Easy Cheesy Green Pasta

Green Cheesy Pasta

I’m always looking for new dinner ideas – preferably ones that don’t take hours and are healthy and I got this idea from my Abel & Cole organic fruit and veg box and it’s the perfect veggie dinner option for the whole family, I guarantee they’ll all love it! I am using cheese in this recipe when we very rarely add dairy to our recipes. I get high quality, organic cheese and, if you’ve read our article about dairy, you’ll see that we strongly suggest limiting the consumption of cow’s milk products to once a week. During my pregnancy, I have chosen to have cow’s milk products once or twice a week. That way I am limiting my intake to ensure my gut and immune system stay strong (of course with the help of probiotics), but I am also not cutting it out totally, leaving the baby susceptible to intolerances when he / she is born.

Ingredients

Enough brown rice pasta for however many people you’re serving
Extra virgin olive oil
Handful of almonds, roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup breadcrumbs (or a gluten free alternative)
1 head of broccoli
5 leaves of spring greens
3 small leeks or 1 large
150-200ml almond milk
Some grated mozzarella
A sprinkle of nutmeg
A pinch of chilli flakes
Oryx or Himalayan salt and ground black pepper

Method

In a frying pan, gently toast the almonds until just coloured. This should make your kitchen smell amazing! Put into a bowl and set aside.

Put the pan back on the heat and add a splash of olive oil, then the minced garlic, followed by the breadcrumbs and stir until golden. Set aside in a separate dish.

Cook the pasta as per packet instructions.

Put the pan back on the heat with a little more olive oil and add the broccoli and stir around for a few minutes before adding the greens and leeks. Cook these until they start colouring, then add a couple of tablespoons of water to help steam the broccoli. Add some salt and pepper and cook until the broccoli looks slightly coloured but crisp and not soggy.

Drain the pasta and leave in the colander then add the almond milk to the saucepan and gently heat. Add the nutmeg, then put the pasta back in, along with the vegetables, followed by the almonds, then add the mozzarella (gauge how much you need for it to melt and not be too sickly).  Stir everything really well.

You can either add the breadcrumb mix now and stir a little, or you can serve up the pasta into bowls and top them with the breadcrumb mix.

Serve immediately – it will be devoured!

Enjoy!

Love,
Lauren

Zoodles with Roasted Fennel, Sage & Salmon

Zoodles with Roasted Fennel, Sage & Salmon

I recently bought a spiralizer and have been excited to start playing with it. I would definitely recommend getting one if you want to eat more healthy food… it was super easy to use and this dish was just as satisfying as a regular pasta. Maybe even more so because I felt so good after eating it!

Roasting the fennel gives it a beautiful caramelized liquorice flavour, which pairs so well with the sage, lemon & salmon. If you don’t eat fish you can simply omit that, and you’ll still have a gorgeous, fresh and healthy supper.

Ingredients (serves 2)

1 large bulb of fennel
12 cloves of garlic
juice of 1 lemon
60ml olive oil
a handful of fresh sage
380g zucchini
another 2 tbsp olive oil
200g hot-smoked salmon

Method

Preheat the oven to 200 C.

Use a mandolin to finely slice the fennel. You could just use a sharp knife, but using a mandolin is quicker and easier. Peel the garlic and just use the heel of your chef’s knife to smash them up a bit – you still want biggish pieces. Place the fennel, garlic, lemon, olive oil and sage in an ovenproof dish. Season with himalayan salt and black pepper. Roast for about 30 minutes, until the fennel has caramelized and has a sweet aroma.

Meanwhile, spiralize the zucchini into noodles and flake the salmon. When the fennel comes out the oven, add the zoodles, additional olive oil and salmon. Toss together in the hot dish to warm everything through. Check the seasoning and adjust if necessary with more himalayan salt, black pepper or lemon juice. Serve immediately.

Health & happiness!

Love,
Raine

Butternut & Sage Pasta

Butternut & Sage Pasta

This is a quick and easy family dinner – I literally only had 35 minutes to get food on the table, and that included writing the recipe and taking a photo!

I am in love with sage… it’s such a versatile herb and the tangy, lemony flavour really comes out with roasting. It pairs beautifully with butternut, which is high in beta-carotene and vitamin C.

Ingredients (serves 4)

850g butternut (weighed without the skin or seeds)
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus some extra
1 tsp himalayan salt
15 cloves of garlic, cut into quarters
big handful of fresh sage
250g gluten-free organic pasta (I used amaranth, but you could use buckwheat or quinoa)
1/2 lemon
2 heaped tbsp raw pumpkin seeds

Method

Cut the butternut into cubes. On a roasting tray, toss together the butternut, olive oil, salt, garlic and sage. Roast at 200 C for about 30 minutes, until tender.

Cook the pasta according to packet instructions.

Toss the butternut and pumpkin seeds through the cooked pasta. Add some more olive oil if it looks too dry. Season to taste with lemon juice, himalayan salt and freshly ground black pepper. That’s it!

Health & happiness 🙂

Love,
Raine

Simple Homemade Tomato Sauce

tomato sauce

Every freezer should be stocked with this simple and healthy tomato sauce – it can be used in a myriad of different dishes, and makes life easier for busy moms! Just got home from work and need to make dinner in under half an hour? Defrost this sauce and serve it with some buckwheat or quinoa pasta for a quick but still nutritious family meal.

Tomatoes are high in vitamin C and antioxidants, particularly lycopene. Researchers recently found a connection between tomatoes and bone health, concluding that tomatoes can help to prevent osteoporosis. They are also important for heart health, and have long been hailed as the anti-prostate cancer food of choice.

I like to make up a batch of this sauce and then freeze some of it in ice trays, so that I have small portions handy for my son’s meals (I use 2 – 3 cubes for him) and freeze the rest in one portion for a family meal.

IMG_0301

Ingredients

2 large onions, chopped
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
6 large cloves of garlic
1/2 cup of red wine (optional)
1.3kg fresh tomatoes, roughly chopped, including seeds
small handful of fresh thyme
2 bay leaves
1/4 cup dried dates
3/4 tsp himalayan salt
a few leaves of fresh basil

Method

Fry the onions in the olive oil until caramelised. Add the garlic and fry for 2 minutes. Add the wine. There should immediately be a cloud of steam, and a strong smell of alcohol. This is the alcohol in the wine cooking off – so don’t worry, there won’t be any alcohol left over in the sauce. You can omit the wine, but it adds depth of flavour.

Add the tomatoes, thyme, bay leaves and dates. Turn the heat down, cover with a lid and simmer for a minimum of 30 minutes. An hour or longer is better – the longer it simmers the more the flavours develop.

Remove the hard stalks of the thyme and then put the sauce in a blender or food processor. For pasta sauces I like a chunkier texture so will use a food processor. For a smoother sauce (for example, for pizza) use a blender. Add the salt and basil and blend until you have the desired consistency. Taste for seasoning and adjust accordingly. Traditionally tomato sauce would have quite a bit of sugar added (you’d be mortified to learn how much sugar there is in store-bought tomato sauce or ketchup!) I avoid this by adding the dates. If you feel that it needs more sweetness, add more dates or raw honey or organic maple syrup. If you feel that it needs more acidity, use fresh lemon or organic apple cider vinegar. This all depends on the natural flavour of the tomatoes you’ve used, so just taste and see!

Use immediately or freeze for future use.

Below are examples of how I would use this sauce:

tomato sauce 2

Here I roasted some aubergine with olive oil, salt and black pepper. I added it to the sauce along with some fresh chilli and basil. Served with buckwheat pasta.

IMG_0299

I fried onion, garlic, carrot, red pepper, broccoli and chilli in olive oil. I added the sauce, cooked brown basmati rice, shredded poached chicken and fresh coriander.

Health & happiness!

Love,
Raine

Creamy Porcini Pasta with Crispy Sage

photo 2

Who doesn’t love a good creamy pasta? You may think that when you switch to a healthy lifestyle it’s something you’ll have to give up permanently. But I’ve got good news… you CAN enjoy a delicious and satisfying bowl of pasta, and know that you’ve nourished your body with the good stuff!

Mushrooms have many medicinal properties and make a great substitute for meat.

This recipe is dairy-free, wheat- and gluten-free and vegan. I use raw cashew nuts to make my “cream” for this sauce and nutritional yeast adds a cheesy flavour. You could use any gluten and wheat-free pasta, such as buckwheat, brown rice or amaranth pasta.

Ingredients

2/3 cup of raw cashews

1 1/4 cup of water

2 tbsp nutritional yeast

1 tsp Himalayan crystal salt

a handful of fresh sage

250g quinoa pasta

Organic and virgin coconut oil or extra virgin olive oil for frying

250g porcini mushrooms

120g shiitake mushrooms

3 big cloves of garlic, finely chopped

truffle oil and fresh lemon to finish

Method

Place the cashews, water, nutritional yeast and salt in a blender and blend until completely smooth.

Cook the pasta according to package instructions.

Slice the mushrooms and saute them in coconut or olive oil. Once they start to brown nicely, add the garlic and continue to fry for a few minutes. 

In a separate pan, fry the sage in some oil for a few minutes until it turns crispy.

Season the sauce to taste with black pepper and salt if necessary. Toss the pasta and sauce together and serve topped with a few crispy sage leaves. Finish with a drizzle of truffle oil and a squeeze of lemon if desired.

Enjoy!

Love,

Raine