protein

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.

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.

Protein Bliss Balls

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Now I know there is a thousand  Bliss Ball recipes out there, now there is a thousand and one – ha! These little beauties are very high in protein, high in good fats and  low in refined sugar. They are adaptable with any nuts, seeds or dried fruits, just substitute the same quantities. You don’t even have to roll into balls, just press into a lined baking tray and place in the freezer, slice once frozen. They will last 2 weeks in the fridge and 2 months in the freezer.


Protein Bliss Balls

30 balls


Ingredients

300 g pitted dates

80 g roasted walnuts/cashews or Brazil nuts

100 g roasted almonds

2 tablespoons linseeds, chia, sunflower and pepita

1 tablespoon coconut oil

2 tablespoon honey

2 tablespoon tahini or peanut butter

2 tablespoons raw cacao powder

3 tablespoons protein powder (whey protein isolate-plain)

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Desiccated coconut to roll

 


  1.  Blitz the dates until crumbly, add nuts and seeds, blitz until mixed thoroughly.
  2. Melt coconut, honey and tahini or peanut butter in microwave, pour into mixture, pulse to combine. Add raw cacao, protein powder and vanilla. Blitz until the mixture starts to come together.Roll tablespoons of mixture into balls and cover with desiccated coconut, store in fridge or freezer.