Week beginning Friday 23rd October 2020

Half Term; an opportunity to nourish!

I remember when my children were at school, holidays could go either way when it comes to food choices. If we were away, any attempt to steer in a healthy direction was futile! However, at home, I’d seize the opportunity to feed them the good stuff…. breakfast, lunch and dinner. Eggs for breakfast, Salads on the side, healthy dips or fruit snacks and homemade wholesome evening meals. [Now, in their twenties, they prepare all this naturally so something must have surreptitiously sunk in! 👊]

And it’s not just the kids who need a half term nutrient boost, so here’s a little healthy inspiration to top up your reserves; kids and adults alike!

  • Creamy Roasted Cauliflower and Chickpea Curry (V)
    Cauliflower (like aubergine) is so much tastier if it’s roasted before using in any dish and once it’s ready roasted, you can make this curry in no time.
  • 3 tbsp Rapeseed oil
  • 1 tbsp Coconut oil (or rapeseed if preferred)
  • 2 onions, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 inches fresh ginger, finely grated or chopped (no need to peel)
  • 1 head of cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 2 tablespoon curry powder
  • 2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 handful green beans, cut into small pieces
  • 1 carrot, cut into small batons
  • 1 tin chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tin chickpeas, drained and rinsed (optional)
  • 1 tin coconut milk
  • Lime wedges for serving
  • 2 tbsp fresh coriander for garnishIn a large bowl, toss the cauliflower florets in a little rapeseed oil, season with salt and pepper and lay out on a large, lined baking tray. Roast for 35mins at 180 degrees. Remove and set aside.
    Meanwhile, heat the coconut oil in a large saucepan and add the onions. Sauté for around 5mins until they’re starting to soften

    Add the garlic and ginger and sauté for around 1min until the aromas are distinct.

    Once the cauliflower is ready, add these to the saucepan, along with the curry powder, turmeric, coriander and cumin. Season with salt and pepper and saute for 5 more minutes until the vegetables are well coated and the spices are blended. Now add the green beans/carrots and cook for a minute until they begin to soften.

    Then add the tomatoes and chickpeas as well as the coconut milk.
    Bring to a boil, then turn the heat to low. Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Turn the heat off and allow the flavours to infuse. This dish benefits from a little time before serving (and even better if overnight)

    Serve with rice and garnish with chopped coriander leaves and lime wedges.

  • Lunch bowl of goodness and homemade soup (V)
    When you’re stuck for ideas, one of the easiest lunches is to arrange a selection of leftovers on a bed of rocket and serve it with a homemade (or shop-bought) soup and a slice of bread. So so simple but if the foods assembled are bright, colourful and nutritious, you’ve got yourself the easiest lunch in minutes.
    This is an easy one if you’ve been out all day but it does rely on having fresh ingredients AND leftovers. Never throw anything away; if there isn’t enough for all to have the same, each person will have a different lunch!


  • Homemade Chicken Fajitas  
    Yes, homemade!! Absolutely no need to buy a shop-bought spice mix when the marinade for the chicken is this easy:

    • 2-3 chicken breasts cut into strips
    • 1 tbsp tomato puree
    • 1 tbsp dried oregano
    • 1 tsp smoked paprika
    • 1 tsp garlic salt
    • 6 tbsp rapeseed oil
    • Salt & PepperMarinate the chicken…the longer the better but you can use immediately if you’re pushed for time. Lay out the chicken strips on a large baking tray and bake for 10-15mins at 180 degrees. Remove and set aside.

      Meanwhile, prepare the trimmings; grated cheese, guacamole (preferably homemade) diced tomato and onion salsa (with garlic, lemon juice and olive oil), sour cream and shredded lettuce.

      Serve with warm tortillas, preferably wholemeal.

  • Carrot Cake Oats (V)
    It’s so easy to vary your porridge breakfast and this is one of my favourites. It’s incredibly filling & I love the texture of slightly undercooked grated carrots with the soft spicy chia and oats, plus you secure one portion of vegetables towards to daily tally.Here’s how ..makes a big serving….I ate it all so that makes it serving for 1, right?

    • 1 cup oats
    • ¼ cup chia seeds
    • 3 cups milk (any)
    • 1 carrot, grated
    • 1tsp cinnamon (or lots more of you love cinnamon!)
    • 1 tbsp raisinsOptional
    • 1 tbsp walnut or pecans, chopped
    • Pumpkin seeds
    • More spice; nutmeg and ginger work well hereAdd the oats & chia seeds to a saucepan and then add the milk.

      Bring to the boil and then reduce heat to a simmer until the oats start to thicken after 2-3mins, stirring all the time, especially from the bottom to avoid it sticking and burning.

      Now add the carrots, cinnamon and raisins, mix well and add more milk if necessary. Cook for approximately 1 minute, stirring continuously.

      Serve with a generous sprinkle of cinnamon and topped with nuts. I find the sweetness from the raisins enough but you may like to add a little drizzle of maple syrup or honey.