All posts filed under: vegetables

Rhubarb and banana muffins

I found huge stalks of rhubarb in the supermarket the other day and have gone a little bonkers thinking of a million different recipes I could make using this delicious vegetable. My only issue is that in the past I have always cooked this very bitter ingredient with a lot of sugar and I now try to stick to a refined sugar free diet so will have to try a new version. My mum advised me that the best way to deal with rhubarb is to cook it first, then add sweetness, as it sucks up all the sugar and you end up putting in double if you cook it in sugar first. My favourite natural sweeteners are honey, bananas and dates so I thought I could combine all of these to make some little breakfast muffins. I’m always trying to use wholemeal flour when I can but if you want to make this gluten free, swap the flour and baking powder for gluten free flour, and gluten free baking powder. I am also going to …

‘Hot’ salad

The glorious hot weather seems to have disappeared and lunches of cold salads and glasses of rosé feel inappropriate as the wind and rain batter across the window. As a result, I am craving something warm and comforting but have a fridge full of raw veg and don’t want any of it to go to waste. There are a few items I buy every time I go to the supermarket, a lemon, garlic, fresh ginger, onion and bananas. If I have these items in stock they feel a good set of basics for many different recipes including hot drinks like fresh ginger and lemon. Bananas are perfect for a quick snack on the go or let them get a little too ripe and you can make my sugar free banana loaf. So as well as having my supermarket must have purchases I also have a number of store cupboard favourites such as tahini, peanut butter and honey. Honey gets used in place of refined sugar where possible and for the peanut butter and tahini, I …

Baked falafel on tabbouleh

I adore falafel but I don’t adore how they are made by frying a lot of good ingredients in oil so I have tried making my own baked falafel which are pretty tasty and not too far off the originals. Also, rather than having them in a pitta bread I have made a tabbouleh salad and drizzled them in good olive oil. Alternatively you could water down a little tahini and pour over the top. A dressing I have used in the past on one of my salads is tahini, apple cider vinegar, honey, splash of water, salt and pepper would be delicious on these. Ingredients: 1 cup dried chick peas 4 -5 tbsp plain flour 1 tsp baking powder 3 large garlic cloves (crushed) 1 small onion or 2 shallots (roughly chopped) 1 tbsp harissa paste 1.5 tsp ground cumin Half tsp ground coriander large handful of chopped parsley 1 tsp salt flakes or half tsp pouring salt Soak your dried chickpeas over night in a bowl of water, making sure that there is at least 2 cm …

Homemade baked beans

I stopped eating baked beans a while ago as the amount of sugar in a tin of baked beans can be around 3 teaspoons which is rather a lot for a savoury item. I would also love to eat them on thick slabs of white bread which probably also contained sugar. Bread is one of those items on the supermarket shelves that you can’t quite get one’s head around that there could be sugar in there as it isn’t at all sweet. Have a look at the ingredients list before you buy as there is sugar or glucose in many of them. I am not completely sugar free in my diet but I try to stick to no refined sugar when I can. This way of thinking also stops me from eating a lot of processed food.  A lot of foods have added sugar to help with the flavour, if you cook it yourself you know exactly what is in there and can almost always get a better taste and freshness as a result. BUT.. …

Aubergine and sweet potato Thai green curry

You can get very good shop bought Thai curry pastes these days, but there is nothing more satisfying than making your own from scratch. The aroma alone makes it worth it, it almost stings your nostrils it is so fresh and zingy. We try not to eat meat every day but that doesn’t mean that you can’t have the same dishes and replace your protein with beautiful vegetables. Using lots of vegetables in this dish gives different textures which I sometimes find vegetarian food lacks. First of all the curry paste. This one takes a little bit of time but I make double the amount and freeze half so that if we want a last minute curry then I have the paste in the freezer. Then all you need is a tin of coconut milk in the cupboard and a few pieces of veg and chicken or any other protein that is a quick mid week supper sorted. Thai curry paste Ingredients 4 tsp cumin seeds 4 tsp coriander seeds 1-2 tsp dried chilli flakes …

French Onion Soup

  I always thought French onion soup was rather complicated but having tried it myself, I realise it is terribly easy, just slightly time-consuming and a non stick pan is essential. It feels very French too, full of butter, onions, baguette and cheese. It is a hearty, filling soup with caramelised onions topped with croutons and melted gruyere cheese. This soup I have also tried to freeze. If you freeze in bags and also make the croutons, you can bag them up separately. When you are ready, defrost them and top with the cheese,  and melt in the oven. I know I make a lot of soup- it’s that time of year, and it’s comforting to have something you can hold in a bowl, legs crossed on the sofa. Ingredients: (serves 2) 6 large white onions 1 litre beef stock large knob of butter tsp olive oil (extra for brushing on croutons) tsp caster sugar salt & pepper heaped tsp cornflour 50g gruyere cheese small baguette Finely slice your onions by hand or in a food …

Chicken Laksa

It may be the lead up to Christmas but that doesn’t mean that the only food you can eat is mince pies with brandy butter or turkey and stuffing sandwiches. Keep being adventurous in the kitchen and keep a few recipes like this up your sleeve. Your dinner party guests would be thrilled to be given something light and gently spiced for dinner rather than the hefty carb loaded food that we all insist on eating this time of year. Don’t you find that you never quite feel hungry most of December? I’m basically exhausted and longing for the eating to stop, but can’t quite say no to all the delicious canapés being handed round, and have slightly given up trying to be good. Frankly no one wants a salad in December! So here are my ‘salads’ of the curry world that are low in fat, full of flavour, textures and bring a satisfying warmth to your supper.   Ingredients:  (ok this looks like a long list, but you will notice in all my food I end up …