Truffle oil and Pecorino Chicken Burgers

Truffle oil & Pecorino cheese chicken meatballsThere is one word to describe this dish….ScRuMPTiouS!!

It’s such a fresh, satisfying and healthy dish that we’ve added it to our weekly favourite dinner menu.

It is not completely paleo, but you can omit the pecorino cheese if your following a strict paleo diet. It’s still delectably tasty. Pecorino cheese is made from sheep’s milk, which means there is less lactose and is a better alternative for the lactose intolerant. The protein is also nearly double in sheep’s cheese and yogurt (vs cow’s cheese) and the calcium is about 50% higher.

We loved the taste of the burgers, chicken is so versatile and this recipe is super quick and easy. Always ensure you’re using free range chicken mince. If you can source grass fed/pasture fed chicken from your butcher, that’s great. Grass fed chicken, beef or game fed meats have a higher ratio of omega 3 fatty acids and less saturated fat compared to grain fed contemporaries. Grass fed is also higher in precursors for Vitamin A and E and antioxidants such as glutathione.

These burgers are full of protein which means they have all the essential amino acids needed to repair the body as well as support your immune system.

If you don’t have truffle oil, don’t worry, it tastes just as great!

Ingredients

Serves 4

  • 500g chicken mince
  • 1 cup finely chopped button mushrooms
  • 1 tbsp truffle infused oil
  • 2 tbsp grated Pecorino cheese (you can also use aged Parmesan or remove cheese completely)
  • 2/3 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • pinch of black pepper
  • 1 egg
  • Coconut oil for cooking

Method

  1. Combine all ingredients and mix thoroughly using your hands. Make sure to knead the mixture for a few minutes to work the protein in the meat which will bind everything together. Wet your hands and roll the meat mixture into balls or patties.
  2. Heat a large frying pan, lightly coated with coconut oil. Brown the first side of the meatballs on high heat, then bring the heat down to medium and fry for 3-4 minutes. Turn and fry the other side on medium/low heat for 5 minutes. Keep turning to make sure all sides look visibly cooked. Total cooking time should be about 12-13 minutes. Remove from the pan and let the meatballs rest for a few minutes before serving
  3. Serve with some sweet potato wedges and fresh salad. Bon Apétite!
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Paleo Low Carb Zucchetti Bolognese

Low Carb Spaghetti Bolognese

Some of my favourite Italian dishes include Lasagna and Spaghetti Bolognese, while both contain pasta I’ve found some brilliant tasty paleo recipes that still allows us to enjoy the traditional dishes without all the heavy carbs.

This dish includes Zucchetti which is also known as Zucchini spaghetti, Zucchini noodles and Zoodles. It was so delicious that we had nothing left over when I made this dish. I love the fact that your body doesn’t have to struggle to process the heaviness of pasta. Zucchini is light yet super tasty and the consistency is surprisingly spaghetti like and super easy to prepare. I am aware that there’s Spaghetti squash which is also used to replace pasta, and I bought some today to try out this week.

After discovering Zucchetti, I could very easily give up pasta for the rest of my life, it was THAT good!

Paleo Low Carb Zucchetti Bolognese 

Serves 2

Ingredients

  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 1 celery stick, finely diced
  • 1 carrot, grated or finely diced
  • 1/2 cup grilled red capsicum, finely diced
  • 300grams organic lean beef mince
  • 2 roma tomatoes
  • 1 cup of passata
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • handful of fresh basil leaves, save a few to serve
  • sea salt and pepper to taste

Method

  1. Sauté the onion, celery, carrot and garlic in a little oil over medium heat until softened
  2. Add the beef and cook for 5-10 minutes until browned
  3. Add tomato, passata, oregano, basil leaves and cook for about 3 minutes
  4. Cover the pot and cook over low heat for 20-30 minutes until the sauce is thick and rich
  5. Season to taste and set the pot aside until ready to serve

To make Zucchetti

  • 2 large zucchini, ends trimmed
  • sea salt
  1. Peel the zucchini if you want it to look more like real spaghetti, otherwise leave the skin on
  2. Run the zucchini along a mandolin to form nice long spaghetti strips. Ensure its lengthwise to get the longest noodles possible until you are left with a thin sliver that is pretty much impossible to slice.
    Optional: Set aside for  few minutes to drain the excess water
  3. Sauté zucchini lightly in a pan with a little oil, or steam for 2 minutes
  4. Serve immediately with the delicious bolognese and some basil leaves to top it off. Enjoy!

Paleo Turkey Burgers with fresh Guacamole

Paleo Turkey Burger

These delicious burgers are Paleo friendly, easy and super tasty too!

While we have enjoyed burgers bread buns in the past, we happily look forward to enjoying the true taste of a burger minus the high carb bread.

I must admit, I was a bit sceptical that these burgers would be exquisitely delicious, but I was unbelievably wrong! This is one of our favourite meals now and we both look forward to our Turkey Tuesdays to commemorate our new love for this dish.

Since we love sweet potato, I made some wedges as an accompaniment, as well as a paleo friendly guacamole which is divinely delish, and can be used interchangeably with other dishes too. The threesome combo of sweet potato, guacamole and turkey burgers was a friendship made in heaven. We also added some freshly picked lettuce from our veggie patch which adds a wonderful freshness to the dish too 🙂

You have to try it!

 

Turkey Burgers

Makes 4 – 5 burgers

Ingredients

  • 250gm turkey mince
  • 1/2 cup coriander, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup red onion, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • sea salt and pepper to taste
  • Coconut oil to cook

Method

  1. Preheat pan a teaspoon of coconut oil
  2. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix well with a fork
  3. Divide into 4 or 5 portions and shape into patties
  4. Cook the patties in prepared pan for about 5-8 minutes each side
  5. Enjoy with some guacamole and sweet potato wedges on the side

Please note: Coriander is also known as Cilantro

 

Tasty Paleo Guacamole

Makes about a cup

Ingredients

  • 1 large ripe avocado, peeled and seeded
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp chilli powder
  • sea salt to taste

Method

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mash with a fork, serve immediately

Exquisite Quinoa Penne Pesto with Chicken

Quinoa and Rice Pesto Pasta Salad

This week we tried a new type of pasta made from Quinoa and Rice. We have been converted to say the least!

It has been one of the best finds of all time because it was easy to digest, tasty and it has a much higher nutritional content than most other staple grains.

Quinoa has been all the rage these past few years and is now a readily available in most fine dining restaurants and cafes around Sydney due to its amazing taste, health benefits and versatility. This South American grain is extremely high in protein and iron and boasts a low glycemic index, resulting in slower rates of digestion, keeping you feeling fuller for longer without feeling bloated. This quinoa and rice pasta is gluten free, wheat free, yeast free, dairy free, sugar free, egg free, nut free and cholesterol free. It is rich in essential amino acids, vitamin B2, E and A.

The quinoa grain itself is super easy to cook and it has a delicious nutty taste which makes any meal come alive! I will be posting some great recipes soon, including a delectable quinoa risotto! YuM!

In the mean time, we are hooked on this new healthy pasta and with our new vegetable patch growing ever so quickly at the moment; our basil plants are exploding with fresh leaves perfect to make homemade pesto. I will be posting my recipe for that in the near future as I prefer making things fresh when possible as the taste surpasses any store bought product. Though I have store bought pesto before, it is now a thing of the past because I have been enlightened to the enhanced flavour of fresh pesto thanks to my aunty and uncle in Bergamo, Italy; who have a contagious love and passion for fresh food. Also because basil is a breeze to grow and amplifies flavours of many dishes, pizzas and salads too!

This type of pasta salad recipe traditionally has cream included but I find that the pesto is sufficiently creamy and doesn’t need additional cream added, making it an even healthier dish to enjoy.

If you haven’t tried quinoa and rice pasta yet I encourage you to, you will never look back! Where do I get this quinoa and rice pasta you ask? It is available at selected health food stores and I will place some links at the bottom of the page for those of you who are keen to try this brilliant food!

Stay tuned because I will post some great quinoa recipes and take you through the steps so you can enjoy this fantastic superfood too!

Exquisite Quinoa Penne Pesto with Chicken

Serves 2

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of dry Quinoa and Rice Pasta
  • 250g chicken breast fillets, trimmed
  • 1/2 cup of basil pesto
  • 1/2 cup drained sun-dried tomatoes, thinly sliced
  • Coconut oil (or similar) for cooking

Method

  1. Cook pasta in a large saucepan of boiling salted water, following packet directions, until tender. Then Drain
  2. Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Add chicken. Cook for 5 minutes each side, until cooked through
  3. Return the pasta pan over medium-low heat. Add the pesto, chicken and sun-dried tomato. Stir to combine. Cook stirring for 2 minutes or until heated through
  4. Ready to serve and enjoy 🙂

Quinoa and Rice Pasta Stockists

Spelt and Vanilla Fluffy Vegan Pikelets

IMG_1740

Welcome to the month of November! I am determined to make the last two months count by trying out some new healthy recipes and continue to challenge my frame of mind when it comes to food and maximum nutrition.

I have recently decided to try spelt flour in place of white flour in my cooking.

Spelt flour is known as the ‘Grandfather of Wheat’. It is high in fibre and manganese.  Manganese helps your body utilise key nutrients, it protects cells from free radical damage, maintains normal blood sugar levels, promotes optimal function of your thyroid gland and keeps bones strong. It is also higher in protein and lower in gluten than white flour.

The appearance of spelt is very similar to wheat, however it’s outer shell is much harder than wheat before milling. Due to the hard outer shell, higher amounts of vitamins and minerals are present in spelt flour in comparison to wheat flour.

It’s flavour is quite similar to whole wheat flour but slightly sweet and nutty. What I also love about spelt flour is that it is more easily digested, due to spelt’s high water solubility, the grain’s vital substances can be absorbed easily into the body. The nutrients are made available to the body with minimal digestive work.

There are numerous ways of including spelt in a diet, spelt bread and pasta are readily available from most health food stores, along with spelt flour itself.

I have also started using almond milk instead of soy, just for a good change as I prefer not using dairy milk at all. The almond milk boosts any milk shake or recipe with more protein and it has a beautiful nutty flavour and texture.

So all in all, with all the health benefits of spelt flour, it was pretty easy for me to give it a try and the result was absolute deliciousness! You wont be disappointed, or have any guilt for splashing out on some pikelets.

Spelt and Vanilla Vegan Pikelets

Makes 12 pikelets

Dry ingredients

  • 1 cup Organic Spelt flour
  • 2 tbsp baking powder
  • Pinch of fine himalayan salt

Wet ingredients

  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup or 3-4 drops of stevia
  • 2 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 1 tbsp vanilla essence
  • Coconut oil for cooking

Method

  1. Mix all dry ingredients into a bowl and all the wet ingredients into a separate smaller bowl
  2. Combine wet and dry ingredients and stir until smooth
  3. Set aside for 5 minutes to allow batter to rise as spelt flour takes a little longer to absorb liquids
  4. Prepare a pan on low heat with 1/4 tsp coconut oil
  5. Gently spoon batter into pan, forming 2-3 small pikelets.  Cook for 2-3 minutes or until bubbles appear on surface and are golden on underside, then flip to finish
  6. Remove from pan and serve immediately
  7. Serve with fresh fruit and maple syrup if you wish 🙂 Bon appétit!

Please note: I have made pikelets for this recipe but if you prefer pancakes, the recipe makes about 6. Enjoy!