It’s raining here in Gibraltar today. It doesn’t happen very often, so I quite like it. I’ve been for a wet run with Finn Dog, collected the boys from rugby and then turned into Debbie Domestic in the kitchen.
I’m all over the ginger at the minute. I’ve made the boys a ginger, carrot and apple loaf for later and made some clean eating raw food balls, packed with raw ginger.
So first the cake…
Is the cake clean eating? No, it’s got vegetables, fruit and good spices in which is pretty wholesome, but it is made with wheat flour and lashings of butter. However the kitchen smells amazing right now and I’d rather them eat that than open a boxed cake later on or a soulless frozen desert. There’s some conditioned and deep rooted maternal desire to get the approval of your brood with food. This kind of pudding warms hearts and makes me feel good to give.
Will I feel like I am missing out? Will I secretly cry inside as they crack into the ginger loaf and ladle with custard? I honestly won’t. It’s been so many years now since I ate anything like that, I just don’t want, need or miss if from my life. I am not depriving myself. I made choices that ultimately make me feel good not just when I eat or after I eat, but each and every day for life.
There’s no instruction required on this one really. I just wanted to post a fresh plate with the right mix of textures, that takes no time or effort, It is simply good in every way.
Half a fillet of salmon (try sprinkling a little paprika and a squeeze of lime before wrapping loosely in foil and baking at 150 degrees c for 20 minutes)
1/5 – 1/4 avocado
Some lettuce leaves
A few torn mint leaves
A squeeze of lime
Avocados offer nearly 20 vitamins and minerals in every serving, including potassium (which helps control blood pressure), lutein (which is good for your eyes), and folate (which is crucial for cell repair).
Avocados are a good source of B vitamins, which help you fight off disease and infection. They also give you vitamins C and E, they’re low in sugar and they contain fibre, which helps you feel full longer.
Salmon is full of nutrients. It is an excellent source of high-quality protein, vitamins and minerals (including potassium, selenium and vitamin B12) plus high density of omega-3 fatty acids. (Good for brain, joints, heart and general well-being).
I haven’t made granola before, but after some fresh air and exercise this morning, I came back with granola on the brain.
This granola isn’t overly sweet, but that makes a pleasant change from the stuff you buy in the shops. You may want to put in more sweetness to the recipe, or even a tiny sprinkle of salt. It’s down to personal preferences, but this recipe allows you to finish off with a little extra honey or maple syrup when served. Delicious.
For around 5 40g servings you will need:
Tablespoon of oil
Tablespoon of honey
Sprinkle of cinnamon
60g dried fruit – I used raisins, dates and unsulphered apricots
40g pumpkin seeds
20g almonds or almond flakes
Preheat the oven to 180c
Place all the dry ingredients into a shallow baking tray – excluding the dry fruit
Mix the oil and honey together then pour over the dry ingredients and work in with your hands. It doesn’t feel like there is enough moisture but go with it and mix well.
Bake for between 20 – 25 minutes. I wouldn’t leave this alone as it needs a few shuffles in the oven through the baking to make sure the heat gets evenly distributed.
When brown and crispy, incorporate the dried fruit and leave to cool down.
Each 40g serving contains approximately 185 – 190 calories
The beauty of soup is that you can use what you have. This soup was originally going to be a pea and mint one, but I ended up getting some gargantuan courgettes from the Spanish supermarket and needed to blitz them into something good.
To create 3/4 servings, you will need:
150 g onion
1 or 2 cloves of garlic (we are garlic monsters and always add plenty)
300g chopped courgette
500g frozen peas
About 15 mint leaves
400ml – 500ml vegetable stock (add around 300ml then add more at the end if you like a thick soup)
1 tablespoon olive oil
Here’s how to do it:
Simply soften the onions and garlic in the oil, then add the other vegetables and stock.
Simmer for a good 15/20 minutes with the pan lid on until all the ingredients are soft.
Blitz up with the handheld or food processor
Season as you like it and enjoy really hot
This one is great with some shaved parmesan and ripped mint leaves on top
A 300ml portion contains approximately 125 calories (before any parmesan or extras)
These clean-eat and gluten free bars are truly gorgeous. I eat these now instead of Nakd bars. The basic principle is to combine fruits and nuts that taste great together, meaning there are loads of variations you can try.
I’ll make a weekly batch to share some of the combinations we like most. Today is Fruity Friday at school so my son has one in his packed lunch. Both the children love these. I’ll be honest, I’d probably have to smear in melted chocolate to convince Alex.
To make 5 bars you’ll need:
75g cashew nuts
3 large dates
45g unsulphered dried apricots
20g unsulphered raisins
Each bar contains around 130 calories (between 30 – 35g)
Just blend up the nuts in a processor until fine. Take them out and whizz up the fruit. Then mix them both together. You need to get your hands in and mix them up properly. Then press into a loaf tin or just shape them on a board using a pallette knife. Cut into 5 bars then cover with cling film and refirgerate them for a couple of hours.
I then wrap each individually in cling film and pop back in the fridge.
They’ll keep for a few days without any problem. Sounds cheesy – but we’ve never had to wait that long to find out.