1 1/2 litres water
5-10 slices of ginger
20 smashed cardamon pods
3 cinnamon sticks
Simmer for 40 minutes.
Add 1/2 teaspoon of black tea (optional).
Bring to the boil for 1 minute.
Keeps for a week in the fridge.
Add honey or milk, good iced too!
This is my children’s favourite staple, and great comfort food. It takes about 40 minutes from start to finish and is delicious with pasta, rice, baked potatoes or with mashed potato on top as a shepherd’s pie. Sprinkle grated cheese or yeast flakes on top.
Red lentils 500 g
2 garlic cloves or more
Carrots, peppers, courgettes chopped small
2 sticks celery optional
If starting from scratch… chop 2 onions and celery and cook in tsp olive oil in a big pan. After a few minutes add the lentils and stir for a minute. Then generously cover with stock and cover with a lid and leave to simmer on a medium heat stirring from time to time. The lentils take about 20 mins to cook, you may need to add more stock. You want a bolognaise consistency. Add some tinned tomatoes and paprika and herbs if you want to season.
Mung dhal comfort food – incredibly healthy! If you want to totally clean out your digestive system try living off this for a few weeks, with lots of fruit and veg as well.
The kids love eating it in bowls with cheese on top. If they ever do eat so the sofa in front of the telly this is what they will eat! Mung beans are a great ‘whole’ food – fibre & protein and have a lovely nutty flavour. Cooking from dry beans makes these two meals very cheap and nutritious.
Makes 8 servings
* 1 Cup soaked Mung Beans
* 1 Cup Basmati Rice
* 9 Cups Water
* 6-7 Cups assorted Vegetables
* ¼ Cup Ghee or olive oil
* 4-5 Cloves of fresh Garlic, crushed in a press
* 2 Onions, Chopped
* 1 finger fresh Ginger root, peeled and minced
* 1 1/2 Tsp Tumeric
* 1 1/2 Tsp Cumin powder
* 3/4 Tsp Ground Coriander seed
* Seeds of 5 Green Cardamon Pods (or 3/4 tsp powder)
* 1 Tsp Black Pepper
* ½ Tsp Crushed Red Chilies (more if you like spicy OR omit completely if you don’t like it hot)
* 1 – 1 1/2 Tbsp Sea Salt
* Add salt to water in a large stew pot and bring water to a light boil.
* Wash Mung beans, carefully removing any tiny stones.
* Rinse Basmati Rice at least three times to remove starch.
* Set mung beans and rice aside.
* Chop assorted vegetables.
* Heat Ghee (or Oil) in a large frying pan.
* Add garlic, chopped onions, and ginger and cook until translucent. Then add Turmeric, Cumin, Coriander, Cardamon, Crushed Chilies and Black Pepper; mix well.
* When all spices are absorbed shut off flame and let sit for 5 min, covered.
(When water begins to boil)
* Add mung beans to boiling water.
* Reduce flame to simmering and cover and boil until the beans start to soften and open, (15-20 min.)
* Add Masala Mixture to water with mung beans and vegetables.
* Simmer for 20-30 minutes until soupy.
* Add rice and cook an additional 15-20 min until rice is absorbed.
* Serve with fresh yogurt (or sour cream and coriander if desired.
Easy veg curry
1 tsp medium curry powder
1tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
1/4 tsp hot cayenne pepper
1 large garlic clove
1/4 ginger root chopped
1 tin tomatoes
One cup of left over cooked potato or chopped uncooked sweet potato
One cup of veg of your choice- eg sugar snaps and green beans, spinach but you choose
Fry onion garlic and gingerin a little oil with the spices, Add tomatoes. simmer, add a little water if needed, then add vegetables. Cook slowly over a low heat for 20 mins. Serve with rice. And coriander if you want!
Spinach/courgette and feta filo pie This is very easy and good for two meals but also very impressive for friends! You can replace the feta with cheddar for kids or half and half if they find feta too strong. Useful to have a pastry brush or clean paint brush!
1.5 kg courgettes grated or spinach chopped
100g parmesan grated
175g feta cheese crumbled
120mls white wine
1 small onion
Salt and black pepper
50g butter melted
1 packet filo pastry
50g pine nuts
Sweat courgettes until cooked then drain. If using spinach no need do this.
Cook onion in olive/sunflower oil til soft and add courgettes/raw chopped spinach, eggs, wine and both cheeses. Stir and cook for minute or two only.
Layer the pastry in a buttered dish painting melted butter between each sheet. 4 sheets on the bottom then pile in the filling. Fold over any draping pastry and layer four sheets again, making sure each sheet or extra fold has been painted with melted butter. Cover with pine nuts and bake for 35 minutes until golden brown. Delicious with quinoa and salad.
Simply cook quinoa according to packet instructions and stir in following…
Roasted sweet potato and roasted broccoli, chickpeas, avocado, dress with tahini, maple syrup, garlic, lemon juice yummeeeeeeeee J)
Brown rice salad olive oil, tamari, lemon juice, chilli/tabasco, toasted seeds, nuts, raisins, grated carrot with brown rice!
Leek, potato and chick pea soup Try to buy organic potatoes if you can. Jamie Oliver inspired. This is also delicious with spinach instead of leeks.
2 large potatoes
2 cloves garlic or more
250g dry chick peas soaked the night before and cooked before hand or two tins.
Sweat the leeks and garlic in butter or olive oil in a large pan with lid on low heat til soft.
Meanwhile peel and chop potatoes into cubes. Stir them into the leeks and add 2 pints of vegetable stock. When the potatoes are soft you can either add the chick peas and serve as it is, or add chick peas and blend til smooth. Or our favourite way is to half blend it leaving bits of leek and potatoes and then add the chick peas. It looks very professional with parmesan shaved on top and is totally delicious and makes a fulfilling meal. Kids love this!
Minestrone soup as a hearty meal – with or without bacon
2 Tin tomatoes
Peppers, Courgettes, Green beans, Celery
White beans (or baked beans if haven’t any white ones handy)
Veg stock 2 pints
Bacon or you can add smoked paprika if you want the bacon smoky flavour without the meat. I just add normal paprika to make it rich without the smokey flavour that the kids aren’t so keen on. But you can add it to your own bowl in you wish.
Macaroni or fresh bread.
Tomato sauce that you made before or start with onions, celery & garlic in olive oil. Add bacon too if you are using bacon. Then add the other veg and fry for another five mins. Then add tinned tomatoes and stock and simmer until the vegetables are not too soft but ready to eat. Add the beans and seasoning and serve in bowls with cheddar or parmesan, with macaroni stirred in or on its own with fresh bread.
Easy sweetcorn & cashew chowder – kids love! 20 mins
55g cashews roughly chopped
2 onions chopped
2 celery chopped
1½ tbs flour
720mls veg stock
1 large potato cubed
1 sweet potato cubed
4 large fresh sage leaves chopped (optional)
4 cobs sweetcorn kernels scraped off or frozen/tinned corn easier!
Fry cashews in oil til brown. Remove nuts (put aside), add butter to pan and stir in onions and celery and cook til soft. Stir in flour cook for min til pale brown add stock and bring to boil. Add potato cook for three mins and then add sweet potato and sage and corn and cook til soft. Serve and sprinkle with cashew nuts. Eat with fresh bread.
Very simple yummiest lentil soup
Fry onions and garlic til soft on low heat. Then add lentils and stock and when lentils soft blend or leave as it is. Stir in ground roasted cumin and lots of lemon juice and chilli flakes to taste. Serve with bread below for very easy but very yummy healthy lunch!
Easiest homemade spelt bread easy on digestion! Plain, sweet, spicy, fruity, nutty… however you make it!
There are lots of easy bread recipes out there, I recommend River Cottage Magic Bread Dough for pizzas, pitta, bread, wraps, rolls….
But this recipe is even quicker and can be done while making soup or breakfast on weekends. It is the recipe on the back of Doves Farm Organic Wholemeal Spelt Flour.
Heat oven to 200c
500g spelt flour
½ tsp salt
1 tsp quick rise yeast
400ml warm water
1tbs olive oil
In a large bowl mix flour, salt and yeast. Add warm water with honey melted in it. Start to stir and then add the oil when dough is craggy. Mix well and put into bread tin and cover with tea towel and leave in warm place for 30 minutes. When risen bake in the oven for 40 mins or until golden brown on top.
You may want to add cinnamon and raisins for tea bread, or apricots and almonds chopped up or sprinkle seeds and oats on the top before baking. Impresses friends and tastes delicious!
HEALTHY SWEET THINGS! I often take normal recipes and replace with spelt flour and replace sugars with syrups or dried fruit. I love making cakes using seasonal fruit/veg such as berries, rhubarb, pumpkin and courgettes and squash in cakes and muffins. These recipes can be found easily on the internet. And you can use cream cheese and maple syrup instead for delicious icing, or try the chocolate icing from the millionaires shortbread recipe below.
Bliss balls! Amazing alternative to chocolate and so healthy you can have for breakfast!
2 cups walnuts / cashews
2 ½ cups Medjool dates, pitted
3/4 cup cocoa or cacao powder
1 cup raw almonds
1/4 cup honey
Place walnuts in food processor and blend until the nuts are finely ground. Add the dates, cocoa powder, almonds and honey and keep pulsing until you have a fine but sticky crumb mixture.
Roll this into little balls about the size of a golf ball and keep in the fridge for up to two weeks.
Variations – roll in coconut / cocoa once finished and/or swap the almonds seedy mix
Makes about 12.
Cook prunes and apricots in a little water til soft. Add a banana and blend and pour over Greek yoghurt, ice cream or porridge!
Easy oaty choc chip cookies These are almost always in our biscuit tins J
100g spelt or normal/wholemeal flour
125g butter or I use PURE sunflower spread or olive oil
honey, maple syrup or dark brown sugar to taste.
½ tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
50 g pecans
100 g dark 70 % chocolate
Mix all ingredients, roll into balls and bake at 180c
Gluten-free, vegan olive muffins:
50 g cornmeal (polenta flour)
50 grams doves farm gluten free flour
50 g rice flour
½ tsp salt
2 tbs oil (olive or almond)
chopped black and green olives- small cup
½ tsp baking powder
1 tbs honey
Almond or oat milk to mix – consistency goes very thick quickly so you may need to top up- til it looks like cake mix – a paste plus a splash more as polenta sucks a lot of liquid up!
Bake in oven 180 degrees about 15 minutes
6 oz unsalted butter/alternative
6 fl oz set honey
3 oz brown sugar/maple syrup
Melt these three in pan and boil for 2 minutes. Then add to ingredients below:
12 oz rolled oats
1.5 tsp ground cinnamon
4 oz chopped walnuts
5 oz raisins
5 oz ready to eat chopped apricots and prunes – mixed
20z pumpkin seeds
2 oz sunflower seeds
2 0z sesame seeds
2 oz dessicated coconut
Some halved cherries as well
Spoon into a greaseproof lined tin (about an inch thick) and bake at 190 c GM5 for about 25-35 mins
Blueberry muffins makes 6 – no sugar or butter or flour!
100 g ground almonds
Small punnet blueberries
2 spoons of Agave/ honey or maple and carob syrup
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 tsp baking powder
Banana loaf This is like a kind of malt loaf / fruit loaf…yummy!
4 ripe bananas – mashed
2 cups of gluten free flour / spelt or grnd almonds
2 tsp baking powder
2 cups of raisins and prunes mixed – soaked in a little water til plump
1/2 tsp salt
1- 2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp mixed spice or fresh grated nutmeg and cinnamon
1 egg separated and the white whisked til stiff.
Mix all ingredients except egg white which you fold in at the end . Bake for 40 mins at 180c
Vanilla and Turmeric Polenta Cake with Roasted Rhubarb and Grapes suitable for those with coeliac disease and a soft diet. Dairy-free and gluten-free, too.
150ml light rapeseed oil/light olive oil/virgin coconut oil
125g coconut palm sugar or 100g fruit sugar
100 g fine or regular polenta/maizemeal (available in the Asian section at most supermarkets)
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp turmeric
175 g ground almonds
2 tsp good quality vanilla extract OR seeds from one vanilla pod
3 medium eggs
3-4 stalks of rhubarb
2 handful of black or red seedless grapes
2 tbsp brown sugar or 1tsp fruit sugar
1. Oil and base line an 11 x 7 inch/27.5 x 18cm (approx) pan. Preheat oven to 180 C/160 C/
fan/350F. Have your baking paper reach up from two sides so that you can pull the cake out
easily when cool. Or use a loose-bottomed tin.
2. Beat together the oil and sugar. I use a stand-mixer and let it rip for about 4-5 minutes. Pour in the polenta, baking powder, turmeric, almonds, vanilla and eggs. Mix well and pour into the prepared tin. Although I use a stand mixer for this, strong arms or electric beaters are fine.
3. Bake in the middle of the oven for 25-30 minutes, checking at 20 minutes and perhaps
covering with foil to prevent burning. I usually take it out at 25 for a slightly softer cake.
You can also make this in a well-greased muffin tin (uses 9-10 holes); bake these for about 20 minutes, but check at 15. The top of the cake or muffins should be golden brown in patches and just starting to pull away from the sides of the tin.
4. Let the cake stand for about 20 minutes before pulling it out by the baking paper ‘handle’
and onto a serving board or plate. If you use a bundt tin, just cool and flip it out. It should
ideally be just almost imperceptibly soft in the middle; certainly not at all dry.
Serve barely warm, or cold, with the roasted fruit compote and/or vanilla custard (and!).
Luscious Apple Cake gluten and sugar free
11oz cooking apples (skin on – I peeled them but just seen no need)
Blend in mixer and add sieved flours …
3oz rice flour
2 heaped tspn baking powder
then mix in…..
3oz ground almonds
2 oz sultanas
Bake for 45 mins at 175c
Millionaire’s shortbread with no sugar, flour or animal fat! Expensive exotic ingredients but worth it! You never feel sick after it as you do after the traditional recipe! Taste it as you make it to get the perfect taste for you.
Base – blend cashews and dates to make a paste and flatten into a baking tray oiled with coconut oil. Freeze for ten mins while you make the caramel
Caramel – a pot of tahini mixed with maple syrup and some coconut oil. Pour on top of frozen base and put back in freezer.
Chocolate – blend cocoa or cacao powder with maple or agave syrup, coconut oil, creamed coconut. Pour on top and freeze for further ten mins. Keep it in the fridge for a week and eat with abandon J
Each smoothie should have a handful of kale/spinach/other greens, a tbs seeds, handful of nuts and then fruit of your choice. Bananas sweeten berry smoothies, avocados add protein and make them very smooth, oats are calming and also give the smoothie a lovely texture and prunes are great for the digestive system.
A lovely green smoothie has the above essentials plus a banana, half a lemon (with skin on if unwaxed organic), an avocado and a piece of fresh ginger. J Sprinkle cacao nibs on top for extra deliciousness and crunch!
And finally two very healthy drinks …
Traditionally, turmeric milk has been used for colds, congestion, headache, and sore throats. Turmeric is a depression-fighter as well. Adding more to our diets is one great brain build. Turmeric also has strong anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties, making it a promising complementary therapy for cancer-prevention…. A traditional cure-all spice!
2 cups of almond milk (or coconut milk),
1 teaspoon dried turmeric (or one-half inch fresh turmeric thinly sliced or diced),
black pepper to taste,
5 cardamom pods crushed,
1 teaspoon dried ginger (or one-half inch fresh ginger…),
1 tsp almond oil.
Blend if you need to and warm on the hob and sweeten with hone