With the weather heating up recently all I’m craving are lighter and fresher meals (well, most of the time!). This poached salmon and rice noodle salad is so unbelievably tasty, yet still light and healthy.
I have pretty full on psoriasis and eczema on my hands, so I’m becoming much more conscious of what I eat at the moment and am trying to boost my Omega 3 intake by eating more oily fish. Thankfully this recipe can be whipped up in 10-15 minutes and is as nice cold as it is hot, so it makes eating more salmon very easy. So easy in fact, that I’ve been making this every week (when I fall for a new recipe, I fall hard!). The zingy lime, ginger, garlic and chilli gives it a nice kick, and despite being a nutritional powerhouse, this recipe really feels like a treat!
Ingredients (Serves One):
1 Fillet Salmon
1/2 Bunch of Spring Onions
1 Red Chilli (more or less depending how much heat you can handle)
1 Piece Fresh Ginger
1 Large Clove of Garlic
Toasted Sesame Oil
75g Rice Noodles
Half fill a pot with boiling water. Add in about 2 tbsp soy sauce, the juice of half a lime, 2 crushed garlic cloves and 3-4 slices of fresh ginger, let it boil away for a few minutes before adding your salmon fillet. The salmon will take between 10-15 minutes to cook so keep an eye on it.
Your rice noodles should only take about 5-10 minutes to cook, but check the packet instructions to be sure. You want them to be cooked just before your salmon.
Slice the spring onions and chilli diagonally, finely chop the ginger and finely dice a few slices of fresh ginger. All them all to a medium heat frying pan with a tablespoon of toasted sesame oil. The toasted sesame oil will give this a delicious, nutty tasty. Fry for about 2-3 minutes. You don’t want these to go totally soft.
When the rice noodles are cooked, drain them (reserving a few tablespoons of cooking water) and add them to the pan of veggies. Stir them in with a few tablespoons of soy sauce, a squeeze of lime juice, about a tablespoon of chopped coriander and some of the reserved cooking water if needed to loosen the mix out.
When the salmon is done, serve the noodles on a warm plate and place the salmon on top. Serve with a squeeze of lime juice over the salmon and another drizzle of the toasted sesame oil. Garnish with some fresh coriander
Do you, like me, often suffer the boredom of trying to use up leftover chicken after your Sunday (or whatever day) roast? There’s only so many chicken sandwiches a person can eat! Last Sunday when faced with a mountain of chicken and a perfectly lovely carcass, I decided to make an Asian inspired chicken noodle soup for a change.
As a huge fan of the gorgeous and talented Hemsley sisters, I have rediscovered the joys of a good homemade stock (“Boil Your Bones” as they so eloquently put it). Now I can scarce look at a chicken bone without imagining what to do with the nutritious stock I plan on squeezing out of it. A good bone broth is packed with amazing health benefits, so get boiling them bones. Even if you’re not bothered about your health, you still need a good homemade stock for this recipe, the cubed stuff will taste awful. This soup is based around a light and fragrant broth, so make the effort here and you’ll reap the rewards!
This is really filling due to the vermicelli noodles, but also really light due to the fragrant broth base. No ingredients in this recipe are fried, so you get a great fresh flavour. While this is best eaten straight away, it lasts happily for about 3 days in the fridge.
1.5 Litres Good Quality Homemade Chicken Stock
Leftover Roast Chicken (as much as you have but at least a good cup or two)
150g Vermicelli Noodles
5 Cloves Garlic
200g Shiitake Mushrooms
1 Bunch Spring Onions
1 Red Chilli
1 Handful Fresh Coriander
Toasted Sesame Oil
Put your stock into a large, heavy bottomed pot. Peel a good inch of ginger and slice it into long pieces, peel the garlic cloves and smash slightly with the back of a knife. Add to the stock (you’ll fish them out again before serving) and let simmer on a medium heat for 30 mins.
Slice your mushrooms and chilli finely and add to the broth. Chop or tear your chicken into strips and add to the pot. Let it cook away for another 10 minutes.
Add the vermicelli noodles to the pot (check the packet instructions, some need to be soaked in cold water first) and cook to until soft, about 5-10 minutes.
Add about 4 tablespoons of soy sauce and the juice of two limes to the broth. Chop up your coriander finely and add it in. Slice the spring onions diagonally and add to the pot to cook for about 5 more minutes.
Just before serving, fish out the chunks of ginger and garlic and taste the broth, add more soy sauce or lime juice as you need.
Serve in warm bowls and garnish with some fresh coriander and another squeeze of lime if you have it. Finish with a generous drizzle of toasted sesame oil.
With Easter coming up it seems we all have chocolate on the brain! Well at least I do; it’s the one day a year I can indulge my chocoholic tendencies without judgement or guilt.
While giving friends and family gifts of Easter eggs is the norm as we celebrate this holiday, I think it’s a nice touch to make some homemade chocolate truffles instead of a shop bought egg. Despite these truffles looking the bee’s knees (if I do humbly say so myself), they are stupidly easy to make. This is a great recipe to add to your repertoire as a box of these bad boys always makes a thoughtful gift.
Best of all it only requires a few simple ingredients and you can use your imagination for the toppings. So put your apron on, get into the kitchen and channel your inner Juliette Binoche!
Ingredients (Makes Approx 24):
400g 70% dark chocolate
Cocoa powder & Cinnamon (equal amounts of each)
Crushed Roasted Hazelnuts
Break up all your chocolate into little pieces and place into a large bowl.
Heat your cream in a saucepan and just before it comes to the boil take it off and pour it over the chocolate pieces. Stir the chocolate and cream together continuously until it combines.
Add a splash of whiskey (I’ll let you use your judgement on this! Even if you’re not a whiskey fan I still advise adding a shot as it just adds a great depth of flavour rather than a strong whiskey taste. Don’t add more than 2 shots of whiskey though as the mix needs to be thick enough to set). Keep stirring until totally combined.
Leave the mix in the fridge overnight or for a minimum of 4 hours until it sets. When set, take it out and take a spoon at a time and roll between your hands until they form into ball shapes, do this quickly or they will melt from the heat of your hand. Don’t worry about them being perfectly circular. I advise wearing rubber gloves for this or your nails may go black!
Set up bowls containing the toppings and roll the truffles in each until they’re well coating in either your coconut, hazelnut or cocoa cinnamon topping.
Put into a lined box or tupperware and make sure to keep in the fridge until ready to eat. They will keep for up to a week, but my experience is that they all get gobbled up within a day or two!
I am obsessed with breakfast, it’s quite literally what gets me out of bed in the morning. While I have long been devoted to my original granola recipe (which is incredibly delicious, if I do say so myself), recently I have been cheating on it with an altogether different but equally delicious granola.
I’ve been experimenting with buckwheat a lot over the last few months, and was happy to discover that when roasted it makes a delicious alternative to oats for granola. There are also tonnes of health benefits associated with eating buckwheat, but I won’t bore you with them today. This particular granola recipe is bound together using a delicious gingery banana sauce that gives the whole recipe the most incredible flavour. Best of all, it takes less time to cook than my usual granola recipe. If this doesn’t have you bounding out of bed and down the stairs in the morning, I’m not sure what will!
1 kg Buckwheat Groats
200g Seeds (I used pumpkin and sunflower)
100g Coconut flakes
2 tbsp Coconut Oil
1 Tbsp Honey
1 Inch Fresh Ginger, grated
In a large bowl mix together your buckwheat, pecans and seeds.
In a saucepan melt the coconut oil and add the grated ginger and honey, let it simmer away for about two minutes. In another bowl break up the bananas and mash until liquid, if you have a hand blender than use that- it will be much quicker. Add the ginger/oil/coconut mix to the bananas and stir through.
Mix the wet banana mix to the bowl of buckwheat, nuts and seeds and mix together until all the dry ingredients are well coated.
Grease a deep baking tray with some more coconut oil and spread the granola mix on top. Pop into an oven preheated to 180C for about 30 minutes, or until golden. Make sure to stir the mix every few minutes to ensure the granola is evenly baked.
When baked, stir in the coconut flakes. Let the granola cool completely before storing in an airtight container.
I have been enjoying this in the mornings with berries and almond milk, but it’s delicious with any type of milk or yoghurt. Enjoy!
Despite being a meat lover, I find I feel a lot better after eating a plant based meal. Especially in the evenings, I find them lighter and easier to digest. I decided to try and make my first vegetarian curry last week, this is absolutely brimming with so much flavour, it will convert even the most loyal of carnivores.
It passed the main test; my Dad ate it without asking where the chicken was! I’ve cheated a little using a korma spice mix, I’m in love with the Green Saffron spice mixes. They import fresh spices from India and blend them into perfect little pouches, which make curries so much easier and hassle free to put together. This is filling, wholesome and incredibly tasty. Definitely something to make if you want to spice up your week!
1 large butternut squash, peeled and cubed
3 onions, sliced
1 punnet of cherry tomatoes, quartered
1 bag spinach
6 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tbsp honey
1 bunch fresh coriander
1 korma spice mix
1 inch fresh ginger, grated
1 can coconut milk
1 can tomatoes
1 can chickpeas
Brown rice to serve
Flaked almonds to serve
Slice the onions and sweat them down in a little coconut oil for about 5 minutes. Then add the garlic and ginger and cook for another minute or two.
Add in the spice mix and cook for a further minute or two, the aromas will be amazing! Then add in the tomatoes and honey and allow to cook away for another five minutes.
Add in the tin of coconut milk and two cups of water along with the cubed squash. Allow the liquid mixture to reduce as the squash cooks, which should leave you with a nice thick sauce after an hour. Add in more water if you need to.
5 minutes before serving add in the cherry tomatoes, chopped coriander and spinach.
Serve in a bowl with brown rice and sprinkle with some of the reserved coriander and almonds.
I have many vices, but they all seem to come in the form of either cake or chocolate. Carrot cake, banana walnut bread and orange chocolate brownies, I am powerless before. Similarly, put me in front of a box of Leonidas and I won’t stop eating until I have a pain in my tummy.
However, despite being such a chocolate lover, I’ve never really bothered making my own, despite regularly satisfying my cake cravings by baking pretty little cakes. I decided to try my hand over Christmas at making my own little chocolates, and after a few variations, I think I have cracked the ultimate after dinner or tea time chocolate. This has so many complementing flavours going on, the spicy cinnamon, zesty orange, roast honeyed hazelnuts and dark chocolate make the perfect, most indulgent treat.
Make this once and you’ll never look back, they’re unbelievably easy to make. Just take my word for it when I say that they won’t last long!
200g 70% Dark Chocolate
100g Hazelnuts, whole
100g Candied Orange Peel, chopped
First things first. Place the hazelnuts on a piece of tin foil within a baking tray. Drizzle with a tablespoon or two of honey and then generously dust with cinnamon. Pop into an oven preheated to 150C and roast for 5 to 7 minutes. Check regularly, you don’t want to burn the nuts or they taste awful. When they’re done, take them out and let them cool. They’ll probably stick together when they cool, that’s okay- just crack them apart again.
You can use a bain marie to melt your chocolate, but I never bother. If your pot is heavy bottomed enough and the heat is low enough, you should be fine to heat it directly in a pot over a low flame. That’s what I always do (mainly because I love cutting corners). Stir the chocolate continuously until it’s all just melted, then take it off the heat.
Lay out a grease proof piece of paper on a large, flat and even chopping board or surface. Drop about a tablespoon of melted chocolate at a time onto the sheet, leaving plenty of space in between each chocolate disc.
Then place a few nuts and about a teaspoon of candied orange on each chocolate disc. Make sure that each topping is touching the melted chocolate or it won’t stick when the chocolate hardens. Finally, sprinkle all the chocolates with some more cinnamon.
Leave to cool for an hour or two and then when they’re hard, peel them off the greaseproof paper and store in an airtight container in the fridge.
Something I’ve wanted to make for ages has been turkey meatballs. Apart from roast turkey at Christmas dinner, it’s not something we ever really cooked at home. However, being on a huge health kick this January (such a cliche, I know), I decided to give them a go. Turkey is obviously a great source of protein, but it’s also an extremely lean meat so it’s often suggested to people who are trying to eat healthily.
These meatballs are jam packed with veggies for an extra nutritional hit and flavour, and I used almond flour instead of breadcrumbs for a change. They taste absolutely gorgeous and this recipe makes about 30-40 small meatballs, so I tend to make a big batch and freeze smaller portions of them to defrost throughout the week for a quick and easy meal.
These taste completely decadent and are so comforting despite being really healthy. So if you’re getting sick of eating chicken salads as you try and get healthy, these are just the thing for you.
2lb turkey mince
1 bunch basil
2 large carrots
2 sticks celery
1 large onion
1 – 2 eggs
50g ground almond
1kg vine tomatoes
6 large shallots
4 large cloves garlic
1 bunch basil
For the meatballs- grate the carrots and celery and very finely dice the onion. Finely slice the basil as fine as you can get it. Set it all aside in a bowl and add the mince. You may not need both eggs to bind the mix (depends on their size) so add one first and if it doesn’t hold together add the second egg. Add in the flour to help further bind the mix (again, if the mix is too wet, you can add more ground almond).
On a baking sheet lay out the washed tomatoes and the peeled onion and garlic cloves (just remove their outer skin). Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt. Throw into an oven preheated to 180C for 20-30 minutes.
Using your hand, roll your meatballs together into whatever size you please. I kept mine a bit smaller than a golf ball. This will make 30-40 meatballs so you can freeze the ones you won’t be cooking straight away. Fry the meatballs in some olive oil on a medium high heat until they’re golden all over. If they’re sticking to the pan you could add some stock instead of oil as they continue to cook. They’ll take about 10-15 minutes, depending on size. Add your spaghetti to a boiling pot of water when the meatballs are looking close to being ready.
When the vegetables are ready (the tomatoes will start to split and the shallots and onions will be soft), pop them all into a large bowl and blend with the other bunch of basil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. It’s that easy!
Add some of the sauce to the pan and let the cooked meatballs stew away in the sauce until the pasta is ready.
Drain the pasta when cooked and serve on a plate with a heap of meatballs and grate some parmesan cheese on top!