VEGAN PINK LADY® APPLE PIE BREAKFAST SMOOTHIE (V+, R, NF, ChF, GF)

VEGAN PINK LADY® APPLE PIE BREAKFAST SMOOTHIE (V+, R, NF, ChF, GF)

It's an I-am-gonna-tell-you-some-personal-stuff-about-me kinda day today. I know you didn't ask for this info, but I'm in the mood for sharing anyway, so here goes:

Fact number 1: I am a self confessed fruit junky! I love fruit! I eat fruit ever day and I think I'd loose the will to live if fruit weren't a part of my life. Seriously!
Fact number 2: After all's been said and done, I am a simple girl at heart.
Fact number 3: Though I adore exotic fruit with lots of crazy cool names, flavours and colours, my most favoruite fruits tend to grow close to home, so I can enjoy them in season and without the airmiles attached.

Hence - knowing what you know now - it may come as no big surprise then that apples are right up there when it comes to my choice of best fruit ever. Yup, since I was a little girl, I've loved them, be it served warm in an apple pie, juiced for breakfast or given to me raw as an afternoon snack. I even remember, when I was younger my mother would take me to this pancake place and I'd always order the exact same thing: thin crepe style pancakes with warm apples and LOTS of cinnamon.

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TOFU SCRAMBLE WITH GARLICKY KALE (V+, ChF, GF, NF)

TOFU SCRAMBLE WITH GARLICKY KALE (V+, GF, ChF, NF)

It's the week of Valentine's Day and - as I sit here and write today's post - I just know there will be 101 recipes on the internet celebrating chocolate, heart shaped strawberries, (heart shaped anything probably) and all things pink. I want to say that I made a conscious decision to swim against the tide and give you today's delicious vegan recipe. But the truth is, I just totally forgot about Valentine's day as I was putting my blog schedule together (ooops). Nonetheless, I think there is nothing more romantic than waking up to a gorgeous, lovingly made breakfast like this one and so - though of course I'm not even a tiny bit biased - I think this is THE most romantic recipe you'll EVER find on the internet in the run up to the day of love :D. So, put on the kettle, pop Dirty Dancing into your DVD player, grab the one you love, snuggle up and enjoy your tofu scramble ;).

Wishing you all a wonderful Valentine's, hugs Kimberly.

P.S. I'll be back next week (rather than in 2 weeks time) as I'm hosting a cookbook giveaway you don't wanna miss! See you next week :).

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GREEN KALE SMOOTHIE WITH PEACHES (V+, R, ChF, GF, NF, P) + A GIVEAWAY!

GREEN KALE SMOOTHIE WITH PEACHES (V+, R, ChF, GF, NF, P) + A GIVEAWAY!

By the time you read this it'll be 2017, so happy New Year everyone! I hope your year is filled with love, happiness and health. And fact is, if you're here for the green smoothie recipe, you're off to a pretty good start if you ask me ;).

2016 for me was one of the craziest years of my life. Now, I told you a little bit about some major developments that have been going on for me in my last blog post (please do give it a read if you've got a minute) and today I'll reveal a tiny bit more about what's been happening for me and why I was quieter on social media towards the end of the year ...

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VEGAN CINNAMON APPLE ROLLS WITH SALVIA+LIMONE AND TWIGG STUDIOS (V+, ChF)

VEGAN CINNAMON APPLE ROLLS WITH SALVIA+LIMONE AND TWIGG STUDIOS (V+, ChF)

Two weeks ago I had the joy of working on not one, but TWO collaborations with some of the best food bloggers I know. First, at the start of the week I invited Aimee R. from Wallflower Kitchen into my home and together we made these fluffy vegan pancakes. (Sooooo yummy!) Then, later that same week Silvia from Salvia+Limone and Aimee T. from Twigg Studios popped by to bake today's insanely yummy vegan apple cinnamon buns.

Those of you who read the blog regularly or follow me on instagram will know that Silvia, Aimee T. and I baked together once before earlier this year when we created this vegan matcha pistachio tres leches cake. So gorgeous, right?! We promised one another that very day we'd meet and bake together again and true to our word, we did! 

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SUPER FLUFFY VEGAN PANCAKES AND SEASONAL FIGS WITH WALLFLOWER KITCHEN (V+, ChF, NF)

SUPER FLUFFY VEGAN PANCAKES AND SEASONAL FIGS (V+, ChF, NF) WITH AIMEE FROM WALLFLOWER KITCHEN

If you are a regular reader of my blog or follow me on instagram, then you know I adore hanging out with fellow food blogging friends. In fact cooking and baking with other women who love food as much as I do may just be my most favourite part of blogging. And last week I got extra lucky because I had the chance to create vegan magic in the kitchen with Aimee R. from Wallflower Kitchen and then, a few days later, with Aimee T. from Twigg Studios and Silvia from Salvia + Limone. BLISS! 

If you don't know already, Aimee R. is not just 'any' vegan blogger. Nope! Apart from being breath-takingly beautiful, super duper sweet AND an awesome baker, she's also the successful cookbook author of Coconut Milk Icecream, a book dedicated to making creative and tasty vegan ice creams. Oh and she's always saying I don't look my age, meaning I'm MEGA fond of her and will never turn down an opportunity to bake with her ;).

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VEGAN BUCKWHEAT PORRIDGE WITH SPICED PLUMS + A COOKING APP GIVEAWAY! (V+, ChF, GF, NF)

VEGAN BUCKWHEAT PORRIDGE WITH SPICED PLUMS + A COOKING APP GIVEAWAY! (V+, ChF, GF, NF)

These last few weeks, well months really, have been a whirlwind of craziness and this blog post right here is yet another example of the unexpected twists and turns I never imagined possible. See there are a few blogs out there that I am TOTALLY obsessed with. Like, big crush obsessed; like I follow them like a crazy stalker obsessed, like I loose my breath every single time they post something on instagram obsessed. That's because these bloggers produce images and recipes that just move me in ways I can't even put into words. And sadly my blog doesn't have emojis cuz they might do a better job at expressing my feelings than a collection of random sentences ever could. 

Berlin based Susann and Yannic who you might know as KRAUTKOPF are two bloggers who firmly fall into this 'I'm obsessed with their blog' category. And if you have a quick glimpse at their instagram page you will totally understand what I'm on about. Hence when they contacted me to try out their vegetarian cooking app because they were interested in my feedback, I practically choked on my avo toast. Surely, this couldn't be? I didn't even know they had clocked that I was stalking them, thought I'd covered my tracks real good, but somehow they did know I existed and moreover they wanted my input. So after double checking that they'd not made a mistake and contacted the wrong blogger (I mean, these things happen, right?) and drinking some water to shift that piece of bread out of my throat, I said HELL YEAH!  

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GLUTEN-FREE RICE FLOUR MATCHA WAFFLES + SUMMER FRUITS WITH THE SUNSHINE EATERY (V+, ChF, GF, NF)

GLUTEN-FREE RICE FLOUR MATCHA WAFFLES + SUMMER FRUITS WITH VIOLA FROM THE SUNSHINE EATERY (V+, ChF, GF, NF)

“Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?”
“That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,” said the Cat.
“I don’t much care where –” said Alice.
“Then it doesn’t matter which way you go,” said the Cat.
“–so long as I get SOMEWHERE,” Alice added as an explanation.
“Oh, you’re sure to do that,” said the Cat, “if you only walk long enough.” - Alice in Wonderland, Lewis Caroll (1832 -1898)

I kinda feel like Alice at the moment, which is why this quote really resonated with me when I spotted it on Jessica's instagram feed a few days ago. See with all the joy that's come from finishing my nutrition course, I am now faced with the reality of saying goodbye to my student status and getting serious about working again, of finding something 'real' to do. But what do I want to do? Where do I want to get to? I wasn't so sure...

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RAW VEGAN TURMERIC CHIA PUDDING + A COOKBOOK GIVEAWAY! (ChF, GF, NF, R, V+, V)

RAW VEGAN TURMERIC CHIA PUDDING + A COOKBOOK GIVEAWAY! (ChF, GF, NF, R, V+, V)

Hi everyone. Hope you're all well :)

I've got LOTS in store for you this week. which is why I thought it would be helpful if I break this week's blog post down for you, so you can skip to the bits you're actually interested in ;). Cuz - just so you know - this is a looooong one and I don't want you getting bored ;).

This week you can find info on...

1. SUPERFOODS
I've been dying to write about superfoods ever since I started my little plantbased blog and with turmeric as the star ingredient in this week's vegan recipe, I coudn't think of a better time to share my thoughts on superfoods. This means I'll give you a list of the 7 superfoods that I believe truly live up to their name and should appear on your plate every single day! 

2. BLOGIVERSARY + A COOKBOOK GIVE-AWAY!
It's actually my blogiversary this week. Eeeeek! I STILL feel like a novice, but here I am finishing my second year of blogging. Crazy stuff! To celebrate I'm giving away a copy of Jessica Sepel's new book The Healthy Life. This give-away is open to UK and EU residence, so do check it out:). I'll provide a short review of the book and then I'll let you know what you need to do for a chance to win it.

3. TURMERIC RECIPES
I'm sharing 2 superfood recipes this week. One is this healthy raw vegan breakfast come snack recipe (the BOMB by the way). Two is a crazy sexy superfood Turmeric Cinnamon Tea on the Rocks recipe which you'll find over on Heal's blog this week. Just cuz turmeric is SO good, I had to create 2 easy and delicious recipes so you've got no excuse not to give this spice a go ;).

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RAW VEGAN ACAI SMOOTHIE BOWL + A COOKBOOK GIVEAWAY! (V+, V, ChF, GF, GrF, P, R, NF)

RAW VEGAN ACAI SMOOTHIE BOWL + A COOKBOOK GIVEAWAY! (V+, V, ChF, GF, GrF, P, R)

I posted the following statement under this image of Xochi Balfour's new healthy lifestyle book 'The Naturalista' on instagram the other day:

'FACT I get lots of cookbooks sent to me. FACT I buy lots of cookbooks,. FACT I'd never recommend something I don't wholehearted believe in.
So if I say that the healthy living book 'The Naturalista' by @xochibalfour is INSANELY AWESOME you better believe it's true. I hope this treasure gets the attention it so deserves when it comes out at the end of April. @xochibalfour you should be darn proud of this looker.'

And, though it's been a few weeks now since I first received the book, I still feel mega excited about it and super duper lucky to have been given a copy. Yup, it's THAT good. So, what about it is so special, you might wonder? Well, ...

1. The voice behind the book - Xochi is engaging, genuine, so, so sweet and I read the story of her journey to health with great interest. It's one that so many of us can relate to. (I'm not telling you more. You just gotta buy the book ;)). Plus, I've had the pleasure of meeting Xochi in person and I can tell you, she's not a brand. She's the real deal :). 

2. The stunnig, healthy and most importantly achieveable recipes - I have literally bookmarked every other page - banana almond pancakes, kale and avocado rice with pickled carrots, smoky beet hummus etc.. I mean there are soooo many recipes to get excited about and most of them require ingredients that are easy to come by. However, please be warned - there are a few non-vegetarian recipes in this book. It doesn't bother me as you can count them on 1 hand, but I'm aware that for some of you this may be a deal breaker, which is why I'm pointing it out.

3. Drop dead gorgeous photography - In case it's not totally obvious from the hours I spent writing about it, I'm obsessed with good food photography. And this book's got some of the most stunning shots I've seen in a long, long time. In fact, if I ever photograph a cookbook I kinda want the pictures to look like the ones in Xochi's book *blush*. 

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PISTACHIO MILK GREEN SMOOTHIE FOR HEAL'S AND SOURCING FOOD PHOTOGRAPHY PROPS (V+, R, ChF, P, GrF, GF)

PISTACHIO MILK GREEN SMOOTHIE FOR HEAL'S AND SOURCING FOOD PHOTOGRAPHY PROPS (V+, R, ChF, P, GrF, GF)

Hi everyone! If you're here to get the recipe for the vegan pistachio milk green smoothie which I created exclusively for Heal's then please head over to their blog where you'll find some more images of the recipe creation process as well. The smoothie recipe was put together to show off one of the gorgeous Mervyn Gers Bowls which they sell at their flagship store on Tottenham Court Road in Central London. As those of you who follow along on instagram know, I have been a massive fan of anything Mervyn Gers makes and so this collaboration felt like a match made in heaven.

I often get asked about where and how I source my food photography props so, as I'm not sharing a recipe on the blog today, I thought I'd take a little time out to talk you through where I get my food photography props from and how I choose them instead. I hope this will be of some help to you.

When first starting out....

1. Use what you've got.
When I first got into food blogging I just used the plates and bowls I had at home. It was a very cheap and easy way to get started and also helped me experience first hand why certain plates work better than others. For example, there was nothing particularly remarkable about the plates I used for my Spring pearl barley risotto recipe, but the simplicity of the plates let the food shine, which was all that was needed. 

And whilst in South America I used these cute little bowls, which were the only ones I had to hand, to show off this easy vegan blackberry crumble. The bowls were mainly white, but had some simple detailing around the edges, which just worked for this particular shot. And - from my experience - it is simple plates and bowls like these that make a good recipe look great!

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VEGAN SOURDOUGH SPELT WAFFLES (V+, ChF, NF)

VEGAN SOURDOUGH SPELT WAFFLES (V+, ChF, NF) + REVIEW OF NO-MESS SAGE WAFFLE MAKER

A few days ago my son turns 6. Can you believe it, 6! I know it sounds so cliché, but time truly does fly when you're having fun. And when you have children you can actually see the physical evidence of life's continual forward flow, which is quite grounding as well as - for me on this occasion - really upsetting. (I so wish my blog platform did emojis cuz I'd insert that crying face with buckets of tears streaming out of its eyes right here).

It's not that I miss the baby stage, I don't at all and every day, every week and every year that passes by I enjoy motherhood more and more. But it's that realisation that everything is just temporary and that I can't hold on to the here and now forever, not even for my little boy. And that recognition left me feeling a tiny bit lost the other day. I don't know, but I just felt emotional.

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APPLE AND TOMATO CHUTNEY (V+, ChF, GF, GrF, NF)

APPLE AND TOMATO CHUTNEY (V+, ChF, GF, GrF, NF)

It feels as though so much has happened in the last two weeks and I am bursting to tell you all about it! Can I start off by sharing a little bit about my experience at Food Blogger Connect 2015 (FBC15)? If you've been following along, you'll know that I've wanted to become much more serious about my food blogging, writing, photography and recipe development. So as part of that 'want', I did a collaboration with Ceri about two weeks ago to broaden my food blogging horizons. I also attended FBC15 at Chiswick House and Gardens in order to get as many tips as I could on making my blog bigger and better.

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So what was the conference like? Well, it took place over 3 days (I attended and volunteered at 2) during which one had lots of opportunities to meet, mingle and connect with other bloggers, share experiences and provide one another with heaps of encouragement and support. For me personally, this was probably the most invaluable aspect of the conference and as it stands 2 possible collaborations are in the works as a result of FBC15! So watch this space ;)

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SUPER VITAMIN C JUICE (R, V+, P, GF, ChF, GrF, NF)

SUPER VITAMIN C JUICE (R, V+, P, GF, ChF, GrF, NF)

Hi everyone! Sorry it's been a little while since I posted a recipe. As you know I like to post bi-weekly, but the last few weeks I've been away from home meaning it's been rather complicated to access the internet or a kitchen for that matter. I'm glad to report though, that I may have found a way around this problem. For now. More about that soon...

Firstly, I wanted to tell you a teeny tiny bit about my week on the island of Curaçao or Curadise as I like to call it. If you've been following me on instagram, you know I enjoyed lots of gorgeous and fresh juices whilst I was there. Honestly, I can tell you that they were all as tasty and refreshing as they looked!

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You'll be glad to hear though that those delicious juices formed only a tiny part of our wonderful time on Curaçao. I mean the warm and friendly people, the fun music, the vibrant atmosphere and those magnificent beaches were actually what made our stay unforgettable. It's such a special island; I can wholeheartedly recommend a visit :).

GREEN FENNEL JUICE (R, V+, GrF, GF, ChF, NF, P)

GREEN FENNEL JUICE (R, V+, GrF, GF, ChF, NF, P)

I've posted some really long blog posts recently and you'll be glad to hear this one's gonna be short and sweet. Why? Cuz I've got a massive nutrition exam coming up at the end of the week and I am waaayyy behind schedule. Which in turn means I'm in a total panic :(

BUT I made a commitment to this blog and to you so here is my bi-weekly post as promised. And, it's a pretty good one too. In fact it's a super good one - my all time favourite green juice! Yup, this is one of the juices that helped me find my green path and I bet it will help you on your wayy too.


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MUSHROOM SERIES 3: THOUGHT ON MACROBIOTICS + EASY MISO SOUP WITH SHIITAKE MUSHROOMS (V+, GF, NF)

MUSHROOM SERIES 3: EASY MISO SOUP WITH SHIITAKE MUSHROOMS (V+, GF, NF) + I TALK MACROBIOTICS

Meet my new favourite breakfast buddy: Miso Soup! I know it might sound weird, but I can promise you, it's weirdly wonderful :).

Actually, let me backtrack a little bit and tell you how I got to swap my fruity porridge for soup...

As those of you who have been reading the blog for some time know, I'm studying to be a nutritional therapist (Yup, Still. In year 2. One more year to go. And in case it's not blatantly obvious: I CAN'T WAIT TO GRADUATE! ;)). As part of my studies we were asked to partake in a diet experiment; we had to live a particular diet and lifestyle for one week and then write a report about our experience. Cool huh? 

By the time I had a chance to look at the options available to us, most of the diets were already taken:(  and I was left with only 4 possibilities: FODMAP, the GI diet, macrobiotic diet and the blood type diet. Sorry, but this was a no brainer for me. As a massive Madonna fan (this is her best album ever and this my favourite tune) I knew full well that Madonna partly attributed her healthy body to her macrobiotic diet and so I HAD to give it a try.

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GLUTEN-FREE NO-BAKE GRANOLA BARS (GF, V+, ChF, NF)

GLUTEN-FREE NO-BAKE GRANOLA BARS (V+, GF, NF, ChF)

"I know one thing: that I know nothing" - Plato

It's MEAT-FREE WEEK here in the UK and guess what? I'm in. Wholeheartedly. Completely. Totally ;)!

So I gotta thinking how best to use this really cool and important week in the foodie calender. Of course I'm gonna share a cracking plant-based recipe with ya'll, right?! But I also thought it would be a great excuse to finally talk in detail about the what, why and how I eat. I've been meaning to do this for donkey's years (ok, maybe just 10 months aka since launching this blog), but up until now it didn't seem like quite the right time. As my readership has grown though I feel it's so important for me to continue to be open, honest and transparent about my food philosophy. I owe that to you, my readers and I owe it to the integrity of my blog :).

To be clear, I'm under no illusion that my writing in this post is 'the ultimate truth'. It's just my personal view as I hold it in the here and now. However, I'm always open to learn and explore other ideas and thoughts; I want to keep developing my knowledge about food and hence should I learn something that challenges what I presently think, I'll be sure to let you know ;).

WARNING: This is a long post. Please skip to the recipe section at the bottom if you want to. I won't mind :)

COLLAGEGRANOLA


Are you a raw foodist?
I LOVE raw food and I strongly believe that everyone can benefit from increasing the amount of raw plant based foods in their diet, which is why there are lots of raw recipes on this site. But I don't exclusively eat raw foods. I did a blog post a while back about why. Check it out here if you want to :).

Are you a vegan?
Nope, I'm not a vegan.

So are you a vegetarian then?
Nope. Like 'vegan' it's a title that doesn't fit me 100% and actually doesn't quite describe what and how I choose to eat. So, I'm uncomfy with it.

What about paleo?
You'll find lots of paleo recipes here, but that label definitely isn't 'me'. I ADORE legumes and grains. They form a major part of my diet.

But you constantly use hashtags like #vegan, #vegetarian and #paleo on instagram and twitter. Isn't that a bit misleading?
I hope not. I use these hashtags to help people who are curious about vegan, vegetarian and paleo foods find my recipes. If a recipe is vegan, I will use the vegan hashtag; so in essence I'm trying to describe the food, rather than define who I am with the chosen hashtags. Does that make sense?

I occasionally use the hastag veganmom not because I am a veganmom, but because the recipe is especially family and kiddie friendly and something I think a vegan parent would like.

So how DO you describe yourself?
Firstly, I'm a human being ;).

Secondly, if I HAVE to put myself in a foodie camp, I'd say I eat a mainly whole food plant-based diet. This means that the fast majority (around 95%) of what I eat are seasonal, local, organic, whole, plant-based foods such as veggies, fruits, legumes, grains, etc.

And what makes up the rest of your diet?
I LOVE honey and bee pollen, which aren't strictly 'vegan' foods. I can also be a bit naughty and bake cakes that includes refined sugar or be really naughty and have something pretty vile like ketchup (I LOVE that stuff) or soya products. I eat eggs, probably 1-2 every week, and use mayonnaise occasionally. A couple of the ingredients I cook with might not be organic or seasonal and sometimes you'll even see me nibble on a piece of raw, oily fish. Not often, but it can happen.

Fish? Isn't that cruel? Doesn't it go against everything the blog stands for? How do you justify eating that?
Some people choose to eat a vegan or plant-based diet because their main concern is the welfare of animals. Though it is something I think about A LOT, it's not how I ended up where I am now. Instead my drive towards a plant-based diet came out of my desire to be healthier. I suffered from really bad constipation after having my son and was eager to try and figure out what was going on with my body. Furthermore, when my son stopped breastfeeding and moved on to finger foods, I wanted to be sure I was giving him the best and healthiest meals possible. One thing led to the next and before I knew it, I'd read every book about food and health I could get my hands on.  

The more I read, the clearer it became to me that a whole food, plant-based diet was the way forward. I tried it and felt like a million dollars. I haven't looked back. Now I'm in my second year of retraining as a nutritional therapist and the course has just confirmed what I already experienced for myself: that the power of plant-based food is fascinating cool and super healthy!

The second most important driving force towards the diet that I presently follow has been my deep love for Patch Mama (Mother Earth). She feeds us and looks after us and you know, we need to respect, honour and care for her. Eating a whole, seasonal, organic plant-based diet – I feel – is the best way to do that.

Lastly, I did a lot of reading about farmed animals, their suffering and you know what? I just didn't want to be a part of that. I don't judge anyone who is. And I don't believe that omnivores are 'cruel' or 'bad' or 'ignorant' or that vegans are necessarily more 'enlightened', 'compassionate' or 'better' human beings. I have met lots of omnivores (including my husband) who have a heart of gold. (Though rest assured, I'm working on him ;).)

More importantly, I think it's my role as a plant-based blogger to spread love and acceptance, not hate and anger, which is something I know many other plant-based, vegan and vegetarian bloggers are commited to.

Which leads me to the issue of eating fish. It's a very tricky one for me. Because healthwise, I feel that the small amount of raw fish that I do eat has more positives than it does negatives. In particular fish's vitamin D content is something that does me good.

I feel that eating more than the occasional piece of wild fish puts a tremendous pressure on our oceans. It breaks my heart that we're depleting our marine resources the way that we are. And hence - despite my joy of eating fish - I know I need to keep it in close check. Will I give up fish completely? I don't think so. Do I feel eating fish is cruel? Honestly, I don't. But things shift and change so watch this space.

Any more confessions?
Nope, but I will do a post about how I feed my family at some point as that's a whole different topic in itself...

Just for the record though I don't do red meat, chicken, turkey, duck etc. And I am really not into dairy. I can't see that ever changing. But something like this could happen, right!? Other than that, you can safely bet your bottom dollar you won't see me sneaking a piece of spam into my mouth;). 

Finally, does that mean you'll include egg or fish recipes on your blog?
I have unintentionally never included (free range, organic) egg recipes, but I will because I do eat them and find them very versatile. My baking recipes however will remain 100% egg-free.

I can promise that you won't see fish here. 


They say boredom is a great excuse to eat. So let's eat, shall we?
Thanks for reading everyone.

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GLUTEN-FREE NO-BAKE GRANOLA BARS (V+, GF, ChF, NF)


IMPORTANT: This recipe is adapted from one I found in Angela Liddon's truly wonderful book The Oh She Glows Cookbook. It's a firm favourite! Also, please check the tips at the end of the recipe for substitutions and other suggestions.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Chilling Time: 20 minutes
Makes: 12 scrumptious bars

Ingredients:

½ cup (65g) (organic) sesame seeds
1 ½ cups (125g) (organic) gluten-free oats
1 ¼ cup (180g) (organic) buckwheat
¼ (25g) (organic) goji berries
¼ cup (35g) (organic) raisins
1tsp (organic) ground cinnamon
¼ tsp pink Himalayan Salt
½ cups (120ml) maple syrup
¼ cup (60ml) light tahini
1 tsp pure (organic) vanilla extract

Instructions:
Get all the ingredients out onto the kitchen counter and ready to use.
Line a square baking tray with parchment paper.

In a large bowl combine the oats, buckwheat, goji berries, raisins, cinnamon and salt.

In a little pot, gently heat the maple syrup and tahini until nicely combined. Take this mixture of the heat and add the vanilla.
Pour the mixture over the dry ingredients and combine well.

Transfer this onto the prepared baking tray, spreading the mixture as evenly as you can. (Feel free to use your fingers if need be).
Pop in the freezer for 20 minutes or until set.

Remove from the freezer and cut into 12 bars.

You can store the bars in the fridge, but I'd recommend storing them in the freezer (for up to a month) and taking one out when you fancy it. They are GREAT for breakfast on the go or as a filling snack.

Tip 1: When you take a bar from the freezer wait 5-10 minutes before eating. However, I did notice if I left it out too long, it didn't hold together that well. When that happened, I transformed the bar into a chunky granola and enjoyed it with some almond milk. Yummy.
Tip 2: I used toasted buckwheat, but you could use raw buckwheat too. Just soak them overnight before using.
Tip 3: I know some people who are gluten intolerant don't do well with oats, regardless of whether the oats are gluten-free or not. If that's you, just swap them with millet flakes.
Tip 4: I used black sesame seeds, but there's nothing stopping you using white ones.

Looking for more breakfast ideas? Just click here:)

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PART II: THE BEST VEGAN COOKIES EVER AKA GLUTEN FREE PISTACHIO AND CARDAMOM COOKIES (V+, ChF, GF)

PART II: THE BEST VEGAN COOKIES EVER AKA GLUTEN-FREE CARDAMOM AND PISTACHIO COOKIES (V+, ChF, GF)

When I started 2015 I put together a little 'wish list' for the blog, full of dreams, hopes and ambitions. One of these wishes was to have my recipe featured in a magazine. Initially, I was ambivalent about writing down this very personal dream on my blog for everyone to see – what if I failed and didn't get published? Wouldn't I look utterly silly? But, trusting in the power of positivity and affirmation I went for it and wrote it down. So what if I didn't suceed and never got featured? You live and learn, right? 

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PART I: THE BEST VEGAN COOKIES EVER AKA VEGAN BREAKFAST COOKIES (V+, ChF)

PART I: THE BEST VEGAN COOKIES EVER AKA VEGAN BREAKFAST COOKIES (V+, ChF)

Picture this: I'm sitting in the office, minding my own business when one of my work colleagues starts taking about baking and healthy eating. My ears perk up. She's rather negative about vegan baking, so I'm definitely all ears now! Then she says: ''I don't like vegan desserts. For me desserts have to taste like proper desserts and that means they have to be made with lots of butter!''

What?!? She didn't just say that, did she? Ok, she's got my complete and undivided attention now! Firstly, let me be clear here. I greatly appreciate her honesty and completely respect her views (no, really I do). Secondly I must say, she's a total sweetie and I love her no nonsense approach, but there is no way in the world I can hear that comment and not respond. With words initially, but then with a much more powerful weapon: The best out-of-this-world-finger-lickin'-good vegan cookies ever (massive statement, I know - totally subjective, I know - but I stand by it 100%).

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SWEDISH CRISP BREAD: 4 WAYS + WINTER YOGA WORKSHOP & VEGAN DINNER IMPRESSIONS (V+, GF, ChF, NF)

SWEDISH CRISP BREAD; 4 WAYS + WINTER YOGA WORKSHOP & VEGAN DINNER IMPRESSIONS (V+, GF, ChF, NF)

In December (oh gosh, that seems so long ago now!) I hosted a winter yoga workshop in a converted warehouse in South East London. Some lovely yoginis joined me for a sweaty and fun ashtanga yoga practice. Their hard work didn't go unnoticed and certainly didn't go unrewarded because after nearly 2 hours on the yoga mat, I made sure they had the opportunity to enjoy a nourishing and delicious vegan winter soup. 

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B/W Photos by: JOASIS PHOTOGRAPHY                                                                    (gluten-free)

We all tucked into my seasonal curried butternut squash soup, a firm favourite from the blog. It was super yummy and I am proud to report that not a drop remained uneaten. Cheekily I also did some recipe testing on my students and 'made' them try some home-made Swedish crisp bread. I'd discovered the recipe during a girly get-together a few months earlier and wanted to make sure it was blog worthy. The recipe is on the blog today so I am sure you can figure out what the feedback was ;)

FLUE FIGHTING WINTER JUICE: 5 WAYS (V+, R, GF, P, NF, GrF, ChF)

FLUE FIGHTING WINTER JUICE: 5 WAYS (V+, R, P, GF, NT, ChF, GrF)

HAPPY NEW YEAR everyone! It's sooooo good to be back. I really, really, really missed writing, creating recipes and taking pictures for the blog. And I missed being part of the blogging community :). But the 3 weeks off did me well and I can't think of a better month than January to start blogging again! I know lots of people think the first month of the year is too dark, too gloomy and too depressing but you know what? I am rather fond of January. That's because the beginning of the year to me means a chance to make a fresh start and to be a better, healthier and happier me :).

Like many of you, I tend to make a wish list of things I want to accomplish and achieve . (I don't like using the term New Year's resolutions as it kinda implies that it'll all fall to pieces before Jan is even over ;). Whereas wish list is more positive, more attainable and less conspicuous, don't you think?). I always post my New Year's wish list on my personal facebook page because the scrutiny of family and friends, as well as their support and encouragement, makes me work harder at completing all items on my list.

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