Category: Paleo

Beef and mushroom Shepherd’s pie

This is one of my favourite winter recipes, which will one day be in my book (more on that in the future). Its packed full of veggies, and the beef is rich and tasty.

Beef and mushroom Shepherd’s pie

500g Beef mince
4 Large Mushrooms, chopped
1 Large carrot, diced
½ medium zucchini, diced
½ white onion, diced
2 Handfuls of baby spinach
2 Garlic cloves, peeled and diced
½ cup Red wine
1 cup Beef stock
2 Tbsp Tomato paste
½ Tsp Sea salt
Pinch Black pepper
1 Tsp mixed Italian herbs
1 star Anise
2 Dry Bay leaves
1 Tbsp Tamari soy sauce
2 Tbsp Tapioca Flour
2 Tsp Olive oil (for browning meat and onion)
2 Medium Sweet potatoes

  • Heat a frying pan on medium heat and sauté onion in ½ the olive oil for 8 minutes (or until brown). Prepare the rest of the ingredients.
  • Add the beef mince to the pan, break into small chunks with a spatula. Stir frequently for 10-15 minutes, or until the beef is browned on all sides.
  • Add carrots, zucchini, garlic, red wine, sea salt, pepper, start anise, bay leaves and herbs, and bring to a simmer.
  • Add beef stock, tomato paste, mushrooms and tamari, stir and bring to a simmer.
  • Turn the heat down to low, then cover and simmer for 35 minutes, or until most of the liquid is gone. Stir occasionally.
  • Once the beef is simmering, you can prepare the sweet potato. Peel sweet potato and cut into large chunks. Place in a pot of boiling water and boil for 10-15 minutes, or until soft (you can check this with a knife).
  • Drain the sweet potatoes and leave to cool for a few minutes. Once cool, mash with a fork or potato masher. Add the sea salt and a little tapioca flour and mix well (I like to keep mine a little chunky for the texture). Leave aside.
  • After the beef has been simmering for 35 minutes, uncover and add spinach, stir well and let the spinach wilt. Once it has wilted add the tapioca flour. Stir to combine, the beef should thicken. Take off the heat and leave aside to cool.
  • Heat oven to 180C. In a medium casserole dish, spread the beef mince on the bottom, ensure you leave around ¼ of the space for the sweet potato.
  • Carefully spread the sweet potato over the mince evenly, until the mince is completely covered. You can use a fork to add a visual effect on the top. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes.

Serve 2-3. Serve with a side of steamed veggies, garden salad or on its own.

Print version below:

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Book review: Optimal Health the Paleo way-Claire Yates

This week I finally got around to purchasing a copy of Optimal Health the Paleo way by Claire Yates, and I much say this thing is INCREDIBLE! Its not just a cookbook….Its 143 pages full of scientific based nutritional information, and Claire has presented it in a really easy to understand way. She goes through additives, allergens, hormones, stress, gut health, inflammation, macronutrients, micronutrients, and the list just goes on. I was amazed at just how much love and time Claire has put into this gorgeous work of art. 
Simply, Claire has summised everything you need to know about nutrition and the role it plays in your health, then gives you the ultimate guide to how to change your habits! Its a book I can confidently recommend to others who want a simple health eating plan to get them into the realm of good health. And its a book I will personally use to guide my diet. 
I have been on Paleo for 2 weeks now as part of a dietary intervention study at uni. I have noticed quite a few changes to my health. Firstly I have noticed that I am less hungry, and I want to snack less. This is a great feat for me as  have an issue with always being hungry. Secondly, my skin is looking amazing! I haven’t had this kind of skins in quite a few years. And thirdly, I have more energy. Now in the afternoon, I don’t feel like I need another coffee, its just all uphill! 

This weekend I used Claire’s recipes to do my meal prep (as well as some recipes from Eat Drink Paleo). I made:

  • Carrot and sweet potato bites: These were a huge hit at the family Easter BBQ, even for those that are big meat eaters.
  • Sweet potato salad: Another hit at the family Easter BBQ, everyone was surprised at how tasty it was.
  • Roasted eggplant, cauliflower and warm chicken salad: This on is just gorgeous, and is going to be my lunch during the week. It was so easy to out together
  • Butter Chicken: Again, another super simple recipe that only really took 20 minutes from start to finish.
  • Herb and chili chicken: This was amazing, I just popped everything into a big baking dish and literally left it for a hour, and tada-Done!
Honestly, get your hands on a copy of this, Claire has put her heart and soul into this book, and you can really tell. This is the kind of book I would love to one day be the proud author of.
Find out more about Optimal health the Paleo way, Claire Yates, and how to re-set your health over at her website: http://optimumhealthpaleo.com/

 

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Stuff I heart #2

I hope everyone had an amazing Easter weekend, full of rest, relaxation, treats, family and love <3 
I know lots of people are still on holiday until next week, but I’m back in action this week, and I’m ready for the remainder of the Uni semester as well as filling the blog with yummy recipes and nutrition posts. 
So here is my (slightly) overdue stuff I heart post:
 

1. The Paleo diet and Claire Yates cookbook “Optimal health the Paleo way”

I picked up this book from work after months of swooning over it, and I spend Friday morning reading the entire first half, which is full of some fantastic nutrition information. Claire is full of so much wisdom, and I just love her book! If you get a chance, grab a copy. I made the Carrot and sweet potato bites you see on the far left, they were a huge hit at the family BBQ I was at over the weekend. 

See my full review of Claire’s book here. 
 

2. This article full of reasons you should break up with your makeup

I stopped wearing a face full of make up a few years ago, it was mostly because I couldn’t afford it (student life right), but my face has loved me for it! I now can be proud of my own skin, rather than hiding behind a layer of chemicals. My mum also helped me to make the choice to move to natural makeup, so now, I could probably eat everything I put on my face. And our skin is our largest organ, so it absorbs everything! I love not wearing makeup, and I think it should be an everyday trend rather than for a #nomakeupselfie. 
There is also this great website I used for my info on being gorgeous AND green. 
 

3. This article on what your perfect day looks life from This is Lifeblood

On that note, here is what would be my Perfect day: Wake up early, refreshed and energised, next to my man. Then, cuddles and a coffee in bed with a chat. Then off outside to exercise with the sun rising, yoga, walking the dog, or the beach. Next would be a big, gorgeous breakfast full of eggs and veggies. Then work. In a perfect day I would be seeing clients as a Nutritionist, inspiring and educating people to live a fulfilling and empowered life. Lunch would be more veggies and of course a cup of tea. The afternoon would be filled with blogging and creating new recipes, as well as a bit of gardening. Then its time for some more exercise, another walk, or yoga, or some running. I’d then make an exciting, nourishing meal, and share it with my closest friends and loved one. There would be wine, and nibbles and music. And then finally at the very end of the day, I would sit down to read something awesome. 
 
Sounds awesome huh! What does your perfect day look like?
 

4. This incredible Lady: Yuna (Singer/Songwriter)

 
 
I’m in love with her album Nocturnal, I don’t usually post about music, but this is just too good not to share. Its full of lovely sparkly songs and gorgeous lyrics. Its my spring anthem album at the moment, Plus its fantastic to sing along to <3
Find out more about Yuna here.
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4 awesome egg recipes

I love eggs, with all their versatility and variety of nutrients. Eggs are nutrient rich and are a great addition to a healthy diet. Eggs are a source of at least 11 various vitamins and minerals, as well as having high quality protein, omega 3 and antioxidants. In particular eggs are a great source of folate, vitamin A, zinc, iron, and iodine. Eggs are very versatile and can be incorporated into a variety of foods and meals. Eggs can play a vital role in the diets of kids who are fussy, as they provide a wide array of nutrients. 
So with that, here are my favourite egg recipes from around the internet:
 

1. Egg white and greens frittata from The Healthy Chef

http://www.thehealthychef.com/2012/06/egg-white-greens-frittata/

 

2. Paleo Choritzo Cauliflower casserole from PaleOMG

http://paleomg.com/almost-5-ingredient-green-chile-chorizo-cauliflower-casserole/

 

3. Zucchini Ham and Sun-dried tomato savoury muffins from Eat, Drink Paleo

http://eatdrinkpaleo.com.au/zucchini-ham-sun-dried-tomato-savoury-muffins-grain-dairy-free/

 

4. Green eggs with ham from I Quit Sugar 

http://iquitsugar.com/recipe/green-eggs-with-ham/

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Gorgeous Granola

There is something deliciously rewarding about making your own tasty granola. I usually make a batch over the weekend to enjoy with my weekday smoothies, or with Greek yogurt and figs. I even have it on its own as a healthy snack during the day. Plus you can add your own preferences to make it even better!
 
The thing to remember with granola is a low heat, and slow cooking process, you don’t want to burn or overcook it, the nuts just need to be toasted. 
 
This granola is full of energy boosting nuts, slow release oats, and packed with protein from the seeds. And of course, just a hint of sweetness from the honey, vanilla and spice. Not that you need to be any more sweet lovely!
 
 

1 cup Rolled oats
1/2 cup Ground almonds
1 cup Mixed nuts (I like Brazil, Hazelnuts and walnuts)
1/2 cup Mixed seeds (Pepitas, Chia, Sunflower, Sesame)
1 cup Dried fruit (Cranberries, Apricots)
1/2 cup Desiccated coconut
1/4 cup Coconut flakes
1 Tsp. Cinnamon
1/2 Tsp. Nutmeg
1/2 cup Coconut oil
3 Tbsp. Honey
1 Tsp. Vanilla

  • Preheat the oven to 160 degrees.
  • In a large mixing bowl, mix together the oats and ground almonds.
  • In a food processor, process the mixed nuts, until there is a variety of sizes (I like to keep it pretty chunky)
  • Add the processed nuts and seeds to the bowl.
  • Chop the dried fruit and add to the bowl.
  • Add coconut, and spices, mix thoroughly.
  • In a small jug mix together the coconut oil, honey and vanilla, then pour over the dry mix, and combine.
  • Line a large baking tray with baking paper, and spread granola mix over.
  • Bake at 160 degrees for 30-40 minutes, check every 15 minutes to prevent overcooking.
Serve with Greek yogurt, and figs.

 

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18 healthy green recipes to try this weekend

Its only a few days till St Patrick’s day-and how better to celebrate than with all things green!

Here are a few recipe ideas for the green lover in you:

Breakfast:

 

1. Green Eggs from Elena’s Pantry

2. Green Breakfast Bowl from Green Kitchen Stories

3. Lemon Frittata with Leek and Goats Cheese from The Kitchn

4. Green Pancakes from Choosing Raw

5. Almond flour Zucchini bread from Against All Grain

Lunch and Dinner:

 

6. Power Green Salad from The Sprouted Kitchen

7. Super Healthy Green Soup from Queen of Quinoa

8. Green Falafel from Food Wanderings
9. Green Pea and spinach risotto from The Healthy chef
10. Thai Green Curry from Not Quite Nigella

Snacks and Drinks:

11. Green Hummus from I Quit Sugar

12. Rocket Basil Pesto from Eat Drink Paleo

13. Power Green smoothie from Mind Body Green

14. Green Tea Latte from Just One Cookbook

15. Baked Kale Chips from Nom Nom Paleo

16. Lime, Ginger and Coconut Smoothie from The Healthy Foodie

Desserts:

17. Avocado Ice cream from All Among Friends

18. Lemon and Lime Coconut Cheesecake from This Rawsome Vegan Life

And the guys from The Green Smoothie Co have this great green smoothie ebook free on their website. Check it out!

Christmas Orange and Cinnamon Bliss Balls

I’m loving all the Christmas themed food things popping up everywhere at the moment, for me, i’m planning on having a wholefood Christmas filled with lots of lovely veggies and raw snacks! The tricky part is choosing the right kind of treats, which is why I have come up with my own bliss balls. Everybody has their own version, and mine are a lovely orange and cinnamon flavour.

1 cup Dates chopped
1 cup Cashews
2 Tbsp Cacao powder
1/4 cup Coconut oil
1/2 cup Walnuts
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
rind from one orange
Dessicated coconut and chia seeds for outside
Place dates and cashews in a food processor and blend until combined and cashews are finely chopped (Should all stick together in a ball). Put the dates and cashew mix into a bowl, then processed walnuts until very fine. Melt coconut oil in microwave for 30 seconds, then add all ingredients into the bowl with the date and cashew mix.
Roll into balls and place on a lined baking tray in the fridge or freezer for 30 minutes, or until set. I also rolled mine in desiccated coconut and chia seeds.
*Variations: ginger and lemon, cranberry and almond, vanilla and cherry, rum and raisin
Enjoy xx

 

Raw blueberry beetroot cheesecake

Yesterday I got creative in the kitchen, and made a delightful raw blueberry beetroot cheesecake. Unfortunately I didn’t write down the ingredients, however I’ve estimated what I did, and it should probably turn out similar to what I made! Either way it will be delicious 🙂

For the base:
1/2 cup walnuts
10-12 dates, chopped
1/2 cup almond meal
3 Tbsp. coconut oil
2 Tbsp. cacao powder

For the middle:
1 avocado
1/2 banana
1/4 zucchini
1 Tbsp. cacao powder
3 Tbsp. coconut oil, melted
1 Tbsp. honey

For the top:
3/4 cup of coconut cream (Get the really thick white layer that settles at the top of the can)
1/3 cup blueberries
2 slices raw beetroot
1/2 cup cacao butter
1 tsp honey

To prepare the base:
In a food processor, add the dates, walnuts, almond meal and cacao powder, and blend until its relatively fine, and sticks together. Melt coconut oil in the microwave, then add to the blended mixture, and blend for a further 20 seconds. Line a circular cake tin with baking paper and press the mixture down until firm. Leave in the freeze while preparing the next layer.

To prepare the middle:
In the food processor, add all ingredients and process until smooth (I had to wait quite a while for all the lumps of zucchini to disappear). Take the base out of the freezer and spread the middle layer on top. Put back in the freezer while preparing the top layer.

To prepare the top layer:
To the food processor, add all ingredients and blend until smooth. Get the bottom layers out of the freezer, then spread the top layer on top. Be careful to wait until the middle layer is hard before spreading the top layer on, you may find it is too soft straight away.

Leave in the freezer until completely set, serve with fresh berries.

The 8 week Health challenge

Ok, so Monday is the day I start the 8 week health and wellness challenge from Karrinyup Wellness Centre. Basically it involves a bit of a lifestyle upheaval and rebooting my health. For 8 weeks I will be going PALEO! Which is not a huge step for me, as i’m already halfway there, but i’m looking forward to trying to live a lifestyle that so many people rave above.

Some of the reasons i’m keen on trying paleo, is the type of foods eaten are whole foods, good quality foods, and nutrient dense foods. This excludes processed and refined foods, Grains and Dairy. For me, dairy is the biggest loss (I love my morning coffee), and a bit of dark chocolate, however I am totally willing to give it a go! So basically the allow foods are:

  • Any veggies (Except corn, and limited white potato)
  • Local, seasonal fruit
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Olive oil and coconut oil
  • Grass fed, free range lean protein
And to be honest, I’m pretty sure you can fulfill your recommended daily intakes by eating these foods. However, being the skeptic that I am, I will be monitoring my diet using monitoring software, just to check that I am getting everything I need.
The other parts to the challenge include:
  • Consuming enough water daily (about 2.7 L for me)
  • Getting enough sleep (About 8 hours per night)
  • Exercising (I will be aiming for 5 times a week-as I currently exercise around 3 times a week)
  • No alcohol (Not an issue for me as I don’t drink anyway)
  • Looking after my emotional stress (I will be using Yoga, meditation, journal writing, and Chiro to help me here)
I am really looking forward to trying this out, iv’e heard so much about it, and i’m all for trying everything! I will be using a log book to monitor my progress, but I will also post a quick update every few days to see how i’m going. I am looking to loose some weight, so hopefully I get that outcome, but mostly I am doing it to be healthier, Have more energy, and gain muscle.
We have a weigh and measure session on Sunday, which I am helping with (I finally get to use some of my Uni skills in the real world!). And i’ll also do all my shopping and meal prep on Sunday (Which will include a few recipes posts).
I will also be posting a whole bunch of recipes, menu suggestions and tips and tricks that i’m learning for getting on board with the paleo lifestyle! I look forward to having a whole bunch of stuff to blog about, and for anyone else that is interested in trying out paleo.
Britt xx