Let me start by saying that I’m currently based in Paris for 6 months and am having the time of my life. I live in an adorable (read: tiny) flat and I absolutely love it. HOWEVER, my only complaints are:

a) I don’t have an oven.

b) I don’t have a food processor.

Whilst I enjoy going over to my friend’s apartment to bake desserts using her oven whenever I get the opportunity, sometimes I get the urge to create a delicious sweet treat right then and there, without schlepping the ingredients half-way across Paris and carrying the finished product home in tupperware. So I’ve had to experiment with recipes which require no equipment but my own hands (and perhaps a bowl and a fork for mixing).

My most recent kitchen creation: these Raw Brownies with a Salted Caramel Frosting. They are unbelievably tasty, so beware – you won’t be able to stop at just one! The best part is that they’re genuinely healthy, rich in protein, fibre, minerals and antioxidants from the cacao, PLUS they’re free from gluten, dairy and refined sugar, and suitable for vegans. The scrumptious frosting is so simple to whip together and is, quite literally, the icing on the cake!

Raw Protein Brownies with Salted Caramel Frosting

Ingredients – Base:

1 cup ground almonds

1 scoop chocolate protein powder (I use MissFits – use my discount code CPB20 for 20% off)

1 tablespoon raw cacao powder (I use myvitamins – use my discount code ELI25 for 15% off)

3/4 tablespoon peanut butter

1/2 tablespoon almond butter

1/5 cup almond milk (I use Califia Farms)

2 tablespoons date syrup

3 tablespoons dark chocolate (at least 70%), broken into small chunks

1 tablespoon hazelnuts, roughly chopped

Ingredients – Salted Caramel Frosting:

2 heaped tablespoons cashew butter

2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted

1 tablespoon maple syrup

 

Method:

1. Add all Base ingredients to a bowl and mix very well, using a fork or even your hands.

2. Press into the base of a lined cake tin.

3. Add all Salted Caramel Frosting to a bowl and mix very well with a fork.

4. Spread the topping over the base and place in the freezer to set for a minimum of 2 hours, or the fridge for longer.

After going vegetarian in my second year at university, I very quickly had to learn how to satisfy that desire for a juicy burger, so that I could have these on hand in the freezer after a night out when my house-mates were getting McDonald’s or ordering Domino’s. I found recipes online for black bean burgers and created a delicious recipe for these chickpea burgers, which find their way into my lunch box on a regular basis, usually alongside some veggies, quinoa/rice and a big dollop of my Homemade Hummus!

I love getting creative in the kitchen, so I figured if I can make such tasty burgers out of chickpeas, what about other pulses/beans? Like edamame? I got experimenting and the results seriously exceeded my expectations!

These have a slight kick from the chilli and are super high in protein and fibre, so make a much healthier alternative to your typical greasy burger dripping in oil! Whether you are veggie or not, give these a go for a fun alternative to whatever your regular burger might be.

Ingredients:

1 tin edamame beans

140g chestnut mushrooms, finely chopped

3 tablespoons buckwheat flour

1/4 teaspoon thyme

1/4 teaspoon oregano

1/8 teaspoon chilli flakes

2 teaspoons coconut oil

1 cup rice (I used white rice this time but any rice works well)

1 pinch of sea salt

1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil

Method:

1. Boil 2 cups of water in a saucepan. When starting to bubble, add the rice and salt.

2. After 2 minutes, reduce the heat to a simmer, cover with a lid and leave for about 30 minutes, until all the water has been absorbed.

3. Drain and rinse the edamame beans, then roughly mash them in a bowl or lightly pulse in a food processor – but leave some chunks.

4. Heat 1 teaspoon coconut oil in a frying pan and add the chopped mushrooms and the oregano. Fry for 4 minutes then add the mushrooms to the bowl with the beans.

5. Add 2 tablespoons buckwheat flour, thyme and half the chilli flakes to the bowl and stir well.

6. Roll into 6 patties and dust with the last tablespoon of buckwheat flour.

7. Heat 1 teaspoon coconut oil in the frying pan and fry the burgers for 4 minutes on one side, then flip and fry for 3 minutes on the other side – you may need to do this in two batches if the pan isn’t big enough.

8. Assemble the rice in 2 bowls and top each bowl with 3 mini burgers. Drizzle half a teaspoon of olive oil over each bowl and sprinkle the remaining chilli flakes.

 

If you try my recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram @cerealandpeanutbutter – I absolutely LOVE seeing your recreations.

 

As well as giving curries that gorgeous yellow/orange hue, turmeric is one of the most potent spices in the world at fighting disease and potentially reversing it altogether. This medicinal herb has so many healing properties thanks to its active ingredient, curcumin.

Here are the top 5 health benefits of turmeric, plus 2 ways for your body to absorb the maximum amount possible.

1. Anti-inflammatory – the active ingredient, curcumin, helps to inhibit inflammation-causing molecules in the body.
2. Antioxidant – neutralizes free radicals and increases the body’s antioxidant capacities.

3. Anti-cancer – studies have proven that curcumin can inhibit the growth of cancerous cells on a molecular level.

4. Fights depression – scientific evidence has shown that turmeric can boost levels of serotonin and dopamine in the brain, acting as an antidepressant.

5. Proven to help prevent multiple diseases including Alzheimer’s and Arthritis, and lowers the risk of heart disease by 65% when taken daily!

6. Curcumin is a fat-soluble substance so consume it with a meal that contains healthy fats (avocado, nuts, eggs).

7. Consuming turmeric with black pepper (bioperine) increase its absorbtion in the body by 2000%. That’s right – two thousand per cent!!
So what are you waiting for? Go on and sprinkle some turmuric all over your life! Add it to smoothies, soups, curries, stews… just be careful not to stain your clothes with it – I learnt the hard way!

Click here for the recipe to my Turmeric Tonic – a warming golden milk.

Click here for the recipe to my Indian Lentil Dahl made with turmeric.

 

Today I am SO excited to have Liz Lyons on my blog – author of www.breakfastin.com.au and creator of the @breakfastinperth, @breakfastinmelbourne and @breakfastinsydney Instagram pages, with over 350,000 followers. After featuring my post Breakfast In Madrid  on her website, she is now sharing her top FOUR brekkie spots in Melbourne. Introducing Liz…

 

PEDRO ESPRESSO – ST KILDA ROAD

This hidden gem is a little bit hard to find (located in the base of an office building on St Kilda Road) but it is worth the exploration. They’ve just refreshed the menu and have a very tasty Benedict with pulled pork, a delicious ramen, and one of the best smashed avos going around.

 

Their coffees are made on the Slayer Espresso Steam Machine (which is apparently the best in the biz) so definitely grab a latte while you’re there.

 

Pedro

DISTRICT NORTH – MOONEE PONDS

District North is serving up one of the most colourful menus in Melbourne. We’re talking amazing brekkie bowls, epic pancake specials, ridiculously decadent French toast and crazy smoothies and juices.

 

The space is large, so you shouldn’t have to wait too long if they’re busy. (Which is always a win – #somanycafestotrysolittletime)

District North

SAINT JAMES CAFÉ – MALVERN

This English-inspired café’s menu provides a nod to the Motherland. They’ve got black pudding, a fish finger butty (fish finger sandwich) and the must try- their delicious pikelets.

 

Go on a sunny day and hang out in their gorgeous courtyard (which is also pup-friendly!).

Saint James Café

 

HOLLA – RICHMOND

Okay first thing’s first, these guys do a MAC AND CHEESE EGGS BENE. Yup, not a drill.

 

The interior is as cool as their menu, lots of plants and a soothing tropical vibe. Happy hour’s everyday from 2pm and means that you can knock back one of their yummy cocktails for only $9.

 

Holla

 

Be sure to check out www.breakfastin.com.au for more by Liz!

 

If you’ve been on Instagram in the last few weeks and follow a couple of food bloggers, the chances are you’re well aware of the latest trend: UNICORN TOAST. This craze involves using natural food dyes such as beetroot and turmeric to colour cream-cheese which is then spread on toast. The rainbow-themed breakfast has taken social media by storm, and was started by Miami-based Adeline Waugh (A.K.A. @vibrantandpure).

As part of the fast-growing tribe of people who avoid dairy for one reason or another, I thought I would share with you a step-by-step guide for a delicious alternative to cream-cheese if you want to recreate your own dairy-free unicorn toast!

TIP: Don’t be afraid to experiment with nature’s vibrant pigments to end up with a work of art.
Colour code:

Hot pink = beetroot juice
Light pink = crushed strawberries
Purple = açai powder
Violet = blueberry powder
Orange = ground turmeric
Light green = matcha powder
Dark green = spirulina powder

Ingredients for the Base Cream:

1/2 cup raw cashews

1/4 tablespoon coconut oil

2 teaspoons maple syrup

1/4 lemon, juiced

2 drops vanilla extract

Pinch sea salt
Optional add-ins: 1 tablespoon chickpeas / 1 teaspoon tahini, 1 teaspoon maca/lucuma/baobab powder

Method:

1. Soak the cashews in water for at least two hours.

2. Drain the cashews and  blend in a food processor or strong blender with all remaining ingredients.

3. Divide the base cream into as many bowls as colours you are making.

4. Stir in one natural food colouring (see above) to each bowl.

5. Spread on toast in colours stripes or splotches, then use a knife to smear the colours together.

6. Garnish with crushed pistachios, goji berries, chia seeds, or like Adeline, multi-coloured sprinkles!

7. Photograph (non-negociable) then dig in!

Let me know if you guys have a go on Instagram @cerealandpeanutbutter .