Cauliflower Pizza Base

 

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A few months ago I posted a recipe for a gluten free pizza base which is a staple in my household. After making this pizza almost every week I thought it was time to try a new recipe.

I have been experimenting with this cauliflower pizza base, which needed to be altered a few times before sharing but I have finally perfected it.
If you are like me and love the taste of pizza but struggle to enjoy it due to the additives, gluten and heavy dough causing havoc in your body then this healthy twist will go down a treat.

The sesame seeds give it a crunchy and chewy texture and the garlic and pesto add a flavorsome kick.  The cauliflower is hard to taste in this pizza base which makes it a great option for fussy children who do not like the taste of vegetables.

Get creative with your pizza toppings. I used pesto, sun dried tomato’s, fresh basil leaves, mozzarella and seaweed flakes.

This base is:
* Gluten Free
* Dairy Free
* Vegetarian

Base ingredients:

1 medium sized cauliflower
2 organic eggs
¼ cup of sesame seeds or linseeds
2 tablespoons of gluten free flour
¼ cup of pesto (I used another ¼ cup for the topping)
1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
Salt + Pepper

Method:

1. Pre heat the oven to 180C.
2. Wash the cauliflower and cut into cubes. Place into a food processor and blend the cauliflower until it is pureed.
3. Place the cauliflower into a tea towel or milk bag and over the sink squeeze all the water out, put aside.
4. In a bowl add the remainder of the ingredients and combine well.
5. Re squeeze the cauliflower to get any more excess water out and then add to the mixture making sure it is well combined.
6. On a piece of baking paper spread the dough out into an even circle. Try to keep the dough around 1.5 cm’s thick to avoid it from cracking once cooked.
7. Bake the base for 15 minutes and then add the topping of your choice. Place back into the oven for another 15 minutes or until topping is done.
8. Let the pizza cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Enjoy! L x

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Colourful Capsicum Cups

Loaded with vegetables, chickpeas, quinoa and herbs these capsicum cups provide nutrition needed for a wholesome and balanced meal. These are incredibly filling and the quinoa and chickpeas provide a high vegetarian source of protein.

These are great to make for lunch, dinner and snacks. Try to choose a variety of coloured capsicums to make the meal bright and colourful.

* Vegetarian
* Vegan
* Gluten Free
* Dairy Free

Ingredients:

3 capsicums
3/4 cup of quinoa
1 400g can of chickpeas.  I used half a can.
1/4 pumpkin
1 avocado
1 fresh chill pepper- diced
2-3 cloves of garlic- diced
1 small bunch of chives
1 bunch of parsley
Olive oil
Salt and pepper

Note: For a non vegan meal, feta cheese can be sprinkled over the capsicums after the capsicums are roasted in the oven.

Method:

1. Cut up the pumpkin into small cubes, drizzle with olive oil and place in a baking tray.  Roast the pumpkin in the oven on 180C for 15-20 minutes or until lightly golden.
2. Place the quinoa in a pot with 1 1/2 cups of water and a pinch of salt.  Cook for around 15-20 minutes or until the water is absorbed and the quinoa is light and fluffy.
2. Cut out the stems of the capsicums and remove the seeds then cut the capsicums in half, lengthwise.
3. In a bowl add the quinoa, pumpkin, diced garlic, chili,  half of the parsley and chives and salt and pepper. Mix well.
4. Stuff the capsicums with the mixture, then place them in the oven for 10-15 minutes on bake.
5. Sprinkle the remainder of the parsley and chives onto the capsicum, along with the sliced avocado. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Enjoy!

Julia & Libby xx

 

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Broccoli, Feta and Pine Nut Fritters

Broccoli is a favourite staple in my house.  I am always trying to find new ways to include it in my diet as it is a powerful superfood with high nutritional value. These fritters are the perfect way to enjoy broccoli even for non broccoli fans.
The fritters are creamy and soft on the inside and the toasted pine nuts give them a beautiful crunchy texture.

Like most fritters they taste best straight out of the frying pan. I drizzled these fritters with lemon juice and served them with grilled salmon and a leafy green salad, a perfect combination.

Enjoy these as a snack or include with your dinner for a meat free, high protein and high fibre meal.

Gluten free*

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Ingredients (makes 8 fritters)

1 medium sized broccoli
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
4 eggs
1 small bunch of parsley, chopped
150 grams of gluten free flour or buckwheat flour (put an extra 50 grams aside incase mixture is too wet)
80 grams of feta cheese
1/2 cup of pine nuts
1 lemon
Salt and pepper
Dash of oil

Method

1. Chop up the broccoli finely and steam for 5 minutes.
2. Beat the eggs in a bowl and add the flour, garlic, salt and pepper and parsley.
3. Chop up the feta cheese into small cubes and place into the mixture.
4. Place the pine nuts in a fry pan on a low heat and gently roast for 4-7 minutes or until pine nuts are slightly golden. Once cooked add them to the mixture.
5. Before adding the broccoli into the mixture make sure it is finely sliced.  I found that I needed to add an extra 50 grams of flour to the mixture as it was too wet.
6. Heat a large frying pan over moderate heat and add a dash of oil.
7. Scoop 1 large tablespoon of mixture into the frying pan, then flatten it slightly with a spatula. The mixture should make around 8 fritters. Cook the fritters for 2-3 minutes on each side, or until golden.
8. Place fritters onto a paper towel to soak up any excess oil.
9. Drizzle with lemon juice before serving. Enjoy!

L x

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Kumara and Peanut Butter Rostis

Kumara and Peanut Butter Rostis

These kumara and peanut butter rostis make the perfect vegetarian meal for winter.  The rostis are full of beautiful flavours from the garlic, ginger, orange zest, chilli and peanut butter. I chose to bake the rostis instead of frying them which I usually do to make them healthier. They turn out golden and crispy and are amazing served with hummus or avocado.

The rostis can be served as a snack or used in meal as an alternative to meat.

Ingredients     8 rostis

3 medium sized kumaras
2 tbsp peanut butter (If you want it extra crunchy I would use 4 tbsp)
2 tbsp tamari (healthier alternative to soy sauce)
2 garlic cloves – crushed
1/2 tsp ground ginger or 1 tsp freshly grated ginger
1 tsp chilli flakes
zest of 1 orange
1/2 cup of chopped coriander and/or parsley
1/2 gluten free flour – I used rice flour
1 tbs ground linseed or chia seeds (used for binding the rostis)

I drizzled some hemp seed oil over the rostis after taking them out of the oven.

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 180C. Peel the kumara and slice in half, place into a pot of boiling water for 5 minutes. Drain off and let them cool down.
2. In a large bowl mix the peanut butter, tamari, garlic, ginger, chilli and orange zest.
3. Grate the kumara once it has cooled down, add this to the mixture and mix through. Add the flour, herbs and linseeds/chia seeds.
4. The mixture should be sticky, if not add a little bit of water and if it is too sticky add more flour. Line an oven tray with baking paper and sprinkle some flour onto it. Roll the mixture into 8 balls and place onto the tray, then flatten the balls.
5. I added more finely chipped coriander to the rostis.
6. Bake the rostis at 180C for 20 minutes, remember to flip them after 10 minutes. They should be lightly golden.

L x

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Red Lentil Patties

The fun thing about cooking vegetarian meals is experimenting with new flavours – spices, herbs, sauces and seasonings.  Letting all of the ingredients be important parts of the dish.  It’s easy to cook meat as the flavour is already there.  With vegetarian meals you usually have to be a bit more adventurous as lentils and chickpeas can be uninteresting on their own.

These red lentil patties have had the tick of approval from a meat eater, in fact he loved them so much the whole batch I made was gone in one night.  I was planning on saving some for lunch the next day as these are great cold in salads.  The beauty about these is that they are so easy to make I whipped up some more after dinner.  They take all of fifteen minutes.

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Red lentils are a member of the legume family, they are cooked more quickly than other lentils and are said the be the tastiest of them all.  Cooked red lentils provide you with protein, fibre and calcium.  Due to the protein and fibre content lentils help you stay fuller for longer.  They are virtually free from fat so are an excellent food source for people watching their weight.

Ingredients: 

1.5 cups of cooked red lentils (I use dried lentils, soak them in 3 cups of water overnight, drain and then boil)
2 brown onions, diced
4 cloves of garlic, minced
2 organic eggs, beaten
1/2 cup gluten-free bread crumbs
1 carrot, grated
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 cup freshly chopped parsley
1/2 cup freshly chopped coriander
Juice from 1 lime
Himalayan salt and pepper
Olive oil or coconut oil for cooking

Method:

  1. If you are using dried lentils soak them in a bowl overnight in 3 cups of water, drain water before boiling.  If using canned lentils remove from can, give them a good wash.  Place lentils in a pot with 3 cups of water, bring lentils to boil in water, reduce heat to simmer and let lentils cook for 10 – 12 minutes until soft.  Remove from heat, place in sieve and drain lentils well, try to get most of the water off them.   
  2. In a frying pan saute onion, garlic, carrot, turmeric and cumin seeds in oil for 2-3 minutes until onion is golden brown and you can smell the spices.  Remove from heat.
  3. In a bowl combine lentils, beaten eggs, bread crumbs, lime juice, fresh herbs and the onion, garlic and carrot mixture.  Combine ingredients thoroughly and season with Himalayan salt and pepper.
  4. Place saucepan on heat, heat frying pan at quite a high heat, add coconut or olive oil.  Get a 1/4 measuring cup and working in batches placing mixture onto saucepan.  You might only be able to fit 3 – 4 patties at a time.  Turn heat down to medium so that the patties do not burn on the outside.  You want them to warm throughout.  Press down on mixture with a spatula to create flat patties.  After a few minutes turn the patties over, they may be quite fragile so handle with care.
  5. Once golden brown on both sides remove from frying pan and work on your next batch.  Once done serve warm on a bed of salad greens with lots of vegetables.

As I said earlier these are fantastic cold the next day for lunch.  You can also freeze patties if you make in large batches and re heat in the oven for a quick meal.

Julia x

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Peanut Butter Protein Slice

On my way home from Uni yesterday I had a peanut butter craving, so got home, looked at what food was in the cupboard that I could possibly use to make some sort of peanut butter creation.  Keep it simple is one of my motto’s – Make something substantial and somehow combine protein powder without making the whole thing taste like cardboard.

The recipe can easily tweaked here and there to suit your own taste.  For example rice milk if you don’t drink almond, honey if you don’t like maple syrup and adding in stevia if you have a big sweet tooth.  Make it for yourself and let me know your thoughts.

Makes 15 – 20 pieces, depending on what size you cut them.

Ingredients:

1 cup almond milk
2 Tbsp organic maple syrup
1 cup peanut butter (it’s best to use a good quality peanut butter that only contains peanuts and no added sugar/salt/preservatives)
2 cups raw oats
1/3 cup vanilla pea protein powder

Method: 

  1. Turn stove onto medium high heat, Put maple syrup, peanut butter and almond milk into a pot and place on heat.
  2. Stir gently until all of the ingredients are combined (be careful not to let ingredients burn)
  3. Add the protein powder to pot, mix well.
  4. Add in the oats and stir.  If the mixture is too thick you can add a bit more milk.  Again, be careful not to let the mixture burn.
  5. Once combined put the mixture into a flat baking tray (as shown in the pictures below) and place in refrigerator. It’s best to lay down baking paper first just so that the ingredients don’t stick.
  6. Once it has cooled completely chop into pieces and store in an air tight container in the fridge.

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Julia x

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Protein Powder – the good and the bad.

For humans to function optimally our body requires two types of nutrients in right amounts, micronutrients and macronutrients. Carbohydrates, fats and proteins are called macronutrients as they make a large portion of the food we eat. Micronutrients are what our body needs in smaller amounts and without them our body cannot function.  These are vitamins, minerals and secondary plant compounds.

The word protein comes from the Greek word ‘protos’, meaning ‘prime importance’. Protein is needed to build lean muscle, help muscle repair and recovery, maintain healthy skin, hair and nails and boost your immune system. Protein is made of important amino acids that are the building blocks of human growth and development. It is so important that we are getting the recommended amount of protein we need daily.

Supplements seem like a great idea for people who want to have an active healthy life, they are a great way to build muscle and burn fat. Protein powders can add a nutritional boost to a smoothie and using it as part of a balanced diet may help you accomplish your fitness and health goals. Protein powders do have their risks and may have the potential to cause more harm than good.

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A lot of people have a false idea of what is good quality protein and what isn’t. Good quality protein includes organic chicken and organic beef (grass-fed), fish, organic eggs, beans, quinoa, plain yogurt, nuts, seeds, peas and lentils.

A lot of people want to ‘eat clean’ but then consume protein powders and protein bars which are high in sugar, high in soy and dairy, artificial sweeteners and colouring which completely contradicts what ‘clean eating’ really is.  Makes you think doesn’t it?

Some protein drinks contain metals such as mercury, lead, arsenic and cadmium, which have toxic effects on the body.  This is especially harmful to pregnant women and children who use poor quality protein powders that contain these harmful toxins. A lot of people are then substituting protein bars and shakes for meals and eating extremely high amounts of protein without knowing what that does to your body. Replacing whole meals with protein alone isn’t going to do any wonders for your health. This is because it doesn’t contain any vitamins and mineral. The reason is that you need other nutrients in your diet as well, such as carbohydrates and fats. Our daily protein requirements depend on our size, age and how much exercise we are doing. One way to work out our minimum daily protein requirement is to multiply our body weight in kilograms by 0.8. This is how much protein we need daily. Our body can break down 5 to 9 grams of protein per hour and if we are consuming more then that, our body will convert it to fat or it will be excreted.

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The most common protein sources that are used in protein powders are egg, whey, soy and wheat gluten. Soy and gluten promote inflammatory reactions within the body and are highly allergenic. Whey concentrate is one of the least expensive sources because it has fillers, which has side effects such as bloating, diarrhea, stomach pain and flatulence. Since whey protein comes from milk, it is unfit for consumption by people suffering from lactose intolerance. It may trigger allergic reactions like skin rashes, sneezing and itching. Undigested whey protein reside can build up in the liver and kidneys, over time this will cause damage to these organs. When the body has excessive amounts of protein the kidneys have to filter these wastes to eliminate them from the body. Too much protein can build up in the kidneys and lead to the formation of kidney stones or calcium deposits.

Due to the side effects that these protein powders have it is important to choose one that is going to benefit your health. One of my favourite sources of protein is pea protein, it works effectively to regulate the appetite and encourage significant weight loss. Pea protein delivers large amounts of the necessary branched chain amino acids compared to other sources of protein. Pea protein is 100% gluten and allergen free.

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Julia and I use a product called ‘Clean Lean Protein‘ by a company called Nu Zest. This product is made from pea protein, in fact it has the worlds highest source of vegetable protein. It is highly absorbable, alkalizing, low allergenic and contains no bad stuff. If you want to eat a healthy clean diet then this product is the best on the market. My favourite flavour is vanilla, I add a scoop to my smoothie every day and even use it in pancakes and muffins.

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To find out more about Clean Lean Protein visit their website or Facebook page.
If you purchase Clean Lean Protein from their website enter in the promo code JANDB to receive 10% off, just enter the code when you are at the checkout.If you have any further questions regarding protein powders do not hesitate to ask us.
Libby Matthews x
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San Choy Bow

San Choy Bow originated from China – traditionally made with pork mince Dr Libby has added this dish to her new cook book but taken out the meat and replaced it with protein rich quinoa and chickpeas.  I made this last night for dinner and it was enough to have as a main dish.  The quinoa and chickpeas are so filling! This is a beautiful meal, so many flavors and so fresh… with the added bonus of no MSG as it’s home made.

I love how this dish is cooked using macadamia nut oil.  Macadamia oil is one of the healthiest edible oils and is higher in monounsaturates, the goods fats, when compared to Extra Virgin Olive oil.  The oil can be cooked at very high temperatures 210°C /410°F so doesn’t burn food.



Ingredients:

1 tablespoon macadamia nut oil
1/2 cup fresh mushrooms, stemmed and chopped
2 medium organic chilies, seeded and finely chopped
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, peeled and grated
3 kaffir lime leaves, finely sliced
3 tablespoons tamari
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
2 tablespoons sesame oil
Filtered water
1 1/2 cups white quinoa, cooked (I used a mixture of red and white)
1 cup cooked chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
1/4 cup fresh coriander (cilantro), chopped
Juice of 1/2 lime
Iceberg lettuce cups
Raw macadamia nuts of garnish, optional (I didn’t have any macadamia nuts so used green capsicum as a garnish)

Method:

  1. Heat the macadamia oil in a wok or skillet over medium heat.  Do not let the oil smoke.
  2. Stir fry the mushrooms, chili, ginger and kaffir leaves until the fragrance develops, about 2 minutes.
  3. Stir in the tamari, maple syrup, sesame oil and about 1/4 cup filtered water.
  4. Add the cooked quinoa and the chickpeas and keep stirring.
  5. Finish with the fresh coriander and lime juice.  Spoon the vegetable mixture into each of the lettuce cups and garnish with chopped macadamia nuts, if desired.

Julia x

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