Upside down citrus, rosemary, olive oil and almond cake

I’ve dabbled in eating more healthily on and off for a couple of years. This year I drew a line in the sand and decided, no more dabbling! If I want to live the best version of my life, I’m going to have to pay attention to what I’m eating and how it makes me feel. When I was a dabbler, it always felt a bit too hard – too many ingredients that I didn’t recognise and way too much prep and organisation involved in making the gluten free, dairy free, refined sugar-free snacks that taste semi-decent. The first time I tried winging it to make healthy cupcakes they turned out like hockey pucks and were about as tasty.

The key to making it work was to find a couple of resources that I knew would hit it out of the park every time. Finding the right food blogs and recipe books with fail-safe recipes was a game changer.

Bek is my go-to for super delicious cake recipes. I like to wow people when it’s my turn to bring morning tea at the co-working space where I have my studio. Her plant-based food blog The Floured Kitchen has divine treats like – wait for it – upside-down caramel apple cake, beetroot & olive oil brownies with salted chocolate ganache, or how about date‐vanilla almond milk iced lattés & coffee cashew ice‐cream. Yummmmmm.

I spoke to Bek about how she got to be doing her food blog and she’s generously created this autumn / winter inspired recipe for me to share with you.

Tell us some background on you and how you got to be doing what you’re doing

I always loved to eat, though admittedly as a child I was a frustratingly picky eater. As I grew older however, my taste buds began to discover a world of exciting new flavours and textures, and this naturally evolved into an interest in cooking.

It wasn’t until I was in university undertaking a Speech Pathology degree, that this turned into a full-blown obsession. I completed my degree, but the real accomplishment of my university years was how my nature as a procrastinator had turned me into a passionate home cook and baker (I have a wild sweet tooth), by way of avoiding study. University led me to my true passion for cooking, baking and writing about it, and I learned that I needed creativity in my life to thrive.

As I continued past my university years though, I became more aware of the ethical and environmental concerns surrounding our food, and the impact of food on our health. I began to read extensively into these topics, and after much agonising (I did not want to give up cheese!), I decided to adopt a plant-based lifestyle and haven’t looked back since. I still wanted to continue to love and explore food, so I started my blog The Floured Kitchen to share my vegan and often floury cooking adventures.

What does mindful eating mean to you?

Mindful eating to me is being in the present moment while eating. It’s taking time out to stop, clear my thoughts, and simply enjoy whatever it may be that I’m about to put into my body. It’s choosing to eat food that both satisfies and nourishes. And it’s seeing food as something to celebrate – not as a calorie, not a fat or a carb or an annoyance, but as a small joy that makes me happy and full and provides me with all kinds of goodness.

Do you have a daily ritual that brings you joy?

Sitting down to a little sweet treat, with a cup of coffee and a friend or a good book is my ultimate way of slowing down and appreciating the present moment. Sweet baked goods hold a special place in my heart, for the sheer fact that they are completely unnecessary. They aren’t something we need in a nutritional sense, but they feed the spirit and bring people together. This little act of simply being and enjoying, if only for ten minutes or so, is a daily reminder that regardless of what else is going on, there are things to be grateful for.

The Recipe

This cake recipe is one that I come back to again and again, though with different variations depending upon the season. In the cooler months, citrus are at their peak, and when combined with earthy herbs they really transform into something special. You could use apples or pears rather than the citrus when they are looking fine at the farmers market. Or in the warmer months – peaches, nectarines or bananas. The options are endless. Seasonal eating brings you back to the here and now, and this cake recipe is a brilliant way to showcase the best that the season has to offer. It’s vegan, made with spelt flour and almond meal, and is sweetened with less processed alternatives to sugar. So, you can relax and enjoy a treat, whilst still giving your body the respect it deserves. To me, this is mindful eating at its best.

orange cake served on a handmade pottery plate

Upside down citrus, rosemary, olive oil + almond cake

Ingredients

citrus

3 tbsp vegan butter or coconut oil
3 tbsp light muscovado sugar or coconut sugar
1 tbsp maple syrup
1 tbsp citrus juice
1 large sprig rosemary
about 8 or so thin slices unwaxed citrus, enough to cover the bottom of the pan
 (blood oranges, oranges, grapefruit etc. whichever you like, or a nice mix)
1/2 tbsp finely chopped rosemary

cake

1/2 cup almond milk
1/2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 1/4 cup spelt flour
3/4 cup almond meal
1/4 cup chickpea/besan flour
1/2 tsp. fine sea salt
3/4 tsp. baking soda
3/4 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 cup packed light muscovado sugar or coconut sugar
1/2 cup good quality, mild extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup unsweetened coconut yoghurt (I like coyo)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
zest of one large unwaxed citrus fruit (blood orange, orange, grapefruit)

Method

citrus

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius / 350 Fahrenheit. Lightly oil a 20 cm / 8 inch round cake tin and line the bottom with a round of baking paper.
  2. Heat the butter, sugar, maple, citrus juice and rosemary sprig in a wide shallow pan over low-medium heat until the butter has melted. Add the citrus slices in an even layer and allow to gently cook in the syrup for 10 minutes, flipping gently halfway through.
  3. Remove the pan from the heat and allow to cool for 10 minutes.
  4. Sprinkle the chopped rosemary in the bottom of the prepared cake tin then arrange the citrus slices on top in a circle overlapping each other. Reserve the syrup in the pan for
    later.

cake

  1. Add the almond milk and apple cider vinegar to a measuring jug. Mix gently and leave to ‘activate’; for 10 minutes to create ‘buttermilk’.Add the flours, sea salt, baking soda, baking powder and spices to a large bowl and whisk to combine and aerate.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk together sugar, olive oil, ‘buttermilk’, yoghurt, vanilla, citrus zest. Fold the wet mixture through the flour mix until just combined and pour into the
    prepared tin over the citrus.
  3. Bake on the middle rack of the oven for about 25-30 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the middle of the cake comes with no gooey batter attached.
  4. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 15 minutes in the pan, then carefully invert onto a cooling rack and lift the tin off. It should slip right out, slide a knife around the
    edge if it needs a little help.
  5. Warm the leftover syrup from the citrus in the pan for a minute then brush onto the top of the cake. Place the rosemary sprig on top decoratively and decorate with more fresh sprigs if you’d like.
  6. Allow to cool completely then serve.

I love to serve this with maple whipped coconut cream or vegan vanilla ice-cream.

The cake will keep in a container in the fridge for 3 days.


Featured in this post are the dinner plate, fika plate and everyday deep bowl.

Green pea, leek & mint soup with spicy pepitas

Winter pea and mint soup, sprinkled with pepitas in a stoneware handmade bowl

Last winter, I was sitting with a friend, chatting and drinking spicy chai by the fireplace. I was feeling content but also a bit flat and a little bit quiet and I couldn’t muster the same sparkly enthusiasm she had that day. I apologised to her for feeling slow, and not in a good way I joked. She said don’t be sorry, and she told me a story that has stuck with me and it’s changed the way I think about the seasons we’re in.

She said; “In winter when the tree loses its leaves, when the flowers have fallen away and it doesn’t bear fruit, we don’t shake the tree and say, where’s your fruit? Your flowers? Your leaves? Why do you look so empty and so sad? We accept that the tree is doing exactly what it needs to. It’s turning inwards and grounding itself. The tree is busy planting its roots deep into the soil so that it will be stronger and more stable. We know that the tree needs this time to be bare and raw and we trust that it will be spring again in due time”.

What a powerful thing to give ourselves permission to be quiet, introverted and reflective. Let’s give ourselves time to be raw and sad and bare and not be in a hurry to be bright and cheerful all the time. To use quiet times to contemplate, to reflect, to grow stronger and plant roots and have trust that it will pass just as the winter always passes and turns to spring.

As we move through the last days of autumn here in the southern half of the world, I’m keeping it in mind, to be kinder to myself. To adopt the pace of nature and enjoy slower evenings at home.

Nothing compares to a bowl of homemade soup on a cold winters day. This recipe created by my friend Lise Walsh is nourishing and hearty, you can use frozen peas if you’re short on time and the pepitas add a crunchy texture that makes it so moreish.

Little handmade bowls with pepitas, hazelnuts and pepper

Shelling peas into a handmade bowl

Shelled peas in a stoneware handmade bowl

Winter pea and mint soup, sprinkled with pepitas in a stoneware handmade bowlIngredients

For the soup

1 onion
2 tbsp olive oil
3 cloves garlic- peeled
1 leek – white part only
750g frozen baby peas
1 litre vegetable stock
1 cup coconut milk
Salt and pepper
1/3 cup fresh mint leaves

For the spicy pepitas

1 cup pepitas
2 tsp olive oil
1/4 tsp ground chilli powder
1/4 tsp smoked paprika
Salt and pepper to taste

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees fan-forced.
  2. To make the spicy pepitas, place all ingredients into a bowl and mix well.
  3. Spread seeds onto an oven tray and bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden. Set aside.
  4. For the soup, roughly chop the onion and leek and sauté in a large saucepan with the oil, over medium heat until the onion and leek have softened and started to turn translucent. Add the finely chopped garlic and cook for a further 1 minute.
  5. Add the frozen peas to the onion mix and sauté for a further 5 minutes, stirring often. Add the stock and bring to the boil.
  6. Once soup has started to boil, reduce the heat and simmer until all the vegetables are soft.
  7. Remove from the heat. Add the coconut milk, mint and season with salt and pepper.
  8. Using a hand blender, blitz the soup until smooth.
  9. Serve soup topped with spicy roasted pepitas and toasted sourdough bread.

Featured in this post are the hibi bowl, dip bowl, everyday bowl, family bowl and the everyday deep bowl.

Simple bowl food recipes: Roasted Veggie Salad with Jess Thomson

We all have different approaches to mindfulness, and ideas about what mindful eating means. I’ve been chatting with some of my favourite people about how they practice slow living and mindful eating at home. Jessica is a busy Mum with a baby and toddler at home, she understands the value in carving out mindful moments in the day.


Jessica from Mindful Moose

Can you tell us some background on who you are, and how you got to be doing what you’re doing?

I always find this one so difficult to answer. I’m 27 and a Mum to two, and a fiancé to one. I have lived in Perth my whole life, and I love it. Around 8 years ago, I started creating healthier versions of foods that I loved, reducing the sugar and using natural sweeteners, replacing dairy and eggs etc in an effort to eat healthier and start taking care of myself. I stumbled on a bit of a passion of creating new recipes from there. I went vegan 6 years ago so that was a fun challenge for me, learning how to create vegan food without compromising on taste! I started my Instagram about 3-4 years ago, which really encouraged me to keep creating and sharing!

What does mindful eating mean to you?

To me, mindful eating is about eating with intention and being mindful of my food choices. I like to eat when I’m hungry and stop when I’m full. I like to treat myself often with raw cakes but I do it in a self-love treat kind of way, usually with a cup of tea and a nap break from the baby and toddler! Stopping for a bit. Taking a moment. I am mindful about what I’m eating, and where it comes from. I choose to eat without harm to other beings and that is really important to me. I became mindful and educated on what or who my food choices were, so could never return to eating anything non vegan. I love eating and living this way. I am always on a journey to have more “slowness” in our lives, as a bit of a naturally stressy person but I’m really enjoying where I’m at in just these last few years of intending to live more slowly.

Please share with us the recipe for one of your favourite ‘bowl foods’

Roasted vegetable and tahini salad

Roast Veg, Quinoa & Avocado Salad with Tahini Sauce

serves 2-3

Roast Veg

1 sweet potato, peeled
2 white potatoes
1/2 a butternut pumpkin, peeled
1/2 a red onion
1 small paprika or red capsicum
1 tbsp olive oil
1 sprig of rosemary, chopped
good pinch of sea salt
1/2 cup Quinoa, cooked according to packet directions
3-4 handfuls of greens of choice
1/2 an avocado, sliced into chunks

Tahini Sauce

1/4 cup tahini
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
2.5 tbsp water
2 tsp maple syrup
Pinch of sea salt

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 190C. Chop all of the vegetables into similar sized cubes, to ensure even roasting. Add them all to a baking tray and drizzle over the olive oil. Sprinkle with rosemary and sea salt before giving it a toss until evenly coated. Roast until the veggies fork tender and golden. Around 40 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile cook the quinoa and set aside. Let the vegetables and quinoa cool to room temp.
  3. Mix together all the ingredients for the tahini sauce in a small bowl.
  4. Add a handful of greens to your bowl. Pile on some quinoa, roast veg, avocado. Drizzle over the tahini sauce. Savour every mouthful.

Jessica uses the everyday deep bowl in ivory & the dip bowl in ivory.

Everyday bowl in whiteWinterwares handmade dip bowl

Summer Popsicles with Granola, Berry and Yoghurt

Summer is almost here, and with it that feeling of youthful happiness. Mornings spent at the beach, soaking up the warm sand and staring up at clear blue skies that go forever. The taste of summer is sweet watermelon and summer berries. This recipe uses delicious fresh berries, mixed with yoghurt and granola to make perfect summer popsicles. They’re a whole breakfast on a stick, made with just four ingredients! I love them so much I have them all day, not just for breakfast.

Granola berry popsicles

Summer inspired yoghurt, granola and berry popsicles.

Ingredients

  • 2 punnets of berrieswhatever’s in season, I used raspberries and strawberries (frozen berries work great too).
  • Two Tbs of honey
  • 3/4 cup of granolaespecially delicious if you make your own but you can buy some yummy granola already made.
  • 1 cup of yoghurtI use greek yoghurt, but you can use whatever good quality yoghurt you love.

Method

Roughly chop the berries and add them with the honey into a saucepan over low-medium heat. Once they start to soften, mash them up and remove from heat when they’ve turned to a thick saucy consistency. Let the mixture cool down.

To assemble the popsicles. Scoop a few spoons of the fruit mixture into the moulds. Add a layer of yogurt and top with some granola.

Pop them in the freezer over night and tomorrow morning you’ll be enjoying the quickest yummiest breakfast you’ve ever had on a stick.

Yogurt, berry and granola breakfast popsicles Yogurt, berry and granola breakfast popsicles

Images above show the Gather Together Platter, the Spice Bowl and Dip Bowl.

Photography by Angelica Talen

Semolina Pudding with Rhubarb & Blood Orange Compote with Katrine from My Capsule Kitchen

Blood Orange Semoline

Katrine started her online journal My Capsule Kitchen as a reaction to the onslaught of confusing messages about how to be healthy. She craved a simpler, more joyful approach to food – an alternative to guilt inducing approaches to eating that have strict rules and restrictions. Her philosophy is to be healthy and happy and to enjoy eating. Sometimes that means muesli and green juice, sometimes it involves cake and wine.


Could you tell us some background on who you are, and how you got to be doing what you’re doing?

Food has always played a huge part in my life. I love the memories it creates and how it connects you to who you are, where you come from and what you value. But what was once simple has become complicated.

We live in a world with information overload and are often made to feel guilty about the food we eat. The list of what you should add to or cut out of your diet is long. There is no shortage of recipes or advice but often it contradicts itself and not all of it applies to you. It left me confused and frustrated. I grew increasingly tired of trying to stick to other people’s rules of what my healthy diet should look like.

My approach to home cooking leans on the concept of a capsule wardrobe, which is all about owning less, making you feel good about yourself and finding your own style. I believe that finding balance and moderation is personal and needs more than a cookie cutter ‘one size fits all’ solution.

That’s why My Capsule Kitchen is about letting go of things that don’t serve you, creating a space you love cooking in, and recipe collections that are seasonal, balanced, achievable and most importantly uniquely yours. Green smoothies can happily co-exist with chocolate cake! It’s about shopping, cooking and feeding yourself and your family more intentionally, with less stress and more joy.

What does mindful eating mean to you?

Mindful eating means to me a guilt-free and joyful approach to food. Sometimes your circumstances don’t allow you to approach food or home cooking in a way that you know is ‘better’, but nourishment comes in many different forms. Home cooked meals with local and seasonal ingredients are nourishing and so is take away pizza at the end of a long and tiring day when it brings the family together.

Mindful eating for me is to allow yourself to tune into what is good for you, and achievable, right at this minute. And then enjoy that thoroughly without judgement.

Would you share with us one of your favorite simple recipes?

 

I love rhubarb because it reminds me of the simple and slow days of summer at my aunty’s house who has a hobby farm and garden. Very idyllic. She always came out of the garden with large stalks of rhubarb, ready to make compote.

Semolina

Per person I use 1 cup milk (hereI used oat milk) and 2 tbs semolina.
Simply combine in a non-stick saucepan and stir as it heats up and thickens. Take it off the heat when it’s still easy to stir, it will thicken further as it cools.

Rhubarb and Blood Orange Compote

5 stalks rhubarb, washed, peeled and chopped into 1 cm pieces
2 small blood oranges, juice only
3 tbs caster sugar

Combine in a saucepan and let simmer for about 20 mins, stirring occasionally.

I made this in advance and have it in a jar in the fridge. It’s nice to potter in the kitchen but it’s also nice not having to stress about all the different elements. Cooking only the semolina in the morning makes for a slower and more mindful breakfast preparation. Then you only have to top it off with the compote and nuts and seeds of your choice.

Nuts and Seeds

Black sesame seeds
Pumpkin seeds
Macadamias, chopped

Best eaten warm!

Katrine uses our Everyday Deep Bowl for her recipe.

Everyday bowl in white