Bean & Chard Soup

Lunch in the week is always a difficult meal for me to sort out. I usually make a batch of something Sunday night for the week ahead but I like something that I can heat up at work, is healthy, filling and not too time consuming to make. I turned to Gwyneth Paltrow for inspiration and she definitely delivered. This soup is filling, quick, tasty and contains one of my favourite vegetables: Chard! This recipe is from her book ‘It’s All Good’, it is my new favourite lunch for work. I urge you to try it.

Bean and chard soup

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Vegan Peanut Cookies (GF)

I wanted to bake something vegan friendly to take into work and a quick Google search lead me to this useful article on Jamie Oliver’s website. I was instantly drawn to the peanut butter cookies as I’ve had a bit of a thing about peanuts recently and kept my fingers crossed that they’d be a popular choice. I was pretty excited to see that not only were they vegan but they were gluten free too!

Vegan Peanut Butter Cookies (GF)

They were tasty with a nice crunch and crumble. They seemed to go down well with everyone but I kept a couple at home and they definitely didn’t last long!

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Spicy Hot Chocolate (Dairy Free)

Happy Easter!! Have you had chocolate for breakfast? I hope so.

This hot chocolate was inspired by a delicious hot chocolate that I had an at amazing café a few weekends back. It was so good that I set about to make my own. Before I go into the details, let’s talk about this café; it served sourdough toast, kale scrambled eggs, buckwheat, banana and almond pancakes and so many other incredible dishes. The cake selection though, oh my gosh, never have I had to make a tougher cake decision. They cater to many dietary requirements, gluten free, vegan etc and everything is helpfully labelled. If you live in Kent, lucky you! The place is Kitch, Canterbury.

Spicy hc

Onwards to the recipe…

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Spiced Winter Porridge with Carrot

I first saw this post on Joy the Baker’s blog and she found it in Whole Grain Mornings and adapted it slightly.I spotted the picture on Joy’s blog and thought it looked delicious, then I read the ingredients and got very excited! There are all my favourite spices in here (cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg) along with currants, brown sugar and carrots; I love sneaking vegetables into unsuspecting dishes, it’s a hobby of mine. What a heavenly combination of ingredients! I renamed it to spiced winter porridge because it just screams Christmas to me. James loved this porridge now and was a star for not even questioning why I was grating carrots to make breakfast. The real treat came when we had the leftovers for breakfast the next day, it tastes even better the next day, like lasagne but nothing like lasagne. I made a second double batch to last us the week, I can’t wait!

Carrot

It is gluten free and vegan friendly too! I adapted the recipe to use rolled oats and fresh ginger but ground ginger will be just fine too.

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Cacao & Hazelnut Spread

Nutella, being chocolate and hazelnut i.e. my two most favourite flavours ever, is one of my weaknesses. I dream about the stuff. Unfortunately, despite marketing itself as a healthy and nutritious breakfast toast topping of choice for children, it really isn’t. I’ve been wanting to make my own ‘healthier’ chocolate and hazelnut spread for a while and when I got my hands on Deliciously Ella’s cookbook, I was excited to see the recipe in there. I’d seen the recipe on her blog before but never got around to making it. Having some time off of work though, meant I finally did get around to making it. Oh wow. It is delicious; it is hard to believe that this is the healthy nutritious version, it is to die for. It’s vegan friendly and gluten free too.

Nutella

On the subject of nutritious and delicious, if you’re looking for a cookbook of ridiculously tasty food that will make your body feel great, look no further; Ella has you covered. Ella uses raw cacao in this recipe, an ingredient I’m using more and more. It is jam packed with minerals and antioxidants, Ella has written a whole post on it, if you’d like some more information. I used raw cacao in my last batch of brownies, its a change you’ll never regret. It might seem slightly pricey but actually it works out much better as you use far less (half the quantity of normal cocoa if substituting). You can find raw cacao in most whole food stores and online.

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