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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Bacon, Asparagus & Pea Risotto and Gibbon Conservation

Hello everyone! On the off chance you had noticed that I haven’t posted in a while, the past two weeks I’ve been working away in London and catching up with many lovely friends in the evening. I didn’t have a kitchen when staying in London and even though I came home in the weekend between (to see Foo Fighters play Milton Keynes – a bucket list item for sure), eating out for every lunch and dinner got old very quickly. I did manage five pre 7 am runs along the beautiful Southbank of the Thames (see my Instagram) though, my favourite part of London.

Risotto

On a related note, tomorrow I am running the first of two runs for a charity called The Aspinall Foundation, who do amazing animal conservation work, this particular run is for their Gibbon projects (the most endangered primate). If animals are your thing then a donation, no matter how large or small would be hugely appreciated by the animals and myself. The first run is a 5 km fun run and the second is a 10 km run in October (my longest official run to date, eek!).

The recipe inspiration is courtesy of Jam and Clotted Cream, such a simple but delicious combination of flavours with the genius addition of clotted cream at the end, risotto is comfort food at its finest!

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Chicken with caramelized onion and cardamom rice.

Accompanied by roasted butternut squash, peppers & red onion with tahini and za’atar.

Flavour of the week: Cardamom; nothing screams Middle Eastern to me like cardamom rice and anyone who knows me will tell you, I like to scream Middle Eastern. In other flavourful news tahini and za’atar are also typical Middle Eastern flavours and both are delicious. Tahini is sesame seed paste and is used in many things including houmous whilst za’atar is a blend of spices used frequently in cooking all over the Middle East and it is such an unbelievable combination of flavours. Just in case I haven’t said the word flavour enough: flavour, flavour, flavour, flavour, FLAVOUR.

Cookbook of the week: Jerusalem – Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi. Both recipes mentioned are from this book, it is a beauty of a book, exquisite quality and gorgeous photography interspersed with fascinating insights into the Holy City. A friend of mine bought me this book as a congratulations on finishing your degree present and in the hopes I’d stop talking about how much I NEEDED to own it. She succeeded in that and it is one of my most prized gifts, if you don’t own this book then I really am very sorry. Continue reading