easy

Roasted tomato and chickpea bowl

Roasted tomato and chickpea bowl

This bowl is one of my go-to bowls to make for lunch or dinner. I love it because you can make all the elements individually for meal prep or you can roast everything in one pan and make it a one pan wonder. If you make it individually then the same roasting rules applies to each veggie you are roasting, you'll just have more dishes! Its filled with all the flavours and packs a punch of protein with the chickpeas. I have added some spice but this is something totally optional. Play around with it and see what makes your taste buds sing! 


Ingredients: 

  • 250 grams cooked chickpeas 
  • 300 grams zucchini, cut into 2cm chunks 
  • 400 grams cherry tomatoes 
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil 
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric 
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper 
  • salt and pepper 
  • 1 cup wild rice 
  • 2 handfuls fresh rocket 
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon buckwheat 
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin seeds 
  • 1 ripe avocado 

For the dressing:

  • 3-4 tablespoons olive oil - I use 4. 
  • 1 tablespoon tahini 
  • 1 teaspoon honey 
  • juice of 1 medium lemon 

Instructions: 

preheat the oven to 180°

In a large roasting tin add the chickpeas, zucchini, cherry tomatoes and cover with the coconut oil. Add the spices and toss until evenly covered. Season and pop it into the oven for 35-45 minutes or until all your veggies are golden brown and soft. Keep an eye on them so that the chickpeas don't burn and toss the veggies at the halfway point. 

Cook the rice as per packet instructions. Once ready, set aside. 

Meanwhile, in a small bowl mix together all the ingredients for the dressing. 

Once the veggies are ready remove them from the oven. Add the rice to the roasting tray along with the dressing, rocket and nutritional yeast. Mix together until well combined. 

Add the salad to your serving dish. Top with sliced avo. Sprinkle over the buckwheat and pumpkin seeds and serve!

-Melissa  

Christmas Vegan Eggnog!

Christmas Vegan Eggnog!
Christmas Vegan Eggnog!
Christmas Vegan Eggnog!
Christmas Vegan Eggnog!

This year has been the year of connecting with my health. As most of you know I have created a book on mindful eating which is coming out this coming year April (I'm so excited I can pop). After creating something so near and dear to my heart I decided I had to live my brand and heal my relationship with food. So I took my health seriously. I cut out dairy, gluten, and sugar. Why? Because I didn't feel good after eating it. You should give it a try then see how you feel! I learned that being healthy is not black and white and it sure as hell isn't about perfection. It's about making lots of little changes as often as you can. It's about the small things adding up to the bigger picture. So are there days that I have a little sugar? Of course! But I try my best to honour my body with balance and real food. I also let go of when I indulge and allow myself to enjoy. This way I don't feel deprived and it stops me from binging. 

As the festive break is upon us I wanted to reframe my thinking. I don't want it to be about "falling off the wagon" then the tedious climb in January to "get back on it". I've had that mentality my whole life and it has never worked. That is why I have created some healthy recipes for you guys. They are going to be around my table this year. They are just as indulgent and won't leave you wanting for sugary empty calories that will do only harm leaving you with 'food comas' and sugar crashes. I know you will enjoy them and I hope that you share your creations with me! Give something different a try this year! Who knows, your body might thank you for it! 


Ingredients:

  • 2 cups almond milk 
  • 1 cup full fat coconut milk 
  • 1/3 cup macadamia nuts (soaked overnight or for at least 1 hour)
  • 6 majool dates 
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla paste 
  • 1 tablespoon 100% maple syrup 
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg 
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon 
  • pinch of ground cloves 
  • pinch of salt 
  • two shots brandy *optional 

Instructions: 

Add all the ingredients to a high speed blender and blend until smooth. Serve immidiately with holiday cheer!

-Melissa 

 

Roasted sweet potato with walnut and parsley pesto

Roasted sweet potato with walnut and parsley pesto
Roasted sweet potato with walnut and parsley pesto
Roasted sweet potato with walnut and parsley pesto
Roasted sweet potato with walnut and parsley pesto

This recipe is an ode to my sweet friend Rose. She is a marvelous cook and first shared this recipe with me a while back. It is insanely good and with sweet potato being one of my all-time favourite foods, I had to recreate this recipe and share it with you guys. The secret to a gooey sticky sweet potato is too let it roast as long as possible to get the crunchy edges and to let its natural sugars caramelized. Ten minutes before you remove it from the oven, drizzle with some olive oil and let them roast a little more. Don't make your wedges too small or the bulk of them might burn. This is an amazing recipe for any dinner table and although it is a side, everyone will treat it as the main affair! 


Serves 5 as a side

Ingredients: 

  • 1kg sweet potato washed and cut into wedges. 
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • wax paper
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 bunch parsley
  • juice and zest of 1 lemon
  • 90 grams walnuts
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  • Maldon salt for serving
     

Instructions:

Preheat oven 180°C.

Place the cut sweet potato into a large bowl along with the coconut oil. Toss until evenly covered. Line a large roasting tray with wax paper. Line the wedges up on the tray skin side down and season with salt and pepper. Pop them into the oven and roast for an hour and 10 minutes. Turning them at the 45 minutes. 10-15 minutes before they are ready, drizzle them with some olive oil and let them finish up roasting. 

Meanwhile, in a food processor add the parsley, lemon juice, walnuts, garlic and olive oil. Blend until you reach a smooth creamy consistency. Season to taste and fold through the lemon zest. 

Once the sweet potatoes are golden brown (I like my edges crunchy) remove from the oven. Add a few dollops of pesto to the wedges and toss the wedges gently until evenly covered. 

Add to your serving bowl, sprinkle with Maldon salt and serve hot!

Merry Christmas 

-Melissa

 

Cauliflower Roast for Christmas - Plant based celebrations!

Cauliflower Roast for Christmas - Plant based celebrations!
Cauliflower Roast for Christmas - Plant based celebrations!

This recipe is a cracker for those of you celebrating a plant-based Christmas. It really is wildly delicious and super easy to make. The cauliflower goes melt in your mouth tender and soft. I first saw this recipe done by Jamie Oliver. I tweaked it slightly and decided this was going to be the main event around my Christmas table. I hope you guys enjoy it and give it a try. Whether you are eating meat or living a vegan lifestyle this recipe is a game changer and something different. 

On a side note - Thank you to everyone who has supported my blog this year and for the journey so far. This coming year is going to be a great one with many changes and I cannot wait to take them on! I am going to be sharing even more of my health journey thus far in hopes of inspiring you to make the little changes in your life and your kitchen.

Merry Christmas! 


Serves 4

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons coconut oil
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon cayanne pepper
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 medium cauliflower head
1/2 teaspoon crushed coriander seeds
salt and pepper
400 grams cooked and peeled tomatoes
1 handful flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped
50 grams chopped almonds
Zest of 1 lemon

Instructions:

Preheat oven 180°C

In a small bowl mix together all the spices and the coconut oil. 
Peel the cauliflower and score the bottom into a cross shape.
Place the cauliflower in a heavy-based ovenproof pot. Using the spice/oil mix evenly cover the whole cauliflower massaging it into all the grooves. Give it a little extra love!
Sprinkle with the coriander seeds and top with salt and pepper. Close the lid and pop it into the oven for one hour. 
On the hour mark take the cauliflower out of the oven. Add the tomatoes to the pot on the side of the cauliflower and pop it into the oven for a further 15-20 minutes.

Once it is golden brown remove it from the oven.  
Add the parsley, almonds and lemon zest. Top with a squeeze of lemon. 

Serve hot with one of my delicious sides such as maple glazed carrots! 

-Melissa 

 

 

Maple glazed carrots with honey comb

Maple glazed carrots with honey comb
Maple glazed carrots with honey comb
Maple glazed carrots with honey comb
Maple glazed carrots with honey comb

I have decided to do something a little different this year. I am going to be sharing a few recipes on how to have a full plant-based Christmas! Including the roast. These are my maple glazed carrots. If you are ok with having raw organic honey then you can add the honey comb and glaze them with honey. If not stick to the maple and they will be just as delicious! You could even top them with some roasted almonds. Keep your eyes out for the recipes to follow! They will make your Christmas not only a delicious one but one that is better for the environment, your health and of course the animals! If you are in a place in your life where you are eating meat, there is no judgment here. Listen to your body and make sure you source ethical meat free of growth hormones etc. Being mindful of the meat you consume and how much is a start to a healthier life! These carrots will make a delicious side no matter what. 


Serves 4 as a side

Instructions:

  • 450 grams baby carrots
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup or honey (100% maple syrup, not the processed one)
  • 5 cardamom pods crushed
  • salt and pepper
  • 20 grams honeycomb
  • edible flowers

Instructions:

Preheat the oven 180°C

Place the carrots and cardamom in a large bowl with the coconut oil. Toss until evenly covered. Pop them into an oven proof deep dish. Cover with the maple syrup, season to taste and roast for 40 minutes until golden and sticky. 

Meanwhile, crush the honeycomb into small pieces. Once the carrots are ready, pop them into a serving dish. I like to stack mine high on a plate. Sprinkle with honeycomb or nuts and decorate with edible flowers. 

Serve hot and as a side to my Christmas Cauliflower roast. 

-Melissa