Archives September 2016

Cashew, coconut & strawberry nutty granola and granola bars

Nuts and seeds are some of nature’s ‘superfoods’.  Packed with vitamins, minerals, dietary fibre and healthy fats, nuts and seeds are the perfect addition to recipes to add plenty of nutrition.   With a new season upon us, it’s a great time to add some variety to your diet and enjoy new recipes that complement the warmer weather.  I’ve done just that by making a delicious  cashew, coconut and strawberry nutty granola that’s simple to make and can be used either as a granola, a trail mix  or a base for some delicious, cashew, coconut and strawberry nutty granola bars.   So you’ve got yourself both a filling, nourishing breakfast and a wholefood, energy dense snack too – all with one simple, base recipe.

As well as cashew nuts and sunflower seeds, I’ve used Brazil nuts in this recipe which are an excellent source of selenium – a mineral lacking in many NZ diets. Selenium acts as an antioxidant within our bodies to help protect against damage, and it’s also important for regulating blood pressure and keeping our immune system healthy.    Cashew nuts are a source of magnesium, vitamin B6 and iron.

We tend to forget about seeds in favour of nuts, but seeds are also really nutritious. Sunflower seeds provide a source of vitamin E, magnesium, folate and other B vitamins and iron, as well as healthy fats, protein and fibre.

Enjoy the granola with milk and yoghurt of your choice, or grab a handful as a yummy snack.  The bars make a good on the go option for a snack or even breakfast on the run.

GIVEAWAY!!  I’ve got an awesome prize pack to give away thanks to Tasti, including some of the ingredients I’ve used here.  You could win:

x 1 Tasti Tin filled with:
– 1 pouch of 300g walnuts
– 1 pouch of 300g cashews
– 1 pack of 70g sliced almonds
– 1 pack of 70g macadamias
– 1 pack of 60g coconut chips
– 1 70-100g “surprise pack”
– 1 pack of Smooshed Wholefood Balls

To be in the draw to win, simply comment below with what nuts and seeds you like the most and click on the facebook share button at the top or bottom of this page.  Competition will be drawn 14th October 2016.  Open to NZ residents only.

Congratulations to Clare – you’re the lucky winner 🙂 I have emailed you to arrange your prize delivery.

Here’s the recipes.

Cashew, coconut and strawberry granola

With a base of cashews, brazil nuts and sunflower seeds plus a little coconut and oats, this is a filling breakfast that tastes great with milk, yoghurt and some added fresh fruit. Because it’s high in fibre and healthy fats, a small serve is all you need to help keep you feeling full and satisfied.

It’s quick and easy to make – simply a matter of throwing together a few packets of the new Tasti bulk nuts and seeds packets together, and mixing in a couple of other ingredients and you’ve got yourself sorted for breakfast or snacks for a good few weeks.


1 300g packet of Tasti cashews (2 cups)
½ 300g packet Tasti Brazil nuts, chopped (1 cup)
½  300g packet Tasti sunflower seeds (1 cup)
1 60g packet of Tasti coconut chips (1 cup)
1 cup rolled oats
2 tablespoons macadamia nut oil
2 tablespoons honey or maple syrup
1 teaspoon cinnamon

½ packet freeze dried strawberries (these make it really delicious and are worth buying, but you could also add ½ to 1 cup of dried fruit of your choice instead)

In a large wok or pan, add the nuts, seeds, coconut and oats and turn heat to medium.  In a mug or small bowl, mix together the macadamia nut oil, honey/maple syrup and cinnamon and drizzle over the dry ingredients, turning the dry ingredients over as you do this.  Keep stirring the mixture for around 10 minutes, until lightly toasted.  Take off the heat.

Leave to cool, then fold through the freeze dried strawberries.  You may want to break up the slices a little bit.

Store in an airtight jar in a cool place.   You can have this for a cereal or take a handful for a healthy, nourishing snack. You can also use this to create the yummy granola nut bars below.


Cashew, coconut and strawberry granola bars


¼ cup almond or peanut butter
¼ cup coconut oil
2 – 4 tablespoons honey (add depending on your preference for sweetness)
1 ¾ cups of cashew, coconut and strawberry granola (as per recipe above)
¼ cup sunflower seeds
¼ cup coconut threads
1 large handful of freeze dried strawberries

In a pot, melt together the peanut butter, coconut oil and honey over a medium heat until lightly bubbling. Add the granola, sunflower seeds and coconut threads.  Lightly crush the strawberries and stir the wet and dry mixture together until well combined.

Place the mixture in a small 18 x 14cm lined tin and press down firmly with the back of a spoon.  Sprinkle some extra strawberries and coconut on top if desired.

Freeze until firm and cut into fingers, then cut these in half again. Store in the fridge as these will soften in a warm room.

Makes 10 pieces – simply double the recipe to make more.

The bigger and handier packs of bulk nuts and seeds from Tasti are now available in New World and Pak n’ Save.

This post was made possible thanks to Tasti










Two delicious healthy overnight oats recipes + WIN

Oats are one of my favourite breakfast options, but as it gets warmer porridge becomes slightly less appealing and I’m always ready for a change in options.

Overnight oats – also known as bircher muesli – is a delicious way to enjoy oats when the weather is warmer.  You simply soak oats in a milk of your choice overnight, then mix through your favourite fruits, seeds, nuts and yoghurt plus other bits and pieces to create a delicious summery breakfast.   This combination provides a nutritious start to the day – some slow release carbohydrate, fibre and protein to help keep you full, plus some healthy fats.  And did I mention it tastes amazing too?   I’ve come up with two delicious recipes for breakfast – banana blueberry overnight oats and passionfruit, coconut and raspberry overnight oats

I’ve  been trialling a couple of new UNCLE TOBYS oat products  and these have been the base of my overnight oat recipes. UNCLE TOBYS Ancient Grains Oats is oats with a bit of a twist. It also contains rye, millet and quinoa which makes a tasty change to original oats as well as adding a bit of a different nutritional profile.   I’ve also been using UNCLE TOBYS Steel Cut oats. Instead of being rolled flat after the husk is removed like rolled oats, steel cut oats are oven toasted then cut into pieces using steel discs – hence their name!  They have a nutty taste, a hearty texture and have a low glycemic index to give you a nice slow release of energy.

A good breakfast is one way to be on the path to wellness, but there are lots of other ways too.  If you want some tips on how you can improve your wellness, thanks to Nestlé you can take a quiz here and get your own wellness score plus tips on how you can improve your wellbeing. The quiz looks at an overall picture of wellness and will give you your results and some relevant tips around happiness, sleep, alcohol, exercise, healthy eating etc. It does talk about weight which is something I don’t tend to focus on, but there are lots of useful tips for healthy eating and building healthy habits.

And in the meantime, here’s my two delicious, nourishing recipes for some new breakfast inspiration.

Blueberry banana overnight oats

½ cup UNCLE TOBYS Ancient Grain Oats
2 tsp chia seeds
½ cup milk (cow milk or almond milk)
½ cup blueberries (I used frozen)
½ cup yoghurt
1 banana

Place the oats, chia seeds, milk, ¼ of the cup of the blueberries and ¼ cup of the yoghurt in a bowl and mix together.  Place in the fridge and leave overnight.

In the morning, cut the banana in half and mash. Stir through the oats.

Spoon half the oats into a glass, then add the rest of the yoghurt, then the rest of the oats. Top with the remaining half of the banana cut into slices and the remaining blueberries.
Tip:  If you prefer things a little sweeter, stir through a teaspoon of maple syrup through the oats.

Passionfruit, coconut and raspberry overnight oats

1/3  cup UNCLE TOBYS steel cut oats
1/3  cup milk
1 tablespoon coconut milk
½ cup yoghurt
2 tablespoons coconut threads + extra for topping
1 tablespoon passionfruit pulp
1/3 cup raspberries

In a small bowl, mix together the steel cut oats, milk, coconut milk, ¼ cup yoghurt and the coconut threads.   Place in the fridge overnight.

In the morning, top with passionfruit pulp, raspberries and remaining yoghurt and add an extra sprinkle of coconut threads.


I’ve got a yummy prize pack full of the UNCLE TOBYS oat range to give away to one lucky winner! To be in the draw to win, simply comment below with your favourite way to eat oats plus hit the Facebook like button at the top or bottom of this post.  And don’t forget to check out the quiz here

Open to NZ residents only. Competition closes Friday 14th October.

Congratulations Catherine, you are the lucky winner! Check your emails

This post was made possible thanks to Nestlé and the UNCLE TOBYS Team










Delicious new ways to enjoy eggs for breakfast

I’ve always been a breakfast lover and a perfect way to create a filling, nourishing breakfast is to have eggs.  Since being pregnant, eggs are something I’ve been eating more often as they’re not only a good source of protein, but they’re really nutrient dense too.

Eggs are one of the few food sources that contain vitamin D. We make the majority of vitamin D when the sun hits our skin, but because we have our skin covered in winter and there is less sun, vitamin D levels drop. So including more food sources is especially useful in winter.  Eggs also contain 10 other vitamins and minerals plus the antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin which promote good eye health.

Whilst people used to avoid eggs because of their cholesterol, evidence now suggests there’s no need to.  Eggs can be eaten regularly as a low cost, nutrient rich wholefood protein source. Yah!

Eggs for breakfast can be more than poached or scrambled too. And to get you inspired with some new ideas, here’s three egg recipes I’ve been enjoying lately for breakfast – from the super quick, to the prep in advance. There’s even a sweet option too.



2 minute microwave pesto eggs

Eggs for breakfast don’t have to take a lot of time.  This is my favourite way to have a quick egg based breakfast (especially during the week before I head off for a busy day of work!) – plus it’s a good way to get an extra serve of vegetables into your day.


2 eggs
Optional – 1 tablespoon of chopped fresh herbs (eg parsley, basil)
1-2 teaspoons pesto
Juice from ½ lemon
¼ avocado, sliced
2 handfuls baby spinach
Wholemeal sourdough bread (or whatever bread you fancy)
Salt and pepper to season


Simply crack 2 eggs into a ramekin, mix well with a fork, season with pepper, add the herbs if using and microwave for 1 ½ minutes, stirring half way.  Cover it well with  paper towel as the egg can ‘pop’ and make a mess!  Or if it pops when you take it out it could hit you and hurt!

Place a handful of baby spinach on a slice of toasted bread, top with the cooked egg and sliced avocado.  In a small dish, mix the pesto and lemon juice and drizzle over the egg.

Season with salt and pepper and enjoy for a super quick, protein packed breakfast that also gives you a serve of vegetables too.


Kumara hash egg muffins

These kumara hash egg muffins are kind of like a cooked breakfast in one.  These ‘muffins’ have a kumara hash bottom, a layer of spinach, mushroom and cheese and are then topped with an egg.  A couple of these provide a nourishing breakfast you can eat on the run.

Ingredients (makes 6 texas size muffins)

1 large kumara, peeled and grated
1 tsp powdered garlic
½ cup grated cheese
3 large handfuls of baby spinach, washed
6 large free range eggs
6 mushrooms, chopped
1 tablespoon pesto

Optional: Smoked salmon slices, or bacon



Preheat oven to 200 degrees Celsius.

Place the grated kumara in a bowl and season with a little salt.  Mix and leave for a couple of minutes.  With clean hands, take handfuls of the kumara and squeeze out extra fluid. Place squeezed kumara back in the bowl and sprinkle over the garlic powder and season with cracked pepper.

Line texas muffin tins with baking paper, or grease well.  Press the kumara evenly into the bottom of the muffin tins.    Bake for 12 minutes.
While the kumara is cooking, heat a fry pan over a medium heat.  Add the chopped mushrooms and pesto, stirring often until cooked (around 4-5 minutes).  Set aside in a small bowl.  Add the baby spinach and heat through until wilted.  Squeeze out excess moisture – otherwise it will make the kumara soggy.

Grate the cheese.  When the kumara has finished cooking, sprinkle half of the grated cheese evenly over the kumara bases.  Add the mushrooms and spinach, then top with remaining cheese.  If using smoked salmon or bacon, you could add these now.  Cook the bacon before using so it’s crispy .

Crack an egg on top each of the bases.  Lightly prick the yolk with a skewer.

Bake for 15 minutes, or until the egg is cooked.



Chocolate banana & hazelnut omelette

Sometimes I like my eggs on the sweeter side, and this is a delicious way to have them.

Serves 1

2 large size free range eggs
1 tablespoon milk
1 tablespoon cocoa
1 teaspoon runny honey
1 ½ bananas, cut in half
1 small handful of hazelnuts, cut in half
3 tablespoons Greek yoghurt



In a bowl, beat the eggs, milk, cocoa and honey together until well combined.  Mash half the banana and add to the egg mixture and mix well.

Grease a non stick fry pan and heat over a medium heat.  Pour over the egg mixture and heat until cooked.

While the omelette is cooking, finely slice the other banana.  Once cooked place half of this banana over top of the egg on top of one half of the omelette and spread over a couple of tablespoons of yoghurt.  Flip in half and place on your plate.  Top with extra yoghurt, the remaining banana, hazelnuts and dust with a little cocoa.

For more delicious recipes, how to videos, health and nutritional information you can check out this website.

This post was made possible thanks to Eggs Inc


So you can head to the supermarket and pick up some goodies to create your own favourite eggy breakfast, I’ve got a $50 supermarket voucher to give away.  To be in the draw, simply comment below with what recipe you’d try or your favourite way to eat eggs.  Don’t forget to check out Eggs Inc for more recipe inspiration too.

CONGRATULATIONS Heidi! I’ve emailed you regarding your prize. Thanks everyone for entering.

Competition closes September 24th 27th 2016.  Open to NZ residents only.