May 31, 2012

Inspirational Friends: Elenore from Earthsprout

Greetings from the Arctic Circle, my friends!

We finally arrived here on Monday morning, after travelling for almost 30 hours. Needless to say we've been jet lagged, but very excited at the same time. It feels so good to be home. Spring has arrived even on these altitudes, but it is still early days and we even had a few snowflakes falling down yesterday. I've taken a few happy snaps here and there and will share those with you a bit later.

Whilst we are busy getting everything organised for the wedding, I've invited another fabulously inspiring friend as a guest here on my blog. I've been a huge fan of Elenore's blog for quite some time now and her endless positive energy has been both addictive and contagious. I am so honoured to have Elenore here to answer a few questions about her raw food journey and share yet another delicious recipe with us. 

Thank you Elenore and much love back to you!

PS. The giveaway entries close today, May 31. I will announce the winners of Sarah's e-book later this week.

I just fell in love. With myself. And yes, it had everything to do with the Liquorice toffee on the picture above. I might even have to go get me a ring or something.

If you are familiar with me or with Earthsprout then you know I tend to rave about all kinds of Greenylicious health boosting things but quite frankly it is Raw chocolate and leafy veggie-focused most of the time. So now I'm breaking a pattern for Beautiful Maria and all of you Scandi Foodies on this amazingly bright page! I am really happy to get to share these recipes with you (cuz then you´ll fall in love with yourselves too) plus I am crazy glad to be able to help Maria give all her attention to the wedding. I think we all agree that she should, right!?

Now you might be wondering who on earth I am who suddenly popped up here. Well, I am Elenore, your official Tree Hugger and Sassy Health Gal. I run with the wolves and I love long fabulous dresses. I mix the wonders of nature with the latest of knowledge in the world of natural nutrition an I firmly believe in the magic of this Planet. I mean I doubt that the date pits that I throw out in the vegetable garden will grow since I live in Sweden. but still, this Earth is pretty magical indeed. So what I do is that I use my knowledge and inspiration to hopefully make a change in the world. I spread Greenylicious tips and love and crazy dance this whole life through! (More in the interview below)

Fun & Fabulous Facts

So if the earth is magical then of course so is the Liquorice root! Liquorice is derived from a plant part of the pea family which means that Liquorice is a legume and was actually also sold in pharmacies up until the 70´s! I remember the first time I met this root, I was around 6 or 7 year old and I got one to chew on in the health food store. Instant love for sure. It is traditionally used as a mouth refresher so I'm not the only one who likes to chew on it apparently.

There are many studies and many things said about the wondrous root of the Liquorice plant one of them being it´s effect on the hormones of the endocrine system. There are active substances in Liquorice that acts balancing in particularly the bodies of women by adding plant estrogens (phytoestrogens) and lowering the amount of testosterone (the "male" hormone). Based on studies that show this, the liquorice root is commonly used to help balance menstrual irregularities and other problems liked to the hormonal system. I think that is a really good excuse to indulge in these toffee squares at least! That being said, it is not advised to eat more than 50g liquorice per day as it can in access consumption for example rise blood pressure or disrupt the water balance in the body.

Raw Liquorice Toffee with Rhubarb compote

This is one of those ridiculously easy raw dessert recipes that you can create in a few minutes and while the toffee rests in the freezer you have time to make the compote. I know it may seem like the weirdest collision of flavors but I'm telling you. It´s so darn delish! (did I mention it's free from added sugars?) Now go fall in love with yourself!

Raw Liquorice Toffee
 (Makes 8 mid sized squares)

165 g prunes
40 g virgin coconut oil, carefully melted in a bowl over hot water
40 g almond flour or ground almonds
2 tsp Raw Liquorice powder
0.5 tsp Himalayan salt
6 drops of anise seed oil
1 tsp Raw Liquorice powder (to dust the toffees with)

1. Add all ingredients to your a food processor and blend thoroughly until it has formed a smooth dough.

2. Press the dough into a a square on a baking sheet, dust with the additional liquorice powder and put in the freezer while you make the rhubarb compote.

3. Cut the toffee in squares and enjoy together with the compote.

Rhubarb Compote

400 g rhubarb, peeled & sliced
170 g apple
0.5 cup water
3 tsp arrowroot powder
10 drops of stevia concentrate
0.5 tsp pure vanilla

1. Add rhubarb, apple and water to a large saucepan and bring to a boil then let it simmer at a low temperature for 10 minutes.

2. Add arrowroot powder, stevia and vanilla and stir until incorporated.

3. Turn of the heat, put on the lid and let it rest for at least 5 minutes.


Put a small liquorice square on a pretty plate sprinkle some Himalayan sea salt over it and add some rhubarb compote, decorate with a few mint leaves. EAT!

What inspired you to become a raw, vegan foodie?

Lets start by saying that I am not eating 100% raw but I sure am a raw lover and continuously amazed by how raw food makes me feel.  So. Being close to nature and venturing the world of yoga always makes me question eating animals and this was also where it all started. Going completely green might not be for everyone but it sure does resonate with me and my belief that lot´s of veggies = world peace. I know it sounds a bit cheesy but it will continue to be a huge part of my core.

You’re an organic gardener and a raw food chef. Tell us how you got into this kind of a career?

It is actually a funny story but when I tell it is just makes perfect sense. I am all for following your intuition and there was a period of time in my life when I was not sure where I should go next. One day this thought popped into my head that said "let´s create a vegetable garden" and so i did. From that day on everything else kind of followed. Growing vegetables sparked my interest in natural nutrition and when realizing that the veggies are such powerful superheroes, all I wanted to do was to spread the word. Years of education and experience followed, Earthsprout was born and now here I am really glad that I went with my gut feeling. Our intuition rocks!

What tips do you have for people wanting to make the switch to a raw food diet?

I´d say experiment, play, find all sorts of fun inspiration and if you live in an area that have cold seasons, wait for summer to come! Oh, and Raw Food desserts are such a perfect eye opener and definitely have the power to make people want more of the raw stuff!

What is your favourite raw food meal to prepare?

Yesterday I made a raw meal for me and Fabian. Zucchini pasta with tomato sauce and olives, topped off with greens and raw crackers. It made me realize how much I love the simple meals. Pure, Whole and Oh So Tasty!

What are your future plans? Any upcoming projects you’d like to share with us?

Well first and foremost I was thinking I´d save the world... I am part of an AMAZING weekend course called Goddess Boost in July where I´ll whip up some glorious raw foods and speak about my yummy passions. I am really looking forward to that! You should come!
Also I am putting the final touches on the design of my fabulous Nordic Superfood Mix which I am going to launch this summer. This is such a heart project of mine and with it I wish to spread knowledge about the superb superfoods that we have here up north. The Nordic Superfood Mix is exclusively handpicked, extremely powerful and really tasty. If you want to hear more about it or maybe know some place suitable to sell the product, do contact me! I´d love to hear from you!

Hugest thanks to Maria for having me, such an honor (Scandi foodie is Totally Earthsprout Approved)! And all you Scandi Foodie honeys, you are more than welcome to join me on Facebook and Twitter and tell me all about your Greenylicious adventures!
°° Elenore Earth °°

May 27, 2012

Inspirational Friends: Amanda Rootsey

Hi friends!

We are off to Finland today, but I have prepared a few special treats for you while I'm away. I'm going to introduce you to some of my friends; the people I truly admire for what they represent, what they are doing and how they are inspiring others.

First off is Amanda Rootsey, an eco model and co-founder of Vegan Era, an online portal with information on vegan lifestyle. Please continue to read Amanda's incredible story and make sure to check out Amanda's personal website as well as Vegan Era!

What inspired you to become a vegan?
A few years ago I was vegetarian but I hadn’t quite made the switch to vegan.  Then I was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and started researching.  It was very easy to cut out dairy and any other animal products after reading all of the alarming evidence that links animal protein with all sorts of diseases, including cancer.  

What do you love about being a vegan?
It feels right.  I love knowing that I’m doing what I can to ensure that I do not harm another being.  

Tell us about the concept behind Vegan Era?
Actually my partner and I have been running Vegan Era for about 5 years and it is constantly evolving.  Initially we just wanted to share everything that we have learnt along the way and have created lots of free e-books and recipes.  While it has always been primarily an information portal, we have also held seminars around Australia, put up “Save the Planet, Be Vegan” billboards around Queensland, hosted a regular 21 Day Live Vegan online program to help people transition, assisted other vegan businesses to develop their online presence and our latest project is the Vegan Card. 
Vegan Card is being launched on June 1st!

As part of Vegan Era, you are launching the Vegan Card on June 1st. What is the Vegan Card and how can it be used?
The Vegan Card is an Australia-wide loyalty card, which gives the card holder discounts at over 60 vegan and vegan-friendly businesses online and around Australia.  We have had such an incredible response, both from businesses and from people purchasing the card, and it hasn’t even launched yet!  It’s already proven to be a great way to bring the vegan community together and introduce vegans to more businesses that they may not have heard about otherwise.  

You are also an eco model. Tell us why it is important to spread the message about sustainable and cruelty-free fashion?
I think it’s important because it’s so easy and affordable to buy fashion these days that we often don’t stop to think about where it actually came from and the effect that supporting cheap and fast fashion has on other people, the planet and animals.  Each time we make a purchase we can make a choice to support businesses that are creating their products without using child slave labour, without killing animals, without polluting waterways… as consumers, we have the power to create a better world and demand higher standards.  I think the more educated we become and the more we talk about it, the more positive change that we will see in the world.  After going through cancer I realized how fragile life is and it made me stop and consider the type of world that we are leaving for future generations.   At the rate we are going, there won’t be much left for the kiddies! 

Besides following a vegan diet, what are some simple things one can do to promote a compassionate and cruelty-free lifestyle?
There are lots of little things that we can do to tread a little lighter on the planet and be kind to other beings.  From choosing beauty and cosmetic labels that do not test on animals and do not use animal products, such as one of my favourites, Adorn Mineral Cosmetics, to buying fair-trade chocolate or shopping at your local organic farmers markets.  Not only will you be living a more compassionate and eco-friendly life, but you will also be doing wonders for your health. 

What tips do you have for people wanting to make the switch to a vegan diet?
Be gentle with yourself and find some support.  At first we can come up with all sorts of obstacles and our family and friends can instil fear and worry about whether it’s the right thing to do.  But you will know in your heart that it’s right and once you begin on this journey you feel incredible, physically, mentally and emotionally.  If you would like any help at all, please do not hesitate to get in touch via email or sign up for our next 21 Day Live Vegan online program which starts on July 1st.  We provide 24/7 personalised support and try to make it as easy as possible to transition, with weekly meal planners, shopping lists, recipe books, nutritional information, tips on socializing and eating out, vegan beauty and cosmetic information, videos, personal stories, inspirational quotes and LOTS more!   

Who is your vegan inspiration?
Oh wow I have a few…I think celebrities like Ellen DeGeneres and Alicia Silverstone are incredible and are showing millions of people that it’s a healthy, positive way to live.  Supreme Master Ching Hai is a beautiful spiritual Master who is guiding hundreds of thousands of people to live a compassionate existence in every possible sense and helping people to get in touch with their own inner Master, Buddha Nature or whatever you would like to call it.  She is a true inspiration and her teachings make so much sense to me.   

What is your favourite vegan meal to prepare?
My favourite, simple meal that I seem to make quite a few times a week is Miso Soup.  Sometimes with noodles, sometimes with brown rice, sometimes with tofu sometimes just with loads of veggies – I am totally addicted!  

What are your future plans? Any upcoming projects you’d like to share with us?
I’m really looking forward to the launch of the Vegan Card on June 1st and we are busily working away on the next 21 Day Live Vegan online program which will start on July 1st.  Apart from that, I’ve got a few photoshoots coming up for some gorgeous eco-friendly labels and I am also putting together an Eco-Fashion show for the Sunshine Coast Fashion Festival later in the year.   

You can connect with Amanda and find out more here:

All images by Amanda Rootsey

May 24, 2012

Fennel and Persimmon Salad with Buckwheat-Sesame Sprinkle

First of all, THANK YOU for all the amazing responses on my previous post! I am overwhelmed and incredibly inspired by all your comments. It's really great to see so many of you interested in ridding sugar out of your lives and it's also good to know that so many of you acknowledge sugar addiction is something you'd like to work on. Well done all of you!

I've been wrapping up a few last minute photo shoots at work this week, borrowing and returning props, typing product details and making sure I haven't missed anything amongst all the craziness. Our luggage for the trip are still empty, but I've managed to pile the suitcases with gifts that I've been buying here and there during the past weeks. I love buying gifts and I do my best to bring something for everyone, even if it's just a small token. 

It hasn't quite hit me yet that we are actually leaving - this Sunday - . Time has really flown, especially during the past few months (can you believe it's almost June?!), but I am so happy to go home. I haven't seen my parents in one and a half years and I haven't seen my brother in well over three years! That's a really long time. I miss them all so much and I really just want to give them all a big hug.  

This salad is a little bit of celebration for our upcoming trip. There is a lot going on on this plate: so many flavours, colours and textures, but they all work well together. I adore the sweet fennel and persimmon, the gorgeous ruby pomegranate arils and the crunchy buckwheat-sesame sprinkle. A truly enjoyable salad! 


Fennel and Persimmon Salad with Buckwheat-Sesame Sprinkle
(serves 2)

1 small fennel bulb
2 small persimmons, peeled
1/2 pomegranate
1/2 bunch kale
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons raw buckwheat
1 tablespoons sesame seeds
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
salt, to taste

1. Finely slice fennel and persimmons and toss in a big bowl. Add arils of half a pomegranate and coarsely slice about 5-6 kale leaves, tossing them in as well. 

2. Add apple cider vinegar and olive oil.

3. In a dry pan, toast buckwheat, sesame seeds, cumin and salt for a few minutes or until evenly browned. Sprinkle the mixture on top of the salad and toss well to combine. Serve immediately.

May 20, 2012

My Sugar-Free Journey + A Giveaway!

My sugar-free journey so far

Those of you who have followed this blog for a while may remember that back in October 2011, I was inspired by this book to quit sugar. The challenge for me was not as dramatic as it may sound - it basically meant no fruit (for about 4 months), no more dark chocolate and baking with rice syrup instead of raw sugar or honey which I had done in the past. It's been over 8 months since I went sugar-free and although I now eat fruit daily, I haven't got back to eating dark chocolate and when I do bake, I use either a couple of tablespoons of rice syrup or just fresh fruit as a sweetener.

Sprouted quinoa and coconut crisp

What changes did I experience after quitting sugar?

Contrary to many testimonies of the sugar-free diet, I didn't actually loose any weight. I like to think of this as a good result as it indicated that I wasn't actually eating a lot of sugar to begin with. I did, however, stop craving for sweet things, especially after meals and I noticed my palate became much 'cleaner'. I don't eat as much fruit as I used to eat and I tend to stick to apples, unless I'm baking with fruit (like bananas). When I eat out I don't order desserts, but this is not just because of sugar, but also because it's almost impossible to find vegan desserts at "main stream" restaurants.

Why should you go sugar-free?

I do recommend people to first become aware of the amount of sugar they are consuming daily and then adjusting their diet accordingly. I don't really think you should get so hung up on whether or not you should eat fruit, but I would instead encourage you to look at all the processed foods (including processed white sugar) you may be consuming and cutting down on those. As a tip, and this goes for going vegan too by the way, I would suggest that you change your way of thinking. Instead of thinking that you are "missing out" on something if you don't eat sugar, processed foods, etc. try to think about what else is available and how much you will gain in terms of better health, cleaner skin and more energy.

Toasted Super Muesli
Chocolate-blueberry pudding, persimmon brownies and banana and walnut bread (all vegan, low-sugar)

The I Quit Sugar Cookbook by Sarah Wilson

I am so excited to announce that earlier this week, Sarah published another great e-book titled "I Quit Sugar Cookbook". This book is full of sugar-free and low-sugar recipes from Sarah and many others including Aran, Maggie, Gwyneth and myself. Needless to say I feel utterly honoured to be amongst the contributors for this book. You will find 4 of my recipes included in the I Quit Sugar Cookbook and I am so smitten to be featured.

Since I'm on the topic, if you are in Australia, you may want to pick up a copy of the latest Wellbeing Magazine, as well. Sarah's e-book and my recipes are featured there, along with my photos. Thank you Sarah and Wellbeing Magazine for the features! 
Photography by Marija Ivkovic

I am so pleased to let you know that Sarah has kindly offered three I Quit Sugar Cookbooks to give away to Scandi Foodie readers! The competition is open to all readers, in Australia and overseas, and all you have to do to enter is leave a comment below answering this simple question "Why do I want to quit sugar?" This competition ends May 31, 2012.

If you have any comments or questions about my sugar-free journey (or my vegan journey, for that matter!), please don't hesitate to email me at scandifoodie [at] gmail [dot] com or leave a comment below. You can also find me on Twitter @ScandiFoodie.

I'm looking forward to hearing from you and good luck!

May 17, 2012

Muhammara - Roasted Capsicum and Almond Spread

We are getting closer to leaving for Finland - only about a week and a half to go now! We are trying to get everything ready for the wedding and the trip, needless to say life's been a little hectic lately! I must apologise in advance for the lack of posts in the coming weeks. I will try to keep the blog going whilst I'm away, but I can't guarantee as regular posts as I've been able to do now. I'm sure you'll understand!

I've been wanting to make this red capsicum dip ever since I first heard about it in Colleen's podcast. I must admit I don't make dips very often and since I don't tend to eat bread or crackers, dips aren't usually in my list to try. There was something about this particular spread, however, that caught my attention and of course I had to give it a go.

I've used raw almonds instead of more traditional walnuts, which, I'm sure would be just fabulous for this recipe. I've also taken the liberty to add some cinnamon in the mixture, to give it that warm hum. You could certainly add some pomegranate molasses, too. I believe that's actually part of the traditional Syrian recipe. In any case this spread was definitely worth making and it's equally tasty on crusty sourdough or crispy raw vegetables.

Muhammara - Roasted Capsicum and Almond Spread 
(Adapted from Colleen Patrick-Goudreau)

 2 red capsicums
200g raw almonds (or walnuts)
50g fresh bread crumbs
1 clove garlic
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
a pinch of chilli flakes
juice of one lime or half a lemon
2-3 tablespoons water
pinch of salt

1. Roast the capsicums either in a really hot oven (under the grill) or directly over the flame of a gas stove until the skin is blackened. Place the roasted capsicums in a plastic bag for a few minutes before peeling off the skin. 

2. Place all ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth. Add water if necessary. Serve the spread on bread, crackers or with veggies. Store in the fridge for about 3 days.

May 14, 2012

Vegan Banana and Walnut Bread

Good old banana bread! I haven't made a loaf in ages, but Mother's Day called for a sweet treat and one can always count on banana bread to deliver just that. I love the fact that this particular loaf is not only dairy-free and egg-free (and thus, vegan), but reasonably low in sugar too. Bananas are naturally sweet so a few tablespoons of rice syrup is really all the added sweetness it needs.

This is a really quick and well-tested recipe. The result is a soft and moist loaf that is definitely sweet enough, but perfect for both breakfast table and afternoon tea. Feel free to swap almond milk to soy milk and use whole wheat flour instead of spelt flour. You can even add a touch of cardamom in the mix, if you wish. Macadamias or hazelnuts would be a great alternative to walnuts, too.

Vegan Banana and Walnut Bread
(recipe adapted from Caroline Marie Dupont)

260g spelt flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon pure, ground vanilla
a tiny pinch of salt
5 bananas (500ml mashed)
50ml almond milk
6 tablespoons olive oil
4 tablespoons rice syrup
120g chopped walnuts

1. Preheat oven to 180C. Grease and lightly flour a medium size loaf pan.

2. Combine all dry ingredients in a bowl. 

3. Mash the bananas really well and in a large bowl, whisk them with almond milk, oil and rice syrup. 

4.  Add the dry ingredients to the banana mixture and mix lightly to combine. Finally fold in the chopped walnuts. 

5. Pour the batter into the tin and bake for 40-45 minutes or until a tester inserted in the middle of the loaf comes out clean. Leave to cool on a wire rack before cutting into slices. Serve fresh or toasted.

May 11, 2012

An Ode to Tea

"Strange how a teapot can represent 
at the same time the comforts of solitude 
and the pleasures of company."

There is really nothing quite like a cup of freshly steeped tea: it can be vitalising, calming, comforting and warming, it will caress all your senses and leave you feeling restored and content. Tea truly is the elixir of life, and over the years I've moved on from drinking coffee to enjoying and embracing green and herbal teas. I've become fascinated by the rituals deep engraved in the traditions of serving and drinking tea and I've become more appreciative of this magnificent beverage. 

I find it incredibly fascinating how, a humble leaf of an ever-green camellia plant, can be so highly celebrated over the whole world, can have the most precious ceremonies formed around it and can still be the most standard beverage found in the most modest of homes. 

For thousands of years the Chinese have used tea for medicinal purposes and tea is now known to contain high quantities of antioxidants, those cell-hugging substances that are believed to lower the risk of heart disease and cancer. There are many additional health benefits of regular tea consumption, including improved artery function and increase of good cholesterol, as well as decrease of bad cholesterol. 

We all know the different types and varieties of tea - black, green, Oolong, white, Rooibos, Pu-erh, herbal teas and so on. The flavour of the brew is affected by the way tea is harvested, dried and processed, but the soil, climate and altitude also leave a mark on the flavour. Whilst certain countries and areas are only known for their black teas (India and Sri Lanka, for instance), others are commonly producing only green varieties (like Japan). There is a whole art of steeping associated with each type of tea, but without going into too much technicalities, I will refer you to this steeping guide that will most certainly guide you towards right direction.

There is so much to say about tea, but I will now introduce you to Helene von Schrenk, who, together with her husband Richard, founded Swedelicious, a Swedish tea business located in Melbourne, Australia. I had a few questions in mind for Helene and here's what she had to say. 

Q1. Can you tell us a bit about Swedelicious – Why did you decide to start a tea business? 

Coming from Sweden where there are tea houses around every corner it seems, I have missed all the beautiful tea blend varieties one can enjoy there. I decided to see if I could import some of my favourites down to Australia for my own enjoyment. To do that was not easy or cheap, as I needed an import permit for each ingredient for each tea! It all started to snowball and all of the sudden I had an online business and wholesaling black, green, rooibos and organic (Viking) tea blends. It seemed that there were more Scandinavian other than my husband and I that were missing these sorts of blends that were impossible to find in Australia.

My aim with Swedelicious is to continue bring in more tea blends, introducing other scrumptious Scandinavian products and eventually have a typical Swedish Tea house for all to sample, buy and enjoy a cup of tea and other delicacies. 

Q2. Are there any dos and don’ts one should know about brewing a perfect cup of tea at home?

I think the main problem in brewing a great cup of tea is the length and temperature of the brew. Green tea can become quite bitter if it is brewed for too long (black can get a more tannin taste too) and we shouldn’t scald the tea leaves either with the water. So when I make green tea I try to turn the kettle off before it has reached boiling point and I taste the tea so that I know when to remove my tea strainer in time. Milk doesn’t go that well in green tea, but is a great accompaniment in black and I also have it in my rooibos blend but that isn’t everyone’s cup of tea :-)

Q3. What is your favourite tea variety? And how do you like to enjoy it?

I have many favourites :-) The hardest is choosing which one to have each night, but I tend to lean towards the black tea blends and rooibos during the colder months especially. Green teas I tend to drink more during the summer months and make lots of ice teas!

My favourite black (at the moment) has got to be Freya’sPassion, which is an organic tea with passion fruit, kumquat, blueberries and marigold. 

Q4. Can you tell us about the art of blending teas? How do you come up with different flavour combinations?

I have only dabbled a little in blending myself, but would love to become more knowledgeable in that are. At the moment I source the tea blends and import them directly from Sweden.

Q5. What are some different ways one can use tea in cooking and in recipes?

I think you can use tea where and when your imagination lets you. I tend to use it in baking, substituting water for example with tea for a greater taste. But you can also use it in poaching, smoking, BBQ… the list goes on. Great ways to experiment!

Thank you, Helene! 

To celebrate tea, Helene and Richard are kindly offering 25% off all Swedelicious teas, tea cards and Sami bracelets to Scandi Foodie readers! Please visit their website for more information on different blends (Freya's Passion is my favourite too), tea cards and Sami bracelets. Please see Helene's blog for even more information. This offer is available until the end of June, 2012. Please email orders to Swedelicious and make sure to mention "Scandi Foodie" in the order. 


Recommended reading

Some of my favourite tea shops

Swedelicious - Scandinavian blends
Obubu Tea - Matcha and other green tea varieties
T2 - Lots of black, green and white teas + brewing equipment
Neo Australia- Herbal teas
Yogi Tea - Herbal teas
Pukka - Herbal teas
Nordqvist - Finnish tea company

"If man has no tea in him, he is incapable of understanding truth and beauty."
~ Japanese proverb

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored blog post. All recommendations are genuine. 

May 08, 2012

Tunisian Breakfast Soup

I really love having soup for breakfast - miso soup is a long-time favourite of mine, but I also don't mind having just a simple vegetable soup or even just some plain vegetable stock with a bunch of kale thrown in. Whilst I can't take credit for this Tunisian breakfast soup, I do love the combination of the flavours and the idea of sitting on my balcony on a sunny winter morning with a bowl of this soup. Ideally you're ought to serve this soup with a dollop of harissa and some fresh coriander sprinkled on top, but I had neither. Instead, I enjoyed mine with some mixed seed sourdough bread. It was delicious nevertheless.

Tunisian Breakfast Soup
(Inspired by Jill Dupleix)

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 red capsicum, finely diced
5 tomatoes, chopped
500g cooked chickpeas
1 bunch kale, chopped
700ml vegetable stock
sea salt and black pepper, to taste
harissa (optional), to serve

1. Heat oil in a large pot and cook onion for a few minutes. Add cumin, coriander, most of the diced capsicum, as well as chopped tomatoes. Cook for a further few minutes.

2. Add chickpeas, kale and vegetable stock. Bring to the boil and simmer for about 10 minutes. 

3. Season the soup with salt and pepper and add the rest of the capsicum just before serving.