Thursday, August 30, 2012

vegan curried 'egg' salad cups

I love a good curried egg salad. It reminds me of staying at my Grandma’s house when we were younger ‘kidlets’ . My Grandparents are/were mad water skiers and we would spend hours on end out on their ski boat in the summertime. My attempts of water skiing were never a great success. You see, I wouldn't let go of the rope when I fell and would be dragged under the water to the point of nearly drowning. This made me develop a bit of a phobia. So, I spent most of the time clinging for my life on the donut and cruising on the kneeboard.

Grandma would always make up a massive eski full of sandwiches and come lunchtime we were always famished. With my brother and sister we would sit with our feet in the water enjoying a super satisfying lunch of curried egg sandwiches.

As well as the lunches on the boat, during the school term when we would stay with our Grandparents, Grandma would always be up first thing in the morning making our lunches. Adding lots of homemade goodies like biscuits, fruit cake, Grandad’s dehydrated bananas and of course homemade bread with fresh curried egg and lettuce. There’s nothing better than meals full of nostalgia so that’s what this one is.

Although veganised and totally adapted from the original, it still takes me back to the summer days on the ski boat as the texture and flavours are still all there.


(serves 2)

300g organic firm tofu (homemade or otherwise)
2-3 tsp mild/stong curry powder
1 tsp hemp seed oil (or oil of choosing – olive also works great)
1 tblsp nutritional yeast flakes
pinch of salt and pepper

iceberg lettuce leaves
snow pea sprouts (optional)

Crumble the tofu into a small bowl, using fingers.
Stir in all other ingredients until well combined.
Lay out a lettuce cup and fill with curried ‘egg’ and sprouts (as much or as little as you like).
Roll and munch down straight away.

If you want to make it a take-away option, pack the lettuce cups and curried egg in a separate containers and make the rolls later - perfect for a picnic.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

spiced apple and pear roll-ups

I know, I know, I’ve been a little silent on here. But for good reason as we have been at the snow for the past week.

It was amazing; fresh powder, super drop offs and jumps, absolutely worth the aches and pains. On top of that, it was just so nice to have a holiday with Joel again, even if it wasn’t restful, it is just so nice to be active and creating new memories together.

Our time on the slopes was exceptional, however our car started playing up pretty early on in the week and we ended up losing all our radiator fluid in 20mins intervals. We took it to a mechanic who said that the job would take him 8-12 hours to pull the engine apart and find the root of the issue*. As we didn’t have time for this, we decided to keep chugging along with a massive drum of coolant and water in the back of the car for top-ups. Our major stress was always going to be the drive home.
We left the snow at 4pm and made it home by midnight – not a bad effort for a 6.5 hour drive, stopping every 10-20 mins.

*Not to mention the car had been in the shop for 2 months right before we left for the snow. Our timing belt went and we had to replace the engine.

I haven’t had time to really document a new recipe amidst the car issues, washing, unpacking, shopping and work. So I’ve decided to post this snack which I made before we left for the snow.
We had a heap of pears and apples to use up in the refrigerator and what better way to use them all up than making roll-ups. A healthy, easy-pack energy hit for the hill.


(makes 24)

5 large apples (mixed red & green)
5 large pears
1 tsp cinnamon

Roughly chop the apples and pears and place them in a heavy based saucepan with an inch of water.
Simmer until soft, remove from heat and cool.
Add cinnamon, and softened fruit to a blender and whiz until smooth.
Scoop out and spread evenly (1/2 cm thick) on dehydrator trays – approx. 4 trays.
If you don’t have heaps of Teleflex sheets (like me), line the trays with baking paper.
Dehydrate on 40 degrees for 15-20 hours.
While still warm, slice each sheet into 6 portions and roll tightly.
Store in an airtight container for a week or 2.

I was totally having too much fun to take many pictures, so there's a few iPhone shots.

Early morning drive down to the snow, 4am start.

First day up, just stunning.

Joel always looks confused when taking photos.

We had a blizzard day; the most dangerous drive ever. I was just like bumper cars, we luckily came away unscathed.

Yeah, snow!

Friday, August 17, 2012

walnut, chia and rhubarb cookies

I’ve been utilising the dehydrator a bit more lately, can you tell?

This time is a fruity healthy cookie cracker. Gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, vegan, no added sugar, low-gi, mostly raw.. they are the perfect on-the-go snack.

Joel says they are more like fruit crackers than cookies. But I think he had greasy, buttery cookies on his mind when I produced these for him to try.
His verdict: they are really tasty, but you spend the next couple of minutes picking chia seeds out of your teeth.
I know this would bother him, because, Joel is a minimal effort kind of guy when it comes to food. He won’t eat muesli because it takes too long to chew. Yep, he is a different sort.

These ‘cookies’ (and I use the term loosely) are an impromptu idea I had to use up a bunch of rhubarb that was sitting in the refrigerator.

What?! Use up rhubarb! Like it is some kind of space waster.
It is not like that at all. Honest.

I love rhubarb, but because we are leaving in a couple of days for the snow (for a week) and I couldn’t justify baking it into something that would not keep – or that doesn’t travel well.

Alas! Dehydration.


(makes 20+)

1/4 c chia seeds
1 1/2 c water

1 bunch rhubard, chopped into inch long lengths
1 tblsp water

1 c walnuts, soaked for 12 hours and drained

2 bananas, mashed
1 tsp cinnamon, ground
1 tsp vanilla extract

Mix chia seeds and water and set aside for 20 mins so the seeds can activate.
Next, place rhubarb and water in a small pot and heat until the fruit is soft.
Remove from heat and cool.
Empty walnuts into a food processor and blend until smooth and creamy.
Next add the bananas, cinnamon, vanilla and rhubarb to the walnut mixture and process until well combined.
Then, gently fold through the chia seeds.
Line dehydrating trays with parchment or teleflex sheets.
Place a cookie cutter on the tray and spoon in 2 tblsp sized portions - or whatever will fit.
Gently remove the cookie cutter and repeat until the mixture is all used up.
Dehydrate on 40 C for 20 hours.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

orange soup

I am calling this one my 'orange' soup because of the intense rich colour of the ingredients I've used.

Orange foods are high in carotenoids, which have been shown to decrease the risk of cancers, such as; lung, colon, bladder, cervical, breast and skin. Carotenoid consumption also protects against the risk of macular degeneration and cataracts - which is where the old wives tale comes in, that eating carrots will make you see in the dark.
Orange coloured foods help cleanse the body of toxins and stresses. Vitamin C and zinc work together to provide an excellent detoxifying combination helping the body rid itself of heavy metals and other pollutants.

Also high in Vitamins A, C and minerals such as calcium, copper, selenium, zinc - orange foods are a 'must' in your diet.

I made such a large amount of this soup so that I could freeze individual portions to take for lunch at work.

It has been delightfully satisfying and warming over the past week, as we've had a bitter cold snap - I really don't mind, because it means more snow!


(makes 6-8 serves)

2 kg carrots, roughly chopped (skin on)
2 leeks, roughly sliced
2 brown onions, peeled and roughly chopped
2 c pumpkin, cubed (skin off)
1 kumera, roughly chopped (skin on)
1 tsp turmeric, ground
1 tsp cinnamon, ground
1 tsp curry powder

2 tblsp creamed coconut

coconut oil and salt to taste

Place all ingredients except for the creamed coconut, in a large heavy based pot.
Add enough water to cover the vegetables by an inch - bring to the boil.
Reduce heat and simmer for 30 mins until vegetables are soft (ie. you can poke a knife easily through).
Turn off heat and stir through creamed coconut.
When cool enough, transfer contents to a blender and process until smooth (you may need to do this in batches).
Return to pot and reheat, adding salt to taste.
Serve and drizzle with a small amount of coconut oil.

Monday, August 13, 2012

fresh pea citrus salad

Fresh peas will forever take me back to my childhood.

My Grandfather has always had a vegetable garden, even now when he is in his mid-eighties he is growing turmeric, ginger, squash, kohlrabi, passion fruit, tomatoes.. and the list goes on.

When I was younger, I would always raid his fresh pea vine.
Seriously, whenever we visited I would strip the plant of all it's juicy peas and devour them on the spot. Slowly making my way along the fence that the vine grew, I was like a pacman.

Not much has changed since childhood though.

Because whenever I visit now, I ask Granddad to take me straight to his garden and show me what he's been growing - although, I don't eat anything without permission these days.

But, if I'm super lucky, he'll pack me up some of his treats and send me on my way.


(makes a side for 2)

1/2 c fresh peas, shelled
1/2 c snow peas, diagonally sliced
1/2 lemon, juiced
1 tsp lime rind, finely grated
5 basil leaves, finely sliced
2 tsp olive oil

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and toss well.

Friday, August 10, 2012

activated vanilla walnuts

I love productive days.
My hours at work have gone back to normal, which means I was finally able to get on top of the house work. I'm not one to feel comfortable if there are lingering jobs waiting to be done.
But, now, I am at ease.
Tidying, sorting, washing, cleaning, ironing etc - all done! I've got the incense burning, fresh bunch of lilies from the garden and the fire on full blaze.
Not only all that, but I was able to catch a movie with my best friend (whom I love dearly).

So, after a busy day, it's time for a well deserved snack.

I've had these walnuts on to dehydrate for 24 hours, so now is as good a time as any to dig in.

Walnuts are super high in Vitamin E which has been found to significantly protect against heart problems. Also high in calcium, manganese, omega 3, copper, potassium and magnesium; walnuts provide so much of the good anti-oxidants that our bodies thrive on.

To properly engage these nutrients, I have activated these walnuts by first soaking them in water for 12 hours. This enables the nut to come alive again - literally. The enzymes in the nut start to break down as if it were about to grow. In doing this, your body is absorbing pure live nutrients rather than trying to break down the tough nut first. What better way to nourish your body than with living foods.
Even though they have been dehydrated, they are still activated as they have not been dried out too much to become dormant again.


(makes 3 cups)

3 c raw walnuts, soaked for 12 hours
2 tblsp malt extract
2 tsp vanilla extract

Thoroughly combine all ingredients in a large bowl.
Lay out on dehydrator trays and place on 40 C setting (level II for me).
Dehydrate for 24 hours.
Store in an airtight container for up to a week.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

moroccan spiced homemade couscous

Sometimes I get in this mood where I’m ready to pack it all up and keep travelling. 

It certainly has nothing to do with not being completely happy and satisfied with my life at the moment, but more that I love living and experiencing all that the world has to offer.
Not to mention I love travelling with Joel; creating new memories, expanding our views on the world, planning life and dreaming together.

There is so much to see in the world and I feel we could live a thousand times over and still not truly absorb the cultures of the globe.

At the moment I am dreaming of Morocco. We were so close to getting there when we were in southern Spain, but with visa constraints, we had to be careful not to cross in and out of the EU.

So, this dish is Moroccan inspired.

I love the intense spices of the Moroccan cuisine, and teamed with a good couscous - yum!

Couscous is really easy to make from scratch, even quicker than the instant kind that you get in a packet.


(serves 4)

1 c course semolina
1/4 c chilled water

1 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1 star anise, ground in a mortar and pestle
1/2 c pistachios, shelled
2 medjool dates, finely chopped

1/2 c fresh parsley, chopped
1/2 c fresh mint, chopped

1 tsp lemon rind, finely grated
1 lemon, juiced

Place semolina and chilled water in a food processor and process until crumbled.
Bring a medium sized pot to the boil.
Simultaneously, heat a saucepan on dry heat and toss cumin, cinnamon, turmeric, ginger, anise, nuts and dates for flavours to release.
Drop crumbled semolina into boiling water and bring to the boil for 1-2 minutes. 
Remove from heat, drain and rinse through with cool water.
Add the drained couscous to spices, warm through and turn off heat.
Toss through parsley, mint, rind and juice.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

lemon myrtle and poppy seed cracker: raw

Last winter we would be out on the property every weekend, chopping, collecting and stacking firewood for the week ahead. We have been lazy this winter and used my father’s contact for bulk fire wood.

Sadly, this contact has now fizzled out and our wood pile has slowly dwindled to nothing.
So, we loaded into our run-around car and up the hill we went. Joel chainsaw’ed and I followed him around loading the car full of logs. Then when we got back to the house, we unloaded and Joel chopped it all while I stacked. We make a good team!

I love my lumberjack man.

It’s been forever since I’ve posted a dehydrated recipe. It still runs regularly with fruits, crackers or dog treats.

So I thought I would share my latest cracker recipe with you. It’s delightfully fresh with the hints of lemon and pepper, perfectly wonderful on their own or alongside a tasty dip.

I had the crackers run over night so they would be ready by the next day. After our wood collecting efforts we munched a few down, nourishing our bodies with the super healthy benefits of the chia and cashews.


(makes 3 trays worth or 40 crackers)

1/2 c black chia seeds
1 1/2 c water

1 1/2 c raw cashews, soaked for 12 hours
1 tblsp poppy seeds
1 tsp lemon myrtle
1 lemon, juiced
pinch of salt
1/2 tsp black pepper

Combine chia seeds and water and set aside for 30mins to activate seeds.
Place drained cashews in a food processor and whiz until smooth.
Stir poppy seeds, lemon myrtle, juice, salt and pepper into the cashew mixture.
Next, slowly fold through the chia seeds until well combined.
Spread mixture onto dehydrator trays.
Tip: I don't have many teleflex sheets, so I find it useful to line the trays with baking paper.
Dehydrate on whatever setting you would use for fruit (level 2 for me), for 5 hours.
Then score the crackers to whatever size you would like.
Dehydrate for a further 10 hours.

Friday, August 3, 2012

sweet potato breakfast loaf

I turned into our road this afternoon and saw these sweet bright little flowers sitting on the edge of a paddock. This paddock contains a old lovely white horse, her name is Rose.

Whenever we go for walks to the end of the road, I always scoop up a bunch of grass from the other side of her fence and she has a nibble. Grass is greener, right Rose?!

Well, today she was standing by the fence trying to reach these flowers. So, I stopped the car and picked some and held them up offering them to her. She quickly gobbled them down, but I managed to spare a few for me, because they are so pretty.

Sorry Rose, I had to keep some.

Anyway, I've had a sweet potato loaf written on my "to build" list for a while now.
And finally, I've got around to it.

With very minimal effort, the 'loaf' is a great addition to a meal or my favourite - a quick on-the-go breakfast.


(makes 1 loaf, 12 slices)

2 sweet potatoes
1 tblsp coconut oil

2 c wholemeal spelt flour
1 tblsp savoury yeast flakes
1/2 tsp grated nutmeg
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp himalayan rock salt
1 tsp bi-carb soda

1 c water

1 tblsp sunflower seeds

Heat oven to 180 C and line a loaf tin/dish with baking paper.
Next, thoroughly wash and roughly chop the sweet potatoes (skin left on).
Boil, cool and mash the potatoes, add the coconut oil and set aside.
Combine flour, yeast flakes, spices, salt and soda in a large bowl.
Add the sweet potato mixture, then slowly add the water stirring until well combine.
Transfer the dough to the loaf tin, sprinkle over the sunflower seeds and bake in oven for 1 hour.
Remove from oven and cool before cutting.