Friday, 20 November 2015

Thanks to Lisa for this lovely recipe.  I often make it as a midweek dinner when the children have clubs on as I can pop it in the slow cooker in the morning and forget about dinner until we are ready to eat.  If I have time  I  seal the meat and cook off onions etc first but have also just put the whole lot in the slow cooker when pushed for time, tastes just as good.
 I usually substitute the red wine for stock made with a Bovril cube and it tastes just fine,  it’s always a full house of clean plates!


      2 tbsp plain/gluten free flour                              1tbs ground cinnamon
      1 Kg lean boneless lamb, cubed                        55g raisins         
      2 large onions, sliced                                          1 bay leaf
      2 cloves garlic, crushed
      400g tin chopped tomatoes
      300ml  red wine/ /stock
      2tbsp red wine vinegar
·        Preheat slow cooker if necessary
·        Coat lamb in flour and season with black pepper
·        Heat oil in a pan and add onions and garlic and cook slowly until softened. 
         Increase heat and add lamb.  Cook for about 5 minutes until browned evenly
·        Stir in wine/stock, vinegar and tomatoes and bring to the boil.  Transfer to the slow cooker, stir in raisins, cinnamon and bay leaf and season with black pepper.  Cover and cook on low for approx. 8 hours until the lamb is tender.

·        Discard bay leaf and serve with basmati rice/couscous and steamed green vegetables.

Thursday, 19 November 2015



1 ½ lbs diced chicken
1 onion, peeled & finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 carrot chopped into batons                                                               1 inch grated root ginger
1 tbsp medium curry powder
1 tsp each of ground cinnamon, coriander, cumin & paprika
½ teaspoon crushed cardamom seeds
¼ tsp turmeric
400g can chop tomatoes
½ pint vegetable bouillon stock
2 large handfuls baby leaf spinach
Chopped coriander to serve

Cook off onion until soft and then add garlic, ginger & spices and stir fry for a further
couple of minutes.
Add the chicken; allow sealing for 2 or 3 minutes and then adding tomatoes and stock.
Bring to the boil, cover and reduce heat, simmering for about 30 minutes until the
chicken is cooked through. Add spinach about a couple of minutes before serving,
garnished with chopped coriander.

Thursday, 12 November 2015

Simple Fish Pie

390g pack Tesco’s fish pie mix 
1/4 pint SS milk                            juice and zest of ½ lemon                Approx 75ml ½ fat crème fraiche
2 chopped hard boiled eggs
1 teaspoon fennel seeds  
4 oz frozen peas

1 Cauliflower, broken into florets and lightly steamed
1 oz grated hard strong cheese
Tomatoes to garnish

Mix all ingredients apart from topping and pop into an ovenproof dish.  Mash cauliflower and mix in cheese and then spoon over fish mixture.  Garnish with sliced tomatoes, a sprinkling of black pepper and cook for about 30 minutes at 200C/400F/Gas 6.

Halloween special Recipe, Brains, Blood and Bogies!


The Boys absolutely loved this, hope it gets the same response next week when it's known as just plain old meatballs!

  Herby Meatballs with Smokey Tomato Sauce
Serves 4 - Ingredients
• 500g minced beef
• ½ onion
• ½ cup fresh basil
• ½ cup fresh parsley
• 1 cup spinach
• 3 medium eggs
• ½ cup wholemeal bread crumbs
• 1 tbsp dried oregano
• 3 cloves garlic
• freshly ground black pepper to taste
Smokey tomato sauce
• 1 large onion, finely chopped
• 2 tsp coconut oil
• Salt and freshly ground black pepper
• 1 garlic clove, peeled and finely chopped
• 1 tsp paprika
• 2x 400g cans of chopped tomatoes

1. Preheat your oven to 180C or Gas Mark 4.
2. Blend onion, herbs, garlic and spinach in a food blender.
3. Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and mix well with your hands.
4. Season the mixture to taste with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
5. Make small balls the size of golf balls and place them apart on a baking tray, then place them in the preheated oven to cook for about 30 minutes or until browned.
To make the sauce:
1. Place the onion in a heavy bottomed pan with the coconut oil and season with salt and pepper. Cover with a lid and fry gently over a low heat until soft and sweet.
2. Add the garlic, paprika and chilli flakes and fry for a further 30 seconds, stirring constantly.
3. Add the tomatoes and bring to a simmer. Simmer the sauce for 20 minutes. Liquidise until smooth. Pass the sauce through a sieve, back into the pan. Taste and add seasoning as necessary.

Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Oat & Seed Snack Bars

Oat & Seed snack bars

Full of all the good things, these sweet little treats make a delicious healthy snack.


                 300g pitted dates                                                  240ml warm water                                                4 fl oz melted coconut oil
                 500g organic oats
                 100g dessicated coconut
                 zest of 1 orange
                 100g sunflower seeds
                 100g pumpkin seeds
                  50g linseeds


Soak the dates in the warm water for about 30 minutes.  Meanwhile line a baking tray with greaseproof paper and melt the coconut oil.

Blend dates, water and oil in blender/nutribullet until smooth.

Place all the remaining ingredients in a large bowl and then add the date syrup mixture.

Mix thoroughly until all combined and then press down evenly into the baking tray. Pop in the fridge until set.

Remove and cut into approx 16 squares.  Store in a sealed container in the fridge.

Friday, 16 October 2015


Your liver, the largest and most influential organ (and gland) in the body. Most of us know that too much Pinot Grigio/favourite tipple does it no favours but what does the liver actually do?

Also known as the chemical brain of the body it recycles, regenerates and detoxifies. Here are just a few of its 500 + functions!

  • Removes waste and cleans the blood
  • Metabolises fat
  • Blood sugar regulation
  • Controls hormone balance
  • Supports digestion
  • Stores iron and vitamins
  • Cholesterol production

To do all these jobs properly the liver needs good quality nutrition.  Unfortunately with many of todays' poor food choices such as sugar, alcohol, bad fats and processed foods our poor old liver fights an uphill battle.

 Symptoms of a sluggish liver may include:
  • Stored fat around waistline/weight gain
  • Sleep problems
  • Headaches
  • Stress/poor memory/brain fog
  • Depression
  • PMT
Do yourself a favour,  a clean liver promotes improved sleep, energy levels and hormone balance. Support your liver by eating good quality protein, lots of green veggies, essential fatty acids and vitamins and minerals. However don't be tempted to do some of the popular "detox" diets regularly seen in the media that feature calorie restriction. Usually because of the restrictions you will be missing out on the very nutrients your liver needs. If you are struggling I recommend a full body cleanse which I can give you details on if you are interested.  

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Tasty Tuesdays Recipe

A great way to use up those tomatoes that all seem to ripen at once!

Tomato and vegetable soup

In a medium saucepan, sauté 1 small finely chopped onion, 2 chopped sticks celery, 4 crushed cloves garlic and ¼ tsp each of basil, oregano and chilli flakes. Add 5oz quartered button mushrooms and 1 medium, sliced courgette and cook approx. 5 minutes. Stir in 1 tin butter beans, 400g tin chopped tomatoes, 8oz passata and 180ml water.  Bring to the boil, simmer to heat through.

Thursday, 3 September 2015

My "Go To Greenie"

 Whatever did I do before I had my Nutri Bullet.  Really loving experimenting with whatever is in season but this has to be one of my favourites, delicious!

 Large handful spinach
Small piece of root ginger, peeled
1/2 avocado
1 small eating apple

Simply whizz the whole lot for a few seconds, as well as adding those essential fatty acids the avocado makes it really creamy!

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Those crafty cravings and what they can mean!

Crafty cravings and what they mean

You know that feeling when you have been trying to clean up your diet and then you suddenly get an attack of munchies for a certain type of food.  This is your body crying out for vital nutients/minerals that it just isn't getting.  But that doesn't mean we should give into the cravings, just improve our diet and where appropriate use supplements.

Crave Chocolate
Chocolate is rich in magnesium so strong cravings could indicate a deficiency in this mineral.It's probably one of the most commonly craved food, particularly "around the time of the month" due to an increased demand by the body systems during the 2nd half of your menstrual cycle. If you’re a chocoholic and suffer from PMS symptoms such as irritability, headaches, cramps and bloating, it may be worth trying a magnesium supplement, such as Natures sunshine Magnesium (90 capsules, £11.95).

Eat Nuts are actually a richer source, particularly Brazils. Leafy green veg are also good, as are brown rice,  and pumpkin seeds — though not quite so moreish.

TRY: If it has to be chocolate, opt for dark chocolate that contains at least 75 per cent cocoa, as this will contain more magnesium and less sugar.

‘Drinking too much alcohol, tea, coffee and fizzy drinks can also deplete levels of magnesium,’

Crave Bread And butter
Usually lacking in the essential fats, often as a result of the "low fat diet" approach. Essential fats are well...essential for weight management, fluid levels, skin/hair/mail health, hormone balance to name but a few.  Every cell in the body needs essential fats to keep healthy.

Eat   oily fish, nuts, avocados, seeds, particularly flax/linseeds.

Here are a few more common ones, what could be lacking and foods to include to top up! 

Crave Cheese,  EFA, calcium
Eat  oily fish, nuts,seeds as above and green leafy veg, broccoli, kale, legumes, sesame seeds/tahini

Crave Red Meat, iron
Eat Beans, legumes, unsulphured prunes, figs+ other dried fruit, seaweed, spinach, cherries, Vitamin C rich foods for iron absorption

Crave Crisps/salty foods,  ChlorideEat fish, celery, olives, tomatoes

Crave Pasta, pastries, white bread, ChromiumEat, onion, apples, sweet potato, grapes, cinnamon, romaine lettuce and tomatoes

Crave fizzy drinks, calciumEat green leafy veg, brocolli, kale, legumes, sesame seeds/tahini

Crave coffee/stimulants,  phosphorous, sulphur and ironEat Whole grains, pinto beans, pumpkin seeds, brazil nuts, lentils Green leafy veg, broccoli, kale, legumes, sesame seeds/tahiniBeans, legumes, unsulphured prunes, figs+ other dried fruit, seaweed, spinach, cherries, Vitamin C rich foods for iron absorption.

Hope this helps, it pays to listen to what your body needs and fill it with the best food source rather than giving in to those cravings that are often full of sugar, toxins etc and which generally only make things worse in the long run.

It is also important to recognise that minerals and vitamins work together so I tend not to supplement singularly (except in  the case of magnesium, b vits and c occasionally) dependent on what lifestyle factors are involved.  always aim to eat a balanced diet, foods first, supplement to fill any gaps.

My go to is a daily multi vit/mineral which provides 100% RDA for most vits and minerals.  As I've said before not all supplements are created equal and you do get what you pay for. I use natures sunshine products which you can find out about here

Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Halloumi Skewers with Orange & Dill dressing

Delicious on  the BBQ!!

2 x 250g packs of halloumi, cut into chunks
2 red peppers, deseeded & cut into chunks
2 x yellow peppers “    “         “        “         “
2 red onions, cut into 1/8ths, leave attached at root end for easier threading
4 courgettes roughly chunked
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Juice of 1 orange
Handful of fresh dill

8 long wooden skewers
(need to pre-soak for 30 mins or use metal ones)

Make dressing and put to one side
Thread up the skewers with halloumi and vegetables, lay them flat and brush with half

Of the dressing.  Grill on BBq or under grill for about 15 minutes, turning and basting often.  Sprinkle with remainder of dressing and serve with large salad.

Tuesday, 3 February 2015

Slow Cooker Chicken stew

A great winter warmer and so easy too, the slow cooker really is a busy mum's friend!  Excuse the photo, still steaming!!

Ingredients (serves 4)
Approx 1lb diced chicken                                                                                                                          1/2 pint water
1 diced onion
2 sticks celery, sliced
2 large carrots sliced
1/4 small swede, diced
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon dried sage
1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
2 tablespoons tomato puree
3/4 pint chicken stock                                                                                                

4fl oz water
2tbsps cornflour/flour
Frozen peas

Pop all top 11 ingredients into slow cooker (veg at the bottom), and cook on high for 4 hours.  Mix water and cornflour thoroughly then add to pot along with peas and cook for a further 30 minutes.

You can add any vegetables according to choice.  I usually serve some green steamed vegetables on the side as think these only need a quick cook, but root vegetables work really well :-)

Wednesday, 28 January 2015


A lovely tasty juice, full of goodness with a cheeky kick!

Ingredients ( serves 2 )

1 large raw beetroot
1 large carrot
2 small apples
1 inch piece of root ginger
Top and tail and scrub vegetables.
 Chop into managable chunks for your juicer
Juice all ingredients and enjoy!