Home' Nova National : December 2010 Contents SHALL WE PUT on our party clothes? I think
we should, and a little bit of sparkle wouldn't
hurt either. In fact, I'm thinking that sparkly
should actually be a new nutrient -- sparkly
does seem to impart an energy -- a kind of
aliveness, an expectation and a promise kept.
If you think of cuddling your gorgeous baby,
child, woman or man -- doesn't that just make
you feel a bit sparkly? And alive? And good?
I think sparklyness (my word!) is lifeforce in
action and I know for sure that biodynamic
vegetables especially are sparkly with lifeforce.
So sparkle up this festive season and let's
bring out the sparkly, full of good life, food.
Thinking about what is actually in season, let
the eating begin...
Starting with breakfast, look no further
than the humble egg if you need fuel to
keep you going while you shop, work or
play. I'm not talking egg on toast, but rather
egg extended with lots of those wonderful
seasonal vegetables such as corn, zucchini,
tomato and basil -- scrambled, frittata,
Not that hungry first off in the morning
(especially when it's crazy hot?) Pop an egg
yolk into a kefir-coconut smoothie, rich in
fruit to help extend the nutrient density.
Grains such as black sticky rice or quinoa
make good porridge in summer, served with
coconut cream, palm sugar and the best fruits
of all, mango or berries. Quinoa especially is a
high protein, low carbohydrate grain and will
keep you going just that little bit longer. No
need to serve these too hot, and they both
make a handy afternoon tea also.
But without doubt the most sparkly
summer breakfast I know is French Toast.
When made from good sourdough, fried in
coconut oil and butter and topped with the
fruity jewels of summer, then glazed with a
drizzle of maple syrup and vanilla, this is a very
sparkly breakfast indeed. Please, none of that
soft as mush bread they use in many a café,
but a well soaked sourdough, so that all -- not
just the surface 1mm -- the bread cooks up
sparkly and yummy. Santa has my list of cafes
that serve that horrible soft, barely soaked
white bread stuff, and they will be receiving
bad potatoes from him.
Oh lunch, the eternal dilemma! But if
you fill the fridge with good basics you can
put one together easily. Pesto, Tapenade,
good goat cheese, cooked beetroot, cooked
legumes marinating in a dressing and
oven roasted tomatoes are all very sparkly
options that allow you to build something
delicious. Classics really, exactly the same
as your wardrobe. All are cheap and easy
to make at home, and store well for 1 - 2
weeks. Adding nutrient density in the form
of protein will keep you going for longer.
Suggestions include: a pate or terrine of
some sort (vegetarian or meat), hard boiled
eggs as is, but they also make a great dip
(I am a ridiculously easy target for devilled
eggs) and cold meats, including the traditional
ham -- organic, sustainable and nitrate-free.
If you have leftover cooked grains, a good
salad is never far away. This is where having
some legumes marinating in a dressing
comes in very handy, and a few cooked or
grilled vegetables left over from dinner the
If you can manage it, puff pastry will
make your life so much easier over the
Christmas and summer season. A good puff
will add sparkle to anything -- and quickly. It's
the Manolo Blahnik, or Jimmy Choo of the
food world. It's easy to make (you can find
it on my website with pictures for a step by
step even), but it's not the end of the
world to buy it, just as long as it's made
from butter, never, ever oil. The recipe for
Little Savoury Pizzas here is a winner with
children, teenagers and adults alike, but
you could just as easily top it with peaches,
pineapple or berries and for very little effort
end up with a delicious dessert.
As we move towards dinner and a little
sparkly treat called dessert, can I say this -- I
could give you lots of ideas here, and a lot of
them we've discussed over the year. I would
say to you rather, it is the intention to cook
Time to Sparkle
something that counts here -- it's actually
having a plan and cooking it that counts.
Cook your favourites (we will be including
Gumbo Ya Ya, Gnocchi and home made
pasta), but also choose some simple ideas
from the many books and magazines that
abound (but remember, no salmon, or any
farmed fish please -- ask for what is local and
love the one you're with). Cooking is rarely
about the time involved, it's the working out
what to cook. To give yourself some more
sparkle time this Christmas season, plan.
As the year comes to its end, I'd like to
say to you all, thank you. You read me, you
write to me, you cook from me and send me
photos of babies smeared with Mama's Palak
Paneer. My family is precious to me, but you
also are part of my universal family and I am
honoured to share in your lives. Blessings
and sparkles to you.
© NOVA DECEMBER 2010
CLASSIC BASIL PESTO
MAKES 1 CUP
As far as I'm concerned, a house is not a
home without pesto. Apart from the fact it's so
delicious, it's a brilliant way to include vitamin
and mineral packed leafy greens. The olive
oil and fat from the pine nuts ensures all that
goodness is bio - available and it can redeem
almost anything. You can easily replace a
portion of the basil with parsley or young rocket.
• 2 handfuls basil leaves
• ½ cup/ 50 gm parmesan cheese
• 3 garlic cloves, crushed
• ¹/³ cup/ 80ml extra virgin olive oil
Place all ingredients in a food processor and
pulse until well combined. Try not to blend
for too long -- pesto should be chunky, not a
smooth, homogeneous blend.
DAIRY FREE PESTO
GLUTEN FREE - MAKES 1 CUP
• ²/³ cup /85gm pine nuts (try roasting them
• 3 cups /45gm basil leaves
• 2 teaspoons shiro (white) miso
• 2 cloves garlic
• 1 tablespoon lemon juice
• 100 ml extra virgin olive oil
Add all ingredients to a food processor and
blend until combined. Or in a mortar and pestle,
add all ingredients with a small amount of olive
oil, bash together until well combined and add
remaining olive oil.
FREE - MAKES 1 CUP
This olive spread will last for approx 2-3 weeks
in the fridge, and will immediately add depth of
flavour to what was otherwise dull and plain.
• 1 cup best quality olives, pitted - kalamata are
lovely for this
• 1 - 2 cloves garlic
• freshly ground black pepper to taste
• 7 - 8 fresh oregano leaves
• small sprig fresh rosemary - leaves only
• best quality extra virgin olive oil
Check the taste of your olives first -- if they are
very salty, you may need to give them a little
rinse under some water. Place all ingredients
in food processor and pulse until the desired
consistency is achieved -- I like it fairly coarse.
Taste and adjust if needed -- more pepper, garlic
or oregano leaves? Place into a clean jar and
top with a thin layer of olive oil.
LITTLE SAVOURY PIZZAS
WHEAT FREE IF SPELT PUFF
IS USED - MAKES 6
Better than anything you would spend big
money on in a patisserie -- line these up and
watch them disappear. They make a great
brunch or lunch, especially at Christmas when
ham is often in the fridge. With ready rolled
puff in the freezer, especially scraps, they take
about 5 minutes to assemble. For a vegetarian
version, simply omit the ham -- they still taste
• 1 x 24cm piece rolled puff pastry cut into 6
• organic, nitrate-free ham
• 2 medium, ripe tomatoes - sliced
• salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
• a good quality melting cheese (I like the Heidi
• fresh basil leaves
Pre heat oven to 190c (conventional) or 175c
Line a tray with baking paper and lay the slices
of puff on this.
Return to the freezer for a couple of minutes to
firm up. Working along the centre of each slice
of puff, lay the ham, then the tomatoes, salt and
pepper, topped with cheese and the basil leaves
tucked between the layers. Place in oven
and cook for 15 - 20 mins or until the pastry is
golden. If desired, top with pesto and/or olives
See our website novamagazine.com.au
for more of Jude's fabulous wholefood recipes
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