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Slow cooking is the key to a healthy winter + Rosemary and Thyme Chicken Stew Recipe

Written by Lee on . Posted in Autumn, Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Candida Friendly, Dairy Free, Fast Your Way to Wellness, Fasting, Gluten Free, Heal Your Gut, Heal Your Gut Powder, Organic, Seasonal, Sugar Free, Wheat Free, Winter, Yeast Free

It's time fire-up those kettles into full gear, keep the soup spoon handy and pull the fluffiest blanket out from the back of the cupboard – winter is here!

Winter is a time of hibernation, where we crave comfort foods and warming drinks. But we're usually so busy keeping warm, we tend to spend more time eating, less time cooking and even less time working out - which inevitably adds to that extra winter pudge! (Hello... Heal Your Gut powder!)

But it's important to keep in mind that winter is also one of the best times of year to stock up on those essential nutrients and eat healthy.

My winter menu generally rotates between comforting soups, spicy stews, crispy stir fries, perfect porridges and spiced teas - all of which can be packed full of nutritional whole foods. Curries and stews are perfect for packing in your veggies and protein, but the misconception is that these delicious wintery meals take a lot of time to cook.

Enter your new best friend: the slow cooker!

Basically, a slow cooker does all the hard work for you, and they're easy to clean - which I know will have most home cooks cheering! If you're time-poor in the evenings, find some slow-cooker recipes - lamb shanks, curries and stews are perfect - throw the ingredients into the cooker, and it'll be ready for you at dinner time. 

Three Supercharged Workout Meals + Pear and Walnut Oatmeal, Hemp and Tahini Bliss Balls + My Ultimate Roasted Veg Bowl

Written by Lee on . Posted in Blog, Blog Breakfast, Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Blog Salads, Blog Snacks, Gluten Free, Nutrient Rich, Organic, Seasonal, Shopping List, Vegetarian, Wheat Free

This one's for all you exercise and gym lovers and likers, hikers and bikers, buffs and bunnies.

If you're planning to fit a workout into your daily schedule, nourishing your body with the right foods is essential.

It can be difficult to find a pre or post workout meal with just the right amount of nutritious ingredients to make you feel satisfied AND energized.

If you're pressed for time or honestly can't be bothered after a long day at work (it’s alright, we've all been there), having a few supercharged ingredients on hand can make a real difference to your motivation levels.

Before we begin, I’m going to have to break a bit of a myth that’s circulating about how to build or tone specific muscles in the body. There’s no miracle food that can tone your physique or build specific muscles. What I can tell you however, is that by eating supercharged foods, with an adequate amount of protein, healthy fats and unrefined carbohydrates, and a great exercise regime, you can be on your way to #breakingtheinternet with your fabulous body.

Supercharged foods are everyday super foods full of antioxidants that are easily accessible and relatively affordable. It’s all about making it easier for you to make healthier food choices so your mind and body don't fall into temptation and undo all your hard work.

That's why I’m a huge fan of bowl food. Personally, I find that eating food out of a bowl has made me more conscious and mindful of what and how much I'm eating. Plus, it’s quick and easy to make and you can come up with as many healthy combinations as possible. It's the best motivation for smashing out another set of squats! 

Usually I opt for a healthy mix of protein, vegetables and grains. It’s nutritious and a great way to exercise portion control. More importantly, the great thing about bowl food is its convenience. You can easily whip up a meal by using whatever you have sitting around in your fridge and pantry.

Did you also know that food eaten out of a bowl can trick your mind into feeling full? Studies have shown that when we're exposed to various sensory stimuli, this can impact our perception of flavour – including how full we feel after a meal.

Eating heathy meals served in bowls simply because they seem to taste better and eating smaller portions sounds like a win-win situation to me!

And now I've concocted three new reps to add to your repertoire!

Carbohydrates are a go zone when it comes to helping to build muscle, especially if we’re burning through energy while exercising. Carbohydrates help keep our energy levels steady and fuel our muscles so we can be twerking the night away.  Some of my favourite carbohydrates are brown rice, quinoa, pumpkin, sweet potato and fruit. Just be sure to stay away from refined products like pasta, pastries and white bread to keep your butt looking fab instead of drab.

If you plan to workout in the morning, the Pear and Walnut Oatmeal bowl is a great option. Pears are in season now so I've included them in this recipe but the best part is that you can swap them out for other fruits and they’ll taste just as good! 

I try to stock up on oats, nuts and seeds when I can. Sometimes I use fresh supercharged foods such as berries in my breakfast bowl but oats and nuts are a great alternative and non-perishable so you don’t have to worry about them turning to mush within a week.

Pear and Walnut Oatmeal bowl

Serves 2

Ingredients:

Method:

  • Place pear, vanilla, cinnamon, nut butter and milk into a medium saucepan and heat to medium high, cook stirring until pears are softened and milk has reduced to a thick sauce, about 10-15 mins.
  • Add oats to a small saucepan and add water and salt and bring to the boil then simmer until the water is absorbed and oats are cooked.
  • Scoop oats into a bowl, top with caramelised pears and top with walnuts and pumpkin seeds and cacao nibs

I've also included a simple bliss ball recipe, as an on the go snack so you have all your bases covered.

Hemp and Tahini Bliss Balls

Makes 10 large

Ingredients:

Method:

  • Place nuts, almond meal, hemp seeds, coconut flakes and coconut milk into food processor and mix

  • Add honey, almond nut butter and tahini and continue to mix until combined

  • Chill the dough in the freezer for 20 minutes
  • Remove the dough from the freezer and using hands, roll into balls and placeon a flat tray

  • Place extra hemp seeds in a bowl and roll balls to coat the surface

  • Refrigerate and enjoy. These can also be kept in the freezer

If you truly don’t have the time to make your own bliss balls, Sprout has quite the selection, including gluten-free, paleo or vegan-friendly options.

Now that you're finally done with the daily grind and your workout, it’s time to nourish your body with the good stuff. The urge to eat a big old bowl after a workout can be strong and why not? You deserve it. Reward yourself by eating smart and opting for the Ultimate Veg Bowl, which allows you to not only avoid undoing all your hard work but also tastes delicious at the same time!

The Ultimate Roasted Veg Bowl

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 2 whole eggs
  • 2 cups cooked quinoa
  • ½ butternut pumpkin cubed
  • 2 zucchini sliced lengthways and quartered
  • 4 yellow squash quartered
  • ¼ cup hemp seeds
  • 3 TBS extra extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ cauliflower chopped into florets
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • squeeze of lemon
  • small bunch broccolini
  • ¼ cup tahini
  • 2 tbs tamari
  • ¼ cup water
  • 1 avocado quartered

Method

  • Boil eggs and set aside
  • Make quinoa and once cooked fluff with a fork and set aside
  • Place pumpkin, zucchini, squash, on a roasting tray and drizzle with 2 TBS olive oil and sea salt, sprinkle pumpkin with hemp seeds
  • Place in oven 210 degrees for 35 mins
  • Meanwhile coat cauliflower with turmeric and remaining olive oil and a squeeze of lemon and place on a smaller tray in the oven for 20-25 mins
  • Place broccolini in a tray drizzle with oil and place in oven for 15-20 mins
  • Mix tahini, tamari and lemon with water to create a pourable dressing
  • Once roasted layer all ingredients into a bowl and top with tamari and tahini dressing
  • Add avocado and egg and top with extra hemp seeds

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

Spice up your life with my Lemon Slice

Written by Lee on . Posted in anti-inflammatory, Blog, Blog Breakfast, Blog Snacks, Dairy Free, Dessert, gut healing, Vegetarian, Wheat Free

Image by Kate Duncan

What do you do when life gives you lemons?

Make lemon slices! 

Think back to the first lemon slice you ever bit into. Was it equally decadent yet surprisingly fresh, classically creamy yet delicately chewy and beautifully zingy yet surprisingly sweet?

The lemon slices many recall from childhood were made with a chewy biscuity base that was complemented perfectly by a smooth lemony filling that achieved mouth-watering satisfaction. But, these desserts were often made with a biscuit base, loads of sugar, flour, milk, coconut and of course, luscious lemon.

While this may be the dessert you dream of, for some it is a nightmare for the gut. Sugar, gluten and dairy are all known to irritate the lining of the gut, causing various digestive disorders and serious discomfort in some people.

But there is no need to give up on lemon slices altogether.  I'm encouraging you to throw out everything you’ve ever known and thought about lemon slices right now, because things are about to get very interesting…

I'm going to share with you my raw, sugar-free lemon slice that's bound to impress and tastes just like the real thing minus the uncomfortable bloating after eating. 

To begin, lets work from the ground up, in this case it’s all about the base. Instead of a regular lemon slice biscuit base, this supercharged slice uses a delicious mix of shredded coconut, coconut butter and creamy cashews.

You may be looking at this and thinking: what’s the difference between coconut oil and coconut butter?

Well, coconut oil has been extracted from the meat of the coconut whereas coconut butter is a spreadable paste made from coconut flesh. Coconut butter can act like a metabolism booster that can help burn calories and increase energy levels. It's high in lauric acid which can boost immunity and ward off viruses.  It’s delicious in soups, curries or sometimes, off the spoon (I won’t tell if you don’t!).

Of course, you can’t have a lemon slice without a zingy squeeze of lemon. Lemons are rich in many nutrients like immune-fighting vitamin C and blood pressure-stabilising potassium. They can also help aid digestion, balance our internal pH levels and reduce fevers. If you are looking for an excuse to eat a lemon slice, this is it! 

And now for the filling. Not only do these slices contain lovely lemons, they also contain limes. Limes have been used for centuries for their medicinal purposes. They can help aid digestive disorders, relieve constipation and get your skin nice and glowy. Combine the lemon and the lime and you've got a really good show going!

I just need to warn you, these lemon slices will give any other lemon slice you've ever had a run for it's money. They're seriously decadent, fresh and delicious.

PS: If you're a slice loving kind of person, please promise you'll check out my Salted Caramel Slice and Australian Lamingtons.

Without further adieu, the lemon slices you've all been waiting for:

Lemon Slice

Ingredients:

Method:

  • To make the base, combine cashews and shredded coconut in food processor and blend. Stir in remaining base ingredients, adding some filtered water
 if it looks too dry and won’t hold together.
  • Use your hands to mould mixture into dough, then press dough into freezer-proof tray. Place in freezer for 30 mins.
  • To make filling, combine all the ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth.
  • Remove the base from freezer and add the filling, using the back of the spoon to smooth the top.
  • Return the slice to the fridge for 30 mins or until set. Cut into slices and serve.
  • Will keep in airtight container in fridge for up to 1 week, or 2 weeks in freezer.

Enjoy!

Lee xo 

Gutmeal (Oatmeal with a gut-healing twist)

Written by Lee on . Posted in anti-inflammatory, Blog, Blog Breakfast, Dairy Free, Gluten Free, gut healing, Heal Your Gut Powder, Heal Your Gut Powder, Nutrient Rich, Organic, Spring, Sugar Free, Wheat Free, Winter, Yeast Free

There’s something that’s just so nourishing about starting the day with a big bowl of oatmeal. A spoon of porridge on a colder morning is like a warm hug for your insides!  

Oats are amazing for lowering our overall cholesterol levels, especially the ‘bad’ cholesterol known as LDL (low-density lipoprotein). High levels of LDL raise your risk of developing blood clots which can lead to heart diseases. While not all cholesterol is bad, LDL is one we need to look out for. 

They're packed full of soluble fibre, which reduces the absorption of LDL cholesterol in the blood. This means every morning you start your day off with a bowl of porridge, you’re fighting heart and cardiovascular disease!

Oats are one of the yummiest gut-healthy foods out there.  Not only are they delicious, they boost some beneficial bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract which can provide serious relief in cases of irritable bowel disease, irritable bowel syndrome and constipation.

No bowl of oats is finished without beautiful berries. Berries have proven to help your brain think better and additionally, the antioxidant-rich fruits are great for maintaining control over our muscles – which is so important when it comes to ageing. If you want to get amongst the berry madness, why not try my Supercharged Summer Popsicles or Strawberry Teacakes?

I've combined the magical powers of oats with my Heal Your Gut Powder for some extra gut-boosting love. This gutmeal is such an easy way to squeeze in some gut-healing benefits first thing in the morning. My HYG powder is remarkable for detoxification, aiding nutrient absorption and improving hair, skin and nails health. You can read more about the amazing benefits of HYG powder and purchase it here!

Now that’s a winning breakfast!

Gutmeal (Oatmeal with a Gut-Healing Twist)

Ingredients: 

Method:

  1. Cook oats in water
  2. Add sea salt and cinnamon
  3. When cooked, stir in the HYG powder
  4. Add milk and remove any lumps by stirring through
  5. Top with berries and torn mint

Enjoy this tasty breakfast recipe to fill the belly and nourish the mind.

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.

Teacup Watermelon Salad 🍉

Written by Lee on . Posted in Ayurveda, Blog, Blog Breakfast, Blog Salads, Blog Snacks, Eat Right for Your Shape, Fast Your Way to Wellness, Fasting, gut healing, gut health, intermittent fasting, Organic, Salads, Seasonal, Snacks, Spring, Summer, Vegetarian, Wheat Free, Yeast Free

watermelon saladSeasons are one of life’s most beautiful designs. I love that as the earth turns and seasons change, there is a completely unique expression of foods and patterns that cause culture and behaviour to shift. In the depths of winter, the earth provides the perfect earthy foods that beckon to be served hot, whilst in the height of summer, there’s the miraculous provision of hydrating fruits that are the perfect solution to a searing heatwave. As a cook, I find it extremely joyous to work with what each season provides me, forming recipes that celebrate and compliment our needs and desires that change at different times of the year. This salad is from my new book Fast Your Way to Wellness.

In following an Ayurvedic philosophy, summertime can cause an overabundance of the fire element within our constitution, which explains why we can get so angry and irritable during a hot day. However nature has its wonderful way of providing the exact kinds of foods that calm this fire; balancing us out and bringing our mind and body back into a happy, ‘cooled down’ state.

The hot months can very easily cause dehydration within our bodies as we sweat more. Apart from keeping on top of our water intake, we can also work with the seasons and capitalise on some of the hydrating and cooling foods that are growing at this time of year, and base our meal planning around these foods. In summer, juicy hydrating foods like berries, cucumbers, tomatoes, mangoes and watermelons are in abundance, and for this reason they’re also really cheap to buy!

We are having an extended Indian summer in Sydney this year, yesterday we spent the day at Bondi Beach to soak up the last rays of the east coast sunshine. To me, summer just screams the name WATERMELON. I love the sound of a knife cutting wedges of juicy watermelon, and the sensation of an icy cold piece of its watery sweetness is something of pure bliss on a day of sweltering heat. Enjoying it straight up is a joy on its own, but I’m definitely a fan of a good watermelon salad! If you haven’t tried watermelon in a salad before, you’re going to be in for a treat with this recipe!

Banana and Quinoa Cookies

Written by Lee on . Posted in Blog, Blog Snacks, Dairy Free, Dessert, Gluten Free, gut healing, gut health, Heal Your Gut, Heal Your Gut Powder, Heal Your Gut Powder, Snacks, Vegetarian, Wheat Free

banana cookies 3

Fellow Cookie Monsters - This one's for you!

Do you ever remember as a child coming home after school to the smell of freshly baked cookies wafting through the house? That feeling when you're floating on clouds and happy at the thought of eating cookies? A feeling that lasted the whole afternoon. Or perhaps it's the childhood memory of a burnt finger with the excitement of releasing your inner-cookie monster and gobbling down a few delicious bites? Or fighting with a sibling over who was going to get the last one?

I'm sure you'll all agree that here's nothing quite as wistfully wonderful and terrifically tasty as cookies that have just been airlifted out of the oven. 

That's why I wanted to create a new kind of cookie- a healthier version 2017 style! Not only are they the perfect cookie to have with your afternoon tea, they’re a great balance of equally chewy yet crunchy; a combination any cookie connoisseur will understand.  These will leave everyone in the household smiling because of that delightfully homey and oh so nostalgic: we-just-baked-delicious-cookies smell. If that doesn't make for a nostalgically good cookie, I don't know what will! 

Different from your regular sugar-laden, gluten-filled, artificially coloured cookies, mine are all the frees and tummy friendly. The main two ingredients are banana and quinoa and they make for a tasty, yet unlikely duo.

I have combined the magical power of protein-packed quinoa with comforting coconut flour to make these cookies gluten-free and because I'm all about gut health, I've added a sprinkle of my magical Heal Your Gut Powder! Just a little bit of HYG powder can really go a long way. Sneaking it into treats, like these cookies, is a great way to give your gut a nice boost without ever having to think about it! I’ve done the all the hard work for you, I'm nice like that 😉

Apple Pancakes Y’all

Written by Lee on . Posted in Blog, Blog Breakfast, Dairy Free, Dessert, Fasting, Gluten Free, gut healing, gut health, intermittent fasting, Kids, Lunch Box Ideas, lunch box ideas, Nutrient Rich, Organic, Seasonal, Spring, Summer, supercharged food, Vegetarian, Wheat Free, Yeast Free

appleThe humble apple is one of my greatly adored kitchen staples and today I'm sharing an apple recipe from my brand new book Fast Your Way to Wellness.

Affordable, nutritious and versatile, they’re a scrumptious fruity must-have that I love to continually replenish within my kitchen. Whether sliced thinly and thrown into salads, baked and stuffed with nuts and oats, stewed and made into apple sauce, or lovingly formed into a classic crumble, apples are the jack of all trades and a loyal friend that awaits transformation into all kinds of delectable creations.

Apples are nutritional ninjas, boasting loads of wellness boosting properties. Did you know that apples are a wonderful ingredient for regulating blood sugar? Recent studies have shown that the polyphenols contained within apples can help to prevent rollercoaster blood sugar spikes. Particular flavonoids like quercetin have the effect of inhibiting enzymes like alpha-amylase and alpha-glucosidase which normally break down carbohydrates into simple sugars. Therefore when you eat apples, your body deals with less simple sugars and releases you from spikes in blood sugar.

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

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