Banana and Mango Smoothie

By Lee Holmes

Now is a great time to look at the health of your gut, especially after ongoing January festivities where holiday over-eating may have left you feeling a little worse for wear.
Gut health is by far the best way to nudge off a few excess kilos gained during the over-indulgent festive season.

If you haven’t already tried it or seen it in stores, my Heal Your Gut powder, which is all natural and made from naturopathic grade, organic and fresh water diatomaceous earth is the perfect antidote to seasonal weight creep and will get you back on track.

This all natural food based ingredient will give your gut that little daily spring clean it craves, particularly after a long-winded holiday eating splurge that seems to run for the best part of the new year and beyond.

It’s not just our cupboards that need a bit of tender loving care, our hard working colons do too!

Diatomaceous earth is the superfine fossilised remains of fresh water diatoms, a natural type of hard-shelled algae. For hundreds of years our ancient ancestors recognised algae as an incredible food source, holding magnificent health benefits. But for some reason it has taken us a long time to reap those benefits.

The wonders of algae lie in the silicon makeup. Silica provides an abundance of health benefits, from boosting hair growth, to easing skin problems such as redness, acne and eczema. Slowing down the degenerative break down of connective tissue, to increasing calcium deposits to bone.

Getting sufficient amounts of this super mineral is essential. However, it’s not all in the mineral composition, diatomaceous earth holds many other benefits as it’s anti-bacterial, anti-viral, anti-fungal and anti-any nasties in the form of parasites. It helps with increased nutrient absorption, better immunity and improved waste removal.

Due to the texture of this natural sediment, it very gently exfoliates the intestine wall, sweeping away all impurities that sit in your gut.

These unwanted toxins block our bodies from absorbing vital nutrients, and therefore decreasing our general well being, energy and happiness.

Once the junk has been removed from your trunk, you will nourish and glow from the inside out.  It’s easy to take and tasteless too without any additives. It’s also suitable for vegans and is gluten and GMO free.

Simply add a tablespoon to water, juice or a smoothie twice a day before meals and scroll down for my favourite gut soothing smoothie.

Serves one
• 1 frozen banana
• ½ cup frozen mango chunks
• 1 cup almond milk or milk of choice
• 1 tsp Heal Your Gut powder
• 1/2 teaspoon vanilla powder or extract
• Pinch cinnamon
• Pinch nutmeg
• 1/2 tsp turmeric
• Place all ingredients to a high-speed blender and whizz until combined and smooth
• Pour into a tall glass
You can also spice up your mornings by adding this fine powder to one of the gut healing drinks from my Heal Your Gut recipe book.

By Lee Holmes

Brown rice nori

By Lee Holmes

Makes 4

Vatas will enjoy this vegetarian version of a typical sushi roll, usually made with sweet white rice that can raise your blood sugar levels too quickly due to its sky-high glycemic index. By using wholesome brown rice and tempeh, you can create delicious rolls that will make your insides and outsides happy. The fibre in brown rice and fermented soy (tempeh and tamari) will ensure these rolls are easier for vatas’ delicate bellies to digest. Bite down on raw cucumber and carrot to add crunchiness, and relish the creaminess of tahini and avocado, which add a dose of good fats to complete a balanced meal that’s as fun to make as it is to eat.

60 ml (2 fl oz/¼ cup) wheat-free tamari, plus extra to serve
1 teaspoon lime juice
1 teaspoon ghee, melted
65 g (2¼ oz/¼ cup) tahini
100 g (3½ oz) tempeh
370 g (13 oz/2 cups) cooked brown rice
4 nori sheets
½ avocado, sliced
1 Lebanese (short) cucumber, sliced lengthways into eighths
½ carrot, sliced lengthways into thin sticks
2 spring onions (scallions), halved lengthways

Combine the tamari, lime juice, ghee and 1 tablespoon of the tahini in a bowl. Add the tempeh and set aside to marinate for 10 minutes.

Remove the tempeh from the marinade. Heat a dry frying pan over medium heat and pan-fry the tempeh until golden 
on both sides. Cut into thin strips and set aside.

Combine the rice with the remaining tahini. Lay a nori sheet shiny side down on the bench. With wet hands, take a quarter of the rice and press it evenly over the nori sheet, leaving a 3 cm (1¼ inch) border along the top side. Lay a quarter of the tempeh, avocado, cucumber, carrot and spring onion on top. Moisten the top edge of the nori with water and roll up securely. Repeat with the remaining ingredients.

Cut each roll into four pieces and serve with extra tamari.

White Fish Soup with Saffron

By Lee Holmes

Bring on the convenience of a one-pot meal that just simmers on the stove-top, ready to be enjoyed to it’s full potential.

White Fish Soup with Saffron is a beautifully light and flavourful soup that’s injected with dose of precious saffron, a spice so colourful and aromatic that it changes the profile of a meal and acts as a versatile medicine that has been used since ancient times.

The foundation of this dish is fish stock, a nourishing and gut friendly building block rich in essential minerals: iodine, calcium, magnesium, phosphorous, silicon and sulphur that will provide your body with an variety of nutrients and omega-3 fatty acids to boost the gut and the brain.

Fish stock also contains gelatin, to help seal the digestive tract and improve the digestion of food through its hydrophilic (liquid attracting) properties.
If you prefer, you can use vegetable stock in this recipe but don’t be afraid of fish stock, really it’s affordable and ever so simple to make. There’s no roasting or long simmer times, all you need is half an hour in the kitchen to get a good result.
To make fish stock, start by washing fish trimmings and bones, and then place them into a waiting stockpot. (Remove the gills as they can make the stock bitter). Some people like to include the heads because of their thyroid boosting properties and you can pop in the skin as well, but it really is personal preference at this point.

Adding some roughly chopped fennel, leeks, and carrots, will enhance the taste and give the stock an extra boost of nutrients. Grab a large handful of parsley throw that in and some water to cover, then bring to the boil and simmer it with the lid on for about half an hour, scraping off any scum that may rise to the surface.

Once the time has elapsed, the stock is then removed from the heat and strained, discarding fish trimmings and the vegetables. Most types of fish can be used for stock, but try to avoid salmon, red mullet and oily fish.

All recipes aim to achieve a balanced and neutralised gut, efficient digestion, maximised nutrient absorption, and therefore improve your general wellbeing.

White Fish Soup with Saffron
Serves 4
• 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
• 1 onion, chopped
• 2 celery stalks, chopped
• 1 leek, white part only, chopped
• 1 medium fennel bulb, fronds reserved, bulb chopped
• 3 garlic cloves, crushed
• juice of 1/2 lemon
• grated zest of 1 lemon
• 400 g (14 oz) tin additive-free chopped tomatoes
• 1 small red capsicum (pepper), seeded and chopped
• pinch of saffron threads
• 2 thyme sprigs
• 1 litre (35 fl oz/4 cups) fish stock or vegetable stock
• pinch of cayenne pepper
• 400 g (14 oz) boneless white fish fillets, whole or roughly chopped
• 1/2 teaspoon Celtic sea salt
• 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast flakes (optional)
• pinch of freshly cracked black pepper
• Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat.
• Add the onion, celery, leek, chopped fennel and garlic, and cook for 3–4 minutes or until soft.
• Add the lemon juice and zest, tomato, capsicum, saffron and thyme, reserving a little of the thyme to use as a garnish. Cook for 2–3 minutes, then add the stock and cayenne pepper. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 25–30 minutes. Add the fish and simmer for a further 10 minutes.
• Remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly, then purée in a food processor or blender until smooth. (Alternatively, purée the soup before adding the fish.)
• Add the salt to taste, reheat if necessary, then serve sprinkled with yeast flakes, if using, and black pepper, and garnished with reserved fennel fronds and thyme.

Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Baby Carrots

Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Baby Carrots
500 grams Brussels Sprouts
2 bunches baby carrots
Olive Oil
Fresh herbs, thyme is good
Sea salt and pepper

Trim the Brussels sprouts and drop into a large pot of salted boiling water for 3 minutes.
Remove and refresh in cold water
Pre-heat oven to 220C, peel or scrub the carrots.
Heat the olive oil and butter in a roasting pan, drop in the carrots to brown a little then place into the oven.
After 6 or 8 minutes, drop in the drained brussel sprouts, giving the veggies a toss.
Cook a further 5 or 6 minutes until the carrots are browned and tender. Remove from the oven and season, sprinkle with the fresh thyme, and serve with grilled chicken or red meat.