food. chilli, lemon and prawn pasta.

Magazines are a bit more expensive
down here than in the States so I really have to stick to the 'yes Nate, I'll make at least one recipe from this magazine' idea. Donna Hay is easily becoming a go-to for my recipes (I only have two magazines but they are GOOD!). I was a bit thrown off by the spaghetti noodles at first, but this dish turned out great! We'll be adding it to our menu rotation.

Chilli, Lemon and Prawn Pasta from Donna Hay
Serves 4
400g spaghetti | I used the KitchenAid Fresh Pasta recipe
40g unsalted butter, chopped
1 Tbls extra virgin olive oil
4 glove garlic, through a garlic press
1 long red chilli, thinly sliced
1 Tbls finely shredded lemon zest
600g raw (green) prawns (shrimp), peeled, deveined and roughly chopped
salt and pepper, to taste
1 cup watercress sprigs, to serve

food. fresh pasta.

I've (finally) been able to make use of my
birthday gift! So far, my KitchenAid pasta attachments have been amazing and delicious. First step - make fresh pasta from a very simple recipe. KitchenAid's The Ultimate Mixer Cookbook has been helpful so far. Below is the basic pasta recipe I've used a few times. If you have a suggested recipe or tips on how to make/store fresh pasta, I'd love to hear them! Feel free to leave a comment on the blog, Facebook or tweet it to me. Enjoy!

halloween. and wine.

Happy Halloween! This is about as exciting as our night is least we have good wine and cute wine charms. Not as exciting as last year but we'll take any reason to buy candy we like and open a delicious bottle of vino.

food. summer vegetable stir fry.

Spring is in Australia! It's getting
warmer...tasty, spring veggies are getting cheaper at the grocery store...and I get to finally start making all the spring & summer recipes that have been making their way through my inbox.

Summer Vegetable Stir Fry from
3 cups mixed tender herbs, divided (such as basil, Thai basil, mint, cilantro, tarragon, and celery leaves) | I opted for basil, mint, cilantro, celery leaves.
1/2 cup thinly sliced scallions, divided
1 1/2-inch piece peeled ginger, sliced
1 garlic clove
7 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
Pinch of red pepper flakes | An additional we made
2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups cooked, cooled wheat berries, farro, or brown rice | I opted for brown rice
4 cups chopped mixed summer vegetables (such as bell peppers, eggplant, chiles, zucchini, summer squash, carrots, celery, radishes, and cherry tomatoes) | I opted for zucchini, carrots, cherry tomatoes, mushrooms

work. meetings.

You can't decline a meeting like this. Today Sarah took us through a tasting of our current Winemaker's Dozen and as a bonus as got to take home a bottle. Does the Velvet Glove taste delicious on a Monday night, you bet it will!

Mollydooker's Flavour Spectrum - learn all about it on a visit to the winery!

duke. eating in bed.

He always gets meal time in bed. Getting old or has figured out how to get us to spoil him? 

food. red coconut curry lentil and sweet potato soup.

As soon as Nate said "best soup you've ever made", I jumped on my laptop to share the recipe. Seriously, I'm pretty impressed with this Donna Hay recipe. From the original photo in the magazine, I thought - oh, recipe said no cream but I think we'll need to get some. That is certainly not the case. This delicious and healthy soup recipe is the perfect cool night dish. Open a bottle of wine (our choice was a 2009 Mollydooker Blue Eyed Boy) and enjoy.

Red Coconut Curry Lentil and Sweet Potato Soup
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
3 shallots, finely chopped
2 cloves, crushed
3cm piece of fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated
1/4 cup Thai Red Curry Paste
3 medium sized sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
4 cups chicken stock
1 x 400 ml (about 13 ounces) can coconut milk
2 tablespoons fish sauce
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 x 400 ml cans of lentils, cooked and drained
1/2 cup coriander (cilantro) leave, finely chopped

vacation. day one.

Nate and I were finally able to get away for a belated anniversary trip. Kicking off our vacation, Nate set up one night in the city and dinner at press*. It was amazing - delicious drinks, delicious food, fun atmosphere - our type of date night. We'll be adding press* to our date night list.

drinks to kick off vaca

wine pick of the night | oakridge, yarra valley 

entree | beef tartare, aioli, toast
entree | zuchinni, persian feta, mint

my main | roast pork belly, roasted carrot puree, confit onion
the crispy skin on the pork belly was so good - I could have eaten that all night and been completely happy

side | brussels sprouts, hazelnuts

nate's main | lamb shanks, potato puree, carrots, parsnips

dessert | bomb alaska

Follow press* on Facebook | Tweet them @pressfoodwine

clean. lemons.

Just read these great tips for cleaning with lemons from and thought I'd share. I might have to 'borrow' some lemons from our neighbour's lemon tree to get through all of them. The one I think is most helpful is sanitizing your cutting board - Nate would tell you I'm a freak about keeping the meat board and veg boards clearly marked. Doing this cleaning tip will probably keep my germaphobia at bay...for a bit anyway. Have any organic cleaning tips? Leave a comment or tweet it to me, @JenEvison.

Why clean with lemons? Its high acid content, which enables the fruit to work as a powerful antibacterial sanitizer that combats common household bacteria, says Julie Edelman, author of The Accidental Housewife: How to Overcome Housekeeping Hysteria One Task at a Time.

Freshen Up the Stinky Garbage Disposal
“Lemon rinds ground in the disposal will deodorize your sink’s drain 1-2-3,” says Edelman. “And bonus, unlike vinegar, which leaves no scent, lemons provide a clean, crisp aroma.” Just slice a lemon into chubby quarters, slip them into the sink’s disposal, turn on the hot water and flip the power switch. Run the disposal until you hear the “gurgle-gurgle-grind-grind” sound—when that noise stops, it means the lemon is chopped and swallowed up. Turn off the disposal.

Put a Shine on Metal
When it comes to copper, brass and chrome, nix harsh chemical polishes and instead put some elbow grease behind half a lemon. “Lemons are highly acidic, which enables them to cut through and loosen mineral deposits, making them easier to wipe away,” says Edelman. For extra oomph, before scrubbing, dip the fruit half in salt—it will help exfoliate the surface for added shine.

Sanitize the MicrowaveThe lingering smell of popcorn, pizza and whatever you might have heated up recently can overwhelm a microwave. Edelman’s advice is to cut a whole lemon into super-thin slices and put the pieces in a microwavable bowl. Fill the bowl with hot water, place in the microwave and cook on high for one minute. The citric acid’s antibacterial properties will kill bacteria while the heat works like a humidifier to loosen icky, caked-on food. Afterward, wipe the oven with a damp cloth.

Nix Soap Scum in the Shower
Instead of tending to the shower tiles, doors and fixtures with an abrasive chemical treatment, use this homemade natural remedy: Juice six lemons and pour the contents into a spray bottle. “The citric acid will break down hard water deposits and dissolve filmy soap scum,” says Edelman. “Also, the antibacterial and antiseptic properties will sanitize the space.”

Hand-Wash DishesWhen you run out of dish soap, slice a lemon in half and sprinkle baking soda on top, working the lemon half like you would a Brillo pad. Watch as the citric acid cuts, loosens and then dissolves grease, giving your pots and pans a shiny glow. Oh, and your dishpan hands will smell sweet!

Deodorize the LaundryIt doesn’t take much to combat the odors of work, the gym and the everyday grind. Adding just one teaspoon of lemon juice to the laundry along with detergent will provide a fresh, clean scent to socks, undergarments and other clothing.

Wash the Windows
Four tablespoons of lemon juice (either fresh or out of the bottle) mixed with a half-gallon of water makes an effective window cleaner—sans chemicals and streaking. The powerful citric acid dissolves dirt, grime and water stains, leaving your windows sparkling.

Sanitize a Cutting Board
Spruce up that kitchen workhorse—the cutting board—by squeezing a lemon half over the top and letting the juice absorb for 10 minutes. (It soaks into wood especially well, but this also works on plastic cutting boards.) This will loosen stains. Next, kill bacteria by using the fruit to scrub the board.

Clean Hard-to-Reach Places
Make a paste of lemon juice and borax. With a toothbrush, use the fresh-smelling cleanser to scrub tiles and around drains. This mixture is also ideal for all those evil nooks and crannies!

food. dessert bar.

Update: House Bakery let us know they are doing a new Dessert Bar...something we hope they continue. After a mini-date night out, we had to end it with dessert so why not try House Bakery.

The menu was small but to the point. If you had a craving for chocolate - you got chocolate, pie - you got pie, you get the idea. The Bakery did a great job of turning the mood from a great coffee joint to a romantic setting for some sweet treats.

So full. Can barely do this entry...that uncomfortable full feeling you get when you can't stop eating something delicious is all totally worth it.

Details to come tomorrow.


hot double chocolate chip brownie

Nate had the custard apple crumble, not sure where the photo went though.

duke. happy birthday.

Duke turned 8 this weekend...yep, I keep track of his birthday. His birthday treats included a plethora of dog treats, extra dog food (which he always gets very excited about...even though he's had the same food for about 2 years), and scrambled eggs. Happy birthday, Duke - when I got you as a Christmas gift 8 years ago, who would have thought of all the adventures ahead of us!

breakfast of champs.

food. roasted chicken thighs with tomatoes, olives, and feta.

Thank you, Martha Stewart! This recipe could easily turn into a go-to weeknight meal. Simple ingredients,
simple directions. I made a few tweaks, you can do the same if you want to add more flavours to the dish.

Roasted Chicken Thighs with Tomatoes, Olives, and Feta | Martha Stewart
4 chicken thighs fillets (skin on or off)
1 chicken breast, butterfly
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 pint grape tomatoes, halved lengthwise
1/2 cup pitted Spanish olives
2 medium shallots, sliced
3 sprigs fresh thyme
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
Fresh mint leaves, for garnish
Feta cheese, crumbled, for garnish

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine chicken, oil, tomatoes, olives, shallots, and thyme in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper and toss. Transfer to a rimmed baking sheet and spread chicken mixture, skin side up, in a single layer. Roast until a thermometer inserted into thickest parts of the thighs reaches 165 degrees, 35 to 40 minutes.

Transfer chicken to a dish and cover with Saran wrap and foil.

Prepare couscous.

Return vegetables to oven and roast until golden brown in places, about 10 minutes more. Transfer vegetables and accumulated juices to a bowl. Fold in couscous, mint, and feta.  Move mixture to platter, add chicken, and season with salt and pepper. Garnish with additional feta and mint.

Jen's Notes:
I didn't use chicken breast the first time around but it's something I'd like to try next time I make the dish. Even without the chicken, the couscous and vegetables could be a great side dish.

Click here for the original recipe.

food. fish tacos and spicy slaw.

My original thought - easy, 15 minute dinner. While that wasn't true (Nate, thanks for cooking dinner!!), it was delicious. No need for tortillas, the fish and slaw are enough for a great dinner.

Fish Tacos with Spicy Slaw | Serves 4
2 tbl olive oil, plus more for grill
1 pound skinless firm, white fish fillets, cut into 3-inch pieces
1 small bunch cilantro, stems and leaves separated, roughly chopped
3 jalapenos | I sub'd mild red chilies as jalapenos, sliced thinlu
salt and pepper
2 tomatoes, seeded and diced
3 Napa cabbage leaves, shredded
1 small red onion, finely chopped
lime juice, plus wedges for serving
8 corn tortillas, toasted | We don't think you'll need these
sliced avocado, for serving

Smoky Seasoning Salt - There's a lot of this. You can save it for use with another dish.
Combine 1/4 cup coarse sea salt, 2 tablespoons grated lime zest, 2 teaspoons smoked paprika, and 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper.

1. Heat a grill or grill pan over medium-high heat. Clean and lightly oil hot grill. Combine fish, cilantro stems, and jalapenos. Coat with oil and season with salt and pepper.
2. Grill fish and jalapenos until fish is opaque throughout, about 5 minutes.

3. In a medium bowl, combine tomatoes, cabbage, and onion. Season to taste with smoky seasoning salt and lime juice. You can add additional jalapenos.
4. Divide slaw on the plates, top with fish, cilantro leaves, more smoky seasoning salt, lime wedges, and avocado.

Click here for the original recipe from

food. the loose caboose.

How can you say no to a breakfast spot called 'The Loose Caboose'? Breakfast has been we just take in the fun atmosphere and smells of delicious coffee. Review and more photos to come.

Chai Lattes to start.

My dish: Caboose Board - Poached free range eggs, bacon, heirloom tomato, avocado, mushrooms, Meredith feta & toasted sourdough 
I'm not sure what my response was suppose to be to the server who said 'This is usually a bloke's dish'...needless to say, I finished most of it. Hey - I was hungry.

Nate's dish: Huevos Rancheros - Fried free range egg, black beans, pico de gallo, avocado & toasted tortillas 

While you're waiting for a table, feel free to grab some Sparkling or Still water from a tap!

Everything was delicious! Nate and I quickly agreed that we would visit again and bring would certainly be bringing anyone we know that appreciates breakfast and has an appetite.

Check out their website and menu

house. dryer sheets.

Great tip from Real Simple (one of my favourite magazines!):

Dryer Sheet As Shower Door Cleaner
After you towel off, rub a new or used dryer sheet over the inside of the wet shower door to prevent soap-scum buildup.

food. hearty chicken and dumpling soup.

First thought: best homemade chicken soup we've ever had. Thanks Food Network, it was delicious.

Hearty Chicken and Dumplings, Lightened Up
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 stalks celery, finely chopped
1 medium carrot, finely chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
3/4 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
2 cups trimmed and halved green beans
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh dill

Heat the olive oil in a medium Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the celery, carrots, garlic, onions and cook, stirring, until the vegetables are softened, 5 minutes.

Add the broth and bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender, about 15 minutes. Meanwhile, grind the oats in a food processor until fine.

Combine with the flour, baking powder, zest, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a medium bowl. Work in the butter with your fingers until only very small pieces remain. Stir in 1/2 cup ice water, a bit at a time, until a soft dough is formed. Let rest 10 minutes.

Drop cherry-size bits of the dumpling dough into the soup. Add the green beans and stir gently. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the dumplings are floating and cooked through and the beans are bright green and crisp-tender, about 12 minutes.

Add the chicken and continue to cook until it is just cooked through, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat, stir in the dill and season with salt and pepper.

Click here for the original recipe.

food. lemon yogurt bread.

I've had this recipe saved for a while in my calendar - it just kept getting pushed out to bake. When I looked  at the recipe last week, I vaguely remember making this when I first started at Yes, it's a Taste of Home recipe but at that time, they were sister companies. Nate and Greg were my guinea pigs...thankfully the recipe turned out delicious! If you're looking for an easy dessert, take ten minutes to put this together. It'll be a crowd pleaser.

Lemon Yogurt Bread
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 egg
1 cup (8 ounces) lemon yoghurt
1/3 cup canola oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice

In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, salt, baking soda and baking powder.
In another bowl, combine the egg, yoghurt, oil and lemon juice.
Stir into dry ingredients just until moistened.
Pour into an 8-in. x 4-in. loaf pan coated with cooking spray.
Bake at 325° for 45-50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the centre comes out clean.
Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack.

Jen's Notes:
I followed the ingredients as they are. One exciting thing...I cracked the egg with one hand. Yes, to some not so made headline news in our house.

Since I'm too lazy to figure out how to work our convection oven still learning all the different settings on our convection oven, everything I have to throw in there goes on the force fan (I think that's the setting...) and at 180 or so degrees Celsius. Everything starts at about 20 minutes and I check it from there. It took this recipe about 35 minutes to bake through.

For the original recipe, click here.

food. mango chicken salad with couscous.

This was a find on my epicurious app. Mangoes are not in season here so we opted for Mango with Ginger
Chutney and honestly, I was just too busy to pick up some of the other ingredients needed so I made other substitutions. In the end, we were a huge fan of the couscous and we'll be making it again as a side.

Mango Chicken Salad with Couscous
1/4 cup couscous, follow the directions to cook
1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped green bell pepper
1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped red bell pepper
1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 tablespoon canola oil
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (3 ounces each)
1/3 cup fresh lime juice
1/4 cup Japanese rice vinegar
2 tablespoons whole-grain mustard
2 tablespoons honey
2 teaspoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
1/2 head each romaine, frisée, hydro Bibb lettuce (we sub'd a head of romaine)
1 cup arugula
1/2 mango, thinly sliced (we sub'd Mango & Ginger Chutney)

In a bowl, combine couscous, bell peppers, onion, lemon juice, 2 tablespoons olive oil and 1/3 cup water. Season with salt.

In a large skillet over high heat, heat canola oil. Cook chicken until golden brown on the bottom, 3 to 4 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low. Flip chicken and cook through, 6 to 8 minutes. Cool chicken; cut into 1/2-inch dice.

In a blender set to medium, blend lime juice, vinegar, mustard, honey and soy sauce. Slowly add remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil. Season with salt.

Break up romaine and combine with arugula in a bowl. Divide lettuce, couscous, chicken and mango chutney among 4 plates. Dress salad with mustard vinaigrette.

For the original recipe, click here.

food. fettucini alla marie.

Skip the jarred pasta sauce and take the 10-15 minutes to make this. It's that good. Really.

This recipe came from our friends Joe and Marie after a recent visit to Australia. As usual with many of our friends, food became a topic of conversation over a few glasses bottles of wine. Pasta, among other dishes, usually always goes well with wine., pasta, pasta, wine....

Fettucini Alla Marie
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 a white onion, minced
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 cup heavy cream
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1/4 pound prosciutto, julienned (we used about 80 grams)
1/6 pound pancetta, tear in strips (again, we used about 80 grams)
1 cup frozen peas, thawed (optional)
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, plus more for garnish
White wine
1 pound fresh fettuccini

1. Open the bottle of wine and pour a glass and start enjoying.
2. Heat olive oil and butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and saute for a couple minutes or until tender.
3. Add prosciutto and pancetta and let it cook for 2 minutes then add a splash of white wine and let simmer for a minute. Season with salt and pepper, to taste then add cream and cook for 1 to 2 minutes.
4. Sprinkle cheese over top and stir to melt and combine. Cook until heated through.
5. In a large pot of boiling salted water, add fettuccini and cook until al dente. Add peas a few minutes before draining.
6. After draining add the peas and fettucini to skillet. Toss to combine pasta with sauce and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Serve, garnished with extra cheese and parsley.

Jen's Notes:
After we made the sauce, my exact words were "I could swim in this". I repeat the above, it's that good.
We increased the prosciutto, pancetta, and cream...we like all three so why not.
You could easily increase/decrease ingredients to your liking.

active. the color run.

Have you heard of it? The insanely colorful 5K aka happiest 5K on the planet...The Color Run! I remember the first time I saw this nutty event was from a video on Below is one of their videos (couldn't find the one from How do you watch this and not think - yes, I want to do that. EMERGENCY! How do I sign up?!

The Color Run was new to Adelaide this year and I was pretty stoked to sign up. While Nate had a few the end it was a blast. Basically this is how the event is set up - you show up with your white shirt (crazy outfits optional), waves of people are let loose on a 5k. At each k, you're met with a blast of color - orange, blue, pink, yellow, and finally a shower of almost every color you can think of. It's amazing. No need to be an athlete, it's uber fun for kids (be sure they have swim googles to rock to protect their eyes), and you should really opt in for the crazy outfits. Don't forget to bring towels and an extra change of clothes for your car ride home.

It wasn't very hard to convince Nate to sign up for next year. My outfit is already picked out - white shirt, white tutu, white's going to be awesome. Next I even try to convince him to where the same thing? Stay tuned to find out.

More info on The Color Run:

There were over 10,000 people at the Adelaide Color Run.

food. ultimate pork tacos with spicy black bean avocado green salad.

Holy crap that's a long recipe title!
Another recipe from Jamie Oliver...yes, we're a bit hooked to the show. We have to get our food porn somehow - there isn't a Food Network channel down here...yet.

Ultimate Pork Tacos with Spicy Black Bean, Avocado, Green Salad
Pork Ingredients:
350 g skinless higher-welfare pork belly - we just found stir-fry pork at the butcher and used that
1 heaped teaspoon fennel seeds
1 heaped teaspoon sweet smoked paprika

Bean Ingredients: 
olive oil
1 good pinch cumin seeds
spring onions
cloves of garlic
1 x 400 g tin of black beans

Salad Ingredients:
1 fresh red or green chilli
Spinach or any type of lettuce you would like to use in your tacos
½ a bunch fresh coriander
1 ripe avocado
1 large ripe tomato
1 eating apple
low-salt soy sauce
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 lime

Chilli sauce
4 tablespoons fat-free natural yoghurt

1. Heat a medium frying pan and tip pork into pan with the fennel seeds, paprika, salt and pepper, and stir regularly
2. Heat a second medium frying pan and put 1 tablespoon of olive oil and the cumin seeds
3. Trim, slice and add the spring onions, squash in the unpeeled garlic through a garlic crusher, then stir in the beans and their juices, and simmer
4. Finely slice the chilli, spinach and most of the top leafy half of the coriander, then halve, destone, peel and chop the avocado, along with the tomato
5. Toss and pile all this on a platter, coarsely grating or matchsticking the apple on top
6. Ripple a little chilli sauce through the yoghurt in a small bowl
7. Stir, mush and season the beans to taste
8. Drizzle the salad with a little soy sauce, the extra virgin olive oil and lime juice, then toss together
9. Drain the fat from the pork pan, then serve

Jen's Notes:
This recipe originally had hard shell tacos. Since we're not a fan, I swapped them out for tortillas  The next day I just had this as a salad for lunch and it was pretty tasty. Even with all the dressing on the salad, it held up pretty well.

Be sure you use canned black beans for this recipe. I tried the dried beans in a pressure cooker and it turned out a bit dry. Why dried beans? Because black beans are a minority here in Australia. If you're coming to visit, bring some cans with you!

We weren't a huge fan of the pork but the bean/salad combo was nice (or as they say in Aus, beautiful). I've already added that portion of the recipe as a menu option for future meals.

For the original recipe, click here

breakfast. busy people.

This is the breakfast of a busy...errrr...late person. Total fail on my time management.

On the bright side, at least I had enough time to do a batch of boiled eggs earlier in the week.

food. chicken tikka lentil, spinach & naan salad

Amazing. This was a recipe we saw on Jamie Oliver's 15 Minute Meals. Being me, this was going to take about 30-45 minutes. Sorry, no Jamie Oliver support team in our kitchen! If you're into Indian food and want to be healthy, try this recipe!

Chicken Tikka Lentil, Spinach & Naan Salad
Chicken Ingredients:
2 skinless chicken breasts
2 heaped tsp tikka paste
4 chestnut mushrooms (I used button mushrooms)

Salad Ingredients:
4 spring onions (I have these in the freezer, already cut up)
1 fresh red chilli
1 heaped tsp mustard seeds
½ tsp cumin seeds
olive oil
1 x 250g pack of ready-to-eat Puy lentils (I used about a cup or so of dry lentils, cooked in a pressure cooker)
1 ripe tomato
red wine vinegar
1 big bunch of fresh coriander (cilantro for all my readers from the States - I think that's one of you b/c I don't do anything to market my blog!)
2 lemons
4 tbsp fat-free natural yoghurt
1 heaped tbsp raw cashew nuts
1 heaped tbsp mango chutney
1 tsp turmeric
2 naan breads
200g baby spinach
½ a cucumber
1 carrot
30g feta cheese (really, use as much as you want. Feta is delicious)

1. Heat a pan to cook the chicken.
2. Clean and butterfly the chicken breast. Toss with  salt, pepper and the tikka paste
3. Place on the hot pan with the halved mushrooms, turning after 3 or 4 minutes, until nicely charred and cooked through
4. Heat another pan for the lentil mixture.
5. Trim and finely slice the spring onions and half the chilli.
6. Put the mustard and cumin seeds and 2 tablespoons of oil into the second pan, followed by the sliced spring onion and chilli.
7. Tip the lentils into the pan, squash in the tomato and add a pinch of salt and pepper and a splash of red wine vinegar.
8. Toss occasionally for a couple of minutes, then turn the heat off.
9. In a food processor, add coriander stalks, the juice of 1 lemon, the yoghurt, cashews, mango chutney and turmeric, then whiz up until smooth. This is going to be your dressing. It's
10. Remove the cooked chicken and mushrooms from the griddle and put the naan on the pan.
11. Tip the baby spinach on to a serving board or platter, scatter over the lentils, speed-peel the cucumber and carrot over the top and sprinkle over the mushrooms.
12. Slice the chicken, naan and remaining chilli and arrange on top, then crumble over the feta and spoon over the dressing.
13. Finish with the coriander leaves and serve with lemon wedges.

Jen's Notes:
As I said above, AMAZING! Make it and let me know what you think - write a comment down below or feel free to tweet me, @JenEvison.

For the original recipe, click here.

food. veggie packed turkey meatloaf.

Nate and I love this modern twist to a classic dish. Note, there's a lot of chopping involved unless you have something like the Chop and Measure.

The photo is leftovers (yes, I've finally started finishing them). Since we don't have a microwave, I sliced up a few slices and pan fried them to heat them up. That will be another post - tough decisions had to be made!

Veggie Packed Turkey Meatloaf by Bobby Flay.

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 
  • 1 small zucchini, finely diced 
  • 1 red bell pepper, finely diced 
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, finely diced 
  • 5 cloves garlic, smashed to a paste with coarse salt 
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes 
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper 
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten 
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh thyme 
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley 
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground turkey (90 percent lean) 
  • 1 cup panko (coarse Japanese breadcrumbs) 
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Romano or Parmesan cheese 
  • 3/4 cup ketchup 
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar 

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Heat the oil in a large saute pan over high heat. Add the zucchini, bell peppers, garlic paste and 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes. Season with salt and pepper and cook until the vegetables are almost soft, about 5 minutes. Set aside to cool.

Whisk the egg and fresh herbs in a large bowl. Add the turkey, panko, grated cheese, 1/2 cup ketchup, 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar and the cooled vegetables; mix until just combined.

Gently press the mixture into a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan. Whisk the remaining 1/4 cup ketchup, 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar and 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes in a small bowl; brush the mixture over the entire loaf. Bake for 1 to 1 1/4 hours. Let rest for 10 minutes before slicing.

Jen's Notes
Lots of chopping, but totally worth it. It's helpful if you have a meat thermometer on hand so you know when it's done.

Click here for the original recipe.

health. cleanse.

Broke down and am in the middle of a health cleanse with Nate. Today is day four. Of ten.

Basically, this is how it's going:

The day before the cleanse we were a bit hungover...and by a bit I mean mac and cheese for breakfast hungover...happy birthday, Brett.

Our "last meal" included oysters kilpatrick, haloumi cheese salad, eye filet, creme brûlée. It was amazing. And helped finally kick the hangover.

Days 1-3: Good. Not as bad as I thought it would be. We even got work outs in (Nate is much better at working out than I am).

Day 4: Sniffed banana bread with cream cheese frosting for about a minute (yep, holding up people at work from actually enjoying the bread). REALLY wanted Thai food for dinner but instead had chicken and a salad. We'll see how days 5-10 .

Downside: We don't have a scale so I won't be able to tell you if we've lost weight.

Upside: We are feeling better and I think a pair of jeans that are usually snug seem to be a bit more comfortable. Nate created a delicious salmon recipe that I'll add to the blog.

If you're interested in learning about the cleanse we're on, look up AdvoCare Herbal Cleanse.

Tips on how to complete a cleanse are welcome! Leave a comment below or tweet me-@JenEvison #cleansetips