Sunday, 30 August 2015

Courgetti with an Avocado & Lime Pesto

Spiralisers have taken over as the new must-have kitchen appliance. They are so easy to use and will soon have ou wondering what you ever did without one! Courgetti is my favourite dish by far and since I got a spiraliser for Christmas last year I have made the dish so many times, mixing it up with different pesto’s. I recently moved out of my friends flat and took my spiraliser with me (of course). It hasn’t taken her long to purchase her own and better yet even her boyfriend is hooked on Courgetti!


4 courgettes

For the Pesto

30 grams coriander

1 avocado

2 limes

1 lemon

handful of nuts (brazil/pine/pecan nuts)

2 cloves garlic

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoons coconut oil

1 teaspoon tahini

2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

Choice of toppings:

sun-dried tomatoes

kalamata olives

pumpkin seeds

red pepper

Spiralise the courgettes and lightly fry in coconut oil to soften and warm up the vegetables. This is not essential, you can leave the courgettes raw for a cold, crunchier dish.
Blend the pesto ingredients until thick and smooth. Mix the pesto into the courgetti and add your choice of toppings.

Sunday, 16 February 2014

Activate your Nuts

My new obsession is activated almonds. They are popping up all over over health food stores and with various flavours are absolutely delicious. My favourite are these by Raw Ecstasy. 

They taste like they have been roasted when in fact they have been ACTIVATED. This involves soaking the nuts in water then drying them out at a very low temperature. What this does is break down Phytic acid, which can block the absorption of certain minerals by binding to them. By breaking this down, enzymes are activated making the nuts easier to digest and the nutrients more readily available. 

As this is quite a process, little bags of these special nuts do not come cheap! So I've decided to activate my own. Its really easy!

First soak your nuts (I would recommend almonds) for at least 12 hours by covering them with water and leaving them out at room temperature. For cashews and pistachios reduce soaking time to 6 hours. You will notice them puff up a bit and may even see signs of sprouting.

Rinse the nuts with cold water and if you want to add any flavour do this now. I added Himalayan pink salt to mine. You can enjoy the nuts now if you like - I did half/half as love the taste of them both soaked and then dried!

To dry place the nuts in an oven at a very low temperature (around 50 degrees) and leave for at least an hour, keep tasting until your most desired crunchiness! 

Store in an airtight container and snack on throughout the week without breaking the bank! 

Sunday, 5 January 2014

Detox with Broccoli

Happy New Year! I am so looking forward to 2014 and can't believe how in a year I have had a complete career turnaround, swapping Investment banking with Wellbeing and FSA studies for a diploma in Nutrition! It is so amazing to start a year knowing I am doing something I love and working towards a subject I am so passionate about. One of my New Year's resolutions is to keep up this blog no matter how busy I get. So I will attempt to make weekly posts every Sunday even if it consists of one photo or one thought of the day!

At the moment we are studying Biomedicine and so have been learning all about the different systems of the body and how their structure relates to their function. The human body is incredible! Today we did the Digestive System and after an indulgent holiday the part that really sparked my interest was the liver and its detoxifying role. There are two phases to this process and lucky for us our amazing lecturer included a slide of foods and vitamins which induce these phases. The Brassica family so Cabbage, broccoli etc induces both phases and so I thought I would incorporate them into my dinner tonight!

I boiled some sweet potatoes and broccoli then coated them in coconut oil, turmeric and lemon juice. I then added these to a salad of tomatoes, red cabbage, alfafa and radish sprouts. I dressed the salad in olive oil, lemon juice and himalayan salt! 

I made quite a lot so managed to stop eating and put aside some in the fridge to take to work for lunch - sorted! :)

Sunday, 29 December 2013

A calorie is not a calorie

I have started a new job, which I absolutely love. However this means I don't have as much time to prepare delicious and healthy meals. So I've been on the hunt for quick, healthy, satisfying options and the clear winner of which I can't get enough of are coconut chunks.

 They are so delicious, filling and very good for you. Ignore their fat content as these are good saturated fats! Ignore the calorie count as a calorie is not a calorie, which will make sense in a bit. I have eaten as much as a whole packet a day and have actually lost weight in the last two weeks. I did feel like I needed to do some research on why coconuts are so good for you so I may preach with substance. And so I've consulted nutritionists, health-minded women at work and even my GP!

A calorie is not a calorie - the words of Robert Lustig - an American pediatric endocrinologist. I was recommended to look up Robert Lustig by my doctor in South Kensington who after learning I am studying naturopathic nutrition launched into several sites I must check out so that as the new generation of health I am one step ahead and able to better bridge the gap between conventional medicine and naturopathy. A relationship that has brought about much controversy. I was excited to find that what he told me is very much in tune with my naturopathic lecturer and so I looked up his recommended sites of which I'd like to share the following. 

Why a calorie is not a calorie

1. Fiber. You eat 160 calories in almonds, but you absorb only 130. The fiber in the almonds delays absorption of calories into the bloodstream, delivering those calories to the bacteria in your intestine, which chew them up. Because a calorie is not a calorie.
    2. Protein. When it comes to food, you have to put energy in to get energy out. You have to put twice as much energy in to metabolize protein as you do carbohydrate; this is called the thermic effect of food. So protein wastes more energy in its processing. Plus protein reduces hunger better than carbohydrate. Because a calorie is not a calorie.
    3. Fat. All fats release nine calories per gram when burned. But omega-3 fats are heart-healthy and will save your life, while trans fats clog your arteries, leading to a heart attack. Because a calorie is not a calorie
    4. Sugar. This is the "big kahuna" of the "big lie." Sugar is not one chemical. It's two. Glucose is the energy of life. Every cell in every organism on the planet can burn glucose for energy. Glucose is mildly sweet, but not very interesting (think molasses). Fructose is an entirely different animal. Fructose is very sweet, the molecule we seek. Both burn at four calories per gram. If fructose were just like glucose, then sugar or high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) would be just like starch. But fructose is not glucose. Because a calorie is not a calorie.

Saturday, 23 November 2013

Good-for-you Chocolate Mousse

This is one of my favourite things to make. The process is just so decadent, especially when creating the recipe as a lot of tasting and testing is required! The best version of healthy chocolate mousse that I have tried so far has got to be from the Wild Food Cafe. While they didn't share the recipe with me I managed to get the ingredients out of them, all of which I have tried to incorporate here except the algarroba powder. I had never heard of this before so did some googling. 

Algarroba powder is a Peruvian carob which comes from the pods of the mesquite tree. Considered a superfood due to its protein, fibre, calcium, magnesium, potassium, iron and zinc content, its is perfect for sweetening raw recipes or smoothies. I will be looking out for it and once tried will blog a review. 

Peru is abundant in natural superfoods as the cacao I used in this recipe is also Peruvian. This raw cacao is made by cold-pressing the oil out of the beans, filtering them and resulting in a premium grade powder. When processed this way the cacao powder produced contains more antioxidants than any other known food. They go into further detail and compare nutritional content to other foods (40 times greater than blueberries!) so if you are interested have a look at their website here

Ingredients (Serves 2): 

4 dates

1 tablespoon of coconut oil

1 avocado

2 and a half tablespoons of cacao powder

2 ripe bananas

2 tablespoons of almond butter

1 teaspoon of vanilla bean paste

Simply add all theingredients into your food processor and blend. If you are using a blender which may not be very powerful add the dates, coconut oil and almond butter first and let that blend for a few minutes before adding the rest of the ingredients. 

Eat immediately or if you can't wait or let chill in the fridge for later!

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Nutty Coconut Overnight Oats

Here is a breakfast option that does not include avocado! Overnight oat recipes are popping up everywhere and I now know why. The soaking makes a delicious creamy and gel-like consistency with the oats and no matter what you soak them in they are divine.

Soaking oats and other grains is very beneficial to their nutritional value as well. It helps enzymes, lactobilli and other organisms to break down and neutralise phytic acid. Phytic acid is contained in the outer layer of all grains. If untreated phytic acid can combine with calcium, magnesium, copper, iron and zinc in the intestinal track and block their absorption. I read about this in an extract from Nourishing Traditions (I have yet to read to read this book but it seems to challenge some interesting beliefs and is on my list!) While this is all true I have also read that the amount of phytic acid in oats is not that much and when we cook them it is even less so, so I wouldn't be overly concerned about soaking your oats every night!

A new obsession in our household is Coyo coconut yoghurt. It is absolutely delicious, you won't believe there is no cream at all. In fact I would say it is more of a cream substitute than a yoghurt substitute and would be perfect as healthy alternative for desserts or cake icings. It really makes this breakfast option something special!

What is also great about this recipe is that it will keep in the fridge for 2 - 3 days so you can prepare a few for your week and then have them as breakfast, an afternoon snack or even a pudding! It's just so versatile :)


4 tablespoons of oats

Almond milk (or any other milk you want to soak the oats the in)

1/4 cup of almonds

1 medjool date (optional)

Chia seeds

1 banana

Cover oats in almond milk and soak in the fridge overnight or for at least 4 hours.

Pulse the almonds and date in a food processor or blender for a few minutes until chopped, don't let it form a flour. Combine the nut mixture with the soaked oats and layer at the bottom of a glass or bowl. Scoop a dollop of yoghurt on top and layer sliced bananas. Enjoy immediately or leave in the fridge for later!

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Lentil brown rice & beetroot salad

As the chill sets in I find myself wanting to eat more and more hot cooked grains. It is stil important to incorporate some raw fresh foods as well so I've combined two simple recipes to create an explosion of flavours. 

The brown rice, lentils and caramelised onions recipe was inspired by one of Goop's posts. If you don't subscribe to Goop you should. It is great with lots of style tips, beauty recommendations and healthy recipes. 

Ingredients (serves 2):

1 cup of brown rice

1 cup of lentils 

4 red onions

1 packet of greens (rocket/watercress/spinach - a mix is best) 

1 avocado

1/2 a cucumber

1 green pepper

1 raw beetroot

1 lemon

Olive oil

Coconut oil (optional)

Vegetable stock


Start by cooking the lentils and brown rice in two separate pots with salt and water. Instead of salt I add organic vegetable stock to the brown rice pot with the water. Once that is on the go, slice the onions and let them fry slowly on a low heat with some coconut oil. 

To prepare the salad simply chop the cucumber, green pepper and avocado and add to the mixed greens. Drizzle with olive oil and some lemon juice and salt to taste. 

Once the rice, lentils and caramelised onions are cooked mix them together. Serve as is or grate some beetroot in to get a lovely purple colour. Dish up separately or mixed with the green salad, the flavours complement each other so nicely so definitely eat them together!