I never get sick of baked zucchini slice. It is in fact what my regular breakfast, snack and lunch looks like. Even if the base is pretty much same, I can be creative and change the toppings and fillings depending on what I feel like to have or what I have in the fridge. I can happily have it at any time of the day either served warm or cold. It lasts well in the fridge for up to a week so you can make on the weekend and take it to work lunches. You can serve a little green salad on the side or even top with smoked salmon, sliced chicken breast or whatever protein you like.
Ingredients (serves 4)
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 small zucchini grated
1 small carrot grated
1 small brown onion sliced fine
1 cup of Parmesan cheese grated
1 cup of cooked lentils
1 cup of wholemeal flour
50g feta cheese
1/2 tsp of chili flake
salt and pepper to taste
Heat coconut oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Add the zucchini, carrot and onion, season with salt and pepper and cook for 5 minutes until lightly golden. Place in a large bowl with cooked lentils, lightly beaten eggs, flour, grated cheese and chili flake. Mix to combine and spoon the mixture into a baking dish lined with baking paper. Top with crumbled feta cheese on top and bake in the preheated oven (180) for 35-40 minutes until golden and cooked. Allow to cool before slicing.
I had a little experiment in my kitchen today using cooked quinoa. I love making savoury breakfast loaf with grated veggies like zucchini, carrot, beet and parsnip. I have to admit I eat the whole loaf everyday – my addiction, I know! This time I added cooked quinoa in this zucchini loaf and am so happy with the results. Quinoa is high in protein with all 8 essential amino acids, rich in fibre and low GI. Not only these health benefits, it makes bread light and super moist without adding nasty butter or oil. Hallelujah! This loaf doesn’t contain any sweetener and in fact has quite plain flavour. So you can top up with your favorite spread like nut butter, tahini, goat cheese, avocado or banana.
1/2 cup cooked quinoa
1 cup grated zucchini
2 tbsp coconut oil, melted
1 cup brown rice flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tbsp flaxseed meal
1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
1/4 tsp nutmeg powder
1/4 tsp ginger powder
1 tsp fennel seeds
a pinch of salt
sesame seeds for a sprinkle on top
In a bowl, combine all dry ingredients including spices. In a separate bowl, lightly beat the eggs and add in grated zucchini, cooked quinoa and melted coconut oil. Combine dry and wet ingredients in a large bowl and mix well with a spatula. Pour the mixture into a prepared loaf tin and bake in the preheated oven (180) for 40 minutes or until cooked. Allow to cool before slicing.
Love pizza night? Over a cold beer or red wine, of course? Making a home-made pizza is easy and also fun choosing your favorite toppings. Simple yet delicious Neapolitan pizza needs only a few ingredients – a good quality buffalo mozzarella cheese, fresh basil leaves, tomatoes and tomato paste. Here is step-by-step.
1 tsp dry yeast
1 tsp sugar
3/4 warm water
2 cups of flour
a pinch of salt
Toppings: tomato paste, tomato, basil leaves, buffalo mozzarella, olive oil, salt and pepper
- Mix a teaspoon of yeast, a teaspoon of sugar and a teaspoon of flour in 3/4 cup of warm water. It should look like a thin pancake batter. Let it sit for 10 minutes until bubbly.
- Then put 2 cups of flour and a pinch of salt in a large bowl and add activated yeast mixture.
- Use a wooden spoon or your hand to combine together until you get a big clump. You might need more warm water or flour depending on your dough.
- Once it comes together and forms a smooth dough, drizzle olive oil over and cover with a cling film. Let it sit on kitchen bench until doubled in size.
- Take the dough onto a floured surface and gently knead into a ball.
- Let it sit again for about an hour, covered with a cling film while you preheat a pizza stone in the oven (200) and prepare the toppings.
- Stretch a ball of dough into a thin round and put on a preheated pizza stone (or a baking sheet). For toppings, spread tomato paste and top with sliced tomatoes, drizzle of olive oil, salt and pepper.
- Place in the oven for 10 minutes until crispy and golden.
- Top with torn fresh mozzarella cheese and basil leaves on hot pizza. Drizzle more olive oil before serve.
- Enjoy with beer or wine!
I was so glad to find a bag of ground black sesame seeds at the Asian grocery today. I think black sesame seeds are nuttier and more fragrant compared to white or brown kinds. These little black guys are an excellent source of copper and a very good source of manganese. They are also a good source of calcium, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, vitamin B1, zinc, molybdenum, selenium, and dietary fiber. So what do these nutrients mean? Eating them helps to lower cholesterol and blood pressure, prevent osteoporosis, migraine and PMS, protect your liver from oxidative damage. Amazing right? They are good for you inside out, as well! Powerful antioxidants and antibacterial properties in them help to nourish and detoxify your skin. So we will all look glowing and dewy after eating them, in theory anyway 🙂
The way I like using them is lightly toast and sprinkle over salads or stir-fries or noodles. Nuttiness and crunchiness brings the dish up to another level. Don’t forget it looks pretty, too. I added ground black sesame seeds in my baking today. A slice or two of this black beauty has become my favourite breakfast and snack. Enjoy x
1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
1/2-3/4 cup coconut sugar
1/4 cup coconut milk
2 cups of almond flour
1/2 cup of black sesame seed powder
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
Gently whisk eggs in a bowl and add melted coconut oil, coconut milk and coconut sugar. Put all other dry ingredients in in a separate bowl and combine well. Add wet mixture into the bowl and combine well. Pour the cake mixture into a prepared loaf tin and bake in the preheated oven (180) for 40-45 minutes until cooked. Let it cool before slicing.
I hope everyone is enjoying a beautiful autumn weather in Australia. I’m sure some of you are more engaged in exercises and sports as the weather allows us at the moment. I’m going to briefly write about changes in my exercise regime and healthy eating in this post. I know it is so confusing when someone tells you this works this doesn’t and so on. So I will keep it as a part of my story here. I really enjoy going to the gym everyday and do Pilates and stretches at home. I’ve done that for years hoping to keep my body in good shape and health. However, I had trouble putting on muscles and toning up as much as I wanted to. I then took some advice from a gym junkie, my brother, and changed my exercise program and diet, which I can totally see the difference in my body and strength. My weight hasn’t changed at all (it’s just numbers!!!!), but I feel so much stronger when doing daily activities such as carrying grocery bags. So here is what I do to tone up.
– 30 minutes pre-workout, I drink a cup of coffee or a glass of water and have some snacks e.g. a handful of dried fruits
– I start with a light cardio workout as warm-up and cool-down about 10 minutes each.
– Focus on weight training. Work on different muscle groups on different days. For example, I train the muscles that you use to pull (back muscles and biceps) one day, the opposing muscles (chest muscles and triceps) next day, legs following day
– Use a variety of exercises to train same muscle groups. For example, I do chest press, inclined bench press, cable across and push ups for chest muscles. 10-15 reps x 4-5 sets, 30-20 sec rest in between.
– Focus on technique e.g. eccentric control and breathing.
– Eat well after workout. This is what I didn’t do before, but you need to fuel up your body to facilitate muscle repair and recovery. Have plenty of water, carbs and protein within 30min to 1 hr.
– Rest and listen to my body. Really important! your body needs to rest. I do Pilates, yoga and light cardio on rest days.
– Sleep well. Adequate sleep releases growth hormone that is essential for muscle building.
Okay, enough on my story. This gluten-free wholesome healthy loaf is so easy to make and delicious. Cinnamon-y, coconut-y and chocolatey. It is my ready-to-go meal as breakfast and snack. Oh it is even better with a spoonful of nut butter or goat cheese on top (yes! protein boost). Happy baking x
1/2 cup almond milk
2 tbsp raw honey
1 tbsp coconut oil, melted
1/2 cup brown rice flour
1/2 cup coconut flour
1 tsp cinnamon powder
1 tbsp cacao powder
1 tsp vanilla powder
1/2 tsp baking powder
50g chopped walnuts
50g goji berries
a pinch of salt
Lightly beat eggs in a mixing bowl and add in almond milk, raw honey and melted coconut oil. Then add other ingredients and stir to combine. Transfer the mixture into a prepared loaf tin and bake in preheated oven (180) for about 30 minutes or until cooked. Let it cool before serve.