Paleo Sweet Potato Fritters
GRAIN FREE - GLUTEN FREE - LOW GI
- 500g Sweet potato (2 small-med or 1 large), grated
- 1tsp each of Cumin (seed or ground), ground Coriander, ground sweet Paprika
- 1/2 tsp ground Cayenne (optional. Cayenne can be a good digestive warmer and adds some kick!)
- 1 cup Almond meal
- 2 Eggs
- 1/2 cup Tahini (unhulled or hulled is fine. If you go with UN-hulled, it will be darker in colour, stronger in flavour, nutty, and will have far better Calcium and Magnesium nutritional value)
- 1-2 cloves of garlic (again, optional. If you like garlic, have a hankering, or are feeling like you are coming down with a cold, go for 2 medium sized bulbs), crushed or finely diced.
- Juice of 1 Lemon
- 1/3-1/2 cup water
- Olive oil or Coconut Oil for frying
- Salt and Pepper
Grate sweet potato and set aside. Place on paper towel or a tea towel if you have one handy to absorb any excess liquid
In a bowl, combine all spices, almond meal, sweet potato and eggs. Season with a sprinkle of salt and pepper.
Heat 2 Tbs oil in a frying pan and when hot (not-smoking) add spoons of fritter mixture. Make them as large or small as you like, just dont overcrowd the pan. Cook for 2-3 minutes each side, turning very carefully. When they are golden and feeling solid, pop them out of the pan and back onto the towel. Repeat until all mixture is cooked.
Place garlic, tahini and lemon in a bowl. With a spoon, blend mixutre until combined. Add teaspoons of water until sauce turns into more of a...well, sauce. Taste for lemon and seasoning. You want a drizzle-consistency that is light and refreshing against the spiced fritters.
Plate up and enjoy!
Roasted Chickpea Snack
HIGH PROTEIN - HIGH FIBRE - GLUTEN FREE - GRAIN FREE - RESISTANT STARCH
These are a wonderful snack or salad topping. Kids love them too! Legumes are a also a great source of resistant starch. Chickpeas contain a type of indigestible starch, which when traveling to the lower gut, helps to feed good bacteria. Fermentable fibres and starches can do wonders for our gut flora. Resistant starch has other powerful health benefits too - like increasing insulin sensitivity and balancing appetite and blood sugar.
- Pinch of sea salt
- 1-2 tablespoon sugar (coconut, maple, or other unprocessed sugar)
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 4 cups chickpeas (you can cook your own, or use canned organic beans. You must rinse well, and dry with paper towel)
- 2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 2 teaspoon ground paprika
- Pinch or 2 of cayenne pepper
- 2 tablespoon oil (avocado, rice bran or olive oil)
- ½ teaspoon ground coriander
Preheat oven to 180 degrees
In a large bowl, toss together the beans and all of the ingredients, including the oil. Spread the beans out in single layer on a cooking tray lined with baking paper.
Roast in the oven for about 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes or so, and removing them when they are thoroughly cooked, roasted and crispy.
Let cool and snack away!
Easy Buckwheat Pancakes
GLUTEN FREE - LOW ALLERGY - DAIRY FREE
Okay, so I use this pancake batter as a base for SO many alternatives. We add grated veg like zucchini, broccoli, silver beet and/or carrot for savoury pikelet snacks. My 1 year old devours them! We add squashed berries, varying spices, and sometimes ill bung in leftover roasted veg, mix it all together and throw it in a tray and bake it into a slice. It's a winner.
- 2 cups Buckwheat flour (thankfully, we grow some wonderful organic buckwheat in Tasmania. Either the sifted or unsifted version are fine)
- 1 egg (Vegan alternative: 1 Tbs flaxseed meal, or one mashed banana if making a sweet version)
- 3/4 - 1 cup milk or milk alternative (I usually use oat milk, almond milk or soy)
- 1 tsp baking soda (look for aluminum free and free from "flowing agents" of any kind. Try the health shop)
- Oil for frying
In bowl, add flour & baking soda and make a well in the centre. Add egg (or alternative) and most of the milk. Fork or whisk to combine liquids with flour. Continue adding milk until a batter is formed.
Add 1 Tbs of oil to heated fry pan. Pour batter into pan and wait for bubbles to form. Flip and cook on other side.
Top with seasonal fruits, yoghurt, nuts, seeds or whatever takes your fancy!
*TIP: If the batter it seems to runny, don't be afraid to sprinkle in more flour. If its too thick, add more milk. I find a thicker mixture is great when adding grated veg and making a fritter type pikelet. Thinner batter is good for simple pancakes. If using flaxseed meal for vegan alternative, allow batter to sit for 10 minutes before cooking.
Simple Chia Pudding
GLUTEN FREE - VEGAN - RAW - DAIRY FREE - NUT FREE - OMEGA 3
These are great to make a batch in small jars or containers and keep in the fridge. An easy breakfast or a healthy snack. Great for kids too. Get creative with flavourings, toppings and combinations by expanding on this base recipe.
- 1/3 cup chia seed
- 1 1/2 cups milk (any milk alternative is fine)
- 1/2 tsp of vanilla powder, vanilla extract or half vanilla bean, scraped.
- 1 Tbs maple syrup, rice malt syrup, warmed runny honey or sprinkle of pure stevia powder (optional)
Divide chia seeds into equal amounts in small jars or containers. If making one pud, add total amount to pint sized jar
Add all other ingredients to chia seed. Stir well or shake in a jar.
Leave to chill in the fridge or in a cool place for a minimum of 4 hours. Overnight is great.
Serve with fruit, nut or seed of choice.
*TIP : for a fancy dessert to impress your friends with - layer in a jar with raw nuts in the bottom of the jar. Add chia, let set and pour pureed fruit on top. Top with nuts, edible flowers and chocolate sauce.
"Sustain Me" Muesli : 2 ways
HIGH PROTEIN - LOW GLUTEN - HIGH FIBRE - HEALTHY FATS
I'm often advising people to change their breakfast choice. Too many people are eating a grain-based breakfast with no added protein or fat to balance the energy release and sustain their energy. The nuts and seeds in this recipe make it particularly good for those needing to balance blood sugar levels or wanting to increase fibre and improve gut health.
This can be heated for a hot breakfast or kept raw for a muesli. Soak overnight in water or milk choice for easier digestion.
- 500g Rolled Oats (look for Australian and organic)
- 1 cup almonds (raw whole, flaked or slivered)
- 1 cup pumpkin seeds / pepitas
- 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
- 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
- 1/2 cup coconut flakes (organic, non-sulfur)
- 1/2 cup currants (or other sulfur-free dried fruit)
- 1/2 cup sesame seeds
- 1/2 tsp each of nutmeg and cinnamon (optional)
Mix all ingredients together and store in an airtight container or jar.
Serve with milk of choice, warm water or yoghurt.
*TIP: If soaking overnight, you may like to add a grated apple to sweeten. Will keep in fridge as a soaked muesli for up to 2 days for an easy breakfast.
Diabetes and blood sugar regulation : Add 1tsp of cinnamon on serving. 6g of true, good quality cinnamon has been shown to aid in regulating blood sugar.
Easy Bean Dip
GLUTEN FREE - HIGH PROTEIN - HEALTHY SNACK
Almost any legume can be used as a base for this dip. Ensure beans or lentils are soaked and cooked well before blending. Try Australian Chickpea, Adzuki Bean, Kidney Bean or Cannellini Bean.
- 1x 410g tinned beans or 1/2 cup dried beans, soaked and cooked (will expand to over 1.5 cup when cooked)
- 2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
- 1-2 clove of garlic, crushed or finely diced
- 1 Tbs tahini (optional)
- Salt and pepper
- 1/2 tsp of either cumin, paprika, turmeric (optional)
- 1-2 Tbs lemon juice
- 1-2 Tbs water
In a small food processor, put beans, tahini, lemon juice, garlic and olive oil. Blend until fine and combined into paste. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add small amounts of water to thin out dip mix if needed, or keep as a chunky style dip. Add more lemon and ground spices to taste.
Serve topped with a drizzle of olive oil and fresh herbs. Great with raw veggie sticks or crackers. Or add a dollop to salads!
Drink of Warm Sunshine...
GLUTEN FREE - HIGH ANTIOXIDANT - ANTI-INFLAMMATORY - HEALTHY SNACK
You've no doubt come across some of the fuss about Turmeric. And is it as good as they all say? Well, in short, YES.
It's been shown to provide an anti-inflammatory effect in various bowel diseases (Ulcerative Colitis, Crohns's, gastric ulcer), arthritis and respiratory diseases. It promotes healthy liver and gallblader function and so helps with digestion. It is also highly antioxidant. In these recipes it is combined with gut-warming herbs such as pepper and ginger, which also have a gut calming effect. The black pepper increases the absorption of the active components of turmeric, meaning it gets into the blood stream for systemic effect.
These two recipes give you a hot and cold version to warm the digestion and reduce inflammation. You can use the grated fresh root, or the powdered herb. Go for organic if possible.
HOT DRINK - TURMERIC LATTE :
- 2 Cups of nut milk or coconut milk
- 1 heaped tsp of turmeric powder or 1 tsp grated fresh root
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 vanilla pod, scraped OR 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- ginger powder OR 1cm thick slice of fresh ginger root, grated or finely sliced.
- pinch of black pepper
Blend all ingredients in a blender until smooth. Place in a saucepan and heat slowly until almost simmering.
COLD DRINK - TURMERIC LASSI
- 2 cups nut milk or coconut milk
- 1 banana OR 1 mango
- 1 heaped tsp of turmeric powder or 1 tsp grated fresh root
- 1 tsp of ground ginger or 1cm thick slice of fresh root, grated or sliced
- pinch of black pepper
- 1 tsp of unheated, unprocessed honey (optional)
Place all ingredients in a blender and combine until smooth. Place in tall glass and chill before drinking.
Buckwheat Banana Berry Muffins
VEGAN - GLUTEN FREE - REFINED SUGAR FREE - HEALTHY SNACK
As the cooler weather arrives, comfort muffins are a must. These are also reasonably guilt-free which helps!
- 2 cups buckwheat flour (look for Tasmanian and organic)
- 2 heaped Tbs flaxseed meal
- 2 heaped tsp bi-carb soda or baking soda (look for aluminum / flowing agent free)
- 1 large banana, or 2 small
- 1/2 cup, or small handful of dried dates, roughly chopped
- 1/2 cup of dried goji berry (optional)
- 1 egg (optional)
- 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 cup milk of your choice
- 1/2 cup coconut oil, olive oil (or 60g butter if non-vegan), melted
Preheat oven to 180 degrees
Line muffin tray with patty pans, or grease
Soak dates and goji berries in enough hot water to cover. Leave aside for 5 minutes while you prepare the rest.
In a bowl place flour and flax meal. Make a small well and add bicarb. Pour apple cider vinegar onto bicarb and see it fizz up
Add melted oil/butter
Drain dates and goji and mash banana into them. Add to flour mix with milk (and egg if using) and stir reasonably gently until all ingredients are combined.
The trick with all muffins is to NOT over mix. So mix until combined, then put straight into tray to cook!
Cook for 15-25 minutes or until skewer comes out clean and they are golden on top
* For extra indulgence, I made a simple fresh strawberry sauce by simply mashing strawberries (or you could use a blender) with a little maple syrup. While muffins are hot, stab them gently with a fork and pour syrup over them. Allow to cool, then devour with a nice cup of tea
* You can dress up the look of these by placing a thin slice of fresh banana or two on top before you pop them in the oven
GLUTEN FREE - HEALTHY SNACK - VEGAN OPTIONS - YEAST FREE
Bread can be a reliable, filling staple in our diet. But what I often see when examining people's diets is that they rely on bread too much, or cannot tolerate the amount they are eating, resulting in bloating, poor digestion and a sense of heaviness in their gut.
Seeing a lot of the same grain in your day is not ideal and variety is often needed. We are often wheat heavy - think toast for breakfast, wrap for lunch, pasta for dinner. Plus, including regular or sourdough breads can put pressure on the gut and immune system if you suffer from gut dysbiosis, yeast infections, or any form of intolerance to grains or gluten.
These simple recipes are highly nutritious - giving you more bang-for-your-buck when compared to regular grain bread. Give them a try to change things up a bit!
TURMERIC CAULIFLOWER FLAT BREAD
- 2 cups Cauliflower rice (blended or very finely chopped raw cauliflower)
- 1 cup Almond meal
- 4 Organic eggs
- 3 tsp Turmeric
- ½ tsp Black pepper
- ½ tsp Sea salt
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Line a baking tray with baking paper
Blitz your cauli in a food processor to form a texture like cous cous. You will need to do it in a couple of batches
Mix all ingredients to a even consistency
Empty onto a baking tray and smooth out
Bake for 30 minutes or until nice and brown
Let it cool, then remove from tray, and cut into squares
Fill it, or top with your favourite sandwich fillings
*Stores in the fridge for 1 week
EASY CORN TORTILLAS
- 150g / 1 cup masa harina corn flour (available at good health shops – look for Bob's Red Mill brand – or Spice World if local to Hobart)
- pinch salt
- 100ml/3½fl oz cold water
- 1 tbsp olive oil
Mix the masa harina and salt in a bowl. Add the water and olive oil and mix until a smooth dough is achieved. (If it’s too sticky add a little more masa harina, or, if it’s too dry, add a drop more water.)
Divide the dough into 24 balls. Cover and leave to rest in the fridge for 10 minutes.
Flatten the balls of dough with your hands - alternatively, use a tortilla press or roll them between two layers of cling film. Flatten to approximately 3mm thick.
To cook the tortillas, lightly oil a flat griddle pan or frying pan and place over a hot heat.
Cook the tortillas for approximately one minute on each side, or until lightly coloured
*fabulous as soft taco shells or as a side to soups
YEAST FREE SEEDY BREAD
- 1 cup / 135g sunflower seeds
- ½ cup / 90g flax seeds
- ½ cup / 65g hazelnuts or almonds
- 1 ½ cups / 145g rolled oats
- 2 Tbsp. chia seeds
- 4 Tbsp. psyllium seed husks
- 1 tsp. fine grain sea salt (add ½ tsp. if using coarse salt)
- 1 Tbsp. maple syrup or a pinch of stevia
- 3 Tbsp. melted coconut oil or ghee
- 1 ½ cups / 350ml water
In a flexible, silicon loaf pan combine all dry ingredients, stirring well.
Whisk maple syrup, oil and water together in a measuring cup. Add this to the dry ingredients and mix very well until everything is completely soaked and dough becomes very thick (if the dough is too thick to stir, add one or two teaspoons of water until the dough is manageable).
Smooth out the top with the back of a spoon. Let sit out for at least 2 hours, or all day or overnight. To ensure the dough is ready, it should retain its shape even when you pull the sides of the loaf pan away from it it.
Preheat oven to 350°F / 175°C
Place loaf pan in the oven on the middle rack, and bake for 20 minutes. Remove bread from loaf pan, place it upside down directly on the rack and bake for another 30-40 minutes. Bread is done when it sounds hollow when tapped. Let cool completely before slicing.
Store bread in a tightly sealed container for up to five days. Freezes well too – slice before freezing for quick and easy toast!
* This bread can be made in a regular baking tin, however it may stick if you mix the ingredients in the tin. Use a mixing bowl, and very quickly transfer bread mix into tin to sit and soak before cooking. Coat your baking tin with oil before adding mixture.
Immunity Soup - Garlic and Herb
HEALTHY MEAL - GLUTEN FREE - LOW CALORIE - EASY ON DIGESTION
This soup is a recipe borrowed from Lee Holmes and is wonderfully warming on a cold day. The roasted garlic gives an earthy sweetness while the herbs are cleansing and rich. It is filled with common ingredients that are all very antibacterial and full of immune nutrients such as vitamin C, A and B6.
If you have an intolerance to onion & garlic (the Allium family) or sulfur, keep reading for the next recipe which will make you and your immune cells happy!
- 3 garlic heads, whole, unpeeled.
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, or 2 tablespoons of oil for frying
- 1 large brown onion, finely chopped
- 1 l vegetable or chicken stock
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon celtic sea salt or good quality iodised salt
- 1 teaspoon dried mixed herbs
- 1/4 cup coconut milk (optional)
- Thyme and sage (1 tsp each of dried or small handful of fresh, optional)
Preheat oven to 175 degrees Celsius
Cut the top off each garlic head, place on a baking tray and drizzle with 2 tablespoons of olive oil
Transfer to the oven and cook for 45 minutes. Remove and cool
Once cooled, squeeze the garlic cloves out of the skin into a small bowl. Transfer to a food processor and whizz for a few seconds. Set aside
Meanwhile, heat the butter (or oil) in a large saucepan over medium heat
Add the onions and saute for 10-15 minutes, or until transculcent
Stir in the stock, turmeric, cumin, apple cider vinegar, blended garlic, salt, pepper and herbs and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to medium low, cover and cook for 30 minutes. Serve Hot.
If you'd like a creamier soup, stir in the coconut milk before serving.
Immunity Soup - Pumpkin, Ginger and Cashew
This soup is full of orange veggies and that means tons of Betacarotene, the pre-cursor to Vitamin A. Both betacarotene and vitamin A are important for our mucosal health - that is the health of our mucous lining in the throat, nose, ears and gut. Adding a good dose of fresh parsley to serve will increase the vitamin C and iron content and help support your immune system against the winter nasties.
1/2 butternut pumpkin or 1/4 jap pumpkin
2 large carrots
1 small sweet potato
1 inch knob of fresh ginger
1/2 tsp organic turmeric powder
1/2 tsp cayenne powder (optional)
1/2 tsp black pepper
2 tsp good quality salt
3 cups boiled water
2 Tbs olive oil or oil of choice
1 cup raw cashews
1/2 cup pepitas or pumpkin seeds (optional)
1 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
Dice all veg into medium pieces, leave skin on preferably
Place oil in warm saucepan
Add all orange veg and stir through oil and cook slightly
Add water, salt, turmeric, cayenne and thinly sliced ginger to pot and stir through
Bring to a simmer and cover, stirring occasionally until veg is soft and cooked
Remove soup from heat and add cashews. Allow to sit for 15 minutes
In a separate fry pan, place pepitas and allow to dry toast for a few minutes. Add 1 Tbs olive oil and sprinkle of pepper, salt and cayenne. Careful not to burn, remove from heat when beginning to split and pop. Remove from pan and allow to cool
Blend soup together to desired consistency. Add more water for a thinner consistency
Taste and season with salt and pepper to taste
Serve with a good dosing of chopped parsley on top, and roughly chopped spiced pepita seeds