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5 Fabulous diet meals in under 30 minutes!

November 24, 2014 in Diabetic friendly, Diet Friendly, Gluten free, low fat

Posted by

5FabDietMeals

 

See here’s the thing, as much as your family loves and supports you on your newly found quest to weight loss, nobody is willingly going to give up their meals to join you on your diet!

And believe me when I say this, you can only have broccoli and bland salads for a short while before dry bread looks more appealing.

Not having a variety of meals in your diet might lead to boredom and that’s when you catch yourself picking at forbidden foods.

Well it’s your lucky day! I have 5 meals that is quick and easy and very tasty indeed.

I’ve been cooking diet meals for a while now, not only for myself but for my clients as well. I cater mostly for the Slender Wonder, Lean Again and Dr.Cohen diets. So if you are currently following one of these diets then please ensure that you adjust your protein and veggies according to your own personal diet allowances. This goes for ingredients used as well.

If you are not following any of the above diets but would still love to have a low carb meal then please feel free to adjust the weight of the protein and veggies to suit your own preferences. The recipes have been developed to give you 100 g protein and 100 g veggies per portion. This might be too little for your dietary needs so don’t stress it if you need to increase either quantities of your protein or veggies or both.

Tip

Always make more than one portion at a time and keep the other meal in the fridge for that unexpected odd day in the week that you don’t feel like cooking your diet meal. This will save you a lot of time in the week to do other things, like taking a walk, painting your nails or just rewarding yourself with a nice long bubble bath. 

Get the recipes here!

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Spinach Tortilla bites

October 6, 2014 in Diet Friendly, low fat

OCT 6

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As the days get longer and warmer we enjoy a renewed energy for life and spending time with friends and family.

Yes, it’s that time of the year again, lazy spring afternoons, just enjoying the nice weather and each others company over chilled fruity drinks and light and fresh finger foods.

Why not try a spinach tortilla bite to jazz up your next party, these adorable bites will hit the spot and leave your guest begging for more, plus they are so healthy, ideal for the dieter!

Making your own tortillas can be a bit time-consuming but believe me, you will think twice to spend a small fortune on something you can make at home for much less.

If you are short on time go right ahead and make use of store-bought tortillas instead.

SpinachTortillas

Recipe

 Yields 12 Tortilla wraps

For plain tortillas simply leave out the spinach 

500 g Brown bread flour

5 ml Baking powder

2 ml Salt

60 ml Low fat Margarine

225 ml Luke warm water

200 g spinach

Remove the stems from your spinach leafs. You want to break up the spinach as much as possible to be able to work it into your dough, for this you could use a food processor but I find my smoothie maker gives me better results.

Add your water and spinach to your smoothie maker or food processor and pulse until smooth.

Mix together the dry ingredients and rub the margarine in with your fingertips to resemble coarse breadcrumbs.

Add the water and spinach mixture until well combined. Turn on to a floured surface and knead for two minutes until dough is smooth.

Divide dough into 12 pieces and roll into a ball. (Divide in half, divide each half in three and divide the three balls in half again, repeat with the other half of the dough)

Place onto a floured baking tray and cover with a damp cloth. Leave to rest for one hour.

Roll each ball out onto a lightly floured surface to form very thin circles.

Use glad wrap or wax paper when you place the dough on top of each other and keep the pile covered with a damped cloth as you roll out each tortilla circle.

Heat a heavy-base frying pan over high heat and place one tortilla in the pan.

Cook for a 5 to 10 seconds, then turn over and cook for another 5 to 10 seconds.

Your pan should be extremely hot and you will see bubbles forming on your tortilla as you cook them.

Remove from the pan and cover with a damped cloth to keep them warm and pliable. keep the pile well wrapped until all are cooked.

Filled tortilla bites 

One filled tortilla will give you about 6 tortilla bites depending on how you thick you cut them.

6 tortillas

1 tub low-fat cream cheese (I’ve use feta and olive cream cheese)

12 slices of cold meats of your choice, beef or ham works well. (you could use more if preferred)

To keep your tortillas pliable you could reheat them in the microwave for +- 10 -20 seconds.

Spread the cream cheese over your tortilla and place two pieces of cold meats on your tortilla, one in the upper corner to the middle and the second on the bottom corner to the middle.

Spread another thin layer of cream cheese over the cold meats.

Tightly roll up your tortilla and keep aside under a damped cloth, repeat with the rest.

Cut your rolled tortillas into slices and secure with a toothpick.

They tend to dry out fast so be sure to cover them before you plate them for your guests.

Enjoy!

Tips 

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Chop up small pieces of onions, red peppers or olives and mix it in with a tub of plain cream cheese.

You can add any veggies to your tortillas bites as long as you cut them thinly to ensure they still hold their form when rolled up, try carrots, peppers and lettuce.

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No bake – Energy balls

September 15, 2014 in Diet Friendly, Gluten free, Snacks

Posted by: Daily Dose of Fresh 

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This is definitely my new pre-workout snack!

So delicious and loaded with goodness. These chewy energy balls is the perfect little snack to keep around for those sudden hunger pangs. What I enjoy most about them is that the fact that you don’t have to bake them, just mix and roll and voila!

A great healthy treat for the kids and it’s gluten-free too, and as an added bonus the Chia and flax seeds will provide you with a good dose of Omega 3 fatty acids, fibre and protein.

depending on how big you roll the balls you could have at least 3 dozen energy balls.

Keep them in an airtight container in the fridge.

Recipe 

1 cup Rolled oats

2 /3 cup Desiccated coconut

1/2 cup Flax seed

1/2 cup Almond flakes

1 Tbs Chia seeds

2/3 cup Honey

1/2 cup Peanut butter

Mix all the ingredients in a large bowl and mix with a wooden spoon.

Set aside in the fridge for 1/2 hour and roll into bite size balls.

Enjoy!


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Veggie noodles and chicken – a low carb alternative

August 27, 2014 in Diabetic friendly, Diet Friendly, Gluten free, low fat, Veggies

Posted by:  Daily Dose of Fresh

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This meal is perfect when you follow a low carb diet or simply trying to cut down on the carbs a bit.

Packed with yummy nutritious veggies, and packed with  protein from your chicken fillet.

The zucchini gives a creamy taste to the dish that works well with the lean chicken fillet.

Once you’ve prepared your ingredients it’s 1, 2 , 3 and your done!

So much healthier than your ordinary noodles.

Recipe

Serves 2 – 3  

1 Punnet zucchini’s (the bigger the better)

1  carrot (peeled)

1/2 punnet button mushrooms

1 onion (finely sliced)

300 g Chicken fillet  cut into thin strips

little olive oil / coconut oil for frying

salt and pepper to taste

Veggie seasoning

Ground black pepper

Prepare your veggies by rinsing, cutting the tops and peeling your carrot.

I’ve use my Julienne cutter, but you can slice the carrot and zucchini in thin layers and simply cut it in Julienne strips.

Rinse  the veggies and set aside.

Heat a Wok or large pan and add a little olive oil.  Add the onions and saute’ for a minute or two until the onion is translucent.

Add the mushrooms and saute’ for another minute until golden in colour. Add the chicken and salt and pepper to taste  and transfer the mixture to a separate bowl once the chicken is cooked trough.

In the same pan add your veggies and a little water to barely cover it (+- 60 ml) . Cook your veggies for +- 3 minutes giving it the occasional stir. Don’t over do it though, you still want you veggies to hold their shape

Add the veggie seasoning when the water is almost evaporated, add the chicken back to the pan with the veggies.

Mix trough and serve hot with a good pinch of  freshly ground black pepper.

Tips

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If you use a Julienne cutter:

Cut the first two strips while holding the zucchini in your hand, transfer the zucchini to a cutting board with the cut side facing down. Now gently run your cutter over the zucchini until you are only left with one slice which you can cut into strips using a veggie knife. This method makes it so much quicker and easier and prevents injuries.

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Mmm it’s Meatloaf

August 21, 2014 in Meat, Protein, Veggies

 

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Are your children pulling up their noses for veggies?

Then make This meatloaf! Packed full off nutritious veggies, so well disguised in between the succulent ground beef mince they won’t even notice it!

I love this  meatloaf  simply because it’s one of those “combine, pop it in the oven, forget about it” dishes and also because the left overs makes such a perfect lunch the next day.

Be creative with this recipe!  there is absolutely no way you can mess this up. You can replace the carrots with spinach or Zucchini next time.

Just remember to set a timer when baking , this is so convenient you might just forget about it in the oven all together!

Recipe

 

1 Large onion (finely chopped)

1/2 Punnet of mushrooms (finely chopped)

200 g Carrots ( peeled and finely diced)

1 glove of garlic (finely chopped)

10 ml Veggie spices (I’ve used the Ina Paarmans garlic and herb spices)

700 g Ground beef mince

(For a lower fat meatloaf you can use lean mince instead) 

60 ml Oat bran

1 egg (beaten)

10 ml Salt

5 ml Paprika

Freshly ground black pepper

Topping

60 ml Good quality tomato sauce

5 ml Mixed herbs

30 ml water

5 ml brown sugar

Preheat your oven to 190 degrees Celsius.

Prepare your veggies by peeling and chopping and keep aside. You can also use a food processor if you are short on time but keep your veggies separate.

In a large saucepan, saute’ the onions and garlic in a little olive oil until soft and translucent. Add the veggie spices and the mushrooms and carrots and saute’ for another minute.  Set aside to cool down.

In a large mixing bowl combine the beef mince, oat bran and 1 beaten egg. Season with the salt, paprika and a good helping of freshly ground black pepper.

Add your veggies to the mixture and mix thoroughly.

Place your meatloaf in ceramic or tin loaf pan (no need to grease, the fat  from the meat will prevent the loaf from sticking to the pan)

press down firmly and even out the top to ensure your meatloaf does not have any gaping holes in the middle when you cut it later.

combine the Tomato sauce, mixed herbs, water and sugar and spoon over the top of your meatloaf.

Cover with tin foil and bake in the oven for 1 hour.

Remove the tin foil and grill slightly for about 3 – 5 minutes on the highest setting of your oven.

Remove and set aside for at least 15 minutes before you attempt to remove it from your loaf tin.

Slice in slices and enjoy hot with some freshly steamed veggies.

Tips 

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When ever I make Tomato soup I always scoop out a little and freeze it for when I make meatloaf again.

Mix this with the tomato sauce instead of water for an even better tomato topping!

If you have time at hand you can also skin 2 large tomatoes and whiz it to liquid form in your food processor and use it in the place of the water.

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Food talk – Understanding nutritional labels

August 19, 2014 in Food talk, Nutrition

#Fact – Healthy eating starts with knowing exactly what you are putting in your mouth…

 

but In order to do so you first need to understand nutritional labels

Although food manufactures are required by law to include nutrition information on their products, the information still seems to be intimidating and sometimes misleading to the average consumer.

So here is what you need to know.

South Africa is a metric country, the energy value of foods must be expressed in kilojoules (kJ).

So, if a food’s energy value is listed as 700 kJ per portion, then this is how much energy you will ingest when you eat a portion of this food.

However, many manufacturers still list the energy content of foods in calories (kcal) or use both kJ and calories.

1 kcal = 4.187 kJ

Energy in food is always expressed in kcal, but most manufacturers forget to use the ‘k’ in front of the ‘cal’ in the abbreviation. Even though the abbreviations ‘cal’ and ‘kcal’ actually have different scientific meanings, manufacturers use them interchangeably.

So when a food label states that the product contains 50 cal and another product contains 50 kcal, it actually might mean the same thing.

 

Ingredients are listed from the largest amount to the least on the food label.

Think twice when purchasing a product if one of the top three ingredients is either fat, sugar or salt .

Check the serving sizes

Ensure that you look at the correct column in the Table indicating the portion size of the product.

Nutritive value of the food will be listed  as  per 100 g or per 100 ml (liquids), or both per portion and per 100g (100ml).  This is the standard and will make it easier for the consumer to compare two of the same kind of products with each other.

However the serving size will also be noted in the second column.  That will be where the portion size “suggested”.

But! Keep in mind that you might not eat the same serving size in reality.

Cereal for instances:  they might suggest  40 gram but you might actually be eating 60 gram in reality.

 

So I am on a diet, but how would I know if it’s low in kilojoules?

Food that contains less than 170 kJ per 100 g (40.6 kcal per 100 g)  or less than 80 kJ per 100 ml (19.11 Kcal) in the case of liquids can be regarded as ‘low in energy’.

This is a very small amount of energy and  you will probably notice  that most processed foods will not meet this requirement.

 This is why most weight loss diets recommend a higher intake of fruit and vegetables as they contain much less kilojoules compared to commercially pre-packed foods. 

What about low-fat?

“Low Fat” foods should not contain more than 3 g fat per 100 g  and beverages no more than 1,5 g per 100 ml.

There are four different types of fats that make up Total Fat: Monounsaturated, Polyunsaturated, Saturated and Trans fats. The Trans fats and Saturated fats are the baddies.

 If you are at risk of heart disease you should always look at the Saturated fatFoods with a low saturated fat value that contains less than 1 g saturated fat per 100 g or less than 0,75 g per 100 ml.

Trans fats  are linked to heart disease and cancer. Opt for products that have less then 0,1 g trans fatty acids per 100 g or 100 ml. Pies, chips and cookies are the biggest culprit foods when it comes to trans fatty acids.

Remember 5 g of fat is 1 teaspoon of fat. If there is 30 g of fat per serving you will be eating 6 teaspoons of fat!

Look out for the  South African Heart and stroke Foundations logo on products.

The Heart and Stroke Foundation South Africa (HSF) plays a leading

role in the fight against preventable heart disease and stroke.

heart

What about protein?

Keep in mind that animal products (meat, cheese and milk) will be a better quality of protein than plant-based proteins.

If a product claims to be “High protein” foods it should have  10g of Protein per 100g

 

What about Carbohydrates?

If you are a diabetic , an athlete  or simply trying to limit your carb intake you will be interested in this value.

Carbs are our main source of energy, when you eat carbohydrates, your body breaks them down into individual sugar molecules and converts them into glucose, which your cells use for energy.

Nutrition labels will reveal the amount of total carbohydrate, fibre  and sugar in a serving of food,

 

Total Carbohydrates

The total carbohydrate value refers to all the sugars and starches found in all fresh fruit, vegetables, all grains , milk and milk products. Total carbohydrates of a product is of little value unless you are following a weight reducing diet and know how much carbohydrates you should consume per day.

If you carbohydrate count, you should look at total carbohydrate, not sugar, to determine the amount of carbohydrate in each serving. If you’re counting carbs in your diet, be aware that 15 grams of carbohydrates count as one serving.

Take special note that the Total carbohydrate value is NOT the GI value of the product.

Research have found that not all carbohydrates are digested and absorbed at the same rate. This means that different carbohydrates can have different effects on the glucose and blood insulin levels.

Look out for the GIFSA  symbol (Glycemic Index Foundation of South Africa).

The GI index or list will indicate which foods are low GI, Intermediate GI and High GI.

Based on the Glycemic index of each carbohydrate food they are divided in three categories.

  • Slow release carbs with a GI value of 55 and below is regarded as LOW GI FOODS (Listed in green )

      Often foods, ideal before exercise or when inactive, most of the time.

  • Carbs with a GI value of 56 to 69 is regarded as INTERMEDIATE GI FOODS (Listed in orange)

      Ideal during and after exercise lasting longer than one hour

  • Fast release carbs with a GI value of 70 and above is regarded as HI GI FOODS (Listed in Red )

      Ideal after exercise lasting one hour (healthy sportsmen and woman)

Carbohydrate (of which sugars) tells you how much sugar the food or drink contains and includes both added sugar and naturally occurring sugar from fruit (fructose) and milk (lactose). Added sugars include sugars such as sucrose, glucose, glucose syrup, invert syrup, maltose and honey.

Look out for the GIFSA logos on products.

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Carbohydrates of which sugars

Keep in mind that 5 g sugar is equal to one teaspoon of sugar.  Most processed foods contain hidden sugars, Here’s a list of 56 names of sugar.

56namesofsugar

Sugar-free products should have less than 0.5 grams of sugars per serving.

Sugar free products often contain sugar alcohols which are lower in calories. Common sugar alcohols are mannitol, Xylitol or Sorbitol, which could cause diarrhoea, so don’t consume a lot in one sitting.

What about Fibre?

Fibre is good for you and we often eat too little of it. Fibre helps prevent bowel problems and keeps you fuller for longer when trying to lose weight.

Fibre is one type of carbohydrate that does not raise blood glucose, in fact  the presence of fibre can slow down the impact of the other carbohydrates in a meal.

When counting carbs we subtract the grams of the fibre from the total carbohydrates. This gives us a value also known as Net carbs, usable carbs or impact carbs.

Food that claims to be “High fibre” should contain 6 g fibre per 100 g or 3 g per 100 ml.

What about Sodium?

Sodium can raise your blood pressure and it’s advisable to limit your sodium intake. We should aim for less than 1500 mg (3.75 gram or 3/4 teaspoon)   – 2300 mg (6 gram or 1 teaspoon) of sodium per day.

A product is “Sodium free” if it contains less than 5 mg of sodium per serving.

Remember food labels are there for you the consumer to make informed decisions and better food choices.

Remember your Health matters!

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2 minute Health muffin for Breakfast

August 18, 2014 in Breakfast, Diabetic friendly, Diet Friendly, Gluten free, low fat, Muffins

Posted by: Daily Dose of Fresh

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Oh my! When you run around on a Monday morning and you still haven’t had breakfast…

Then take a deep breath, relax and bring a mug.

This quick and easy muffin will blow your socks off…and get this, it’s really healthy as well!

Sugar free, fat free, lactose free, and if you use gluten free baking powder it’s gluten free too.

I mean come on, this is as good as it gets!

Recipe 

Yields one muffin

(Nogal blerrie groot hoor!)

 

3 TBS Oat bran

2 TBS rolled oats

1 sachet Sweetner (I’ve used Canderel vanilla flavoured sweetner)

1/4 tsp baking powder

pinch of nutmeg

pinch of cinnamon

pinch of salt

1 Egg

3 TBS mashed banana (1 small or 3/4 medium banana, just eat the rest!)

Spray a large MICROWAVE SAFE mug with baking spray or grease with a little butter or coconut oil.

Add all the dry ingredients to the mug and give it a quick mix.

Add your egg and the banana and mix well.

Microwave for 1 minute and again for 30 – 40 seconds, keeping an eye on it.

Your muffin is ready when it’s cooked through.

Allow to cool for 2 minutes (difficult I know!, waiting for 2 minutes after the longest 1 minute of baking..)

Be careful the mug might be hot.  (Yip sometimes things ain’t as microwave safe as the sign said :) )

Enjoy!!!

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Spinach bread – Gluten free

August 14, 2014 in Bread, Breakfast, Diabetic friendly, Diet Friendly, Gluten free, low fat, Veggies

Posted by: Daily Dose of Fresh

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Let’s just get one thing straight, I still love carbohydrates (Like a lot!).

But I have to admit, eating a little less carbohydrates is very good for my waistline.  And whenever I get my hands on a gluten-free, or low carbohydrate recipe I get very excited.

Look at this spinach bread!  Perfect for breakfast or lunch with a slice of turkey rasher and tomato.

Best of all you can slice and freeze the slices for “next time sandwiches”.

Recipe 

2 Bunches of fresh spinach

1 Small onion

1 Glove of garlic

1 tsp Salt

4 Eggs

Pinch of freshly ground black pepper

Pre-heat the oven to 190 degrees Celsius.

Wash and finely chop the spinach.

Finely chop the onion and crush the garlic glove.

In a separate bowl beat the eggs with a fork.

Use a large mixing bowl and mix all the ingredients, adding the eggs to the mixture last.

Grease a ceramic, or use a non-stick loaf tin.

Add all the ingredients to your loaf tin, firmly pressing it down.

Bake for 30 – 40 minutes or until firm.

Leave the bread to cool down in the loaf pan for +- 15 minutes before removing.

Slice and enjoy!

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Gluten free Seed loaf

August 7, 2014 in Bread, Gluten free

Posted by Daily Dose of Fresh 

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Sometimes you are blessed to have special people in your life that share wonderful recipes like this gluten free bread with you!

This bread will truly change your life.

If you love nuts and seeds as much as I do you will truly appreciate the textures and taste of this bread. Pop it in the toaster and you have a bit of heaven to indulge in.

This bread contain no flour, eggs or rising agents.

It contains oats instead of flour, and oats in its natural form is gluten free. However if you are severely sensitive to gluten opt for a specially packed gluten free oats. The main problem with oats in gluten-free eating is contamination. Most commercial oats are processed in facilities that also process wheat, barley, and rye.

Recipe 

Prep time 10 minutes plus at least 2 hours resting time before baking

Cook time 50 minutes

Yields 1 small loaf or 16 slices

Note Replacements can be made to suit your own needs or preferences.

Basic ingredients                                                                                Alternative ingredients
1 cup (250 ml) (135 g) sunflower seeds                 (mixed seeds, pumpkin seeds)
½ cup (125 ml) (90 g) flax seeds                                     (sesame or partly poppy seeds)
½ cup (125 ml) (± 6o g) hazelnuts                                       (almonds or mixed raw nuts)
1 ½ cups (375 ml) (150 g) rolled oats                               (quinoa flakes – adjust the liquid)
2 Tbsp (15 ml) chia seeds                                (no replacement – see about chia below)
¼ cup (60 ml) psyllium seed husks                                  (3 Tbsp psyllium husk powder)
1 tsp (5 ml) salt                                                                       (add ½ tsp if using coarse salt)
1 Tbsp (15 ml) maple syrup        (pinch stevia or honey or molasses for a dark bread)
3 Tbsp (45 ml) melted butter or oil of your choice (coconut or olive oil)

1 ½ cups (375 ml) water (room temperature)

 

Select a medium size loaf tin and grease with butter or cooking spray. Measure out all the dry ingredients in a bowl, mix well and add to the loaf tin.

Place the maple syrup, oil and water into a measuring jug and mix well.  Pour the liquid over the dry ingredients and mix with a fork until all is completely moistened and a stiff dough forms – sticky and too thick to stir. If necessary to make the dough come together and become manageable, add one or two extra tablespoons of water.  Smooth the top with the back of a wet spoon.

Cover the pan and let the dough sit on the counter for at least 2 hours (or all dry or overnight) to allow the liquid to become completely absorbed.

Preheat the oven to 180°C when ready to bake. Place the loaf pan in the oven on the middle rack, and bake for 30 minutes.  Turn out the firm bread and place it onto a baking tray or onto the overturned loaf tin to bake for another 20 minutes – the bread is done when it sounds hollow when tapped.

Let cool completely before slicing (difficult, but important!).  Store the bread in a sealed container for up to five days.  The bread freezes very well – slice before freezing for quick and easy toast!

Enjoy!

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Healthy Banana bread

August 6, 2014 in Bread

 Posted by Daily Dose of Fresh  

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One slice of this moist sweet banana bread and you will also feel like a monkey with a new banana!

This Banana bread is not only much healthier compared to your regular banana bread but also very versatile.

Your kids will adore you when they discover banana bread instead of the regular sandwich in their lunch boxes.

 It’s also the perfect treat for that up and coming summer picnic we are all waiting for!

Left over Banana bread ? (WHAT LEFTOVER BANANA BREAD???…) 

Use any left over banana bread for a trifle with some low-fat custard and sugar free jelly!

Each slice equals 1 Carbohydrate (23 g) ,    1/2 fruit,    1/2 fat  with 563 Kj per slice .

Banana Bread Recipe 

30 ml Canola oil

190 ml Brown sugar

3 Eggs

60 ml Low fat milk

1 Apple,  peeled and finely grated

3 medium bananas mashed

295 ml Cake flour

10 ml Baking powder

2,5 ml salt

125 ml Oatbran

125 ml Whole-wheat ProNutro (Original or Apple bake)

Pre-heat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

Mix the oil and sugar.

Add the eggs and milk to the sugar mixture and mix through.

Add the grated apple and mashed banana to the  mixture.

Sift the flour, baking powder and salt in a separate bowl and add  the ProNutro and Oatbran.

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix with a wooden spoon, be careful not to over mix it.

Pour mixture into a greased loaf tin and bake 40 -60 minutes or until the bread is done on the inside.

Allow the bread to stand for 15 minutes before removing it from the loaf tin.

Enjoy!

Tips

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Money saver tip: Make your own Oatbran by simply whizzing up rolled oats in your food processor.

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