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Spiced Pumpkin Chia Seed Pudding 

What started out with intentions of becoming pumpkin pie, has ended up being a most decadent, yet healthy, treat. It’s almost Halloween, so it seems right to be eating spice and pumpkin, despite it being 30 degree weather! This would make a great breakfast, dessert, leave it in the fridge and snack on it whenever you feel like it! 

SPICED PUMPKIN CHIA SEED PUDDING

400g tin of pears

400g cooked pumpkin

1 cup coconut cream

3 tbsp  rapadura sugar (or your preferred sweetener)

Mixed spice (to taste)

Vanilla (I use a good swig of vanilla, none of this 1 teaspoon nonsense)

1/4 cup chia seeds.

Blitz all of these things into a purée in the food processor. Remove into a bowl and stir in chia seeds. Let it set overnight for the best pudding consistency, or you can dig in straight away. Get it in your belly! Yum. 

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Paleo Apple Banana Pancakes

Easy breakfast Friday!
Well it’d probably be easier if I wasn’t trying to blog about it and manage my family at the same time. Lol.

This is generally why my posts are super quick and not as flash as other people’s. I just want to share the love of good food 🙂

So…

2 apples grated
1 banana mashed
4 eggs
1/4 c coconut flour
Splashings of maple syrup & vanilla
I used a little almond milk, but I don’t think that’s necessary, I’d accidentally overflowed my cup of flour, so needed a bit of extra moisture.

Mix all the ingredients, cook in coconut oil, serve with a knob of butter and drippings of raw honey…delish!

You could also put some crushed walnuts, sultanas, cinnamon or seeds in! I always make extra and put them in the fridge because I find the coconut flour cooking goes good once it’s cold. It’s less crumbly.

Anyway have a great weekend! Exciting things coming next week 🙂

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The 2013 Jump! Change is good.

Most people in blog-land have probably communicated their thoughts about the new year already. I’ve taken a month to formulate mine…. and a crazy month its been. It really does feel like 2013 is a year of change, not just for me and my family, but for lots of people around us too.

I’ve been pondering what to include in this blog this year, I love good healthy food, interesting design and the odd spattering of inspiration and thats the dominating content, but I have some other things burning in my heart that I want to get out.

You see, I’m a bit passionate about seeing people doing things that they love, or really want to do. I believe that every human is made with a purpose, and that to be truly content, and getting the most out of life, we need to find that purpose. This is a multi faceted philosophy, but the most simple way to talk about this is in the area of career. (I use this term fairly loosely.)

My story is this. I’ve worked for many years in communication, marketing and a bit of graphic design. During December and January I got offered a few opportunities in this area, and so I started on the path to take them up. Partway down the path, I suddenly realised my hypocrisy! I profess this passion for seeing people do what they love to do, yet here I was continuing on a path mediocre. I literally thought to myself…

“How long will I keep doing things I’m only half enjoying, when I know in my heart, I’m meant for other things.”

I have known for a while now that I should be in a more design driven career. I’m obsessed with interiors, furniture, design, colour, problem solving, innovation to make better things, and am constantly coming up with ideas for objects, events and experiences.

So, I jumped! Out of a safe, comfortable chair into a brand new, unworn and slightly uncomfortable chair… Diploma of Interior Design & Decoration. It’s a risk, committing time and money, sacrificing the ability to generate income to contribute to the family with 2 small kids. And although I am an advocate for all things new and exciting, it was a little bit difficult!

Now I feel like I can write about this. I’ve jumped and I want to share a bit of the journey here. But the main thing I want to do this year is find others who have made or are making the jump too. People who are sacrificing in some areas to ensure they are content and purpose driven, people who are just simply enjoying what they do, people who are passionate about making a difference. I’d like to tell some of their stories too. So please keep an eye out for these, if you’re at all interested in making some changes for a more content life.

Happy 2013!

Date, Almond, Coconut & Banana Slice

So I tried something new and it turned out so delicious, I thought I better share! I love this because its takes about 30 seconds to make, has no sugar but is a yummy sweet treat. You paleontologists will love this!

Now, my style of cooking is pretty experimental, and I try to keep things as healthy as possible. The other thing about these type of “recipes” is that I sometimes don’t remember exactly how much I put in. Here’s a guide..

Banana date nut slice

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2 c almond meal*
1 c dates
1 c desiccated coconut
3/4 c cashew nuts
1/2 – 3/4 c coconut oil
2 bananas
2 eggs
Vanilla

Chop dates and cashews and add them to almond meal and coconut in a bowl. In another bowl, mash up all your wet ingredients together – eggs, oil, banana and vanilla. Then make a well in the dry ingredients and mix!
Pour into a slice tin and cook for about 25 mins or so. Eat hot, cold or frozen!

*Please note… I never use pre made almond meal, I buy bulk almonds (from Aldi mostly) and blitz them in the food processor myself. It’s much cheaper and you get a wholemeal effect from the skin still being on, plus they aren’t blanched or anything. Win!

About Beer – Spiced Ales for Christmas drinking!

My husband is really into craft beers, and loves to share the delights of handcrafted brews with anyone who will listen.  I, on the other hand, don’t really have a large vocabulary of adjectives for beer. So here is a combined review/commentary style thing about my favourite style. Spiced beers. What better time of year than christmas to explore the deliciousness of these. A very good place to do that in Brisbane is The Scratch. You can pretty well find all of these there.

My original experience with spiced beer started many years ago with the first release of NZ brewery’s Monteiths Summer Ale. A delicious and refreshing slightly gingery beer, great for a drinking session on a hot day. With an obvious limited  one, these beers have expanded my understanding of how spices can be used and applied in different ways.   I’m just sharing what I’ve discovered, and I encourage you to get behind smaller breweries like all these ones to try and support their artisan craftiness.

Lobethal Bierhaus – 7.5% Christmas Ale from South Australia.  Apart from the label being awesome, it‘s like drinking a delicious christmas pudding. It is rich and sweet, with more chocolatey style to it. It is less spicy than the Taieri George, but well balanced. The heavier alcohol definitely warms your heart, and would be so perfect sitting by the fire on a snowy December night in the Northern hemisphere.

Nogne O God Jul –  American Strong Ale from Norway, 8.5%. OK, so I’m not really one for dark beers, but this made me say WOW. In fact, this very beer played a part in turning my tastes to the darker variety. It’s sweet, caramel, cakey, delicious, and hints of spice flavours, although I don’t think there is any actual spice used in the brewing.

Emersons Taieri George – 6.8% Spiced Ale from NZ. This is like a big fat mouthful of gingerbread. It’s delicious. Darker and thicker in body, sweet like a biscuit and spicy like ginger, nutmeg and cloves. You can’t help but feel all cool and christmassy drinking this. Its a shame we’re in 30 degree heat here in Brisbane!

Norrebros Julebryg – 7% Danish Spiced Ale. This one is light in body, and not too sweet. You could taste more yeasty characteristics, but after the first couple of mouthfuls that mellows out. The spice flavour was very subtle.

Red Hill Brewery – Christmas Ale 8.3% Victoria, Australia. This one wasn’t so much traditionally spiced, but the hops they used were more the driver for spiciness. As a hoppy ale, it was great. But for me, the traditional spicy flavours of ginger, cinnamon etc are the drawcard for a ‘christmas ale’. If you don’t like those flavours, but want to get into the christmas spirit, then this is for you!