Supercharged lasagne…

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There’s nothing better than finding a new recipe which puts a healthy spin on a re-occurring weekly meal request from the boys. This recipe uses zucchini in place of pasta and natural yoghurt instead of white sauce and is absolutely amazing to eat. Sure, the little people in the house don’t think it’s quite as good as the “real lasagne” but it is certainly great for a change.

1/4 cup olive oil

3 small zucchinis, sliced lengthways into 5cm pieces

1/4 onion, chopped

500g minced beef

4 tomatoes, chopped

125ml tomato passata

2tbs tomato paste

1 1/4 tsp fresh or dried herbs – basil, thyme, sage, oregano

Sea salt and freshly ground pepper

200g plain yoghurt

2tbs nutritional yeast flakes – found in healthfood stores

1 Preheat oven to 200 degrees C and grease ovenproof dish

2 Add 2tbs olive oil to a large frying pan over medium heat and gently fry zucchinis on both sides until golden. Remove from pan and set aside.

3 Add remaining olive oil, onion and garlic to the pan and cook until golden. Add the beef and cook until brown. Add the tomatoes, passata, tomato paste and herbs and reduce the heat. Simmer, covered, for 15mins and season with salt and pepper to taste.

4 Add half the meat mixture to the oven proof dish, followed by half the zucchini and yoghurt. Repeat and top with the yeast flakes. Bake in the oven, uncovered, for 25mins.

5 Remove from the oven and allow to stand for 10 minutes before serving.

Recipe found in Womens Fitness May 2014

 

xx

 

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Every home needs pom-poms…

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I’ve been seeing pom-poms on cushions for quite some time now and I love not only that they give a new lease of life to your soft furnishings but I also love  how they create that extra feeling of “home”. And…… after a friend introduced me to the Tweed Heads wonderland Fantazia Fabricland my cushions fate was sealed…. They have an amazing array of just about everything including many colours and sizes of pom-pom trail.

Now, I am a lazy (and cheap) sew-er so my cushions always follow along the path of a pillow case rather than the zip up variety and this actually worked in my favour as I was able to just sew a pom-pom trail around the circumference of my already made cushion cover. (To work out this technique just turn a pillowcase inside out and you will see exactly how they are folded and sewn. I always grab half a meter of my chosen fabric, hem the two ends and use the entire piece for a 50cm cushion insert)

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xx

 

Lush almonds, raw caramel and homemade raw chocolate…

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I know I raved about the last raw chocolate goodie…. but this one takes things to a whole new level…..

Honestly you won’t understand until you try it…. Think healthy snickers bars with a lush almond base, delicious caramel and home made raw chocolate!

I found this recipe on Womens Fitness Magazine website and whilst mine didn’t look nearly as good… it DID NOT MATTER!!!

Lush Almond Layer
1 1/2 cups almond meal
1 rounded tablespoon nut butter of your choice (I used almond butter)
1 tablespoon maple, rice or agave syrup (I used agave)

1.Mix altogether. The mixture should hold together when squeezed in the palm of your hand.

2.Press firmly into a lined glass dish.

3.Chill Lush Almond Layer in the fridge, while you go on to make Raw Caramel.

Raw Caramel Layer
1 1/2 cups organic pitted Medjool dates (I used standard supermarket dates presoaked in hot water and drained)
4 tablespoons raw organic coconut oil
1 teaspoon vanilla powder (I used vanilla essence)
1/4 teaspoon Himalayan pink salt

1.WHIZ ingredients altogether in a food processor for 2 – 3 minutes or until a mass of delicious raw vegan caramel is created.

2.Remove the chilled Almond Layer from the fridge.

3.Spread it evenly on top with the Raw Caramel.

4.Press some raw organic almonds (or any raw nuts of your choice!) into the top, leaving 2/3 of each almond exposed.

5.Chill again to firm while preparing raw chocolate.

70%+ Raw Chocolate Coating:
70g raw cacao butter, finely chopped
1-2 tablespoon organic raw coconut oil
1/2 teaspoon vanilla powder
1- 2 tablespoons raw dark agave or maple syrup
Pinch of sea salt (brings out the flavours)
1/3 cup raw cacao powder or organic cocoa

1.MELT cacao butter and liquor with coconut oil and vanilla in a glass bowl over another bowl of boiling water.

2.Remove from heat. Whisk in all other ingredients adding raw cacao powder last.

3.Carefully remove chilled Nickers Bars filling from setting dish. Cut into small bar shapes.

4.Pour some chocolate into the base of another lined dish with raw chocolate.Then place bars carefully on top.

5.Drizzle raw chocolate on top before chilling again to harden. You may need to coat again with more raw chocolate depending on how thick you wish it to be.

Makes up to 15- 20 decadently rich raw bars! Serves 10.

x

Winter warmer cornbread…

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Winter has officially arrived in Cabarita Beach! And whilst home with sick boys this mama needed a baked treat that could double for sweet or savoury!

So a quick phone call to my beautiful sister and I had a cornbread recipe to try!

I ate it with avocado and egg for a morning snack and then nut butter, strawberries, lsa and honey for the sweeter needs of the afternoon snack…

Both perfectly amazing!

Ingredients:

1 cup cornmeal – finely ground polenta

1 cup plain flour

2tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1 cup natural yoghurt

1 egg

3 tbs honey

3 tbs melted butter

 

Method:

Preheat oven to 180 degrees

Line a loaf pan with baking paper

Combine dry ingredients and wet ingredients separately

Stir wet ingredients in to dry

Transfer to lined pan

Bake for approx 30 mins or until browned, springs back when lightly pressed in the center, and begins to pull from pan sides.

Also great toasted the next day when not in it’s first flushes of freshness!

x

 

Planting with the little fellas…..

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I don’t always have success with getting things to grow ….. (or stay alive if I’m totally honest) That’s Dan’s domain!

But with an egg carton, seedling soil and a plastic bag, even I got these seeds from the local $2 shop to sprout.

I’ve slowly learnt that investing in good quality soil to begin with will give you a head start every time.

The boys filled the egg cartons with seedling soil, made finger holes for seeds and then set about sprinkling them in. We gave them a water with seasol and tied them in plastic shopping bags to create a bit of a micro climate. A few days in the sun and the bags were removed and magic…. little cornflower seedlings.

Fingers crossed I can get them to grow a little bigger before planting in the garden….

x

Raw brownies….. nothing but goodness!!

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Try this… try this… try this…….I found this recipe on a blog called Back On Pointe and just had to give it a go…..

One of the best versions of a raw brownie I have ever tried! It will convert even the biggest sweet tooth!

Ingredients:

Bottom Ingredients:
1 cup pitted medjool dates
1 cup mixed raw walnuts & almonds

Top Ingredients:
2 ripe bananas
1/2 cup raw cacao
4 tbsp raw almond butter
4 tbsp raw honey

Instructions:

•Mix together all bottom ingredients in a food processor until well blended.

•Spread bottom ingredients in a large glass baking dish until evenly distributed

•Mix together top ingredients in a food processor until well blended.

•Spread top blend over bottom layer base until evenly distributed.

•Place in freezer for 30 minutes.

•Cut into squares and devour….

•Re-freeze whatever you don’t eat for a later date.
Makes approximately 16 squares.