Sweet potato and Acai smoothie bowl

Sweet potato and Acai smoothie bowl
Sweet potato and Acai smoothie bowl
Sweet potato and Acai smoothie bowl
Sweet potato and Acai smoothie bowl
Sweet potato and Acai smoothie bowl

Guilty as charged! I promised you guys more recipes and to be honest, with the launch of my cookbook WHOLE - bowl food for balance, it has been crazy! I am hoping that this insanely delicious smoothie makes up for it. If you haven't shopped my book yet then click here to get your hands on a copy! 

As you guys know I have PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome) This is an endocrine disease that stops me from having a regular cycle. I used to feel really ashamed about sharing it with others. However, I have since learned that 8-10% of females at childbearing age have it. I have also learned along the path of discovering my health that it is a solvable problem through healthy eating and lifestyle changes. 

It can be overwhelming when you look at the whole picture and you have so many people telling you what not to eat and what to eat. I have learned that the only way I am going to succeed is to make one small change a day or even in a month. All the little changes eventually add up and before you know it you will be leading a healthier lifestyle. 

This smoothie bowl is unique because I recently discovered that banana isn't ideal for me to be having as someone with PCOS because it is higher in sugar and sugar triggers hormonal acne. It's not to say a banana is bad. It's just to say that it isn't necessarily good for me as an individual right now. The problem is though, is that I love creamy smoothies. I mean duh, who doesn't. I went down the rabbit hole to find out what solution and I found it. Steamed sweet potato. Yes, you heard me. I steam it, then I freeze it, then I blend it and it is glorious! It makes the smoothies super decadent and delicious and it doesn't overpower the flavours. It's a healthy carb and a great kick starter to my day! I steam the sweet potato then I freeze it placed out on a baking tray so that it doesn't stick together. Once frozen I add them to a freezer safe Tupperware.

If you do this you end up with at least a weeks worth of supply and you can give the bananas a break. Try it and see how you feel. Does your body love it or not so much? It's about listening to what works for you. For now, I am on a mission to make as many small changes as I can in order to achieve normal health and hormonal balance! 


Ingredients:

1 1/2 steamed and frozen sweet potato (about 2 cups) – white or orange sweet potato
1 cup of frozen berries of your choice (I used blueberries) 
1 teaspoon acai
1 teaspoon chia seeds
1/2 ripe avocado
1 serving of pea protein powder or protein powder of your choice
2 majool dates, pitted
1 tablespoon of almond butter + extra for drizzling on top
1/4 cup almond milk, you can add more if needed. 

toppings all optional:

chia seeds
raspberries
sliced banana
coconut
strawberries
almond butter
pumpkin seeds
buckwheat
sunflowers seeds
 


Instructions:

Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth. Decorate with toppings and serve! 

-Melissa 

Christmas Chocolate Chia Trifle

Christmas Chocolate Chia Trifle
Christmas Chocolate Chia Trifle
Christmas Chocolate Chia Trifle
Christmas Chocolate Chia Trifle

Trifle is a tradition in my family. I am hosting Christmas this year and I have decided to do a plant-based one because not only do I want a healthier Christmas but I want to show my family how easy it is to become mindful of the amount of meat and animal products we consume. You don't have to be vegan for this, you just have to care more about your environment and your body and think do I need as much as I take?  
I have been eating healthier and my body has been thanking me for it. Your will to if you give it a go. I don't want to have a full-blown sugar binge if I don't have to. I mean just look at this Trifle. Does it not tick all the boxes on every level? My mouth is watering just looking at it! You can play around by adding different nuts, nut butter and dark chocolate. 

It's so easy to make and a lot quicker than a normal Trifle. Plus it is refined sugar-free, gluten free and dairy free! 


Makes 2-3 glasses depending on glass size

Ingredients:

Chia layer:

  • 1/4 cup chia seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg 
  • 1 tablespoon 100% maple syrup 
  • 1 cup almond milk 
  • 1/2 cup full fat coconut milk

Chocolate mousse layer:

Other layers:

  • 1/2 cup sugar-free granola - You can find great options at your local health store.  
  • 1 - 2 fresh bananas sliced 
  • 50 grams pecan nuts, chopped 
  • 2 tablespoons almond butter
  • Banana bread *optional. You can bake a vegan bread or find one at your local health store. 
  • fresh cherries *optional 

In a medium pot over a medium heat add all ingredients for the chia layer. Bring to a simmer stirring often. Once the chia seeds begin to absorb the liquid, about 5 minutes of simmering, turn the heat off and set aside. The other option if you have time is to combine all ingredients and leave them in a jar in the fridge overnight. 

In a tall glasses begin assembling your trifle. Begin with two tablespoons of Chia pudding, then two tablespoons of chocolate mousse. Add the sliced banana. Top with granola and nuts and repeat ending off on a chocolate layer. Top the trifles with granola, almond butter and torn pieces of banana bread. 

Buckwheat porridge with caramelized banana

Buckwheat porridge with caramelized banana

*Serves 1

This is a really great meal if you are bored with your usual, mundane breakfast. It is easy, delicious and different. Banana is decadent and sweet paired with the crunch of the almonds this breakfast is enough to satisfy any cravings! 


Ingredients:

  • 300g buckwheat
  • coconut oil
  • 1 ½ cups almond milk
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla paste
  • 1 teaspoon agave or raw honey
  • 1 banana, sliced to your liking
  • 1 handful raw almonds

Instructions:

Soak the buckwheat in water overnight, then drain and rinse.

In a medium frying pan over a medium heat add a teaspoon of coconut oil and fry the buckwheat until golden brown, about five minutes.

Add the almond milk, cinnamon, turmeric, vanilla, and honey. Let simmer for 15-20 minutes or until the liquid has been absorbed. Dish the porridge into a bowl and set aside.

In the same frying pan, add a teaspoon of coconut oil and the banana and fry on a medium heat until sticky and caramelized, roughly five minutes. Once caramelized, add the banana to the porridge. Top with almonds and serve.

Health fact:

Buckwheat is high in fiber and gluten-free. Combined with the turmeric which is anti-inflammatory, this breakfast will pack a punch, and what is breakfast for if not for energy!

-Melissa 

 

Pineapple, Paw Paw and Kiwi Smoothie Bowl

Pineapple, Paw Paw and Kiwi Smoothie Bowl

It’s all in the name. This smoothie bowl is packed with Vitamin C and quick and easy to make. There’s no reason not to start your day right by enjoying this bowl for breakfast.


Ingredients:

  • 120g fresh pineapple, chopped
  • 100g paw-paw, chopped
  • 250ml 1 cup coconut water
  • juice of ½ a lemon, juiced
  • 1 handful fresh mint leaves
  • 3 blocks of ice
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • ¼ cup gooseberries
  • 1 kiwi fruit, sliced
  • 1 dragon fruit (optional)
  • 1 star fruit (optional)
  • ¼ cup almonds

Instructions:

Blend the pineapple, paw-paw, coconut water, lemon juice, mint, chia seeds, and ice until smooth.

Add the smoothie to a bowl. Decorate with gooseberries and almonds kiwi fruit, dragon fruit balls, and star fruit.

This is a moment to connect with your food and put some good energy into it. If you feel like decorating with other seeds, nuts and a variety of fruits. Go wild! Real food is good for you and filled with vitamins and minerals!

Health Fact:

Kiwifruit is high in Vitamin C which is a powerful antioxidant. It also helps to build strong bones and strengthen the immune system.

-Melissa 

 

 

 

 

 

Sweet corn polenta with crispy bacon

Sweet corn polenta with crispy bacon

I've been playing around with a few unique takes on breakfast. I've been wanting to mix things up and keep it fresh whilst still keeping it on the healthier side. I've used polenta as it reminds me of porridge. Maize is packed with energy and the parmesan and bacon topping will leave you in taste heaven! It's quick and easy to make and a wonderful recipe with this cooler weather as it is a very comforting dish! If you want to adapt it to vegan skip the cheese and bacon and add avocado and some crunchy greens like rocket! Start to play with the flavours and trust your palette and body when it comes to food. Life is too short to not enjoy flavours or feel bad after food. Some people enjoy meat for example where as others feel sluggish after eating it. For what ever the reason, make it yours! -Enjoy! 


*Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 200g streaky bacon
  • 1 sweetcorn
  • ½ cup polenta
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large spring onion
  • parmesan

Instructions:

Preheat your oven to 200°C.

In a roasting tray lay the streaky bacon flat except for three pieces.

Pop your bacon into the oven and bake for 10-15 minutes. Keep and eye on it and make it as crispy as you like. 

Finely dice your remaining bacon pieces.

In a small frying pan over a medium heat add your bacon bits and fry until crispy. Set aside.

Meanwhile, remove the sweet corn kernels off the cob.

In a medium pot, over a medium heat add two cups of vegetable stock and teaspoon of salt.

Bring the water to a boil, turn down temperature and reduce to a simmer.

Slowly add your polenta while whisking continuously.

Whisk the polenta until it is all incorporated and there are no lumps. About five minutes. Add the sweetcorn to the polenta and continue whisking.

If your polenta gets a little dry, feed it with a small amount of hot water.

Your total cook time for the polenta is ten minutes.

Finely slice the spring onions.

For the last two minutes of the bacon being in the oven, turn the grill on to crisp it up.

Add the polenta to a serving bowl. Top with bacon, spring onion and parmesan shavings.

Option to add rocket if you are wanting to add more greens or top it with a poached egg! 

-Melissa