Oumph has launched in the UK

A fun and thought provoking product launch took me to Whole Foods  in Kensington last night. The cool Swedish outfit behind the launch, Food for Progress, has managed the unmanageable by turning a bean based meat substitute into a sexy, tasty and remarkably meat-like product called Oumph. Forget bland tofu and Quorn. This is as close to meat you can get as a vegetarian. Continue reading “Oumph has launched in the UK”

The thing about sprouts..

imageI recently started using sprouts in my green smoothies. Nothing fancy, just some alfalfa sprouts from Whole Foods, but I’ve noticed a definite boost in my energy levels and the more I read about it the more I think it may not be a coincidence. Raw food is packed with food enzymes which we need in order to thrive. They are for example responsible for our digestion and how well our immune system functions.  But sprouts takes it all to a different level, filled as they are with goodness such as antioxidants, proteins, minerals, vitamins, enzymes and so on. The good news is that you can sprout almost anything – AND you can do it in your own home. Common varieties besides alfalfa seeds are mung beans, chickpeas, wheat, barley, lentils, soybean, sunflower seeds, oats, broccoli seeds to name a few.

Here is how simple it is: Rinse the seeds/beans thoroughly in a colander and place in glass jar with air holes in the lid. If you are using  dried beans you must first soak them overnight then rinse and place in glass jar. Place in a warm and dry position. Rinse frequently and when the little tails have started to appear from the seed/bean and measures about an inch they are ready to eat. Store the left overs in a jar in the fridge. Voila!!

You can of course buy purpose made receptacles from health food or online shops if you are that way inclined but you don’t have to. I love simplicity and want to monitor just how frequently I will manage to do this before investing in a new gadget. I’ll keep you posted on my sprouting progress. x

Top snack!

imagePresent me with a choice of sweet or savory and I’ll choose savory every time. No pudding for me, instead I’ll head straight for the cheese and chutney. Since becoming more interested in what I’m putting into my body, however, I am a more discerning customer. So the white pitta bread and shop bought hummus have been replaced by veggie tortilla chips from Whole Foods (all natural and gluten-free) and a great hummus recipe from the founder of Abel & Cole. What a great company that is by the way. If you don’t know them they were one of the first home delivery services to bring seasonal, organic veggies to the London area. Their weekly fruit and vegetable boxes are legendary.

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Here is the hummus recipe. Once made you can keep it in an airtight container in the fridge for a couple of days:

Hummus in a Hurry (from the Able & Cole cookbook)

1 can organic chickpeas

1 large or 2 small garlic cloves, peeled and crushed

2 tbsp tahini (sesame seed paste)

Juice of a lemon

3 or 4 glugs of olive oil

A couple of pinches of sea salt

Optional: a couple of pinches of paprika

Drain the chickpeas (retain a bit of the juice from the can) and throw them into a blender or food processor with the crushed garlic, tahini and lemon juice. Get blitzing!

Slowly pour 3 or 4 glugs of olive oil in through the top of the blender with the motor still running so it all combines. You may need to scrape some of the mixture down the sides of the blender to get it all to combine. If it is too dry, re-mix and add a bit of the juice from the chickpeas to help it loosen up to a smooth paste.

Season with sea salt (and paprika if you like) to taste and serve. Enjoy x

Good food fast

photo 2-2Being a food lover can be quite overwhelming. I often stare into my fridge, ravenous with hunger and wanting to consume its content all at once but not sure in which order. Today, after my Whole Foods veggie shop, I was having one of those moments. It all looked so dewy, crunchy and fresh that I wanted the lot. I promptly cubed and diced until I had a little sample of everything and heaped the lot into a pot of boiling water together with some sea salt.photo 1-410 minutes later I had blended the content into a smooth soup with no bits in sight. Which had the added, unplanned, benefit of shielding the contents of the soup from my son who was home sick from school. Don’t get me wrong, he really likes a good soup but was he to know the precise ingredients, like courgette, ginger and sweet potato, he’d  fastidiously declare that he was ‘just not that into it’.

My point is that this stuff is not rocket science and we know that our waistlines and energy levels benefit from plenty of good, seasonal veggies. The key therefore is to be arsed to whip up something healthy and quick instead of getting a cheese’n ham Panini from Costa.

Remember – it’s spring, people. Beach 2014 is beckoning!!  Get juicing and souping, make weird and wonderful salads using all the fab organic veggies that are available to us and feel your energy levels soar and waistline shrink. Here’s the ingredients for the soup we had today:

1 large sweet potato

1/2 butternut squash

2 large broccoli florets

1 courgette

2 shallots

1 1/2 ” ginger root, chopped

1/2 can coconut milk

1 tsp coconut oil

A sprinkling of crushed chilli

Sea salt to taste

Cook for about 10 minutes then blend all into a yummy, smooth soup and serve. Enjoy x