Getting Kids back into the Kitchen

The Heart Foundation has published a free cookbook titled Kids in the Kitchen, a collection of fun family recipes suited to children of all ages and abilities. The new cookbook is designed for Kiwi kids to work alongside their parents or caregivers in the kitchen, at a time when many schools no longer teach the important life skill of cooking.

Kids in the Kitchen is free to download: Heart Foundation Kids Cookbook.pdf

Or come and see Nikki Martin for your FREE copy.

Heres a great recipe from the cookbook:

Banana and chocolate ice cream

Serves 4


  • 4 bananas, sliced and frozen
  • 1 ¼ Tbp cocoa


  1. In batches blend frozen banana with the cocoa in a food processor until smooth.
  2. Transfer to a sealed container and keep in the freezer until ready for serving.

Banana and chocolate ice cream

Most of packaged food unhealthy – study

Unhealthy Food Packaging

A new study from University of Auckland has found that most packaged food in New Zealand is unhealthy – that includes everything from loaves of bread to meat products.

And with poor diets being shown to do more damage than smoking in New Zealand, researchers say it’s time for a change.

When it comes to healthy food in the supermarket, you are safe around the fruit and vegetable section.  But once you stray into the aisles, you are in danger.

A study of 23,000 packaged food products in supermarkets in New Zealand and Australia found most were unhealthy.

“Whilst it includes things like confectionary and snack foods, it also includes lots of staple products like breads, dairy products and breakfast cereals as well,” says Professor Cliona Ni Mhurchu from the National Institute of Health Innovation.

Researchers looked at packaged food products displaying nutritional information, such as canned fruit and vegetables, ready meals, milk and dairy products.

The study weighed up negative nutrients like sugar, salt and fat, against positive nutrients such as protein and fibre. It then used a calculator to decide whether that food was healthy or not.

Packaged foods make up 90 percent of what is available on supermarket shelves and 55 percent of those packaged foods were found to be unhealthy.

So is enough being done to provide healthy choices?

“No, I think we could be doing a lot better,” says Prof Ni Mhurchu. “If less than half the food in New Zealand is healthy, it shows a real opportunity for us to improve our food supply.”

Supermarkets are aware of growing concerns about the nutritional value of foods. Foodstuffs, which owns Pak ‘n Save and New World, says it’s responded by rolling out the health star rating on its Pam’s and Budget brands. That allows shoppers to compare two similar products and work out which is best for them.

Prof Ni Mhurchu says New Zealand scored lower than Australia in the survey.

“New Zealand did worse when compared with Australia, so about 40 percent of our packaged food can be considered healthy compared to about 47 percent of Australian food,” she says.

So if improving our health isn’t motivation enough, surely we could lift our game just to beat the Australians.

By Kanoa Lloyd – 3 News, read more:—study-2015041318#ixzz3a3uwEuHQ

Raw Chocolate Brownie Bar

Raw Chocolate Brownie BarA delicious recipe that does not require cooking has minimal ingredients and a great snack for busy days!!
And just in time for Easter treats…


1 cup packed pitted, soft dates (or medjool dates)
1 cup warm water
½ cup raw almonds
½ cup walnuts
3 Tablespoons cacao nibs
2 Tablespoons cacao powder

  1. Line a 23 by 5cm loaf pan with non-stick paper.
  2. Combine the dates and warm water in a small bowl. Let stand for 5-10minutes until soft. Drain and pat dry with    paper towels.
  3. Place the almonds and walnuts in a food processer until finely chopped (but not a paste). Add the prunes, process, using on/off pulses, until the prunes are finely chopped and blended and the mixture begins to stick together and clump on the sides of the bowl.
  4. Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan. Place a large piece of non-stick paper atop the bar mixture and use it to spread and flatten the mixture evenly in the pan, leave the paper to cover. Refrigerate for 30minutes
  5. Lift the mixture from the pan and transfer to a cutting board. Uncover and cut into approx. 6 bars.

How to store bars:  Tightly wrap the bars individually in plastic wrap.

                                    ROOM TEMP: 3 days
                                    REFRIGERATOR: 3 weeks
                                    FREEZER: 3 months in airtight container; thaw 1 hour.

Healthy Snack Recipe: Vegan Almond Butter Apricot Bites

Who wants to turn on the oven in this heat? If you’re craving a sweet, cookie-like snack that’s high in protein and flavor but don’t want the hassle (and temperature) of an oven, then whip up these quick and easy almond butter apricot bites. All you need is a handful of ingredients and a food processor, and you’re set.

Vegan Almond Butter Apricot Bites

This vegan treat is perfect for snacking before a workout but is sweet enough to satisfy your dessert cravings.

Vegan Almond Butter Apricot Bites


1 cup raw almonds
1 cup raisins
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
10 dried apricots, chopped
1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut


  1. Place the almonds, raisins, and cinnamon in a food processor. Turn on until mixed thoroughly into a smooth, thick almond butter paste, about three minutes or so. Turn off the food processor.
  2. Add the chopped apricots and pulse for 30 seconds, and then add the coconut and pulse for another 10 seconds.
  3. Remove the dough and place it on a cutting board or counter that’s covered in a piece of plastic wrap. Pull up the plastic on either side and begin to press it together to form one large square, keeping the layer of plastic between your hands and the dough to prevent sticking.
  4. Wrap up the square and place it in the freezer for 20 to 30 minutes. This will make it easier to cut.
  5. Using a sharp knife, cut the square into 25 smaller squares.
  6. Store the bites in an airtight container in the fridge.

Makes 25 Bites.

Vegan Almond Butter Apricot Bites


Spice Roasted Chickpeas

Spice Roasted ChickpeasChickpeas (also known as garbanzo beans) are a high fiber legume and a natural source of protein.

Foods that combine both protein and fiber are a smart choice, since they promote satiety, making you feel full for longer.

These crunchy roasted chickpeas are a great easy to make snack recipe.

√     Gluten free

√     High in Protein

√     Low GI

√     High in Fiber


2 400g cans of Chickpeas in springwater – drained and rinsed

2 Tsp Coconut oil or extra virgin olive oil

2 Tsp Cumin

1 Tsp smoked paprika

¼ Tsp all spice

1 Tsp garlic salt or 1-2 gloves crushed garlic

¼ Tsp sea salt


Pre-heat oven to 200°C

Once you have drained and rinsed the chickpeas, dry off with a clean tea towel.

Place the chickpeas in a medium sized bowl and combine with the rest of the ingredients until well coated.

Place in a single layer in a roasting pan lined with baking paper.

Bake for approximately 40-45 minutes -mixing them around about 20mins. Keep a close watch on them for the last 10-15mins as some may burn.

Let them cool before eating to obtain their crunchiness.

For best storage keep them in a glass jar and add some rice to the bottom (helps soak up moisture) to keep them crunchy. Be sure to eat within a few days.

Microgenics Superfood Pro-Blend (Berry or Cacao flaour)

This product has 55 high quality and potent superfoods:

  • With 10 super greens and vegies and 12 super fruits.
  • 2 billion probiotics & prebiotics & 4 digestive enzymes.
  • 6 certified organic whole grains & 23 antioxidants.
  • Supports energy, digestion and packed with antioxidants

Can you believe it and it tastes amazing!!

Just add 7g (5g = 1tsp) to 180ml cold water for a post

workout shake.

It can be used in yoghurt, a shake or sprinkled on cereal.

Give me a call and I can assist you to acquire some.

Microgenics superfoods

Too much red meat causes cancer

Red meat causes cancerWhen humans eat red meat, the body generates an immune response to the foreign sugar.

By Sarah Knapton

Red meat has been linked to cancer for decades, with research suggesting that eating large amounts of beef, lamb or pork raises the risk of deadly tumours.

But for the first time scientists think they know what is causing the effect. The body, it seems, views red meat as a foreign invader, prompting a toxic immune response.

Researchers have always been puzzled about how other mammals could eat a diet high in red meat without any adverse health consequences.

Now they have discovered that pork, beef and lamb all contain a sugar that is naturally produced by other carnivores but not humans.

When humans eat red meat, the body generates an immune response to the foreign sugar, producing antibodies that cause inflammation, and eventually cancer.

In other carnivores the immune system does not kick in, because the sugar, called “Neu5Gc” is already present.

Scientists at the University of California proved that mice which were genetically engineered so they did not produce Neu5Gc naturally developed tumours when they were fed the sugar.

The research was published online in the journal, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

“This is the first time we have directly shown that mimicking the exact situation in humans increases spontaneous cancers in mice,” said Dr Ajit Varki, Professor of Medicine and Cellular and Molecular Medicine at the University of California.

“The final proof in humans will be much harder to come by. This work may also help explain potential connections of red meat consumption to other diseases exacerbated by chronic inflammation, such as atherosclerosis and type 2 diabetes. Of course, moderate amounts of red meat can be a source of good nutrition for young people.”

Health experts say red meat provides protein, vitamins and minerals, but too much is bad for long-term health. They recommend eating no more than 2.5oz (70g) a day, the equivalent of three slices of ham, one lamb chop or two slices of roast beef a day.

Miso Enriched Barley and Vegetable Soup

Pearl barley is a nutritious grain most commonly associated with soups. Its chewy texture gives substance, making it an ideal winter soup base.

The recipe is vegan, but I like to add a dollop of sour cream for extra richness (making it then vegetarian).

Pearl barley (grain) with the combination of soya (legume) from the miso and Braggs Aminos or Tamari makes a complete protein.

• ½ cup pearl barley

• 2 bay leaves

• 2 litres boiling water

• 2 Tbsp olive oil

• 1 tsp hing/asafoetida

• Freshly ground black pepper

• 1½ tsp salt

• 1 cup each of grated carrot, beetroot and parsnip

• 1 stick celery, sliced

• 2 cups cabbage, chopped

• 4 Tbsp Braggs Aminos or Tamari

• 1 Tbsp sesame seed oil

• 2 Tbsp miso, light-coloured such as Aka or Shiro

Handful fresh coriander or parsley, chopped

Rinse barley and place in soup pot with water and bay leaves. Bring to boil, then reduce to simmer until barley is tender.

Add olive oil, hing, pepper, salt, grated vegetables and celery to barley and cook a further 10 minutes. Add cabbage, Braggs or Tamari and sesame oil, and continue to cook until cabbage is tender.

Mix miso to a paste with 2 Tbsp of water, then add to soup with coriander.

Blend to serve. Do not re-boil.