Banana, Almond and Flax crackers

My daughter’s kindy has a no nut policy for snack time. It makes sense, however suddenly I am lost as to what to give her other than fruit and cut vegies. Normally I will also have a pot of nuts or I make bars for her with nuts and seeds. However I found a recipe for flax crackers and have tweaked it a bit (although for her ones at school I will just make 100g flax half whole half ground). These have the perfect balance of carbohydrate, protein and essential fats. Can be for snacks or spread with nut butter for breakfast. Also go very well with my Lemon, ginger and orange curd.

80g flax seeds(half ground half whole)

20g ground almonds

1 medium (browned or extra ripe) banana.

Mash the banana with a spoon until its creamy with few lumps. Add the flax seeds, almonds and mix. Keep mixing till it completely combines. Let it sit for 20 mins.

Grease a baking sheet with olive oil cooking spray, drop 1 Tsp drops and press flat.

Bake for 15-20 minutes on 300C or until the edges are brown and the tops are hard.

Pumpkin smoothie

Pumpkin Pie Smoothie Loula Natural

Pumpkin Pie Smoothie

We have a protein shake every morning with our breakfast. I used to use a pumpkin seed protein mostly because its unflavoured and I am not a huge whey protein fan. Nowadays we just just nuts and seeds in our quest to eat as close to nature as possible. This Pumpkin smoothie is great tasting but also really filling and satisfying.

Both of my kids have had morning smoothies from around 6 months (although I kept them nut free for the first year). My eldest would have porridge and it was not keeping her full up till lunch. I was adding ground almonds and berries when she was one however she would still be looking for food an hour after. Since I was already having a smoothie myself I started giving her some. She’s had one every morning since! Now my youngest is also not complete in the morning without his smoothie! 

Breakfast= smoothie then muesli then apple! 

Check out all my other breakfast recipes here

I love pumpkin. I love it in soup, pie, roasted, chipped and puréed. I found organic canned pumpkin but also prefer making my own pumpkin puree. This is a twist on our regular morning smoothie and my kids and I think its delicious. The hubby is going along with it but he has issues with using veggies in sweet mode (he eats my beetroot brownies alright though!!)

 2 cups of oat milk/Almond Milk
1/3 cup of organic pumpkin puree
1 banana (I keep mine in the fridge- but a frozen one would be nice too)
1 tbs peanut butter (or other nut butters- optional)
2 scoops protein powder/almond meal/ground flax/ground seed mix (30g protein- optional)
Tsp Pumpkin Spice powder (to taste so add more or less)
Vanilla (essence, pod or paste)
1 tsp maple sugar (coconut nectar, maple syrup- optional)
1 tbs coconut oil/ghee/butter

you can also add 2 tbs kefir (dairy or water) for a probiotic kick

Whizzzzz up. This serves 3 glasses.

Delicious- I also love sequins!!

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Other pumpkin recipes;

Homemade Pumpkin Puree

Baked Pumpkin Donuts

Pumpkin Bread

 Pumpkin Brownies

Immune boosting pumpkin pie spice

Pumpkin Pie Smoothie Loula Natural Pin

Lentil burgers

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I am terrible for not following recipes! Even my own- sometimes you don’t have everything- or what’s more common you can’t find something the recipe calls for in the shops- so I often improvise and use re pies as more of a guide. Some things come out downright bland sometimes if you follow a recipe. I like to add spices and herbs all the time!

Lentils are pretty bland so when making a burger out of them my husband generally doesn’t expect much so I have to give him flavour. This recipe has morphed out of a few and it takes a bit of artistic license sometimes to get the right consistency to make a patty that doesn’t crumble or slop all o er the place. So if you go a bit off book- you have my permission!

If you can get organic versions of the ingredients- that would be best.
400g cooked/sprouted (if you are feeling that extra step) lentils I usually use the brown French ones- (cooking them in some stock juice half orange and bay leaf often helps too with flavour)
400g cooked/sprouted chickpeas
2 garlic cloves (3 if they are only little)- ginger as well if you like
1 onion
1tbs Harissa (optional-depends on the kiddies)
1/2 pack flat leaf parsley (coriander is also nice also Thai basil or mint- whatever you can find fresh)
1 diced aubergine (celery, carrot, peppers equally work well)
100g breadcrumbs (gluten free if you need them to be) a little cooked rice sometimes works too)
Flour for dusting
Egg maybe but not always necessary depending on if you need to give it a bit more binding
Salt and pepper
Spices can include- turmeric, paprika, cumin, cinnamon, chilli flakes, curry powder whatever takes your fancy.

it’s really important to taste as you go with this- since here’s no meat there’s no danger!

Use a little olive or coconut oil and cook off the garlic, onion, aubergine, chickpeas and lentils. Add spices and other ingredients and pulse in food processor. Mix slowly you don’t want baby purée! You want it mixed but not smooth.
Dust flour on work top and roll balls of the mixture and pat down into patties
Can be done ahead and then frozen or kept in fridge before cooking. Heat a little olive or coconut oil and fry them on both sides until heated through

I like them with my rustic slaw, or pickled cucumber. Or they go well with cauliflower cheese!

Sweet Potato, Chickpea and Chorizo hash

This is a family fav. Its easy to whip up and contains ingredients we always have in! Its also delicious and nutritious. Its also really nice without the Chorizo, just add a little chilli pepper to the hash mix if you are not sharing it with the kiddies (or if the kiddies also like a bit of spice!). My almost 3 year old loves it.

I got it from the BBC Good Food Mag, great for inspiration.

Ingredients:

600g Sweet potato -3/4 large ones- peeled and cubed  (preferably organic)

1tbs olive oil/coconut oil

1 large onion thinly sliced  (preferably organic)

400g cooking Chorizo (about half of a ring) thickly sliced

400g can of chickpeas (preferably organic)

4 large eggs  (preferably organic) or as many eggs as you have people so everyone can have an egg!

1 green chilli -optional

Boil/steam the sweet potatoes (if boiled save the water for your stock pot or for when you make soup) until tender and drain.

Heat oil in pan and cook onion and Chorizo until soft and add sweet potato and chickpeas. Cook for 5 mins

Use a fork to break down mixture and to flatten- not too chunky but also you don’t want it too sloppy.

Heat the Grill, break the eggs onto the top, season with some salt and pepper (works really nice with Pink Himalayan Salt but Sea Salt works just as well!). Put under the grill until the whites are set. Sprinkle on the chilli and serve. Easy peasy!!

Party Pieces

Today we had a party to ‘Wet the Head’ of my son. Just a few friends round for lunch. Party food can be really healthy and delicious. Here’s my spin to get the most nutrients out of a few favourites!

Homemade Sausage Rolls:

I would love to say I made my own pastry. I have tried many times (my gluten free one was a disaster) they have never quite hit it. If you have a recipe I would love you to share it with me….

16 good quality Cumberland Sausages (or Chipolatas)

6 Sheets of Puff pastry cut in half

1 egg beaten

sesame seeds for the top

Cut the sausages out of the casing. Try and keep them as sausages.

Places the sausage meat down the left hand side of the pastry. Roll until sausage it completely covered. Egg wash the overlap and continue rolling with overlap side down. Egg wash the top and sprinkle the top with the sesame seeds. Cut to desired size and cook at 180-200C for 20 mins until golden brown.

Rustic Slaw:

Half a red cabbage

2 Large carrots peeled (unless organic- then just washed) and grated

1 apple peeled, cored and grated

1 Red onion thinly sliced

2 handfuls of pumpkin seeds

a really good dollup of organic mayo

a good dollup of Dijon mustard

Half a lemon

Salt and pepper

Place all ingredients in a bowl and mix till mayo covers everything.

Broccoli salad:

I found this on Pinterest and changed a couple of things

2 Heads of Broccoli

Handful of pecarino cheese grated

10 slices of cooked crispy pancetta

Half a red onion finely diced

1 really good dollup of organic mayo

A couple of good dashes of white wine vinegar

About a tsp worth of maple syrup/ coconut nectar

Squeeze half a lemon

Salt and pepper

Cook the broccoli till soft with a bite (save your broccoli water to make stock if you have boiled it- otherwise steam it). Let it cool. Meanwhile, cook pancetta and cut up, grate cheese and dice onion. Add everything to a bowl and mix till dressing covers everything.

We also had marinaded Rack of lamb, Roasted Ratatouille, hummus and crudite. But those we can leave for another day to share…

For the sweet teeth!

Kane Festive Rocky Road:

This is normally only kept for Christmas and is a Kane family tradition to make on Christmas Eve- but it was a party and its much better for you than a cake or other puddings. Beware though it is incredibly moreish!!!

5 bars of organic dark chocolate (i used 4 70% and one 85% Madagascan Dark Chocolate)

Then the world is your oyster- we never repeat the same ingredients as its what we have in the cupboards or what we like the look of when collecting ingredients!!! This one included- nuts, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, raisins, goiji berries, dried blueberries, rasins, thin almond cookies, homemade rose cookies, mini marshmallows, maltesers, pecans, ground almonds, dried banana and amonds. I have in the past put cut up jaffa cakes, any nut or seed, apricot kernals, bashed shortbread, different flavoured chocolate, digestive biscuits, any dried fruit, coconut. The great thing about it is it always tastes different!

Gently melt the chocolate in a Bain Marie. Cut, bash, break up the ingrdients into a bowl. Put 2 baking sheets with greaseproof paper ready. When the chocolate has melted add to the bowl of ‘rocks’. Add the ground almond, sesame seeds, coconut at the end to absorb any still wet chocolate. Make sure everyone has a stir. At Christmas we each have a wish while we stir!!!

Pour into baking sheets and put in fidge or freezer till chocolate hardens again. Cut into squares…beware while you are cutting the desire to taste the little bits is too much to resist!!!!

Enjoy…Just try and pace yourself on the Rocky Road- or at least do a workout the next day!!!!

 

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