Wednesday 20 May 2015

Madeleine Shaw Event: Supper Club @ Harvey Nichols

Last week, Pamela, Nadia & I enjoyed a delicious evening of food with Madeleine Shaw at her Supper Club hosted by Harvey Nics. Her Get the Glow evening promised four plates and a pudding from her cookbook, cocktails and a talk about the new book, and I'd been looking forward to it for ageees. We were even more excited (read: giggling with massive grins on our faces) to see on the seating plan that our names were on Madeleine's table!

Green Goddess Bowl

We kicked off with soft poached eggs, avo, kale, sesame seeds and a gorgeous dressing. Look at that yolk! 

Mexican BBQ Grilled Corn & Quinoa with chilli salsa

The creamiest quinoa I've ever tasted (it was mixed with natural yoghurt). I'm not usually sweetcorn's number one fan but this was lush, the BBQ flavours brought it to life and the salsa was fresh and tangy.

Thai Beef Salad, salt & pepper cashews

This dish was my favourite. The beef was so tender and juicy, mixed with the chewy salted cashews and wilted greens the textures were spot on! Cannot wait to recreate this.

Spicy Salmon, Cucumber & Yoghurt

I loved this one - it looked so delicate but the flavours were punchy and there was a nice mix of crunch (the cucumber, the salmon edges) and smoothness (the yoghurt and the juicy meat).

Raw Chocolate Cherry Fudge, Vanilla & Coconut Dairy-free Ice-cream

This dessert was insane, I can't do it justice in words - the richness of the dense, yet almost gooey chocolate paired perfectly with cooling creaminess of the icecream. Yes I realise I'm gushing here, but I've attempted to make raw chocolate before and not gonna lie, it tasted rank, so this is a recipe I can't wait to try as it was incredible.

The evening was just what I needed; relaxed and chilled - a room full of people chatting over really, really decent & nourishing food. As well as the food being spot on, both Madeleine and her boyfriend Kieran were so lovely to chat to - a very humble happy couple!

I was gutted as I'd ordered the book from Amazon and it didn't arrive in time - it still hasn't arrived! - but once it's here I can't wait to start bookmarking recipes, especially the raw chocolate fudge...


Wednesday 13 May 2015

Smoked Salmon & Egg Skillet

This recipe is similar to the smoked shakshuka recipe I did a while back but it's a variation I just couldn't not share with you. 

The dish is ready in about 10 minutes making it a great option if you're absolutely ravenous or are short for time. 

To serve one, you'll need; 
2 free range eggs 
50g smoked salmon
1/2 pepper (whatever colour you fancy, wild)
1/2 red onion 
1 garlic clove 
1/4 tube tomato purée 
1 tablespoon paprika 
Handful cherry tomatoes 

Chop your onion and garlic and sauté in a pan (I used coconut oil to fry mine in). Once they've browned, add in your sliced pepper and tomatoes and stir to keep them from sticking to the pan. 
Next coat the veg in paprika and mix to ensure the spice is distributed evenly. Then add in your purée. I also added in some boiling water from the kettle to help it form more of a sauce based consistency, which I'd recommend. How much you add is up to you, I reckon I added about 1/4 small cup. 

After two minutes or so, make two holes in the pan and crack your eggs in. You might have to push the ingredients about a bit to let the white of the egg cook quicker, but be careful not to stab your yolk. 

Then top with smoked salmon whilst the eggs are cooking. 

Voila! I served mine with broccoli..

Saturday 9 May 2015

Review: Bosu Body Bar, Chorlton

I am not ashamed to say that when Bosu opened last month, I was told I was technically their first paying customer; running in after work on their opening day to grab a Chorlton Green juice. I know, keen much?? Anyway. Since then, I've been back a handful of times and loved it! 

If you haven't been yet, hopefully this post will inspire you to get involved, you won't regret it...

That's the chicken protein box. Soo filling - the chicken is sitting on an array of delicious sides, from memory they were: rocket, home made 'baked beans' (my favourite), quinoa salad, sweet potato mash, honey roast vegetables, hummus, home made slaw and tomatoes with a little bit of peri peri sauce...

The mixture of flavours is spot on and everything works really well together.

Juice wise, I went for the Chorlton Green (kale, spinach, broccoli, cucumber, apple, fennel, ginger & lemon), and James had an Indian Summer (fennel, carrot, orange, ruby grapefruit, ginger, pineapple, turmeric).

We also got some deelicious protein balls for pudding - nutty, chocolatey, goey, crunchy, they were just what we needed after a savoury feast.

A few weeks before that, I went with the lovely Pamela, and I devoured the halloumi protein box; same amazing sides, just swapped out chicken for halloumi:

and, ohmygod, the best smoothie - a Muscle Up (peanut butter, almond milk, flax seeds, honey, banana & vanilla). It was divine.

There's seating available inside or outside, and they're open till 8pm most nights so if you can't be bothered to cook dinner after work it's a great option!

(I love the addition of workouts on the table, such a nice touch!)

I'm so pleased Bosu has come to Chorlton, and I wish them every success..


Friday 8 May 2015

Pea & Pomegrante Quinoa

This summer inspired quinoa dish is a lunchtime favourite of mine at the moment - it goes with pretty much everything. So far either avocado, feta, smoked salmon or a basa fillet are my favourite pairing. It feels 'light' and tastes nice and fresh so it doesn't leave you feeling lethargic, but is also filling too.

To make 3 - 4 servings you'll need:

100g white quinoa
100g black quinoa
70g frozen peas
1 lemon
The seeds from one pomegranate

(You can use any sort of quinoa here, red would work too, as would white quinoa on its own.. I'm using black and white because not only does it make the dish look more interesting, I like how crunchy black quinoa is.)

Cook your quinoa as you would rice for about 12-15 mins. Squeeze half the juice of your lemon into the water into the pan for flavour. After the 15 minutes is up, add in your peas and continue to cook for a few minutes.

Then chop your pomegranate in half or quarters, pick out all the seeds and add to the pan of cooked quinoa. This is where it gets a tad messy, don't where white here kids - picking out pomegranate seeds is messy as, the juice gets everrrywhere.

Mix it all round and either serve immediately (drizzling the last half of your lemon juice on top) or transfer into tupperware and store it in the fridge.


Wednesday 6 May 2015

Running Nice 10k

It was a pretty last minute decision, but I went back to Nice last week. Amongst multiple scoops of Fenoccios (the salted caramel ice-cream is so good), sunbathing on the beach and exploring the tiny chateau village of Èze, we also ran the 10k.

I thought I'd share my experience of doing a race in a foreign country for anyone that's interested...


First thing's first, the language. Luckily, with my (very) basic knowledge of French combined with the fact my emails could easily be translated, everything was fine. Getting the Doctor's note was a bit of a faff, but I'll get onto that..

When we went to collect our t-shirts and running packs, the woman we dealt with spoke English and so my fantastic French skills were saved once again. I think if you've run in a race environment before you know what to expect, which was definitely an advantage.

Signing up 

Cost wise, it was very reasonable; 21 euros including the booking fee.

The French are verrry hot on making sure you have a doctor's note, however, which costs £10 to get. You can't run without one, it's French law apparently. My doctor wrote me a note saying I was fit to run, but hadn't included the exact phrase "fit to practise running in competition" in the note and it couldn't be accepted, so I had to go back and change it, even though my doctor had written essentially the same thing.

The Route

The route was weird. As well as thousands of people doing the 10k, they also had the half marathon running the same route at the same time, and it was packed. The majority of the run was around the city, so you're looping corners, turning left right and left again a lot, which slowed things down considerably. The roads were closed for the event, but cars remained parked on these closed roads, making the course even narrower as people tried to navigate around stationary cars and motorbikes.

Running back down from the port along the Promenade was an incredible feeling though - you can see the finish line and can really push yourself; that was definitely my highlight! Plus it's lined with palm trees on one side and the sea on the other, so it's pretty too.

The Event Organisation

The event was really well organised, there were a few water and orange stations dotted around the route. At the finish line, they had orange slices, water... sugar cubes, Coke(!), cake and chocolate, which I'll get onto.

My main bear bug was that it was sponsored by Haribo - not even some faux 'healthy' brand like Lucozade, and the promotional race box we got had nothing in it remotely related to running, health or fitness:

Our favourite gift was the Pataks Tikka Masala curry sauce, with the washing up liquid sachet a close second... Still, it was a nice touch, at least it felt like you were getting your money's worth..(?!)

None of us liked the colour of the t-shirts (see below), which I know is SUCH an important factor when running a race.... but seriously, they could have come up with something a bit more vibrant than a muted grey...

I did it in 55:40, a time I'm quite pleased with. It's not my best (#53:31 y'all), but I think due to the congestion running round the town as I mentioned before, kind of hindered my 'performance'.

Overall, it was an amazing experience, and a really nice thing to do with two of my favourite people!


Tuesday 5 May 2015

Guest Recipe: Sugar free, gluten free muffins

Today I've got something a little different for you - it's a muffin recipe written by Carly from My Well Being Journal. Carly has IBS and her blog is a great place to go if you're after recipes and food inspiration that won't aggravate your symptoms. She's also on a mission to dispel supermarket myths, which, if you've read this post of mine, you'll know is something I'm all for!

Sweet treats are something I need to up my game on, so I'm hoping they'll inspire me!

Sugar-free, gluten-free muffin recipe

I think of all the sweet treats I enjoy, muffins are my favourite.

When they’re done right, they’re moist, wholesome and go great with a morning coffee. The only issue I have with them as an IBS sufferer is that the muffins you typically find in stores are packed high with sugar and wheat, which does nothing but cause me digestive discomfort.

Now I’ve been diagnosed with IBS, it’s important I cut out the high sugar, high wheat stuff from my diet which does nothing good for my digestive ailments. So rather than moping about it, I thought I’d rather make my own so I know EXACTLY what’s going into it. I know what works best for my IBS, so why the hell not.

These are my sugar-free, gluten-free muffins. I love mashing up a few bananas into this recipe to thicken it up and give a natural sugar kick (I actively try to avoid sweeteners so this works best for me) and the oats give them a great mealy texture. For a ‘banana nut muffin’, simply add in a few handfuls of chopped walnuts or sprinkle them on top whilst they’re still hot! Such a delicious guilt-free treat.

Give it a go and see how good they are! 

·         100g unsalted butter, softened
·         50g almond butter
·         2 ripe bananas, mashed
·         1 egg, beaten
·         100g oats
·         50g coconut flour
·         2 tbsp ground almonds
·         1 tsp vanilla extract
·         ½ tsp baking soda
·         ½ tsp cinnamon
·         ½ tsp ginger

1.       Preheat your oven to 200degrees
2.       This is the easy bit – throw it all in together! Make sure the egg and flour are fully combined and the butter is well distributed.
3.       Pour 2 tablespoons into individual muffins cases in a muffin pan and bake for 15 minutes or until the tops start to split.
4.       Allow to cool – now you can serve!

For more recipes and nutritional info, head on over the My Well Being Journal and learn all about how your body works, and what works for you!

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