My two British food “heroes” are currently and unashamedly, Jamie Oliver and James Ramsden. The first needs no introduction but the second is a very talented blogger and this dish is loosely based on two recipes from his book “Small adventures in Cooking”.
- Olive oil, 20ml
- Onion, 1
- Chickpeas, 1/2 tin
- Red kidney beans, 1/2 tin
- Pinto beans, 1/2 tin
- Tomato puree, 1 Tbsp
- Spinach, 1/2 tin
- Coconut milk, 150ml
- Juice of 1 lemon
- Garlic clove 1
- Curry powder, 1 Tbsp
- Chilli, 1 pinch
- salt and pepper
The beans add a nice texture and plenty of protein to this version, but if you have trouble digesting them, just skip!
Melt the chopped onion in a bit of olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
Add the spices and the beans, then the drained spinach, the crushed garlic, the tomato paste and lemon juice.
Bring to a boil and let simmer for about 10 minutes. Pour in the coconut milk towards the end so it does not ever boil.
Serve hot with some naan bread or chapattis.
This curry is delicious re-heated and will keep for a few days in the fridge.
The greatness of this dish is that every ingredient is coming out of a tin and can be stored in your cupboard. Perfect when the fridge has been empty for days because of exam stress! Or just when work is getting out of hand…
I am leaving the country at dawn and throwing this recipe as a life-line to the three men of my life who are going to have to cook for themselves from tomorrow evening!…
A few healthy baking tips
I am passionate about nutrition and well-being and I want this blog to reflect good practice but at the same time I love cakes and puddings and want to preserve indulgence in an increasingly “hygienic” modern life!
So… here are a few tips to try and reconcile baking with health:
– Never use Trans- or any hydrogenated fat.
– Replace butter with rapeseed oil wherever possible.
– Skimp on sugar: Measures given are always over the necessary amount!
– Don’t add salt – or very little.
– Replace plain flour with wholemeal or, better even: use spelt flour. It is less refined and more digestible.
– Experiment with unusual and forgotten basics such as buckwheat flour, spelt or chickpea; chesnut flour, Agar Agar (for low calorie jellies) or Arrowroot (in lieu of corn-flour in stews or sauces).
– Do everything from scratch: stay away from fluorescent packets…
– Read the labels and don’t use anything your grand mother would have sneered at! If it does not sound edible, it is not edible.
– Use raw cane sugar: It contains more minerals, carries more flavour and is usually cheaper than refined.
– Use the natural sugar of fruit: a handful of currants in yogurt, a grated apple in porridge.
– Flavour with spices rather than salt or sugar: try using and abusing cinnamon, smoked paprika or chilli! Exercise moderation with the latter though – not everybody has the marmoreal palate of Jamie Oliver…
– If you have to use sugar in drinks, use fructose. It will not raise your blood sugar so it is better for your long-term health (Low GI).
– Have a piece of fruit rather than eat ready-made cakes or biscuits. Keep homemade ones as a treat for when you have time to bake and indulge your inner-Nigella!