Review: Cross Eatery (Sydney CBD)

The healthy eating scene in the CBD is getting bigger and better. One of the newest additions is Cross Eatery, whose early reviews got my attention thanks to the words “Feather & Bone” and “kombucha on tap”. To find this place, look for the sign in the photo below.

Cross Eatery

Menu

Salads, sandwiches

I heard the coffee was good but was not my type. Not bad, just not as smooth for my South American palate.

Long black

Long black ($3.50)

As I mentioned before, they also offer kombucha on tap. Hopefully more cafes will follow this trend.

Kombucha on tap

Kombucha on tap

These guys make one of the best paleo-friendly breakfasts in the area: a Cross breakfast salad bowl with raw sprout, kale salad, probiotic cabbage, activated nuts and poached egg. I added a (generous) serve of Feather & Bone pastured raised ham and called it a meal.

Cross breakfast salad bowl, Feather & Bone ham

Cross breakfast salad bowl ($12), Feather & Bone ham ($6)

Feather & Bone pasture raised ham ($6.00)

For lunch, they have a few specials and a roast meat (I missed out on the lamb and the pork belly) with two salads. The day I visited, they had pulled beef brisket, made with Feather & Bone grass-fed beef and serve with house made pickles, which was very tasty. The serve was a bit small, FYI. I had it with broccolini, chilli, garlic & mustard dressing and burnt Brussel sprouts, citrus, walnut, and witlof.

Pulled beef brisket and two salads

Pulled beef brisket and two salads ($17.50)

This same meal can be ordered in a box to take away as in the photo below. They also do a box with two salads plus F&B ham.

Pulled beef brisket and two salads, takeaway

Pulled beef brisket and two salads, takeaway ($16)

Cross Eatery
155 Clarence Street
Sydney NSW 2000
(02) 9279 4280
info@crosseatery.com.au
www.crosseatery.com.au

Product review: Kehoe’s Kitchen sauerkraut

Now that fermented foods are in fashion (yay!) there are quite a few new interesting brands popping up. This bright pink jar in my local health food shop caught my eye, especially when I read the ingredients list: red cabbage, apple, garlic & fennel seeds.

Kehoe's sauerkraut

I really liked this sauerkraut, I didn’t find the garlic too strong at all. The only downside, as with all good fermented products, would be the price (I paid $19.95).

Kehoe's sauerkraut

Kehoe’s Kitchen
kehoeskitchen.com

Magical Multipurpose Paleo and Primal Dough discount code

Last year our Italian friend and chef by trade Ferdinando and I made gluten-free pizzas at home. I have had a few GF pizzas here and there and they all have been crap. Not only the toppings are normally low quality but the dough does not resemble real dough by any length of imagination. The pizzas we made not only pleased me (which is a hard task) but our non-paleo friends as well, including chef Manzo himself.

Ferdinando was in charge of the toppings and I made the dough with Tara Grant’s (aka PrimalGirl) recipe. I used cassava as ingredient (the recipe calls for any mashed root vegetable) and it turned out perfect. Below are some pics of the results.

ferdinando_pizza

Chef Manzo at work

pizza2

Pizza with ham, mushrooms, olives, capsicum

pizza1

Pizza with rocket, tomato, mushrooms, olives, capsicum, prosciutto, shaved Parmesan

Tara has been kind enough to offer you a discount code for buying her Magical Multipurpose Paleo and Primal Dough Recipe, with which you can make rolls, hamburger buns, pizza crust, crackers and tortillas. Just enter the code LATERALEATING001 at PrimalGirl.com or this link for a 15% discount.

Recipe: Smoked pork, mushroom, ginger & cabbage soup

This recipe is more a guide than an actual recipe. Yes, this is an excuse to be inaccurate with the quantities. The results will be great, give or take reasonable amounts of any ingredient. You can also use pre-made broth if you can find a good one.

Smoked pork, mushroom, ginger & cabbage soup
Yield: 6-8 servings

Smoked pork soup

Ingredients

Broth

  • about 1 kg smoked pork (bacon) bones
  • enough water to cover the bones

Soup

  • about 3 litres smoked pork broth
  • about 300 grams mixed mushrooms (I used oyster, shiitake and black)
  • 5-cm piece ginger
  • 1/4 savoy cabbage
  • about 2 tbsp tamari

To serve, optional

  • boiled eggs *

Directions

Broth

  1. Place bones in slow cooker, cover with water and cook in low 12-24 hours. Enjoy the smell in the process.
  2. Drain the broth. If your bones are meaty enough, separate the meat and keep for serving in the soup.

Soup

  1. Slice ginger, mushrooms and cabbage.
  2. Bring broth to a boil, add ginger, cook for 10 minutes.
  3. Add mushrooms, cook for another 10 minutes.
  4. Add cabbage, cook for another 10 minutes.
  5. Turn off heat, add tamari and adjust seasoning.

To serve

  1. Serve with boiled eggs and/or reserved meat.

* I opted for soft-boiled eggs and was too impatient to wait for them to cool down before peeling, hence the terrible presentation in the photo.

Review: Henley’s Wholefoods (Alexandria)

A while ago I reviewed Henley’s Wholefoods Bondi Junction without knowing or expecting that they would later open another shop walking distance from where we now live.

Henley's Wholefoods Alexandria

For those who don’t know, this is a paleo-friendly cafe that focus on good quality ingredients. Coffee, which you can have with almond milk, is great, and they also have a good range of Mayde teas and Botannica cold-pressed juices available.

Coffee gear

Teas, sweeets, cold-pressed juices

I’ve enjoyed my usual long black and a cacao mint tea. I have also tried Alvaro’s smoothies: the Henley’s Special (double shot of espresso, whey blend protein, CocoWhip, almond milk, ice) and the Good Green Stuff (Nu Zest good green stuff, banana, avocado, mint, coconut water, ice), both great.

Long black

Long black ($3.50)

Henley's Special smoothie, cacao mint tea

Henley's Special smoothie ($9), cacao mint tea ($5)

Good Green Stuff smoothie

Good Green Stuff smoothie ($9)

On the food front, I have a few favourites. The grass-fed beef burger (served bunless with caramelised onion, celeriac, red cabbage & parsley slaw, plus coconut flour dusted sweet potato wedges) is a paleo girl’s dream come true.

Grass fed beef burger

Grass fed beef burger ($19)

I love the salad plates, too, in which you can choose one or more of the available salads, and add some protein. We tried a mix of the autumn roast (roasted golden & red beets, kohlrabi, Brussel sprouts, Jerusalem artichokes, kale, ginger pickled carrots & toasted sprouted bread crumbs with a rocket & almond pesto) and purple power (Red cabbage, purple dutch carrots, beetroot, parsley, mint, pepitas & dried figs with horseradish & honey dressing) with miso ‘butter’ swordfish. Loved everything.

Autumn roast & purple power salads, miso "butter" swordfish

Autumn roast & purple power salads ($10), miso ‘butter’ swordfish ($8)

We have also tried the zucchini noodles (a.k.a. zoodles), served with preserved lemon, chillies, slow roasted heirloom tomatoes & garlic prawns. Great flavours, but a bit small for big appetites.

Zucchini noodles

Zucchini noodles ($19)

My least favourite of the dishes we have tried is the grain free pizza with roasted tomato sauce base, chorizo sausage, Spanish onions, tomato salsa & almond parmesan. Nice toppings, but the base needs some work. It tastes and feels like a giant cookie. We’ve made grain-free pizzas at home with Primal Girl’s recipe with way better results.

Grain free pizza

Grain free pizza ($16)

On our way out one day Alvaro stared at the muffin tray as I was paying the bill and we got one for the way home (12 minutes walking). These are delicious and truly healthy, as they have no gluten, dairy or refined sugar. They have a “rustic” texture, in a good way, and the right amount of sweetness for our palates. Will buy again.

Muffins

Muffins ($5.50)

Henley’s Wholefoods
38 Mitchell Road
alexandria@henleyswholefoods.com.au
henleyswholefoods.com.au

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Henley's Wholefoods on Urbanspoon

Product review: Build a Bar

In my constant search for paleo-friendly protein bars that I can have as a post-workout meal on the go, I stumbled across buildabar.com.au. This is the protein bar equivalent of a salad bar: you pick and choose whatever you want from their fairly big suite of ingredients. You choose a base, a protein, nuts, fruits, sweetener and seasonings, and specify how much of each you want (none or a little/some/regular/a lot). On the site there’s a nutritional information panel that refreshes as you tweak the contents of your bar.

When you’ve finished customising your bars you give them a name and wait for your box to arrive.

Build a Bar box

You can find the nutritional information inside the lid of the box.

Nutritional information

The wrapping is simple yet eye-catching, both front and back.

Front

Back

We found the texture of the bars a bit crumbly but the taste was awesome. The texture was way better when frozen. I would definitely order again, especially because I can decide what goes in. Of course, DIY is cheaper but not convenient when there’s not much spare time.

Build a Bar
+61 403 214 594
help@buildabar.com.au
www.buildabar.com.au

Product review: Woolworths slow cooked stocks

As much as I love making my own broth, when time is tight it’s nice to have backup options. Some of them can be quite expensive but fortunately Woolies has come up with a range of slow cooked stocks that are decent and budget-friendly.

The stocks come in 4 flavours: King Island beef, vegetable, free range chicken and white fish. All have very clean ingredients lists. All good for cooking and okay for drinking straight. Perfect for emergencies and/or lazy people.

Woolworths King Island beef stock, vegetable stock

Woolworths King Island beef stock nutrition information

Woolworths vegetable stock nutrition information

Woolworths free range chicken stock, white fish stock

Woolworths free range chicken stock nutrition information

Woolworths white fish stock nutrition information

Recipe: Menestrón

The Peruvians took the minestrone recipe, brought with the Italian migrants, and turned into it menestrón. The Peruvian version is heavier on the basil and almost never features tomatoes. It’s also big on the carbs, not only featuring beans (sometimes a few different kinds) but also pasta (often penne). I grew up loving my mum’s and aunty’s, and I crave it when it starts getting chilly in Sydney. I make my version with no beans nor pasta, and often use whatever veggies I have available. This time, for example, I couldn’t find turnip, so used radishes instead.

Peruvian osso buco
Yield: 4 servings
Adapted from this recipe

Menestrón

Ingredients

  • 1 onion, minced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tablespoons fat of choice (I used ghee)
  • 1 kg beef stew meat
  • 2 litres beef broth
  • 2 medium carrots, coarsely chopped
  • 1 turnip, coarsely chopped
  • 1 leek, sliced
  • 1 celery stick, coarsely chopped
  • 2 nicola potatoes, cubed
  • 1/2 cup green peas
  • 1 cup green beans, chopped
  • 4 tablespoons parsley
  • 2 tablespoons basil
  • salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Heat fat in a pot on low heat, cook garlic and onion for about 10 minutes, until very soft.
  2. Add meat, turn heat up and brown. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Add carrots, turnip, leek, celery, potatoes and broth. Cook for about 1 hour, until the potatoes are tender.
  4. Add peas and green beans. Cook for another 15 minutes, turn off heat.
  5. Blend parsley and basil with a bit of broth, add to the soup, adjust seasoning and serve.

Product review: Giving whey another go (part 1)

It’s been 5 years since I consumed whey protein regularly. When I went paleo I cut down most dairy and noticed a great improvement in my respiratory allergies. My approach to eating is to cycle foods as much as I can because there is good and bad in most stuff (with some exceptions that I prefer to stay away from). One of the things that I have incorporated lately for convenience and for the sake of variety is whey. I had done a few protein smoothies here and there and had noticed that quality made a huge difference in my reactions, particularly an itchy throat immediately after ingestion and a stuffy nose the day after.

I went on to investigate good quality whey protein powders that were grass-fed and crap-free, and that came in sample size. Below a review of the first two brands I tried.

The Naked Co. offers whey protein isolate in 3 flavours: organic cinnamon (whey protein isolate, organic cinnamon powder, organic stevia extract; 0.3g sugar per serve), organic vanilla (whey protein isolate, organic vanilla powder, organic stevia extract; 0.3g sugar per serve) and organic cacao (whey protein isolate, organic cacao powder, organic stevia extract; 0.2g sugar per serve). They are made in Australia, mix very well, taste amazing and are not super sweet.

The Naked Co. whey protein isolate

The Naked Co. whey protein isolate

Open To Play makes whey protein isolate from NZ, it’s gluten and lactose, GMO and preservative free, it’s sweetened with stevia and comes in chocolate (whey protein isolate, natural cocoa, organic stevia; 0.125g sugar per serve) and vanilla (whey protein isolate, natural vanilla, organic stevia; 0.125g sugar per serve) flavours. They mix well but take a bit more shaking than the other brand, taste great but I found them a bit too sweet for my taste.

I’ve been having a serve of protein powder in water post-workout 2-3 per week with no ill effects. I haven’t put on weight, nor fat. If anything, I think I’ve gotten a bit leaner, which was unexpected, but it could be a million things other than the whey.

Open to Play whey protein isolate

Open To Play whey protein isolate

I will try few more brands to decide which to buy if/when I need it. Keep your eyes peeled for the reviews.

The Naked Co.
thenakedco.com.au

Open To Play
www.opentoplay.com.au
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Product review: Hunted & Gathered Dry Wors

Hunted & Gathered, the makers of my favourite 100% paleo beef jerky have a new(ish) product: Dry Wors. This is their version of a traditional South African dried beef sausage.

Dry Wors

These are expensive ($20.50 per pack) but worth every cent. They are made with organic grass-fed beef, organic coriander seeds, organic black pepper, organic vinegar, organic coconut sugar and pink lake salt. They are chewy but less than jerky, and also fattier. Great shelf-stable snack to have handy.

Hunted and Gathered
huntedandgathered.com.au