Make takeaway the healthy way…today. A kid’s perspective.

My 8 year old daughter wrote a speech for school earlier this year that is worth sharing, titled “Fast Food should be healthy”. However my children decide to eat in future, I think their knowledge of food additives and the potential for adverse reactions will stand them in good stead! Reproduced here with permission, from a combination of her own research, her prior reading and a few reputable websites.

“While I was in the city, I counted no less than 18 fast food outlets. This included McDonalds, KFC, Boost Juice and Sushi takeaways. Out of these outlets, only three sold salad, fresh fruit, eggs or dairy. It was hard to tell if the fast food contained artificial colours, flavours, preservatives, additives or numbers such as 160b.

We should aim for less fat, salt and sugar in fast food. I think that all fast food should be healthy, fresh and additive and preservative free.

Did you know that milk bars came before fast food? Milk bars sold milkshakes, ‘spiders’ and hamburgers. The first fast food shop to open was Kentucky Fried Chicken, known as KFC. Now young Australians say their favourite fast food outlets are McDonalds, Subway, KFC, Hungry Jacks and Dominos Pizza. The amount that Australians spend on fast food is 15-30% of food-related spending.

If fast food was healthy, it would be better for our wellbeing. Right now, fast food might affect YOUR health! Buying fast food more often will affect your whole body. So we need more information about what’s in our fast food, for example, energy and additives. By eating less fast food less often, you will be able to think better in work or class and less people will be able to distract you. You will get good marks at school or finish the project at work.

But what if you were at before and after school care? Well, if fast food was healthy and Mum and Dad were working late, you could buy fast food and know it is still healthy. Make takeaway the healthy way!

If fast food was healthy, more people with intolerances (like me) could have more fast food. I’m intolerant to additives, preservatives, and numbers like 160b. If there was none of these in fast food, I could have so much more! Make takeaway the healthy way!

What if you could buy fast food more often and know it is still healthy and appetising? What if you could walk into McDonalds and see a menu with the following options: a fresh fruit slushy, choose your own ingredients to make a fruit salad, celery with cream cheese or peanut butter and optional poppy seeds, fresh hot soup or jacket potatoes with fresh topping?

Australians make 51 million visits to fast food outlets per month, mostly for takeaways. Let’s make takeaway the healthy way…today!”


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Spring meal plan

Week 1 Dinners: Failsafe ‘pad thai’; Lamb cutlets, veggie sticks and brown rice; Baked chicken, steamed green beans and rotmos (mixed mashed root veg); Lamb kebabs, with salad and tortillas ; Sausage rolls (beef or chicken) with leftover salad and rotmos; Baked chicken legs with rice and chopped salad e.g. beetroot (mod sals) or coleslawMeatloaf with roast potatoes and green salad

Week 1 Breakfasts, snacks and staples to make: Caramelised pear crumble layered dessert; Failsafe ‘sushi‘, boiled eggs, rice paper rolls, leftover tortillas with vegemite substitute

Week 2 Dinners:  Vegetable and bean soup (mod sals), pumpkin and lentil soup (mod sals) or any soup from The Failsafe Cookbook (freeze leftovers for an easy lunch or dinner later in the week); Whole steamed chicken with green salad and homemade foccacia; Leftover focaccia with chicken and Mighty Mayo; Veal strips, green beans and bok choy (mod sals) stir fried with rice; Lamb chops or lamb chop tagine with mashed potato and green beans; Crunchy chicken and green salad; Failsafe sausages and potato wedges with green salad

Week 2 Breakfasts, snacks and staples to make: Chick-chick burgers; vegetable bread rolls (mod sals); okonomiyaki (vegetable pancakes); Rice bubble biscuits;

Week 3 Dinners: Mountain Bread wraps with leftover chicken and grated veggies (yoghurt and sour cream are moderate amines); Wombok salad with chicken; Homemade beef burgers with failsafe rissoles (The Failsafe Cookbook); Minute steak, potato skewers and green bean salad;  and bread rolls (I like this white bread roll recipe for Thermomix, remember sesame seeds are not failsafe); Beef stir fry with noodles; “Deli chicken” and vegetable pies; Pesto chicken with pasta and green salad (iceberg lettuce, celery, green beans)

Week 3 Breakfasts, snacks and staples to make: Rice pudding and besan bombs from The Failsafe Cookbook; Failsafe vegetable stock paste and Mighty MayoMagic Bean Carob Cake

Week 4 Dinners: Pasta with no-mato sauce and beef mince; Lamb cutlets with mashed potato and green beans; Chicken noodle soup (Thermomix method) or stovetop methodPotato and leek pancakes with beef skewers; Chicken and leek mini-pizza with green salad; Beef and leek pies with veggie sticks; Lentil and vegetable soup (Thermomix method or stovetop method) with bread rolls.

Week 4 Breakfasts, snacks and staples to make: Baked chicken tenders; Baked French toast; Cream cheese and herb dip; Jelly cups; Carob muesli bars.

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Another mid-winter meal plan

Week 1 dinners: Homemade beef burgers and wedges, roast lamb or chicken with potato bake, sausage casserole, lamb and celery satay on rice (Friendly Food), glazed meatballs (Failsafe Cookbook) with mash and steamed vegetables, coq au vodka with rice or mash, red lentil soup (Failsafe Cookbook) and toast.

Week 1 breakfasts, lunches, snacks and staples to make: Baked oatmeal, cannellini beans on toast or bean bruschetta or baked beans (Friendly Food), French toast or baked French toast (a delicious treat!), boiled eggs, vegie sticks and dip/mayonnaise, failsafe san choy bow (mince and veg in lettuce cups), magic bean carob cake, carob chip oatmeal cookies, GF carob brownies (Kersten’s Kitchen).

Week 2 dinners: Mince and vegetable pies or sausage rolls, Irish stew (Failsafe Cookbook), stir fried beef and noodles, lamb and rice noodle soup, chicken drumsticks with Miracle Mash, schnitzel with coleslaw and rice or soba noodle coleslaw, chicken soup or congee or Thermomix chicken and vegetable soup (use failsafe oil, this is moderate-high salicylate depending on vegetables used and whether they are peeled).

Week 2 breakfasts, lunches, snacks and staples to make: Eggs on toast, ‘That’ cheese sauce for dipping or toast-topping, Omelette, Crumpets with pear jam, seeded bread sticks and soup, potato and leek pancakes, vegetable muffins (Failsafe Cookbook), okonomiyaki, roast potatoes, butter biscuits (Thermomix Basic Cook Book), no-mato sauce (stovetop or Thermomix).

Week 3 dinners: Steamed chicken buns and noodles, lamb chop tagine, baked spring rolls, lamb cutlets with jacket potatoes, vegetable risotto and chicken meatballs, beef lasagne, roast vegetable and lentil soup with croutons.

Week 3 breakfasts, lunches, snacks and staples to make: Cracked egg pies or baked eggs in potato (Friendly Food),  rice or oat porridge, rice pudding (Thermomix Basic Cook Book or Failsafe Cookbook), FS hommous, chicken drumsticks, egg rolls, arancini balls (using leftover veg risotto).

Week 4 dinners: Pear and bean salad (Friendly Food) with rice or pasta and mini meatloaves, chicken nuggets, beef strips and fried rice, lamb salad (moderate salicylate), steak sandwiches with caramelised leek, wombok salad with chicken and noodles, pad thai.

Week 4 breakfasts, lunches, snacks and staples to make: Porridge with stewed pear, Spanish omelette, pear and chive muffins (Friendly Food), Magic Sauce, red bean dip (Failsafe Cookbook), custard, besan biscuits, cashella (FS nutella).

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Delicious snacks (moderate salicylate, low amine, low glutamate)

Satisfying crunchy, sweet, salty and creamy snacks! I created my list following on from a suggestion in the year-long Replenish 365 course created by Lisa Grace Byrne. I really like the book Replenish 365 by Lisa Grace Byrne so you may like to check it out too – lots of great self-care suggestions for mums.

I stick to low-amine and low-glutamate foods and moderate to high salicylates so make sure you tailor the suggestions below to suit your tolerance levels.

Crunchy: Celery or Red Delicious apple or Golden Delicious apple slices with cashew butter; rice cakes with hommous and grated carrot .

Sweet: Pear, celery and cucumber green smoothie; roast sweet potato, swede and carrot; carob hot chocolate with rice milk.

Salty: Chic Nuts and cashews; Parkers Pretzels; Mountain bread crisped in the oven or rice cake popcorn; sliced green beans and celery with lentil chips or Bean and Rice chips (check the shopping lists to find suitable pre-made products).

Creamy: Cashew, pear and rice milk smoothie; chicken and brown rice soup (Quirky Cooking with failsafe adaptation e.g. cashews, leek, green beans, failsafe vegetable stock paste); bean dip with rice cakes; high protein custard (extra eggs, less sugar).

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Mid-winter meal plan

Week 1 Dinners: Failsafe sausages, Miracle Mash and steamed veg; Steak and whiskey pot pie; Roast lamb and maple roast vegetables; Homemade beef burgers with caramelised leek and lettuce; Chicken coq au vodka; Stir fried chicken and noodles (moderate salicylates); Big batch lasagne.

Week 1 Breakfasts, snacks and staples to make: Failsafe hommous; ‘That’ cheese sauce; Baked French toast; failsafe donuts; gluten free failsafe bread.

Week 2: Sticky chicken drumsticks; Meat and vegetable triangles and sausage rolls; Meatballs and steamed vegetables with white sauce; breakfast for dinner (failsafe sausages, hash browns, eggs, leftover steamed vegetables); Stir fried beef and udon noodles; Chicken schnitzel and vegetables; Homemade pizza with beef and potato topping.

Week 2 Breakfasts, snacks and staples to make: Crumpets; Pear ketchup; Chick bean dip; failsafe bliss balls; vegetable muffins; gluten free seed bread from Kersten’s Kitchen.

Week 3 Dinners:  Roast chicken and vegetables (swede, potato, brussels sprouts); Creamy garlic chicken risotto; Beef samosas with pear chutney; Okonomiyaki and baked chicken legs; Sunshine yellow soup and garlic bread; Spaghetti with mince and no-mato sauce; Herbed rack of lamb from The Failsafe Cookbook with baked vegetables.

Week 3 Breakfasts, snacks and staples to make: Besan biscuits; Rice pudding from The Failsafe Cookbook or Thermomix Basic Cook Book; Potato and leek pancakes or potato rosti from The Failsafe Cookbook; Vanilla jam cookies; No-mato sauce.

Week 4 Dinners: Chicken congee; Rissoles and mashed potato; Arran’s fried rice from The Failsafe Cookbook; Mountain bread burritos from The Failsafe Cookbook; Lamb cutlets with potato and leek soup; Rice crumbed chicken nuggets and potato wedges: Roast vegetable and lentil soup with croutons.

Week 4 Breakfasts, snacks and staples to make: Baked oatmeal; Dip trio; Seeded bread sticks; Swede and potato or Cornish pasties from The Failsafe Cookbook; Butter beans on toast from The Failsafe Cookbook.


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Meal plan: Week starting 23 May

Monday:Chicken pie and maple roast vegetables or Clayton’s chicken curry. Make pear ketchup

Tuesday:  Roast lamb and jacket potatoes with green beans. Bhaji or Besan bombs from The Failsafe Cookbook for a snack.

Wednesday: Meatballs with steamed vegetables and pear ketchup

Thursday: Baked chicken thighs with spaghetti, no-mato sauce and a green salad

Friday: Failsafe sausages with mashed potato and steamed green beans

Saturday: Arancini for lunch. Homemade beef burgers and potato wedges.

Sunday: Meatballs and vegie sticks for lunch. Brown sugar kumera cake for a party (“Everyday Cooking for Thermomix Families” cookbook). Steak and whiskey pot pie

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Meal plan: Week starting 16 May

Monday: Chicken casserole from The Failsafe Cookbook with green beans and lettuce

Tuesday: Nana’s chicken soup from The Failsafe Cookbook (I’ll use chicken pieces and quick cooking to minimise amines)

Wednesday: Mountain bread burritos from The Failsafe Cookbook

Thursday: Jacket potatoes with mince, shallots, kidney beans and bechamel sauce

Friday: Meatloaf and mashed potato

Saturday: Green salad with lasagne from The Failsafe Cookbook (I like the special occasion recipe but use more vegetables than pear, after one child called it “dessert lasagne!”) Or big batch lasagne to stock the freezer.

Sunday: Baked chicken with roast vegetables

Snacks (dairy challenge): celery filled with cream cheese, rice pudding, pancakes, brioche or buttermilk bread, Anne’s easy icecream from The Failsafe Cookbook.

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Meal plan: Week starting 9 May

Monday: Potato, parsnip and leek soup (moderate sals) with seeded bread sticks

Tuesday: Stir fried green beans, celery and beef mince with noodles and magic sauce

Wednesday: Lamb salad with lettuce or cabbage, shallots, celery, grated carrot (mod sals) and chickpeas with Mighty Mayo

Thursday: Wraps with leftover salad and defrosted mince and vegies or baked chicken

Friday: Failsafe sausages, hash browns and eggs

Saturday: Sausage rolls or rice paper rolls with green salad

Sunday: Roast chicken and vegetables (choko, swede, potato, brussels sprouts) with garlicky green beans

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Meal plan: Week starting 2nd May

Monday: Quick quiche from The Failsafe Cookbook

Tuesday: Jacket potatoes with mince and kidney bean mixture and a green salad

Wednesday: Failsafe spring rolls

Thursday: Sunshine yellow soup with garlic rolls

Friday: Okonomiyaki with baked chicken legs

Saturday: Steak and whiskey pot pie with green beans

Sunday: Chicken roast dinner

Lunches and snacks: Chicken lentil soup; Lamb and rice noodle soup; muesli balls; failsafe gado gado; beetroot salad (moderate salicylates).

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The big list! Autumn and winter ideas for every meal.

Breakfasts: Potato and leek pancakes with fried eggs; Baked oatmeal (no cinnamon or raisins and a tub of baby pear puree instead of applesauce); Spanish omelette; Porridge with pear and maple syrup; French toast; Chicken congee; Brown rice with cashews, rice milk and a dollop of pear jam; Breakfast burritos (mountain bread wrap with omelette); Frittata for vegetable haters and Country Vegetable Bake muffins (both from The Failsafe Cookbook); big breakfast (failsafe sausages, eggs, hash browns or potato rosti, steamed green beans and crumpets from Friendly Food); pear and chive muffins from Friendly Food.

Lunches: Baked potatoes with failsafe mince or Tex Mex topping; Birgit’s cabbage rolls; Barley vegetable casserole: Cracked egg pies; Quick quiche; Egg foo yung; Kerry’s vegetable hater soup (all from the Failsafe Cookbook); Baked eggs in potato; Baked beans; Lentil and potato bake; Pear and bean salad (all from Friendly Food); Homemade burgers with chicken, beef or veal mince and vegetable patties, lettuce and pear ketchup;  Okonomiyaki; Bubble and Squeak; Arancini (I’ll make these with leftover vegetable risotto so low amines); Bhaji or Besan bombs from The Failsafe Cookbook.

Dinner: Chicken lasagne; Birgit’s fried rice; Irish stew; Failsafe spring rolls; Birgit’s glazed meatballs; Red soup (all from the Failsafe Cookbook); Roast chicken with stuffing; Lamb and celery satay (both from Friendly Food); Sunshine yellow soup; Potato and leek soup; Roast vegetable and lentil soupChicken pie and maple roast vegetables; Chicken casserole with savoury biscuits; Chicken casserole; Sausage stew (I’ll cook this on the stovetop to minimise amines); Clayton’s chicken curry; Failsafe spaghetti bolognaise; Coq au vodka; Lamb and barley stew (again, I’ll go with a short cooking time to minimise amines); pan-fried chicken or lamb chops with Miracle Mash; Beef samosas and pear chutney: ‘Lemon’ tempura chickenLamb chop tagine; Lamb meat pies; Steak and whiskey pot pie; Roast chicken and Brussel sprouts with aioli.


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