Recipe list
Wild rice & quinoa pilaf with baked ricotta

"It was a dark and stormy night during a miserably cold winter. Fortunately, thanks to Fresh & delish, they had the cosiest comfort food ever to warm them."

Okay, so please keep reading to discover that my culinary skills really are better than my somewhat lacking literary talents. This is absolutely one of my favourite meals for a cold stormy night; pair it with some warm mulled wine and you're all set to beat the winter chills.

Cheese & herb cornbread

Winter is not my favourite time of year, but there are many things I do like about the cold weather: fluffy blankets, oversized jumpers, hot chocolate and warming soup being among them. The problem is what a coeliac, who's had little success with gluten-free baking and doesn't want to spend a small fortune on average-at-best gluten-free bread every week, have to accompany her soup? That's where this cornbread comes in.

Ricotta-stuffed mushrooms

If you're in Australia at the moment, chances are you've got a barbecue or three coming up. If you're in cooler climes, then you might be looking for cosy dishes to bake. Either way, these stuffed mushrooms fit the bill; talk about versatile!

Banana egg flip

This is one of my favourite post-workout snacks. It's something of a cross between an egg flip and a banana smoothie and has good doses of both carbohydrates and protein to assist in recovery. I like to make it in two flavours: chocolate or vanilla.

Fruit and nut energy balls

Okay, so to say this blog's been neglected lately is something of an understatement. Sometimes life just gets in the way and there are only so many things you can keep up with at once. Well, life has settled down somewhat lately, and I've been getting a number of requests to start posting again, so here goes...

I've also been getting several enquiries around the gym about some of the concoctions I'm seen snacking on so I'll start by sharing some of those. I eat these fruit and nut balls as a high energy-density 'fast' food to keep me going during long training sessions. If I'm doing two classes back-to-back I generally need to eat in between or my blood sugar can drop too low, but I don't have much time and need something light enough that I can keep working on straight away.

For a seasonal touch: these would also be a nice treat as part of a Christmas spread.

Buckwheat porridge

Winter has well and truly settled upon Canberra, and winter means cold mornings and warm breakfasts. The medical advice in Australia is that oats are not safe for those with coeliac disease. (I know this varies in other countries.) When I was first diagnosed my gastroenterologist explained that the reason for this is two-fold: First, oats and wheat are usually grown in adjacent fields and processed on the same equipment so the risk of cross-contamination is very high. Second, oats contain a protein (called avenin) which is similar in structure to gluten and which around 1 in 5 coeliacs also react to. Coeliac Australia explain that there is no way to test who will react to avenin in advance, and so they actually class avenin as a type of gluten and advise that coeliacs shout not eat oats. I developed this recipe the first winter after I was diagnosed with coeliac disease and it has been our regular cold-weather breakfast ever since.

Spanakopita filled chickpea crepes

This came about from my unwillingness to give up my favourite Spanakopita filling from my pre-coeliac-diagnosis days. Spanakopita is a Greek spinach and cheese pie. Here, I've taken the same spinach and cheese mix, rolled it up in chickpea crepes and topped with tomato sauce.

Roast eggplant puree

This isn't quite quick, due to the cooking time required, but it is dead easy to make, and oh so yummy. It's a great option as a side when you're preparing something else which is a bit involved, as this will take little effort from you and can cook in the mean time.

Mushroom and chestnut gratin

The changing seasons is always an exciting time in the culinary year, so many new foods coming into season! One of those I await most eagerly each autumn is chestnuts, and the first dish I make with them is this mushroom and chestnut gratin.

Fried halloumi with caremalised fennel

I made halloumi from scratch for the first time last weekend! And it worked! Here's one of my subsequent creations which I served up for a friend the other night. She hadn't tried halloumi or fennel before, and I think I sold her on both accounts with this dish.

Recipe list
Name this dish!

Figs are in season and abundant at the Farmers' Market; as I adore fresh figs I find this very exciting. Having bought two bags of figs at the markets last weekend, I recalled fondly some very tasty fig and brie mini pizzas I made for a dinner party a few years ago. I wanted a healthier option to the pizza base though, so paired the toppings with some linseed meal crackers. The only thing is, I need your help to name them. The best I can come up with is 'Toasted fig, brie, balsamic caramelised onion and walnut linseed slices' which, while descriptive, is a little long. So, have a go at making these and suggest a new name in the comments section.

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