How to Perfect Winter Roasted Vegetables

Roasted vegetables are the perfect accompaniment to every savoury meal.

Whether you’re focusing on leaning down or just trying to incorporate enough veggie servings into your day, roasted veg + protein will help you get there.

Roasting vegetables is a delicious way to get the vitamins, minerals and fibre that they provide. A diet rich in vegetables will decrease the chance of cancer, diabetes and many other health complications.

For me, maintaining a healthy balance means making food that tastes as good as the benefits it provides.

I’ve developed the perfect recipe for roasting up delicious vegetables quickly. This blend of spices has the aroma and flavours of a warming winter meal.

You will need:

  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Garlic Powder
  • Olive Oil
  • Rosemary
  • Oregano

This combo of oils and spices can be used with any combination of your favourite vegetables, but here are my favourites for a roast:

  • Turnip
  • Beetroot
  • Leek
  • White Onion
  • Carrots
  • Broccoli
  • Brussel Sprouts

To prepare, just chop the vegetables into desired sizes, cover in olive oil and sprinkle with salt, pepper, garlic powder, rosemary and oregano.

Cook for 35 minutes at 200˚C and enjoy!

High Protein, High Fibre, Summer Smoothie Bowl

I’m constantly devising new smoothie recipes, so its no wonder that my blog is full of smoothie variations (see my detox smoothie, my green tea smoothie, and my acai bowls). There are just endless combinations.

This summer smoothie bowl I have created with a focus on vitality, protein and fibre. The key ingredient here is the Cacao Macadamia Raw Slim &  Tone Protein by Amazoniathis stuff has 7.5mg of iron and is 76% protein, which is fantastic for reducing fatigue and boosting energy.

This powder gives the smoothie bowl an irresistible nutty chocolate taste, as well as packing it with protein and iron for satiety and energy throughout the day. 

In my bowl I have: 

  • 30g Slim & Tone Protein 
  • 1 cup baby spinach – a great source of vitamin C for immune health
  • 1/2 cup frozen blueberries – for fibre, to help your body digest the protein
  • 1/2 cup almond milk 
  • 1 tbsp psyllium husks – brilliant for digestion as high in fibre
  • 1/4 cup water 
  • You can also add some extra nutrients such as the collagen and pro/pre-biotic powders from Vida Glow and The Beauty Chef

Whip these up in a blender, and pour them into a bowl. I like to garnish with Carman’s fruit free muesli, seasonal fruits, healthy nut butter’s from Mayvers.

Breakdown
Calories: 219 (335 with 1 tbsp peanut butter topping) 
Protein: 26g
Fat: 5g | Fiber: 14g | Carbs: 23g
Prep time: 5 mins

xx

XMAS Healthy Salted Caramel Cookies

Okay so yes this is your usual Salted Caramel cookie recipe, however, for a sprinkle of Christmassy festivity I added cinnamon, nutmeg and rich dark chocolate to the dough.

Read on if you’re interested in my simple, yet divinely tasty XMAS Caramel cookies. Or better; create them yourself in 20 minutes.

Gather the following:

The Method:

  1. Mix all the ingredients (except chocolate chips) together, until you form a cookie dough. You can add almond milk gradually if the mixture is too flour-y.

2. Use a rolling pin to knead the dough out on top of an acrylic/plastic/stone surface.

3. Here’s where it got a little more complicated. I’m currently experiencing an Australian summer, so naturally the sun was beating down at 30˚C, which made all my cookie dough melt and stick to my hands. So, I wrapped it in cling wrap and popped it in the freezer for 5 mins to make it think it was in Antarctica.

4. Cut little shapes out with the cookie cutter.

5. As the cookie cutter will make the raw cookies a lot thinner and smaller than Betty Crocker recommends for cookie sizing, you only have to place them in the oven for 8 minutes at 180˚C (350˚F), so they don’t burn.

The perfect Christmas treat. Enjoy!

xx

Australia voted YES! Rainbow Pizza & Pancakes for Marriage Equality.

Although I’m not a member of the LGBT community, I believe in equal rights, and so, hearing that 61.6% of Australians had voted “YES” in the recent postal vote (legalising gay marriage) was overwhelmingly exciting.

Naturally, I decided to draw inspiration from the rainbow flag, which represents the LGBT movement, and make rainbow pizza and pancakes to celebrate.

If you want to make eye-catching rainbow meals, read on.

Rainbow Pancakes (makes 15)

We’ll start with the pancakes – since they are the simplest, and because everyone wishes dessert would come first.  These are the perfect breakfast or lunch (or dinner?) recipe.

You will need food dye, pancake mix, vanilla essence, fruit (to garnish) and butter for greasing.

Start by working off the pancakes you’re about to eat, and shake the pancake mix like crazy as per its instructions.

Once it’s ready, add 1 tsp of vanilla essence to the mixture (gives it a delightfully sweet tang) and pour 65g of the mixture into 6 different bowls. Add the food dye as follows:

Red – 8 drops red dye

Orange – 2 drops red, 4 yellow

Yellow – 5 drops yellow

Green – 5 drops green

Blue – 5 drops blue

Purple – 3 drops red, 1 blue

Then cook the pancakes over a medium heat in a frying pan. Tip: make sure you add butter to pan between each pancake so they don’t stick and burn (and earn a lovely, buttery aftertaste). You can also use coconut oil as a non-dairy alternative.

Voila! Garnish with berries.

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Rainbow Pizza (makes 8 pieces)

I like it simple so I decided to go with store bought pizza bases. If you can get them I recommend Bazaar Gourmet Pizza bases. You could also use a Cauliflower Crust, if you are looking for a lower calorie alternative.

You will need:

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  • 1 Pizza Base
  • Tomato Paste
  • Shredded Mozzarella Cheese (you can use light mozzarella if you want something healthier)
  • Colourful Veggies, my suggestions:
    • Red – Red Pepper (Capsicum) & Red cherry tomatoes
    • Orange – Carrot
    • Yellow – Yellow cherry tomatoes, Sweet corn
    • Green – Broccolini, Snow peas
    • Purple – Red onion, Cabbage (I didn’t end up using the cabbage)

After heating the oven to 220˚C, smear the base with tomato paste and sprinkle the cheese on top. Note: this is different to normal pizza recipes. The cheese needs to be put on first so the veggies stick but you can still see their beautiful colours.

Then, chop up all the veggies and place them on the pizza in a rainbow fashion.

Cook for 10 minutes and your pizza is ready!

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These recipes were so tasty, and incredibly fun to make. Let me know if you try it out, or have any other rainbow recipes 🙂

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xx

A salad to suit the season?

Reading over and editing this post I realised how many times I used the word Spring. I’m sorry but unfortunately Oxford dictionary doesn’t have any good alternatives.

***

We’re getting to the end of Spring over here in Australia, and although I’m excited about the beachy climate that summer is bringing, it’s sad to see those cool, breezy Spring days fade away.

Because Spring is the season before Summer, it’s the time every gym membership goes on sale, Halloween stashes quickly get thrown out, and green smoothies and salads are glorified.

The idea of munching on a bowl of bitter green leaves drizzled with vinaigrette sounds highly unappetizing to me, but with the right ingredients they can taste great and they ensure you are packing your daily greens in.

So, I created the perfect Spring salad, with protein, healthy fats and a range of different flavours.

You will need:

  • 1 medium tomato – reduce risk of heart disease and cancer
  • 135g tinned salmon – rich in omega 3 fatty acids and a great source of protein.
  • Mixed green lettuce leaves
  • Drizzle of extra virgin olive oil
  • Heaped tsp of dried chia seeds – high in omega 3s, fibre, and provide a delicious crunch to the dish.
  • 100g chopped canned beetroot
  • 50g avocado – source of filling, healthy fats.

Cost: AUD 10   Calories: 380

Perfect! xx

You Must Dine at the Rocks in Sydney

The reason The Rocks is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Sydney is because of how many diverse restaurants, bars and cafés it has to offer. What makes it better is that each restaurant has a different cuisine, atmosphere, quirks, and is just a 2 minute walk from the iconic harbour.

If you only had one night in the city, I would tell you to first head for drinks at Grain, a dimly lit cocktail bar next to the Four Seasons. What they do best is a range of exotic cocktails; I recommend Alexander’s Fizz or Sunburn, if you want to give some strangely delicious drink combinations a go.

If you are feeling Tex-Mex, head to El Camino Cantina. They serve up oversized margaritas and tapas share platters (think crispy tacos, sizzling quesadillas, nachos dripping in cheese and churros), AND they have unlimited corn chips and salsa which is always a win.

The walls are adorned with Mexican themed collectables and animation-style art, giving the place a groovy, retro vibe. We went for the Cadillac Platter which served up a selection of chilli chicken wings, jalapeño poppers, tuna ceviche tacos, guacamole, chicken and cheese quesadilla, and chilli con carne – which tasted as good as it sounds.

If Mexican isn’t your thing, head over to Zia Pina Pizzeria, owned by the same family for the past 3 decades (there’s a reason why their food is so good). I would recommend the Zucca pizza with cheese, tomato base, grilled pumpkin, olives, parmesan cheese and rocket, or the Veal Gnocchi.

There’s also the Munich Brauhaus which does Bavarian food traditionally and festively. The wait staff are dressed in dirndls and lederhosen, serving up house-made sausages, freshly baked pretzels, schnitzels, crispy pork belly, and of course, lots of beer.

For dessert, you have to head to the iconic Guylian Belgian Chocolate Café, for desserts which both taste and look amazing. I recommend the dark chocolate raspberry cheesecake or a milk chocolate mousse with macadamia cream.

Or, if you’re feeling like a real treat night, head over to Pancakes on The Rocks, a well-known dessert chain which does pancakes every way you can think. My favourite is the decadent Black Forest Cherry, which involves chocolate pancakes with cherries, brandy sauce, creamy chocolate ice cream and chocolate chips, all doused in chocolate sauce.

Leave comments below if you know any other great places at The Rocks! I’d love to check them out xxx