Tag Archives: delicious

No bake muesli bars.

So I’m in a cooking / baking / making mood.

I always try to have healthy snacks at the ready, that are quick and easy but also yummy.

Dont get me wrong, I eat not so healthy food and quite often find myself reaching for the double coat Tim Tams 😉 BUT if I’m organised I try to have better options available.

Food prep takes no time at all and your body and mindset will thank you for it.

I hate to say it, but what you fuel your body with is how it responds. Much like your car, you put good fuel in your car and it will drive well. You eat well and your body and mind will perform well.

No bake muesli bars.

Ingredients
¼ cup coconut oil
¼ cup agave syrup
¼ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract,
¼ teaspoon cinnamon,
1 cup old fashioned oats
1 cup cashews
½ cup pepitas
¼ cup sunflower seeds,
1 tablespoon chia seeds
1 cup chopped dried apricots.

Instructions
Melt the agave syrup with the coconut oil.

Mix all the dry ingredients together in a large bowl then add the melted coconut oil and agave mixture.

Stir well or blitz in a food processor.

Pour into a lined or non stick tray and refrigerate for minimum 3hr or until the coconut oil has set.

Store in an air tight container in the refrigerator.

– note –
You can swap the dried fruit for whatever you like including dates, goji berries, sultanas or even a mix.

You can also swap the nuts to almonds, walnuts or peanuts. Again whatever flavour you prefer or maybe to a mix?

You could also add extra seeds and add chocolate chips if you like or try drizzling either melted chocolate or yogurt on top prior to setting it in the refrigerator.

Who says healthy isn’t easy and yummy!

These babies took no time at all. Actually about 15 minutes without setting time.

ThermoMix heaven….

Easy, healthy cooking.

About a year ago something happened that literally turned things around for me in the kitchen. I met Caroline, my Thermomix consultant. She’s also a mummy with two young children so we clicked straight away over shared experiences.

Together she showed me how this one piece of equipment could help me in so many ways – not just making it possible to make healthy and tasty options but to do so quickly and easily, which of course meant I didn’t resort to store-bought yuckies. And having more free time was a bonus I didn’t anticipate but certainly appreciate.

Now I’m not big on selling things but seriously, this ‘thing’ she showed me, was about to turn my kitchen experience around.

Even better, I could get those nutrients into my littlies, especially my fussy young man, without resorting to a battle. Of course, trying new tastes often results in the reflex spit-out but a bit like the sleeping patterns persistence can pay off and it took less time than I imagined.

Yes, a Thermomix is a considerable investment, but for me it’s also been a Godsend and possibly one of my best purchases as a parent. They also have many options to almost ‘lay buy’ or ‘pay off’ this piece of kitchen equipment. I use mine almost every day and for everything from a smoothie, making porridge, chopping vegetables, cooking a whole meal at once, including steaming vegetable in the varoma, whilst making a pasta sauce in the jug!

This 1 item has eliminated so many from my kitchen. It chops, blends, steams, boils, stirs, cooks, poaches, purées and all on a timer. So no boiling over, burning pans or constant stiring. Best of all it comes with a recipe chip, which is amazing! It has hundreds of easy to make recipes, that takes no time at all to prepare and cook. Well actually this machine pretty much does everything. The LCD screen works a bit like an iPad. It prompts you all the way so you basically cannot stuff up! Easy!

Not only is Caroline always just a phone call away to help with cooking and recipe tips, but as well as a Thermomix consultant I’ve also gained a friend.

Your interested to know more, please feel free to contact Caroline direct. I’ve popped her details at the bottom of this post.

Or jump onto the ThermoMix website and check it out for yourself!

Here’s one of our favourite sneaky veg recipes:

Carrot and Zucchini Choc Muffins

Ingredients:
1 medium zucchini
1 medium carrot
30g raw sugar
130g chickpea flour
30g raw cacao
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp ground cinnamon
Pinch nutmeg
Pinch salt
30g almonds
30g macadamia nuts
70g grapeseed oil
2 eggs

Method
Preheat oven to 180 degrees and line a muffin tray
Grate zucchini and carrot speed 7 for 2 seconds, transfer to a bowl
Add all ingredients from raw sugar to macadamia nuts and mix speed 5 for 6 seconds
Add oil and eggs and mix speed 5 for 20 seconds
Add back zucchini and carrot and mix speed 2 for 5 seconds on reverse
Transfer mixture to prepared muffin tray and bake for 20-25 minutes
Transfer to wire tray to cool for 10 minutes

I like to serve these with vanilla coconut custard…( one of Caroline’s recipes).

These can even be frozen so you always have a supply on hand!

If you would like to contact Caroline to arrange a cooking demonstration or purchase you own Thermomix you can contact her on 0402 483 803 or carolinesomma@hotmail.com

Low fat yummy banana muffins!

Banana Muffins!

Easy and low fat!

I can’t remember where I got this recipe from but it’s always been a crowd pleaser and I know they don’t last long!

As a treat I eat mine warm, or slightly heated in the microwave and served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream! Delicious!

Ingredients;
1/3 x cup honey
1/2 x cup applesauce
2 x egg whites
1/4 x cup buttermilk or 1/4 cup skim milk with 1 tbsp lemon juice to sour it
1 x tsp baking soda
1 x tsp vanilla
1/2 x tsp salt
4 x medium ripe bananas pureed until smooth
2 x cups whole wheat flour

Directions;
Combine all ingredients and mix until smooth. Be sure to not over mix, a few lumps are ok.
Pour into muffin tins coated with cooking spray or lined with paper liners until 3/4 full.
Bake at 150 degrees for 20-30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in middle comes out clean.

Parmesan cookies!

Parmesan biscuits!

I made these many years ago and many many times, however have only just found the old hand written recipe. I can’t quite remember where I got the recipe but it has flour on the paper and in parts the paper has gone transparent from the melted butter. The perfect way to tell its a good recipe, it’s been used many times.

These Parmesan Cheese Biscuits are such a tasty (and yet so easy) treat to make for either a cheese platter with a bit of flair or simply to have in your pantry as snacks, or better still pop them in the school lunch box!

They are a golden and buttery, yummy cheesy parmesan biscuit that will be a hit with everyone in your family.

Ingredients

125g Soft Butter (Salted or Unsalted depending on your taste)
175g Plain Flour (White or Wholemeal depending on your preference)
100g Grated or Shaved Parmesan Cheese
Pinch Salt
Method

Place all ingredients into the bowl of a food processor and blitz until a soft golden dough ball starts to come together. If you don’t have a food processor, you could use a hand mixer, a stand mixer or good old elbow grease and a wooden spoon.
Turn the dough onto a gently floured surface (not too much flour or your biscuits will be very dry) and knead for 2 – 3 minutes until the dough is a beautifully smooth ball.

Divide the dough ball into two equal parts and set one aside.

Form one of the dough balls into a cylinder shape – aim for very flat ends and make the cylinder as even as possible all along.

Wrap the cylinder tightly in cling wrap and pop into the fridge for at least half an hour for the dough to become firmer (the butter will harden allowing the cylinder to hold its shape better).

Repeat Step 3 with the second half of the dough.

While the dough is chilling, pre-heat your oven to 180 – 185 degrees celcius (reduce by 10 degrees if you have a fan forced oven).

Once the dough is nice and firm, remove the cling wrap and using a large knife (run it under hot water and then dry on a tea towel between cuts) cut the dough log into 1.5cm rounds.

Place each round onto a biscuit tray on sheets of baking paper.

The biscuits should not spread too much during cooking but allow a little room between each just in case.
Cook for 15 – 20 minutes or until the edges are a beautiful golden brown. Remove from the oven and place on a cooling rack until cool.

Serve warm or cold – on their own or with a lovely soft, gooey cheese and a fruit paste.

Or serve them alongside soup (delicious dippers) or crumble over a salad like a crouton.

Mocktails !

Mammas #1: The Mama Sunrise
Mocktail Recipes!

Perhaps your not big on drinking alcohol?

Perhaps your pregnant?

Perhaps you are on medication where you can drink alcohol?

What ever your reason, it doesn’t mean that you can’t still enjoy a beverage.

I’ve just stumbled upon these mock tail recipes which I’m defiantly going to try. They seem easy, have minimal ingredients and sound tasty and refreshing! Especially on hot days like these!

Let’s pretend we are on an island holiday somewhere exotic and sip on one of the below! My pick is the Nojito! Possibly because I love a mojito!

Enjoy!
The mamma sunrise !
Orange juice (or mango if you fancy)
2 dashes grenadine
Crushed ice
Take a highball glass, and half fill it with cracked ice. Add the orange juice to the top of the glass, and then carefully pour the grenadine onto the surface of the drink. The grenadine will slowly sink to the bottom, giving you that beautiful sunrise effect.

Mammas #2: The Ginger Spritzer

Non alcoholic sparkling wine soda
Gingerale
1 lime
Many women swear by ginger as a cure for morning sickness, so this mocktail could be your lifesaver in those early months. Half fill a large wine glass with the non alcoholic sparkling wine soda, and top up with the gingerale. Add a splash of fresh lime juice, and garnish with a round of lime.

Mammas #3: The Banana Mamma

3 bananas
2 cups crushed ice
1 cup lemon sherbet
3 cups grapefruit juice
Sliced lemon or grapefruit to garnish
This is a great way to get fruit into your diet, although we can’t claim it’s totally healthy because of the lemon sherbet. Blend the bananas, lemon sherbet and grapefruit juice together. Prepare a pitcher with crushed ice, and then pour in the mocktail to chill. Serve in tall glasses, garnished with a slice of lemon or grapefruit – or both.

Mammas #4: The Strawberry Surprise

2 cups lemonade

1 ½ cups crushed ice
½ cup frozen strawberries
Fresh strawberry to garnish
This is another deliciously fruity mocktail for you to enjoy. Blend together all the ingredients, and serve in tall glasses with a fresh strawberry as garnish.

Mammas #5: The Fruity Sangria

1l pomegranate juice
1 cup mango juice
1 orange, sliced
1 pear, sliced
This is the perfect mocktail for hot days spent relaxing by the pool. Mix together the pomegranate juice and mango juice in a large jug. Add the sliced orange and pear. Leave to chill in the fridge, or serve immediately with ice. Serve in a lowball glass, and garnish with an orange slice.

Mammas #5: The Nojito

4 sprigs fresh mint
Juice of 1 lime
2 tsp caster sugar
1 cup soda water
Sliced lime and sprigs of mint to garnish
The mojito is a popular cocktail across the globe. To make a pregnancy-friendly mocktail version, simply mix the ingredients together in a large jug. Serve in a highball glass, and garnish with a slice of lime and a sprig of mint.

Mammas #6: The Virgin Mary

Sea salt
Fresh lime juice
1 tsp lemon juice
½ tsp hot sauce
½ cup tomato juice
Crushed ice
Lemon wedge and rosemary sprig to garnish
Place the rim of a tall glass in fresh lime juice, and then dip into sea salt. Fill the glass with cracked ice and add the lemon juice, hot sauce and tomato juice. Stir and garnish with a lemon wedge and a rosemary sprig.

Mammas #7: The Virgin Pinacolada

1 cup pineapple juice
1 cup coconut syrup
1 cup crushed ice
Pineapple chunks to garnish
Mix the pineapple juice and coconut syrup together in a jug of crushed ice. Serve in a lowball glass with a chunk of pineapple to garnish. Since it’s a pinacolada, you should probably have a little cocktail umbrella in there too.

Mammas #8: The Mulled Mamma

1l pomegranate juice
Mulled wine spices
If you’re pregnant over winter, you might long for a mulled wine – especially if the smell is wafting from the kitchen. This great non-alcoholic version tastes so much like the original, that you won’t feel like you’re missing out. Simply heat the pomegranate juice, and add the mulling spices are normal. If you can’t find mulling spices, simply add some whole cloves, orange zest and a cinnamon stick. Don’t forget to remove the spices before serving.

Mammas #9: The Special Treat

1 scoop of mint chocolate ice cream
2 tbsp coconut cream
1 cup crushed ice
3 tbsp milk
Chocolate syrup
You’re going to struggle to argue that this mocktail is healthy – it’s about as decadent as they come. This is a mocktail you should save for very special occasions – like birthdays – so you don’t have to feel too guilty. To try and make this drink a little healthier, you could substitute the milk and ice cream for soya alternatives. Take a low glass, dip the rim in chocolate syrup and fill with crushed ice. Blend together the mint chocolate ice cream, coconut cream and milk, and pour into the glass.

Overnight oats!

Overnight oats!

Ok so perhaps I’ve jumped on ten bandwagon here 🙂

These are actually delicious and creamy! My little guy and I have porridge every morning so I thought, hey why not try these. Simple, easy, delicious!

1 x cup rolled oats
1 x cup milk – your choice. I’ve used almond and full cream. (Not together)
1 x teaspoon chia seeds
1 x tablespoon honey

Add all ingredients into a jar with a lid or Tupperware is great also.
Shake, refrigerate, eat!

This is best if it’s been in the fridge for minimum 12hrs…. I make mine at lunch time for the next morning. Yumo!

You can also add other flavours, such as banana or simply top with fruits? Granola, anything really. It’s just like porridge but no cooking required!

Quick curried sausages!

What to do with your left over sausages from a BBQ?

Curried sausages!

Quick and super easy!

Approx 8-10 cooked sausages.
1 x tablespoon currie powder
2 x cups chicken stock
1 x tablespoon plain flour
1 x medium sized diced brown onion
Cut your sausages into pieces approx 2cm in length.

Heat a large saucepan with a tablespoon of butter and brown the onion until transparent.

Add the curried powder to the onion coating thoroughly.

Mix the flour into the stock in a separate jug and stir until no lumps.

Add flour and stock mix into the saucepan continuously stirring making sure all ingredients are combined with no lumps. This should resemble a thick soup like liquid.

Add the sausages and let simmer for 10 minutes.

Let sit for approx another 10 mins to thicken prior to serving.

Delicious with either mash potato or brown rice.

Fiji – Bula!

imageFiji Sitting beside the stunning pool on a wonderful holiday with my hubby and gorgeous toddler I feel very lucky!

We have came to Fiji Denaru Island and are staying in a lovely villa at the Sheraton. The sun is shining and the days are getting lost. 🙂 not a care in the works simply relaxing and spending quality time with my hubby and bubby! So let me tell you why we chose Fiji as our destination.

My husband and his family have been coming to this wonderful island for many years, my husbands mother recalls stories of bringing her children here when they were very young. My husband took his first steps at 14 months old in Fiji and for many years to follow they would continue to come here as their annual family holiday. It holds a special place in his heart which I find sweet and he has lovely early memories here.

My husband fell in love with it way back then and for the past few years we have made it our wonderful family holiday and am sure we will continue to come here with our next bubba also. I too have fallen in love with this place, it’s so convenient to get here only a 3.5hr flight (approx) from Sydney.

Here are only a few reasons as to why we will continue to come back to this stunning island.

1. The people are so accommodating, friendly, happy and a delight to deal with.

2. The sun is always shining!

3. The water is clear and blue,

4. There are 5 plus pools to choose from to swim in or lay by incase you don’t want to swim or lay by the beach 🙂

5. The sand is white 🙂

6. There is kids club for kids up to the age 14

7. The food is yummy

8. It’s relaxing and carefree

9. Bula – means hello, and that word to me sounds happy!

10. Everyone is always smiling and friendly

11. It’s family friendly

12. The amenities are always clean

13. There are various activities to keep you busy – only if you want

14. We get a 2 bedroom villa with a kitchen (easy for staying in and cooking for little ones)

15. It’s affordable

16. The fresh coconuts are delicious!

17. You don’t need to leave the resort if you don’t want too, there are 2 deli’s, many family friendly restaurants, bakery, multiple gifts stores and various recreational activities on-site

18. The Sheraton is associated with the Westin here so you have full access of all the Westins amenities also including their gym and recreational activities and restaurants.

19. You don’t need to carry around your wallet / purse. Within either Sheraton or Westin you can charge anything from any shop or restaurant to your room

20. The main port ‘Port Denaru’ is a easy flat 15 minute walk where you will find a very convenient mini supermarket and duty free store for all your needs.!

Warm Quinoa Salad

Warm Quinoa Salad with Edamame & Tarragon

This recipe is one that a good friend if mine passed onto me. She like to eat good wholesome foods that also taste great, not only is this quick and easy, it really does taste great!

INGREDIENTS
1 cup quinoa,
2 cups vegetable broth
2 cups frozen shelled edamame, thawed
1 tablespoon freshly grated lemon zest
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon or 2 teaspoons dried
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup drained and diced jarred roasted red peppers
1/4 cup chopped walnuts, preferably toasted

DIRECTIONS
1. Toast quinoa in a dry skillet over medium heat, stirring often, until it becomes aromatic and begins to crackle, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a fine sieve and rinse thoroughly.

2. Meanwhile, bring broth to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat. Add the quinoa and return to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to a simmer and cook gently for 8 minutes. Remove the lid and, without disturbing the quinoa, add edamame. Cover and continue to cook until the edamame and quinoa are tender, 7 to 8 minutes longer. Drain any remaining water, if necessary.

3. Whisk lemon zest and juice, oil, tarragon and salt in a large bowl. Add peppers and the quinoa mixture. Toss to combine. Divide among 4 plates and top with walnuts.

Tips:
Note: Quinoa is a delicately flavored grain that was a staple in the ancient Incas’ diet. It is available in most natural-foods stores and the natural-foods sections of many supermarkets. Toasting the grain before cooking enhances its flavor and rinsing removes any residue of saponin, quinoa’s natural, bitter protective covering.

Cooking Tip: To toast walnuts:
Cook in a small dry skillet over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until fragrant, 2 to 4 minutes.

MAKE AHEAD TIP: Prepare through Step 3. Cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days.

NUTRITION FACTS
Calories 404, Total Fat 18 g, Saturated Fat 1 g, Monounsaturated Fat 6 g, Sodium 645 mg, Carbohydrate 46 g, Fiber 16 g, Protein 17 g, Potassium 319 mg. Daily Values: Vitamin A 20%, Vitamin C 20%, Iron 25%. Exchanges: Starch 3, Lean Meat 1, Fat 3.
Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet

Easy 4 ingredient chocolate balls.

So this is a very easy,  throw together recipe that a good friend of mine passed on. They take no time to make and are delicious using only 4 ingredients.

Chocolate balls!

Recipe:
1 x packet of biscuits like Arrowroots,
4 tbs of cocoa or raw cacao,
1 x can of condensed milk,
3/4 cup of dessicated coconut.

1/4 cup dessicated coconut for rolling into balls.

Blend biscuits until a fine grain and then add other ingredients and mix.

Then roll into small balls and put into the fridge.

Voilà.