Sunday, 15 March 2015

Healthy whole nut chocolate bar, sugar gluten dairy free and suitable for raw vegans

Ok so before I begin I want to expel the myth that all chocolate is bad for you.

So chocolate starts life as a humble cacao bean.  Chocolate companies then buy up the expensive beans but in order for them to make a profit on what they have bought they process the hell out of the beans to increase the mass, otherwise we would be paying a tenner for a mars bar.  Fats, sugar, oils and flavourings are added to the beans during processing to turn one bean into, for example, one hundred times the volume.  Flavourings are then added to make the processed mass taste like it originally did - raw cacao.

Cacao in its original form is a really powerful superfood (super high in nutrtients) Rich in vitimins and minerals, it has more than 300 nutritional compounds and is one of the richest sources of antioxidants in the word. Raw cacao also aids in weightloss and promotes healthy skin and brain function. SO this is truly a treat you don't have to feel guilty about.  You can pick up raw cacao online or Holland and Barrett on the high street for around £5 per bag, 3 times the price of cocoa powder but remember what I said about the processing/bulking out and adding crap.... Making this bar will cost you about a fiver, again highlighting the need for chocolate companies to bulk out the raw beans, but just remember the health benefits and always always remember refined sugar is rapidly stored as FAT on the body! Its your choice.

200g toasted hazelnuts, they really need to be toasted as the flavour is a million times better. If you have bought untoasted simply add them to a medium heat frying pan and fry for around 5 minutes until golden all over, shake/rub off the skins if they have them on after toasting.
200g raw cacao butter (again online or Holland and barrett)
100g coconut sugar or maple syrup
sea salt (develops the flavour of chocolate so much, I prefer pink salt but sea salt flakes are fine)
1tsp vanilla
60g raw cacao powder

Melt the cacao butter in a double boiler nice and slowly, don't let it get too hot so keep an eye on it.
Stir in everything else
Pour into a clingfilm lined tray, or a foil disposable, make sure the hazelnuts are equally dispersed.
Chill until set.


Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Healthy chia seed jam

use this as you would jam without the sugar and additives. Chia seeds can hold upto 20 times their weight in liquid so they thicken anything, here ive used it to thicken fruit puree so it turns into a jam consistency. Chia seeds are also a powerhouse of antioxidants and nutrients and almost all the carbs in them are fibre so you're allowed chia pudding and jam on low carb days.

makes a few tbsp.

a large handful of your favourite berries
1tbsp chia seeds
1tbsp maple
a pinch of vanilla

Blend the berries into a puree and stir in the chia, vanilla and maple.
cover and leave in the fridge for the chia to swell and thicken. This should take 4 hours but you can leave it overnight.
keeps in the fridge for days.

Sunday, 1 March 2015

Ultra low carb cauliflower crust pizza

This is a great alternative to a bread base, perfect if like me you cycle your carbs. Use veggie cheeses to make this suitable for vegetarians.

Ingredients, makes 1x 9-10 inch thin pizza

200g cauliflower (about half the head of a medium cauli)
1 egg
2tbsp parmesan
salt and pepper
a touch of oregano (optional)

Grate or food process the cauliflower until it looks like cous cous.
Place in a microwavable bowl and microwave, covered in clingfilm for 4 minutes.
Remove from the microwave and squeeze out all the excess moisture and water, I did this by tipping the cauliflower into a teatowel and ringing it out really hard.
Place the dry cauli in a bowl with the rest of the ingredients and mash together with hands.
Lay a large circle of greaseproof paper (slightly oiled) on a baking sheet
Using an 8 inch cake ring  as a guide (i took the base out of a loose bottom tin and used that) tip the mix into the tin and press down evenly.
Lift the tin and then press/flatten out the cauli mix so its around 9-10 inches (8 will be too thick and wont crisp up)
Bake in a pre heated oven gas mark 7 (220) for 15 minutes until golden. don't worry if its not fully cooked as it will bake further once the toppings are on.
Once golden top with whatever you like and return to the oven on full heat for 5-10 minutes or until toppings are cooked.
Slide off the greaseproof paper straight onto your plate and enjoy.
Im having mine with chipotle pulled chicken, mozzarella, olives, pine nuts and a base of my kale and ricotta pesto.

Thursday, 10 April 2014

Instant and unbelievable clean banana and blueberry ice cream (can be made as a protein treat)

One of the main things people always ask is how to I get treats into my diet when I eat clean and have such a high protein intake.

Well from the posts from the last week I hope you can see I deny myself nothing, chocolate mousse, pancakes with stewed cinnamon apples and nut butter. ALL CLEAN.

This is another one of my favourites. Instant clean ice cream. Sugar and dairy free..

I say instant it requires two things, a little patience in the prep department and a bloody good food processor (magimix or similar)

You can make this without the blueberries, infact use any fruits, but you need bananas as the base as that's what makes this so incredibly creamy.

I have this for breakfast or after the gym to replenish my glycogen stores.  The health benefits of bananas is crazy and everyone knows that blueberries are a superfood.

makes 1 medium sized bowl or two small bowls.
2 bananas sliced
1 handful of blueberries or any other  berries (optional)
50mls almond milk (less if you don't add protein)
1 scoop of natural whey protein in vanilla, blueberry or banana (leave out if you aren't on a high protein diet)
for toppings:
chai, ground flax (linseed) goji berries, coconut oil, more blueberries. Whatever you want as long as its clean.

place the bananas and blueberries on a baking tray and freeze until solid (a few hours or overnight, do it before you go to bed that's what I do)
once frozen immediately add to a food processor and blend, you might need to scrape down to get everything mixed evenly.
trickle in protein and the almond milk until the perfect soft scoop consistency is reached.
Decant and eat immediately. This is no good re-frozen.
Top with your chosen toppings and enjoy immediately.

Four utterly delicious and clean salads

So as you all know im an avid fan of meal prep. Most of my meals I prepare in advance because im so busy. The below four salads are great to grab on the go in Tupperware usually paired with protein of some sort. The flavours are bursting and fresh. Salad no longer means a bit iceberg and a slice of tomato. These are inspired from all over the world and contain only fresh, raw, clean ingredients.
The four salads are:
  • Moroccan inspired carrot salad
  • South American guacamole
  • Slow roast squash, feta and spinach salad
  • Superfood rainbow quinoa salad
I haven't given methods because making a salad is pretty self explanatory, just throw all the ingredients into one.  All salads serve 3 large (heaped palm sized) or 4 smaller portions.
Moroccan inspired carrot salad.
This goes great with marinated meats, its so fresh and delicious while packing lots of vitamins, minerals and superfoods from the pomegranate and chai.
2 grated carrots
1/2 red pepper finely sliced
2 grated or finely sliced radishes
1 small bunch of coriander or mint finely chopped
1/2 pomegranate (seeds only, get them out by bashing the back of the pom with a spoon)
juice of 1 lemon
small lick of extra virgin olive oil
2tsp toasted sesame seeds
2tsp toasted cumin seeds
sprinkling of chai seeds
salt and pepper
South American guacamole
packed full of good fats I enjoy this for breakfast with an egg white omelette before the gym.  Also great on rye bread for a snack.
1 large or 2 small very ripe avocados chopped chunky
1/2 red onion very finely diced
a handful of cherry tomatoes quartered
1 small bunch of parsley or coriander
1 chilli finely chopped
juice of 2 limes
salt and pepper
Slow roast squash, feta and spinach salad
This is simply delicious, especially when the garlic slow roasts with the squash and you can mush it up and add it to the salad. Pure comfort food, packed full of low glycemic (good) carbs, protein from the feta and iron from the spinach
1 small organic squash, I get the Tesco finest ones, cant remember what the bloody hell they are called by my god they are good, look like a normal squash but have a name beginning with a P and are a dark orange.. don't bother peeling the squash, do that after its roasted because its easier, chop into quarters and roast the squash in coconut oil, salt, pepper for 1 hour on medium until tender and slightly charred (I start it off high for 20 minutes then turn it down low) Once cooked scoop the flesh and chop roughly.
1/2 bag baby spinach
1/2 pack feta cheese (make sure its feta not the low fat and not the greek style)
2tbsp pine nuts toasted
2tbsp pumpkin seeds
1 stick of celery chopped
1/2 red pepper chopped
a handful of sugar snap peas chopped
Superfood quinoa salad
This is my staple salad, I always have a bowl of this in the fridge, it goes with absolutely everything and is also substantial on its own. This salad is also a great protein source for veggies. make sure all your veg is finely chopped for this, you can have it chunky if you want but it has a better overall texture if its a very fine dice.

1/2 cup quinoa cooked as per pack instructions
1/2 can of black eyed beans drained (don't cook them)
1 stick of celery finely chopped
A small handful of cherry tomatoes finely chopped
1/2 a pepper finely chopped
1/4 bag of finely sliced baby spinach
A few florets of very finely chopped broccoli (raw so cut it small)
1/2 pomegranate seeds (see above tip)
juice of 1 lemon
small lick of extra virgin olive oil
1tbsp each of
chai seeds
pumpkin seeds
flax (linseed)
toasted pine nuts
toasted peanuts, almonds or cashews (not the salted ones)


Sunday, 6 April 2014

Clean pancakes / protein pancakes

I eat these once a day, they are a great way for my to hit my protein macros/targets.
If you aren't on a high protein diet just leave the protein powder out, you don't need to amend the recipe, simply leave it out and they will still be banging. These are thick American style pancakes around 3 inches in diameter each.
Ive included a few variations which I love, so much choice and its all clean!
makes 3 small
1 banana
1 scoop of vanilla protein powder  (you can use other flavours but they might taste different)
1 egg
coconut oil for frying
simply blend all three together, so simple its unreal.
heat coconut oil and fry tablespoons of the batter over a medium heat for around 2 minutes per side.
my favourite topping is simple cinnamon, pure maple syrup, a couple of raw almonds and ground flax (also known as linseed) and a sprinkle of chai seed.
  • berries and raisins, you can have them raw or softened in a pan in a little coconut oil.
  • cook 1 chopped apple in a little pure maple syrup and cinnamon until soft for apple pie pancakes.
  • melt 1tsp of coconut oil, raw cacao and a dash of almond milk together for a clean chocolate sauce.
  • top pancakes with Greek yogurt, chai, poppy, pumpkin and linseed/flax
  • top with 1tsp of natural peanut butter
  • plumbs softened in a pan in cinnamon and a little honey
  • use pancakes to stack Greek yogurt and strawberries for a kind of shortcake stack of pancakes

Delicious baked coconut and blueberry oatmeal

One of the most delicious breakfasts I make is my gluten free baked oatmeal. Gooey, naturally sweet and soft, I eat this at all times of the day not just for breakfast. If like me you are on a high protein diet then add a scoop of your favourite protein powder ensuring it does not contain sucralose which is a nasty sweetener.

You're probably wondering why the hell am I telling you to bake the oatmeal when you can just do it in a pan or have overnight oats (see other recipe posting) well you can use this recipe for all three of those methods. The only reason I sometimes bake my oats is because it yields a different texture and I get bored of eating the same thing with the same texture every day. So sometimes I have baked, which is gooey and warm, sometimes I have regular oats in a pan which is quick and tasty, then sometimes I have overnight oats which are raw, cold, thick and delicious, packed with flavour.  Variety is the spice of life afterall..

Serves 1:
1/2 cup of gluten free oats
¼ cup boiling water
Small handful of blueberries
 1 small ripe banana
1/4 a cup of coconut milk
1tbsp desiccated coconut (no added sweetner)
1tbsp of pure maple syrup (optional)
To serve (optional)
1tsp Ground linseed/flax
1tsp Chai
1tbsp greek yogurt

Start by pre-heating the oven to 190C. gas mark 5.
Place the oats in a bowl and cover them with boiling water, soak for ten minutes.
Chop the banana into slices
Once the water has been absorbed and the oats are soft stir in most of the chopped banana, most of the blueberries, milk and maple syrup if using.
Pop the mix into a small individual baking dish. Top with the remaining banana, a few reserved blueberries, the coconut and bake for 20 minutes, until the top has slightly browned. Top with serving ideas or eat as it is.