Tuesday, February 26, 2013

booktalk: french women don't get fat by Mireille Guiliano

It's been a while since I've written here about cookbooks or food books I think are worth reading. Mireille Guiliano's book French Women Don't Get Fat is one of my favorites, I'm re-reading it for about the tenth time, I never tire of Mireille's story or the way she writes. When it was released back in 2005, I didn't bother picking it up thinking it was 'another diet book'. I'm not into the idea of 'going on a diet' because in fact all of us are already on a diet it is just that some people would benefit from changing theirs!

About a year after its' release a friend gave me a copy insisting I read it, and I had to admit I was wrong. This is not a diet book, it is not about counting calories or cutting out fat, sugar and salt. No. In fact it is quite the opposite, butter, champagne and dessert are all on the menu. The key is: go for quality and mind the quantity.

Mireille speaks my language, my wholefood language that is (I don't speak French) and I want to recommend her book here because if you are just starting out on your wholefood path reading this book is a fun and easy way to switch your thinking about food, health and pleasure and realise that changing your path is not about deprivation in fact it is about nourishing yourself on many levels. At the heart of it, Mireille is advocating a wholefoods way of living.

For those not familiar with the book, Mireille tells a good story based on her own life experience of moving to America as an exchange student, adopting the American diet of over-sized portions of processed foods and returning to France with extra kilos and feeling unhealthy and miserable. It is then that her mother teaches her the art of eating like a French woman. The story is laced with many useful tips for living (a ritual for a better nights sleep, sneaky ways to include exercise in your day even when you think you don't have time) and delicious seasonal wholefood recipes such as tagliatelle with lemon, snapper with almonds or cold beetroot and yoghurt summer soup. Mireille advocates only eating fruit and vegetables that are in season, shopping at farmer's markets, always having fresh herbs in your kitchen and a well-stocked spice cupboard. In the chapter titled 'Life Stages' Mireille writes about children and eating, from birth to seven she writes:

"Most kids' cereals have more sugar than a French pastry; avoid them like the plague. (I wonder how many children on behaviour-modifying pharmaceuticals are merely sugar junkies.)" 


There is no mention of the words paleo, raw food, gluten free or grain free so if that is your preferred way of eating it may not be the read for you but if you are interested in the French way of life or you were quick to judge this book as a diet book like I was seek a copy out, I think you'll be surprised to find am inspiring wholefood story.

Have you read it? What did you think?

Friday, February 22, 2013

friday harvest

The Wellness Mama has written a fantastic, detailed post about how to 'cure' fussy eaters 

I've been enjoying looking around Alexx Stuart's real food blog this week and her post about redefining treats is worth a read

And so is Christy Morgan's great post - Eating healthy in a not so healthy world

How do you handle it when strangers offer your children junk food? Read about Kellie and Olive's experience with the man on the bus and be inspired to stick to your wholefood ways.

I've been invited to a wholefoods cooking class this weekend which I am very excited about! I look forward to sharing details and photos here next week. I hope you have many delicious moments planned for your weekend. Thanks for reading and sharing the wholefood love xxx

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Australia's new national dietary guidelines

Australia's National Health and Medical Research Council this week released new national dietary guidelines. In fact, very little of the guidelines have changed since the last ones were released a decade ago. According to the council, in Australia 60 percent of adults and 25 percent of children are overweight or obese, clearly the guidelines are not working. The problem with guidelines is they are just that, a guide, they are open to interpretation and difficult for people to put into practice if they do not have basic cooking skills.

When I think about all of this too much I succumb momentarily to feeling overwhelmed about the amount of change that is needed for many people in the world who exist on fake food to make the very obvious link between real food and real health.

As I see it, we all need to get back to basics:

- value and teach cooking skills as life skills, opening packets and reheating food is not cooking
- cook real food at home more often than eating out or grabbing take away
- sit at the table to eat with family or friends rather than eating on the run or skipping meals
- grow at least some of our own food at home to reconnect with the cycle of nature and where food comes from, even if it is just growing herbs

I think if more people did this they would be healthier for it.

What would you add to this list? Are you hopeful for the future that we can have a healthier population?

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

wholefood mama maintenance

When was the last time you had a medical check up? Or visited your natural health practitioner?

I recently had a blood test to check my cholesterol level, triglycerides, iron, vitamin D, thyroid function etc; I do this every two years mainly because my mum died very unexpectedly at age 44 of a heart attack and because I believe so much that prevention is better than cure. Don't wait to get sick to get well!

The test results came back showing I was anaemic (low in iron). Tiredness is a common side effect of being anaemic and there I was thinking I was tired from Sol waking me up every night. After all, aren't all mothers tired? Well apparently not. And there is a difference between feeling tired and feeling exhausted to the bone and no amount of rest or sleep can restore your energy.

Anaemia has been an on and off problem for me since giving birth to River almost 7 years ago. It is not because I don't have enough iron in my diet but more so an absorption issue.

I decided to write about this here because I think many mothers put their own health and wellness at the bottom of their very full to do list and it really needs to be at the top.

I booked in to see my local Chinese medicine practitioner and spent an hour receiving acupuncture, shiatsu, wisdom and herbs. In addition to taking the herbs it was recommended I have a daily root vegetable juice, drink plenty of water and also chlorophyll. It was not recommended I sit down to a great big steak which is a common thought, that meat is the answer to anaemia, eating big amounts of red meat if your digestion is weak will make you more tired! I am enjoying the ritual of making the juice and now that the weather has finally cooled I have made a bone stock. The herbs have made a huge difference to my energy in just 10 days of taking them. The words of wisdom I received that I think will resonate with many mothers is to do things in your own time on your own terms, set goals that work for the present always with an ideal in mind that will be more possible in the future.

In your own time, on your own terms. Don't you love that? This applies to so many aspects of mothering and looking after yourself while you are busily focused on looking after all those around you. For instance, weaning, co-sleeping, practicing yoga, changing your family's diet. Your ideal might be to attend a yoga class twice a week but for now a yoga DVD at home is more achievable. Your ideal might be for your family to eat wholefood home cooked meals three times a day but for now you are focusing on wholefood breakfasts and saying goodbye to boxed cereals and white toast every morning.

What are you doing to take care of you mama? Do you find it hard to do?

Friday, February 15, 2013

friday romance

(Thanks Robin for the extremely beautiful corn)

Continuing on from Valentine's Day yesterday the list theme today is wholefood love and romance...

let's begin with chocolate love smoothie. A super delicious, nutrient dense chocolate delight.

who doesn't love a cup of tea? Well go ahead and make yourself a cup and settle in to Amber's blog Mindfully Green starting with her beautiful post The Sweet Power of Tea.

hop on over to Wholefood Romance to read a fantastic, inspiring interview with one of my favorite wholefood heroes: Jude Blereau.

I stumbled across Allana's blog- High Maintenance Hippy - (love the name. and the content) and while I was busy falling in love with the site I discovered The Wholefood Mama listed on the blogroll. Thanks Allana :)

if I didn't already have plans for this weekend in March I would love to be going along to Clare Bowditch's Big Hearted Business conference...they'll be serving organic wholefood :) perhaps you are going along? let me know how it is.

ok. the list is short and sweet today, real life is calling. wishing you all a wonderful weekend may it be filled with wholefood goodness. xx

Thursday, February 14, 2013

cooking with love

Happy Valentine's Day! I'm not really into the whole commercialisation of romance thing but I am as you know into wholefood and couldn't resist shaping this pile of beautiful rosie tomatoes from our garden into a big healthy love filled heart. Pete puts so much love and energy into growing food in our garden. I am very grateful! 

Love of course is a key ingredient in any great cooking and especially today I suppose. Whether you are cooking for yourself, your family, your lover, your friend do so with heart and you will taste the difference. Really!

A few years ago I spent some time at an ashram and worked in the kitchen (if you're thinking what does this have to do with Valentine's Day? bear with me), we had to work in silence and really feel the energy we were putting into the food as we prepared it. 'Made with Love' has become a popular tagline but there is a deeper truth behind the words, our energy imbues all that we do.

Today also feels like the perfect day to recommend a fantastic book I read quite a few years ago now but the information is eternally relevant. Susan Taylor's book Sexual Radiance is, contrary to the title suggestion, more about nutrition and cooking than it is about sex. If you click over to the link, don't be put off by the completely daggy cover it is packed with really interesting and useful information about eating for energy and vitality and includes recipes, yoga sequences and breath work exercises. 

I hope your day is delicious whatever you're up to xxx

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

11 (wholefood) tips for supporting grieving loved ones

Two of my beautiful friends are grieving following the deaths of people they love. I have unintentionally become an 'expert' on the topic of grief and how to offer support, not through a university degree but through the experience of having five significant family members die when I was aged between 18 and 23 (my great grandmother, my mum, my brother, my uncle and my grandmother). Experiencing so much loss early in my life has of course been painful and sad but through my loss and grief I have experienced many riches too, such as a clearer perspective about what really matters.

After having a cup of tea with one of my friends who is in the depths of raw new grief I started to think about the ways to support people who are grieving and I remembered ways that people supported me. Making food and sharing food is a very obvious and practical way of showing your love and support to someone who is grieving, especially to someone who is having to find a way to keep their family life going while feeling broken hearted.

If you have someone in your life who is grieving and you want to support them but don't really know how here are my tips with some wholefood ideas in the mix:

1. Acknowledge the person's loss. It sounds so simple but it means so much. "I am really sorry to hear that your......has died" or write it in a card. Avoiding the person because you don't know what to say is not helpful. If they cry when you speak to them its ok, you didn't upset them, the tears were already there.

2. Offer to do their grocery shopping for them or just arrive with a bag of groceries.

3. Make a pot of soup or some meals that can be frozen. Soup is soothing and nourishing, and it is easy to eat and digest which is important when appetite is low and digestion is unsettled which can be a part of grief.

4. Organise a meals roster among friends and provide cooked meals for a few weeks.

5. Deliver a fruit bowl to your friend, it is both nourishing and visually beautiful.

6. Offer to mind their children so that they can have some space just to be with their feelings.

7. Offer to do school drop offs and pick ups. Chatting at the school gate may be the last thing a grieving parent feels like doing.

8. Bake a wholesome cake or batch of biscuits.

9. A selection of herbal teas makes a thoughtful gift, camomile is of course a good choice as is valerian to help with sleep.

10. Put together a care pack that includes a candle, lavendar oil (sometimes it is difficult to sleep when grieving a few drops on a pillow can help), a beautiful soap, a purse pack of tissues or a handkerchief and perhaps a journal for some writing if your friend likes writing.

11. Grief is not time limited. The intensity of the feelings lessen over time but the loss remains. Be mindful that your friend may have new waves of grief around anniversaries, birthdays and Christmas. A small gift or a card, or making time for a cup of tea at these times means a lot.

If you have suggestions to add to this list please do in the comments. And to all those who are in the midst of grief, go gently for as long as you need to. xxx

Friday, February 08, 2013

friday so soon?!

We are doing our best here to pretend that summer holidays are not over. I pick River up from school with surfboard strapped to the roof of the car, beach bag packed and a couple of nights this week dinner packed too. Please summer days stay forever.

How are the new year intentions/resolutions coming along? With January over in the shake of a beachtowel I am determined not to let February slip through my fingers. My resolutions feel within reach, that in itself feels good!

Today's list...

A good read from Heather at Beauty that Moves - Healthy Eating with a Teenager

I found a delicious recipe for raw vegan cranberry bliss bars on This Rawsome Vegan Life. The recipes, writing and photography on this blog is enough to make me think about going vegan!

My friend Anthea sent me a link to this sweet post on Meg's blog 'My Wholefood Romance', it is a post about nourishing new mums (very important!) and includes a recipe for a quinoa, coconut, fruit filled breakfast 'loaf-cake'. Thanks Anthea.

Is it just me or do any of you have issue with the whole 'superfood from the Amazon' push? For those of us who don't live in the Amazon and prefer our 'superfoods' to be ones local to where we live this link that my friend Andy sent through is a good place to start -  'The top 9 Superfoods' (I also love that the Dr who writes the site calls himself a Health Evangelist. If you are going to be an evangelist, converting people to great health seems like a good idea to me).

If growing vegies is on your to do list this year, Farmer Liz is posting a great series all about 'getting started with growing your own'. Even if you are already a grower you can probably pick up some ideas there too.

The final link on this list makes me smile. A big welcome and thank you for signing up to Raimundo (perhaps the first wholefood papa here!) and the other new followers and facebook likers of this here blog. Raimundo is the man behind a delightful and fun blog called Art and Salads. Check it out.

Have a delicious weekend. As always, thanks for reading and for your comments xx

Monday, February 04, 2013

wholefood mama: Renee McCready

I'm excited today to introduce you to wholefood mama Renée McCready. I know I say that every time I introduce a wholefood mama interview, but it is true! I find it very inspiring to hear how other mamas live the wholefood way and in this case it is a joy for me to see how much my friend Renée has accomplished, learnt and shared living her health and wellness path since we first met 13 years ago. Renée moved with her young family into the block of flats I was living in in Elwood, she was studying shiatsu around that time one shiatsu with her and I was hooked! We lost contact over the years but thanks to social media we have reconnected and I am so happy we have, firstly because I remember how dedicated she was to her healing work and it is really wonderful to see where Renée has gone with it but also because as you will read, Renée has some really wonderful information and ideas to share with us here about starting out on a healthy path, to coping when a child has allergies to how to get your children and teenagers to eat well. Plus a delicious raw food chocolate torte recipe. Thank you Renée! xx

Let's get into the interview...

Renée McCready is a wholefood raw foodie mama who owns a Yoga and Healing Studio in Elwood Melbourne, Victoria. She is a Holistic Health Practitioner, Yoga Teacher, Shiatsu Therapist, Intuitive Healer, Educator and Author. Renée runs regular classes, workshops and intensives in her own unique therapeutic somatic based yoga style, called KI FLOW yoga. Renée lives in the beachy relaxed bayside suburb of Elwood, cycling distance from her studio (which is a bonus as a non driver) with
her 15 year old son Dylan, her designer/artist partner Aaron and their cat Fernando. 

1. Tell us about the food and wellness path you have taken to where you are now? 
My mum was a wholefood 70's mama. I grew up with jars of lentils and mung beans sprouting on the kitchen window sill, freshly baked wholemeal bread, homemade tofu, brown rice, and LSA (linseeds, sunflowers and almonds) in a jar in the fridge before it became the norm and you could find it on supermarket shelves, home grown organic veggies, being a vegetarian kid created an interesting twist.
I mostly loved being different from the norm, but would occasionally feel just a little embarrassed at school lunch time, as I opened up my steaming lentil and veggie soup. As you can imagine my path to wellness was well groomed with a clear view, it was innate, after finishing school and doing a stint in theatre school I studied herbal medicine, then went onto studying to become a Therapist of Shiatsu and Oriental Therapies with a specialty in Oriental Dietary Energetics, at the same time completed a traditional apprenticeship in Japanese Yoga (Oki-Do) all when Dylan was a toddler. Then in the last few years my study has been in the realm of Meditation, Health and Well-being Coaching and the Esoteric Sciences, and in the last 12 months raw plant based living foods.

2. Judging from your photos and recipes you have a definite flair for uncooking. How did you learn about raw food uncooking?
I feel when your passionate about something the learning bit is easy, for me plant based eating is like I'm remembering something I've already known before, and just rediscovering. In saying that I have a slightly obsessive nature so I will totally throw myself into whatever my focus is. With the raw plant based diet it became this thing, I would go to bed and dream about - what flavours go with what? how can I take my favourite cooked recipe and turn it into a raw based one? Some days, my entire day revolves around food, thinking about it, going to my local organic shop and health food shop and buying the food, and then getting into the kitchen and bringing it all together. With some raw food the preparation starts days in advance, like my raw cashew fermented lebneh cheese that I recently mastered, flax crackers or raw bread I make in the dehydrator, raw vegan walnut nut meat balls, a raw vegan cheese and spinach pie or a raw vegan lasagne that needs to be warmed for a few hours before consuming. I spend hours trawling the internet for raw recipes based on ideas I have, sometimes I create from scratch, raw flow alchemy in my kitchen :) sometimes I take a recipe I find that's irresistible and maybe just tweak it a little. 

3.What do you love most about your work? 
Helping create change in others lives, assisting people to move from that point of feeling inspired to embodying it into everyday life, assisting people to discover their authentic self, and become empowered.  I love watching the light switch on in people, that quiet inner moment, when I just know that they know, whether it be about the value in an aspect of raw plant based eating, or a deeper understanding of the breath, or the subtle movement in a posture, of feeling the energy move through a meridian (energy channel). I feel what I'm here to do is help pull information and knowledge together, and find a tidy way to relay it back to people as if it was designed especially just for them, move them into their integrity and heart space to be the best version of themselves. 

4. Food allergies in children are a common experience in this day and age, I know you have had some experience with this when Dylan was a child can you share any tips for parents who are struggling with managing their child's diet and allergies?
When Dylan was about 18 months old he had an anaphylactic reaction to eggs, I knew instantly what it was and it was hands down the scariest experience of my life. He was 10 years old before he was retested and cleared by the Children's Allergy Clinic, it still took me at least a year after to feel safe, even though logically I knew it was ok emotionally I just couldn't find common ground. In retrospect, I would say if you have kids with allergies get them retested earlier than I did, don't wait years, we would have saved ourselves a few years of heartache and worry as it was probable he had grown out of his allergy way sooner then we thought. Seek alternative therapies for healing, we did and this assisted in helping his vital force become stronger and I believe this is one of the main reasons for his healing. Be open to possibility, like us you may just get the result.

5. Being the mum of a teenager, do you have any tips for readers whose teenagers only want to eat junk food?
I think for my 15 year old son, being around real organic living foods, is one of the best set up gifts I can give him for when he leaves home. I have to say most of his friends love coming around to eat, and in fact a few of them are my taste testers for my raw alchemy recipe whims - desserts, cakes, cheesecakes and tarts are their favourites. If your kids are younger you have more control with what's going in their mouths, set up good habits now, it will last. If they are older, its all about honesty and communication, be real, show them the facts, start with a food or drink they relate to like soft drinks, show them how much sugar is in one can, then show them the value of freshly made organic juices, buy a juicer make them together. There are some awesome doco/films out there, like Food Matters, Hungry for change, Let Me Be Frank, Fat Sick and Nearly Dead, watch them with your teens it will open up a channel of communication. Make changes together, get them in the kitchen creating. Lead by example, get in and clean out your pantry, go shopping with them and together replace with only wholefood versions, clean out the fridge and fill with fresh organic vegetables, have the biggest and best looking fruit bowl in easy access filled with seasonal produce, they will reach for it, if its there and its the only choice available. Talk about it, I will say to Dylan, "There's raspberries and blueberries in the fridge for a snack when you feel peckish" plant the seed so to speak that way when the teen hunger strikes its the only thing they remember. They will start to believe that they made that healthy choice on their own. Grow a garden together, even if you live in an apartment with just a balcony, grow pots with tomatoes, lettuces, some fresh herbs. 

6. Some of your favorite books or links to do with food, health, nutrition.
At the moment I'm reading "Spiritual Nutrition" by Dr Gabriel Cousens, its pretty intense, mind bending but an incredible read. One of my revelation books is called "Support the Mountain" by Mikio Sankey, for me it tied together my background in Chinese Medicine and put it into a format with nutritional material and the value of raw living foods.
There are so many incredible resources out there, but here are just a few of some my favourite sites: The Raw Chef
Mimi Kirk, she is 73, wait till you see her!
Matthew Kenney, his food is raw gourmet, love his un cook books!
Scott Mathias, he lives in Queensland and is a digestive specialist with great plant based recipes.
I just love Girl on Raw, she is a down to earth ex-pat Australia and Mum living in Saudi Arabia
and Carmella's Sunny Raw Kitchen 
A few must watch Film/Doco's are; Food Matters, Hungry for Change, Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead, Food Inc, Let Me Be Frank, Simply Raw - reversing Diabetes in 30 days, Thrive. 

7.What would you say to anyone reading who is at the beginning of making changes in the way they cook and eat and may be feeling like it is all too hard or that they don't have time or money to cook and eat the way they think they would like to?
Start with the basics:
Select a day that suits and make that a preparation day, menu plan for the week ahead.
Have a big bowl of fruit in easy access.
Make a big container of kale salad (just kale and brocolli cut up into small pieces) massage some olive oil, salt and lemon juice into it) to last a few days in the fridge, that's your salad base to then add in everything else fresh.
Remember as you become more plant based you tend to let go of other habits in your life, your priorities change with what you choose to spend your money on.
Shop local and seasonal, go to your farmers market, get to know your local health food and organic shop, many health food shops have speciality days once per month where you can buy anything in the store for 15-20% discount, so wait and only shop on those days.
Go to your organic shop and get the brown bananas and freeze them for smoothies and raw ice creams, and I can't stress enough eating seasonally so you get fresh produce at the best prices.

8. Three simple things mamas can easily do, drink or eat when they are feeling frazzled or low on energy? 
1. One of the easiest and most nutritious things I can recommend for well-being, daily energy levels, weight maintenance and dense nutrition is a green smoothie. One a day will make a change even if your regular diet doesn't move into mainly plant based. All you need is a blender and fresh seasonal produce. There are many recipes on the internet but here's a simple one for the summer months -
1 or 2 frozen bananas (I always have a container in the freezer full for making smoothies and raw vegan 'ice creams') about 500mls purified water, 1 fresh or frozen mango, a big handful of baby spinach, and a few kale leaves, a sprig of fresh mint and blend.  I always add in superfood extras as I have mine post workout and as one of my daily meals, I add any combination of coconut oil, maca and lucuma powder, spirulina, wheatgrass, raw vegan sprouted rice protein powder, goji chia and hemp seeds, macqui and acâi powder and E3live (a bio available algae)
 2. Doing a yoga posture or making geometry with your body everyday is imperative. Have a stretch, make a shape and do it intuitively, move through it, imagine breathing into your cells as you do it, do it whenever you have a moment, it doesn't have to be a 90 minute yoga class for you to reap the benefits, and for you to take the learning into your life. 
3. To me the breath is our greatest tool, it can centre you in a moment, bring you back, reignite your energy, settle frazzled nerves and ground you back into the earth. 

Thank you Renée for this great interview! I don't know about everyone else but I am feeling inspired to try out some raw food recipes and to go further on my health and healing path. Readers, I'd love to hear your thoughts - what did you enjoy most about Renée's story? We haven't finished yet though, below is a delicious recipe for Renée's raw chocolate torte and you'll find 50+ recipes in her ebook 'Awakening to Raw'.

For readers in Melbourne if you are interested in having a treatment with Renée you can phone her on 0416 873 599 or email her at kiflow@bigpond.com.

And if facebook and twitter are your thing you can find Renée on facebook here and twitter here.

Raw Chocolate Torte 
Renée says, "If you are a chocolate lover like I am, this will become a staple in your raw dessert making. Raw cacao is unlike other chocolate in that is retains all the nutritional benefits of pure cacao; antioxidants, magnesium, phytochemicals its good for heart, and a great mood stabilizer."

2 cups mix of brazil and walnuts 
1 cup raisins
2 tablespoons coconut oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon cinnamon 
pinch salt 

Blend all ingredients together in a food processor until it has a cookie type consistency. Press into 9” spring form cake pan and place into the freezer until you have the rich chocolate batter ready to pour.

1 cup cashews soaked 1-2 hours
1/2 cup purified water
1/2 cup raw cacao powder
1/2-3/4 cup melted cacao butter
(place over a double boiler or a bowl over a pan or heated water untill the oil melts, it will turn from pale yellow & solid to clear & liquid)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon cinnamon 
1/4 cup maple syrup or agave
1 teaspoon lemon juice

Blend all ingredients together in a food processor until batter is smooth and velvety, pour onto solid cookie base, place in freezer till solid then keep in fridge for up to 5 days.
Can be served with a raspberry or strawberry coulis, or cashew cream. 

more in the wholefood mamas series:

wholefood mama: Robin Koster-Carlyon
wholefood mama: Jay Black
wholefood mama: Rachel Pitts

Friday, February 01, 2013

friday at school

School resumed and Autumn seems to have crept in early. I am holding out hope for a last blast of summer heat over the next few weeks. Feeling very grateful though that rains that fell here last night were light; thinking of all those around our great big land that are dealing with the ravages of fire or flood I hope that relief and recovery are swift.

To all those readers whose children began or returned to school this week I hope it was a smooth transition from holiday mode to school days.

This week around the web these are some of the places I've enjoyed...

I am so inspired by people such as Marion Nestle an American Professor of Nutrition and Sociology who is dedicating her life to social change. This week I discovered Marion's blog Food Politics and look forward to seeking out her books.

Whether you are starting out learning to cook or sew or paint or sing, whatever it may be take heart from this beautiful, eloquent post from Amanda Soule as she reminds us about the importance of commitment to practice. Oh how I loved reading this. Thank you Soulemama.

A bit more blog love, have you been reading Cookie + Kate?

I haven't cooked with xylitol before but this recipe for nut and yoghurt tart looks like a good place to start.

I know a few of you have nominated this year as your year to get into fermentation - me included! I am very inspired by this post on For the Love of Food.

Hemsley and Hemsley is a blog about The Art of Eating Well written by London ladies Melissa and Jasmine Hemsley. Great wholefood recipes!

Thanks for reading. Have a wonderful weekend and next week I am very excited to have the next post in the interview series with wholefood mamas. Wholefood mama Renee McCready has many wonderful wise words to share and a delicious raw food recipe. Plus I will have the post about sprouting that I promised a little while ago. Happy cooking (or uncooking ;) xx
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