Lemon and coconut scones

Today I had a hankering to make scones. Not savoury though, I felt like some coconut flavour. I’m so in love with coconut. My favourite discovery since looking into our healthy eating is coconut oil. So so delicious!
After looking through some flavour ideas online, I came across lemon and coconut scones. I kept finding recipes with eggs which I didn’t want to use, so I used my usual scone base and winged it from there. I’m a fan of winging things.

Ingredients
4 cups of self raising flour
4 tablespoons of raw brown sugar
1 and a half cups of milk
Tablespoon of butter
Quarter cup of coconut oil
Juice of four lemons
Quarter cup of shredded coconut
Two tablespoons of slithered almonds

Method
Preheat oven to 180 degrees
Combine flour, sugar, coconut products, almonds, butter and lemon juice in a bowl
Using fingertips crumble mixture until it becomes the consistency of breadcrumbs (make sure ingredients at the bottom are mixed through)
All milk in parts, cut through mixture with a knife until all combined. Leave a bit of milk to brush the tops of scones
Using your hands, roll mixture into balls. Don’t make them too big as they expand. I can make around 12-14 scones from this mixture
Place on tray and cook for around 15-20 mins

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I topped mine with butter and honey. Delicious!

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Sucker for punishment or something to prove?

Gym post!!

So this is my third week of using the gym at work and just had my second boxing class. I’m pretty proud of myself, I’ve gotta blog about it!

We were down one person today and this meant one person has to do a second cycle of whatever it was we are doing. When the trainer asked who was going to do it, there was a silence between the three of us and then something washed over me where I suddenly wanted to see if I could smash this out! My inner brain was saying… “do it, this is why you’re here!” my body was like “you FOOL, I hate you”. My brain is bossy.

We started off outside doing cycles. 20 jabs, 20 sit ups or squats (bum to floor, suck that tummy in, push that butt out), then 1 sprint. Then it moved up a cycle until we were doing 50 jabs, 50 squats and 5 sprints.

Next cycle was wall sits for 20 seconds, duck walking (or squat walking) and 5 lunge kicks on each foot. Repeating this cycle three times (four for me)

Then finishing off with abs for one minute

So packing that into half an hour is quiet a good workout. I’m pleased that I pushed myself. It’s a great feeling once it’s done, as disgusting as it may be at the time!! I can’t wait to see improvements with my fitness levels, how exciting

An hour later and my face is still red as a tomato. Not a good look when I just did a face to face quote with a potential customer haha. **Next week, bring make up**

We are doing our first family fun run this Saturday. I’m so, SO excited that hubby has jumped on board doing this. Technically we won’t be running because we are pushing the boys in prams, so maybe we can say a brisk walking/pram pushing half jog? There are 3k, 5k, 10 k, 15k and 21 k. I would have loved to completed the 15 k but age restrictions means we could either do 3k or 5 k. I’m just excited to look at the beautiful views along the coast while doing it! Having beautiful surroundings really makes being active more appealing. Let’s just hope the boys don’t flip their lids half way through haha. Oh kids. Unpredictable beings they are 

Rice stuffed mushrooms

Oh man, am I super stoked with this dish. This is 100% something I made up and it was rad. So so rad. Got the tick of approval from the boys in the house too!

Something I’m really loving about our crate of fruit and veg is that we are thinking up awesome tasty ways of making sure nothing goes to waste. This dish was no exception, it used a lot of what was on the brink of turning (but was still obviously edible)

First up, sauce. I got this on the go a good 2 hours or so before I even started preparing dinner. Gotta let that liquid gold simmer!

Ingredients
Tomatoes (halved)
Cherry tomatoes (halved)
Capsicums
Onions
Mushroom scraps (it will make sense later)
1/4 cup of passata
1 cup of water
Tablespoon of brown sugar
Olive oil
Generous amount of herbs
Greens (spinach/parsley)
Salt
Teaspoon of curry powder

Combine everything in a pot and let it simmer away and break down. Make sure to sir it
The curry powder sounds a bit odd and I don’t even know why I added it but it worked really well. We didn’t have chilli so it have it a nice little zing
So once that boiled, whatever you don’t use, you’ve got your tomato base sauce for the next few days. If you’re like us and tomato bases are a staple in you’re cooking, bottling the leftovers really comes in handy!

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Now onto the mushrooms. We had 8 portobello mushrooms to use. I knew I wanted some sort of baked thing with them. It had to happen.

Ingredients
Mushrooms to fill
Bacon
Cheese
Rice (brown organic)
Sauce (the one prepared earlier)

Method
Get your rice on the go first of all
Take the stalk out of the mushrooms and scoop out as much of the dark brown bit as you can. I dunno what it’s called, you know the frilly bit? I wasn’t too meticulous doing this
Add the removed bits of mushroom to your sauce, how good is that?!
Put some cheese in the mushroom. I thought this might be a bit of a barrier with the sauce, so the mushroom wouldn’t go mushy. Also, cheese is awesome
Dice the bacon and fry it up, leave it in the pan
Once your rice is ready, put some in a bowl and add some of your sauce. Mix together so there’s an even ratio
Once your happy with that, scoop into the mushroom. Top with bacon and more cheese
I cooked them on180 degrees for around 20/25 mins

They turned out pretty tasty!! Next time the old portobello appears in the veggie crate, we will be having it again!

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Baked egg casserole

Had a great old cook up in the kitchen with hubby tonight. He cooked chow mien for tonight’s dinner and lunches and I threw together this egg casserole that I’ve been wanting to try for ages.
I think this could be a dish for any main meal. I’ve seen a few recipes but I’ll just share what I did

Ingredients
Red capsicum
Yellow capsicum
Onion
Mushrooms
Spring onion
Bacon
Sausages
Eggs
Chives
Quarter to half a cup of passata
Cherry tomatoes
Olive oil

Method
Lightly fry the bacon and sausages until they get a bit of colour, don’t over cook as they’ll be going in the oven.
Put them on paper towels or baking paper until you need them

Dice onion and red capsicum
Julienne yellow capsicum
Cut mushrooms into quarters
Combine and sautée in passata, season

Transfer veggies into a deep baking dish. Scatter bacon and sausages
With a spoon make little ‘wells’ where the eggs will sit. Crack egg into well, be careful not to break the yolk
I only used two eggs, I’d advise to use four though
Scatter over spring onion and cherry tomato quarters

Bake in the oven at 180 degrees until the eggs are cooked

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Turned out pretty well! Paleo friendly as well

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This will be tomorrow nights dinner

You could take it up a notch and add olives or chorizo instead of sausages. Mmmmm chorizo

Getting with the program

This post is going to be about exercise.

So today and yesterday I started my program at the gym. It goes a little something like this;

Day 1 – Upper body circuit. This is assorted weights and planking (YUCK)

Day 2 – Lower body circuit. Leg work, ABS and more planking… (WHY?!)

Day 3 – Boxing 

I guess you could say my daily exercise is running after two kids. Maybe the odd bicep curl with my 2 year old. 

While I was on maternity leave my exercise consisted of what I refer to as “jail workouts”. No gym equipment, just home works outs. Throwing a tyre around the backyard and doing jump squats. 30 day squat/planking challenges. Gross circuits that my sister in law would make up for me (she’s a fitness freak). Then going for walks around my town and running where I can. 

So being back in a gym is different! It’s only early days but so far so good. I’m already sore and realising how unco I am. 

My main goals for going to the gym are to maintain the weight that I am now, tone up a bit and to increase my fitness all together. When I get my head around these circuits I will focus on building up the weights that I’m using. 

The plan for now is to smash out two rounds of the circuit in 30 mins. Then move to three. Good starting point! 

Also if I don’t fall over or fart out loud, that will be a bonus! 

Local produce for the win!

On Thursday we finally checked out the $15 fruit and veggie crate from a local cafe. We were more than impressed!

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My cat is photo bombing, haha.
So that photo doesn’t even do it justice . $15 got us (you ready?);

Kilo of baby spuds
Bunch of spring onion
White onions
Bunch of baby carrots
Kilo of tomatoes
Capsicums (red, yellow and green)
Pumpkin
Limes
Lemons
Cabbage
Parsnips
Corn cobs
Red and green grapes
Oranges
Mangos
Plums
Nectarines
Peaches
Apples

Amazing! I was a nerd last night and put it in an online woolies shopping list and it was around $105. This is by far the best food find ever for us! Can’t wait to try their homemade goodies too.

Detoxing of our cupboard is coming along nicely too! Unbleached plain and self raising flour, coconut oil (which is DELICIOUS), Apple cider vinegar (more uses than just cooking), almond milk (just for me, hubby’s not interested haha) and almond meal. I’ve found a couple of great websites that stock coconut products, so I’ll be doing a bulk order in the next few weeks.

I’ve been back at work part time for two weeks now and joined the gym. We get it for free once we’ve been there 6 years. So that starts Tuesday, I’ll do a separate post about exercise next week

Today I’m going to be busy in the kitchen making some homemade sauce and bread 🙂

Cooking ahead, like a BOSS!

I’m back at work tomorrow after 2 weeks shy of a year off for maternity leave.
As we have moved rural but kept the same jobs, a good portion of our week is going to be spent travelling. So we need to start bulk cooking to save time.
I started last night by preparing hubby’s breakfast for the week and some easy snacks for us and the boys.

I’m not going to go into the full recipes because basically it’s egg and ham English muffins and savoury scones. Just wanted to share some great ideas for them though.

Two weeks ago I discovered how awesome oven baked eggs are! You get the perfect circle and they look rad. All you do is get a muffin/cupcake tray, grease and crack the full egg into the tray. I like to sprinkle spring onion and put a small dab of cream cheese on top. This is brilliant for cooking bulk.

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While the eggs are cooking, I toast both sides of the English muffin and spread one side with garlic butter. Use bacon or egg for the middle and add some sliced cheese
Not exactly whole ingredients, but I’m planning to make my own English muffins so at least it won’t be filled with crap. If you ensure the bacon/ham, butter and cheese are grass fed, you’re laughing.
Wrap and freeze the muffins and take out what you need to use the night before. Last time I made these hubby said he zapped them in the microwave at work and they still tasted great. Winner!

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Savoury scones. I’m obsessed at the moment. I love experimenting with different ingredients. Use your normal scone base and go nuts! To these I added leek, ham, garlic and tasty cheese. They are great topped with cream cheese or butter.

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Delicious!

The easiest homemade stir fry ever

I used to hate stir fry with a passion. A passionate passion.

I have changed my ways. Homemade stir fry dominates a crappy sauce in a jar stir fry.

I love using honey for a base for sauces, it’s so versatile. Last night I threw together a simple chicken honey soy stir fry. So yummy and a massive hit with my sons. Also great because you can use such a range of veggies

Ingredients
Skinless chicken breast, diced
Two carrots, julienned
Half red onion, diced
Two heaped spoonfuls of minced garlic
Generous squirt of minced ginger
Two green capsicums, diced
Soy sauce
Honey
Dash of all spice ( don’t be heavy handed with it, it will become over powering)
Noodles (I was delighted to discover the pad Thai noodles in our cupboard didn’t contain any nasty ingredients)

Method
Oil up your pan (I used spray olive oil)
Add chicken, garlic, ginger and all spice. Cook until chicken is browned
Add onion, carrots and capsicum. Give it a good stir to coat your veggies
Now add your soy sauce and honey… I didn’t measure this. A good rule of thumb is if you prefer a salty taste, add more soy than honey. Sweeter, add more honey than soy. You want everything coated, not swimming in it
Turn heat down and stir occasionally

Prepare your noodles following packet directions. I always wash under cold water after to help separate the noodles
Add to chicken and veggies. Stir through and there you go

So easy and really tasty. Even have a serving left for work. Always handy!

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For dessert we used the yonana (honestly the best invention EVER) and had banana and strawberry flavour

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If you’re a dessert fiend but want healthy options, Yonana is the way to go. You freeze your fruit, using spotted bananas as your base. It turns it into an ice cream consistency. It’s a lactose intolerant persons dream come true (I’m not).

Now onto cooking some snacks for hubby and I for work. Savoury scones, yuuuuummy!!

Detoxing the cupboard

I’ve started trying to use up what’s left in the cupboard to make way for our natural cupboard staples. I can’t wait until it’s all gone!
Yesterday was the first shop where I could take the time to read the ingredients list of each item. What an eye opener, there’s chemicals in everything it seems. I wanted an easy way to check what’s actually in everything and winced at the thought of standing in the supermarket, using their free wifi, googling a shopping list of ingredients. But it’s actually the opposite, if the ingredients is in fact a shopping list- especially with numbers next to it, that’s your warning sign.
So this trip was successful apart from bread and English muffins, which means I really need to get onto making our own. I refuse to pay more than $4 for one loaf of bread!

On the way home yesterday I stopped by a little cafe that sells local fresh produce. They do fruit and veggie bags weekly, we used this service through the neighbouring suburbs community centre but it ceased in November. So to stumble upon another local one was very pleasing! Plus they do half price on Sundays to get rid of stuff that’s about to turn. So that will be perfect for the Yonana, veggie stocks or sauces. Yay!!

Now onto our dinner last night. Breadless, flour and egg free turkey burgers. This is something I totally winged (pun not intended).

Ingredients
Patties

500 grams turkey mince
Half diced red onion
Teaspoon of minced garlic
Chives
Salt (standard table salt, this will be substituted with Himalayan rock salt)
Handful of spring onion
Half handful of cheese
(I guess I should point out that I only use measuring cups when I’m following a recipe)

Method

Squish meat and ingredients together with your hands until mixed together
Roll into balls. This made ten patties

Cook patties, I just used spray olive oil. This again will be substituted with local or Australian olive oil when we need more

Filling
I didn’t want to use bread for the buns so I used lettuce. I just chopped it up for the boys.
Of course use anything you want for the filling but this is what we had

Green capsicum
Tomato
Olives
Cheese
Corn
Tomato sauce (I want to make homemade chutneys to substitute sugary sauce. Especially because my oldest son is obsessed with sauce)

There you go!

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Introducing…. me

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Hello there, if you’re reading this. I’ll get the basics out the way.  My name is Katie, I’m very soon turning 29. I live in a quiet beach town with my husband, two boys, cat and two dogs. We got a good thing going.

So am I just another blogging mummy? Well yeah. I’m not looking to blog about how busy I am and telling people how they should do things. I just want to do blog about our journey (soooooo cliché,  apologies) into changing our lifestyle into a healthier, good whole food lifestyle.

This has been in the works since I was pregnant with our second child. I started off overweight and carrying baby weight from my first pregnancy 10 months earlier. I was high risk for gestational diabetes.  It was hard to hear and no one knows this but I was ashamed. I promised that things would be changed with my eating and exercise habits.

11 months on, I’m happy where I’m at. I’ve reached my final goal weight and as a whole have been eating better. Not 100% of the time though.

Time for some further changes. Not for weight loss purposes,  this is to overhaul our eating and the way we look at food. My husband and I have had lengthy discussions and the approach we want to take is based on paleo eating. Though entirely cutting out grains and dairy is daunting to me, reading into it further does make sense. I’ve found some yummy looking paleo bread recipes so far . So maybe grains won’t be so bad…. Dairy though.. We ‘ll see. Included in this overhaul is my husband quitting smoking, I think that could be a blog all in itself!

Starting off sensible though, we are going organic and clean. I’ve had preconceptions about this sort of thing in the past because a) Id never bothered looking into it and b) I tend to tune out when I feel im being preached too. But nope, I’m on board. Clean, organic, Grass fed meat and dairy. Homemade bread from unbleached flours.

So the first thing that comes to mind is price. It’s bullshit how much it costs to eat real food. I’m currently on my last week of maternity leave so needless to say – down one income things have been very tight, particularly after Christmas. This is where my bargain hunting skills will come in handy

Over the last year I have been so stoked cooking yummy, “healthy” meals on a budget.  Cooking sauces from scratch, crumbing our meats, that sort of thing. Now I’m horrified that what we’ve been eating is riddled in chemicals and a whole bunch of shit!

It’s hard to swallow when you think you’re making good food choices for your family, when in reality you’re not.

Which brings me here. Planning out our new changes and pawing through awesome food ideas for home, work, daycare and special occasions. I’m excited for what’s about to go down in the Cassidy household!

*Disclaimer – this is not intended to be a condescending “you should do this ” blog. This is purely to capture my families journey into our new lifestyle (there’s that cliché again)