Banana and Apple Smoothie

Photo by Any Lane on Pexels.com

So, I recently started making this for when I feel I want a smoothie, but I don’t want all the hassle of loads of different ingredients. With this one, you are most likely to have these 3 main ingredients and even if you don’t have the others, it is still tasty and uplifting

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Ingredients:

Main:

  • 1 Apple, chopped up small into cubes or just bite sized pieces.
  • 1 banana, cut up small too.
  • 250ml of milk of your choice.

Extra:

  • A handful of blueberries
  • 1 Teaspoon of chocolate protein powder.

Method:

It is fairly straight forward, blend it all together in a blender such as a fruit ninja or nutri-bullet! Enjoy!


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Cranberry and Raisin Soda Bread

Really easy and went down a treat in my house! It was eaten very quickly haha. This loaf is perfect spread with salty butter accompanied with a cuppa tea.

You don’t need to be a pro baker to make this one!

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 plain flour
  • 2 1/2 cups of bread flour for seedy bread.
  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda/ Bicarbonate Soda
  • 2 Teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 Teaspoon of Salt
  • 3/4 Cup Raisins
  • Big handful of cranberries
  • 7 ounces soured cream
  • 1 teaspoon full fat milk
  • 2 eggs
  • Extra flour for dusting
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Method to the madness:

Preheat oven to 200°C. Line a small bread tin with greaseproof.
Whisk together flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, cranberries and raisins and salt in a large mixing bowl.


In a medium mixing bowl whisk together sour cream and eggs until fully combined.


Add the sour cream mixture to the flour mixture and stir with a sturdy spoon until combined. Batter will be thick and sticky.

It might appear quite runny, almost as runny as pancake batter, do not freak out! Mine was the same!
Scrape batter into prepared pan.

Bake for about 50 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

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Global Hunger

I had the idea for this post during my July project: Nature and Us. However as I couldn’t get it to fit in I wanted to make it a separate post all together.

Production of food and drink is a multi billionaire business. Eating is a basic human necessity and yet, despite all the food to go around, all of the food produced each year and the food available on the shelves, millions go hungry.

According to the BBC, as of 2020, 700 million people are going hungry. That number is increasing every year.

A meeting was held in 2019 by a branch of the UN and talks were held about food waste what needs to be done to make changes.

Our actions have consequences

The UN Environment Assembly met on the 11th to the 15th of March 2019. If you are interested in learning everything about this meeting, the records are public and posted here: The Fourth Session of the United Nations Environment Assembly.

In this meeting, they said “

Deeply concerned that approximately one third of the food produced annually in the world for human consumption, equivalent to some 1.3 billion tonnes and representing an approximate value of 990 billion United States dollars, is lost or wasted, while 821 million people suffer from
undernourishment
.”

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Why is so much food wasted?

Well, many reasons could factor but one answer is it goes off before it is used. Life is busy so when you get home after a long day on your feet you are not in the mood to make food for yourself.

There are recipes out there that can use few ingredients and take no more than 15 mins to make.

Find some of these recipes below:

If we can cut down our waste individually, over time it would make a difference globally.


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Italian Style Pasta

Okay, so I recently saw a video on YouTube on how to make Italian only using $10. I thought it looked actually pretty decent so I gave it a go! ( I have linked the video at the bottom of the blog post).

Now what was included in the video, it can be adjusted depending on where you live. For example, I don’t live in America I live in Britain so the names of the products or the brand changed. But here is the recipe, just adjust it for yourself!

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Ingredients:

  • 500g fusilli
  • 480g jar of Lasagna creamy, white sauce
  • 480g jar of Tomato pasta sauce
  • 400-500g of Turkey mince
  • 226g of shredded mozzarella.
  • Basil
  • Parsley
  • Salt and Pepper

Method:

Start by boiling your pasta in a big pan. Then in a frying pan, start cooking your mince, sprinkle your seasoning.

Once your pasta has been fully cooked, empty into a big mixing bowl. Add the fully cooked mince and the two jars of sauce and mix it all together.

Using a spoon, spoon it all into a big glass dish and sprinkle the mozzarella on top. Whack it into the oven at 170C or 350F for 15-20 mins.

Dish up and enjoy with salad and some garlic bread!!

Original video:

Food Challenge! Italian Style

Full credit the lady on YouTube! As you can see, my instructions are slightly different but the outcome is still the same, This recipe is delicious 😋. Let me know if you enjoy it yourself!

Finished product!
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Berry Smoothie Madness

I hate breakfast. For years I have said to my friends over and over: “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. I cannot believe you missed it!”. What a hypocrite I was!

I would always skip breakfast because I wanted that extra 15 minutes in bed, and no matter how justified I felt those 15 minutes were, my body was taking a hit. I would end up like a zombie, walking around yawning while my body was craving those nutrients to kick-start my day.

That was…until I found smoothies.

I’m no health expert. I’m really not. However, after drinking these smoothies over the course of April & May, I have really felt a difference in myself. I feel healthier because I know I am getting those vitamins in a morning. Just taking those 5-10 minutes before I go to bed to help my future self has really benefitted my mental health too.

I have also replaced caffeine. So instead of reaching for my morning coffee, which can cause gut issues, drinking smoothies makes me feel better! You do have to be careful how many sugary smoothies you have though. So do not be adding honey into the mix, but rather banana’s are the way to go!

I would like to quote the NHS on what they say, it is quite enlightening:

A 150ml glass of unsweetened fruit juice, vegetable juice or smoothie can count as a maximum of 1 portion of your recommended 5 daily portions of fruit and vegetables. In other words, limit the amount of fruit juice, vegetable juice or smoothie you have to no more than a combined total of 150ml a day (1 small glass).

NHS, Water, Drinks and your Health

So basically, just be balanced! I like to swap around what type of smoothies I drink, (such as the green smoothies I wrote about a little while ago) so they’re not constantly Berry smoothies which are my favourite. Here is what I like to put in my…

Very Berry Smoothie!

For this, you will need:

  • 1 Banana
  • 1 handful of Blueberries
  • 4 small strawberries or 2 big strawberries
  • Handful of raspberries
  • 1 healthy glug of Oat milk or other plant based milk.
  • 1 teaspoon of your chosen protein powder.
  • (Optional: I use a splash of beetroot juice if I have it in as it is a good source of potassium and it helps to lower blood pressure.)

Method:

Chop all of the fruit such as strawberries and the bananas. Put all of the ingredients in the blender and completely blend until smooth. If needs be, you can pour some more liquid into the mixture.

(Featured image by: https://images.app.goo.gl/hHmFEhampRpy8LSs7)

Chocolate Cookies

These cookies are very moreish and you can never just stop at one. Sadly they are not vegan but they are vegetarian friendly. This recipe can make quite a few cookies depending on how big your cookie cutter is. I used the rim of a glass for mine as I couldn’t find my cutters and it did the job!

They do not take very long to make and are simple enough that they are quick and can fill your chocolate craving! I hope you enjoy making them. Let me know how your baking goes!

Ingredients:

  • 220g Plain flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 145g caster sugar
  • 120g salted butter
  • 1tsp vanilla, I used Madagascan vanilla for mine.
  • 1 free-range egg
  • 40g cocoa powder

Method:

Add the baking powder to the flour and the salt. Whisk it together and put this aside for a moment. Cream the butter and sugar together with either a machine whisk or a hand held whisk for 30 seconds. Pour in your vanilla and the egg, whisk.

Gently put your cocoa powder in without trying to get it everywhere and mix it all together.

Add half of the dry mix you made earlier and fold it into the wet mix. Once it has fully mixed, add in the other half.

Fold your mix into a ball, cover in clingfilm and chill in the fridge for no more than 15 mins. After that, lightly flour your surface, flatten and cut with whatever cookie cutter you desire! Be creative, don’t be boring like me and go for round *winky face*

Place on a baking sheet and cook for 15 minutes at 175C.

Greenie goodness

What are the benefits of a green smoothie once you get past the colour?

Dr Joanna McMillan is a PhD qualified nutrition scientist, accredited practicing dietitian and former fitness instructor. She said that some of the commercial ones “are glorified fruit juices, served in enormous portions with only a little spinach to make them green.” However, if you make them at home instead and “make them with at least 70 per cent veggies, a little fruit and whatever other ingredients you want to add…then you have a fabulous nutrient rich drink”. (Source: Is your go-to green smoothie doing you any good? A nutritionist explains.)

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Full of fiber, which lowers cholesterol and glucose levels, keeps you feeling fuller for longer and regulates your body’s cleansing processes. It is also it’s a tasty way to get a strong dose of fruits and veggies, which provide vital nutrients like vitamin A, vitamin C, folate and potassium.

So:

  • 1 stalk of celery for your base vegetable
  • A big handful of spinach for your iron.
  • Add jucy pear in there.
  • A squeeze of lemon juice for sweetness and alkaline.
  • Then ginger for your superfoods!
  • 2 glugs of plant based milk, I chose Oat.
  • 1 banana.

Blend it all together in a blender and there ya have it! Goodness on the go!

Cover picture: https://images.app.goo.gl/g12DDCsr9cqZqUp88

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Palak Paneer

So I understand that the picture makes it look rather gross. However, this dish is so nice and tasty. The paneer when browned is just so sweet and squidgy. Soooo good!

Ingredients:

  • 220g Paneer
  • 2 Onions
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric
  • 600g spinach
  • 4 garlic
  • 1 green chilli
  • 1 ginger
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 200g peas
  • 1 tsp mild chilli powder

Recipe:

Cut the paneer into chunks and place in a bag. Add the salt, chilli and turmeric then shake to coat. In a frying pan with some oil, fry the paneer until browned. Add more of the oil if you need to.

Once paneer is cooked, remove to the side and add the onions, garlic, chilli, ginger, cumin, coriander and then fry.

Add spinach then blend until it’s a smooth sauté. Add paneer back in, then peas and garam masala. Cook on a low heat for a further 10 mins and then serve with rice. Serve!