She didn’t have an easy life.
She had such character and depth.
Hard times tend to grow that in us, eh?!
I had a great time with a lovely client of mine today. I LOVE health coaching. It is my dream job. During our session we talked about delicious, real whole food. I came home feeling rather hungry. I needed to prepare lunch quickly!
This is what I made..
These are really approximate amounts.
I ‘taste as I go’ when I prepare food. Add a bit, stir, taste, add some more, stir, taste..
This helps me to not worry about being specific about the measurements of ingredients that I use.
When I prepare food, I also do it in bulk. This saves me a lot of time. I prepared a really good amount of this to have for lunch and also for later. Bingo! A lovely vegetable dish to add to our plant-strong dinner.
Where was I? Oh yes.. bulk ingredients..
One big red onion
1/2 (ish) of a curly cabbage
1 large broccoli
Sesame seeds – a few tablespoons
Soaked almonds – a cup
Chilli flakes – 1 tsp for the whole dish, more if you want more heat.
Jalapeños – diced – 2 – 3 tablespoons for the whole dish.
Sunflower seed cream with lemon and basil – or any other herb that calls to you from your garden, the vege shop, or cupboard! I would use about 1 cup of this cream for the whole dish (lunch and dinner). See directions below on how to make this.
A little Himalayan rock salt to taste.
Cold pressed organic olive oil.
I roughly chopped the onion.
Threw it into a large pot to ‘dry fry’.
Chopped up the broccoli and some curly cabbage – I love this stuff.
Threw the broccoli into the pot. Stirred.
Threw the cabbage in next (it is faster to cook than the broccoli).
Stirred until the cabbage wilted a tiny bit, and all the colours became vibrant. Kept the veges crunchy though – was careful to not overcook them.
While this was cooking I got some soaked almonds from the fridge. Put into another pot with a little olive oil, added a sprinkle of Himalayan rock salt and some chilli flakes. Stirred for a couple of minutes until they were lightly roasted. Yum. No longer raw, but yum.
I plated up the onion, curly cabbage and broccoli.
Sprinkled some of the sesame seeds on top.
Got some delicious sunflower seed cream out of the fridge. Had made this a couple of days ago. Now it’s flavours were really ‘singing’.
Drizzled this cream over the vegetables. Oh boy – it was SO calling to me from the plate. Was getting hungrier.
Threw the roasted almonds on top of the cream and veges.
Sprinkled some chilli flakes on top of all of this deliciousness.
Diced some Jalapeños and threw on top.
Tiny sprinkle of Himalayan rock salt.
Little drizzle of cold pressed organic olive oil.
This lunch was serious yummy!
It is nutrient-dense, the wonderful nutrients from plants which are so health building and protecting. It has protein, good fats, fibre to fill us up.
When preparing food I try to make sure that there is a lot of scrumptiousness going on for the palate. This had..
A bit of crunch from the vegetables, the almonds.
Some heat from chilli and the jalapeños.
Creaminess from the sunflower seed cream.
Fattiness (is that a word?!) from the olive oil. We need some good fats in our diet.
Herbiness (I’m sure that’s not a word) from the cream.
Tartness from the cream. Not to be confused with tartiness! From the lemon.
Saltiness. (The nurse in me feels to say at this point, that if you have high blood pressure and are still eating processed foods which can be high in hidden salt, it will be good to leave out the salt when making this dish).
1 cup soaked sunflower seeds. Rinse well.
3/4 cup filtered water. May need a little more if you want it runnier.
The juice from 1/2 to a whole lemon. Can put the lemon zest in there too if a spray-free lemon.
2 teaspoons of dried basil +/or fresh herbs.
1/3 tsp of chilli flakes.
A little pinch of Himalayan salt.
Use this nut-free cream as delicious ‘bling’ on top of hot soups or stews, roast vegetables, stir fries, cold salads.. anything that inspires.
Hope you enjoy this curly cabbage, broccoli.. recipe!
It is fine to use the healthy ingredients that you have handy, and to be free to be really creative.
Some ‘SOUL FOOD’ thoughts..
I went to my lovely ladies group last week and was given this beautiful daffodil with this wee message on it. There was a flower and note for every person there.
I think that the message is really profound. We can spend a lot of time and energy in life trying (often subconsciously) to be like others. We are unique. Our fingerprint is literally unlike anyone else’s on the face of this earth. We have a unique set of giftings. A unique purpose and plan for our lives. Why would we want to try to be like anyone but ourselves?!
Bless your uniqueness and the freedom to be you.
Don’t you just love Spring?
Don’t you just love having good friends?
I am LOVING making raw, sprouted muesli / granola / cereals. There are many different ingredient and flavour possibilities. The sky is the limit really.
The mueslis I make are made from gluten-free whole grains / seeds.
They are creamy, yet dairy-free.
They are completely free of processed sugar, colour, flavouring and other additives.
There is so much real food in them that they don’t need all of that stuff. Yep, they are packed full of healthy, living nutrients. Filling. Wonderful for breakfast or a snack.
Feel free to add your favourite, healthy ingredients to really make this recipe your own. More on inspiring, different ingredient options below. Great to have a variety of different foods for our breakfasts, to get the maximum amount of health-building nutrients into our bodies!
This raw muesli recipe feeds about 4 people.
I use homemade almond milk which is very quick and easy to make, and SO much creamier and cheaper than store bought. For an easy, step by step photo recipe on how to make almond milk, pop over to: http://www.realfoodforrealhealth.com/creamy-berry-and-vanilla-chia-dessert-for-any-time-of-the-day/ …or otherwise read below –
For the almond milk:
1 cup soaked and rinsed raw almonds (pre-soaking all your nuts and seeds overnight works well)
4 – 5 pitted dates (preservative-free)
1 – 2 tsp pure vanilla essence, or the seed paste of one vanilla bean for a really superb flavour.
A pinch of Himalayan rock salt, or Celtic sea salt
Blend the above ingredients together well. High speed blenders work the best.
You don’t have to strain the almond milk! Keep all of the wonderful fibre and goodness in it. This makes this recipe more nutritious and filling.
I like to use plenty of nut milk in my muesli. Go by feel / your preference here.
There will be milk left over. Store this milk in the fridge for later, for smoothies, dressings..
For the ‘base’ of the muesli / granola:
3/4 cup soaked, rinsed raw pumpkin seeds
1 cup mixed organic berries (frozen or fresh) + some for ‘bling’ on top.
1/2 cup soaked rinsed raw almonds – also great for garnishing.
2 cups really well rinsed raw, hulled buckwheat sprouted with cute little ‘tails’.
Combine your dairy-free almond (or any nut) milk and your ‘base’ ingredients together. Squash and mix in the berries to get the berry flavour and colour into the milk. Eat your muesli straight away or store in the fridge to enjoy later.
How do you sprout buckwheat?
You can simply soak your raw / *non-heat treated buckwheat overnight and rinse well (until not at all sticky) and use straight away. OR you can continue to sprout these little beauties over 1-3 days. I soak overnight, rinse well, then put in a fine mesh sieve that sits within a pot. I put a clean, dry tea towel over all of the buckwheat. Rinse the buckwheat well twice a day while sprouting. In Summer, it is good to rinse three times a day. Avoid keeping in a hot, humid place or in direct sunlight. When ‘harvesting’, rinse thoroughly again before eating!
*Kasha is toasted buckwheat, so it won’t sprout.
Variety is the spice of life…
When making raw mueslis you really can be very creative..
Instead of using buckwheat you can use those raw, chunky wholegrain rolled oats. Soak these overnight, then add to your muesli. Choose gluten-free oats if you are very sensitive / have Coeliac’s disease. You could also use sprouted raw quinoa. Or you can soak, then cook either quinoa or buckwheat for a non-raw muesli option.
Nuts? You can use different soaked whole or chopped nuts, even a mixture – cashews, walnuts, hazelnuts..
Seeds? Soaked sunflower seeds work really well, some chia seeds, flaxseeds..
Berries? You could use just one type of seasonal or frozen organic berry. Just using blueberries, or raspberries, or strawberries give this muesli a different flavour and look altogether.
Dairy-free milks? You can also use coconut, cashew, hazelnut, walnut..
If you have allergies to nuts, sunflower seed milk can be a really nice alternative.
A little organic soy milk occasionally can be nice.
Spice of life? This reminds me.. you can add cinnamon, mixed spice, ground ginger…anything that inspires! Add a little, taste…add some more until it ‘sings’ on your palate. Your children may want to add a little of their own choice of spice to make it their own.
Here is a photo of another muesli with a different combination of ingredients –
This muesli was made with a little cashew milk. It had pre-soaked walnuts, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, some chia seeds and chunks of organic apple, organic blueberries (instead of mixed berries).. also a reflection of my darling hubby in the spoon if you look closely!
If you are transitioning off processed sugar and initially need some more sweetness, add a couple more dates to your almond milk, or add some grated apple into your muesli. Adding more vanilla to your almond milk (yum) and some cinnamon can help with this too.
For children, whole soaked nuts and seeds can be thrown into the blender and ground down first. Important: For younger children – blend these very finely (to avoid any choking risk).
Always check no nut allergies before serving.
Soaking or ‘activating’ or ‘sprouting’ nuts and seeds deals to the phytic acid in them which is their natural protection. When activated like this, the nutrients in these nuts and seeds are more available and therefore better absorbed by our bodies. When we soak and sprout these foods, their nutrient content increases LOTS! When food is raw and living, it has enzymes and phytonutrients that are very health building for our bodies.
Buckwheat is gluten-free. It doesn’t have wheat in it. It is part of the rhubarb family! Great to have a muesli that is not those wheat-filled, packaged breakfast cereals that are deficient in nutrients and can rocket our blood sugar levels upwards. This all makes us hungry soon after eating them. Adding more healthy (wholegrain), gluten-free options into our diets can be a good thing for our gut health and overall health.
Berries are packed with antioxidants for our health. They have a relatively low Glycaemic Index which means that (when we eat a moderate amount in one sitting), they don’t push our blood sugars up, which is a good thing. Buying organic or spray-free berries is important so that they don’t have spray residues in them.
These mueslis have some protein in them. Having protein for breakfast is important as it sets us up well for the day. This protein, along with the good fats in the nuts and seeds, keeps us full for longer. Good for us to have more plant-based proteins and fats in our diet versus animal based.
There is fibre in this breakfast, in the nuts and seeds, the fruit. More so because the ingredients are whole foods and not refined. Fibre in food helps us to have a more balanced blood sugar throughout the day. It keeps us full for longer. Fibre keeps us ‘regular’ which is vital for our overall bowel health and for our natural detoxification. Fibre fosters the growth of beneficial flora in our gut which is so important for our immunity, our digestion, even our mood..
Buying your food in bulk when on special, or from a community collective can save you lots of money. We buy our beautiful organic ingredients from a collective at wholesale prices. This makes all the difference to the creativity and affordability of the food we eat.
Yes, almond and other nut milks are much cheaper than store bought! Fresher. Creamier. Tastier. Did you know that store bought almond milk tends to have 2% almonds in it (and artificial flavouring to make up for the lack), whereas homemade milk can have about 20% almonds?! Not straining well blended nut milks saves heaps of time.
I LOVE it the way that when you soak nuts, seeds, pulses etc, they really increase in size.
e.g. 3/4 cup of almonds actually increases to 1 cup or more after soaking.
This saves money. It can be really helpful to get into a routine where you put the nuts, seeds etc that you need for the next day in water to soak overnight – ready to quickly rinse and use the next morning. When soaked, nutritionally they have even greater ‘bang for your buck’.
Bulk preparing food saves a lot of time. I love preparing food once and eating two or even more times. Mueslis like this actually can improve with time. The taste of the vanilla, berries can really soak into the buckwheat and be their best after a night in the fridge. (I store these raw mueslis in the fridge for up to 24 hours). This bulk preparation in advance can be really great for easy, self-service breakfasts in the mornings for busy families. Also great to put into a well sealing container to take with you as you go out and about. Throw into one of those insulated food carry bags with icepack in Summer.
This is one of my favourite breakfasts…or snacks…or desserts…
I love that this is nutritious, processed sugar-free, dairy-free and gluten-free. It has a creamy, decadent feel about it while being really healthy. You can prepare this the night before and put in the fridge, or make it about 10-15 minutes before needed.
There are no rules with making this recipe.
There may be other ingredients that ‘call’ to you from your fridge/pantry and beg to be added?!
If you want the consistency to be more liquid simply add more almond milk.
Kids (and adults) love seeing the way the chia seeds absorb the nut milk and become bigger and gelatinous…in a non-gross sort of a way!
This recipe feeds about 5-7 people.
Create your creamy dairy-free milk in minutes -
Put these ingredients into your blender container:
(High speed blenders work the best, but a standard upright blender will also do).
1 cup of soaked raw almonds. This is about 3/4 cup of un-soaked almonds. They bulk up.
1 litre of filtered water.
4 pitted dates or a small amount of stevia.
A little pinch of Himalayan rock salt – this brings out the flavour of the almonds.
1-2 teaspoons of pure vanilla essence or the seed paste from the inside of one vanilla bean.
Blend the almonds, water, dates, salt and vanilla together. It takes about a minute.
After blending, there will be some texture or sediment in the milk. There may be small chunks of almond and date. I don’t strain it, but put every bit of this delicious goodness into the recipe.
Pour your frothy, creamy almond milk into a good sized bowl.
Gradually add 7 tablespoons of chia seeds (dark or light ones) to your milk while stirring.
Using a whisk helps. Adding your chia like this prevents clumping.
Stir again in a few minutes. Let the chia seed bulk up beautifully. This takes about 10-15 minutes.
Put some more berries and a sprinkle of coconut on top – either desiccated or flaked. You could also top with any other soaked nuts or seeds, or a little fresh seasonal fruit that inspires.
Kids (and big kids) enjoy stirring in the berries and watching the colour of the milk change to bluey pink. Raspberries create lovely marbled effects.
If you are transitioning off processed sugar it can be helpful to put more berries into this recipe to naturally sweeten it a bit more. Alternatively you may want to add a couple more dates to your almond milk. Once your palate adjusts to less sugar, you can decrease the amount of berries/dates.
Bulk food preparation in advance is a wonderful time-saver! Simply make up this recipe and keep it in the large bowl. Cover the bowl with a plate and put into the fridge for easy self-service the next morning. Another very cool option is to divide the mixture into glass jars (or non-breakable containers for younger kids) one for each member of your family. Put a well-sealing lid on each container. Put into the fridge overnight to let the magic happen. The seeds bulk up even more overnight, and really absorb the delicious flavour of the other ingredients.
These make wonderfully easy ‘chia to go’ breakfasts or snacks for work or school.
This recipe has plenty of protein, fibre and also some good fats, all of which help to make us full for longer. This is always a good thing for the beginning of the day as it can prevent mid-morning sugar cravings and tiredness!
Raw chia seed – a super food. Contains omega 3 fatty acids, protein, fibre and important minerals. Also contains protective antioxidants. Chia seeds can apparently help to improve blood sugar control.
Raw almonds – have protein, fibre and healthy fats. They have magnesium, Vit E, and other antioxidants. The thin brown skin of the almonds contain most of the antioxidants. Soaking almonds ‘activates’ them and helps deal to the phytic acid making the nutrients better absorbed by our bodies.
Dates – a very effective natural sweetener. As we are adding the whole pitted date, all of the fibre and nutrients are included. If you need to watch your blood sugar levels, some natural stevia (the green powdered variety) is an excellent choice.
Vanilla – the smell of vanilla has been linked to the production of endorphins! When vanilla is added to a recipe, less natural sweetener is needed. Vanilla seed paste from the inside of a vanilla bean has the best flavour.
Coconut - contains fibre, protein. The fat contains a little lauric acid (also found in breastmilk) which has antiviral, antibacterial, and antiprotozoal properties.
Raw sunflower seeds - contain vitamin E, also selenium, copper, zinc, folate. They have protein, fibre and good fat.
Berries – have wonderful phytonutrients. They are anti-oxidant rich (blueberries have the most). Berries in general are considered to have a low glycaemic index. This means that when eaten in moderation, they don’t spike your blood sugar levels too far upwards – which is important.
A couple more thoughts to do with our health..
If you like this recipe, feel very free to share this post with friends and family. I’d really appreciate it. Thanks!
This delicious idea came to me one day as I dug into the fridge and pulled out whatever inspired to make some sushi with a really creative difference. I was hungry and wanted something that was going to fill me up.
I love this type of sushi as it is using a variety of nutrient-dense whole foods that are by their nature filling. It has fermented veges so is great for gut health and has sprouts that are packed with health-building goodies. The gluten-free quinoa with a little millet is healthier than white rice.
I had a wee epiphany on typing up this blog post and looking at my ‘no rules’ sushi photos. It dawned on me that the contents of this sushi are perhaps symbolic in that they represent a shift in what we need to be putting on our plates. For a long time there has been the recommendation to ‘eat mostly’ carbohydrates. You know, the bottom of the old food pyramid? Now there is a growing realisation that what we need to be eating most of is salad and vegetables, and less in the way of carbohydrates (especially the refined, white ones).
Keeping the above in mind, the sky is the limit with this ‘recipe’.
You can add whatever healthy goodies inspire you! Pile as much salad and veges as you can fit inside each nori sheet.
It can work very well for friends and family members if you put the ingredients on the table and let them make their own creations. Kids love doing this.
Mine was messy to eat, I definitely needed a fork!
Provide a fork …and perhaps some serviettes!
If you like this recipe, feel free to share this post with your family and friends. Many thanks!