Category Archives: whole food
140g almond meal
80g sesame seeds
1/2 teaspoon of Celtic sea salt
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
2 tablespoons of finely chopped herbs
(dill and coriander work well)
Zest of one lemon
1 organic free range egg
1 1/2 tablespoons of olive oil
Preheat oven to 175 C.
Line 2 baking trays with baking paper.
Combine almond meal, sesame seeds, salt, garlic, herbs and zest in a bowl.
Stir with a spoon to combine.
In a separate bowl whisk egg and olive oil together until combined.
Pour egg mixture into dry mixture and stir to combine.
Kneed together with your hands until forms a ….dough.
If its too dry add more oil/water and if its too wet add more almond meal.
Place dough between 2 sheets of baking paper.
Roll dough with a rolling pin into a large thin rectangle
Cut the dough into small rectangles or squares.
Place on line baking trays and bake for 6 minutes.
Turn each cracker over. and bake for another 6 minutes or until golden.
Remove from oven and cool completely.
Keep fresh in an air tight container for 5 days.
With winter well and truly here, baking has become my favourite method of cooking. I bought some beautiful cauliflower at the markets yesterday. Usually I would boil it quickly and drizzle with olive oil but why not bake it? Cauliflower bake is an all time winter favourite but I usually avoid it as the hero of the dish, the cauliflower and all its health benefits are usually lost drowning in white sauce and copious amounts of cheese. I thought I would make a slightly healthier version and one that lets us taste the lovely nutty flavours of the cauliflower.
This dish is cheap, quick, healthy and delicious. The perfect week night dinner.
I’ve kept some cheese in the recipe as I think it adds just a bit of the richness you need from food in winter.
1/2 cauliflower, florets removed and divided into small – medium sized pieces
1/4 cup water
1 clove garlic crushed
1/4 cup chopped parsley
Teaspoon of chilli flakes
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
1/4 cup grated mozzarella
Ground sea salt to taste
Preheat oven to 180 Cm (fan forced).
Pour water into a baking tray big enough to hold all the cauliflower
Place cauliflower in baking tray, season with salt and bake for 20 minutes, or until stalks feel slightly soft (al dente)
Add garlic and parsley, stirring to combine
Sprinkle over cheese
Return to oven for 5 minutes, until cheese melted and slightly browned
Remove from oven, season with salt and chilli eat straight away or leave to cool.
Serve hot with a piece of grilled fish or chicken.
Chop the cauliflower and toss through wholemeal or spelt spaghetti, sprinkle with lightly toasted chopped walnuts, a drizzle of olive oil, a sprinkle of Parmesan, extra chilli flakes and finely chopped parsley.
When cooled chop it up and add to salads.
Cauliflower is a great cool climate vegetable to add to your winter menus. If cooked correctly it is not only delicious but has many health benefits too. From the same family as cabbage and broccoli, cauliflower has many nutrients associated with detoxifying the body and preventing cancer. It is also tipped to provide a good source of folate for pregnant women and a high fiber content also make it great for the digestive system. So really it has a health benefit for everyone!
Add 1/2 sweet potato diced at the beginning, and sprinkle toasted walnuts over it before serving, which makes this into a more substantial meal. Cooking time may increase to 30 minutes at the start.
You can also remove the cheese and add 1 tablespoon of ground cumin, rubbing it into the cauliflower before baking. Serve this version with yoghurt.
Do you struggle to find the time or the desire to cook every night? I know I do. Eating out or ordering take away is becoming more and more common and I can see why. With the many and increasing demands on our time it is so much easier to ‘out source’ this extra ‘thing’ to do. Don’t get me wrong, eating out is great and is a favourite past time of mine and takeaway has its place too but do this every day/night and you may be getting less of the nutrients you need and more of the ones you don’t.
At the start of the year, with a new job that took up more of my time, I got into a habit of ordering home delivery, buying takeaway or eating out. This went against my knowledge and belief in eating whole and nutritious food but I was just so time poor that I wanted something quick and easy that tasted good. Exhausted from work I didn’t want to spend my time cooking, let alone cleaning!
After a few months of this I noticed I often felt bloated, woke up at night extremly thirsty and my apetite seemed to be controled more by the highs and lows from sugar and ceffeine and addiction to salt than actual hunger. Realising how my diet had changed I decided I needed to get back to what I knew was right for my body. So how to do this? Of course I had to cut out the takeaway and reduce the dining out but I also needed to add more of the good stuff! I was still time poor so I needed a plan to ensure I ate as much whole and nutritious food as possible.
This is what I did:
1. Quick dinner options in the freezer: fish, soups, stews, frozen vegetables, wheet free bread.
– I will cook up a large portion of soup or stew on a day off and freeeze it.
2. Easy protein in fridge or freezer: Tinned tuna, silken tofu, tempe, smoked salmon, cheese, yoghurt, nuts.
3. Bring salad ingredients and protein options to work
4. Save leftovers from dinner for lunch or breakfast on the weekend
5. Excerise 4-6 times per week (and plan for this so it happens)
6. Buy my lunch only once a week. This may be a salad and chicken roll, tabouli and tuna or a home made lentil soup form the my local IGA.
7. I also cut out dessert as I found this bloated me
Soups and sandwiches are a quick and convenient way to get a variety of foods in one meal. I make stock on the weekends and freeze, so I always have some at hand.
SALMON AND AVOCADO SANDWICH
This is simple as you can get. Make it with your kids too and you have an activity for the weekend.
small handful of italian salad mix
1/2 avocado sliced
1/2 smoked fillet of salmon flaked
2 slices of your choice of wheet free bread (I like chia bread or wheet free quinoa bread)
Spread both slices of bread with mustard.
Place avocado on one side and mash down with a fork.
Top with more mustard if desired (I like mine strong).
Place salmon on top, a squeeze of lemon and top with salad leaves.
Top with last piece of bread, cut in half and enjoy.
CHEAP AND EASY LENTIL SOUP
A staple in my freezer this is great for a weeknight meal.
2 celery sticks, trimmed and diced
1 carrot, peeled and diced
1 Swede, peeled and diced
1 garlic clove, crushed
½ cup red lentils
2 x 400g can diced tomatoes
6-8 Cups of vegetable stock
4 tbsp ground cumin
100g goat’s cheese or plain yoghurt
¼ chopped fresh chives
Place all soup ingredients into a large pot and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes or until vegetables are tender, adding more stock if it becomes to thick.
Serve sprinkled with chives and goat’s cheese, a dollop of yoghurt or lemon juice and parsley.
Well I have just arrived back from the Mindd conference on children’s health, replenished with new knowledge. The more I am finding out about nutrition the more I am steering away from a total raw diet! However, don’t worry I am still exploring this. Today I want to talk briefly on fats, which may not be for a raw diet but an equally healthy (if not more healthy) whole food diet.
Many of you know I am sure that we need a variety of fats in our diets: omega 3, omega 6, monounsaturated and saturated. We get these by eating a diverse diet and I have always been conscious of eating the first 3, however the saturated fats I have always thought I needed to avoid but apparently this is not necessarily the case. Many of the speakers today used and spoke highly of the flavour and nutritional benefits of ghee, coconut oil and animal fats: all saturated fats. It was highlighted that ghee and animal fats should come from grass fed animals, as this gives then animal fat and butter a range of vitamins (Vitamins A E K and D are found in the grass not grains).
Ghee is made from butter but has less fat and is relatively casein free so can often be consumed by people with a lactose intolerance. It has a rich nutty taste and a high smoke point, which makes it great for cooking. It is said to have a slightly alkalising effect on the body compared to butter which has a slightly acidic affect and is considered to be easier to digest*.
Coconut oil ( and I have bought Spiral Foods Coconut Oil) has been linked to a whole range of health and healing benefits**. While a saturated fat it contains no cholesterol, no trans-fatty acids and is unusually rich in medium chain fatty acids MCFA). These MCFA are apparently hard to find and help protect against heart disease**. It is also obviously a great source of fat for vegans and vegetarians!
Holly Davis poke highly of animal fats for cooking, both for flavour and nutrition. There are many vitamins and amino acids in animal fats, vital for good health. Researching this on-line I have found many who back this up and that there are many vitamins and amino acids in animal fats, which are vital for good health! ***
As I am not a nutritionist please consult your health professional before making any drastic changes to your diet. What I got from today is that diets are a very personal thing and need to be catered to the individual! xx
Web sites I used for this post are below:
*information on ghee
** Information on coconut oil:
***Information on animal fats:
You can get coconut oil form any good health food store and animal fats you can render at home. Just ask your butcher for the fats you need or use the fats you cut off any meat you buy.