Monday, May 25, 2015

Warming Pear, Almond and Chia Porridge - Dairy and Gluten Free

This porridge, with its mix of warming spices and protein from the chia and almonds is a delightful (and filling) way to start a wintry morning. And taking just 5 minutes to whip up, there is no excuse to be eating anything less!


Warming Pear, Almond and Chia Porridge


1 pear, grated
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup coconut or almond milk
2 tbs chia seeds
2 tbs Mayvers Almond Spread
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cardamom
1/4 tsp vanilla bean paste

Place all ingredients in a small saucepan and heat over medium heat for 5 minutes until pears have softened and porridge is thick and creamy. Top with extra cinnamon and sliced pears.







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Thursday, May 21, 2015

Sunshine Immunity Juice

Winter is no longer coming, it is well and truly here, and with that comes cold and flu season. This vibrant juice is full of immune boosting goodies to keep your system healthy and strong over winter!


Sunshine Immunity Juice


1 carrot
1 orange, peeled
1/2 lemon, peeled
1 slice fresh ginger
1 slice fresh tumeric (or 1/2 tsp ground)
2 tsp SuperElixir greens powder (optional)
1 1/2 cups cold green tea (or water)
1 cup ice

Place all ingredients in a high powered blender and blend on high speed until combined.







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Monday, May 11, 2015

Thanks to Tory Burch I finally love wearing my Fitbit!



I love my Fitbit and find it incredibly motivating in my quest to move more, but lets be honest, that silicone band that comes with it is really not that attractive. Functional, perfect for the gym, but stylish? No. And because of that, I would regularly remove it because it just didn't look right with an outfit, which obviously completely defeats the purpose of wearable tech. Even worse, I would often forget to put it back on altogether. So you can imagine my excitement when Tory Burch (a brand I luurve!) released a collection of chic pieces of jewellery to hold the Fitbit. 

 
Unfortunately, the original collection just didn't work for me. The necklace looked gorgeous, but necklaces are the one piece of jewellery that I tend to switch up on an almost daily basis. So pretty as it is, the necklace just wasn't going to cut it for me. 


The hinged bangle suited me to a tee. I almost always wear my Pandora charm bracelet everyday together with my watch and my current Fitbit silicone band, so replacing the current band for a sleek and chic bangle would work perfectly. However, thankfully I read a number of reviews before hitting the Buy It Now button, as it apparently is designed for women with very slim wrists (how very Tory, when you think about it!!).  Most reviews seemed to agree that if you wear the M/L Fitbit band (as I do), there is no way the bangle will fit. Disappointed, I closed the website, pouted a little (OK, a lot!), and then carried on using my usual band, cursing bird boned Park Avenue Princesses as I did!


Thankfully for those of us with regular sized wrists, Tory Burch expanded her collection last month, adding in three delightful bracelets with a double wrapped leather strap, and the signature Fretwork housing for the Fitbit itself. After reading reviews, and taking careful measurements, I came to the conclusion that this bracelet should *just* fit me. Deciding on the rose gold with pale rose pink leather band, I ordered, and waited with bated breath for it to arrive.


Oh, is it ever gorgeous!! And it fits - on the second last hole! I have to say, I simply can't imagine who would be able to use it on the smallest hole. As an experiment, I tried it on my 7 year old daughter, and even she couldn't come close to wearing something that small!! Regardless, it fit me, and that was all that mattered. I think it looks great paired with my watch and my Pandora charms. Of course, I still switch it back into the rubber band for the gym and exercise, but otherwise, it has been living mostly in its stylish gold case.

Some other reviewers have mentioned that the metal case scratches easily, or that the casing is hard to open, but I have to say, I found neither of these to be a problem. After a week of (constant) wear, I haven't noticed a single scratch, and as you can see, I wear it right up against my watch. And I've found the casing incredibly easy to open; it literally takes just seconds to switch the tracker between bands. So thanks Tory, now I finally love wearing my FitBit!


Friday, May 8, 2015

Product Review: Aerin Rose Hand and Body Cream



You all know I love the Aerin range of beauty products so I was super excited when I found out they were finally available in Australia and I didn't have to have them shipped all the way from America! I was thrilled to see the entire fragrance range was available, as perfume is one of the few things I can't get sent to Oz (pesky flammable goods!). Unfortunately, the Lauder company seem to be doing a soft launch, and have not brought the whole range to our shores, with only the lip conditioner (my all time favourite lip balm) and the hand cream supplementing the perfumes, but I hold high hopes they will bring the rest of the range here sooner rather than later!

As a treat, I decided to buy the Aerin Rose Hand and Body Cream, as it was one of the few Aerin products (other than perfume) that I hadn't actually tried yet. Despite the fact it is a full size tube (125ml), I love it so much it has become a handbag mainstay. Delicately scented with a sophisticated (rather than old fashioned) delicate rose fragrance, this cream sinks in quickly, leaving your hands hydrated, nourished and with a velvety rather than greasy finish. The peachy pink cream feels thick and luxurious; it is a mini treat every time I put it on. As you can see in the pic above, the packaging is gorgeous as well, and it would look perfect on my nightstand, but at this point, I just can't seem to get it to leave my handbag!!

At $65, this is a luxury, but a little really does go a long way, and it has become one of my everyday indulgences. And with Mother's Day coming up, it would make a beautiful present for a treasured mother.

Available at Estée Lauder counters at David Jones and Myer, Australia wide.


Monday, May 4, 2015

Winter is coming...Shortcut Chicken Soup

If the recent weather here in Perth is anything to go by, winter is indeed coming, and that means large pots of soup bubbling away on the stovetop.  I love filling my soups with beans and grains to make them soup-er (get it?!) hearty, but I don't always love how long you need to cook them for. I have relied on the McKenzies brand of soup mixes since I started cooking, so I was intrigued when I saw a packet called Quick Cook the other day, stating ready in 15 minutes.

I bought a packet of the Quick Cook Country Chicken Soup and got to work on a Short Cut Chicken Soup based on pantry/fridge/freezer ingredients. The McKenzies mix looked really nice and hearty with a nice variety of beans and grains, including barley, red lentils, yellow split peas, and navy beans, as well as a "natural" stock packet. I'm not sure, and the packed doesn't say, but I have a feeling the beans and grains have been par-cooked and then dried, and that's why it can be ready in just 15 minutes. Regardless, the soup I came up with was delicious! I discarded the powdered stock packet, and used homemade chicken stock instead of the water asked for in the directions, but I'm sure making it with the powder would have been tasty as well.

This is a true shortcut soup, using real food convenience items and is designed for a quick, but wholesome, weeknight meal. It's more expensive than if this soup was truly made from scratch, but certainly cheaper, and a heck of a lot healthier than running out to get a take away meal!


Shortcut Chicken Soup

1 packet pre chopped mixed veggies (from the fresh fruit and veg section) - mine had celery, leek, carrot, turnip, broccoli stems.

1 packet McKenzies Quick Cook Soup Mix


500g packet frozen shredded chicken

8 cups chicken stock (or water and included stock packet).

  • Saute mixed veggies in a little butter and olive oil until softened (about 4-5 minutes) in a large saucepan.
     
  • Add remaining ingredients and bring to a simmer.
  • Lower heat to low, and then simmer, covered, for 15 minutes, until beans and grains are tended.
  • Serve with crusty bread.

 

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