Sunday, March 18, 2012

Cooking up a storm!

Well hello!!! I am sorry I've been a bit absent, thanks to all the people who have sent me messages to check on me. :) I have had an extremely busy couple of weeks but hoping things settle down a bit now. My weight has fluctuated a bit over the past few weeks. I put on some weight as I started to include bread and sugar back into my diet, have had a few ups and downs due to big nights out and other assorted celebrations, but have stabilised and seem to be maintaining quite easily, albeit about 1.5 kg up from where I was. My plan is to have a few weeks of diet and then a few weeks of maintaining, so we'll see how that goes. I find that as soon as I start eating carbs or other non-cohen foods I have a great deal of trouble stopping. It's like it kicks in a mother load of cravings which makes not eating everything in sight very difficult. So I'm focusing at the moment on not creating that carb vacuum (that makes me want to make up for it later) by focusing on balance rather than denial.

I have been cooking up a storm over the past 2 weeks and even took a cooking class last weekend! There were 4 x 45 minute classes on Vietnamese, African, Lebanese and Indian food and my my, it was fabulous. I didn't learn as much as I was hoping but I did pick up a few little tricks here and there. I don't have any photos (other than the spice photo above) as it was total chaos! Fun and messy.

I've had a few requests for more recipes, so here are two yummy things I've made recently....

Thai Turkey Salad

This is an old staple recipe of mine that I normally make with chicken, but had turkey on hand and it was just as fabulous. It came from a fabulous friend of mine who I can give most of the credit to for teaching me to cook. She got the recipe from her boyfriend. I think he got it from his work...

- 250 g bean shoots
- 1 bunch coriander
- 1/2 bunch mint
- 1 long red chili
- 2 spring onions or 1/4 red onion
- 1/4 cup fish sauce
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 500g chicken/turkey mince

Wash and cut up all the salad ingredients. I usually find that one long red chili, de-seeded, is plenty hot enough for me. My friend would probably use about 4 of the little hot buggers, but I am a wimp when it comes to chili (as my student husband would attest). Cook the mince on high heat and continually break it up. I give a generous sprinkle of salt and pepper as I cook it. Once cooked, stir all together, pour over fish sauce and lemon juice and serve! Serves 4. Also fabulous on a bed of steamed basmati rice... which helps it to go further also if you have more people to serve.

Organic Basil Beef Burger

You really can make burgers with whatever meat and whatever ingredients but my basil plant was getting huge so I went and got some organic beef mince...

- 1 kg mince
- 1 bunch basil
- sprinkle of chili flakes
- sprinkle of garlic powder
- sprinkle of salt and pepper

Combine ingredients and then separate into 125 g balls and freeze in snack size snap-lock bags. Defrost when ready to cook, form into a patty and grill! I made 8 patties and then used the leftover mix to make a bit of a spaghetti bolognese, to which I added fresh tomato and zucchini and cooked off immediately. YUM!

The burger looks huge but I actually made it with a dinner roll so it is the perfect size. As for the pasta, it's actually Slim Pasta, made entirely from vegetables, as mentioned in my last post.

Enjoy! x

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