumin highlights add to the warmth and spiciness of this rustic and sturdy dish.

Where possible, it’s important to purchase organic and 100% grass fed and finished lamb, which will contain higher amounts of healthy fats including omega-3 fatty acids, bringing another level of wholesome nourishment to build energy and stamina.

Pastured meat’s EPA fatty acid components are also incredibly important for mental health, as EPA is directly linked to brain function and emotional stability.

The fat content in these lamb kofta’s will bring an increase in digestive fire, as will the inclusion of fiery spices like warming ginger and the grounding zing of fresh parsley.

Lamb's natural oily and warming qualities will make you feel capable and maybe even a little competitive. It’ll bring the bounce back to your step, and make you feel more focused and driven.

Enjoy these delightful ayurvedic kofta’s as a midweek meal that’ll be enjoyed by the whole family.

Kids will especially find them fun to eat on their little skewers, and they’re a great way to ground littlies as a trusty witching hour meal to bring them back down to earth!

For busy families, double the recipe for lunch the next day. You can even serve them minus the skewer as a great protein addition to a salad made with seasonal vegetables.

I hope you enjoy them 🙂 Let me know what you think in the comments section below.

Spicy Lamb Koftas

Serves 4 makes 8 koftas

  • 500 g (1 lb 2 oz) minced (ground) lamb
  • 1 small brown onion, chopped

  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed

  • 2.5 cm (1 inch) piece of ginger, peeled and grated

  • 1 tablespoon chopped mint

  • 1 tablespoon chopped flat-leaf (Italian) parsley

  • 1 teaspoon mild paprika

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • Celtic sea salt, to taste

Preheat a chargrill pan or barbecue hotplate to medium.
  To make the koftas, mix all the ingredients in a bowl until well combined. Divide the mixture into eight portions and form each into a short sausage shape. Thread each onto a bamboo skewer and refrigerate for 15 minutes.

Place the skewers on the prepared pan or hotplate and cook for 10 minutes, turning halfway through.

Serve with a garden salad in warmer months or roasted vegetables in winter.

 

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