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Posts Tagged ‘sugar free’

A Year of Beautiful Eating + Roast Lamb and Ramen Recipes

Written by Lee on . Posted in Books, Reviews

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Madeleine Shaw, a wonderful nutritional health coach from London, has just released her latest book A Year of Beautiful Eating and I must say, it's everything that I look for in a cookbook and more!

A Year of Beautiful Eating explores the art of eating healthily to achieve inner and outer beauty all year round. It contains over one hundred wholesome recipes that are made according to the season and help to recognise what our body needs to feel and look its best throughout the year.

Like many of us, Madeleine turned to health after feeling constantly lethargic and bloated. She embarked on a health journey to Sydney, one of the healthiest cities in the world (go Sydney!), to discover the art of eating well and living a more energised life. This is when she started to learn how to listen to her body and give it what it needed. Madeleine began to fall back in love with food, life and most importantly, herself.

After this revelation, she was inspired to help others back in London, and across the world, do the same.

Madeleine is now a food blogger, nutritional health coach and mum to be.  

I had the pleasure of meeting up with her over lunch, last time I was in London launching my book Fast Your Way to Wellness and let me tell you, she practices what she preaches! Madeleine delivers her philosophy of keeping things simple, delicious and deprivation-free. She is lovely in real life and glows from the inside out.

Madeleine believes in healthy eating, not starvation and deprivation. More than anything, A Year of Beautiful Eating teaches you how to live a healthy life, not just follow a diet. The recipes are sugar-free and wheat-free and will be sure to leave you wanting more. Every dish is mouth-watering and simple! 

Whether you’re looking to cool off with a Papaya and Peanut Salad in summer, delve into a Slow-Roast Lamb Shoulder with Celeriac Mash and Greens in Autumn, cure your Winter blues with Coconut Chocolate Chunk Cookies or lovingly lounge with Lamb Chops with Parsnip Mash and Asparagus in Spring, A Year of Beautiful Eating has got you covered. It's the perfect cook book for everyday of the year!

Two of my favourite recipes from the book are the Slow-Roast Lamb Shoulder with Celeriac Mash and Greens and the Chicken Ramen. Yum.

Congratulations on the beautiful new book Madeleine and best of luck with the baby-to-be!

You can follow Madeleine on Instagram here.  

Slow-Roast Lamb Shoulder with Celeriac Mash and Greens

Photography by Sussex photographer Emma Gutteridge

Serves 6

  • 2kg lamb shoulder, bone in
  • 6 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 sprigs of fresh thyme, leaves picked and chopped
  • 2 sprigs of fresh
  • rosemary, leaves picked and chopped
  • 1 tsp salt
  • For the celeriac mash
  • 2 celeriac, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1 tsp grainy mustard
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • ½ tsp salt

For the greens

  • 2 bunches of Swiss chard
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh
  • parsley
  • pinch of salt

Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/gas mark 6.

Take the lamb shoulder and rub the garlic, thyme, rosemary and salt into the meat all over. Place in a casserole pot with the lid on, and put in the oven.

Turn the oven down to 150°C/300°F/gas mark 2 and cook for 4 hours until the meat falls apart.

Shortly before the lamb is cooked, prepare the side dishes. Steam the celeriac over a pan of simmering water for 10 minutes until cooked through, then drain and place in a blender with the mustard, butter and salt. Steam the Swiss chard for 5–6 minutes, then drain and tip into a pan. Add the olive oil, parsley and salt. Sauté for a minute or two.

Serve the lamb with a dollop of mash and a serving of greens.

CHICKEN RAMEN

chicken ramen copy 2Serves 2

  • 1 tbsp coconut oil or butter
  • 1 tsp freshly grated ginger
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 500ml chicken stock
  • 200g button mushrooms
  • 1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp tamari or soy sauce
  • 2 chicken breasts or thighs, cut into strips
  • 100g rice noodles
  • 2 eggs
  • salt, to taste
  • 2 carrots, julienned
  • juice of ½ lime
  • 2 spring onions,
  • finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp toasted
  • sesame seeds

Heat the oil in a large pan, add the ginger and garlic and sauté for 30 seconds. Next add the stock, mushrooms, chilli, tamari and chicken pieces.

Cook for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, cook your rice noodles as per the packet instructions in a separate pot. In another pot, boil the eggs in plenty of water for 4 minutes, until the whites are cooked but the yolk is still runny. Once cool enough to handle, peel and slice the eggs in half and sprinkle on a little salt.

Just before serving, throw the carrots and cooked noodles into the soup and squeeze in the lime juice. Top with the boiled egg halves, spring onions and sesame seeds, then serve immediately.

These recipes are taken from A Year of Beautiful Eating by Madeleine Shaw, published 20th April 2017 by Trapeze in Hardback and eBook, priced £20/£10.99.

‘Straya Day Lamingtons

Written by Lee on . Posted in Autumn, Blog, Blog Snacks, Dairy Free, Dessert, Gluten Free, Kids, Nutrient Rich, Organic, Seasonal, Spring, Summer, Wheat Free, Winter, Yeast Free

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‘Straya day is almost here and I’m celebrating the ‘Bush Capital’ with a healthy version of one of our nation’s iconic sweet treats.

Although not being born an Australian, celebrating this day has never felt alien to me and it’s a wonderful thing to have a special day nominated to praise and thankfulness at being able to live in this radiant country.

Marking ownership, community, belonging, love and acceptance are feelings that all Aussie’s and newfound-Aussie’s like myself are able to experience first hand.

And on that note, what better way to celebrate our national birthday than to fire up the Barbie, throw on your swimmers, forget any troubles and rejoice with family and friends with the sun brimming down on us!

Bounding forward with this sense of belonging and togetherness, I’d love you to create some unique national treasures in the form of delicious Lamingtons.

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Did you know that these scrumptious chocolaty treats were named after Lord Lamington? However, how they came to be square is a question slightly more shrouded in mystery.

Either designed around the appearance of Lord Lamington’s favourite hat, or made originally from dirt by the Lord’s youngest niece whilst she was making a ‘mud pie’ with a twist in her garden, it has never been officially confirmed, however what we do know is that the Lord’s niece had quite the vivid imagination.

Taking on the spirit of this sprightly little girl and her homemade mud pie, I’m sharing my ‘Straya Day Lamingtons recipe from my new cookbook Supercharged Food For Kids. It’s a print version of my popular eBook.

Getting children involved in the making of food is an enjoyable way to bond after a busy day or week of school, not to mention a pleasurable way to get hands on and have fun and just relax in the kitchen. Ok, maybe not relax completely but it sure will be entertaining! Minus the clean up 😉

With your children learning the ways of the quantities, measuring and mixing, their hard efforts don’t go a miss, a little reward of licking the bowl (we all do it!) will be sure to place a wide grin on their chocolate smeared faces!

So let’s grease those paws and pans and get baking to celebrate our joyous day.

Happy Australia Day everyone 🙂

‘Straya Day Lamingtons

Makes 12

Ingredients

  • 6 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons rice malt syrup
  • 1 teaspoon alcohol-free vanilla extract
  • 55g (2oz) extra virgin coconut oil, melted
  • 60g (21/4 oz/1/2 cup coconut flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons gluten-free baking powder
  • 180g (6 1/4 oz/2 cups) desiccated coconut

Icing

  • 110g (3 3/4 oz/1/2 cup) extra virgin coconut oil
  • 45g (1 1/2 oz) coconut butter
  • 55g (2 oz/ 1/2 cup) cacao powder
  • 60ml (2 fl oz/ 1/4 cup) almond milk
  • 90g (3 1/4 oz / 1/4 cup) rice malt syrup
  • pinch of ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon alcohol-free vanilla extract

Method

  • Preheat the oven to 160°C (315°F)
  • Grease and line a 20cm (8 inch) square cake tin
  • Using an electric mixer, beat the eggs with the rice malt syrup and vanilla until light and fluffy.

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  • Beat in the coconut oil, then gradually beat in the coconut flour and baking powder until smooth.
  • Spoon the batter into the prepared tin and bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.

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  • Remove from the tin and cool on a wire rack.

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  • To make the icing, stir all the ingredients together in a bowl until smooth.
  • Spread out the desiccated coconut on a plate.
  • When the cake is cool, slice into squares and dip each square into the icing, coating well.

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  • Roll in the coconut, ensuring all sides are covered.

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  • Refrigerate to set the icing.

The Lamingtons will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-5 days.

Simplicious by Sarah Wilson

Written by Lee on . Posted in Books, Reviews

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Sarah Wilson's Simplicious is a must for every aspiring cook, and even the most learned home cooks. It has all of the tips and tricks you need to help re-master the basic art of food preparation.

Far beyond a simple recipe book though, this resource is a text book of how-to's; including practical guides on waste avoidance expressed through tips on how to buy in bulk, freeze, preserve and use scraps to make mouthwatering new meals.

This is a beautiful cooking guide filled with aesthetically gorgeous images reflecting simple, straightforward but innovative meal ideas that are completely free or low in sugar.

One of the key elements about this book is the emphasis on mindful eating and enjoying real, wholesome food for pleasure, rather than perceiving it with stress or fear and it embodies Sarah’s principles of “JERF” (Just Eat Real Food).

I made the Green Scraps Shakshouka with some leftover greens, pesto and eggs and it was delicious. It’s an environmental take on a classic Israeli bubble ‘n’ squeak.  Should have taken a pic but mine looked a bit "fugly".

Sarah has dedicated a whole chapter to leftover mishmashes, featuring an abundance of clever leftover dishes to make the most of your spare ingredients and bits and bobs. Look forward to globe-trotting your way through Bibimbap Pancakes, Green Gumbo, Fridge-door Tonnato, Fish Pie and a wholesome Vegan Quiche.

My favourite bit? Three ways with oily fish...Only another sardine lover would understand my excitement about this!

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An overall brilliant cookbook that is generously informative and will inspire people to realise that cooking is a vital practice that saves money, time, your health and the environment.

More information can be found about Sarah here on her blog or you can find her recipe book here.

Supercharged Breakfast Bars

Written by Lee on . Posted in All, Autumn, Blog Breakfast, Dairy Free, Dessert, Gluten Free, Nutrient Rich, Organic, Seasonal, Spring, Sugar Free, Summer, Supercharged Food Menu, Vegetarian, Wheat Free, Winter, Yeast Free

bbCrumbs, I know you’ll enjoy these make-ahead Supercharged Breakfast Bars if you’re stuck in a breakfast time-warp.   Or if you’re a little bit partial to the not-so-healthy big-brand energy bars with their bold health claims, well maybe then you’ll welcome them with large pincer grips.

It turns out that sadly, commercially produced health bars are home to inflammatory ingredients such as sugar, partially-hydrogenated oils, soy protein isolate and artificial colours, flavours and preservatives. And even ones touted as healthy are cereal offenders.  With that in mind, if you do partake, you may as well be eating a Tim Tam!

You don't need to buy your fuel from a petrol station.  These easy-to-make-at-home wholesome energy bars are one of most popular recipes from my recipe book Eat Yourself Beautiful.  So high in the popularity stakes, it would appear that these little tinkers have also been involved in highly competitive bake offs and come up trumps!

Not to sound too over-confident but I'm quite sure that they would pass bake-off scrutinization well ahead of any crumbling croquembouche or Victoria Sponge oozing with Raspberry Jam.

They glow in the nutrition stakes too, with respectable levels of good fats, zinc, dietary fibre and B vitamins.  Easily transported in your bag for a quick-snatch snack, eaten as a portable breakfast or popped into a lunchbox, there’s no reason to not have them on hand when you need a little somethin’ somethin’.

Nut free? Swap out nuts with seeds such as pumpkin and sunflower and add flaxseed meal in place of almond meal.

If you’re lacking in energy, my healthy breakfast bars will pep you up in no time minus the immune system overload.

Give them a go and let me know what you think in the comments section below.

PS: Have you heard about my new Heal Your Gut eBook yet? Find out more here.

Supercharged Breakfast Bars

Ingredients (makes 8)
  • Unsalted butter, or coconut oil for greasing
  • 125g almond meal
  • Pinch of Celtic sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
  • 60ml coconut oil
  • 60ml rice malt syrup, or sweetener of your choice
  • 1 tsp alcohol-free vanilla extract
  • 40g cashews, crushed
  • 160g combined flaxseeds, sunflower seeds and slivered almonds
  • 40g dried cranberries (optional) no additives
Method
  • Preheat the oven to 175°C.
  • Grease a 20 x 20 x 5 cm square ovenproof tin.
  • Mix the almond meal, salt and bicarbonate of soda together in a bowl.
  • In a separate bowl, combine the coconut oil, rice malt syrup and vanilla. Add the almond meal mixture, and mix in the nuts, seeds and cranberries, if using.
  • Wet your hands and then transfer the mixture to the tin, using your hands to press down firmly on the mixture.
  • Transfer to the oven and bake for 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Remove from the oven, transfer to a wire rack and cool before dividing into eight bars and serving.
Storage Instructions
  • These will keep in an airtight container for seven to 10 days.

Creamy Curried Cauliflower with Cashews

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

Like humans, different foods can become better versions of themselves by association. Certain ingredients are taken up to another level when married to Mr. Right; think tomato and basil.  They’ve been soul mates all along, partners in crime, just waiting to bring the best out in one another. Cauliflower is another one that’s transformed when matched up with an eligible bachelor. She’s quite a plain-jane ingredient on her own, but a dead set knock-out when in the right relationship. Although if she were on facebook her relationship status would be “Its complicated". Rather than a sensible matrimony between two ingredients, she benefits greatly from more of an open-marriage, or a multiple-partnered approach.

Spicy Meat Balls

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

Spicy Meat-a-Balls

I'm drawn to Italian meatballs and I'm not talking about the guys from Jersey Shore.... On serving these "just like mama used to make" delights, mentioning the words "That’s a spiceeee meat-a-ball" is hard not to do it without gesturing wildly and launching into a heavy fake Italian accent. I know you guys will go ga-ga over this delicious Italian inspired dish which is super easy and packed with healthy ingredients.

Lamb is one of those power packed foods providing the entire body with a wide range of essential nutrients for a balanced and healthy diet.  Packed with protein, iron, zinc, B vitamins, selenium, vitamin D, and long chain omega-3s, lamb certainly provides optimized health and energy to the body.

In a nutshell, lamb provides needed vitamins for the body and immune system function. Vitamin B12, which is an essential vitamin for proper brain function; Zinc supports healthy immune function, cell division and overall growth; Iron is an integral component of haemoglobin and aids formation of red blood cells in the body, omega 3 benefits emotional health and the heart and amino acids are necessary component of every living cell.

Together with fuelling the body these high protein meatballs will certainly spice up your life! The twist of fragrant herbs and spices will heighten your taste buds, with the ground nuts providing a rich and light flavour throughout keeping the meatballs from drying out.

Delicious and bound to please the whole family from the little ones to the more mature. Enjoy as a starter with a roasted cherry tomato dipping sauce or make a meal of it and partner with a quinoa pilaf. Top with homemade relish...

Serve with Quinoa Pilaf and Homemade Relish

Spicy Meatballs

Ingredients

  • 500 grams organic minced lamb
  • 1 organic egg
  • 2 brown onions chopped finely
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 2 TBS fresh parsley chopped
  • 2 TBS coriander seeds
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp Garam Masala
  • pinch red chilli powder
  • 1/2 cup chopped nuts preferably soaked and dried (almonds/walnuts/cashews)
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 TBS Extra Virgin Coconut Oil for frying

Preparation

  • Place all spices and herbs in a bowl and mix
  • Lightly fry onions and garlic in coconut oil then set aside
  • Using your hands mix lamb, nuts, spices, herbs and egg together and then add onions and garlic and season to taste
  • Shape mixture into balls and over a medium stove top heat coconut oil in a frying pan
  • Add meatballs and sear on each side, transfer to the oven at 180 degrees Celsius for 20 min or until cooked
  • Drain meatballs on paper towel and serve by themselves or accompanied with quinoa pilaf or a crispy green side salad.

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

No Bean Hummus

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

No Bean Hummus

I adore hummus… seriously adore it.  My preferred vessel is a scoopable cracker or crudité to ensure maximum consumption per bite.  But you know what?…it just doesn’t love me back.

Even if I practice the art of moderation I still appear to find the whole process gut wrenching so to speak. And yes, I am a foodie…I know how to properly prepare beans.

The bean thing isn’t a new phenomenon…nor is it unique to me. Beans, often hailed as a vegetarians wonder food because they combine starch and protein is held back by the very fact it contains both nutrients.

Generally, if you combine starch and protein you get a boatload of gas, bloating and other digestive issues.

Here’s why:

When you eat protein your stomach produces hydrochloric acid and an enzyme called pepsin to create an acidic environment to break them down.

When you eat a starchy vegetable, grains or beans, an enzyme called ptyalin is secreted, which develops an alkaline condition ready for starchy foods to be digested.

What happens then when you eat the two together? Well…the acid and alkaline enzymes can’t do their jobs as they neutralize each other. Digestion falters and the food we consume begins to ferment.

I won’t elaborate…but needless to say I stay away from beans as I personally feel they do me wrong in the nicest possible way.

This is where my no bean hummus comes into play. Hand on heart…it tastes identical…. I’ve just snuck in a raw zucchini and almonds for creaminess…tempted?

Do try.

No Bean Hummus

Ingredients

  •  3/4 cup sunflower seeds or soaked almonds
  • 3/4 cup tahini
  • 2 zucchini peeled and chopped
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 4 cloves of garlic peeled
  • ½ tsp. Celtic sea salt
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. fresh basil
  • ½ TBS ground cumin
How to Make:
  • In a blender combine all ingredients
  • Blend until smooth and add a little filtered water if necessary
  • Serve with green veggies, as a dip or topping with your favourite gluten free cracker

Chilled Mexican Avocado Soup

Written by Lee on . Posted in All, Blog Lunch, Candida Friendly, Spring, Summer

Chilled Avocado Soup

Mexico is one of my favourite travel destinations.

I spent some time in gorgeous Puerto Vallarta a few years ago and stayed at the most charming and adorable Beachfront Villa.

I sampled delicious and authentic Mexican food during my trip and found that there was so much potential within the Mexican cuisine; healing herbs and spices, a variety of colourful fresh ingredients bursting with beneficial phytochemicals, fibre filled beans and protein rich meats.  However, the Americanisation of Mexican cooking has seen this potential warped for the purpose of convenience in urbanized and capitalized societies like our own.

Visit your local food court and you’ll find yourself staring down the barrel of guacamole, salsa and two limp iceberg lettuce leaves, and although they might look healthy, they are a mere distraction from the copious amounts of cheese, sour cream, starchy, refined carbohydrates deep fried in hydrogenated oils, sodium laden refried beans and poor quality meats. A lovely plate of artery clogging, acid forming, disease creating mess. Yes... the paradox of Mexican food.

In an effort to recreate the authenticity of traditional Mexican cuisine, this healthy version of chilled avocado soup will deliver those flavours you love so dearly minus the garbage. Here are some of the nutritional facts you can share with your amigos as you enjoy this guilt free meal.

The dominant ingredient in this meal is the amazing, creamy avocado.  Avocados have been considered as nature’s multivitamin. According to the California Avocado Commission, Avocados contain more than 20 vitamins and minerals! Just one cup of cubed avocado contains 39% of the RDA for vitamin K, responsible for bone health, healthy blood coagulation and proper brain and nervous system functions. It also supplies the body with 25% of the RDA for vitamin C, which is important for the body’s immune response, the development of collagen, and in the prevention of oxidative stress caused by free radical damage. Avocados also contain 22% of the RDA for folate, which is of paramount importance in the production of red blood cells, and the proper development of the brain and spinal cord of an unborn infant.

In the mineral department, avocados contain significant amounts of potassium, magnesium, manganese and copper. They are actually higher in potassium that bananas! Potassium is such a vital mineral, with several functions in the body. For example, potassium is used in the body to help regulate mineral and fluid balances, prevent strokes of the brain, regulate muscle contraction and relaxation, maintain the electrical conductivity of the brain, assist in healthy metabolic processes and assist the kidneys to remove toxins and wastes through the process of excretion.

Studies have shown that when combined with antioxidant rich foods such as spices, salad or salsa, the fats in avocados help our bodies to absorb healthy phytochemicals called cartenoids. This Mexican style avocado soup uses this premise to enhance the bioavailability of the cartenoids found in paprika. Cartenoids are the pigments that give paprika its bright red colour. They are known for their great antioxidant potential, and their significant role in protecting the body’s cells from oxidative damage, thus being a great preventive measure against the formation of cancer cells.

Cumin, a spice that actually originated in Egypt, has great medicinal qualities that make this dish all the more enticing. Herbalists have long appreciated this spice for its antispasmodic and carminative --- or gas reducing properties. No more awkward post Mexican stomach problems! In Ayurvedic medicine, it is prized as a common treatment for indigestion, vomiting and diarrhea. Cumin has been found to significantly benefit the digestive system, with a soothing effect on mucous membranes in the gastrointestinal tract.  Other studies show that cumin appears to stimulate the liver to secrete more bile, which aids in the breakdown of fats and the absorption of nutrients.

I hope by now you are no longer afraid of the dark side of Mexican food. Follow this recipe and these worries will be a distant memory. Welcome to the brighter, healthier side of our beloved Mexican food fiestas!

Avocado Soup Mexican Style

Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 2 avocados, ripe, pitted, peeled, and mashed
  • 2 TBS EV Olive Oil
  • 1 brown onion, chopped
  • 3-4 cups homemade vegetable stock
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1 lemon freshly squeezed
  • 1 TBS lemon rind
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • ½ tsp. ground cumin
  • Pinch cayenne pepper
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • Celtic Sea Salt
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
  • Lime quarters to garnish

Let’s Get Cracking:

  • Sauté onions in olive oil until browned
  • Place all ingredients in a food processor and blend until combined
  • Place in bowl and chill until served
For more gluten, wheat, dairy, yeast and sugar-free recipes visit www.superchargedfood.com

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

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