Tuesday, 19 January 2016

Vanilla Overnight Oats

If you enjoy living life on the edge, aka you tend to find yourself pressing the snooze button to the maxxxximum amount you possibly can, to savour just a few extra special moments in your beloved bed.... then this recipe is for YOU my friend. I can totally sympathise with you. Bless our souls. We aren't the greatest morning people. Especially when we haven't eaten breakfast. So to kickstart/ease you in for the day, whatever you're feeling, overnight oats are the BEST. They fill you right up, and taste like a heavenly dessert for breakfast, especially when topped with berries. Do not worry. I've got your back. Trust me, this is the solution to easier mornings and happier days. Oh and don''t thank me. Thank the oats.

P.S This recipe is kind of like 'Overnight Oats 101', basically it's very simple. Simple, yes, but veryyy delicious. However, what I'm trying to get at is, feel free to add whatever you like to it. Top your jar with nuts, seeds, berries, more maple syrup -  whatever you fancy. Or even if you have more time to spare in the morning, empty the jar's contents out into a bowl and top with more yoghurt, cinnamon etc., you name it! 

*Warning, this will make your mornings very enjoyable. Even if you aren't the greatest morning person.

Serves 1

25g Porridge Oats
50ml of Milk (whatever you prefer; cow/almond/oat etc.)
3 tablespoons of Greek Yoghurt
1 tablespoon of Chia Seeds
1 tablespoon of Maple Syrup
1 teaspoon of Vanilla Extract
Pinch of Cinnamon and Salt
  1. The night before you'd like to eat these oats - add all the ingredients together in a large bowl and mix them with a spoon until blended.
  2. Place in a jar or tupperware - then pop the lid on. (You could also transfer the oat mixture into a bowl, and cover with clingfilm, if you've got time for a leisurely breakfast. The initial options are for transportation sake.)
  3. Leave the oats in the fridge overnight to infuse all the amazing flavours.
  4. The next morning, remove the lid/clingfilm and top with anything you'd like. It is also good on it's own. Although fruit makes everything better and has lots of incredible nutrients, so why leave it out?!
  5. Simple as that- it's ready to be enjoyed wherever. On the train, bus, at work...or in bed.

Wednesday, 13 January 2016

Raw Almond Fudge

These bite-size fudgey beauties are SO delicious. Perfect as an energy-boosting snack or sweet treat after a meal. Almonds are amazing, as they are fully loaded with Vitamin E, which will keep your skin glowing and looking beautiful. I've used both the whole nut and butter form for double the goodness- oh yeahhh! As well, these nuts contain heart-healthy fats and anti-oxidants. This is what eating healthy is all about - enjoying nourishing food which also tastes amazing!

Makes 10 bites

110g Pitted Medjool Dates
90g Almonds
50ml of Water
3 tablespoons of Almond Butter
3 tablespoons of Maple Syrup
2 tablespoons of Cacao Powder
2 tablespoons of Coconut Oil
1 teaspoon of Vanilla Extract
Pinch of Salt

  1. Simmer pitted dates in saucepan with water, and a pinch of salt, for 5 minutes until softened.
  2. Line a small tin or tupperware box with greaseproof paper.
  3. Blend almonds for a few minutes on high speed until they've broken down quite significantly.
  4. Remove dates from heat and allow to cool.
  5. Add almond butter, cacao powder, maple syrup, coconut oil, vanilla extract and a pinch of salt to the blender with the almonds. Blend for a minute or so, until well combined.
  6. Add dates and blend mixture until a gooey dough forms.
  7. Remove dough from blender and place into lined line/tupperware.
  8. Pop lid on and freeze for 2 hours before serving.
  9. Keep fudge in the freeze, then remove when you'd like to eat. They shouldn't need that long to defrost - a minute or so. 

Friday, 8 January 2016

Lentil, Spinach & Paprika Soup

"Healthy foods" seem to have quite a lot of stigmas attached to them. Especially that they are a lot more expensive than processed foods. Yes, OK - this may be true to an extent if you are choosing to buy already prepared 'good for you' meals/snacks in supermarkets or independent shops. However, if you make your meals at home, wholesome nourishing dishes can be cheaper than chips! Nature's most nutritionally-packed foods are usually not expensive at all. For example, the gloriously filling and extremely versatile - LENTIL. These yummy fibre and protein laden little discs can be bought in large quantities from a supermarket without exceeding your budget, and are such a great addition to your diet. 

Serves 6

2 Brown Onions
4 Garlic Cloves
500g of Red Lentils
1 tin of Chopped Tomatoes
1 teaspoon of Chilli Powder
2 teaspoons of Oregano
1 tablespoon of Paprika
1 tablespoon of Cumin
1 tablespoon of Butter
1 tablespoon of Tomato Puree
2 litres of Vegetable Stock
1 bag of Spinach
  1. In a large saucepan on medium heat, fry off onions and garlic for 5 minutes, with butter. Season with salt.
  2. Add chilli, oregano, paprika and cumin. Fry off for another minute.
  3. Rinse lentils in cold running water.
  4. Then add lentils, chopped tomatoes, tomato puree and 1 litre of stock. Cook lentils until soft for 18-20 minutes. Stir every now and then to prevent lentils from sticking to bottom of the saucepan.
  5. Add remainder of the stock to ensure lentils are well cooked and that the mixture becomes more soup-like. [Leave it thickened and you could also enjoy this dish as a delicious vegetarian dhal curry!] 
  6. Remove the soup from the heat and allow it to cool slightly. Blitz it with a hand blender for a minute or so, to increase soup-like texture and whatever your preference.
  7. Bring the soup to boil again to ensure that the soup is well heated before serving.
  8. Once it has been reheated, remove from the heat, and stir in the spinach. Season with salt and pepper to taste. 
  9. Can be served straight away, stored in air-tight containers for up to 2 days, or frozen and read ready to be re-heated anytime you're craving some mental lentils!