Selfies, Shelfies and Still Lifes


Raphaelle Peale Still Life With Orange

Every now and then bloggers get slammed for the disproportionate amount of foodie pictures they carpet bomb across the webosphere.  Photography is one of the main artistic forms that bloggers use to capture their creations.  You’ll find overhead kaleidoscopic stacks of vegetables drizzled with glistening extra virgin olive oil, arranged and seated on a clean white plate.  There’s a sprig of strategically positioned micro herbs, and perhaps a carefully placed napkin, I think you know the shots I’m talking about.

When you think about modern art and art throughout history you may think about the great masters at work. The Renaissance oil painter absorbed in their figurative composition or the impressionist creating his visible brush strokes with natural depiction of light. Art has been used throughout the years to commemorate our very existence, to honour our achievements, disappointments and celebrations, to freeze frame personal memories and to document what we love and what we eat.

What was relevant back in the day and revered is still relevant now in the era of contemporary art although we just use another form to capture it.  Looking at it objectively, our aesthetic hasn’t changed but the tools and technology we use to objectify the moment has.  A still life, is still a still life, a selfie once known as the self-portrait is no different and our holiday snaps are our depictions of a landscape painting.  The only difference today is that we capture them on our smart phones or with the help of a digital camera.

In honour of modern art and our creativity I want to share some of the beautiful artful compositions from our wonderful community that are worthy of being hung in the national gallery.

Here’s to modern art and shaping history our way and long may it continue!

@kiaraible Sweet Pistachio Chicken

@kiaraible Sweet Pistachio Chicken

@niteskye Tapioca Pancakes

@niteskye Tapioca Pancakes

@drinkbalance Supercharged Breakfast Bars

@drinkbalance Supercharged Breakfast Bars More

Winter Chicken Casserole


10527471_789616857756699_6490674931314733962_nI’m akin to the withered bone structure of winter and how the simplicity gives you longer quiet stretches to savour belonging to yourself whilst becoming an observer of the human condition.

During the seasonal cold weather in Sydney, Sunday has now become my favourite day of the week.  That’s because it’s my batch cooking day, a day I look forward to as I start to become the architect, anticipating and planning my menus for the upcoming week. It’s a cost effective way to cook and eat and by sweeping prodigality under the carpet you can whip up a few recipes in unison using bulk ingredients.

Another highlight of batch cooking day is the need to clean the kitchen only once and alleviate the necessity of constantly preparing meals throughout the week.  I adore the wonderful aromas that waft out of my kitchen as my cast iron pot is simmering on the stove top.

This is a beautiful big-on-flavour chicken casserole I chanced upon last Sunday that I will happily enjoy with my family and friends over the coming week.  The casserole can be added to with spontaneity with any ingredients you may pick up along the way to bulk it out.

I played with a few flavours and spices in this recipe and used sumac which pairs wonderfully with chicken, then added to the spice mix paprika, cumin and turmeric for its powerful anti-inflammatory benefits. It really is a simple and effortless dish to make and one that is enhanced flavour-wise with time.

If you are doing my Heal Your Gut program this casserole can be blended at the final stage for easy digestibility.

More

Supercharged Breakfast Bars


bbCrumbs, I know you’ll enjoy these make-ahead Supercharged Breakfast Bars if you’re stuck in a breakfast time-warp.   Or if you’re a little bit partial to the not-so-healthy big-brand energy bars with their bold health claims, well maybe then you’ll welcome them with large pincer grips.

It turns out that sadly, commercially produced health bars are home to inflammatory ingredients such as sugar, partially-hydrogenated oils, soy protein isolate and artificial colours, flavours and preservatives.  And even ones touted as healthy are cereal offenders.  With that in mind, if you do partake, you may as well be eating a Tim Tam!

You don’t need to buy your fuel from a petrol station.  These easy-to-make-at-home wholesome energy bars are one of most popular recipes from my recipe book Eat Yourself Beautiful.  So high in the popularity stakes, it would appear that these little tinkers have also been involved in highly competitive bake offs and come up trumps!

Not to sound too over-confident but I’m quite sure that they would pass bake-off scrutinization well ahead of any crumbling croquembouche or Victoria Sponge oozing with Raspberry Jam.

They glow in the nutrition stakes too, with respectable levels of good fats, zinc, dietary fibre and B vitamins.  Easily transported in your bag for a quick-snatch snack, eaten as a portable breakfast or popped into a lunchbox, there’s no reason to not have them on hand when you need a little somethin’ somethin’. More

Healing Chicken Broth


http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photo-home-made-chicken-soup-image25485700My grandma who is just about to turn 103 is as sharp as a tack and can still sniff out a stock cube at 100 paces.  Her cooking is very traditional and one of her mainstays in the kitchen is home-made broth.

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Many supermarket brands nowadays just don’t cut it when it comes to healthy ingredients and have limited healing prowess.  You’ll find that even though they claim to be natural on the front of the box, in reality they are watered down versions of the real thing and often produced at high temperatures which eliminates much of the goodness.  On top of that artificial colours, preservatives and MSG can be added along with sugar and high doses of salt.

There’s no need to feel intimidated by making your own broth, although there are hundreds of variations of stock recipes, you can do it very simply and once the preparation is done and you’ve left it bubbling on a low heat until ready for use you can go about enjoying your day.  I have a lovely healing chicken broth recipe I’m going to share with you from my brand new Heal Your Gut e Book.

Soothing and immune boosting broth supports digestion by healing and sealing the digestive tract. You can consume it as a soup or soothing drink or use it in any recipe that calls for stock.

The gelatin found in bone broth in particular is a hydrophilic colloid. It attracts and holds liquids, including digestive juices, to fully support digestion. It’s anti-inflammatory, nutrient dense and contains a rich amount of minerals in an easily absorbable format. It not only contains calcium and magnesium, but also phosphorus, silicon, sulfur and trace minerals. It even contains broken down material from cartilage and tendons such as chondroitin sulphates and glucosamine which are beneficial for arthritis and joint pain. That’s why it is so supportive for people who are suffering with auto-immune or gut issues. More

Heal Your Gut


Heal-Your-Gut-3d-cover
So excited to be launching my new eBook Heal Your Gut!

I hope that you’ll enjoy the book, it’s a culmination of my personal quest for healing and everything I have learnt along the way to bring my health back into balance.

It’s an informative, uncomplicated and achievable gut healing protocol which will inspire, motivate and bring about true healing to your body minus the expensive supplements and faddish diet trends.

The natural four week protocol is not scary and honors the body as a whole.  The healing program is divided into four phases for you to follow one step at a time, and in your own time.  What I think you’ll embrace about this book is that it’s not dictatorial and takes you into account as an individual on your own healing pathway.

Heal Your Gut encourages you to work with your natural gut flora in a positive and supportive way, and not fight against it as an unwelcome and unruly opponent.  It provides step by step guidance on how to bring your gut flora into balance with food to achieve optimum and enduring health.

Heal Your Gut features over fifty sweet and savoury recipe inspirations, drawing on whole foods and a kaleidoscopic rainbow of healing ingredients.  There are simple solutions for blood sugar, energy maintenance and gut healing and it covers breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert.  There are also delicious snacks and beverages to indulge in. More

Lemon and Cinnamon Lamb Shanks with a Lemony Gremolata


IQS lamb shanksI shank it up fairly regularly, especially in winter and my slow cooker is my haven for making comfort food.   There really is no need to slave over a hot hot-pot when you can bung a bunch of ingredients and seasonal vegetables into your slow cooker in the morning and come home to a deliciously intense flavoursome and fulfilling meal which has been left to bubble pleasantly throughout the day. All ready to love you tender.

There’s a growing need for meals that alleviate any languid moods which often accompany winter’s chilly weather. Dishes that really sympathize with your hard day’s work and give you a big cuddle to make you feel nourished and pepped up again are a pre-requisite.

Slow cooked meals gladly fulfill a multitude of duties for you including lessening piles of washing up. All you need to do is invest a measly five minutes of hasty ingredient preparation in the morning, to reap an evening of hearty deliciousness.  I’m a big fan of this slow cooked hot pot recipe and chicken saag and think you will embrace them too, try them out and let me know what you think?

Speaking of slow cooker recipes this week I came across a brilliant new Lemon and Cinnamon Lamb Shank recipe to test out in my kitchen.  Hearty lamb shanks respond well to slow cooking and become even more succulent with time.  This delicious creation is from my friend and fellow blogger Sarah Wilson who blogs over here.

It’s a delicious nutrient dense pot of yumminess and flavour and comes from Sarah’s brand new book The I Quit Sugar Slow Cooker CookbookMore

Vegetable Thoran


10251927_748658795185839_7696725495682177106_nKeep Korma and Curry On.

India is a controlled and chaotically enriching assault on the senses which has altered my perception on reality forever. I would go as far as to say that it quite literally blew my mind.

There are so many things to love about a place that holds the most wonderfully vibrant and alive cuisine in the world, coupled with an ancient system of healing and what’s not to love about the traditional home of downward dog?

So what was my biggest takeaway from India?

I met a myriad of wonderfully genuine and generous people who I felt had a strong sense of kinship and community, perhaps I noticed it more because I could see people’s dependency upon one another.  And not just the kind of dependency which involved getting a step further ahead in business or a personal advancement.  It was more of a matter of sticking together for the sole purposes of survival.  Being immersed in the human element of India and its people gave me an insight and a sense of perspective that can’t be found on a facebook highlight reel.

What did I learn?  More

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