Hot Lemon and Ginger

(makes one serving)

Boil the kettle, put 1 or 2 tablespoons of freshly-squeezed lemon or lime juice in a mug (the stuff that comes in bottles or squeezy lemon/lime shapes is fine), add a good pinch of sea salt crystals, grate in some peeled fresh root ginger (you can peel it, cut it into chunks, bag them and freeze then grate from frozen), add boiling water, stir well, leave to cool a little before stirring in a teaspoon of Manuka honey then sip slowly.

Bircher Muesli

(makes 1 generous or 2 smaller servings)

Ingredients

6 tablespoons oats

9 tablespoons coconut water

2 tablespoons flaked almonds (toasted or untoasted)

½ tablespoon Manuka honey

1 tablespoon 0% fat Greek yoghurt

2 teaspoons lemon/lime juice

½ apple, peeled, cored and grated

4 fresh mint leaves, very finely chopped

Method

Combine all the ingredients in a bowl, mix really well, cover and place in the fridge overnight.

Serve with a sprinkling of cinnamon powder or grated nutmeg on top.


Crisp Breads are Quick 

Select plain wholegrain rye crisp breads or the ones with added grains and/or mixed seeds and top with one of the following delicious combinations:

Sliced cooked beef, tzatziki, toasted flaked almonds, fresh mint leaves and a drizzle of honey.

Fresh prawns or crabmeat, sliced cucumber, chopped boiled egg, natural yoghurt and toasted pine nuts.

Parma ham, sliced raw mushrooms, sliced tomato, scrambled egg or sliced boiled egg and a dash of Worcestershire sauce.

Tinned tuna, coarse grain mustard, lime/lemon juice, anchovy sauce, sliced tomato and Greek yoghurt.

Tinned salmon, chopped boiled egg, sliced mixed olives, sliced avocado, sliced cucumber, natural yoghurt, lemon juice and a good dash of smoked paprika powder.

OR experiment (dependent on what is in the fridge!)


Essential Smoothie

(makes 2 servings)

Ingredients

2 tablespoons mixed raw seeds (pumpkin, sunflower, flax etc.)

3 ice cubes

200g mixed red/purple berries (raspberries, blueberries, blackcurrants, strawberries, stoned cherries, brambles etc.)

100g watermelon, seeds included

200g silken tofu, drained and sliced

750ml rice milk or skimmed milk

Method

Place the seeds in a spice/coffee grinder and blitz until pulverised or use a mortar and pestle if you don’t have a grinder.

Place the ice cubes in a blender with all the other ingredients and run of low power until they start to come together, then on full power until the smoothie is creamy and frothy.

Add a little water if it is too thick and strain to remove the seedy, gritty bits.

Transfer half the mixture to a tall glass and refrigerate or freeze the rest for tomorrow. You may need to give it another blitz before serving the other portion as the seeds tend to sink to the bottom.

NB: you can make more of the seed mix in one go and keep it in a dark glass jar in the refrigerator for up to 4 days for convenience.


Quick and Tasty Chicken Broth

(makes 4 servings)

Ingredients

2 chicken thighs or 4 chicken wings

1 tablespoon light olive oil

3 thick stalks celery, peeled and finely sliced

1 large onion, peeled and finely sliced

1 medium carrot, peeled and finely diced

1.2 litres chicken stock

100g brown rice

1 teaspoon horseradish sauce

A generous bunch of parsley, stalks removed and leaves very finely chopped

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method

Roast the chicken pieces in a medium to hot oven until the skins are crisp and the flesh is cooked through while you make the soup.

Warm the oil in a soup pot, add the celery, onion and carrot and saute gently until the vegetables are tender (about 15 minutes).

Add the stock and bring slowly to the boil.

Reduce the heat, add the rice and simmer, covered until the rice is cooked (around 20 minutes).

Skin the chicken pieces and shred/chop the flesh before adding to the soup with the horseradish sauce and parsley.

Stir well and season to taste.

As rice soaks up a lot of liquid, you will probably have to add more stock or water to achieve the light, brothy experience if you are not supping this soup immediately and have refrigerated/ frozen it for future use.

Ham and Eggs

(makes one serving)

Ingredients

½ tablespoon coconut or olive oil (or a mix of both)

2 medium free range eggs (preferably Omega 3 rich)

2 thin slices Parma or other ‘cured’ ham

1 medium fresh tomato, halved

Freshly ground black pepper

Method

In a small to medium-sized saute pan, heat the oil over a medium heat until hot then add the tomato halves, flesh side down and cook for a few minutes then push them to the side of the pan.

Add the ham slices, let them sizzle for a minute or two before moving them to the side and cracking the eggs into the remaining space (turn the heat down if they start spluttering).

As the eggs cook, keep basting them with the oil using a spoon and tilting the pan slightly.

Once the eggs are cooked to your liking, season the eggs and tomato lightly with pepper (you are unlikely to need salt as the ham is salty) then lift all the ingredients onto a warmed plate with a slotted spoon or fish slice and dig in.


Spinach and Watercress Soup

(makes 4 servings)

Ingredients

2 tablespoons light olive oil

1 medium onion, peeled and finely chopped

1 litre chicken or vegetable stock

1 heaped tablespoon porridge oats

2 bags spinach leaves

1 bag watercress

Fresh lemon juice

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method

Warm the oil in a large soup pot and saute the onion gently until soft. 

Add the stock and the porridge oats, bring slowly to the boil, turn down the heat and simmer for 15 minutes.

Add the spinach and watercress and keep stirring whilst bringing the soup back to the boil then turn off the heat.

Liquidise the whole lot until you have a smooth, foamy soup then return to a clean pan.

Heat through gently, add a good squeeze of lemon juice and check the seasoning.

You can grate a little lemon zest on top of each bowl for added zing.


Lentil and Bean Salad

(makes 4 servings)

Ingredients

230g tinned puy lentils, drained and rinsed

230g tinned kidney beans, drained and rinsed

80g natural cottage cheese

80g raisins

40g dried apricots, chopped

40g cashew nuts, chopped

2 tablespoons mayonnaise

2 tablespoons natural live/bio yoghurt

Lemon juice

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method

Gently mix all the ingredients together and chill before serving.


Tomato-Topped Rose Veal Escalopes

(makes 2 servings)

Ingredients

2 rose veal escalopes

1 tablespoon olive or avocado oil

Himalayan rock salt

Freshly ground black pepper

2 shallots, peeled and very finely sliced

8 cherry tomatoes, halved

200ml white or rose wine or pomegranate juice

2 tablespoons tarragon leaves, roughly chopped

2 tablespoons creme fraiche

2 handfuls of pine nuts

Method

Toast the pine nuts in a medium oven and set aside (watch them, they burn in the blink of an eye).

Coat the veal escalopes in a little of the oil, season both sides with salt and pepper and set aside.

Heat the remainder of the oil in a saute pan, add the shallots and sweat over a low heat until cooked through (around 5 minutes).

Add the tomatoes, flesh side down, turn up the heat and cook until they are nicely caramelised but still fairly firm then turn off the heat and cover the pan with a lid or foil.

Heat a dry, non-stick pan until you can only leave the palm of your hand above the surface for a couple of seconds and add the veal escalopes. Flash fry for around 1-2 minutes on each side then remove to a warmed plate and cover to let them rest and relax.

Sling the wine or pomegranate juice into the shallot/tomato mix, turn the heat up to high and quickly reduce the liquid until syrupy then turn down the heat to low and add the tarragon and creme fraiche, stirring well but carefully to ensure everything is well mixed and the tomatoes are not broken up.

Check the seasoning before serving the escalopes topped with the sauce and garnish with the toasted pine nuts.

This is particularly good served with steamed mixed greens (spinach, kale, spring cabbage) or a lightly-dressed crisp green salad.

mixed salad

Beta Carotene Cocktail

(makes 2 servings)

Ingredients

3 ice cubes

1 yellow or orange pepper, de-seeded and chopped

1 orange, peeled and chopped

½ small cantaloupe melon, peeled and chopped

4 fresh apricots, cleaned, stoned and chopped

4 cos lettuce leaves, washed and torn

Fresh carrot juice

beta carotene2 small.jpg

Method

Blitz the ice cubes, pepper, orange, melon, apricots and lettuce until smooth and add carrot juice until you achieve your desired consistency.


Fish in a Parcel

(makes 1 serving)

Ingredients

1 white fish fillet of choice

1 generous handful of fresh spinach leaves

1 small onion, peeled and very finely sliced into rings

6 fresh asparagus tips

1 tomato, sliced

1 small red chilli, de-seeded and finely sliced (optional)

1 tablespoon fresh parsley or coriander leaves, chopped

2 teaspoons lemon juice

2 teaspoons olive oil

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method

Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas Mark 6.

Lay out one piece of aluminium foil about 12-14” square and place the spinach on it.

Lay the fish fillet on the bed of spinach followed by the onion, asparagus, tomato, chilli (if using) and herbs.

Drizzle the lemon juice and olive oil over and season lightly with salt and pepper.

Fold the foil to create a parcel, leaving plenty of space around the contents, place on a baking sheet and bake for around 25 minutes or until the fish is cooked and the juices run clear.

Timing will depend on the thickness of the fish fillet so take a peek after 25 minutes. Be careful when opening the foil as hot steam will escape.

When cooked, lift the contents of the parcel onto a warmed plate and spoon over the delicious juices.


Apple, Carrot and Courgette/Zucchini Bread

(makes 1 standard loaf)

Ingredients

1 medium apple, peeled, cored and roughly grated

1 medium carrot, peeled and roughly grated

1 medium courgette/zucchini, wiped and roughly grated

1 tablespoon freshly-squeezed lemon juice

40g fresh pecan nuts, roughly chopped

550g wholemeal flour

½ teaspoon baking soda

¼ teaspoon baking powder

¼ teaspoon sea salt

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

¼ teaspoon all-spice powder

pinch ground nutmeg

2 eggs, whisked

80g brown sugar

The seeds/paste from 1 vanilla pod or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Method

Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4 and line a standard loaf tin with baking paper (or use a non-stick silicon mould if you have one). Prepare the apple, carrot and courgette/zucchini, put in a bowl, add the lemon juice, mix well and cover the bowl with cling film so the apple doesn’t brown.

In a large mixing bowl combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, all-spice and nutmeg.

In another bowl, whisk three quarters of the beaten egg, the sugar and the vanilla extract together before thoroughly combining the mixture with the dry ingredients.

Fold in the grated fruit/vegetable mix and lastly the pecan nuts.

Pour the mixture into the prepared loaf tin and place in the middle of the oven for around 45 minutes or until the top is golden brown and an inserted skewer comes out cleanly. Check after 35 minutes then every 10 minutes until perfect.

Leave to cool a little before turning it out onto a wire tray to cool thoroughly.

This bread makes a quick, delicious and nutritious in a rush breakfast or snack and is particularly tasty when toasted!


mixed nuts and seeds

mixed nuts and seeds

dark chocolate

dark chocolate