Tag Archives: health kick

Gluten Free Zucchini Crust Pizza

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IMG_4137Wow this pizza may not look like much but boy was it tasty!!! Though the base tastes nothing like normal pizza dough…I have to say I think it taste a whole lot better!! Packed full of flavour with all the herbs and spices and with a lovely chewy texture this pizza crust is perfect for all those die hard pizza fans out there who are unlucky enough to have a gluten intolerance! Though I am do not have coeliac disease myself, I really enjoy trying and creating gluten free alternatives for some of our usual not so gluten free friendly favourites so that no one has to miss out!

The base was super easy to whip up and then the toppings??…well that is entirely up to you but I will give you an idea of what tasty morsels I sprinkled over my pizza last night to make my pizza so irresistibly tasty! This recipe below makes 2 decent sized pizzas, but I must warn you..dont expect any leftovers as you are likely going to be able eat a whole one on your own they are just so delicious!

What you need…

For the base:

  • 2 large zucchinis, grated
  • 1/4cup almond meal (or you could use brown rice flour)
  • 1/2 tsp chilli flakes (you can adjust this based on your spice preference!)
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1-2 tbsp chopped fresh basil
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh or dried oregano
  • salt n pepper
  • 1 egg

Suggested Toppings:

  • 90g smoked salmon
  • 2 button mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 punnet cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/4 red capsicum, thinly sliced
  • bunch of fresh basil
  • 1/3 cup tomato paste
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 50g fetta cheese
  • fresh argula leaves and some homemade basil pesto to garnish

What to do…

IMG_4126Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius (fan forced).

For the base, place the grated zucchini in a bowl sprinkle over about 1/2 tsp salt and mix well. Allow to sit for 20mins to draw the moisture out. Then place the zucchini in a clean cheese cloth (chux cloth) and squeeze out as much of the moisture as you can. Note: You want your zucchini to be as dry as possible so that the base doesn’t become soggy!

Next throw all the base ingredients together in a bowl and mix well to combine before turning the mixture out on a piece of baking paper. Use you fingers to press the mixture down to form a large flat circle about 1/2 an inch thick.

 

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You need to pre-cook the base before adding your toppings, so when ready, carefully slide the pizza base on the baking paper onto a rack in the oven and cook for 8-10mins or until nicely browned around the edges. Once cooked remove from the oven and allow to cool.

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While your base is in the oven, crack on with preparing your toppings…whatever they might be! I have included what I threw on my pizza last night in the ingredients list above but go crazy and throw on what ever toppings you like! That is really the best thing about pizzas…there is just ENDLESS possibilities of tasty topping combinations, making it possible to tailor each pizza to suit the palette (and cravings) of each and every diner! So let your imagination run wild and throw on whatever you can find in your garden, pantry and fridge!

 

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Once you have concocted your ultimate pizza combo, slide the pizza (still on the baking paper) onto a tray and into the oven and cook on high heat for 5-8mins or until your toppings are cooked to your liking.

Remove from the oven, top with some fresh argula leaves, slice and dice your pizza and you’re good to go!

Oh and don’t forget to team your meal with a lovely glass of red if you’re looking for the ultimate Italian feast experience!!

Enjoy!

A

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New Years Resolution # 1: Getting a Handle on Sugar Cravings!

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Sugar cravings.. just about everyone gets them at some point or another, but what can you do to Mixed-lollies_Lge-01override them? For some it is a daily battle to overcome that 3pm sugar craving slump and if this is you, here a few simple suggestions on how you can take control and stop the cravings for good!

1) Make sure you eat every 2-3 hours

Though it may be easy to get distracted at work and before you know it, its 3pm and you still haven’t had lunch, this is a serious recipe for disaster! Going long periods of time without eating causes significant drops in your blood sugar levels, often leading to intense sugar cravings. This is because glucose or sugar (which is what carbohydrates are broken down into in your gut) is your body’s primary energy source. So, when energy levels become too low, your body starts to crave sugary foods as these are easily broken down and released into your blood stream to be used as energy, providing a super quick energy fix. The problem is, the energy release from sugary foods is short lived and you often end up feeling sluggish  and craving even more sugar before you know it! Moral of the story?… eat regularly to prevent your blood sugar levels dropping too low and the sugar cravings from creeping in!

2)    Always keep a packet of minty chewing gum on hand

Popping in a piece of gum after a meal not only keeps your breath minty fresh but it also serves as a great distraction from sweet foods and it also helps to cleanse the palate, making sugary foods seem less appealing.

3) Opt for herbal or black tea between meals

Virtually calorie free and oh-so soothing herbal or black teas are the perfect distraction after meals to prevent those sugar cravings from creeping in! Herbal teas like peppermint are especially effective at curbing the cravings as they help to refresh the palate in much the same way as chewing gum!

4) Curb the cravings with healthier, more nourishing alternatives.

Instead of feeding your cravings with sugar, which will only cause you to crave MORE sugar, try opting for more satisfying, protein –rich snacks like nuts, a slice of cheese or celery sticks with peanut butter. Or, if you absolutely feel you need something sweet, opt for a couple of squares of extra dark chocolate. The richness of dark chocolate should prevent you from eating as much and it is also far less sweet than normal milk chocolate, which may help to prevent a total sugar blow out!

5) Ride it out

Though it may sometimes feel like sugar cravings are going to last a life time and the only answer is to give in, I can promise you those feelings will pass! In fact, studies show most cravings last a maximum of 20 minutes. So, why not try distracting yourself with something non-food related for a few minutes and you might just find those cravings might just pass faster than you think!

Happy New Year!

A