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  • Lorna

Here's a beautiful carrot and pumpkin gratin that uses pureed parsnip as a base to give a rich, creamy texture! A pinch of nutmeg and cinnamon can turn this everyday side into a festive feast!


Ingredients:

  • 3 large carrots

  • 3 cups pumpkin, thinly sliced

  • 2 leeks, sliced

  • 2 tbs butter

  • 3 cups parsnip, diced

  • 100g pecorino or parmesan cheese, grated

  • Salt and pepper


Method:

  • Preheat the oven to 180C

  • Thinly slice the carrots and pumpkin with a knife or mandolin. Set aside.

  • In a large frying pan, cook the leeks in one tablespoon of butter until soft. Remove from the heat and set aside.

  • Place the diced parsnip in a large saucepan and cook in boiling water until soft. Drain. Place the pieces in a high-powered blender with one tablespoon of butter. Season with salt and pepper. Blend until smooth and creamy.

  • To assemble the gratin, spread some parsnip puree on the bottom of a pie dish. Top with carrot and pumpkin slices. Top with some leek and a small sprinking of cheese. Repeat, finishing with a thick layer of parsnip puree. Sprinkle with the remaining cheese.

  • Place in the oven and cook for one hour or until the carrots and pumpkin are al dente. If the top is browning too quickly, cover it with foil.


Serves 6-8



  • Lorna

Who doesn't get excited seeing an ice cream cake! This one has all the flavour, but none of the gluten, added sugar, or even dairy (if you want!)


This recipe is dead easy to make – all you need is a food processor, and in two steps, you’re done. The filling is made from frozen berries, which miraculously fluff up with the addition of egg white, giving a texture very similar to ice cream.




Ingredients:

¾ cup desiccated or shredded coconut

7 medjool dates or 15-16 normal dried dates soaked in boiling hot water for 5 minutes

⅓ cup sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds, fine rolled oats, almonds, hazelnuts or macadamias 1/3 cup

¼ cup melted butter or coconut oil


Filling

500 g frozen raspberries - you could also use strawberries, boysenberries, blackberries or a mixture of berries for a different berry flavour and colour

3-4 tablespoons pure maple syrup ,liquid honey (not manuka as it has too strong a flavour) or agave syrup

¼ cup cream or coconut cream

2 egg whites


To garnish

Sliced fresh strawberries or other berries



Method:

Grease and line the bottom and sides of a 20-21cm spring-form cake tin with baking paper.

To make the base, place all base ingredients in a food processor and blitz until well combined and the mixture has formed a slightly sticky dough.

Scrape down the sides of the food processor as necessary to ensure all the ingredients are incorporated. Press mixture into the base of prepared cake tin using the back of a spoon. Place in the freezer while you make the filling.

To make the filling, place frozen berries in the food processor and blitz until crumbly. Add honey/maple syrup/agave and cream/coconut cream and continue blitzing until the mixture is the consistency of sorbet or ice-cream, scraping down the sides of the food processor as necessary. Add egg whites and continue blitzing for 1-2 more minutes – the mixture will become light, fluffy, smooth and ice-cream like, and a paler pink colour. Spoon filling on top of the base and roughly smooth out the top. Return to the freezer immediately. Leave for at least 6 hours (or overnight) until set.

When ready to serve, remove from freezer and stand at room temperature for 10 minutes to slightly thaw. Garnish with sliced fresh strawberries. Use a large, sharp knife to cut slices of cake.


There's not much that beats a good burger. By making some conscious choices when assembling ingredients, you can make a burger healthy, too. Here are some ideas below, but try your ideas to make it your own.



Ingredients:

  • 1 whole butternut pumpkin/squash

  • Lettuce/rocket for dressing

  • Free range mayonnaise

  • Hot sauce/wasabi paste/chipotle or chilli powder/crushed garlic

  • Smoked paprika

  • Neutral oil

  • Onion powder (optional)

  • Garlic powder (optional)

  • Swiss cheese slices

  • Burger buns


Method:


Preheat oven to 200C.


Prepare the pumpkin by slicing whole, 1.5cm thick slices, making 6-8 rounds of pumpkin (depending on its size). In a bowl, add the pumpkin, cover with a tablespoon of oil, salt, pepper, a teaspoon of garlic and onion powder (if using) and a tablespoon of smoked paprika. Using your hands, rub the marinade into the pumpkin.


On a lined baking tray, add the pumpkin slices so they're not overlapping. Reserve the marinade left in the bowl, and place the tray in the oven for 20-25 minutes, until the slices begin to colour.


Remove from the oven, and baste with the remaining marinade. Turn each slice over and return to the oven for a further 20-25 minutes, or until cooked through.


Alternatively, cook both sides for 5 minutes less each side, remove from the oven and place on a sizzling hot BBQ griddle for 3 minutes each side for more smoked flavour and lovely charring.


Meanwhile, make a spiced mayonnaise by combining a few tablespoons of mayo with a teaspoon of your favourite hot sauce or chilli powder. Wasabi paste is delicious here, as is a crushed garlic clove. Add salt to taste. Set aside.


Assemble your burgers by toasting each bun (perfect if you're using the BBQ to finish the pumpkin steaks), adding a spread of mayo, a slice or two of pumpkin, cheese slices, lettuce or rocket, and more mayo.