Friday, 24 February 2017

Purple Sweet Potato Smoothie Bowl with Crunchy Cacao Nibs

Spring is trying to emerge (see daffodil!) and the marginally less inclement weather means I feel less freakish for indulging in my perennial smoothie bowl fixation.

The crunch of the cacao nibs interspersed in the smoothie gives little bites of texture as well as pops of deep cacao flavour. It goes especially well with the earthy sweetness of the sweet potato. This is more dessert than smoothie bowl.

Purple Sweet Potato Smoothie Bowl with Crunchy Cacao Nibs

Friday, 17 February 2017

Mango and Sweet Potato Satay Noodle Salad

Unlike regular potatoes, which can be toxic to humans in their uncooked form, owing to a dangerous alkoloid called solanine, sweet potato can actually be consumed raw. However, it is worth highlighting that large quantities are not recommended as they do contain an enzyme inhibitor (trypsin) that can make digestion of proteins difficult, so don't go chowing down on multiple portions in one sitting!

Mango and Sweet Potato Satay Noodle Salad

Thursday, 16 February 2017

Super Super Simple Chocolate Pots

Imagine the scenario: it is 5pm on Valentine's Day. I am in the midst of role as tea time chef to one child, while already en route to donning my chauffeur cap to pick up the other one. Simultaneously I am cooking tonight's dinner for the grown ups and flinging laundry off the clothes line to make way for the next load about to come out of the washing machine. Washing up is piled almost to head height and bedtime is closing in. Suddenly I am struck by the realisation that on this most commercially recognised romantic day of the calendar year, I probably should have made an effort to prepare a romantic meal encompassing a decadent dessert. Oops.

Super Super Simple Chocolate Pots

Friday, 10 February 2017

Chestnut Mocha (Coffee) Dairy Free Vegan Cheesecake

I have no idea how I've travelled this food blog journey without yet making a coffee flavoured dessert. Every day after lunch I have my regular daily cup of coffee - nothing fancy as I don't own a coffee machine but I totally enjoy that moment of blissful idleness. It's the chasm between the morning's mania and the impending afternoon chaos. It's a small fissure of freedom but that's what coffee o'clock denotes to me.

Chestnut Mocha (Coffee) Dairy Free Vegan Cheesecake
 

Friday, 3 February 2017

Thai Coconut Soup with Mushrooms, Pak Choi and Sweet Potato

Warm and fragrant but so simple to throw together. I used a mix of oyster, maitake and shiitake mushrooms but the soup works just as well with a handful of enoki or plain old chestnut or button if less exotic options are available. Include the chilli seeds if you like it hot or alternatively omit chillies altogether and add a few thinly sliced red peppers for colour without heat.

Thai Coconut Soup with Mushrooms, Pak Choi and Sweet Potato

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

Mango Pudding 芒果布甸

There is nothing my daughter loves more when we go for dim sum than the Mango Pudding (aka 芒果布甸) that we ritualistically order for dessert. It is without doubt her favourite part of the meal. This year we decided to celebrate Chinese New Year with a meal at home and I couldn't let her down!

Mango Pudding 芒果布甸

Friday, 27 January 2017

Miso Aubergine Salad

Happy Chinese New Year of the Rooster for tomorrow! Sending out good wishes to all for the lunar year ahead!

Miso Aubergine Salad 

Yes, I am fully aware that miso is not considered 'paleo' but I'm Chinese and soy has featured fairly prevalently throughout my dietary lifetime - whether I consumed it a lot (while in Asia) or not at all (in my early Paleo days) has made little discernible difference to the way I feel. Some may argue the damage is stealthy and I will rue my indifference but I'll take my chances.

Friday, 20 January 2017

Mint Choc Chip Sweet Potato Cookie Dough

I went through a phase as a teenager when I just LOVED cookie dough. Back then cookie dough was still pretty novel, imported from our friends across the pond - and like my childish longing for an American accent and braces, I embraced all things of that ilk without question. Luckily my parents never bought into it and it was a rare indulged treat.

Mint Choc Chip Sweet Potato Cookie Dough

Friday, 13 January 2017

Sweet and Sour Red Cabbage with Pomegranate

Even though this was a side dish I made for Christmas Day there's no reason it should only be rolled out on an annual basis. Red cabbage is still plentiful and the balance of juicy sweet pomegranate and apple against the tangy sharpness in this dish makes this a thoroughly moreish remake of an oft underrated vegetable.

Sweet and Sour Red Cabbage with Pomegranate

Friday, 6 January 2017

Hawaiian Fried Cauli-Rice with Pineapple and Chicken

Time to put away the industrial-sized tins of festive goodies (mince pies/ chocolates/ alcohol/ cheese - name your preferred poison!) and crack on with 2017 folks!

This is a simple yet healthful and still super tasty mid-week meal to ease back into normality. The children love this - though they prefer it with actual rice rather than riced cauliflower so feel free to sub rice if you fancy. I ate way more rice than usual over the holidays as my parents make the best rice, plus they have a snazzy new rice cooker! For vegans adding diced firm tofu instead of chicken works just as well.

Hawaiian Fried Cauli-Rice with Pineapple and Chicken

Saturday, 31 December 2016

The Magic of Tidying


Recently I finally got round to reading Marie Kondo's self-professed life-changing book about tidying, 'The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying'. It had been waiting patiently on my To-Read list for such a long time and the time had arrived - I was ready and receptive. Subconsciously I had already started; having Kondo-ed many of my clothes drawers with her eponymous 'KonMari' method of folding and vertically stacking my clothes.

Tidy House, Tidy Bowl, Tidy Mind

Thursday, 22 December 2016

Sesame Crust Tuna Steak with Vegetable Ribbon Salad

I presume there are enough Christmas turkey recipes out there in cyberspace this week so here is something different. There is only one rule: do not overcook the tuna. Unless, of course, you like it that way! Happy Christmas to all x

P.S. Apologies about the photo quality: Real life dinner = Real life lighting!

Sesame Crust Tuna Steak with Vegetable Ribbon Salad

P.P.S. This is the final recipe from a special three course anniversary dinner I prepared for a special someone. See Scallops and Chorizo for the starter and Anniversary Chocolate Pots for the dessert.

Friday, 16 December 2016

Lingonberry and Lemon Bliss Balls

It's the run up to Christmas which means festive foods aplenty. My birthday also coincides with this time of year so double the excuse for dietary indulgence. Unfortunately these past weeks have left me feeling saddened, full of anxiety and seriously lacking in seasonal cheer as we experienced a burglary. Worse still is the knowledge that we will never know the identity of the culprit - who indeed and most likely is someone we know.


These cheerful pink balls were made while I was ironically blissfully unaware of what was in store and I long for that feeling of being worry-free. I've been meaning to incorporate my recently discovered lingonberry powder into a recipe and simultaneously was after a fun way to brighten up my brithday cake. Lingonberries are tart, red berries similar to cranberries and are rich in antioxidants and vitamins A and C.

Friday, 9 December 2016

Roast Purple Kale with Lime Cashew Sauce

If you want to stumble across some of this delightful purple 'Buttonhole' kale, you could hunt it down in your local Waitrose store. It has a lovely mild, almost sweet flavour and looks really pretty to boot! Pair it with the zingy and creamy cashew sauce and you have a simple lunch or a beautiful side dish.

Roast Purple Kale with Lime Cashew Sauce

Thursday, 1 December 2016

Raw Blueberry 'Cheese' Cake

In America a 'Pot Luck' is defined as 'a meal or party where each guest contributes a dish'. Here in the UK it is more likely interpreted as 'taking your chance that whatever is available will be good or acceptable'. Funnily, in this situation, both applied!

For the Christmas party of the parents in my daughter's class we were all tasked with bringing a dish. This alleviated the worry of identifying at least one safe food choice but at the same time raised a whole new concern about foisting my own dietary inaneness on others and potentially eliciting criticism and ridicule.

Raaw Blueberry 'Cheese' Cake

Friday, 25 November 2016

Raw Lemon and Poppy Seed Cake Balls

What to do when cake craving strikes but the internal tug of war between the inner clean-eating angel and wayward sugar fiend is in the midst of a civil war without end in sight? Step forward these no-bake cake balls.

Raw Lemon and Poppy Seed Cake Balls


Friday, 18 November 2016

Cumin Roast Delicata Squash with Celeriac Rice and Matcha Tahini Dressing

You would not believe how excited I was when I spotted a delicata squash in my local Waitrose! Almost as excited as I used to get when I found a Louboutin in my size at a sample sale - trust me; that is VERY excited!

Common as they are in the US they are still fairly hard to come by here in the UK where the butternut has a monopoly on the supermarket squash scene. The skin is edible - and looks oh so pretty sliced in the horizontal don't you think? Just make sure to wash it well and remove seeds.

Cumin Roast Delicata Squash with Celeriac Rice and Matcha Tahini Dressing

Friday, 11 November 2016

Persimmon and Squash Autumn Slice

My children and I absolutely LOVE sharon fruit (aka persimmon). Recently, as I bit into a particularly ripe and delicious one I experienced what can only be described as a Proustian memory - the same taste, smell and texture shelved in a box decades old; the home I shared with my parents, sisters and brother; the way the sunset always cast a luminous orange glow across the red carpet (yes, it was hideous!) in the living room. It is distant yet close - like the family I now see so rarely: logistically distant but always in my heart...

Persimmon and Squash Autumn Slice

Friday, 4 November 2016

Pear Watercress and Beetroot Salad

Autumn is here. Pears are abundant. Despite the colder weather I am clinging persistently to my lunchtime salads before they hibernate to make way for winter warmers. This autumnal bowl combines the sweetness of pears with earthy beetroot and crunchy pecans. The caperberries provide a little sharp and salty zing which is balanced out by the mellow creamy tahini dressing. And plenty of immune boosting nutrients and vitamin C in watercress to ward off those pesky colds.

Pear Watercress and Beetroot Salad

Friday, 28 October 2016

Green & Pinks: Basil Lime Smoothie and Strawberry Chia Breakfast Bowl

When you can't decide what colour smoothie to have you can have both. Together. The basil, lime and lemongrass flavours are a refreshing wakeup call. They balance well with the subtly sweet strawberries and hydrating cucumber in the pink chia mix.

Green & Pinks: Basil Lime Smoothie and Strawberry Chia Breakfast Bowl

Friday, 21 October 2016

Scallops and Chorizo

Scallops were served as the starter at our wedding many moons ago so it only seemed fitting that they make another appearance at an anniversary dinner. This well-established combination of scallops with chorizo is one we've been making and eating for years, inspired originally by a recipe from Nigella Lawson's 'Nigella Express'.

Scallops and Chorizo

Friday, 14 October 2016

Anniversary Chocolate Pots

Once upon a time, I ate dairy... AND gluten AND sugar aplenty! I remember once making this ludicrously rich and utterly decadent chocolate pudding for a dinner party.

Anniversary Chocolate Pots

Friday, 7 October 2016

Tahini Aubergine with Parsley and Pumpkin Seeds

This can be used both as a lovely vegetarian main or as a vegetable side. Feel free to substitute the pumpkin seeds for another seed and toast them if you have both time and a penchant for extra crunch. I love to eat mine alongside a big salad as a main or with a quick sautee of vegetables when the idea of washing a pan isn't too hard work! Lazy? Very!

Tahini Aubergine with Parsley and Pumpkin Seeds

Friday, 30 September 2016

Mango Coconut and Carrot Bliss Balls

Blissful in that they taste divinely creamy, sweet and deliciously treatlike. Also in that any child (or fussy grown up) will be blissfully ignorant that they are inadvertently consuming hidden carrots and antioxidant rich turmeric!

Mango Coconut and Carrot Bliss Balls

Friday, 23 September 2016

Paleo Beetroot and Artichoke Hummus

Never was there quite such a quandary on the spelling of a word than with 'hummus' - or is it 'houmous' or 'houmus', which I used in my previous two 'hummus/houmous/houmus' recipes and can be found here Lemon and Rosemary Artichoke Houmus and here Smoked Paprika and Porcini Artichoke Houmus.

Paleo Beetroot and Artichoke Hummus

Thursday, 15 September 2016

Pumpkin Pie Hidden Vegetable Smoothie Bowl

Why I bothered to state the obvious about 'hidden vegetables' in the title is a mystery to me given I hide vegetables in every meal!

Pumpkin Pie Hidden Vegetable Smoothie Bowl

Friday, 9 September 2016

Sweet Potato Turkey Indian Spiced Patties

Over the busy summer holidays I have been trying to make meals that:
a) cater to the tastes of all members of the family (quite a tall order given the diversity of strong likes and dislikes;
b) require minimal fussing over a hob in the summer heat;
c) can be served cold straight from the fridge for efficient leftover lunches.

Sweet Potato Turkey Indian Spiced Patties

These little patties do just the job. despite the fragrant Indian spices they are not too spicy for the children (or husband) but flavourful enough to elicit a general consesus of approval. A winner in our household!

Friday, 2 September 2016

No-Bake Mini Matcha Sesame Dougnuts

Let me be very clear at the outset: aside from their shape these bear absolutely zero resemblance to the average doughnut! That's not to say they don't taste good but there is truly nothing worse than unmet expectations - spiralling into disappointment, frustration and potential anger... After all, this is the highly sensitive subject of doughnuts, people!

No-Bake Mini Matcha Sesame Dougnuts

Friday, 26 August 2016

Fennel Peach and Cucumber Simple Summer Salad

I make so many variations of this salad in the summer. It is super quick to make, satisfyingly crunchy and fresh. Add or omit whatever salad bits you might have lurking in the fridge; as long as there is a juicy piece of seasonal stone fruit, the aromatic crisp crunch equivalent to fennel and the hydrating freshness of cucumber and mint! An effective #happinesshack is a big bowl of this salad in the warm sunshine; my little robin friend flitting by the cherry tree in the garden.... Summer days...
 
Fennel Peach and Cucumber Simple Summer Salad

Friday, 19 August 2016

Blueberry Lemon Parsnip Dairy Free Cheesecake

A few weeks ago a fellow food blogger, Audrey Snowe aka The Unconventional Baker, who I admire immensely, instigated a little interactive Instagramming to encourage some social chitchat and engagement (albeit on a virtual level).

Blueberry Lemon Parsnip Dairy Free Cheesecake


Friday, 12 August 2016

Sundried Tomato Pesto and Olive Mini Muffins

Handy as an 'on the go' breakfast, snack or lunch. Packed with protein and good fats from eggs, olives and walnuts; antioxidant rich sundried tomatoes and garlic; and anti inflammatory basil, these mini muffins are satisfyingly filling. The nutritional yeast adds a cheesy hint; bringing together the intense sundrenched tomato and olive flavours of the Mediterranean. Yum!

Sundried Tomato Pesto and Olive Mini Muffins

Friday, 29 July 2016

Peach Mint Avocado and Pistachio Salad with Trout and Moroccan Spiced Dressing

Juicy sweet peaches, fresh mint, creamy avocado, crunchy pistachios and earthy beetroot, topped with flakes of subtle pink trout. A perfect summer salad. Alternatively, leave out the fish and serve as a large side platter to accompany barbecues all season long...

Peach Mint Avocado and Pistachio Salad with Trout and Moroccan Spiced Dressing


Friday, 22 July 2016

Matcha Cacao Nice Cream Cups

This cooling summer dessert is inspired by my Matcha-Maca-Cacao Tricolor Treats

Matcha Cacao Nice Cream Cups

It is super simple to make - no blender and only TWO core ingredients (plus a pinch of sea salt). The matcha and cacao add extra yumminess, colour and antioxidants but really, they're fabulous even without. Enjoy and make the most of the glorious summer sun  x

Friday, 8 July 2016

Turmeric and Coconut Cauliflower Steaks

This is a great meaty alternative for when vegan friends come for dinner. Serve alongside a rainbow of riced red cabbage and creamy ripe avocado before drizzling over a thick tahini dressing to bring it all together.


Turmeric and Coconut Cauliflower Steaks


Friday, 1 July 2016

Cleansing White Peach and Matcha Green Tea Smoothie Bowl

This is a great way to start the day as the matcha provides a lovely morning boost, with some caffeine and, more importantly, plenty L-theanine (an amino acid reported to boost concentration). The anti-ageing, antioxidant and detoxifying benefits are just extras thrown in for good measure.

Cleansing Peach and Matcha Green Tea Smoothie Bowl

Friday, 24 June 2016

Lemon and Rosemary Artichoke 'Houmus'

This is a variation on my Smoked Paprika and Porcini Artichoke Houmous - all the creamy deliciousness of regular houmous but replacing the legumes with more nutrient dense veggies. This version has a zingy lemon freshness and fragrant notes of rosemary picked from the garden.


Lemon and Rosemary Artichoke Houmous

Friday, 17 June 2016

Purple Sweet Potato Ice Cream

When I was little I often spent summers in Hong Kong. One of my most vivid food memories (and that is some feat given the quantity and variety of foods consumed per trip!) is the purple Ube flavoured ice cream. It was like nothing I'd ever seen here at home (and no, the blue bubblegum flavour ice lollies do not count). To think an actual real food had a colour as bright and fun as a Strawberry Shortcake cohort was mindbogglingly glorious!

Purple Sweet Potato Ice Cream

Friday, 10 June 2016

Red Cabbage Fig and Pistachio Moroccan Salad

Summer is here (in theory)! My lovely husband has awoken the barbecue from its state of hibernation and I am looking forward to relaxing meals al fresco. Again, relaxing in theory owing to the cooking being passed baton-like to the man of the house! Except in reality, barbecues aren't just about throwing a bunch of meat on the barbecue while laughing with carefree abandon over a chilled Pimms. If only.

Red Cabbage Fig and Pistachio Moroccan Salad

Friday, 3 June 2016

Apricot and Brazil Nut Cardamom Bliss Balls

The calming effect of rolling up a batch of bliss balls. These combine the tangy taste of unsweetened apricots (try to use unsulphured if possible even though the colour looks less pretty!) with the warmth of vanilla and cinnamon and an extra kick of aromatic spice from the complex flavour of cardamom.

Apricot and Brazil Nut Cardamom Bliss Balls

Friday, 27 May 2016

Two Tone Beetroot Spiralised Salad

Aside from being beautiful with the two tone jewel shades without a single E number in sight, red and golden beets provide a subtle diversity in nutrients and flavour.

Two Tone Beetroot Spiralised Salad

Friday, 20 May 2016

Raw Carrot Cake Squares

Though the general consensus of carrot cake is that it is healthy because it features a vegetable in its title, invariably this is just delusional and wishful thinking! However, all carrot cakes were not created equal...

Raw Carrot Cake Squares
 

Friday, 13 May 2016

Singapore Zoodles

As spicy or mild as you choose (add or remove chilli peppers/ seeds to taste), this dish was always a favourite growing up. Mum made it very spicy!

Singapore Zoodles

Friday, 6 May 2016

New York Post, Wednesday 4th May 2016!

One of my green smoothie bowls was pictured in a double page feature about smoothie bowls in the New York Post this week!

Matcha Maca Mint Green Smoothie Bowl

Thursday, 28 April 2016

Matcha Bliss Balls

I created these for my little boy whose favourite colour is green and I wanted to surprise him with something (naturally) green on the top of his birthday cake. He also has a mini obsession with bliss balls (as do I)!


These are nut-free but work really well with pistachio nuts instead of the sunflower seeds if there are no nut allergies to be catered to. Pistachio nuts also add even more green vibrancy to the end result.

Thursday, 21 April 2016

Water Chestnut Sushi Rolls

The ultimate carb and calorie free way to eat 'rice' is undoubtedly to blitz vegetable of choice into 'rice' like grains. Oftentimes blitzed up raw vegetables can be rather crumbly, rendering the process of making (and eating!) neat little sushi rolls a frustrating pastime.

Water Chestnut Sushi Rolls

Wednesday, 13 April 2016

Banana Brownie (Egg-free Nut-free Hidden Greens)

No sugar, no nuts, no eggs, no grains or gluten (obviously), no nasties. Contains hidden kale and spinach. And the best thing? The kids LOVE it!

Egg-free Nut-free Hidden Greens Banana Brownie

Wednesday, 6 April 2016

Raw Banana Bread Cookie Dough Balls

Super simple little wholesome snack using a few kitchen staples.

Raw Banana Bread Cookie Dough Balls

These are especially useful for school snack boxes as they are nut-free - just make sure they don't get too warm!

Thursday, 31 March 2016

Courgetti Meatballs with Speedy Squash-Mato Sauce

Weekday family friendly easy meals always come in useful. Save any leftover meatballs and serve cold with a salad the next day or in a lunchbox. If you have plenty of time then feel free to slowly simmer a more in-depth flavoured tomato sauce but this Squash-Mato Sauce is a quick and healthy 5 minute option. I serve them on raw spiralised courgette but any spiralised or mixed sauteed vegetable will do just fine.

Courgetti Meatballs

Wednesday, 16 March 2016

Chocolate Nut Butter Easter Eggs

These are adapted from my Guilt-Free Chocolate Recipe

Chocolate Nut Butter Easter Eggs

A little bit of fun for the Easter festivities without having to suffer any ill effects of sugar, dairy or gluten. I like my chocolate bitter and happily enjoy it without any sweetener but feel free to sweeten to taste with a little maple syrup or honey. To make these nut-free, try subbing the almond butter for tahini mixed with a little maple syrup or honey or use sunflower or pumpkin seed butter. Happy Easter x

Tuesday, 8 March 2016

Matcha Mint Green Protein Bowl

Another day another smoothie bowl! A perfect way to get in your 5 a day or simply a little pick me up snack or breakfast bowl. Never a wrong time for a bowl of green goodness. Cleansing, refreshing, vitamin packed and satisfyingly protein-rich. Have a good day x

Matcha Mint Green Protein Bowl

This recipe was created for the lovely people over at  Creative Nature Superfoods where you can get 10% discount on any of their products using code IMPAL10.