What is simple, colorful, flavorsome and used in cooking & baking?

What is simple, colorful, flavorsome and used in cooking & baking?

The Stunning Carrot!

Do you see carrots as a hero vegetable?   You could say they have super powers yet how would you know without a label to tell you.  What a shame, if carrots did come with a nutrition label PLUS marketing messages here is what I think you would see;

Carrots are a good source of vitamins and minerals!
Carrots are extremely low in fat!
Carrots are a component of a healthy diet.


Now turn the carrot over and lets see what is on the back panel:

The nutrition facts for two small-to-medium raw carrots (100 grams) are:

  • Calories:                 41
  • Water:                    88%
  • Protein:                  0.9 grams
    • Carbs:          9.6 grams
    • Sugar:          4.7 grams
  • Fiber:                     2.8 grams
  • Fat:                        0.2 grams

    in the form of – starch and sugars
    Sugar in the form of sucrose and glucose
    Fiber in the form of pectin { a soluble fibre} and cellulose, hemicellulose, and lignin {insoluble fibre}@
    @Soluble fibre helps lower blood sugar levels by slowing down your digestion of sugar and starch.
    Insoluble fibre helps reduce constipation

And the vitamin and mineral content is also worthy of mention, look at all you get in just two carrots!

Vitamin A promotes good vision and is important for growth, development, and immune function
Biotin: A B vitamin plays an important role in fat and protein metabolism
Vitamin K1 important for blood coagulation
Potassium important for blood pressure control
Vitamin B6 involved in the conversion of food into energy

ould agree, carrots are a rather good vegetable to have on hand.

However, I don’t think there are enough recipes that allow carrots to show off.  Carrots are still seen as things to hold dip, add to recipes for flavour, used as a side dish, but never as the star of its own show.    What if there was a recipe that allow the humble carrot to be the star.  I recently found such a recipe – Carrot Sung Choi  Boa.  The recipe was perfect for a party I  hosted over the weekend.  The guests loved it, I loved it and my husband loved it.  I know you will love it too, so I have included the recipe here for you!

Now that you know what a kick *** vegetable carrots are, will you use them more in your daily cooking?  Maybe you need some ideas to help your own creative juices going – here are some ways I use carrots:

  • Roasted whole to be use as a side dish or for salads
  • Grated, to be added to any thing like meat loaf, pasta sauce, and salads (adding fibre ).
  • Cut into different shapes for different uses – coins, baton (carrot sticks), spiral (for noodles), thin match sticks, diced (mirepoix) for stocks and stews.
  • Healthy snack.
  • You can turn them into soup, dips, or juice, bake into a cake, turn into fritter, or plant-based filling for Sung Choi Bao
    Stunning Carrot Sung Choi Bao

    Prep Time: 15 minutes

    Cook Time: 10 minutes

    Total Time: 25 minutes

    Category: Vegan Dinner Option

    Cuisine: Chineese


    Stunning Carrot Sung Choi Bao

    I discovered this recipe while looking for a menu item for a party. The original recipe I came across was by Jacqueline Alwill from her website The Brown Paper Bag. The photo I used here is also from that same website.

    The changes I made were to swap out the quinoa for cauliflower and broccoli rice with minced mushrooms added.

    The Topping was changed from peanuts to hemp and sesame seeds in an effort to keep this nut free.


    • 2 teaspoons coconut oil
    • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
    • 2 cups (400g) carrot, grated
    • 1 ½ cups (300g) cooked cauliflower and broccoli rice ( original recipe used the same amount of cooked quinoa)
    • ¼ cup water
    • 1 red or green chilies, finely chopped (for less heat, remove the seeds)
    • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
    • 2-3 tablespoons tamari
    • 4 Asian shallots, finely chopped
    • 1/2 cup (100g) fresh Shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced
    • ¼ – ½ bunch coriander, leaves and stalks finely chopped
    • 1/4 cup mixture of hemp seeds and toasted sesame seeds
    • Lettuce leaves - iceberg is the best option. Alternatively you could use romaine (Cos)


    • Heat coconut oil in a large fry pan or wok, and sliced garlic and saute for 30seconds.
    • Add carrot and cauliflower, broccoli and mushroom mixture and cook for 4 minutes.
    • Add water, sesame oil and tamari and cook a further 4 minutes.
    • Next, add chopped shallots and coriander and cook for 3 minutes.
    • Serve hot with lettuce leaves, extra chili and garnish with hemp seeds and toasted sesame seeds.


    I did makes some changes:

    1. I changed the quinoa out for a mix of cauliflower and broccoli rice. To that mixture I added finely minced mushrooms.

    2. I opted to change the crushed peanuts for Hemp Seeds and Toasted sesame seeds. Very nice and great if you are going NUT free.


  • Or use with other left over vegetables, like cherry tomatoes and zucchini and create a whole meal like I did after my party.
    I was left over veggies - Now I am a main meal

    Am I going to be a soup, pasta sauce, or…..


    I turn 500 grams carrots + one onion + garlic + 2 zucchinis + 300g of cherry tomatoes and 1 tin of chickpeas into a vegetable tagine. All  vegetables were saved from going to waste!

    Pantry creation

    Stunning vegetables saved from going to waste!



The Pure Joy of Peanut Butter Bliss Balls!

The Pure Joy of Peanut Butter Bliss Balls!

photo credit to wholesome yum.
I love SIMPLE – WHOLE – CREAMY – CHEWY – BLISS BALLS.  The pure joy of Peanut Butter Bliss Balls!

Ah the pure delight  of a great bliss ball is truly a wonderful thing.  My favorite is usually made with peanut butter.   What I do know peanut butter is its one of my go to snack creators, I love it on slices of crunchy apple , down the middle of celery sticks (yes really), in a banana smoothie, in over night oats and as the perfect dip for dark chocolate must be bitter with very little sugar (85 to 100%), and last but not least in a peanut butter bliss ball.

I have included a very simple recipe for you here.  Honest, just a couple of ingredients and you are in business!  If you don’t like peanut better or can’t eat it, you can use other nut or seed butters.  I think almond butter is great in this recipe as is sunflower seed.  Additionally you can coat the bliss balls with melted chocolate for an extra special treat.


The Pure Joy of Peanut Butter Bliss Balls!

Prep Time: 12 minutes

Total Time: 12 minutes

12- 14 balls

The Pure Joy of Peanut Butter Bliss Balls!

Simple to make and easy to enjoy Bliss Balls!


  • 1 cup (240g) peanut butter (smooth, crunchy, natural
  • 4 tbsp maple syrup, honey or brown rice syrup
  • 3-4 tbsp of coconut flour
  • See notes for alternatives to dress these up.


  • Add all of your ingredients to a medium sized mixing bowl and mix until combined.
  • Once your mixture has formed into a soft dough, roll your balls, using about 1 tbsp of mix at a time.
  • You can enjoy these @ room Temp or place in the fridge and allow to firm up.
  • Store in the fridge for couple of weeks in an airtight container OR can frozen to keep for longer.


You can make these in a flash. The best part, you mix by hand so less washing up. Winner all around.

For an extra special here are some options:

1. Add a good quality chocolate chip to the dough prior to rolling them. 2. Add chopped walnuts or other nuts into the dough prior to rolling OR once rolled coat them in either chopped nuts, desiccated coconut. 3. A great option is to melt some 100g bar of 75% chocolate and roll the balls through the chocolate then chill either in the fridge or freezer.




Black bean Burger that will rock your taste buds! New recipe from Patricia of Warmly Nourished.

Oh Yes A Black Bean Burger! New recipe from Patricia of Warmly Nourished

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 35 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes

Category: lunch

Cuisine: causual dining


Oh Yes A Black Bean Burger!  New recipe from Patricia of Warmly Nourished

Making a burger with black beans is so easy and so yummy. If you don't want to serve them as a burger, you could use them as a base for a salad, or as a wrap. I am sure you will think of so many ideas to create meal ideas. They also make a great addition as a lunch box meal for kids and adults - can can be eaten cold.


  • • Two X 400 g (14-ounce) cans black beans, drained and rinsed. Or cook your own.
  • • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • • 1-2 cloves garlic minced
  • • 2 carrots grated or the equivalent of 1 cup
  • • 2 jalapeno peppers, diced (seeds removed if heat is an issue for you)
  • • 1 cup fresh chopped herbs. This can be one herb or a combination of herbs. I use fresh coriander (cilantro), chopped plus fresh chives and fresh parsley. As long as it equals one cup.
  • • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • • ¼ to 1/2 teaspoon cayenne powder (optional but nice if you like spicy heat)
  • • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • • 2 tablespoons whole chia seeds + 6 tablespoons water (to create a gel, mix together and allow to set for 5 to 10 minutes).
  • • ¾ cup brown rice flour
  • • 1 cup cooked quinoa (cook ½ cup dried)
  • • ¼ cup olive oil


  • Preheat oven to 180 C (350 F)
  • Line baking trays with parchment paper, unbleached if possible.
  • In a food processor or Thermomix, add cooked black beans, olive oil, salt, cumin, cayenne, and blend until a rough chunky paste forms. Be careful not to over blend or it will be to wet.
  • Transfer the mixture to a large mixing bowl. Add in minced garlic, diced onions, diced jalapeno peppers, pre-cooked quinoa, brown rice flour, and chia seed gel/egg re placer. Mix well.
  • At this stage I normally place the mixture in the fridge to allow it rest and firm up a bit, around 20 to 30 minutes or longer. I do this with meat burgers/and meatballs as well.
  • When you are ready, using your hands, form round patties, in a size that is easy to manage = I keep mine between 80 and 90 grams. Place on the baking tray. Be careful not to crowd the burgers.
  • Place the formed burgers on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake for 30 minutes, then turning the burgers over, and continue to bake for 10 to 12 minutes more.
  • Top with your favorite burger toppings and enjoy on a bun or lettuce wrap, or as a topping for a salad.


These burgers are great to do when you have some left over cooked quinoa, great way to use up leftovers while creating a whole new menu item. They can be frozen, for about 6 months. Make a great base for a salad.




Healthier Green Smoothie With Essential Oils

Healthier Green Smoothie With Essential Oils

To be honest, I really like to chew my food, so having a smoothie can sometimes put me off.  That’s not the case with this lovely smoothie. I call it my Healthier Green Smoothie.

Elegant Serving a smoothie in a wine glass!

Make every meal special, why not serve your fresh and healthy breakfast smoothie in a wine glass!

Well balanced using fresh spinach, fresh apple -with peel, good fats with flax seeds, hemp seeds, tahini and a medjool date for hit of sweetness wrapped up with fibre and iron.  But what I really love is the addition of essential oils.  For this recipe I choose lemon, lime and ginger.  The lemon and Lime help with your metabolism in the morning and the freshness wakes me up.  I used Ginger for the warming touch it gives and for digestion.

What a perfect breakfast smoothie!

Healthier Green Smoothie With Essential Oils

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 5 minutes

2 servings

Bright, well balanced Smoothie that will suit the whole family.


  • 1 red or green apple, core removed
  • 1 to 2 cups Spinach OR Kale
  • 2 cup water
  • 1 tbsp Hemp Seeds
  • 1 tbsp Flax Seeds
  • 1 tbsp Tahini
  • 1 soft medjool date, stone removed
  • pinch of sea salt
  • 3 drops lemon doTERRA Essential Oil
  • 3 drops lime doTERRA Essential Oil
  • 2 drops ginger doTERRA Essential Oil


  • Place all the ingredients in a high speed blender and process.
  • Pour finished smoothie into glass of choice - I used a wine glass for fun.
  • Makes enough for 2 serves.


1. You can use red or green apple. Or other fruit such as Pear or even kiwi fruit.

2. The Essential Oils are an optional extra. You don't need to have them on hand or use them.


With Essential Oils

So balances…so fresh…loving the essential oil addition!

Ah, Cake!  Homemade German Chocolate Cake

Ah, Cake! Homemade German Chocolate Cake

Homemade Birthday Cake was the norm when I was growing up,  every member of my family had their GO TO cake.  Mine was lovely layered cake known as German Chocolate Cake.   It had this really yummy frosting made with pecans and coconut and I simply couldn’t think of anything better.

Traditional German Chocolate Cake

This cake is named for a man not the country!

Travel forward with me to 2019 and I have re-fashioned my childhood cake into a more whole food version that tastes just as special as it always did!  In this version, the white flour and white sugar have been replaced with wholefood options.   And if you want the cake to be VEGAN, the eggs can be replaced too!  WOW, so is this really a cake?  Yes it is and its every bit as good as the original.

So what magic did I spin to create this cake?

It starts with replacing the flour.  Which I did my using pre-cooked quinoa.  I then replaced the white sugar with coconut sugar.  Now I could have used rapadura sugar here, however, I really like the caramel taste of coconut sugar.  I don’t have an issue with eggs, however, I have many friends who either can’t eat eggs or are vegan, so I have included an option to use chia gel as an egg replacement.  You could also use powered egg replacement, however, I wanted to keep this as a whole food cake so chia was the  better option.

The result, is a moist, yummy, chocolatey cake worthy of being someones favorite Birthday Cake!  With the perfect pecan and coconut frosting.  YEAH!

For the frosting, the sugar was replace with whole majool dates – the rest is almost the same, unsweetened coconut and fresh raw pecans.  Its the perfect frosting for this cake.   Whats  more, you can make this cake as a single layer, double layer or turn it into cup cakes.  The choice is yours.  I hope you love this cake as much as I do and make it often.

Ah, Cake! Homemade German Chocolate Cake

Prep Time: 25 minutes

Cook Time: 35 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour

one whole cake or 12 cup cakes

Ah, Cake!  Homemade German Chocolate Cake


  • • 2 cups organic quinoa, pre-cooked
  • • 1/3 cup almond milk ( or non nut milk like oat, rice, coconut)
  • • 4 organic eggs (use chia seed gel for vegan option see notes)
  • • ½ cup coconut oil (melted)
  • • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • • ¾ cup coconut sugar
  • • ½ cup raw cacao powder
  • • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • • ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • • ½ teaspoon Sea salt
  • Frosting
  • • 16 Medjool dates, pitted
  • • Water to cover dates in bowl
  • • ¼ cup water
  • • ¾ cup coconut, organic, unsweetened, finely shredded
  • • ½ cup organic pecan


  • 1. Preheat oven to 180 C. (350F) Grease and line a 9-inch cake pan with a round of parchment paper at the bottom (single layer – use 2 cake pans for double layer)
  • 2. Melt coconut oil.
  • 3. Put the quinoa, milk, eggs, melted coconut oil, and vanilla into a food processor fitted with the metal “S” blade. Pulse to combine and then process until smooth, this will take about 30-60 seconds.
  • 4. Add the coconut sugar, cacao powder, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt to the bowl and pulse to combine well.
  • 5. Bake - For a single layer cake: Pour batter into the prepared pan and bake for about 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick poked in the centre comes out clean.
  • Let the cake cool on a rack for about 15 minutes before turning out of the pan.
  • For the cupcake option: Divide batter into paper cupcake liners in muffin pan, filling 2/3 full and bake 15-18 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  • When the cake or cupcakes are completely cool, frost as desired.
  • Frosting How to....
  • 1. Place 16 pitted in enough water to cover. Soak for 20-30 minutes to soften.
  • 2. Drain water from dates, reserving ¼ cup for processing
  • 3. Place dates in food processor with “S” blade. Add reserved date water.
  • 4. Process till smooth and creamy
  • 5. Add pecans and coconut, mix till blended.


To make Chia/ or Flax Seed egg replacement you will need

4 tbsp whole raw flax or chia seeds, ( do not use pre-ground)

12 tbsp water

Using a spice grinder or mortar and pestle, grind the flax or chia seeds into a fine meal.

Combine the fine meal with the 12 TBSP of water. Mix well and allow to set before using in your cake mix.

Chia will need at least 15 minutes in the fridge, but an hour is better if you have the time. This gives your egg re placer plenty of time to thicken.

If you use Flax, it generally needs 1 full hour in the fridge. Once thickened, you will have the equivalent of four eggs to substitute in your cake.





Are You Missing Bread?

Are You Missing Bread?


Today I have a great option for you,  I am sharing a recipe for a FERMENTED gluten free  bread.  YEAH!

Why a fermented bread?  The cool thing about the natural process of long fermentation is it breaks down gluten proteins into smaller fragments, which improves digestibility.  The process also breaks down phytic acid, a naturally occurring compound found in all whole grains that inhibits mineral absorption, so the fermented process produces a bread which won’t  spike blood sugar, has more magnesium, zinc, iron, B12, and a lower glycaemic index.

However, If you have celiac disease all gluten-containing breads are off the menu.   Which is why we are looking at this bread recipe using all GF pseudo grains.  This bread can be eaten by those avoiding all standard grains and/or have celiac disease.

So how did we get here…. has it always been this way?

For 10,000 years, we cultivated wheat, stored it, milled it and consumed it. The system worked, and it nourished civilization. Then, in the industrial era, we changed things.  First, we invented mechanical technologies to turn wheat into barren white flour. Then, we invented chemical and genetic technologies to make it resistant to pests, drought and blight and easier to harvest. And, while we were tweaking genetics, we also figured out how to increase glutens for better “baking properties” (fluffier results). Put another way:

We have mutant seeds, grown in synthetic soil, bathed in chemicals. They’re deconstructed, pulverized to fine dust, bleached and chemically treated to create a barren industrial filler that no other creature on the planet will eat. And we wonder why it might be making us sick?

So what else is in our bread?

Has anyone you know made let you know: “I’ve gone gluten-free and feel so much better.   For the  vast majority of people with some level of “wheat sensitivity”, symptoms are much milder and seem to be triggered  by *something* about modern wheat. The irony, however, is that most gluten-free versions of traditional wheat-based foods are actually junk food. A quick check of the ingredients labels and you might see thinks like  rice starch, corn-starch, tapioca starch, potato starch and guar gum, which are highly refined industrial starches that spike blood sugar just like white flour.

Well good news, my fermented bread recipe is perfect for you.  Its gluten free, vegan and yeast free.
Bubbling as a great Ferment Should

Checking the batter along the way. Seeing little air bubbles means fermentation is happening.

Fermented Gluten-Free Bread (Egg Free and Yeast Free)

Cook Time: 55 minutes

Total Time: 55 minutes

1 standard loaf

Serving Size: 16 to 20 depending on how think you slice it.

Fermented Gluten-Free Bread (Egg Free and Yeast Free)

I really love this bread! Its a very dense loaf, with a slight sour taste. Perfect for anyone who can't have gluten. It's also free of eggs and yeast.

The fermentation process (leaving out at room temperature) gives it a rise with all the air bubbles, but by no means is this a light fluffy loaf.

Lovely toasted with your favorite toppings.


  • • 3 cups whole buckwheat OR 3 cup mixed grains (try buckwheat/millet/rice)
  • • 1-2 tsp. sea salt
  • • Coconut oil, ghee, or butter ( for the loaf pan)
  • • Sesame seeds, flax seed, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, chia seeds, (fold into the fermented dough before baking.


  • 1. Rinse all grains, cover with water, and soak overnight (for at least 12 hours) in a large bowl.
  • 2. Drain into a fine mesh strainer, and rinse before combining with ¾ –1 cup of fresh water and sea salt. Place in a high speed blender or food processor and blend until it reaches a loose toothpaste consistency.
  • 3. Pour the batter into a clean bowl, cover with a clean tea towel, and leave out at room temperature for approximately 24 -48 hours to ferment (I NORMALLY STOP THE FERMENTATION @ 36 HOURS).
  • Note: I like to mix the batter once around the 24-hour mark to mix in any hooch that might be on top of the batter. You’ll notice it because it will be darker than the batter…almost a purplish color. Just mix it back in and let it rise again.
  • 4. Preheat oven to 180C (350-370F). Grease a loaf pan and then sprinkle a mix of seeds in the bottom of the pan. This helps the bread to not stick.
  • 5. Before you pour the batter into the pan, add a couple Tbsp. of any other seeds you want. Once the seeds are mixed, pour the batter in the loaf pan and place in the oven.
  • 6. Baking usually takes 45-60 minutes It's done when it's golden brown on top, usually the top of the bread is cracked, and if you stick a toothpick in it will come out clean.
  • 7. Remove from oven and allow bread to cool for at least 1 hour before removing from pan. Once completely cool, slice bread and enjoy, either plain or toasted.


Can be left out at room temperature (well covered) for up to 3 days. After that is best to store in the fridge or freezer. There are no preservatives


Picking inside....

Peeking inside the finished loaf. As you can see, very dense.