Vegetarian Experience

Howdy!

I thought Id quickly write about my experience with being a vegetarian in terms of why I chose to cut out meat, how I emotionally felt about it, how it physically affected me after the three month mark, and why I decided to start eating meat again. Yes I went on a bit of a rollercoaster with my diet however I feel as though I needed to go through it in order to understand what works for me and my limits with meat consumption.

So here it is,

Back in the day, well around 6 months ago when I was travelling Europe solo I found myself in an Argentinian restaurant ordering a 300 gram beef tenderloin in Milan with my beautiful cousin. As it arrived on my plate, all I could think about was the fact that I was eating an animal. I had never felt this before and it was the first time I understood why some people become vegetarian and never look back. Ever since that evening my want for meat fizzled away and I made the conscious decision when I arrived back to Melbourne that I did not want to eat animal protein again. I cut out red meat, poultry and fish for a good three months. I started to add beans and pulses to my meals and was having quite a good time soaking the beans and watching them sprout and then cooking them in a pot. The whole experience of cooking beans entertained me for quite some time. I did not feel the need for meat at all, and I found myself even starting to feel repulsed from eggs (but I never gave them the flick).

Everything was going fine and dandy until I started to feel fatigued on a regular basis, hungry every two hours, my digestion slowed down and I felt bloated almost every day. These symptoms started to happen around 3 months after I gave up meat, which is usually when you begin to feel the affects on your body after making the change. On top of that, my acupuncture practitionor told me that my thyroid glands were not working properly (they became under active), which explained all of my symptoms. Around this time I started to crave the feeling of biting into flesh. I know that may sound a little strange but that is the best way of explaining the way I was feeling. It was as if the inner mammal in me was crying out for prey. I decided to listen to my bodies needs and started to introduce fish back into my diet, and not long after that I re introduced chicken and now I am back eating red meat once again. I still do not feel 100% okay with the consumption of another animal, however I have put my health first in order to support my under active thyroid and adrenal fatigue.

Sarah and I are back at drinking bone broths together, slow cooked meals, crispy skinned king fish and pan fried curry chicken. We source grass fed, organic meat and shop at local farmers markets and healthful stores. The fact that we only buy the best meat you can find and we only eat meat in moderation makes me feel slightly better inside.

So why have I just explained my feelings about eating animals to you guys? Because as we post about organic food and living a conscious lifestyle, I wanted to keep you all in the loop with my vegetarian adventures and to give you an insight into why I personally chose to make a rather big change to my life.

Anyway thats all from me now,

Its time for a drink, ciao!

Melanie

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Spring Salad Series #6

Olive Oil Spelt Penne with Sautéed Greens 


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Who doesn’t love pasta? (no one…)

Spelt pasta teamed with organic greens and olive oil go perfectly together. This dish is super simple and takes only a few minutes to prepare, ideal for a mid week lunch or dinner

* Due to our gluten intolerance we tend to opt for spelt or buckwheat pasta as our bellies can tolerate these grains a lot better


Ingredients

Organic Spelt Penne (enough to serve two)

One small organic broccoli head

Three large organic leaves of silver beet

Half a cup of frozen organic garden peas

One tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil

Pepper (to taste)

Himalayan salt (to taste)

Fresh organic parsley (to garnish)

One heaped teaspoon of nutritional yeast


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Method

Put on a put of water with some himalayan salt and bring to a boil

Once boiling add the pasta, we usually cook our pasta for around 10 minutes however this will vary on the type of pasta and how cooked you like your pasta to be. We prefer it more on the al dente side!

Meanwhile, break the broccoli head and finely chop the silver beet leaves. In a large wok add these vegetables and the garden peas with a dash of water. Sauté for around 3 minutes, our until the frozen peas are no longer frozen

Once the pasta is ready, drain out the water and put the pasta back into the pot. Add the olive oil, pepper, salt and nutritional yeast and mix all together. Then you can add the vegetables and give it another good mix

Separate into two bowls and top with parsley. It really is as easy as that kids! A simple, satisfying and beautiful dish that can be enjoyed at any time of the day

Now were off to enjoy this spring sunshine, Ciao!

Spring Salad Series #2

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We’re off to Europe in exactly 10 weeks. It’s no secret that we are completely, 100% obsessed with everything to do with the European culture. The fresh food, old buildings, their train systems, cute bakeries, red wine (lots of red wine), the coop (only a few people would understand this), friendly people and most importantly our family in Neuchatel, Switzerland.

Our love for Europe has come to a stage where we are trying to set up camp over there, permanently. This means a lot of research, visas, Italian passports, what do we do with our clothes?! how much money do we need? etc. It has been quite a headache. But so worth it.

Amongst this research, we have been taking our time in the kitchen, cooking and creating beautiful recipes to share with the world. As we have started our Spring Salad Series, this week we had to come up with salad number 2! Feeling a bit sluggish today, we opted for a lighter salad, bringing us back to our European summers.

Hope you enjoy this meal! Make sure to share it with family and close friends, no one likes eating alone.


Fennel, Celery, Rocket and Sardine Salad with black Sesame

Organic Ingredients

Serves two

Half a fennel

One celery stalk

Two handfuls of rocket

Two small oranges (we picked these from our garden)

One can of sardines in olive oil

One teaspoon of black sesame seeds

Few sprigs of fresh parsley

Two teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil

Himalayan salt (to taste)

Pepper (to taste)


Method

 Quite simple, no need for the stove or any other appliances

– Wash fennel and celery thoroughly

– Roughly (julienne) slice the celery and fennel

– Prepare two plates, and place one handful of rocket on each. Then top with the fennel and celery

-Peel the two oranges, and slice into thin circles (we’re not too sure how to explain this but we’re sure you will understand what we mean..). Place oranges onto the plates

– Divide the can of sardines in half and top onto the salads

– Sprinkle with black sesame, EVOO, pepper and salt. Oh and don’t forget the parsley!

– Serve with fresh dark bread (we had ours with some wholemeal organic spelt crackers)

– Bon Appetit!

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Cannelloni Bean ‘Pate’ with Olives and Goats Cheese

We do love our pates, mashes, purées… just condiments all together. They always and we mean always, lift any meal giving it more life, flavour, and character

Try this simple pate-ish’ recipe. It is truely brilliant


Ingredients:

– 1 can of organic cannelloni beans

– Around 6 pitted green and black olives (roughly chopped up)

– 2 cubes of Meredith’s goats cheese

– 1 pinch of himalayan salt

– 1 pinch of pepper

– 1.5 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil

– 1 teaspoon of ground cumin


Method:

This is a really simple ‘pate’ that will take you literally 5 minutes! All you need is a food processor at hand and the ingredients listed above

Firstly, you have to drain the cannelloni beans ensuring you get rid of most of the liquid. Then simply place the beans in the food processor, along with the goats cheese, chopped up olives, spices and olive oil

Turn on the food processor until you can see that the ingredients are nicely mixed together. We believe its best when the olives are still in ‘chucks’ throughout the paste, giving it a bit more of a ‘crunch’

Have a sneaky taste, if you believe it’s too dry then add a little more olive oil or a dash of water

And voila, that is all you have to do! Serve as a dip, or dollop onto a salad, or spread onto a freshly baked moist ‘melt in your mouth’ loaf

Enjoy Lovelies

 

Cauliflower Couscous with Lentils and Spiced Quark

Winter Warmer Series 

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Ingredients: Serves two as a main with leftovers!

– 1/2 a head of organic cauliflower

– 1 head of organic broccoli

– 1/2 a cup of organic peas

– Four stems of organic black kale

– 1 cup of organic lentils

– 1 teaspoon of coconut oil

– 1 teaspoon of cumin

– 1 teaspoon of turmeric

– 1 tablespoon of raw buckwheat

– Spiced Quark (refer below for recipe)


Method:

1) Wash hands and vegetables

2) Place one cup of lentils with three cups of water in a saucepan and bring to boil. Once boiling, turn down heat and allow lentils to simmer with lid on. Keep an eye on the lentils, adding small dashes of water if needed

3) Meanwhile, break apart the cauliflower and place into a food processor. You want the cauliflower to resemble ‘rice’

4) In a large saucepan or wok place the cauliflower with a teaspoon of cumin and a teaspoon of turmeric. Sauté the cauliflower for a few minutes and then turn down the heat and place the lid on

4) Cut up the kale leaves into smaller segments (also cutting and using the stems – no wasting food!) and break apart broccoli head

5) In another large saucepan or wok with one teaspoon of coconut oil, sauté the kale with the broccoli and peas. We like to salute our greens with bone broth that we pre make and leave in the freezer. Adding a dash of water will also work. Sauté for a few minutes then turn down the heat and place the lid on

6) In a small pan, lightly toast the raw buckwheat until golden

7) Grab a large mixing bowl. Combine 1 cup of cauliflower rice, the sautéed greens and around 2/3 cup of lentils. Mix all ingredients well. Feel free to add more cauliflower rice or lentils if you wish, there will be leftovers in the pan!

8) Place onto two plates and top each with one generous tablespoon of spiced quark and one teaspoon of toasted buckwheat!

Enjoy!

M + S


Spiced Quark 

You can buy Quark at any grocer or healthful store. We use biodynamic/organic Swiss style cottage cheese quark from B.-d.Farm Paris Creek

– 2 heaped tablespoons of cottage cheese quark

– A pinch of pepper and himalayan salt

– 1 teaspoon of ground cumin

– 1 teaspoon of ground turmeric

– 1 teaspoon of organic tahini

– Water (this will depend on the consistency you want – we added around 3 tablespoons)

– In a small mixing bowl, combine spices with quark and mix gently