Tag Archives: vegan

Lime & Sage Cashew “Blue Cheese”

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I absolutely love entertaining at home and serving up new food and drink creations to friends and family  (using them as my guinea pigs). They don’t seem to mind most of the time. Sometimes my creations don’t always come out looking and/or tasting very glamorous, but at least it lends itself to some interesting dinner conversations. This one (thankfully) did turn out to be a success and a wonderful substitute for blue cheese if you struggle with the thought of mould in your cheese (me). If you’re stuck for an appetizer at your next dinner party, this cheese compliments any kind of seasonal fruit and is heavenly on a fresh piece of sourdough.
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Going nuts for nuts!

Nuts,  the perennial of life for any vegetarian, has now been proven above its other feats to have life prolonging capacity.

Having long been known as nutritious (and by many health conscious as a “superfood”) these little guys were previously known to lower cholesterol and diminish insulin resistance.

Most of these claims were met with scepticism, with the most common question being – ‘how does lowering cholesterol or improving insulin function really even help me?’.

Published last month in The New England Journal of Medicine, was  the largest prospective study to date on nut consumption. With 76 464 women and 42 498 men, the authors concluded that those who ate nuts less than once per week had a 7% decrease in mortality and those who ate nuts up to 7 times per week had a 20% reduction!! And that goes for any type of nut too.

Good news right? Great news you say ……especially for those of you aiming to push past 95 and spend every last waking hour squeezing a bit more out of life. But what about those who are more stuck in the reality of the next few years rather than the twilight of time? Maybe you hate the though of living out your life in a hospital bed or rattling with pills into old age? There’s more good news!

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Cashew & Fig Cream

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My sister and I have been eating no sugar for 5 weeks. She asked me if I wanted to cut out sugar with her for a whole 8 weeks to help keep her accountable. I agreed without realising how difficult it is to actually avoid the stuff. It is literally EVERYWHERE and my eyes have really been opened to how much we eat of it without even realising.  I am still allowing myself fruit though – I could never live without fruit, it is my favourite food in the world, really!

I’ve really enjoyed the journey of getting creative making tasty treats without relying on sweeteners. This cashew and fig cream is one of the toppings I created for our pancakes over the weekend. It really is perfect on anything from pancakes, toast, fruit, or even in smoothies…and vegan-friendly too :)

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Ingredients:

1 cup cashews
Half cup filtered water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 dried figs

Method:

Add ingredients to a blender and combine on a high speed until creamy.

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Perfect Protein Bar

A few Saturdays ago I got together with my mum and sister, and we put our heads together to come up with something that so many of us often struggle to find. The perfect afternoon snack.

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This was our checklist:

  • healthy
  • satisfy chocolate craving
  • protein loaded
  • low sugar
  • high fibre
  • nutritious
  • delicious

I’m happy to say we ticked all of these and created the perfect protein bar from the very heart of my mum’s kitchen. We could hardly wait for the bar to cool so we could taste test it. When we did, we all nodded in agreement that this was the best we’ve tasted. Heck, even the boys that were watching rugby upstairs gave it the tick of approval. If I can get my husband to say “that doesn’t taste healthy at all” – it is probably the best complement he can give to my healthy creations!

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Ingredients:
Makes 12 slices

½ cup almond meal
⅓ cup protein powder (Sunwarrior Brown Rice Protein)
2 ripe bananas
¼ cup shredded coconut
¼ cup chia seeds
¼ cup hemp seeds (or pepitas/sunflower)
3 tablespoons cacao powder 3 tablespoons almond butter (or nut butter of choice)
1 teaspoon vanilla paste
15 drops liquid stevia
2 tablespoons raw honey

Method:

Preheat oven to 175 degrees Celsius. Combine all ingredients in a high power blender. Blend until well combined. Line a bread pan-sized baking tin with baking paper and press mixture firmly into the tin. Bake for 15 – 20 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool completely before slicing. Makes 12 slices.

Nutrition Info per slice:

470 kJ or 112 kcal
6 grams protein
9 grams carbohydrate
4 grams fibre

It is delicious with a dollop of yoghurt and some warmed berries!

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