My Smoothie Recipe

As I’ve written about here I love routine, and as a result I tend to have the same thing for breakfast most days. Sometimes I change things up and have something else but even then I tend to have the same things. So I basically have 2 or 3 breakfasts I rotate between. But mostly it’s my smoothie.

I find that it’s quick, filling, easy to prepare and gives me lots of nutrients.
This is a fantastic breakfast, especially in the summer as it basically feels like your drinking an ice cream for breakfast.

So in a good smoothie you want plenty of veg and some fruit for vitamins. Also some good fats and protein for a complete and filling meal.

This is what I put in mine:

Spinach
Avocado
Berries
Juice (not much and it’s only so it’s not to thick)
Kefir (a fermented yogurt packed with good bacteria)
Protein powder
Cinnamon (can be left out, but I put a pinch in it because its a good blood sugar regulator)

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The spinach can be swapped for kale if you prefer. Take a good handful. You can also use frozen spinach, same with the berries.

You don’t have to use berries, you can use any other fruit you like. Today I made Richards one with mango since he’s allergic to strawberries. Use about 80g of each spinach and fruit/berries.

Put about 1/4- 1/2 of an avocado in, depending on the size of the avocado, for good fats and fibre.
As for juice, I usually use Tropicana ’Red Ruby’, I find it’s not to sweet. You won’t need much only 50 – 100g. I am not a fan of juice really, it’s just for thinning the smoothie and it tops up the vitamins a bit.

Then I use kefir for it’s gut friendly bacteria, but if you don’t have kefir you can just as easily use yogurt. Be aware of sweetened yogurt though, you don’t want your smoothie having to much sugar. I use about 100g.

Put all this together in a blender or container ready to be mixed:

Blend all of the above together before adding the protein and blending again.

As for protein powder, use 20-25g. Please don’t leave this out, but if you really don’t have any try to use a higher protein yogurt, like greek, instead. You need the protein to fill you up! Some smoothie recipes suggest you put peanut butter or other nut butters in there for added protein, but really it’s more fat and very high in calories so I wouldn’t suggest that as a protein source.

When you shop for protein powder, make sure you use a good brand and not one packed with sweeteners and fillers. I use Natural Nutrients. Their whey comes from grass-fed cows and with no added nasties. I highly recommend them. I use the natural one but if you like a bit more flavour you can go for a flavoured one like vanilla or strawberry.

Now to the best part:
You can prepare it all the night before! This is actually necessary if you’re using frozen fruit and veg. Just leave the protein powder out. In the morning, take the container out, mix until it’s smooth and then put protein powder in before mixing it again.

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That’s it! Enjoy! And please let me know if you try it.

xx

 

Healthy Banana Bread Recipe

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Yummy!

I make banana bread a lot. It is a fantastic way to use up those bananas that have gone just a bit to brown.
This recipe is simple but so delicious, AND healthy! And if you use gluten free oats its even a gluten free recipe.

It’s super easy to make, give it at try!

You will need

200g / 5 dl oats, which you will grind into a flour using a hand mixer or processor.
3 medium Bananas
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 table spoons sugar or xylitol
1 tablespoon melted butter or oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract or vanilla sugar for my swedish friends
A hand full of frozen Raspberries or blueberries.

First you grind the oats into a flour.

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Grind up oats

Once thats done you stir in the baking powder, baking soda and sugar. (if you’re using vanilla sugar you can add that at this point too) I’m actually using xylitol here instead of sugar. The bread will taste exactly that same, it’s just a bit healthier.

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All the dry ingredients

In a separate bowl you mix the bananas in to a mush (I use that same hand mixer as I did for the oats). Then pour in the melted butter and vanilla extract (unless you already put it in with the dry ingredients)

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Mixed bananas and butter

Then add the two mixtures together and stir well before adding the frozen berries.

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The wet and dry ingredients have been mixed and lastly adding the frozen rasberries

Pour (or scoop, the mixture will be quite thick) in to a bread tin.
Sprinkle a bit of sugar on the top and if you want you can put some oats and seeds on top too.
Bake in the oven for 25-35 min at 200 degrees. When the skewer comes out dry-ish its done. Start checking at about 25min but if the bananas you’ve used were really mushy you might need a few more minutes.

Try it and let me know what you think!

 

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This one turned out dark and crusty on top because I sprinkled raw sugar on it before going in the oven. Tastes lovely!

Bone Broth, what, why and how?

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chicken broth

I recently wrote about my love for My slow cooker and how I originally got it because I wanted to make bone broth. Today I thought I’d share with you what bone broth is and how to make it.

Broth is made from the bones of animals. By simmering the bones for a long period of time the nutrients will extract from the bones.

It is incredibly protein and mineral rich and contains nutrients that our body will thank you for. Minerals that support the immune system and healing compounds like collagen, glutamine, glycine, and proline.

It can heal and protect your gut lining and reduce intestinal inflammation.
It can help protect your joints and from getting osteoarthritis because of the glucosamine. It gives you stronger bones.
It boosts your immune system because it’s so rich in minerals. And even if you do get sick, you know the old “chicken soup remedy” when you have a cold? Well, it’s true. Bone broth is the answer.
It can help you look younger. Bone broth is a rich source of collagen.  You can often find collagen in beauty products that help to minimise wrinkles and make your skin to look younger, but you can drink it too.

Ok, so how do I make it?

1-2 kg of bones from chicken, beef, turkey or fish. I will say though, that it is important to use bones from a good source. Meat and bones from organic and grass fed, happy animals are more nutrient rich and healthier than grain fed cattle or battery farm chickens.

1-2 tbsp of apple cider vinegar – optional
Vegetables. Use what ever you have at home; onions carrots, leeks, celery, garlic. 1-2 of each, roughly chopped in large chunks. Exact amount of size doesn’t matter so don’t worry about it to much, its just for flavouring.
1-2 bay leaves
Peppercorns

You can use the bones that are left over from a roast chicken or any other times you have bones left over from a meal. Clear off as much meat and other stuff from the bones as possible but it doesn’t matter if you can’t get them really clean, it will all be filtered away when its all done anyway. If you have raw bones you will need to roast them in the oven for about 30min. The broth will taste better than if they were raw.
The amount doesn’t have to be exact. I can usually get 2-3 old chicken carcasses in my slow cooker, or 1 kg of bones. If you don’t have enough bones left after dinner, you can freeze them and accumulate until you have enough.

Put the bones in the pot and pour water over them. You will need it to cover and have an extra 2-3cm extra on top, but make sure you don’t fill up to close to the edge. This is why you need a big pot.
Pour the apple cider vinegar over and let it sit for about 30min. This is to help draw out the nutrients from the bones. If you don’t have any apple cider vinegar, don’t worry you can still make the broth and it will still taste fine.

Then in goes the vegetables and seasoning. Once it starts to boil, immediately turn it down to just simmering. Or if you have a slow cooker, put it on the ‘low’ setting and just leave it.
The times vary depending on what bones you’re using.

12-24h for chicken bones
24-48h for beef bones
6-12h for fish bones

When the time is up it will look something like this:

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Yummy! 😉

 

Then you need to filter it. I use a big colander and pour it all through in to another big pot, just to get the big bits out of the way. Then I filter it again through a mesh filter.

You will want to cool this down quickly but don’t put it straight in the fridge, that will raise the temperature of the fridge and it will be unsafe for the other food in there. Put the pot in the sink filled with cold water instead.

Once it’s cooled a bit, pour the broth in to jars or containers to store. It will keep in the fridge for about a week. And what you won’t use this week, put in the freezer. It’s a good idea to store it in portion size tubs so you can just take one out to defrost as you need it.

A cooled broth will have a layer of congealed fat on the top. You can remove it if you’d like, but if you have used bones from grass fed, organically raised animals, that fat will be really good for you. And once you reheat the broth it will all melt in it again and make the broth all nice and shiny. You can even use it to fry food in. Fat from well raised animals is not bad for you, but that’s a topic for another blog post.

Thats your broth.

Once you have that the options are endless.
You can season it and drink it as it is.
Use it as a base for soup, stews, gravy or sauce.
Cook vegetables in it.
I use broth anytime I have to use water when cooking. It gives a delicious flavouring and extra nutrients to food.
Mostly I use it for soups.

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Chicken broth soup

So there you have it. Please give it a go. I thought about making broth long before I actually got around to doing it because it seemed so complicated to me, but once I did it, it’s really not that hard at all.
If you try it, please let me know how you got on!

xx