Beautiful apricots are now ripe and sweet across Australia. This simple delicious addition to your cheese board is full of Christmas spirit. This paste is prepared with raw apricots and takes only 10 minutes.
500g apricots, ripe and sweet
1/8 cup semisweet or sweet white wine
1g agar (European, fine quality)
* Fine mesh sifter drum, silicone spatula, 170ml wide jar.
If along with vitamin and mineral content, phytochemical content is also taken into consideration, food can be ranked, and the food that contains the most nutrients per calorie are ranked the highest. Phytochemicals are plant substances that have beneficial health effects. Cauliflower would be in the top 20 foods in regards to this score. This concept was created by Dr.Fuhrman.
Cauliflower contains natural sulforaphane that has been of increasing interest for nutraceutical and pharmaceutical industries due to its anti-cancer effect. The highest amount of sulforaphane is found in cauliflower seedlings. (Food Chemistry, Volume 104, Issue 4, 2007, Pages 1761-1764, ‘HPLC Screening of anti-cancer sulforaphane from important European Brassica species.’)
The cauliflower is used raw in the below recipe, as it is more beneficial for health when it is fresh. But you can easily increase the heating time in step 5 to make the ‘rice’ softer.
Calamari Cauliflower Risotto
During the last few decades no fat was welcomed in our kitchens. Now we are coming back to a good fat. And chefs say the duck fat is one of the must-have ingredients.
The duck fat is considered to be a good fat. The content of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fat is high and the content of saturated fat is very low. According to Google, the duck fat has only 10% of saturated fat. Compare that to the natural butter, which has 51% of saturated fat.
This is very fortunate because duck fat tastes great too. The traditional duck confit is not a French duck confit without a duck fat.
Cooking the whole duck is easy but the eating is simply unattractive. I had been buying only legs or fillets until one chef shared a secret for the consumption of the whole duck. I used his idea in my recipe below. Enjoy, this is a very special risotto that has an unforgettable taste.
All chocolate lovers probably felt even happier when cacao was declared a super food. However, a chocolate and raw cacao are very different. The process of producing cacao powder involves cold-pressing raw cocoa beans to remove cacao butter before turning the product into cacao powder.
So, how harmful is a high temperature for the health benefits of cacao? It was found by multiple researchers that the critical temperature for cacao is 130C. Temperatures above 130C reduce the cacao’s antioxidant activity, however temperatures above 170C significantly change the product.
I came across one study that investigated insulin secretion qualities of cacao under various pH (3.5 and 5.2). In that research, fat, alkaloid and polyphenol (which act as antioxidants) were removed from cocoa beans before the material was used for these experiments. The cocoa under 3.5 caused the highest insulin secretion, but both types decreased blood glucose. The research paper concludes ‘It can be suggested that besides other compounds of cocoa, its peptides and amino acids could contribute to its health benefits.’ (Food Chemistry, Volume 134, Issue 2, 15 September 2012, Pages 905-911 )
Cocoa contains about 60% of dietary fibre, most of it is insoluble fibre. This is why raw cacao as a low calorie and high-fibre food with exceptional anti-oxidants qualities is an amazing product.
Of course you could sprinkle cacao over your porridge, add some to your chia puddings, add into your coffee instead of adding a chocolate syrup…
I worked very hard on this chocolate cheese cake, but finally I am very happy with the result and can’t wait to publish my recipe!
Cheese for Teeth
There is a lot of advice we can follow to maintain our baby’s health. One of the important things we can do for our children’s health is to provide special care for their teeth. Some of you might be surprised to hear that baby teeth first start to develop while the baby is in the womb. At birth, the baby has a full set of 20 teeth hidden within the gums. This is why it is crucial for the mum to consume enough calcium during her pregnancy. This is maybe even just to protect herself: the human body is amazing, the baby in the womb consumes calcium from the mum’s body. Amongst all diary products, cottage cheese is the best for calcium intake. Continue reading
White daikon radish is an amazing root vegetable. First, its taste is very delicate if compared to other root vegetables. Also, daikon is juicy and refreshing. What I find most interesting about this radish is that it produces special starch digestive enzymes, as well as protein and fat digestive ones. However, the key property of daikon, the most beneficial for our health, is that daikon possesses anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory properties. (Food Chemistry, Volume 161, 15 October 2014, Pages 176-180)
Daikon radish can be consumed raw, juiced or cooked in any way you prefer: boiled, baked, fried… It is also suitable for fermenting as daikon produces excellent probiotics. See Fermented Foods. Continue reading