Tasty Side Dish

This is a quick post passing on a recipe I have just discovered saved in the ‘notes’  in my phone from a while ago. I clearly forgot to ever actually upload this recipe of mine! Anyway, thought I would share this now before I forget again or delete the note by mistake.

Ingredients (serves 2)

A couple of handfuls of:

  • Mushrooms
  • Sliced courgettes
  • Red pepper
  • 1/2 tsp dried rosemary
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • Black pepper

Optional:

  • Rocket, to serve

Method:

Saute sliced mushrooms and courgettes in olive oil. Add rosemary and thyme and a generous twist of ground black pepper. Continue to cook until the mushrooms and courgettes are beginning to soften. Add in some chopped red pepper and stir for a little longer until the rest of the vegetables are cooked through.

Serve while the red pepper is still quite crisp.

Serving tip:

This is a great accompaniment for turkey.

It can be plated with rocket added too.

Enjoy,

Helen x

Follow the HLDCblog on social media: Twitter | Facebook | Instagram


Copyright©HLDCblog // Helen Redman 2015.

 

Advertisements

Herb Chicken and Puy Lentil Salad

It is now officially the season of spring and what better lunch to have on a sunny day than a tasty salad? (I may be a bit biased, of course, as this is my own recipe…) This salad is packed full of protein and will leave you feeling like you have had a proper lunch not just some leaves as some people seem to think is the sole constituent of a salad! Chicken breast provides lovely lean protein and Puy lentils provide plenty of fibre as well as plant-based protein. The salad also has baby kale which is my new addiction. I love traditional kale, too, but the baby variety is perfect for salads. The addition of pepper adds some sweet crunch to the salad. The salad is quick to assemble but the chicken will have to be cooked in advance. I had chicken curry on Sunday and while I was cooking the curry on the hob, the chicken for the salad was cooking in the oven. This made it perfect for knocking up this quick salad for lunch on Monday. You could easily have this salad for dinner too.

Photo

Photo

Photo

Photo

Recipe (serves 1):

For the chicken:

  • 1 chicken breast
  • Rosemary
  • Sage
  • Black Pepper
  • 1 tsp Olive Oil

Sprinkle the seasoning over the chicken, drizzle with oil and wrap the chicken in foil.

Bake the chicken in the foil for 25-35mins at 200C. (Make sure it is white throughout and piping hot in the centre.)

Leave to cool and then refrigerate

For the salad:

1 serving of baby kale

1/4 of an orange pepper (cubed)

80g Puy Lentils (I often use pre-cooked lentils for quickness but the dried lentils are cheaper and can easily be cooked up and used to make a salad for a couple of days, just store it in the fridge.)

Herb chicken breast (sliced)

Dressing:

Extra Virgin Oil

Balsamic Vinegar

Assemble the salad on a plate loosely layering the baby kale and lentils before topping with the chicken and pepper.

For the dressing, simply combine equal amounts of the oil and vinegar to make a simple vinaigrette. You can omit the dressing if you wish.

TIP: If cooking lentils from scratch, cook the lentils in vegetable stock rather than plain water to add extra flavour. Add a bay leaf too as it adds great flavour.

Hopefully the sun is out when you make it so you can enjoy it with the sun streaming down on you as you eat it like I did

image_zpski7kzxmkHave a great day,

Helen x


For more of my foodie-adventures, follow me on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.


Copyright©HLDCblog // Helen Redman 2015.

10 Healthy Wrap Fillings

HeaderHere is a handy list of suggestions for what to fill a tortilla wrap with. I love having a generously filled wrap for lunch as they are super convenient (protein, carbs, and veg in one), quick to make, and easy to grab and go.

Also to keep the wrap as healthy as possible, try to use wholemeal or 50/50 tortillas rather than white ones.

10 Healthy Wrap fillings

1. Hummus, rocket, red pepper, and feta cheese

2. Chickpea, cous cous, Harissa dressing, and salad leaves

3. Chicken /or lentil dahl, mint yoghurt dressing, baby spinach, and fresh coriander leaves

4. Red onion, goats cheese, and baby spinach

5. Turkey bacon, iceberg lettuce, and tomato

6. Chicken, sliced olives, cous cous, lettuce, and a mint yoghurt dressing

7. Smoked salmon, cucumber, low-fat cream cheese, and freshly ground black pepper

8. Feta cheese, fresh basil, tomatoes and black olives (add salad leaves too)

9. Red peppers, grated carrot, hummus, and watercress

10. Pre-cooked bean chilli, spinach and natural yoghurt. Fancy bean chilli but don’t have a recipe? No problem! I have one from one of my earlier blog posts here.

I hope there was something there that sounds great to you. Have a food-tastic day! 😉

Helen x


For more of my foodie activities, feel free to follow me on:


Copyright©HLDCblog2015.

5 Guilt-free Sweet Snacks

Header Graphic HCRart Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest

Step away from the biscuits, muffins, pastries, and chocolates. Here is little list of satisfying sweet snacks which you can indulge in freely and with no feelings of guilt as each one is healthy. They are all free of anything artificial, free of refined sugars, and free of added fat. Instead, they are filled to the brim with nutrients, natural sweetness, and a mouthwatering taste. Also, for those in the USA currently watching the Superbowl, this is a tempting list of snacks.

So, who’s hungry?


 1. Avocado and banana whip

  • This is a nutrient-rich snack.
  • Blend 1/2 a ripe avocado and a whole ripe banana with a hand-blender for a delicious sweet snack.
  • Add some cinnamon or fresh ginger if desired.
  • If not using a ripe banana then you may need to add some maple syrup or honey to sweeten.
  • Serves one to two.
  • TIP: Add some cocoa powder for chocolatey goodness!

 2. Sliced banana and almond butter

Simply slice a banana and top the slices with some of the nut butter.

Tip: If you don’t want so much of the nut butter, make banana / nut butter ‘sandwiches‘ instead as this will limit the amount of butter you use.

Variations:

  • Peanut butter or hazelnut also works well.
  • Dried apple rings can also be used instead of the banana

 3. Baked apple

This is a snack my mother often prepared for me as a child and I often helped by stuffing it. It is a good child-friendly recipe.

Photo

To make:

  • Core an apple using a corer. Make sure you line it up centrally or you’ll end up with it going in diagonally and leaving part of the core remaining (I speak from experience…)
  • Once cored, fill the apple with sultanas, honey, a little coconut oil, and cinnamon.
  • Bake the apple in an oven for 15-20mins (or until soft) at 200C.
  • Serve with Greek yoghurt

TIP: This also makes a great dessert.

Screen Shot 2015-01-28 at 14.09.21


4. Oats

Oats have to be one of my favourite ingredients ever. They are very versatile, can be eaten as they are, or cooked, and can be added to both sweet and savoury dishes.
These can be used to make hot or cold bowls of deliciousness.
NOTE: If you require it to be gluten free just use gluten-free oats rather than ordinary ones.

Ideas:

  • Cold: Serve oats with milk, honey, grated apple, and pecan nuts.
    Or try this cold serving idea
  • Hot: Cook oats with water (milk or 50/50), and stir in frozen berries or fresh berries. Sweeten with maple syrup if desired.
Cold serving suggestion (see link above for method)

Cold serving suggestion (see link above for method)

Hot berry oats (porridge)

Hot berry oats (porridge)


5. Frozen banana ice-cream

This is unbelievably cool. Get it, cool?! (Sorry, I can’t help making that joke…)
But it is honestly a really incredible snack when blended in a blender because it develops the look and consistency of banana ice-cream. (Albeit, ice-cream with no unhealthy refined sugar, added colouring, and cream.)

  • To try for yourself, simply cut a banana into chunks, and freeze.
  • Once frozen, place the banana pieces into a blender, and blend until the pieces are combined into a thick, ice-cream looking substance.
  • NOTE: Do not, as I did the first time (very rookie mistake), freeze a whole banana with the skin on. It’s not difficult to work out why that failed to work!

Frozen banana ice-cream


Hope you enjoy the snacks as much as I do. They are ones which I regularly make for myself.


Disclaimer: Biscuits, muffins, pastries, and chocolates are, of course, fine to eat in small amounts, occasionally, just not all the time! And anyway, once you’ve tried the above snacks, you may no longer be tempted by those ones.


Want to read more? Here are some options:

Follow this blog (sign up to the email list if you don’t have WordPress – click on the link to the right).

Follow me on various social media platforms:
Twitter
Facebook
Pinterest
Instagram

Feel free to comment below with your favourite sweet snacks or pop me a Tweet. I’d love to know!


 Copyright HLDCblog2015.

Pina Colada Style Drink

Graphic   Twitter | Instagram | Facebook | Pinterest

This is a superbly delicious drink which is made from only three ingredients and takes just a few minutes to prepare. It is cool, creamy, and sweet yet has a hint of heat from the stem ginger adding a subtle kick. As a non alcohol drinker, this is a great alternative.

I have seen a few pineapple and coconut ‘juice drinks’ sold in shops which consist of pineapple juice from concentrate, sugar, sweeteners, water, coconut ‘flavouring’, and sometimes even added colouring. Pineapple and coconut is, in my opinion, a match made in heaven so in creating this recipe, you can enjoy the taste of the two flavours combined, but in an entirely natural and wholesome way free from anything artificial.

10365898_844708268908888_8337504562550679343_n

This is the sixth smoothie recipe in my January smoothie series aiming to help you kick off the new year in a healthy way. Links to the previous recipes can be found at the bottom of this page. Back to this post now.

Pina Colada Style Smoothie

10168217_844708418908873_6742014028718402487_n-1

Here is the recipe:

  • 1 cup chopped pineapple (either sweet fresh pineapple or drained unsweetened tinned pineapple)
  • 1 cup chilled coconut milk (I tend to use a coconut milk that is made like other nut-milks, such as almond, i.e. it has water added and is not the sometimes high fat tinned versions)
  • Approx. 1 1/2cm slice fresh stem ginger

NOTE: The amount of ginger varies depending on the size of the root, and of your liking of ginger – add more or less as desired)

10264901_844708305575551_8713001643074534718_n10931244_844708355575546_7332579834115260353_n

Method:

Add everything to a blender and blitz until thoroughly blended and smooth.

Garnish with a sprinkling of desiccated coconut and/or a wedge of pineapple.

Sit back and enjoy!

10943030_844708225575559_7875843054718578204_n

10390279_844708292242219_5772895458902282202_n

1979575_844708242242224_1134920878204498579_n

Tips:

  • For an extra cool drink add 1/2 cup ice cubes before blending
  • If you would like an alcoholic version then add some rum

Here are the links, as promised earlier, for my previous smoothie recipes:

  1. Creamy Green Energy Machine
  2. Tropical Dream
  3. Breakfast Smoothie with a Kick
  4. Good Morning Smoothie
  5. Detox Green Smoothie

Would you like more recipes like this? Then be sure to SUBSCRIBE to the blog (link over to the right) You can subscribe via email or via a WordPress account.

I can also regularly be found Tweeting here, posting foodie pics here, and Facebooking here, so feel free to follow me on any or all of those platforms 🙂

Have a nice day,

Helen x


 Copyright©HLDCblog2015.

Ideas for a Healthy Savoury Breakfast

Graphic 9.1.15Twitter •  Facebook • Instagram • Pinterest

A while back I posted a list of ideas for healthy sweet breakfasts (read here) and then completely to post this sister-post. I think it is by now certainly time to post this long over due content! This list of suggestions is great if you fancy something savoury rather than sweet. These ideas provide different nutritional benefits so if using them to create a meal plan for the week, remember that variety is key! Obviously there are many other healthy, savoury options but these are my top 5 and the ones which I personally have most often.

• Also, a new smoothie recipe will be coming tomorrow, thought I’d take a break from smoothies today! Here’s one from the archives if you’re currently in the mood for one – it’s a refresher smoothie (recipe here). •

Now, let’s get back to breakfast.

Here is the list:

1. Omelette (2 or 3 eggs)

A plain omelette seasoned only with black pepper is an option, but why not spice it up by adding a variety of herbs /or cayenne pepper (I LOVE this stuff for adding a spicy kick to foods) /or chilli powder etc. Add these ingredients to the egg as you whisk it up.

Also, add a little ground turmeric which will enhance the yellow colour of the egg but, more importantly, is a great spice that has surprisingly bountiful health benefits including its anti-flammitory properties and being a powerful antioxidant.

As for fillings, red pepper, sliced courgettes, finely chopped onions, half cherry tomatoes, low-salt cheese, spinach, parma ham, turkey bacon, and kale are all possible options.

Here are some combinations to try:

  • tomato, parma ham, and cheese
  • spinach, tomato, basil, and mozzarella
  • red pepper, spinach and turkey bacon
  • courgettes, mushrooms and red peppers (as seen in the picture below)
Photo

Cooking an omelette

Serve with salad leaves /or rocket or on its own.

Screen Shot 2015-01-09 at 13.59.04

Serving suggestion

Nutrition: This breakfast provides a source of protein from the egg (filling too depending on your choice), benefits from spices, if used, and vitamins from the fillings.


2. Wholemeal toast (2 slices)

Toppings:

  • Avocado (spread a ripe avocado over the toast for a butter-like topping that is full of nutrients)
  • Scrambled egg and smoked salmon or flaked smoked mackerel (a breakfast classic!)
  • Low-fat cream cheese
  • Sliced tomatoes and a twist of cracked black pepper (a refreshing topping)
  • A poached egg (as seen in the photo below)
Egg photo

Poached egg

Or you could use a wholemeal pitta bread if desired.

Nutrition: Wholemeal bread provides a source of fibre while the toppings provide protein, and various nutrients such as omega 3 (salmon) or vitamin E (avocado).


3. Cottage cheese

If in a hurry this requires least preparation and no cooking.

Eat this with:

  • chopped fresh tomatoes
  • fresh finely chopped chives
  • celery
  • peppers
  • pineapple

Nutrition: Cottage cheese is a good low-fat source of protein and is much healthier than hard full-fat cheese. Adding fruit or vegetables adds a source of vitamins


4. A ‘grill-up’’

This is a healthy alternative to a ‘fry-up’ which is grilled rather than fried (obviously), and has healthier substitutes.

Try a combination of grilled turkey bacon (a leaner and healthier alternative to pork bacon), tomatoes, mushrooms and a scrambled egg. If vegetarian, substitute a vegetarian sausage for the bacon. You could also add sweet potato and / or reduced-salt baked beans.

Nutrition: This option provides a protein-rich breakfast.


5. Porridge

Make with just oats and water for a simple healthy breakfast or, alternatively, do what the Romans did (trust me, I have a history degree(!)), and season with herbs.

Photo

Porridge

 

Nutrition: Oats are a great source of slow-release energy and help to lower cholesterol making them a great way to start your day.


For more meal ideas, recipes, and tips follow us Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

Have a great day,

Helen x


Disclaimer: Nutritional information has been gained from personal study over the years. I am a graduate of a subject which is not nutrition-based.
Copyright©HLDCblog2015

Tropical Dream

Header

Facebook • Twitter • Instagram • PinInterest

Smoothie 2: Tropical Dream 

Missing the summer sun at all? I may have a quick fix DIY solution… Bring the sun to you, in the form of a sunny smoothie! Ok, so not a real sun, and no heat comes with it, but it looks nice and bright and tastes of the tropics. My mango and banana smoothie is a rich yellow smoothie which is dairy-free and free of any added sugar. It is packed with vitamin C and other nutrients. The flaxseed is an excellent plant-based source of omega 3 and also adds some texture to the smoothie.

Smoothies are a fantastic way of getting towards your 5-a-day of fruit and vegetables. They make great snacks, additions to breakfast, or a work-break drink as they are quick to make and easy to take with you. This is the second in a seriesof smoothie recipes I’m posting to help you all kick off the first month of 2015 in a tasty, healthy way. Check out yesterday’s post for another idea and come back tomorrow for the next smoothie instalment!

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup chopped mango
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1/2 banana
  • 1 tbsp flaxseed (ground linseed)

Makes: 1 glass

Method:

1. Add everything into a blender.

2. Blend until smooth.

Note: The finished smoothie is reasonably thick, so if you’d prefer it thinner, just add a tablespoon to a quarter cup water to thin it down. TIP: Add ice cubes and blend for a slightly thinner and refreshingly cool drink.

*Drink and pretend you’re on a beach in a tropical place bathingin the gorgeous warm sun* 😉Screen Shot 2015-01-07 at 15.45.49

Enjoy!

Helen x


Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and PinInterest to keep up to date with recipes, tips, and mouthwatering pics!

Copyright©HLDCblog2015

8 Healthy no-cook Canapé Ideas

Header

So it is that time of year once again, New Year’s Eve. It is a time of celebration, reflecting happy memories, and making new memories with family and friends as the preparing for the clock to strike midnight. Here is a selection of simple, healthy, no cook canapé ideas which are ideal for NYE parties, or New Year’s Day snacks and appetisers. Happy celebrating!


 1. Melon and parma ham

Wrap the parma ham around chunks of melon. Use both cantaloupe and honeydew melon for variety.


 2. Quirky crackers and cheese

Crackers are a great ready-prepared snack on there own but can be a bit bland if just served plain. To make a fun canapé, cut slices of cheese and then use a cookie cutter to cut stars or circles, or anything NYE related, to top the cracker.

Optional: Add some chutney or a sun-dried tomato to finish it off.


 3. Smoked salmon and low-fat cream cheese pinwheels

Spread a generous layer of cream cheese over a slice of smoked salmon, sprinkle with a twist of ground black pepper, and a squeeze of lemon juice. Then carefully roll up into a swiss roll type shape. Wrap in cling film and chill for 15-30mins. Finally, carefully slice into bite-sized slices (pin wheels).


 4. Whipped goats cheese-topped bread

Cut star shapes out of herby or olive bakery bread and top with whipped goats cheese and a twist of freshly ground black pepper.


 5. Chocolate swirled strawberries

Melt some high cocoa content dark chocolate (70 to 90% cocoa) and swirl over fresh strawberries.


 6. Tropical fruit kebabs

Alternate cubed fresh mango, papaya, and pineapple on a kebab stick.

Optional: Drizzle with melted dark chocolate


 7. Stuffed cherry tomatoes

Remove the flesh from the tomatoes and stuff with a small basil leave, one drop of balsamic glaze, and a cube of feta cheese.

Go on, try them!

Helen x

For more tasty ideas check out the blog’s social media accounts: Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.


Copyright©Hldcblog2014

 

Top 5 Healthy Foods to Snack On

Header

Tempted to pick up a handful of crisps, sweets, or pop to the nearest coffee shop to buy a triple chocolate muffin?! Try these healthy options instead. All require no, or virtually no, preparation making them perfect for work breaks and study snacks.


1. Grapes

Why?

  • They are lower in sugar than other fruit such as bananas.
  • They are easy to eat, no sticky fingers or juice going everywhere (a nightmare if you’re busy working away in an office – no one likes sticky keys on a keyboard!)
  • They require virtually no preparation – just be sure to buy the seedless variety for minimal effort.
    Grapes

2. Half an Avocado

Why?

  • It is a power-house of goodness it is good if you’re in both a savoury or sweet mood
  • It can be eaten easily just with a spoon it is filling.
  • Here’s a quick little recipe for a sweet serving idea. 

Screen Shot 2014-12-29 at 10.45.07


3. Nuts

Why?

  • There is no preparation – providing you buy ones already shelled.
  • They are a good source of minerals, vitamins and protein. Although, the high fat content in some nuts can worry people, the fats in the nutritional make-up of nuts are good fats rather than bad. [1]
  • There are many types to choose from including almonds, brazil nuts, cashew nuts, chestnuts, hazelnuts, and macadamia nuts. My favourite are pecans and fresh coconut.

Coconut photo


4. Sliced red pepper, carrot batons, celery and hummus dip

Why?

  • It’s a colourful snack filled with nutrients and easy to eat.
  • Celery, red pepper and carrots are all low-calorie making it a light snack.
  • Celery aids digestion and lowers blood pressure, red peppers are full of antioxidants and vitamins A and C, while carrots give a source of beta-carotene, promoting eye health.

This requires some prep. but works great for preparing in the morning to take to work as a mid-morning or afternoon snack. The different vegetables vary in colour and taste making them appealing to both eyes and tastebuds. This snack got me through many an essay break at university! I used to buy pre-cut carrot batons (lazy, I know) and store-bought hummus too – serving idea [here].


5. Apple and cheese

Why?

  • Apples are a good source of Vitamin C while cheese is a source of protein.
  • It is sweet and savoury – perfect if you can’t decide what mood you’re in (tastebud-wise!)

The snack I had as a child when other kids were eating fries / crisps / sweets etc. My parents have always encouraged a healthy diet. I did love it as a child and I think that’s why I still enjoy it now. Simply chop up an apple and cheese into similar sized cubes and serve as is in a bowl or, if taking to work, place in a sealed snack box with a squeeze of lemon over the apple to stop it from going brown due to oxidisation. To me, it’s the perfect sweet and savoury snack.

  • TIP (from my childhood): Try to end on a piece of cheese as cheese will help get some of the fruity acidity off of your teeth.

Apple and cheese


Enjoy,

Helen x

For more foodie content, check out our Facebook page and Instagram. Any questions, feel free to pop me a Tweet, or comment below!

[1] http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/howto/guide/health-benefits-nuts

Sources:

http://www.webmd.com/diet/peppers-health-benefits
http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20680738,00.html
http://www.livestrong.com/article/24659-health-benefits-raw-celery-juice/
https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/vegetable/health-benefits-of-celery.html

 

Copyright©Hldcblog2014

6 Salad Ideas

Header graphic

Facebook • Twitter • Instagram • PinInterest

This collection of salads can be used as individually plated starters or in a larger serving bowl and dish from which guests can help themselves. I have not included quantities or methods because I think for salads it varies from person to person how much of each item we enjoy most in salads so I’ve given some suggestions of things that go together well but you can decide with what quantities you’d like to go with. For me, creating any dish with food is about experimenting and I stopped following recipes years ago (I’m only in my 20s but have been cooking since I was in primary school!) There used to be a TV show here in the UK called Ready, Steady, Cook which inspired me greatly as the chefs would have a limited time to prepare dishes based on ingredients they only got to see a couple of minutes prior to beginning cooking. Who else was inspired by this programme? I’d love to know. Leave a comment below or tweet me @hldcblog! I found the methodology of the show to be a brilliant way to inspire ideas and hence, I often like to do the same – find 5 or 6 ingredients and give myself limited time to see what I can make them into! Back to salads, however, here is my selection of ideas. If I was in charge of creating a salad menu for a food establishment, these would most probably feature! Quite a few of these salads are gluten free.

TIP: If you are looking for festive salads, the last two ideas will probably suit best.


1. Mango, rocket, bulgar wheat and avocados with balsamic glaze

• The sweetness of the mango is offset by the peppery rocket, while the avocado and bulgar wheat add contrasting textures and the balsamic glaze finishing it off by adding an acidic sweetness.


2. Prawns, cucumber, avocado, served on a large romaine lettuce leave Lemon juice dressing

• This is quite a classic salad style although brought up to date with the avocado, which is certainly and rightly so, in my opinion, a popular fruit at the moment. (Gluten Free)

• A recipe for a similar salad can be found here.


3. Strawberries, rocket, balsamic glaze, and fresh basil leaves

• Surprisingly enough balsamic vinegar complements strawberries a lot, and the addition of rocket gives another flavour while the fragrant basil leaves finish off the dish creating a wonderful journey for your tastebuds! (Gluten Free)


4. Goats cheese, beetroot, spinach, balsamic, tomatoes

• Goats cheese is my favourite cheese at the moment and it features heavily as a protein source in salads I make for myself. The other ingredients I suggest combining it with go really well with the creaminess of the cheese, giving contrasting textures and flavours. (Gluten Free)


5. Festive side salad

• Dried cranberries, wensleydale, apple, pecans, rocket, watercress, lemon and balsamic vinegar dressing

•  This is a selection of sweet and sour, nutty and savoury ingredients which creates a pleasing festive salad perfect for adding a healthy supplement to Holiday dinners! (Gluten Free)


6. Cous cous, pomegranate seeds, apricots, butternut squash, rocket, and an orange-balsamic dressing

• Again, this is quite a festive salad although a somewhat alternative one as the ingredients are non-traditional. Pomegranate seeds with their deep ruby colour however can be likened to little jewels and add a festive touch. This salad would go particularly well with duck.


For more ideas, recipes and tips, follow Hldcblog on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and PinInterest.

Helen x


Copyright ©Hldcblog 2014