Year: 2016

Courgetti Ratatouille

So the bountiful August is well and truly in swing… filled with beans, potatoes, herbs, carrots, garlic, beetroot and of course courgettes… Our Allotmenting this year has been less productive than in previous years, mainly because I’ve been focused on getting my yoga class up and running alongside studying…I’m spread pretty thin but Tim and the kids have done a fab job of just about staying on top of the growth…and salvaging veg before the birds / rabbits / deer get there!  So here’s a vegan ratatouille recipe, originally posted on my instagram account, tried and tested by the lovely Mel Bevan (who’s family have given their seal of approval)!     Ingredients (serves 2): 1 red onion 2 cloves garlic 1/2 red pepper 1 red chilli Pinch sea salt and crack of black pepper Sprig of fresh rosemary and thyme 1 can plum tomatoes 8 medium mushrooms 1 tsp agave nectar 1 large courgette 1 tbsp rapeseed oil Method: 1) Heat a tbsp rapeseed oil in a large pan or wok. 2) Finely slice …

Mango, Coconut & Chia Cream

It’s officially the first day of the school holidays for us… Amid various melt-downs there were moments of loveliness.  Breakfast was one of them.  I think we all thoroughly appreciated the slow morning we had.  The sun was shining and we sat in the garden eating and planning our day… With extra time comes a little more creativity and this delicious breakfast pudding was the result.  It was as easy as making a smoothie, and just took a few extra minutes for the chia seeds to do their coagulating business in the fridge… So here it is… hope you enjoy!   Ingredients: 1 mango 2/3 can coconut milk 1 tbsp chia seeds 1 tbsp cocoa nibs Method: 1) Quarter the mango, slice and dice and scoop in to a blender. 2) Add the coconut milk, chia seeds and cocoa nibs. 3) Blend and pour in to a bowl.  Set in the fridge for at least 10 minutes. Enjoy! PS – I watched Forks Over Knives last night, anyone else seen it?  Brilliant watch for anyone …

It’s Make or Break – Fast…

This post comes late to the party… mainly because the party was late… and blogging the breakfast was far more than I could handle!  So after a weekend of celebrations, a birthday dinner at ‘The Giggling Squid‘ Esher on Thursday night, Hersham Beer Festival on Friday night, a 40th at Weybridge Vandals on Saturday night, 3 Ballet shows at Cleves school on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, 3 dogs and 4 visiting relatives, it truly was a make or break-fast on Sunday morning.  It turned out to be a make-fast thankfully!   Ingredients for Spicy Chick Peas, Stuffed Mushrooms, Sourdough, Sauteed New Potatoes and Scrambled Egg… a vegetarian breakfast delight! Spicy Chick Peas: 1 red onion 1 can chickpeas 1 can plum tomatoes 2 cloves garlic 1 tsp paprika 1tsp maple or agave syrup 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper pinch salt Stuffed Mushrooms: 2 Portobello mushrooms 1 ball mozzarella Handful chopped watercress 4 chopped cherry tomatoes Handful chopped basil Pinch sea salt & black pepper Sauteed new potatoes 8 new potatoes pinch of sea salt and paprika …

Homemade Burgers & BBQ Salads

So in the spirit of Summer (apparently it’s here in Britain although you wouldn’t know)… here’s my home-made BBQ.  Albeit to be consumed under a brolly in a shivering 16C whilst pretending it’s not raining and it’s actually hot… I’m not complaining, I’m not I’m not…   In a bid to cut out the sulphites, the nasty preservatives found in a lot of processed meat I’ve made my own burgers.. The recipe is simple and the flavour is delicate and that’s mainly because the kids complain if they are any other way… But the salad are a little more hearty, and the potatoes are home grown…whoopee (pat on the back for keeping a plant alive)…   Burger Ingredients (Makes 6):   400g Organic lean beef mince 1 red onion 1 tsp maple syrup 1 egg 50g breadcrumbs Pinch salt & pepper Knob of butter Sprinkling of plain flour to shape the burgers Potato Salad (serves 4): Around 24 new potatoes (either whole or halved) 2 handfuls fresh broad beans Knob of Butter Handful of Fresh …

Reasons to be healthy, 1…2…3…or Bending over backwards for health!

This is Lupa the Immortal.  Well, technically speaking this is an offspring of Lupa the Immortal, my sourdough starter which came in to being in the very early days of writing this blog (read more in ‘Sourdough, the worlds slowest bread‘).   Lupa spends most of her time in the fridge, slowly fermenting… sometimes she’s really active, bubbling away, being fed and nurtured, and sometimes she’s so forgotten, that when I come to her she needs a little TLC before she’ll produce a healthy offspring… The reason I’m using my bread as an analogy in a post about health is two-fold.  One, that (if you read the original blog post you’ll see) I prefer to cut out the additives, preservatives, bulking agents and sugar that many commercial bread products come laden with, and make my own bread instead.  And two, that I see this simple sourdough starter bloom when nourished and cared for and fade when it’s needs are not being met.  It reminds me of how I so often feel.  It’s only been through …

5 Tips to Soothe You Off to Sleep…zzzz…

Whether you’re still buzzing from a busy day, or twitching from too much TV… Here are some go to tips to help soothe you off to sleep… 1 )   B a l a s a n a   ( C h i l d ‘ s   P o s e ) This one works for me almost every time.  The gentle pressure on the forehead encourages the back of the neck to lengthen, and it’s possible that’s where there’s a lot of held tension, especially if you’ve been sitting at a computer for much of the day. Physically the body ‘closes down’, curled up in a comfy, supported ball gives the brain a signal of ‘safety’, that’s a good condition to encourage sleep too! Top Tips:  Ensure the balls of the big toes are touching Place a pillow between the hips and the heels if they don’t comfortably meet DON’T put pressure through the knees, try something different if it hurts. DON’T squish the baby (not for you if you’re pregnant) Experiement with draping the arms …

A Meat-Free Monday Bowl of Plenty…

Mondays are for cleaning up after the weekend, sorting laundry, putting away, generally making sense of the mess created by us all having a ‘relaxing’ (read chaotic) weekend at home.  Mondays are for Yoga too… There’s a brilliant class at the beautiful Yoga Sp8ce on a Monday afternoon taught by Ruth… It’s always challenging, always blissed out and always reminds me to be good to myself… So feeling virtuous (after a weekend of over-indulgence) here’s a fab meat-free Monday recipe to kick start a healthy week, before another over indulgent weekend at the Hersham Beer Festival!!  See you there… Ingredients (Serves 2): 1 medium sweet potato 1/2 head cauliflower 1 leek 1 cup red camargue rice 1 400g can chickpeas 2 handfuls almonds 1/2 large white onion 1 tsp paprika pinch saffron 1 tbsp tamari 1 tsp garam masala Sea-salt Olive oil Method: 1.Heat the oven to 200C. 2. Bring a saucepan of water to the boil and add the rice, along with a pinch of salt and pinch of saffron.  Allow to simmer for …

Chicory, Pear & Goats Cheese Salad

I’m not sure if this is an starter or a meal in itself?  My portion sizes aren’t exactly very yoga (by which I mean make a bowl with your hands and that’s  your portion size…) I just can’t decide how many times a day and how many servings per meal they mean… This one was part of a tapas style ‘picky’ Friday night meal… so we probably vastly overate a lot of a very deliciously food!     Ingredients (Serves 2): 2 heads of chicory 2 pears 2 handfuls walnut halves 100g goats cheese (the soft rolled type) balsamic vinegar 1 tbsp maple syrup 1 tsp butter Method: 1) Break up the chicory so each leaf provides a little bowl for your cheese, pear & walnuts… 2) Slice the goats cheese in to discs and then halve. 3) Cut the pear in to approx. 1/2cm slices (discarding the core).  Then cut each slice in to 1/2cm strips. 4) Melt a tsp of butter in a frying pan on the hob.  Add the walnut halves and …

Retro Rhubarb and Ginger Compote

When I think of rhubarb I think of ‘Roobarb and Custard’ the 1970’s kids TV show, or Rhubarb and Custard penny sweets, or endless Rhubarb crumbles every Sunday through the summer…  I’m never very sure whether Rhubarb is a vegetable or a fruit and I’m always slightly panicked as to what to do with it.  However, when in doubt, compote.  The main reasons I love a compote are that it reduces the volume, it stores well in the fridge and it can be added to just about any pudding or breakfast.  Mixed with yoghurt, added to smoothies, dolloped on top of granola or porridge or mixed with ice-cream. Ingredients: 5 sticks of Rhubarb 1 Thumb of ginger 2 Tbsp Maple Syrup A little water Method: 1) Top and tail the rhubarb to remove any scraggly bits.  Cut in to approximate 1cm chunks. 2) Add the rhubarb to a saucepan on the hob with a splash of water and the maple syrup.  Heat and simmer, add a tbsp of water at a time if the compote …