healthy

Only Kindness Makes Sense. Everything Else Is Excruciating.

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Breakfast goals: freshly baked croissants and walnut sourdough from BELLBIRD Baked Goods.  Disclaimer: although the watermelon was delicious, it was TEN bucks! Holy moly, eating food-bloggy ain’t pocket-friendly! Who else is counting down to Summer?
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Godley Head desu. Processed with VSCO with c3 preset
We were freezing, our smiles are fake.
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Last week I opened the pantry in the morning to grab muesli and happened to spot this cutie pootie thing! A boiled egg holder (yes, such a thing exists) that I spontaneously bought (precisely for it’s cutie pootie aspect) during my Japan days. Take.Me.Back.Processed with VSCO with c3 preset
Pimping out my work locker *love heart eyes*Processed with VSCO with c3 presetVegan and gluten-free dessert from The Lotus Heart *more love heart eyes*

Superfood Blackcurrant Smoothie Bowls

Talented family all around! Forget Acai bowls, this morning mama and I had delicious and absolutely nutritious superfood ViBERi (my auntie and uncle’s business) smoothies in cosy and beautiful Miami Valley Pottery (Soroosh’s cousin’s business) bowls xxProcessed with VSCO with c3 presetProcessed with VSCO with c3 presetProcessed with VSCO with c3 preset
Superfood Blackcurrant Smoothie Bowls
Serves two 

2 frozen bananas (using frozen bananas gives them a delicious ice-cream consistency)
3/4 cup milk of choice (I used unsweetened almond milk)
1/4 unsweetened yoghurt of choice (I used coconut yoghurt)
2 heaped tsp ViBERi freeze-dried blackcurrant powder

Whizz together in a high-powered blender (might take a bit of patience if using frozen bananas) then top with favourites (I used Ceres Organics Paleo Breakfast Mix) xx

It Looked Like The World Was Covered In A Cobbler Crust Of Brown Sugar And Cinnamon.

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2 ripe bananas
2 free-range eggs
1 cup almond meal
1/2 cup buckwheat flour
1/2 cup fresh blueberries
1/4 cup broken walnut pieces
pinch of cinnamon
1/2 tsp baking soda

Preheat oven to 180oC
In a large bowl, mix together all ingredients, pour into a silicon muffin tray, and top with some sesame seeds (for extra pizzaz). Bake until nice and golden and an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Makes 12 littlies. (Mom’s recipe BTW)
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What is it they say? Choose a job you love and you will never have to work a day in your life! HASHTAGblessed. Image (10)
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Playing pizza pretend at work.Image-1 (1)
For my next DYKWTI (Do You Know What This Is?) Savvy Tokyo article: kinako smoothie bowl – stay tuned! Image-2
Every guy thinks that every girl’s dream is to find a perfect man…WRONG, every girl’s dream is to eat anything she wants without getting fat!
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Guess what? Mandy says vegan waffles coming to Utopia Hot (Christchurch Farmer’s Market) very soon! Though these regular organic waffles were the shizz as well – served with Black Boy peach and blueberry compote, whipped coconut cream, caramelized walnuts, and melted dark chocolate – yes, I may or may not have requested everythang.
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Mona Vale is so beautiful. Thanks to my amazing brother-in-law for suggesting we walk it after the market. So lovely. So autumnal. So romantic. Image-6Image-3
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Speaking of Autumnal, here’s a super easy seasonal activity for your little munchkins: collect leaves, decorate! Image-1 (4)
And for Mother’s Day? An easy peasy tea-riffic (see what I did there?) 3D tea cup card made from a corner piece of a round egg carton and a curled pipe-cleaner. Image (7)
“A mother is the truest friend we have, when trials heavy and sudden fall upon us; when adversity takes the place of prosperity; when friends desert us; when trouble thickens around us, still will she cling to us, and endeavor by her kind precepts and counsels to dissipate the clouds of darkness, and cause peace to return to our hearts.” (Washington Irving)

Use The Power Of Intent To Clear A Path For Yourself

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As you may have heard, NZ received a lot of rain as of late. My prayers and sympathetic thoughts to those whose lives were greatly affected. Fortunately for us, our household just further glimmered. My parents and I spent even more time than usual together and I made “healthy” French toast for them. It’s actually very simple! For the three of us, I soaked 6 pieces of gluten free bread in a beaten mixture of 3 free-ranges, 1 cup of unsweetened almond milk, and 1 tsp cinnamon, then fried them in a hot pan with a little coconut oil until nice and golden. Last, I topped them with fresh fruit, honey, and plain yoghurt (not pictured). Image-1 (1)
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Never enough herbs in a Persian woman’s garden.
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Can you see what I see? On the last day of term, we made an Easter egg hunt for the little munchkins. Image (12)Image (13)
And… one for the big munchkin who really shouldn’t be having one in the first place.
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Another day, another green smoothie. These are also super easy to make. Simply blitz together in a high-powered blender: 2 frozen bananas (frozen bananas make your smoothies colder and creamier), 2 large handfuls of spinach (stalks and all), a big dollop of natural yoghurt, 1 cup unsweetened almond milk, and 1 tsp cinnamon. Top with favourites.
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I found out the hard way that jandals were not appropriate wear for yesterday’s Saturday Farmers’ Market. As I walked into a muddy puddle and splashed gunk all over myself, I overheard a father telling his little girl not to worry about getting dirty as she, in her pink gumboots, was appropriately dressed – I couldn’t help but take his comment as a personal dig to my existence.
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Giant delicious organic apple from the organic apple people at the Saturday Farmers’ Market (sorry I don’t know your company name). Image (8)
For as long as I have been coming to Sumner, I have been in mad-love with that itsy bitsy yellow house bursting with character. I sent this photo to Soroosh expressing this, and he replies: “I like the modern house next to it.” BLAH Image (1)
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Almost finished writing back to my Japanese students ^.^
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Mojgan joon, I wish you were here to accompany me on my walking adventures. Alas, I think of you always – the coming Autumn leaves further remind me of my unforgettable time with your beautiful family in beautiful Nashville. Image-1 (6)
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Last but not least, a picture sent to me by my dear mentor and friend. AKA Soroosh’s father. Guys, I am so impressed and inspired by him. Rick is a man of so many talents. But most of all, he is joyful, he is understanding, and he is compassionate. Also, big-ups for food-presentation and food-photography, and your recently written article HERE.

Making Great Art Is About Being More Of Who You Are

Sorry my last post was a whiny one. I’m quite good at that, whining. So much so that my primary school teacher, my Payne, told me, as I whinged my way through the wet mud on school camp, that he’d never met someone so complaining and impatient before. Though in my defence (and his) the same teacher gave me the class diligence award at the end of the year. So, I am complaining but I am persistent, too. Yes, a woman of many qualities. Alas, don’t you think I have good reason to complain? Harry seems to think so. You know, Harry from When Harry Met Sally? He takes the words straight out of my mouth when in his epic declaration of love he says: “when you realise you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible.”Image-2
So, I keep busy…Image (1)
I bakeImage-1
I shop.
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I work.
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And I work some more (watching Japanese movies for my next Savvy article).
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And I reassure myself that this too shall pass. For almost one year has passed since mummy and daddy came to visit me in rural Japan where my life was so very different to what it is today.
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Trying their first ramen. image79
Enjoying sakura (cherry blossom) season. Aimage123
And watching their daughter imitate Mimasaka’s best sushi chef.
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Updates

Figuring out that being an adult and living the “adult life” isn’t easy. Or rather, when we reach a certain age, we tend to begin complicating things. Life is simple. Why do I allow myself to become so attached to society’s expectations of me? In the short space of a little over a month that I’ve returned, I’ve tried to do everything including: returning/creating a normal/non-traveller lifestyle, finding my dream job and planning for my future. Okay, so our visitors and our planned family-holiday in the mix were out of my say but everything else, I have personally cultivated. Don’t get me wrong, productivity is great but in the thick Persian accent of my mother, “mo-de-ration iz im-portant.” Life is percious and life is fleeting but like my brother-in-law once said, life is actually really long, too (if we’re lucky). Which means, I don’t have to find my dream job before a certain age. I don’t have to justify my life decisions. And making memories with my family and friends, looking after my well-being  and enjoying the day to day is what comes first. Currently trying to calm the frick down and do what makes my heart sing. Some of which include, baking delicious muffins, writing for Savvy Tokyo (new article HERE), and pursuing my “book a week” challenge.
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image-12 free range eggs
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp runny honey
1 tbsp sugar-free Barker’s apricot jam
1 cup almond flour
1 cup self rising flour
1 tsp cinnamon
1/3 cup unsweetened yoghurt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
Handful of raw walnuts, chopped small
Some dark chocolate, chopped small
4-5 small apricots, chopped small

Mix everything together, pour slightly thick mixture into a greased muffin tray and bake at 160 degrees until fork comes out clean (about 25 min)image-1
Book two, week two!

Healthy Recipes And Precious Times Spent With My Momma

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Spent my day off hangin’ with my momma. I made her breakfast, took her grocery shopping, bought her cold-pressed juice and prepared her lunch. Can you tell how much I love her? I love my daddy too he’s just super annoying to hang out with that’s all (haha). By the way, he wanted me to mention him in my blog “tell them his name is Sirous,” he said. Crazy. Anyways, here are the recipes for you. I miss you all so much by the way! Auntie Pouneh, Laura, Randy, Jose and family, Hiromi and Olivier, Akiko and Lifa, Mr. and Mrs. MacLean, Dave and Maria etc. etc. all of ya!

Turmeric, Zucchini and Carrot Muffins (vegetarian, can be gf, dairy-free, refined-sugar-free):
2 free range eggs
2 tbsp olive oil
full 1/2 cup of grated carrots
full 1/2 cup of grated zucchini
1 cup almond flour
1/3 self-rising flour (use a GF alternative here to make muffins GF)
1/4 cup oat milk
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
handful of raisins
big pinch of salt, pepper, red chilli powder and turmeric (little more turmeric won’t hurt)
small bunch of torn italian parsley

Mix everything together, pour into a greased muffin tin, bake at 160 degrees for 20 or so minutes. Muffins ready when golden on top and fork comes out clean. Let cool before nomnom.
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Beetroot Energy Salad (raw, vegan, gf, hipster):
2 large beetroot, peeled and grated
handful of raw pumpkin seeds
handful of raw sunflower seeds
juice of half a lemon
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp olive oil
pinch of salt and pepper

Mix together and enjoy – das it!

Let’s Love Loud

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Cheese testers galore in Geraldine. image-3
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Isn’t my daddy hilarious? This one’s for you, Lifa!
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Central otago peaches and cherries, banana, momma’s homemade muesli and unsweetened organic oat milk.
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Guys, this is Queenstown in NZ and it is one of my absolute favourites. True, it’s super touristy today but it’s so so lovely always. Thank you Delaram and Andy for organising this trip. image-1
My 2017 resolution (gosh can’t even write “2017” without thinking “wtf”) is to read a book a week. Apparently that’s 52 books in total. Today i finished A Crack In Forever by Jeannie Brewer, a love story: honestly sad, truly sweet, overly sexy and incredibly hard to forget.image-5
What A Crack In Forever taught me during its last tear-gushing chapters is to seriously appreciate each and every moment for a loved one can be taken away at any moment.

Redefine Yourself

It has officially been one month since I’ve returned from my around-the-world adventures and I.am.missing.it. Lucky for me, every new day is an adventure. If we let it.
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In addition to the yearly skinny-me resolutions, I’ve decided to read a book a week this year. Starting with the little bit sexy, Crack in Forever.
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Got me a full-time job at NZ’s best cafe.
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Nothin’ beats mama’s homemade muesli. Recipe HERE.
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Somewhere between Lake Tekapo and Queenstown.
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Probably the most touristy NZ location eva.
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Central otago cherries, organic kiwifruit and homemade muesli for dinner. Chur!

Back To Food Blogging

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Persian breakfasting at the Persian household with organic buckwheat bread.
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I’m so happy I got to go to the Riccarton Farmers’ Market this Saturday. I love farmers’ markets and I especially love the one at Riccarton. The river.. the ducks.. the roses.. the smells! My oh my, am I in heaven! You know, the thing I keep telling everyone and myself, is just how much more I appreciate NZ after being away. There’s no place like it. Nil.
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Posh porridge with my best friend.image-2-png-19
Tis officially stone-fruit season in NZ!image-1-png-21
Look Japanese friends! Here we have my gorgeous friend Ayumi serving me vegetarian Gyoza! Yes, Vegetarian! Mmmm!
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Yum Yum Gyoza!
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After 2 years.. healthy Sunday pancakes at the Kazemis! Recipe HERE.
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My mama made me my favorite: vegan Persian dolmeh and boiled broad beans with salt and lemon. Dolmeh recipe HERE.
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Last but not least, I’m back at work at Cafe Valentino again and it’s looking like a crazy busy Christmas season. In the mean time, I am actively looking for a writing career.