When it comes to cooking, I believe the biggest mindset shift we need to make is that cooking is not a chore…it is what keeps us alive, healthy, full of energy. It is a labour of love! And we should be grateful for being able to do it in a world where we can mostly access anything. Eating a clean diet has helped my body immensely during chemotherapy. It helped me finish treatment feeling stronger and healthier. It helps me now to feel full of energy and vitality. “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food” Hippocrates This is what I believe from the bottom of my heart because I experienced it. By cleaning my diet, my body slowly got stronger during chemotherapy. Two years after I finished my cancer treatment, I feel physically and mentally the healthiest and happiest I have ever been. I can say food was a massive contributor to my recovery. I don’t crave bad food anymore. I am happy when I eat the closest to nature as I can. If anything I still improve my diet still to this date. I have also changed my whole family diet. Yes…the whole family… My kids were 6 and 4 when I was diagnosed with bowel cancer. It wasn’t fair on my husband to ask him to cook different meals for each of us. It wasn’t fair on my kids not to give them a chance to change anything they could to decrease their chances of ever getting bowel cancer as they are now on the bowel cancer genetic spectrum. They will need to get checked 10 years earlier than when I was diagnosed (which means they will need to be checked from age 28). We ear everything organic and as much local produce as we can. We don’t waste ANYTHING and the secret to achieve this is down to one simple thing PLANNING. These are some of our favourites….
Dinner or Lunch Recipes
[All my recipes are based on 2 adults and 2 kids]
Broccoli and Sweet Potato curry with cauliflower rice
2 large sweet potatoes cut in chunks
1 diced tomato tin
Grated ginger and garlic (as much as you like)
1-2 chillies (or as much as you like)
One handful of macadamia nuts – toasted and crushed – I did that myself
1 tsp of ground coriander
1 tsp of ground cumin
1/2 tsp of ground turmeric
3 Tbs spoons of coconut yoghurt or 1 tin of coconut cream
1 cinnamon stick
1 broccoli head
For the rice
1 cauliflower head (whizzed up on a food processor until it is fine as rice)
Sautee the cauliflower in olive oil just before serving
Steam the potatoes chunks.
Whizz the tomato tin, garlic, ginger and chilies with the roasted macadamia nuts.
In another sauce pan, add olive oil. Add the tomato mixture and simmer for 2-3 minutes.
Add the coconut cream or if using yoghurt add the yoghurt plus 2 cups of water.
Add infused organic herbs and vegetables (Herbamare) or salt.
After simmering for 5 minutes, add the cut up broccoli forests and the cooked potatoes and leave it to cook until the broccoli forests are tender.
Serve with the cauliflower rice.
Veggie chilli nachos
1 onion cut in small chunks
2-3 garlic cloves grated or cut finely
1-2 chillies finely chopped
2 tsps of ground cumin
1 teaspoon of paprika
1 teaspoon ground coriander
2-3 red or green pepper cut in small chunks
1 tin of diced tomato
1 cup of lentils or beans (if using tin, we like to use brown lentils, cannellini beans or 3 mixed beans) if using dry beans or lentils ( we use white beans or green lentils)
Lightly fry onion, garlic and chillies. Add spices and fry for 2 minutes or until you can smell them.
Add peppers and tomato tin. Simmer for 20 minutes then add lentils or beans (if using dry ones, you will need to cook them before)
Serve with quinoa or millet.
For the falafel
1 tin of Jackfruit and 1 tin of mixed beans
1 teaspoon of allspice
1 teaspoon of ground coriander
1 tablespoon of tomato paste
1 tablespoon of chickpea flour
Add all ingredients to a food processor. Make 12 patties and put in the oven for 15-20 minutes at 175C.
Roast peppers (cut in big chunks), onions, courgettes(cut in half length wise) and sweet potatoes (cut in small chunks to cook quicker)
Mixed salad with cherry tomatoes, cucumber, black olives and parsley. Add oregano, olive oil and apple cider vinegar. I don’t sue salt on my food – I use Avogel – which is a organic salt and infused vegetables – no chemicals – https://www.avogel.com.au/food/herbamare/
For the wraps
250g organic wholemeal flour
1 tbs of olive oil
150 ml water
Pinch of salt
Put all the ingredients together and knead the bread until it forms a dough. Divide it in 12 balls and set it aside.
When you are ready to roll, sprinkle the surface with flour and roll each ball to a flat bread size.
Dry fry until it is cooked
Make the wraps with whatever you like the most. I make the roasted sweet potatoes for the kids to eat aside.
Chickpea and Spinach curry
1 onion chopped
2-3 garlic cloves
5 cm of ginger root grated
5 cm of turmeric root grated (if you can get access to)
1 chilli (green or red) finely chopped
1 teaspoon of turmeric
1 teaspoon of paprika
1 teaspoon of garam masala
1 teaspoon of ground coriander
1 tomato tin
1 chickpea tin (or 2-3 cups of chickpea cooked from dry)
250 g of spinach
Lightly fry onion, garlic, ginger, turmeric and chillies. Add spices and fry for 2-3 minutes or until you can smell them.
Add chickpeas and tomatoes. Simmer for 20 minutes. Then add roughly chopped spinach
2 kg of tomato cut in halves
2 onions cut in half
2-3 garlic gloves
Roast the tomatoes face down with the onions and garlic. Add olive oil, oregano and any other condiment you may desire.
After 40 minutes, take the skins out (you don’t have to but I don because of the kids) and add everything to a blender.
Blend everything until soup consistent.
I have also added sweet potatoes and even potatoes to bulk it up. By the way, they are roasted too.
I make my kids home bread toast with grated organic cheese. I don’t it but I tell them if they eat the soup, this is the treat they get – cheese toasties.
These are great to snack on and to add to the kids lunch boxes.
250g dates – soaked for 20-30 minutes
1/3 cup of cashews
1/3 cup of Brazilian nuts
1/3 cup of macadamia nuts
Feel free to replace any nuts with almond, pistachio or any nuts
1/3 cup of cacao powder
1 tablespoon of ground linseed
Remove the pits out of the dates and add everything to a blender. Blend until smooth consistency. ( I use my food blender instead of my Vitamix as it is easier to blend such thick ingredients).
Make mouth size balls and roll on desiccated coconut
1 batch flax egg (1 flax egg = 1 Tbsp flaxseed + 2.5 Tbsp water)
3 medium ripe bananas
¼ cup of almond butter (or any nut butter)
3 Tbsp melted coconut oil)
½ cup of rice malt syrup
½ tsp sea salt
¾ cup of almond milk
1 Tbsp baking powder
1 ¾ cup of almond meal
1 ¼ cup of gluten-free flour blend (I add a mixture of buckwheat and coconut)
1 1/3 cup of oats
½ cup of raw walnuts
Preheat the oven to 176C (350 degrees)
Prepare flax egg and leave it to rest for 5 minutes in the fridge. Add the bananas and mash it well.
Add almond butter, coconut oil, rice malt syrup, sea salt and almond milk and whisk it to combine.
Add baking powder, almond meal, gluten free flour blend, oats and stir to combine.
Lastly add the walnuts and stir to combine
Bake it for 1 hour and 15 minutes but after 45 minutes, check it if it is done as depending on the gluten free flour blend you use, it will cook it quicker. The cake should be crackly and golden brown on top.
Banana and date biscuits
1 cup dates (soaked)
2 tablespoons of nut butter (peanut, almond or mix nuts)
¾ cup almond meal – I male that myself in the food processor first)
¾ cup of gluten-free rolled oats
Optional add-ins: flaxseeds, seeds, vegan chocolate chips, 70% dark chocolate chips
After making the almond meal, add all the ingredients in and blend it. If needed, add a teaspoon of coconut oil to bind it.