Broccoli and Cream Cheese soup

Very simple, inexpensive, easily sourced ingredients. Amazingly good at feeding your super gut bugs. Quick to make, cooks in bulk and freezes well for weekday lunches. Allergy friendly ….. AND YUMMY!!!

  • 400g Broccoli (1 medium size), roughly chopped
  • 600g Cauliflower (1 large), roughly chopped
  • 1 small brown onion (about 120g), diced
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp veggie stock paste
  • 8 cups boiling water
  • 150g cream cheese (*dairy, soy or nut based – you can even use a light silken tofu here)

If you don’t have stock paste you can use 2 cups liquid stock and then only 6 cups water.

Heat the oil in a large saucepan then add in the onion and cook, stirring, until it is soft and golden.

Add in the cauliflower and broccoli plus the stock paste and stir well. Cook down for about 3 minutes then add in the boiling water.

Cover and simmer for about 20 minutes or until the veggies are very soft. *If you need a quicker cooking time you can give them veggies a quick blitz in your food processor first.

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Remove from the heat and add in the cream cheese.

Use an immersion blender to blend until the soup is very smooth. If you are using a blender/thermo cooker/bullet machine to blend – BE VERY CAREFUL! Allow it to cool quite a bit first and then do small batches.

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Serves 8.

If Macros are important to you, here they are for 1 serve.

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Enjoy 🙂

 

Lunchbox Apple Slice

I love this slice because it is fragrant and lightly sweet, uses only the things that I always have in my cupboard so it is inexpensive, you can have it in the oven in 5 minutes flat and it is really simple to make it allergy friendly.

And even better … my kiddo who has an Oral Allergy Syndrome reaction to raw apple can tolerate some cooked apple so everyone in our family can share!

**See below the main recipe for allergy friendly swaps and more options**

  • 2 large apples
  • 2 cups of flour (I use spelt and do half wholemeal)**
  • 2 tsp GF baking powder
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup sugar (I like coconut sugar for the caramel taste)
  • 3/4 cup rolled oats
  • 185g melted butter

Mix together all of the dry ingredients.

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Add in the melted butter, then core and dice (but don’t peel) the apples and mix them through.

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Press them mix firmly into a greased 20×20 baking dish and place in a preheated 180C for about 25 minutes.

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Allow to cool for 5 minutes in the tin before moving to a wire rack.

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Cut into about 16 squares and serve warm or cold.

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To change it up:

Gluten Free – replace the flour with 1 3/4 cup of a gluten free flour mix plus 1 tsp of psyllium husk. Then replace the oats with shredded coconut or puffed rice.

Dairy Free – use a plant based butter

Can’t do apples? Pears are a great switch

Want something a bit fancier? Crumble some chopped almonds over the top and sprinkle with a tsp of extra sugar before baking and serve warm, with custard.

Got a super sweet tooth? Add in 6 chopped medjool dates or 1/2 cup of sultanas

Not sending it to school? Replace 1/2 a cup of the flour with almond meal

Enjoy 🙂

 

 

Eggplant Lasagne (with killer cauliflower ‘cheese’ sauce!)

I did not grow up in a family that ate lasagne much – but my husband did! It was my lovely mother-in-law’s go to dish!

He has missed it since we were married, so I’ve worked hard at making a dish that we both enjoy AND fits all of our dietary needs. This one is also a winner with the kids – and the left overs taste even better the next day!

Heads up – this is in no way a traditional lasagne, I’m not event pretending it is … in fact I have had friends tell me that I am not allowed to call it lasagne if it doesn’t have either pasta or cheese … sorry … I’m going do it anyway!!

**Check out below the main recipe to see how I make this one completely plant based**

This is a meal that takes a little more time and fiddling in the kitchen than I normally like, but the end result is worth it and it does make 10 large and very filling servings, so I’ll allow it!

  • 1 tbsp garlic olive oil
  • 1 small brown onion, diced (about 125g)
  • OPTIONAL: 1/2 tsp dried chilli flakes
  • 1kg beef mince
  • 400g tin brown lentils, drained and rinsed
  • 1 medium zucchini (about 1.5 cups chopped)
  • 150g fresh spinach
  • 200g button mushrooms
  • 400g tin red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 70g tomato paste,
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • salt to taste
  • Large egg plant (about 1kg)
  • spray olive oil
  • 125g grated cheese (dairy or vegan)

For the Sauce:

  • 1 large cauliflower (approx 900g-1kg), roughly cut up
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp dried onion flakes
  • 1/2 tsp dried garlic flakes
  • 1 cup high protein almond milk (or soy or dairy milk if they suit you)
  • 1 cup hot veggie stock
  • 3 heaped tbsp nutritional yeast
  • Salt to taste

Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan. Add in the onion and garlic flakes. (Steam Temp, speed 1, set for 15 minutes)

Then add in the cauliflower and stir well to coat in the oil. (Turn up to speed 2)

Add in the milk and stock and cover, allowing to come to a gently simmer. (Leave in Steam temp, speed 2 with the m/c off)

Simmer for 10-15 minutes or until the cauliflower is soft and you can easily pierce it with a fork.

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Add in the nutritional yeast and then use an immersion blender to mix until smooth – you can transfer to a blender if you need to but be VERY careful! (Start by turning off the temperature function and gradually build to speed 8 until very smooth).

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Taste the sauce and add a little salt to taste (dairy cheese is quite salty and when you remove it you need to add in a little salt to help with flavour). Set the sauce aside.

Onto the meat mix:

Start by creating the veggie mix you’ll stir in to the meat.

In your food processor or thermo cooker, add in the zucchini, spinach, mushrooms, kidney beans and tomato paste, then blitz until quite fine. (Speed 6, 8 seconds, scrape down and repeat until you get your desired consistency). Set aside.

In a large frying pan heat the olive oil then add in the diced onion and cook, stirring until translucent.

Add in the beef mince and herbs/spices. Break it up well and when it has roughly browned, add in the lentils and mix well.

Now add in the whole processed veggie mix to the meat mix and stir very well.

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Bring to a gentle simmer for about 15 minutes.

Now the egg plant while the meat is simmering:

Slice finely. Lay on a baking tray, spray with a little olive oil, sprinkle with a little salt and place under the grill in your oven.

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Once the top side is golden brown (it only takes a few minutes), turn over and cook the other side.

The remove from the oven and set aside.

Now build the layers:

Lightly grease a large baking dish (I actually use 2 – awesome for freezing one too!)

Layer half of the meat mix into the bottom, then lay down half of the egg plant, then half of the cheese sauce and then repeat.

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Then sprinkle either dairy or vegan grated cheese over the top.

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Pop into the preheated 180C oven (fair warning …. you’re best to place it on a baking tray to catch any drips or bubbling sauce!) for about 30 minutes or until golden and bubbling – a quick minute under a grill at the end really helps to give you golden cheese, especially if you are using a plant based cheese.

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Slice and serve…. and Enjoy!

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**If you want to make this meal completely plant based: I use my lentil bolognese recipe but I omit the pasata (other wise there is too much liquid)**

*Of course, if you just want dairy free but you still love your pasta, then go ahead and use whichever lovely, fresh sheets suit you.

*And if you are not an eggplant fan but you still need a Gluten Free option, then I have used both of these Orgran and San Remo Lasagne sheets in the past.

 

If Macros are important to you here are the details for 1 serve – that is 1/10th of the meat based meal (I have kept the cauliflower ‘cheese’ sauce separate as I know people like to use it in other dishes!). You will just need to additionally factor in whichever cheese you use on top.

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Seriously Green Sauce

This is a super simple, super fast sauce.

 Light but creamy it is delicious on pasta and zucchini noodles. Or you can drizzle it over chicken or salmon for an extra flavour boost.

  • 75g spinach
  • 15 fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 medium avocado, very ripe
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 50ml fresh lemon juice
  • Good pinch salt

Pop all of the ingredients into a high powered blender/bullet and blitz until smooth.

If the sauce is too thick add in a splash of water to help it blend.

If you’re using a Thermomix/Bellini or any of their cousins, you’ll need to use speed 6 for 10 seconds, scrape down and repeat and then turn up to speed 10 for 6 seconds at a time, scrape down and repeat as required until smooth

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If macros are important to you, here’s the breakdown for a heaped tablespoon (about 1/5 of the recipe)

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We like to have ours with zucchini noodles.

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Use a spiralizer for the zucchini, then add the zoodles into a hot frying pan. Add in enough sauce to coat the zoodles and stir until warm.

Extra delicious if you top them with some grilled chicken, tomatoes and pine nuts!

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Enjoy 😊

Simple Pumpkin Soup

Hooray for soup weather!

This is a soup-er simple meal, really inexpensive and delicious. A pretty mild soup, so it is very kid friendly too.

  • 400g Cauliflower  (1 medium size), roughly chopped
  • 1.2kg Butternut pumpkin roughly chopped
  • 1/2 small brown onion (about 60g), diced
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 tbsp garlic infused olive oil
  • 2 tbsp veggie stock paste
  • 10 cups boiling water
  • 225g cream cheese (*dairy, soy or nut based – you can even use a light silken tofu here)

If you don’t have stock paste you can use 3 cups liquid stock and then only 7 cups water.

Heat the oil in a large saucepan then add in the onion and cook, stirring, until it is soft and golden.

Add in the cauliflower and pumpkin plus the stock paste and stir well. Cook down for about 3 minutes then add in the boiling water.

Cover and simmer for about 20 minutes or until the veggies are very soft. *If you need a quicker cooking time you can give the veggies a quick blitz in your food processor first.

Remove from the heat and add in the cream cheese. Use an immersion blender to blend until the soup is very smooth. If you are using a blender/thermo cooker/bullet machine to blend – BE VERY CAREFUL! Allow it to cool quite a bit first and then do small batches.

I love to serve mine topped with roasted pumpkin seeds and pine nuts (switch hemp seeds for nut free) …. Just pop the seeds in a hot, dry frying pan and cook, stirring, for a couple of minutes until they are golden brown. Sprinkle on the soup and if you want a little extra kick … sprinkle on a little pinch of chilli flakes!

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Serves 12.

If Macros are important to you, here they are for 1 serve (roughly 2 ladles of soup) , worked out for the dairy based cream cheese – not including the seed topping.

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This will last several days in the fridge, or it freezes and defrosts well.

Enjoy 🙂

 

 

Chicken, Broccoli & Quinoa Patties

You already know that I like easy food!

Well, these are easy, have only a few ingredients, freeze well, pack in a heap of good stuff to stretch the meat further aaaaand… they’re delicious!

Plus I kind of feel like they’re a complete meal in one. Protein, veg and grain … All right there! Which means that if I’m in a hurry and grab a couple of these from the freezer, I’ve got everything I need for a balanced meal. Winning 👌

  • 4 medium chicken thighs (about 485g), skinless and boneless
  • 200g broccoli
  • 1/2 cup tricoloured quinoa (110g)
  • 1 tbsp coconut aminos
  • 1/4 cup (15g) Nutritional yeast
  • 1 birdseye chilli or 1/2 tsp chilli flakes (you can skip the chilli if you’re not a fan!)

Start by bringing a small saucepan of water to the boil and cooking the quinoa. Rinse it well first, then it should take about 15 mins. Drain it, rinse it again and set aside.

Wash the broccoli well and shake dry (too much water and your patties will be soggy). Break into chunks and add to your food processor. Process until fine (Speed 4, 8 seconds, scrape down then Speed 5 for 5 seconds).

Whilst still processing (speed 4), add the nutritional yeast and chicken through the top chute and process until it is finely chopped and well combined. (Up to Speed 5 for 8 seconds once it is all added)

Continue processing (Speed 4) and add in the chilli and coconut aminos.

Add add in the (very well drained) quinoa and process until it is evenly combined.

Scrape mixture into a bowl, cover and place in the fridge for 2 hours, or up to over night. I usually make the mix in the morning before work and then form the patties in the afternoon.

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Use tablespoons of mixture to form patties with slightly oiled hands and place them on a lined baking tray.

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So pretty!

Spray with a little olive oil, then place into a 200C oven for about 20 minutes, then flip and cook for another 5-10 minutes, or until cooked through (you can use a thermometer to check that the centre has reached 75C) and golden.

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Makes 12. These freeze and defrost well – use a little kitchen paper to absorb excess moisture when defrosting and reheating.

Serve warm with extra veggies, and an extra drizzle of coconut amino sauce – or use them the next time your build your own burgers!

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Enjoy

If macros are important to you – here are the details per patty (1 /12th of the recipe):

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Enjoy

Lamb Koftas

We don’t heat a huge amount of red meat, but a few months back, my biggest boy was reading and the characters in the book described the Lamb Koftas they were eating.

Will had never heard of them before so he asked me about them and then asked me to make them.

They were very simple to make and a winner of a meal with 6 empty plates, so they have been added to the menu and we hope you like them as much as we do!

  • 500g lamb mince
  • 100g chick peas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 small brown onion
  • 2-3 clove cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp tahini
  • 1 tbsp hemp seeds
  • 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp dried paprika
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2-1 tsp dried chilli flakes (depending on the amount of bite you like)
  • 2 tsp finely grated lemon zest
  • good pinch salt

Optional: Dressing of Minted yoghurt (see below the recipe) and crunch of toasted pine nuts or pumpkin seeds

Into your food processor/thermo cooker, place the onion, garlic, chick peas, lemon, seeds, tahini and all of the herbs and spices.

Process until they are finely chopped (Speed 4, 8 seconds, scrape down and repeat)

While the machine is still processing, add in the lamb in through the top opening and process until the mixture is very well combined and quite smooth.

Place the mixture into a bowl, cover and place in the fridge for at least an hour (over night is fine). This will help the mixture to hold together without egg as a binder.

Divide the mixture into 12 and form in to small fat sausage shapes.

Slide on to skewers and cook over medium heat on an oiled bbq or griddle plate. If you’re using bamboo skewers, soak them in water for at least half an hour first and it’ll stop them burning on the heat.

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We like to serve ours with ribbons of carrot and cucumber.

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We also used minted yoghurt as a dressing (you can used which ever kind of unflavoured yoghurt fits your dietary needs). About 4 tbsp mixed with 2 tsp of finely torn fresh mint.

Top with toasted pine nuts (or pumpkin seeds).

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If Macros are important to you here are the details. Each serve is 1 kofta (that is 1/12 of the mix)

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Enjoy 🙂

Crunchy Crumbles

These super speedy little bites are just slight sweet and deliciously crunchy.

They add great fats and proteins as well as some extra fibre and texture to yoghurt.

Add them to plain rolled or soaked oats too.

  • 2 heaped tbsp pumpkin seeds
  • 2 heaped tbsp hemp seeds
  • 2 tsp honey OR maple syrup

Place seeds in a hot frying pan.

Dry fry the seeds, stirring regularly until they start to brown … Watch carefully, it won’t take long!

Add in the honey and stir until all the seed are well coated.

Fry until the seeds are golden brown (only another minute or so).

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Remove from frying pan and spread out on a plate (don’t use kitchen paper or they stick!)

Place plate in the fridge or freezer for a few minutes until they have cooled.

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Then break up and sprinkle on.

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Keep the leftover crumbles in an airtight container in the fridge for a week.

If macros are important to you, here are the details for 1/4 of the mix.

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Berry Fruit Compote

So simple to make. Quick and delicious … and you can adapt it to whatever fruits you have lying around.

  • 1 cups frozen berries*
  • 1 medium apple or pear, finely diced
  • Lemon peel (peel into strips for easy removal)
  • 1 tsp vanilla bean paste
  • Optional: 1-2 tsp maple syrup

*if you are using fresh berries and not frozen, you’ll need to add a little splash of water when you first start cooking.

Place all ingredients into a small saucepan and turn on to a low heat.

Stir regularly until the juices from the berries release.

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Allow the mix to come to a simmer and then leave to a very gentle simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Leave the saucepan partially covered with the lid to stop it splattering!

It is ready when you can very easily slide a fork through the apple and the juices in the pan are becoming thick and sticky.

Remove the lemon peel and if you want a smoother compote, use a potato masher to crush down the fruit.

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Thermo Cooking instructions:

Place all ingredients into a bowl and turn on to Speed 2, 100C. For about 10-12 minutes.

Remove the lemon peel. If you want smoother compote, turn off heating, increase speed to 4, in 5 second bursts until you are happy with the texture, scraping down the sides as required.

—–

Serve warm on cakes, scones or pancakes, or allow to cool and serve with yoghurt, custard or ice cream … or just eat it on it’s own!!

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Enjoy 🙂

Oaty Seed Bikkies

These lovely bikkies are like a cross between an ANZAC and a muesli biscuit.

Just sweet enough to satisfy my husband’s sweet tooth, super easy to whip up plus they’re lunchbox and allergy friendly!

  • 1 cups rolled oats
  • 1 cup plain flour  (GF flour, spelt, wheat – all work)
  • 1 tsp GF baking powder
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1/2 cup sultanas*
  • 125g melted butter or oil (coconut oil and melted vegan butter work well)
  • 70g golden syrup/honey/maple syrup

*Chopped Dates, or dried apple, or apricots work well too

**For a Coeliac friendly version: you can replace the oats with a mix of rolled quinoa, puffed rice and shredded coconut.

Mix together  all the dry ingredients in a large bowl. (Speed 4, 10 seconds). Then set aside.

In a medium sized saucepan (or microwave), melt together the oi/butter and syrup. (Speed 2, 100C for approx 2 mins)

Add the wet mix to the dry mix and combine well (Speed 4, 8 seconds, scrape down and repeat).

On a greased baking tray place heaped teaspoon-fulls of the mixture and flatten down slightly.

Cook in a preheated oven at 170C for about 15-20 mins or until golden brown.

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When you remove them from the oven they will be fairly soft. They will harden as they cool. Leave them on the tray for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to finish cooling.

Makes about 20 – store in an airtight container for up to a week.

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And watch out for the bikkie thief ….

Enjoy 🙂