Quinoa & carrot salad

I20170405_221436ngredients
(serves 1)
1/3 cup (60g) quinoa rinsed
1 large carrot grated
1 small tin of chickpeas
Juice ½ lemon
¼ tsp allspice
¼ tsp honey
1 dessertspoon extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp mint
1 tbsp dried cranberries or sultanas or pomegranate seeds

Method

  1. To make the dressing, combine the lemon juice, allspice, honey and oil and mix well.
  2. Combine the 1/3 cup of quinoa with 2/3 cup (120mls) of water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer the quinoa for 15 minutes. Drain the quinoa well and place in a bowl
  3. Add your grated carrot, cranberries or sultanas, chickpeas and dressing to the quinoa. Mix everything well and season.
  4. Stir through the mint and enjoy.

Health benefits of quinoa

  • Excellent source of protein – contains all the essential amino acids
  • Source of calcium, fibre, iron, vitamin E and the anti-stress B vitamins
  • Higher essential fat content than other grains
  • Gluten free
  • Helps keep you fuller for longer, sustains energy levels, mood and concentration.

Curry chips – full of goodness!

bakedceleriacchipsOk, so not your standard chip – these are made from Celeriac, sometimes called celery root or knob celery.  It’s an odd looking root vegetable that someone recently mentioned, looks a bit like a brain!  It has a taste similar to regular celery stalks, and can be enjoyed in the same ways as most root vegetables.

 

Health benefits

  • Compared to other root vegetables, such as potatoes and carrots, celeriac is very low in calories, as it is only 5-6% starch by weight. It can therefore be used in place of other starchy root vegetables to cut down on calories, or as a carb option for people with diabetes.
  • Celeriac is very good source of vitamin K. 100 g root provides about 34% of recommended daily intake. Vitamin-K improves bone health.
  • It is full of fiber too, helping to keep those bowel movements regular, and it also helps to regulate the absorption of nutrients. Very useful in dampening down hunger pangs!

Organic elery (root and leaves)

Ingredients  (serves 4)

  • 1 celeriac
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons of olive oil or melted coconut oil (coconut oil helps kill yeast infections)
  • 1 tablespoon of mild curry powder

Method

  1. Chop the celeriac vegetable into thumb sizes pieces
  2. Bring salted water to the boil and blanch – boil rapidly uncovered for 1 to 2 minutes
  3. Drain and throw the vegetables back into the saucepan.
  4. Add the oil, curry powder and sea salt and toss well
  5. Spread over a large baking tray (leaving plenty of space between the chips) and cook for 30 to 35 minutes at 210c in a fan oven.

Caroline Seale BA Hons DipNT mNTOI

Lovely Lemon Cake!

lemon cake

Thanks to Susan Jane White and her latest book “The Virtuous Tart” for this delicious recipe. It makes up 16 servings and I love the idea of adding in the turmeric to give it that bit of glow.

It’s dairy free, gluten free, sugar free and still tastes fab. I love that it’s so easy to make, you just pop everything in a blender and that’s it!

The sweetness comes from the honey and the recipe works out at about 1 teaspoon of honey per serving. Honey counts towards added sugar and don’t forget that the maximum amount of added sugar a day recommended by the World Health Organisation is 6 teaspoons a day. So it’s perfect to have as a treat, just watch those portion sizes!

Ingredients
3 cups (300g) ground almonds (found in baking section of supermarket or you can ground your own by popping whole almonds into a blender)
4 eggs
Juice of 1 large unwaxed lemon
6 tablespoons of coconut oil
Up to 3 tablespoons of raw honey
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/4 teaspoon of himalayan salt

For the drizzle:
Juice of 1 lemon
Approx 2 tablespoons of raw honey

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 170C/150C fan or 340F. Line a 20cm x 20cm square brownie tin with non-stick paper.
  2. Blend everything in a food processor or electric blender.
  3. Pour into the tin and bake for 22-25 minutes, removing it from the oven before it browns. Leave to cool in the tin.
  4. Then gently warm the lemon juice with the honey in a small saucepan. Pour over your cake while still warm. Pierce the cake with a fork to let the drizzle dressing soak in and taste!

Immune boosting sweet potato soup

Immune boosting sweet potato soup

Immune boosting sweet potato soup

 

When you see any orange coloured vegetables think immune boosting carotenes that help to keep those bugs at bay.

 

 

 

Health benefits:

  • Rich in vitamin E and beta-carotene (carrots, sweet potato)
  • Anti-inflammatory (onions, garlic, ginger)
  • Medium chain triglycerides to help provide energy and fight infection (coconut milk)

Ingredients (serves 2 to 3)
1 tbsp coconut oil or medium (not extra virgin) olive oil
½ red onion, roughly chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 large carrot or 2 small-medium ones, peeled and chopped
1 large sweet potato, or 2 small-medium ones, not peeled, chopped to the same size as the carrot to ensure even cooking
1 heaped tsp grated fresh root ginger
¼ tsp turmeric
2 tsp Marigold Reduced Salt Vegetable Bouillon powder
½ red pepper, diced
75ml (2 ½ floz) coconut milk

Method
1. Heat the oil in a large pan and gently sauté the onion and garlic for a few minutes until they start to soften by do not turn brown.
2. Add the carrot, sweet potato, ginger, turmeric and bouillon powder. Just cover with boiling water and bring to the boil. Cover and simmer for about 15 minutes or until the vegetables are soft.
3. Add the red pepper and coconut milk, then blend until smooth and thick.

Enjoy!

Fans of Nutella…here is a healthier alternative!

Cleantella

Did you know that in 2 tablespoons of Nutella there is a whopping 21 grams of sugar. That’s just over 5 teaspoons of sugar!

The World Health Organisation recommends a max of 6 teaspoons of added sugar a day for a woman and 8 teaspoons for a man, and it’s very easy to reach the limit when you buy processed and convenient foods.

But the good news is that you can still get your chocolate fix by making your own “Cleantella”

Cleantella

Ingredients
2 cups raw hazelnuts (240g)
1 1/2 tbsp pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/4 cup of raw local honey or maple syrup
1/4 tsp salt
Optional: 2tsp coconut oil (for extra smoothness although it’s still very smooth without the addition of the coconut oil)
1/2 cup of milk of your choice (almond milk works well)

Instructions

  1. Roast hazelnuts for 6-8 minutes at 400F
  2. Rub them together in a paper towel to get the skin off.
  3. In a blender or food processor blend the nuts until they turn into butter
  4. Then add all other ingredients and blend for quite some time, till it gets as smooth as Nutella. This will take about 2 minutes.
  5. Enjoy without the sugar guilt trip!

Thanks to ‘healthy and hip’ for this yummy recipe!

Buckwheat pancakes

Buckwheat pancakes - Caroline Seale (www.discovernutrition.ie)

 

Pancakes are so easy to make and this recipe uses only a few ingredients.  Buckwheat flour can be found in your local health store or the health food section of some supermarkets. What’s great about buckwheat is that it is gluten free, so it’s good for anyone suffering with digestive problems.

 

 

Some more health benefits of buckwheat:

  • contains 2 flavonoids (rutin and quercetin). They act as antioxidants and help Vitamin C to work better. They increase blood flow, helping to prevent  blood clots and they protect LDL – the bad cholesterol from free radical oxidation, i.e. turning into potentially harmful cholesterol
  • Very good source of protein and has all 8 amino acids
  • Very good source of magnesium which helps to increase our energy

Ingredients (serves 6 large pancakes)
335ml of water
3 tbsp. coconut oil
120g buckwheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract

Method
1. Blend all ingredients together to make a batter.
2. Heat extra virgin olive oil in a non-stick frying pan. Add spoonful’s of batter to make pancakes about 8-10cm across. Cook for a couple of minutes until set on the bottom and bubbles appear on the surface, then flip and cook on the other side. Keep the pancakes warm in a low oven while you finish up the batter.

Serve:
With berries (blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, blackberries) and a sprinkle of cinnamon
or
Spread of all natural peanut butter / almond butter or pumpkin seed butter

Cee’s homemade granola

Cee's homemade granola

 

There is nothing like the taste of homemade granola, fresh and full of goodness. It’s a great kick start to the day, to boost those energy levels. It’s low GL (glycemic load), helping to keep you fuller for longer so you shouldn’t have any of those mid morning sugar cravings. This recipe is adapted from Susan Jane White’s version and proved a hit with the family over the festive hols.

 

 

 

Ingredients (20 servings)
2 cups mixed nuts (almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts, brazil nuts)
2 1/2 cups jumbo oats
1 cup buckwheat flakes
1 cup of mixed sunflower and pumpkin seeds
5 tablespoons of ground flaxseeds (also known as linseeds)
1 cup coconut flakes
Pinch of himalayan salt
3/4 cup raw honey or 100% pure organic maple syrup
3/4 cup extra virgin coconut oil
grated zest of lemon
1/2 cup of dried cranberries or chopped dates

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 170c/150c fan/340f. Line 2 baking trays with parchment paper.
  2. Roughly chop any big nuts and add to a large bowl with the oats, buckwheat flakes, seeds, and ground flaxseeds and salt.
  3. Gently warm the honey, oil and orange zest together (the orange zest adds a lovely taste to it). Pour over the bowl of oats and mix well.
  4. Spread thinly on the baking trays and place in the middle of the oven and bake for 17 – 20 minutes. Shake the trays after 8 minutes to prevent burning. Aiming for a light golden colour.
  5. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before tossing through the cranberries/dates. I only add 1/2 cup of dried fruit as it’s quite high in sugar.

Store in an airtight container for 2-3 weeks. Serve with milk or yoghurt.

Vietnamese Chicken Coconut Curry

Healthy chicken coconut curry vietnamese style!

I’ve taken this recipe from the Happy Pear recipe book and adapted it a bit by swapping the tempeh for chicken and I swapped the low fat coconut milk to full fat. Latest research is that there is a lack of evidence that links saturated fat to heart disease. On my 8 week weight loss programme, clients can enjoy full fat milk, yoghurt and coconut milk, helping to keep them fuller for longer, and at the same time loose weight and have healthy cholesterol levels. We need a healthy amount of cholesterol for our cells, to help manufacture Vitamin D and for our sex hormones.

Ingredients
3 cloves of garlic
Thumb size piece of fresh ginger
1 medium pumpkin (approx 1.5kg) or butternut squash or sweet potatoes
2 x 400ml tins of full fat coconut milk
Juice of 2 limes
2 tablespoons of honey
2 tablespoons of curry powder
1 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons tamari, Bragg liquid aminos or soy sauce
4 breasts of free range or organic chicken chopped into small pieces
1/2 a head of pak choi (chinese cabbage)
6 scallions or spring onions
bunch of fresh corriander
1 tablespoon cornflour, arrowroot or potato starch, mixed with 1.5 tablespoons of water

Method
Preheat oven to 200 degrees C/400 degrees F/gas mark 6

1) Peel and finely chop the garlic. Peel and finely grate or chop the ginger.
2) Wash the pumpkin, cut off any blemishes and slice off the top. Usually there is no need to peel it, as the skin goes soft when cooked. Cut it in half and scoop out the seeds. Cut the flesh into bite-size pieces. (if using butternut squash or sweet potatoes, leave the skin on and cut into bite-size pieces.) Put on a baking tray and bake for 20 minutes.
3) Put the garlic, ginger, coconut milk, lime juice, honey, curry powder, salt and tamari into a blender and whiz until everything is smooth.
4) Put the chicken pieces into a large casserol dish and stir fry in coconut oil over a medium heat for 5 to 8 minutes, pour over half the coconut dressing and mix well to ensure each piece is full of flavour.
5) Put the dish of chicken ino the oven where the pumpkin is already baking and bake for 15 minutes, stirring after 10 minutes to ensure that the dressing is well dispersed. Meanwhile, pour the other half of the dressing into a large pan – this will become the sauce, along with any remaining sauce from the chicken dish. Bring to the boil, then lower the heat and reduce to a simmer.
6) Once the chicken and pumpkin are done, transfer them to the simmering sauce and mix well. Cook for 10 minutes over a medium heat, stirring regularly.
7) Finely chop the pak choi, scallions, spring onions and coriander. Add the pak choi and the cornflour mixture to the pan and simmer for about 3-5 minutes, until it thickens. Serve sprinkled with the scallions or spring onions and the coriander.

Serve with wholegrain brown rice or quinoa and enjoy!

Broccoli pesto

Here is a handy recipe to up those greens. Green vegetables are alkalising and detoxing and important to have on our plates at least once a day.

 

 

It’s really quick to make up and if stored in a sealed container in the fridge will keep for up to 1 week. This could be a good option for the kids too if you are struggling to get them to eat their veg.

Ingredients:
2 cups (350g) broccoli florets
2 medium spring onions, peeled
2 cloves garlic, peeled
3 tablespoons olive oil
juice of 1 lemon
1/2 cup (75g) cashews, soaked in water for 1-4 hours and drained. Or 25g grated parmesan.
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Method:
Steam the broccoli florets. Place all the ingredients in a food processor or blender and process until creamy and smooth.

Option: can freeze but just cover with a layer of oil beforehand

Taken from Sarah Wilson’s “I quite sugar” book. Thanks Sarah for this tasty recipe.

Hummus and Aubergine Smash

Thanks to Domini Kemp for sharing this recipe which I immediately liked for it’s nutritious ingredients.

Aubergines are an excellent source of dietary fiber and this recipe works well as a lunchtime option because it’s full of protein from the chickpeas helping to keep you fuller for longer.  You also won’t get that post lunch slump as it’s very low in carbohydrates and a low carb option is good too if you want to loose some weight. Research has also found aubergines to be high in an anthocyanin flavonoid called nasunin – a potent antioxidant and free radical scavenger, it helps to protect our cell membranes from damage!

This recipe serves two so I made it one evening to have the following day for lunch. It was so yummy I had it two days in a row! No need to heat, I found it fine served cold.

Ingredients (for 2)

1 aubergine, sliced into 1 cm-thick rounds
2-4 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp dried rosemary
half tsp dried thyme
Salt and pepper
2 cloves garlic, chopped
Juice of half a lemon
1 x 400g tin chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 tsp cumin seeds 

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees/gas 4
  2. Brush the aubergine well with olive oil, season and sprinkle with half the rosemary and the garlic.
  3. Bake for 15-20 minutes until golden brown and just tender, making sure to turn them halfway through.
  4. Blitz half the cooked aubergines together with half the chickpeas in a blender with olive oil, the lemon juice and salt and pepper. Add more lemon juice if it’s not tangy enough.
  5. Meanwhile, roast the remainder of the chickpeas in the oven with the cumin, rosemary, thyme, salt and pepper, for about 10 – 15 minutes.

To serve: place a generous blob of the smash on top of the sliced, cooked aubergine and sprinkle with the oven-roasted chickpeas.

Homemade chocolate treats (gluten & dairy free!)

These are gluten free, wheat free, dairy free and still yummy!! They definitely satisfy my chocolate cravings!

They also pack a wonderful punch of health benefits! Raw Virgin Organic Coconut Oil has countless benefits that include helping with weight loss, acting as a natural anti-fungal, reducing inflammation, and countless more benefits listed here: http://www.coconutresearchcenter.org/

And Raw Cacao is another super food that provides your body with antioxidant flavonoids, more magnesium than any other known food, and many more feel good benefits listed here: http://livesuperfoods.com/raw-cacao-powder.html

Quick and easy to make, takes less than 10 minutes.  Makes approx 12 chocolates and 2 are enough to satisfy those choc cravings!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup coconut oil
  • 1 cup raw cocoa powder (e.g. The Raw chocolate company or Natasha’s both available in health food shops)
  • ½ cup of maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon of desiccated coconut flakes
  • 1 tablespoon of ground hazelnuts (I used the roasted ones from health food shop but you can use any type)
  • 1 pinch of Himalyan crystal salt
  • Cinnamon to sprinkle on top

Method:

  1. Melt coconut oil in a pan
  2. When melted,whisk in all other ingredients and mix well.
  3. Pour into ice cube moulds, sprinkle cinnamon on top.
  4. Put into freezer for half an hour until set.
  5. Take out and enjoy!

Like  https://www.facebook.com/DiscoverNutritionKilkenny?ref=hl for lots more nutrition and health tips!

“Body cleansing” green juice

It is generally considered better to use more vegetable rather than fruit in combinations juices. Fruit juices tend to be more acidic and have a higher sugar content which can cause energy imbalances, strain the kidneys, plus weaken the enamel on our teeth!
Vegetable juices (especially green) cleanse the blood, alkalise the system and also encourage liver detoxification. Perfect for this time of year as a gentle detox after the Christmas season.

The recipes below make up 500ml, just bigger than a pint glass.

Body cleanser

  • 2 apples, cored and chopped
  • 1 ¼ beetroot chopped
  • 2 broccoli florets, chopped
  • 2 ½ carrots, chopped
  • ½ celery stalk, chopped
  • ¼ courgette, chopped
  • ¼ cucumber, chopped
  • 1 cm of ginger, peeled and  chopped
  • A handful of kale
  • Juice of ¼ lemon
  • A handful of parsley
  • A handful of spinach

Place all the ingredients in a juicer and pour over ice.

Pure Green Super Juice (not for the first time juicer! more for the experienced one)

  • 2 sticks of celery, chopped
  • 1 cucumber, chopped
  • Handful of kale
  • Handful of spinach
  • Handful of parsley
  • 1 teaspoon of wheatgrass powder

Place all the ingredients in a juicer and pour over ice.

Chinese Brussel sprouts

Bored with plain boiled sprouts! Try pepping them up Chinese-style with this unusual stir-fried method.
They are an excellent source of folic acid, vitamins C and K, and beta-carotene. Sprouts are also a very good source of vitamin B6, fibre, thiamine and potassium. Plus they have numerous cancer-fighting phytochemicals.

Ingredients (serves 4)
450g/1 lb Brussel sprouts
5ml/1 tsp sesame oil or olive oil
2 spring onions, sliced
2.5ml/ ½ tsp Chinese five-spice powder
15ml/1 tbsp light soy sauce

Method
1.Trim the Brussel sprouts, then shred them finely using a large sharp knife or a food processor.
2.Heat the oil and add the sprouts and spring onions. Stir-fry for about 2 minutes, without allowing the mixture to brown.
3.Stir in the five-spice powder and soy sauce, then cook, stirring, for a further 2-3 minutes until just tender. Serve hot.

Thanks to Cathy a client of mine who kindly shared this recipe.

Coconut and lentil Dhal with toasted almonds

This is my favourite lentil dish! Don’t be put off by the long list of ingredients. Once you have stocked up on all the spices & herbs, it’s just lentils, coconut milk and some veg.
Try this dish on a meat free Monday. Lentils are an excellent source of cholesterol lowering fibre. Not only do they help lower cholesterol, they are of special benefit in managing blood sugar levels since their high fibre content prevents blood sugar levels from rising rapidly after a meal. This way you stay fuller for longer and avoid those sugary snack cravings.

Ingredients (4 people)
1 large onion
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 carrot, diced
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tsp cumin seeds
2 tsp yellow mustard seeds
2.5cm/1 in fresh root ginger, grated
2 tsp ground tumeric
1 tsp mild chilli powder
1 tsp garam masala
1 cup red split lentils (soak for an hour before cooking)
2/3 cups of water
2/3 cups of coconut milk (or half bar organic creamed coconut)
5 tomatoes, chopped
Juice of 2 limes
4 tbsp chopped fresh coriander
Salt and freshly ground pepper
¼ cup flaked almonds, toasted

Method
1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan. Saute the onion for 5 minutes until softened, stirring occasionally. Add the garlic, carrot, cumin and mustard seeds, and
2. ginger. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring until the seeds being to pop and the carrot softens slightly.
3. Stir in the ground tumeric, chilli powder and garam masala, and cook for 1 minute or until the flavours begin to mingle, stirring to prevent the spices burning.
4. Add the lentils, water, coconut milk and tomatoes, and season well. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer, covered for about 45 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent the lentils sticking.
5. Stir in the lime juice and 3 tbsp of the fresh coriander, and then check the seasoning. Cook for a further 15 minutes until the lentils soften and become tender. To serve, sprinkle with the remaining coriander and the flaked almonds.

Serving suggestions: basmati, wild rice or quinoa

Delicious immune boosting autumn soup!

Gingered Butternut Squash Soup
Butternut squash is now in season, rich in antioxidant Vitamin C to support immune system and full of fibre for good digestion. It’s also a good source of B vitamins to boost those energy levels! If you don’t fancy the squash suggest swapping it for pumpkin.

Serves 6
Ingredients
2 butternut squash (about 3.5 lbs) peeled, halved, deseeded and cut into ½ inch pieces
1 cup onion, chopped
3 tblsp. Extra virgin olive oil
1 tblsp fresh ginger root peeled and grated
1 apple, peeled, cored and chopped
1 tsp fresh nutmeg grated
stock cube (or even better 4 tsp Marigold Reduced Salt Vegetable Bouillon powder – available in health food shops and some supermarkets)
Sea salt
freshly milled black pepper

Method

  • Put the squash into a large saucepan and put in enough water to cover.
  • Bring to the boil.
  • Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, stirring occasionally for 30 minutes or until the squash is tender.
  • Drain the squash and reserve the liquid.
  • Saute the onion in the oil gently until soft.
  • Add the ginger, apple, nutmeg and squash and cook for one minute, stirring all the time.
  • Add enough water to the reserved cooking liquid to make up 750ml
  • Add the liquid and stock to the squash mixture and simmer for 30 minutes.
  • Liquidise with a hand blender.
  • Adjust seasoning, if necessary.

Tip for preparing the squash: remove the outer skin with a vegetable peeler. Use a sharp kitchen knife to then cut into ½ inch pieces. It’s really worth investing in a sharp knife and will make life so much easier!

Tasty gluten free Quinoa salad

Quinoa is a grain and is a great alternative to pasta, rice or couscous and has many health benefits such as…

  • Excellent protein content – contains all the essential amino acids
  • More calcium that milk
  • Good quantities of fibre, iron, vitamin E and the anti-stress B vitamins
  • Higher essential fat content than other grains
  • Gluten free
  • Helps keep you fuller for longer

You can buy Quinoa in any health food shop and sometimes it’s found in the health food section of supermarkets.

Ingredients (serves 2)
2 cups of water to 1 cup of quinoa (optional – add ½ tsp of tumeric spice to give colour to dish)
6 tomatoes
4 inch long piece of cucumber
2 cups of fresh parsley
2 cups of spring onions
Juice of 1 lemon
6 tbsp olive oil
1 cup of fresh mint

Method
Bring quinoa to the boil in a saucepan of water. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 min, or until water has been absorbed. Finely chop the tomatoes, cucumber, parsley, and spring onions. Add lemon juice, oil, and mint to the tomatoes mixture. Stir in cooked quinoa. Mix well and chill before serving.