All Posts by vitalassurance

Cauliflower Puree

I love using cauliflower as an alternative to mashed potatoes. This accompaniment works great with chicken, beef, and fish, and the velvety and creaminess of this recipe may transform you into excluding mashed potatoes from your regular dinner menu forever!

Ingredients:

1 medium sized cauliflower head
¼ cup coconut cream
Salt & Pepper

Method:

Bring large pot of water on stove to a boil.
Wash
cauliflower and cut into small florets.
Add cauliflower to boiling water and return to simmer for 15-20 minutes until cauliflower is soft.
Drain water and place in high speed blender together with coconut cream. Blend for 30-60 seconds (depending on blender strength) until puree is smooth and creamy.
Adjust with seasoning as required.

Serves 4-6

Eggplant Bruschetta

I love the flavour combinations of Italian food and it is so good to know that eliminating bread and pasta from my diet doesn't mean that I have to miss out on some amazing flavour combinations. This eggplant bruschetta is such a great option to have either when you’re entertaining or just wanting a light meal for yourself. The flavour combination of tomato and basil goes a long way and having this with your anti-oxidant rich eggplant leaves you salivating for more.

Ingredients:
2 eggplants
2 roma tomatoes, chopped
¼ red onion, diced
Handful fresh basil leaves, sliced
Goats cheese (optional)

Dressing:
1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 tablespoons Organic Coconut Vinegar (Balsamic Style)
Salt & pepper to taste

Method:
Slice eggplant length ways and sprinkle with salt. Set aside for approximately 30 minutes for eggplant to soften.
In the meantime, combine tomatoes, onion and basil.
Add dressing ingredients to tomato mixture and set aside until eggplant is ready.
Preheat oven to 180 degrees.
After 30 minutes, rinse and pat dry eggplant. Place on tray and top with prepared tomato mixture. Season with salt and pepper and if using Goats cheese, place small pieces over tomato mixture.
Cook in oven for approximately 40 minutes.

Makes approximately 6-8 slices

Kale and Spinach Juice

Detoxification is a process that goes on inside us all day every day. It is essential to remove any substance in that we ingest that could be harmful to our body. One of the best ways to support our natural detoxification is through drinking juices as it allows our digestive system to have a break from working hard to break down our food whilst still absorbing essential nutrients. Kale is recognised as providing comprehensive support to our detoxification system and although it can be bitter in taste, adding pineapple makes this juice a delicious drink to have.

Ingredients:
¼ pineapple, peeled
handful spinach
handful kale, washed and de-stemmed
200ml filtered water or coconut water

Method:
Place pineapple, kale and spinach through a juicer and then add water at the end.
Alternatively, place all ingredients in a high speed blender and blend until smooth.
You may want to strain the juicer prior to drinking to remove excess pulp.

Serves 1

Almond Pulp Macaroons

There is no reason to throw away the pulp when making your almond mylk. One of the benefits of making your own almond mylk is then being able to use the left over pulp for another dish, either by drying out and making almond flour or in this case directly from the nut bag.

Ingredients:
1 cup almond pulp
6 dates, pitted
2 tablespoons melted coconut oil
½ cup shredded coconut
¼ teaspoon Celtic sea salt
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract

Method:
Preheat oven to 180 degrees.
Combine
pulp and dates in high speed blender until smooth.
Pulse in the remainder of the ingredients.
Using a tablespoon, place mixture onto tray lined with baking paper and shape into macaroons.
Bake for approximately 30 minutes until golden brown.
Best to allow macaroons to cool prior to serving.
Can be stored in air-tight container for 1 week.

Makes 16-20 macaroons

Satay Beef Skewers

I absolutely love to entertain. Entertaining does not have to be difficult, complex or very time consuming. Having some quick and easy dishes up your sleeve always makes this process easier. These Beef Satay Skewers are a great option as the sauce can be prepared a day in advance and the longer you leave the meat to marinade, the tastier they will be. My recipe is quite mild so that my children can enjoy them too, but there is no reason why you can’t give the sauce a little more oomph by adding some fresh chilli or a little more curry powder.

Ingredients:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 clove garlic, crushed
½ teaspoon ginger, minced
1 can full cream coconut milk
1 teaspoon curry powder
2 tablespoons, smooth peanut butter
½ teaspoon salt
8 bamboo skewers
600g diced beef

Method:
Soak bamboo skewers in water for approximately 30 minutes so that they won’t burn.
Place the diced beef on the bamboo skewers, 4-5 pieces on each one. Otherwise you can buy pre-skewered beef from your local butcher.
Heat oil in pan on medium heat on stove then add garlic and ginger, stirring for 1-2 minutes.
Add remaining ingredients, bring to boil and then reduce to a simmer for approximately 5 minutes until all the peanut butter has dissolved. You may need to stir occasionally to ensure that everything mixes well and doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan.
Remove from heat to allow sauce to cool.
Brush marinade onto beef skewers and place on tray. You may reserve some marinade as a dipping sauce.
Skewers can be cooked either in the oven, grill or on the bbq.

Makes 8 skewers.

Chicken and Cauliflower Bake

How good is it to only need one dish to prepare a whole meal? Just throwing all the ingredients into a tray and just leaving it to bake in the oven is not only satisfying, but leaves you wondering what to do with all the time you have saved! Cauliflower is known for its cancer fighting abilities and is also jam packed with so many other nutritional benefits. It is an excellent source of dietary fibre, Vitamin C and folates which are essential in the metabolism of fat, protein and carbohydrates. I found this recipe on the website Elana’s Pantry and my family and I enjoy it thoroughly every time.

Ingredients:
8 chicken thighs, bone and skin removed
1 head of cauliflower, cut into florets
1 bunch of thyme
1 cup black olives, pitted

Marinade:
1 lemon, juiced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tablespoon olive oil
¼ red onion chopped
salt & pepper to taste

Method:
Preheat oven to 180 degrees
Prepare marinade and set aside
Place thyme scattered at the bottom of your tray and lay chicken pieces on top.
Scatter cauliflower florets and olives around chicken.
Pour marinade over chicken and bake for 40-50 minutes.

Serves 8

Grain Free Tabouli

Tabouli salads are a favourite of mine during the summer period. The freshness of the tomatoes and parsley when combined with the hydrating powers of the cucumbers is so refreshing. It is such a fast salad to throw together, so it is always a good option to take to a bbq, and one that everyone will enjoy.

Ingredients:
4 salad tomatoes, diced
3 lebanese cucumbers, diced
½ red onion, diced
4 tablespoons hemp seeds (can use cauliflower rice instead)
½ bunch parsley, chopped

Dressing:
2 lemons juiced
salt & pepper to taste

Method:
Prepare the dressing and set aside.
Combine the vegetables, herbs and hemp seeds.
Toss with dressing.

Serves 4-6 as side

Tropical Green Smoothie

Smoothies are a great way to pack in nutrients, minerals and anti-oxidants whilst giving your digestive system a break. They are easy to prepare and can be drunk on the run. The flavour combinations are endless, but give this one a go for a nice, refreshing summer’s drink.

Ingredients:
1 cup mango, diced
1 cup pineapple, diced
½ frozen banana, sliced
1 cup almond mylk (the recipe is here)
1 cup spinach
2 tablespoons shredded coconut (optional)
sprinkle of cinnamon and nutmeg (optional)
handful ice cubes

Method:
Place all ingredients in high speed blender and blend until smooth.

Serves 1

Hummus Dip

Chickpeas are a great source of plant protein, and when consumed they leave you feeling full and satisfied. The recipe below is a basic hummus recipe and can be easily adapted by adding whatever spices you like to change the flavour. They are also a great condiment to have with healthy Kale chips as you can see in the picture below (recipe to follow soon)!

Ingredients:
1 tin chickpeas (BPA free)
1 garlic clove, crushed
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cumin
1 lemon, juiced
¼ - ½ cup olive oil

Method:
Place all ingredients in a high speed blender. Start with a smaller quantity of oil and keep adding until you get your desired consistency.
Adjust seasoning to taste.

Note – instead of using tinned chickpeas you can pre-cook 1.5 cups of dried chickpeas that have been soaked for 8 hours.

Makes approximately 1 cup

Healthy Fish ‘n’ Chips

No need to freak out when your kids ask for Fish ‘n’ chips for dinner! Forget what it used to be known for: greasy, battered, salty fast food, and make this instead. This meal is just as delicious, without the extra coronary heart attack! It is so quick and easy to prepare, and tastes so delicious that even my ten year old son thanked me for preparing him the “best meal ever”.

Ingredients:
2 x 180g white fish fillets
1 lemon
handful parsley
2 medium sized sweet potatoes
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
salt & pepper

Method (for the chips):
Pre-heat oven to 200 degrees
Peel and cut sweet potato into thick chips
Spread potatoes over a baking tray and pour oil over chips and season with salt and pepper
Cook for approximately 30 minutes turning chips over once
Reduce oven to 180 degrees and continue cooking for approximately another 15-20 minutes whilst fish is cooking at the same time

Method (for the fish):
Whilst the chips are cooking, place fish fillets on two separate pieces of non-stick baking paper
Season with salt and pepper and top with a few sprigs of parsley and a couple of slices on lemon
Form a parcel out of the baking paper by twisting the ends
Place fish into oven at 180 degrees and cook for approximately 15-20 minutes or until cooked through

Serves 2