Once You Go Wrap, You’ll Never Go Back: A Recipe

I can’t call this a recipe, I just can’t. But it will change your life. Maybe. I got the idea when I was at work and the canteen were serving fish finger wraps with sweet chilli sauce. It’s not exactly groundbreaking to entomb some fish fingers in a tortilla wrap but it’s just so much better than a fish finger sandwich. Trust me on this, once you go wrap you will never go back.

All you need to do is cook four fish fingers according to the packet instructions. For reference, I like Youngs more than Birds Eye. Cook them a little bit longer than the box says for some extra satisfying crunch. Get yourself a large tortilla wrap and squirt some mayonnaise down the centre. Pile on a handful of rocket leaves and a few slices of ripe avocado then top with the fish fingers followed by a generous drizzle of sweet chilli sauce. Wrap and roll and thank me later.

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For the simple fact that this has avocado in it, you can totally class it as a health food and eat as many as you like. I’ll take this opportunity to admit getting through a whole box of fish fingers making these for myself one night as I just kept wanting more. That, my friends, is the sign of a good meal.

Stay tuned for more recipes!

Tania x

 

 

What I Ate In A Day #10 – Vegan Edition

As part of vegan week on The Gammon Kitchen, I figured it only right that I take you along for the ride and share everything I eat in a day on a vegan diet. I’m halfway through my trial and I’m feeling tired, grumpy and in desperate need of a McDonalds. I kind of want to give up but I’m not going to. I’m just eagerly waiting for the day when I bound out of bed full of vigour with wonderful glowing skin and a new found zest for life. Please God, let it be soon.

Breakfast today was of the liquid variety. I made my chocolate and peanut butter milkshake that was featured on my blog earlier in the year, but used cashew butter rather than peanut and coconut milk rather than almond. Anything goes really. It was delicious and set me up for the day.

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The 11am slump was fixed by a few dates. Ugly little things aren’t they? Medjool dates are amazing, like soft, chewy toffees. They’re more expensive than other varieties but totally worth it.

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I’ve been making the most of leftovers for my lunches and today was a classic example. It’s great to have a fridge full of things that you can just throw together to create a pick’n’mix lunch bursting with flavour and nutrients. Today was brown rice, roasted vegetables (peppers, onions and courgettes), garlic and herb roasted sweet potatoes and some homemade spicy, smoky humous (made smoky by smoked sea salt – AH-MAY-ZING.)

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I snacked on some fruit between lunch and dinner. Doughnut peaches, or flat peaches as they’re sometimes called, are my favourite fruits ever. I had a plum too but ate it without thinking so didn’t take a photo.

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The biggest hurdle I’ve faced during this trial is having time each night to cook a healthy meal, prepare my lunch and tidy up all the mess made along the way. It’s hard. I can’t just order a pizza now and it means every night is chore night. Tonight I decided to go for the easy option. I’d bought some ready made bean burgers in my weekly food shop to have on stand by for when this day came so we had those with oven chips, homemade guacamole and a bit of salad. It’s the first night Tyler and I have had the same dinner since I started my vegan journey. The bean burgers were alright but I probably could have made better myself.

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As an evening snack I had a slice of wholemeal bread, toasted and spread with cashew, cinnamon and honey butter and topped with a sliced banana. Snack heaven.

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I ate a little more today than I have been to see if it would help my energy levels. Here’s hoping! I love having such colourful, vibrant meals and I’m not really missing meat (apart from that McDonalds craving) but I would give an arm for a bit of cheese now and then.

Recipe: Balsamic Onion Hummus

Hummus is the modern day holy grail of food stuffs, great for dunking, spreading and dolloping. You can buy or make so many different varieties and serve it in loads of different ways. I love my hummus with salted tortilla chips as a snack, or used as a topping for a rice bowl or salad. This one has soft, melting onions cooked in balsamic vinegar whizzed into it to make it delicately sweet and sour.

Makes a large bowlful

What you need:

  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp runny honey
  • 3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 400g tin of chickpeas, drained
  • 1 tbsp tahini
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 tbsp water

What you do:

  • Heat the olive oil in a pan and add the sliced onions. Cook over a lowish heat until the onions are wonderfully soft, about 15 minutes. Then chuck in the garlic and cook for a minute more.
  • Next, add the honey and balsamic vinegar and cook for a couple of minutes until you have a jammy consistency that is lusciously dark and gleaming. Leave this to one side to cool.
  • In a food processor, pulse together the chickpeas, tahini, cumin, paprika, extra virgin olive oil, water and the cooled onion mixture with a good pinch of salt and pepper. You can keep it chunky or make it really smooth, I like something in between, which really is the only setting my food processor has. I should really upgrade to a better model. I top my hummus with some more extra virgin olive oil and paprika, but you don’t have to. Why would you buy it when it’s this easy to make?

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Washing Up Score: 4/10 – still worth it rather than buying a tub of over processed, gritty stuff that parades itself as hummus. Oops, did I just show a hint of food snobbery? Sorry, not sorry.

Recipe Review: Deliciously Ella’s Raw Brownies

Real brownies should be squidgy, dense and intensely chocolatey. They should stick to the roof of your mouth in the most satisfying way and provide a moment of serenity and calm in the way that other foods just can’t. Brownies are one of those things that everyone loves, they’re ridiculously easy to make and even easier to devour. Ella Woodward, or Deliciously Ella as she is more often known, has managed to take all the great things that make a good brownie and completely transform it without the need of refined sugar, unnecessary fat or an oven. Her raw brownies are an absolute triumph and are fast becoming one of my favourite things. These feature in her first book, which I would recommend to anyone and everyone, and on her blog, which you can view here. Thank me later.

To make these brownies you simply tip 140g of pecans into a food processor and whizz them around until they form a crumbly mixture, then add 400g of pitted medjool dates, 3 tablespoons of cacao powder and 2 tablespoons of maple syrup. Process again until the mixture forms a glorious, sticky mess. Now, try not to eat it all straight away and instead press it into a tin. Pop it into the freezer for an hour to set, take it out, cut the slab into squares or fingers and store in the fridge. You then have a delicious, yet nutritious, snack or dessert any time you need it.

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Making these brownies really couldn’t be easier. Yes, you will need a loan to buy the ingredients, but the rewards are more than worth it. I’m never one to preach about quality of ingredients as everyone has their own budget that they need to stick to, but there is a reason why certain things need to be used here. The dates need to be medjool dates, not just so that you can feel smug as you add them to your trolley, but because all other kinds of dates are drier and therefore will not provide the required amount of stickiness which acts as the glue to keep the brownies together. The cacao powder is not only much better for you than cocoa powder, the taste is just so different. Cacao powder is insanely chocolatey and surprisingly not as bitter as cocoa powder, plus you need to use much less of it so it lasts longer despite the initial eye watering cost. I’m a complete convert now and don’t think I will ever buy cocoa again.

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I need to thank Ella for bringing these brownies into my life. There is still a time and a place for the traditional brownie (with Oreos baked into them please), but these really are just as good and have the advantage of being healthy. I’m not sure I will ever be able to make it through an afternoon at work without one now.

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Washing Up Score: 2/10 – Under normal circumstances, I would rather eat cat food than wash up my food processor, but the fact that these are made in less than 5 minutes means I feel so smug when I’ve made them that even cutting my hand on the processor blade can’t bring me down from this chocolate high.