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Posts Tagged ‘cooking’

Supercharge your pantry, fridge and freezer + four recipes

Written by Lee on . Posted in anti-inflammatory, Blog, Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Gluten Free, gut health, Heal Your Gut, intermittent fasting, Organic, Seasonal, Spotlight On, Vegetarian, Wheat Free, Yeast Free

Have you noticed a lot more articles popping up about food waste and frugal living and the effects it can have on healthy eating?  Me too....so I today figured I’d share my thoughts on eating well on a budget. It is possible!

Being thrifty doesn’t mean we need to compromise on health or taste.  Often, frugality means not splurging on organic groceries and choosing the home brand when it comes to stocking up on necessities because their organic counterparts are jaw-droppingly expensive. But, eating well shouldn’t be expensive or difficult. Food is part of our everyday lives so it’s important to make eating well as easy and enjoyable as possible!  

Whether you’re a meat-eater, flexitarian, keto lover, paleo, vegetarian, vegan or somewhere in between, there is a way that healthy eating can work for everyone. 

So, how do we begin?

Let’s start in the kitchen, by supercharging your pantry, fridge and freezer!

Every Sunday morning, I take stock of what I have in my kitchen. I then make a list of the ingredients I need to buy so I can use up what’s already in there. If you're on a budget it helps to do a quick price comparison and check the prices at your supermarket or local grocer and think about bulk options that are available in your area.

With the busy lives that most of us lead, we tend to do many of our tasks online. We catch up with our friends online, shop for clothes online, order products online, and now, we can do our groceries online!

Sometimes, online grocery shopping can be even cheaper than your usual store and as an added bonus, it's delivered straight to your door. How easy is that?  For busy people, (working moms and dads I’m looking at you!) switching over to online shopping means you'll also avoid the hustle and bustle of the supermarket.  Plus, online stores often have special offers so keep an eye out for them. 

Depending on how often you cook and how many people you're food shopping and prepping for, you might find it worthwhile to invest in an annual membership at stores such as Sprout Market which allow you to buy natural groceries at cheaper prices. Who doesn’t love a bargain?

When I'm cooking, I like to cook simple recipes from scratch and use natural foods, herbs and a range of oils such as olive and avocado which are great for seasoning a variety of foods. When you cook yourself, you avoid buying ready-made foods which can often be loaded with unwanted ingredients and lacking in taste. So the trick to economise is,  supercharge your pantry and use economically-friendly ingredients, then choose simple recipes that make meals last the distance.  To get into this flow, all it takes is a little upfront planning.  Today I'm going to share four recipes that really go the distance from my eBook The Renewable Table, a way of eating that produces less food waste, saves money and is healthier than the average convenience meal. I call it continuum cooking.

Like good wine and cheese, some foods only get better with age (but not too much age!). Foods that improve with taste the following day have an important commonality; they consist of a multitude of herbs, spices and ingredients that add loads of flavour to a dish – think onions, garlic and peppers! Yum! 

Here is how I like to supercharge my pantry fridge and freezer with the basics so I always have options on hand to create quick, easy and affordable meals.

Herbs and spices

Keep a wide range of herbs and spices lined up in your pantry to lend a punch of flavours to your dishes. Adding an alluring blend of your favourite herbs and spices will ensure your dishes taste even better a day or even three after you’ve prepared them.

The herbs and spices you keep on hand will depend upon your particular tastes and preferences. Start by looking through the recipes that spark your interest and check to see which flavours you’ll need. They all add a delicious aroma to your meal in addition to loading your dish up with health- promoting properties. These are some of my favourite herbs and spices:

Always stock some good quality sea salt or pink Himalayan salt, which you’ll find packed full of minerals to add even more nutrition and great flavour to your cooking.

Flavour providers

Onions and garlic both from the Allium family are two of my favourite flavour accompaniments to use in cooking. Onions and garlic don’t just play an important culinary role; they also contain a plethora of health benefits.

When you start by sautéing onion or garlic at the beginning of your cooking, you’ll find they’ll unleash a powerful flavour that lends itself to releasing the aromas of other ingredients in your dish.

When continuum cooking, this is a really important first step, as the strong flavour combinations will only increase the longer you wait to eat it. This is perfect for renewable dishes you plan on reheating in a few days’ time.

Both onions and garlic can play a vital role in protecting your immune system and keeping you feeling strong and well. Onions can reduce the symptoms of bronchitis and the common cold. Garlic has antibacterial and antifungal properties that can strengthen your immune system overall, making you less vulnerable to contracting infections.

Some of my favourite flavour providers:

Grains and Staples

An absolute staple, grains, are one of the most affordable ingredients you can add to any meal of the day. Use grains and seeds such as brown rice, quinoa, and quinoa flakes to create hearty and nourishing dishes.

Each one of these grains and seeds is versatile, budget- friendly and last for months, sealed in a jar in your pantry, alleviating the need for excess waste.

When reheating renewable meals, add some brown or green rice to bulk up the dish, allowing it to serve a larger group of people whilst at the same time, becoming even more affordable. Both brown and green rice are full of fibre and a great way to satisfy your tummy when you’re famished or in need of an injection of B vitamins.

Re-purposing last night’s roast meat or vegetables into a fried rice is super-fast and makes for a tasty and convenient work lunch.

Quinoa has become more popular over the last few years and is one of the more affordable and versatile ‘powerfoods’ of today. One of my favourite renewable sequences that you’ll enjoy going on a culinary adventure with is my garlic and lemony chicken roast, and then the following day, turning the uneaten portions into a chicken quinoa meal with roast vegetables.

Supercharged Tip: Be sure to soak your quinoa the night before. This century-old process of soaking helps to break down the anti-nutrients and hard-to-digest components of the seed to avoid tummy upsets or bloating.

Buckwheat is another grain that has become popular in recent times and is a scrumptious alternative to rice or made into porridge for a warming winter breakfast. Diets that contain buckwheat have been linked to lowered risk of developing high cholesterol and high blood pressure. If you’re feeling adventurous, try scattering some activated buckwheat grains over your berries or yoghurt to add to your daily nutrient needs and for added texture.

On a cold winter’s morning, creating porridge with oats is a perfect way to start the day. Affordable, tasty and tremendously satisfying, oats are high in fibre and a perfect way to ensure the family are ready and alert for an energised day ahead.

If you’re gluten intolerant, you may find discomfort with ordinary oats, so look for the gluten-free oats or use organic quinoa flakes, to ensure your tummy has a pleasured experience and not an excruciating one.

Tinned Tomatoes

From pasta sauces, to vegetable bakes, soups to casseroles, there’s no limit to what trusted tinned tomatoes can do for your kitchen.

Adding a richness of flavour to your meal, tinned tomatoes are a versatile and low-calorie product imperative to have on hand in your pantry.

When transforming a roast into a stew, or converting unused vegetables into pasta, tinned tomatoes and tomato puree are essential for simple and budget-friendly continuum cooking.

Dressings, oils and vinegars

To add some instant flavour and bring your ingredients together, maintain a few basic dressings, oils and vinegar. Start with wheat free tamari, apple cider vinegar and extra virgin olive oil.

Wheat free tamari is a thicker, less salty, fermented soy sauce and can be used in Asian and non-Asian cooking to add a full, savoury, umami flavour to your dishes.

Originally used as a food preservative, vinegar is a must-have condiment in your kitchen to add flavour and an acidic balance to your dish. Apple cider vinegar, different to apple cider is delicious as a marinade or salad dressing, and is known for its vast list of medicinal benefits, including balancing blood sugar levels, promoting heart health, aiding weight loss, supporting digestion and providing an energy boost.

Try adding two tbsp of apple cider vinegar to 1⁄4 cup extra virgin olive oil, crushed garlic and pinch of sea salt as a delightful dressing to drizzle over your next salad or vegetable dish.

Extra virgin olive oil is a necessity in a renewable kitchen and you may find yourself using this tasty condiment daily.

The “extra virgin” refers to the oil being of the highest quality and usually has to pass a large number of tests and meet a range of strict standards to be classed as extra virgin. It should be produced by olives that are disease-free, harvested at the right time and processed immediately.

Extra virgin olive oil is completely natural, very high in antioxidants and contains anti-inflammatory qualities, making it a nutritious addition to your dish. Plus it tastes so rich and charming; no wonder the Italians add it to everything!

Other Dressings and Oils I'm loving at the moment include: 

Seeds and nuts

Nuts and seeds are some of the most versatile ingredients, adding a rich flavour to your sweet or savoury recipe. When creating a renewable table, the addition of nuts or seeds can transform the texture of your next meal while adding a boost of nutrients to help you meet your daily nutrition quota. They also taste great on their own as a cheeky little nibble.

Keep on hand almonds, hazelnuts, cashews, pecans, walnuts, pine nuts and pistachios. Each of these nuts contain essential good fats that promote skin and heart health and are a good source of plant-based protein.

If you haven’t experimented much with seeds, try chia and flax seeds. Sprinkle chia seeds over your breakfast parfait, or simply scatter over a fruit salad for some added protein and fibre.

When handling flax seeds (sometimes referred to as linseeds) you can eat them whole, sprinkling over your breakfast or using them to create homemade muesli bars – a great afternoon snack for the kids. 

Another way to consume flaxseeds is by blending them into a meal, or you can buy the flaxseed meal already blended at your local supermarket or health food store; this is a handy grain-free ingredient for creating breads and muffins.

Nut and seed butters are becoming more popular and are a tasty and nutritious spread to add to biscuits or for dipping vegetable sticks. A favourite of mine is tahini, which is made from ground sesame seeds. You can purchase hulled or unhulled tahini; however the unhulled version is more nutrient-rich, with more than ten times the amount of calcium.

Other nuts and seeds I'm loving:

Non-Dairy Milks

For those who are dairy intolerant or looking to reduce dairy intake, start celebrating for the vast selection of non-dairy milks now available. A natural nut milk or oat milk is a delightful non-dairy option to add to your breakfast muesli or porridge. If you want an extra treat, I'm going nuts over hazelnut chocolate milk and the almond-chocolate milk. If you’re extra handy in the kitchen, make your own!

Natural sweeteners

An alternative to refined sugar or artificial sweeteners, natural sweeteners like rice malt syrup or raw honey, are the perfect solution to satisfy your sweet tooth whilst protecting your waistline.

Creating fun recipes like my Coconut Banana Bread will enable you to stay on track and avoid binge eating or ice cream remorse that can often accompany a overdose of processed sweet stuff.

After a natural sweetener with zero calories? Try stevia, which is a sugar substitute extracted from the leaves of the plant species stevia. Add a pinch of stevia to your tea or in place of other sweeteners while creating sweet treats. As stevia is much sweeter than natural sugar, you only need to use a fraction of stevia. For example, for every tsp of sugar, you only need a pinch of stevia. Taste as you go, and then add more according to your liking. If stevia's not your thing, coconut sugar and coconut syrup are a great alternative. 

Fresh vs. Frozen 

Contrary to popular belief, 'fresh produce' doesn’t always necessarily mean it’s really fresh. The fresh fruits and vegetables you buy at your local supermarket may already be a week old by the time they put on display. If you don’t have access to a farmer’s market nearby, it’s not a bad idea to opt for frozen. Whilst the texture might not be the greatest, frozen produce might sometimes be even healthier because they are frozen immediately which locks in all the essential nutrients.

You get home from work hungry and tired, and there are no fresh ingredients in the refrigerator but you want to eat something right away. Your first thought might be what’s the number to order in?

The perfect solution is to have a couple of packets of snap frozen vegetables in your freezer. Stock up on edamame peas, spinach, broccoli and green beans. They’ll come in handy when you need a quick healthy bite.

Then all you need to do is fling open the doors of your pantry and add your choice of pulses and tinned tomatoes or a pre-made sauce, and voila! You have everything you need to create a nutritious dinner that takes just minutes to prepare.

Frozen berries

A final must-have for your freezer is frozen berries. Anti-oxidant rich berries assist with aiding weight loss, diabetes management, and lowering blood pressure. Loaded with vitamin C, berries can protect with health of collagen, promote radiant skin and healthy hair, and may reduce the risk of cataracts, arthritis and macular degeneration.

Apart from the extensive list of health benefits, you’ll find yourself eating berries simply because they taste so sweet and satisfying.

Fresh berries are delicious, however if you know you have a busy week and may run the risk of wasting those sweet fruits, keeping frozen berries on hand gives you that sense of security knowing you won’t have a wastage situation on your hands.

Frozen berries are a convenient solution for an uplifting smoothie or a refreshing breakfast idea, scattering berries over a granola or yogurt. Try mixing frozen berries in your next sweet dessert recipe,

So, now we've stocked the cupboards, what's next?

It's cooking time!

I know you’re probably taking out your phone and about to open your favourite delivery app because cooking your own food every day sounds like a hard task but listen up! It can actually be easier AND cheaper to go from takeaway meals to homemade meals.

This may sound like a hard task but when we replace the convenience of buying store bought meals in a bid to be savvy and eat healthy, food choices don’t need to be a challenge.

I have come up with four recipes that are part of a renewable table. This means that we can use base ingredients to create four (yes you heard that right, four!) meals over four days. Have a cooking day on a Sunday and you'll save yourself a lot of time through the week.

Recipe A: Chickpea Curry 

Serves 8

Ingredients

Method

  • Heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add chopped onion and cook for 2-3 minutes until onions slightly sweat.
  • Add the garlic and spices, cooking for a further 2 – 3 minutes.
  • Add vegetable stock and tomato, and then bring to the boil and let simmer for 5 minutes.
  • Add chickpeas and let simmer for a further 5 minutes.
  • Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Split the mixture into 2 portions, setting aside half to be used for the remainder of recipes in this sequence. Store as per instructions below.
  • Add the cooked brown rice to 4 serving bowls, and top with 1/4 of the chickpea curry in each. Add steamed vegetables and serve.

Once the unused portion of curry has cooled to room temperature, place in a sealed glass container and store in the refrigerator. Curry will last for 4 days in the fridge.

Recipe B: Gourmet Sandwich with Indian-spiced Hummus

Makes 4 sandwiches

Ingredients:

Hummus

Leftover curry from Recipe A above (half of the original curry recipe)

Sandwich

  • 8 slices of gluten free bread or bread of choice
  • 20 slices of eggplant, grilled (setting aside 12 slices for future recipes in the sequence.)
  • 8 cos lettuce leaves
  • 1 large tomato slice.
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Method:

  • Separate the chickpeas from curry liquid. Place chickpeas into a high-speed blender and all other hummus ingredients.
  • Blend until smooth and combined.
    • (Note: save the remainder of the curry liquid as a nourishing drink or as a base for your next curry or stew by storing in a jar and leaving in the refrigerator for up to 4 days, or freezing for up to 2 months).
  • Set aside 2/3 of the prepared hummus for Recipe C and D of this sequence by storing in a tightly sealed bowl and refrigerating for up to 4 days.
  • Prepare sandwiches by laying out 4 slices of bread, spreading hummus evenly across each slice, and then adding 2 slices of eggplant, 2 lettuce leaves and ¼ of the sliced tomato across each slice.  Season with salt and pepper, then cover with partnering slice of bread.

Recipe C: Mezze Plate

Place all of the below recipes onto your mezze plate.

Ingredients:

Hummus

  • ½ of the leftover hummus from Recipe B, with the remaining portion for Recipe D below
  • Drizzle extra virgin olive oil
  • Sprinkle paprika

Parsley, goat’s feta and pine nut dip

(Tip: Make a batch of this on your cooking day to save you time later)

  • 2 bunches of parsley, without stems
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • ½ cup pine nuts
  • 200g goat’s feta (reserve 100 gms for Recipe D)
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Extra pine nuts and parsley leaves to garnish

Wheat-free Tabbouleh

(Tip: Make a batch of this on your continuum cooking day to save you time later!)

  • 70g quinoa, rinsed
  • 80g flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  • 1 handful mint, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • 80ml lemon juice
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small Lebanese cucumber, diced
  • 4 vine-ripened tomatoes, diced
  • 3 spring onions, sliced

Method

Hummus

  • Add leftover hummus to a serving bowl and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil.
  • Sprinkle with paprika.

Eggplant

  • Chop 4 slices eggplant into squares and sprinkle with sea salt.

Parsley, goat’s feta and pine nut dip

  • Combine all ingredients in a blender and mix until combined.
  • Place into a serving bowl and sprinkle with extra pine nuts and parsley leaves to garnish.

Wheat-free Tabbouleh

  • Cook the quinoa in a saucepan of simmering water until tender, about 15 minutes. Set aside to cool.
  • In a bowl, place the parsley, mint, garlic, salt, lemon juice and zest, olive oil, cucumber, tomatoes and spring onion, mixing all ingredients until well combined.
  • Season with freshly ground black pepper.
  • Stir through the quinoa and mix thoroughly.
  • Place 2/3 of the mixture into a bowl to serve. With the remaining 1/3, set aside for Recipe D below, placing into a sealed container and storing in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

Recipe D: Baked Falafel Burgers with Tabouleh and Spicy Hummus

This the perfect mid-week dinner, or a mouth-watering lunch meal that’s easy to store and take to work. With most the elements already prepared, you’ll effortlessly create this gourmet burger with plenty of time to sit and enjoy.

Makes 4 burgers

Ingredients:

Falafel balls

  • 75g sunflower seeds
  • 80g cashews
  • 1 tbsp organic nut butter, softened
  • 2 tbsp basil leaves, chopped
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tsp chopped coriander leaves
  • 2 tbsp chopped red capsicum
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ¼ shallot, chopped
  • Pinch sea salt
  • 40g toasted sesame seeds, for coating

Burger

  • 8 x slices of gluten free bread/quinoa bread/rosemary and flaxseed bread to make 4 burgers
  • Leftover Hummus
  • Leftover tabbouleh
  • Leftover eggplant slices
  • 8 crispy lettuce leaves
  • 100 gms leftover goat’s feta
  • Pinch of sea salt to taste

Method

Falafel balls

  • Preheat oven to 220 degrees Celsius and line a baking tray with baking paper.
  • Place all falafel ingredients, except sesame seeds, in a food processor and pulse until thoroughly blended.
  • Use a spoon to form 4 falafel balls, flattening out the ball to form patty shapes.
  • Coat in the sesame seeds, transfer to the baking tray and bake for 15 minutes until crispy.

Burger

  • To build burger, heat each slice of bread under a grill for a few minutes to slightly heat and colour the top.
  • Lay out 4 slices and spread hummus on each.
  • Stack the 2 slices of eggplant, goat’s feta and falafel patty on top, place crispy lettuce on the plate and spoon in some tabouleh.  Top sandwich with the second piece of bread to form the burger.

I hope this has given you a few ideas to supercharge your kitchen and meals!

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. 

Food Matters Live

Written by Lee on . Posted in Blog, News

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So excited to let you know that I’ll be hitting the road with the founders of Food Matters James and Laurentine and Jon Gabriel for Food Matters Live!

The Food Matters film was the catalyst for a health revolution in my own life, I wrote about it in a previous blog post and now I'm fortunate enough to be joining the team for this healthy and transformative roadshow.

We'll be stopping by in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth to share stories, some home-cooked wisdom, Supercharged recipes and tips on how you can live a healthy and happy life.

I’ll be doing some cooking with James and I'm going to pull it all back to simple and Supercharged Foods for the whole family to enjoy. We'll be demonstrating easy kitchen tricks and foods that taste great. We all believe that food really does matter and solutions to health problems don't involve fad diets, medication and strict exercise regimes.

It's a full day program and you'll discover;

  • How to take control and live your healthiest life yet.
  • Quick and easy nutrition and superfood cooking demonstrations.
  • Modern day stress reduction for busy people.
  • How the power of our mind and thoughts effect our health.
  • How to boost energy and break free from the diet trap and processed food addictions and cravings forever.
  • The latest up-to-the-minute tips for detoxing and natural weight loss.
  • Myth debunking: That eating healthy is expensive. Practical and affordable solutions.
  • The secrets and confusion of the multibillion dollar diet industry and uncover the truth behind “diet” “sugar-free” and “fat-free” products.

Come and watch us demonstrating kitchen tips, tricks and foods that taste great, and recipes which are simple and easy to bring to the table and made with everyday ingredients.

If you’d like more information and want to join in on an action-packed and inspirational day visit here

Stuffed Tomatoes with Cashew and Spinach

Written by Lee on . Posted in All, Autumn, Blog Breakfast, Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Candida Friendly, Dairy Free, Dessert, Gluten Free, Nutrient Rich, Organic, Spring, Sugar Free, Summer, Vegetarian, Wheat Free, Winter, Yeast Free

Stuffed Seasonal Delights

Tomatoes are one of nature's true super foods.  They can be cooked in a variety of ways, added to soups, pastas and served up with salads.  If you want to try something adventurous like the Greeks do why not try Stuffed Tomatoes?  An exotic way to incorporate a host of delcious in-season vegetables into one glorious mouthful.

This plump and fulfilling meal can be eaten on its own, with a crunchy salad or as a side dish accompanying your main.

You can devour these cheeky parcels of goodness for breakfast lunch or dinner, they're an anytime of the day delight.

Organic or vine ripened tomatoes are the best to use in this recipe, as they'll not only taste delicious but will create a dramatic and striking effect especially if you want to keep the lids of the tomatoes which you have sliced off and pop them on top like a Top Hat.  The vibrant colours are beautiful together and if you sprinkle on nutritional yeast flakes before you put on their hats you'll get a cheesy, nutty and sweet sensation all in one bite.

Being a high-source of vitamin C, A and B and magnesium, phosphorous and calcium makes tomatoes an extremely nutritive option. They're also a great source of chromium, folate and fibre....who would have thought so much goodness would come from the humble tomato!

If you've never had the pleasure of stuffing a tomato before its quite simple and really alot of fun.

Here's what you'll need...

Ingredients

  • 5 -6 large organic tomatoes
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 4 garlic cloves chopped finely
  • 1 cup fresh spinach leaves
  • 1 cup basil leaves
  • 1/2 cup cashews
  • 1 TBS nutritional yeast flakes (optional for sprinkling on before they go into the oven)
  • ½ cup cold pressed extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 TBS fresh lemon juice
  • 1 TBS lemon rind
  • Celtic sea salt and black pepper to taste
How to make:
  • Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius
  • In a little olive oil saute onions and garlic until brown
  • Scoop out flesh of tomatoes and set aside

Scoop out the Flesh

  • Put all remaining ingredients into a food processor adding olive oil slowly and mix seasoning to taste

Vibrant Green

  • Place in baking tray and drizzle with little EV olive oil and sprinkle with nutritional yeast flakes if you have some on hand.
  • Place in oven on middle shelf for 20-25 mins until cooked through

Delicious Alone or As a Side

For more gluten, wheat, dairy, yeast or sugar-free recipes visit www.superchargedfood.com

You can also buy nutritional yeast flakes here.

Happy Cooking 🙂

Lee xo

Quinoa and Vegetable Curry

Written by Lee on . Posted in All, Autumn, Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Candida Friendly, Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Nutrient Rich, Organic, Sugar Free, Vegetarian, Wheat Free, Winter, Yeast Free

My Golly Gosh This is Good

Don’t you just love a meal that you can sit down to with the complete assurance that what you’re eating is bringing health, vitality and healing to your body?

In the state of the busy world today, it seems that our priorities are so focused on the high speed rhythms of work and priorities, that we don’t have any time to think about what we are feeding the very body that is endlessly chugging us through a life of almost impossible demand.

Those demands require nutrients and that is the key for a functioning body and a healthy life.

Nowadays we are fully immersed in a society where fresh wholesome food is available, yet unfortunately our biggest killers are preventable diseases.  In my opinion we need to get our aprons on, our skillets a-sizzling, and link arms to tackle these issues head on, with enthusiasm and joie de vere.

The idea of preparing nutritious meals at home can seem like a pain to many people. But really there’s no need to feel daunted, it just takes a little practice in the kitchen, planning, and an appreciation of the nutritional value of wholesome ingredients.

The Supercharged Food website and blog are a perfect starting place, providing you with nutrient packed, easy recipes complimented by research that will educate you on the very ingredients you’re cooking with. You can prepare and enjoy disease fighting food knowing exactly how the ingredients are bringing your body into a state of health and wellness. Win-win!

This exotic vegetable quinoa curry is a wonderful meal to include into your transition to a lifestyle of health. Cook up a massive double portion and freeze the leftovers for those busy weeknights or work lunches. I promise that your body and tastebuds will be jumping for joy!

The base of this mouthwatering curry is quinoa (pronounced keen-wah), technically a fruit seed that seems to be growing and growing in popularity due to its versatility and significant health benefits. Quinoa conveniently has a quicker cooking time compared to brown rice and other grains, and accompanying flavours are absorbed beautifully, making it a great option for sweet or savoury cooking.

The uses of quinoa are remarkably diverse, and it can be used in pilaffs, gluten free risotto’s, soups, salads, or as an interesting addition to stuffed capsicums, tomatoes or mushrooms.  I personally love to use fluffy royal white quinoa to make a satisfying gluten free breakfast porridge.

One very important thing to remember before cooking with quinoa is to wash the seeds, as they contain a naturally occurring outer coating called saponin, a defense mechanism of the seed that is toxic to humans. This can be easily removed by placing the seeds in a fine sieve, washing under a tap and using your fingers to scrub off the residue. Saponin has a bitter taste, so a taste test before cooking will ensure that it has been removed.

So why is quinoa really selling out in supermarkets? What are its real claims to fame besides being a convenient grain substitute? The rage for quinoa has its roots in the knowledge that unlike other grains, it is a complete protein. The superfood uniquely contains all nine essential amino acids required for protein utilization. Vegans and protein junkies rejoice!

Quinoa is the perfect substitute for animal protein, therefore a lunch ingredient of high biological value that will fill your tummy and protect you from the haunting idea of eating that sugar laden doughnut during your 3 o’clock slump. Quinoa is also rich in iron and magnesium, and provides fibre, vitamin E, copper and phosphorous, as well as some B vitamins, potassium and zinc.

Studies confirm that quinoa is a very good source of flavanoids, particularly in its high levels of quercetin and kaempferol antioxidants.  Quercetin has been found to be valuable in cases of allergic reactions due to its ability to inhibit the production and release of histamine.  It has also been linked to an improvement in the health of capillaries and connective tissues, as well as having important antiviral and immune support benefits.

Kaempferol is known for its strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Evidence has indicated that kaempferol is one of the most important flavanoids that inhibit heart, spinal cord and brain disease, and studies have shown that it can help the treatment of cancers, cardiovascular disease, neuron disorders and cholesterol.

I could go on forever. There is so much valuable evidence out there showing the countless benefits of this superfood. Try out this delicious, hearty curry as a way to include quinoa’s wonderful benefits into your life.

Vegetable Quinoa Curry

Serves 4

  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed
  • 2 cups baby green beans
  • 1 head cauliflower chopped into florets
  • 4 carrots, peeled, thinly sliced
  • 3/4 cup chopped coriander
  • 1 1/2 TBS coconut oil
  • 2 tsp. grated fresh ginger
  • 1/2 cup cashews
  • 2 cups vegetable stock or water
  • 1 large onion, cut into strips
  • 2 tsp. cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 2 tsp. minced garlic
  • 2 tsp. ground coriander

Let’s Get Cracking:

  • Bring a saucepan of water to the boil and add quinoa cooking for 5 mins
  • Add green beans and cook for a further 5 mins
  • Now drain and set aside in a colander
  • In a frying pan sauté garlic, ginger and onions in coconut oil push to one side and toast cumin and coriander and turmeric for a couple of minutes, stirring consistently
  • Add cauliflower, cashews and carrots and stir fry for a couple of minutes then add stock and bring to boil then reduce heat to simmer and stir through coconut milk cook for 10-15 mins
  • Remove from stove and stir coriander through and then fold in quinoa and green beans
For more gluten, wheat, dairy, yeast and sugar-free meal ideas visit www.superchargedfood.com

Baba Ganoush

Written by Lee on . Posted in All, Autumn, Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Blog Snacks, Candida Friendly, Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Nutrient Rich, Spring, Sugar Free, Summer, Vegetarian, Wheat Free, Winter, Yeast Free

Vibrant Eggplant

Eggplants are a funny vegetable, a bit like coriander, I think you either love them or hate them. For me, it needs to be cooked right and given the attention it deserves. If you do give it that extra love and attention, eggplant becomes wonderfully rich and nutritious vegetable that is particularly versatile in adding bulk to gluten free diets.

So unique is Eggplant that it contains a rare antioxidant known as Nasunin. Found under the peel of Eggplant’s intensily purple skin, Nasunin has been shown to protect brain cells from free radical damage.

Eggplant also has vitamins and minerals in spades, rich in manganese, folic acid and the ever-important thiamine, the mineral that helps convert blood sugar into glucose for energy. More importantly is the fibre content of eggplants, with a single cup serving of eggplant containing 3g of beautiful, filling, detoxifying fibre. Load up on the stuff guys, when you think your reaching your target (30 grams a day) look at the fibre you’ve eaten and double it!

The addition of Tahini in this Middle Eastern spread is a vital component for texture and taste. Thankfully it comes with a dose of goodness to boot. Did you know that just 2 tablespoons of the stuff gives you a whopping 130mgs of calcium? Not bad for something that tastes so good.

Baba Ganoush

Tahini is a nutrient dense food source containing Vitamins E, F and T as well as broad spectrum of B vitamins. It also contains a true treasure trove of essential minerals and amino acids. Indeed one serving of tahini is 20% complete protein. This makes it a denser form of protein than milk, soybeans and most seeds and nuts!

And now onto one of my favourite spices….cumin.

Cumin is an essential ingredient in my kitchen spice draw; it’s been used extensively in many cuisines throughout history. In Ayurvedic medicine particularly, it's seen to be increasingly helpful with digestive disorders. Cumin seeds appear to stimulate the pancreas to release valuable enzymes and allow nutrients to be absorbed into our bodies.

Baba Ganoush makes a wonderful topping or dressing for salads, or a dip for crunchy veggies.  You can also team it with quinoa and use as a chunky sauce to add flavour.

Here's how...

Ingredients:

  • 1 large eggplant 9 TBS tahini
  • 4 garlic cloves finely chopped
  • Sea Salt to taste
  • ½ cup lemon juice freshly squeezed
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • Chopped parsley to garnish
How to:
  • Preheat Grill
  • Prick the eggplant with a fork to allow steam to escape
  • Grill eggplant for 15 mins turning frequently until eggplant skin is charred
  • Remove and let cool
  • Split eggplant in two lengthwise and remove pulp discarding the skin
  • Squeeze out excess moisture
  • In a bowl combine pulp, tahini, garlic, sea salt, cumin and lemon juice and adjust seasonings if need be.
  • Sprinkle with chopped parsley
  • Serve with gluten free crackers
Serve dip with crunchy Kale chips or gluten free crackers for a totally healthy snack.
For more gluten, wheat, dairy, yeast and sugar-free recipes visit www.superchargedfood.com
Happy Cooking 🙂 Lee x

Galloping Goulash Hungarian Style

Written by Lee on . Posted in All, Autumn, Blog Dinner, Candida Friendly, Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Nutrient Rich, Sugar Free, Wheat Free, Winter, Yeast Free

Galloping Goulash

A simple meat and veg dish should never bring back childhood memories of monotonous, dull weeknight dinners!  The slow cooked tenderness of the meat and the tantalising coalescence of flavours within this hearty Hungarian style galloping goulash will blow that stigma right out the window!  As well as containing a range of nutritional benefits, this troop pleaser has a fascinating history to bring a little dinner table culinary intellect to the family feast. When you're starting off your journey of healthy eating it may seem a bit daunting at first, but after you have the hang of using fresh ingredients and time saving tips cooking will become almost second nature.

Here are some tips on how to get started on a healthy eating plan.

Zoltan

The word goulash derives from the Hungarian word gulyas, meaning cattle stockmen or herdsmen. From the middle ages and well into the nineteenth century, the great Hungarian plain known as the Pusza was home to massive herds of cattle driven in tens of thousands to trade with Europe. It is believed that during the nights of these long journeys, the herdsmen would pick out the weaker animals to be slaughtered, cooking them in a large cauldron and combining them with vegetables to make a hearty stew. The large scale reforms of the Holy Roman Emperor and Hungarian King Joseph II after 1780 resulted in the Hungarian population seeking symbols of national identity to help assert independence.  As the years rolled by, the recipes found their way to the peasant population, and during the end of the nineteenth century during a period of burgeoning national awareness, the goulash descended into the dining rooms of the wealthy, making it a highly fashionable meal all over the country, and a defining characteristic of Hungarian national identity.

Fiery Paprika

Paprika, the signature ingredient of this hearty dish gives goulash its distinct red colour and didn’t actually become a part of the dish until the Turkish brought it in during their invasion of the Hungarian plain in the sixteenth century. Herdsmen who had contact with invaders got hold of the ingredient and used it to add flavour to their usual stew, and thus, Hungary adopted paprika as a national spice and the goulash we see today was born! We should be ever grateful for this wonderful exchange, as paprika is an ingredient high in cartenoids, responsible for its fiery red colour. Cartenoids act as antioxidants, promoting immune function and the protection against oxidative damage to cells. Studies have shown that individuals with a high concentration of cartenoids in their blood have a decreased risk of cancer and heart disease.  If you're wondering about how to get the most out of your anti-oxidants try this yummy anti-oxidant salad.

Assuming you don’t stock a cauldron in your kitchen, this recipe engages the use of a trusty slow cooker. For more ideas on appliances for a healthy kitchen see my fave Tools of the Trade.  I’ve been obsessed with my slow cooker lately and it’s so easy just to throw in the in the morning, and come home to an enticing intermingling of flavours and meat so tender you could cut it with a spoon. Nutritionally, slow cooking is a preferred method of cooking due to its prolonged use of lower temperatures. Animal cells within the meat are surrounded by a thin membrane that is easily dissolved by digestive juices, however, when cooked quickly and at high temperatures, this membrane will toughen, slowing digestion and impairing nutrient uptake.

Slow Cooking Cauldron Style

Slow cooking breaks the cell walls in the plant and animal ingredients, allowing a significant uptake of vitamins and minerals into your body. The tenderization is an important factor in digestion and if you have digestive issues slow cooking is highly recommended.  Whilst heat has an impact on the nutrient content of the ingredients, with slow cooking you can rest assured that almost all of the nutrients leeched into the water will be retained under the lid of the pot, and are consumed within the saucy goodness of this historically significant stew.

What are you waiting for? Let’s get cooking…

Goulash- Hungarian Style

Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 2 TBS olive oil
  • 2 red capsicum, sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves crushed
  • 1 large yel­low onion, chopped
  • 750 gms stew meat
  • 3 turnips cubed
  • 1 TBS lemon rind
  • 1 cup diced tomatoes
  • 2 TBS sweet Hun­gar­ian paprika
  • 2 Cups beef stock
  • 1 tsp. car­away seeds
  • 1 tsp. Celtic Sea Salt

How to:

  • Melt Olive oil in saucepan and add capsicum, garlic and onions.
  • Cook until onions are translucent.
  • Add paprika, caraway and toast in the pan on medium heat for a few minutes.
  • Add beef, turnips lemon and tomatoes and stock and bring to the boil and then simmer for 45 minutes to 1 hour.
  • Can be thickened with coconut milk if required but the turnips will help thicken also.

For more gluten, wheat, dairy, yeast and sugar-free recipes visit www.superchargedfood.com

Goji Berry and Nut Muesli Slice

Written by Lee on . Posted in All, Autumn, Blog Breakfast, Blog Lunch, Blog Snacks, Candida Friendly, Christmas, Dairy Free, Dehydrating Food, Dessert, Gluten Free, Nutrient Rich, Spring, Sugar Free, Summer, Supercharged Food Menu, Wheat Free, Winter, Yeast Free

Breakfast Bars

A little preparation on a lazy weekend afternoon can prevent a massive guilt trip midweek if you’re tempted to reach for a mid-morning or afternoon snack. If you’re in a hurry and start to feel your energy levels slipping away, an easy alternative would be to pop something convenient and devoid of nutrition into your mouth. But making sure everything you put into your mouth counts is a great way to fill your body with nutritious foods and enjoy the benefits that they bring.

This scrummy Berry and Nut Muesli Slice will give you the best of both worlds, with its sweet and truly nutritious qualities. While many snacks are synonymous with trans-fatty, sugar laden treats, there’s no reason you can’t create healthy ones.  The great thing is that having a healthful snack in between meals helps manage your blood sugar levels and hormones. Insulin in particular can increase your ability to store fat especially if you skip a meal or allow yourself to get too hungry. No one wants to start gnawing off their own arm or reaching for an instant snack full of processed and artificial ingredients that will only make the immune system have to work twice as hard to process and leave a trail of toxic substances for your body to try and eliminate..

Healthy made over muesli slices, using only the best, most nutrient dense foods are the perfect mid-morning or mid-afternoon snack. If you’re wondering what’s in every mouthful, these scrumptious treats contain a truckload of nutrient-rich ingredients to keep you full and will undoubtedly satisfy the cheekiest sugar craving. Let’s take a look at some of the ingredients:

Almonds: Keeping recipes low in sugar, which is the Supercharged Food philosophy, naturally means that it’s best to use foods which are low in carbohydrates. (Remember just 4 grams of carbs equates to 1 tsp of sugar in our body…yikes!) The wonderful thing about almond flour is that it’s high in protein, manganese, potassium, copper, and vitamin E, as well as heart healthy monounsaturated fats. If you’re using a quarter of a cup of almond meal, this contains 15g fat (1g saturated), 5g carbs (3g fiber, 1g sugar), and 7g protein. Nutrient dense deliciousness in one single slice! Here’s a tip when cooking with almond flour; if you’re planning on replacing wheat flour with it in a recipe, just make note that you may require more eggs to provide more structure.

Goji Berries: Apart from being pretty in pink and delicious, Goji Berries contain 18 types of amino acids and all 8 essential amino acids. Amino acids are the building blocks for protein, which in turn is vital for some very important functions in your body. To put this into perspective it helps keep your skin glowing or hormonal glands in check, your nails intact and your hair ultra-glossy with mountains of  va va va voom!

Another attribute of Goji berries is their rich source of carotenoids, (more beta carotene than carrots can you believe?!) of all known foods or plants on earth! They contain 500 times the amount of vitamin C, by weight, than oranges making them the second most potent source of vitamin C on earth. To round it all out Goji berries score an astronomical 23,500 on the ORAC scale (Blueberries are a mere 2400).

Seeds, despite the small packaging, pack a nutritional punch. Pumpkin seeds, or pepitas, are packed with iron, zinc, calcium and magnesium. These four important minerals are arguably the most important minerals our body requires. Magnesium is used in nerve and muscle function, making it an excellent mineral to help calm tired and wired minds. Calcium, as we know, is integral to bone health, iron is necessary for the generation of new blood cells, which promotes the circulation of oxygen throughout the body. No wonder if you’re iron deficient you have a tired mind and body! And finally zinc is necessary for protein development.

Sunflower seeds are an excellent source of Vitamin E, a fat-soluble antioxidant that helps fight free radical damage. They are also a wonderful source of Linoleic acid (an essential fatty acid), dietary fibre, protein and minerals such as magnesium and selenium. Sesame seeds are a rich source of manganese, needed for bone development and copper which assists in the production of connective tissue proteins, collagen and elastin (helping us achieve hot and healthy skin). Sesame seeds contain a unique antioxidant called sesamin, powerful anti-carcinogens which may assist with respiratory health.

Apricots are an excellent source of beta-carotene, potassium, iron, calcium, silicon, phosphorus and vitamin c. If you’re wondering about the difference in organic dried vs. conventional apricots, non-organic apricots are treated with sulphur dioxide, which stops the fruit from oxidizing and losing its vibrant orange colour. Sounds ok, but this chemical process creates sulfites, which is a common trigger for asthma in some sufferers. Deceptive as it is, it’s much better for your health to get those darker brown organic dried apricots that haven’t been processed or tampered with or better still dehydrate your own so you know exactly what in them.  You can find out more about dehydrating here.

Now that you’re skilled up and raring to go the only other thing you need to remember is just to make sure that your baking powder is aluminum free and now you are ready to make your own tasty treats.

Berry and Nut Muesli Slice
(makes 12-15 slices)
2 cups almond flour
½ tsp. baking soda
¼ cup goji berries
8 drops liquid stevia
½ cup mixed seeds, pumpkin, sunflower, sesame
¼ cup pistachios roughly chopped
¼ cup dried apricots, cut into 2.5 cm pieces
Pinch Celtic sea salt
1 large egg

Heat oven to 180 degrees Celsius
Line a baking sheet with baking paper
Combine baking soda, fruit, nuts and seeds, sea salt and almond flour in a bowl
In a separate bowl beat egg and add liquid stevia
Mix wet ingredients into dry
With hands form the mixture into a dough
Shape dough into a rectangular shape about 2 cms thick
Cut dough into slices
Bake for 15 mins

For more gluten, wheat, dairy, yeast and sugar-free recipes visit www.superchargedfood.com

Chicken, Turnip and Cashew Red Curry

Written by Lee on . Posted in All, Autumn, Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Candida Friendly, Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Nutrient Rich, Sugar Free, Supercharged Food Menu, Wheat Free, Winter, Yeast Free

Oh My Golly Gosh

You don’t have to be daunted by curries, this recipe is simple to make and delivers a winning result without the fuss. In India, it is not uncommon to eat curry for breakfast. While this isn’t everyone’s cup of chai, knowledge of the disease fighting power of this scrumptious concoction may have you re-thinking your reluctance. Alongside the health benefits, the experience of cooking this curry is a joy in itself. When the spices hit the pan be prepared to be whisked off into a sensory experience of kaleidoscopic aromas and flavours. Ahhhhhh. I want my curry, and I want it in a hurry!

The beauty of this delectable dish lies in the diversity of ingredients, delivering a vast array of natural medicines and disease busting qualities that your body will be ever so thankful for. One of my favourite foods, garlic is an amazing super food containing active compound allicin. This compound is known to have anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, anti-viral properties to keep your immune system in tip-top health. Coconut oil contains lauric acid, which in the body is converted into monolaurin, a monoglyceride compound that has been found to increase metabolism and improve the condition of skin and hair. Monolaurin also disrupts the lipid membranes in organisms such as fungus, viruses and bacteria and helps to keep gut flora healthy. Two great reasons why this curry should be enjoyed not only for the taste but also its amazing health benefits.

Another is that it contains turnips, a member of the cruciferous family, alongside kale, collards, broccoli and cabbage and it’s no big surprise that this ingredient is a secret weapon in the nutritional department. Turnips are high in vitamins A and C; antioxidants that together play an important role in stimulating the body’s immune response by boosting the formation of antibodies and white blood cells.  Vitamin A also maintains epithelial cells, which are responsible for keeping body surfaces healthy so that they can act as barriers to infection. The world needs more turnips and there are so many great ways to enjoy them, as crunchy fries, hearty mash, in curries, stir fries and casseroles.

If you’re looking for more reasons to eat curry for breakfast, studies have revealed that India has four times less the incidence of Alzheimer’s disease than their American counterparts. The saviour is believed to be turmeric, a spice consumed daily throughout India. The active ingredient curcumin contains potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties linked to the prevention of degenerative disease. It has been reported to have great benefits in people with auto-immune diseases as it lowers inflammation levels.

Coriander is high in flavanoid antioxidants and dietary fibre that together work to protect colon mucous membranes from cancers. Studies have also shown that coriander has significant anti-inflammatory effects, and protects the body from nervous system disorders. Using freshly ground and sprinkling fresh coriander onto dishes doubles its effectiveness. If you’re using ground spices they do go off quickly so it’s best to purchase small quantities at a time and store them in airtight containers.

Cardamom is a member of the ginger family and adds an aromatic, spicy quality to dishes. It is also used in sweets and plays a role similar to that of cinnamon. Did you know that cardamom in an excellent source of manganese, with just one tbsp supplying around 80% of your daily value?  Manganese is a co-factor for the enzyme superoxide dismutase, a powerful free radical scavenger, protecting the body’s cells from oxidative stress and also repairing them.

Chicken, turnip, and cashew nut red curry is a wonderful dish if you’re looking for an injection of health boosting nutrients and an exotic culinary adventure.  You can add your own ingredients to your taste too, once you have created the sauce base use your favourite ingredients to create differing flavours. By adding tomatoes, red peppers, ginger or lime you can zest it up to your liking. Experiment and see what you can come up with.

Chicken, Turnip and Cashew Red Curry

Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 4 chicken thighs
  • 3 round turnips cubed
  • 1/2 cup raw cashews
  • 1 TBS coconut oil plus extra
  • 1 400 ml can coconut milk
  • 1 brown onion - thinly sliced
  • 4 large cloves garlic sliced
  • 2 TBS whole cumin seeds
  • 1 level TBS red curry paste (no additives) I use Thai Gourmet Red Curry Paste
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp cardamom powder
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • Handful of fresh coriander
  • Freshly cracked pepper
How to:
  • In a large saucepan, heat coconut oil on medium heat
  • Add garlic and onions and sauté until browned
  • Add more coconut oil if necessary and add spices and red curry paste
  • Mix then add chicken, browning on both sides
  • Once browned add coconut milk, cashews and turnip bring to the boil
  • Cover and reduce heat to low, simmering for about 30 minutes
  • Just before serving dress with fresh coriander
Enjoy!
For more gluten, wheat, dairy, yeast and sugar-free recipes visit www.superchargedfood.com

Spirulina and Sesame Balls

Written by Lee on . Posted in All, Autumn, Blog Snacks, Candida Friendly, Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Nutrient Rich, Spring, Sugar Free, Summer, Supercharged Food Menu, Vegetarian, Wheat Free, Winter, Yeast Free

Spirulina and Sesame Ball

I'm spirulina besotted ATM. Totally in love with an earthy green nutritious and immune boosting micro salt water plant.

So what is this green stuff that is so big in Japan?

Technically its a single-celled microalgae which thrives from water and sunbeams. It contains every vitamin beginning with the first five letters of the alphabet as well as iron, calcium and magnesium, selenium, phosphorous, zinc, potassium and chronium. Spirulina is a rich protein source, complete with all essential amino acids in perfect balance as well as a boost of B12, chlorophyll, beta-carotene and other natural phytochemicals. If you're looking for an alkaliniser of the body, this is your go-to-guy.

The trouble is that many of us are consuming convenience and processed foods on a daily basis, which can raise cholesterol and weight levels, and inevitably contribute to digestive health challenges.  Bombarding yourself with over-processed foods which are extremely taxing for the body to process just contributes to fatigue and exhaustion.

When you ingest spirulina, particularly the natural powdered form in smoothie or shake, your body will almost instantly feel a rush of energy  because the powder is naturally and easily digestible. So you're literally infusing your body with nutrients and banishing that sluggish feeling.

Instead of reaching for an instant snack between meals Spirulina Balls can fill the gap naturally and provide nutrients to fuel your body and a boost if your energy levels are flagging. They don't take long to make and will keep in the fridge for a couple of weeks.  Now get making!

Spirulina and Sesame Balls

Makes 12

  •  1 TBS spirulina powder
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 1 cup chopped mixed nuts such as pistachios, almonds, cashews, brazils, hazelnuts
  • 1/4 cup sesame seeds
  • 5 tablespoons almond nut butter
  • 1/2 cup tahini
  • 8 drops liquid stevia
  • extra sesame seeds, for coating

Place spirulina, nuts,  almond meal, and sesame seeds in a food processor and process until combined.

Now add the almond butter, tahini and stevia and continue to process until mixed together and ready for rolling.

Divide the mixture into 12 equal parts then roll each one into a ball using the palms of your hands. Set them aside.

In a bowl place the sesame seeds and roll the balls through to evenly coat them.

On a flat tray place the spirulina balls in spaced apart and refrigerate for 30 minutes until set.

Enjoy!

For more gluten, wheat, dairy, yeast and sugar free recipes visit www.superchargedfood.com

Quinoa Risotto with Tomato, Basil, Lemon & Hazelnuts

Written by Lee on . Posted in All, Autumn, Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Nutrient Rich, Seasonal, Spring, Summer, Vegetarian, Wheat Free, Winter, Yeast Free

 

Ritzy Risotto

I'm a quinoa convert, no longer on the fence, I'm ready to shout QUINOA from the roof tops and you know what?  it's one of those words which is just begging to be echoed from the highest mountain "Keen- wah, wah, wah!".

Technically speaking, quinoa is not a grain as it is derived from the seed of the Chenopodium or Goosefoot plant, a close relative to spinach. I'd never heard of the Goosefoot plant before I learnt about Quinoa.  It's not something that comes up in everyday conversation unless you're a botanist. Apparently some of the species in the genus have leaves that resemble the foot of a goose so that's where it receives its unusual moniker.

I love to use quinoa in my recipes as it's super healthy and a great source of protein and amino acids as well as containing vitamin B6, thiamine, niacin, potassium, and riboflavin. Quinoa also provides your body with copper, zinc, magnesium, and folate, so it really is a nutritional feast and tasty too.  Because of its unique versatility, you can use  quinoa in casseroles, soups, stir fries and salads and it can be substituted for rice or grains in most dishes. You can even use it for porridge at breakfast time if you're so inclined.

If you want to give quinoa a toasted flavour and to create more depth to dishes, why not try dry roasting it in a pan before use?.  Quinoa is readily available in supermarkets and not just in health food stores, which now makes it more accessible for anyone wanting to cook up a delicious quinoan delight.

This gorgeously lighter-than-traditional-risotto dish is a flavoursome, yet hearty meal and perfect for lunch or dinner or even a side dish.  Supremely gnoshable and easy to throw together, you can mix and match the vegetables included to suit your personal taste, soiree  or seasonal style. The lemon makes it zesty and with a burst of citrusy zing and the yeast flakes add to its nuttiness and provide a wonderfully cheesy taste and extra B vitamins too.

Here's all you'll need to be in quinoa heaven.

Serves 4

Ingredients:
1 cup quinoa uncooked rinsed in sieve
1/2 cup hazelnuts or almonds optional roughly crushed (save a few whole for garnish)
2-3 TBS extra virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic minced
1 brown onion chopped
1/2 cup yellow zucchini chopped
4 TBS nutritional yeast flakes
1 TBS Apple Cider Vinegar
3 cups vegetable stock or water
1 can chopped tomatoes no additives
I cup baby spinach leaves washed
I TBS freshly chopped rosemary, oregano, thyme
¼ cup fresh torn basil (optional)
1 TBS lemon zest
2 TBS freshly squeezed lemon juice
½ tsp Celtic Sea Salt
Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Let's Get Cracking:

In a large saucepan sauté onion and garlic in EV olive oil on medium heat until translucent, stirring often
To the pan add yellow zucchini and nuts and cook for a couple of minutes until slightly browned

Mixing it Up

Push mixture to side of pan, add quinoa and stir for a minute until slightly crispy then mix
Turn up heat and over a few minutes gradually add stock or water to cover the quinoa, stirring consistently until all the quinoa is absorbed, add one cup at a time, letting each one absorb
Add tomatoes, and spinach, herbs and seasonings, lemon and zest and ACV

A Risotto Rainbow

Cook for 10-15 minutes until quinoa is tender but still slightly al dente
Remove from heat and stir through yeast flakes and serve in earthenware wide mouth bowls
Garnish with nuts and basil and enjoy

Delisioso!

Planning Your Gluten Free Christmas Menu

Written by Lee on . Posted in All, Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Blog Snacks, Christmas

It's Party Time!

Can you believe it?? With less than one month to go, Christmas is just around the corner. And this year there’s no need to miss out on delicious Christmas fayre, you can eat, drink and be merry this festive season tucking into tasty treats that even Aunt Millie will enjoy sinking her brand new teeth into. With a few basic modifications to the traditional Christmas menu it’s easy to come up with delightful Christmas recipes for everyone to savour.  Discovering new ways to use fresh and unadulterated ingredients can be fun and in no time you can be making your own health-promoting seasonal dishes that you’ll be proud to bring to the festive table.  If you’re cooking for others, here are a few quick tips to remember when creating a supercharged Christmas lunch.

  1. About a week before Christmas plan your menu and check recipes ensuring that ingredients are suitable for guests.  If you’re using any store bought ingredients check the labels to ensure there are no hidden ingredients. Sometimes the words; all natural, added spices, natural colourings and flavorings and maltodextrin are included on the labels and these ingredients can be a disaster for many people who cannot tolerate gluten, additives and preservatives.
  2. To get the show on the road with cracker and dip options, why not experiment by making buckwheat and herb crackers and teaming them with dairy free pesto, tahini or guacamole? You can also slow bake crunchy sea salt and apple cider vinegar almonds a few days earlier and have them sitting around as tempters, which will be gobbled up in no time whilst guests are getting into the Christmas spirit and letting their hair down.
  3. If you’re planning on cooking a traditional turkey, why not bake it with the stuffing on the outside? Or better still flavour-up the turkey by making up your own stuffing by combining crushed nuts or brown rice or quinoa with celery, onion, garlic, olive oil, rosemary, thyme, sage, an egg yolk, chicken stock, sea salt and freshly cracked pepper.
  4. If you’ve decided to ham-it-up this Christmas, just bear in mind that when purchasing store bought ham glazes it’s a good idea to check the label before you buy, as many packaged ham glazes contain chemical additives and preservatives as well as gluten.  There’s a great Christmas Ham recipe that I roll out every year, it’s delicious, tasty and will knock your guests out with its intense, exotic flavour and tenderness. Try it, you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
  5. When it comes to dessert ideas, pre-baking a lemon flan or pumpkin pie and then serving it with dairy free ice cream, or mock or cashew nut cream is a good option for people wanting to go the extra mile and indulge in a delicious dessert.

For recipe ideas visit www.superchargedfood.com

Gluten, wheat, dairy, yeast and sugar-free cooking!

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