Tuesday, 27 August 2013

Warm & Sweet Plantain Milk

It was only last year I discovered the plantain, a larger version of the banana, and often the skin was brown or almost blackened, a sign that the plantains were ripe. It was only the other day, that I got to use it for the first time. I struggled a little bit with peeling it, but I got there eventually!

Now this was meant as a soup, but I reckon the recipe turned out a little too watery to be called a soup, and so I decided to put it up as a drink, as that's the way I served it up - in a cup!
I might make some adjustments to this recipe, for a thicker and more soupy version, adding an additional plantain, and using almond milk instead, I think that might work...Hopefully I'll find out!
In the meantime, here you have it - a warm cup of comfort packed full of goodness and easy to make! Perhaps snuggle up with this instead of a cup of tea in the evening?

Warm & Sweet Plantain Milk
(Serves 2, about 200 calories each)


1 plantain
500ml skimmed milk
500ml water
1 tbsp agave syrup
1 tbsp plain flour (optional)

- Start by heating the milk in a pan, peel and cut the plantain in chunks before having them in the pot along with the agave syrup. Once warm, use a stick blender and mix until you have a smooth liquid.

- Add the water and flour and stir until it is free of lumps. Taste and see if it needs a little more syrup, before serving warm, in bowls or in cups!

Oh, and I thought I would treat myself the other day, drawing a bath and popping in one of these little bad boys:


A Dragon's Egg from Lush! It dissolved like a mixture of foam and popping candy, and even though I normally go for the more fruity products of theirs, usually with a bit of zing, this one smelt too good to not get!

Ever cooked with plantains before? Or got any favourite Lush products?


Original source:
Friske Vegetariske Oppskrifter Basert på Salgssuksessen "Frisk av Mat", p. 168

- Jules

Monday, 26 August 2013

Quick Chickpea Curry

Here's a dish you can whip up in about 20 minutes, if not less! Just in time to boil some rice and there you go - Dinner done even if you're in a rush!

Quick Chickpea Curry
(Serves 2, about 270 calories each)

The curry on its own, quite a large portion, but you can always serve it on a bed of rice, mmmm

1 tbsp olive oil
A dash of water
2 tbsp Garam Masala
1 tsp chili powder
1 medium onion, chopped
300g tin chickpeas (180g drained)
400g chopped tomatoes
2 tbsp low-fat natural yogurt
Salt and pepper to taste

Rice, naan, chapatti etc to serve

- Heat the oil in a medium sized pan, add a splash of water followed by the Garam Masala and chili powder. Let it sizzle for half a minute before adding the onion, chickpea and tomatoes.

- Simmer on low heat for about ten minutes, swirl through the yogurt, season to taste with salt and pepper, and it's basically done!

Serve with rice, naan bread or anything else you feel like, and tuck in!

Original source:
http://studenterhjemmet.blogspot.co.uk/2011/10/mat-for-en-sjukling.html

- Jules

Sunday, 25 August 2013

Sweet Potato & Tomato Tarts

I saw these on a blog about a week ago, and I decided I HAD to try and made them! Three main ingredients, salt and pepper plus a little rosemary for good measure, but that is optional!

Sweet Potato & Tomato Tarts
(Makes 10, about 45 calories each)


1 Sweet potato, about 250g - skin on, grated
3 Eggs plus 3 egg whites
Salt & ground black pepper
1/2 tsp rosemary (optional)
2 Salad tomatoes, sliced or 10 cherry tomatoes, whole

- Pre-heat the oven to 180-200°C.

- In a bowl, combine the sweet potato, eggs, and seasoning. Pour into oiled muffin tins, and top with a slice of tomato or a cherry tomato, and grind a little extra pepper on top.

- Place in the middle of the oven and bake for about 15-20 minutes, then turn the heat off and leave them in the oven for a further 5 minutes, making sure they're all set.

Serve as a snack, or as an accompaniment to a main dish or as part of a tapas. Delicious!


Original source:
http://thenutritionguruandthechef.wordpress.com/2013/08/18/little-sweet-potato-and-cherry-tomato-tarts/

- Jules

Saturday, 24 August 2013

Vegetable Risotto Soup with Barley & Oats

A soup with a twist! To make it extra filling, add some barley and oats. I think mushrooms would go really well in this too, but I'll leave that up to you!

I made it so it god a very rich, creamy texture, and got three medium sized portions out of it. Next time, I'll add a little water so it becomes more soupy! It was deeelicious!

Vegetable Risotto Soup with Barley & Oats
(Serves 3, about 230 calories each)


1 tsp olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped,
1 small leek, chopped
1 carrot, peeled and finely chopped
1 tomato, smashed og chopped
100g barley
40g porridge oats
Fresh basil, a few leaves (optional)
1 tsp dried basil
1 1/2 l vegetable stock
1 tsp onion powder (optiona)
Salt & black pepper to taste

- Heat oil in a pan and soften the leek and onion for about 5 minutes, before adding the carrot and tomato. Stir for another few minutes before stirring in the barley and oats.

- Now, add the rest of the ingredients. Mix it well to combine, cover and cook for about 20 minutes until the barley has softened. Once done, you can add more water if the barley has soaked up most of it, so you get the right soupy consistency - the way you like it!

Original source:
Friske Vegetariske Oppskrifter Basert på Salgssuksessen "Frisk av Mat", p. 218

- Jules

Thursday, 22 August 2013

Avocado & Apple Shake

Here's another little shake combination for you all! Avocado with apple! You can taste both of them, but the avocado not too much, it's surprisingly sweet considering the honey and apple are the only sweetners in this, but I suppose the almond milk contributes a little bit too!

Avocado & Apple Shake
(Serves 2, about 220 calories each)


1 avocado, about 150g when peeled
1 apple, peeled and cut into chunks
100ml almond milk
1 tbsp honey

- Have the apple, almond milk and honey in a blender.

- Remove the stone from the avocado, scoop out the flesh and add it to the mix. Blend until you have a smooth shake, you can add a little water if you think it is too thick. I ate mine with a spoon as a sort of light mousse!

Super healthy, and super delicious! You can maybe try and make your own twist to the recipe. Cocoa powder sprung to mine, but I have yet to try that!

I could only eat so much after dinner that day, and so I froze the rest for avocado-apple quick fixes for some other day!


Oh, and as if seeing Regina Spektor the other night wasn't enough, guess who came to play a wee set in the local CD shop in Glasgow!


That's right, Andy and Fran from Travis! I got my album signed too, but unfortunately the security people mucked up when they took a photo of me with them, so it was all blurry, boo! BUT the guys were lovely, and I have actually met them before, seven years ago in Norway, where I told them I'd move to Scotland. I told Fran quickly that I'd done it, and he seemed mighty chuffed, and asked if I liked it here! I hardly got a chance to answer though, as the security tried to keep a tight schedule. So I answered as quickly as I could, with a big smile on my face "Yes! It's good" That's five years I've been living here now... Wowser!


Five years back in time, I would never ever even have dreamed of getting to see two of my favourite bands/singers in two days!

Thanks for the show guys, and for being ever-inspiring!


Original source:
Friske Vegetariske Oppskrifter Basert på Salgssuksessen "Frisk av Mat", p. 129

- Jules

Friday, 16 August 2013

Baked Eggy Mushrooms

A simple and satisfying snack or accompaniment! It is almost like a baked omelette, I could easily have eaten the whole thing last night, but decided to save some for a savoury breakfast pancake this morning, mmmmm!

Baked Eggy Mushrooms
(Serves 1-2, 250-125 calories each)


250g chestnut mushrooms (or mixed mushrooms), chopped
1-2 tsp groung thyme
Salt and pepper to taste
2 eggs
100ml milk
Fresh chive to garnish with

- Pre-heat your oven to 180°C.

- Fry the mushrooms along with thyme and a little salt and pepper for 5-10 minutes until they start to shrink. Then pop them in a small oven proof dish.

- Mic the egg and milk together, and pour over the mushrooms. Place in the oven, and bake for 20-30 minutes, depending on your oven (Mine is soooo slow!)

Ta-da! Serve on it's own, in a wrap, as an accompaniment with dinner, or anything you desire!

Oh and hey! - It's Friday! Have you got any plans?


Original source:
http://www.matprat.no/oppskrifter/gjester/sopp-i-form

- Jules

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Vichyssoise

Now...for something a little different!

I was looking in the fridge, to see what I could do with all the vegetables I had leftover. Then, I came across what appeared to be a really easy soup called vichyssoise. It's like a very creamy, smooth leek and potato soup! Originally it's served it cold, but due to the impatient-cook-syndrome, I've had it both lukewarm and cold now, the first one definitely being my favourite!
I swapped fat free Greek yogurt for quark, and used light butter instead of oil for just a bit more of a homely flavour. It's delicious, and ready in about half an hour!

Vichyssoise
(Serves 2 as a main, about 265 calories each)


20g (1 tbsp) flora light (original recipe used oil)
1/2 celery stalk, finely chopped
200g leeks, chopped
1 small onion, finely chopped
200g potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
400ml vegetable stock
250g Quark (fat free cream cheese)
Squeeze of lemon juice
Sea salt
Chives (optional)

- Start by heating the butter in a medium/large pan, add the celery, leeks and onion and stir for a few minutes. Then add the potatoes for a further few minutes, before pouring in the stock. Cover and simmer for about 20 minutes, until the vegetables are tender.

- Take the pan off the heat, mix the vegetables smooth with a stick blender or in a processor, and either:
A) Start mixing the quark in, if serving lukewarm or
B) Leave the mix to cool, before adding the quark.

- Before serving, stir in a little sea salt and a good squeeze of lemon juice. Top each bowl with a little bit of chive, and enjoy!


Original source:
Friske Vegetariske Oppskrifter basert p[ Salgsuksessen "Frisk av Mat", p. 192

- Jules

Wednesday, 7 August 2013

Three Bean Mexican Chili

Another chili, my third so far on my blog, which is quite fitting, as there were three kinds used to make up this wonderful casserole dish! I left some of the chili seeds in, and it turned out to be quiiiite fiery, which I don't mind. Make sure you deseed it properly if you only want a little bit of a kick though.

Three Bean Mexican Chili
(Serves 2-3, 300-200 calories each, no side included)


A few sprays of olive oil
1 fat garlic clove, finely chopped
1 medium onion, about 150g, finely chopped
1 carrot, peeled and finely diced
1 large celery stalk, finely chopped
1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
1 tbsp tomato purée
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
1 bay leaf
1 cinnamon stick
1 tsp smoked paprika (I love the stuff! Used 1 tbsp instead!)
1 tsp soy sauce
400g chopped tomatoes
1 red pepper, diced
100g soaked black eyed beans
120g spoaked kidney beans
100g soaked borlotti beans
Salt and pepper to taste

You can serve this with bread, rice, potatoes, or other things, or perhaps top it with a little cheese!

- Start by spraying a medium large pot with oil and frying the garlic and onion, before adding the carrot, celery, and chili.

- Stir for a few minutes, before adding the purée and seasoning, along with the soy sauce, bay leaf, cinnamon stick, chopped tomatoes and pepper. Let this simmer for ten minutes before adding the beans.

- Now, add the beans, season with salt and pepper to taste, cover the pan with a lid and let it sit for 40 minutes, up to an hour, stirring every 10-15 minutes. Serve with whatever you want to serve it with. Leftovers are perfect for lunch the next day, perhaps over a baked potato or in a pita bread?


Original source:
http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/477649/three-bean-mexican-chilli

- Jules

Monday, 5 August 2013

Apricot Shake

So I needed to get my daily intake of fruit, and had come across this really easy recipe that I found in a vegetarian recipe book. My father gave me the book, as he hadn't found any use for it. Plenty recipes to try out in the future!

Four ingredients, and a minute in the blender, and you've got yourself a mighty fine fruity drink!

Apricot Shake
(Serves 1, about 240 calories)


100g apricots (about 3-4), washed
1 banana
3 tsp agave syrup (or use honey)
100 ml soy- or hazelnut milk (add more for a thinner shake)

- Get your blender out! Remove the pips from the apricots and have in the blender along with chopped up banana, agave syrup/honey and the milk. Whizz until smooth, and serve - that was easy, wasn't it?!

- For a colder shake, just add a few icecubes to the mix!

Original Source:
Friske Vegetariske Oppskrifter Basert på Salgsuksessen "Frisk av Mat", p. 81

Sunday, 4 August 2013

South Beach Puffin Muffins

Hello! After nearly three weeks of not having posted anything, I have returned from the mighty shores of Norway!

Many a mountain has been climbed (or....walked) and I finally got to go fishing! I have been craving that for a couple of years now. I have hardly gotten to make any food myself whilst being away, and so now I am ready for a comeback!

Yesterday, I tried to make these "South Beach Muffins" BUT they raised and as soon as I took them out of the oven, they collapsed and looked like...well, nothing really! Today, I decided to make a few changes, and they puffed up more than I ever would have imagined, and here you have it! I would consider sprinkling something on top of them though, as the top was a little bit dry. Next time I will try and have some sukrin gold on top before placing them in the oven, I would imagine a little agave syrup would be lovely too!

I am not following the South Beach diet, but when I saw the amount of cinnamon in these bad boys, I couldn't help but to try it out!

South Beach Puffin Muffins
(Makes 3, about 52 calories each, 155 for all three!)


1 egg + 1 egg white
2 tsp fat free natural yogurt
15g flaxseeds
1-2 tsp ground cinnamon
2-3 tsp sukrin gold (Or other natural sweetner such as stevia)
A pinch of bicarbonate of soda
A pinch of baking powder
1-2 tsp psyllium husk (optional, but recommended)
Sukrin gold or syrup for the topping to prevent it from going dry

- Pre-heat the oven to 180ºC.

- Mix all the ingredients together in a small bowl, before dividing between 3 muffin cases. I used silicone moulds to prevent them from sticking. You could probably divide it into four cases if you follow the recipe exactly, as they will rise quite a bit!

- Place them in the middle of the oven an bake for 25-30 minutes. Sprinkle with a little icing sugar or just eat them as they are!


Also, my colleague went to the States on a road trip a few weeks back, and she brought me back some organic goodies! (She knows me well *smiles*) Odwalla bars! I had never tried them before, but tried the orange and cranberry one yesterday after an almost 6k - trying to get back on track after the holidays!


They do contain quite a bit of sugar, but after a session in the gym, your blood sugar levels needs a boost, and here you get it in a healthy bit of cereal bar, and it was really filling too!

Aaaaand when I went to Norway, I ended up stocking up on the most random of things, my dad shook his head and laughed at me as I battled the suitcase, forcing it to shut. In my defense though, I had brought a smaller suitcase than I usually do. Let's try and see if I can make it all out here:


Apricot and blueberry porridge oat porridge packs, reduced fat almond flour, fiberfin - a flour substitute free from gluten, perfect in baking! Milk chocolate a la Norway, a small wooden chopping board as well as a folder, a fancy "punk" mug that my auntie got me, a New Energy bar (used to be my favourite when I was younger!) garlic dressing (my boyfriend said he would eat salad every day if he could have some of that stuff on it! Hama beads and shapes (see the little charmander to the right? So much fun to make!), three DVDs, bachelor style "go-to" spice Piffi seasoning, three DVDs, a multicolour pen, felt tip pens (Søstrene Grenes is a genius shop, and so cheap!), mini muffin silicone moulds, Sport + cracker bread, cracher bread rich in fiber, mackerel in tomato sauce, tea filter, the tiniest tooth floss I have ever seen, calcium tablets, Karin Park CD (I'm more of a rock/indie girl, but sometimes some dance beats can be good too!) Nestea with lemon for my Dolce Gusto coffee machine, decaffeinated lungo coffee, aspic jelly powder to make savoury jelly with prawns and cooked vegetables (Way better than it sounds, served on wholemeal bread topped with mayonnaise or "remoulade") and fiiiiiiinally - a Canon Ixus HSS! I needed a new small digital camera to carry around, the one I already had really isn't much to brag about. My super camera was not replaced though!

I will probably try and put together a little post about how my trip to Norway went, but for now....I guess this will have to do! I hope you're having a great weekend!

Original source:
http://www.food.com/recipe/south-beach-muffin-263983

- Jules