Easy Ways to have a diet high in Omega 3

It’s not always possible to eat fish every day, nor would you probably want to. One easy way we add omega 3 to our diet is to eat Soy and Linseed bread, as linseed is one of the highest sources of omega 3.

Canola oil is also high in omega 3 so we use margarine with canola oil in it. Although olive oil and rice bran oil are good to cook with, we also have canola oil as a choice. We also take fish oil capsules when we remember, not that David is in particular need of a diet high in omega 3. Finding simple ways like these to add omega 3 to our food means we don’t have to think about it much, it’s just part of our daily routine.

It’s good to skip the meat and have a vegetarian meal regularly, which I’m so grateful my husband doesn’t mind. Today we had toasted cheese and tomato sandwiches for lunch which were spiced up with our Awesome Sauce! So we add these into the Calorie King, as well as the daily exercise we’ve started doing, to work out your daily calorie intake. Yes, we are now on a diet and exercise regime, which is well overdue – the final straw being the Wii Fit told me I have now crept over into ‘obese’, WTF! Diet time!!!!

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Sushi on a Sunday

I love sushi and David has learned how to make it quite well! For lunch, we make 3 rolls with a simple filling of tuna and carrots. Because we have run out of wasabi, we used our very own home-made Awesome Sauce and some mayonnaise. We did try and make our own mayonnaise once, but that was epic fail so we’ll have to try that again another day! I’m David’s kitchen hand, preparing the carrots, tuna, other ingredients and equipment, he prepares the rice with the sushi vinegar as I’m much more likely to screw that bit up!

David gets creative for the camera by making a pattern with the filling for one of the sushi rolls! He also has developed a deft hand for the trick of rolling the perfect sushi roll /nomnomnom

Hollandaise Sauce and Rosy Pink Meringues

On Saturday 13th February, the day before Valentine’s Day, one of the many things we baked was David’s yummy hollandaise sauce for our salmon eggs benedict. But what to do with the left over egg whites? Why, my Rosy Pink Meringues, of course!


I helped David with the emulsion step of the hollandaise sauce, which has to be done very slowly, adding one cube of butter at a time. We then refridgerated it in a jar over night. To heat it up the next day, you have to warm it very very slowly over the double boiler. If you do it too fast, the emulsion will break and the egg and butter will seperate. It is possible to do this, but on Sunday morning, it was heated a little too fast and it did break. All you have to do to save it is, put a tablespoon of lemon juice in a fresh bowl to use as a double boiler. Then add one tablespoon of the broken emulsion, mix until it’s the correct consistency, then slowly add the rest of the broken emulsion one tablespoon at a time. We also discovered that hollandaise sauce, it’s main ingredient being butter, makes a very yummy buttery spread on bread when it’s cold from the fridge! No need to warm it over a double boiler, it’s yummy cold. I reckon it tastes a bit like the kraft cheese spread.

Because hollandaise sauce uses three egg yolks, you are then left over with three egg whites. We don’t make hollandaise sauce often, its a special treat which I love, so we usually make some meringues with the egg whites. I use a very simple recipe I found in my “Australia the Beautiful Cookbook” by Hayes and Gorrick, 1982, page 168. You only need the eggs whites and a bit of sugar. I also added a drop of red food dye, which I clumsily splashed on my fingers, and a drop of vanilla essence. David whisked these up using our new handwhisk, so these turned out the best so far due to the proper whisking they got! I had considerable fun playing with the gorgeous pink mixture that spooned onto the tray so delightfully. When they come out of the oven, the pink had a rosy tinge to it due to the browning from the cooking, which I think looks rather lovely. When we were eating our love heart icecream cake on Sunday, David thought to crumble one of these pink meringues over the top of it, and it was scrummy!!

Feast for a Day – Valentine's (part two)

After much planning and a full day of preparation yesterday, this is what we actually ended up having for our special day-long celebration today for both Valentine’s and Chinese New Year.

breakfast
Love Heart Fried Eggs with Smoked Salmon, generous dollops of hollandaise sauce and a sprinkling of fresh chives
Homemade Tomato, Capsicum, Chilli and Garlic Pull-apart Bread
Peppermint & Lemon Balm Tea with honey
Chocolate Coffee with cream & sugar

mid-morning snack
Mint & Ginger Fruit Punch
Poorman’s Caviar with Corn Chips
Lemon Myrtle & Pistacio Biscotti dipped in cinnamon honey

lunch
Smoked Salmon & Carrot Sushi
more Mint & Ginger Fruit Punch

afternoon desert
Love Heart Icecream Cake with strawberries, chocolate sauce, and crumbled pink merringue

dinner
Lemon Myrtle & White Fish Cakes with Sweet Chill Sauce and Basil Fried Rice

How to make

Icecream Cake
6 scoops of strawberry shortcake icecream mixed with 6 cut up caramel chocolates, a handful of crushed cashews, 3 crumbled chocolate biscuits, press into a cling-wrap lined heart-shaped small cake tin and freeze overnight

Mint & Ginger Fruit Punch
1 can of fizzy soft drink (we used Lemon Squash), a tablespoon of fresh ginger juice (grate and mix with a little tonic water then strain), add cut up 2 nectarines, 1 orange, a handful of strawberries and love-heart shaped ice cubes, a handful of fresh mint leaves, top up with Mango Juice as required

Feast for a Day – Valentine's

It’s important for strong mental health to mark the passage of time with friends and loved ones by celebrating special occasions together. This year, Valentine’s Day falls on a Sunday so this will be the last weekend day for a couple of years. Next year, David will be at work. So David and I have decided we shall celebrate with a day long feast!

To design the menu, we came up with three words to describe our greatest hopes for our relationship, this being the time to celebrate “love”. We then assigned colours and foods to these themes, then created a menu with each dish containing at least one thing from each theme. Another way to describe this “spell” we made up is to describe it as a “positve affirmation”, because after you eat each dish, you could think or whisper the three romantic words together! The only hocus-pocus here is to remind ourselves of our goals for our life together, and to consolidate it in a yummy but meaningful way.

Passion – Longevity – Faith

Passion – heat, red, sweet, blood
(eg. chillies, pepper, honey, mint, tomatoes, red wine, red kidney beans, red capsicum, rosewater, strawberries, passionfruit, lamb, ham, salmon, wasabi, coffee etc.)
Longevity – life, health, trees, green
(eg. rosemary, basil, oregano, marjoram, lemon myrtle, lemon balm, olive oil, eggs, eggplant, apples, linseed, tree nuts, nutmeg, peas, dairy, flour, rice, citrus etc.)
Faith – earth, strong, white, reliability
(eg. potatoes, water, onions, carrots, chives, chocolate, garlic, ginger, groundnuts (peanuts), cinnamon, mayonaise, etc.)

DRAFT Feast for a Day menu (will post fotos of what we actually did later)
(if you use this idea on your website, please link back to my blog, thanks!)

breakfast
Peppermint, Lemon Balm and Ginger Tea (passion, longevity, faith)
Hot Chocolate Coffee with Cream (passion, longevity, faith)
Heart-shaped Eggs Benedict with Smoked Salmon and Chives (passion, longevity, faith)
Garlic and Tomato Homebaked Bread (passion, longevity, faith)

morning tea
Heart-shaped Rosewater and Peanut Cookies (passion, longevity, faith)
Spice Milk Chai, incl. caffiene, ginger, nutmeg etc. (passion, longevity, faith)

lunch
Salmon and Carrot Sushi Rolls with Sweet Chilli Sauce and Wasabi (passion, longevity, faith)
Mango Juice with sprigs of mint and ginger (passion, longevity, faith)
Apple Juice with floating strawberries and a dusting of cinnamon sugar (passion, longevity, faith)

dinner
Roast Lamb with Rosemary and Garlic (passion, longevity, faith)
Basil Fried Rice with Peas, Onion, Red Capsicum and Chilli (passion, longevity, faith)
red wine (passion) to be served in green glasses with white ribbon (longevity & faith)
Garlic and Tomato Homebaked Bread (passion, longevity, faith)

snack and drink ideas
Pistacio and Lemon Myrtle Biscotti with Honey and Cinnamon dip (passion, longevity, faith)
Hot Apple Tea with Cinnamon and Honey (passion, longevity, faith)
pappadoms with carrot and margoram dip (passion, longevity, faith)
corn chips with tomato and onion salsa (passion, longevity, faith)
Poorman’s CaviarĀ  – red capsicum, eggplant, garlic (passion, longevity, faith)

desert
Love-heart Shaped Pavlovas with Strawberries, Cream and a drizzling of chocolate sauce (passion, longevity, faith)
Strawberry Shortcake Icecream with a dusting of sweetened cocoa powder (passion, longevity, faith)

make before the day
garlic and tomato bread
rosewater and peanut cookies
peppermint and lemon balm tea
hollandaise sauce and pavlova shells (or merringues)
pistacio and lemon myrtle biscotti

Oh no, we've run out of eggs!

Most weekends, we like to cook ourselves up a nice hot breakfast, pancakes being a favourite. We’d decided on pancakes this morning when I noticed Dave looking up egg substitutes on his pc and remembered we were out of eggs. We’ve already found out that there are several ways to subsitute eggs in cooking. Pioneer Thinking has a page with a list of egg substitues. I would’ve liked to have tried a banana in our pancakes, as one can be used instead of an egg, but lucky for Dave we are currently out of them as he doesn’t like cooked bananas! Another egg substitute is ‘milled flaxseed’. Now, we knew flaxseed is another name for linseed, but what did ‘milled’ mean and could we use the linseeds from our pantry?

Linseed, or flaxseed, is an excellent source of Omega 3, almost as good as salmon, which is the best source. Omega 3 is an essential vitamin that helps with a couple of things, the most interesting for us is that it helps maintain good mental health (my doctor has suggested a diet high in Omega 3, which is why we keep linseed in our pantry to add to homemade bread). Flaxseed is a very old grain that’s been used for thousands of years, but has fallen out of popular use in recent times, I think that might be one reason why people are so stressed nowadays! We have whole linseed in our pantry, and sometimes we also have a ground mix of linseed, sunflower and almond.

For milled linseeds you can just grind the whole seeds, which can be done in a coffee grinder. Freshly milled linseed is best as it only lasts about a month in the fridge, and it’s better to eat it this way than eat the seeds whole*. We don’t have a coffee grinder so Dave ground a tablespoon of linseed with our mortar and pestle to try. He’d already made the pancake mix with no eggs, and had started cooking one to see if it would be ok without. Then he added the egg substitute, which was a tablespoon of linseed mixed with 3 tablespoons of water, and cooked up another pancake.

Dave thought you could tell the difference but I didn’t! You can see tiny flecks of ground linseed in the pancake, but they were so fine as to not spoil the texture at all. In the least, the pancakes contain a bit of extra fibre. But these special pancakes with linseed are especially good because they help keep you sane and lovey dovey all at the same time!

enjoy!
xoxox

Lovey Dovey Egg Free Pancakes
2 cups of plain flour
3 teasponns of baking powder (1 part bi-carb soda to 1 part cream of tartar)
2 tablespoons sugar
2 cups milk
2 tblspn ground linseed mixed with 6 tblspn water (instead of 2 eggs)
60g melted butter
a handful of frozen berries (extra healthy and yummy!)

Shift flour and baking powder, stir in sugar.
Whisk eggs, milk, butter, add to flour.
Mix well then put in fridge for 15 minutes.
Preheat a frypan with some butter, turn to low heat.
Using heart shapped egg rings, cook for a couple of minutes or until bubbles form, then turn them over and cook for a couple more minutes.
Serve with honey and icecream.
Yummmm!!

* http://www.flaxseedshop.com/content/Milled-Flax-Seed.asp