Category Archives: Nutrition & Health

Rhubarb & Raspberry Tart

Rhubarb is really in right now. Especially since it’s winter here in Australia. So I made a rhubarb and raspberry tart to celebrate (healthy style of course!). Here’s how I did it.

Ingredients – Makes one delicious tart

Base
1 ½ cup oatmeal
½ cup shredded coconut
½ cup almonds or macadamia nuts
3 tablespoons coconut oil (or 2 ½ tbsp. almond/macadamia/olive oil)
2 tablespoons maple syrup

Filling
5 stalks rhubarb (chopped)
1 cup frozen raspberries
1 large pear (chopped)
3 tablespoons honey/maple syrup/agave (or stevia equivalent for sugar-free diets)
2 tablespoons arrowroot
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Topping
¼ cup shredded coconut
2 tbsp. coconut sugar
2 tbsp. chopped walnuts

Method
Preheat oven to 200 degrees Celsius.
Using a food processor, lightly process the oatmeal, coconut, and nuts until the nuts are just broken. Add the oil and syrup and pulse until the mixture is combined enough to stick together. Press the mixture firmly into a tart tin using clean fingers. Place in a hot oven and bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until slightly golden.Meanwhile, heat a saucepan on medium heat and add raspberries and chopped pear. Using a potato masher, squash the fruit to release juices. Stir in the syrup and vanilla until combined. Add the rhubarb and cook for approximately 10 minutes, stirring the contents to prevent it from burning. Once the rhubarb becomes soft and starts to disintegrate take off heat and add the arrowroot to thicken the mixture. Cool slightly.

Pour rhubarb mixture into tart base and spread evenly to cover pastry. Place in the oven and reduce heat to 180 degrees Celsius. Combine the ingredients for the topping and sprinkle over tart after 20 minutes of baking. Bake for another 5 to 10 minutes. Remove from oven and eat warm with coconut ice cream. Heaven!!

This one was eaten with Greek yoghurt, crushed berries and honey, but the flavours in your mouth turn into a party when paired with some homemade or store-bought coconut ice-cream.

Are you licking your screen yet? Go and make it NOW! :)

 

Baked Pears with Banana & Almond Butter Ice Cream

This dessert is satisfying, warming, and delicious – everything you want in a winter dessert. This is my kind of food, because it tastes naughty but is actually VERY healthy. And who doesn’t want guilt-free indulgences right? Especially when the weather is getting chilly!

The main feature of this dessert is the pear. I am a bit obsessed with pears at the moment. They are really cheap at my local farmers market and I love how versatile they are. You can use them in smoothies, grate them into bircher muesli, add thin slices to a lunchtime salad, or even as a marinade for meat (think Korean food….yummmm). They’re delicious added to freshly squeezed green juices too (I love kale, cucumber, lemon, and pear).

And of course, as a dietitian, I love pears for their high fibre content – a whopping 7g of fibre in one pear! We all need at least 30 grams of fibre per day, so you can see that eating a pear a day pushes things along nicely (literally)!

Ingredients for pears (makes a large batch)

5 ripe fresh pears
cinnamon
1 cup of warm water
~ 10 drops Organic liquid stevia drops (~ 3 teaspoons of powdered stevia)
1 tablespoon honey
Natural vanilla extract

Method

Pre-heat oven to 200 degrees Celsius. Wash pears, cut into quarters, and remove core. Set aside. In a bowl, combine warm water with stevia, honey, and vanilla extract. Add pears and mix to coat pears with syrup. Place the mixture onto a roasting tray and sprinkle liberally with cinnamon (about 2 teaspoons all together). Bake for 20 minutes and then turn pears so the skin faces out (this is to get that crispiness). Bake for another 10 to 15 minutes or until skins are crispy and golden. Serve warm (or cold) with ice cream.

Ingredients for ice cream (for one serve)

1 frozen banana
1 teaspoon of almond butter
1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon maple syrup for drizzling

Method

Place frozen banana and vanilla extract in a high-power blender and blend until you reach a creamy consistency. Add almond butter and blend until well incorporated. Use an ice cream scoop to serve, and drizzle with a little maple syrup.

What is your favourite pear recipe?

Link of the day:
Why not make this Maple Brown Rice Pudding with pear?
Maple Peach Brown Rice Pudding 1

What I Ate Wednesday

A lot of my blends (blogger friends) have this thing where they post what they ate on Wednesday.

I think it’s genius. For one, we get to see what others eat (c’mon, I know we all secretly want to know this). And secondly, we get inspiration from others. Let’s be honest there is nothing new under the sun, and all of us lose a little inspiration or creativity sometimes. “What I Ate Wednesday” is here to help us all.

So here’s what I had.

Breakfast:

1/3 cup of rolled oats cooked with 1/2 cup of almond milk, 1/2 cup of water and 1/2 a pear. Topped with chia seeds, almonds, and walnuts with a dash of agave syrup. My favourite kind of breakfast for a cold rainy day.

Snack:

1 small banana cut into wheels and topped with 1 tablespoon of peanut butter. Sorry I didn’t take a picture, I was in a hurry!

Lunch:

This is my new favourite. Two slices of the life changing loaf of bread topped with 1/4 of an avocado mashed, a handful of microherbs, 1 tsp of homemade almond dukkah and a drizzle of fresh lemon juice. I had a side of freshly chopped tomatoes and orange capsicum! So yum!

Snack:

As I said, it was a cold and rainy day. What is a girl to do in this kind of weather? Well, have chocolate of course! This was in the form of warm liquid chocolatey goodness! It is called my Hot Choconana, and is made from 1 teaspoon cacao powder, half a small banana, 1 cup of almond milk and a date! All you do is blend and then heat on the stove or with a coffee machine milk frother. Or, you can do both simulaneously if you have a thermomix (which is the coolest kitchen gadget you will ever use). Top with extra cacao powder and a few cacao nibs. Chocolate heaven!

Dinner:

This is such a quick meal to make if you had a long day and can’t be bothered to spend a lot of time cooking a healthy meal. It’s a Tomato, Kale, and Lentil Pasta topped with goats cheese fetta and fresh coriander. I made the sauce from organic canned tomatoes, freshly chopped onion and garlic, and lots of different spices (chilli, turmeric, coriander, sumac, paprika, cinnamon). Then added a whole bunch of washed purple kale and a tin of organic brown lentils. I then let it simmer for about 10-15 minutes while the pasta cooked (made from wholemeal spelt flour) and then combined with the pasta. Dinner time!!

Dessert:

Yep, I eat a lot. Dessert was a medjool date filled with a teaspoon of almond butter and a cup of rooibos tea. The perfect sweet end to a busy, cold and productive day.

Question:

What do you think of “What I Ate Wednesday” blog posts. Yay or Nay?

Link of the day:
Creamy Almond Milkshake
Creamy Almond Milkshake – perfect for breakfast, a snack, or dessert!

The Life-Changing Bread

I love bread. It is definitely one of my weaknesses. If I didn’t know better and didn’t have all the nutritional knowledge from studying for 6 years, I’d probably eat french bread sticks and sourdough from my local baker with lashing of butter at every meal. But unfortunately (and fortunately for my health and yours!) I do have the knowledge.

By no means am I saying that bread is bad for you. There is definitely a place in a wholesome, well-balanced diet for bread that has been made from good quality ingredients in small amounts. But unless you’re willing to fork out $8-$12 for a good quality bread these days (or have the skills of a Danish bread maker) you’re stuck with the mass-produced loafs from the supermarkets. These are often laden with processed wheat products, soy flour, colours, preservatives, sugars and syrups. If this is news – learn to read your labels.

One of my passions is to create healthy versions of everyday foods and dishes, and to encourage others to do the same. I simply had to look for a healthy alternative. These sorts of pursuits don’t often stop until I find what I look for and it has ticked all my nutritional boxes. It didn’t take me long though, to find this life-changing bread that was geniusly invented by Sarah at My New Roots. When I saw it, I simply had to try it. The end result was a very impressed dietitian with a huge smile on her face holding a piece of life-changing bread in her hand. With lashings of homemade jam (my treat).

The best thing about this bread? It actually is HEALTHY for you. And it is REALLY easy to make, with minimum kitchen mess. You the combine ingredients, stir, soak, and bake all in the one dish – perfect!

Here is the recipe from the My New Roots blog

Ingredients:

Makes 1 loaf

  • 1 cup / 135g sunflower seeds
  • ½ cup / 90g flax seeds
  • ½ cup / 65g hazelnuts or almonds
  • 1 ½ cups / 145g rolled oats ( contains far less gluten than bread)
  • 2 Tbsp. chia seeds
  • 4 Tbsp. psyllium seed husks (3 Tbsp. if using psyllium husk powder)
  • 1 tsp. fine grain sea salt (add ½ tsp. if using coarse salt)
  • 1 Tbsp. maple syrup (for sugar-free diets, use a pinch of stevia)
  • 3 Tbsp. melted coconut oil or ghee
  • 1 ½ cups / 350ml water

Directions:

1. 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 on the counter 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.

2. Preheat oven to 350°F / 175°C.

3. 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 (difficult, but important).

4. Store bread in a tightly sealed container for up to five days. Freezes well too – slice before freezing for quick and easy toast