Vegetable Smoothies . . . Warm or Cold

Vegetable smoothies are great for a variety of reasons. It can be a winter warmer &/or a mixed fruit and vegetable smoothie (cold), as a weight loss drink and toddlers for added nutrients.

I will not deny that some of the combinations actually sound, let alone taste, disgusting. Once actually made up and tasted, are to my surprise, very nice to taste.

On my previous pages, I have written on Breakfast Juices and Milk Smoothies. There are quite a few that are better suited in the winter months alone and others as a refreshing drink for the warmer months.

Related: Whole30 Chili

I have NOT provided any recipes although, instead have named the various vegetables which you can use.

Of course, here is a list of vegetables that I would be recommending:

  • Kale
  • Spinach
  • Pumpkin (butternut, jap)
  • Carrots
  • Celery (this is absolutely delicious)
  • Tomatoes
  • Beetroot
  • Zucchini
  • Garlic
  • Red cabbage
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Silverbeet (Swiss Chard)

and, if you are wanting a few added herbs:

  • anise
  • lemon grass
  • fennel
  • rosemary
  • sage

Related: BBCGoodFood (Vegetables)

Sticky Chicken Lettuce Cups

Making chicken lettuce cups at home is very quick and simple. Its also fun to eat with your fingers as well as little mess to clean up afterwards. Most of all, if picking up kids from school or before you are heading out after work, its a perfect on the run snack. Its not too filling but rather light so not to complain about not eating at all. Although I have provided this recipe, I have also provided another version.

The title “related is at the very bottom of this post.

Ingredients:

500g Australian Chicken Breast Mince
2 tsp olive oil
1/2 brown onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/2 cup (125ml) hoisin sauce
1/4 head green cabbage, thinly sliced (about 2 cups)
1 large carrot, peeled, coarsely grated on large holes on a box grater
2 spring onions (white and green parts), thinly sliced diagonally
1 iceberg lettuce, halved and cored
2 tbs coarsely chopped coriander

Directions:

Section 1:
* Heat a large heavy non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat;
* Add chicken and cook, stirring occasionally, breaking up chicken with a wooden spoon for 4 mins or until just cooked through;
* Transfer to a heat-proof bowl

Section 2:
* Bring pan to heat;
* Add the oil, onion and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally for 1 min or until onion begins to soften;
* Stir in celery and cook, stirring often for 3 mins or until vegetables are slightly tender

Section 3:
* Mix/Stir in the hoisin sauce;
* Return the chicken to the pan and cook for 30 seconds to blend flavours;
* Stir in the cabbage, carrot and half the spring onions and season with pepper;
* Remove pan from heat

Section 4:
* Carefully separate lettuce leaves to get 16 neat cups, trimming as needed;
* Arrange lettuce leaves on 4 plates;
* Spoon chicken mixture into each leaf and garnish with remaining spring onions and coriander

Note: Plan ahead – prepare veggies for lettuce cups up to 8hrs ahead & refrigerate

Nutrition/Per Serve:

Energy 1237kJ/296 cal (14%)
Protein 28g (56%)
Fat 10g (14%)
Sugar 16g (18%)
Dietary Fibre 6g (20%)

Related: Sticky Chicken Lettuce Cups (Taste)

Rice Pudding with Roasted Strawberries

Rice puddings is a traditional dish and easy to make. They can vary a lot, depending on the persons tastes. It also depends on how you prepare the rice pudding and what ingredients you like to use. It comes down to personal taste and flavours.

Cooking: 25 mins
Prep Time: 10 mins
Serves: 4

Ingredients:

3/4 cup (150g) medium grain white rice
4 cups (1ltr) milk
1/2 cup (125ml) maple syrup
500g strawberries (halved)
2 tbs pistachios (roasted and chopped)

Directions/Instructions:

Step 1:
*  rinse rice under cold water
*  drain well
*  combine rice and milk in medium saucepan over high heat
*  bringing to the boil

Step 2:
*  reduce heat to low
*  simmer, stirring often for 20-25 mins or until rice is tender
*  stirring in HALF the maple syrup

Step 3: (meanwhile)
*  preheat oven to 180oC (356oF)
* combine strawberry and remaining maple syrup in a small baking dish
*  roast for 20 mins or until strawberries begin to soften

Step 4:
*  divide rice pudding evenly among serving bowls
*  spoon over the strawberry mixture and sprinkle with pistachio

Nutrition:
Energy: 1942kJ/465cals (22%)
Protein: 13g (26%)
Fat: 12g (17%)
Sat. Fat: 6g (25%)
Carbs: 75g (24%)
Sugar: 45g (50%)
Dietary Fibre: 4g (13%)

Dairy Free Chocolate and Berry Terrine

This is an exquisite desert using dairy free ingredients. So yummy . . . ! Although chocolate, there will be no guilty feelings eating this after dinner desert.

Related: Healthy No-Bake Fruit Terrine with Berries (Paleo)

Preparation Time: 10 mins, (plus 6 hrs freezing & 10 mins standing time)

Meanings of a Terrine?

The terrine as a cooking bowl or container? Its a deep rectangular, straight-sided dish, usually ceramic, glass or cast iron. It sometimes has a tight-fitting lid. The terrine dish is often in the shape of an animal, detailing contents of the terrine.

The 2nd reference made of a terrine is of the actual food that it’s cooked or served in. The food’s built up in loaf shaped layers of either meat or fish. At times, it can actually contain vegetables, served cold in the terrine that its cooked in or sliced.

Ingredients:

500ml dairy free dark chocolate sorbet
500ml dairy free coconut sorbet
500g pkt frozen mixed berries, slightly thawed
1 cup (200g) dairy free coconut yoghurt
1/4 cup mint leaves

Instructions:

Step 1:
*  Grease 10cm x 20cm (base measurement) loaf pan, lining base & sides with baker paper, allowing sides to overhang

Step 2:
*  Place the chocolate sorbet and coconut sorbet in separate bowls, setting aside for 5 minutes to soften slightly

Step 3: (meanwhile)
*  reserve 1 cup of berries in a bowl in freezer
*  place remaining berries in a food processor & process until smooth

Step 4:
*  Spoon HALF the chocolate sorbet into prepared pan and top with SOME (not all) of the berry puree
*  Spoon OVER HALF of the coconut sorbet and top with berry puree
*  Continue layering with the remaining chocolate sorbet, berry puree and coconut sorbet, finishing with chocolate sorbet
*  Smooth its surface
*  Tap pan on bench to remove any air bubbles
*  Cover with foil
*  Place in freezer for 6 hours or until firm

Step 5:
*  Remove terrine from freezer
*  Set aside for 5 mins to soften slightly
* Turn onto serving plate
*  Spoon over the coconut yoghurty and top with reserved berries
*  Sprinkle with mint

Related: Vegan Salted Caramel Chocolate Cheesecake

Nutrition:
Energy: 1286 kJ / 308 Cals (15%)
Protein: 4g (8%)
Fat: 15g (21%)
Sat. Fat: 12g (50%)
Sugar: 34g (38%)
Dietary Fibre: 2g (7%)

Dairy Free Pea & Leek Soup

Diary Free Pea & Leek Soup

This is a dairy free, pea & leek soup which is super quick to make and nice, especially in winter. I also have a chocolate desert which is dairy free also.

Ingredients:

2 leeks, pale section only, thickly sliced
1 large washed potato, peeled, coarsely chopped
4 cups (1Ltr) Massel Vegetable Stock
500g pkt frozen peas
2 tbs lemon juice

Directions/Cooking Time: 25 mins

Section 1:
* Combine leek, potato and stock in a large saucepan;
* Place over high heat, bringing to the boil;
* Reduce heat to medium and cook, partially covered for 20 mins or until potato is tender.

Section 2:
* Reserve 1 cup (120g) peas;
* Add remaining peas to the pan and bring to a simmer. Set aside to cool slightly

Section 3:
* Using a stick blender to carefully blend the pea mixture until smooth, returning pan to medium heat;
* Add the lemon juice and reserved peas, stirring until heated through;
* Season well;
* Divide the soup evenly among serving bowls

Serve with:
lemon slices, finely chopped chives and extra virgin olive oil

Related: Green Goodness Immune Boosting Soup

Providing (per serve):
Energy 736kJ/176 cals (8%)
Protein 11g (22%)
Fat 1g (1%)
Sugar 9g (10%); and
Dietary fibre 11g (37%).

Sourdough and Salmon Snacks

 

Cooking Time: 3-5 minutes
Serving:
2-4

Ingredients:

1/2 cup Ricotta Cheese (Full fat or Reduced Fat)
1 tsp finely grated lemon zest
1 tbs finely chopped fresh chives
4 slices sourdough bread
extra virgin olive oil (for brushing)
130g John West Skinless & Boneless Salmon – Lemon & Cracked Pepper
1/2cup watercress

Toppings (optional):
1 fresh red chilli, finely sliced, seeds remove
4 tbs soft fetta (if you don’t like Ricotta OR Cream Cheese)
100g of Smoked Salmon (if you don’t like John West Skinless & Boneless Salmon)

Directions/Instructions:

* Combined ricotta, lemon zest and chives, season to taste and set aside

* Brush bread slices with oil and cook on a chargrill plate or griddle pan to lightly char grill

* Spread ricotta mixture on bread, top with John West Salmon and Watercress

* Serve with lemon wedges

Note: Sourdough is a nutritious low GI bread choice

Baked Risotto . . . with Flavour Variations

Baked risotto is quite different to the traditional style.

It takes longer to cook, although it means you don’t have to attend to it. This allows you time to whip up something delicious to serve along side it.

Cooking Time: 40-45 minutes

Serving: 4-6
Preparation:
5-10 minutes

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups arborio rice
4 cups chicken stock (heated)
1/2 cup finely grated parmesan cheese
40g unsalted butter (chopped)

Directions/Preparation:
* preheat oven to 180oC
* combine rice and stock in a 10-cup capacity baking dish
* cover tighly with a lid or foil and bake for 40 minutes, stirring halfway through or until most of the stock has been absorbed and rice is “al dente”
* stir through parmesan and butter and season to taste – serve immediately

Nutrition (per serve):
12g protein
14g fat (9g sat fat)
64g carb
2g sugars
2g dietary fibre
1810 kJ (430 cals)

Flavour Variations:

Pumpkin & Sage: Toss 500g diced pumpkin with 1tbs olive oil and season. Place onto a lined baking tray and bake along with the Baked Risotto for 3 minutes. Toss 1/4 cup sage leaves with 2 tsp olive oil, adding to tray with pumpkin and cook for a further 5 minutes or until crisp. To serve, top risotto with pumpkin and sage

Seafood: Use fish stock instead of chicken stock to make a Basic Risotto. Pan fry 200g peeled green prawns, tails intact and 150g barramundi in a pan with 20g butter. Flake fish. Top risotto with prawns and fish, season to taste and serve with 2 tbs snipped chives.

Asparagus & Leek: Use sliced leek in place of onion in the Basic Risotto. Once half the stock has been added, stir in 2 bunches asparagus, trimmed, cut into 2cm pieces. Gently stir in parmesan and butter to finish.

Related: Risotto Basics and then Some

Mushrooms: Pan fry 500g sliced mushrooms and 1 crushed garlic clove in 40g butter over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes or until golden. Stir through the Basic Risotto or Baked Risotto.

Spinach & Prosciutto: Chop 1 bunch spinach leaves and stir through cooked Basic Risotto. Grill 2-3 slices prosciutto until crisp. Break into shards and serve with risotto.

Basil & Rocket: Add 1/2 cup shredded basil to the cooked Basic Risotto or Baked Risotto. Top with baby rocket to serve.

Gorgonzola: Stir 200g creamy gorgonzola (or another blue cheese) instead of parmesan through the cooked Basic Risotto with butter.

Related: Oven-Baked Chicken and Mushroom Risotto

Lemon & Peas: Add 1 1/2 cups thawed peas and 1 lemon, zested, to cooked Basic Risotto.

Risotto Basics . . . and then some

Cooking Time: 35-40 minutes
Prep Time:
5-10 minutes
Serves:
4-6

Ingredients:

3 cups chicken stock
1 1/2 tbs olive oil
80g butter (chopped)
1 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 1/2 cups arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
80g finely grated parmesan
2 tbs chopped fresh herbs such as parsley, chives basil or thyme (optional)

Directions/Preparation:

Step 1:
* place stock into a saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat

Step 2:
* in a wide saucepan, heat oil and 20g butter over medium heat
* add onion and garlic and cook for 8 minutes, stirring occasionally or until onion is very soft

Step 3:
* add rice and stir well to coat
* cook for 1-2 minutes or until lightly toasted

Step 4:
* add wine and cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally or until absorbed

Step 5:
* add 1/2 cup stock and cook, stirring gently and occasional, until absorbed
* repeat adding stock in batches (allowing to absorb between each addition)
* cook for 20 minutes or until rice is “al dente”
* remove from heat and stand for 1 minute

Step 6:
* beat in parmesan and remaining butter until combined and creamy
* season to taste, stir through herbs, if using and serve immediately

Nutrition (per serve):
14g protein
30g fat (16g sat fat)
66g carbs
4g sugar
3g dietary fibre
2505 kJ (600 cals)

Tips:
1) Cook onion gently until pale golden and translucent. Don’t try to speed this up
2) Stir gently to prevent the release of too much starch from rice, which will make your risotto gluggy
3) Use good-quality stock for the best flavour, remembering that as stock absorbs, that flavour becomes stronger
4) Replace chicken stock with fish stock for seafood risotto or vegetable stock for a vegetarian version

Apple Doughnuts

Cooking Time: 20 minutes
Makes:
16 (approx.)

Ingredients:

4 Royal Gala Apples
1 lemon, zested, juiced
2 cups plan flour, plus 1/3 cup extra
1 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 cups apple juice
1 free range egg white
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
vegetable oil for deep-frying
raw sugar to sprinkle

Honey Glaza:
3/4 cup honey
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 cup pecans, toasted, chopped

Preparation/Directions:

Section 1:
* to make the glaze, place honey, cinnamon and 1/2 cup boiling water in a wide saucepan over medium-high heat and cook, stirring for 4-5 minutes or until slightly reduced – SET ASIDE

Section 2:
* trim tops and bases of apples
* slice each apple into 4 thick rounds, using a 2cm round cutter and remove cores from each slice
* toss in a bowl with zest and lemon juice and a pinch of salt
* let stand for 10 minutes

Section 3: . . . meanwhile
* line a baking tray with baking paper (or parchment paper)
* whisk flour, baking powder, apple juice, egg white and cinnamon in a blow
* set aside

Section 4:
* half-fill a large saucepan or wok with oil and heat to 180oC or until a cube of bread turns golden in 45 seconds;
* working in 4 batches, coat apple slices with extra flour then dip in batter to coat
* lower into oil and cook for 2-3 minutes, turning halfway or until golden
* remove with a slotted spoon, dip in glaze then place onto tray

Section 5:
* serve hot with any remaining glaze and a sprinkling of sugar

Nutrition (per doughnut):
3g protein
10g fat (1g sat. fat)
20g sugar
2g dietary fibre
1000kJ (240 cals)

Zucchini and Carrot bites

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 medium-sized zucchini, shredded (if you don’t like Zucchini, then use Broccoli instead)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese (or 1 cup, depending on individuals taste)
  • 1/2 cup Panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 small-medium carrots, peeled and shredded (depending on individuals taste)
  • 2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil (depending on individuals taste)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano (depending on individuals taste)
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder (depending on individuals taste)
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder (depending on individuals taste)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves (depending on individuals taste)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F (200˚C.)
  2. Lightly oil a baking sheet or coat with nonstick spray
  3. Grate the zucchini into a bowl and salt generously, adding salt and gentle combine ingredients.
  4. Allow ingredients to stand for 15-20 minutes
  5. Using clean dish towel or cheese cloth, drain zucchini completely, removing as much water as possible.
  6. Transfer zucchini to a large bowl. Stir in carrots, Panko, eggs, cheeses, basil, oregano, garlic powder and onion powder
  7. season with salt and pepper, to taste and mix until well blended
  8. Take a tablespoon of mixture and roll it into small bites (slightly bigger than a chicken nugget), repeating for rest of mixture.
  9. Place into oven and bake until golden brown and crisp, approximately 20-25 minutes total. Flip over when 10-12 minutes have passed at half of cooking time.
  10. Serve immediately

 DIPS:

Greek Yogurt
Tomato Sauce

Related:  Broccoli Tots