Tag: healthy eating

Sweet Potato Pancakes

It’s nearly Pancake Day and I’ve been avidly testing out my pancake recipes. Actually, who am I kidding? I love pancakes and we eat them nearly every weekend!   While plain pancakes are great, I love adding different ingredients to them to give them a […]

Autumn Pumpkin Waffles

I’m still on a pumpkin kick, adding it into as many dishes as possible to fully capture that lovely autumn feeling. They’re such an amazing vegetable, full of energy producing B vitamins, immune boosting zinc and fibre for your digestive system. And the seeds are […]

Cinnamon Pumpkin Pancakes

pumpkin cinnamon pancakes and coffee

I love making pancakes on the weekend. Something about the ritual of measuring out the ingredients and gently stirring, folding and mixing them all together is so calming to me.

 

My son loves his weekend pancakes and I now have the challenge of creating new recipes to keep things fresh and exciting and educating his palate with new flavours.

 

It’s fall and the shops are replete with pumpkins, which made me feel a bit homesick. Actually, I’m pretty sure the homesickness started around Canadian Thanksgiving when M made a butternut squash and pumpkin pie to celebrate. Nevertheless, I put together this pumpkin pancake recipe to celebrate this amazing ingredient.

 

pumpkin cinnamon pancakes

What you need:

180g chestnut flour (you can also use wholemeal flour instead!)

1/4 tsp baking soda

2 large free-range eggs

250ml almond milk (or organic whole milk, if dairy works for you)

3 tbsp fresh pureéd pumpkin

1 tsp ground cinnamon

10-15g melted butter

 

How to make it:

  1. Sift the chestnut flour, baking soda and cinnamon into a medium sized bowl and stir until the ingredients are combined.
  2. Crack the eggs and separate the egg yolks and whites, setting the yolks aside.
  3. Whisk the egg whites until they are frothy. This is key for really fluffy pancakes!
  4. Slowly fold the milk into the dry mixture, then add the egg yolks and pumpkin.
  5. Add the butter and stir.
  6. Slowly fold the egg whites in the mixture until the egg whites can no longer be seen. Do not over fold!
  7. Leave the batter to stand for at least 10 minutes so the milk and baking soda have enough time to interact.
  8. After 7 minutes, warm up your cast-iron pan on medium heat. After a few minutes, add a tablespoon of your oil of choice and make sure the bottom of the pan is completely covered.
  9. Turn the stove down to medium-low heat. Cast-iron pans conduct heat really well, so a little heat goes a long way.
  10. Use an ice cream scoop to drop the batter in. I like to make pancakes on the smaller side so they are easier to flip.
  11. Once bubbles start to form on the edges of the pancakes (normally after a minute or so), flip them over. Chestnut flour tends to cook a bit faster than wheat flour so you’ll need to keep a close eye so they don’t burn. I learned this the hard way!
  12. Once you’ve made all your pancakes, top with the toppings of your choice. I like toppings such as fresh fruit, compote, dried coconut, chopped nuts and cacao nibs.

How many portions of fruit and vegetables do you eat each day?

  This isn’t a trick question! The NHS recommend at least 5 portions of fruit and veg per day and a recent study by Imperial College London went all the way up to 10 portions per day.   Does that sound like a lot?   […]

Sweet Potato Sliders

This weekend, I really fancied an open-faced sandwich, but had no bread in the house. I shuffled through the cupboards and found a bag of sweet potatoes and decided to see what sweet potato ‘bread’ tasted like. Stay with me… it was pretty good.   […]

The Easiest Frittata Recipe

easy-frittata-hot-out-of-the-oven

Aside from their significance as a major plot point in the Harrison Ford – Rachel McAdams film, Morning Glory, frittatas are one of those recipes that everyone seems to have their own little twist on. And why not? Their versatility means that even the newest of cooks can make a lovely frittata.

 

What you need:

At least 10 large free-range, organic eggs (the more eggs you use, the denser the frittata will be – no bad thing!)

Vegetables of your choice – I chose 1 cup of collard greens and 1 tomato for my version

Protein of your choice – I used 1 cup of diced chorizo in this recipe, but have also liberally used shredded pork, chicken and beef, as well as many varieties of cheese in the past

Chopped herbs of your choice – I used 1 sprig each of fresh thyme and rosemary

Salt and pepper

1 tbsp olive oil

Non-stick pan

Oven

 

How to make it:

1.  Break all the eggs into a bowl and beat them together, until all the yolks and whites have combined.

 

2. Add your chopped veg, protein and herbs to the egg mixture and stir until everything is combined.

 

3. Turn on your oven to 175C.

 

4. Add the olive oil to your non-stick pan, making sure that there is a light coating of oil across the pan and turn on the stove to low-medium heat.

 

5. Pour the frittata mixture into the pan, stirring so that all the veg and protein ingredients are evenly distributed. Use the tomatoes to create a nice pattern on the top of the frittata.

 

6. Leave to cook for 5 minutes or until the edges of the frittata start to crisp up.

easy-frittata-cooking-on-the-stove

7. Remove the pan from the stove (not forgetting to turn it off!) and place it into the warm oven. Let it cook for 20 – 25 minutes, or until the frittata is firm to the touch and there are no runny areas around the top.

 

8. Remove from the oven. Using a pallet knife or something similar, lift around the edges of the frittata so that it is easy to slide out of the pan, on to a plate.

 

9. Let cool for 5 minutes and enjoy!

easy-frittata-ready-to-serve

Food is food – nutritious, cheap and tasty.

This week, a prominent doctor in the UK talked about the need to reduce the 5-a-day fruit and vegetable intake recommendation because it was ‘unrealistic’ for low-income families to achieve this. She says that lots of families may struggle to afford the recommended amounts and that […]

Chestnut and caramelised apple and pear pancakes

I’ve been on a massive pancake kick recently. It’s probably because I associate pancakes with the comfort food of my childhood and right now, I seem to like the idea of getting a bit of comfort through food. Analyse that how you will.   Other […]

Clean eating? Healthy eating? What about nutritious eating?

hampstead heath

There’s been a lot of chatter in the media this week about the end of ‘clean eating’, with many disavowing this term, saying that it has led to a rise in disordered eating and anorexia.

The denouement of the majority of these pieces tend to call for moderation and for more healthy eating.

I will always applaud anything that helps people get to grips with what and how they eat.

BUT.

It seems to me as health professionals, that we’re suffering from terrible reductionism when it comes to advocating for better quality eating. On one side, there are those that are demonising whole food groups  (i.e. ‘all wheat/sugar/dairy/etc/etc is bad’) and the other side, proclaiming the answer is to simply eat a healthy, balanced diet. Both extremes are very reductionist and don’t offer the nuance that people need. But nuance doesn’t sell newspapers / magazines / books, doesn’t it?

What if you don’t know what eating healthy actually is and what it means for you? What if you’ve picked up the first Deliciously Ella book because everyone was talking about it and you thought it might teach you a few healthy eating tips and tricks? Are you now a part of the clean eating brigade (how I hate that term)?

I’ve discussed this topic before on the blog. The rise of the concept of clean eating isn’t a bad thing. Becoming more aware of what you put into and onto your body is good – we could all benefit from mindfulness when it comes to the way we eat. And with everything, there will always be individuals who have no brakes and take advice and concepts to their limit.

Equally, there will always be charlatans who peddle bad advice. Rather than blame the clean eating bloggers and instagrammers, surely asking people to take some agency around what they put into their bodies isn’t a big ask? Just as we ask people to educate themselves in other areas of their lives (finance is an area that comes to mind), it is not outrageous to expect people to give themselves a broad education into the benefits and drawbacks of the food they feed themselves and their families and to look at what they see on TV and in newspapers and magazines with a critical eye.

I firmly believe that we need to start thinking about food in terms of how nutritious it is. ‘Healthy’ is such a empty, almost meaningless term. Nutritious – the vitamins, minerals, protein, carbohydrates, fats in food – is more meaningful and has tangibles that can be referenced.

And what about flavour? Nutritious and flavourful aren’t mutually exclusive. Just as there’s pleasure in eating rich, indulgent foods, there’s also a lot of pleasure in eating nutritious, flavourful foods. The pleasure of eating these foods should ideally last from the moment of anticipation when you first put it in your mouth through to the lovely feeling of satiety when you’ve finished the meal.

Oh, one last thing. Get rid of the guilt. Enjoy the food you do eat and find pleasure in the making and eating of nutritious, flavourful meals.

Sweet Potato & Dukkah Crisps

We’re into the dog days of summer and the weather has gotten exceptionally warm here in London. No complaints here – I adore hot weather and any opportunity to spend some time getting some vitamin D. Happily, my enforced furlough at work has coincided with […]

Cinnamon, Date & Cashew More Balls

I made these very moreish date, cashew, seeds and cinnamon balls on Saturday and needless to say, they were almost all gone by Monday morning. Hence the name, more balls – you know, because you want more!   They’re a really nice variation on the […]

Refreshing Strawberry and Mint Ice Lollies

strawberry, raspberry and mint ice lolly

It’s FINALLY summer here in London and I’ve been experimenting with some fun warm weather recipes. You know, the type of food that you want to eat when the temperature rises and you desperately need to cool down.

I made this ice lollies at the weekend in less than 10 minutes (not including freezing time!) and they went down a treat.

What you need:

1 cup strawberries, washed and hulled

1/2 cup raspberries, washed

150ml coconut water (I like Rebel Kitchen)

3 medium-sized fresh mint leaves, chopped (You can use 1/2 teaspoon of dried mint if you don’t have any fresh mint)

Ice lolly moulds

A freezer (!)

strawberry ice lollies about to go into freezer

How to make it:

  1. Wash and hull your strawberries, then drop them into your blender cup. I use my Nutribullet for this, but a hand blender or Magimix would work just as well.
  2. Add the washed raspberries.
  3. Pour in the coconut water.
  4. Add the fresh mint.
  5. Blend until strawberries and raspberries are smooth.
  6. Pour into your ice lolly moulds and freeze. Depending on how cold and full your freeze is, the lollies will be ready in about 2-4 hours.
  7. Save the leftover mixture for more lollies or use it in your morning smoothie!
  8. Enjoy!

Stories I loved this week.

The countdown continues. Only one week left until my exam and I have to admit that it’s been incredibly challenging to study this week. My concentration has been completely shot, as I toggle through various tabs of post-Brexit coverage on my browser, whilst I incessantly […]

Simple Baked Wild Salmon and Vegetables

I threw this together early this week after a long day of clinics when I knew we needed to eat well and I couldn’t justify the expense (both caloric and monetary) of ordering in. From start to finish, the meal took me 30 minutes, including […]

Lemon, Ginger and Oil of Oregano Cold Remedy

lemons and grapefruit

As you can probably imagine, I’m not a huge fan of off the shelf cold remedies you might find in your local Boots or Superdrug. I always prefer a natural remedy whenever possible.

 

A few weeks ago when I was fighting a little cold, I bought a few turmeric tonic shots from my local Planet Organic. As effective as they are, they can be rather pricey at £3.50+ for a 50ml bottle.

 

 

Here’s my recipe for a quick little homemade tonic that will help boost your immune system and help those natural killer cells do their job of getting rid of bad bacteria and pathogens.

 

I’ve included a good dose of ginger for the lovely zing and the zinc, a mineral that is better at boosting the immune system than vitamin C. The turmeric in the recipe is packed with curcumin, an phytonutrient that has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties.

 

Oil of oregano is an incredibly powerful antioxidant, with important antiviral, anti fungal and antimicrobial properties through carvacrol and thymol, its active ingredients. I get my oil of oregano from Zane Hellas, a reputable Greek company. If you use oil of oregano, do not give this to children, as they cannot ingest essential oils.

 

What you need: (makes 2-3 servings)

1-2 lemons, cut in half and juiced

1/2 thumb fresh ginger, roughly chopped

1/2 thumb fresh turmeric, roughly chopped

a dash of cayenne pepper

1/4 teaspoon coconut oil

3-4 drops of oil of oregano

20 – 30mL water to dilute the mixture, depending on preferred strength and taste (for me, the stronger the better!)

 

How to make it: 

  1. Juice the lemons into a cup, using a strainer to catch the seeds. I go old school and do it by hand.  Remove the seeds and add the pulp back into the mixture.
  2. Add the ginger, turmeric, cayenne pepper, coconut oil, oil of oregano and water
  3. Blend for 30 seconds, or until the turmeric and ginger are not longer visible
  4. Pour half of the mixture into a cup and down the hatch!
  5. Store the rest in a glass container in the fridge for up to 5 days.

What are your  cold remedies? I’d love to hear what your tried and true recipes and tricks are!

 

Are you the kind of person that gets sick more often than others? Your immune system could likely use some support. Maybe there is an underlying issue, especially if you also have asthma, eczema or allergies. Is this you? I invite you to book in for a free introductory session with me to talk through your health and wellbeing.