Tag Archives: #healthy

Sweet Potato Curry with Coconut Milk from Karnataka

When we lived in India I needed to go to Cochin in Kerala for work. The market research session I was attending didn’t start until the afternoon, so I had the morning to explore Fort Cochin. There amoungst the alleyways I found a tiny little bookshop piled high with books. A wonderful little treasure trove. From that store I bought a South Indian Vegetarian cookbook which I love exploring. This recipe is based on that for Urulaikizhangu Saagu which is a Potato Curry from Karnataka. Using sweet potatoes to make a Sweet Potato Curry gives it a slightly richer flavor (and a few more vitamins), and I skipped the process of making homemade coconut milk, and stuck to a store bought can for convenience. It is truly delicious!


  • 3 large sweet potatoes
  • 1 270ml can coconut milk
  • 2 large onions, finely chopped
  • 2 green chilies, de-seeded and finely chopped
  • 2cm piece of ginger, peeled, grated
  • 2 large tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt

Spice paste

  • 1 tsp poppy seeds
  • 3 dried chillies
  • 1 Tbsp Bengal gram or Moong dal
  • 1 Tbsp coriander seeds
  • 1/2 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1 cinnamon stick


  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp urad dal
  • 1 tsp Bengal gram or Moong dal
  • 1 dried chilli
  • 1 sprig curry leaves


  1. Peel the sweet potatoes. Cut into 1-2cm cubes. Cook in salted, boiling water until tender. Drain and set aside
  2. Grind ingredients for spice paste in a mill accessory on a blender or food processor. Gradually add 2-3 Tbsp to make a paste
  3. Heat some oil in a large frying pan. Add all the Tempeeing ingredients and fry until the mustard seeds start to splutter
  4. Add the onions to the Tempered spices and fry until golden, around 3 minutes
  5. Add green chilies, ginger, tomatoes, turmeric, and salt. Fry for about 2 minutes
  6. Add 1 cup of water and turn up the heat (from 6 to 7 on an induction cooktop). Simmer for 4-5 minutes stirring occasionally
  7. Turn down the heat (to 6 on an Induction cooktop). Mix in the spice paste and sweet potatoes and cook for a further 5 minutes, stirring frequently to ensure all ingredient should are well mixed together and the mixture does not catch on the pan
  8. Pour in the can of Coconut Milk and stir to combine thoroughly. Simmer for a few minutes over a low heat.
  9. Serve with rice, idli, dosa, or roti

Gluten Free Pikelets

Liam decided he wanted to cook this morning and had a whole bunch of ingredients out on the bench. Including, cheese, chocolate, eggs, flour, maple syrup and almond milk. “I want to make a cheesey, chocolatey, little pancake” he said. “I’m not sure about the feta and chocolate together, but we could make little pikelets with melted chocolate” I replied, “oh, but there is loads of sugar in pikelets” I muttered. “No problem, we can use maple syrup instead of sugar” he said. And so this recipe was born. A slightly sweeter, thicker pancake mix, with baking powder so that it would rise, and it worked really well.


  • 1 cup (250ml) gluten free flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 Tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 egg
  • 180ml almond milk
  • pinch of salt
  • a little water


  1. Add all ingredients into a bowl and mix well
  2. Add a little water to get a thick batter, but one that can be spooned into the pan (about 50ml depending on your flour).
  3. Heat a frying pan on a moderate heat (induction 6).
  4. Place a desert size scoop of batter into the pan. Spread it a little to have the batter an even thickness of approx 1/2cm thick.
  5. Cook all the batter in batches and serve warm with melted chocolate, honey, jam and coconut yoghurt, or other toppings of your choice

Coriander Tahini Dip

Coriander Tahini Dip

Tahini is a wonderful base ingredient for dips. We have been enjoying making many different combinations including this Coriander Tahini Dip. It is great as a dip with sweet potato chips (which we cook in the Air Fryer for a low fat snack) or with raw vegetables.


  • 1 clove garlic, chopped roughly
  • small handful of pinenuts
  • 2 spring onions
  • little pinch of chilli flakes
  • large bunch of fresh coriander
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp tahini
  • juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • 1/2 tsp cumin powder
  • olive oil
  • handful of pomegranate seeds for garnish (optional)


  1. Add the garlic, pinenuts, spring onions, chilli flakes, coriander, salt, pepper, tahini, lemon juice, and cumin powder to a blender.
  2. Add 4 Tbsp of olive oil.
  3. Blend to a smooth paste. Add a little more olive oil if it is too thick or not blending well.
  4. Serve garnished with pomegranate seeds.
  5. Delicious as a dip with sweet potato chips or fresh vegetable sticks (eg cucumber or carrot).

Music to go with it…
Listen on Spotify: The Decemberists – Five Songs EP

Apricot, Almond, Date Snack Bars

Apricot, Almond and Date snack bars

Snack bars are great for filling a little gap between meals, or when you know that lunch is going to end up being a little late. However, Healthy Snack Bars are generally quite expensive, so we have been experimenting with different recipes to make our own. This is a classic combination inspired by the fruits of Kashmir – Almonds and Apricots. The dates give a natural sweetness, so no honey or sugar needs to be added to the mix.


  • 1 cup almonds
  • 1 cup dried apricots
  • 1 cup dried dates
  • Little coconut or olive oil


  1. Place the almonds into a food processor using the metal knife blade. Chop the almonds until they are in small pieces
  2. Add the dates and apricots to the food processor. Mix until the mixture starts to form into a ball
  3. Grease a metal tray with a little coconut or olive oil
  4. Spread the mixture out onto the tray and press down with your hands to form a square or rectangle of an even thickness
  5. Place into the fridge for about an hour
  6. Cut into bars, and store in an air tight container in the fridge. We wrap the bars in baking paper to avoid using plastic wrap.

Music to go with it…
Listen on Spotify: The Kite Strings Tangle – Vessel

Korean Carrot Salad

Korean carrot salad

Living in Asia gives us the opportunity to explore its many flavours. The Korean kitchen is one we have been exploring more of recently. This is a very fresh tasting salad using all raw ingredients. It is easy to make, and fits into a vegan, vegetarian, or paleo lifestyle.


  • 1 large carrot, sliced into thin sticks
  • 1 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 2-3 spring onions, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced and chopped
  • handful of fresh coriander, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp coconut aminos (or soy sauce)
  • 2 tsp sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp hot sesame oil (or 1 tsp sesame oil and 1 tsp chili flakes)
  • pinch of salt


  1. Place the carrot, onion, spring onions, garlic and coriander into a bowl.
  2. Mix together the coconut aminos, sesame seeds and sesame oil in a small bowl to create the dressing.
  3. Stir the dressing through the salad.

Music to go with it…
Listen on Spotify: Mahoney Harris – We Didn’t Feel Alone

Coconut Yoghurt

Coconut Yoghurt with Mango and Honey

Since going dairy free I haven’t had any yoghurt, or yoghurt substitutes. I wanted to change my breakfast habit (muesli and yoghurt) before trying any. Recently a friend gave me some culture grains that she uses to make her daily drink of kefir. I decided to use it to make a coconut yoghurt. After some experimentation, I found that you can vary the creaminess of the yoghurt by using coconut milk, coconut cream, or a mix of the two. This is a 50/50 mix, but you can make it more Greek Yoghurt like by adding more coconut cream


  • 200ml coconut milk
  • 200ml coconut cream
  • milk kefir grains (available on Amazon.com)
  • 1 mango
  • 1 tsp honey


  • Place the coconut milk and coconut cream in a jar. Stir to combine
  • Add the milk kefir grains to the coconut milk
  • Let the coconut milk mixture stand for 12-24 hours for the culture to do its magic
  • Strain the yoghurt through a mesh (I use a sifter) to sift out the kefir grains. Add the grains to a new batch of coconut milk.
  • Place the coconut yoghurt in a bowl in the fridge for 1 hour to cool down. It will also thicken in the fridge.
  • Serve the yoghurt topped with mango and a teaspoon of honey, or use it in a curry (such as a Palak Chicken Curry) to make the dish more creamy

Music to go with it…
Listen on Spotify: Oscar and the Wolf – Entity

Escape Juice

Banana watermelon juice

Our little Juicemaster son has been busy experimenting with his juicer and blender again and has created this very simple, but refreshing juice. Packed full of vitamins it could also all be made in the blender if you don’t have a juicer, but it would then be thicker as all the fiber of the watermelon would still be included. This Lego criminal thinks it has all the right ingredients to aid his escape.


  • 3 bananas
  • 1/4  watermelon
  • handful of ice
  • Juicer machine
  • Blender


  • Remove the rind from the watermelon. Juice in a centrifugal or slow juicer on the slowest speed to extract as much juice as possible.
  • Pour the watermelon juice into the blender. Add the banana and a handful of ice. Blend for 30 seconds until well combined
  • Serve over ice for a refreshing juice

Music to go with it…
Listen on Spotify: Graveyard Club – Nightingale

Nutty breakfast “muesli”

Nutty breakfast Muesli

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but not the easiest when you are trying to avoid processed food. We have become so conditioned to toast with spreads, or muesli with yoghurt that we hardly think of other options for breakfast.

While our Sago Porridge has become our standard breakfast, the one we make without thinking, it is really nice to have some variation, especially variation that can be made ahead of time and whipped up quickly before work. Because let’s face it, it isn’t as though we suddenly found a whole heap of extra time when we changed our lifestyle, but we did prioritize food and cooking our own meals over television time 🙂

This breakfast muesli was actually created by our son (6). He wanted to make breakfast for us, and started looking through the pantry for things to put in it. Together with Barry he pulled out all of these ingredients, and then with the help of Papa he put them together for our breakfast. It was really good, and worthy of including here. Enjoy!


  • 20g cashew nuts, chopped
  • 20g pinenuts, chopped
  • 20g blanched almonds, chopped
  • 20g shelled pistachios, chopped
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 20g goji berries
  • 2 apples, chopped
  • 4 pitted dates, chopped
  • 1 dried fig, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • good squeeze of lemon juice
  • pinch of sea salt


  1. Toast the nuts in a frying pan together with 1 tsp of coconut oil until they are golden brown and crispy. Remove from the pan. Sprinkle with a pinch of sea salt. (Note: This can be made in larger quantities and stored in an airtight container to use later if you like.)
  2. Chop the apples into bite sized pieces. Place in a bowl. Sprinkle with cinnamon and toss to coat all of the apple pieces.
  3. Sprinkle over a squeeze of lemon juice. This will stop the apples from browning.
  4. Chop the dates and fig and add to the nuts.
  5. Stir the nuts mix through the fresh fruit and serve.
  6. it would also be nice to add some fresh blackberries, blueberries, or cranberries to the mix as a variation.

Music to go with it…
Listen on Spotify: Moke – Let it burn

Kimchi Chicken

Kimchi chicken


  • 200g chicken breast, finely sliced
  • 200g leek, finely sliced
  • 200g Chinese cabbage Kimchi, chopped up roughly
  • 100g carrot Kimchi (optional)
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 Tbsp sesame seeds, toasted
  • 1/2 Tbsp maple syrup
  • a little coconut or other oil to fry


  1. Fry the chicken in a little coconut or other oil for 2 minutes until the chicken has sealed all over
  2. Add leek and kimchi and fry for 5 more minutes
  3. Add the sesame oil and maple syrup and fry for 1 more minute
  4. Take off the heat, sprinkle with the sesame seeds, and serve hot with boiled rice or cauliflower rice.

Music to go with it…
Listen on Spotify: Eric Wire Hustle – Love Can Prevail

Gluten Free Kimchi Pancakes

Kimchi pancakes

I made a big mix of Kimchi and am spending the week on recipes that can use it in cooking, instead of as an accompaniment. Kimchi pancakes (Kimchijeon in Korean) is a recipe that Korean friends of ours made us when we went to visit them, and this is a variation of that recipe in order to make it gluten free.

These are a savoury pancake, that should get a little bit crispy. In order to make them crispy the water that you add to the mixture needs to be cold, or you can add some ice to cool it down. Do make sure that you use oil in the pan, as this will also help the process of turning them crispy. 

We ate them on their own and with Carrot Kimchi, and they make quite a hearty meal. This recipe makes 8-10 pancakes, which is a little too much for 2 people for lunch. 

We have also made them with some chicken added, and you could also add some finely chopped leeks or spring onions as a variation.


  • 2 cups (500ml) rice flour
  • 2 Tbsp coconut flour
  • 1 egg
  • 550ml cold water
  • 2 cups (500ml) kimchi
  • 5 ice cubes
  • coconut oil or other high heat oil


  1. Chop the kimchi up finely
  2. Place the rice flour, coconut flour, egg, cold water and kimchi into a bowl. Stir to combine. It should be a fairly watery batter
  3. Heat the oil in a frying pan on a moderate heat
  4. Place the ice cubes into the batter. This will help to cool down the mixture and make sure that your pancakes get crispy. The alternative is to use chilled water out of the fridge when making the mixture.
  5. Using a soup ladle, scoop up a good scoop of the mixture and pour it into the pan. Use the back of the soup ladle to spread the mixture around, making sure that the kimchi is evenly spread across the pan and not in a heap in the middle
  6. Wait until the mixture has cooked through before flipping the pancake over onto the other side. Resist the urge to turn it too soon as it will not go crispy around the edges if you do. Takes 1-2 minutes
  7. Flip the pancake and ensure that it is cooked through – only about 30 seconds to 1 minute on this side.
  8. Serve while stil hot
  9. Makes 8-10 kimchi pancakes

Music to go with it…
Listen on Spotify: The Vaccines – English Graffiti