Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Panela sugar from columbia

I'm taking a break from rapadura sugar and have been using panela in baking and also in my tea in the morning, I like it because it's a hybrid of molasses and brown sugar it's made by cooking the juice from sugar cane into a thick sticky good which is then moulded into blocks. There is so many dangers around consuming white and refined sugars, in my kitchen panela is getting a good workout. You can buy it from your organic grocer or whole foods store, it's around $4 a packet and I can imagine this will taste great with porridge in winter with fresh berries. On a food as medicine tip it's super high in minerals and is a low gi food for those with blood sugar issues.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Ten tips to get you through the in-between week

1. Eat less, yes, even the Christmas left-overs

2. Connect with friends and family

3. Drink lots of water, and if your drinking more alcohol than usual have 2 glasses water per alcoholic drink

4. Review the year, appreciate your accomplishments and focus on these for next year

5. Start the day with some spirilina in organic apple juice, mix furiously with a teaspoon or have with yogurt and fruit

6. Be grateful for what you have and keep relaxed and calm so you end the year well

7. Clear out the fridge and cupboard of expired processed and packaged foods (yikes I'm hoping you don't have any of these in the first place !) let's call them dry good's.

8. Start cooking a little more each day and be free with you improvisation of recipes, a chef whom I admire once told me you can always fix a cooking mistake just don't be afraid to try new thing's.

9. Cook with love and reckless abandonment

10. Be kind to strangers and smile at one new person as you have time this is the in-between week.

Chef goes surfing

Yeah so it is the in-between week which means working from home and playing with friends in the sea, although the weather has been so crap so I have been in a movie marathon catching up on new films and some old ones. Christmas lunch was at my aunt's and I'm not allowed to lift a finger so I have had my head in cookbooks the last 2 day's getting ready for new menu's and a cooking extravaganza. My boyfriend gave me Jamie's America cookbook for chrissie and what a treat, since my recent USA trip's and doing the food styling gig for Mad Mex, I can't get enough of this amazingly fresh and delicious cuisine so get ready for some Mexican wholefoods.
Hope your relaxing enjoying the in-between week somewhere warm or maybe in the surf like me.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Christmas sweet pumpkin pie with no crust (gluten free)

I love a good pumpkin pie even though it's more american than australian I revel in it's creaminess and spiciness, I used some spices that I smuggled back from a herbal apothecary in east village new york, the mixed pumpkin pie spice has cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves and cardamom. Today cooking this in my kitchen I explored a pie with no crust, I'm not so skilled with pastry and have wheat intolerances so I opted for no crust and this is the delightful result.
It's so easy and the longest part of this recipe is roasting the pumpkin, so I painted my nails while I was waiting for the pumpkin to roast. I can imagine this doesn't need anything to go along with it just simply slice and eat.

500g butternut pumpkin, skinned and cut into small chunks
1 tablespoon sweet spices (see mix above)
1 cup coconut milk
1 tablespoon arrowroot
3 eggs
1/2 rapadura sugar
1 tablespoon shredded coconut I use loving earth brand


Lightly coat the pumpkin with extra virgin olive oil and put on a baking tray to cook for 30 minutes
In a food processor add the pumpkin, spices, sugar, coconut milk, eggs and arrowroot and pulse until blended very well.
Grease a pie dish and pour in the mixture, sprinkling some coconut on top
Bake on 160 degrees for 40 minutes

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Masterchef live and otway free range pork

All last weekend I helped out with otway free range pork and cooking different products for people to try.
Here I am with damien and demo chef chris both visiting from melbourne. I missed the whole ' master chef' hype but got around to some talks by chefs and met some really cool foodies, the heart and soul of food land the makers of products and the unknowns. Nuff said. If your interested in finding out about free range piggies living in ecohuts go to otway pork It's the only pork product in australia to be certified by the RSPCA.....

Monday, December 13, 2010

Mahi mahi fish with lime, turmeric, ginger, coriander, chilli, hawaii style

I'm winding down from my Hawaiian trip as I slink back into the Sydney pace (but I'll keep my Hawaii laid back vibe!)

This is a dish I created for my new man, a dish that is sweet, salty, a touch of heat and sour from the limes, to accompany this dish was a papaya tomato and cucumber coriander salsa with lot's of fresh lime juice and also a basmati pilaf.

I picked up the fish from my local fish monger in Balgowlah and was so happy to find Mahi Mahi, it is a thick white fish but actually light when digested, it is super yummy and this recipe was designed around it.


3 mahi mahi fillets (around 800grams try and get similar sized fillets)
2 limes, juiced
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 small red chilli
3 small slithers ginger
1 teaspoon turmeric paste ( I use pure foods a new organic spice company, it's a wet paste and turmeric is a cancer fighter and antioxidant)
1/4 bunch fresh coriander
6 baby tomatoes (these are from my garden)


Lay the fish down in a baking dish and mix all the above ingredients into a marinade pouring over the top, decorate with tomatoes and coriander and bake for 30 minutes on 170 degrees cover with foil.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Sea Asparagus

I picked up some Sea Asparagus at the Honolulu farmers markets from a beautiful couple that harvest this interesting product in Kahuku, the texture is crunchy twig like, the taste salty and clean nothing quite like I have tasted. It's also know as Sea beans, Samphire and Glasswort.

Described on there information fact sheet as a exotic gourmet vegetable with ocean taste and refreshing crunchy texture,(similar to the way I described it) the food as medicine benefits are remarkable it protects the liver, increases healthy mood, enhances stamina and reduces cancer.

Also rich in vitamin A, iron, sodium and calcium.

All I can say is yum yum, I ate it with a cold soba noodle salad from the ramen diner up the road and it was delicious.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Honolulu farmers markets

I have been visiting Hawaii for the last week, I'm in love with this place, the people, it's spirit, the cool asian fusion food and the fresh organic produce from the farmers markets up at Diamond Head every saturday. I went crazy taking photo's and trying some culinary delights. The highlight been a pesto, roma tomato pizza, the line was long but it was worth it every bite was an explosion of farm fresh ingredients and homemade wholemeal pizza dough.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Ocean trout with smashed new potatoes, salty chickpeas, garlic, kale and green beans

Once again everything remaining in the fridge find's it way into a recipe for a late lunch, I love the different flavours and minimal fuss it took to prepare this meal, high in essential fatty acids the ocean trout comes from Hooked in greenwich a family run fish shop that also is a cafe and makes great salads, I have this habit of shopping for my client there and arriving just as they are carving up the trout or seconds after. It's a very oily fish (much oily than salmon) and also has much more flavour.
The kale came straight from my garden and the sun-dried tomatoes from Sonia's lebanese shop in Northbridge, bless you Sonia for your culinary advice and also recipes and delightful warmth.

1 piece ocean trout
sea salt and pepper to season
clarified butter or ghee to cook in
handful green beans trimmed
6 new potatoes, cut in half and boiled until al dente
handful sun dried tomatoes
1 clove garlic
cumin powder
1 cup chickpeas

Bring a pot of water to the boil and add the potatoes, cook for 8 minutes
Rub the salt and pepper into the skin of the trout
In a saute pan heat the butter or ghee gently and put the fish in skin down
When the potatoes are a minute off done throw in the beans for a quick blanch
Once the skin is crispy on the fish turn over (around 3 minutes) and cook until medium rare
Set the fish aside and add the garlic and cumin the the pan and gently fry, add the potatoes and press down with the back of a spoon or potato mash until flat and so they can soak up the flavour, add the kale, beans and sun-dried tomatoes and stir well.

Serve on a bed of salty chickpeas and put the fish on the top of the chickpeas

Friday, November 12, 2010

Summer salad

I have arrived back at home with a flourishing and delicious garden after the rain, so today's lunch is a combo of thing's from the fridge and thing's from the garden and of course the top ingredient the Capra ash goat's cheese all the way from bairnsdale!

grape tomatoes, cut in half
1 cucumber peeled and sliced thinly
cannelloni beans
half a lemon
caper berries
Capra ash goats cheese
extra virgin olive oil
half a avocado
sea salt

Combine all ingredients on a plate and have with some rye sourdough

Capra organic goat's cheese

Emma, Matt and baby Selwyn from whom I met at the conference, I transported some of there beautiful handcrafted cheeses in an esky in my suitcase and they made it back to Sydney and yes they are beautiful. They have been winning awards all over Victoria and soon they will be available in Sydney, completely certified organic, Emma has a background as a naturopath and in total they have 65 goat's that they milk twice everyday of the year!

Organic famers association conference bairnsdale, victoria

I really am blessed with my life, I have just returned from a guest speaker spot at the organic farmers assoc conference on the weekend, I spoke to 125 organic famers, educators and food producers, it was so inspiring and enriching to tell my story and also meet so many wonderful people working from the heart on the land and changing the face of australian agriculture.

The stories were uplifting and encouraging, the highlight speakers for me were Nigel Kieran who won farmer of the year in 2008, and also Shane Blundy a beef and lamb farmer from Cherry Tree Organics, there stories of resilience, diversity and respect for nature blew me away, learnt alot about the challenges of organic crop farming and grazing.

Another highlight was meet Kane a young man from a third generation or organic famers just oustide Bairnsdale, his story of resilience was growing up with deaf parents and his father running a very successful organic crop farm. My late father was very passionate about holistic land management n his own work and also social nutrition so everything he had taught me about respecting nature and working with her and not using harsh pesticides or chemicals really resonated with me on this trip.

Thanks to Stephen Cross and the people of Bairnsdale for there openness and hospitality.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Crispy salmon with speckled kale, tomatoes, garlic and aioli with asparagus

Dinner with my flatmate and good friend Johnny, had to run outside to shoot and just caught the end of day light and dinner wasn't so cold! The photo has some orange toes in it, a bit quirky I liked the contrast. (that's what food photographer joshua dasey has taught me and helped me with understanding the art of food styling :)

We have just started watching the organic food special on Insight, what a bummer they don't have any cutting edge interesting farmers/ producers on board and it's disappointing and boring. Let's talk about sustainable and local produce, I wonder what Alice Waters would have to say ?

This is basically everything I had left in the fridge and I'm lucky because the dish just came together and was very yummy!

300g Australian salmon
1 bunch kale ( i got this unusual bunch from the farmers markets it is light green flecked with white, very stunning)
2 cloves garlic, finely diced
1 tablespoon clarified butter
1 packet baby tomatoes
1 bunch asparagus
Aioli to serve

Heat butter in fry pan or saute garlic, add tomatoes cook for 2 minutes add kale and cook for further 2 minutes,

Set aside

Season skin of salmon with sea salt and pepper, cook quick and on a high temperature to crisp up skin, turn over cook for another 5, best to serve med - rare.

Blanch asparagus and serve on a plate with salmon and vegetables

Bon apetite

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Clarified butter

2 sticks butter (organic I used a NZ brand organic valley, not bad produces a quality ghee/clarified butter)

Put butter in saucepan, turn the heat up to bring to a slight bubble, then turn down for 20 minutes, you can thrown in garlic, leek, chili, cinnamon if you want something different which is how the Ethiopians make there ghee.

Clarified butter and ghee is really the same thing just different names for different cultures.

It is super healthy and keep food at a stable temperature when cooking, it adds a delicate flavour to a dish.

Simple Ingredients part two the meal.

The finished simple ingredients.

Ten minutes is all it took for this yummy lunch

Simple Ingredients

Saturday lunch before work.

Bunch asparagus (currently in season and great deals around, I got 3 bunches for $10)

Angus beef scotch fillet (grass fed, so delicious - look at that fat marbling)


Worcestershire sauce


Clarified butter

Sea salt and pepper

Ok so this is how I like to cook, 3-4 simple ingredients, let the food speak for itself.

Take fry pan and put in a tablespoon clarified butter.

Saute mushrooms for 3 minutes

Add scotch fillet 2 minutes each side (should be blood)

Pour in 3-4 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce and some cream

Season with salt and pepper

Blanch asparagus 30 seconds.

Serve on a white plate, make it look beautiful.

Who would believe I was a vegetarian for ten years! this is what happens when you have butchers in your family, you go back to your roots.

Please use only excellent quality meat, make friends with your local butcher, try unusual cuts. Don't buy your meat from Woolworths or Coles, buy it fresh if preferable just killed and carved.

Check out Grassroots Butcher if your on the Eastside of Sydney (Vaucluse)

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Mexican nachos with red kidney beans, sweet tomatoes, creme fraiche and goat's cheddar

My chiropractor inspired this recipe, she told me vegetarian nachos are her favourite food, well damn I think they are ONE of my favourite foods and when I'm in the states I eat so much real mexican (not tex mex) it makes me feel nourished and is real soul food yum yum. Lot's of protein and crunchy goodness!

I had some left over basmati pilaf that I served with it too and made guacamole

1 can organic kidney beans
1 teaspoon cumin, ground
1 clove garlic. diced
sweet baby tomatoes
organic plain corn chips (gmo free)
creme fraiche to serve I used tatua farms a new band I found at harris farm
goat's cheddar this is from alpine farms and really so good
1 avocado
jalapeno peppers
and chololula hot sauce (arbol and piquin peppers) beautiful glass bottle with a wooden lid and rock a billy style picture of mexican mamma on the front label!


Gently fry garlic, add cumin , sweet baby tomatoes and red kidney beans for 3 minutes, mash (into semi-refried bean situation)
On a tray lay corn chips and add red kidney bean mixture, grate the goat's cheddar and stick under the grill for 3 minutes

Serve with creme fraiche (European cultured cream) and guacamole with a little hot cholula sauce

Serves 2

Friday, September 10, 2010

Lamb meatballs with cumin, parsley pesto and tomato eggplant, capsicum spicy sauce

Ah more meatballs, this time lamb, last night I gave a seminar to a group of girls that train with my friend Sarah from Pure Fitness Manly the title was smart eating for busy people, all the knowledge that I have on food and health at the end of the day needs to be translated into recipes, this is smart eating, cooking 80-90% of your food, consciously shopping, knowing where your ingredients are coming from. Health = food choices, Diet = how you prepare those foods and translate them into recipes.

1kg lamb mince (ask you butcher to do fresh)
1 tablespoon cumin seeds, ground in mortar and pestle (or ground cumin)
sea salt and pepper to season
1 tablespoon parsley pesto (recipe on blog with chicken meatballs)

tomato sauce

1 jar passata
2 cups chicken broth (stock)
1/2 yellow capsicum, cut into fine strips
4 baby eggplants (or 1 medium size eggplant) sliced finely
1/2 rd onion, diced finely
1 red chilli, diced finely
1 tablespoon ghee
1 carrot, diced into cubes
200g pumpkin, cut into cubes


Preheat oven to 10 degrees
Take the lamb mince, cumin seeds, pesto and season in a bowl, mix with your hands very well, then roll into small balls, bake on in over for 20 minutes (should be a little pink on the inside)
On another baking tray place the eggplants and rub extra virgin olive oil into them and season again with sea salt and pepper

In a saucepan gently saute the red onion and chili in ghee, add the capsicum, and then the stock and tomato passata, pump kin and also carrot cook on lo heat for 20 minutes.

When the eggplant is cooked, cut up into small squares and then add to tomato sauce, stir around and serve with meatballs and some basmati or brown rice, these meatballs keep int he freezer really well I always make large batches of the sauce too so I have them ready to go for busy days.

Roasted pumpkin salad with spinach, walnuts, cucumber, coriander

This salad is really easy and super yummy, my family came over for lunch on Father's Day it was a sunny and windy day, but we love the sun and took the opportunity to sit outside in our wonderful garden. This salad was a combination of a few thing's I had left over in the fridge and I used the white bean sumac puree as the salad dressing, whizzing it in the blender with a little water to move the texture from a puree to a dressing.

Baby spinach, washed
200g Japanese pumpkin, diced small
handful fresh walnuts
1 cucumber, skin off and diced into small cubes
Sheep's feta
cherry tomatoes, cut in half


*****see below recipe lamb, quinoa, and white bean sumac dressing


Roast the pumpkin for around 20 minutes with a little olive oil and sea salt and pepper the tomatoes also in the oven and roast for the same time.
Lay all the ingredients onto a beautiful plate and lastly roast the walnuts for ten minutes and sprinkle on top pouring white bean sumac dressing all over and some sheep's feta

Rosh Hashanah

Last Wednesday night was Rosh hashanah - Jewish New Year my very good friends Michal and Shai invited me to celebrate with a bunch of beautiful people some Israeli's some non - Israeli's, it was so wonderful.

Michal is an amazing cook and the dishes were delicious, some Israeli, an Arabic dessert with rosewater, we were very blessed.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Lamb, spinach , quinoa and white bean sumac puree

What a week, my car hit the dust and has been in the mechanic's all week, I caught a cab to get ingredients for a catering gig and kept smiling, (!) I have been on foot, borrowing friend's cars if absolutely necessary and using the opportunity to be indoors and focus on planning workshops and recipe development. Also of course I have been cooking, cooking and dreaming and thinking about food. Sometimes been without the freedom of a car brings you back to the important stuff in life.
This recipe is dedicated to my late father, as it is father's day this Sunday and he is in my mind and heart everyday but especially this week. So at this sad time for me, I pour that (e)motion into my craft; cooking. My father was a coeliac and very passionate about food, good health and nature he inspires me in my work today.
This dish is very delicious and the sumac and white bean puree brings a smooth and salty taste to the dish. Enjoy and hopefully you may make this meal for a father or loved one.

1 lamb back strap (if cooking for 4, do 2)
1 cup cooked quinoa
1/2 bunch spinach, finely chopped
sea salt and pepper to season
extra virgin olive oil

white bean puree
1 can cannelloni beans
1 clove garlic
1 lemon, juiced
1 tablespoon sumac (middle eastern berry)
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil


Take all the puree ingredients and put into a food processor, buzz until smooth, taste, add salt and check it's balanced, slightly salty, and sour.

Season the lamb back strap with sea salt and pepper and rub oil on either side of the meat, turn the skillet or fry pan up high, then when hot add the lamb, cook for 3 minutes each side then rest for a further 10 minutes
In the same skillet/frypan throw in the finely chopped spinach and cook quickly for a few minutes, slice the lamb thinly it should be pink inside, on a plate lay the spinach first, then the quinoa and sliced lamb, add the puree around the plat so it looks good.

Serves 2

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Raspberry, banana and coconut muffins - gluten and dairy free

I'm exploring gluten free baking and this recipe works really well, I adapted it from an easy gluten free baking book from the states, these muffins are moist and sweet enough. All the flours work really well and the buckwheat brings out a nutty flavour.
Make a batch and give them away to your friends.

1 cup raspberries
1 banana
1 cup brown rice flour
1/4 buckwheat flour
1/4 besan (chickpea flour)
1/4 arrowroot starch
2 eggs
1 cup agave syrup
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 cup coconut oil


Preheat the oven to 170 degrees
Grease a cupcake or muffin tray with a little butter
In a mixing bowl, combine all flours and the baking powder
Melt the coconut oil
In another bowl, mash the banana, add raspberries and eggs and agave syrup and coconut oil, add the wet and dry ingredients together.
Bake for 20 minutes

Chicken meatballs with parsley pesto and roasted red capsicum tomato jus

Thanks to Michal my dear Israeli friend for always inspiring a meatball makeover.
Yep so easy and such a great way to get protein in a simple form, you can reheat them in a saucepan with sauce, you can steam them to rejuvenate and always have them on hand for last minute to add with some vegetables and perhaps a grain if you desire. The secret ingredient to these meatballs is the preserved lemon and parsley pesto giving them a zingy flavour.

500g organic or certified free range mince chicken ( I use la ionica) ask your butcher to mince fresh
100g green beans, diced finely
1 tablespoon parsley pesto (recipe below)
sea salt and pepper to taste
small amount dried chilli flakes
1/4 preserved lemon, diced finely (pulp and skin)

parsley pesto
1 bunch parsley
handful of raw almonds
2 garlic cloves
1/4 cup extra quality olive oil
dash sea salt

red capsicum sauce
1 red capsicum
2 cans diced tomatoes
1 tablespoon cumin seeds
1/2 fennel dced finely
1 cup vegetable or chicken stock


Take the mince chicken, parsley pesto, green beans, preserved lemon, and mix together, form into small balls and bake in the oven for 20 minutes
Roast the capsicum for 20 minutes and peel the skin off, saute the fennel, cumin seeds and add the tomatoes and stock, cook for 10 minutes, in a blender place the tomato sauce and red capsicum and blend until mixed
serve the meatballs with red sauce and green vegetables.

Storage hint - you can freeze meatballs and sauce in container and simply reheat and make fresh vegetables to go with it

Friday, August 20, 2010

Brown rice porridge with passionfruit, olive oil and agave

I recently found that I need to be on a gluten free diet, so breakfasts have changed and this creation is not only nourishing it is really delicious and will keep you going through to lunch time.

You can be creative as you like and put dates and figs in this porridge, just soak them in water the evening before to soften them.

1 cup cooked brown rice (cook up 3 cups in advance and store in a glass pyrex container so you have it ready to go)
2 tablespoons raw walnuts, chopped
1 tablespoon agave
1/2 cup bonsoy milk (or whatever milk suits you)
1 passionfruit seeds
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

Put all the above ingredients into a small saucepan and stir through until warm and serve

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Sydney Cooking School

Last night I went along to the opening of the new Sydney Cooking School it is a beautiful kitchen with fisher and paykel appliances and the owners Camilla and Brett are two very experienced and passionate chef's. The canapes were delicious especially the paella which was cooked by one of Brett's chef's from Spain.
Exciting news for foodies in Sydney!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Madras coconut curry with tempeh, spinach and cauliflower

A delicious curry with a smooth coconut broth taste that lingers on the palate, make a big batch and you can keep in a large glass pyrex container and keep in the fridge for at least 4 day's. I have this with brown rice and eat for lunch and dinner until it's all gone!

For those not familiar with tempeh, it is a fermented soybean and has a nutty quality, When I worked at Fressen vegan restaurant in toronto we used to have an incubator and make out own, to this day I have never found one as delicious as that one. You can buy it in the dairy section of the grocer and it is used often in balinese cuisine. Try slicing it thinly and frying it in organic coconut oil for a cold day, and then eat it with brown rice and a good chutney and brocoli.

1/4 cauliflower, cut into florets (so they look pretty)
200g Japanese pumpkin, skin on, cut into large cubes
1/2 packet tempeh, cut into small squares
1/2 brown onion
1 Spinach leaf, sliced finely
1 tablespoon organic homemade ghee or coconut oil
1 small part of ginger grated
1 garlic clove, grated
2 tablespoons madras curry powder from Indian supermarket
2 cups vegetable stock
1 can spiral coconut milk


In a steamer basket place the pumpkin and tempeh and steam for approx 7-8 minutes, add the cauliflower for a further 5 minutes. Once cooked strain and set aside. In a fry pan gently saute the onion, garlic and ginger until translucent and add the curry powder, stir the curry powder into the aromatics for a a minute and then add the vegetables and tempeh followed by stock and coconut milk. Cook for a further 5 minutes

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Cumin, roasted sweet potato and black bean soup with a hint of chilli

This soup is packed with protein and the ghee and chilli adds some delightful flavour, enjoy on a chilly day to warm the heart and peripheral circulation!

3 small sweet potato, peeled and cubed
2 cans goya black beans
1 garlic clove, diced
1 small brown onion, diced
1 litre vegetable stock
2 tablespoons homemade ghee
1 teaspoon cumin, ground
1 teaspoon chilli, ground

Preheat the oven to 170 degrees
Line baking tray with paper
Roast sweet potatoes for 25 minutes until soft and golden
In fry pan gently saute the onion and garlic in ghee and add the cumin and chilli cook until translucent
Once the roasted sweet potato has cooled place in a blender with the black beans, sweet potato, stock, garlic, onion and blend until combined

Monday, June 28, 2010

Food Miles

Food MIles

As we all get caught up in organic and biodynamic food/produce and farming practice it is equally as important to think about Food Miles and where has this organic strawberry come from, because if it's travelled from Victoria I'm really not interested.

A couple from Canada have written a book called the '100 mile diet' which has kinda started a movement in other cities and countries and is a great concept.

This was an article recently in the SMH and discusses Food Miles and Carbon foot print please read

Friday, June 25, 2010

Lion Burger

I have been caught up in the soccer and needing to pull myself away from the tv screen and get back into the kitchen to whip up some delights, I came across this disturbing article on lion burgers

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Simple breakfast

A simple quick, healthy and nutritious start to the day inspired by breakfast at pilu kiosk which is next door to the restaurant in freshwater with killer views of the beach

2 slices sonoma spelt sourdough bread
1/2 organic avocado
sea salt and pepper to taste
extra virgin olive oil (top shelf best quality you can get)
1/4 lemon

Slice your avocado in half and then slice pieces thinly
Toast bread
Lay avocado on bread and drizzle with olive oil, lemon and season

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Roasted chestnut soup

Thanks michal for this recipe I have changed it slightly but not much because it works beautifully and I can't get enough of chestnuts right now they are so full of flavour and unique in texture and taste, they are considered to be from the nut family. This recipe takes awhile as preparing the chestnuts is quiet a task but well worth it

1kg chestnuts
2 cups vegetable stock
1 cup whole organic milk or almond milk
pepper and sea salt to taste
2 tablespoons ghee
1/2 brown onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 sprig rosemary

Preheat the oven to 170 degrees
Take the chestnuts and place an x on one side so that the steam can escape whilst roasting, put them on a baking tray and bake for 20-25minutes. When there ready you will know because the shell will easily come off, you need to take the shell off while they are still hot, so keep them wrapped up in a tea towel to keep the heat in.
put the ghee in saucepan and gently heat, add the onion and garlic stir around add the chestnuts (without shells), milk and stock plus the rosemary, cook for a furthur 20 minutes on low heat.
Puree in a blender until smooth and serve.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Jerusalem artichoke soup with rosemary

Fresh from the organic markets Jerusalem artichokes, they are a funny looking vegetable knobbly and awkward.
The rosemary really makes this recipe. Enjoy with a La tartine baguette and a splash of extra virgin olive oil

1 kg Jerusalem artichokes
2 cups vegetable stock
1 cup whole organic milk
1/2 brown onion, diced
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 full sprig rosemary
1 tablespoons organic ghee or extra virgin olive oil
1 celery stick, sliced finely

Peel the artichokes as well as you can, and splash with extra virgin olive oil and fresh pepper, place on a baking tray and bake for 20 minutes on 170 degrees.
In a saucepan gently heat the ghee or oil and add the garlic, onion, rosemary and celery gently saute for 2-3 minutes.
Once the artichokes are golden and soft add to the saucepan alongside with the milk and stock cook for a further 20 minutes on a low to medium heat ( you do not want the soup boiling or bubbling)
Once cool, puree in and serve.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Cranberrries, oat, roasted walnut and spelt anzac cookies

These cookies just might be my best one's yet, they have an unusual crunch and the cranberry and walnuts are a perfect match.

1 cup organic dried cranberries (try and find apple juice sweetened one's)
1 cup biodynamic oats
2 cups wholemeal spelt flour
1/2 stick organic butter
2 tablespoons raw honey
1 cup rapadura sugar
1 cup walnuts
1/2 teaspoon aluminium free baking powder

Preheat the oven and on roast walnuts on a baking tray for 5 minutes or until crispy and light in colour on skins.
Chop walnuts roughly and set aside.
In a mixing bowl combine flour, baking powder, oats, cranberries and sugar
In a saucepan gently melt the butter and honey and then add to dry four oat mixture and stir with a wooden spoon until well combined.
Take a spoon and drop mixture onto baking tray then flatten.
Bake for 12 minutes and cool.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Raspberry, white chocolate spelt and buckwheat muffins

Today I adapted these muffins from a recipe in Good to the grain cookbook I baked them for my little friend Atticus who turned 3. He requested pink or strawberry cupcakes these worked a treat for all the children and adults.

1 cup spelt flour
1/2 cup buckwheat flour
1 block fair trade white chocolate
2 cups raspberries (frozen)
3/4 stick organic butter
1/2 cup panela sugar
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 eggs

Preheat the oven to 170 degrees
Lightly grease the mini muffin tins with butter
Make sure the butter is room temperature and cut into small cubes to put in a bowl with the panela sugar.
Beat with electric beaters or use mix master to blend until pale and creamy. Add the eggs and butter milk and mix until combined. In another bowl sift the flour and add raspberries and cut the white chocolate into small pieces to add too.
Now take the butter mixture and add to the flour mixture and hand stir with wooden spoon until blended
Drop a spoon full of the mixture into each hole in the muffin tin.
Bake for 20 minutes

Friday, May 28, 2010

Taste buddy

Recipe journal written by friends and famiy and put together by cool foodie Chelsea Stevens Tastebuddy

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Laionica chickens

Let's get this straight yesterday I heard on Twitter that Laionica chemical free birds are dipped and bleached, today I checked with my very thorough and ethical butcher and he told me he has visited the production plant and that is rubbish!
La Ionica birds are half the price of an organic one if your a bit tight and there are truly a beautiful little tasty bird
Chemical free, free roaming, hormone free (although it is illegal to give chickens hormones in australia) ooh la la the bird.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Spinach zucchini potato and fish brown rice red curry hotpot

When it's cold I love to get a one pot dish happening, it's quick and very nutritious and keeps me warm and nourished.
This hot pot is using a bunch of left over ingredients you can substitute the fish for tofu or chickpea's if your vegetarian.
1/2 brown onion, diced small
1 tablespoon red curry paste ( I like west country spice company available at always organics
small amount organic ghee or extra virgin olive oil
1/4 red capsicum, cut into julienne or sliced
1 zucchini , sliced diagonally
4 small potatoes, sliced thinly
5 spinach leaves, cut very fine
2 pieces blue eyed cod
1 cup brown rice
1 litre vegetable stock (I use marigold organic swiss vegetable bouillon when no time for homemade)

In a saucepan gently saute the onion in ghee or oil and add red curry paste stir around add potatoes and rice and stock cook for 20 minutes with lid on the saucepan and once rice is soft add he remaining ingredients and cook for a further 10 minutes.
Serve steaming in a a bowl

Friday, May 21, 2010

Prima Italiano Festival East Sydney Sunday May 23

This sunday in east sydney, get down and sample food and music, art, short films and pizza making classes go to link for more info
Prima Italiano Festival

Raw almond and coconut butter with a dash of himalayan sea salt

Nut butters are so delicious and an extra dollop of protein as a snack or added to dishes.
My friend Bec makes a killer salad dressing with brown rice vinegar, raw almond butter and a little raw honey and dijon mustard.

All you need is a food processor to make this recipe and it takes ten minutes max.

2 cups raw almonds
1 teaspoon himalayan sea salt
1/2 coconut oil (add more if mixture to dry)
1 teaspoon cinnamon and cardamon (if you like a little spice in your life)

Place all the above ingredients into a food processor and pulse for ten minutes, the almonds will break gradually over this time and the oil will disperse.
Enjoy on a little brown rice cracker as I have done or in a salad dressing.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Wild fig and buttermilk muffins

This original muffin recipe is taken from Nourishing Traditions, but I have adapted it to my own tastes and preferences.
It really is very healthy, delicious and so damn simple!

Cook's tip * you need to start this the night before by soaking the flours in buttermilk or water and lemon over night in a bowl covered with tea towel*

2 cups barley flour (demeter farm mill)
1 cup spelt flour (demeter farm mill)
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 tablespoon raw honey
2 cups wild figs (available from middle eastern grocers and sometimes organic retailers)
1 tablespoon cardamom powder
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract (not artificial colouring please)
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 cups butter milk (or water if dairy sensitive with 1 tablespoon lemon juice)
60 grams melted organic butter
2 eggs

Soak flours overnight in butter milk or water and lemon juice
In a saucepan gently on low simmer melt the butter and add maple syrup and honey stir well.
To the soaked flours add the spices, salt and vanilla and also whisked eggs, lastly add butter mixture and figs and gently fold.
The mixture will be more like a dough, spoon into a muffin pan and bake for 20 minutes or until firm to touch, cool and enjoy with a spread of butter and a cup of tea!

First harvested lettuce from my garden

I have been patiently tending to my little garden for 8 weeks chasing away snails with organic coffee granules, beer and finally eggshells, none seemed to work so I just let the snails cohabit with my garden although they chewed all my kale!
Finally it's harvesting some beautiful lettuce, basil and soon broccoli.

Red kidney beans, pumpkin, kale and polenta crust

This recipe is inspired by the cold weather and I have also been reading this fantastic cookbook called 'The enchanted broccoli forest' it has been around since 1982 all the recipes are handwritten and Mollie Katzen is the author who helped set up the famous Moosewood Restaurant in Ithaca upstate NY the restaurant has been running for 33 years and is a very well know vegetarian establishment. Anyway the recipes are yummy and the little drawings are also cool.
But this is my own original recipe inspired by thee Moosewood!

3 can's red kidney beans (organic of course)
1/2 brown onion, diced small
2 tablespoons organic ghee or extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons tamari
1 tablespoon organic sweet curry power or ayurvedic blended curry powder (bioveda brand)
250g Japanese pumpkin, peeled and chopped into small squares
5 kale leaves, chopped very small
1 cup polenta (cornmeal)
2 cups water
sea salt and pepper to season and olive oil

Preheat the oven to 170 degrees
Heat the saucepan with ghee or oil very gently and add the onion and brown, add the curry spice and stir, add the kidney beans an tamari and pumpkin, cook for ten minutes and if the mixture is drying up just add some water so that the pumpkin can steam. Lastly add the kale and stir around. Put into a deep baking dish (square of round)
Put the polenta and water plus a little drizzle of olive oil and seasonings into a saucepan bring to the boil and stir very vigorously until polenta thickens, Pour the polenta on top of the bean mixture and flatten like a lid.
Bake for 20 minutes
Cool down so that the polenta is firm and crunchy before eating.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Rebecca Katz

One on my mentors Rebecca Katz is a phenomenal and very special chef, Rebecca makes healthy food fun and delicious and like me has gone through losing a parent to cancer and uses it as a catalyst to inspire her cooking. Intelligently fusing food, health and nutrition as a platform for designing recipes for fighting cancer check out her website

Vegan blogger 'resistance is fertile'

I have been following luscious lagusta since my vegan day's almost 8 year's ago, this cool new york girl has ALOT to say, but her passion and politics are inspiring.

Food inc.

The highly anticipated film Food Inc hits the cinemas on May 20th.
For more intelligent writing's on food and politics check out Michael Pollen and Eric Schlosser
Let's be more mindful about food and eating please ask more question's when buying and sourcing food. Be a responsible and savvy eco-cook!
Food Inc

Monday, May 17, 2010

Last weeks big waves in sydney photo courtesy of steve from light play photography

Biodynamic oats anyone ?


Soak your oats overnight in filtered water and a teaspoon of lemon juice.

Add grated pear and apple, chia seeds, flaxoil and mayple syrup with a dash of sheep's yogurt

Rainbow chard

Fresh from the markets I turned this rainbow chard into a black bean Jamaican potato curry it is so beautiful with the different coloured stems that it was a sad experience to cut it hence this photo to demonstrate its gorgeous stems

Rosewater and lime cardamon almond vegan cookies

Now as the cooler weather has reached us all I wanna do is Bake!
These small and sweet cookies are made with barley and spelt flour and more like a healthy whole food version of petit four because I'm so fanatical about middle eastern and persian food these hit the spot with the fragrant rosewater

1 cup spelt flour
3/4 cup barley flour
1 tablespoon rosewater
1 tablespoon cardamon powder
3/4 cup panela sugar (similar to rapadura low gi and rich in minerals)
1/2 cup almonds (grind up in a coffee grinder or food processor)
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons millet milk or no dairy milk
1 tablespoon aluminium free baking powder (available at health food shop or organic retailer)
1/4 organic sunflower oil (or use coconut oil)

Preheat oven t 17o degrees
Mix the flours, baking powder in a bowl together and set aside
Put the milk, lime juice, oil, sugar, oil and rosewater in a bowl and whisk, add this mixture to the flour mixture and use your
hands to mix into a dough, make little balls and roll in the almonds and put on a lined baking tray and bake for 15-2o

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Demeter flours

When you bake it's important to use top quality fresh flour, you see the longer flours, seeds and nuts sit on the shelf in the store (or floor!) the precious oils and minerals go rancid.

I always use demeter products when baking as I don't have flour mill to grind my own.

There products are far superior and available at most organic retailers and health food shops

It all my recipes on my blog I use these products, check them out..

Chicken and black bean tortilla with smokey chipotle and guacamole

I really love great mexican food and when you find the good stuff in the states it is healthy and so delicious, when I visit new york I always eat at chipotle it is a fast food place but they use organic chicken and pasture fed beef and have a huge selection of vegetarian dishes as well, all the sauces and guacamole are made fresh on the premises.

Here is my take on a a chicken black bean dish I would eat at Chipotle.

My secret ingredient in this recipe is sweet potato it balances out the spice perfectly!

It is real simple and I found my smokey chipotle peppers at harris farm (of all places) you can also order them online from a fab latin/mexican wholesaler in sydney fireworks foods

2 can's black beans (amy's or goya)
packet of diago's gluten free tortilla"s (available at supermarkets)
1/4 small sweet potato, diced very small
1 chicken breast poached and shredded (IF VEG SKIP THIS)
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 red chilli, diced small
1 garlic clove diced small
1 smoke chipotle pepper
1/4 red onion, diced
2 avocado
1 lemon juiced

Mash the avocado and add lemon and sit in the fridge
Take the onion and garlic and gently fry in ghee of olive oil for 5 minutes, add cumin.
Add the black beans, sweet potato and shredded chicken and cook for 10 minutes, when beans and sweet potato have softened mash up with a whisk or fork
Lastly add the chipotle pepper (medium heat) and cook for another 5 minutes until all the smokey chipotle flavour is soaking into the beans.
Heat the tortillas in a warm oven or grill and eat with beans and guacamole

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Saturday lunch

I love to use left overs it makes me feel thrifty and economical.
For lunch today I use left over basmati rice from dinner and also a cooked salmon fillet
This sure is a tasty and super quick recipe, if you ever have left over brown rice or basmati you can whip up a stirfry in not time.

Salmon, basmati stirfry with cherry tomatoes, mushrooms and fresh rocket with a hint of harissa

2 cups cooked basmati rice
1 salmon cooked fillet
6 cherry tomatoes
1 tablespoon harissa paste (refer to recipe finder on this blog)
handful rocket
handful mushrooms

Slice the mushrooms and put in a a skillet with the harissa paste a little olive oil or ghee and cook until golden, cut the cherry tomatoes in half and add to skillet finally add the salmon and rocket and stir for 2 minutes.

Be as creative as you can and use this recipe as a template for your own rice stirfry

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Corn polenta, spelt and goats cheese dumplings with mushroom and rosemary ragu

This is inspired from a private clients menu today, we made chilli con carne with dumplings so I wanted to make a vegetarian version. It is VERY easy takes about 30 minutes but looks so impressive like you would have been slaving over a hot stove for at least an hour!

1/2 cup polenta
1/2 cup spelt flour (demeter brand)
1/2 cup corn kernals
2 tablespoons organic milk
50g goats fetta (100 acres brand is great)
1 egg
50 g organic butter
sea salt and pepper to season.

Rub the butter into the polenta and set aside, whisk egg and milk and add to mixture stir well, add corn kernals and season with seas alt and pepper.

Roll into little balls the size of golf balls and cook in a sauce pan filled with boiling water on a medium to boil for 20 minutes
strain and set aside once cooked.

Mushroom rosemary ragu

1/4 red onion
1 clove garlic
2 tablespoon olive oil
350 butter mushrooms
1/2 bunch rosemary
1/2 cup red wine
2 cans diced tomatoes
1 can passata

Saute the red onion and garlic and add the chopped mushrooms and rosemary cook for ten minutes, add tomatoes and red wine cook on low to medium heat for 15 minutes.

Serve with dumplings

Beautiful palm cove; a chef's gotta take a holiday sometime

Have been eating out in restaurants the last 4 day' over the Anzac long weekend, visiting crocodile farms, lingering in rainforests and eating fresh organic papaya, ah and chilling out in a hammock on the beach.