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Chocolate Bean Pudding for Breakfast – Yes Please!

Chocolate Bean Pudding for Breakfast – Yes Please!

Belinda Smith | June 10, 2019

 

Gasp, shock, horror!
I have processed food in my house!
I have gluten-free Weetbix in my pantry and puffed rice. And rolled oats, organic rice cakes, and brown rice crackers.

My approach to eating well is this – eat mainly vegetables, some fruit, nuts, seeds, good quality eggs and meat and minimise processed packaged food. When it comes to processed packaged food, I choose them consciously by understanding what’s in them. They are a minimal part of our diet, but they are what I call my fall-back food. You know, for the times when the wheels fall off or you’re in a mad rush.

This week I have been short on time and so the bus-hold has had porridge and Weetbix most days for breakfast. Today, I didn’t have to rush madly so I wanted to make a breakfast which was a little special. The result was this Chocolate Bean Pudding. It’s loaded with protein and good fats to keep our tummies full for longer – just what we need because we’re driving for about 3 hours today.

Ingredients

½ cup sunflower seeds
2 tbsp chia seed
400g can red kidney beans
2 frozen bananas
½ medium avocado
½ cup of coconut milk
2-3 tbsp cacao powder
pinch of cinnamon
1 egg
1 tbsp of sweetener of your choice (rice malt syrup, raw honey or maple syrup)*
fresh fruit and pepitas to serve
* our family’s palates have adjusted over time to not require a lot of sweetness. If you’re not quite there yet, you may wish to add a little more sweetness to this.

Method

1. Add sunflower seeds and chia seeds to a processor and blitz until it’s a fine meal.

2. Rinse and drain the red kidney beans, then add them to the processor.

3. Add the rest of the ingredients.

4. Using high speed, combine all the ingredients until they are ‘mushed’ (technical term) together.

5. Now use medium speed for 2-5 minutes to make the pudding the consistency your family would prefer (I left mine a little textured – our daughter liked it, our son not so. I needed it to be smoother for him).

6. Divide the pudding up into 4 bowls and serve with fresh fruit and a sprinkle of pepitas.

 

Another 3 Ways

Add more liquid along with some ice to turn this into a smoothie

Add a good dollop of this on top of cereal to make your cereal breakfast more nutritious

Enjoy for dessert with some fresh berries and shaved dark chocolate.

This could also be a dessert or even put in the lunchbox for school.

Sneaky Beans Super Sweet & Gooey Lunchbox Cake

Sneaky Beans Super Sweet & Gooey Lunchbox Cake

Belinda Smith | May 4, 2019

 

Drum roll, please… The secret ingredient in these delicious cupcakes is cannellini beans! Gluten-free gooeyness & a huge nutrition bump!

After perfecting a Choc Fudge Cake made on Red Kidney Beans (recipe here), I thought to myself ‘if red kidney beans work, then I wonder if other beans would too’. So I decided to take the Choc Fudge Cake recipe and replace the red kidney beans. I really didn’t want another chocolate cake for the lunch boxes, so I took out the cacao and put in some banana and apple.

After adding a bit of this and a bit of that, what I created was a banana apple cannellini bean cake/muffin. My chief taste tester is our daughter Indrani, I usually get her to name my creations. This one she named ‘Super Sweet Gooey Cake’. Super sweet and more gooey than normal because of the banana & apple. So here is how I make my lunchbox super sweet gooey cake.

This recipe makes roughly 15 individual cakes.

 

Ingredients

300g can Cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1 medium banana, mashed
1 small apple grated
1 tablespoon water
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
125g butter
2 eggs
2 tablespoons chia seeds
85g rapadura sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon Bicarbonate of Soda

Method

1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees. Prepare muffin tin.
2. Blend Cannellini beans, water, chia seeds, vanilla, and butter until smooth.
3. Add the banana and apple. Mix again.
4. Let it sit for about 5 minutes so chia absorbs some of the moisture
5. Add the remainder of the ingredients and blend again.
6. Use an ice cream scoop to scoop mixture into muffin tip.
7. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean

 

Another 2 Ways With This Recipe

1. Add grated zucchini to the mix (squeeze out the liquid from the zucchini).
2. Add cacao or chocolate protein powder for a chocolate twist.

 

Find more healthy, wholefood, kid-friendly recipes on Bel’s website, The Root Cause.

Share your healthy lunchbox creations with us on Instagram with #myTWC!

Smash a Cup of Greens in a Drink Before School!

Smash a Cup of Greens in a Drink Before School!

Belinda Smith | April 23, 2019

 

In Australia only 5 out of every 100 kids are eating the recommended 5 serves of vegetables a day. Rather than try to get all 5 serves on our dinner plates, I’ve made it a way of life to get some vegetables into our kids day before school, then in their lunchbox so that we’ve already smashed a few of the day’s servings. A green smoothie is a great way to boost the veggie intake.

I tend to give my kids a green smoothie every day before school. It’s a great way of filling them up and getting some extra veg into them before school.

So our mornings look like this:

They have their first breakfast at around 6.45am (this is usually one of these – overnight oats, eggs, sourdough with homemade baked beans, banana pancakes, homemade banana bread with yoghurt etc).
Then about 7.30am, they have a green smoothie. This One Cup of Greens In A Drink Before School is their current favourite.

You can’t even taste the greens in this because of the fruit, yoghurt and milk. This Green Smoothie means the kids have essentially had a piece of fruit before going to school too, I only need to pack one piece of fruit in their lunchbox to ensure they are getting their 2 serves of fruit a day.

 

Ingredients

1 orange
1 banana (or green apple)
2 handfuls of baby spinach
½   avocado (optional – if they are too expensive, I just skip this)
½  cup coconut flakes
2 tbsp natural greek yoghurt
1 and ½ cups of coconut water/milk or milk of your choice
4-6 cubes of ice


Method

 

1. Throw everything in a blender and blitz until smooth and creamy.

 

Another 2 ways


1. Freeze the green smoothie in reusable pouches – it’s great to take them to school or to have in the afternoon
2. Add some mint to the mix before blending, then top with some cacao nibs for a great choc mint green smoothie – yum!

 

Find more healthy, wholefood, kid-friendly recipes on Bel’s website, The Root Cause.

Share your smoothie routine with us on Instagram with #myTWC

 

Paint Your Kitchen Green & Have Fun With Greens This St Patricks Day!

Paint Your Kitchen Green & Have Fun With Greens This St Patricks Day!

Belinda Smith | March 16, 2019

 

Eat your greens!

How many of you heard your parents say that when you were growing up? Some of you may have even said it to your own kids.

But do you know what? We do need to eat our greens. They are so important for our body. They help our energy, lungs, skin, teeth, bones and sleep, and so much more.

When we travelled around Australia on our mission to transform children’s health, parents told us that getting their kids to eat their vegetables was difficult enough, but getting them to eat their greens was even harder. Quite often the problem is that children (and adults) taste with their eyes not their tongues and greens visually do not look appetising to many.

We’ve run our Mad Food Science Program in over 100 schools around Australia and served over 27,000 children, parents and teachers a green smoothie to taste. Sure, there have been some who have declined to taste it, but most do. And then many come back for more.

Why has this experiment proven so successful? Because it makes it fun to taste a green drink, even though some kids say it looks like snot or puke. So why not have fun with greens this St Patrick’s Day? Let’s get into some of the fun you can have with greens in your kitchen!

 

Greens Tasting Plates

Greens Snack SamplerDepending on the age of your children, you can make up a St Pats greens tasting plate. For older kids, cut up a whole heap of different greens and display them on a chopping board. For younger kids, pop them in a muffin tray for a bit of fun.

I got this image from Be Brave, Keep Going which has a whole feature called Muffin Tin Monday which has loads of fun ways to use the muffin to help you get kids to eat more foods.

 

Green Le Snack Cheese Dip

I recently shared a video of how to make your own version of Le Snack Cheese at home in my lunchbox e-Course Facebook group and also in the TWC Facebook group. Both videos received lots of positive comments with people trying it out and their kids loving it. One of our lunchbox community members took it up a notch and turned it green by adding some baby spinach. Here’s what you need to make St Pat’s Le Snack Cheese Dip. Serve this with some delicious plain crackers, like any of the Ceres Organic crackers from TWC.

Ingredients
100g of tasty cheese, grated (from the block to avoid anti-caking agents)
150g full fat sour cream
A small handful of baby spinach

Method

1. Heat a frying pan over medium heat, add in a small amount of butter

2. Add the handful of baby spinach, season with salt and pepper and wilt the spinach until it’s soft

3. Remove and allow to cool

4. Blitz the baby spinach in a food processor or nutri-bullet kind of device until it’s a paste, set aside

5. Take a small saucepan over low heat and add in the grated cheese and the sour cream

6. Stir to mix the cheese and sour cream together as it melts

7. As it starts to melt, add in the baby spinach and stir to combine

8. When the mixture has no lumps and it’s runny, pour it into little pots and refrigerate to set. Takes about 2 hours. Can be frozen and used in lunchboxes. Will last in the fridge for 1 week.

 

Green Kabobs

Green Fruits and VegetablesKids tend to love food on sticks. Again depending on the age of your kids, you may like to make up the kabobs in advance of just cut up an array of greens and let them have fun making them too.

Mix it up if you can. Have some vegetables and some fruit. Some ideas include:

  • cucumber
  • celery
  • green capsicum
  • a little floret of broccoli
  • sugar snap or snow peas (cut in smaller pieces)
  • green grapes
  • kiwi fruit
  • green apple
  • honey dew

 

You could even jazz it up a little and cook them on the BBQ with a bit of pineapple juice sprinkled over to give it a yummy caramel coating as it cooks.

Green Smoothie

A Cup Of Greens Before School SmoothieYou simply can’t go wrong with a green smoothie made with fruit and then some baby spinach added to turn it green. There are loads of green smoothie recipes you can find online but here’s the recipe for one my kids love and it gives them a cup of greens in a drink before school.

 

Green Wraps

It doesn’t take many real food ingredients to make some fun St Patricks Green Wraps at home. All you need is:

Green Spinach Wraps1 handful of baby spinach
¾ cup wholewheat flour
¼ cup brown rice flour
2 eggs
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup milk

Throw it all into a blender and blitz. Then let the mixture rest for about 10 minutes before pouring some of it into a hot pan. Swirl the batter so it spreads out and then cook until the mixture starts to firm up. Gently flop to the other side and allow it to cook.

 

For more fun and inspirational real food ideas for every day and the lunchbox, join our communities at therootcause.com.au or Facebook or Instagram.

If you’d like The Mad Food Science Program to come to your school, go here to make an enquiry and we’ll send you an information pack for you to take to your school.

 

Share your glorious greens creations with us on Instagram with #myTWC

 

Chocolate Protein Bombs

Chocolate Protein Bombs

Belinda Smith | February 3, 2019

 

Forget the marketing on packets of biscuits which say ‘Perfect For Lunchboxes’ because they really aren’t.  These packets are usually loaded with sugar, additives and preservatives and are usually empty carbohydrates – high energy, low nutrient foods. Now these Chocolate Protein Bombs really are Perfect For Lunchboxes. They’re naturally sweet from the dates and are packed with protein from the seeds, so they will offer longer lasting energy.

 

Ingredients

10 medjool dates
¼ cup sunflower seeds
¼ cup pepitas
1 tbsp chia seeds
½ cup coconut flakes
½ cup oats
2-3 tbsp cacao powder*
2-3 drops peppermint oil or flavour (optional)
Pinch salt
Desiccated coconut (to roll balls in)

*My family like 85-90% dark chocolate so I used 3 overflowing tbsp of cacao. Adjust the amount to suit your family or use carob powder if you’re making these for little ones to enjoy too.

 

Method

1. Soak dates in warm water for 5 minutes

2. Drain dates, then throw into a food processor or Thermomix

3. Put the rest of the ingredients in the food processor or Thermomix

4. Blitz until the mixture comes together – blitz until you get the consistency you want (I still leave mine a little chunky because the kids don’t mind the texture of the seeds but if your children prefer not to have lumps, just blitz for longer)

5. Roll into balls – I make mine smaller than the store-bought bliss balls because they are easier to pack into the lunchbox (I just pack 2 instead of 1 big one)

6. Place desiccated coconut onto a plate. Now roll the ball in the coconut. Give it a little shake to get rid of any excess coconut.

 

Freezing / Storage

These are best stored in the fridge, then pack directly into the lunchbox – too easy. I haven’t tested freezing these yet but it’s not really necessary, they will last a month in the fridge anyway.

Another 2 Ways

Jaffa Balls: Replace the peppermint oil with orange – you could add a tablespoon of orange juice and some zest or use 2 drops of food grade orange oil.

Choco-Nana Balls: Replace the peppermint oil with half a dried banana popped int the food processor and a good pinch of cinnamon.

 

These bombs are a great way to get your kids involved in making their snacks. Why not have them whip up a batch on the weekend to pop into school lunchboxes throughout the week?

Find more healthy, wholefood, kid-friendly recipes on Bel’s website, The Root Cause.

 

Show us your favourite bliss ball creations on Instagram with #myTWC! 

 

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