Monthly Archives: November 2013

Summer Berry Soup

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The hardest thing about changing my diet (less sugar, less processed food, more fruit and vege) is that I love entertaining and I set an expectation to deliver at least a 2 course meal whenever I have friends over. I am lucky I started my change in lifestyle just as berries are coming into season as there are some delicious nutritious recipes out there.

Here is a chilled berry soup, which was simply delicious served with some orange creme fraiche. You will need a couple of hours chilling time, so make ahead.

Serves 6

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Ingredients
2 punnets of strawberries
1 packet (600 gms) of frozen raspberries – defrosted (simply as fresh are so expensive, but use fresh if you can get them)
2 tbsp raw honey or maple syrup
The juice of 1 lemon
1 cup plain unsweetened yogurt (Or cream if you were being luscious – I recommend the new Lewis Road Creamery cream)
1 pottle (250 gms) creme fraiche
The juice of one orange
1 tbsp Cointreau
Extra berries to serve

Method
Blend the strawberries, raspberries, honey and lemon juice in a blender until smooth. There will be some pips from the fruit so if you want it silky smooth you could strain the liquid with a coarse sieve at this point (however I didn’t worry) mix through the unsweetened yogurt and pour into serving bowls.
Chill for a couple of hours. Mix the orange juice and Cointreau through the creme fraiche and chill for a couple of hours. When ready to serve dollop the creme fraiche on the top of the soup and decorate with fresh berries and a few mint leaves (if available)

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Almond and Chocolate puddings

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I am trying my best to have a healthy diet lately but some days nothing but chocolate will do. I looked for inspiration on the Desserts by Green Kitchen ap and amended the recipe from there. This recipe is gluten-free, dairy-free (if you don’t add the yogurt to serve) and refined sugar-free.
This recipe makes 6 ramekins or would work equally as well in muffin tins which you could then turn out on to a plate.

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Ingredients
250 mls nut milk (I used Almond)
4 tbsp nut butter (I used Almond, but you could use smooth peanut, or hazelnut)
1 tbsp vanilla
2 eggs
2 tbsp honey or raw maple syrup
100 gms 70% cocoa chocolate
1 cup almond meal
2 tbsp cocoa powder (make sure it is gluten-free if you need it to be)
1 tsp cinnamon
Fresh berries to serve
Natural yogurt to serve

Method
Pre-heat the oven to 150 degrees, grease your tins/ramekins if you want to be able to turn your pudding out, I didn’t worry about it.
Put the milk, butter & vanilla into a microwave bowl and heat for 1 minute, stir and heat for a further minute. The milk and butter should be well combined. Stir through the chocolate until melted and smooth and set aside.
Separate the eggs and beat the yolks with the honey until pale in colour. Set aside and whisk the egg whites to soft peaks. Mix the almond meal, cocoa and cinnamon through the milk, butter and chocolate mix. Fold through the egg yolks then the egg whites.
Pour into the ramekins and bake for 30-35 minutes.
Remove from the oven and dollop with yogurt (if using) and decorate with berries.

Salmon and Seaweed salad

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When Mr Goldie is away I do my best to fill up on fish and seafood (as he isn’t a fan). I felt like something a bit different and found delicious packs of seasoned seaweed at New World (where you would find the fish) so I made this salad. I think you could easily substitute the salmon for fresh salmon (rather than smoked) prawns, or cooked white fish.
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Ingredients

One packet of seasoned seaweed (approx 300 gms)

100 gms of smoked salmon

1/2 cup snow pea shoots

1 carrot peeled then use the peeler to make ribbons

1/2 yellow capsicum finely sliced

1/2 red onion finely sliced (spring onion would also work)

1/2 cup coriander leaves

For the dressing

2 tbsp sesame oil

1 tbsp white vinegar

1 tbsp lemon juice

salt & white pepper to taste

Method

Combine all the salad ingredients in a bowl, pour the dressing ingredients into a jar and shake to combine. Stir through the salad and enjoy!
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Green Bean and Coconut salad

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I had a salad similar to this several times in Bali, it used fresh coconut which is so hard to find here. It was such a cooling salad in the hot weather so I thought it was perfect for the last few hot days we have been having.

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Ingredients

250 gms of green beans, chopped, steamed (but still crunchy) and cooled

1 cup bean sprouts

1/2 cup threaded coconut

1 red chilli finely chopped

1/2 cup coriander leaves

2 tbsp crispy shallots (or red onion dry fried until crispy)

For the dressing

1 tbsp rice bran oil

1 tbsp white vinegar

the juice of two limes

1 tsp fish sauce

1/2 tsp coconut (or palm) sugar

Method

Put all the dressing ingredients into a jar and shake to combine. Mix the salad ingredients (except the shallots) together in a bowl, pour over dressing and mix to combine. Sprinkle over shallots and serve

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Salmon and udon noodle salad

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The next salad in my series would be lovely with chicken and duck as well as salmon. The flavours develop over time, and it would hold up well as a picnic salad so it is very versatile.
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Ingredients
200 gms of hot smoked salad
180 gms of dried udon noodles
1 cup of mung bean sprouts
a small bunch of snow pea shoots
a small bunch of coriander
1/2 small red onion finely chopped
1 tbsp of black and white sesame seeds
the juice of one lemon
2 tbsp fried shallots

For the dressing
4 tbsp sesame oil
3 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp sweet soy sauce
1 tbsp sambal oelek (or sweet chilli)
1 tsp grated ginger

Method

Boil the noodles as per instructions on the packet. Flake the salmon with two forks. Mix the dressing ingredients in a small jar and shake until combined. In a bowl add the noodles, then all the other salad ingredients (except the lemon juice and shallots). Mix through with the dressing then squeeze lemon over top and sprinkle over the shallots

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Coconut berry Friands

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I have altered an AWW recipe to make these delicious gluten-free Friands. The coconut flour adds a great taste as well as being a substitute for normal flour
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Ingredients
3 egg whites
90 gms unsalted butter (melted and cooled)
3/4 cup almond meal (ground almonds)
3/4 cup icing sugar
1/2 tsp gluten-free baking powder
1/4 cup coconut flour
1/2 cup frozen berries

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Method
Preheat oven to 180 degrees, grease a 12 hole friand (or muffin) tin.
Whisk egg whites until soft peaks form. Fold in butter, almond meal, sugar, baking powder and coconut flour. Gently fold in berries then spoon into friand tins.
Bake friands for around 20 minutes, cool in pan for 5 mins then turn out onto a rack. Dust with icing sugar once cooled.
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Two interesting salads

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I have been making an effort lately to eat my 5+ a day. Some days its easy, and other days it seems a struggle to get those 5 serves of veges in.
I found two great recipes in Jerusalem by Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi. If you have bought this book you will know how amazing it is for fresh, tasty recipes. If you can’t afford it, or don’t buy a lot of cookbooks, you will find many of Ottolenghi’s recipes on his column in the Guardian http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/series/yotam-ottolenghi-recipes.

Both of the recipes I have picked today are really interesting in both flavour and texture. They would also be nice the next day, and would be lovely for work lunch.

Baby spinach with almonds and dates
Ingredients
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
1/2 red onion thinly diced
1 cup of pitted medjool dates chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
2 small pita bread cut into triangles
70 gms (one small packet) of whole almonds, roughly chopped
1/3 cup of pumpkin seeds
2 tsp sumac (if you haven’t used this spice before, I would hunt it down. It is delicious)
1/4 tsp chilli flakes
1/2 bag of baby spinach
2 tbsp of lemon juice
salt and pepper

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Method
Put the onion and dates into a small bowl with the vinegar and a pinch of salt, squash a bit with your fingers and set aside.
Heat the olive oil in a frying pan, and add the pita bread, almonds and pumpkin seeds and toast until bread is crispy and coloured.
In a salad bowl mix the spinach & date mix together. Add the pita bread mix, sprinkle over the lemon juice, chilli, sumac, salt and pepper then toss to combine.

Roasted  cauliflower with Hazelnuts
1 head of cauliflower (broken into small florets)
5 tbsp olive oil
1 large stick of celery (finely sliced)
1/2 cup of hazelnuts (skin on)
1 cup of green grapes
1/2 cup of flat leaf parsley
1 tbsp pomegranate molasses
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp mixed spice
2 tbsp red wine vinegar

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Method
Preheat the oven to 220 degrees and once hot place cauliflower on an oven tray with 3 tbsp of olive oil. Roast for around 20 mins. Turn the oven down to 170, add the whole hazelnuts and roast for a further 15 mins.
In a bowl, mix together the celery, grapes and parsley. In a small jar mix the pomegranate molasses, cinnamon, mixed spice, remaining olive oil and vinegar together and shake to combine.
Tip the cauliflower and hazelnuts onto the celery etc, pour over the dressing and mix to combine.