Golden Sweet Potato Muffins

We all lead busy lives, whether we are a full time stay-at-home mother or father, a family juggling work, kids and their additional sporting, schooling and friendship commitments or business people. It is easy to push our nutritional needs to the wayside when our life seems to be in chaos. Unfortunately the repercussion of poor nutritional intake often means we crave sweet, salty and carbohydrate dense foods to give us an instant but short lived boost of energy to get us by.

Not with these beautifully golden muffins! They concur both your sweet and savoury cravings as well as provide sustained energy with balanced carbohydrates. They are also a quick and easy option to run to the car with.

What else have these babies got going for them?

  • They contain turmeric, praised for its anti-inflammatory abilities
  • They boast an enormous his of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants
  • They are flour and dairy free
  • They are low GI

Golden Sweet Potato Muffins

Serves: 12 muffins

Prep time: 10 mins

Cook time: 60 minutes or until cooked through

Ingredients

  • 1 large sweet potato, peeled, cubed
  • 2 free-range eggs
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • 2 cloves garlic (chopped)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground sea salt
  • 2 green onions, chopped or ½ brown onion
  • 2 cups oat flour (2 cups regular oats blended down into flour)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 170°C (fan-forced) and line muffin tray with cases
  2. Steam sweet potato until completely soft
  3. Mash sweet potato with a folk or place into blender.
  4. Using an electric beater, beat the mashed sweet potato, eggs, olive oil and salt together in a large mixing bowl until combined.
  5. Stir through chopped spring onion, garlic and turmeric.
  6. Add oat flour and baking powder and fold it into mixture until combined.
  7. Using a large dessert spoon, spoon mix into muffin cases and bake in the oven for 35 minutes-1 hour or until lightly browned and cooked through. Allow to cool in the tray.

You may store muffins in an airtight container in the fridge or freeze them. Re-heat them in the oven or microwave before serving.

Winter Warmer Recipe – Spicy Veggie Curry

Curry

Curries are a healthy and comforting meal to get your through the chilly winter months. They are also great for boosting the immune system, stimulating the sinuses and improving circulation to ward off colds and flus.

Try this low carb vegetable rich curry using one of my absolute favourite, versatile vegetables, ZUCCHINI! If you have seen some of my most recent immune posts, you will see all of the usual ingredient recommendations in this curry.

Spicy Veggie Curry

Serves 6 (great for lunch prep)

Ingredients

  • 2 tsp fresh grated ginger
  • 2 tsp fresh crushed garlic
  • 1 brown onion, diced
  • 2 tsp ground turmeric powder
  • 2 tbsp ground curcumin
  • 1 tsp freshly sliced chill (you can remove the seeds or leave the chilli out if you are easing into spicy foods)
  • 2 tsp ground coriander (can be left out if you really dislike coriander)
  • 4 kaffir lime leaves
  • 2 tsp sesame oil
  • 2 cups organic stock or water
  • 160mL light organic coconut milk (available in the Asian section of the supermarket)
  • 2 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 8 zucchini sliced thick
  • Good quality as and pepper to taste (Himalayan or Celtic)

Method

  1. In a medium bowl add all herbs and spices and combine.
  2. Heat 1 sesame oil in a large saucepan with a low heat.
  3. Stir in the combined spices from the first step with the onion and kaffir lime leaves.
  4. Continue to stir for 2-3 minutes or until fragrant.
  5. Add prepared zucchini to the saucepan and allow to cool for 2 minutes. Ensure the zucchini does not stick to the bottom of the pan.
  6. Add the liquids (water/stock, coconut milk, lime juice).
  7. Taste and add salt and pepper to desired taste.
  8. Allow mixture to come to a boil and reduce the heat to allow a gentle simmer for approximately 5 minutes (until zucchini is tender and sauce becomes thicker).
  9. Serve as is or over quinoa, brown rice or cauliflower rice.

**option to add some turkey or chicken breast after the spices and before the zucchini for a protein hit.

Homemade Oven Dried Tomatoes (AKA Sundried)

Sundried tomatoes are a tasty addition to any salad, antipasto plate or smashed avocado. Store bought sundried tomatoes however, often come with some nasty additives and unhealthy oils. Making them at home can be a sure fire way of ensuring they are as healthy and clean as possible but still absolutely delish!

Not only are they yummy, cooked tomatoes are higher in lycopene than their raw, fresh counterparts. Lycopene is a powerful antioxidant which has been praised for improving male prostate health, cardiovascular health and to protect against sun damage.

Homemade Oven Dried Tomatoes

  • 1kg Roma tomatoes
  • 3 tbsp. olive oil
  • Himalayan salt and pepper to taste

Method

Preheat oven to 100 degrees Celsius fan forced. Line a medium to large baking tray (or use two smaller trays) with baking paper or parchment paper.

Cut each tomato in half length ways. Lay out skin side down on the baking tray, leaving some space between them.

Drizzle olive oil lightly over each. Season with salt and pepper.

Place in the oven for 7-10 hours or until fluid has evaporated and tomatoes have flattened and shrivelled.

Store in a glass jar in the fridge with a 1/4 of the jar filled with olive oil.

Enjoy over salads, with antipasto platters or on your brekky avo on toast!

Keto Bread Rolls (cut carbs)

keto bread rolls

The keto craze has well and truly kicked off and to those of you who are just starting up on their merry way, here is a recipe that will help you cut carbs without even knowing it! Bread lovers behold the ‘Keto Bread Rolls’.

The Keto Bread Roll Recipe

Ingredients 

Dry Ingredients

  • 5 tbsp. psyllium husk
  • 1 1/4 cups almond meal/flour
  • 1 tsp Celtic/Himalayan/Sea salt
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • optional 2 tbsp. sesame seeds (I let these out in this instance)

Wet Ingredients

  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 3 egg whites (you can make flax eggs if you can not eat eggs)
  • 1 cup water, boiled

Method

Preheat your oven to 175C fan forced.

Mix dry ingredients together in a bowl.

Add all wet ingredients (boiling water, vinegar and egg whites) to dry ingredients.

Using a hand mixer, beat ingredients for 30 seconds (be sure not to overbeat).

Pre-grease a baking tray lined with baking paper.

With moist hands pull out six pieces of dough and lay them side by side with enough space to expand slightly on the tray.

Place in the oven on the lower shelf for approximately 50-60 minutes or until a tap on the bottom of the rolls produce a hollow sound.

Enjoy fresh or store airtight.

Quinoa Christmas Salad

Christmas Salad

In Australia, Christmas is prime time for fresh, light salads to keep us going through the hot summer that we love so much being Aussies.

I hear time and time again that salads are BORING!

Well, below is a recipe that will make you rethink the boring old lettuce and tomato salad and have you lining up for seconds.

It is bright and full of exciting festive Christmas colours. Not only that, but this salad provides a protein, antioxidant, essential fatty acid and fibrous punch.

Have I got you excited yet?…

Quinoa is a seed (that’s right a seed, not grain), that somewhat resembles cous cous in texture and appearance. Did you know that Quinoa is one of the only vegan source of compete proteins? This, along with its long nutritional profile make it live up to its ‘superfood’ reputation.

Now that I have you eager to try out this salad, the recipe is as follows.

Quinoa Christmas Salad

Ingredients 

1 cup quinoa

2 cups water

1 tsp Himalayan/Celtic salt

1 red capsicum (diced)

1 yellow capsicum (diced)

1 green capsicum (diced)

1/2 cup walnut halves

1 medium/large pomegranate (hulled)

100g goat/sheep feta

3 tablespoons avocado (or 2 tablespoons olive oil)

1/2 pumpkin (diced, oven roasted and cooled )

1 can chickpeas (drained)

1 bunch mint leaves

additional salt/pepper to taste

Method

In a large saucepan, cook quinoa as you would rice using 1 cup of quinoa to 2 cups of water. Add more water as it is cooking until the quinoa becomes light, soft and fluffy.

Remove quinoa from the stove and allow to cool. In a separate, large salad serving bowl add all capsicum, pumpkin, chickpeas and pomegranate, mixed through gently.

Add the avocado or olive oil to the cooled quinoa and mixed through. Add approximately 1 tsp of salt or to your own taste. Add quinoa to the salad bowl with the other prepared ingredients.  Add walnuts and mix through. Add mint leaves and mix through. Finally, add feta and mix through.

Serve on the Christmas table with your ham, seafood, turkey or any other meat. Also great the next day as leftovers!

 

Breakfast: Oat, Chia, Hemp and Nut Protein Pudding

Breakfast

Why is breakfast so important?

Breakfast is an important part of our health. It prepares us physically and mentally for the day and sets the tone for how our metabolism will respond for the day ahead.

This is why, the foods we choose to put in or not to put in our mouth in some people’s case, really does have an effect on how we live for that day.

Consequences of no breakfast or the wrong breakfast may include:

  • Poor concentration
  • Poor memory and retention of information
  • Brain fog
  • Irritability
  • Headaches
  • Low productivity
  • Poor brain function
  • Low energy
  • Low libido
  • Excessive hunger later in the day
  • Bing eating
  • Poor sleep
  • Higher levels of stress or a poor stress response
  • Slow metabolism

 

Longer term implications may include:

  • Weight gain/weight loss
  • Nutritional deficiencies
  • Blood sugar complications
  • Muscle wasting
  • Elevations in cholesterol and blood pressure

A well-balanced breakfast should include a balance of protein, healthy fats and a small amount of complex carbohydrates.

This Oat, Chia, Hemp and Nut Protein Pudding will have any feeling energised and ready to take on your day.

 

Oat, Chia, Hemp and Nut Protein Breakfast Pudding

 

Ingredients

1 tbsp. chia seeds

30g oats

½ cup water

Combine in a bowl and soak overnight.

 

1 tsp cacao powder

1 tbsp cacao nibs

1 heaped tsp almond butter (or any pure nut butter)

1 tsp cinnamon powder

10g vegan protein, flavour of choice

Another ½ cup water

1 dash almond milk

Toppings

10g Mixed nuts and seeds

10g hemp seeds

Method

Add pre-soaked chia/oat mix to a small pot.

Turn heat to low-medium.

Gently warm and add the remaining water, stir.

Once stirred through add the rest of the ingredients besides the toppings and stir until combine.

Remove from heat into bowl.

Top with mixed nuts, seeds and hemp seeds.

The pictured pudding also has dragon fruit chips for decoration, but you may like to add some fresh fruit such as passionfruit or berries.

You can enjoy this pudding cold or warm so it is a fantastic breakfast all year round!