Category Archives: Rice, pizza, pasta and quinoa

Roasted aubergine and tahini bowl

Roasted Aubergine and Tahini Bowl

Roasted aubergine and tahini bowl

Before I talk about this week’s awesome recipe I just want to say the biggest thank you to everyone who has bought my app, I can’t tell you how much I appreciate it! I honestly can’t believe what a success it has been, seeing it go to number one on the iTunes store overnight was literally one of the most exciting things that has ever happened to me. So thank you all, you’re amazing and I really hope that you’re enjoying it!

This week I’ve had a serious aubergine (eggplant) obsession, I just can’t stop craving it. I’ve been eating it almost everyday. I’m particularly loving it pureed in Middle Eastern style baba ganoush, sautéed and mixed into rich pasta sauces, baked in delicious tomato curries and roasted in thin crispy slices. The thin roasted slices are my favourite though, there’s just something so addictively moorish about them and they seem to be the perfect accompaniment to almost anything. I thought about all the different ways to share them with you and decided on a simple bowl of goodness. This bowl is the perfect weeknight dinner, perfectly filling and delicious yet still so energising and nourishing. It’s so easy to throw together too! I make big batches of brown rice every weekend so that I can put the whole thing together in just twenty minutes. My favourite thing about the bowl is the way that all the ingredients compliment each other, from the slightly crunchy aubergine slices to the soft wilted spinach, the garlic sautéed black beans, the toasted sunflower seeds and the warming brown rice. I then mix them all with creamy tahini, salty tamari and tangy lemon to create lots of incredible, health giving flavour.

Roasted Aubergine and Tahini Bowl Roasted aubergine and tahini bowlRoasted Aubergine and Tahini Bowl

Serves 2

- 2 large aubergines (eggplants)

- one 400g tin of black beans

- one bag of spinach (about 200g)

- a big handful of sunflower and pumpkin seeds

- 1/2 a cup of brown rice

- 4 tablespoons of tahini

- 2 tablespoons of tamari

- 2 cloves of garlic

- 1 lemon

Roasted aubergine and tahini bowl

Start by placing the brown rice in a saucepan with boiling water and a tablespoon of tamari and allow it to simmer for about forty minute until cooked – make sure that it never runs out of water during this time. When it finishes cooking stir in two tablespoons of tahini, one more tablespoon of tamari and the lemon juice.

Once the rice has been cooking for fifteen minutes or so pre-heat the oven to 180C. Then cut the aubergines into thin slices, just a couple of mm’s thick.

Grease the bottom of a baking tray with olive oil and place the aubergine slices onto it, drizzle a little more olive oil onto them plus some salt and pepper and then put the tray into the oven for fifteen to twenty minutes until they are starting to go crispy – but not burnt!

Next, sauté the spinach – simply place it in a frying pan with a little olive oil, salt, pepper and a heaped tablespoon of tahini. Allow it to wilt for a few minutes.

Once the spinach has cooked peel and crush the garlic into a frying pan and add the beans (after draining them). Sauté for a couple of minutes until they are warm and delicious.

Finally toast the sunflower seeds for a minute or so in a frying pan.

Then place everything together in bowls, drizzling them with extra tahini, before serving and enjoying!

Sweet Potato, Lentil and Coconut Curry

Sweet Potato, Lentil and Coconut Curry

January is the ultimate comfort food month. It’s just so dark, grey and cold that our bodies crave warm, hearty dishes that feed the body and soul. Of course everyone is also trying to stick to their healthy New Years resolutions too, which can make this craving a little tricky! This is where my recipe for a sweet potato, lentil and coconut curry comes in. It’s the ultimate mix of the two! Full of incredibly nourishing ingredients that together really work to boost your health, yet at the same time each bite is so incredibly flavoursome and comforting with big chunks of tender sweet potato and green lentils cooked in creamy coconut milk and tins of juicy tomatoes, then flavoured with a blend of ginger, cumin, turmeric and fresh coriander! Just so delicious! I love it served on a bed of piping hot brown rice, but quinoa or homemade mash potato are also amazing sides for this! It’s an amazingly inexpensive meal too, all the ingredients are available at any supermarket and it’s the easiest thing to make for a big group of friends and family!

Sweet Potato, Lentil and Coconut Curry

Serves 6

- 2 large sweet potatoes (mine weighed 1.5kg)
- 2 cups of black olives
- 1 and a 1/2 cups of lentils (500g)
- 2 cans of coconut milk
- 2 cans of tinned tomatoes
- a handful of fresh coriander leaves
- 1 tablespoon of turmeric
- 1 tablespoon of cumin
- 1 tablespoon of ground ginger
- salt and pepper
- 1 lemon

Sweet Potato, Lentil and Coconut Curry

Pre-heat the oven to 180C.

Then start by cutting the sweet potatoes into small bite-sized cubes and finely chop the coriander.

Then place the coconut milk, tomatoes, turmeric, cumin and ground ginger in a large sauce pan or even better a Le Creuset style cast iron casserole dish, allow these to heat into they begin bubbling. At this point add the sweet potato cubes, lentils, olives and coriander plus salt and pepper.

Once everything is mixed simply place the lid on the pot and place it in the oven to cook for about an hour, until the potatoes are soft and everything tastes delicious! At this point squeeze the lemon juice into the pot and then serve.

If you’re making rice simply boil this when the pot goes in the oven so that the two finish cooking at the same time.

Healthy Eating On-The-Go

Healthy Eating On-The-Go

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One of the questions people always ask me is how do you stay healthy when you’re busy or out at work all day. It might seem like an impossible task, but trust me it’s way easier than you think! Plus taking your own food almost always tastes better than any store brought sandwich or unexciting salad, it’s much less expensive and it makes you feel so much more energised. So how do you do it?

Every weekend I make big batches of the foods that will be the basis of my lunch. This starts with either quinoa, brown rice or buckwheat – I change my grain each week so I don’t get bored but I normally cook them in the same easy way. All three are boiled with a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar, a drizzling of tamari, dried herbs and pink salt and at the end I stir in a spoon or two of tahini to create a richer, creamier flavour. I then make lots of roasted vegetables, normally this is a mix of carrots, squash and sweet potatoes as I find these taste the most delicious cold – they seem to get more delicious stored in the fridge whereas other veggies can go a bit soggy. I cut them all into small cubes, place them on a baking tray and bake at 180C for an hour with a generous sprinkling of paprika, dried herbs, cinnamon and pink salt plus a drizzling of olive oil. My third staple is hummus, either my classic hummus or my roasted red pepper and paprika hummus, both are super easy to make and last for a week or so in the fridge. I love adding them to my on-the-go rainbow bowls as they add a delicious smooth, creamy texture that really brings everything together. Plus they’re an amazing source of fibre and protein, both of which are really important for keeping your energy levels up.

So the grains, roasted veg and hummus I prepare in advance and keep in tupperwears in the fridge but of course eating the same three things everyday would get boring so I then buy a variety of other veg to add in each morning. For this I focus on things that won’t take more than a minute or two to prepare, so I love things like juicy cherry tomatoes, peppery rocket, soft avocado chunks, grated carrot, salty olives, marinated kale, pink pomegranate seeds, fresh spinach leaves, crunchy pumpkin and sunflower seeds, meaty mushrooms, sweet raisins, rich sun-dried tomatoes and toasted pine nuts. I add a different selection everyday to keep it interesting and then normally drizzle fresh lemon juice over the whole thing. I promise it really does only take five minutes to throw the whole thing and it will taste incredible! The weekend food prep only takes about an hour too so it really is so easy and so worth taking that time as it will really help you feel amazing all week!

Healthy Eating On-The-Go

Serves 1 for 5-7 days:

For the grain:

- 1 and a 1/2 cups of quinoa, brown rice or buckwheat

- 2 tablespoons of tahini

- 1 tablespoon of tamari

- 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar

- dried herbs

- pink salt

For the roasted veg:

- 2 sweet potatoes

- 2 carrots

- 1 butternut squash

- 1 tablespoon of cinnamon

- 1 tablespoon of paprika

- dried herbs

- olive oil

- pink salt

For the hummus see my recipes:

- Here for the classic hummus

- Here for the roasted red pepper and paprika hummus (my favourite!)

Plus extras like:

Cherry tomatoes, rocket, avocado, grated carrot, olives, marinated kale, spinach leaves, pumpkin and sunflower seeds, mushrooms, raisins, sun-dried tomatoes, pomegranates and pine nuts

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Warm Buckwheat and Tahini Spicy Salad

Warm Buckwheat and Broccoli Spicy Salad

Warm Buckwheat and Tahini Spicy SaladThis is the perfect warm winter salad – nourishing, soothing and so insanely delicious, just like healthy comfort food! The whole dish is based around buckwheat, which you may not have tried before. I hadn’t had it until really recently but I’m now a huge convert and it seems to be taking over from quinoa in my dishes at the moment, which says a lot as quinoa has been my best friend for the last few years! Despite the misleading name buckwheat is actually totally gluten free, and like quinoa it’s a seed not a grain. It’s also super healthy as it’s rich in disease-fighting flavonoids, as well as being full of magnesium, which works to relax blood vessels to improve blood flow and nutrient delivery. It’s even been shown to regulate blood sugar levels and lower cholesterol and blood pressure. So basically it’s an amazing addition to any diet. It also tastes awesome. The grains are much bigger than quinoa, with a slightly nutty taste and a more substantial texture, which I love, and they go with everything. Of all the buckwheat combinations I’ve tried though this is my favourite, particularly because of the dressing which has the perfect mix of creaminess, spiciness and sweetness thanks to the blend of tamari, tahini, apple cider vinegar, honey (or maple syrup), paprika and chilli flakes. It’s then mixed with grated carrots and beets, which adds a subtle, slightly-sweet, slightly-earthy flavour and a brilliant beautiful pink colour, before being topped with coconut and tamari roasted cauliflower, broccoli and chickpeas.

I love it served with pumpkin and sunflower seeds to get a little crunch, and some spicy hummus, because I just love hummus and I love the extra creaminess!

Warm Buckwheat and Tahini Spicy SaladWarm Buckwheat and Tahini Spicy Salad

For the salad:

- 2/3 of a cup of buckwheat (2 cups of boiling water)

- 1 large carrot

- 1 small beetroot

- 1 cauliflower

- a dozen tender stem broccolis

- 1 cup of soaked chickpeas

For the dressing

- 1 tablespoon of tamari

- 1 tablespoon of tahini

- 1 tablespoon of honey (or maple syrup)

- 3 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar

- 1 teaspoon of paprika

- 1 teaspoon of chilli flakes

Warm Buckwheat and Tahini Spicy Salad

Start by pre-heating the oven to 180C. Then chop the cauliflower into bite sized pieces and place them in a baking tray with one tablespoon each of coconut oil and tamari, as well as a sprinkling of salt and paprika. Roast the cauliflower for 30 minutes.

While the cauliflower cooks chop the broccoli into bite sized chunks, and ten minutes before the cauliflower finishes cooking add these and the chickpeas to the baking tray with another tablespoon of tamari and a sprinkling of paprika.

Next, peel and grate the beet and carrot and cook the buckwheat. To cook the buckwheat simply add it to a saucepan with double the amount of boiling water, then allow it to simmer and absorb all the water, which should take about ten minutes. Once it’s cooked it should have an al dente style texture. At this point you can stir in the grated carrot and beet as well as all the ingredients needed for the sauce - tamari, tahini, apple cider vinegar, honey (or maple syrup), paprika, salt and chilli flakes. Place it all in salad bowl with the roasted cauliflower, broccoli and chickpeas and stir well. Finally, if you want a little crunch sprinkle some pumpkin and sunflower seeds on the top, then eat and enjoy!

Almond, Quinoa & Pumpkin Seed Bread

Superfood Bread

I’ve always been a bit nervous of making a delicious gluten free, vegan, super healthy bread, it just seemed like a very daunting and slightly impossible task, but after the success of my burger buns two weeks ago I realised that it was time to attempt it and what a simple success it was! I can’t tell you how easy this recipe is and how insanely awesome it tastes, it also left me feeling like a serious domestic goddess: seriously I was jumping all around my kitchen in such excitement! The bread is just perfect, with a beautifully rich, wholesome, nutty flavour and a wonderfully soft texture. It’s so great to have bread back in the house again too and I’ve been really enjoying slices of it toasted with all my favourite toppings – think creamy avocado with lemon juice, chilli salt and sliced tomatoes; homemade almond butter with banana slices and medjool dates; roasted red pepper hummus with bean sprouts and black pepper, healthy nutella with pieces of roasted hazelnuts… the list is just too awesome!

Something tells me this might be my most popular recipe yet and I know it’s something that a lot of you have been asking for for a while so I hope you love it! This type of nut and seed bread is so popular at the moment and seems to be popping up on blogs everywhere so I’m sure you’ll have come across similar versions on places like Green Kitchen StoriesOh She Glows or My New Roots (three of the best blogs ever) as well as lots of paleo versions using eggs not psyllium. I’ve changed the consistency of the typical bread though to make is smoother and softer as I like my toast to have a more traditional texture that kind of melts in your mouth, although I’ve left some whole pumpkin and sunflower seeds in there for a little crunch! Mine’s also totally gluten free as most of these types of recipes use oats, so I’ve moved to brown rice flour to make it easier for you all.

Almond, Quinoa & Pumpkin Seed BreadAlmond, Quinoa & Pumpkin Seed BreadAlmond, Quinoa & Pumpkin Seed Bread

Makes one loaf

- 2 cups of cold water

- 1 and a 1/2 cups of pumpkin seeds

- 1 cup of buckwheat or brown rice flour

- 1 cup of almonds

- 1/2 a cup of sunflower seeds

- 3 heaped tablespoons of psyllium husk powder

- 2 tablespoons of chia seeds

- 2 tablespoons of dried mixed herbs (I used herbs de provence but basil, rosemary, thyme, oregano etc are all great)

- salt and pepper to taste

Unfortunately there is no substitute for the psyllium husk powder – they work to stick the loaf together and I’m so sorry but they’re just essential for the recipe, I tried it without them and it was just too crumbly! They’re really easy to get hold of though, every health food shop sells them and google has endless links to sites that sell them too.

P.S. I just changed the recipe a little to the original changing the quinoa flakes which lots of you were struggling to find and instead using brown rice/buckwheat flour, I’ve also taken out the flaxseeds. I find this version works much better and I hope you do too!

Almond, Quinoa & Pumpkin Seed Bread

Simply place the almonds and one cup of the pumpkin seeds in a food processor and blend for a couple of minutes until a smooth flour forms. Transfer this flour into a bowl and stir in the remaining half a cup of pumpkin seeds plus the buckwheat flour, sunflower seeds, psyllium husks, dried herbs and salt. Stir the mix well before gradually pouring in the water.

You’ll then need to let the mixture sit for an hour or so to let it fully absorb all the water and firm up. During which time you can heat the oven to 180C.

Once the mix is nice and firm (I mean really firm, it can’t even be a tiny bit runny – if it is then add another spoon of psyillium) grease the base of a loaf tin with coconut or olive oil, pour the mix in and firmly press it down with a spoon or spatula. Then place the bread in the oven and bake for forty minutes to an hour, until the top begins to brown and you can pull a knife out of the middle without any mix sticking to it. Finally, slice, smother in your favourite toppings and enjoy!

I normally store the bread in the fridge as it makes it last longer, and if you want to freeze it that works too, I normally slice it before freezing first though to make toasting easier!