As you may have guessed by now, a childhood favourite of mine was pasta- delicious, warming, creamy, decadent and not so healthy pasta. Pasta was the first meal I remember cooking on my own (if you count boiling pasta and heating up the pasta sauce with grated cheese as cooking), and I loved it. Mum would routinely make pasta for seven hungry mouths, her nightly task (and bane of her existence, so she tells me), and I can now appreciate what a task that was to feed all of us- which is where the pasta came in. Quick, affordable, easy and oh so delicious, those pasta ribbons have a sentimental place in my heart. These days. both my diet and, thankfully, my cooking abilities have improved drastically, which means that my recent pasta craving was able to be rekindled in a new and healthier incarnation….
This humble, hearty Sweet Potato & Kale Curry dish ticks all of my “ideal” boxes. Packed with nutrient-dense ingredients, it features some of my favourite vegetables including kale, aubergine and sweet potato. A pleasant kick of heat and fragrant spice combined with a vibrant assortment of plant-based goodies, makes for an exciting vegetarian dish, whether you pledge yourself to a strictly plant-powered way of eating or not….
Every time I go for a relaxing walk around the block I end up with a twig of lavender between my fingers, unconsciously twisting it beneath my nose, sniffing in its strong perfume while I tramp away the hour. I’ve done this for many years, and by the end of it I’m always a picture of calm, having walked away the days stressors.
Walking and lavender, for me, go together like peanut butter and chocolate. It was only once I began to study herbalism that I understood the true nature behind this relationship. I now realise that its not the walk alone that creates this happier, calmer me, but in fact the idle lavender twirling plays a very important part.
There are few combinations better than strawberry and mint (except for maybe apples and cinnamon). There is simply something tantalisingly fresh and uplifting that a crisp bunch of mint leaves can bring to the table. And to a table of strawberries; a punnet of delectable red jewels rich with the heavy sweetness of summer, mint is the perfect companion.
If you have yet to try this winning combo, this recipe is the perfect place to start. Easy to prepare and quick to make, it elevates the stodgy oatmeal to a new plain of pure deliciousness. And while you’re enjoying your super luscious breakfast, you can also feel tick your Vitamin C box for the day. Strawberries are not only rich in this immunity boosting vitamin, but are also bursting with high levels of antioxidants, as well as maganese. Interestingly, if you’re freezing your strawberries, they will retain higher levels of Vitamin C if kept whole….
Pitaya, or dragon fruit, is one of those incredible exotic fruits I have always admired from afar but never had the spunk to try out. There was always something intense and seemingly fierce about this widely cultivated fruit – though now that I’ve jumped on the pitaya bandwagon I can clearly see my assumptions were unfounded!
The only thing truly fierce about this cactus plant fruit is its appearance. Scaly green leaves cover a kiwi-like black seed speckled flesh. The fruit flesh itself can vary: both the white and the exquisite bright magenta varieties have a surprisingly mild taste- more like a semi-sweet melon with a soft kiwi texture.
The pitaya fruit is high in antioxidants, vitamin C and other nutrients. It is also a low calorie and low sugar alternative to other fruits, and its seeds are rich in healthy fatty acids. It’s also low in fructose, so great for those of use who follow the FODMAP diet.*…