Meatless Monday: Lentil & Peach Salad w/ A Tarragon Dressing [Vegan & Gluten Free]

Healthy Recipes, Meatless Monday

Serves: 4
Prep:15-20 mins
Cooking: 20-30 mins
Type: Main Meal
Tools: Sieve, large non-stick pot w/lid, chopping board, sharp knife, resealable jar, small frying pan, pastry brush, grill tray, kitchen foil, mixing bowl

Hello everyone! Although this year’s Easter weekend has been a bit of a wash-out (particularly this morning!), we hope that you’ve all found some time to unwind, maybe go for a relaxing walk and enjoy some good food with family and friends. ūüôā

The recipe that we are sharing with you today is a¬†delicious¬†salad we created¬†weeks ago…when the weather felt more ‘spring like’ and everyone was still¬†optimistic¬†about a sunny Easter! However, we think that you’ll be happy to hear that this salad requires minimal prep (and cooking), of which the majority¬†could be organised the night before, particularly¬†if you plan on having this salad for lunch.¬†

We love adding fruit to salad, not only is it¬†a great way to add some fibre, vitamins and minerals into your diet, such as¬†vitamin C, potassium and potentially¬†folate, but it’s the perfect solution for¬†satisfying¬†your sweet tooth in the evening. We’ve tried adding oranges, pineapple, mango, apples and even pears, but never peaches. So as you can probably gather, we’ve never¬†grilled peaches before either. So when thinking about some new, exciting and delicious salad¬†possibilities, this idea came to mind. The experience¬†was not life changing, but we definitely feel like we have been missing out! Delicate and juicy peaches become creamy and tender (almost dessert like). A sure fire way to transform your salad and enjoy one of the many plants nature has to offer. We threw in a few juicy blueberries and dried cranberries for another pop of colour, but the peaches (and dressing!) were¬†definitely¬†the stars of the show. The delicate and peppery rocket works beautifully with the sweet and slightly tangy/’aniseed-y’¬†tarragon dressing and the toasted walnuts provide¬†a delicious crunch. The inspiration for the dressing came from a well-known chef, which we adapted with much love and care into a format we can use happily throughout the summer months to come.¬†

 

 

The result: a salad full of bold flavours, great textures and the¬†privilege¬†to feel smug; eating2health has never been so easy (or tasty)!¬†With¬†hearty and nutritious lentils, plump and grilled peaches, toasted and¬†crunchy¬†walnuts, wild and peppery rocket and a sweet¬†and vibrant tarragon dressing… it’s just a sensory overload waiting to happen!

Happy cooking everyone! ūüėÄ

 

If you are looking for some additional salad inspiration, please make sure to check out some of our other ideas from our recipe index!

 

Fancy this recipe?! Just contact us¬†us for an easy-print PDF! ūüôā

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Roasted Vegetable Terrine with Mock Goat Cheese and Sun-dried Tomato Pesto

Diet & Weight Loss

What a fantastic recipe! So creative and nutritious- we can’t wait to try it! ūüôā

The Calgary Beet

If you‚Äôre hosting over the¬†holidays, you may¬†have at least one friend or family member requesting a vegetarian or vegan meal option.¬†This roasted vegetable¬†terrine is festive and makes¬†a rich¬†and hearty¬†vegan¬†option¬†for those on special diets. And it tastes divine ‚Äď food from the Gods in my opinion! Don‚Äôt omit the smoked chipotle pepper ‚Äď it adds such great flavour!¬†

There is nothing difficult about making this terrine¬†but there are three separate components that come together to make this dish what it is ‚Äď the tomato pesto, the nut¬†cheese and the roasted vegetables. Each of the individual components can be made ahead, and stored in the refrigerator until you are ready to assemble the terrine. Make the mock goat cheese first as it needs 24 hours to ripen.¬†

  IMG_6028

SERVES 8-10

Ingredients

  • 1 large red bell pepper
  • 1 large yellow bell pepper
  • 1 small eggplant, cut lengthwise into 1‚ĀĄ4‚Ä̂Ķ

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Curried Chickpeas & Sweet Potato Dinner Bowl

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 1
Prep & Cooking Time: 30-50* minutes (*Dependant upon cooking methods used!)

Notes: This recipe contains: Vitamin A, B-Vitamins, Vitamins C & K, protein, fibre, calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, zinc and is low in salt, sugar and saturated fats!

Who doesn’t love a great (healthy!) salad bowl- especially one that contains chickpeas and a fantastic curry flavour?! Well here’s a¬†lovely, simple¬†and¬†versatile recipe that provides just that; chickpeas…check, enticing¬†curry flavours…check, fantastic colours and a lovely crunch factor…of course! ūüėÄ

We used some leftover roasted sweet¬†potato, but feel free to use any of your favourite seasonal salad¬†vegetables, or any leftover roasted or steamed vegetables you might have knocking around! It’s worth noting¬†that when you use curry paste straight from the jar, it tastes realllly spicy!…So adjust the¬†quantity¬†to your own¬†preferences!

We have no doubt that this light and delicious curried-salad option is perfect for those summer days ahead! #getreadyfortheheatwaveUK #stayhydrated #SPF50 #alwayswearsunglasses

 

Ingredients:

+++++++++++++++++++++++++70g     Sweet potato
+++++++++++++++++++++++++40g     Kale
+++++++++++++++++++++++++150g   Cooked chickpeas
+++++++++++++++++++++++++80g     Green bell pepper
+++++++++++++++++++++++++30g     Red onion
+++++++++++++++++++++++++60g     Salad tomato
+++++++++++++++++++++++++16g      Radishes
+++++++++++++++++++++++++1/2       Lemon
+++++++++++++++++++++++++3g        Extra virgin olive oil
+++++++++++++++++++++++++3g        Curry paste (we used masala!)
+++++++++++++++++++++++++3g        Pumpkin seeds (unsalted)
+++++++++++++++++++++++++             Salt and Ground black pepper

 

Directions:

1. Heat the oven to 200C/400F. Wash and scrub the potato. Pierce the flesh several times with a fork. Place it onto a baking tray. Spray it with low-fat cooking oil. Bake in the oven for 30-40mins or until tender. Remove. Allow it to cool slightly and then chop it into bite-sized pieces.

Tip: If you are lacking time (or can’t stand the heat in the kitchen!), you could dice the potato (into bite-sized cubes) and place it on a baking tray¬†under a heated grill for about 15-20mins, OR¬†wrap the potato in a piece of kitchen paper and cook it in the microwave for 4-5mins (or until tender).

2. Wash and then place the kale into a streamer pot. Bring to a boil. Simmer and steam for about 5mins or until tender. Drain.

3. In the meantime, open, drain and rinse the chickpeas (if applicable). We used some of our prepared slow cooker ones!

4. Wash, remove the stem, de-seed and then chop the bell pepper into cubes.

5. Peel and finely slice the onion (dice if preferred!).

6. Wash, remove the stem and dice the tomato.

7. Wash, remove the stalk and then thinly slice the radish.

8. Wash the lemon; grate some zest, slice in half and then juice half of it.

9. Place the chickpeas into a small bowl. Pour over the lemon juice and oil. Add the curry paste. Mix to thoroughly coat.

10. Place the potato, kale, bell pepper, onion, tomato, radish and lemon zest into a large serving bowl. Throw in the chickpeas and scatter over the seeds.

 

 

Toss the salad together. Taste and season as necessary.

 

Enjoy!

 

 

Here’s another version that we’ve previously made!

Curried chickpeas, garlicky kale and broccoli with some fresh salad veggies. ūüôā

Potato Salad w/Quinoa

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 6-8
Prep & Cooking Time: 40 minutes

Notes: This recipe contains: Vitamins A, B-Vitamins, Vitamins C & E, protein, fibre, calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, zinc, has no added sugar and (per serving) is low in salt and fat! 

It’s been a while folks! Many apologies but we both have had other commitments on the go; like most people we’re¬†finding¬†life to be a fine balancing act!…Hopefully we can now tempt you with another¬†delicious salad straight from our kitchen to yours; for the lovers of salads, potatoes and/or summer alike!

In short, our¬†salad is simple, quick-ish (well, depending on how fast you can chop potatoes!), versatile and full of great flavours; enjoy it on your lunch break or at part of your next picnic or summer BBQ (as a main or side dish)! There’s no need to buy potato salad ever again (especially¬†the ones drowned in mayo)!

It’s definitely not your typical ‘eggy mayo-based’ potato salad containing over 30¬†grams of fat! There’s no eggy mayo in our salad, just plenty of veggies (but we wouldn’t have it any other way!), along with some quinoa for¬†additional¬†substance and a delicious nutty taste!

Yes, we were never big fans of ‘authentic mayo’…but the store-bought dairy-free (DF) versions don’t rock our world either! Our¬†DF mayo is tangy, creamy and easily adjusted to suit your personal taste. Try experimenting with different milks, nuts and oils; perhaps a¬†tahini or avocado based dressing is more your thing?! It’s worth noting that some combinations work better than others; we’ve previously made this ‘mayo’ with flaxseed oil…and unless you like it’s¬†distinct¬†and strong flavour, we wouldn’t recommend¬†it (save it for your soups, curries and smoothies instead)!¬†

 

Happy summer solstice everyone; we hope that you’re all having a great weekend! ūüėÄ #longestdayoftheyear #13weeksofglorioussummertogo

 

 

Ingredients:

 

Directions:

Place the cashews into a bowl of cold water. Allow them to soak.

 

 

In the meantime, place the quinoa into a sieve. Rinse it under cold water for 30 seconds. Cook it according to the packet instructions and then allow to cool.

Ours took 15 mins. ūüôā

 

 

Wash and quarter the potatoes.

 

 

Place them into a large sauepan¬†full of cold water. Add a little salt (if desired). Cover with a lid. Bring to the boil. Reduce to a simmer. Cook for approx.¬†6-8 minutes or until just ‘fork ready’. Drain in a large colander. Allow to cool slightly. NB: Please be vigilant! If your potatoes become too soft…you’ll end up having to make ‘mashed potato salad’!

 

 

In the meantime, peel and dice the shallots. Wash the bell pepper, remove the core and then finely chop it. Wash, trim the ends and finely dice the celery.

 

 

Wash, peel trim the ends and then grate the carrot. Wash and dice the cucumber.

 

 

Wash, trim the ends and finely slice the spring onion.

 

Wash, dry and remove the coriander leaves from the stem; finely chop.

 

 

Place a large non-stick frying water over a medium-low heat. Add 1-2 tbsp. of water. When it begins to bubble…

 

 

…add the shallot, bell pepper and celery.

 

 

Stir together. Cover with a lid. Steam-fry for about 4-5 minutes or until tender. Stir it occasionally; add more water as necessary. Remove from the heat.

 

 

If necessary, transfer the vegetables into a sieve and drain off any excess water.

 

 

Meanwhile, prepare the dairy-free mayo! Drain the cashews. Place them into a blender. Add the milk and the yoghurt.

 

 

Blend until smooth.

 

 

Add the vinegar, lemon juice, mustard powder and paprika. Season it to taste with the some black pepper.

 

 

Blend until combined. Pour in the oil whilst the blender is still running. Blend until it’s thick, creamy and thoroughly combined. Scrape the sides down with a silicone spatula before pouring it over the salad.

 

Salad Assembly!

Place the potatoes into a large resealable container or serving bowl (as appropriate).

 

 

Add the shallots, bell pepper, celery, carrot, cucumber half of the spring onion and parsley (reserve a little for a garnish if desired).

 

 

Pour over the ‘mayo’.

 

 

Using a spatula, gently fold the ingredients through the ‘mayo’¬†until coated. Taste and season as necessary.

 

 

Add the quinoa.

 

 

Gently fold it through the salad. Add a bit more yoghurt if a ‘wetter’ mixture is desired.Top with the remaining spring onion and a sprinkle of paprika (*optional).

Now it’s ready to be stored in the fridge (if applicable) or taken to your next family BBQ or picnic! …Along with those Baked Beans! ūüôā

 

 

Serve a portion…

 

 

…garnished with some parsley (if desired!).

 

Enjoy!

Leftovers!

We added a lot more yoghurt the next day as the quinoa absorbed some of the ‘mayo’ overnight! NB: We also added some fresh dill into this batch; it made a very tasty but almost ¬†‘Russian/Polish’ type salad! Yum! ūüôā

Refrigerate any leftovers in a resealable container; best consumed within 3-4 days.

Aubergine Dip

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 8*
Prep & Cooking Time: 60-80 minutes

Recipe adapted from: All TV Chefs…or in this case, Paul Hollywood!

Notes: This recipe contains: B-Vitamins, Vitamins C & E, calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, zinc and (per serving*) is low in salt, sugar and saturated fats!

Here’s another great dip for summer! Our ‘baba ganoush-style’ dip is delicious;¬†we have referred to¬†it as such¬†because ours is lacking in the¬†‘smokey taste’ that ‘authentic baba ganoush’ is known for!

Baba ganoush is thick Middle-Eastern dip made from¬†aubergines (a.k.a ‘eggplants’!), that can be enjoyed as part¬†of¬†a Middle-eastern meal and/or with flatbreads, or with wholemeal pitta, bread sticks, crudities, salads or as part of a delicious sandwich or pasta meal!

As this was our¬†first time preparing it,¬†we used one of many recipes available through¬†our favourite search engine! We slightly adjusted the quantities and used¬†pur√©ed¬†garlic instead of fresh, but it still turned out great! ūüôā If you want a ‘smoother/less grainy’ consistency, we’d recommend that you remove the seeds before¬†pur√©eing¬†the¬†aubergine… although the seeds do not¬†affect the taste! ¬†¬†

 

 

Ingredients:

+++++++++++++++++++++++++780g        Aubergine
+++++++++++++++++++++++++1               Lemon
+++++++++++++++++++++++++                Fresh parsley (*optional; to be used as a garnish)
+++++++++++++++++++++++++ 30ml      Extra virgin oil
+++++++++++++++++++++++++18g          Garlic paste
+++++++++++++++++++++++++22g          Tahini paste
+++++++++++++++++++++++++                Salt

 

 

Directions:

Heat the oven to 190¬įC/375¬įF. Line a baking tray with a silicone mat or parchment paper.

 

Wash the aubergines. Prick each side gently with a fork. Place them¬†onto the baking tray.¬†When the oven has come up to temperature, place the tray into oven. Bake the aubergines for 30-60 minutes, or until they’re soft and slightly blackened; turn once.¬†NB: If preferred, you can grill the aubergines…as suggested in the¬†original recipe!

 

 

In the meantime, juice the lemon. If applicable, wash, dry and roughly chop some parsley.

 

 

Once, the aubergine’s skin has ‘blackened’ and the¬†flesh is soft, remove it from the oven. Leave it on the tray and allow it¬†to cool slightly.

We baked ours for 50 minutes. NB: Our skins ended up with more of a dark-brown hue rather than a blackened one.

 

 

Once cooled, slice it into halves…

 

 

…spoon out the flesh and discard the skin.

 

 

Place the oil, garlic paste, tahini and lemon juice into a food processor…

 

 

…followed by the aubergine.

 

 

Pulse until creamy and blended together (or until your desired consistency is achieved). Season it with some salt to taste.

 

 

Remove and transfer the dip into a large serving dish (if applicable) or portion out as required. Garnish it with some parsley (if applicable).

 

 

Enjoy!

 

 

NB: Refrigerate any leftovers in a resealable container; stir well before serving and it’s best consumed within 3-4¬†days. ūüôā

Soya & Vegetable Spaghetti Bolognese

Healthy Recipes, Meatless Monday

Serves: 4
Prep & Cooking Time: 35-40 mins
Type: Main Meal
Tools: Chopping Board, sharp knife, sieve, bowl, 2* non-stick pots, wooden spoon

Notes: This recipe contains: Vitamin A, B-Vitamins, Vitamin C, carbohydrates, protein, fibre, iron, potassium and per serving is low in added salt, sugars and saturated fats.

‘Veganising’ a¬†recipe of this nature was effortless! In no time at all we created a pasta¬†sauce¬†that is not only plant-based and versatile but most importantly, nutritious and¬†delicious! If you’ve never used dried soya mince before and/or fancy something new for your pasta night, we’d thoroughly suggest that you give this recipe a try! It’s packed full of great flavours from a tasty medley of veggies and¬†seasoning’s¬†alike (hint: the¬†soya mince is great at absorbing of all these tasty¬†elements¬†from your dish!), and a¬†wonderful ‘meaty’ texture from the mince! Serve it over some hearty wholemeal or GF spaghetti¬†and you’re good to go!

It’s good to note that:

  • We used some frozen veggies because we had some on hand, but feel free to use fresh, frozen and/or anything seasonal!

 

Quick Foodie Facts:

  • This meal contains about 4 servings of vegetables (per serving/*based on four servings) towards you 5-A-Day!¬†
  • The soya mince is easy to use, inexpensive and also a great source of protein! Check out some of other health benefits from¬†soya products mentioned here.

Happy cooking everyone!

 

Ingredients

++++++++++++180g        Frozen Mushrooms
++++++++++++100g        Frozen Bell Peppers
++++++++++++80g          White Onion
++++++++++++8g            Garlic Clove
++++++++++++240g        Courgette
++++++++++++180g         Carrot
++++++++++++50g          Dehydrated Soya Mince
++++++++++++                 Low-Fat Cooking Oil
++++++++++++ 10g          Balsamic Vinegar (2 tbsp.)
++++++++++++10g           Lemon Juice (2 tbsp.)
++++++++++++4g             Herb Blend (2g of each: Dried Basil & Dried Oregano)
++++++++++++2g             Sweet Paprika
++++++++++++                 Salt & Ground Black Pepper
++++++++++++2               Tins Plum Tomatoes (800g/ unsalted)
++++++++++++40g          Tomato Purée (unsalted)
++++++++++++65-80g    Wholemeal Spaghetti (use GF if required)/person

Need an easy-print recipe? Print here. ūüôā

 

Directions

  • If you’re using frozen mushrooms and bell peppers, place them into a microwavable dish. Place them into a microwave and¬†defrost them. Drain.
  • Alternatively wash and prepare any fresh mushrooms and peppers to your own personal preferences.¬†Prepare the remaining vegetables. Peel and finely chop the onion and garlic. Wash¬†the courgette,¬†trim off its ends, slice it (vertically) and then chop it into thin slices. Wash, trim the ends, peel and then dice the carrot.
  • Rehydrate the soya mince according to the packet instructions. Drain. Tip: Make sure to follow the instructions to a ‘T’!¬†We used about¬†150ml of freshly boiled (and seasoned) water; the whole process took about 7¬†mins.

 

In the meantime…

  • Heat a non-stick pot¬†over a medium-low heat. Spray it with some low-fat cooking oil.
  • Add the onion and garlic. Gently fry for 1-2 mins or until softened.
  • Add the mushrooms, bell pepper, courgette and carrot. Gently fry for 3-4 mins or until softened.
  • Add 2 tbsp vinegar, 2 tbsp lemon juice, 4g herb blend and sweet paprika. Season it to taste with some salt and a few grinds of black pepper. Mix to coat.
  • Add the tin tomatoes and tomato pur√©e. Mix to combine. Tip: Use the edge of your frying spatula or wooden spoon to crush the tomatoes.¬†
  • Add the rehydrated soya mince. Stir it through the sauce.
  • Cover with a lid. Simmer and cook for about 12 mins, stirring occasionally. NB: Leave the lid loosely covering the pot for the last half of the cooking process.
  • Remove from the heat. Taste and season the sauce as necessary. Tip: Tinned tomatoes can be slightly bitter; if necessary just add a pinch of sugar or sweetener to help balance out the flavours! Leave the pot covered until you are ready to serve.¬†Give the sauce a good stir before serving.
  • Meantime, cook the pasta according to the packet instructions whilst the sauce is cooking. Drain.

 

Serve warm. Transfer the pasta into a large serving bowl. Ladle over the sauce. Tip: A drizzle of balsamic glaze or a scattering of fresh herbs and/or toasted pine nuts would make for an extra tasty finish!

 

Enjoy!

 

Refrigerate any leftovers in an air-tight and resealable container; reheat and consume within 2-3 days. Alternatively freeze in a resealable container(s); best consumed within 1-2 months, just defrost and reheat before use.

Tofu, Pea & Oyster Mushroom Stir-Fry

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 4
Prep & Cooking time: 65-75 minutes

Notes: This recipe contains: B-vitamins, Vitamins C & E, protein, fibre, calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, potassium, phosphorus, and (per serving) is low in salt and saturated fats!

This stir-fry recipe can be summed up into three words: spicy, fresh and delicious! It’s a simple recipe with a spicy sauce;¬†it uses the Eat2Health’s ‘baked tofu’ as seen in previous recipes!¬†If you prefer things a little less heated, use half the amount of raw chilli and chilli flakes. ūüôā

 

If your short on time, prepare the tofu the day/night before!

 

 

 

Ingredients:

 

 

Nutritional Info:

NB: To reduce the fat content further, omit the rapeseed oil and use more low-fat cooking oil instead and slightly reduce the quantity of tofu used.

 

 

Directions:

Open and drain the tofu. Place it between two heavy chopping boards for approximately 20-30 minutes to remove any excess water.

 

In the meantime, heat the oven to 200¬įC/400¬įF. Line a baking tray with a silicone mat or parchment paper. Spray it with a little low-fat cooking oil (if desired).

We used approx. four¬†‘sprays’ and then spread it across the mat with a silicone spatula.

 

 

Meanwhile, wash, remove the stem, de-seed and dice the chilli. Wash, peel and chop the ginger. Peel and dice the garlic.

 

 

Wash the peas. Wash and dry the mushrooms. De-shell the nuts (if applicable). Wash, trim the ends and slice the onion.

 

 

 Drain and chop the tofu into small pieces (cubes). Place them onto the baking tray. Lightly spray with some low-fat cooking oil.

We used approx. three more ‘sprays’.

 

 

Place the baking tray into the oven. Bake for approx. 20 minutes or until lightly golden. Remove.

 

 

Meanwhile, place a small saucepan over a medium-low heat. Add the onion, water, sugar, starch and chilli flakes. Whisk together until the flour and sugar have dissolved. Pour in the vinegar. Season it to taste with some salt. Mix together.

NB: We have advised you to use slightly less water than we have here.

 

 

Keep whisking until the sauce begins to thicken. Remove from the heat.

It will develop a glossy appearance from the starch.

 

 

 In the meantime, cook the noodles according to the packet instructions. Drain.

Ours took 3 minutes to cook!

 

 

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a non-stick wok over a medium heat.

 

 

Add the chilli, ginger and garlic. Gently fry for 1-2 minutes, or until softened.

 

 

Add the peas. Gently fry for 1 minute.

 

 

Add the mushrooms. Gently fry for a further 1-2 minutes.

 

 

Add the baked tofu. Gently mix together.

 

 

Pour in the sauce. Mix together. Stir the mixture until the sauce comes to a gentle boil.

 

 

Remove from the heat. Add and stir through the nuts.

You might see the odd noodle in our wok; we changed our minds at the last moment! We were going to mix the noodles into the mixture, but felt there was already enough going on in the wok!

 

 

Serve warm. Transfer the noodles into a large serving bowl. Top with the stir-fry mixture.

We garnished ours with a sprinkling of sesame seeds. ūüôā ¬†How does everyone rate their ‘chop stick’ skills?!

 

Enjoy!

 

 

Refrigerate any leftovers in a resealable container; reheat and consume within 3 days.

A Roasted Mushroom Sandwich (With Kidney Bean & Red Lentil Spread!)

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 1
Prep, Cooking & Assembley: 30-40 minutes

Notes:

For those that were following along last week… you might remember our red kidney bean dip/spread that we made? If not, check it out here!

We created this sandwich using our¬†spread and thought we’d share it with you! This recipe doesn’t require a lot of time or money!

It’s just another healthy post (for those that love a good sandwich!) to help you¬†think outside box; enabling everyone¬†to have something tasty and nutritious for lunch! This sandwich can easily be prepared the night before (or at the very least, you can prep the¬†vegetables!) to ensure you have a delicious and satisfying meal…and make your¬†lunch box rock! ¬†

The mushroom provided a tasty and ‘meaty’ texture that tasted great with our spicy spread and the peppery rocket! We hope that you enjoy it as much as we did,…right down to the last mouthful! ¬†ūüôā

 

Ingredients:

+++++++++++++++++++++++++80g   Large mushroom
+++++++++++++++++++++++++          Fry Spray (low-fat cooking oil)
+++++++++++++++++++++++++          Salt & Ground black pepper
+++++++++++++++++++++++++          Dried thyme
+++++++++++++++++++++++++60g   Salad tomato
+++++++++++++++++++++++++10g    Wild rocket
+++++++++++++++++++++++++75g    Wholemeal baguette (GF if required)
+++++++++++++++++++++++++20g    Kidney bean dip/spread

 

Directions:

Heat the oven to 200¬įC/400¬įF. Line a baking sheet with a silicone mat or some parchment paper.

 

Wash and dry the mushroom. Place it onto the baking sheet (bottom side up). Spray it with some low-fat cooking oil. Sprinkle over some thyme. Season it to taste with some salt and black pepper.

We roasted a whole package; loads of mushrooms in our meals that week!

 

 

Meanwhile, wash, remove the stem and thinly slice the tomato. Wash and dry the rocket.

 

 

Place the backing sheet into the oven. Roast the mushroom for 10 minutes. Remove. Turn once. Place it back into the oven. Roast for a further 10-15 minutes. Remove. Allow to cool slightly. Cut into slices.

Ours took a total of 25 minutes.

 

 

In the meantime, heat or warm¬†the baguette (if desired)… and make a cup of tea! ūüėÄ

 

 

 Assemble the sandwich! Cut the baguette lengthways.

We cut ours into two halves,¬†but you can always just ‘cut and fold it open’.

 

 

Spread the inside of each half with the spread.

 

 

Layer the bottom half with some tomato.

 

 

Assemble the mushroom over the tomato.

Is your mouth watering yet?! ūüėÄ

 

 

Spoon a little more of the spread over the mushroom (if desired). Place the rocket over the other half of the bread.

 

 

Finish off¬†the sandwich with the top half of the baguette…

 

 

… and enjoy!

This is not deja vu! This is the spread that we used last week! ¬† NB: Our sandwich ¬†contained¬†approx. 260kcal and 1.9g Fat. ūüėÄ

Oriental Vegetable & Rice Bowl

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 2
Prep & Cooking time: 35-40 minutes

Notes: This recipe contains: Vitamin A, B-vitamins, Vitamins C, K & E, protein, fibre, calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium and is low in saturated fats!

Who doesn’t love a bowl full of ‘colourful goodness’?! This recipe has all the flavours of a stir-fry but without actually stir-frying! ¬†It’s a simple, nutritious, frugal, and tasty meal that you can throw together any time of the week!¬†Use fresh or frozen ingredients; check out our other ideas below for further¬†ways¬†to adapt this recipe!¬†

Quick facts:

  • This recipe contains approx 4.5 portions of fruit/vegetables towards your 5-A-Day!
  • This is a high fibre meal (talk about pointing out the bleeding obvious!)!

 

We didn’t use the low-fat cooking oil; we ended up steaming and boiling everything instead!

 

 

Ingredients:

 

Nutritional Info:

NB: Per serving, this recipe contains moderate amounts (orange traffic light alert!) of fat and salt and low levels (green traffic light!) of saturated fat; there is approximately 1.8g of added sugar/serving (another green traffic light!).

 

 

Directions:

Cook the rice according to the packet instructions.

 

 

Meanwhile, place a small pot full of cold water over a medium-low heat. Bring to the boil. Add the beans. Reduce to a simmer. Cook for 4-6 minutes or until tender. Drain.

It was a freezer ‘clean out’! We used 50g of soya beans and 30g of broad beans.

 

 

In the meantime, cut the stalk off the head of broccoli. Separate the florets from the remaining stem; cut the florets into halves (or quarters if preferred). Discard the stalk/stem (or prepare it and use it in your meal!) and wash the florets.

 

 

Wash, trim the ends, peel and chop the carrot into ‘match-stick’ pieces.

 

 

Place the broccoli and carrot into a steamer pot with some cold water. Bring to the boil. Reduce to a simmer. Steam for 4-5 minutes or until just tender. Drain.

 

 

In the meantime, wash, peel and grate the ginger. Wash, remove the stem, de-seed (keep the seeds intact if you prefer spicier dishes!) and chop the chilli into thin strips. Wash, trim the ends and chop the onion into half (tops & bottoms); finely slice the onion and keep the halves separated. Wash, remove the stem, de-seed and chop the bell pepper into cubes.

 

 

Meanwhile, prepare the dressing. Place the ginger, chilli, onion (top half only), soya sauce, vinegar, sugar, lime juice and oil (if using) into a large measuring jug. Mix to combine and dissolve the sugar.

 

 

Place the beans, broccoli, carrot and bell pepper into a large mixing bowl.

 

 

Pour over the dressing.

 

 

Mix to coat. Taste and season/flavour it as necessary.

We added a little bit more lime juice!

 

 

Serve warm. Place the rice into a large serving bowl.

 

 

Add the vegetable mixture. Garnish with the remaining onion and peanuts.

We added¬†a sprinkling of sesame seeds on the rice. ūüôā

 

 

Enjoy!

 

 

Refrigerate any leftovers in a resealable container (ideally, place the rice into the fridge within an hour after cooking); reheat and consume within 1-2 days.

NB: When reheating, always check to make sure the rice is steaming hot all the way through and do not reheat the rice more than once. 

 

If¬†preferred…

  • Make the vegetable medley and dressing your own! ¬†NB: Try making a spicy mustard vinaigrette or sweet chilli dressing- the sky is the limit!
  • Use quinoa, millet, brown long grain rice, wholemeal pasta or buckwheat soba noodles instead of the basmati rice!
  • We recommend washing down this meal with a small glass of unsweetened and¬†fortified almond milk!

 

A Walk In The Park: Birds, Rain & Romans

Exercise, Healthy Mind

Whether you are you a stickler for consuming your¬†5-A-Day or follow a vegan or a pescetarian diet… The very definition of being healthy incorporates¬†not only eating a ‘healthy diet’ but by also by implementing some sort of realistic fitness plan/routine.

Exercise doesn’t have to consist of¬†a gruelling regime in the gym.¬†When given the chance, we think that most people¬†would¬†prefer to be outdoors. We’re designed to move and we should make the most of what nature has to offer…rain or shine!

We know it’s less motivating when the trees are still bare, the wind has an icy bite and a blast of rain is imminent… but that’s what big, fuzzy apparel and robust winter¬†boots are for!

 

This week we decided to stretch our legs with a trip into a Hertfordshire park. As you can see from the map, it’s a great size with lots of things to do (including plenty of hills to climb!).

This park is named after the Roman city ‘Verulamium’ on which it stands….

 

 

 

¬†We¬†enjoyed an hour’s walk through sunshine, rain, a freak sleet storm…

 

 

…and groups of ravenous ducks!

 

 

This is a lovely park located¬†within the centre of¬†a historic town….so it’s obviously close to local amenities, like this pub….

If you venture off into¬†the other direction, it will lead you to ‘The Waffle House’! Haha! Despite it having excellent reviews… it is unfortunately not vegan friendly! ūüė¶

 

Just joking! We did not go into any pub, even at the end of our walk when we were cold and drenched!

 

 

With cheap bird seed on sale in the park’s cafe, the birds¬†appreciate and expect to be fed…some even started to quack at the sound of our little, brown paper bag rustling…

So many ducks and beautiful swans…

 

 

Some of the¬†swans we all too keen to show me their ‘bullying technique’ when it came to ‘feeding time’…

 

 

…biting at my hands…they really didn’t like eating off the pavement…but I guess who can really blame them?!

 

 

So we gave up and just enjoyed the peace and quiet (once we¬†tuned out the sound of all of the honking Canadian geese!) and the sites, like these Roman ruins…

The remains of  the Roman city walls

 

 

This one is for all you history buffs or lovers of everything ‘English’…

 

We would have loved to have shown you more of these sites….but if you didn’t notice, the sign is stained in rain drops! The sky soon opened up and pelted us with heavy rain, followed by sleet. So we had to get a move on!

 

 

Our walk quickly turned into sprint…but we realised we still had one more bag of bird seed; we decided to brave the birds¬†one last time. They were hungry and perhaps a bit aggravated about the freak storm…

Please excuse my ‘bear-paw’ blocking the corner of the camera lens!

 

 

A huge swan emerged from the pond and became aggressive; it snatched¬†the bag of seeds from Al….and that was enough of that!

 

 

We’d just like to point out that it’s great to support your local wildlife, but please respect the advice laid out by the parks… do not feed birds white bread! This poor goose was a little worse for wear and feeding it¬†half of loaf of bread from¬†your local baker’s isn’t going to help matters…

Birds can be nutritionally depleted too! ūüė¶

 

 

When the weather is more desirable (and the equipment is a little less slippery!), this outdoor ‘gym’…

Adidas allows everyone to bust a move in the park!

 

 

mini¬†climbing wall…

To the left of this climbing wall is a large tennis court, and to the right is a custom-made volley ball court.

 

 

or basketball court…

To the left of this court is a huge, kids play area and numerous football pitches…perfect¬†for when you’re tired of your kids turning you into a human gym-set! ūüôā

 

 

…are among many of the¬†resources that this park has to offer…which all allow people to¬†support a¬†healthy lifestyle with innovative¬†ways of¬†spicing up their¬†fitness routines!

 

 

As we left the park¬†we noticed that spring is just on the horizon with this¬†budding tree…

Little pink buds are always a great sign!

 

 

…along with these little flowers that are lining the church cemetery.

We’re not sure what these flowers are; there are¬†also many beautiful daffodils flowering around Hertfordshire at the moment too!

 

 

It’s always great to end a¬†walk on a positive note; we would thoroughly recommend this park, rain or shine!

 

 

So we’d like to encourage everyone¬†to get out into their¬†local parks (or green spaces) this weekend and take their¬†dog for a stroll, or allow their¬†little ones the enjoyment of kicking a football across the pitch or just being able to run around (and be kids!)… and of course to allow yourself to de-stress from the week’s events.

 

So remember everyone- let’s all Eat2Health and get out and¬†about more often!

Butter Bean & Red Pepper Dip/Spread

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 8-10
Preparation:¬†‚ȧ5 minutes
Cooking time : 35 minutes
Assembly:10-15 minutes

Notes: This recipe contains: Vitamin A, B-Vitamins, Vitamin C, protein, calcium, iron, phosphorus, potassium, magnesium, no added sugars and is low in salt and fats.

This recipe strangely gives me hope that those lovely spring days are just on the horizon; hot soups, stews and casseroles become a thing of the past and we can all enjoy colourful salads, dips and delicious meze type meals. 

This is¬†an extremely easy recipe to prepare, especially when you ‘cheat’ and use¬†cooked beans (like we did)! It’s also really tasty and¬†versatile; we think some fresh chilli or smoked paprika would also¬†make great additions or ingredient swaps.The butter¬†beans work well due to their natural creamy consistency- great for dips, baking and¬†maybe even some sort of vegan pate?!¬†

 

NB: The drained weight of our beans was approx. 470g.

 

Ingredients:

++++++++++++++++++++++++400g    Red bell pepper
++++++++++++++++++++++++             1kcal Fry spray (low-fat cooking oil)
++++++++++++++++++++++++2           Tins Butter beans (unsalted water)
++++++++++++++++++++++++120g     Plain soya yoghurt (unsweetened)
++++++++++++++++++++++++2g          Sweet paprika
++++++++++++++++++++++++1g          Ground cumin
++++++++++++++++++++++++              Salt & ground black pepper

 

 

Nutritional Info:

¬†If you’re a fan of using the FSA traffic light system, our dip gets green lights all the way!

¬†This recipe is great for those leading a healthier lifestyle. ūüôā

*Check out the serving portion guide below- you’ll see that it’s quite generous!

Eating the same quantity (124g) of another dip/spread, e.g.¬†a standard store-bought houmous, could provide you with approximately: 200-400Kcal, 15-35g fat, 1.7g-3g S/fat & 1-1.5g salt. Most people would probably not eat this type of portion size (of houmous!)…but you can see that it’s a big difference for those trying to watch their calorie intake!

 

 

Directions:

Heat the oven to 180¬įC/350¬įF. Line a roasting tin with a silicone mat or aluminium foil.

 

Wash the bell peppers. Place them into the tin. Spray with some low-fat cooking oil.

 

Place the tin into the oven. Roast for approximately 35 minutes or until tender and lightly ‘charred’. Remove. Allow to cool slightly.

NB: Do not allow them¬†to become cold; the skin is easier to remove whilst it’s still warm.

 

 

In the meantime, drain and rinse the beans under cool water. Leave to drain.

 

 

Peel away and skin the bell peppers. Discard the skin, stem and the seeds.

NB: I didn’t remove all of the skin; the choice is yours!

 

 

Place the beans, bell pepper, yoghurt, paprika and cumin into a food processor. Season it with some salt and black pepper to taste.

 

 

Pulse until ‘smoothish’ and a vibrant shade of red!

 

 

Remove and transfer into a resealable container. Taste and season it as preferred.

We added little more black pepper and cumin. ūüôā

 

 

Enjoy as a dip, an addition to your salad bowl or as a sandwich spread!

Those lovely baked ‘green’ falafels are making an appearance again…sadly they’re the last ones in the fridge ūüė¶ NB: Serving guide: this picture represents approx. 1/8 of the dip.

 

 

Refrigerate in an air-tight/resealable container; consume within 1-3 days.

NB: If you’re using fresh ingredients, than it might keep for approx. 5 days.

 

 

If preferred…

  • Experiment with a wide range of vegetables and/or legumes or pulses and see what wonderful and¬†delicious combinations you can come up with! ¬†ūüôā

Tofu & Veggie Ravioli + 5 Minute Marinara Sauce [Vegan & Gluten Free]

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 6-8
Yields: about 24 ravioli
Prep: 60-90 mins
Cooking Time: 3-5 mins
Type: Main Meal
Tools: Mixing bowl, silicone spatula, kitchen film, frying pan, food processor, bowl, rolling pin, large plate, large pot(s)

Notes: This recipe contains: Vitamin A, B-Vitamins, Vitamins C & K, carbohydrates, protein, fibre, calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese,potassium, has no added sugars and per serving  is low in salt* and saturated fats*! 

Who loves pasta dishes?! We do! Apart from preparing pasta sauces, we’ve never attempted making our own pasta. It truly is a labour of love- one that needs to be respected; we’re sure we have broken the hearts of many Italian grandmothers‚Äô‚Ķ as they look at our finished product in despair! Sorry! Maybe we should consult with L at Bubblesandbooyah¬† or Kiana at The Italian Vegan way of Life on this matter?!

Our ravioli does not look¬†authentic, that’s for sure…more anaemic! This is because typical¬†ravioli recipes use several eggs, which gives it its standard yellow/beige appearance; not ideal for us following plant-based diets! If this is a big issue for you, try using fresh herbs, spices (make sure it complements your filling) or perhaps some cooled, green vegetable water (from the drained spinach) instead of the plain water the recipe instructs to help colour your pasta.

For anyone that has attempted GF baking or has prepared GF pastry or dough…it’s not very straight forward! To say that it’s daunting might be a bit of an understatement! However, this feeling passes- it’s quite liberating preparing a whole meal from scratch (apart from growing your own foods of course!). We’re¬†not going to lie though; this recipe can be quite time consuming, especially if you do not own any pasta gadgets, are new to the ‘pasta making world’ or using GF dough for that matter.

If you have the patience and the desire to make GF ravioli, then you‚Äôre in good hands! Ours was really tasty (we can’t stress that enough!) and the finished product was ‘respectable’…well, it definitely looked ‘homemade’, perhaps by people¬†that doesn’t really know what they‚Äôre doing?! …Well, that might be partially true! ūüėõ

We¬†admit there is a science to it, one that we are¬†still working on!¬†If you are have stronger, GF pasta making skills than we¬†do, or any advice or tips it would be greatly appreciated!¬†We have also included another marinara sauce recipe. This one is slightly different from our other recipe¬†that we supplied you with last week; it’s ultra-quick and thrifty! If you do decide to use a store bought brand instead, as always, be mindful of the salt, sugar and fat contents!

Happy cooking everyone! ūüôā

 

Need an easy-print recipe? Print here. ūüôā

 

Ingredients

NB: If you have a ‘tried and true’ GF or standard dough recipe, feel free to use that instead!

 

 

Nutritional Info (Prepared Ravioli Only)

NB: To reduce the fat content further, omit the olives and the tahini from the filling.

*Low in salt and saturated fats based on eight servings.

 

 

Directions

Prepare the dough. Place 300g rice flour, 60g corn flour, 80g potato starch, 8g xanthan gum, 1g basil, 2g thyme and 2g salt into a large mixing bowl.

 

 

Mix until combined. Make a ‘well’ in the centre of the mixture.

 

 

Add 1 tbsp oil and 300ml cold water.

NB: Make sure you use cold water! Hot water will make the corn flour, potato starch and xanthan gum turn into a horrible mess.

 

 

Use a spatula; stir and combine the mixture until the dough is smooth and tacky.

 

 

Place the dough onto the middle of a piece of kitchen film.

 

 

Wrap and completely seal. Place it into the fridge for a minimum of 20 mins.

 

In the meantime, prepare the filling.

 

Place the spinach into a microwavable bowl; defrost in the microwave. Drain. Place the bread into a toaster. Gently heat until lightly brown and crispy. Place it into a food processor. Peel and dice the shallot and garlic. Wash, dry and finely dice the mushrooms. Wash, remove the stem and core and then finely chop the bell pepper. Wash, peel and finely grate the carrot. Drain, rinse and dice the olives. Wash and chop the basil leaves; discard most of the stems. Place the bread in the food processor. Process it until breadcrumbs are achieved; remove and transfer into a small bowl.

The amount of bell pepper we have advised is approx. half a pepper…so this is why we have suggested to use the other half in the marinara sauce.

 

Heat a non-stick frying pan over a medium-low heat. Spray it with some low-fat cooking oil. Add the shallot and garlic. Gently fry for 1-2 mins or until softened.

NB: We used four ‘sprays’.

 

 

Add the mushrooms, bell pepper and carrot. Gently fry for 3-5 mins, or until softened and most of the water has been removed. Remove from the heat.

NB: We used two more ‘sprays’.

 

 

Meanwhile, drain the tofu. Place it into in the food processor. Pulse until creamy.

 

 

Transfer it into a large mixing bowl.

 

 

Transfer the vegetable mixture into a separate bowl. Allow it to cool slightly.

 

 

Place the spinach and olives into the frying pan. Gently fry for 1-2 mins; allow the spinach to steam-dry slightly. Gently separate/shred some of the fibres with a fork. Remove from the heat.

 

 

Add the vegetable and separate spinach mixture, along with the basil, breadcrumbs, oregano, thyme and tahini into the large mixing bowl. Mix and thoroughly combine.

 

Add the flour. Mix to combine.

 

 

Let’s Assemble The Ravioli!

Disclaimer: We¬†will be¬†commentating¬†on the best ‘working scenario’ (based on our¬†previous¬†failures and current mistakes); occasionally the pictures may not seem in sync or an accurate representation of¬†each step. So please bare with us- we’ll get there in the end!

Tip:¬†If you have a ravioli mould/tray or cutters- dig them our of your cupboards and use them!¬†Otherwise let’s prepare these ravioli’s using this ‘freestyle’ method.

 

Prepare a clean and lightly floured work surface. Tip: have a large plate, a little dish of water and some spare flour nearby.

We were  ambitious and thought we could make the ravioli in 2 stages instead of four! Two words- fat chance!

 

Divide the dough into four pieces/balls. Place one piece onto the work surface and re-wrap the remaining dough. NB: This dough tends to dry out quickly, so always re-wrap it!¬†Knead the dough into the flour until it is slightly ‘less’ tacky.¬†Roll the dough into a long and narrow-ish strip (approx. 12″x4″).

We measured the dough and these were the approx. dimensions. Please feel free to experiment! NB: We feel that this is about as thin as this dough would allow without it falling apart!

 

 

Test and try to lift the dough slightly. Tip: you need to make sure it’s not sticking to the work surface (if it is, add a little more flour) and that it’s not going to completely fall apart when moved.

We¬†tested our dough by re-rolling it onto the rolling pin. NB: The dough on this rolling pin represents half the quantity of dough. It wasn’t long after this picture that we¬†divided the dough into four working pieces.

 

 

Roughly mark the dough into six equal squares.

 

 

Spoon and place the filling onto the centre of one side of the dough.

NB: This represents the maximum amount of filling you can use.

 

Cut the dough down the middle. Separate the dough into two strips. Tip: a quicker method would be to fold the half without the filling over the other half of the dough. Press, mould, shape and then cut out the¬†individual¬†ravioli’s.¬†

 

Gently re-roll the strip (without the filling), creating a slightly larger and¬†thinner half. Tip: we¬†have suggested this because GF dough is less forgiving/stretchy than normal wheat-dough (because of its¬†wonderful powers it obtains from¬†gluten) and you have to make sure it’s going to cover all of the ravioli! However, if you are using half of the amount of filling, you may be able to skip this step entirely.

 

 

If you’re brave enough, place and align the re-rolled strip over the top of the other strip (with the filling). Gently press down in-between each piece; helping to shape the ravioli. Gently cup and continue to shape each piece with your hands; allowing the dough to wrap around the filling. Cut and separate the six¬†pieces. Pinch the edges of each ravioli together and then fold the edges up and over itself; crimp and press to seal the ravioli. NB: You might have to complete¬†this step with the help of a wet fork.

If your a little clumsy with GF dough or with the ravioli-making process (like myself)….you can do what I did (explained below!)

 

 

After you have re-rolled the strip, cut it into six separate pieces. Cut the other strip (with the filling) into six separate pieces. Individually place each piece re-rolled piece of dough over a piece of the prepared dough (as shown).

i.e. prepared dough with filling.

 

Cup and shape the ravioli dough around the filling with your hands. Pinch the edges of the ravioli together and then fold the edges up and over itself; crimp and press to seal the ravioli (as we have previously mentioned, a wet fork is great for this step!).

We’re¬†¬†sorry about the lack of pictures at this stage! Our¬†hands were covered in flour and filling- neither of which you want smeared on your camera!

 

 

Place all of the prepared ravioli’s onto a clean plate. Cover¬†and¬†seal with a piece of kitchen film.¬†Repeat these steps with the remaining three pieces/sections¬†of dough and filling until all of it has been used.

To stop them drying out!

 

Now might be a good time to place two large pots over a medium heat and bring to the boil; it can take some time to heat the water. However, if you are slower at this process, just wait until you’re finished- there’s no need to add more potential stress into the equation!

You can use one large pot….if you have it…and/or if your brave enough to man-handle over ten ravioli’s cooking at once!

 

All twenty-four¬†ravioli’s ready to go!

 

 

If you haven’t already, place two large saucepans over a medium heat and bring to the boil.¬†Meanwhile,¬†prepare our ‘5 minute thrifty marinara sauce’ (if applicable)! Just open the tinned tomatoes and then place all of the sauce ingredients into a blender.¬†Blend until smooth.¬†Pour into a small pot.¬†Place the pot¬†over a medium-low heat. Gently heat the sauce to low-grade simmer and then reduce the heat. Cover with a lid; keep it over a low heat setting until served.

We ¬†saved some for later in the week and some for now… ūüôā

 

Cooking The Ravioli!

Once the water begins to boil, place about 4-5 pieces into each pot using a large, slotted spoon;¬†reduce to a medium heat. Loosely cover with a lid.¬†Once the ravioli’s start to rise to the top and/or the water comes to more of a rapid boil- remove the lid. Cook the ravioli’s for 3-5 mins or until tender.

NB: Ours took approx. 4 minutes to cook.

 

 

Remove them with the slotted spoon. Place them into a large colander (not onto a plate like we have in this picture!). Cover with some kitchen foil and allow them to drain.

NB: They don’t get a chance to drain properly on a plate…which means extra water added to your sauce! :/

 

 

Repeat these steps until all of the ravioli has been cooked.

All in all the cooking process was a success! There were a few that lost a corner on the way out of the pot but that’s trivial! Previously, we’ve had ravioli’s that have disintegrated whilst cooking because we¬†allowed the water to boil too rapidly…lol (it wasn’t really that funny at the time)! ¬†Cooking 101: DO NOT allow you ravioli’s to ride tidal waves in your saucepan!

 

 

Serve warm. Spoon the ravioli into a large bowl or pasta dish. Ladle over the sauce. Season it with some black pepper to taste. Garnish with fresh basil and/or chopped tomatoes (if desired).

NB: This picture represents 2 servings (*Based on the ravioli serving 8).

It might be advised to wear a red t-shirt; it depends on how ravenous you are! J/K! We are all ‘mindful’ eaters. ūüėÄ

Enjoy!

 

Refrigerate any leftovers in a resealable container; reheat and consume within 3-5 days. Alternatively, freeze in an air-tight/resealable container; defrost, reheat and consume within 3 months.

NB: Do not store uncooked ravioli in the fridge overnight. We¬†attempted this once (trying to save time with food prep for the next night), but the next day they were all a bit soggy…and cooking them didn’t improve matters! We’re¬†not one-hundred percent¬†sure as to why this occurred…and unless you do, we wouldn’t recommend it!

 

If preferred…

  • The world is your oyster! Make the¬†filling your own! Just make sure to decrease/remove the water content of any vegetables used (by lightly frying/steam-frying) before preparing your ravioli.
  • If gluten is not of concern, try using wholemeal or grade ’00’ flour instead, along with salt, oil and water (and maybe some eggs if you’re not vegan!); adjust the quantities accordingly and omit the xanthan gum.
  • Use our marinara recipe, your own pasta sauce, or drizzle a little olive oil over the pasta¬†(and garnish with herbs) just before serving!

 

 

¬†If anyone prepares this recipe- send us some pictures! We’d love to see¬†how you got on and of course, your thoughts!

Baked ‘Green’ Falafels

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 5-10
Prep & Cooking Time: 70-80 mins

Notes: This recipe contains: Vitamin A, B-Vitamins, Vitamins C & K protein, fibre, calcium, iron, phosphorus, potassium, magnesium, manganese, zinc, has no added sugars and (per serving) is low in added salt, sugar and saturated fats*!

This recipe is an example of how fast/processed foods can be healthy! Authentic recipes can use undesired cooking methods, such as deep or shallow frying; these methods are not ideal to use on a regular basis. Our recipe provides you with a healthier alternative to help keep the fat content to a minimum; which is also why we opt for using a little flour and not excessive amount of tahini to help hold our falafels together. The kale provides a nice and healthy twist (and a lovely shade of green!) for this tasty and popular food.

This delectable Middle Eastern food (traditionally Arab) can be made suitable for all types of diets; traditionally they are made ‘vegan’. These little ‘patties/fritters’ are typically served in a warmed pitta or flatbread with ‘Israeli salad’ or some lettuce, tomatoes, onion, pickles with some houmous, tahini or tabbouleh; cucumber, aubergine, feta cheese, yoghurt and/or tzatziki are also sometimes used. Serving styles can vary as this is now a popular meal/snack in most countries.

NB: Our preparation technique has been seen to alter the texture and flavours slightly (*when compared to authentic cooking methods). However, we think our falafels are still delicious and full of great flavours; reduce the cooking duration slightly if a ‘softer’ falafel is desired.

 

Our kale is busy ‘steaming’ away! NB: If gluten is not of concern, use a plain flour instead. Our drained chickpeas equated to approx. 480grams.

 

Ingredients:

+++++++++++++++++++++++++100g    Kale
+++++++++++++++++++++++++160g    White onion
+++++++++++++++++++++++++8g        Garlic cloves
+++++++++++++++++++++++++40g      Fresh Coriander
+++++++++++++++++++++++++2           Tins Chickpeas (in unsalted water)
+++++++++++++++++++++++++30g      Tahini paste
+++++++++++++++++++++++++10g       Olive oil
+++++++++++++++++++++++++15ml     Water
+++++++++++++++++++++++++4g         Ground cumin
+++++++++++++++++++++++++2g         Dried parsley
+++++++++++++++++++++++++2g         Sweet Paprika
+++++++++++++++++++++++++20g       Rice flour
+++++++++++++++++++++++++              Salt & ground black pepper
+++++++++++++++++++++++++              1kcal Fry Spray (low-fat cooking oil)

 

 

Nutritional info:

NB: Serve 2-4 falafels as part of a healthy meal or have 1-2 as a healthy snack. 

 * Low in saturated fats when 2-4 pieces are consumed (**Based on 20 prepared falafels).

 

Directions:

 Wash the kale. Place it into a steamer pot with some cold water. Steam for 5-8 minutes or until tender. Drain. Rinse under cool water.

 

 

In the meantime, it’s time to start using your food processor…

1. Peel and chop the onion into halves. Peel the garlic. Place the onion into a food processor. Process until minced; add the garlic whilst the processor is still running. Transfer into a large mixing bowl.

2. Wash the coriander. Ripe it into halves. Place it into the food processor. Process until minced. Transfer it into the mixing bowl.

3. Place the cooked kale into the food processor. Process until minced. Transfer into the mixing bowl.

4. Drain and rinse the chickpeas. Place them into the food processor. Add the tahini, oil and water. Process until almost smooth.

 

 

Heat the oven to 190¬įC/375¬įF. Line a baking tray with some parchment paper or a silicone mat. Lightly spray it with some low-fat cooking oil.

 

 

In the meantime, assemble the falafels!

1. Transfer the chickpea mixture into the mixing bowl. Add the cumin, parsley, paprika and half the quantity of the flour. Season it with some salt and black pepper to taste.

2. Using a spatula, mix and thoroughly combine the ingredients.

3. Add the remaining flour. Mix to combine.

4. Divide the mixture up.

 

 

Roll the mixture into balls; use lightly floured hands if necessary. Place them onto the baking tray. Repeat this step until all of the mixture is used. Lightly spray them with some low-fat cooking oil.

We created 20 ‘balls’.

 

Gently press down on them to form ‘patties’ (if desired).¬†Place into the oven. Bake for 15 mins; remove and turn once. Increase the oven temperature to 200¬įC/400¬įF.

Traditional falafels are normally round, but it can depend upon the ¬†utensil used to shape them. ūüôā

 

 

Once turned, lightly spray them with some more low-fat cooking oil (if desired). Place back into the oven. Bake for a further 8-10 mins or until lightly browned. Remove. Allow to cool slightly.

 

 

Serve your falafels with some salad and a wholemeal (or GF) pitta, couscous or rice.

We also added some nibbles, along with low-fat houmous and plain/minty soya yoghurt. :D

We also added some nibbles, along with low-fat houmous and plain/minty soya yoghurt. ūüėÄ

 

 Enjoy!

 

Refrigerate any leftovers in a resealable and air-tight container; consume within 3-4 days. Alternatively, wrap them in kitchen film and freeze in a resealable container; defrost, reheat and consume within 2 months.

 

 

If preferred…

  • Use dried chickpeas; soak over night, drain and cook before preparing the falafels.
  • Try using soya or broad(fava) beans instead of chickpeas.
  • Use some steamed spinach or swiss chard instead of kale.
  • Adapt the flavours and seasoning’s to suit your personal tastes.
  • Serve these lovely falafels with veggies (of course!) and some plain/minty soya yoghurt, tahini dip, tabbouleh or houmous; check out our houmous¬†recipe as a guide!

Sweet And Sour Battered Tofu With Rice

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 4
Prep & Cooking Time: 60-70 mins
Type: Main meal
Tools: Heavy plates, chopping board, sharp knife, small bowls, baking tray, silicone mat or parchment paper, non-stick pot w/lid, frying spatula, steamer pot, food processor or blender, whisk

Notes: This recipe contains: Vitamin A, B-Vitamins, Vitamin C, carbohydrates, protein, fibre, calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, zinc and per serving is low in added salt, sugar and saturated fats!

A plant-based lifestyle does not all have to be about celery, steamed tofu and rice… er, but when has¬†that ever really been the case?! This recipe is a prime¬†example¬†of how delicious and exciting vegan meals can be. It’s also¬†a great¬†alternative¬†for those that love Chinese foods but are trying to adhere to a healthier¬†lifestyle…and it’s¬†coeliac friendly. ūüôā

Apart from stir-fry’s, we¬†don’t normally eat Chinese foods; a lot of authentic dishes can be high in salt, fats and/or sugar! However, I was thinking about this the other week when I initially made my¬†battered tofu; the tofu looked a little like ‘battered chicken pieces’… and that got my creative juices going!

…I suppose my love of¬†pineapple may have biased my choices slightly! ūüôā

Happy cooking everyone! ūüėÄ

NB: We used some frozen bell peppers to help bulk out the quantity and some fresh pepper to help keep the meal visually appealing!

 

Ingredients

Battered tofu:
396g Firm tofu (*Serves 4)
See our previous recipe for instructions and a full ingredients list.

NB: Our pineapple tin contained approximately 130g of juice.

If gluten is of concern, double check your vinegar before you purchase it, e.g. in case it contains ‘extra’ ingredients, such as barley malt.

 

 

Nutritional Info (Sauce Only)

NB: 4 grams is approx. one teaspoon!

Store bought varieties can easily contain¬†two to three times the amount of added sugars/serving, whilst ‘take-away’ versions (dependant on the serving size) can contain up to six to eight times as much.

 

 

Directions

Prepare the tofu. Open and drain the tofu. Place it between two heavy and/or weighted plates (or chopping boards) for about 20-30 mins to remove any excess water. In the meantime, prepare the batters. See our other recipe for instructions.

 

Meanwhile, heat the oven to 200¬įC/400¬įF. Line a baking tray with a silicone mat or parchment paper. Spray it with a little low-fat cooking oil (if desired).

 

 

In the meantime, prepare the vegetables for the sauce. Place the frozen bell peppers into a microwavable bowl; defrost in the microwave. Drain. Wash, peel and dice the garlic. Wash, remove the stem and chop the chilli. Wash, trim the ends and slice most of the onion; set the rest aside (to use as a garnish later). Remove the stem de-seed and chop the red bell pepper into cubes. Open the pineapple; separate the fruit from its juice into two separate containers.

 

 

Drain, chop and slice the tofu into¬†small pieces (about ¬Ĺcm thick rectangles). Place them onto the baking tray.

 

 

Batter the tofu; refer to our other recipe. Once all of the tofu has been coated in batter, place the baking tray into the oven. Bake for about 20-30mins or until lightly golden. Turn once during cooking. Remove.

NB: This tofu has not been baked.

Baked. ūüôā

 

 

Meanwhile, prepare the sauce. Heat a non-stick saucepan over a medium-low heat. Spray it with some low-fat cooking oil.

 

 

Add the garlic, chilli and onion. Gently fry for 1-2 minutes or until softened.

 

 

Transfer into a small dish. Allow to cool slightly.

 

 

In the meantime, cook the rice according to the packet instructions. Remove from the heat. Steam any side vegetables in a steamer pot. Drain.

NB: Frozen green beans and broccoli normally cooks faster than cauliflower!

 

 

Add the bell peppers to the saucepan. Gently fry for 2-3 mins.

 

 

Transfer into a small dish. Allow to cool slightly.

 

 

Place the garlic, chilli and onion into a food processor. Add the pineapple juice, water, sugar and vinegar. Season it with some salt and black pepper to taste.

 

 

Pulse until combined and the¬†chilli and onion have ‘broken down’ slightly.

 

 

Transfer the mixture into the non-stick saucepan. Add extra dried chilli flakes (if desired). Add the potato starch and bell peppers. Whisk together.

 

 

Chop all or half of the pineapple slices into cubes.

NB: Save some for serving or chop all of it and add it into the sauce.

 

 

Add the chopped pineapple. Stir to combine.

 

 

Place the saucepan over a medium-low heat. Whisk until the sauce has thickened; approx 1-2 mins. Add a little water if a thinner consistency is desired.Remove from the heat. Cover with a lid to keep warm.

 

 

Meanwhile, shred or chop the remaining onion (if applicable) .

 

 

Serve warm. Spoon the rice onto a large serving plate (or into a small bowl); garnish with the onion. Transfer the tofu next to the rice and ladle over the sauce. Serve with the accompanying vegetables and a piece of the remaining pineapple (if applicable). Season it with some black pepper to taste (if desired).

NB: This shows one portion of tofu, rice and sauce. Add a dash of low-sodium soya sauce to the rice (if desired).

Leftovers!

 

Enjoy!

Refrigerate any leftovers in a resealable container; reheat and consume within 3-5 days.

NB: This container shows all of the sauce. I made my sauce in advance and reheated what we needed later on.

NB:

  • When reheating the sauce, do so in a non-stick saucepan over a medium-low heat. The sauce can be a bit¬†gelatinous after being refrigerated; add a little water to loosen the sauce (if desired).
  • The tofu can be gently reheated in the microwave; approx. 1-2 minutes on a high heat setting.
  • Store the tofu and sauce in two separate resealable containers.

 

 

If preferred…

  • Use standard baked tofu or temph, or some cooked white beans instead of my battered tofu.
  • Serve with rice, millet or quinoa.
  • Use dried chillies instead of fresh; feel free to use more or less than instructed!

Leading A Healthy Lifestyle & Weight Loss: A Personal Account

Diet & Weight Loss

When it comes to leading a better quality of life, we all have a journey, a story to tell, one that most can relate to‚Ķ including mine. I am not searching for empathy or a pat on the back, nor am I trying to be your go-to health-nut guru. I’m just trying to express my views, my personal account of the pitfalls and harsh realities of weight loss and healthy living; an account that not everyone is capable of or willing to divulge. So, before you judge a book by its cover, let me tell you about some very candid personal truths.

 

Photo by: alyssa kirby_flickr

Photo by: Alyssa Kirby (Flickr)

I too can empathise with you…if you’re trying to lose weight…trying to find a balance of diet and exercise, or mindlessly eating without reflecting on the contents of your food. You may not believe it to look at me now, but I too have overcome my own personal demons and moved on with my life.

I‚Äôm someone who could put on and lose weight fairly easily- if I put the effort into it; whether it is eating too many snacks, having frequent/large portions or exercising 4-5 times a week with sensible meal planning. Genetically speaking, I am predisposed to a number of ailments‚Ķ.but so is everybody else‚Ķbut this doesn’t mean that my health or future is completely mapped out.

Avoiding type two diabetes, heart disease, stroke and obesity is in my hands; I do not wish to live a life dictated by chronic illness and prescribed medications.

 

As our blog has mentioned before, we all have to take personal accountability; there is always a price to pay for lack of awareness and ignorance. Obviously one shoe does not fit all‚Ķ but we can all take similar steps to lead healthier lives; as we’ve mentioned in a previous article¬†in January.

There were periods in my life where my weight yo-yoed. I‚Äôve never been clinically overweight or obese, but my BMI was 24.5kg/m2; the cusp of being overweight. ¬†Some may think that it‚Äôs not that significant, but the revelation of deciding to change is the same…no matter what weight you are.

 

The truth is a bad diet, lack of exercise, or trying to out exercise a bad diet wreaks havoc on mental and physical health…and I was caught up in this vicious circle like all the other serial dieters…up until about my mid-twenties.

Photo by: Rose Waterman_Flickr

Photo by: Rose Waterman (Flickr)

During this time I tried these types of diets/ideas:

-A Very-Low Calorie Diet (VLCD)
-High protein, low carbs (or more commonly known as ‚ÄėAtkins‚Äô)
-Loads of exercise, low calorie but a high protein intake
-No-sugar, low-fat
-A Smoothie/juice cleanse

 

I don’t need to tell you that these types of fad diets are all rubbish and some are potentially dangerous… and for good reason. Obviously this was before I saw sense, took responsibility and of course when off to university to study human nutrition.

 

Photo by: Katherine of Chicago_Flickr

Photo by: Katherine of Chicago (Flickr)

I took a dogmatic approach towards health, an all or nothing view, and I could never find a healthy and happy medium; a common mind-set I’m sure.

I am not even going to try and justify why I attempted any of these regimes‚Ķ because I can‚Äôt and equally I know the reasons why these diets did not work; I didn’t and couldn’t comply with them (especially long term) and I did not educate myself on portion sizes and general healthy eating. I just bought into the same hype a lot of young health-enthusiasts do, e.g. carbohydrates are bad, don‚Äôt eat after 5pm, everybody juice! and your body needs to be detoxed; nonsense. These types of myths and poor insight still exist which fuels similar diets; check out our article on ¬†gluten free diets.

I also bought into media images; this was before the massive trend of social media and the dreaded skinny selfies…and perhaps there was less fat shaming and instant victimisation of those that were not a size two as a result, perhaps not? But I think that seeing any picture of yourself (fat or thin), or of a thin celebrity, when your mindset is that skewed can bring it all home and produce black and white thinking; creating distorted body images and a shit storm of dieting. It’s funny though, when I look at some of those pictures now- I wonder what I was complaining about?!

 

None of these types of behaviours or drastic thinking sat comfortably with me, and taking my health into my own hands without being properly informed only meant one thing, doomed to start again! Whether that be in a week, a fortnight or in a month‚Äôs time‚Ķ.and I don‚Äôt know about you, but I was tired of it and completely aware that it was my own fault. I needed to take a step back and analyse ‘what was the driving force behind my behaviours’… what steps did I need to take¬†in order to change… and who do I turn to for some sound advice?

Photo by: Oliver Symens_Flickr

Photo by: Oliver Symens (Flickr)

 

When it comes to weight loss, there are some that say ‚ÄúI’ve tried everything and nothing has worked‚Ä̂Ķwell it‚Äôs because they¬†are going about weight loss the wrong way and potentially they’re not dealing with any¬†underlying (personal) issues. The dynamics of weight loss and good nutrition isn’t complicated, but humans are‚Ķ by nature we can over complicate everything! If more of us would just comply with our healthcare professional‚Äôs advice, we would see results‚Ķthis might sound trite, but it‚Äôs true; sadly (healthy & permanent) weight loss won‚Äôt happen overnight, and it takes complete compliance and most of all patience‚Ķso don‚Äôt be too hard on yourself.

As I have mentioned in a previous article, there are too many reasons to be fit and healthy, but ultimately it’s just easier to take the whole healthy lifestyle approach and just run with it! No more fad diets, no more excuses.

Photos by (starting from top left/clockwise): Sam (Flickr), Mikey Sklar (Flickr), Nadyana Magazine (Flickr) & Karyn Bosnak (Flickr).

 

From June last year my husband I started to adopt a vegan lifestyle, but we still ate fish on occasion; that aspect has now diminished. Doing this really helped give my whole outlook on food (ethically and medically) and my health a ‚Äėfull 360¬į‚Äô; I never thought my digestion would improve so much, or that I would be able to get off the unpleasant ‚Äėsugar-train‚Äô‚Ķ and now I have. If you‚Äôre worried that your vitamin and mineral levels will decline, then don‚Äôt. A recent blood test showed my iron and Vitamin B12 levels were thriving; plant-based lifestyles are sustainable! Check out our article on Plant-based proteins for more persuasion and read our articles on Supplements and ‚ÄėSuperfoods‚Äô before you part with your cash! I‚Äôm not saying that this type of approach is suitable for everyone, but countless studies offer evidence to support it. Check out our article on veganism to help you digest some further reasons why people might adopt this type of lifestyle. As always,¬†everybody should consult¬†with their health care professionals before making¬†any drastic changes to their health.

 

As far as healthy eating goes and what foods to buy- everybody has their own individual considerations. Social media, time, cooking skills and affordability can all dictate and influence what we will choose to buy, e.g. buying ground flaxseed may be expensive to some but not for others…and that goes for just about anything on the supermarket shelves.

Photo by: Thinkpanama_flickr

Photo by: Thinkpanama (Flickr)

 

‚ĶBut I‚Äôm telling you right now, everyone can eat healthily on a low-income. We did it when we were students and we do it now because we‚Äôre frugal and trying to prevent food wastage! The ‚Äėfrugal diet‚Äô can put everything into perspective. Try checking¬†out some of our recipes!

Plant-based diets are relatively cheap; on average, we spend £50-70/week (and I’m sure we could reduce it further if we tried). This feeds two people (three meals and one a snack a-day/ 7 days a week). As long as you meal plan, then there really isn’t a problem…and hey, anything to prevent food wastage right? BBC1 has recently started a miniseries on healthy eating & food wastage (Eat Well for Less?); assisting families with how much they spend on the weekly shops by encouraging them to do more of their own food prep (and therefore improve their health), eliminating brand biases (sometimes value brands are OK!) and reducing their food wastage through meal planning; very apt and things everyone should reflect on. It’s also worth checking out thecountyfare.net, they have written a great article recently that touches on meal planning; definitely worth a read. What’s in your supermarket basket? Are you making the most of you pennies? Do your current choices depict your current health status? That reminds me of a post  the Life is Good blog put out last year; check it out!

 

Photo by: Diabetes Care_Flickr

Photo by: Diabetes Care (Flickr)

 

I know, sometimes jumping through these hoops is quite mundane, especially when it comes to chopping vegetables and potentially spending a chunk of your Sunday prepping for the week ahead…but it is worth it in the end.

It‚Äôs the same with exercise, it’s something that we should all partake in‚Ķbut do you opt for more sitting and serial munching or walking and eating healthily? Your waistline and your overall disposition will reflect your choices. A recent article I saw on the blog ‘The Zeit‘,¬†emphasises how we all should have a healthier relationship with exercise; don‚Äôt use it as an escape from your problems. By doing this, exercise can fast turn into a chore and a military style punishment‚Ķbut I was guilty of this. Guilty of pounding the pavement to forget or suppress unpleasant feelings or events‚Ķ. Pounding the pavement (at times) to try to out exercise a bad diet! I started running when I was nineteen and quickly clocked up a lot of mileage. Unfortunately my knees aren‚Äôt built for long term running, but that‚Äôs besides the point. I have now developed a healthier relationship with exercise too.

Photo by: Patrick Marella_Flickr

Photo by: Patrick Marella (Flickr)

 

We should all remember, the three P’s: patience, persistence and a positive attitude, along with having the ability to stay motivated and applying/adapting realistic expectations into our health and well-being. This outlook will carry you through to help you meet your weight loss goals and guide you into that permanent healthier lifestyle that you desire.

We have to remember that were only human and we’re all fallible; even those with health credentials smoke, drink and can be generally hypocritical with the health advice they supply us with.

Life is there to be lived and we all need to find a healthy balance; negative thoughts and filling our heads with nonsensical information isn’t living. We just end up punishing ourselves through gruelling exercise and nightmare eating regimes, making life a lot harder than it needs be.

 

So…

  • Don‚Äôt set yourself up to fail‚Ķ
  • Don‚Äôt torture yourself over small mistakes (this journey is not perfect)‚Ķ
  • Don‚Äôt be afraid to ask for help (especially if you feel a bit blue or recognise that you are an emotional eater)‚Ķ
  • Don’t give up too easily. It can take time to develop a permanent and healthy relationship with food and/or exercise again… to be able to ‘trust your body’…
  • Don‚Äôt take everything at face value, whether that be about what you read about health or how you feel; people can be quite good at suppressing emotions‚Ķstiff upper lip and all‚Ķ

…just follow attainable and informed/accredited health advice and remember to embrace life.

 

This may just be only one person‚Äôs opinion and personal account‚Ķ but I am offering you some informed advice that will hopefully set you up for life and prevent you from making the same mistakes that I’ve made; some of my thoughts and experiences may resonate with you‚Ķor you may choose to ignore them…

Just remember though that healthy living and healthy weight loss is achievable, and there is nothing to be ashamed of; I got there and so can you.

 

 

Article written by: Lynn Risby BSc Nutritionist
Feature image by: Katherine Of Chicago (Flickr)

Slow Cooker Pad Thai Soup W/Tofu (V,GF)

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 6
Prep duration: 60 minutes
Cooking Time: 7-8 hours

Notes: This recipe contains: Vitamin A, B-vitamins, Vitamin C, K & E, protein, fibre, calcium, iron, phosphorus, potassium, magnesium, has minimal added sugars and is relatively low in salt* and saturated fats*! (*NB:orange traffic light ratings). 

I think the main¬†thing that enticed¬†us to prepare this¬†recipe (well, me especially) was¬†the peanut butter. Authentic¬†pad Thai soups and/or noodle dishes¬†normally have vegetables, noodles, poultry, shellfish¬†and/or eggs with some nuts….but when your vegan, what are you left with?! Lovely noodles, vegetables and peanuts… so we took the peanut aspect and ran with it!

We’re both peanut butter lovers, me probably more so, but only because I grew up in North America…but my palate and awareness¬†has evolved a millionfold¬†since childhood; no more¬†¬† hydrogenated¬†oils or glucose-fructose, corn¬†syrups! I’ve said it before¬†and I’ll say it again, peanut butter is a love affair most people have for life…so we all just have to be smart about it.¬†Nut butters (in their natural form) can be quite nutritious…but also high in calories and fat (some more than others)- so please consume them within moderation as part of a healthy diet!

As for the recipe, it’s quite versatile and can be made on the ‘cheap’! For this reason we have excluded¬†tamarind¬†paste (a typical ingredient found in this type of recipe); this item isn’t necessarily expensive (especially when bought in its ‘pulp’ form) but¬†for those that do not attempt¬†a lot of ethnic cooking, it may be a waste of money… it does provide a lovely depth of flavour though, if you do decide to treat yourself! Check out our butternut squash curry;¬†we show you how to prepare¬†tamarind¬†pulp (but this is also a great recipe)!

We have also omitted the use of fish sauce and chicken stock for obvious reasons…and soya¬†sauce; just trying to keep the salt content down! Some recipes request using fried noodles- but we thought we’d give that a miss! Using chilli, lime, ginger and the peanut butter provided a lovely vegan/Thai alternative. Feel free to add¬†more veggies- this soup only offers approx. 1.5 servings (fruit/vegetables)/serving, towards your 5-A-Day; considerably¬†less than our other¬†recipes!

We hope you enjoy it!

 

The tofu is off ¬†being ‘pressed’… and we decided not to use the mirin.

 

Ingredients:

 

Directions:
Step One

Open and drain the tofu. Place it between two heavy chopping boards for approximately 15-20 minutes to remove any excess water.

 

 

Heat the oven to 200¬įC/400¬įF. Line a baking tray with a silicone mat or parchment paper.

We sprayed the mat with a little low-fat cooking oil.

 

 

In the meantime, wash, peel and grate the ginger. Wash, trim the ends and finely slice the spring onion. Peel and dice the shallot and garlic.

 

 

Wash, peel, trim the ends and chop the carrot into matchstick pieces. Wash and zest the lime.

 

 

 Drain and chop the tofu into cubes. Place them on the baking tray. Spray them with a little low-fat cooking oil. Place it into the oven. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden. Remove.

Through the magic of time….we give you baked tofu! ūüôā

 

 

In the meantime, wash, dry and slices the mushrooms…

 

 

…. and juice the lime.

 

 

Heat a non-stick frying pan over a medium-low heat. Spray it with some low-fat cooking oil.

 

 

Add the ginger, spring onion, garlic and shallot. Gently fry for 1-2 minutes or until softened.

 

 

Remove from the heat.

 

 

Transfer the tofu into the slow cooker.

 

 

Add the ginger, spring onion, garlic and shallot and mushrooms…

Opps! We forgot to add the mushrooms… until about 10 minutes after it started cooking! Add them now!

 

 

…the carrot, lime zest and juice, sugar, chilli flakes¬†and peanut butter…

We added our mange tout at this stage…but do not recommend it. Add it right before serving to help keep its vibrant colour!

 

 

…followed by the stock and boiling water. Stir together.

 

 

Cover with the lid. Cook on low heat setting for 7-8 hours.

 

 

This soup is great to make overnight or first thing in the morning (for those that have time)!

Whether you decide to make this soup overnight or before you go off to work, there will be minimal work required to get this dish on your table.

 

Step Two

Cook some pasta according to the packet instructions (this is only going to take 10-14 minutes!). Drain.

In the meantime, place the soup into a large, non-stick saucepan (if applicable) and gently reheat over a medium-low heat; add the mange tout. Taste and season it as desired; we added a little more lime juice. Add the cooked pasta to the soup just before serving; stir together and serve.

Meanwhile, wash and chop some fresh coriander and chop some peanuts (if desired).

¬†NB: We snapped our spaghetti into halves before cooking.¬†Once you turn the slow cooker off, your food can remain a good temperature for at least 30 minutes¬†afterwards; just don’t remove the lid.

 

Ladle into a large serving bowl. Garnish with fresh coriander and chopped peanuts (if desired) and serve.

See, don’t make the same mistake we made with the mange tout- it looks so washed out! NB: This picture shows one serving (based on six servings). One serving provides approximately: 208kcal, 11g Protein, 9g Fat, 1.6g S/fat, 3.8g Fibre, 0.5g Salt, 383mg Calcium, 2.2mg Iron & 16mg of Vitamin C! To help reduce the fat content, use half as much tofu..and maybe a little less peanut butter!

 

Enjoy!

 

 Refrigerate any leftovers in a resealable container; reheat and consume within 3-4 days.

 

If preferred…

  • Our bag of mange tout was only ¬£1, but please feel free to use bean sprouts, shredded kale, or some frozen/defrosted spinach, green beans, bell peppers, green peas, or sweetcorn instead…or in addition (let it provide 3 of your 5-A-Day)!
  • Swap the shallot for white onion.
  • If you’re short on time, you can try adding the tofu to the slow cooker ‘unbaked’…but we’re not too sure of what the end product will be like; we’ve never tried it. If anyone has, please feel free to fill in the blanks!
  • If being GF isn’t a concern, try using wholemeal pasta;¬†alternatively¬†use soba noodles or some rice¬†noodles or vermicelli instead.

Battered Tofu & Vegetable Stir-Fry

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 4
Prep & Cooking Time: 60-70 mins
Type: Main meal
Tools: Heavy plates, chopping board, sharp knife, small bowls, baking tray, silicone mat or parchment paper, large measuring jug, whisk, non-stick pot w/lid

Notes: This recipe contains: Vitamin A, B-Vitamins, Vitamin C & E, carbohydrates, protein, fibre, calcium, copper, iron, potassium, manganese, magnesium, and is low in added sugar and saturated fats.

Stir-fries can be a great way of eating a quick and low-fat meal (packed full of lovely vegetables of course); just be mindful of how much salt, sugar and oil you use.

This¬†is a great stir-fry recipe…. and if you love tofu- read on!

There are various ways to prepare tofu, but baking it is one of the healthier methods; it’s great for those that do not like ‘soft and squishy tofu’. If you drain and then stir-fry your tofu, this is often the end result….but if you have the time, this battered tofu recipe adds a little something extra and tastes great;¬†it’s fantastic at absorbing all the delicious flavours in your meal, just place it into the sauce towards the end of cooking!

A few other good things to note include: 

  • The batter we have prepared is fairly basic and bland. Please feel free to change it as you see fit.¬†Also, you can make the tofu in advance; just refrigerate¬†it in a resealable container for 3-5 days and reheat it before use.
  • The vegetable list is just a guide and the sauce can be adapted to suit your personal¬†taste; if you plan on using frozen vegetables,¬†defrost¬†them first.
  • Our vegetable list provides you with about¬†2.5 servings¬†of vegetables/serving towards your 5-A-Day!

Happy cooking everyone! ūüôā

 

Batter ingredients…

 

Ingredients

 

Directions

Open and drain the tofu. Place it between two heavy or weighted plattes (or chopping boards) for about 20-30 mins to remove any excess water.

 

In the meantime, prepare the batters. Place the flour, cornmeal, onion and garlic powder and sweet paprika into a bowl. Season it with some salt and black pepper to taste. Stir together to form the dry batter.

 

 

In a separate bowl, add the potato starch and milk. Stir until dissolved.

Wet batter.

 

 

Meanwhile, prepare the stir-fry sauce.

Sauce ingredients…

 

 

Peel and mince the garlic. Wash, peel and grate the ginger. Wash, remove the stem and finely chop the chilli (remove & discard the seeds first if you can’t stand the heat!). Peel and dice the shallot.

 

 

Place the corn flour and water into a large measuring jug. Stir to dissolve.

 

 

Add the soya sauce, lime juice, rice vinegar and sugar. Stir to combine and dissolve the sugar.

 

 

Add the garlic, ginger, chilli and shallot. Stir to combine.

 

 

Meanwhile, place the broccoli into a microwavable dish; defrost in the microwave. Drain.

 

 

Wash, trim the ends and finely slice the spring onion; set a little aside for a garnish (if desired). Wash, remove the stem, de-seed and chop the bell pepper into slices. Wash, peel, trim the ends and chop the carrot into ‘matchstick’ pieces. Wash, dry and slice the mushrooms. Wash the corn and mange tout.

We used some green and red bell peppers…

 

 

Heat oven to 200¬įC/400¬įF. Line a baking tray with a silicone mat or parchment paper.

 

 

Drain, chop and slice the tofu into¬†small ¬Ĺcm thick rectangles. Place them onto the baking tray.

 

 

Take a piece of the tofu and¬†dip and coat it in the ‘wet batter’ mix…

 

 

…and then dip and coat it in the ‘dry batter’ mix.

 

 

Place it onto the baking tray.

 

 

Repeat these steps until all the tofu has been coated in batter.

 

 

Place the baking tray into the oven. Bake for approx. 20-25 mins or until lightly golden. Turn once during cooking. Remove.

 

 

In the meantime, cook rice according to the packet instructions. Drain.

 

 

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large, non-stick wok over a medium-high heat.

 

 

Add most of the spring onion (or all of it if you are not saving any for a garnish), bell peppers, carrot, mushrooms and corn. Gently stir-fry for 4 minutes.

 

 

Add the broccoli and mange tout. Stir-fry for a further 1-2 minutes.

Yes, we are missing our broccoli; epic fail!!! We forgot it in the microwave…so had to cook and add it to the stir-fry at the end. ūüė¶

 

 

Pour in the sauce. Stir together. Keep stirring until the sauce thickens; approx. 1-2 minutes. Remove from the heat.

NB: You can add & stir in the battered tofu if at this point (if desired) or wait and serve it on top of the stir-fried vegetables and rice.

Finished. ūüôā

 

 

Serve warm. Spoon the rice onto a lipped plate or into a large serving bowl.Top with the vegetables; sprinkle over the remaining spring onion (if applicable) and some seeds.

 

 

Finish with the tofu (if applicable).

Obviously we ate more than three pieces (more like 5- 6!)

 

 

Serve it anyway you desire!

This was our next-day leftovers- lot’s and lot’s of vegetables! ūüôā

 

 

 Enjoy!

 

 

If preferred…

  • As always, use lot’s of fresh, frozen and/or seasonal vegetables!
  • Make it as spicy as you desire; use fresh or dried chillies.
  • If you really can’t get on with tofu, try using cooked beans or brown/green lentils instead.
  • Brown basmati rice is great, but if you prefer, try using wholemeal or a GF pasta instead.

NB: We definitely prefer this meal with rice!

A Meal For Two

Healthy Recipes

We hope everyone’s had a fantastic weekend? They always go by so fast and this one has seen Valentine’s Day come and go; we decided to keep ours low-key.

Extravagance doesn’t necessarily mean ‘better’… and you don’t need one specific day to declare your love to your significant other either… but good food always helps! ūüėÄ

We decided to create a nice, healthy meal for ourselves that wouldn’t break the bank, wasn’t typical of our day-to-day meals and of course would leave us satisfied; we don’t normally make three course meals- who has the time for that?! We spent approx. ¬£14 on top of our weekly budget to prepare this meal, but estimate it would cost approx. ¬£30-35 if you had to buy all of the ingredients. In the grand scheme of things, our three course dining experience wasn’t very expensive; considerably cheaper than dining in a vegan/London restaurant! We do not end to eat out anyways; who wants to pay ¬£3 for three strawberries when you can buy the whole box?

Here’s a breakdown of what we ate.

 

 

Our Valentine’s Menu

 

Mini bruschetta’s¬†with a mixed plum tomato medley, marinated with fresh basil, olive¬†oil and¬†a balsamic glaze.

 

 

A grilled & marinated portobello mushroom nestled over baked potato & daikon latkes and creamed leeks, with steamed asparagus spears.

 

 

 

A DF, GF and low-sugar chocolate cake, topped with a medley of fresh fruit & crushed hazelnuts.

 

Some elements of this menu are still in the making, but overall we enjoyed it! We hope to put up some of these recipes at a later date.

 

Have a great week everyone and as always… let’s try and¬†Eat2Health!