Sweet Sensation

Sweet Sensation


Chocolate Avocado Mousse

As this is the very first recipe I am offering into this space, I wanted to make it a real goodie.  One that represents so much, when it comes to nutrition, well-being, and also my connection to whole food and nourishment.

I have spent years gathering, creating, and offering wholesome recipes in retreat and workshop spaces, not to mention the endless hours of time spent in my own kitchen and it is truly an honor and one of my greatest joys to share this gift with the world.

Creating and sharing food with other humans, for me, is love in action – I believe it to be one of the most intimate connections we have with ourselves, each other, and mother nature.

Today I want to share with you a sweet sensation.  My Chocolate Avocado Mousse recipe.

For the most part, my focus with food is of the savoury nature and tailored around low inflammatory, gut healing, cleansing, toxin-free and immune boosting. Often this cuts out a lot of the sweet sugary treats that aren’t particularly good for our health anyway.  Yet the sweetness of life is still something that our body craves and needs for balance.  Sweetness comes from the mother; it is a flavour that is comforting and brings us back into the place of nurture.  Our first experience of sweet comes from our mother’s milk and can brighten our day and offer us energy when we need it!

So, to honour nourishing ourselves with the sweetness that is also “good for us” – I do love to discover sweet recipes and offer these alternatives – transforming the way in which we relate to the word “treat” – because is it really a “treat” if it feeds dis-ease?

This recipe is delicious AND loaded with life-giving nutrients that totally hit the spot!

First – A few words on the four superstars of this yummy creation:

Avocado – One of my favorite foods and a true superfood hero! Not only are they so yummy and creamy and available all over the world in all kinds of varieties – they also contain abundant amounts of good fats, fiber, and vitamins and minerals like potassium and Vit K.  I love to use avocado for my skin and hair too!  One reason I love avocados most is their ability to support a faster metabolism.  The healthy fats help to increase your satiety hormones creating a feeling of fullness faster and for longer.  

Cacao – The food of the gods, can be traced back to the Mayan civilization and is the very best version of “chocolate” – natural and full of good medicine.  Raw organic cacao (or Theobroma cacao) is the real deal but unfortunately, a lot of the “chocolate” that people consume these days contains little to no cacao at all.  Cacao contains many powerhouses like phytonutrients, magnesium and antioxidants as well as being particularly beneficial for focus, alertness, and a good mood – not to mention it being a total heart medicine! Raw, organic Cacao is making its way into the hands and hearts of many these days – I’m so happy for that!

Maple Syrup – 100% my sweetener of choice (well monk fruit and honey are also) – yet maple and honey at least can still spike blood sugar and insulin in certain individuals. While these “alternative” sweeteners are whole foods, natural and contain a lot of beneficial nutrients – I still try to use them minimally in my diet.

Coconut – Another one of my favorite fruits – yes…it’s a fruit! Coconut is jam-packed with amazing nutrients like good fats and micronutrients like manganese.  Coconut is a medium-chained triglyceride which offer immediate energy, is easy on the gut and aren’t as readily stored as fat on the body.  Coconut is one of the most versatile foods to use in our meals and has heaps of health benefits like supporting digestion, improving brain function and is anti-bacterial.

You can go totally wild with this recipe – melting in ceremonial grade cacao paste, adding different flavours like orange, raspberry, or passionfruit – you can do all kinds of magical and wonderful things to jazz it up – but here, I simply want to offer you the basic recipe, which in itself, is amazing! 


Lahla xo


Chocolate Avocado Mousse

½ tin coconut cream

2 ripe avocadoes

½ cup raw cacao powder

4-6 TBSP maple syrup (to your liking)

1 tsp pure vanilla essence

Good pinch of salt  

  • Blend together and serve.
  • Even better after being in the fridge for a few hours (if you can wait that long).
  • Best eaten within 3-5 days.

You can swap out some of the Maple for a Medjool date or two if you like.

You could also use dark (at least 80%) melted chocolate or the ultimate – ceremonial-grade cacao.

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I was born and raised in Aotearoa, NZ – a dairy farmer’s daughter. There was a lot of love and a lot of hard work. Despite the rise of environmental toxins, prescription drugs like birth control medications and junk foods of the 80’s – our family were wholesome, ate relatively well and in connection to the land.

I was a highly sensitive and expressive little girl who was deeply connected to the natural world. My parents taught me many good things to carry in life, yet my soul’s experience in this life and the journey of coming back home to my body would not be the easiest road to walk. In those more challenging years, I certainly tried to escape my reality…often – It is only years later that I understand and trust that the hardships of my lived experience were to be the medicine and wisdom to offer back to others.

At age 7 I developed Epilepsy and was heavily medicated for 10 years. At that time, we didn’t understand anything about how Epilepsy affects the rest of the body let alone the damaging effect of the medications on my gut health or the psychospiritual understanding of such an illness. Somewhere there I decided life was not a safe place to exist and abandoned myself.

The years that followed carved an arduous road of inner turmoil, insecurity, and physical symptoms. Through my pre-teens and up till my early 20’s I struggled with the belief of not being good enough, I had a very negative sense of self and of my body. I experienced a cascade of symptoms like depression, fatigue, PMS, digestive issues, headaches, and weight gain. I didn’t know how to access the knowledge, support, and courage to overcome – I felt overwhelmed, alone and scared, so I chose to numb out in various unhealthy ways to escape my reality – seeking to feel worthy, validated and good in my body. These years were often hard.

At 22 I had hit rock bottom and wanted to end my life. I was 120kg, sick and very sad. I prayed for a better life. As I sat at a crossroads contemplating my life and purpose, if existing was going to be this hard, I didn’t want it. It was in this moment that I felt, for the first time, an energy and presence beyond my physical prison. I could sense a shimmering light begin to emerge, a light of hope, of choice, of change. I will always remember this time as my awakening, and I am eternally grateful beyond measure.

While my course had been redirected I still had to start walking the path of unraveling deeply ingrained patterns, physical pain, and emotional baggage. Yet as each day passed my whole perspective began to change and I began offering my body and being what it needed to flourish, I was being shown the parts that needed my love and attention to heal. My heart and inner compass were guiding me, and all aspects of my life began to transform. All the beauty of my being that I had abandoned at such a young age began to seep into all the darkened places.

Over the next 6 years I shed 55 kg and numerous layers of discomfort and dissonance. It began with obvious simple changes to my diet and lifestyle. I brought more intention and connection into my life and began to inhabit myself once again. I embarked on a passion filled journey of learning about the body, food, alternative therapies, self-care and spiritual connection – teachings and tools I carry with me today.

When I was 30, I was diagnosed with Hashi Moto’s Thyroiditis (an autoimmune disease). I believe this had been going on for a long while, driving many of the symptoms I had been traversing. I felt deeply knocked down by this diagnosis as I had given so much time and energy to “fixing” what I deemed broken.

While so much healing and transformation had taken place, I was now being gifted the opportunity to seek within and explore the origins of my suffering. The more curious and compassionate I became, the more I opened to the messages and call the fragmented parts of myself home – the more I began to understand that I was never broken to begin with, I began to feel the wholeness that had never actually left me. This diagnosis was a gift.

The decade that followed was all about coming into right relationship with myself, with others and with the world around me. It was a deep dive into trauma, limiting beliefs, root cause medicine and the systemic nature of chronic stress. I was shown that I still had much work to do around my inner narratives and the lack of trust I held for my body. It took me a long time to understand that the source of my suffering was disconnection.

I know what it is like to live in a body that doesn’t seem to work properly, that doesn’t seem to match your heart’s desires. I understand what it’s like to feel trapped in symptoms you don’t know how to shift and spend much of your precious time and energy trying to fix what feels broken. I know what self-abandonment feels like.

So here we are – learning, growing, and healing together.

… And the journey continues …

To life…

Linda xo

After leaving high school at 16 to pursue her dream; at that time, of becoming a Chef – Linda graduated with a distinction from culinary school and additional hospitality/customer services-based trainings in Canterbury, NZ. Over the next 10 years, the diversity of her work within these sectors evolved to roles focused on health food, wellbeing, and support services.

In 2007, after some years upon European soil remembering the nourishing ways of her ancestral roots, she explored Asia and India, immersing herself in the Healing Arts of the East – Traditional Medicine, Yoga, Philosophy and Spirituality. From there she journeyed to the Americas and opened to the teachings of Native American and Shamanic Medicine Ways.

Heeding the call, her walk led her to Colorado to begin studies with the Seven Bowls School of Nutrition, Nourishment and Healing, diving deep into many modalities of healing and completing her training as an Integrative Nutrition Practitioner specialising in Food, Energy and Earth Medicine.

In 2010 and after being away from her islands of birth for almost a decade she returned to Aotearoa, NZ to reconnect to the medicine of Polynesia and Rongoa (indigenous plant medicine) for what was to be a majestical commune with the Ngahere (Forest) and wild places, guided by her teacher, Pa Ropata.

With a yearning to find stillness and grow deep roots into the earth, Linda poured her love and energy into growing food, living simply and regeneratively and building community. Crystallising in 2012, from her humble bush shack in the rural coastal paradise of Golden BayNourishing Ways was born.

Mirroring the evolution of her work and research as well as her own personal healing journey, Linda returned to study at the Institute for the Psychology of Eating in the USA, delving into teachings of Eating and Nourishment Psychology and Body Mind Nutrition.

In 2019 she relocated to the Northern Rivers of NSW Australia, Bundjalung Country.  Alongside the flourishing of Nourishing Ways’ many expressions, Earth Kitchen was established to hold the bespoke Catering and Food Medicine Education branch of Nourishing Ways’ tree.

Linda has offered workshops and talks on many subjects ranging from mental health to mindful eating, from autoimmunity to positive body image. She created the popular 21-day cleanse programme “Rejuvenate”, ran healing food cooking classes, and co-created retreats offering wisdom on nutrition, nourishment, plant medicine and spirituality. Linda has mentored people around the world, created in-home wellbeing programmes, consulted cafes on menu development & eco initiatives, offered wholefood catering and workshops for young women’s rites of passage programmes, conscious festivals, yoga retreats/trainings and other wellbeing and transformational events.

Linda has worked in treatment facilities for addiction and disordered eating and has been recruited to cook and teach nutrition, eating psychology, body/mind nutrition and mindfulness to the Sydney Roosters NRL team. She has presented at “The Real Food Revolution”, Mental Health Awareness week, has been featured in newspapers throughout New Zealand, as well as Australia’s “That’s Life” magazine. She has written for Happyzine and Healthpost sharing her story and nourishing wisdom.

Having been a teacher and guide to many over the years, it is not till now, in 2023 that a readiness to fully step into the online world has aligned.