how to summon Spring? cacao crepes with banana and blackberry jelly

I’m officially sick and tired of this Spring-called weather. Whoever pulls the strings up there is either mentally unstable or simply mean. This so-called Spring is an error, something is broken in matrix, it’s beginning of May and I’m still wearing my high top sheep wool slippers. And I had to switch on the heating (although having a look on my energy bill should heat me up). 9 degrees Celsius (feels like 6°C) doesn’t call for short sleeves and ditsy floral dresses that are abandoned in my wardrobe for months. Spring – you’re urgently called to be present! I understand that North Scotland is not the hottest place on Earth (either in Spring or Summer), but it’s not Alaska for God’s sake.

That’s why, against all odds lets make a very Summery recipe today. Maybe it will cheer me up while I rest my feet on the radiator.

These fruity crepes are just in time for a weekend breakfast or afternoon tea. We have three flavours here – slightly dry cacao pancakes, sweet banana and slightly sour blackberry jelly. This combination makes the dish not overly sweet. Adults should like it, and kids will surely be delighted with this combination. Especially since we have quite a lot of goodness here – cacao is a source of magnesium and gives happiness, bananas are full of vitamins, minerals and natural fiber, blackberries are full of goodness, all without artificial additives. So basically if you don’t mind carbs – just yummy. It’s a great Spring and Summer meal (if your Spring and Summer is warm) when your body calls for something lighter, juicy and fun.

I give approximate amounts of ingredients for crepes – I always guesstimate the amounts and if I want thinner crepes, I make slightly more liquid batter – it’s easier to spread it on the pan. About 10 pancakes came out of this amount of ingredients. But it all depends on your personal preferences and own way of frying crepes and, of course, the size of the pan.

For making blackberry jelly, apart from fruits, you can either use water or blackberry juice (or other fruit juice). You can also swap blackberries with cherries, blueberries or blackcurrants. Choose the one you like the most or the one that are available for you. You can also use frozen fruits if you don’t have fresh on hand.


cacao crepes with banana and blackberry jelly


NOTE: my cup is 250ml regular glass

INGREDIENTS for crepes batter:

  • about 1½ cup plain flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tsp sugar (or sugar replacement)
  • milk of your choice
  • 3 tsp raw organic cacao
  • clarified butter for frying (or coconut oil)

INGREDIENTS for blackberry jelly:

  • 2 handfuls of blackberries
  • some water (or blackberry juice)
  • about 2 tsp potato starch or corn starch
  • sugar to taste (or sugar replacement)

ADDITIONALLY:

  • couple bananas
  • clarified butter for frying (or coconut oil)

DIRECTIONS

Prepare a traditional pancake batter: whisk together flour, baking powder, egg and milk add enough milk to be able to pour batter and spread it over the pan. Additionally add a little sugar (so that the pancakes are not bitter) and cacao. Mix everything thoroughly so there’s no cocoa lumps in it. I also always add a tablespoon of coconut oil or clarified butter to the batter (it helps crepes not getting sticky to the pan).

Heat the pan adding a tablespoon of clarified butter or coconut oil and pour your first crepe. Usually the firs crepe is always imperfect, so don’t you worry an keep frying. When the crepe pan heat up properly you should be able to get beautiful crepes, without even using any fat. Make rather thin crepes so that when the banana is wrapped in them it’s not going to be too thick. When you make a batch of crepes put them aside and cover with a pan or a plate to keep them warm and soften the edges.

Now it’s time for jelly. Place blackberries in a small saucepan and add a little water – just enough that the fruits are in water but not covered with it. Add sugar to taste and heat it up, let it simmer for a minute. In a small cup, combine potato starch or corn starch and 2-3 tsp of cold water. Pour in the starch and stir quickly, but as gently as possible, so as not to crush the fruits. Simmer until you get jelly-like texture and clear colour. If you feel like it’s not thick enough add a little bit more starch (but always combine it first with a little bit of water, never add straight to the fruits because you’ll get lumps). When you get consistency that you like switch off the heat and let it cool down slightly.

Peel bananas and cut them lengthwise in half. Wrap each half with a crepe. Heat the frying pan adding butter or coconut oil, and fry crepes for a few minutes on both sides, over low heat, so that the banana has time to warm up and soften.

Serve warm, right after frying – crepes are then crispy, and banana is sweet and soft – it melts in your mouth. Decorate crepes with warm or cold blackberry jelly and enjoy 🙂

Indian style vegetable curry

This Indian style veggie curry recently became one of our favourite meals. What’s great about it is that it’s extremely easy and quick to make. Perfect when you don’t have much time to cook, but you still want something nourishing and hearty. It’s full of flavour one pot meal you can prepare, using different veggies you have in your fridge. Mushrooms are the most important though. You can swap cauliflower with broccoli, courgettes and aubergine with other veggies (root veg for example). I chose the one that are most low carb.

Choose closed cup baby mushrooms – they are the best for this recipe. They are small, so there’s no need to chop them, they won’t become soggy while cooking. Baby mushrooms will remain firm and juicy, perfect for one bite. There’s no need to add any meat to this curry.

I chose mild curry powder – feel like mild flavour goes better with veggies, but I you like more spicy curry, try adding hot curry powder or sprinkle your curry with chilli flakes. Also I wouldn’t be myself if I wouldn’t add garlic for even more delicious flavour. But if you don’t like smell or taste of garlic you can skip it in the recipe.

Also choose good quality coconut milk. There’s plenty of choices, but various coconut milk can differ a lot. Look for the simplest list of ingredients: coconut extract and water. If you can, try to stay away from the ones that contains emulgators, stabilisers, starches and emulsifiers. Also look what’s the percentage of coconut extract it contains – the more the better.

You can serve your curry with multiple additions like rice, quinoa, bulgur wheat or on its own, or with piece of naan bread.


vegetable curry


INGREDIENTS:

  • 500 g baby mushrooms
  • 1 small cauliflower
  • 1 small courgette
  • 1 small aubergine
  • handful of cherry tomatoes
  • spring onion for garnish
  • 450 ml coconut milk
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • about 2 tsp mild curry powder (or hot curry powder if you like)
  • 2-3 garlic cloves
  • salt to taste

DIRECTIONS

Thoroughly wash all veggies. Divide cauliflower in small florets. Chop courgette and aubergine. Heat large, deep frying pan (or wok) adding one tablespoon of coconut oil. Fry cauliflower first, on high heat, until slightly golden, then add baby mushrooms. Fry for couple minutes, then add courgette, aubergine, curry powder, turmeric, chopped garlic and sprinkle with salt.

Add coconut milk and lower the heat, let it simmer for couple minutes – mushroom should be still firm and juicy. At the end of cooking add halves of cherry tomatoes. Garnish with spring onions before serving.

Serve on its own, it will also taste great with rice, couscous, bulgur wheat or quinoa.

Store in the fridge for about 2-3 days.

Enjoy!

red slaw with wasabi & avocado dressing

Recently red slaw is my go to side salad, I just add different spices or dressings. It’s so quick and easy to make. And cabbage stays fresh for quite a long time, so I can keep it in my fridge for a while without the risk that after one or two days it will go off.

I love the crunchiness of this slaw mixed with creamy avocado dressing. It’s so good that my partner ate all of it even though he’s not really a fan of avocado. Addition of wasabi gives lots of tangy flavour to gentle and nutty avocado. Mayo is always good, there’s no point for discussion 😉 But if somehow you don’t like mayonnaise, I think if you add Greek yogurt would work as well.

This dressing would also work as a dip for crackers, chips, veggies, it’s nicely thick and creamy. Not that I would encourage you to eat chips or crackers, but if it happens, keep in mind that mix of mayo, avocado and wasabi is delicious. Smeared generously over the freshly toasted ciabatta bread with couple cherry tomatoes also sounds amazing, but I didn’t say that 😉

You see, plenty of ideas already how to use this avocado and wasabi dressing, you might never get bored with your food.

red slaw with wasabi & avocado dressing

INGREDIENTS for red slaw:

  • quarter of a small red cabbage
  • 1 small brown onion
  • 1 small carrot
  • pinch of salt

INGREDIENTS for dressing:

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • about 2-3 tsp wasabi
  • about 1 tbsp mayonnaise
  • pinch of lemon pepper
  • couple drops of lemon or lime juice

DIRECTIONS

Shred the cabbage, finely chop onion and grate the carrot. Combine all veggies together, sprinkle with pinch of salt and set aside.

Smash avocado using a fork or a blender if you want extra smooth texture. Add mayonnaise, pepper, couple drops of lemon juice and spice it up with wasabi. Add as much wasabi as you like – to make it more or less spicy.

Combine your dressing with red slaw just before serving. Avocado oxidise strongly, so with time your dip becomes rather greyish colour (addition of lemon juice helps but it will not remain nicely green for long time). So always keep it in air tight container and mix with slaw before serving.

If you don’t mind muddy colour you can mix it all straight away.

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lazy oat and carrot bake

I saw this baked oats dessert idea so many times on Instagram that I could not resist and finally tried it as well. It’s a kind of TikTok recipe, where you put together couple ingredients, that sometimes doesn’t really go together, and prepare in a way you usually wouldn’t choose (like making mash potatoes from potato crisps). And I didn’t even plan to post this recipe (it’s even hard to call this a recipe), especially that I really dislike the photos I’ve made. But came out that this dessert or breakfast idea is actually quite tasty and we’ve ate all in one and a half day.

So if you’d need to choose between buying a pack of oat bars (or pack of doughnuts), and making a little bit more healthy (and definitely cheaper) choice, I think this kind of oat bake is perfect. Especially that you can add whatever you like to this combination: nuts, raisins, peanut butter, fruits, chocolate, you can either use any plant milk you like or cow’s milk if that your choice. And it literally took me couple minutes to mix all ingredients in a baking dish. So even though it’s not my “go to” food choice, as I try to avoid lots of carbs, if I would like to treat myself with some home baked goodies I would choose this one.

I chose a mix of carrot and cinnamon, and all my sweetness comes from carrots, one banana and raisins that were already in my oat mix. For me that was just enough and I didn’t need any addition of any sort of sugar or sugar replacement. For you though it might be different, so don’t feel restricted by that. You can either add more banana or after baking drizzle it with some honey. Seriously this recipe gives you so many options, that each time you can make absolutely new taste with changing only one or two ingredients.

Because this kind of “recipes” usually doesn’t tell you the exact amounts of ingredients, I was just eye-balling the amounts of milk and oats. So feel free to experiment. From the amounts I’ve added my oats were quite dry – more like an soft oat bar, than actual porridge. But it was nice and crispy on top – especially when hot straight from the oven. If you add much more milk, you’ll get more loose and moisture texture.

I’ve popped couple pieces of organic raw chocolate – they’ve melted nicely over the hot oats. Also added some pumpkin and sunflower seeds to make it more nutritious and filling. I had a mix of oats, nuts and raisins, but if you have plain porridge oats they will work as well. Enjoy making your own mix of your favourite flavours.

lazy oat and carrot bake

NOTE: my measuring cup is 250ml regular glass

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 cups of oats (mix of oats, nuts and raisins)
  • 2 cups of plant milk of your choice (I had almond)
  • 1 banana
  • 3 small carrots
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • coconut oil or butter to grease the baking dish
  • optionally: pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, dark chocolate (I used 85% organic cacao chocolate)

DIRECTIONS

Grate the carrots, finely chop banana. Smear coconut oil or butter all over your baking dish. Add oats, grated carrots, banana, cinnamon and seeds if you have them. Give it a good stir, so all ingredients will combine and spread evenly in a baking dish. Pour over with plant milk. Texture of my bake was quite dry – like soft oat bar, if you’d like more porridge like consistency add more milk.

Preheat the oven to about 170-180°C, bake for about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven, add pieces of chocolate. Serve hot or cold. Although I think tests the best when hot and crunchy on top.

Enjoy!

chocolate chia pudding

Really low carb themed dessert today, not sweet for most of the people, for me sweet enough to be a dessert 🙂 Obviously you can alter this recipe to your liking and needs. Personally I love combination of chocolate (cacao) and raspberries, and warmth of pudding mixed with frozen fruits, that’s melting over it. Add some chocolate on top and you don’t need anything else.

You can use various types of milk to prepare it, I had almond, but I think hazelnut would taste delicious, kind of nutella flavour. If you don’t mind regular cow’s milk, you can use it as well. The same with sweetener. I use xylitol, but if you have other sugar substitutes you like, feel free to add as much as you like.

I also used raw cacao powder, which in my opinion is much less bitter than regular cocoa powder, so you don’t need to add as much sugar or sweetener to balance the bitterness.

From this amounts of ingredients I got two quite large portions, but you can easily make four smaller ones.

Chia seeds are full of Omega-3 fatty acids, and also other nutrients, so if you’d like to balance your intake of Omega-6 fatty acids, chia is a great source. If chia seeds are not available to you, flaxeeds or linseeds are great substitute. Although I feel like soaked linseeds make slightly different consistency, more gel-like, kind of slimy. If you don’t mind (and I know lots of people do) you can use linseed to make this pudding. It’s also full of Omega-3 fatty acids, and one of the best foods that reduces inflammation in your body according to the researchers.

I would recommend eating your pudding when it’s still warm, with piece of dark chocolate melted on top. Sound good, isn’t it? 🙂

chocolate chia pudding

INGREDIENTS:

  • about 500 ml plant milk of your choice (or cow’s milk if you like)
  • 4 tsp raw cacao
  • 8 tbsp chia seeds
  • 2 tsp xylitol or other sugar replacement of your choice
  • handful of raspberries (I had frozen)
  • couple bits of dark chocolate

DIRECTIONS

Heat up the milk in a saucepan adding cacao powder and sweetener. Combine using a whisk. When milk heats up add chia seeds and whisk again until it starts to boil. Lower the heat and simmer for about 3 minutes stirring repeatedly. Switch off the heat and set aside to cool down.

Transfer your chia pudding to smaller bowls or other dishes, place some raspberries on top, and couple bits of dark chocolate. You can either eat it warm or cold. I like it warm with chocolate melting on top.

You can store your chia pudding in the fridge for 2 days.

Enjoy! 🙂

Asian inspired red slaw

I love these kind of salads – quick and easy to prepare, crunchy and colourful, and they goes with all sorts of meats or fish. They can easily be a morning salad you can serve with fried eggs (if you’re on low carb foods), or on its own in the evening, if you want to munch on while watching Netflix.

I like experimenting with different spices and this time I had a taste for something Asian inspired, so I dug in my spice drawer and composed this tangy dressing. I really enjoy the taste of apple cider vinegar combined with sweetness of cabbage and carrot. If you like vinegar taste you can add even more to this dressing. If you don’t have hoisin sauce, that’s fine, you can add a bit of dark soy sauce. I think a pinch of chilli flakes could also work great if you like it on the more spicy side. For me is fine as it is.

Red cabbage is a great source of vitamin C (even more than oranges!), vitamin A and Potassium. It also contains vitamin K (very important for our bones), and B vitamins, also full of antioxidants. Red cabbage is also noted as one of the fruits and vegetables with the lowest amount of pesticide residues. So you definitely include lots of cabbage into your diet, if you like it obviously!

Did you know that the colour of the cabbage will be different depending on the pH balance of the soil it grows in? For example on pH 2 (which is very acidic), the cabbage would reflect bright red-pink colour. At pH4, the colour becomes light purple, on pH6, we get the dark-purple to red. When the pH reaches 8 (that’s alkaline), the hue becomes more blue.

Asian inspired red slaw

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 small red cabbage
  • 1 small red onion
  • 1-2 carrots
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 2-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 2 tsp hoisin sauce
  • 2-3 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp lemon pepper
  • pinch of salt

DIRECTIONS

Very thinly slice red cabbage. You can also use a peeler to slice the cabbage – it will slice very thinly. Just be careful with your fingers when you use a peeler to slice it. Chop one onion, grate the carrot. Place them all in a large container and give it a good stir.

In a small bowl combine together: olive oil, sesame oil, apple cider vinegar, hoisin sauce, lemon pepper, pinch of salt and half of the sesame seeds. Pour it over the veggies and stir thoroughly. Cover with lid and place in the fridge for about 30-60 minutes. Before serving transfer to a bowl and sprinkle on top with the remaining sesame seeds.

Enjoy with or sorts of meat, fish or on its own 🙂

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An if you liked this red cabbage slaw take a look at this recipe as well:

peanut butter and sunflower seed fat bombs

Peanut butter is often a “go to” snack when you are on a keto diet. Let those who have not spent the evening with a jar of peanut butter raise their hand.

There are some misconceptions about peanut butter – some people say it’s a healthy snack, other that peanut butter isn’t beneficial for us. And both are right. As with lots of foods the are two key words: source and moderation. Peanuts grow on the ground if not taking care properly they might get mouldy, if this kind of peanuts will be used for peanut butter, it can cause allergies and inflammatory reactions. Also some manufacturers adds some other ingredients to peanut butter that we don’t want. So always keep it in in mind when shopping peanut butter. It’s the best to buy from proven manufacturers or certified brands.

Other thing is moderation: peanut butter contains lots of Omega-6 fatty acids, which your body needs but no too much, because if we eat too much Omega-6 it can cause inflammation in the body. So if we eat Omega-6, we should balance it with lots of Omega-3that prevents and heals inflammation. According to this study Western diet is very high in Omega-6 and very low in Omega-3. So actually opposite that our body needs. High amounts of Omega-6 causes plenty of health issues: cardiovascular disease, cancer, autoimmune disease etc. So most probably spending a night with a jar of peanut butter is not the best what you can do for yourself. But it doesn’t mean that you can’t have it at all. Everything is fine in moderation, and my today’s recipe is a great way to have some peanut butter but not too much 😉

Some of the types of peanuts contain monounsaturated fats that lower triglycerides, and they have all nine essential amino acids and the antioxidant resveratrol (antioxidant). They are also full of protein, which is important if you not really fan of meat.

In this case, peanut butter mixed with coconut oil and coated with sunflower seeds is a powerful snack – I can assure you you will eat one or two cubes and you won’t be able to eat more. This way you will eat less peanut butter than you would straight from the jar.

Sunflower seeds also contains lots of Omega-6, therefore keep it in mind as well. Although they contain some Omega-3 but not enough to balance Omega-6. But they have other great benefits: lots of Calcium, Magnesium, Phosphorum, Pottasium, Manganese, Selenium, Folate, Vitamin B6, Niacin, Thiamin, and lots of Vitamin E.

To balance these two out we have coconut oil – to reduce inflammation, kill bad bacteria in your stomach and boost your energy levels. According to this study coconut oil, which is the most easily obtained source of MCT (healthy type of saturated fatty acid), improves (in synergy with exercise) the cardiometabolic and physical measures of people with obesity. Coconut oil also contains other compounds such as antioxidant polyphenols, known to improve metabolic profile by lowering LDL and VLDL while increasing HDL.

Coconut oil as health oil was recognized in Ayurvedic medicine almost 4000 years ago. The medium chain fatty acids and monoglycerides found primarily in coconut oil have antiviral, antibacterial and antifungal benefits. Either topically applied or ingested, coconut oil gets broken down to release Lauric Acid and Monolaurin – known anti-microbial agents. So it’s not only good for the inside of our body and our skin and hair.

Isn’t it remarkable that couple simple foods and they contain such a complicated and mysterious effect on our body?

Just in case you started thinking about Omega-3 rich foods a contrary to these peanut butter fat bombs, they are: fat fish (sardines, mackerel, anchovies), linseed/flaxeed, chia seed, walnuts, soybeans, hemp seeds, spinach, Brussels sprouts.

Did I mention that these fat bombs are easy and effortless to prepare? 🙂

peanut butter and sunflower seed fat bombs

INGREDIENTS:

  • smooth peanut butter
  • raw extra virgin coconut oil
  • sunflower seeds
  • optional: sea salt flakes

DIRECTIONS

Combine together coconut oil and peanut butter in proportion 1:1. For example 3 tablespoons of peanut butter and 3 tablespoons of coconut oil. If you haven’t tried fat bombs before, it’s better to make smaller portion. Simple melt coconut oil on a very low heat (it just need to melt, don’t heat it up too much) and thoroughly combine with peanut butter.

Line a glass or plastic container with a baking paper or cling film – it will help you to take out and slice fat bombs. Pour in combined peanut butter, level and place in the fridge or freezer until it sets. You have to remember that all fat bombs based on coconut oil will need to be stored in the fridge, because they will melt in the room temperature.

While it’ s setting in a cool place. Toast some sunflower seeds on a clear pan. Low heat and stirring frequently, not to burn them. Toasting will add lots of flavour, so I encourage you not to skip this step. Let it aside to cool down completely.

When the peanut butter is set, take it out of the container and cut in cubes. Coat each cube with toasted seeds (warmth of your fingers will melt slightly each cube so seeds will stick easily). It doesn’t need to be perfect but don’t mess with it for too long. They melt quicker than you might think, especially if you hold them in your fingers for too long 🙂

Optionally you can sprinkle couple uncoated cubes with sea salt flakes.

When all cubes are covered with seeds place them back into the fridge for another 30 minutes or so. If you feel like evening cravings are coming at you, grab one or two cubes. Enjoy chewing! 🙂

https://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/nut-and-seed-products/3076/2

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/12442909/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4882694/

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32602684/

summer radish salad with avocado and radish leaf dressing

Look at the colour of these beautiful leaves, don’t you think they look amazing on a plate? It’s a festival of textures and colours. They are almost velvety in touch and have deep purple hue. To complement the purples we have green and purple mustard greens with their beautiful frayed leaves. And last but not least spiky, green radish leaves. That’s something new – I used to put them to rubbish, but as you might know radish leaves are edible and you should not be afraid to add them to your salads.

I got this beautiful purple leaves in my weekly veggie box and I fell in love with their texture and colour. Quick research and looks like it’s edible wild plant called Orach also known as Saltbush, Garden Orache, Red Orache, Mountain Spinach, or French Spinach – plant of many names. They are found along North America’s coasts and on the shores of alkaline lakes inland. They are also found along seashores from the Mediterranean countries to inland areas in North Africa and eastward to Turkey and central Siberia. Some species prefer dry, salty soils and can be found in desert areas. The entire plant is edible raw or boiled. Young leaves and shoots have a mild chard-like flavour with added salt. They can be eaten raw in salads, or cooked by steaming or stir frying. They are also used to make a slightly sour soup and can be boiled with pasta to turn it pink.

For me in comparison to mustard greens and radish leaves they are gentle and velvety, very pleasurable to eat. Now let’s talk about radish leaves for a second. Their hairy and prickly texture don’t seem to be attractive for your mouth, and eating their spiky leaves might be a little bit weird. But they didn’t harmed me 🙂 And they are full of essential vitamins and minerals.

If you’re afraid to eat them in a salad they can also be sautéed with garlic and used as a side dish, chopped up and used as toppings for soups, noodles and sandwiches. You can also use them as a base for dressings, blended and mixed with olive oil, like I did in this recipe.

To finish up this salad I added boiled egg (the yellow-orange colour goes perfectly with purple) and dressing made with avocado – that’s for some fat content that will keeps me full for longer, as it was my breakfast salad.

I think it’s a great idea if you’re expecting guests who likes veggies, because orach and mustard greens look great on the plate arranged with other veggies, can look amazing on summer party table. I can imagine having this salad in a sunny garden on a lazy Sunday morning.

summer radish salad

with avocado and radish leaf dressing

INGREDIENTS:

  • Purple Orach leaves (also known as arrach, mountain spinach and saltbush)
  • mustard greens or rocket
  • radish with leaves
  • eggs
  • 2-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • pinch of natural rock salt
  • lemon pepper or freshly ground black pepper
  • pinch of nigella seeds
  • optionally to spice up your dressing: chilli flakes, minced garlic or sweet chilli sauce/sriracha

DIRECTIONS

First boil the eggs. I cooked mine for about 4 minutes as I like them soft. Then cool them down.

Wash all your greens and radish to get rid of any remains of soil. Slice radishes, do not bin the leaves. Leave the nicest looking leaves to put to the salad, the rest place in a blender. Place also half of avocado to a blender adding lemon juice, pinch of salt, lemon pepper, 2 tbsp of olive oil ald about 1-2 tbsp of cold water. Water will thin the sauce making it more dressing like. Blend it all together until you get nice and smooth texture, add some more water if you feel like. You can spice up your dressing adding chilli flakes, minced garlic, or leave it as it is and add a splash of sweet chilli sauce or sriracha on top of your salad.

Arrange all the leaves on the plate, also adding some of the radish leaves. Add sliced radish and egg. Drizzle with some extra virgin olive oil. Put some avocado and radish leaf dressing and serve. I also added some nigella seeds for extra flavour and as visual interest.

Enjoy!

Source of knowledge:

https://www.organicgardener.com.au/blogs/satisfying-saltbush-orach

https://www.wildernessarena.com/food-water-shelter/food-food-water-shelter/food-procurement/edible-wild-plants/orach

quick summer black soya bean spaghetti (vegan, gluten free)

When the sun is shining in Scotland and temperatures goes up it’s not the time to sit indoors. This weather is not going to last for long, so the best you can do is to try to enjoy it as much as you can. If your work allows you to take advantage of the sun and spend time on the beach or hiking – good for you. To take the most of the Summer and do not die starving you definitely need a quick, healthy and delicious meal you can prepare effortlessly in your kitchen in less than 30 minutes.

So here comes fresh and colourful veggie pasta. But it’s not an ordinary spaghetti. It’s black soya bean spaghetti – gluten free, dairy free, wheat free. Free of almost everything 😉 If it would be carbohydrates free it would be ideal 😉 But it contains 15g of carbs per 100g, so it’s half less than in regular pasta.

Veggie season is officially opened – I started receiving my organic and local veggie delivery and it always inspire me to prepare something new, fresh and delicious. I love having plenty of veg in my fridge because it’s so easy to cook with them – you can easily prepare something yummy, good looking almost from nothing. I keep on learning new things about veggies, about their edible parts we usually put to rubbish (to learn more about this click here) and it gives even more opportunities to make the most of each vegetable.

I highly encourage you to include more veggies into your diet, Summer is the best moment for that. Experiment with veggies you don’t know and never tried, prepare salads, smoothies, stir fry or grill veggies if you have a chance. Veggies are the easiest and quickest to prepare if you don’t want to spend a lot of time in the kitchen. But remember to buy locally, veggies that didn’t travel thousands of miles, but are locally grown with love are the best veggies.

So today we have easy-peasy and quick gluten free and vegan spaghetti with stir fry veggies and bunch of delicious spices. Although you don’t need to use these exact spice mix. If you have your own favourite mix – use it. If you want to try something new grab some fenugreek, nigella seeds, fennel, coriander seeds, black pepper and cloves. You can use a mortar to grind them together or simply pop them into the coffee grinder. Then add dried tomato flakes, chilli flakes, some dried parsley and chives, mix with some onion powder and voila!

quick summer black soya bean spaghetti

(vegan, gluten free)

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 pak choi cabage
  • handful of sugar snap peas
  • couple cherry tomatoes
  • small tin of chickpeas
  • 1 spring garlic (or couple garlic cloves plus spring onions)
  • 200g black soya bean spaghetti
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds oil
  • natural rock salt to taste and to cook spaghetti
  • mix of spices: onion powder, fenugreek, tomato flakes, nigella seeds, chilli flakes, fennel, coriander seeds, parsley, black pepper, chives and cloves

DIRECTIONS

Cut of the ends of sugar snap peas and boil in water for 4-5 minutes, then drain. Also cook black soya bean spaghetti in salted water for 2-3 minutes as describe on the packaging. Slice spring garlic, finely chop its green part. Also thoroughly rinse and chop pak choi. Cherry tomatoes cut in halves.

Heat a large pan adding 3 tbsp of olive oil, add snap peas and chickpeas, fry for 3-4 minutes and add all the spices. Then add sliced spring garlic, leaving the green part on the side. Add cooked spaghetti, tomatoes and pak choi cabbage. Give it 4-5 minutes so pasta can soak all the flavours. Add more spices if needed. At the end drizzle with a tablespoon of sesame seeds oil and sprinkle with green part of garlic.

Serve fresh and hot. Enjoy!

white mushroom stuffed buns

These buns were a very spontaneous idea, as I needed something that would not require to be reheated and my partner could take it to work for his lunch. And it was a great idea, and now I would double the portion, because 8 buns vanished very quickly.

What I love about flour, is that you can basically have an empty fridge or just some leftovers of stuff in your cupboards, but if you have some flour, yeast and a good idea you can make something from nothing. Like these white mushroom buns. But it’s the same with crepes, pancakes or dumplings – with seemingly not very interesting and simple ingredients you can prepare very tasty meal. Something extraordinary almost from nothing really. Maybe not extremely nutritious, but extremely tasty for sure.

Who doesn’t like freshly baked fluffy bun, stuffed with mushrooms?

To make it a little bit more nutritious I decided to mix plain flour with some rye flour I had in my cupboard. I like buns to be very fluffy and lightweight so I tend to mix more heavy flours (like spelt, rye or wholegrain) with plain white flour. Sometimes these heavy wholegrain flours makes the final dough more dense and not as fluffy as I like. If you have the same problem, you can try mixing different flours together.

Also I’m not very good with proportions and measuring ingredients (as you probably know from my baking mistakes post), so keep it in mind preparing your ingredients. I always throw everything into a pot without measuring, so my measurements are guesstimated. Sorry about that to everyone who likes to have exact proportions.

But these buns are great – fluffy, with aromatic mushroom stuffing. Amazing still warm, but also very tasty when cooled down. And depending of your liking you can make them quite big or very small – then they become great party food. They will be a perfect addition to different soups or stews, as an easy lunch or snack when you’re out and about.

Definietly recipe worth trying and repeating 🙂

white mushroom stuffed buns

INGREDIENTS for dough:

  • about 400-500g in total of plain flour mixed with rye flour in proportion 2:1
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 sachet (7g) dried yeast
  • 1-2 tsp cane sugar
  • good pinch of natural rock salt
  • some warm water
  • poppy seeds
  • 1 whipped egg to brush the buns on top (skip for vegan option)

INGREDIENTS for filling:

  • 500g white mushrooms
  • 1 brown onion
  • thick slice of butter or coconut oil for vegan option
  • natural rock salt
  • lots of freshly ground black pepper

DIRECTIONS

Start with preparing yeast. I always use the same method with dried yeast and fresh yeast and if I only won’t kill them with too hot water, it always works perfectly. So start with heating some water, I would say about 150ml. It’s easier to add more water when needed. Water should be nice and warm when you put your finger into it, not hot and not lukewarm. Add sugar and yeast and give it a stir so yeast have a chance to dissolve. Then leave it for couple minutes stirring occasionally. Yeast will start growing making a nice fluffy foam on top.

I always use a large pot to pre-knead my dough, it’s less messy. Mix together 2 flours (or only plain flour), salt, olive oil. Add yeast and start kneading. If you need a little bit more water add some more. When the dough starts becoming one piece transfer it on a pastry board and knead until you get quite elastic, not too dense dough. If you knead about 100 times should be perfect. Transfer back to the pot and keep in a dark warm place for about 40 minutes.

In the meantime prepare filling. Peel or rinse mushrooms and chop them quite finely. Do the same with onion. Heat a non-stick pan and melt slice of butter. Add onion first and fry until golden. Then add mushrooms, sprinkle with salt and generous amount of freshly ground black pepper. Fry until mushrooms stop being soggy and start being golden. Switch off the heat and leave it to cool down.

Up until now dough should double its size. Place it on the pastry board and knead again about 100 times. Sprinkle pastry board with some flour and roll out the dough quite thinly to a large rectangle. Cut in smaller rectangles (I’ve made 8 buns) depending of how big your buns are made to be. You can make them quite big or very little. Place some mushroom stuffing on each piece of dough and roll like a burrito.

Take a large baking tray and place a piece of baking paper. Place buns leaving some space between them, they will grow a bit. Again place them in a dark warm place for about another 40 minutes.

Heat the oven to 200°C. Whip one egg and using a brush, brush all the buns. It will give them this nice golden-brown shiny glaze Sprinkle with some poppy seeds and bake for about 15-20 minutes.

Remove from the oven after baking and give them some time to cool down. Enjoy on it’s own or as an addition to a soup. They are also a great snack when you’re out and about.