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Vanilla Infused Sesame Seed Milk

vanilla-infused-sesame-milk

Makes: about 3 cups of milk and a large cup of sesame pulp.

Every single thing happens for a reason; there is a blessing in every challenge; always see the positive in the negative….I could go on all morning! The point here is that my Vanilla infused sesame seed milk is indeed a blessing from a challenge…that being I purchased the hugest bag of sesame seeds recently (self service, got a bit carried away), got home and wondered on earth I was going to do with all of these little seeds. I’m not talking 1/2 cup here, I had about 6 cups – now that’s a challenge! So, I put my thinking cap and Hey Presto! We have this lovely creamy, vanilla infused, dairy and nut-free milk.

Firstly though, let’s not ignore the humble sesame seed and it’s nutritional value. It may be tiny but my goodness it packs a punch (it also turns into tahini…..and oh my goodness me, my teaspoon LOVES a bit of tahini).

Sesame seeds are a great source of manganese, copper (which provides relief from rheumatoid arthritis), calcium (helps prevent PMS, colon cancer, osteoporosis), magnesium (supports vascular and respiratory health), iron, phosphorous, vitamin B1, zinc (supports bone health) and dietary fibre. Significantly they also contain two unique substances called sesamin and sesamolin which have been shown to have a cholesterol lowering effect in humans. Sesamin is also said to help protect the liver from oxidative damage.

You’ll need:
1 cup sesame seeds, soaked overnight in water
4 cups filtered water
Seeds of one vanilla pod
Sweetener of choice, to taste (I used 2 heaped teaspoons maple syrup)
Pinch of sea salt

Throw all of the above ingredients in your high powered blender and blend for 1-2 minutes, depending on the quality of your blender. You want it to be really smooth. Pour the mixture through a nut bag or strainer into a bowl, straining really well until you get all the liquid out of the pulp. Store in the fridge in an air tight bottle or jug for 3-5 days. The pulp can be dehydrated and used as meal (as you would almond meal…I’ll post a recipe for this next week). You could also add it to porridge, soups etc.

If you would prefer your pulp not to have a vanilla flavour, don’t hesitate to make the milk without the vanilla and sweetener, strain it and then pop the milk back into your blender with those ingredients. If you choose to heat this for a hot drink I discovered yesterday that it doesn’t curdle (like my almond milk does). Perfect!

Source: theholisticingredient.com

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Quinoa Porridge Infused with Chai Tea and Orange

quinoa-infused-with-orange-and-chai

Serves: 3

I do believe this is now the sixth quinoa recipe I have posted – clearly I hold it in very high esteem. Here’s hoping I am not the quinoa Lone Ranger because this is a beautiful take on the Steaming Hot Quinoa porridge which has undoubtedly been one of the most popular recipes on this blog.

You’ll need:
1 cup quinoa, well rinsed
2 cups of chai tea, cooled
6 small dried apricots, chopped
4 dates, chopped
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Zest of half an orange
Juice of half an orange

The night before brew your tea. I simply used a couple of chai tea bags, infused them in 2 cups of hot water (in a saucepan) for 15 minutes or so and removed them. I then left the saucepan on the stove (heat free!) for the night, to cool. In the morning simply add the quinoa to the tea and bring to the boil. Once boiling, turn down to a simmer, add the remaining ingredients and simmer for 12 minutes. At this point I give it a fluff with a fork and then pop the lid back on for a couple of minutes. Top with whatever your heart desires. The left overs (assuming there are any) will keep in the fridge for 4-5 days.

Source: theholisticingredient.com

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Spicy Yoghurt Marinated Chicken Breast

spicy-yoghurt-marinated-chicken-breast

This marinade is enough for 2 small chicken breasts, or 1 large.

I reckon I love yoghurt more than anyone I know. I probably eat more of it than anyone I know too – every single day without fail, I get closer to the bottom of the container. So I was a little bit chuffed to be asked to be an ambassador for five:am yoghurt, because let’s be honest, supporting a product you love is anything but work. One of my promises to five:am is to create yoghurt inspired recipes so you’ll be seeing many more of these in time. I am determined to start bridging the gap between sweet and savoury yoghurt creations. This (quite clearly), sits firmly in the savoury camp. Easy as and tasty to boot.

You’ll need:
2 small/1 large chicken breast, sliced into strips
1/3 cup full fat natural or greek yoghurt (I used Five:am natural)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon rind
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/3 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 garlic clove, crushed
5cm piece fresh ginger, finely grated
Good pinch of salt and pepper

Mix the marinade ingredients in a bowl. Add the chicken and pop in for the fridge for at least 4 hours or over night. To cook the chicken, heat large pan until hot and add coconut oil. Cook on both sides for a few minutes, until golden brown. Do not turn chicken too often, this can make it tough. You could also pop this under the grill.

This chicken is delish for left overs – it goes beautifully with a lovely fresh salad, combined with steamed vegetables or with quinoa cooked in veggie stock.

Source: theholisticingredient.com

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Spicy Kimchi

spicy-kimchi

Kimchi is a spicy and tangy fermented food originating from Korea, where it is typically eaten with every meal, thus making it is a day-long family affair. Kimchi works well in fried rice, in spicy kimchi soup, or simply as a side dish. It is a great digestive aid to get the juices flowing before dinner. And, if you have never ventured into the world of fermented foods, Kimchi is a great place to start.

As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, fermented foods are a very important part of our diet and have been used in many cultures to preserve foods, aid digestion and promote the balance of health bacteria within the gut. Read more about the benefits of Fermented Foods here.

It is important to note that fermented foods (e.g. kimchi, sauerkraut) differ from cultured foods in that they ferment by way of bacteria naturally present in the food. Cultured foods (e.g. yoghurt, tempeh, kombucha) add bacteria and require a starter. Both fermented and cultured foods add ‘good’ bacteria to your digestive system, they just do so through differing processes.

With all this talk of bacteria, you’re probably wondering, “…am I going to get ill from this bacteria laden kimchi?” Let me assure you, it is only good bacteria we are talking about, and this recipe is completely safe. Keep it in the fridge once prepared though, ok?!

So, as promised, here is a delicious recipe for kimchi. Adapted from a book by Sandor Ellix Katz “Wild Fermentation”, this recipe was given to me by a delightful Gwinganna Naturopath, Sarah McKenzie, during my recent visit to the extraordinary lifestyle retreat. This is a great project to consider for the weekend as the recipe takes two days to complete.

You’ll need:
Sea Salt (or Celtic/Himalayan)
Half a large drum cabbage
12 radishes
2 carrots
1 onion
1 large chilli
1/2 bulb of garlic
3 tablespoons fresh ginger

Mix a brine of about 1 litre of filtered water and salt to taste (approximately 1 tablespoon). Taste as you go and add the salt gradually so as not to over salt. Stir to dissolve. The brine should be salty, yet palatable.

Coarsely chop the cabbage, slice the radishes and carrot (I like to use purple carrots). Let these vegetables soak in the brine overnight, covered with a plate to submerge. At this stage you may ad other vegetable if you so wish (seaweeds, green beans, beetroot etc).

The following day, prepare the herbs and spices. Grate the ginger, chop the garlic and onion, remove the seeds from the chilli and chop finely (or throw them in whole). Kimchi can absorb a lot of spice so go for it! Don’t worry to much about perfecting quantities.

Drain the vegetables that were soaking, and reserve the brine, If the vegetables taste too salty you can give them a quick rinse with cold water. If not salty enough, add more salt and give a good stir.

Mix the vegetables with the ginger/garlic/chilli/onion paste, then pack into clean glass jars (500ml or 1 litre). Pack tightly and press down on the vegetables until the brine rises. If necessary, add a little of the reserved brine to submerge the vegetables. If you chose to screw on the lid at this stage you may want to open it every few days in order to let out some pressure. Or you may chose to cover the top of the jar with a muslin cloth and affix with a rubber band.

Ferment in your kitchen or other warm place. Taste the kimchi every day. After about a week of fermentation, and when the mix tastes ‘ripe’, affix the lid and store in the fridge. Done! This recipe will keep for a couple of months, but let’s face it, it’s quite unlikely to last that long.

Speaking of gut health, if you’d like to know how to make your own coconut yoghurt at home, you can find the recipe in A Nourishing Morning. I was actually very surprised at how simple it was to make. Affordable too.

Source: theholisticingredient.com

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Cauliflower Toast

cauliflower-toast

Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Serves: 1

Every once in a while I plate up a new creation that leaves me wondering how on earth I got by for so long without it in my life. Much like the 5 minute 40 second egg you see adorning this dish. That recipe is on repeat every single week, without fail. This recipe creation was a suggestion by my friend Tash, and a mighty fine one at that. To all of you gluten-free peeps out there, let’s be honest – eggs are definitely better on toast. I don’t care what you say..that golden yolk needs toast – it needs something to dribble on!

Given many of us choose not to eat toast often (if at all), I’m hoping this alternative will win your hearts, as it did mine. Just don’t blink, you’ll miss it for sure.

You’ll need:
Half a head cauliflower, minimum
Good drizzle extra virgin olive oil
Spice of choice (I used a sumac spice rub, you could also use cumin or your spice of the moment!)

Heat your oven to 200C and line a tray with baking paper. Cut the cauliflower into 1.5 centimeter slices, utilising the core to hold it all together. Drizzle with olive oil, rubbing it all over, then rub generously with the spice. Place the ‘toast’ on the baking tray, and into the oven for 30 minutes at 200C (or until golden). Serve immediately, with 5 minute 40 second eggs, of course.

Source : theholisticingredient.com

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The 'Breakfast in Bondi' Smoothie

breakfast-in-bondi-smoothie

Makes: 1 generous serving

This quick and easy recipe pays tribute to my awesome years residing in Sydney, in particular that time spent living by the beach at Bondi. How I loved that life. Jumping out of bed in the morning for a Bondi to Bronte jog and a quick dip before pulling on a (pin striped) suit and heels to jump on the 389 bus to Bondi Junction (it was the 389 wasn’t in Bondi peeps?) and heading off to my corporate job. I remember those days so clearly. I had a flat at North Bondi with a best friend. We have such happy memories of sitting on our balcony on a balmy Saturday night with a big bag of cheesy CC’s or Doritos and (cask) Yalumba chardonnay – before hitting the local clubs. Clearly a little has changed in the 15 (or so) years since.

Tropical fruits are so much affordable and resplendent in Sydney – I recall eating mangos like an apple back then.

You’ll need:
1 cup coconut water
1 banana
1 mango cheek
1 heaped tablespoon natural or Greek yoghurt (I use five:am organic yoghurt
1 dessertspoon ground flax seeds
1 dessertspoon chia seeds
1 heaped teaspoon maca powder
Juice 1/2 lime

Throw all ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth. Leave to sit for at least 20 minutes to allow the chia seeds to soften and thicken the smoothie.

For more simple, summery smoothie inspiration, you’ll find some scrumptious ideas in my eBook, A Nourishing Kitchen.

Source: theholisticingredient.com

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Grilled Peach, Proscuitto & Rocket Pizza

Peach-Pizza

Serves: 2

You’ve got friends (or even a special someone) coming around for dinner and drinks on Friday, friends (or that special someone) who appreciate good grub (for the non Aussies, grub = food) and expect a little more than spag bol. The problem is, you get home from work at 6.30pm and you’re worrying about delivering a frazzle-free meal to the table by 7.30pm (whilst remaining the cool, calm and collected home chef that you are).

Fear not my friends, because I have just the answer. A meal that is relaxed enough for a Friday night dinner yet interesting enough to garner acceptable nods from your guests. It’ll also satisfy any gluten free requirements. Bingo!

Continue reading Grilled Peach, Proscuitto & Rocket Pizza
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Choc Chilli Protein Balls

Protein-balls

Makes: 20 balls

KAPOW! These little ‘pack a punch’ protein balls are our latest healthy treat creation, laden with sustaining goodness to fill that lengthy in between meal gap. With just enough chilli to give your metabolism a boost and plenty of cacao to kick free-radicals to the curb, you’ll be eyeing off the last of these beauties too quick for your likening. Try not to eat them all in one go, if you can possibly refrain.

Make a heap and throw them in the freezer for rainy/hungry days.

You’ll need:
2 cups activated nuts (we used walnuts, brasil & almond)
1/2 cup pure whey protein (or natural protein powder of choice)
1/4 cup chia seeds
1/4 cup water
8 fresh medjool dates, pips removed and cut into pieces
3 heaped tablespoons raw cacao
3 tablespoons coconut oil
2 tablespoon goji berries
1 red chilli, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Place your nuts into the blender and blend roughly. If you want your protein balls to come with a hot kick, keep the seeds in the chilli. If not, remove the seeds prior to blending. Add all remaining ingredients and blend thoroughly for a good minute or two. The resulting mixture should be moist and tacky. Spoon into bite size balls and use your hands to roll. Roll in raw cacao or dessicated coconut.

Source: theholisticingredient.com

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Lemony Coconut Cake Balls (and why we should love cashew nuts)

Lemon-Balls-1200x800

Who doesn’t know about cashew nuts?

Well, cashew nuts are the kidney shaped seeds that adhere to the bottom of the cashew apple, the fruit of the cashew tree which is native to the coastal areas of northeastern Brazil. This nut, which as I mentioned is actually a seed, is jam packed with nutritional content. Containing a significant 5 grams of protein per ounce and high levels of the essential minerals iron, magnesium, zinc, phosphorus, copper and manganese.

Some of you may be deterred from eating nuts due to their high fat content? And it is true, cashews are relatively high in fat (12 grams per ounce, with 2 grams being saturated fat). But it is a “good fat”, due to the agreeable fat ratio in the nut (1:2:1 for saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated, respectively, which scientists say is the ideal ratio for optimal health).

And even with the relatively high fat content, cashews are considered to be a ‘low-fat’ nut. Cashews contain less fat per serve than other popular nuts, including almonds, walnuts and pecans. The advice from this end though, as with any food or indulgence, consume mindfully and with moderation in mind.

So let’s talk about how this little nut can benefit our bodies in a big way.

Reduce the risk of heart disease.
It is the fatty acid profile of cashews that contributes to our good health. Phytosterols, tocopherols, and squalene, all constituents of fatty acids, all serve to lower the risk of heart disease.

Cardiovascular and Circulatory Health
The cashew contains no cholesterol, which is a rarity for such a great tasting treat! As such, cashew nuts are a healthy fat food for those wanting to foster cardiovascular health and those with heart concerns. High levels of monounsaturated fatty acids mean they also help support healthy levels of good (HDL) cholesterol, imperative to healthy heart function.

The cashew’s high magnesium content also takes the credit for its healthy heart qualities. One ounce will contribute to 21% of your daily recommended intake of this heart healthy mineral, which also protects against high blood pressure, muscle spasms, migraine headaches, tension, soreness and fatigue.

Magnesium also works with calcium to support healthy muscles and bones in the human body.

Reduce the signs of aging
Cashews have a high copper content, too, meaning they assist the body in utilizing iron, eliminating free radicals, developing bone and connective tissue, supporting and regenerating joints, and producing the skin and hair pigment melanin.

So how about we just eat some cashews then! My dear friend and mentor Jo Antoun has created a delicious way to prepare them into bite size treats. I find that having a few of these balls on hand is a smart way to moderate my nut consumption (rather than sitting and devouring a whole bag of nuts) and a handy between meals snack. I also recommend making a big batch and freezing them for last minute guest arrivals. Here is the recipe for her Lemony Coconut Cake Balls.

2 1/2 cups raw cashews
1 1/2 cups raw shredded coconut
2 tablespoons raw honey
Juice of 2 lemons
Rind from 2 lemons
Desiccated coconut (optional)

Using a lemon zester, peel the rind from the lemons and then juice them. Into a blender, place just the cashews and process until they are a fine powder. Then add the lemon juice, rind, honey and shredded coconut to the blender to combine. The resulting mixture should be tacky and moist. Roll into bite sized balls with your hands. Coat in desiccated coconut (optional) and pop in the fridge. Simple, yet effective.

So now I’ve got you crazy for cashew nuts, you might like to experiment with them (and a multitude of other nuts) in different ways. You can find many a nut based recipes in A Nourishing Kitchen:

Source: theholisticingredient.com