drinks

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

Today it's all about Xochi Balfour's new The Naturalista cookbook, but if you just want the yummy raw vegan Acai Smoothie Bowl recipe, please don't be shy and make your way to the end of this blog post where you'll find it.

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.

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)

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....
 

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, but I hope you like this fresh and easy Super Vitamin C Juice, inspired by my holiday. 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! 

VEGAN MANGO AND COCONUT FLOAT (V+, P, GF, GRF, NF, CHF)

VEGAN MANGO AND COCONUT FLOAT (V+, P, GF, GRF, NF, CHF)

Hi everyone! If you're here for the light, refreshing and fun vegan mango coconut float recipe, please scroll down to the end of the blog post. You'll find the yummy recipe there. If you're happy to read me going on about my holiday and my family, please read on and get to the recipe later.

As you read this post I'm either at the airport, perhaps I'm even on a plane high up in the sky or maybe I've already landed in my first destination. Either way, I won't be in London. In fact I won't be in London for the next 6 weeks (eek!). Needless to say I'm excited and not just because it's a holiday and a nice long one too. Nope, it's more than that. Actually it's really all about my son. He's just finished his first year in school and with me being so busy over the last 12 months, we've not seen each other as much as we did before he was in full-time education. So, I though it was worth making the most of the school holidays and spending the entire time together. 

During the first week of our journey, we will be on the gorgeous island of Curaçao which forms part of the Dutch Antilles. Curaçao has the most beautiful beaches I know and it's also the place my mother is originally from meaning that part of my roots as well as my son's roots are from this stunning little country too. 


When I was a child growing up in the Netherlands and subsequently Germany, my mother really wanted me to know where my ancestors came from and so we often visited Curaçao, probably about once a year or once every other year. I have so many fond memories of time spent there and the frequent trips across the Atlantic meant that I got to know and love my heritage and culture tremendously. 

I very much want my son to know where his ancestry comes from too. I want him to feel the soil of Curaçao under his bare feet and breath in that incredible, fresh island air. So off we go to spend 1 amazing week with some of my favourite cousins and their children, to live island life to the full and visit as many beaches as we can in the space of 7 days. After that we set off again, but more about that another day ;)

What will this mean for the blog? The honest answer is I don't know. I do know that I should have prepared my bi-weekly blog posts well in advance and have them all nicely lined up for you. But the truth is, I don't because I didn't have a minute's time to do anything other than run around like a headless chicken (sorry, not the best metaphor for a plant-based food blog) putting everything in place to make this trip possible.

However, I am taking my camera and phone with me and hope I will have the opportunity to cook some food, take some photos and share some awesome recipes with you all over the coming weeks. But, I'm not going to stress about it too much cuz what will be will be.

Now, I may not be able to cook as much as I normally do and might not have any recipes to share on the blog as a consequence, but I am really hopeful that I can still share some of the plant-based foods I eat on my instagram gallery and facebook page and I would love it if you joined me for the ride. 

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 delicious Green Fennel Juice is one of the juices that helped me find my green path and I bet it will help you on your wayy too.

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

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

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 with these delicious flue fighting winter juice recipes! 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.

SPICED FRUIT STEW - COLADA MORADA (V+, NF, GF, CHF, GRF)

SPICED FRUIT STEW - COLADA MORADA (V+, NF, GF, CHF, GRF)

In honour of Halloween, I'm sharing this delicious recipe for vegan spiced fruit stew.

Turn back the clock by about 6 years: It’s the morning of Halloween. I frantically run to the supermarket, get a family sized pack of miniature milk chocolate bars and - that evening - hand them out to unassuming children after they have politely rung our doorbell and chanted ‘trick-or-treat’. 

Of course there are left-over chocolate bars. There always are. I eat 1-2 (honest ;)) and then take the rest into the office at the earliest opportunity, causing a handful of work colleagues to abandon their diets and yet strangly feel better for it; at least temptation is no longer within my four walls.

Fast forward: I become a mother. Then I learn more about nutrition. Then I question my actions...