Crunchy broccoli salad

Crunchy broccoli salad

1 medium broccoli head
1 red chilli, sliced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
3 Tb olive oil
1.5 tsp sea salt
1 tsp white pepper
½ lemon juice and zest
3 Tb parsley leaves, sliced
3 Tb Oregano leaves- optional
½ C slivered almond, toasted dry in frypan

Sit broccoli head (upside down) in a bowl of boiling water for 3 minutes, remove and rinse under cold water. This will wash and slightly soften broccoli. Shake off excess water and chop finely, discarding the stalk.
Heat 2 Tb oil of in a fry pan, add chilli, garlic, lemon zest, salt and fry for 1 minute then remove from heat.
Stir in broccoli, parsley, oregano, lemon juice, pepper and remaining oil, coating well. Season to taste.
Top broccoli mix with almonds to serve.

Broccoli florets are good source of Vitamin C (antioxidants), vitamin A (for healthy eyes) and folate (helps red blood cell production, particularly important for pregnancy).

Spiced vegetable curry with mint yogurt

Spiced vegetable curry

300gm firm tofu, cubed
1 onion, diced
1 sweet potato, diced
½ cauliflower, cut into florets
200gm green beans, ends trimmed
1 Tb garam masala
1 Tb ground coriander
1 tsp turmeric powder
½ tsp chilli powder or 1 red chilli
10 curry leaves (recipe remains flavoursome if leaves or one of spices is unavailable)
1 inch ginger, grated
1 garlic clove, crushed
2 C vegetable broth
Coconut oil (or olive oil)
Sea salt
1 C natural yogurt
4 Tb mint (or coriander), chopped
2 tomatoes, diced – optional

Heat 1 Tb oil and fry tofu until golden, remove and set aside on paper towel.
In a large pot with a lid, saute onions in 1Tb of oil. Add spices, curry leaves, ginger and garlic and fry for 2 min.
Stir in sweet potato and fry for further 1 min.
Add broth and pinch of salt. Simmer with lid on for ½ hour.
Add cauliflower, cook for 5 min with lid on, then add beans cook for a further 2 min.
Sweet potato will mash down and thicken sauce.
In a small bowl mix mint with yogurt.
To serve, top curry with yogurt and fresh tomato.
Serves 4

‘Garam masala’ means warm spices (warming for the body). A typical Indian mix has cumin, cinnamon, cloves, pepper and cardamom.

Date and spice poached pears

Poached pears

4 pears, peel and trim bottom if required so that they stand straight for serving
(Firm pears will hold shape better)
4 C water
10 cardamom pods, bash in mortar and pestle to release seeds
1 cinnamon quill
1 Tb ground cinnamon
Zest of ½ Lemon
¾ C dates, chopped
Pinch sea salt
¼ C roasted almonds, crush in mortar and pestle

Place all ingredients, except almonds, in a saucepan with a lid.
Pears can lie on side to be submersed in liquid, turn through cooking time.
Cover and simmer on a medium heat for 30 min or until pears are tender.
Remove pears with a slotted spoon. Reduce liquid until it is approx. 1 cup.
Strain liquid through a fine sieve; pushing through sticky date pulp.
To serve pour sauce over pears and top with crushed almonds.
Serves 4

Cardamom belongs to the ginger family. It is a pod containing seeds, which have a spicy sweet flavor.

Pumpkin tart on a millet pesto base

Pumpkin and onion tart on a pesto millet base

¾ C Millet
2 ½ C water
2 Tb ground flaxseed, in 4 Tb warm water (egg substitute)
2 onions, sliced ( red or white)
600 gm pumpkin, deseeded, peeled & diced 1cm cube
Sea salt & pepper
1 bunch basil
1/4 C almonds
1 clove garlic, peeled
Olive oil
1 Tb water
¼ C pumpkin seeds (pepitas)

For the base.
Pre heat oven to 180°
Toast millet dry in a medium saucepan for 2 min, toasting gives a nuttier flavor.
Add water, good pinch of salt and simmer on low heat with lid on for 20 min, stirring half way.
Mix flaxseed with warm water to make paste.
Turn heat off and stir flaxseed paste into millet and mix well to make a creamy consistency.
Spread mix evenly into tart tin (any shape tin works approx. 30cm, spray with olive oil if not non-stick). Use the back of a wet spoon if mix is too sticky. Place in freezer to cool for 10 min then bake at 200° for 15 min, allow to cool before topping.

Heat 1tb olive oil in a fry pan and cook onions on a low heat for 10 min, add a little water if they are sticking. Add pumpkin, pinch salt, pepper, drizzle of olive oil and fry on medium heat for 10 min.

Blitz basil (reserve some leaves for garnish), almonds, 2Tb olive oil, water, garlic and good pinch of salt in food processor until combined. Add dash more water if required.

Spread pesto over millet base. Top with onion, pumpkin mix and sprinkle pepitas over. Bake in oven at 200° for 30 min. Allow to cool for 10min before removing from tin. Garnish with basil leaves and salt & pepper to serve.

Millet is a small round ancient seed. It is very nutritious, particularly high in protein, magnesium and fibre. The method of cooking allows it to be creamy like polenta or fluffy like cous cous.

Parsnip & carrot fritters with tahini sauce

1 Tb flaxseed, ground
3 Tb warm water
1 large parsnip, grated
1 carrot, grated
2 spring onions, finely sliced
Sea salt, white pepper
¾ C almond meal
3 Tb tahini
1 clove garlic, crushed
½ lemon, juiced
3 Tb warm water
1 cucumber, peeled into ribbons
4 radish, sliced
1 avacado, sliced
Nori, cut into small strips (scissors work well)
Sesame or olive oil for frying

Stir flaxseed into 3Tb warm water, sit for 5 min to make gel (This replaces an egg to bind mix).
Mix parsnip, carrot, spring onion and a pinch of salt and pepper, add gel and combine well.
Stir through almond meal. Form fritters about 10cm in diameter, pressing together firmly.
Refrigerate while other prep is done.

For sauce mix tahini with lemon juice, garlic and a pinch of salt. Add warm water for desired consistency.
Fry fritters in hot oil until golden. Transfer to paper towel.
To serve, top fritters with tahini, cucumber, radish, nori and avocado.

Tahini is a paste made from sesame seeds. You can buy hulled or unhulled, both work for this recipe.
Unhulled has a higher nutrient content though hulled has a less bitter taste.

Cabbage rolls in lemongrass & 5 spice broth

Cabbage rolls in 5 spice broth

8 large chinese or savoy cabbage leaves, 2 small ones can overlap as 1
Pot of boiling water
300 gm firm tofu, place block on paper towel to absorb excess water
1 medium carrot, grated
½ onion, finely diced
1 inch piece ginger, grated
1 large garlic clove, crushed
1 Tb ground flaxseed, this is an egg substitute to bind mix. Also see note.
1 Litre vegetable broth
1 Tb coconut or sesame oil
1 tsp Chinese 5 spice powder
1 red chilli, remove seeds and slice
1 stalk lemongrass, discard top, end and outer leaves, cut in half and half again lengthwise
chives for garnish

Trim cabbage stems and plunge leaves into boiling water for 2 min or until pliable, remove run under cold water and lay on a clean t-towel.
For the broth
Heat oil in a large pot with lid, stir in 5 spice. Add broth, lemongrass and chilli. Bring to boil then reduce heat and simmer with lid on for 15min.

Mash tofu with a fork in a medium bowl. Stir in carrot, onion, garlic, ginger, flaxseed and pinch of salt. Mix well so that flaxseed can bind mix.
Lay cabbage leaves out and place 2 Tb of tofu mix into centre, roll and fold in edges. Repeat with remaining leaves and mixture. Hold together with toothpick if necessary.

Place cabbages rolls fold side down into broth. Cover and simmer gently for 10 min.
Serve rolls with broth and top with chives.
Makes approx. 8

Note- Flaxseed can be bought whole or ground. If you buy ground, store in the freezer because the oil oxidizes quickly and will go rancid. Whole seeds can be ground in a pestle & mortar or coffee grinder.

Chinese 5 spice powder is blend of cloves, fennel, cinnamon, star anise and Szechuan peppercorns. This combination delivers sweet, sour, spicy, bitter and salty!

Roasted beetroot, kale and quinoa salad with horseradish

½ bunch kale, washed, stems removed and sliced
1 bunch baby beetroot, leaves & roots trimmed. Keep small leaves for garnish.
8 sprigs thyme
3 garlic cloves
3 inches horseradish root, store bought may be used but the added vinegar will not be alkaline.
1Tb water
½ lemon
Sea salt & pepper

Cut beetroot in half and drizzle with olive oil and a pinch of salt on baking tray. Roast for ½ hour at 200°c, after 15min add garlic and thyme. Toss together turning beetroot.
Cook quinoa according to pack directions, ratio is often 1cup quinoa to 3 cup water in a saucepan for 15 min. Set aside.

Peel horseradish and roughly chop. Blitz in food processor with 1Tb water. When finely chopped add pinch of salt, 1Tb lemon juice and roasted garlic, squeezed from cloves. Blitz together.

Heat 1Tb oil in a large fry pan on medium heat; add kale and wilt, 2min. Fold through quinoa, season with salt & pepper.
Serve kale mixture, topping with beetroot, beetroot leaves, lemon squeeze and horseradish sauce.

Beetroot and Horseradish are fabulous together!

Cauliflower and asparagus ‘risotto’

Cauliflower and asparagus 'risotto'

½ medium cauliflower, grated to rice texture
½ bunch sage, leaves picked
3 Tb olive oil
1 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
½ C wild rice
1.5 C vegetable broth
1 bunch asparagus, snap ends off and discard, cut into 2cm pieces
1 lemon, zest and 1/2 of juice
Sea salt and white pepper

Fry ¾ sage leaves in 1Tb oil on a medium heat for 20 seconds or until crisp, set aside on paper towel.
Finely chop remainder sage.
Heat remaining oil and fry onion in medium saucepan until softened, add garlic.
Stir in wild rice, fry 2 min, add broth and simmer with lid on 30mins.
Add cauliflower, chopped sage, lemon zest, pepper and 2tsp of salt.
Simmer gently uncovered reducing broth, approx. 10 min.
Stir in asparagus and simmer for 3 min.
To serve top with fried sage and a squeeze of lemon.
2 large serves, 4 as a side dish

Other vegetables are also great in this cauliflower base risotto, such as pumpkin and beetroot.

Wild rice is not actually a rice grain; it’s a grass seed.
It is more nutty and chewy than rice; high in antioxidants, fibre and protein.