Sunday, 28 February 2010
I will for sure have to take supplements aswell because of how low it all is but food also plays a huge part too. I do not lack iron in my diet but need to give it a little bit of a boost.
So the other day i went food shopping and came back with lots of red meat, prawns, raw beetroot, crab and lots of leafy veg and pulses.
I made a delicious salad that was so quick to make. iv had it 3 times already and can already feel something happeneing.
The body is such a funny thing, and we forget that it is a machine that needs to be checked once in a while. So now that iv had it checked, its time to fix it.
Super easy salad and SO good for you.
Baby gem, or iceberg lettuce
Extra large madagascan prawns,
Fresh white crab meat,
Fresh raw beetroot.
Cut and mix of how ever much you need and place in a bowl
To make the dressing:
4T Extra virgin olive oil
2T sherry vinegar
You can make any variation of this, by adding new potatoes, asparagus, fennel, but make sure you have a mix of everything.
You want to give your body a good mix of vitamins and protien, and in my case IRON.
Simplicty at its best!!!!
Thursday, 25 February 2010
I love a good old bowl of comfort food every now and again and spaghetti bolognese is probably high on the list. I make a really good one, but my sister tania makes it even better. She has a secret ingrediant, which is not going to be a secret anymore after this post. I found it truely wonderful to use this in this dish. It just takes it to another level. Keeping your guests wondering what the flavour is that they are tasting.
So this was years ago and i was staying at her flat in London and she was making dinner. For once i was not making dinner and just observing. Something I DO LIKE TO DO. And as well as the pasta, she made several other dishes. As i mentioned in other posts, we all love to eat and my mother, the Queen of multi tasking gave us this ability to just make many dishes at the same time.
So as she was making the spaghetti, i saw the ingrediant and asked her what she was doing, and she said just trust me. My father always told me never to trust anyone who tells you to trust them, but in this case, he was wrong.
That is her secret.
500g lean beef/lamb mince
4 garlic cloves
1t of nutmeg
3T pommegrannate sauce
7 tomatoes, cubed
2T tomato pureé
1 cup red wine
- Sauteé the onions and garlic in olive oil
- Add the mince and brown well. Sprinkle to nutmeg and stir
- Add the thyme
- add the wine and the tomatoes and some water to cover everything.
- Add the tomato pureé
- Add the Pommegranate syrup and season to your taste.
- Add salt pepper and sugar.
- Let it boil
- Boil the pasta in a seperate pan, and salt the water well.
- when the pasta is 1/2 cooked drain some water from the pasta in to the sauce and let it reduce down by half.
- Then add the half cooked pasta to the sauce and continue to cook it.
- This way the flavour of the sauce will be soaked up by the pasta and it will be absorbed.
- This is how and Italian chef taught me how to make it. And it is perfect.
Add some grated parmesan and a sprig of thyme for decoration if you have guests over and serve.
Family recipes are the best and i intend on sharing them with everyone.
Monday, 22 February 2010
I was the photographer for this and Nour was the chef.
1 1/2 bags of marshmallows (large and small, Pink and white)
200ml of cream
300g philadelphia (light, optional)
30 oreo cookies
- Melt the butter
- Bash the oreos to make a crumble.
- Add the melted butter and mix together and place in a pie dish and flatten. Put it in the fridge to cool down while you do everything else.
- Put 3/4 of the Marshmallow in a pan and let it begin to melt.
- Do not have the heat too high as it will burn. It should take about 7-10 minutes to melt.
- When it has become lump free, add the rest of the mini marshmallows, and let them almost melt, but keep thier shape.
- Pour into the pie base and add sprinkles and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before removing from the fridge.
It simply like eating a cloud.
Sunday, 21 February 2010
The meat is ofcourse the star of the show, but as with all stars, the extras make all the difference.
I had some minced meat in the fridge and i had just bought foccacia bread, and was craving. I was also a little lazy to make my own dough as i had just had the longest week, so i began with my craving.
I toasted the focaccia, layered it with goodies, mentioned above, and just before the meat was done i added some cheese to melt on top.
Have a go and tell me how it goes.....
Tuesday, 16 February 2010
My mother is the BEST cook EVER!!!! She makes a different dish every day, and this dish was one of those that really stuck in my mind. I love it. It is healthy, tasty, has texture, and quite simply so worth it. You can make this with OKRA, or ladys fingers, but i prefer this with string beans. Some people, especially in Lebanon, use butter beans.
It may make you use a few more pans than you would like to but, the end result is just divine.
Like my mother, I try to bring different foods, tastes and styles into my home, to feed my husband and friends. And even if they are not used to eating it, or have never tried it, they simply love the flavours.
This dish is made up of Tomatoes, lamb neck, or lamb fillet if you cant find neck, string beans, garlic and onions. Rice is usually what accompanies it with some green chilli and green pepper.
500g lamb neck or lamb fillet, cubed.
500g fine string beans
2 onions, diced
1 onion quartered
1 whole head of garlic crushed
2T tomato puree
Green bell pepper
- Fill a pan with boiling water and add the quartered onion and the cubed meat. Let it boil and remove the scum that comes from the top. Keep doing this till there is no more scum coming to the top. Let it simmer.
- Get another pan, adding your chopped oinons and garlic, and you want to gently sautee this. You do not want to brown it.
- Add the Srting beans when this is ready, and again turn the heat down and let them gently cook.
- Reove the meat fromt he pan, approximately 40 minutes later, and KEEP THE LIQUID. This will make the sauce full of flavour.
- Get your chopped tomatoes, and place them in the sauce pan with a little salt and add the cooking liquor and boil. Add the tomaot paste.
- Place this tomato liquid into a blender to make it sooth, and then pour it over the beans, onions, garlic and add the meat.
- Check for flavour and add a little salt if needed as the tomato puree is a little sour.
- Keep this on a medium heat and begin to cook your rice.
- When the rice is ready, you can serve.
Place a good amount of rice in a bowl, and ladel over this terracota coloured lava on top. Let it cool slightly.
Cut up some green pepper and chilli and eat to your hearts content.
Some fmailiy traditions should never be lost and this one, i hope will be one of those dishes that is made and remembered for its simplicity of ingrediants, but its greatness in flavour.
My mother is the best cook and through her i have managed to be able to express myself so well through food. Every dish has a meaning to me and i cook it to go with that feeling, and this dish is one that i make when i miss her....
Wednesday, 10 February 2010
Manuka honey has been used by the ancient Egyptians for thousands of years, but can now only be found in New Zealand. It is a medical discovery that this honey can help with many many illnesses listed below....
Cold & Flu Symptom
Eczema & Dermatitis
Wounds & Abrasions
Aches & Pains
Oats also have cholesterol lowering qualities which are good for you and also fill you up so you dont have to eat junk during the day. And the berries are super foods, known to be high in antioxidants. So this meal is one not to miss. It takes about 2 minutes to make this one up.
I layer my Granola.
Wild berries, Oats, yoghurt, Manuka honey, Berries, Oats, Yoghurt, manuka honey, Oats...
Simple easy and delicious. And good for you.
Try it Honey.
Sushi has been around for centuries, but the method is very different today than when it began. It used to be vinegered and fermented to preserve the fish and Sushi, literally means "its sour". Nowadays sushi has evolved to a point where people are eating sushi that is not even Japanese, such as the california roll and spider roll. But nevertheless it is delicious.
These rolls i made were so easy and relatively quick to make. I found that i am seriously craving anything with soya sauce, and cant stop eating this and everything else.... So take your time, buy SUSHI GRADE fish from your fishmonger and have everything prepared in advance.
Sushi rolling mat
Fish (salmon, crab, prawn, seabass, tuna)
Vegetables (asparagus, red pepper, cucumber, avaocado)
* Boil the sushi rice as you would any normal rice.
* While that is cooking, begin to cut your vegetables, and cook off your asparagus if you are using. At the same time peel, devein your prawns and cook them.
* Get your fish and cut in to long strips and place back in to the fridge until ready to use.
* When your rice is ready place in a tray to let it cool.
* Mix your wasabi powder with a tiny amount of water to create a paste.
* Get your nori sheet and lay it on your rolling mat.
* Wet your fingers and get some rice and massage it in to the nori to cover 95% of it. Leaving the top free.
* Add a tiny amount of wasabi on to your rice and place your chosen fish and vegetables and begin to roll.
* Add some water to the last strip of the nori before you seal it. This will act like a glue to hold it together.
* Set aside and repeat with the others.
* To cut, i cut them in half and then in 3's. So you get six from each roll.
* Add some wasabi to your platter and some ginger. It helps cleanse the palette. And kills any bacteria floating around.
The sushi i made were rolls and some sashimi.
Crab and coriander rolls
Prawn tempura rolls with asparagus
Its time to take over your kitchen and be more confident. Show yourself what you can do. And impress yourself and your friends. Its the perfect party food to make.
Be fresh, be daring.
Monday, 8 February 2010
It was my friends baby shower the other day and everyone had to either bring or make something..... So i made something. Actually 2 things. I made the brownies, that i posted up earlier and this lovely little cake for her soon to be Jnr.
I just rolled out fondant icing and cut them in to little feet and a bib and placed them on the icing. The cake was a real hit as red velvet is her favourite, and mine. So that was a good call. I also added some hundreds and thousands to add a little colour to the blue and white. I think it was a perfect cake for the perfect meeting. You can try this at home, following the recipe and adding your own design....
Lets see what you can come up with....
Sui Mai are an all time favourite. I love oriental/ Asian food. The flavours, the saltiness and the texture just make it so different from everything else. I made this as a run off to my Gyoza, and absolutely loved them. Although i have to say i am not an expert in making them, they turned out quite well. I also made my own wonton wrappers, and that was the only thing that was a little tricky. In the sense that i wanted them to be paper thin, and they werent. I guess i have to check my rolling techniques. But even though they were a little thick, they were delicious. It is made in a similar way to the gyoza but in the mix for the dough, i added one egg. This changed the texture and the colour.
Fort he filling i just used veal mince and similar ingridiants. But it is all in the shape of the dumpling. You have to make little parcels and squeeze at the neck to make them this way.
You can follow the recipe for Gyoza, and for the pastry just add one egg as an addition.
On top you can add cod roe or peas like i did.
Simply delicious and gone too fast. I know i seem to say that alot, but i guess that is what happens over here. Im hoping it is for the taste as opposed to starvation...
Wednesday, 3 February 2010
Brownies, brownies, brownies..... What more can i say. They are fudgy, moist, crunchy, chewy, and most of all they are simply the gateway to heaven for me. I dont love chocolate. I worship it. Especially, good, dark chocolate. It is smooth, decadant, and rich in flavour. These brownies are an all time favourite at my house, and i should make them more often, but i would be the size of a house if i did.
I made these for a friends baby shower, along with a lovely red velvet cake,and they went down a treat. Literally.
There is something about the smell of chocolate that make people swoon. Ohhhh and ahhhh. I dont know what it is, but if i could be anything if i was reincarnated, it would be dark cooking chocolate.
So chocolate comes from plants, and plants that are dark in colour.The benefits from dark chocolate is from FLAVONOIDS, which act as anti oxidants. Anti oxidants, help the body from ageing, which causes circulatory problems and heart disease. Dark chocolate contains nearly 8 times as many anti Oxidants as strawberries and also helps with relieving stress and blood pressure, becasue of the nitric oxide. It also helps to balance certain hormones in your body.
Stimulates endorphins which makes you feel better
Helps lift your mood as it contains seratonin, so acts like an anti depressant.
It contains theobromine, caffine, which are stimulants.
Studies show that a small amount of chocolate a day helps reduce high blood pressure.
It brings down LDL cholesterol by up to 10%. This is the bad cholesterol in your body.
Enough of the science part, back to the real deal.
400g 70% chocolate
325g unsalted butter
650g golden caster sugar
260g plain flour
Make 24 portions.
- Melt butter and chocolate in double boiler, or in microwave, till it has melted.
- Mix suagr and eggs till doubles in volume, and the colour has gone creamy.
- Mix the two together adding the sifted flour.
- Add Vanilla extract
- Line a baking tray
- Pour and cook for 50-60 minutes.
- Remove from the oven an dlet it cool down before you remove it from the pan.
- Cut into equal sized peices and sprinkle some icing sugar if you like.
So who ever said dark chocolate was not good for you was probably trying to keep it all to themselves....
I have a low fat brownie recipe coming up soon. No Butter.
Tuesday, 2 February 2010
Definitely try this recipe if you are always on the go, as you can make 9 or 12 and keep them on standby. You may want to double the recipe as i mentioned before, they went faster than imagined....
25 grams of butter
200ml of milk
150g baby leaf spinach
250g plain flour or whole wheat flour
1 T Baking powder
1 ts Bicarbonate of soda
1 t Cayenne pepper
75g parmesan cheese, grated
1 egg, beaten
225 g Goats cheese, without the rind
- Heat the milk and butter together, and put the spinach in till it has wilted.
- Heat the oven to 170 degrees
- Mix all the dry ingrediants together and sift.
- Adding a little black pepper
- Mix in the parmesan, add the agg, and the butter, milk and spinach mix. You can blitz this slightly to make the mix a little more combined, but if you dont have a blender handy, it is no problem. Just make sure you use baby leaf spinach.
- Grease 9 muffing holes and place the dough mixture in each one filling HALF way only. You can use cups if you like, but they will come out.
- Cut the goats cheese up into peices and place into the middle of each filling. Then add some more mix to cover the cheese and place in the oven.
- Cook for 20 minutes
Let them cool for 10 minutes before serving this tasty, cheesey vegetarian piece of heaven.