Cara-Lisa Sham, 29, is the Jo’burg powerhouse behind Caralishious, a wellness and lifestyle blog that covers everything from healthy recipes to mindfulness exercises and yoga. In fact, Caralishious has picked up so much traction that Sham’s been tapped by Adidas for its latest campaign. So we asked this health guru to share her recipes for guilt-free food. Here, your full meal plan:
BREAKFAST: protein pancakes with coconut-cashew cream
Prep time: 20 minutes
For the coconut-cashew cream
- 165ml can coconut milk
- 1 cup activated cashews (activated means soaked in water overnight)
- 4t sweetener of your choice
- 1t vanilla extract
Blend all ingredients until a smooth, creamy mixture is formed. Refrigerate until pancakes are cooked and ready to eat.
For the pancakes
- 3 egg whites
- 1 egg yolk
- 3T almond flour
- 1 heaped scoop of brown rice protein powder
- ½t baking powder
- 1t vanilla extract
- 2t stevia (or sweetener of your choice)
- 1T coconut oil – for frying
- Pinch of salt
Place egg whites and egg yolk in a large mixing bowl and whisk for one minute. Add remaining ingredients (with exception of coconut oil) and whisk for a further three minutes or until the mixture becomes lighter in colour.
Place coconut oil in large frying pan on maximum heat and allow to melt. Using a soup ladle, spoon crumpet-sized amounts of the mixture at a time into frying pan. Allow to fry until you start seeing air bubbles form on the top on the pancake (approximately 10 to 15 seconds after pouring the mixture into the pan). Once you begin to see these air bubbles, flip the pancake over and cook on the other side for 10 seconds.
Place cooked pancake onto large plate, and repeat until all the batter is used and all pancakes have been cooked.
Remove coconut-cashew cream from fridge. Create a pancake stack by placing pancakes on top of one another on a single plate. Top with a generous amount of the cream. If you want to, top with sliced strawberries, cacao nibs and maple syrup.
LUNCH: pesto rice with toasted sunflower seeds
Prep time: 40 minutes
For the rice
- 3 cups water
- 1T extra-virgin olive oil
- 1t salt
- 1 cup brown basmati rice
- 1 cup chopped tomatoes
- ½ avocado, cubed
- ½ cup sunflower seeds (dry toasted)
- ¼ cup pumpkin seeds (dry toasted)
- 1 cup fresh rocket
Place water into a medium-sized pot. Add olive oil and salt and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and add brown basmati rice. Allow to simmer for 20 to 30 minutes until rice is cooked through and soft. Once cooked, remove from heat and allow to cool.
For the pesto
- 2 cups fresh basil
- ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- ½ cup pine nuts
- ½t salt
- ¼t xylitol
- 1T white balsamic vinegar
- 1t crushed garlic
- 1T freshly squeezed lemon juice
Add all pesto ingredients to a food processor and blend thoroughly until all ingredients are well combined and a thick pesto forms. For a lighter consistency, add more olive oil.
Add pesto to rice and stir well. Place mixture on medium heat and allow to heat up. Now add tomatoes, and stir well on low heat. Allow to simmer gently for five minutes, stirring continuously. If required, add a little more olive oil here. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.
Place pesto rice into large serving dish, top with chopped avo, toasted pumpkin seeds, toasted sunflower seeds and fresh rocket.
DINNER: baked stuffed aubergines with creamy pesto mayo (vegan friendly)
Prep time: 30 minutes
For the aubergines, stuffing and rice
- 4 large aubergines (eggplant)
- 1T olive oil
- 500ml water
- 1 cup (250ml) brown basmati rice
- Pinch of salt
- 1T coconut oil
- ½ onion, finely chopped
- 1t crushed garlic
- 1 large yellow pepper, chopped
- 1 large red pepper, chopped
- 5 medium baby marrows, cut into rounds
- ½t dried oregano
- ½t dried thyme
- Salt to taste
Preheat oven to 180⁰C. Lightly grease large baking tray with olive oil spray. Cut aubergines in half. Using a sharp chopping knife, cut a little of the middle of each aubergine out to create space for the stuffing.
Lay aubergines out on baking tray and brush with a little olive oil. Place in oven and bake for 15 minutes until just about cooked. (Be sure to watch closely to prevent overcooking.) Remove from heat.
While aubergines are baking, bring water to the boil. Add rice, salt and olive oil. Reduce to medium heat and allow rice to cook for 20 minutes until all water has evaporated and the rice is soft. Remove from heat, and set aside.
In a large frying pan, allow coconut oil to heat up. Add onions and garlic and allow to fry until slightly brown. Reduce to medium heat and add chopped peppers, baby marrows, oregano, thyme and salt. Fry for 10 minutes until vegetables are cooked completely; remove from heat.
Add cooked vegetables to the prepared rice and stir thoroughly. Place back on low heat and stir continuously for one minute; remove from heat.
For the pesto mayo
- 1 punnet fresh basil leaves, destalked
- ½ punnet fresh mint leaves, destalked
- ½ cup olive oil
- ¼ cup pumpkin seeds
- ¼ cup cashews
- 2T tahini paste
- ¼t salt
- ½t xylitol
- ½T white balsamic vinegar
Add all ingredients to blender/food processor and blend thoroughly for 1 minute until all ingredients are combined, and thick creamy pesto mayo forms. You may need to blend a little further depending on the strength of your blender/food processor.
Place generous spoonfuls of vegetable-rice stuffing into the hollow created in each aubergine. Place back into oven and allow to cook for another 10 minutes; remove from heat.
Top the stuffed aubergines with generous amounts of pesto mayo.