Raspberry Recovery Bars

raspberry sports bar
Great for after a run

These are a delicious high calorie snack to have as part of your recovery from training or a race.

You could even crumble one up and serve over natural yoghurt or cottage cheese or as a delicious pudding with a few extra fresh raspberries on the side.

Raspberry Flapjack Slices are packed full vitamin C from the raspberries and healthy fats from the nuts, seeds, butter and coconut oil.

Try to use organic butter as it is higher in omega 3 oils and healthier than margarine.  Oats are a superfood as they release their energy slowly and are high in the soluble fibre beta-glucan that can help lower cholesterol.

If you are on a budget don’t be put off by having to buy the extra flax seeds, pumpkin or chia seeds – just add what you miss out with extra oats, or just buy one of the types of seeds.

Makes 10
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 10 minutes

350g oats
25g flax seeds
25g pumpkin seeds
25g chia seeds
50g organic butter
50g virgin coconut oil
50g honey
250g raspberries
20g coconut flour/oat flour

1. Preheat an oven to 180C, 350F, gas mark 4.  Line a 20cm x 4cm (8 x 1 ½ inch) square cake tin with a large piece of non-stick baking paper, snipping diagonally into the corners so that the paper fits snugly over the base and up the sides of the tin.
2. Grind the oats and seeds as this makes the mixture slightly finer and helps it stick together – these flapjacks have a tendency to crumble more than regular ones as they are lower in fat.  If you are short of time, grind only the flax seeds and chia seeds as your body doesn’t break these down.
3. Melt the coconut oil, butter and honey in a saucepan and add to the dry ingredients.  Add the oil/honey mix in stages, stirring well to make sure it is all incorporated.
4. Spoon two thirds of the mixture onto a baking tray and press it down firmly into the edges, ensuring it is at least 1cm deep.  Bake at 180C for 5 minutes.
5. While it is baking, blitz the raspberries in a blender or mash them with a fork.  Add the flour to thicken the consistency, and mix together
6. Remove the base from the oven and smooth the raspberry mixture over the top.
7. Sprinkle the remaining third of the oat mixture on top of the raspberries and press it down gently so it sticks into it.
8. Return to the oven for a further 5 minutes or until brown on top.
9. Leave to cool before cutting into pieces.

Nutritional Information – Per bar:
Calories 285 Kcal
Protein 7g
Carbs 29g
Fat 15g

Lisa Faulkner’s brie and strawberry parcels

Strawberry and Brie Parcels
Pastries for parties

Now that the warm weather’s here, how about some luscious cheese and berry pastries to enjoy at a picnic or evening soiree?

These dainty little pastries are great to hand round while warm from the oven, just remember to offer tiny paper napkins for sticky fingers.

Raw filo pastry dries out very quickly so keep the pastry covered until the very last minute. Unfold the sheets, take the top one off to use each time then recover the stack again.

Makes 24
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 10 minutes

270 g (9 ½ oz) pack of 6 frozen filo pastry sheets, defrosted
225 g (8 oz) Brie, cut into 24 pieces
225 g (8 oz) strawberries, about 12, each thickly sliced into 3
24 mint leaves
75 g (3 oz) butter, melted
Few rocket leaves and extra sliced strawberries to garnish, optional

1) Put one of the filo sheets in front of you and cut into eight rectangles, brush lightly with the melted butter then separate the pieces slightly. Add a second piece to four of the rectangles so that the second layer of pastry is at an angle to the first to make a star shape.
2) Add a piece of brie, a mint leaf and slice of strawberry to the centre of each then fold the edges of the pastry up and over the cheese stack, pinching just above the strawberry to make a little purse shaped parcel. Transfer to a baking sheet.
3) Repeat with the remaining sheets of pastry and filling ingredients. When all the parcels have been shaped brush the outsides with the remaining butter.
4) Bake in a preheated oven 180°C /350°F /Gas Mark 4 for about 10 minutes until the pastry is golden brown. Allow to cool for a few minutes then transfer to a serving plate; garnish with rocket leaves and extra strawberry slices if liked.

Make your own chocolate bars with 3 simple ingredients

Chocanistas of the world unite! Making chocolate is easy!

All you need is 3 simple ingredients.

Cacao powder, cacao butter and some sweetness. It’s the quality of the ingredient that counts.

Take The  Raw Chocolate Company’s Virgin Cacao Butter for example. It’s basically oil from raw organic cacao beans. Extracted without heat to ensure it keeps its nutrition, quality and wonderful chocolatey aroma.

Simple Raw Chocolate Recipe:

homemade chocolate
Enjoy making your own chocolate

90g Organic Virgin Cacao Butter
60g Raw Organic Cacao Powder
60g Organic Coconut Palm Sugar

1. Place the Cacao Butter in a bowl over a pan of hot water on a low heat and melt gently.
2. Leaving the bowl over the pan, add the coconut palm sugar to the melted oil and stir. 3. Then stir in the cacao powder and mix well using a balloon whisk or hand blender.
4. Spoon or pour into ice cube trays, silicon moulds or even a plastic tub to make one big chocolate bar!
5. Place in the fridge and leave to set.

For a flavoured Raw Chocolate, try adding any of the following: a pinch of cayenne or chilli powder, a drop or two of (food grade) peppermint or orange oil, orange zest, vanilla powder, sea salt, maca powder, dried fruit, nuts, spices… your life will never be the same again!

Christine’s Strawberry Cream Valentine Tarts – recipe

A perfect  celebratory dessert – creamy, rich and sweet. Ideal for Valentines Day: Christine Bailey’s Strawberry Cream Valentine Tarts

strawberry cream tarts1

Completely gluten free, grain free and vegan. Top with a fresh sliced strawberry or chocolate heart for a truly romantic treat.

Christine is a well known nutritionist, chef, presenter and author of many healthy recipe books.  Her latest book Nourish is a cancer care recipe book written in collaboration with the Penny Brohn Cancer Centre. Christine will be running a cancer care cookery demonstration on May 5th at CNE, Wokingham.  For more information and to book visit advancenutrition.co.uk/cookerydays

Preparation time: 15 minutes
Freezing time:2 hours 30 minutes
Suitable for: vegetarians, suitable for vegans, Dairy Free, Seed Free, Soy Free, Gluten Free, Egg Free

Serves 6

Base:
125g pecan nuts
75g pitted, soft dates
2tsp melted coconut butter
Filling:
250g cashew nuts
200ml Vanilla Rice Dream
225g Strawberries, chopped
3tbsp maple syrup
Pinch of Himalayan salt
115g melted coconut oil

1. Grease 6 metal rings and line the sides with a strip of baking parchment. Place on a lined baking sheet.
2. To make the base grind up the pecan nuts in a food processor until very fine.  Add the dates and coconut oil and process to form a sticky dough. Divide the dough between the metal ring bases and press down firmly to form a crust.
3. Place in the freezer for 30 minutes to harden
4. To make the filling place all the ingredients in a blender and process until smooth and thick.  Divide the filling between the metal rings.  Return the rings back into the freezer and freeze for 1-2 hours until firm.  Carefully remove the rings and place the desserts on individual serving plates.
5. Place in the fridge and allow to defrost for an hour before serving. They can be kept in the fridge until needed.
6. Top with berries or a chocolate heart to serve.

Vegan pancakes without eggs? Easy peasy recipe!

Vegan pancakes without the eggs are easy when you have the know how…

veganpancake5oz plain flour
2 tbsp sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
300ml water
1 tbsp oil
icing sugar for dusting
selection of fresh fruit

1. Add the dry ingredients to a bowl, make a well in the centre and add the wet ingredients. Whisk until blended.
2. Add a small amount of oil to a frying pan and place over medium heat. Check the oil is hot by adding a drop of batter, if it spits then it is ready.
3. Pour a scoop of batter into the pan. Brown on both sides.
4. Move pancake to plate. Arrange fruit on top shaped in a smile and serve with a sprinkling of icing sugar.

Buttermilk pancakes or Buckwheat crepes – gluten free pancake recipes for you

It’s the worst thing. Forgetting pancake day and having to do it all a day later.

So don’t forget, Pancake Day is Tuesday 12th February.

Be prepared and make sure you have all the gluten free ingredients you need in your cupboard.  There’s lots of extra toppings to indulge in too, such as maple syrup, lemon juice, chocolate sauce or natural sweeteners.

So now, here’s not one, but two gluten free pancake recipes for you…

buckwheatpancakesGluten Free Buttermik Pancakes

1 1/4 cups gluten-free flour
2 tbsp sugar
1 tsp Gluten Free baking powder
1 tsp bicarbonate soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/4 cup buttermilk
2 tbsp olive oil
1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla extract (optional)

  1. Combine dry ingredients in a mixing bowl and thoroughly blend through.
  2. Combine buttermilk, oil, egg and vanilla in a separate mixing bowl. Whisk to combine.
  3. Stir milk mixture into dry ingredients adding it gradually. Whisk until batter is smooth. If batter looks too thick, add more milk a teaspoon at a time until the consistency is ok.
  4. Lightly brush the frying pan or skillet with olive oil and heat on a medium ring. Pour a measure of batter into the pan an allow it to spread. Once bubbles have begun to form on the top and the bottom is golden brown, flip the pancake to cook the other side until golden.
  5. Serve with your desired topping!

Buckwheat Crepes

buttermilk pancakes3/4 cup buckwheat flour
1/4 gluten-free flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/4 cups milk or dairy substitute
3 eggs
4 tbsp melted butter or olive oil

  1. Pour milk, eggs and melted butter or oil into a blender pitcher. Pulse until combined.
  2. In a small bowl mix gluten-free buckwheat flour, gluten-free flour and salt and add to liquid in blender, pulse until combined and smooth.
  3. Allow batter to rest for two hours for the best results.
  4. Heat a frying pan or skillet and lightly brush it with oil. Pour a measure of batter into the pan once it is hot enough and swirl it to cover the whole of the bottom of the pan. Cook for about a minute until the top is barely moist. Use a thin spatula to loosen the edges and gently flip the crepe to cook the other side until lightly browned. Repeat with the remaining batter
  5. Serve with what ever topping tickles your fancy!

Simple Japanese curry recipe

Curry is the nation’s favourite food isn’t it.

But it’s not just Indian curries, there are Thai curries and Caribbean curries and now, how about Japanese curry?

Blue Dragon make a Japanese Curry Cooking Sauce so it’s easy. Plus, the mild flavour makes it an ideal curry for the whole family.

Here’s a simple recipe for you to try:

Vegetable Curry

Serves 4

  • 1 jar of Japanese Curry Cooking Sauce
  • 1 aubergine – large, cubed
  • 1 butternut squash, cubed
  • 1 sweet potato, cubed
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 1 white onion, chooped
  • cooking oil

1. Fry the chopped onion with oil in a saucepan.
2. Once thee onions are soft add the vegetables and fry a little with the onions.
3. Add 1 cup of water and leave to simmer.
4. Once the water has boiled down a little stir the curry sauce.
5. Let the sauce simmer until it thickens to your desired consistency.
6. Season with chilli to taste.

Serve with Japanese sushi rice. Simple!