Tag Archives: healthy

Healthy Lemon Yoghurt Pound Cake

2 Feb

lemon-pound-cake

Who doesn’t like a slice of pound cake with a cup of tea in the afternoon?

Heck as a Mum, I am grateful for anytime that I get to sit quietly & savour a cup of tea & a slice of cake!

In our house that usually means after the rugrats have gone to bed. That is if I have enough energy left after the craziness of the day 🙂

So bake this cake & hide it away until you can sit down & savour a bit of me time 🙂

It is lovely & decadent with a rich crumb, but the subtle lemon flavour with the slight tang from the greek yoghurt make this cake much lighter & more delicate than you would expect. It’s the perfect accompaniment to a nice cup of earl grey tea – just saying 🙂

This cake yet again is super easy to make, do I bake any other way??

Healthy Lemon Pound Cake a’la Mama Going Natural

  • 1/2 c coconut sugar
  • 1 c greek yoghurt
  • 1/2 c butter
  • 3 eggs
  • zest & juice of two lemons
  • 1 1/2 c spelt flour
  • 2 t baking powder
  • 1/2 t salt

Pre-heat your oven to 170degrees.

In a food processor, mixer or thermomix mix the coconut sugar & butter until well creamed. Add in the yoghurt, eggs, lemon juice & zest mixing to combine. Add in the remaining ingredients & blend until just mixed. Pour into a well greased  or lined loaf pan.

Bake for 45 – 50 minutes until a skewer comes out clean.

Enjoy

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Tumeric Rice Custard in the Thermomix

3 Aug

It seems like everywhere I look lately someone is espousing the health benefits of Tumeric, after reading so many articles on why we should be eating Tumeric I thought I had better find a way to get it into Miss Three’s diet.

Easier said than done!

Miss Three is partial to a curry so I have been sneaking a dash into our curries, but I wanted to come up with something that highlighted its great flavour and would get Miss Three excited about eating Tumeric.

Remembering that my Mum always made our custard yellow with a dash of Tumeric, I decided to adapt that idea & create a yummy rice pudding that had a nice amount of Tumeric in it to ensure we are getting all of the health benefits of this amazing spice.

 

What health benefits you ask?

  • anti-inflammatory
  • increases the antioxidant capabilities of the body
  • lowers risk of heart disease
  • helpful in the prevention & treatment of cancer
  • helpful in the prevention of Alzheimers disease
  • found to be beneficial against depression
  • helpful in treating athritis
  • found to help delay aging
  • linked to improved brain function & lower risk of brain disease

To learn more about the proven health benefits of Tumeric read this article and if you are interested in its ability to stop flouride from destroying your brain read this article.

Then get into your kitchen & whip up some Tumeric Rice Custard for your family. Its great served hot straight from your Thermomix or cold from the fridge for a snack.

This recipe is super easy to make, actually you really do nothing, your Thermomix does all the work, how good is that?

rice-custard-with-tueric

Tumeric Rice Custard a’la Mama Going Natural in the Thermomix

  • 60 gm butter
  • 1 c arborio rice
  • 4 c milk of your choice
  • 2 t vanilla essence
  • 1 t ground tumeric
  • 4 t coconut sugar
  • 1/4 c sultana’s

Place butter & rice in your Thermomix bowl with the butterfly/stirring attachment & stirring blades in place for 3 minutes at level 3 to brown off your rice.

Add all other ingredients & cook for 30 minutes at 90 degrees, level 1. Check your rice from time to time to see if it has cooked. My family like it a little squishy so you may want to check it at 25 minutes to ensure the rice is cooked to the way your family likes it.

Enjoy it hot or serve it cold, either way your family will love it & they will be getting a dose of goodness at the same time. Now thats a mummy win:win.

Enjoy

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Nourishing Pumpkin & Chicken Soup

27 Jul

We are very lucky to have Christine from Health is my Oyster sharing one of her favourite winter warming recipes with us this week.

Christine is a Sydney based health & wellness writer & nutritionist-in-the-making who loves whipping up healthy, nutritious & tantalising treats.

So without further ado, I’ll pass you onto Christine & her yummy soup recipe.

soup

Nourishing Pumpkin & Chicken Soup a’la Health is my Oyster

As winter digs in, few things make life feel comforting and cosier than a bowl of nourishing soup. This recipe adds a delicious twist on a classic winter favourite. The bulb of garlic and curry powder adds depth of flavour and warmth and the shredded chicken makes this dish more than just a soup – it’s a satisfying meal that’s full of protein.

Pumpkin and sweet potatoes are rich in health-promoting compounds called carotenoids which give red, yellow and orange foods their vibrant colour. A well-known carotenoid beta-carotene, found in these root veggies, is then converted to vitamin A in the body, which helps maintain healthy mucous membranes, glowing skin and good vision.

  • Serves 4
  • Prep time: 15 mins
  • Cooking time: Slow-cook for approx 3-4 hours

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 Japanese pumpkin, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 2 sweet potatoes, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1 tbsp peppercorns
  • 1 tbsp curry powder
  • 1 pinch sea salt
  • 2 cm ginger, sliced
  • 1 tsp cumin seed powder
  • 1/2 shredded BBQ chicken
  • 1 brown onion, finely chopped
  • 1 bulb garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • Water, approx 6 cups

Method:

1. Put all the ingredients (except the onion, garlic and oil) in a slow cooker with enough water covering all the ingredients. Set aside on low heat for about 3-4 hours until the veggies are soft.

2. In a hot pan of olive oil, fry the onion and garlic until well cooked. Set aside.

3. Once the veggies are soft, use a soup ladle to scoop out all the ingredients out of the slow cooker, leaving behind the liquid. Place the spiced veggies in a large bowl.

4. Add the shredded chicken to the veggies and mix well. Then add the onion and garlic.

5. In a blender, put as much of the soup ingredients as you can and blend until well combined. Repeat until all the ingredients have been well blended. The consistency should be thick and creamy.

6. Serve immediately with some cumin seed powder on top.

 

You can find more of Christines healthy recipes at : http://healthismyoyster.com/ or join her Facebook page to keep up to date with her healthy escapades: https://www.facebook.com/healthismyoyster

 

 

Creamy Banana, Chocolate & Peanut Butter Ice Blocks

28 Dec

iceblockAs the temperatures soar here in Australia we are constantly looking for ways to cool down.

What better way than a dip in the pool with a creamy, chocolate ice block in hand……..heavenly!!

These ice blocks are super creamy with their banana base, yummy hit of pure cacao & of course the addition of homemade peanut butter. Don’t taste the mixture before you start pouring into your ice block tray or you may find yourself guzzling the mix & those poor kidlets will miss out on their ice blocks 🙂

If your making “Adults Only” ice blocks (you lucky things you!) add a shot or two of espresso coffee & your ice blocks will kick into overdrive – trust me!!

If your a sneaky mum (hands up ladies) you can add a handful of kale, a little bit of spinach or some wheat grass juice to your ice blocks  to kick up the nutrition factor that little bit.

Here in Australia we have a brand of creamy milk ice blocks that we call Paddlepops our ice blocks taste just like them only better – if I do say so myself!

Creamy Banana, Chocolate & Peanut Ice Blocks a’la Mama Going Natural

  • 2/3 c milk
  • 1 & a 1/2 banana’s
  • 1 T peanut butter
  • 1 T Honey
  • 1 T Cacao powder

Place all ingredients in a high powered blender & then pour into your ice block makers & freeze.

In about eight hours you will have yummy ice blocks that you will be fighting the kidlets for!

kidlet

Enjoy

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Granola Parfaits – healthy Gluten free snacks & desserts

13 Nov

granola-cups

This breakfast treat, go to snack, dessert & all around versatile Parfait recipe is fast becoming my daughters favourite.

Just between you & me she asks for “Cafe” – but I know that she really isn’t trying to escape my food, but that she really wants me to make her a Parfait.

These started out as an instant, easy snack for my daughter (that wasn’t all fruit!), but after polishing off her leftovers I now make two, one for her & one for me!

I am loving on these big time!! because they are super easy & quick, you can keep a giant mason jar of granola in your cupboard & then layer it with what ever fruit, yogurt or kefir you have on hand to make yummy, nutritious instant meals. They even store great in a little mason jar for taking to school & on outings. They can be made the night before & left in the fridge, the granola will of course soften a little – but its nice kind of gooey!

You can tailor make the recipe to your own specific requirements, layer it with soy or coconut yoghurt for a vegan variation, add in more nuts & seeds, add some chia seeds for a dose of super food……..the options are endless.

But most of all have fun creating pretty layers of yumminess in your jars.

Granola Parfaits a’la Mama Going Natural

Granola

  • 1 c oats
  • 1/4 c sultanas
  • 1/4 c cashews
  • 1/2 c quinoa flakes
  • 1/2 c puffed millet
  • 1/4 c desiccated coconut
  • 4 T honey

Combine all ingredients in a bowl, stir honey through well to coat dry ingredients. Place in thin layers on baking trays into a moderate oven (approx 150 degrees). Watch your granola while it toasts & stir occasionally (this will only take 5 minutes or so). Once all of your granola is golden & toasted remove from the oven. Once cool place in mason jars to be used at a later time.

I love this Granola recipe big time, because you can also turn it into instant Muesli Bars, simply caramelise butter & honey in a saucepan over high heat till soft ball stage (when cooled in water a drop of the mixture should make a ball). Pour your caramelised honey into your granola, stir well & press into pans & refrigerate to set.

How to Make Granola Parfaits

  • Batch of yoghurt (recipe can be found here)
  • Fruit – we use frozen blueberries & banana’s – but only because that is Miss Two’s favourites!
  • Granola
  • Mason Jars, glasses or bowls

Spoon 1 & a 1/2 tablespoons of fruit into the bottom of your jar then add a tablespoon of yoghurt & top with a tablespoon of granola, keep layering until your jar is full, topping with a little sprinkle of granola for that yummy crunch factor!

granola-cup-2

Then Enjoy 🙂

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Raw Gluten Free Vegan Millet & Seed crackers

2 Nov

seed-cracker-jar

These crackers are part of my search for easy grab & go snacks for our arsenal. Kicking processed, supermarket food has brought it’s challenges, the biggest being “on the go” quick & easily transportable snacks. Miss Two & I are constantly on the go, so I need snacks daily & while Miss Two is happy with a banana or apple day after day, Mama is not! I wish I shared her love for fruit, but I prefer a variety of food & can’t bear to eat the same thing over & over.

The great thing about these crackers (other than they are super easy to make) is that you can create hundreds of variations using this base recipe & adding herbs, spices & flavourings your family like. We have made curry versions, non vegan parmesan cheese & basil & spicy chilli flavoured crackers – but the variations are endless.

And the best part………….kept in an airtight Mason jar these bad boys will last for ages – so you don’t have to be constantly cooking, YAY!

I love making everything from scratch for my family & knowing exactly what is in our food & more importantly what isn’t!! But I do get tired of constantly cooking – I am lazy & not really a natural cook so I am always looking for the cheats way out & this recipe is making it into my arsenal – so give it a try.

Raw Gluten Free Millet & Seed Crackers a’la Mama Going Natural

  • 1/2 c millet
  • 1/2 c sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 c linseeds (flax seeds)
  • 3 t chia seeds
  • 1/2  t Tamari (low salt fermented soy sauce)
  • 1/2 t himalayan salt
  • 1 t smoked paprika
  • 1/3 c filtered water

Place your millet & sunflower seeds in a blender or thermomix & blitz till they make a flour. Add the rest of the ingredients & stir in gently on low speed.

I make my crackers in a dehydrator but you could always slow bake them in a warm oven till they dry out, just make sure you line your trays with baking paper.

Smooth out your mixture on the dehydrator mats or on baking paper till its the thickness you prefer, I make our crackers thin as that’s how we like them. You can make them free form like the ones pictured or spread them out over your tray & after your crackers have dehydrated for 2 hours take them out & score the tray into the cracker size you want. Once they are fully dehydrated they can be snapped along your score lines.

These crackers take about 4 to 6 hours to dehydrate on high in my dehydrator but you will need to test the time they take in yours. Taste test as they are dehydrating – you can take them out early & have a chewy cracker or leave them to dry for longer to make a firm wafer style cracker.

seed-crackers

Enjoy & get cracker making!

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Banana, Coconut and Apricot Healthy Cup Cakes

3 Oct

These are not the cup cakes your used to seeing, no airy vanilla cake topped with a pile of super sweet frosting.

But these cup cakes taste just as good, without all of the nasties.

banana-cupcakes

I am not a fan of banana cake, banana loaf or any other way you bake with banana’s. I think that most banana baked goods end up tasting heavy, gluggy & slightly uncooked. These cup cakes do none of that.

They taste like a super moist loaf cake, but with a more crumbly cake like texture. They are delightful & not dense or heavy at all. The little bursts of sweet apricot give these cupcakes that added something extra & the coconut – why that almost makes them tropical 😉

These are so good that if you look at the photo;s closely you will see steam!, I could not leave these to cool on the bench for fear that I would only have crumbs left to photograph.

Banana, coconut & apricot healthy cup cakes a’la Mama Going Natural

You will need:

  • 3 ripe banana’s mashed
  • 1/4 c milk
  • 2/3 c kefir or yoghurt
  • 3 T coconut oil
  • 1 c wholemeal spelt flour
  • 1 c white spelt flour
  • 4 t baking powder
  • 2 sticks stevia
  • 1/2 c coconut sugar
  • 1 t cinnamon
  • 1/2 t himalayan salt
  • 1/4 c chopped dried apricots
  • 1/3 c shredded coconut

Place all of the dry ingredients in a bowl, mix all of the wet ingredients together. Mix the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients gently. Pour into cup cake pans & bake for 30 mins at 175 degrees.

I love making cup cake size versions as they are perfect for small hands, cook fast ( so therefore less electricity) and my favourite of all – portion control. I can’t be trusted with a knife & cake, my pieces look more like I am trying to teach my daughter fractions – naturally starting with 1/2’s & 1/4’s. So cup cakes are much more friendly to my waist line 🙂

Enjoy

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Creamy Cacao Ice Cream

18 Aug

We love chocolate in this house………. we will take it anyway we can get it.

cacao-ice-cream

But add it to some cream & freeze it & we are in heaven.

This recipe makes an ultra-rich, smooth, creamy ice cream that is very decadent. Small scoops only 🙂

It is a very dark chocolate (the Lindt 75% bar of ice creams, if you will!). If you like you chocolate more on the  milk chocolate (cadbury) side of things simply adjust the amount of cacao chips you put in to make a more mild creamy ice cream.

We love to add 3 – 4 tablespoons of peanut butter to this ice cream in the last few churns to make our own knock off version of Baskin & Robbins Peanut Butter Chocolate ice cream, without all the sugar & chemicals 🙂 but still packed full of flavour.

This recipe is not one of my healthier recipes, BUT it is healthier than most store brought ice creams which are aerated with chemicals & have a shelf life of 2 years +, I kid you not!! I have no idea what you put in ice cream to make it last 2 years but I am pretty sure I don’t want to eat it or feed it to my child. This ice cream made with organic ingredients & raw dairy products is simply a better healthier option without skimping on flavour or decadence.

Cacao Ice Cream a’la Mama Going Natural

  • 350ml milk
  • 300ml cream
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 4 T coconut sugar
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • 2/3 c cacao chips or cacao butter

Place the first five ingredients in the top of a double boiler & gently heat while constantly whisking (like you would a custard). Once the mix has thickened to the stage where it coats the back of a spoon add the cacao chips & stir in until melted. Let your chocolate mix cool (try not to eat too much of it – you are trying to make ice cream after all) & then place your mix in your ice cream maker for the magic to happen.

cacao-ice-cream-close-up

Trust me! you will love this ice cream, perhaps it’s not too healthy – but everyone needs a treat every now & again 🙂

Go on treat yourself

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Vegan Chocolate Chip Treasure Cookies

7 Aug

cookies-treasure-2

So its official – this is a dessert blog!!

I promise my next post will not be a dessert, but I just brought a Bellini Intelligent Kitchen Machine (a knock off of the Thermomix) & I am on a baking/cooking frenzy.

These cookies are firm & crumbly with a light crisp texture & the added bonus of  hidden treasures!!

Not only do these cookies have a slight vanilla coconut flavour but they are also studded with two different kinds of chocolate chips & chunks of roasted cashew nuts. YUM!!

They are suitable for vegans and can be made sugar free if you substitute the coconut sugar for 1/4 c of honey, maple syrup, agave or your preferred sweetener. If your not that fussed on coconut (we love, love, love it in this household) you can omit the desiccated coconut & swap the coconut oil for butter, but I don’t think they will be as yummy!!

treasure-cookies

Chocolate Chip Treasure Cookie a’la Mama Going Natural

You will need:

  • 4 T coconut oil
  • 2 T coconut milk (can substitute with almond, oat, rice milk etc)
  • 1 c spelt flour
  • 1/2 t baking soda
  • 1 t baking powder
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • 1/4 c coconut sugar
  • 1/4 c desiccated coconut
  • 1/4 c dark chocolate chips
  • 1/4 c white chocolate chips
  • 1/4 c roasted cashews

Place all ingredients except for the last three in a mixer or food processor & mix till it makes a nice firm cookie dough. Stir through your chocolate chips & rough chopped cashew nuts to mix in.

cookie-dough

Heat your oven to 175 degrees & roll your dough into balls & lightly depress with the back of a fork.

cookie-balls

These cookies do spread a little so be sure to keep them apart on the tray. Cook for 10-15 minutes. This recipe makes approximately 20 cookies.

Go Forth & Bake…..

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Kefir Water from milk grains

11 Jul

Kefir Water, the healthy Soda!!

Kefir Water may not look like much, but it tastes good.

It is seriously delicious. Our family is hooked, I can not make Kefir Water fast enough. My “little one” loves it so much, plain, flavoured, anyway it comes.

Kefir-water-2

Kefir Water is a fermented beverage teeming with beneficial bacteria, it’s easily flavoured, simple to make & a perfect replacement for commercial fizzy drink. It tastes like a slightly dry, mildly alcoholic & gently fizzy soda that has a faint fermented taste.

Kefir Water not only tastes great but it is impressively rich in micronutrients, enzymes & benefical bacteria, it is a great DAIRY free source of probiotics. Kefir Water is made be fermenting a scoby (symbiotic culture of bacteria & yeasts) in sugar water. The beneficial bacteria & yeasts present in the grains metabolize the sugar & turn it into actic acid and thus making yummy Kefir Water.

How to make basic Kefir Water a’la Mama Going Natural

  • 600ml Glass Jar
  • 500ml lukewarm boiled off water
  • 2 T Sugar (raw, brown, rapadurra, palm, coconut etc)
  • 1/4 c Kefir grains

Stir your sugar into the lukewarm water. Pour it into your glass jar and add your grains. Screw on the lid & leave out on the counter for 24-72 hours depending how warm your home is. In cooler climates the Kefir will take longer to brew, when its warm you can have Kefir Water in 24 hours.

Once your Kefir water has reached your required taste, strain out the grains & repeat the above process with a different sugar. Bottle your Kefir water & screw the lid on. If you want your kefir to be more bubbly leave it out on the counter for another 1-2 days. If your happy with it refridgerate & enjoy.

*Water Kefir grains like variety to keep growing, I feed mine with raw sugar, brown sugar, coconut sugar, rapadura sugar & palm sugar. Alternating the sugars on a regular basis so that my grains stay nice & happy.

*Water quality is important but I have read that the grains do not like RO water, they need minerals to keep growing so I prefer to use boiled tap water even though we have RO water on tap. I boil the kettle with the lid off for several minutes to try & boil off some of the impurities. If you use filtered water it is recommended that you add egg shells to the water to re-mineralise the water, but I have never actually done this.

*Never use Honey – the honey’s anti-microbial properties will attack your grains.

converting-milk-grains

How to convert your Milk Grains into Kefir Water Grains

The process to convert your grains takes about a week in total.

Take your milk grains that you want to convert & wash them gently in purified water (I use R.O water – but you could use boiled or bottled water). Rinse your grains several times until there is absolutely no milk residue.

Boil the kettle with the lid off for several minutes to try to boil off as many chemicals in your tap water as you can. Leave the water to cool, pour in 500ml of warm water into your jar & stir in 2 T of sugar. Let the sugar dissolve & add the grains, screw on the lid & leave to do its magic.

Leave for 48 hours, giving the jar a shake every 12 hours or so. Once the 48 hours are up, pour out the contents & repeat.

Repeat 3 – 4 times before trying to drink your Kefir.

*I have converted about 1/4 c of milk grains & that makes 500ml of Kefir water within 24 to 48 hours.

*You can add a variety of fruits & spices to your Kefir water to make all sorts of different lightly carbonated beverages.

Kefir-water

Ginger Ale

Add a few slices of ginger to your Kefir Water when you make it & viola you will have Ginger Ale

Creaming Soda

When bottling add 2 t Vanilla extract

Fruit Soda

Instead of bottling your Kefir pour it into another glass jar & add 1/4 c berries & let it ferment on the bench for another 2 days, strain off the berries refridgerate & enjoy

Lemonade

When bottling your Kefir add the juice of one lemon for instant lemonade.

Dr Pepper

Instead of bottling your Kefir pour it into another glass jar & add 1/4 c raisons & let it ferment on the bench for another 2 days, strain off the raisons refridgerate & enjoy

ENJOY

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