Brussels Sprouts and Quinoa Salad

Hello, Everyone, I hope you are having a great day.

I think I ate quinoa 3 days in a row one week because I was loving it so much. It takes little time to cook and the quinoa is such a light grain that which makes it perfect for late evening meals. Usually after eating rice you can feel quite full or bloated even after a small portion but with quinoa you don’t feel full afterwards at all. This is a very basic recipe and sometimes the simplest things really are the best. There’s different components in this meal which adds to the taste, texture and aroma making it such a delight to eat.

Recipe: Quinoa and brussels sprouts salad (serves 1)

Ingredients

30g quinoa

1 tbsp red lentils, soaked over night

150ml vegetable stock

1 tbsp pumpkin seeds, toasted

1 tsp desiccated coconut

1 inch spring onion, finely sliced

3 Brussels sprouts, shredded

Pinch of chilli powder

Method

  • Wash the quinoa and lentils in a small pan the pour in the vegetable stock. Place on a medium heat and leave to simmer gently for 20-25 minutes until both are fully cooked.
  • In the meantime, prepare the other ingredients and set aside in a bowl. Toast the pumpkin seeds in a dry pan, slice the Brussels sprouts and cook in a dry pan for 3 minutes until slightly cooked and slice the spring onion. Also, add the desiccated coconut to the bowl.
  • Once the quinoa is done, mix everything into the pot and serve.

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Jamaican Festival

Hello Everyone, I hope your day has been well.

For me this is comfort food, making it perfect for a late Autumn evening. Although I’ve only had festival a handful of times in my life, eating this warm, sugary dough always feels so comforting to me. Festival has only a mild sweetness to it and is often served with savory dishes like ackee and saltfish or a chicken curry. I have used water for the liquid in this recipe but milk is also commonly used for more flavour. The cornmeal is great for a golden outer colour and gives it a nice crunch. In a way, Festival is like the Jamaican version of churros and could also be eaten as a dessert, dipped in melted chocolate or sprinkled with sugar.

Recipe: Jamaican festival (makes 6)

Ingredients

65g plain flour

35g fine cornmeal

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp cinnamon powder

1 tbsp caster sugar

Pinch of salt

50ml water or milk

Method

  • Heat some oil in a deep pan.
  • Mix all of the dry ingredients into a large bowl and gently pour in the water.
  • Use your fingers to mix everything together until it form a soft dough.
  • Next, split the dough into six equal pieces and roll into finger shapes.
  • Once the oil is hot, add the dough pieces to the pan and turn every 2 minutes until fully cooked and golden brown (roughly 6 mins, depending on the heat and size).
  • Place on a plate with kitchen paper to drain off the excess oil and serve warm.

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Apple Crumble

Hello Everyone, I hope your day has been well.

So I made an apple crumble one Sunday morning and I realised I’ve never shared a recipe on my blog. I don’t make crumbles that often however, I’ve made quite a few apple based dishes in the past. This recipe was perfect for me and my family, not too much apple and a golden crumble topping with the addition of oats for extra crunch. Apple crumble is a great autumn dessert because it’s so warming and apples are in season. Not only that, it’s super versatile and can be eaten alone, with custard, ice cream or clotted cream. Why not make this for your dessert today!

Recipe: Apple crumble (serves 4)

Ingredients

4 apples, wash and peel

1/3 tsp cinnamon powder

125g plain flour

50g oats

80g brown sugar

110g butter, cubed

Method

  • Preheat the oven to gas mark 6 and get a medium sized square oven dish.
  • Wash and peel the apples, slice thinly and put into the over dish, sprinkling over the cinnamon.
  • In a large bowl, mix the flour, oats and sugar together then rub in the butter using your fingers until it resembles large breadcrumbs.
  • Sprinkle the flour mix over the apples and bake in the oven for 35-40 minutes until golden brown on top.
  • Leave to cool down slightly before eating alone, with custard, ice cream or clotted cream.

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Oaty Traybake

Hello Everyone, I hope you have a great day.

This recipe is literally flapjacks with a some self-raising instead of golden syrup. Really nice and easy for a quick morning bake. I love baking with oats, they are so filling and very nutritious. Oats are often eaten in the morning and are great to power you up for the day. These taste delicious and a soft with a subtle oaty texture.

Recipe: Oaty Traybake

Ingredients

175g butter, melted and cooled

110g dark brown soft sugar

175g oats

75g self-raising flour

Method

  • Preheat the oven to gas mark 5 and line a medium sized oven tray with baking paper.
  • Weigh out the butter in a microwavable container and melt in the microwave for 30 seconds on a medium temperature until fully melted but not piping hot. You could also gently melt it on the stove.
  • Weigh out the sugar, oats and flour into a large bowl then pour in the melted butter.
  • Mix everything together and evenly spread into the oven tray.
  • Bake in the oven 25 minutes and leave to cool.
  • Slice into bars and enjoy. Best eaten on the day but will last for a few days in an air tight container.

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Sources of Iron

Hello Everyone, I hope your day has been well.

Today, I’m sharing some information about iron because many women in their menstruating age are likely at some point to have low iron levels due to the loss of blood every month. Often the Doctor will prescribe Iron tablets which are usually quite harsh on the stomach, not only that but they can cause many side effects like tummy pain, dark stools and nausea. It is sometimes recommended to take iron tablets alongside a meal or gradually increase the dose.

I am sharing two Iron alternatives to get your levels up and help you feel more energised throughout the day. Of course I would say that food is your best option however, it is not always that effective and you would usually have to be consuming copious amounts of a specific item for it to actually make a difference. As a child, my mother introduced us to Floridax, commonly sold in a dark bottle from Holland & Barratts. The taste is okay once you get used to it and it contains fruit juice concentrates and herbal extracts. Floridax is best taken on an empty stomach, approx. 30 minutes before a meal or 2 hours after. More recently, I have become aware of Spatone, which is natural source of iron and fast absorbing. The great thing about Spatone is that it come in a box with 30 individual sachets inside so can easily carry some with you when travelling or on the go making it easier to achieve your intake.

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Low Iron symptoms can include:

  • Low energy
  • Shortness of breath
  • Headaches

Iron food soucres:

  • Liver
  • Oysters
  • Beef
  • Fortified breakfast cereals
  • Kidney beans
  • Lentils
  • Chickpeas
  • Raw cashew nuts
  • Sesame seeds

Iron found in animal flesh products is called heme, which supports the body in many cardiovascular processes. Iron found in plant foods is non-heme iron, usually added to iron enriched/fortified foods. Non-heme iron is not as easily absorbed by the body therefore it is always advised to consume a varied, balanced diet. Iron helps to reduce tiredness and supports a healthy immune system and normal cognitive function.

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*If you feel you have any low iron related symptoms, please seek professional help.

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