Wednesday, 9 November 2016

3 Pumpkin recipes

Pumpkin party!!!
I moderately hate it when you find recipes online, you go to the blog post and before you can get to the recipe there is a heap of rambled on BS that you don't care about?? You too? Lucky that is NOT going to happen here.
No one has time for reading about what your husband did this morning or that your kid said their first word. We are just here for the recipe dude! Unless you really like them and love reading about them which hopefully you will with me when I go on non recipe related musings!!


Raw 'almost' choc pumpkin tart

*Be warned this is a medium 12cm sized tart! Double/triple if you need

What you need 

  • 2 tbs coconut flour
  • 2 tbs flaxmeal
  • 2 tbs almond meal
  • 2 tbs cacao
  • ¼  cup nuts (walnuts, hazelnuts, cashews or brazil work best)
  • 4 tbs coconut oil
  • ¼ tsp vanilla
  • Pinch of salt

  • ½ cup butternut pumpkin
  • 1/3 cup coconut cream
  • 1 tbs coconut oil
  • ¼ tsp grated ginger or powder
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp vanilla
  • Squeeze of lemon juice

*option to add a sweetener of choice - 1 tbs honey/maple/rice malt or 2 tsp stevia

What you do with it

  1. Place a 9" flan or tart shell mould in the freezer
  2. Place all ingredients into a food processor and blitz until combined. Make sure you do a scrapey scrape of the edges as you go!
  3. Remove the mould from the freezer and spoon in small amounts of your mix and spread it around as you go. The trick is to keep spreading the mix to the cold base so it begins to harden!
  4. Place in the freezer while you make the next part!!
  5. Blitz pumpkin in a processor till you have a smooth puree. 
  6. Add remaining ingredients and taste as you go, adding more lemon to lift the flavour if needed
  7. Remove your mould from the freezer and pour in the filling.
  8. Set in the freezer for 20 minutes and then make sure you take it out at least 5 minutes before you let anyone eat it!

But this is how mine looked! I get impatient...

Spiced pumpkin gluten free muffins

Inspired by Gluten Freelance

Makes approximately 9 muffins

What you need

  • 1 cup of pumpkin chopped and steamed/roasted (roasting makes it sweeter which is awesome!)

  • 1/2 cup of coconut flour
  • 1/2 cup of flax meal
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp of gluten free baking powder
  • 3 tsp of cinnamon
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • pinch of salt
  • couple of dashes of coconut or almond milk
  • 2 tablespoons of coconut oil

*Option to add a sweetener of choice - 1 tbs honey/maple/rice malt or 2 tsp stevia

What you do with it 

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 and grease muffin tray with coconut oil
  2. Place pumpkin in a processor and blend until smooth.
  3. Add flour, powder, cinnamon, salt and sweetener (if you can't help it!) and milk.
  4. Transfer to a mixing bowl and stir in eggs. Give it some mixing love. 
  5. Taste and feel as you go and add extra cinnamon or sweetener. 
  6. Divide mix into tray and bake for around 35 minutes. They will be golden but quite soft on the inside so don't stress...they are gluten free that's why!
  7. Take them out of the oven and try one straight away. It is a requirement of baking isn't it??
I ate some on their own some with a blend of whipped coconut cream and oil (tiny bit just to hold) and dusted with cinnamon. Butter or a beautiful nut butter would be irresistibly to die!! 

Pumpkin walnut and coconut dip

* TRUST ME.....This is such a sweet dip if you roast the pumpkin a little longer so you can even have it as a dessert but is amazing when paired with savoury crackers or breads

What you need                            

  • 500gm butternut pumpkin cut into inch cubes tossed in olive oil 
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 1/4 cup coconut cream
  • 1 tsp grated lemon zest
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon 
  • Salt and pepper to taste

*option to add 1 tbs of coconut oil to make a spread for toast or crackers! I did!

What you do with it 

  1. Pre heat oven to 180 and roast pumpkin for 30-40 minutes until soft but not too brown
  2. Spread the walnuts on a tray and bake for a few minutes until slightly darkened 
  3. Blitz the nuts in a food processor until crumbly then add remaining ingredients. 
  4. Blend until super smooth and season as you go!

Make extras and blend it with milk and greens for a smoothie!!! Veggies AHOY!!!

Sunday, 23 October 2016

How to use coriander roots

It’s Saturday night. It’s the first ‘come-over-and-I-will-cook-you-dinner’ date with that guy you are ‘kinda’ seeing. So you are whipping out the big guns. Shit is getting real. You are trying out that Thai dish you’ve had saved from a Donna Hay mag 3 years back. It’s a spesh occasion. I get it.  But what I don’t get is why many of us when we get all adventurous and cook Thai, Vietnamese or Indian (pretty much 3 of the most amazing cuisine’s) we get all lost and confused with CORRIANDER!! Or cilantro, but I am Aussie!!
By lost and confused, I mean we get stuck not knowing how to wash it, prepare it and store it correctly. But the mammoth question is.......


“Doesn’t everyone just use the precious tangly little leaves??” You ask.  Ermmm, no. That’s the kinda question that makes someone that is hyper passionate about Thai cooking like Derek from Make Bistro all cringy.

Derek is basically ‘the’ dude when it comes to Thai food. He cooks and he teaches how to cook Thai food…..exactly how it is. Like replicates it to the minute detail!  He holds intimate pop up dinners in Brooklyn New York where (those who are lucky enough to get a spot) can eat and discuss Thai food in an open and casual atmosphere. His food is served meticulously and recreated identically as if you were having the best meal of your life down some lane way in the back streets of Chang Mai.

Derek says “Cilantro root is very important to Thai cooking and me. Often grocery stores cut the root off before you even have a chance to savor it! There are so many uses and gives a good balance to garlic with a great herbaceous fragrance. If you have garlic, cilantro root, and white pepper, you are well on your way to creating true Thai flavor. This combination pounded up into a paste is the base for so many dishes.”

How should I best wash coriander and store it?

Chop off the roots first and set aside. Hold the stems of your bunch of coriander and dunk gently a few times into a bowl of cold water. Let sit for a few minutes to let any dirt settle. Repeat with clean water.  Remove and pat COMPLETELY dry with paper towel.  To store, wrap in fresh paper towel and keep in a plastic container if using within the week. Or the best way to keep it fresh is to place upright in a jar of water (with root and stems attached) and cover with a loose plastic bag.

What can I do with the roots??

According to Derek, it is the same process.  But just before patting the roots dry, he scrapes the roots gently but just enough to remove the excess stubborn dirt from the base of the root.  He also suggested to me that I can freeze the roots for later use in Thai sates, marinades and sauces. You can store it for up to 6 months!!

Here are a couple of links to recipes for you that use coriander/cilantro root. 

 Red Lentil Dal           

Peppercorn Cilantro root flavour paste 

Thursday, 21 July 2016

Zesty Choc Mint Avocado Bars

I find that I thrive within limitations. I mean where is a challenge with creation if you have limitless possibilities? At the moment I am on a month long Leaky Gut elimination diet which means that there is a lot that I must avoid. That means I am pretty limited when it comes to ingredients. So within boundaries, of course I take up the challenge to create. Create things like these...

ZEsty ChoC MinT Avocado baRs! Raw, sugar free and think lots of the 'good' kinds of fat

What you need

  • ¼  lime/lemon juice
  • ½ avocado
  • ½ cup coconut
  • ½ cup coconut oil
  • pinch salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tbs honey/maple/sweetener of choice *optional

Chocolate drizzle

  • ¼ cup coconut oil melted
  • ¼ cup raw cacao
  • 1 drop of peppermint essential oil or ¼ tsp peppermint essence
  • pinch salt
  • ½ tsp vanilla

What you do with it:

  1. Blend avocado and juice until smooth
  2. While blending, gradually pour in melted coconut oil.
  3. Add your coconut, vanilla and salt and blend til combined.
  4. Pour into a lined loaf tin and set in the freezer for 30 mins
  5. In the meantime melt coconut oil and stir in cacao a little at a time (no one wants a powder explosion of cacao!)
  6. And your peppermint and give it a good stir.
  7. Remove your mix from the freezer, let sit for 5 mins and cut into bars.
  8. Drizzle with melted chocolate, place on tray and into the fridge for 5 minutes or until the chocolate has set.