Crunchy Fish Salad

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I felt like a light lunch today and I fired it up with some fish cooked in chilli … and it goes something like this …

Ingredients:

250g white fish fillets – I used Barramundi (a line caught river fish found in Australia)
1 teaspoon chilli flakes
1 cup lettuce leaves – mine was chopped cos … ‘cos I like the crunch
1/2 cup celery – sliced into little discs
1/2 avocado – in pieces
1/2 cup mint – chopped
1/2 cup parsley – chopped
1/2 cup walnuts – toasted
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice

Method:

Heat a non stick fry pan to medium hot.

Toss the fish in the chilli flakes then add to the pan and fry gently till crispy on all sides and moist in the middle – perfection!

Chop the greens and place in a bowl with the avocado and walnuts.

When the fish is cooked, allow to cool for a couple of minutes (if you can wait) then add to the greens and squeeze over the lemon juice and olive oil.

That’s it – simple and quick and done in about 10 minutes. This is a cracker jack hip hopping jive talking super dooper salad.

Get into it :)

much love, Sarah

Prawn & Vegetable Stir Fry

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This simple and delicious stir fry was so easy and the whole delicious process took about 20 minutes. Totally gluten free, dairy free, salt free and sugar free – the flavour really packs a punch!

The idea is to have everything about the same size so they cook evenly … this serves two people … mix it up and add whatever you have in the fridge — carrots, sugar snap peas, spinach, celery — go with your heart …

Ingredients:

1 small red onion, finely sliced
1 small fennel bulb, finely sliced
1/2 red capsicum (pepper), finely sliced
1 cup broccoli florets, small pieces
1/2 cup wakame flakes, or any other sea vegetable cut into small pieces
2 medium garlic cloves, finely sliced
2 teaspoons chilli flakes
2 tablespoons oil – I used olive but you can use whatever you have
300 grams shelled prawns, cut into 2cm pieces
Juice of 1 lemon to serve

Method:

Heat the oil in a wok or shallow frypan.

Add all the vegetables, chilli and garlic and stir fry till the onion is lightly browned and the broccoli is starting to soften.

Add the prawns – if they are raw uncooked green prawns, you will need to cook them for about 5 minutes – if they are cooked, they will only need 2 minutes to warm through.

Serve with a squeeze of lemon juice, a few toasted sesame seeds and a little shimmy – dancing is always on the menu :)

with love, Sarah

Spicy Lamb Curry

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This Spicy Lamb Curry really knocked my socks off … maybe I will cut back on the chilli next time!!!

I am not adding any salt to my food so have reverted back to making my own spice mixes for curry’s as the ready made mixes in the store all seem to have salt. I love the process of making my own – so much fun – exploring how different a curry tastes with such minor tweaks to the ingredients. This is a great foundation and you can start exploring making your own!

Spice blend ingredients:

2 teaspoons black peppercorns
2 teaspoons coriander seeds
2 teaspoons cumin seeds
2 teaspoons dried chilli flakes
1 star anise
1 teaspoon cardamon seeds

Method:

Put all the spices into a saucepan and heat on the stove till they start to smoke and pop. I always cough as the chilli starts to heat up!

When you can smell all the flavours releasing, about 3 minutes, take them off the heat and put them into a mortar and pestle them till they are all crushed to a fine powder. You can use a blender, but I prefer the manual process, you can really feel and smell the aroma.

Curry Ingredients:

500g lamb, cubed
2 cups butternut squash, cubed
2 brown onions, finely sliced
2 tablespoons olive oil
Spice mix
2 cups water
3 cups silverbeet, finely sliced

Method:

There are a few ways to make this curry, either in a slow cooker, in the oven or on the stove top. I used a slow cooker, but the principal is the same …

In a large saucepan/oven proof dish/slow cooker lightly brown the onions in olive oil. (If your slow cooker isn’t made to go on the stove top, use a fry pan to start then transfer all to the slow cooker)

When the onion is starting to become clear, add the spice mix and the lamb. Seal the lamb pieces for a few minutes then add the pumpkin and water.

Cover and cook on low for 5-6 hours in the slow cooker; 150℃ in the oven for 5 hours, stirring occasionally so it doesn’t catch or on the stove top on low for 4 hours, stirring occasionally so it doesn’t catch.

When the curry was cooked, the lamb will easily squash under a spoon. Mine was a little watery, so I put it back on the stove and simmered for 20 minutes and reduced the sauce by half. This is when I added the silverbeet because I wanted it with a little ‘bite’ left in it. You can add the silverbeet with 20 minutes or so cooking time. Stir it through well to combine all the flavours.

Serve with love and ENJOY! with love, Sarah

Gluten Free Coconutty Biscuits

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These gluten free cookies are lovely to have for when friends drop around for a cup of tea, for the school lunchbox, a little snack at work or for something to munch when watching a movie – they are an adaptation on my lovely friend Gail’s recipe and they are lovely, light and very yummy and crunchy!

This recipe makes about 24 small biscuits.

Ingredients:

200ml egg whites, approximately 6 egg whites
1 cup almond meal
1 cup hazelnut meal
1 cup desiccated coconut, sugar and preservative free
1/3 cup coconut sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla powder
1 teaspoon baking soda

Method:

Pre-heat oven to 180℃ and line with baking paper.

In a big glass or metal mixing bowl, beat egg whites till light and fluffy. You don’t need to get to the meringue stiffness, just make sure there’s no liquid left in the bowl.

Add all the other ingredients and combine well. The mixture needs to be sticky but not wet. If you need to add more dry ingredients, add extra coconut or nut meal.

At this stage you can add anything else you feel to – chopped dried fruit, orange or lemon zest – make them your own!

Using disposable gloves, take small amounts and roll into balls. Place them on the tray and press down so they are flat and 1cm thick and a little bit home-made and rustic!

Bake for 25 minutes till golden. Remove from the oven and reduce oven heat to 160oC. Allow biscuits to cool then put them back into the oven for another 30 minutes. The biscuits are great after the first baking time but are a little ‘cakey’ for me – I like them more like biscotti which is why I put them in for the second round.

You can choose how you like them!!

For a more polished look to the cookies, I’m just feeling that the next time I make them, I’m going to roll the mixture into a sausage shape in cling film and refrigerate it so it’s firmer … then I could cut it with a knife for lovely sharp edges hahaha!

with love, Sarah

Watercress, Spinach & Pea Soup

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My body is healing from an operation and I’m realising on a whole new level how we either harm or heal with every mouthful.

Twenty two days ago I had a total laparoscopic hysterectomy – my uterus, ovaries and cervix were all removed with key hole surgery. After a four hour operation and three days in hospital, I am on a very steady and beautiful recovery and recuperation. Over the last four weeks, my food has been as much a part of the healing as the preparation, operation and rest. I now truly see how food affects how we are and what effect it can have on healing.

Two months prior to the operation I consulted the instructor at my gym and we devised a strength-building program to ensure my body was ready for the surgery. Two days of colon cleanse and bowel prep before the operation meant only liquids and a very thorough prescribed laxative, was a surprisingly healing process. I felt strong, fit, light and clear going into hospital and my body was ready to be healed.

Three weeks post op and I am starting to really feel the affect of food – almost instantly! For a couple of days I gave into cravings and ate some sugar in the form of gluten free bread, soy ice-cream, chocolate and other ‘treats’ and wow, what a mistake that turned out to be! I felt nauseous and couldn’t sleep and the sugar affected the effectiveness of painkillers. It was as though I needed more pain relief after sugar than not. Interesting huh? I reverted back to the high protein with leafy greens, salads and soups and the effect is profound. I can truly feel my body healing faster with a clean palate of food. What I have discovered, and continue to see through this process, is that what we eat really does harm or heal. The choice is ours.

This soup is exquisite. It felt so gentle and nurturing in my body last night and this morning I feel alive and beautifully fragile.

Ingredients:

1 large brown onion, chopped
1 large garlic clove, or 1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 large bunch of watercress
2 cups frozen or 3 cups of fresh spinach
1/2 cup frozen peas
3 cups home made stock (I used lamb stock)
3 tablespoons olive oil
3 teaspoons cracked black pepper
2 teaspoons lemon juice (to serve)

Method:

Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat

Add onion, garlic and pepper and sauté gently until the onion becomes translucent

Add watercress, spinach, peas and stock and bring to the boil

Simmer gently till the frozen ingredients are cooked through

Remove from heat and remove the thickest watercress stems – you could remove these before cooking too

Blend really well till super smooth with either a hand blender or in a blender

Serve with love and a squeeze of lemon juice

With love, Sarah

Gluten Free Orange & Almond Cake

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In honour of my birthday today, I felt to share the most light and lovely gluten free orange & almond cake that was dreamt up by my dear friend Michelle. She is a baker extraordinaire and her gluten and dairy free recipes are simple, easy and scrumptious. I’ve slightly tweaked it by adding coconut, but you can leave that out if you want to :)

Ingredients:

3 eggs
Zest and juice of two oranges
160 grams dairy free margarine
1/3 cup coconut sugar
250 grams almond meal
2 teaspoons vanilla powder
2/3 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup shredded coconut
100g flaked almonds
2 tablespoons maple syrup

Method:

Pre-heat oven to 170oC

Toast almond meal in oven for about 7 minutes till starting to brown a little

Melt the margarine then allow to cool

In a large bowl, blend well the eggs, orange zest and margarine till light and fluffy

Add coconut sugar, vanilla, baking soda, shredded coconut and cooled almond meal and blend well to form a sticky but not too wet mixture.

Put into the loaf tin and sprinkle with flaked almonds

Bake in a lined loaf tin for about 40 minutes till it’s brown on top and you can insert a skewer and it comes out clean.

Remove from the oven and skewer all over the top of the cake while its still in the tin.

Combine the orange juice and maple syrup and pour over the top of the cake while still in the tin. Allow time for the cake to soak it all up before slicing and serving.

I served it warm with a dollop of coconut cream but it’s equally lovely cold with a lovely hot cup of tea.

Joyful birthday to everyone! with love, Sarah

 

Gluten Free Fish & Seaweed Soup

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IMG_1836This gluten free fish and seaweed soup is an evolution from the sea vegetable soup I’ve made before. I felt to add some more spice and flavour to it …

1/2 cup dried sea vegetables/seaweed (I use The Healing Ingredient sea vegetable salad)
1 cup filtered water
1 large brown onion, sliced
2 tablespoons coconut oil
2 star anise
4 bay leaves, dried or fresh
250g fresh white fish, cut into 3cm cubed pieces (I used blue eye cod)
100g fresh green prawns, shelled and de-veined and cut into 3cm pieces
2 cups filtered water

Soak the seaweed in 1 cup of filtered water and allow to re-hydrate.

In a large saucepan over a medium heat, melt the coconut oil till hot.

Add the onions, star anise and bay leaves and fry gently till the onion starts to brown. Saute for about 10 minutes on a medium heat until the onion starts to soften.

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When the onion is soft add the seaweed with its water and an additional 2 cups of filtered water.

Cover and bring to the boil, turn down and simmer for three (3) minutes.

Add the fish, prawns and  and asian greens and turn off the heat and cover. The heat in the water will cook the fish, prawns and greens through.

Serve with Love xx

 

 

Gluten Free Salmon Taco’s Sarah Style!

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IMG_1843These gluten free fish tacos are a quick, simple and super delicious snack or meal.

I was at the fish market this morning stocking up on fresh salmon. I buy the fillets as a whole side and cut them into pieces and freeze them in individual packs to have when I feel like them – love shopping that way.

The thin ends of the salmon I sliced into strips … here’s how the tacos formed …

About 250g fresh salmon fillet, sliced into strips about 3cm wide
2 tablespoons of sesame seeds
2 tablespoons of sesame oil
1 tablespoon of gluten free low salt tamari
4 spring onions, sliced
1 cup fresh spinach leaves
1/2 cup fresh Thai basil leaves
2 tablespoons black sesame sprinkle (from The Healing Ingredient)
2 tablespoons fried dried shallots

Into a non-stick frypan, heat the sesame oil then add the salmon, skin side down.

Sprinkle the sesame seeds over the top of the salmon as it’s cooking. Turn when the seeds start to brown and add the tamari.

When the salmon is cooking, I prepared some small cos lettuce leaves and fresh Thai basil ready for the construction!

Remove when the salmon is cooked to your liking and set aside to cool. IMG_1841

Add the spring onions and spinach to the pan and cook for about three minutes till the shallots are soft and spinach is wilted. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.

Time for the fun!!!

On a plate arrange the lettuce as the base, place a piece of salmon, some spinach then sprinkle with basil leaves, black sesame sprinkle and crispy shallots.

It’s really yummy and tasty and quick – and you can swap the salmon for any other fish you prefer. So scrumptious!!

Cherry & Apple Tart

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This gluten free cherry and apple tart is simply delicious! Last weekend I had lunch with the girls and was asked to bring along a gluten free dessert. It is dairy free, lactose free, egg free and vegan too. And the only sugar is from green apples and cherries. This is super simple …

Ingredients:

1 cup raw almonds
1/2 cup shredded or desiccated coconut, sugar free
2 tblsp coconut oil
4 tblsp water

2 green apples, peeled, cored and chopped
600g fresh cherries, pips removed,
1 cup almond meal
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/3 cup coconut butter
1/4 cup water

Process:

Preheat oven to 200oC

In a blender mix the almonds, shredded coconut and coconut oil with a little water until it forms a dough.

Gently press the mixture into a 25cm flan or quiche dish so you have a base about 5mm thick.

Bake in the oven for about 10-15 minutes. Keep an eye on it – the cooking time will depend on your oven.

While the base is baking, peel, core and chop the apples into pieces. The labour of love is removing the pips from the cherries. Take a small, sharp knife and run it around to slice the cherry in half around the pip. Twist the cherry gently and one half will come away easily. Take the tip of the knife and carefully work around the pip and remove it from the other half.

Set aside about 28 cherries for the top – how many will depend on the size of your flan dish.

Put the cherries and apples into the cleaned blender with the almond meal, coconut butter, oil and water and blend to a smooth paste. You will need to work it all from the edges so it blends to a smooth, thick consistency.

Remove the base from the oven and allow to cool fully.

Gently spoon the apple and cherry mixture into the flan base and put into the fridge to allow to set. Takes about two (2) hours.

When the flan is set, delicately arrange the cherries on top of the tart.

Perfect to have a gluten free dessert, dairy free and simply wonderful to share with everyone!

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