Spicy Porridge

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Mel’s in Europe at the moment which means that mornings at home have changed quite drastically. I no longer wake with Mel’s sleepy face running to the bathroom to go pee (she pees a lot! haha – sorry for that reference Mel), nor do we get to go on beach walks together early in the morning before the rest of Melbourne wakes. We don’t get to sit at the table with our organic coffees whilst talking about the events of the day and we definitely don’t get to make a wholesome breaky that we can both enjoy. Missing out on all of this sounds so sad and tragic but I am using this as an opportunity to self reflect and tune into what my body needs.

 My mornings are now 100% dedicated to ‘me’ time. I wake pretty early, do some slow movement which is usually in the form of yoga, a light weights session or a beach walk (around half an hour) I then commit to 15 minutes of meditation using the 1 giant app. (highly recommend this app for anyone new to meditation) I have found that I don’t really need the app anymore, but I do love having that extra guided support so I’ve continued to use it.

After around 45 minutes on my mat, I make my way to the kitchen and prepare myself a wholesome, nourishing and satisfying breakfast. I’ve started to mix it up a bit to give my body an array of nutrients day to day. Mel and I have also taken a deep interest into Ayurvedic medicine so my meals have now also evolved around Ayurvedic principles (not all meals but I try to be mindful about how I can add an Ayurvedic touch when I can). Mel knows much more about this than I do so I’m sure she’ll be posting frequently about this topic soon!

 We are definitely mostly ‘Vata’ types so foods that ground are highly beneficial for us. I have found that my body is responding very well to foods that are mostly cooked rather than raw, with adding spices and ghee whenever I can. Ghee is clarified butter which is an extremely nutritious alternative to traditional butter or oil. I have also loved making homemade chai’s either after dinner or in the morning.

In terms of breaky, I have begun to introduce porridge in the mornings. I love making a warming bowl of organic oats or rice flakes with added turmeric ginger and sometimes carrot. Topping with yoghurt, or adding whole organic unhomogensied milk is also fantastic. I don’t particularly love sweet breakfasts so I tend to opt for a more savoury type but in saying that I also do love to indulge in a banana and coconut porridge from time to time.

After nourishing my body and If I have a bit of time, i’ll make myself an organic coffee at home with biodynamic unhomogensied milk (the only milk Mel and  I will drink). Enjoying my coffee whilst checking in with emails, social media (terrible habit) and journalling, I’ll head for the shower. I like to body brush for about 5 minutes before showering and only use certified natural body wash in the shower. Reducing my toxic load is a priority for me. The only moisturiser I use for my body is coconut oil. It works tremendously for me, I absolutely love it!. Plus I bought a massive jar for around 16 dollars and its lastly me ages! Bargain!

There is my morning routine. I have noticed that if I don’t do all of these things, I feel somewhat unsettled and ‘off’. The power of the morning is so understated.

Just realising how much I have just ranted in this post (sorry!) I just wanted to make a point highlighting that finding a morning routine that works for you is a very self-nurturing and self-respecting way to welcome the day. Whether that be taking some time out to read the paper or sit outside calmly with your coffee – our mum loves to start the day like this, or walking the dog around the block. Whatever it is, find what works, find what you love and find what you can stick to every morning. Do this and your body and mind will thank you for the rest of the day.

Trust me.

p.s I miss mornings with Mel.

Finally, here is my spicy porridge recipe

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Ingredients; serves one

– 1/2 cup of organic oats (or gluten free oats if intolerant)

– 1.5 cups of water. (if you want a creamier consistency, you can add half a cup of coconut milk or unhomogensied full cream milk plus 3.4 cups of water)

– 1 tbsp of organic sultanas

– 1.5 tsp of grated ginger (can add more depending on how spicy you like it!)

– 1.5 tsp of grated turmeric (can add more depending on how spicy you like it!)

-1/2 tsp of macrobiotic salt or himalayan salt

– 1 tsp of hemp seeds (preferably unhulled)

-1 tsp of golden flax seeds

-1 tsp of pepita seeds (pumpkin seeds)

Originally I wanted to create this dish with a tad of Japanese influence so sprinkling your porridge with tamari toasted sesame seeds would be perfect! I’ll definitely try that next time!

Method

1) Grate your ginger and turmeric finely and add to a saucepan with your oats, water and sultanas.

2) Cook your oats on the stove on a low heat for around 20 minutes. You want the flavours of the turmeric and ginger to infuse into the oats so the longer you cook it the better!

3) Once ready, pop into a nice bowl and top with the seeds. If you have sesame seeds, whilst your pats are cooking you can toast about a 1.5 tsp of sesame seeds in a small pan with a tad more salt or tamari. If toasting with salt, this method is called Gomasio. Gomasio is a wonderful addition to any dish, its grounding and super tasty!

4) Enjoy your oats on a cosy couch (I most definitely did!)

Hope you enjoy it

So much love,

Sarah x

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Zucchini & Pea Soup with Poached Chicken and grilled Haloumi

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We have entered autumn. That means, we have entered soup season!

We’ve been feeling a little low and run down due to an overload of uni and part time jobs. So  in an attempt to cure our poor sleep deprived and stressed souls, we decided to make a green soup. We love our greens but aren’t really the types to start the morning with a green smoothie so a green soup works for us perfectly. The generous amount of turmeric and garlic gives this delightful meal an immunity boost – just ready to fight off cold and flu season. The added packed chicken also adds a nice touch of protein and the haloumi just tops it off with that ‘creaminess’ that every soup requires!

Go on, make our green soup! It’s super easy

Ingredients – Serves four as an entree or three as a main. 

– Four large zucchinis

– One small head of broccoli

– 1.5 – 2 cups of frozen organic garden peas

– 1 litre of pure water (or vegetable stock if you have one pre-made)

– Half an onion

– 2 cloves of garlic

– 2 heaped teaspoons of ground turmeric

– 1 teaspoon of ground cumin

– 1 Bay leaf

– 3 sprigs of fresh rosemary

– A generous pinch of himalayan salt

– Pepper to taste

– A knob of coconut oil

– 2 organic chicken breasts

– 60 grams of Haloumi

– 4 teaspoons of superfood dukkah

Method

1. Start by preparing all your green vegetables. Thoroughly wash them and dice into 2 cm pieces (the size doesn’t matter all that much as they’ll be blended at the end)

2. Heat the coconut oil in a pot and once hot, stir fry the onion and garlic with a dash of water. Once the onion gathers a bit of colour, add another dash of water plus the turmeric and cumin. Let the spices mix with the onion and garlic. This should start to smell very inviting!

3. Next step, add all your veggies, bay leaf and himalayan salt. Let this green goodness tenderise for a couple of minutes

4. Add your 1 litre of water. Put the lid on and let it simmer for about 30 minutes.

5. In the meantime, heat up another pot of water with a pinch of salt and dice your chicken breast into 2-3 cm pieces. When the water has reached boiling, add your chicken and let it boil for about 5-7 minutes.

6. Whilst the chicken is cooking, this should give you enough time to prepare your haloumi. You can either place the haloumi in a fry pan to brown the edges or you can place the cheese until a grill. Up to you! This should only take a few minutes

7. When the chicken is ready, (you still want it to be succulent so check it every couple of minutes) strain it and place to side.

8. Return your attention to the soup. The veggies should be quite tender at this point. Now all you need to do is blend it all up with a blender stick (is that what it’s called…..?)

9. Ladle the soup into four bowls. Next place the haloumi and chicken in the middle. Finish with a generous sprinkle of homemade dukkah and fresh parsley

10. You could also toast a comforting thick slice of dark rye bread with a drizzle of olive oil. Our mum’s wholemeal spelt would also work wonderfully.

10. EAT

We hope you like it! Please let us know on instagram (@thymes.two) what you think and if you have any suggestions!

M +S xx

Super Green Breakfast Spread

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As many of you would have noticed – we have changed our name to THYMESTWO. We eventually would like to expand our blog into something a bit more exciting in the future so we gathered that a new look would be a perfect start. We’re still keeping avocadotimestwo as our web address (partially because we still love the name but mostly because we’re severely handicapped when is comes to technology) but thymestwo is the name we will go by on our instagram. All change is good change right? 

Let us know what you think! Would love to hear some feedback

So in-between work, uni and yoga, we’ve been spending a bit of time in the kitchen. In an attempt to spice up our breaky boards (not literally ‘spice’ – chilli really doesn’t agree with our taste buds!), we came up with a light savoury green paste that goes perfectly with sliced avocado. We wanted to call it a pesto but to be honest it really doesn’t do traditional pesto any justice what so ever so we’re keeping it to a ‘spread’.

This recipe is extremely easy to throw together and is a tremendous way to sneak in some extra greens in the morning. If you’re adding sliced avocado which we highly recommend that you do then you’re not only getting in extra greens, but you’re also doubling up on your omega-3’s with the added olive oil and sunflower seeds. Adding eggs would also be fabulous as protein (Eggs and kale), complex carbs (wholemeal spelt) and healthy oils (avocado, sunflower seeds, eggs and olive oil) perfectly balance each other to sustain you with long lasting energy.

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Please feel free to add more or less of any of the ingredients to suit our own taste buds. We personally didn’t want to make it too oily, as we were looking for a thicker ‘paste like’ consistency. But hey, everyone is different so give it a go and tweak it if need be. Oh and we would love to see your creations on instagram – tag us @thymes.two so we can view your breaky boards!

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Ingredients

– One small broccoli head (organic if possible)

– 1.5 cups of tuscan kale (or regular kale- we just used up the kale that was left over in the fridge)

– A cup of fresh basil leaves

– 1/3 cup of sunflower seeds*

– 1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil*

– 1/3 cup of water*

– A generous pinch of himalayan salt

– A generous pinch of dried thyme

– Pepper (to taste)

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Method

1. Thoroughly wash the kale, broccoli and basil leaves.

2. In a food processor, first blend the broccoli and kale until you reach the consistency you want. (still a bit chunky)

3.  Add the remaining ingredients

4. We added water to the mixture to help it hold together but you could just add my olive oil.

5. Once you have blended the ingredients to the consistency you want, enjoy on some toasted spelt loaf with sliced avocado and tomato, or with poached eggs!

Voila!

If you love your pesto (doesn’t everyone..?) feel free to have a look at our ‘Creamy pesto’ in our recipe tab! Our creamy pesto is also fabulous on toast and baked fish. 

Stay Green Guys! 

*If you wanted to create more of a typical ‘pesto’ taste you could add extra olive oil/reduce the water and replace the sunflower seeds with pine nuts.

M + S xx

Creamy Pesto

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So, for our dad’s birthday we decided to have a relaxed night and cook him dinner at home. The menu was decided the day before – oven baked atlantic salmon on a bed of fresh spinach, roasted vegetables and blistered tomatoes. To us – this sounded wonderful. Not sure if many of you are aware, but atlantic salmon is by far our most favourite meal.

Anyway, a few wines into the night, we decided to start on dinner. Everything was going well until Mel asked ‘Sarah, what do we do about a sauce…?’.

The thing is, we never add sauces or condiments to our meals when cooking for just the two of us. We’re not saying we like plain food (…ew), we consider our cooking more along the lines of gourmet. We live by the philosophy that simply food, in it’s purest form – is the best. You know, herbs and veggies from your garden, good quality cheese, plump olives, heaps of good quality fats, home baked bread – you get the picture.

Also, due to our Italian background (thanks mum), we probably cook with a bit of mediterannean influence. Lots of olive oil , fresh herbs and red wine. Despite these lovely flavours, we never add ‘sauces’. If you appreciate the versatility of olive oil, you’ll understand this.

Back on track…as we were cooking for our food loving father, we thought a sauce would be more than ideal. SO in a frenzy amidst our food prep, we rushed to the herb garden and picked some beauties to make a lovely pesto. By the way, we cooked a dinner for four after three glasses of red. Go us..

This creamy pesto is full of life and love.

Just the way italians like it.

Ingredients 

– Half a cup of basil leaves

– Three twigs of rosemary (about a quarter of a cup)

– Thyme leaves (we just added a few as we were short for time and the leaves take a while to pick from the stem. If you have your own herb garden you’ll understand – terrible we know)

– Two cups of spinach leaves

– A third of a cup of walnuts (macadamia nuts would also work)

– A quarter of a cup of goats cheese

– A pinch of himalayan salt (do not use table salt! Table salt os very bad for you, we will be blogging about this shortly)

– Pepper to taste

– A quarter of a cup of extra virgin olive oil

– A quarter of a cup of water

Method

Look it would be great if we could post some long description as to how to actually make this marvellous spread in an attempt to make it look sophisticated and complicated but it really is too simply…Literally chuck all the ingredients into a food processor. If you don’t have a food processor on hand, a blender will work perfectly.

Serve this spread as desired. We loved it on our fish, but it would go lovely on a piece of freshly baked bread.

Done and Dusted.

M + S xx

 

Raw Crunchy Green Salad with Poached Chicken

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So you know those days when you feel a little sluggish and gross? Those days when you feel like a salad but the usual roast veggie throw together is just too heavy for your poor little belly? Well, we have come up with a simple, refreshing and light green salad to ease away your tummy sorrows.

If wanting to keep it vegetarian (as protein can be a little heavy if you’re having digestive issues) – then omit the chicken….but it really is nicer with chicken – just saying! 

Here is goes..

Ingredients: We try and use organic produce whenever we can, especially for the chicken!

2 small broccoli heads or one large (raw)

Half an avocado

Around six asparagus sticks (raw)

Half a zucchini (raw)

1 + 1/5 medium chicken breasts

Haloumi

Parsley and Mint (we grow our own, definitely recommend growing your own herbs)

1/4 of a Lemon

Olive oil (around a tablespoon per serve)

Pepper and himalayan salt (to taste)

Method:

1) Place some water and salt in a pot and bring to boil

2) In the meantime, cut chicken breast into small cube-like chunks (try and get the pieces the same size so they cook at the same rate).

3) Wash all the vegetables THOROUGHLY.

4) Cut up the vegetables any way you like, we tend to simply break up the broccoli and then cut it into smaller pieces (even the stem). With the zucchini and asparagus we also cut them into small bit sized pieces.

5) When the water is ready place the chicken pieces in for around 4-6 mins. You will have to test a piece to ensure they are not too pink inside. You want the chicken to be soft enough if you wanted to shred it. However we do not tend to shred ours, we prefer leaving them in cubed chunks. But each to their own! 🙂

6) Cut up haloumi into small rectangular pieces. Pan fry until golden on both sides. You can use some coconut oil if you wish, we never do as we don’t see the need to.

7) Dice the avocado

8) Now its time to get your hands dirty and mix all the ingredients together in a large bowl! Add the olive oil, lemon, pepper and himalayan salt. And finally top it off with your herbs!

Very simple – Great detoxifying foods that will leave you feeling refreshed and satisfied!

Get some Greens in Ya!

Portobello mushrooms stuffed with a green mash accompanied by a side of sautéed green vegetables

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Ingredients

For the Green Pea filling;

– One cup of frozen garden peas

– Half a cup of edamame beans (can find in most asian grocers)

– Half a medium sized avocado

– 30 grams Goats cheese (can omit if keeping it vegan)

– A quarter of a small zucchini grated

– A pinch of himalyan salt

– Pepper

– Oregano

For the sautéed vegetables;

– Brussel sprouts washed and cut in half

– One head of broccoli washed and broken up

– Coconut oil

– One clove of garlic

– Oregano

– Sage

– Pepper

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Method

1. Preheat the oven to 160 degrees

2. Start washing and cutting your vegetables so that they are ready to go when you need them.

3. Start prepping the green mixture by first smashing the avocado and goats cheese in a medium sized bowl. Add the green peas and continue smashing. You still want the peas to keep their shape (more or less). Next add the edamame beans. Take the edamame out of their pods and remove the outer coating to make it easier to mash with the other ingredients. Lightly fold through the zucchini to add some moisture to the mixture. Finally combine the salt, pepper and oregano and viola your mash is done!

4. With your two portobello mushrooms, remove the centre with a spoon to create a flat middle. Leave the edges curved so that the mixture can be held in place.

5. Add the mixture to the mushrooms and top with a table spoon of pepita seeds for some crunch. You can choose whatever seed or nut you want, we chose pepita to keep with the green theme.

6. Place in the oven for around 15 minutes or until you start to see the mushroom browning on the outside. *Please note that as the mushrooms contain avocado, its best not to leave them in the oven for too long as it will alter the natural taste and creaminess of the avocado.

7. As your mushrooms are in the oven, you can start sauteing your vegetables that you would have already washed and cut in half prior to making your green mash.

8. Heat a wok with a tiny bit of coconut oil and start sauteing about a teaspoon of garlic until browned. Once browned, add a dash of water with some oregano and sage. (you can choose any spices you wish – we just love oregano and sage!). The water should be bubbling a bit, if you feel it is burning, turn down the heat and add more water.

9. Add the vegetables and cover the wok with a lid for about 8-10 minutes.

10. Your vegetables should be tender by this point so this is when you remove the lid and saute the veggies until you see some browning. Turn off the heat and serve!

11. Take the mushrooms out of the oven, add some olive oil and some more pepper and oregano. Place on a plate with the sautéed veg and viola! A green themed dinner ready to devour!

This asian/italian inspired green mash can be added to your weekend breaky menu! A generous spread of green goodness onto a piece of crusty rye bread would go down a treat.

S + M xx