Roasted Garlic, Cauliflower and Fennel Soup

garlic, cauli and fennel soup

This soup is a winner. It has the perfect amount of zingy- and creamy-ness to make one’s taste buds tickle. It’s also perfect for Meat-Free Monday, and upping your family’s vegetable intake!

 

Ingredients

2 small cauliflowers, chopped

1 fennel bulb, chopped

8 whole garlic cloves, peeled

Coconut oil for roasting and frying

2t carraway seeds

1 1/2t coriander seeds

1 1/2t paprika

3/4t cinnamon

1/2t ground chilli

500mL vegetable stock

1L (or more) water

2 lemons, zest and juice

 

Method

1. Lay the cauliflower, fennel and garlic cloves in a large baking tray, and drizzle with coconut oil. Roast in a moderate oven (about 170-180 degrees celsius) for approximately 40 minutes; until tender and nutty.

2. Sauté the onion in some coconut oil to tenderise. Add all the spices and sauté until the mixture emits a heightened aroma.

3. Add the roasted cauliflower, fennel and garlic, 500mL of vegetable stock, and 1L of water. Bring to the boil and allow to simmer for 10 minutes or so.

4. Your soup is almost ready! Turn off the element and allow to cool for a bit. Pop in the lemon zest and juice, season with salt and pepper, and blend using a hand blender. Otherwise, if using a regular blender, be sure the lid is on securely. (Hot soup moving at fast velocity burns!) You may wish to add more water during blending, to achieve desired consistency.

5. Serve your delicious, creamy and zingy soup with a drizzle of olive oil, another squeeze of lemon juice and toasted rye bread soldiers.

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Lamb Koftas with Eggs

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This is a satisfying, protein-filled brunch.

Lamb Koftas

Makes about 11.

400g premium lamb mince
1/2 onion, finely diced
1 egg
1.5 pieces middle bacon, rind cut off, finely diced
1t cumin ground cumin seeds
Salt and pepper, to taste
Coconut oil for frying

Put all ingredients into a bowl, and mix well using your hands.

To make the koftas, take about two tablespoons of the mixture and mould into oblong shapes. Fry in coconut oil on a medium-high heat.

Turn the koftas every 5-7 minutes so that they become well browned on all sides. When cooked through (about 20 minutes) remove from the pan. Serve immediately.

We enjoyed ours with mesculin leaves drizzled in olive oil and balsamic vinegar, sliced tomatoes and fried eggs. Hearty and healthy, this brunch will satisfy and energise for the day ahead!

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Apple Walnut Cake

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I’m excited to tell you that I will be posting some health-edifying recipes on the Wilder and Hunt website. Wilder and Hunt are an amazing clean food store in Auckland. They sell beautiful grain and sugar free products, including juices, smoothies, sweet treats, sandwiches, and take home dinners. Be sure to check them out!

Today I share with you my Apple Walnut Cake recipe. This is a wholesome and nourishing cake that will satisfy taste buds, and energise body and mind. Find the recipe here.

Fabulous Fattoush with Fish

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I’ve been devouring Ottolenghi’s Jerusalem cook book at the moment. Jerusalem,The Holy City, fought over by nations and religious groups, a melting pot of culture, ethnicity, language, religion and cuisine. It seems to be a vibrant patchwork quilt of traditions. What a fascinating place it must be!

So I am inspired to use middle eastern flavours and traditional dishes. Today I had a friend for lunch. We had Fattoush, served with lightly pan-fried fish.

Fattoush is an Arabian salad, typically made with diced vegetables, yoghurt, spices and leftover pita bread (which soaks up the juices, similar to croutons). I wanted to avoid grains in our meal today, and so created a delicious alternative using toasted seeds in place of the bread. The result was crunchy, juicy and satisfying. The texture of the toasted seeds are a wonderful contrast to the juicy vegetables, and mop up the spicy yoghurt dressing more-than-adequately.

Fabulous Fattoush

1/2C acidophilus Greek yoghurt
1 Lebanese cucumber, peeled and diced
10 cherry tomatoes, cut in halves or quarters
3 radishes, thinly sliced
1/2 C diagonally sliced spring onion
Handful mint leaves, finely diced
Handful parsley, roughly chopped
Large handful of baby lettuce leaves, shredded
2 small garlic cloves, crushed
Juice of half a lemon
2T apple cider vinegar
3T Arabic spices of your choice – I used cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, coriander, nutmeg
1/4t chilli powder
1/2C toasted sunflower, pumpkin and sesame seeds
Pepper and salt to taste

Place all diced vegetables and herbs in a bowl, apart from the baby lettuce.
In a separate bowl, combine the garlic, yoghurt, lemon juice, and apple cider vinegar together to make a dressing.
Pour the dressing over the vegetables.
Add the spices and seeds, season with salt and pepper, and now stir to combine. Add the shredded lettuce and gently stir again to distribute evenly.

Serves 2-4

Eat those fats!

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It’s a beautiful day for lunch in the park. Here is what my husband and I munched on.

For lunches we typically use what’s available in the garden and fridge to make salads. We throw some things together, so each time the combination is different and (usually!!) lovely.

Today’s lunch – a medley of leaves from the garden, sliced avo, thinly sliced veal and beef sausage, blueberries, pumpkin seeds, diced red onion and a drizzle of cold pressed virgin olive oil and apple cider vinegar. High in good fats, protein, and vitamins. Perfect!

Remember, if you want your body to use fat as fuel, you have to eat it! If you’re avoiding grains and sugar, good in you, but don’t forget to replace it with good fats that will nourish and satisfy.

E xx

Pumpkin, Date and Walnut cake

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Here is a recipe for a delicious, moist, flavoursome and nutritious cake. What better way to nourish your body than by eating cake? It’s ideal!

Pumpkin is a wonderful vegetable. High in fibre and Vitamin C, it also contains beta-carotene which is important for healthy vision and skin. The honey and dates complement the pumpkin perfectly, enhancing its natural sweetness. Almond meal is already high in protein, and the ground linseed, sunflower seeds and chia seeds boost the omega 3 fatty acids, resulting in a powerful protein cake.

You can enjoy this cake for afternoon tea or dessert, in full knowledge that it contains only that which will build you up and bless you and yours.

No artificial sugar, no grains, and no dairy. Sweet, guilt-free indulgence.

Pumpkin, Date and Walnut cake

Ingredients

2.5C almond meal
1/2C LSC (ground linseed, sunflower seeds and chia seeds)
2T baking soda
1T mixed spice
1T cinnamon
1t nutmeg
Pinch sea salt
Zest of one orange

5T coconut oil
5T honey
2t vanilla
3 eggs

3C raw pumpkin, grated
3/4C chopped dried dates
3/4C walnut pieces

Pumpkin seeds and coconut flakes to garnish, if you so choose.

Method

– Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius and grease a 20cm spring-form cake tin.
– Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl.
– In a microwave or a pot on a low heat, gently melt coconut oil, honey and vanilla together. Remove from the heat. Add the eggs, and whisk to combine all wet ingredients.
– Add the wet ingredients to the dry. Combine.
– Lastly, mix in the pumpkin, dates, and walnuts.
– Pour batter into greased cake tin and bake for 40-50 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean.

I topped my cake with cashew coconut icing and a sprinkling of coconut and pumpkin seeds. However, this cake is beautiful on its own and would be equally nice simply served with a dollop of tangy Greek yoghurt.

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Pesto Baked Chicken with Prosciutto

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A lovely way to use homemade pesto, like my Parmesan, Parsley and Pistachio Pesto, is this Italian flavoured dish. It is delightfully flavoursome and deceptively straightforward to prepare.

Pesto Baked Chicken with Prosciutto

Serves 6-8

8 free-range boneless, skinless chicken breasts
200g prosciutto
3 or 4 shallots, peeled and quartered
1 whole head of garlic
1/2 cup sundried tomatoes, halved
Handful of parsley, roughly chopped
5T Olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Squeeze of lemon

– Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius and line a baking tray with paper.
– To stuff the chicken breasts, find the natural pocket on the underside of each chicken breast and enlarge slightly with hands or a knife. Fill the pocket with approximately 1T of pesto.
– Wrap each chicken breast in a few lengths of prosciutto. Place chicken breasts in the oven tray.
– Separate individual garlic cloves but do not peel them. Smash each clove once with the flat side of your knife, to loosen the skin slightly, and cut off the hard end. Toss the cloves into the tray with the chicken.
– Toss the peeled and quartered shallots, the sundried tomatoes and parsley into the tray.
– Drizzle generously with olive oil and a squeeze of lemon. Season with salt and pepper.

Bake in the oven for 30 minutes or until juices run clear.

I served this with a simple spinach, basil, tomato and haloumi salad, drizzled with olive oil and white wine vinegar. Yum!

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Spiced Summer Paleo Bread

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It’s a gorgeous summer’s afternoon, perfect for a picnic beneath the trees.

This morning I planned to do just that, so I whipped up a loaf of Spiced Summer Paleo Bread for the occasion. This bread is incredibly versatile. It is not crumbly like many of the alternative gluten-free recipes out there. Slice it thinly and cover with a slab of coconut oil and organic peanut butter. Toast a few slices for breakfast and munch it covered in avocado, tomato and olive oil. Even use it to mop up the tasty dregs if a summer soup!

This loaf is packed with nutritional value. Bananas, high in potassium, are used here to add moisture and subtle sweetness. Almond meal, gluten-free, is full of vitamins, minerals and healthy fats. Ground linseed adds precious omega-3 fatty acids. Cinnamon helps to regulate blood sugar levels, and pumpkin seeds… Where do I begin with those little gems?!

A rich source of magnesium, zinc, omega-3, antioxidants, fibre, pumpkin seeds support growth and repair, reduce oxidation and inflammation, and support a healthy heart and liver! They also contain an amino acid called tryptophan, which converts into serotonin, and then into melatonin – the sleep hormone. Simply put, eating pumpkin seeds can assist you in getting a restful night’s sleep. Read about their benefits and more here.

So many reasons to enjoy eating this healthy bread!

Recipe

350g almond meal
3T ground linseed
1.5t mixed spice
1t ground ginger
1t cinnamon
1t baking soda
6 eggs
1t vanilla
3 medium bananas
Pumpkin seeds to sprinkle on top

Preheat oven to 160 degrees Celsius and grease a loaf tin with coconut oil.

Add all ingredients, apart from sunflower seeds, into a food processor and blend until well combined.

Pour into tin, sprinkle with seeds, and pop into the oven for 30-40 minutes, or until the top is golden and a skewer inserted comes out clean.

Simple and delicious!

Nut Jumble Granola

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Crunchy and delicious, this granola is a perfect snack anytime of day! Serve with natural Greek yoghurt for a creamy and satisfying breakfast, or equally delicious, serve with almond milk and berries for a dairy-free option. I eat it straight from the jar.

Nut Jumble Granola is gluten-free and refined sugar-free. I try to keep things as natural, whole, and unprocessed as possible. Sadly, many supermarket cereals and muesli are packed full of sugar and additives. High levels of sugar, hidden in most packet foods, increase insulin resistance and body-fat storage. Additives and synthetic ingredients overwhelm the liver with its job – to detoxify your body.

Nuts, seeds and coconut are nutrient dense. They contain a wide variety of vitamins and minerals that are essential to growth and repair. Not only that, but the mono- and poly-unsaturated fats are heart-healthy; working to manage inflammation and lower cholesterol. Coconut contains medium-chain triglycerides, which are absorbed and converted by the liver directly into energy to be used by the body, and so they are unlikely to be stored as body fat. As the experts are saying – you have to eat fat to burn fat!

Cacao powder has been used in this recipe. Cacao is labelled a superfood for its high levels of antioxidants, magnesium and iron. It makes Nut Jumble Granola chocolatey and decadent, however, if you are not such a sweet-tooth feel free to omit the cacao and/or honey. Try adding cinnamon or ginger to create something a little different.

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Recipe

1.5C brazil nuts
1.5C almonds
1C coconut flakes
1C pumpkin seeds
1/2C chia seeds
1/2C sesame seeds
1C goji berries
3/4C coconut oil
1/3C honey
2 to 3T cacao powder

– Preheat oven to 130 degrees Celsius, fanbake.
– Roughly chop all nuts and spread out on large baking tray. Melt oil and honey together and pour over the nuts. Add the cacao powder. Stir to coat evenly.
– Bake in the oven for approximately 20 minutes. Keep an eye on this process – there is nothing worse than burning a tray of expensive nuts!
– Remove from the oven and stir through the coconut flakes, seeds, and goji berries. Return to the oven for a final 5-10 minutes.
– Cool before storing in sterilised jars. Will keep for 2 – 3 weeks.

Emma xx

I am inspired by the Whole Pantry App’s Cinnamon and Cacao Granola. This a wonderful app with beautiful recipes – find out about it here. The Whole Pantry App