Saturday, July 31, 2010

Roasted Sweet Potato Wedges

I was asked by friends to come up with some ideas about healthy salty snacks. These people love their salty snacks and really just want to change to something healthier rather then stopping altogether. I completely agree that this is the right way to go. As soon as you band yourself from certain things you crave them even more. I want to keep things as easy and uncomplicated as possible and when preparing a snack you most certainly don’t want to spend an eternity preparing it. To be honest I don’t have the patience for it.

Roasted Sweet Potato Wedges
1 sweet potato
1tsp olive oil
sea salt
dried rosemary

Preheat the oven to 175ºC/350ºF.

Peel the sweet potato unless organic. Cut into wedges and transfer to a lined baking tray. Cover the sweet potatoes with the olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt and rosemary. Pop in the oven and roast for 20-25min.

serves 2

Serve with some whipped avocado, yogurt with herbs and lemon or a homemade salsa.

HEALTH BENEFITS of Sweet Potatoes: Sweet potatoes contain much more nutrients then white potatoes and should definitely be a part of your healthy way of eating. It is an excellent source of the natural form of vitamin A - beta carotene and vitamin C which works together as a healing antioxidant food. Sweet potatoes are also a good source of dietary fiber, potassium, vitamin B6 and iron. This orange root vegetable is known to stabilize blood sugar and is therefore ranked as a “must eat” weight-loss food.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Balsamic & Black Pepper Strawberries

The appetite during summertime is not anything like the werewolf appetite I myself master during the cold, dark winter months. Strawberries are however something that always tickles my taste buds this time of the year. This recipe is not my invention. In fact I believe that maybe a few of you are already familiar with this way of eating strawberries. First time I had it was years ago at my mothers house. She got the idea from a friend, who got it from a friend and so on. I believe It must be one of those compositions that never hits the cookbooks but instead just travels by word of mouth.

Balsamic & Black Pepper Strawberries
1liter/4-500g strawberries
1tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/4tsp black pepper, freshly grounded

Rinse the strawberries and cut in half. Transfer to a bowl and add the balsamic vinegar and black pepper. Add some mint leaves for garnish if served as a dessert (optional)
serves 2-3

HEALTH BENEFITS of Black Pepper: We all know that strawberries are healthy but what you probably did not know is that black pepper is also considered a health food. It fights infection, lower cholesterol, keeps the liver healthy, and helps with digestion and the metabolism of food in your body. Black pepper also works as an antioxidant in your body protecting cell and tissue from damage.

In this swelling heat you will definitely enjoy the Fruit & Yogurt Swirl and don’t forget to keep dehydrated by drinking lots of water.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Olive Oil & Garlic Spinach

A trip to Tuscany is nourishing for any soul. If not for the food, the surroundings alone feed you and make you feel incredibly satisfied with life. My four days with my husband in Tuscany was all about the great food (lots of it), red wine and sunshine. When it comes to food the Italians really know what they are doing. Many think of the food as mainly pizza and pasta and even though they do have a lot of it, the whole food culture is made up of simple compositions of ingredients, a whole array of vegetables (preferably locally grown), lean meats and fish and a heaped tablespoon of satisfaction. I usually always go for any grilled, fresh, baked vegetable available on the menu and for those who know me well know that I am addicted to oven baked vegetables. The Italian kitchen has now brought a new vegetable dish in to my home – the Olive Oil and Garlic Spinach. I was so excited about this dish that the first thing I did Monday morning after 4hours of sleep (we arrived home from Italy 01.30am Monday morning) was to go through some of my Italian cookbooks and to my surprise it was not represented in any of them. The only thing left was to walk to my local supermarket and buy all the ingredients I believed would take part in the composition of this divine, delicious, oh so simple dish.

Olive Oil & Garlic Spinach
250g frozen spinach (easy peasy, healthy and quick)
3 medium garlic cloves, smashed and finely chopped
splash of olive oil
lemon wedge to serve (optional)

Steam the spinach in a little bit of water using a medium sized pan. Just add enough water to cover the bottom of the pan. When the water has started to boil help the frozen pieces to dissolve with the help of a spoon. Lower the heat and add the chopped garlic. Allow to stand for a minute. Add the herbal salt and a splash of olive oil to taste and serve immediately when still steaming hot.
serves 1-2  

HEALTH BENEFITS of Spinach: Spinach is an excellent source of iron – vital for energy production, the immune system, and development of brain and muscle function. This leafy green has showed to work against cancer cell formation, is a good source of protein and fiber, is low in calories and loaded with nutrients for a healthier you.

If there are any recipes that you would like a healthier twist on or if you have one specific ingredient you would like to get a few recipes ideas on; please add a comment or contact me via email and I will be more than happy to experiment and come up with something delicious, healthy and nourishing for you to enjoy