Archives October 2015

Coconut, Chia and Berry Bircher Muesli

As the weather warms up hot porridge is becoming less appealing and I’m after new breakfast ideas that are filling and delicious.  I’ve been enjoying a couple of new options lately, including this home made bircher muesli.  I like to fill mine with a mixture of oats, seeds, nuts and fruit for a mixture of healthy carbohydrate, protein and healthy fats that help both nourish your body and keep you feeling full.

This version contains coconut, chia seeds, berries and banana and it’s a delicious almost tropical flavour combination.  I’ve topped it with some crunchy walnuts and lemon zest as well as some extra raspberries.  You do have to be a little organised and make it the night before, but it’s worth it! I make enough for two days, but you could half the ingredients for a single serve if you like.

Here’s the recipe.

Ingredients (makes 2 serves):

2/3 cup rolled oats
1 tablespoon chia seeds (or linseeds)
2 tablespoons coconut
1/2 cup natural yoghurt
1 1/4 cup milk
2 teaspoons maple syrup (optional – I didn’t use)
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
1 small banana, finely chopped.
1/2 cup raspberries
1 small banana, finely chopped.
Rind from 1 lemon, to serve
Coconut flakes, to serve

Place the oats, chia seeds and coconut in a pudding bowl and mix.  Pour over the milk.  Cover and leave over night.  In the morning, stir through the natural yoghurt.  If the mixture looks a little thick, stir through some extra milk.   Stir through the chopped banana and most of the walnuts, leaving a few aside for garnish.  To serve, place half the raspberries in the bottom of two glasses.  Spoon the oat mixture between the two glasses.  Top with the rest of the raspberries, walnuts, grated lemon rind and coconut flakes.


Coconut Macaron Ice Cream Sandwiches


I love Donna Hay’s recipes, photography and food styling.  I was flicking through one of her recipe books  at mums and I found a really delicious looking recipe for chewy coconut macaron ice cream sandwiches.  I thought this would be an easy recipe to modify to be healthier, yet still super delicious so I gave it a go.  And what do you know, it worked!  Don’t you love it when that happens?

I switched out most of the sugar for stevia in the biscuits and replaced ice cream with banana berry or banana chocolate ice-cream (aka frozen fruit!).  There’s something quite magical about a crispy coconut biscuit filled with an icy cold sweet filling.  It’s the perfect combination.

The best thing is these are really easy to make.  The only fiddly bit is making the nice rounded macaroons and even doing that isn’t hard.

These make a yummy treat on a warm day and biscuits are also yummy by themselves (would be delicious dipped in a little dark chocolate too!).

Here’s how to make them:

Ingredients for  Coconut Macaron Ice Cream Sandwiches

For the chewy coconut macarons:

2 egg whites
2 cups desiccated coconut
1/4 cup stevia
2 tablespoons caster sugar

Preheat oven to 160 degrees Celsius. Place the egg whites, coconut, stevia and sugar in a bowl and mix to combine. Line a baking tray with non stick baking paper.   Place an egg ring or a large cookie cutter on the tray and add 2 tablespoons of the mixture (or a little more if need be). Press the mixture down evenly and firmly with the back of a spoon and remove the egg ring/cookie cutter.  Repeat with the remaining mixture to make around 10 macarons.

Bake for 10-12 minutes. Don’t let them get too brown, they should just be starting to turn a very light golden colour.  Leave to cool on the oven tray.

For the “ice cream”:

Healthy berry banana ‘ice cream’:
2 large frozen bananas
1/2 cup mixed berries

Chop the banana into chunks and place in a food processor with the mixed berries.  Blend until smooth and creamy.

Healthy chocolate banana ‘ice cream’
2 large frozen bananas
2 heaped teaspoons cocoa
1 teaspoon maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Chop the banana into chunks and place in a food processor with remaining ingredients.  Blend until smooth and creamy.

You may need to pop the ice cream mixes back into the freezer to harden a little.  If you leave it for too long it will go really hard and be difficult to scoop, but if this happens just leave out to soften for a little while.

To serve:

Scoop out the banana ice cream and sandwich between two macarons.  Eat, enjoy and try not to drip ice cream down your top 🙂




September food reviews

September has come and gone and it’s time to share with you some of the new food items I’ve been trying out over the past month or so.  Being a food lover, there’s always something new I’m trying and today I’ve rounded up a few new things I’ve been putting to the test.  Here they are:

These are pretty energy dense for a snack bar – but it is a large bar (75g).  It had a nice texture, quite chewy and it had yummy chunks of Whittaker’s dark chocolate in it! They’re a great source of fibre (10g a bar), and contains 20g of protein a bar. It’s also high in fats, with 20g mostly coming from the sunflower butter.   Silly me threw out the packet so I can’t remember the exact ingredients, but from memory it contains sunflower butter, whey protein powder, Whittakers dark chocolate, almonds, spirulina and it’s sweetened with agave syrup.   They contain about 18% sugar or 12.4g per bar (4 teaspoons of sugar).  If you were going to try these, I’d suggest the smaller bite size bars as a 75g bar is more than most would need.  Keep for a treat.  The other flavours look nice too.  Find out more on their website here.


Good Buzz Kombucha

I’ve reviewed the Feijoa before, but I wanted to compare the feijoa (my fave) to the original since it has slightly less sugar.  When comparing these two flavours, I really think that the original is just as good!  It kind of reminds me a little of cider, but without the alcohol and the benefits of probiotic bacteria.  A 330ml bottle of ‘Origins’ Booch contains just 5.5g of sugar, so just over a teaspoon.  Pretty good for a sweet flavoured drink.  A bottle costs around $2.99 depending where you get it from.

Venerdi Organic 6 Seed Sourdough

I was sent some Venerdi Organic Sourdough bread a wee while back to try and I really enjoyed it.  If I had to eat gluten free (which I don’t), then I’d probably choose this for it’s flavour and nutrition.  Ingredients are : Water, Gluten Free Flours (Brown Rice, White Rice, Maize), Tapioca Starch, Seeds (8%) (Flax, Quinoa, Sesame, Poppy, Sunflower, Pumpkin) Coconut Oil, Fibre (Flax Fibre), Vegetable Gum (Guar Gum), Rice Syrup, Salt, Yeast, Emulsifier (Sunflower Lecithin).  It’s high in fibre, with 8.4g fibre per 100g and I’m not 100% sure but I’m guessing it would be low GI as it’s got quite a few seeds in it and is sourdough. Comparing breads, it’s not the cheapest at $7.20 a loaf, but as far as gluten free breads go, it’s worth it.

 Vogels Buckwheat, Quinoa and Vanilla Cereal

I’ve been trying out this cereal for something different lately and I’m rating it.  Other flake cereals are either low in fibre or high in sugar, but this is both a good source of fibre and pretty low in sugar. I’ve written a bit more about it over  here.

 Urban Hippy Misomite

I’ve been wanting to try out more fermented foods so I bought this Urban Hippy Misomite.  This is a type of miso paste, but it contains less salt and more rice to give it a different, slightly sweeter flavour.  I bought this to marinade chicken and also for a dressing recipe, but I’ve yet to use it for that. I’ve just been trying it out as a spread on some sour dough bread.   It actually tastes quite a bit like marmite, but not as strong!  I really enjoyed it.  I love that it’s made right here in NZ too.

Viberi Freeze Dried Blackcurrants

Viberi kindly sent me some of their freeze dried blackcurrants to try out.  Like other berries, blackcurrants are rich in antioxidants (blackcurrants actually have more than blueberries) and are a source of vitamin C.  I tried both the plain and the chocolate.  These are definitely a little more tart than other berries, but I like that about them.  The Dark chocolate rolled blackcurrants were quite lovely.  They are covered in Belgium dark chocolate and dusted in cocoa.  The chocolate isn’t overly sweet and it complements the tart flavour of the berries quite nicely.   They’re organic too. Check them out online here