Friday, 25 May 2012

Healthy, fast, no excuses!

One of the biggest reasons I hear for not eating healthy or for eating take away is that cooking takes too long or is too hard.  You know what I'm going to say to that - nothing could be further from the truth!!!
Yes the Thermomix has made things even quicker for us here but even without it, there are some really quick ingredients and cooking methods that make eating healthy a breeze.  And obviously like everything, the more you do it, the quicker it becomes.

Friday, 18 May 2012

Eat with the seasons - Pomegranate and Quinoa salad

Going back a few years, I would think nothing of driving around Melbourne in search of an ingredient that was out of season and therefore hard to find, but for a recipe I desperately wanted to cook.  And I guess that was a sign of the times - trends were more about impressing with ingredients that weren't readily available.

Yet now things have turned full circle, mimicking an age where communities were smaller and more self sufficient.  They didn't travel for days to find a certain species of mushroom.  Greenhouses weren't used to grow strawberries out of their natural season.  Food was grown in season, locally, and diets were seasonal, reflecting the produce available naturally at that time.

Saturday, 12 May 2012

Quick, no mess, gluten free flatbread - it will change lunchtime!

A lot of you who know me, especially my 'Coeliac friends', will already know this recipe, and use it regularly!  And you don't have to be Coeliac to get the benefits.  Just change the flour to regular self raising wheat flour and keep an eye on the liquid (you may need more) and you too can kiss boring sandwiches or dry wraps goodbye!

The beauty of this flatbread recipe is that all you need is a flat sandwich maker (see pic #2 below) and about 2 minutes of time spare and you will have a fresh, tasty, bendable (rare yet highly sought after in the Coeliac world!) flatbread that you can totally customise to suit your (or your kids) tastes.
I usually just throw these ingredients in a bowl and go by eye, but today I measured them out (roughly) to give you at least a guide for the basic recipe which then is only limited by your imagination to where you can take it!

Friday, 11 May 2012

Are you aged 0-100? Then this is for you!

Having a birthday this week has made me reflect on where I've been and where I'm going.  What was important to me years ago and whether its the same now.  How my body is holding up as it gets another year older and what my changing needs are as a mid 30's chick!  And whilst, yes, I am still young (and feel even younger at heart by the way!), the 40's are knocking ever so faintly on my door. 
This actually (surprisingly) doesn't bother me all that much.  I feel I am a more settled, wiser (laughing), grounded, self confident person than I was in my 20's and for that I am enjoying ageing!  But on the flip side, I also know that more work needs to be done as we get older to maintain a healthy weight, a healthy mind, and attention needs to be given to our body to keep it firing on all cylinders (oh dear, Dans love of cars is rubbing off on me isnt it?!).

Monday, 7 May 2012

Kids snacking ideas

If your kids are anything like mine with an insatiable appetite, you probably feel like you never leave the kitchen!  I am always trying to think up new ideas for snacks - a balance between my desire for a healthy solution and a taste the boys will love!
Equally if you have kids that don't eat a lot and have little interest in food, no doubt you too would be searching for something that will bring their little taste buds out of hibernation!

I know not everyone enjoys cooking and lack of time sometimes also stops us making snacks at home, and for that reason I have put a list together below for store bought snacks that meet the following criteria:
1.  Minimal fillers, additives, 'numbers'.
2.  Low fat, sugar and salt
3.  Minimally processed

Sunday, 6 May 2012

Do food labels speak to you in another language?!

Ever found yourself standing in front of a wall of products at the supermarket trying to work out which is the best pick for you or the family?  Whats going through your head?  This one says high fibre but this one says low fat.  Is the high fibre one also low fat?  What about the sugar content?  Hang on, whats carbohydrates?  Is that sugar too?  Oh and this one is Australian made, well that's good!  But it also has lots of 'numbers' in the ingredients list that I don't like the sound of.  And what about the price difference per 100g and and and.....!!!!!
Or is that just me?! Perhaps for some it is about the prettiest packaging or the deepest price cut?

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Fudgy chocolate beetroot cake

Ever made red velvet cake?  All the recipes I have seen vary from 1-2 tsp of red food colouring to 1-2 TABLESPOONS!!!!  Deary me.  Well to me this is screaming out to be 'renovated' and yes I couldn't resist the obvious opportunity to add some nutrition in there too ( ;
So here is my renovated red velvet cake - made with beetroot!!!!  Actually, as the story goes, these cakes were originally made with beetroot, before food colouring made their appearance!  The magic about this recipe is that you don't specifically taste the beetroot flavour, but what it adds is a depth of flavour (the earthiness of the beetroot pairs beautifully with the earthiness of chocolate) and a beautiful moist cake that will keep for days (if of course it can be resisted that long!).