Beef and Bacon Slow Cooker Stew

Another Winter evening, another Stew! Today was Mr 7s Rugby Finals and standing on the sideline in the rain made me even more happy I’d planned a hearty Beef Stew for dinner!

You can add any Veges you like. I went to add in my fav Baby Peas towards the end but I’d forgotten we had run out so I threw in some Spinach instead. Still pining for Baby Peas. No biggie.
You can also use whatever flour you like for the thickener, coconut flour or arrowroot if you’re Gluten Free or Paleo.
Perfect with some homemade Garlic Bread or Cheesy Cauliflower Mash


You will need:
500gm Beef suitable for Stewing (Chuck, Blade, Braising Beef) – Diced
2Tbsp Flour – Coconut or Arrowroot for Gluten Free
1 Cup Beef Stock – preferably homemade
1 Onion – Diced
2 Carrots – Chopped thinly
6 Garlic Cloves – Crushed, Peeled, Diced
1 Celery Stalk – Chopped
Knob of Butter
Rosemary, Bay Leaf, Rock Salt & Black Pepper
2 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
1 Tbsp Organic Dijon Mustard
1/2 – 1 Tin Organic Tomatoes – Depending how Thick/Thin you like your Stew
3 Slices free farmed Bacon
Green Veges – Peas, Spinach, Beans…

First up turn on your Slowcooker (8 hours in low or 4 hours on high)
Coat your Diced Beef in the Flour and add to your SlowCooker along with the Cup of Beef Stock. Next Saute all your chopped Veges with the Butter, Salt, Pepper, Rosemary and Bay Leaf until fragrant. Transfer them to your Slowcooker along with the remaining ingredients. I like to quickly fry my Bacon until crispy before adding it for extra flavour. Give it a good mix and pop the lid on. Done. Man I love my Slowcooker! About 30 minutes before serving in go your green Veges and cook on High if not already .
I served mine with a nice dollop of Sour Cream and some Sharp Cheddar grated on top. Delicious X


Pea and Bacon Soup

Its been a busy few days in our household, so a quick and tasty dinner was on the menu. What is better than throwing a few things in the Slowcooker and by evening time you’ve got a delicious, nourishing meal awaiting you! This Pea and Bacon Soup might not be much to look at but it sure is tasty. And quick. And did I mention tasty?


You will get around 7 servings with this recipe, all the leftovers!
You will need:
500gm packet green or yellow Split Peas – well rinsed
6 Cups Chicken Stock – preferably homemade
2 Celery Stalks – Chopped
2 Onions – Chopped
2 Garlic Cloves – Crushed, Peeled, Diced
2 Potatoes or Kumara – cubed
5 Slices Free Farmed Bacon – Diced and Sauteed until Crisp
1 Bouquet Garni
3 Tbsp Sour Cream
Sharp Cheddar Cheese

First up rinse those Split Peas and drain them well. Add them to your Slowcooker along will all the chopped Veges and Stock.
Next Sauté your Bacon in some butter until crispy and add this to your Slowcooker – (alternatively you can skip this step and add your uncooked diced Bacon straight into your Slowcooker if you want it to be a true 1 pot dinner) Season with a generous amount of Pepper and a small amount of Salt (as the Bacon will already be adding a salty element to the Soup) and drop your Bouquet Garni on top and cook on High for 4 hours.
After 4 hours you can either Mash with a Potato Masher for a chunky, rustic soup or use a Stick Blender to puree completely. Stir through the Sour Cream and top with some Sharp Cheddar.

If you prefer, you can use a Bacon Hock instead of Diced Bacon, lifting the bone out at the end, removing the meat to add back to the Soup. Making the Soup this way has amazing flavour! However I tend to opt for Diced Bacon so I can do all the prep during the day and all thats left to do in the evening is serve it.

Paleo Savoury Cheese Muffins

Another Sunday, another weeks worth of baking to produce! As we have just run out of Local Honey and Coconut Sugar I needed something savoury to bake for Husbean’s lunch box. Enter Savoury Cheese Muffins, packed with Veges and a Cream Cheese centre!
Grain & Gluten Free, Sugar Free – these quick and tasty muffins are delicious served hot or cold X


For 10 Savoury mini muffins you will need:
1/2 Celery Stalk – Finely Chopped
1/2 Onion – Finely Chopped
1/2 Carrot – Finely Grated
3 Garlic Cloves – Crushed, Peeled, Diced
2 Tbsp Finely Grated Cheese
Chopped Parsley
1 1/2 Tbsp Coconut Flour
1 1/2 Tbsp Almond Meal
1 Tbsp Ground Flaxseed (Linseed)
Himalayan Salt and Pepper to taste
4 Free Range Eggs – Beaten
10 tsp Cream Cheese

Quite simply add your Veges, Grated Cheese, Parsley and a generous amount of Himalayan Salt and Pepper into a bowl. Next add your Coconut Flour, Almond Meal and Ground Flaxseed and stir well to combine. Finally add your eggs and whisk it all together.
Pop a Tablespoon of the Muffin Mixture into a Muffin Mould, followed by a teaspoon of Cream Cheese and then another Tablespoon of Muffin Mixture to cover the Cream Cheese. Repeat with the rest of the Muffin Moulds and then bake at 180°c for 15 minutes. You must try one hot out of the oven, then pop the rest onto a wire rack to cool.


Pork, Apple and Sage Stew

Phew 2 recipes in 1 day!
Its a very cold evening here under the mountains. I can’t think of anything more comforting to eat than a big bowl of stew and the leftovers make a great lunch for Husbean!
The Apples cook down into an almost Applesauce thats perfect with the tender slow cooked Pork and Sage.


For a Slowcooker full of delicious comforting stew you will need…
350gm FreeFarmed Pork – Diced
1 Tbsp Coconut Flour (or whichever flour you prefer)
1 Good Knob of Butter
1 Celery Stalk – roughly chopped
1 Carrot – roughly chopped
1 Apple – Diced with Skin On
1 Small Onion Diced
3 Cloves Garlic – Crushed, Peeled & Chopped
2 Tbsp Dried Sage
1 400gm Tin of Tomatoes
1 Cup Homemade Chicken Stock
1 Heaped Tbsp Sour Cream or Cream

Firstly turn your Slowcooker on, then chop your Pork into strips and coat in Coconut Flour. Add Pork to your Slowcooker. Next you want to melt your Butter in a pan over medium heat and add the Celery, Carrot, Apple, Onion, Garlic and Sage. Cook while stirring until fragrant, then add to your Slowcooker along with the Tomatoes and Chicken Stock and season generously with Rock Salt and Black Pepper. Cook away on High for 4 hours or Low for 8 hours. Before serving you can give the Stew a light mash if your Apple is still in cubes despite being well cooked! (The Skin cooks until its incredibly soft yet still holds the Apple together) Stir through the Sour Cream if using and enjoy!

Choc Chunk Cookies with Homemade Choc Chunks – Gluten and Refined Sugar Free!

What a flat out week its been! I haven’t had time to post a new recipe and I wanted my next post to be a savoury dish but alas! its more sweets. With school starting back up for Term 3 it was time for some serious baking! I managed to churn out a double batch of Kidney Bean Brownies except with Black Beans this time, a batch of Gluten/Refined Sugar Free Choc Chip Cupcakes, some amazing Peppermint Truffles – find the recipe at HungryCub and finally a batch of these Gluten/Refined Sugar Free Choc Chunk Cookies! They are great in the lunchbox or I’m sure they would be great dunked in a hot drink! They also don’t taste overly Coconutty even using the Coconut Flour! If you use Coconut Oil in place of Butter and use the Choc Chip recipe then these are Dairy Free as well!


First up if you want to make your own Dairy Free Choc Chips
You will need:
1/3 Cup Coconut Oil
1/3 Cup Cacao or Cocoa Powder
2 1/2 Tbsp Local Organic Honey
1 tsp Organic Vanilla Bean Paste

Quite simply add all your ingredients into a saucepan on low heat and mix mix mix until well combined. Then pour or spread your mixture onto a Baking Paper lined tray and pop in the freezer until solid. Then chop into rough chunks or small chips, whatever you fancy! This made enough Choc Chips for 1 batch of cupcakes and 1 batch of Cookies. You can easily double or triple the recipe.

Now for the Cookies!
You will need:
90gm Butter or Coconut Oil
1/4 Heaped Cup Organic Coconut Sugar
1/4 Heaped Cup Local Organic Honey
1 Free Range Egg
1 Cup Coconut Flour
1/2 tsp Gluten Free Baking Powder
1 Cup Choc Chunks

In a food processor or mixer (or even by hand!) Cream the Butter or Coconut Oil with the Coconut Sugar and Honey until light in colour.
Add the Egg and beat well. Now add your Flour, Baking Powder and Choc Chunks and carefully mix it all together. Finally drop Tablespoon size balls of Cookie Dough onto a lined tray and flatten with your hand or a fork. Bake at 180°c for 10 minutes, then leave to cool on a wire rack.  Enjoy!

Chocolate and Orange Curd Tart – Gluten and Refined Sugar Free

Well its my Birthday Week this week so I thought I would make an extra special treat! I had one of my lovely sisters helping me too, bonus!

Just as I love Mint & Chocolate, I’m also a sucker for Orange & Chocolate so what better flavoured tart to make than Chocolate and Orange Curd! Yummm and its also free of Refined Sugar, Gluten and if you sub the Butter for Coconut Oil, Dairy Free!


First up for the base:
12 Dates soaked in Hot Water for 10 minutes, reserve 1 tsp of the Soaking Water
1 Cup Ground Almonds
1 1/2 Tbsp Dark Cocoa or Cacao Powder

Simply throw all your ingredients into a Mini Chopper or Food Processor and blitz until well combined, you don’t want any huge chunks of date!
Then press your mixture into a Medium size Tart Tin and pop in the freezer while you make the Orange Curd!

For the Orange Curd you will need:
50g Butter
1 1/2 Heaped Tbsp Local Organic Honey
Zest of 1 Orange
1/2 Cup Squeezed Orange Juice (I used 2 Large Juicy Oranges)
4 Free Range Eggs
A Couple of Drops or Natural Orange Essence (optional)
1 Orange Slice (optional)

In a small saucepan over low heat, melt together your Butter and Honey and put aside until cool. Whisk in your Orange Juice, Zest and Eggs and return to low heat. Continue whisking until suddenly your Curd will thicken up! It may seem like its not working but it will! We were whisking for a good 10 minutes then all of a sudden it thickened!
At this point you can have a taste and add a couple of drops of essence if you wish. Pour over your frozen base and return to the freezer, after about 45 minutes it should be safe to top with an orange slice if you wish (you don’t want it to sink!) Return it back to the Freezer to set.
After you have removed it from the tin you can serve it Frozen or Thawed the choice is yours!

Enjoy x


Chocolate Toffee Bites – Refined Sugar and Gluten Free

Well its been a little over a month since we started this journey and we have all felt the difference when we do indulge in something sugary – it just goes to show refined sugar is not great in our everyday diets. I decided to jump on scale – right after scoffing a Paleo roast meal at my in-laws, ha! – and I’m 5kg lighter since we have made the change. Weight loss wasn’t the point of our lifestyle shift but it sure is a nice bonus! 1 month down, a lifetime to go!

And here’s a late night treat I whipped up… Chocolate Toffee Bites!
Free of refined sugar and gluten they are perfect when you’re feeling like a really sweet treat. Hope you Enjoy X


First up for the Base you will need:
6 Dates – Soaked in water for 10 minutes beforehand + 1 tsp of the soaking liquid or 3 Medjool Dates
1/3 Cup Ground Almonds
1 Tbsp Dark Cocoa Powder Or Cacao or a mixture of the two

Into a Mini Chopper or Food Processor it all goes and blitz until well combined and starts sticking to the sides of your processor.
Take a tablespoon of the mixture and push into the bottom of silicone mini muffin trays or paper muffin cups. Pop in the freezer to set while you do the toffee.

For the Toffee you will need:
50gms Butter
1/2 Cup Organic Coconut Sugar

Over very low heat, melt your butter In a small saucepan. Add the Coconut sugar and stir constantly over the low heat until the mixture has combined and resembles Toffee. It may look as though the Coconut Sugar and Butter have seperated but continue to mix them and they will come together. Do not be tempted to try your Toffee as it will be incredibly hot!
Remove the Choc Bases from the freezer and drop a Tablespoon full of Toffee over each base. You can now pop them back in the freezer to set as is or you can add another Choc Base on top of your Toffee layer. Up to you! Pop them back in the freezer for an hour or so to set and then devour!

Hazelnut Butter Method & Homemade Nutella

I thought since its the school holidays here I would make a bit of a treat for the boys breakfasts this morning. They are big Peanut Butter fans so I thought I would try something a bit different…Hazelnut Butter!

This is more of a Method rather than a Recipe as there is only 1 ingredient!


Firstly you need to Roast your Hazelnuts to get the oils going, put 1 Cup of Hazelnuts into a roasting dish and pop in the oven for 10 minutes at 160°c – give them a couple of shakes to ensure they don’t burn.

After 10 minutes out of the oven they come, pop them onto a clean tea towel and rub to remove the Hazelnut Skins – they should just crumble away easily. Next tip them into a mini chopper or food processor and blitz! At this point it will look as though all you have made is Hazelnut Meal but persevere. If you keep blitzing you will start to see that the oils have been released and its starting to meld together. Now you will know you’re on the right track, keep going until it looks like a Nut Butter and its as smooth or crunchy as you like. Pour into a sterilised jar unless it gets devoured first! This went down a treat with Mr 7!

Now if you want to go to the next level and make a spread similar to Nutella, all you will need is Sugar, Modified Palm Oil, Hazelnuts, Cocoa, Skim Milk Powder, Whey Powder, Lecithin, Vanillin.
1 Cup Hazelnuts
1 Tbsp Cacao or Dark Cocoa Powder
1 Tbsp Local Organic Honey
1 Tbsp Milk, either a nut milk – Hazelnut or Almond would work well here or Cows Milk (I use Raw Cows Milk)
1/2 tsp Organic Vanilla Bean Paste (optional)
Simply make your Hazelnut Butter using the method above. Once it has become a Nut Butter add the remaining ingredients and mix well to combine.
I actually forgot to add the Vanilla and I think its great without it so I won’t bother adding it to my next batch either. It tastes awesome and has only 4 ingredients! Success!

As long as you use a Nut Milk, this Choc Hazelnut Spread is Dairy Free and Refined Sugar Free.


It may interest you to know that in a 37g (2Tbsp) serving of Store Bought Nutella, 21g of that is Sugar.

Good Old Corn Fritters

Well you just can’t beat a plate of Corn Fritters with Sour Cream and Homemade Sauce for lunch. Pile up the plate and pass it around!
This quick and easy recipe has been adapted from a retro Watties recipe that used to be printed on Tins of Creamed Corn – it calls for considerably less flour than some more modern Corn Fritter recipes.


For around 10 Corn Fritters you will need:
1x 300gm Can of Creamed Corn OR use Corn off the Cob from your garden, mashing half the kernals and leaving the other half whole
1 Free Range Egg – Beaten
2 Rashers Bacon – Diced
1/4 Onion – Finely Diced
1 Garlic Clove – Crushed, Peeled and Diced
1/4 tsp Minced Chilli
Fresh Parsley – Chopped
Salt and Pepper
Grated Cheese -Optional
3 Tbsp Flour – Use 2 1/2 Tbsp if using Wholemeal or Sub for Almond Flour to make it Gluten Free
1/2 Tbsp Baking Powder

In a bowl mix together all the ingredients except for the Flour and Baking Powder. Then sift in the Flour and Baking Powder and gently stir to combine. Melt a knob of Butter in your frying pan and drop in Tablespoon size balls of batter. Flip when bubbles appear on the surface of each Fritter and continue to cook until Golden.

Serve with Sour Cream and Homemade Sweet Chilli or Tomato Sauce and Enjoy!

Lime and Dark Chocolate Ice Cream (Refined Sugar and Dairy Free!)

Although the colour of this Ice Cream may be deceiving,  you have the intense zing from the lime cutting through the bitter dark chocolate.
It is awesome!
Don’t just take my word for it though, give it a whirl, no fancy Ice Cream Maker required!


You will need:
1 Tin Full Fat Coconut Milk
1/4 Cup Organic Coconut Sugar
Juice and Zest of 1 Lime – Make sure you squeeze out aaalll the juice!
1/2 tsp Organic Vanilla Bean Paste
2 Squares of Dark Chocolate – Grated (Richfield’s if you want to avoid Refined Sugar or Whittaker’s Dark Ghana if you want to avoid Dairy)

This ones easy!
Just throw all your ingredients into your mixer with a balloon whisk attachment or a mixing bowl if your going to whisk by hand. Mix for a minute until everything is well combined. Next pop the covered bowl into the freezer. Every half hour for 2 hours take it out and give it a quick whisk. After the fourth whisk you can transfer it to a loaf tin or similar( I used a silicone loaf mould) Leave for 12 hours and then thaw on your bench for 10 minutes before giving it a final whisk and serve!

Next time I will replace the Lime with Orange for Jaffa Ice Cream, or perhaps I will go for a simple Chocolate Ice Cream and ditch the citrus all together, add Dark Cocoa and up the Vanilla. Or…..