Now that I have a toddler in the house, I’m very well acquainted with the degree of difficulty involved with getting said toddler to eat anything green.

Fortunately Fergal loves peas, so I always keep our freezer well stocked. But there are only so many times you can serve up peas each week. So I’ve been on the lookout for a Fergal-friendly green veg alternative.

And I’ve found a real beauty!

Yep. Edamame are our new family favourite veg.

What are edamame?

Basically they’re fresh soy beans still in their pod. I always have some when I go to Japanese restaurants. They’re usually served in their pods and you just pop out the little beans inside and discard the pods.

They’re a vibrant bright green and have a lovely sweet, mild fresh beany flavour. Fergal loves them and so do my Irishman and I. So they’re definitely for adults too!

Where can I get them?

Try your supermarket freezer near the frozen pea section. My local supermarket stocks them but it’s pretty large. The next best place to look would be an Asian or Japanese grocery store.

What can I substitute if I can’t find them?

Frozen peas or broad beans would be the closet thing. Or I guess fresh snow peas or sugar snap peas where you eat the pod as well.

Are frozen veg as good for you as fresh?

Absolutely! Freezing is pretty good for keeping most of the nutrients intact. I’ve even seen studies where the nutritional content of frozen veg was better than unfrozen veg that was getting on the ‘old’ side.

What about you?

What’s your favourite frozen veg? I’d love to hear in the comments below.

parmesan edamame-3

Parmesan Edamame

This is really more of an idea than an actual recipe. I usually make these for Fergal (and me!) to snack on while I get dinner ready.

Enough for: 1-2 as a snack
Takes: 5 minutes

1-2 handfuls frozen edamame
1 handful grated parmesan

1. Bring a small pot of water to the boil (I usually use the kettle).

2. Add edamame straight from the freezer. Simmer for 2 minutes.

3. Drain and pop in a serving dish (if you want them to cool down quickly for small hungry mouths run under the cold tap for a bit).

4. Remove edamame from their pods and discard pods. Sprinkle with parmesan and enjoy!

Variations

different veg / no edamame - broad beans are great (remove from the pods, simmer 2 mins and peel papery skins before eating). Or try parmesan peas (I just heat in a pan with a little butter until no longer frozen).

dairy-free / vegan – serve edamame with sea salt flakes instead of the parmesan.

more substantial – you can use the podded edamame anywhere you’d normally use frozen peas such as in soups or salads or fried rice. But since they’re a bit labour intensive I just stick to using them as a snack.

herby - add a few torn mint or basil leaves.

short on attention span – I often just cover the frozen edamame with boiling water from the kettle and leave to stand while I do other things.

More Stonesoup:

For the next update in the Jules & David project:
Menu 8. Slightly All-American

And on ‘The Yellow Bench’ What I Eat, by Fergal 18 months old.

With love,
Jules x

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{ 17 comments }

About this time two years ago my Irishman and I had a lovely holiday in Sydney staying in our friends Walsh Bay apartment with killer views of the Sydney harbour bridge.

One night we had an especially delicious dinner at Mr Wong. A seriously great Chinese restaurant in the CBD.

To cut a long story short, My Irishman was blown away by their Kung Pao Chicken.

As soon as we were home, he was in the kitchen trying to replicate Mr Wong’s KPC.

Now my Irishman is pretty handy in the kitchen but he doesn’t cook that often because I tend to hog the stove.

I love to be cooked for as much as the next girl, so I was thrilled to be the ‘guinea pig’ for his experiments.

Months later, when KPC was still on high rotation, I wasn’t quite so appreciative of being cooked for. So I took matters into my own hands and sent an email to Australian Gourmet Traveller, my favourite food magazine. I explained my predicament and asked if they could request the recipe from the chef.

A few months later my prayers were answered.

We had the official recipe! My Irishman was finally happy with his kung pao efforts. Life was good.

I’ve been wanting to tell you this story for a while now but I figured it needed a fitting occasion. And this week we have such an event!

This Friday my Irishman, aka GB, turns 40. So to celebrate I have the recipe for my (simple) version of kung pao chicken below plus a little sale…

The GB40 Sale!

GB40 sale new

When I was trying to decide how to celebrate such a milestone occasion, it didn’t take me long to figure it out.

I only have one product priced in the $40s… The ebook bundle deal where you can save $10 if you buy ‘The Tired & Hungry Cooks Companion’ and ‘Healthy & Tasty’ together.

Normally it’s $44 but for the next 40 hours you can get it for an extra 40% OFF!

To make sure you don’t miss out on the 40-hour 40% OFF price go to:
www.thestonesoupshop.com/bundle/

The sale is strictly limited to 40 hours, so don’t delay!

_____________________________

kung pao chicken

My Simple Kung Pao


There have been many dinner table discussions at out house on which ingredients could be left out of kung pao. I must point out that this is my simple interpretation and if my Irishman was cooking, he would stick to the original Mr Wong recipe.

Chinese black ‘Chinkiang’ vinegar is a really lovely ingredient but if you don’t have it already, use rice vinegar, sherry or red wine vinegar instead. It’s not worth buying a bottle especially for this recipe.

enough for: 2
takes: 15 minutes + marinating

450g (1lb) chicken
1 tablespoon soy sauce + 2 tablespoons for sauce
4-6 fresh or dried red chillies 
1 tablespoon Chinkiang black vinegar
2 green onions (scallions), chopped
steamed rice or cauliflower ‘rice’, to serve

 
1. Slice chicken into bite sized strips and place in a bowl with 1 tablespoon soy. Cover and stand for a few minutes or if possible refrigerate for a few hours but no longer than 24.

2. Heat a little oil in a frying pan or wok. Add half the chicken and cook, stirring until the chicken is browned and cooked through. Place cooked chicken in a clean bowl and add the remaining chicken and the chilli. Continue to stir fry

3. When the second batch of chicken is browned and cooked through. Return the first batch of chicken to the pan. Stir.

4. Remove from the heat and add the additional 2 tablespoons soy sauce and the vinegar and stir well. Taste and add more soy or vinegar if you think it needs it.

5. Serve chicken on a bed of rice (or cauliflower ‘rice’ – raw cauliflower grated in the food processor) with green onions sprinkled on top.

Variations

optional extras – handful roast peanuts, 1 clove garlic, 1/2 tsp ground Sichuan pepper, 1 teaspoon sugar to marinate the chicken and another to finish the sauce.

vegetarian / vegan – replace chicken with firm tofu or use diced eggplant (add a little water and allow extra time for the eggplant to cook).

more veg – serve with steamed or stir fried Asian greens such as bok choy or Chinese broccoli on the side. I usually dress the greens with a little sesame oil. Steamed broccoli or broccolini is another lovely accompaniment. Or in Spring time consider asaparagus.

no Chinkiang vinegar – use rice vinegar, sherry or red wine vinegar instead. It’s not worth buying a bottle especially for this recipe unless you are a vinegar-ophile like me and are keen to add something new to your collection.

less hot – 6 chillies should make it pretty punchy, like ‘pao’! If you prefer less heat, use less chillies and remove the seeds. Or just skip the chilli.

With love,
Jules x

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GB40 sale new

PS. The sale is strictly limited to 40 hours.

To make sure you don’t miss out your chance to SAVE 40%, go to:
www.thestonesoupshop.com/bundle/

{ 12 comments }

Last year I read a great little book by Chris Guillebeau who fulfilled his dream of visiting every country in the world.

With the title, ‘The Happiness of Pursuit’, Chris’ latest book is all about quests. It chronicles the adventures of not only Chris’s globe trotting but a heap of other people with quests as diverse as cooking a meal from every country in the world to watching a baseball game in every major league stadium in the US.

Being a Virgo who loves writing (and crossing things off) lists, I found the whole ‘quest’ idea super inspiring.

Not only did it motivate me to finally start my ‘bucket list’, it also gave me the idea for a few mini quests that I’m working on this year.

My Quests for 2015

1. Cook every meal from David Tanis’ ‘Platter of Figs and Other Recipes’.

2. Post one photo on Instagram every day for a year.

3. Eat at every restaurant in Canberra on the Good Food Top 20 list.

4. Have a conversation in French in Paris.

The David Tanis Project

My best Christmas pressie this year was a copy of ‘A Platter of Figs ‘. I fell in love instantly with Tanis’ writing but even more so with the sound of his food.

I just love the way he tells a story about a meal and then gives the menu and recipes.

I also love that even though he is a chef, his favourite way to spend time with family and friends is to cook at home. A man after my own heart.

After reading the book cover to cover, an idea struck.

Maybe I should try and cook every meal from the book over the next year?

And the ‘Jules & David Project’ was born.

The story so far

I made our first meal last week on a suitably hot Summer’s day. If you’d like more detail on the actual menu, I’ve created a separate page over here (excuse the crappy iphone pics).

Overall I just LOVED the meal.

Of course there were many Stonesoup simplifications because sometimes I can’t help it.

I also loved the process of following someone else’s well planned idea. And the chance to try some new tricks that I wouldn’t thought of on my own.

The menus

menu seven: TOO DARNED HOT. ALORS!
menu eight: SLIGHTLY ALL-AMERICAN
menu nine: YELLOW HUNGER (coming soon)

Plus! Watch this space for more to be added during the year…

bas vin-4

Versatile Basil Vinaigrette

As an Australian I love shortening words wherever possible. For example the dishwasher is called the ‘dish’ and this basil vinaigrette becomes ‘bas vin’. I’m not sure how David would feel about that but I think it has a nice ring to it.

I’ve simplified the recipe because I can’t help myself! David uses shallots and he uses much more oil than me. See the ‘variations’ for the original quantities and ideas for uses. He also lets the dressing sit for 1/2 hour before using and instructs that it’s best used within a few hours.

makes: a bit over 1/2 cup
takes: 15 minutes or less

1 clove garlic
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
small handful basil leaves, torn
1/2 cup olive oil

1. Smash garlic with a generous pinch of salt to form a paste. I use the side of my knife on a chopping board but you’re welcome to use a mortar and pestle.

2. Macerate garlic, vinegar salt and basil leaves in a small bowl or bottle. 10-15 minutes or less if that’s all you’ve got.

3. Whisk in the olive oil. See below for serving ideas.

Variations

david’s version – 2 shallots finely diced, 2 cloves garlic smashed with salt to a paste, 3-4 tablespoons red wine vinegar, small handful basil leaves, 1.5 cups olive oil. Remove basil before serving (I missed this step and left it in… extra fiber!).

more wintery – if it’s not basil season where you are try rosemary leaves or thyme. Remove these before serving.

different vinegar – sherry or a sharp cheapish balsamic would also work. Or try white wine vinegar.

with tuna – crush 1 teaspoon fennel seeds and rub onto two tuna steaks or other fish fillets that have been rubbed with oil. Season and grill or cook in a pan on a medium high heat for 3-4 minutes each side. Serve fish drizzled with the ‘bas vin’.

tomato & pepper salad – drizzle over sliced super ripe tomatoes tossed with finely sliced red capsicum (bell pepper).

green bean salad – simmer green beans in salted boiling water until tender – about 5 minutes. Drain and cool. Toss in the ‘bas vin’ and serve as a side or top with a couple of sliced hard boiled eggs.

potato salad - simmer unpeeled whole new or other small waxy potatoes in salted water until tender. Drain and cool a little. Slice thickly and toss in the ‘bas vin’.

drizzled on soup – I had some from the fridge drizzled on a minestrone-ish soup for lunch the other day. Divine!

lively green salad – brings a surprising depth of flavour to a simple green salad.

What do you think?

Would you like to see more blog posts on my David Tanis project this year? Let me know in the comments below. I’d also love to hear if you have a project or quest you’re working on.

With love,
Jules x

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{ 29 comments }

If you’ve been reading Stonesoup for any length of time, you’ll know that I’m a big believer in the power of simplicity in all areas of life. But especially in the kitchen.

And over Christmas I was reminded of just how complicated most published recipes are.

For our Christmas feast I decided to make a couple of salads from Yotam Ottolenghi‘s latest book, Plenty More.

I’m a huge fan of his books and if you’re looking for new ways to cook vegetables, I recommend having a look at Plenty More.

As with many chefs, the recipes I chose were super delicious. But when I was buying and preparing all the ingredients, I couldn’t help thinking that a bit of simplifying would make my life so much easier and I’m sure still totally tasty.

Anyway it got me thinking that while I did write recently about how simplifying my life has had such a positive impact, it’s been a while since we had a post focusing on simplicity in the kitchen. So at the risk of giving away all my secrets, here goes…

What is the easiest way to simplify recipes?

Easy. Remove any duplicate ingredients.

What do I mean by that?

I look at the ingredients which have similar form or function and then choose just one of each and replace the others with extra of my chosen ingredient.

It’s a bit tricky to explain in abstract terms so I have a real example of an Ottolenghi recipe I simplified for a lovely lunch over the holidays…

An example – Japanese Broccoli

Ottolenghi Ingredients List – 11 items
300g purple sprouting broccoli, broccolini or broccoli
120g French beans
180g mange tout (snow peas)
1 tablespoon ground nut oil
20g coriander (cilantro) leaves
2.5 tablespoons black and white sesame seeds, toasted
50g tahini
1 small clove garlic
1/2 teaspoon tamari soy sauce
1/2 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon cider vinegar

Stonesoup Ingredients List – 5 items
2 bunches broccolini or 2 small heads broccoli
3 tablespoons tahini
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
1-2 teaspoons honey
2 tablespoons sesame seeds

So what have I done?

1. The green veg are pretty much performing the same role, providing the bulk of the meal. So it’s easy to just increase the broccoli to replace the others.

2. The groundnut oil is tossed onto the cooked veg as an extra dressing. I just skipped this whole step. One dressing is enough for me.

3. The sesame seeds and coriander are acting as a garnish to make the dish look pretty and to add different flavours and textures. I chose to use just sesame seeds but could have easily gone the other way if I had coriander in the house.

4. Skipped the garlic in the dressing because I think there’s enough interesting flavours with the tahini, honey and vinegar.

From 11 ingredients down to 5. Easy.

(see below for the complete (simplified) recipe.)

Want to learn more?

If you’re interested in learning how to simplify not just recipes, but the whole of your life, then I recommend checking out A Simple Year.

It’s a 12 month program which focuses on simplifying different areas of your life each month. If you join us I’ll show you even more ways to simplify not only recipes but your kitchen and your approach to healthy eating.

You’ll need to be quick because registration for 2015 ENDS 10th Jan.

To make sure you don’t miss out, go to:
www.simpleyear.co

—–

japanese broccoli-2

Super Yum Japanese Broccoli

The Ottolenghi version of this recipe is titled Broccoli with Sweet Tahini, but I think that name doesn’t do it justice. If you can get your hands on purple sprouting broccoli, by all means go for it!

enough for 2
2 bunches broccolini or 2 small heads broccoli, trimmed to bite sized pieces
3 tablespoons tahini 
1 tablespoon rice vinegar 
1-2 teaspoons honey
1-2 tablespoons sesame seeds

1. Bring 2cm (1in) salted water to the boil in a medium pot. Add broccoli and cook with lid on for 4 minutes or until no longer really crunchy.

2. Combine tahini, vinegar, honey & 2 tablespoons water in a small bowl. season with salt.

3. When the broccoli is cooked, drain and allow to cool down in your strainer for a few minutes.

4. To serve divide broccoli between two plates and drizzle over dressing. Sprinkle with sesame seeds (if using).

Variations

more veg – feel free to add in snow peas and green beans. Ottolenghi boils them separately but I’d add the beans at the same time as the broccoli and pop the snow peas in at the last minute. Frozen peas, spinach or sugar snap peas would also be lovely. I’m also thinking the sauce would be lovely with kale in the winter.

no tahini – use other nut butter such as almond, cashew or peanut butter. Or try sun butter (from sunflower seeds). Or grind your own nuts in a high powered blender. Commercial hummus could be substituted as the whole dressing.

sugar-free – just skip the honey and go for a more savoury sauce. I’ve recently got back into using a little honey after being pleasantly surprised when researching this article for The Yellow Bench.

carnivore – serve as a side to roast or grilled fish or chicken.

more substantial - serve with steamed white or brown rice or cooked quinoa.

different vinegar – sherry vinegar would be my next choice or white wine vinegar. Or use lemon juice.

herby – serve with coriander or mint leaves.

summery – Ottolenghi cools his veg and serves the salad cold, I prefer it at room temp but it’s up to you!

With love,
Jules x

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Screen Shot 2013-12-07 at 2.15.44 PM

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ps. Not sure if ‘A Simple Year’ would help you?

Here’s what Carole and Kathy said about their experience in 2014…

“Participating in A Simple Year 2014 has offered me the opportunity to focus on several areas of my life and reconsider, unclutter, and ponder changes that I would not have pursued without the program. The structure of the course allows you to dig in as little or as much in each area as you care to or can manage. For me it’s been life changing.”
- Carole

“Signing up for and participating in “A Simple Year” has been one of the best things I did in 2014. It has allowed me to make some significant changes in my life, each leading to other new changes and opportunities.Several months later, after doing much of the homework, my house was much less cluttered and so calming.”
- Kathy

Registration for 2015 is only open for a few more days.

Here’s the link again:
www.simpleyear.co/

{ 22 comments }

This time 5 years ago I was staying in a tiny apartment in the beautiful city of Barcelona, trying to pretend I was Spanish. Without much success.

The main purpose of the trip was to have dinner at El Buli – at the time the best restaurant in the world.

As often happens when I travel, there was lots to think about.

To cut a long story short, I made the decision to leave my safe fun job designing chocolate biscuits (cookies) and have a go at turning my blog into a business.

I had no idea how I was going to do it. But that was part of the fun!

I did know WHAT I wanted to do.

I wanted to help people by sharing my knowledge of food science and my passion for simple healthy food. I was bursting to help people like you discover what I had – that delicious healthy meals need not be complicated or time consuming.

I wanted to share that by reducing the number of ingredients and using simple techniques, cooking can be amazingly easy, healthy AND tasty.

I had no idea what lay ahead. Not even the possibility that I could and would start an online cooking school helping students from places as far flung as Mozambique, Iceland and Peru.

It’s been so much more rewarding than I ever dared to dream.

So to celebrate the anniversary of that momentous decision and to say thank YOU for reading (and because it’s Christmas!) I’m having a super limited time sale on membership to the Stonesoup Virtual Cookery School.

kindvall_stonesoup_school_01a

Apart from my holiday bundle, this is the first time I’ve had a sale on SVCS membership since last Christmas. So if you want to start the new year by simplifying or upping your cooking skills now is a great time to join!

The 30% OFF Christmas Sale is for a LIMITED TIME only.

To make sure you don’t miss out use the link below:
www.thestonesoupshop.com/newsvcs/

UPDATE: The Christmas Sale is Over!

Not sure if online cooking classes will help you?

Here’s what Carol, Julie, Rebecca and Jim have said about them….

Carol, SVCS Member.
“You have changed my life! I never really thought I’d get into cooking, or be any good at it. Your simple recipes and especially your videos and attitude have given me inspiration and confidence. Really dramatic change for me. I can’t thank you enough.”

Julie, SVCS Member.
“I am also almost ready to get rid of most of my cook books, as I really only use your recipes now. In fact I tend to scan all other recipes and if there are more than 5 ingredients, or steps just pass it by. I’m looking to simplify my life, and you really have made quite a difference to that – I enjoy preparing dinner now.”

Rebecca, SVCS Member.
“I really appreciate how your (classes) have freed the way I cook. From reducing the number of ingredients, to using what I have on hand, and to your many, many other ideas: thank you. I love your approach and imagination. You have inspired me.”

Jim, SVCS Member.
“Love the videos; cooking works very well in this format.”

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spiced eggplant with farro-3

Easy Spiced Eggplant

If I were vegetarian I’d eat a lot of eggplant. I just love its meaty texture and ability to absorb other flavours. It’s great served here as a warm salad with some farro and yoghurt but you could also use the eggplant as a chutney or relish to serve with chicken, pork or lamb.

enough for 2
2 onions, diced
2 eggplant, diced into 2cm (1in) cubes
2 teaspoons baharat or see below for alternatives
1-2 tablespoons lemon juice
1-2 cups cooked grains or legumes, to serve
1 bunch coriander (cilantro) or parsley to serve
natural yoghurt to serve

1. Heat a generous glug of olive oil in a medium saucepan. Add onions and cook covered on a medium heat until the onion is soft and a little brown – about 10 minutes.

2. Add the eggplant and continue to cook with the lid on, stirring every 5 minutes or so until the eggplant is no longer crunchy.

3. Add the spice and remove the lid. Keep cooking until the eggplant is soft. Taste and season with salt, pepper and lemon juice.

4. Toss the herbs in with your grains or legumes and divide them between 2 plates. Top with eggplant and finish with the yoghurt.

Variations

different spices – Baharat is a Lebanese blend of 7 spices. The best substitute is to use equal parts ground cumin, coriander and smoked paprika. Or just use one of those spices. Or use another spice blend such as garam masala or even curry powder.

carnivore – serve as a side to BBQ or roast chicken, pan fried pork chops or sausages.

no eggplant / different veg – use zucchini and/or red bell peppers (capsicum) or mushrooms.

dairy-free – replace yoghurt with hummus or a mixture of equal parts tahini, lemon juice and water.

different grains / legumes – I used farro in the photo but it would be great with lentils, barley, brown rice, quinoa, white beans or chickpeas. Or serve with your favourite flat bread or tortillas.

_____

I forgot to announce last week…
The people who purchased my new book ‘Healthy & Tasty‘ during the launch and won 12 Months of Souptones Meal Plans ($297 value) were:
– Lin Moore
– James Etheridge
– Agnes Moran
– Jeannie Sadzius
– Marion Vilkaitis

Congratulations! You’ve been contacted via email with details on how to claim your prize :)

With lots of Christmas love,
Jules x
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Back in September, I ‘outed’ myself here on Stonesoup by revealing my 3 worst cooking habits. A bit of a brave move for an introvert like me.

Anyway, I promised to report back on my progress. So here we are!

BAD HABIT 1. Picking While I Cook

This is easily the toughest habit for me to break. So don’t be surprised that I still pick from time to time. But I do feel like I’ve made progress.

I’ve been tracking whether I feel ‘full’ or ‘hungry’ when I sit down to dinner in my habit tracking app on my phone (it’s called ‘habit keeper’). Usually it’s only one or two nights a week I’ve been over doing the ‘picking’.

Having more of a focus in this area has helped.

But the biggest change is that Fergal moved to having one nap a day. So we now have lunch at 2pm rather than midday. This means I’m much less hungry in the evenings.

It’s amazing how changes to your schedule can have a knock on effect to how much food you eat.

BAD HABIT 2. Dull Knives

OMG… This has been the easiest habit to kick AND the most rewarding. I’d forgotten how much easier it is to cut with sharp knives.

All I did was make a promise to sharpen our knives every Sunday night (or Monday if I forget). It’s amazing what a difference it makes.

I’ve even found myself sharpening mid week if they aren’t up to scratch. Love it!

BAD HABIT 3. Not Washing Leaves and Herbs

There have been countless times when I’ve been tempted to not wash my leaves. But then I’ve thought about sitting down to write this post and have dug out the salad spinner (one of Fergal’s favourite kitchen toys).

But there’s also been many a time, mostly when I’m in a hurry taking photos, that I’ve fallen back into my old ‘dirty salad’ ways.

So progress but not perfection!

What about you?

Got any bad cooking habits you should break? Or good habits you’d like to form?

I’d love to hear about them in the comment below :)

quick fish salad-2

Quick Fish Salad

We’ve been trying to eat fish at least once a week. And I’m really enjoying it! This recipe is one of my fishy favourites. I love it with flat head fillets but it works with any fish or even chicken for that matter. Hooray for fish!

enough for 2
400g (14oz) fish fillets
2 tablespoons flour (optional)
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 bag salad
mayo, to serve

1. Heat a frying pan on a medium high heat with a little oil. Toss fish in the flour (if using) with some salt and pepper.

2. Cook the fish until golden on both sides, about 3-5 minutes depending on how thick it is.

3. Meanwhile, combine lemon juice with 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil. Season and toss in the salad leaves.

4. Divide salad between 2 plates. Top with the hot fish and serve with mayo on the side.

Variations

gluten-free – The flour is just there to add a light crispy coating to the fish but you can easily skip it or use your favourite GF flour. I used chickpea flour which adds a lovely yellowy colour.

chicken – replace fish with chicken breast or thigh fillets. Chicken will take an extra minute or 2 on each side to cook. I wouldn’t bother with the flour if cooking chicken.

beef – this salad is also surprisingly good with steak sliced into strips and tossed in the flour.

vegan – replace fish with a drained can of chickpeas or white beans. Skip the flour and just pan fry the legumes in a little oil until well browned. Use a vegan mayo or see below for other egg-free ideas.

egg / mayo-free – replace mayo with lots of lemon juice, natural yoghurt, a dollop of creamy ricotta or goats cheese or with a tahini lemon sauce (3 tablespoons each lemon juice, tahini and water).

vegetarian – replace the fish with sliced halloumi cheese. Skip the flour and pan fry until the cheese is well browned on both sides. Or try a fried egg salad.

more veg – feel free to add your favourite raw salad veg such as grated carrot, cherry tomatoes, grated beets, sliced cucumber, sliced zucchini, chopped red capsicum (bell peppers). Or add a handful of frozen peas to the pan for the last minute of cooking the fish.

more substantial – serve with home made fries or toss in some steamed potatoes or torn chunks of sourdough bread.

With love,
Jules x
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A New (Surprising) Reason to
Eat More Vegetables

December 2, 2014

ecently, my Irishman came across a fascinating documentary called ‘Gut Reaction: What You Eat Could be Making You Ill‘. To cut a long story short, the program focused on the latest research on gut bacteria and health. It boils down to this… Eating processed food = unhealthy gut bacteria = unhealthy person. and… Eating lots […]

Read the full article →

How to Fix Excess Salt

November 25, 2014

often get asked where I get the ideas for my recipes and blog posts. And the truth is I find inspiration pretty much everywhere… magazines, restaurants, online, my veggie garden, when I’m looking in my fridge… But one of my favourite places is the Stonesoup by request survey I set up to capture your questions […]

Read the full article →

Can Eating Healthier Change Your Genetics?

November 18, 2014

hen I was studying biotechnology, (as part of my Food Science Degree) if you had asked me whether eating healthier could change your genetics, I would have automatically responded ‘no way’. I used to think that our genes are something we’re born with. Something we can’t change. So you can imagine my surprise when I […]

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6 Ways to Make Vegetables Taste as Good as Potato Chips*

November 13, 2014

ecently I’ve been reading a fab little book by one of my blogging friends. It’s called ‘The Butcher and the Vegetarian’. It chronicles my friend’s journey from vegetarian to occasional meat eater for health reasons. And it’s a great read. Tara talks about growing up, when her mother was all about making everything as healthy […]

Read the full article →

‘Healthy & Tasty’ is NOW READY!

November 11, 2014

K, I’m super excited and a little nervous because it’s been almost 2 years since my last new eCookbook. Anyway, here goes… ‘Healthy & Tasty Meals Made Easy’ is now ready! For all the details go to: www.thestonesoupshop.com/handt/ With love, Jules x

Read the full article →

The 2 Biggest Entertaining Mistakes
(How to Avoid)

November 5, 2014

love this time of year. Here in Oz, Summer is just around the corner and the lure of long lazy days on the horizon. Yay for holidays. Even though we don’t officially celebrate Thanksgiving here, I love the concept of this holiday. When I lived in California, I really embraced it. Taking the time to […]

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Like to Win a FREE Copy of my New eCookbook?

October 28, 2014

oday I have a bit of a favour to ask… In a few weeks I’m going to be releasing my new eCookbook called ‘Healthy & Tasty Meals Made Easy‘. I’m super excited about it because it’s been almost 2 years since my last new book. But before I put my latest ‘baby’ out into the […]

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Could Simplifying Your Life Make a Difference?

October 21, 2014

his time 5 years ago I was at a big crossroads. I loved my job designing Tim Tams (chocolate cookies) for Australia’s largest biscuit manufacturer. I mean who wouldn’t love working with chocolate? However, earlier in the year I’d had a glimpse of another life. Writing my first cook book was an experience that I’d […]

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How to Make it Easier to Cook When You’re Tired at the End of a Long Day

October 14, 2014

o you ever feel ‘too tired to cook’ after a long busy day? Well you’re certainly not alone! A few years ago I surveyed Stonesoup readers for their biggest cooking challenges. The number 1 response was being ‘tired at the end of a long day’. We all know what that feels like. But how do […]

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My 3 Favourite Spice Blends
(and their substitutes)

October 7, 2014

hen I was getting into cooking, one of the few things I found really intimidating was working with spices. I’m not sure what caused my ‘spice phobia’ but I do remember only using spices if the recipe called for them. I’d always use exactly the types and amounts listed. Talk about restrictive. Over the years, […]

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Should You Be Eating MindLESSly?

September 30, 2014

f I mention the words ‘mindless eating’, what thoughts pop into your head? Probably nothing healthy, right? For me ‘mindless eating’ normally evokes thoughts of chowing down on junk in front of the TV or computer. Big bags of chips or pop corn at the cinema. Or shoveling ice cream straight from the tub. While […]

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My 3 Worst Cooking Habits

September 23, 2014

‘m a huge believer in the power of habits for helping to put everyday decisions on autopilot, making it much easier to live a healthy life. One of the things I’ve learned in my study of habit formation over the years is the power of public commitment. Earlier in the year, I joined Febfast and […]

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How I Keep My Family Healthy

September 16, 2014

few weeks ago, my Irishman was in a lift with a family with a sick baby. He mentioned that he has a one-year-old and the other parents were like, ‘Oh you must be used to him being sick’. My Irishman was a little taken back by this. Over dinner he told me about his encounter […]

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Is Dieting Making You Weigh More?

September 9, 2014

ou know when you come across someone who is a kindred spirit? Someone who has similar philosophies to your own? I love when that happens. Like when I discovered Darya Rose from the fab little blog summertomato.com. Darya and I share a lot in common including a love of vegetables and legumes, a background in […]

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