Antioxidant

Super Smoothie Bowl

Now that the weather has started to heat up in Doha, I've switched from warming bowls of porridge to smoothie bowls. I prefer my smoothies in a bowl because it stops me from slurping it all up in one go, which can be quite a shock to the system. My theory is that by eating my smoothie one spoon at a time, I give my body some time to digest it slowly. Plus I like decorating my bowls to make them a feast for the eyes as well as my body. It really doesn't matter what you add to the smoothie so long as you have a good high speed blender, I used my magic bullet and it works just fine!

I like to add a mixture of fruits and vegetables and generally try not to add fruits which have a high glycemic index just to keep my blood sugar levels in check. If you do add banana or mango for example, try to add 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon powder to help stabilise blood sugar spikes.

On another note, I'll be hosting a group cooking class at the end of this month focusing on healthful breakfasts, click here for more information.

Finally here's the recipe for my super plant powered smoothie bowl filled with anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, blood cleansing, gut friendly ingredients. This is guaranteed to boost your morning with nourishing, healing goodness!

Ingredients(Serves 2)

Smoothie

  • 1 fresh young coconut, water and meat
  • 1 inch fresh ginger
  • 1 inch fresh turmeric
  • 1 small beetroot
  • 2 cups frozen raspberries
  • Zest of 1/2 a lime
  • Juice of 1 lime

Optional add ins: 2 tablespoons maca powder | 2 tablespoons acai powder | 2 tablespoons Lucuma powder | 1/2 teaspoon spirulina powder

Suggested toppings: 1/2 cup VTH Nutty granola | 1 cup dices strawberries | 2 teaspoons chia seeds | 2 teaspoons hemp seeds | Raisins

Method:

1. Blend the smoothie ingredients, along with the superfood powders if using, in a high speed blender until you have a smooth consistency. 2. Pour into a bowl, and add the toppings. 3. Enjoy the super powerful benefits of this smoothie bowl!

Summertime Homemade Popsicles

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I know I haven't had the chance to post a recipe up on the blog for a while... We went away on a family holiday to Jordan & Dubai and as soon as I got back I went straight into weekly special orders, my first ever group cooking class, followed by lots of catering orders and few new exciting developments which I'll hopefully be able to write about soon :)

I've been practising yoga on the balcony recently as the weather is absolutely beautiful over here at the moment, and this recipe idea came to me on one hot morning! It was a lot hotter than usual and after I finished I was drenched in sweat, all I could think of was having a nice fruity popsicle. I rummaged around the cupboards and found my old popsicle moulds, reached for the few ingredients we had in the fridge and decided to make some mango, coconut milk, lime, and ginger popsicles.

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Mangos are very alkaline, which help balance the acidity in your body, they are also high in antioxidants which help protect the body against certain types of cancers.

Coconut milk has a multitude of benefits so here are a few, it's anti-bacterial, high in good fats, and iron, which is especially good for women.

Limes are an amazing source of vitamin C, they also help keep the body's blood sugar levels balanced, which is a good combination with mango as they are high in natural sugars.

Finally, I love ginger, not only does it add a nice depth of flavour but it's so good for you too! It helps reduce inflammation, aids in digestion & nausea and has also been linked to studies which have shown that it kills cancer cells.

So not only will this popsicle cool you down in the summer heat, but it will also be doing a lot of good to your body, in contrast to the sugar and chemical filled popsicles you can by at the shops! Again, if you don't have all the ingredients, try experimenting with what you have at home.

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Ingredients (makes 6)

1 medium ripe mango

1 frozen ripe banana

1/2 cup coconut milk/cream

Juice of 1 lime

1 knob of fresh ginger, peeled

Method

Scoop the flesh out of the mango, place in a blender along with all the other ingredients and pulse until you have a nice smooth consistency.

Fill the moulds with the thick mixture, tap the moulds on the counter to make sure the mixture has been evenly dispersed, then place in the freezer for 4 hours, or over night.

Enjoy!

Refreshing Rose Petal Sharbat

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The summer has definitely arrived here in Doha with temperatures hitting the high 40s and even 50 last week!! So a great alternative to cooling yourself down in the summer heat, apart from blasting your air conditioning on full blast, which I detest, is by making a sharbat!

Sharbat is an aromatic syrup which is diluted with water and ice, very similar to cordial, and made either from fruits, herbs, vegetables or flowers. This age old Persian answer to the sweltering hot summer months, cools you down from the inside out! It also is known to help improve hydration and is a good source of antioxidants. You can have it plain with water and ice or to get the antioxidant effect, add in some chia seeds. The traditional seeds which are used in sharbat are basil seeds, which are very similar to chia seeds so I decided to use what I had on hand.

Ingredients (serves 10)

1 cup coconut sugar or any sweetener of your choice

1/2 cup water

1/2 cup rose petals (you can also use rose water instead)

splash of rose water

1 lime

Optional: chia seeds (about 2 teaspoons per glass)

cucumber slices

Sharbat ingredients 1


Bring the water to a boil in a pot.

Then add the coconut sugar, stirring constantly, until it dissolves.

Reduce the heat and add the rose petals and rose water and let simmer for a couple of minutes.

Remove from heat and let the syrup cool down completely. I put mine in the fridge to speed up the process.

Once the syrup has cooled down, pour about 1/3 of a cup of syrup per glass, then add cold water, ice cubes, squeeze of fresh lime and 2 teaspoons of chia seeds.

OR you can make a big jug of this to share, and add in some cucumber slices or watermelon.

Stir it all up and enjoy this refreshing aromatic summer drink!

NB: you can save any left over syrup in a bottle in the fridge for up to a week.

Green Juicie and Chia Seed "Pudding"

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This is a great breakfast packed with super foods which will help wake you up and get you through an action packed morning with a lot of chia power! A juicie is what I like to call a mix between a juice and a smoothie, I normally make them when I want a smoothie but don't want chunky bits of fibre, for instance when I'm using kale. The chia "pudding" is packed full of goodness, chia seeds are a great source of protein, and a little goes a long way. Coconuts work wonders on your immune system with antiviral, anti-fungal and antibacterial properties, to name a few. And goji berries are again a great source of protein, Vitamin C, fibre, iron and antioxidants. You can replace the water with almond/soy/hemp milk if you like but since I used almond milk in the juicie I thought it may be too heavy to have in both.

Please Note: Items marked with * suggest using organic products if possible.

Chia "Pudding" Ingredients (serves 1)

2 tablespoons chia seeds* 1 1/2 teaspoons goji berries* 1 tablespoon dried coconut chips* 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon powder 1/2 cup of filtered water

Place the chia seeds and cinnamon powder in a bowl/cup and pour the 1/2 cup of water over them and stir. Then add the goji berries and coconut chips, and set aside while you make your green juicie.

Green Juicie Ingredients (serves 1)

4 stems of kale * 1 piece of ginger (to your taste preference) 1 apple* (I used Braeburn) 1/4 avocado 1/2 cup blueberries* 1/2 cup almond milk Scoop of green superfood powder of your choice (optional) 1/2 teaspoon edible dried rose petals (optional)

Juice the kale, ginger, and apple. Then add the blueberries, avocado, almond milk, and green superfood powder (optional) to the juice and blitz them with a handheld/regular blender. Sprinkle the dried rose petals on top and enjoy the mood enhancing aromas with every sip!