Banana and coconut cake – gluten free

My husband wanted a gluten free banana cake for his birthday so I did what I normally do and looked to Mr Google for inspiration!   And then I did what I usually do next, amalgamated interesting ideas I found into something that would work for me and my ingredients. The result was so delicious I want to share it.  It looked beautiful too, with the cooked bananas and walnuts on top.  I will definitely do this one again!

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Foods not nutrients

Are you more confused than ever as to what we “should” be eating for health and for weight loss???  The fat versus carbs debate is getting tiresome and it does not help that even experts seem to disagree what we should eat for optimum health.  When I start to feel bewildered I remind myself to stay grounded, and the best way to do this (in my view) is to consider foods not nutrients. Continue reading

Delicious crackers

I tried to come up with a clever name for these crackers, but the only word that kept coming to mind was “delicious”!  They truly are delicious - with cheese, hummus, cottage cheese, tomato, in fact with anything that you would normally put on a cracker.  Better still, they are delicious by themselves!
Those of you who are gluten free will know how hard it is to find good, crunchy, high fibre crackers – well these fit the bill perfectly.  The recipe is an adaptation of a recipe given to me by a friend – her recipe used wholemeal flour (220g) instead of the 3 gluten free flours + psyllium that I used.  The recipe makes a large container full – good to have ready to go in the pantry. If they soften simply dry off in the oven.

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Budgie bites

Budgie Bites
My philosophy for food is that it should taste delicious while looking after health and weight at the same time.  These bite sized morsels fit the bill perfectly.  Deliciously sweet and chewy, they are the perfect sweet treat if you care about what you put into your mouth. My husband thought they looked like budgie seed, hence the name!

Makes 12 bars or 24 bite sized chunks.
Time to make 10 minutes

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Oven Hangi

I discovered this recipe while doing a photo shoot for a NZ Beef and Lamb brochure.  The recipe did not grab me at first glance but having made it, it is now one of my favourite meals.  It is like a kiwi roast but much simpler.  There are heaps of variations on the theme also.  I often replace the stock with a tin of crushed tomatoes mixed with 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar, 1 tablespoon brown sugar, 1 teaspoon mustard and some chopped rosemary.  Wonderfully easy and great comfort food!
Serves 4
Time to make 2 1/2 – 3 hours

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Bird seed loaf

While I like to think that the recipes on this blog are “my own”, rarely is this truly the case.  Recipes travel like all good ideas – and as they do so they are moulded, shaped and altered to suit the needs of the user.   Like most cooks, I get ideas from other recipes and dishes sampled, then I add my spin to it.  This recipe has none of “my spin”  however – it comes directly from my favourite food blog “Not quite Nigella”!  With no wheat, eggs or dairy, it also can be used almost universally – always a bonus in this increasingly food conscious world.  Above all, it is absolutely delicious.  Serve as is or toasted, with anything you would normally have with bread,  Thanks Not quite Nigella – this is now a staple in my household!

Time to make: 25 minutes preparation + 35 minutes cooking
Makes: 1 medium loaf
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Cauliflower and broccoli cheese

Broccoli and other members of the cruciferous vegetable family (cauliflower, brussels sprouts and cabbage) have been getting alot of attention recently.  The reason for this lies in a substance these vegetables contain – sulforaphane. Sulforafane has been shown to demonstrate anti-cancer properties, particularly in concentrated amounts.   As well, cruciferous vegetables provide useful quantities of vitamin C and vitamin K, good reasons alone to eat them.  The recipe below is based on a Jamie Oliver recipe but with a reduced fat content. It combines cauliflower and broccoli together in one delicious dish. Cancer protection was never so tasty!

Cauliflower and broccoli cheese
Serves 4 as a main course or 6-8 as a side dish
Time to prepare: 70 minutes

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Pumpkin, feta and spinach fritters with tomato and raisin sauce

Pumpkin, feta and spinach fritters with tomato and raisin sauce
The salty tang of feta is beautifully balanced by the sweet and sour sauce.
Great when you have left-over pumpkin. For a gluten free version replace self-raising flour with brown rice flour and 1 teaspoon baking powder.

Serves 4
Time to make 30 minutes

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