| Posted by My Super Nanny
Meet Alice Laidlaw...
She's a Naturopath, mama to gorgeous Grace, and founder of Happy Ingredients.
Whoever said healthy is boring hasn't come across Happy Ingredients.
Her recipes featured on her Instagram are simple, highly nutritious and often suitable for the whole fam...bonus!
How did Happy Ingredients evolve?
After studying Naturopathy and having such an interest in Nutrition and a healthy way of life, I decided to start an Instagram where I could share healthy recipes and ideas with people. Once my daughter was born and started eating solids, it was also nice to start sharing the foods that I feed her and why they are nutritious in the hope to give other parents nutritious food ideas for their children.
I found that it was also a great platform to get inspiration from other health accounts.
How do you manage your time studying, blogging and being a mum?
To be honest the instagramming has taken a bit of a back seat since becoming a mum as my daughter is always my first priority however, now that I have a bit more of a routine, I am finding it easier to fit in time to share my recipes or ideas on Instagram. I was studying my Masters which I have now put on hold due to limited time but hope to resume it again in the future!
What is your favourite, nutrient rich food?
My favourite nutrient rich food would have to be eggs! They contain fats, and a nutrient, choline, which is important for brain health. They also contain many other vitamins and minerals such as zinc which is important for many processes in the body and plays a large role in immunity. Lastly, eggs are a great source of protein and they are easy to cook!
Tip: If the eggs are free range (feeding on grass) and organic then they will contain higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids!
What is Grace’s favourite food that you cook her?
Although this isn’t a cooked food, she absolutely loves sauerkraut! Which I am very happy about as it contains those good probiotics!
A food that I cook that she loves is spaghetti bolognaise. She is always likely to eat this and I can get lots of chopped or blended vegetables into this recipe. The other good addition is the bone broth that I cook the sauce in, this is great for gut health and contains many minerals that our body can easily absorb. I serve it with brown rice noodles and she will usually eat the whole thing!
What is your top tip for parents who have kid’s that would rather run a mile than eat broccoli?
I have found that if you keep offering a particular food, eventually they will try it and eat it. With lots of foods I have introduced to Gracie I have usually just kept adding it to her plate of food and most of the time she ends up trying it and liking it, this can sometimes take multiple attempts. It is said that you should offer your child a particular food up to 10 times before they might start to like it. The other very important thing is to not force your children to eat a certain food as this will actually make them dislike it even more. In addition to this, If your children see you eating a particular food they are more inclined to eat it themselves, give them some off your plate and see what happens!
Best place for a healthy breakie in Melbourne?
We generally have breakfast at home these days but if I was to think of healthy breakfast places in Melbourne, the first place that comes to mind is Patch Café in Richmond.
Briefly describe your day on a plate...
In the mornings, I generally have a smoothie as I find this a quick and easy way to get lots of nutrients in- Gracie loves to share this with me as her second breakfast. Now that it is getting colder I always add cinnamon/ginger to my smoothies to warm them up. Also with the cooler weather I try to alternate between hot porridge, eggs and smoothies.
I love to have snacks in the house that are suitable for both me and Gracie- these will often consist of bliss balls, home-made muesli bars, mini muffins, hummus and veggie sticks or left over healthy pancakes. I usually try to make a snack at the start of the week that will last the whole week. When I have snacks pre-prepared it makes the day run much smoother as we can just grab a snack and head to the park or head out.
For lunch, I usually try to have left overs from the night before because that way I can try to ensure that I am getting a healthy and substantial meal that is already cooked and thus quick to prepare when Gracie is needing my attention.
If I don’t have left overs I would have brown rice, tinned salmon/sardines, cucumber, tomato with a squeeze of lemon and salt and pepper or rice cakes with avocado, eggs, sauerkraut, drizzled with lemon and salt and pepper- anything quick, easy and also nutritious is always good!
Again, in the afternoon I will snack- I would often have another pre-prepared snack or a piece of fruit. For the most part all of our meals/snacks are home made. This way I can ensure they don’t contain any nasties and are nutrient dense!
Dinner at the moment is often a slow cooked meal. This is great because then it helps to avoid the night time rush of bath, dinner, clean up and getting ready for bed as dinner is already cooked! I often try to make a slow cooker meal that will last 2 nights to make life easier. The slow cooker meals are either chicken or red meat and we also try to have 2-3 vegetarian meals each week.
If you could fly anywhere in the world tomorrow, where would it be?
I would love to go to Hawaii! I have never been. A bit of warm weather and relaxation would be great. I have also heard that it is quite child friendly which is a bonus.
(Makes approx. 15-18 bites)
1 cup of organic dried apricots, soaked for 1 hour
1 cup of dessicated coconut, plus more for rolling the bites in
½ cup flaxmeal
2 tsp vanilla paste
¼ cup of carob
Blend all ingredients together and then roll into balls
Coat the balls in desiccated coconut and refrigerate for an hour before consuming
Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. Alternatively, store in freezer for up to a month in zip lock bags, take out each morning for school lunches/snacks.
The apricots in this recipe contain iron (ensure they are organic to avoid sulphates). These bites also contain essential fatty acids (flaxmeal) important for brain and nervous system health and development.
Carob is caffeine free and so a great alternative to cacao for children!