dairy free

Turkey and Kale Thai Cakes

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Kale is becoming such a regular in my kitchen that I’m using it in everything.

By using turkey breast mince, these Thai cakes are a leaner option to replace the humble beef pattie – don’t get me wrong I love beef patties, but I don’t want to turn into one!

Turkey breast mince is high in protein and amino acids, low in calories, is carb free and low in fat.

No need to cook the Kale before hand, just finely chop, add to the turkey mince along with all the other ingredients and shape into the desired size you like. Rest them in the fridge until ready to cook, they can  be frozen at this stage or even after cooking. They are  gluten, grain and dairy free.


Turkey and Kale Thai Cakes

Serves 4-6


Ingredients

1 1/2 tbsp Thai curry paste, I used yellow this time

1 egg

1-2 tbsp fish sauce

2 tsp preferred sweetener, I use palm sugar

Juice and zest of 1 lime*

1 tbsp cornflour

2 cups kale, removed from stems and finely chopped

500g turkey breast mince

2 spring onions, finely sliced

4 kaffir lime leaves, finely sliced **

Rice bran oil for cooking


Method

  1. Mix curry paste, egg, fish sauce, sweetener, lime juice and zest, once combined whisk in the cornflour, removing any lumps.
  2. Add the remainder of the ingredients and mix well- time to get your hands dirty. Shape into cakes or balls, cover and rest in the fridge for 30 mins.
  3. Place a large fry pan over med heat with 2 tbs oil, cook for 4-7 mins each side, depending on the thickness of the cakes. I place a lid on my fry pan to cook them quicker, totally optional. You could also cook them in the oven at 180c fan forced for 10-15mins, turning once. They just don’t caramelize as much in the oven.

Notes

To recreate the burger:

buns of choice, peanut satay sauce, Asian salad-mint, coriander, spring onion, thai basil, lime juice and vegetables of choice.

* If I have no fresh limes, I will defrost them from the freezer, 30 sec increments in the microwave.

**I’m lucky enough to have  a Kaffir Lime tree, but you can buy them already sliced in a jar in the asian section of your supermarket or fresh from the herb section and store the unused leaves in the freezer.

Tahini Balls

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Just recently I stumbled across an article about the benefits of eating ground sesame seeds. The health benefits of these little seeds are phenomenal. I won’t bore you with all the technical jargon, but here are a few reasons they should be a staple in your everyday diet.

If you are using Tahini, make sure it is unhulled Tahini, that way the nutrients remain intact as the seeds haven’t been stripped. The list of vitamins and antioxidants they contain goes on forever, vitamin B being the main one. Its a great source of calcium for dairy free options and is gluten free, the protein amount is 20% complete, being more than soya beans, sunflower seeds and most  nuts. It is high in  calories , but because it has a high alkaline content, means the calories are absorbed and digested quicker. You only need 1 tablespoon of this super paste a day for it to make a difference to your overall health and well being!


Tahini Balls


Ingredients

400g dates

1/2 cup unhulled tahini

1/2 cup raw cashews

1/2 cup shredded coconut

3 tablespoons raw cacao

3 tablespoons honey or maple syrup

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon vanilla extract or paste


Method

  1. Place all ingredients into a high powered processor and blend until the mixture starts to  clump together, about 5-10 mins. If its not processed for long enough the oils wont release out of the nuts and the mixture will  crumble when trying to roll into balls.
  2. Roll the mixture into balls and cover with sesame seeds if you wish. Alternatively you can press it into a prepared baking tray and freeze, then later cut into desired size.
  3. Store in an airtight container in the fridge or freezer.

Notes

They will last up to a  month in the fridge and a couple of months in the freezer.

Unhulled Tahini is very strong, so test the mixture as you go to ensure the balance is right for you.

Makes about 40-50 balls, I like to make them small so I can have a couple a day.

 

 

Asian Salad with Poached Chicken

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This quick and easy salad can be prepared ahead of time and will last a couple of days in the fridge. It’s gluten free, low calories and a good source of protein. The salad can consist of any vegetable you have in the fridge – it’s the dressing and herbs that pull it all together.


Asian Noodle Salad with Poached Chicken

Serves 4


Ingredients

200g vermicelli noodles, cooked and place in cold water
1 carrot, julienned
1 Lebanese cucumber, julienned
1/2 capsicum, julienned (didn’t use in the photo, didn’t have any)
1 spring onion, finely sliced
1/4 cup mint and coriander
2 tbsp thai basil leaves ( optional)
6 kaffir lime leaves, vein removed and finely sliced
2 tbsp cashews or peanuts
200g poached chicken, steamed or cooked in broth

Dressing (makes about 3/4 cup)

1/4 cup preferred sweetener ( coconut , Palm or caster sugar)
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup white vinegar
1-2 tbsp fish sauce
1 small red chilli, finely sliced

To serve, chilli and lime wedges


Method

  1. To make dressing place the sweetener, water , white vinegar and fish sauce in a sauce pan and bring to the boil, then take off heat, add the chilli, taste and adjust if needed ( it will be sweet). Place in fridge to cool.
  2. Combine the cooked noodles, carrot, cucumber, capsicum and spring onion in a bowl and set aside.
  3. Shred or slice your chicken, combine with the noodle salad, add a little of the dressing at a time ( about 1/4 cup) toss and taste.
  4. Assemble salad in a bowls, garnish with the fresh herbs, nuts and extra chilli and wedges of lime.

Notes

Ive made this salad before with pork belly, thai chicken cakes, salt and pepper calamari and bbq prawns, its such an adaptable salad.

Coconut Banana Muffins

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One of the easiest, healthiest muffin you will ever make! These Coconut Banana Muffins were mainly invented for daycare, as they are allergy friendly . Using coconut flour as the main ingredient, bananas and honey for the sweetness.

The nutritional benefits from these muffins are amazing, not only being gluten and dairy free, they are low in carbohydrates, high in fibre to help you feel fuller for longer and the fat content of coconut flour is known to give you instant energy and can boost your metabolism.

They can be stored in the fridge for up to a week or in the freezer for a month or so.


Coconut Banana Muffins

Makes 12


Ingredients

Dry

1/2 cup coconut flour

1/2 cup of desiccated coconut

pinch of cinnamon

1 teaspoon baking powder and bi carb soda

Wet

5 eggs

2 large bananas, mashed

1/4 cup coconut oil

1/4 cup honey or to taste


Method

  1. Pre heat oven to 160c. Prepare a 12 capacity cupcake/muffin tin with cases ( they do stick to the cases a little) or grease with some coconut oil.
  2. Whisk dry ingredients together, whisk wet ingredients together, then combine the two and whisk until fairly smooth.
  3. Pour into prepared tray and bake for 20-25 min, all depends on your oven. They are ready when golden on top and spring back when touched. Cool in pan for 5 min and then place onto a wire rack.

 

 

 

Pan Seared Scallops with Japanese Dressing

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I was lucky enough to be given scallops in the shell to cook with – how spoilt am I?!?

Keeping it simple with scallops is always best, with minimal cooking time and a nice clean dressing, you are doing justice to these delicate sweet morsels. The bonus of having them in the shells, is that it serves as a small bowl to capture all the juices and dressing. The shells can be cleaned for later use. Scallops are a lean source of protein, virtually no fat and are packed full of minerals and vitamins.

I have cooked scallops like this before from frozen and you would never have known.

 


Pan Seared Scallops with Japanese Dressing


Ingredients

12 scallops, removed from shell and shell cleaned before serving

Dressing

2 tsp fresh ginger, grated on a microplane

2 tbsp shoaxing wine

2 tbsp light soy sauce

1 tbsp rice wine vinegar

1 tsp castor sugar

1/2 tsp sesame oil

Spring onion for garnish, finely sliced


Method

  1. Combine all sauce ingredients in a small saucepan over low heat, stir until sugar dissolves, remove from heat and set aside until ready to serve.
  2. Heat a little peanut oil in a  large fry pan over medium heat. An easy way to get all your scallops in the pan at the same time, is to place them on a piece of baking paper and when the fry pan is ready pick up the paper and flip it over, the scallops will fall off. They will only take about 30 secs each side. The frypan needs to be very hot to get the caramelisation on the outside of the scallop.
  3. Serve immediately in the shells with 1/4 tsp of dressing on each, garnished with spring onion.

Notes:

If you would like curly spring onion, finely slice, place in a bowl of water and put in the fridge until ready to use.

The dressing can be made a couple days ahead and will last in the fridge for up to a week. You will have dressing left over. If you put too much dressing on the scallops you will lose the delicate flavour of the scallop.

Poached Chicken in an Asian Broth with Konjac Noodles

IMG_1889It’s very simple to make a low-calorie lunch when using  Konjac Noodles, with only 10 calories per 125g.

They have a unique texture, similar to rice noodles. I find they are best eaten with Asian style flavors .

This dish comes in under 150 calories, low carb, low-fat,high fibre and great source of protein.

I created this recipe as I’ve been doing the 5:2 diet, it’s a great lunch or dinner option.


Poached Chicken in Asian Broth with Konjac Noodles

Serves 1 /  120 calories


Ingredients

Broth:

250 ml salt reduced chicken stock

1/2 to 3/4 cup water

1 red or green chilli, stem removed and left whole*

2 garlic cloves, smashed with a knife

knob of ginger or galangal, roughly chopped*

2  kaffir lime leaves, left whole*

30 g chicken breast

50 g broccolini

30 g pak choy

125 g knojac noodles-

Sauce:

juice of 1/2 lime*

1/2 teaspoon stevia or sweetener of choice, adjust calories accordingly

1/2 tablespoon fish sauce

1/4 teaspoon chilli powder

To serve fresh coriander, Thai basil and shredded kaffir lime leaves.


Method

  1. Place all the broth ingredients into a sauce pan, bring to the boil and add the chicken breast, simmer for 5 minutes and turn the heat off and place lid on, leave for 10 minutes.
  2. Remove the chicken from broth and strain liquid, place the broth back onto low heat with the broccolini and pak choy, simmer until done to your liking. The veggies will absorb some of the broth, so you can add more water if you wish.
  3. Place the sliced or shredded chicken, konjac noodles and sauce ingredients  into the broth, cook until heated through.
  4. Serve with fresh coriander, Thai basil and kaffir lime.

Notes

*all these items are stored in my freezer.

 

Japanese Quinoa Patties

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Here’s a quick healthy lunch that can be made ahead and frozen, ready to reheat when the pangs of hunger strike! They are low in calories, high in protein, low carbs, gluten free and most importantly – super tasty! This recipe will make a large enough batch that you can freeze half and have the rest in the fridge. They go great with any type of noodle, leafy salad or even a wrap or burger. They will last 1 month in the freezer and 2-3 days in the fridge.


Japanese Quinoa Patties


Ingredients

2 tablespoons soy sauce *

2 tablespoons oyster sauce*

1 long red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped

2 cm piece (knob) ginger, grated using a micro plane

2 cloves garlic, crushed or finely chopped

1/4 cup coriander, finely chopped

1/4 cup cornflour

100 g kale or baby spinach, finely chopped

1 egg, lightly beaten

1 1/2 cups cooked quinoa

500 g chicken mince


  1. Place soy, oyster, chilli, ginger, garlic, coriander and cornflour into a large bowl, mix thoroughly to ensure cornflour is absorbed and there is no lumps.  Add the kale or baby spinach, lightly beaten egg, cooked quinoa and chicken mince, stir all ingredients until well combined.
  2. The mixture will be quite wet, that is why they are so moist once cooked.You can store the mixture in the fridge until ready to cook.
  3. To cook, heat a large sized fry pan over med heat, spray with oil and using two spoons, scoop the mixture up and using the other spoon push the mixture off into the frypan and just lightly push the pattie down with the back of your spoon. They will take about 3 minutes each side, depending on the thickness of your patties, continue this process with the rest of your mixture, place in a pre heated oven to keep warm or cool in the fridge and then freeze between sheets of baking paper.

 *Ayam brand offer gluten free soy and oyster sauce. You could use Tamari also, just adjust the quantity.

Banana Peanut Butter Bread

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Can this bread get any better- healthy, gluten free, paleo ( if using almond butter), dairy free, refined sugar free and with the added  yumminess of peanut butter, banana, pecans and honey!

It can be made in a  mini muffin, loaf or cake tin. I recommend storing it in the freezer, only so you don’t consume the whole loaf in one day – hehe.

Don’t be fooled by it being healthy, it is high in fat, good fats that is…


Banana Peanut Butter Bread


Ingredients

Wet

3 large bananas, mashed

1/4 cup honey or maple syrup

3 eggs

1/2 cup peanut butter or any nut butter

Dry

1/4 cup coconut flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon bi carb soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon

pinch of salt (omit the salt if using peanut butter)

Crumble

4 tablespoons coconut oil

1-2 tablespoons coconut sugar*

2 tablespoons almond meal

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 cup pecans, roughly chopped or any nut you prefer


Method

  1. Preheat oven to 175c. Prepare your tin with oil and baking paper.
  2. Combine all wet ingredients together in a large bowl and lightly whisk.
  3. Add the dry ingredients to the wet and stir, pour into prepared tin.
  4. Mix crumble ingredients in a small bowl using your hands, sprinkle over the top of the cake batter. Cook in oven for 40-50 minutes (that’s for a loaf tin) for muffins, check after 15 minutes, then every 5 minutes till done. You can usually smell the cake when its close to being ready. Leave in the tin to cool, then gently lift out using the paper, its really soft and moist.

* Coconut sugar can be found in the sugar section of your local supermarket or at health food stores.

This recipe was adapted from Paleomg.com .

Zucchini Mini Muffin Bites

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 How hard is it to create a high protein, low sugar, dairy free snack?  Its not. These Zucchini Mini Muffin Bites will satisfy those late night munchies when the kids are asleep or the 3pm slump when dinner seems so far away. They give you the satisfaction of eating something naughty, but are totally guilt free. They are free from refined sugar, grain and gluten free and dairy free. All you need to do is mix the dry, mix the wet and combine. Simple I know, the hardest part is not to eat them all.


 Zucchini Muffin Bites


Ingredients

1 3/4 cup almond meal

1 teaspoon bi carb soda

1/4 cup raw cacao powder

1 tablespoon macca powder (optional)

1 tablespoon chia seeds

50grams cacao nibs, dairy free dark chocolate or 70- 80% dark chocolate (sugar free), roughly chopped

1/4 cup nut of choice, roughly chopped

4 tablespoons coconut oil, melted

3 tablespoons maple syrup or honey

1 banana, mashed

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 egg

155ml coconut cream (small can)

1 cup zucchini, grated and moisture squeezed out


Method

  1. Preheat oven to 180c fan forced. Grease a mini cupcake/muffin tray with a little coconut oil.
  2. Combine almond meal, bi carb, cacao powder, macca powder, mix with a whisk to remove any lumps, then add chia seeds, chocolate and nuts, mix.
  3. Whisk all wet together, adding the zucchini last and stirring it through.
  4. Fold the wet mixture into the dry, do not overmix or the batter will become very oily.
  5. Fill the mini muffin holes 3/4 full with mixture, you may have left over mixture.
  6. Bake for 20-25 minutes. Test by touching the top, if they bounce back they are ready. Let cool in tray, they will be very delicate.  To remove, run a knife around the edges and pop them out.
  7. Store in the fridge for 1 week or freeze for 2 months