Forget the diamonds, jewels, fine dining, champagne and red roses… Valentine’s day is all about the CHOCOLATE and lots of it. If there is one thing you should all know about me – the way to my heart is all about the food. Strawberries coated in dark chocolate, decadent slices, choc-raspberry tarts and cheesecakes or any cake for that matter oozing with chocolatey goodness. Continue reading “COCONUT CHOCOLATE LOVE BISCUITS”
I refer to this satay sauce quite a lot in my recipes. Satay pies, curries, stir frys, pizzas, burgers and as a dipping sauce for rice paper rolls, spring rolls or meatballs. It is pretty simple to make and a great healthy low fat alternative to the processed sugary sauces you buy from the super market. Just make sure you have your peanut butter tub ready to rock and roll – and sample as you go! It is delish! Continue reading “SATAY SAUCE”
This would have to be my signature and most successful to date raw sugarfree dessert. Firstly if you know me well you will know that I am … how shall i put this… a HUGE fan of (some might say obsessed with) peanut butter. Not only does it taste amazing but it also has amazing health benefits. Peanut butter, and I am talking the natural no added sugar or vegetable oil ones, is chock-full of heart-healthy monounsaturated fat which reduces belly fat, decrease your risk of diabetes, heart disease and other chronic health conditions. The combination of fibre and protein fills you up and keeps you fuller for longer, so you eat less overall. One study published in the Journal of the Medical Association found that consuming about 2 tablespoons a day at least 5 days a week can lower the risk of developing diabetes and belly fat by almost 30%. Hell yes!!!
So get your spooning on!!!
CHOC PEANUT BUTTER SALTED CARAMEL SLICE GF SF DF V* P*
CHOC BROWNIE BASE
1 1/4 C rolled oats
1 C pitted dates (soaked overnight in water)
½ C cacao powder
½ coconut oil / olive oil
2/3 C honey or pure maple syrup
PEANUT BUTTER CARAMEL CENTRE
1.5 C natural peanut butter
1 C pitted dates soaked overnight in water
2/3 C honey or pure maple syrup
4T coconut cream Note: don’t shake the tin – use the thick cream from the top
1tsp sea salt
CHOC GANASH TOPPING
Block of dark chocolate or homemade raw chocolate (see alternative recipe at bottom)
¼ C natural peanut butter
1-2T coconut cream
1tsp sea salt
* Salted crushed peanuts for topping
The best part about this recipe is that although it has so many nutritious amazing ingredients- it’s really simple!! It’s a whizz layer freeze style of baking.
It is 100% vital to have a food processor (blenders have been known to break in our house in the attempt of blending dates and peanut butter)
and you will need to soak the dates overnight AND it takes atleast 4 hours or overnight for the final product to set!!!! These times cannot be compromised or substituted. I say this now because there is nothing worse than getting to the end of a recipe and planning to plate up in 5 mins and then reading “set in fridge overnight’ Trust me – been there done that and it is totally worth the wait!
1. Blend the oats in the food processor (FP). Drain the soaked dates and blend with oats until combined – about 30 seconds. Add the oil, honey and cocoa. This should form a thick doughy base. Depending on your FP you might need to add more oats if it’s too soft. You want to have to ‘press’ the base into the tin not pour it.
2. Press into a large brownie tin lined with baking paper and refridgerate. If it looks like you have quite a lot (even once the taste testing is perfected) then press some into small patty pans to make little cupcake size peanut butter treats. I use these cute heart shape mini tart tins which make for a super special sweet treat!
3. Now the caramel centre – get those finger licking skills ready. Place the drained dates into the food processor and blitz until a smooth caramel consistency. Add peanut butter, coconut cream, salt and honey and blend for 1 minute until creamy and lump free. Pour over the chocolate brownie base and refrigerate. Now get those fingers into the food processor and lick the thing clean – once the blades are removed of course! This high protein, good fat and fibre rich layer is to die for… and it means less elbow grease in the kitchen sink cleaning!
4. Melt the dark chocolate in a bowl either over the stove or slowly in a microwave. Once smooth (and not burnt) add the peanut butter, coconut cream and sea salt and stir until it is well combined. Pour over chilled peanutbutter caramel layer and top with crushed peanuts. Place in freezer for 3-4 hours minimum or overnight for best results.
5. When ready to serve simply take out of tin and let it thaw on the bench for 10-15 minutes. Cut into slices and enjoy! You can freeze ready to grab slices for up to 8 weeks. Little tip when slicing – if the chocolate ganash is really hard and proving difficult to chop, cut long ways and then turn the slice on its side and cut the fingers/pieces that way. It is easier to cut on a small ‘edge’ side rather than flat chocolate. Little bit of architecture model making knowledge there :)
Goodluck, have fun, taste/sample regularly and let me know how it goes! Put your photo up on instagram and tag me @katie_kale_kettlebell or hashtag #kaleandthekettlebell nom nom nom
*ALTERNATIVE RECIPE OPTIONS
1/3 C coconut oil
1/3 C cacao powder
2-3Tbs honey or maple syrup
Melt coconut oil and combine with honey and cacao powder until smooth. Add in place of the melted dark chocolate for the ganash topping.
PALEO: To make this recipe paleo you can simple replace the 1 1/4 C rolled oats with nuts of choice. Almonds or a mix of ABC – Almond Brazil and Cashew would work perfectly.
VEGAN: To ensure the recipe is totally vegan use Maple syrup in place of the honey
5 WAYS TO PIMP YOUR AVO TOAST
Avocado toast is just one of those ultimate classic dishes right? It is quick, easy, looks gourmet, tastes insane and is super healthy for you – not to mention ON EVERY breakfast menu worth looking at. Hello carbs and healthy fats! Ahhh I have been addicted to avocado toast for quite some while now and it makes the perfect breakfast, morning tea snack, quick lunch, arvo hunger snack or easy lazy dinner. Mmmm you can’t go wrong with natures butter!! Here are 5 new ways that you can pimp your avo toast and make it a little more gourmet or interesting! These combos aren’t for everyone but hopefully one of them tickles your fancy. Otherwise – just stick with the classic.
I am sure you have heard of the 80/20 lifestyle consisting of 80% clean and healthy food + 20% indulgent treat food = 100% perfect balance. This is the ‘lifestyle’ (not diet… I hate that word) that I like to follow and live by. It means that I eat healthy and clean foods majority of the time but then let myself indulge in the most naughty of naughty treats without any guilt or regret. When I focus on treating myself 20% of the time it means that I am naturally eating healthy the other 80% without trying. Continue reading “80/20 LIFESTYLE”
Well the answer to that is YES!! ABSOLUTELY!!! Eggs are a very important part of a healthy clean eating lifestyle and one of the most nutritious foods on the planet. They are a great source of healthy fats and protein which keep you feeling full. They are also super easy to cook, relatively inexpensive and easy to transport!! Continue reading “ARE EGGS ALL THAT THEY ARE CRACKED UP TO BE?”
Food, fitness and wellbeing has been a huge part of my life the last couple of years and – so I did what every half talented minor out there with a computer did – I started a blog. Read my first blog post >> HERE.
It started off as something personal for myself and has now grown into my passion. I learnt that people weren’t interested in the sugar coated glossy fitspo crap and more about relating to other people’s personal struggles and real life issues. I didn’t realise how many people were experiencing the same things as me and thought that no matter what I wrote there was someone I could help or relate to. This is why I get so much out of my blog too.
So 12 months on, what is Kale and the Kettlebell really about? What have I achieved in opening my soul to a bunch of randoms over the global internet? What should you read my blog as opposed to one of the other thousand health and fitness blogs popping up each day? Well I’ve got you reading this far so I must be doing something half right!!
I wanted my blog to be delicious. A journal for my recipes online so everyone can share my goodness. Also because I got tired of hand writing (yes …) out the millions of recipes I came across on the net and then spilling coffee on them. Oh and practically gave myself an RSI from print screening drool worthy creations on my phone. Actually I still do that who am I kidding? Print screen is the best feature on the iPhone. Or is it the selfie cam? haha
I wanted my blog to be inspiring. You know what you are lying in bed thinking you should get up, kick goals, work out or do something productive but don’t and then you see some inspirational quote or absolute babe and boom your up and atem (at em?). Or maybe some inspiration for myself to do exactly that – get shit done!
I wanted my blog to be creative. Not just 1 cup of this, 12 push ups that. I wanted it to be quirky and expressive. Probably half the reason I don’t spell check (Rob’s mum is an editor and I can just feel her cringe at once glance of my post) or try to over write each post because I want it to be from the heart, a bit random, fun and just like me. I wanted to share stories, be weird and make people laugh. The more ‘me’ I allowed my blog to be the more I discovered about myself.
I wanted my blog to be honest. There are a lot of blogs out there and articles you read where you just feel miserable after because the people seem invincible and perfect. People who never have bad days, are always looking immaculate, abs and tans every day of the year and cocktails always in hand, no tears in sight. Well let me just tell you I have bad days, I cry, I throw it all in, I never look immaculate, I don’t have abs and I certainly don’t spend my life drinking cocktails or doing yoga poses. I used to struggle with my thoughts, my weight and overall happiness with myself. You wouldn’t have known it because I never wrote about it until recently but everyone has a daily struggle.
Yes there have been times that have been far from successful or pretty. There are times where I haven’t thought that highly of myself or the blog. I’ve wanted to delete it. Change my name. Start fresh. Be anonymous. But if you can’t stop thinking about it then don’t stop fighting for it right? I decided to keep going and the more people commented on how much they love it and how inspired they are by the way I write the more into it I got. Fair to say my blog and I went to second base ;) One lovely girl said she has recently lost 15kg and every time she felt like giving up she would read my blog. Another said she stayed up for hours one night reading it without realising the time because she was so intrigued and engulfed by my writing. Companies contacted me saying how much they loved my pages and zest for life (no I do not promote companies no matter how much free stuff they offer – I only promote what I love and works for me.) No skinny tea and teeth whitening here… Although my teeth could do with some whitening…. Anyone? Just kidding.
Have I changed as a person in the last year? You know it. The blog has made me more open and verbal about my love for health and fitness and made me stumble across some amazing fit people that inspire me along the way. The two biggest and hardest things are CHANGE and BALANCE. No one likes change and trying to find balance can also be much harder than you think.
ALLOW YOURSELF TO FIND HAPPINESS IN BALANCE;
Balance… ahh the word that we all suck at the most. I am an all or nothing person and so balance is a biggie with me. Learn how to stay up late in high heels drinking cocktails with friends on a Saturday and then go for a walk and have a green smoothie on Sunday morning. I have adapted from the 90% 10% to a more 70-30 as of late and my mind and body is better for it. I eat healthy and green to nourish and fuel my body and I eat chocolate to nourish and fuel my smile and brain! Balance is the most important part of life and a lot of people spend their whole life struggling to find it. Whether it be family, friends, work, hobbies, fitness … Anything. Find your balance.
CHANGE YOUR ATTITUDE TO FITNESS AND EXERCISE;
I used to think exercise was just a way to work off the bad food I ate. The gym was a chore for me, something that I HAD to do and not necessarily enjoyed. I would dread going to Attack but knew it meant I could eat cake later. I would workout for an hour plus each time and not be satisfied unless I broke decent sweat. Phwwwooooah have things have changed. Now exercise is just a part of my life, something I love and not a chore. I now workout much, much less (well pretty non existent at the moment to be completely honest) and allow myself to rest. I also found enjoyment in the non-sweaty/vigorous styles of exercise like yoga, pilates and just simply walking. Because exercise doesn’t have to be all sweat and tears.
CHANGE YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH FOOD;
Uhh oh! I wrote a whole post on food relationships >> HERE as this is such a big issue in our modern society. This balance took me the longest to realise because your relationship with food can be a serious addiction. I saw food as ‘good’ or ‘bad’. I cut out all the ‘bad’ food and restricted food groups, made food diaries, counted calories and cut carbs. Yikes i know!! Well glad those days are over. I learnt to eat when I was hungry not at a certain hour. I stopped punishing myself for eating bad food. I started eating foods that were enjoyable to eat and nourishing for my body and foods that I craved and liked. I learnt to eat slowly and mindfully and to enjoy every mouthful.
LEARN TO LOVE YOURSELF;
I have also learnt to love myself and I can’t “stress” how much this has helped me both physically and mentally. My body is an amazing machine and I wasn’t giving it enough credit or love. Even at my lowest weight I wasn’t happy and this constant stress made my cortisol levels increase (off the rikta) which caused a world of hormonal issues. I carry my weight around my stomach like a 4 year old running around the pool with a turtle ring floatation device. But I learnt that excessive tummy fat is due to high stress levels and my mental state was making me retain that fat no matter how hard I tried to remove it. Go figure. I stopped caring about what other people thought of me and learnt to love myself. Because this is MY life. Only I can live it and caring about what others think only makes me insecure and hold back.
ALLOW YOURSELF TO LOOSE ROUTINE AND TRAVEL OFTEN;
Well I think quitting my job, selling my car and bed and flying across the world speaks for itself with this? The more people I meet along the way, the more I realise what a huge and BRAVE thing I am doing. There is so much of the world I haven’t seen and cannot wait to experience it. Even if you can’t travel as often as you like just book a weekend away to somewhere you haven’t been. Because travel is the only thing in life you can buy that will make your richer…
What’s in the pipes for Kale and the Kettlebell over the next year? More change? More balance? Eeeeeek!!! Who knows? At the moment I am traveling the world and experiencing what hidden treasures (and food) is out there. When I reside in London after Christmas I will start a new and more routined style of life and find my new locals for the daily grind. So far the black truffle in England’s lane, Camden is my fave Bonsoy flatty. Oh and when the money tree stops growing i’ll have to get a job right?
I will always be passionate about my blog and health and fitness … Because I am here to live long and happily. This little lady is going to be rocking those push ups (ok maybe only savasanas) when she’s 80! Because a body treated well – is a body for life!
Watch this space
So I am lying on a pebble beach sunning my backside with my toes just touching the lapping water. I am in Kotor, Montenegro without a care in the world. Nowhere to be. Nothing to be done (we do have a load of washing in our apartment going on at the moment… thanks to Rob) and no one to attend to. It has been 2 weeks since we packed up our lives into 16kg and lugged it to our backs flying half way across the world. Continue reading “EATING HEALTHY WHILST TRAVELING”
So its winter in Australia which means two things; our bodies go into hungry bear hibernation mode right? and the cold weather just makes us want to eat pasta, pizza and pies all day long. There is no hiding the fact that our appetites increase as the temperature decreases and we start to crave comfort foods. Therefore instead of going for an evening walk after work or hitting the gym early in the morning we chose to reside to the couch with something warm. No judge!! Continue reading “WINTER SNACKS COVERED”
“The rise of the healthy latte is taking Sydney by storm. From ‘superfood’ tonics and coffee alternatives, to organic traditional roasts brewed with fresh nut milks, these chic and healthy new beverages are gracing café tables everywhere and redefining the term ‘latte’ itself.” – Out in Sydney.