Category Archives: super healthy

Sensational Breakfast Sanga (Indea’s favourite breakfast)

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This is Indea’s favourite breakfast and she asked me to share it. Super easy but super yummy and vegetables are the star. Long weekend Breakfasts are sacred in our family, many pots of tea, coffee, good food and long leisurely yarns with those you love most – what in life is better?

For this Sanga you will need

Toast for each person. Indea and I like an open sandwich but Pete likes two sliced of bread, top and bottom for his.

Capsicum

Spinach

Tomatoes

Haloumi Cheese

Avocado

Tomato Pesto ( you can use shop bought or you can make it. I like to whizz together garlic cloves, sundries tomatoes, macadamias and enough olive oil to make it to a spreading consistency)

To make it

Grill or fry the haloumi and capsicum until golden and cooked through, slice the tomatoes and avocado

Spread the toast liberally with the tomato pesto, layer the vegetables on top.

Super easy and super yummy

Seared Tuna with Olive, Feta and Pomegranate Couscous

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It is getting so hot in tropical Queensland that meals which require very little cooking, are healthy and quick to make, are essential. Tuna, egg and olives make such a happy trio. I created this last night and we settled back with our bowls of yummy couscous and tuna, under the ceiling fan and chilled out with Neil Gaiman’s American Gods.

For four hungry people

You will need

4 Tuna Steaks – You can use Tempeh for a Veggie Option

2 Cups of dry Couscous. I use corn couscous because we are gluten free and this is available in most supermarkets in the health section

4 Eggs boiled hard, shelled and chopped

1 cup of chopped Olives

I red Capsicum finely diced

125 grams of Feta cheese

1 bunch of finely chopped fresh Coriander (otherwise known as cilantro)

1/4 cup of Lemon juice

1/4 cup of Pomegranate syrup (sometimes called Pomegranate Molasses)

1 Lemon

Optional extras

1/2 cup of toasted Pine Nuts

The seeds of one Pomegranate

To Make it

Prepare the Couscous by putting the dry couscous into a large bowl and pouring over 4 cups of boiling water. Let it sit for 15 minutes. Whilst this is happening I pop on the eggs to boil. When the couscous has absorbed most of the water and is fluffy and soft to eat drain it in a sieve and run it under the cold tap. This will stop the cooking process and stop it from becoming gluggy. Place the well drained cold couscous into a large bowl.

Add

The Olives, diced red capsicum, most of the chopped coriander keeping some aside for garnish, crumble in the feta cheese, 1/4 cup of lemon juice and the 1/4 cup of pomegranate molasses. If you are adding pomegranate seeds and/or toasted pine nuts pop them in now too.

Combine well until the pomegranate molasses and lemon juice are thoroughly spread throughout the couscous.

Set aside and sear the Tuna Steaks on both sides

To Serve

Place the couscous salad into bowls, place the sliced Tuna steaks on top, sprinkle on the diced egg and remaining coriander.

Add a 1/4 lemon to each plate so eaters can squeeze over their tuna

Easy Peasy Poke` Bowl

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We love this Poke` on hot tropical nights when heating up the oven is an absolute no. It’s fresh, healthy and super quick to make, more importantly it’s super super yummy. There are many variations on Poke bowls and this is mine.

These are ingredients you will need for each person.

1 Cup of chopped mixed greens. Any greens will do. I use spinach and beetroot leaves and occasionally throw in some blanched broccoli or asparagus.

1/2 Cup of diced Tomato

1/2 Cup of diced Cucumber

1/2 Cup of diced avocado

1/4 Cup of crushed Macadamias

140 gram fillet of diced Salmon or Tuna – make sure its really fresh and a good colour

Put all these ingredients into a bowl.

Now make the dressing and again these are the ingredients for each person

1 Tablespoon of Soy Sauce

1 Teaspoon of Wasabi

1 Dessertspoon of lemon juice

1 Teaspoon of Sesame Oil

1 Teaspoon of Horseradish Cream

Chilli as you like it.

Stir well with a fork until combined.

Pour the dressing over the Salad and toss through, coating the fish in the dressing.

Sprinkle on

1 finely chopped sheet of Nori Seaweed

1 Dessertspoon of Sesame Seeds

Now enjoy how great and refreshed this makes your body feel after eating it.

Easy Agedashi Tofu

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This is our go to quick healthy snack. I love Agedashi Tofu and could easily eat it for three meals a day. This recipe takes less than half an hour to whip up. What can I say? Tofu has come a long way.

This recipe makes 2 large serves.

You will need

400grams of Firm Silken Tofu
Bonito flakes
1 teaspoon of Bonito Stock
1 cup of Potato Flour
2 Tablespoons of Mirin
1 Tablespoon of Soy Sauce
1 Cup of water
Coconut Oil

First Make the Stock

Place the bonito stock, water, miring and soy into a small saucepan and bring to the boil. Then set aside.

Next Make the Tofu

Because you are using Silken Tofu you will need to be gentle with it.
Pat the Tofu dry with towel.
Cut the tofu into cubes, I use fairly large cubes and cut each 200g packet of Tofu into 4.
Coat each cube in potato flour
Immediately gently fry each cube on each side in the hot coconut oil until slightly golden.

To serve

Place the lightly fried Tofu in a bowl, pour over the warm broth, sprinkle with the bonito flakes and enjoy immediately.

Note: You can purchase mirin, bonito flakes and stock in most supermarkets but if yours doesnt have it an asian grocer most likely will. You will find the potato flour in the flour section of most supermarkets

Robbi’s easy peasy 100% Rye Bread and nothing else (made for Pete)

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My lovely husband Peter looked at the salt content in shop bought bread and had a coronary over his sardines on toast so I said I would make home made bread for him that was 100% rye – his favourite.

This bread is so yummy and so easy to make I’m now making it every second day – (ahh what you can manage when the kids fly away).

Smile because there are no arduous hours of kneading and the smell of bread cooking and the taste of hot bread smothered in butter is one of those things that makes life worth living.

Just make sure you have somewhere warm away from drafts to leave the bread whilst it rises. Up here in the tropics that means anywhere.

Ingredients

6 Cups of Rye Flour

2 Teaspoons of Yeast granules

2 Dessertspoons of Molasses

1 Teaspoon of salt

1/4 Cup of Rice Bran Oil

2 Cups of Warm Water

To Make that Dough

Put the rye flour into a large bowl and make a well in the centre, put the yeast into the well, sprinkle the salt and molasses over the yeast. Pour over 1 of the cups of warm water, stir the well until the salt, molasses and yeast is mixed into the water but don’t stir in all the flour.

Leave it in a warm place for about 15 – 20 minutes, after this time there should be bubbles in the watery-yeast mix.

Pour in the other cup of water and the oil and mix the whole lot up until combined. Cover with a towel if you have drafts near by and leave in a warm place until the dough has doubled in size or for about 1 – 2 hours.

Now cover  your hand in rye flour and knead the dough. I usually do this in the bowl using one hand. As its rye you won’t knead to knead (hah hah) for long – just until the dough is doughy and holding together and a bit shiny and elastic – no more than 20 kneads.

Now shape it into the tin you want to bake it in and leave it in a warm place for another 1 – 2 hours until it doubles in shape again.

Bake that Bread

Now bake the bread at 175 degrees celsius or 350 farenheight for 1 hour.

When cooked tip the bread out, slice, smother so its dripping in butter (another coronary coming on) and try not to eat the entire loaf in half an hour.

Prosciutto Brown Fried Rice – Healthy and Yummy

Fried Rice

We have rushed or no breakfast during the week but weekend breakfasts are sacred in our family – they last over many cups of tea and coffee for as long as possible. This fried rice was born when I got up to make big weekend breakfast of rice that reminded me of the rice breakfasts we had in Cambodia. When I opened the fridge door I found we had barely any supplies and I wasn’t ready to get dressed and hit the shops so I used what we had. Luckily I had a few really yummy ingredients that surprised us all by making a perfect marriage and now this is our family fried rice recipe and now we eat it for any meal and cook enough to make sure there are plenty of left overs .

Ingredients you will need:

5 Cups of Brown Cooked Rice

6 Eggs

1 Red Capsicum finely diced

800 grams of Broccoli heads finely shredded – don’t cut the broccoli into florets slice through it like you would if shredding lettuce so it falls off the head like rice

2 Red Onions – love love love sweet red onions

1/2 Cup of Soy Sauce

200 grams of Prosciutto torn into pieces

2 teaspoons of Keanes curry powder – this is optional – sometimes I leave it out. I use Keanes for this recipe rather than making the curry paste, because it is mild for breakfast and has a slight sweetness.

Coconut Oil

Making the Fried Rice

Place a good dob of coconut oil into a large frying pan (I use one that has a 34cm diameter)and heat it, when its good and hot and everything will sizzle drop in the prosciutto, onion and capsicum and fry until the onion and capsicum is browned and the prosciutto is crispy. Remove from the heat and set aside.

Beat the eggs into a bowel. Warm some more coconut oil in a fresh smaller pan (I use one that has a 26 cm diameter). When hot pour in the eggs, lift the eggs around the edges as it cooks so the uncooked egg can run underneath to cook. When cooked flip out onto a bread board, roll and slice into thin strips.

Now put the large saucepan (with the prosciutto mix) back on the heat and add the shredded broccoli. Cook for a couple of minutes until the broccoli softens, then add the cooked rice, soy sauce and curry powder. Finally add the shredded eggs and fold through.

And Eat.

Added extras – I like a squeeze of lemon juice over my rice, my husband Pete likes more soy sauce and fried egg.

Vegetarian Option – Discard the prosciutto and instead use Tofu Chips. To make Tofu chips cut hard tofu into rectangles. Mix 4 tablespoons of flour with mixed herbs, salt and pepper. Coat the tofu pieces and fry in coconut oil. Then add to the rice at the end with the eggs.

 

 

Quinoa with Veggie Chips

Topped with a greek yogurt dressing

Topped with a greek yogurt dressing

It is so hot in Cairns and we wanted a dinner that was light, healthy and meant no baking.  So I created this salad topped with a yogurt sauce. Meals that show off the beauty, colour and flavour of simple vegetables are always my favourites. We loved it and hope you do too.

Ingredients

I cup of Quinoa

2.5 cups of water

1 massel stock cube

2 tablespoons of pine nuts

1 sweet potato

1 eggplant

1 red capsicum

100 grams of natural yogurt or greek yogurt

3 tablespoons of lemon juice

2 tablespoons of minced garlic

2 tablespoons of tomato pesto

1 tablespoon of coconut oil or olive oil

oil to sauté

salt

optional

parsley to top

asparagus to add some green

 

Cook the Quinoa

In a saucepan place

1 cup of quinoa

2.5  cups of water

1 massel vegetable stock cube or a teaspoon of stock powder

Cook for 20 minutes until the water has been absorbed by the quinoa

Whilst it’s cooking

Lightly brown 2 tablespoons of pine nuts and set aside

Prepare and Cook the veggies

Slice the vegetables in strips and place one type of vegetable at a time into a heated and lightly oiled pan and sauté until cooked and browned. When each vegetable is cooked set aside and do the next one.

When all vegetables are cooked place the 2 tablespoons of garlic and the 2 tablespoons of tomato pesto in the pan and lightly cook then add the cooked vegetables and sauté for a further 3 minutes until the vegetables are well coated with the garlic and tomato.

Prepare the Quinoa

When the quinoa is cooked add 1 tablespoon of the lemon juice (you will need the rest for the yogurt) and the pine nuts and 1 tablespoon of coconut oil and lightly stir through the quinoa.

Prepare the Yogurt Sauce 

Mix 2 tablespoons of lemon juice and a generous pinch of salt through the yogurt

To serve

Place the quinoa in each serving bowl or plate, top with the vegetable chips and spoon over yogurt.

Spanakopita Gluten Free – Spinach and Cheese Pie

Our current favourite we are eating this once a week

Our current favourite we are eating this once a week

We love spanakopita – the salty fetta, healthy spinach. I have worked to perfect this recipe over the last 6 months to get it how we think is just the right combination of fetta, other cheeses and the spinach. Its super easy to make. Super yummy and there is never any left over.

You will need:

1 diced onion, sautéed until it is just browning

1/2 cup of grated parmesan cheese

1 cup of grated tasty cheese

200 grams of fetta cheese (I use the Danish because I love its creaminess)

300 grams of  spinach leaves, chopped and make sure they are dry (even though I find it difficult to cook anything that has the word baby to describe it I do use baby spinach leaves)

6 eggs

3 tablespoons of fresh oregano

1/2 cup of gluten free self raising flour – now you can leave this out and sometimes I do – but then you have to make sure the spinach really is dry. If you add the 1/2 cup of flour you will have a fail safe pie.

No salt – the fetta is salty enough on its own

To make it:

what it will look like before you pop it in the oven

what it will look like before you pop it in the oven

Combine all these ingredients and pour into an oiled baking dish and top with extra cheese and some extra fresh oregano.

To Upload it

Sometimes – and my daughters love it when I do this – I line the greased dish with nitrate free prosciutto and then pop the spinach cheesy mix on top. It does make it more salty but also super yummy.

to upload line the dish with prosciutto

to upload line the dish with prosciutto

 

 

Poor Student Vegetable Soup (now also called Actors Soup)

 

I lived on this soup when I was a poor art student in the late 70’s.  I dressed in bright green tights and retro 1930’s dresses from the op shop, lived on a student allowance of $70 a fortnight and made gallons of this soup. I passed on this recipe to my youngest son who is at present a poor Jazz Piano student at the Conservatorium in another state (God I miss him!) . This soup is great because you can use it as a base and add anything you like to it according to your budget. It’s super healthy and so now I am putting it here for my  son Seth who is an actor on the other  side of the world in L.A. (God I miss him!) ,

Vegetable Soup

Into a large pot place one and half cups of each of the following vegetables:

diced onion

sliced celery

grated parsnip

grated turnip

grated carrots

Add

1 tablespoon of mixed herbs

A good lug of olive oil – about 4 tablespoons

salt and pepper

Fry everything for about 5 minutes stirring often. Its really important not to skip this step, this is what really brings out all the lovely vegetable flavours.

Add

500 g  (1 lb) of the cheapest bones you can find, lamb, beef, oxtail, ham hock, chicken anything is fine. I used lamb bones today but I just use what ever is cheapest. If you want a vegetarian soup leave out the bones but add some lentils or other legumes instead.

2 litres of vegetable stock, you can use the ready made stock or you can use powder or cubes and water which is what I did.

Bring to the boil then simmer gently for one hour.

Remove the bones. The dog is waiting patiently for the bones, this is the dog with his I’m being good waiting for those bones face IMG_0015

Chop a bunch of parsley and add to the soup – this will taste great and give you a really good shot of iron.

Serve sprinkled generously with parmesan or tasty cheese.

Things I sometimes add to this soup are

bacon pieces, lentils, white legumes like haricot beans, other veggies like potato, yams, zucchini etc.

Butternut and Cashew Curry

Butternut and Cashew Curry

This is Peter’s favourite curry – the one he asks for as his birthday dinner. Here it is for Seth who is looking for yummy veggie meals for those trying to live on a budget in L.A, and all the rest of you who want to try a really yummy, easy vegetarian curry.

Spices

1 chopped onion

1 chopped capsicum

1 teaspoon of seed mustard

1 dessertspoon of curry paste ( more or less to taste)

2 dessertspoons of dark brown sugar, (I hate to use sugar but it really does bring out the lovely sweetness of the pumpkin)

1 dessertspoon of lemon juice

2 heaped dessertspoons of sultanas (preferably sun dried no sodium nitrates which are super bad for you)

1/2 cup of cashews

a few lugs of olive or cocoanut oil

Throw all these into a good sized pot and stir over heat until the aromatic smells combine into deliciousness and start to fill your house and make you all hungry, reduce the heat to the lowest possible setting and leave to sauté whilst you prepare the veggies.

Vegetables

1 large tomato chopped

1 zucchini (courgette) chopped

200 grams of mushrooms sliced

1/2 butternut pumpkin chopped unevenly, (this is so the smaller pieces become mushy saucy bits whilst the larger bits retain their shape)

Add all these to the spices and stir well, still sautéing for a few minutes so the spices coat the vegetables. Its really important to sauté it all to really give the pumpkin its nuttiness. Then pop on the lid and keeping on low simmer for 30 minutes or until the larger pieces of butternut are cooked. It doesn’t matter if the smaller bits get a bit mushy as you want that  – they will become part of the curry sauce.

Before Serving

When the butternut pumpkin is cooked add 270 mls of cocoanut cream and 4 dessertspoons of chopped fresh coriander (more or less to taste – I love coriander so there is never enough for me).

To Serve

Sprinkle chopped roasted cashews on top

Serve with microwaved pappadums and rice

Dukkah Egg and Chicken Salad

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This is a such an easy salad to toss together, so healthy and fresh and it’s my girls favourite salad. Often if I’m short of time I take short cuts and use store bought dukkah and sesame dressing. I’m including my recipe for dukkah and dressing so if you want to make the whole thing yourself you can.

This make 4 ample serves for hungry eaters.

Ingredients

500 grams of Chicken fillets
4 eggs boiled for 8 minutes
4 freshly cooked baby beetroots
1 bunch of freshly steamed asparagus (don’t over cook it, you want a crispness to it)
4 handfuls of fresh salad greens of any type
1/2 cup of sesame and pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
Dukkah – or make your own (recipe below)
Japanese creamy sesame dressing (or make your own)

Ingredients for the Dukkah

4 tablespoons of pistachios (almond, hazelnuts are a good alternative)
2 tablespoons of sesame seeds
1 tablespoon of coriander seeds
1 tablespoon of fennel seeds
1 tablespoon of salt
1 tablespoon of pepper
4 good slices of lemon peel

Throw all this into a food processor and blitz, (adjust the pepper if you don’t like it too hot)

Sesame Dressing

2 dessertspoons of tahini
1/4 cup of sesame oil
3 dessertspoons of lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste

mix the oil into the tahini, slowly add the lemon juice so it doesn’t curdle, add salt and pepper

Making the Salad

Coat the chicken strips in the dukkah and fry until cooked and golden brown.
Peel the hard boiled eggs, rinse but don’t dry and coat each egg in the dukkah.
Cut the eggs into four pieces

Place a handful of greens on each plate.
Add the beetroot, asparagus, egg, chicken strips.
Sprinkle with the pumpkin and sesame seeds.
Drizzle with the dressing.

Happy Days! The Neal family favourite salad

Quinoa Fritattas

Quinoa Frittatas

Quinoa Frittatas

I was going to post some delicious gluten free biscuit (cookies for non aussies) recipes but instead I have decided to go healthy. This recipe for Quinoa Frittatas is one I make for my daughters for their school lunches. They are full of yummy veggies, cheese and what is life without cheese? and of course Quinoa an excellent source of protein, fibre, carbs etc.
This is a super healthy but super yummy recipe.

This recipe will make 12 Quinoa Frittatas in a large muffin pan

Cook 1 cup of quinoa in a saucepan with 2 1/2 cups of water and one vegetable gluten free stock cube. I use Massels stock cubes which also have no nasties like msg.

Add together:

Cooled Quinoa
1/2 cup of gluten free self raising flour. I use white wings but any brand or type is fine.
salt – just a pinch
Herbs, just a handful chopped well, I use what ever is growing well in my pot plants on the back verandah, today is was oregano and thyme.
6 cups of mixed finely diced or grated vegetables. I used mushroom, grated zucchini, capsicum, spanish onion, carrot – what ever you have on hand will work. I have used grated sweet potato which was yum.
2 cups of cheese, I use 1 cup of tasty and 1 cup of shredded parmesan
8 eggs

Combine this and spoon into 12 lined large muffin pans.
Sprinkle a little cheese on top.
Cook at 375 degrees for 20 minutes