STUFFED EGGPLANT BOATS

A simple delicious combination of carbohydrate(low), protein(high) healthy fats and vegetable with loads of vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients(antioxidants)that are brain and heart healthy.

Egg plant or Aubergine stuffed with spicy ground beef and chick pea sauce, the egg plant balances the flavours from the fiery ingredients in the sauce, giving this meal a subtler taste, simply divine.
Great for a week day dinner, easy and simple to make. This meal was inspired by “Moussaka” a Greek cuisine made with eggplant or potatoes, flour, milk and seasonings. I fell in love with this dish while on vacation in Greece mainly due to it’s simplicity. And the chef at the hotel was kind enough to write me the recipe( I had to ask for the recipe to satisfy my adventurous palate 😃).
As always I had to recreate the recipe to make it healthier and that’s how I ended up with these lovely boats!20180626_190339.jpg
Before we go to how to make, let’s get a sneak peek into our base AUBERGINE which is the main ingredient for this dish. If you’ ve read my About page, you’ll know why I pay close attention to my ingredients I like to know what I’m eating and how it benefits my body. So, I don’t mean to bore you with long reads…Ha-ha

sure, you’ll find it useful!

Aubergine is a great low calorie addition to any meal. it is high in dietary fibre both soluble and insoluble fibre (about 3g fibre per cup) and adds a lot of bulk to your meal which helps reduce your appetite because it absorbs water in the digestive tract making you feel fuller for longer. Fibre regulates rate at which food is digested and contributes to satiety which keeps us feeling fuller for longer.

Soluble fibre dissolves in water and forms a gel that moves through the intestine and slows digestion preventing cholesterol and high blood sugar.(so great for maintaining a stable blood sugar)
while insoluble fibre– does not dissolve in water, helps to bulk up stool and so that it can be passed easily. prevents constipation, eliminates toxic wastes through the colon and balances the PH level in the intestine stopping your gut bacteria from producing substances that can cause colon cancer both types of fibre are needed for weightloss or weight management and for a better digestive health.

I try to add more fibre to my meals and tend to go for ingredients that contain a fair dose of both soluble and insoluble fibre and egg plant is one of them.

Also why getting enough fibre in is good it also important to maintain a balance because if fibre is taken in excess it can make food move too quickly reducing the amount of minerals absorbed from food and can lead to digestive problems like
Gastritis, bloating, diarrhoea and cramps.

the recommended daily reference intake for adults is about 30g according to the British nutrition foundation
AGE 2-5(15g), 5-11 years (20g), 17 and over (30g).

So it is important to keep your meals as balanced as possible because no single ingredient is magic on it’s own.
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choose ones that are firm, smooth shiny with a vibrant colour. I have also learnt to check that my egg plant is not bruised before buying as this means that the flesh inside is decayed.
the stem and cap should still be green as pictured above.
Always test for ripeness by gently pressing the skin with your thumb, if it bounces back the egg plant is ripe, but if the mark remains then it is not.

INGREDIENTS
– 1 Large Aubergine(egg plant)
– 1/2 pack ground beef
– 1/2 can chick peas ( I used freshly cooked, i always batch cook my chickpeas store in tubs and freeze makes it handy for speedy meal preps)
– 1/2 canned tomatoes(low sugar option)I used 3 fresh red tomatoes
– 1 scotch bonnet or 1tsp chilli powder(depends largely on how spicy you can go, adjust accordingly)
– 1/2 Tsp dried oregano
– 1 onion (chopped)
– 1 Tsp coriander or cumin
– 2 cloves of garlic and oregano
– 1Tbsp olive oil and pinch of salt to taste
– handful of grated mozzarella for topping
– Parsley or herb of choice and a slice of lemon for garnishing

METHOD

1- wash and half your egg plant, use a spoon to scoop out the inside leaving about an inch, careful not to pierce the skin. Gently rub with pinch of salt oregano and olive oil(feel free to use any other herb)
Place in a greased oven tray and pop into pre heated oven and bake for 10mins. Then chop the meaty part scooped and set aside.

2- While the eggplant is baking, sauté your garlic and onions in a skillet, then add ground beef crumbling with a wooden spoon till meat is brown and no longer red. then add tomatoes, chopped meaty flesh of the egg plant, season with the rest of the ingredients and cook for about 8mins and remove skillet from hob.

3- divide sauce between the halved eggplant, sprinkle with cheese
20180626_185136.jpgand pop back into the oven just for the cheese to melt. take out and garnish with lemon and parsley.

VEGAN/VEGETARIAN
just use chickpeas with other veggies of choice.

Serves 1

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MUSHROOM AND CHICKEN BULGUR PILAF

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The simplest and fastest meal you will ever make (20 mins cooking time)
A low calorie smart food with a chunk of protein, fiber, B vitamins and antioxidants.Perfect for lunch or dinner, vegan friendly without the chicken.
I have used Oyster mushrooms in this recipe because they make a great low calorie addition to any meal(37cal per cup)adding bulk and that feeling of fullness.

You will get 5 servings from this recipe
Monday – Friday lunch or dinner

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INGREDIENTS
▶️ 100g bulgur wheat
▶️1 cup oyster mushroom
▶️1 onions (chopped)
▶️1cup coconut milk
▶️1Tsp tarragon
▶️1 Tsp white pepper
▶️1Tbsp coconut amino or worcester sauce
▶️2cups of water(400mls〰️)
▶️2.5 Tbsps coconut oil
▶️2 large green peppers ( chopped)
▶️3sticks celery and cloves of garlic( chopped)
▶️ salt to taste.
How to make🔽

1. Wash bulgur properly, cook in 2 cups of water, pinch of salt , tarragon &1/2 tsp coconut oil over medium heat, add coconut milk after 6 mins and cook to Al dente and set aside.20180624_142711

2. In a skillet over medium heat add 2tbsps coconut oil sautee onions and garlic for 3mins add chicken breast fillets and seasonings. keep stiring till well cooked.

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3. Add other veggies fry till fragrant then lastly add cooked bulgur and mix tn combine well, add extra herb( optional) reduce heat at this point and cook for 2-3mins and take off the hob. 🙌aviary-image-1529852714663

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COCONUT FLOUR PANCAKES WITH MIXED BERRY COMPOTE

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It is such a delight to finally share this coconut flour pancake recipe after several attempts. with a bit of creativity, I was able to put together this perfect fluffy low-carb, gluten free pancake paired with a delicious homemade fruit compote simply nutritious and loaded with antioxidants, warm, fruity with a touch of natural sweetness.
Pancakes are great weekend breakfast treats in my house hold, my kids always look forward to it so having a healthier version of the traditional regular flour pancakes or the shop bought ones which are usually loaded with a lot of nasties is a great addition to our healthy eating menu and means I can indulge without the guilt. they unbelievably couldn’t tell the difference except that it smells very coco. Nutty!!

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SO WHY COCONUT FLOUR?
Healthy eating for me, involves looking for alternatives which completely rules out that feeling of deprivation and in so doing makes eating healthily a long-term goal.
After countless research (thanks to google) I settled for coconut flour as it is said to be the healthiest alternative of all baking flours.
Whole grain flours are also healthy, but some people have digestive problems when they eat it, but coconut flour is grain free and non-inflammatory (good news!!)
coconut flour has a high fiber content (12g per 1/4cup), high protein (7gper 1/4 cup) 3 g of fat and 120 calories in comparison with oat and quinoa flour with the same protein and fiber content but higher in calories.

The high fiber and protein contents means a stable blood sugar as it helps slow down the release of sugar into the blood stream. great for weightless too as the high fiber and protein contents keeps you fuller for longer hence reduced tendency to over eat.
It also has a low carbohydrate content compared to other grains, about 1g of total carbohydrate per 2Tbsps without the fiber.

Coconut four is a good source of healthy fat, it contains MCT (medium chain triglycerides)which has been shown to speed up the rate at which food is broken down.

BEST TYPE OF COCONUT FLOUR
After several experiments I find that there are different types of coconut flour out there and sometime can be challenging to make the right choice. if we must eat healthy it is important that we are eating the right thing, I once bought one that is very white and odourless (probably over refined), I couldn’t perceive that coconut smell and my batter crumbled easily with that flour any time I bake with it, so I had to swap to the RAW ORGANIC COCONUT FLOUR which in my opinion is the best. it is ceramic in colour and full of coconut flavour and a better batter consistency Now that we know why we’ve used coconut flour in this pancake recipe and the type of flour to use, LET’S GET BAKING!

INGREDIENTS
-2 Tbsps coconut flour
-2 Tbsps Almond butter(I used pipandnut, feel free to use any brand)
-2 large eggs
-1/4Tsp baking soda
-1/4 Tsp cream of tartar
-60mls coconut milk

METHOD
1. carefully separate egg white from yolk into different bowls
2. Mix the coconut flour, baking soda, almond butter, coconut milk and egg yolk in a large bowl and set aside.
3. Add egg whites and cream of tartar in a clean dry bowl and whisk to a stiff peak(i used a hand mixer) and set aside
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4. Slowly fold in the egg white into your batter untill well combined.
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5. lightly grease pan with coconut oil(i used about 1/2tsps this will depend on the size of your scoop)and scoop about 2-3 Tbsps over a mediun low heat, when bubbles appear in the center of the pancake flip and cook for extra 2mins

COMPOTE INGREDIENTS
– 150g fresh or frozen fruits( i used 75g mixed berries and 75g cherries)

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-3Tbsps water
– 1 Tsp of honey(optional)
-1/4 tsp ground cinnamon and ginger(optional)
Wash fruits properly, place water and juice in a pan and bring to boil over medium heat, lower heat once bubbling and use a wooden stick to mash the fruits up to mix well( or slightly blend with a hand mixer to break up chunks a bit). cook for another 5-8mins on low heat, remove from the hob and transfer into a clean jar.
serve with your pancake20180610_061527

OFFAL MEAT LOAF

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Bringing you one of the most traditional pricedOffal meat loaf dish ever. Offal brings back childhood memories, my mum will use organ meats for almost all her dishes reason being that it is very healthy and will keep you away from the doctors(right!!) my Dad will always get the most vital parts as it is traditionally believed that offal is the king of all meats and should be firstly served to the head of the home and then the rest shared amongst the family members .I wasn’t a huge fan of the offal because of the frequency at which it was eaten(almost every meal had liver or kidney)I however enjoyed it with rice…kidney and liver fried rice insanely delicious goodness.
Several years after, in my search for nutrient dense foods, I came across a book OFFAL A GLOBAL HISTORY by Nina Edward(2013) and a few other articles, I was enlightened about offal nutrition and it became clear to me why my mum was all about organ meats(kidney, liver and heart). So I decided to welcome them back into my kitchen in a way that will be more entertaining and fun to eat, I must confess it was a smart choice
Exquisitely flavourful…yummy goodness with a load of health punch.

WHAT MAKES OFFAL A SUPERFOOD?
-They are an excellent source of quality protein(high BV)
-Most concentrated form of vitamin A
-Excellent source of vitamin A, D, E,K(fat soluble vitamins)
-excellent source of folic acid and CoQ10 a heart healthy vitamin
-Enhances metabolism and production of collagen and elastin
-anti-inflammatory and good source of essential fatty acids(omega 3)
The exciting part of the story is that it contains zero carbohydrate, overall calories are from protein and fats. it’s a definite way to fire up protein intake…hello to weightloss(protein keeps you fuller for longer, curbs appetite)and a more sustained energy level.

What do you factor in when you eat? for me 2 things- nutritional gain and flavour!! this offal loaf gives you this and even more, it will make sense that this nutrient dense food is a good part of a natural diet and would be healthful if eaten in moderation as a regular diet.
So get adventurous look at all that nutritional gains,
OK!! enough of the details, lets get cooking!!

INGREDIENTS
– 1KG Offal(liver, kidney,)
-1 large onions
-2 garlic cloves
-2spring onions
-Dill or cilantro(or any herb of choice)
– Mixed bell pepper
-pepper and salt( i used scotch bonnet)

INSTRUCTIONS
1- Wash the offal in water, cut into smaller chunks and throw into a food processor or blender along with your other ingredients except bell peppers.
blitz to a smooth or coarse texture(mine was coarse)

2- grease loaf tin with coconut oil or any oil of choice and line with bacon rashers

3-Add a layer of the offal mixture then place sliced mixed bell peppers in the middle

4- pour the rest of the mixture over it and wrap as shown in the picture. bake in preheated oven and bake for 45mins or until browned and firm.

serve with any veggie of choice or salad as a main meal. we had it with roasted butternut squash and lightly sautéed spinach… simply Divine!

NOTES: YOU CAN LEAVE THE BACON OUT FOR A COMPLETELY NATURAL EXPERIENCE
IF YOU WANT THE FLAVOUR LESS INTENSE, SOAK IN SALTED WATER FOR A FEW HOURS.
THE MIXED PEPPERS KEEPS YOUR LOAF MOIST, BUT FEEL FREE TO USE BOILED EGGS OR WHAT EVER YOU FANCY OR JUST BAKE WITHOUT LAYERING.
IT IS IMPORTANT TO POUR A LITTLE WATER IN THE OVEN TRAY DURING COOKING TIME KEEPS YOUR LOAF MOIST AND TO GET MORE GRAVY FROM THE LOAF.

If you make it ,please don’t forget to use tags #healthfulnonye#hardynonye

Thanks for joining me!

Unlock the power of nutrition and eat yourself beautiful

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