*********

Before we get into this week’s post, just wanted to let you know I’m having a competition for 5 people to win 12 months worth of FREE weekly meal plans and online cooking classes (normally $297).

h&t 3D cover

To be in the running, just buy a copy of my NEW eCookbook and SAVE 30% over at:
www.thestonesoupshop.com/handt/

Hurry! Launch discount ENDS next week!

_______
Competition closes 5 December 2014.
If you’ve already purchased a copy, no need to do anything, you’re automatically entered in the comp!
Winners will be announced on www.thestonesoup.com

*********

How to Fix Excess Salt

I 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 or ideas for future blog posts.

It’s been a while since I took a request, so today I have a great one for you…

“How do you balance out saltiness? I liked your post on vinegar, and would like more of the food “sciency” posts!”
Marilen

For me, seasoning is the most important skill when it comes to making your meals taste delicious.

I’ve already written about ‘How to Season to Taste‘ and the ‘2 Most Common Seasoning Mistakes‘. If you need help with seasoning in general, they would be great places to visit.

But what happens when you add too much salt?

This isn’t a cooking mistake I make often. Basically, over salting is very difficult to rectify so I’m paranoid about not adding too much.

I always err on the side of under seasoning and have a jar of salt at the table for everyone to do the ‘fine tuning’ themselves.

But on the odd occasion I find myself with an excess salt situation, there is only one reliable method I turn to…

Dilution.

If it’s a soup, sauce or casserole that contains liquid you can easily add some water or other liquid to help spread the salt out. In other cases, you can dilute by adding other low salt ingredients.

For example, if you have over seasoned the salad below, you could toss in some extra zucchini or other raw veg to balance things out. Or if there’s too much salt in your bolognese sauce serve with extra unsalted pasta.

What about adding a potato?

There’s an old wives tale that adding a raw potato will ‘soak up the salt’. While it will absorb some liquid (including some salt), it’s not going to preferentially soak up the salt.

What about adding lemon or other acid?

If you google ‘fix oversalting’ most of the articles that come up talk about flavour balance and adding some acid such as lemon juice or vinegar to ‘balance’ out the saltiness. This is a high risk proposition because salt and acid tend to enhance each other.

There are some times when adding a little acid can help but more often it’s going to make things worse. So be very careful.

What about adding sugar?

It’s true that sugar and salt balance each other out. Which is why salted caramel is so delicious.

If you have a slight salt imbalance, a pinch of sugar can help. However if you’re at the stage where your dish just tastes super salty, adding enough sugar to balance is only going to make it taste really sweet and weird. I’ve tried this years ago with an over salted bolognese and ended up having to throw it out.

That’s why I stick to dilution.

super moist zucchini & tuna salad-2

Super Moist Zucchini & Tuna Salad

I’ve been really getting into grated raw zucchini as an ingredient. I love the mild ‘greenish’ flavour but the best part is all the moisture in the zucchini keeps your salad or whatever lovely and moist. My Irishman had this salad for lunch at work yesterday and he was raving about it so much he took a photo and sent it to me. High praise indeed!

enough for 1
3 tablespoons lemon juice
2 small zucchini
1 medium can tuna

1. Combine lemon with 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil in a medium bowl. Season.

2. Grate zucchini using your food processor or a box grater.

3. Toss zucchini in the dressing along with the tuna.

Variations

vegetarian – replace tuna with poached eggs or pan fried halloumi or crumbled salty feta.

vegan – replace tuna with chunks of avocado and a handful of almonds.

carnivore – replace tuna with shredded BBQ chicken or sliced cooked sausages.

hot! – use tuna in chilli oil

fresh fish – pan fry tuna steaks or other fish fillets and serve with the salad.

different veg - use carrots, beets or cauliflower or a combination of any of the above.

no grater - finely slice the zucchini into strips using a veg peeler or mandoline then slice the strips into smaller slivers.

herby – feel free to toss in some flat leaf parsley, basil or mint.

With love,
Jules x
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______________

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ps. You can still SAVE 30% on ‘Healthy & Tasty’.

Launch discount ENDS NEXT WEEK!

To make sure you don’t miss out, go to:
www.thestonesoupshop.com/handt/

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When 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 happened across a study which showed the opposite.

Yes, changes in our lifestyles such as diet, exercise and stress levels actually change which genes are expressed in our bodies.

Amazing stuff.

In the study 30 men with low level prostrate cancer were tracked over 3 months where they changed their diets, exercised for 1/2 hour every day and engaged in stress management practices such as meditation.

As expected, the men all improved their health with lower blood pressure and weight loss. The surprising thing was they also changed the expression of around 500 genes.

Disease prevention genes were turned on and genes known to be linked to disease were turned off.

So next time you feel like getting pizza instead of cooking something fresh for yourself, remember this study.

Any positive changes you make to your lifestyle aren’t only going to impact your external health, it’s making a difference at the genetic level!

Need some fresh ideas for Healthy AND Tasty Meals?

h&t 3D cover

Then you might need a copy of my new eCookbook!

For all the details (including how you can SAVE 30% with the special ‘Limited Time’ launch discount) go to:
www.thestonesoupshop.com/handt/

_______________________

asparagus bread torta-4

Asparagus Bread ‘Torta’


This unusual dish was inspired by the London chef, Yotam Ottolenghi. His was a bread ‘pudding’ but when I called my version that at a brunch we hosted, everyone was very skeptical.

Luckily I was convincing enough to get everyone to try it. My little asparagus dish stole the show. And it was competing with bacon so that’s saying something.

I’m really sorry if it’s not asparagus season where you live. See the variations for alternative veg ideas.

enough for 4-6
500g (1lb) asparagus (about 2 bunches)
2 cups milk
3 eggs
3 croissants, sliced about 1cm (1/2in) thick
2 large handfuls grated parmesan cheese
green salad, to serve

1. Preheat your oven to 180C (350F). Break the woody bottoms off the asparagus and pop in a loaf pan 24cm x 12cm (approx 9.5in x 5in) with a little oil.

2. Roast for 20 minutes or until the asparagus is almost tender.

3. Combine milk, eggs and parmesan in a large bowl. Season. Toss in the croissants to moisten.

4. When the asparagus is cooked, place on a chopping board and slice half into chunks, leaving the remaining stems whole.

5. Line the loaf pan with baking (parchment) paper. Layer half the croissants in the pan. Sprinkle over the chopped asparagus. Layer in the remaining croissants and pour over the rest of the egg mixture. Top with whole asparagus spears.

6. Bake for 45-50 minutes or until well browned and puffy. If you touch the top with your finger it should spring back.

7. Cool a little before slicing and serving with salad.

Variations

dairy-free – replace milk with your favourite dairy-free milk spiked with a few tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, I’d personally go with almond milk. And you might want to use bread instead of buttery croissants. Use about 8 slices of a rustic loaf like a sourdough chopped into cubes. And just skip the parmsean.

gluten-free – replace croissants with about 8 slices GF bread that have been cut into chunks. You might like to substitute cream for the milk to make up for the lack of croissant butteriness (I would!).

different veg – when it’s not asparagus season I’d try broccolini, zucchini, eggplant (aubergine) or red peppers or a combo. Adjust the roasting time of the veg as needed.

carnivore – toss in some cooked sausage or crispy chopped bacon in with the chopped asparagus in step 5.

pescetarian – add some chopped smoked trout, smoked salmon, tuna or canned salmon in with the chopped asparagus in step 5.

more decadent – the first time I made this I used cream instead of the milk. It was really good!

With love,
Jules x
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________________
ps. Not sure if ‘Healthy & Tasty’ can help you?

Here’s what Ruthie had to say about her purchase…

‘Hey Jules,
A BIG Thank You for another “can’t wait to get cooking” e-book! Have already glanced through and am inspired to start creating some culinary magic. I’m intrigued and eager to try your “Broccamole” recipe… two world’s colliding here with deliciousness!!
I also LOVE how so many of your recipes are naturally gluten free (as this is a dietary requirement for me) and that you provide variations in other recipes to suit, where possible.
Congrats on another great compilation, all the best, Ruthie :)’

Ruthie, ‘Healthy & Tasty’ Owner.

The launch discount is only available for a limited time. To make sure you don’t miss it go to:
www.thestonesoupshop.com/handt/

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Recently 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 as possible. They often ate steamed veg with brown rice and NO oil or salt. Not exactly tasty.

It made me a little sad because I think there is often a misconception that healthy food can’t be pleasurable.

The thing is, if you eat broccoli and actually enjoy it, you get the same health benefits as if you ate it like it were a badge of honour.

So today I wanted to share my favourite tricks for making veg taste amazing… Because aren’t we all more likely to eat more veg if we actually enjoy them?

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

1. Use salt
Many vegetables contain a lot of bitter flavours. And while a love of bitterness can be acquired, there is something you can do to mask it.

Yes, our old friend salt.

Really it makes a HUGE difference. Don’t be worried about the negative health connotations associated with salt. That’s for when you’re eating industrial-sized quantities, not the small amount of sea salt that it takes to mask the bitterness in your broccoli.

Salt is also great because it enhances flavours.

2. Use butter or olive oil
Fat carries flavour and provides fat soluble vitamins which tend to be lacking in veg. So it’s actually better for you to use butter or olive oil when cooking veg.

Needless to say, the tastiness factor should also be considered!

3. Don’t boil your veg
One of the easiest ways to make veg taste yuck is to boil the hell out of them. Boiling is also problematic because your water soluble vitamins end up down the sink.

These days, the only veg I boil are broad beans, edamame and spuds for roasting or when I’m making mash.

So how do I cook my veg? Read on…

4. Roast, pan fry or stir fry
I love roast veg but they can take a while, so I often pop them in a frying pan for a speedier alternative.

Unlike boiling, these dry heat methods of cooking help add yummy caramelized flavours to your veg and remove excess moisture. Which is why they’re so delicious!

5. Use good quality veg
When I was little I hated peas. Boiled frozen peas were all I knew. And then one day when I was older I had a life-changing spring vegetable soup at a little restaurant called the Lynwood Cafe which had its own vegetable garden. I couldn’t believe that I not only liked the freshly picked sweet peas, I loved them.

Now I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with frozen peas. They’re a brilliant vegetable to have on hand.

I tell the story as a reminder that all veg are not equal when it comes to flavour. The carrot you get from the supermarket generally never holds a candle to one you grow yourself.

6. Use tasty accompaniments
I’m a big fan of using tasty accompaniments to make my veg more palatable.

Here are some of my favourites: chorizo, chilli, soy sauce, parmesan, miso paste, bacon, pesto, fresh herbs, spices and hummus.

roast cauli with chorizo

Roast Cauli with Chunky Chorizo

Roasting cauliflower is the easiest way to turn it into a super tasty treat. I love how the pale colour of cauli makes the chorizo pop. The cauli also packs a nutritional punch just as weighty as broccoli and its other brassica cousins. I’ve used oregano in the picture because I was out of parsley and the oregano in my garden needs eating up.

enough for 2
1 head cauliflower
2 chorizo, sliced into chunks
1 tablespoon sherry or wine vinegar
1 bunch flat leaf parsley or oregano, leaves picked
1 handful roasted almonds or other nuts

1. Preheat your oven to 250C (475F).

2. Chop cauli into bite sized little ‘trees’. Place on a baking tray and drizzle with a little oil and a splash of water. Cover with foil and cook for 20 minutes.

3. Remove foil and scatter chorizo over the cauli. Season with salt. Return to the oven uncovered for 20-30 minutes, stirring once or twice until the chorizo is cooked and the cauli is soft in the middle and browned.

4. Combine vinegar with 1-2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil in a small bowl. Season.

5. When the cauli is cooked, toss the dressing in. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.

6. Divide between 2 plates and serve with herbs and nuts on top.

Variations

vegetarian – Skip the chorizo. Add a pinch of smoked paprika to the dressing. Serve cauli, herbs and nuts with a poached or fried egg or a dollop of cooling ricotta.

vegan – replace chorizo with a drained can of chickpeas. Add a pinch of smoked paprika to the dressing.

more substantial – serve with pita bread, steamed brown rice, hummus or cooked quinoa. Tossing in chunks of sourdough at the end so it soaks up the chorizo oil can also be really lovely.

nut-free – replace the nuts with extra chorizo. Or serve with toasted breadcrumbs instead.

different meat – any sausage can be used here. Or try finely sliced strips of chicken thigh.

* Thanks to the lovely Darya Rose for the title inspiration. And for those of you not familiar with ‘potato chips’ they’re the Australian version of ‘French Fries’.

With love,
Jules x
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________________

ps. Have you seen my latest eCookbook released this week?

h&t 3D cover

For all the details (including how you can SAVE 30% with the special launch discount) go to:
www.thestonesoupshop.com/handt/

pps. I’ve had some really lovely feedback on the book already.

Here’s what Eve had to say about her purchase…

‘Hi Jules, just a quick reaction…
I am so excited about this eCookbook, congratulations!
I purchased it almost instantly as I knew you would not disappoint me… and indeed, even after only a quick glance through it, this is again a success.
I love how you always find ways to make tasty food in all its simplicity! Even with a busy schedule, I’m always eager to try one of your recipes… Can’t wait to try one of these!
Congrats!’

Eve, ‘Healthy & Tasty’ Owner.

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h&t 3D cover

OK, 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!

To celebrate I have a special launch discount for you for a very LIMITED TIME.

For all the details go to:
www.thestonesoupshop.com/handt/

With love,
Jules x
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I 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 get together with your loved ones and give thanks with a big feast thrown in.

What’s not to love about that?

But the holidays can come with their fair share of stress.

So I thought I’d talk about the 2 biggest mistakes most people make when it comes to entertaining. And of course my tips for avoiding them…

Mistake 1: Trying to do too much

It’s so easy to get carried away when planning a feast. Even though I’m a big fan of keeping things as simple as possible, especially in the kitchen, I still fall for this rookie mistake from time to time.

So what’s the solution?

Easy. Write down your menu. Leave it aside for at least a few hours, preferably overnight.

Then read through and cut out anything that feels like too much effort. Be ruthless!

Mistake:2 Not allowing enough time

Things in the kitchen always take longer than you expect. Even for experienced cooks like me.

Again the solution comes down to planning. And being realistic and honest with yourself and realistic.

If you think you could do with some help in the planning department, I have something you might find helpful over here.

Here are some of my favourite recipes for entertaining…

Starters

roast butternut pumpkin-4
1. Roast Butternut ‘Hummus’ – serve with flat bread or crusty bread or celery sticks.

broad bean pesto-3
Broad Bean Pesto – If it’s not broad bean season make it with frozen peas. Either way serve with crusty bread.

Mains

slow roasted lamb shoulder-6
Succulent Slow Roast Lamb with Spicy Beet Sauce I love slow roasting meat because you end up with super tender meat AND it can be done ahead so there’s no stress about getting the timing right.

ham
Amazing Glazed Ham - if you’re in charge of the main protein forget about turkey and focus on the ham. A glazed ham is super forgiving and you don’t need to stress about getting it cooked through because it’s already cooked. You just need to focus on getting it looking gorgeous and glazed. I make this every year and this year we’ve even cured and smoked our own ham but you don’t need to go to that much trouble. The other great thing about ham is that is tends not to be ridiculously expensive.

pecan crusted sweet potato-4
Pecan Crusted Sweet Potato – if you need to keep the vegetarians happy, this is the main course for you! If you have any carnivore guests I can guarantee they’ll want to try this too.

warming onion & white bean bake-2
Onion & White Bean Bake – This will double as a side if needed.

Sides

green chickpea salad-3
Green Chickpea Salad – chickpeas are still one of my all time favourite foods. And this salad is no exception. Kale makes a brilliant ‘pot luck’ salad green because it tastes better after a bit of time marinating in the dressing, more than you can say for most regular salad greens.

burnt carrot salad-3
Burnt Carrot Salad – This is still on high rotation in our house. It’s best if you toss everything just before it’s time to eat, so it is a little bit higher maintenance. But worth it!

potato salad-7
Preserved Lemon Potato Salad - the preserved lemon makes this salad far more exciting than a regular mayonnaise-heavy potato salad. There are 2 other delicious potato salad recipes to choose from on this page as well. If there’s an Irish person among the guests you may have them pledging their undying love for you… don’t say I didn’t warn you ;)

roast cauliflower & quinoa salad
Warm Salad of Roasted Cauliflower & Quinoa – also great served at room temp. Just keep the cheese in the fridge until you’re ready to serve. Quinoa always gets loads of questions and compliments.

rolls royce 'slaw
Rolls Royce ‘Slaw – One of those salads that can sit in the fridge as long as needed. Especially good at barbeques.

lentil & beet salad-8
Roast Beets, Lentil & Balsamic Onion Salad – this one takes a little bit of effort to prepare but is super low maintenance after that. Great if you aren’t sure how long it will be before you eat.

Sweet Treats

toblerone ice cream cake
Toblerone Ice Cream Cake – only make this if you know there will be plenty of freezer space. Guaranteed crowd pleaser.

croissant surprise bday cake-4
Croissant Surprise Cake – I can’t tell you how many readers have contacted me telling me of all the compliments they’ve had after making this cake. Great because it will sit at room temperature for hours or is equally happy straight from the fridge.

chocolate peanut butter cake-5
No-Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake – This cake is super easy and super rich. And it’s better if you make it the day before. Get ready for the recipe requests!

molly's chocolate chip cookies-3
Salted Chocolate Chip Cookies – the salt makes them slightly unusual but apart from that they’re as good as cookies get. I love taking these to parties because they’re easy to serve and don’t create any washing up.

Like to overcome your entertaining mistakes?

holiday special square logo NEW2

To celebrate the Holidays this year, I’ve bundled together 4 quick online cooking classes.

They include:
* Stress-Free Entertaining
* Thanksgiving, Made Easy
* Make Your Christmas Merry
* Made with Love (Delicious Gifts Made Easy).

AND if you join today you’ll get access to all 4 quick classes for LESS THAN the price of 1.

To get all the details and make sure you don’t miss out on this LIMITED TIME offer go to:
http://thestonesoupshop.com/holiday/

With love,
Jules x
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_____________________________________________________

ps. And if you’re interested in simplifying your life in 2015, the early-bird pricing for ‘A Simple Year’ ends 15th November!.

Screen Shot 2013-12-07 at 2.15.44 PM

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To make sure you don’t miss out on this really great program go to:
www.simpleyear.co/

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Today 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 big wide world, I’d love to get some feedback on it.

That’s where you come in.

If you’d like to be one of my early ‘previewers’ and score a free copy of ‘Healthy & Tasty’ before it’s available for sale, I’d love to hear from you.

To register your interest, just leave a comment below letting me know how you could benefit from having a FREE copy of ‘Healthy & Tasty’.

The competition is now closed. Huge THANKS to the over 300 people who entered!
The winners have been notified via email.
And the winners are (drum roll)…
Wendy 
Emily 
Alison
Mike
Jess 
Ali
Dena
Laurie
Amy Findakly
Susan
BC
tom
Amanda Brook
Crystal
Robyn
Joann
Narelle
Lisa

UPDATE: ‘Healthy & Tasty’ is NOW Available!

h&t 3D cover
For all the details including the special 30% OFF launch discount go to:
www.thestonesoupshop.com/handt/

The fine print:
There are 20 FREE copies up for grabs.
Entries close: Monday 3rd November.
Entries will be judged by me. I’m looking for creativity and enthusiasm.
_______________________________________

Zucchini Mac & Cheese

Zucchini Mac & Cheese

This is a recipe that was inspired by English chef, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall. It certainly fits in with the ‘tasty’ criteria for my new ebook but with the pasta it didn’t really come up to scratch from a health perspective. So rather include it in my new eCookbook, I thought I’d share it here.

enough for 2
4 zucchini, sliced finely
1-2 cloves garlic, crushed (optional)
4 tablespoons cream
150g (5oz) short pasta
2 handful melting cheese
salad leaves, to serve

1. Preheat your oven to 180C (350F). Bring a pot of water for the pasta to boil.

2. Heat a little olive oil on a medium heat in a large frying pan. Add zucchini and cook until the zucchini are super soft and reduced. 10-15 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, boil pasta according to the packet timing. Drain.

4. Add garlic to the zucchini (if using) and cook for about 30 seconds. Remove pan from the heat and toss in the pasta, cream and half the cheese.

5. Divide the mixture between 2 x 2cup oven proof dishes. Top with remaining cheese and pop in the oven for 15-20 minutes or until everything is hot and the cheese has melted.

6. Serve with salad leaves on the side.

Variations

carnivore – brown some bacon or crumbled pork sausages and toss in with the pasta.

more substantial / carb lovers – serve with garlic bread.

different cheese – I use a combo of emmental, gruyere and parmesan but cheddar, mozzarella and swiss cheese are also good.

vegan / dairy-free – just toss the garlicky zucchini through the cooked pasta with a little extra olive oil. And serve with finely grated brazil nuts and a handful of mint or basil leaves on top.

healthier / more veg – replace some or all of the pasta with steamed chopped cauliflower.

different veg - the zucchini are pretty special here because they cook down and concentrate in flavour but you could use asparagus, broccoli, peas, red bell peppers (capsicum) or cauliflower.

gluten-free – use GF pasta (I did) or replace the pasta with steamed chopped cauliflower.

With love,
Jules x
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___

Screen Shot 2013-12-07 at 2.15.44 PM

Screen Shot 2013-12-07 at 2.16.21 PM

ps. And if you’re interested in simplifying your life in 2015, the early-bird pricing for ‘A Simple Year’ ends SOON.

To make sure you don’t miss out on this really great program go to:
www.simpleyear.co/

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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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Red Velvet Birthday Brownies

September 3, 2014

an you believe it’s September already? I know! I really love this time of year. Spring is just beginning to make an appearance both in the weather and the produce available at the farmers market. The days are getting longer. And it’s my birthday(!) This year, I’m continuing my birthday traditions of sharing a new […]

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Simple Sauerkraut Recipe

August 27, 2014

o I was very pleasantly surprised with the response to my previous post on fermenting vegetables. It made me super happy to hear that so many of you are interested in fermentation and put in a request for my sauerkraut recipe. So today that’s exactly what I have for you. But before we get to […]

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What Would June Do?

August 20, 2014

ithout a doubt, the saddest day of the year for me is the 20th August. You see it’s the day that nine years ago my family huddled in a little hospital room and watched my Mum breathe her last breath. I still really miss her. This year I’m feeling it even more than usual. I […]

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The Number 1. Way to Improve
Your Gut Health

August 13, 2014

few months ago took an online course called ‘Debunking PCOS‘ which is all about improving fertility and conquering Poly Cystic Ovarian Syndrome which I was diagnosed with over 10 years ago. The thing that really surprised me about the course was that the number 1 action we were encouraged to take was to heal your […]

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How to Rescue a Burnt Disaster

August 5, 2014

ot long after we moved into our little farm house earlier in the year, I was beginning to question my ability to cook without burning something. It started one night when I was making a bolognese sauce… Somehow I got side tracked and forgot I had the pot on the highest setting. The next thing […]

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A New Take on Pesto

July 29, 2014

love Winter. The frosty mornings. The crisp clear days. Snuggling up by the fire with a good book and a glass of red. And then there’s the food. Soups and slow cooked delights. Self saucing ginger puddings with ice cream. If I was forced to choose my favourite season it would be a toss up […]

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Debunked: The 3 Biggest Myths about Being an Organized Cook

July 23, 2014

esterday morning I decided to do something a little differently. I’ve been trying to get into the habit of waking up early. I used to think I wasn’t a ‘morning person’ but when I make the effort, I love having that extra quite time to meditate and get a little work done. So what did […]

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