My 10 favourite recipes from last year

So my white month started today , also my no sugar, no dairy and no gluten month. I know I only mentioned booze, the evil white stuff and dairy but what the heck if I’m going to be good I might as well be very good.
I’m probably also feeling inspired to be very good because I watched a fairly cheesy ( I cried a lot in the end ) but also very inspiring Australian/ American documentary last night called Fat, Sick & Nearly dead. It’s about a guy, Joe Cross, who goes on a 60 day juice fast to heal himself and take the one foot that he has in the grave out of the grave. He also meets another man with the same issues as himself. Can he convince him to start the fast as well? If you want some motivation for living a healthier life, this is a good film to watch.

Anyway, I have gone through the recipes that I wrote about on my blog last year to find out which ones do I keep coming back to over and over again! It always annoys me whenever tv-series do these episodes when the characters are just thinking back to things that has happened previously. I always get the feeling that the writers must have been very busy so they haven’t had time to write something new. And it’s sort of true for me as well, I have been very busy preparing for my meeting with the Neurologist tomorrow. I want to be armed to the teeth when I go there. But me being busy isn’t the only reason I have done a “10 favourite recipes” I also find it’s good to evaluate your year when it has come to an end so here we go;

My favourite 10

Peanut butter smoothie
This smoothie is fantastic! It’s a great combo of being that perfect healthy treat and a pre-sports drink, snack! It contains both short-term and long-term energy and is also quite filling. For me it has been more of a healthy treat but since I’m going to be doing more exercise this year……..

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Raw cacao, macadamia, goji and coconut balls
I’m hooked on these yummy little things. Full of anti-oxidants! They are lovely to eat straight out of the freezer so great to have handy if you are craving some chocolate.

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Roasted parsnip and garlic soup
My latest addition to my soup collection and I love it. It’s soo good for keeping those pesky flu-germs away given all the garlic. And delicious!

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Pineapple, ginger, chia seeds and coconut water smoothie
Refreshing and ideal before or after sports due to the coconut water. Also very good if your stomach is upset or as a hangover cure.

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Mozzarella, quinoa, peach, chilli and pomegranate salad
Haven’t made this in a while given how hard it is to find decent peaches this time of the year but it’s a great salad that I make lots of when good peaches are plentiful

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Macademia nut butter smoothie with mint dark chocolate covered macademia nuts
This is quite high in fat and calories so shouldn’t be eaten everyday but it’s a lovely, very nutritious and good for you treat. Waaaaay better for you than my old pals Ben & Jerry

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Fake sushi
A super nutritious and very easy way of making sushi.

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Beetroot goat cheese salad
Good enough to be eaten throughout the year. Perfect for lunch since beetroot is an energy booster

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Liquorice smoothie
A recipe from Ascension kitchen.com. Delicious and so good if you are feeling a bit stressed out

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Giving up coffee
Isn’t obviously a recipe but it’s one of the best things I did last year. Believe me next time I go to Sicily I won’t say no to that perfect espresso. But on a regular basis I feel more balanced, focused and calmer without it.

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Wisdom tooth removal, pea and rocket soup and pomegranate smoothie

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Had my wisdom tooth removed today. Getting there was definitely more painful than the removal itself. Husband cycles to work but got a flat tire on the way there this morning so he had to take the train back to look after Z1 & Z2 but due to a derailed freight train he had to take the tube and then got stranded so had to take a taxi….which I then had to take to the hospital. Phew! Phoned the hospital and they said that if I was going to be more than 10 minutes late they couldn’t perform the surgery today. Got there with 2 minutes to spare due to the excellent knowledge and skills of the cabbie. London cabbies really are the best in the world (he told me these days it takes 5 years of studying to become a London cab driver…..wow)

So after the really easy and pain free wisdom tooth removal (anaesthetics hasn’t worn off yet) I can only eat liquid cold food….hmmm what to eat? Poor hubby, day from hell and he has to eat liquid cold food for dinner ( he doesn’t have to but I don’t think either of us feel like cooking 2 separate meals)

In the end I decided to go for another one of Sybil Kaphoor amazing soup recipes from the Taste cook book ( slightly adapted) and this is a really yummy soup so no poor hubby!

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Serves 4

2 bunches of spring onions, trimmed and roughly sliced
3 cloves of garlic, roughly diced
2 tablespoons of sunflower oil
850 ml chicken or vegetable stock
800 g shelled peas or frozen peas
225 gr rocket
100 ml single cream
Salt and freshly ground pepper
50 ml single cream to serve
A handful of attractive rocket leaves to serve

In a large saucepan gently fry the spring onions and garlic in the oil until soft. Add the stock, bring to the boil, then add the peas.

Return to the boil then cover and simmer gently for 20 minutes, or until the peas are very soft. Stir in the rocket and cook for a further 2-3 minutes, then immediately liquidize.

Add the cream and season to taste. Chill or reheat depending on if you wish to serve the soup cold or hot with a swirl of cream and a few rocket leaves in the centre.

To get some protein into myself I had for dessert ( you’re never as hungry as when you’re not allowed to eat! ) this smoothie. Apart from tasting amazing and being a cold liquid it is also packed with antioxidants which is great when your body is working on healing. Recipe is adapted from eatmedelicious.com but apparently it’s originally comes from Martha Stewart.

Pomegranate, berries and pineapple smoothie

1/3 cup silken tofu
1/2 cup frozen mixed berries
1/2 cup fresh pineapple
1/2 cup pomegranate juice
1 teaspoon honey

Pop in blender and press start button. Serve over ice if you like it extra cold. In hindsight if I had to drink it again straight after having removed a tooth I would have substituted the berries with a banana to get it super smooth

Dinner by myself and a mozzarella, quinoa, peach, chilli and pomegranate salad!

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I was left on my own last night, husband went to the pub!!!! So had to cook for me, myself and I which I hate. My default food for when I have to eat on my own is usually gnocchi since I love it and husband hates it but gnocchi just feels too stodgy so decided to try something a bit healthier ( I will go on a search for a healthier gnocchi some other day ) Used whatever I could find in the fridge and this is what I came up with. Because of the quinoa it was really filling despite being a salad and all the goodie goodies gave it the comfort factor one needs on a cold day like yesterday ! ( It seems like summer is truly over : (

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serves 1
2 handfuls of spinach
1/2 cup of quinoa ( I used a mixture of red and white)
2/3 of a mozzarella ball
1 peach
1/4 of an avocado
1/4 of a pomegranate ( to be prepared earlier )
A decent sized handful of mint
1/2 of a red chilli
1 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil

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Start by preparing the pomegranate. Link on how to do it. I usually after step 3 put the pomegranate in a bowl of water for 15 min and then de-seed it. It makes it easier.
Wash the spinach and cook the quinoa according to instructions. Chop the chilli and mint and mix with the olive oil. Cut the peach in slices leaving the skin on and cut the avocado in 1 1/2 cm cubes. Tear the mozzarella into pieces. Mix everything together. Finish off the pomegranate and sprinkle over salad

Pomegranate – has been called a super food. Super foods are called super foods because they are super stuffed with healthy stuff. Isn’t that super duper!  No difference with pomegranates, high in vitamin c, high in anti-oxidants, good source of fibre (both soluble and insoluble) and a whole other range of other vitamins and minerals. But there has also been quite a few studies showing that pomegranate juice can possible be effective against various cancers ( mainly prostrate) Study through NHS

Quinoa – It’s a complete protein, contains all nine amino acid so great to eat if you are a vegetarian or doing sports. Rich in fibre, iron, B2. It’s also gluten-free