Friday, 15 November 2013

New Hot Chocolate Discovery

I have made an exciting new hot chocolate discovery, just in time for the temperature drop.

Hello, Sweet Freedom Choc Shot. This is liquid hot chocolate, which means no annoying lumps (yes you Options, you know who you are). And it has no refined sugar, but it tastes great. Just to added to its credits, Choc Shot is gluten free and vegan. 

Just add 200ml of your choice of hot milk to 3-4 teaspoons of choc shot and enjoy. This is making me very happy as we head into winter.

Loving this liquid hot chocolate.

Friday, 1 November 2013

Whatever's left smoothie

I hate throwing unused food away. I like to try and think of ways to use up leftovers, which is why I love frittata! And now I am turning to smoothies to do the same kind of thing. I had a bag of salad that was just starting to turn. You can't really use it for lunch, it would be too much of a sad salad and I couldn't bear that. I often use salad leaves in my juices, but I didn't have much in the way to add to the salad to make a juice. What to do, what to do?

Then I remembered, some smoothies have a little juice in then, often stuff like pineapple for sweetener, or something like that. So I decided to add the juice of the salad leaves to a smoothie, to make a healthy breakfast and use up whats left in the fridge. I keep fruit in the freeze, which can always be used for things like smoothies, so no ice cubes required.
Leftovers smoothie
The Ingredients 
110g salad bag
Wedge of lime
1 tbsp of maple syrup or honey
1 handful of frozen strawberries
1 handful of frozen blueberries
200ml plain natural or soya yoghurt
(Optional scoop of peanut butter, for added crunch and flavour)

The Method
Juice the salad and lime.

Add the frozen fruit the blender and whizz until properly broken up.

Add the juice, sweetener and yoghurt (and peanut butter) to the blender and whizz again until smooth.

Enjoy a sweet nutty fruity smoothie, you'll forget its a salad too!

Thursday, 24 October 2013

Best burger ever

Not only that, but the best gluten free burger ever and its in London! And its reasonably priced. I have just had pleasure of an Honest Burger, in Brixton Market. They can also be found in Soho, Camden and Portbello Road. 

There has been a burger revolution over the last few years in London. We were amazed by GBK, cos it wasn't McDonalds. I liked the variety and the fact I could have a burger without a bun. Then Byron came along, you can get the no-bun 'skinny' burger. Less choice, but the burgers, chips, well everything, is better. Goodbye GBK. 

What I liked about Honest was the fact that they have gluten free buns. Even if they didn't it still would have been an amazing'y tasty burger I had the honest burger, so it has all the trimmings; cheese, bacon, pickle, relish, green stuff. The beef patty was cooked beautifully, and just divine, as were the rosemary salt chips.

As I was saying, there are lots of great places to have a burger in London now, just ask Timeout. But, not everywhere caters for those who don't do gluten. Most places that do gluten free burgers do it substituting the bun for salad. I appreciate the fact that Honest Burger have bothered to provide a gluten free bun, it feels like a proper burger experience. So thank you Honest Burger, you are my new favourite! I love you. 

Honestly, the best burger I've ever had!
Image from Honest Burgers website. Words my own.

Saturday, 19 October 2013

Gluten Free Banh Mi

The Vietnamese baguette. Choc full of lovely stuff. Its all good. Just being able to have a baguette is good in itself, not that many places do gluten free baguettes. But, Sainsburys do a proper good one! All it requires is about 5 minutes in oven and its good to go, its light and fluffy on the inside and crunchy on the outside, tastes good too. 

Vietnamese seems to have become more popular in the last few years, or perhaps I have just become more aware of it. Having been lucky enough to travel around Vietnam for a few weeks a couple of years ago, eating amazing food, seeing amazing things, its always nice to try and recreate food memories in the kitchen or have other people do it for you in restaurants. What I like about Western recreations of Vietnamese food is that they seem more authentic and healthier than Chinese-Western food. By my unscientific, uneducated estimation anyway. 

This is adapted  from the Street Food Revolution book and this recipe is one ofBanh Mi 11's popular baguettes. 
BBQ Pork Gluten Free Banh Mi.

BBQ Pork Gluten Free Banh Mi
Serves 1 for a substantial lunch

The Ingredients
2 tbsp xylitol 
50ml hot water 
4 slices ham cut length ways (or tear up left over pork if you have it)
1small onion chopped
2 small spring onions chopped
1 minced garlic cloves
1 tablespoon fish sauce 
Salt & pepper 
Small chunk of cucumber deseeded and sliced 
Few sprigs coriander 
Gluten free baguette

The Method
Heat up a saucepan - make sure it is dry before adding the xylitol. 

Stir in a circular motion until it is light brown. Add the water and stir for about 20 seconds before taking it off the heat. 

In a bowl combine the onion, spring onion, ham, garlic, fish sauce, salt & pepper and then pour over the caramel. Mix well and leave in the fridge for 30 minutes. 

Soak two wooden skewers in water. 

Preheat the oven on 190C for the baguette. 

Prepare the skewer by adding the onion, spring onion, and rolled up ham. 

Preheat a griddle pan with a little oil. 

Add the baguette to the oven and the skewers to the griddle

Bake the baguette for 5-6 minutes, take out and allow to cool. 

Keep turn the skewers over to cook both sides. 

Once the baguette has cooled down a little, cut in half and cut open. Spread the pate & mayo on the bread. Add the coriander and cucumber.

Once the skewers are cooked to your liking, take all the goodies for the skewers on to a plate.

Fill your baguette to the brim with tasty stuff and enjoy a hearty Banh Mi lunch!

Friday, 11 October 2013

Banana Peanut Butter Mash

Its not pretty, to be honest it doesn't look appealing at all - but it sure does taste good! And it sure is versatile. 

You can use it for:
  • filling things - cakes, sandwiches
  • topping things - yoghurt, more cakes, granola, rice cakes
  • mixing into things - I put it in my porridge this morning  
Its simple and quick to make, and delicious too. So you can see it has many redeeming qualities. To me it doesn't matter what it looks like, bananas and peanut butter is such an amazing combination.

The Ingredients
(1 serving for porridge)
1 over ripe banana
1 heaped dessert spoon peanut butter
1 tablespoon maple syrup 

The Method
First mash the banana.  

Second, mix in the peanut butter.

Now mix in the maple syrup. 

Then do your thing - top, fill, mix. 


Banana Peanut Butter Mash

Thursday, 3 October 2013

Harissa Chicken with Quinoa Salad

There is nothing harissa to make a salad interesting. And this is a pretty interesting, with a mix of spice, coolness, soft chewiness and crispy crunch - it really makes you appreciate using textures and different temperatures in food.

This recipe was inspired by the hairy dieters.

Harissa Chicken with Quinoa Salad
Makes 1 serving 

The Ingredients 
The Chicken
1 chicken breast cut into strips 
Harissa mixed with olive oil. I got my harissa from The Spice Shop in Notting Hill. The packet has instructions to make the mixture. You can get harissa paste, but I prefer the Spice Shop mix.

The Salad
Roughly 100g of ready to eat quinoa (for speed)
5 halved tomatoes 
1 stick of celery diced
1 inch of diced cucumber 
2 spring onion finely sliced 
Small bunch of parsley chopped
Small  bunch of mint chopped
Juice of half lemon 
Freshly ground black pepper

The Method
Add the quinoa to a dry pan - don't turn on the heat yet.

Prepare the salad, with the lemon juice and black pepper. 

Heat a second pan for the chicken, use a medium heat.

Cover the chicken in harissa mixture and add it to the pan. 

Then turn the (low) heat on under the quinoa, turn over regularly.

Turn the chicken after each minute to cook evenly. 

Both the chicken and the quinoa will only a few minutes to cook. 

The quinoa will be done before the chicken, once done mix in with the rest of the salad.

When the chicken is done, place on top of the warm quinoa salad. 

A beautiful meal, made in a very short space of time. 

Friday, 27 September 2013

Amazing chocolate discovery

I'm late to the party most likely but I thought it was worth a mention! I have discovered some amazing dark chocolate with no nasty ingredients, from Willie's Cacao. My favourite at the moment is Lime and Ginger but that may change, I got a pack of several flavours, a very welcome gift.