Tag Archives: children


The Healthy Cooking Club on Sport and nutrition

I dedicate this short homemade video to all the under 18 running the Mini Marathon in London this Sunday.
May the sun shine and you all have a great day!

I will be rooting for my favourite contestant and supporting all of you up to Pall Mall.

This video is home-shot in my kitchen and lays down simple nutrition rules for children who want to get fit and eat better. All of the recipes are on the blog.


Le gâteau à l’orange des goûters de mon enfance

The Orange cake of my childhood 5 O’clocks

My nan does not enjoy cooking. That is what she says when asked: “No I don’t enjoy cooking”. Nobody believes her, yet she is so right. It is not cooking she enjoys, it is giving. Cooking is just a gift of love: A stew is in actual fact a hug, a cupcake is a kiss, a chocolate fondant a love letter… She used to bake a deliciously tanguy orange cake for our “goûter d’enfants”; of which the recipe has been lost even to her but I have found this one and I enjoyed it almost as much!

This is a recipe I dedicate to my brothers and all my cousins, to my mother and my lovely god-mother, in memory of happy days and in celebration of the “goûter” at Manille’s or Tatie Marie’s place. For a brief instant last week-end, a champagne tea-time gathered us again and the memories flooded back, illuminating a long darkened room in a nostalgic glow. 

Ingredients list:

  • Soft butter, 115g
  • Sugar 115
  • Eggs, 2 big
  • Fine flour, 150g
  • Baking powder, 1 tsp (1 sachet of levure chimique)
  • Orange, 1 (unwaxed)
  • lemon, 1 (unwaxed)
  • Salt
  • Orange blossom water, 1 Tbsp

Warm your oven to 190°C.

Mix the butter, sugar and eggs in the thermomix. Blend for 1 minute at 37° C, speed 4.

Add the flour and raising agent, zest and juice of the orange and lemon, salt. A pinch of salt will suffice and you can replace it with bicarbonate of soda. Add the orange blossom water.

(This is a nod to my tender grand-mother who can hardly bake without “Eau de fleurs d’orangers”!)

Mix for 20 seconds speed 4.

Put into a cake tin or several small cake tins: I filled 6 of them with this batter.

Bake 25 minutes or 15 min if using small tins.

Decorate the top with a light icing, mixed with a tablespoon of orange juice.

French post script: Recette trouvée sur Papilles en éveil.

Healthy bites for lunch box – raw and vegan!

  1. WE ARE WHAT WE EAT and that is why it is so important to only put the very best fuel into our bodies.
  2. Over two thirds of our plate (or our daily intake) should come exclusively from plant based food. Namely fruit, veg, carbohydrates and staple food like rice, grains, flours.
  3. We only need sugar in very small quantities and we should avoid added sugar in food such as sauces, bread, bought biscuits.

This is in three points the essence of the message I try to pass onto my children and family. They mostly take it in,  sometimes ignore it and rarely but otherwise expectedly rebel against it! So it was with glee on my part and relief on theirs that I recently was able to drill a slightly larger audience of fresh, open and eager minds!

Last wednesday, for the last session of the Healthy Cooking Club, I had a lot of fun designing a menu along those lines and as I was looking at including a sweet/pudding, I came across these fruit and nut balls. They are not only deliciously healthy but also very easy to make and gratifying for the children to roll . They can easily fit into a lunch box or can be used as snack on the go. They can be customised with an endless variety of dry fruit, nuts and even fresh fruits or seeds but here is the mix that I used for the photo:

Raw fruit balls

Ingredient list:

  • raisin, 1 cup
  • rolled oats, 1 cup
  • pecan nuts, 1/2 cup
  • ground almond, 1/2 cup
  • handful of pine nuts
  • dates, 1 cup
  • grated zest of one lime
  • Prune juice, 50 ml to bind
Process to a pulp, adding the juice along so that it helps binding the mix but do keep it touch dry. It must not get too sticky in your hands or rolling will not be such fun…
Now prepare three bowls : Fill one with raw unsweetened cacao, one with cinnamon and Allspice mixed with a little rice flour or cornflour and lastly one more with grated coconut.
Give latex gloves to the kids or oil your hands and take a marble size chunck of the mixture. Roll it lightly then dip into the covering you choose and roll into a ball. Remember your playdoh days! Modelling is so therapeutic it should be compulsory until A level… Dress on a pretty plate and enjoy – or reserve in clingfilm in the fridge.

For a real teatime treat, you could make yourself this amazing drink I discovered at TOMBO, japanese bistrot in South kensington: A frothy Macha latte with soya.
Recipe to come next!