Cook,Nourish,Grow - NZ DadsAmelia Freer is a registered dietician and this new cookbook COOK. NOURISH. GLOW. is full of delicious meals, snacks, baking, and breakfasts that you can cook, that will make you feel nourished, and with any luck leave you with a glow.

We’ve all heard of the clean eating, paleo, gluten free, dairy free, sugar free, chia filled food trends that have been gracing food blogs, pinterest and social media news feeds. If the mention of paleo and chia makes your eyes roll, then fear not. Though this book might tick those boxes (so you can still impress and feed your friends with various preferences), however the main focus is on healthy, home prepared food. All of which is grounded with nutritional scientific evidence, but don’t worry – you’re spared the lecture. Amelia’s philosophy with food is that anyone can learn how to create nourishing food in minutes with fresh ingredients. Naturally, the recipes are generally low in sugars, low carb, and low in gluten and dairy. They are however full of protein (both plant and animal based), healthy fats, and flavour. If you’re looking to recreate your love of food, or learn more about healthy cooking then this is an ideal kitchen accompaniment.

“We have been stripped of our confidence when it comes to food. We no longer trust our instincts…. I want to encourage people to just give it a try. Set aside some time to invest in cooking and caring for yourself” Amelia Freer

Chapters include It’s all about taste, Friendly fats, The naughty chapter, Entertaining, Happy Tummy, Everyday food, and On the go; so there’s something to feed every occasion.

One of the first recipe’s I tried from this book were the Spiced Seeds

Simply toast the following ingredients independently in a large dry frying pan over a high heat. Then mix together and store in an airtight jar. I’ve been sprinkling them over salads meat, with hummus, they’re superbly versatile.
Toast 100g pumpkin seeds, 30g each of sunflower and sesame seeds, 10g each of fennel and cumin seeds. Mix together with 1/2 tsp sea salt, 1 tbsp olive oil, sprinkle of smoked paprika and a dash of cayenne pepper.

They’ve been brilliant sprinkled into slaw, with hummus, over scrambled eggs, or to zest up a sandwich or salad.

Next I tried the Chickpea and Aubergine Salad (pictured above). It made a delicious al fresco dinner for one sunny midweek meal. Amelia explains that the combination is an excellent source of fibre, protein and iron.

Ingredients (serves 4 as a side, 2 as a meal):
• 1/2 small red onion, finely sliced
• 1 large aubergine (eggplant), cut in half lengthways and sliced into half moons
• a good lug of extra virgin olive oil
• juice and zest of 1 lemon
• 2 x 400g cans of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
• 2 large fresh tomatoes, cubed
• 1 bunch of fresh parsley, chopped
• 2 tsp of garlic infused olive oil
• 1 tsp cayenne pepper
• flaked almonds to serve

Method:
Cover the onion with water and set aside for 30 minutes – this reduces the harshness of taste of raw onion.

Prepare the aubergine, spread the half-moons onto a baking tray and brush them with olive oil. Place under a hot grill for 5 minutes. Remove from the oven and brush again with a mixture of olive oil and the half the lemon juice – you can make it quite wet, the aubergine will absorb the liquid. Place back under the grill until the edges are slightly blackened and the flesh is soft. Set aside in a large bowl.

On the same baking tray spread out the chickpeas and grill 5 – 10 minutes till they are golden. Add them to the aubergine.

Dice the tomatoes into small cubes and add them to the bowl along with the parsley, drained red onion slices, garlic oil, cayenne, remaining lemon juice, zest, salt and pepper and mix well.

Serve warm, with a sprinkling of flaked almonds.

The next things I’ll be making from this book are the:
Baked chicken meatballs with almond sauce (p.292), and the
Pork belly with pumpkin and gingered kale (p.277).
and for breakfast a Peanut butter and jam smoothie (p.178), with some Coconut pancakes (p.220).

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