Thursday, March 23, 2017

Springy Spring Spring!

By Sacha Jones, Life-Cycle Celebrant

Don't we all get delightfully giddy at the beginning of spring? It's such an exciting time. More than new year (at least for me) there is a beautiful sense of new beginnings and hope. Seeds to plant, growth, change... metaphorical and actual. I'm still in the UK where spring gets a head start and I feel very blessed to experience it all twice. Pink tree-blossoms, daffodils, croci, tulips - all shining and doing there thing and bringing smiles to the masses. 

I always feel inspired when I come over here. Partly it's time away from home to reflect, partly it's the time of year - but mostly it's spending time with my lovely friends and family who are all doing really cool things and make me very excited about possibility. This is most certainly true in the kitchen (and garden)! As much as I love to cook (and we do all the time), I can get a bit lazy in terms of experimentation and branching out. Mostly this stems from my funny relationship with recipes (I am not so good at following directions and get a bit cross-eyed). So when I come across a really easy, really tasty AND healthy recipe all in one, (and I get a chance to try making it side by side the pros), I'm all about it!

Last week my two longest-running (not oldest!) besties - Sally & Sim, and I got together, and my heart was so very glad. (I can't believe we didn't take a photo!) All three of us are foodies with a palate for clean, healthy & delicious, so the menu Sim prepared for us was perfect. We mmm'd and oooh'd and yummed our way through lunch - gluten-free veggie "flat breads" with homemade pesto, hummus, avocado, salad-y bits and goat cheese and just so much good stuff. And to top it all off, gluten-free honey-sweetened chocolate cake with coconut yogurt and (honey sweetened) rhubarb compote! Mmmm! Hearts and bellies satiated, cheeks sore from smiling.

My personal tummy-health has meant I've been avoiding gluten and much reducing grain for about 14 years now. I don't usually go for the GF products in stores and have instead always gravitated to real food that is "free from" but sometimes I really want a vessel for things that sit so well on bread/toast. Most gluten free breads I find to be pretty gnarly (full of weird ingredients and absolutely require toasting), so to find something that checks all my boxes and tastes amazing, well... I have to share! Do give these a whirl, whether you tend towards gluten free eating or not. They are truly wonderful.

Turmeric Cauliflower Flatbread
1 head of cauliflower (use the whole thing, incl stem)
100 g (1 cup) almond flour or ground almonds
4 eggs (we found two was enough, so start with less and add more if you find it not wet enough
1 TBS turmeric powder
sea salt and black pepper to taste
how to:
Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C) and line a baking tray with wax paper. Roughly chop the cauliflower and put in food processor and blend until you have got a fine rice-like texture. Place the cauli 'rice' in a mixing bowl. Add ground 
almonds, turmeric, salt & pepper - mix with your hands. Make a well in the centre and add the eggs. Whisk the eggs with a fork. Use your hands to pull the dry ingredients towards the middle until everything is combined and you can shape it into a ball. It should be more loose and wet than a traditional bread dough. Transfer to the baking paper and form into a rectangular base by flattening the dough with your hands or spatula. Bake on the middle rack in the oven for 23-25 minutes or until slightly golden and firm. Remove from the oven and let cool completely. Turn it upside-down and carefully remove the baking paper. Cut into bread-sized slices and store in the fridge (but eat some straight away for lunch, it's so good!) 

Beet Flatbread
(about) 3 medium raw beetroots, peeled
100 g (1 cup) almond flour or ground almonds
4 eggs (as above, play by feel)
1/2 tsp sea salt and black pepper

Use the same instruction as above. The dough is slightly more moist than when using cauliflower, but dries out perfectly when baked.

We made one of each, one on each baking tray but if you were feeling experimental you could stripe the different breads - orange and red alternating. You can also try this with broccoli and make a green one. Possibly a "sneaky" way to get your non-veggie eaters eating veggies too! I reckon this recipe is open to experimenting with different veggies so give it a go!

Serve with all your favourite sandwich ingredients.

Sim found this recipe in Green Kitchen Stories which is a pretty great food blog, lots of good recipes and adorable photographs! And it would be remiss of me to mention the desert without sharing the recipe... that honey chocolate cake was from Claire Ptak in the Guardian, and can be found here!

And if you missed it last week, please check out my 
 article Five Foods That Fight Stress in Next Tribe. Feel free to leave (kind) comments and check out the whole magazine. Lots of great articles and inspiration to be found.

Have a wonderful week, 
and giddy start to spring...
Lots and lots of love,
Sacha xxxx

Sacha Jones
Holistic Integrative Nutrition Wellness Coach, AADP
Lifecycle Celebrant & Officiant

Stiggly Holitics
Sacha Jones Ceremonies

Nourish Your Body
Nourish Your Soul 

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