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Life Begins at Fifty – Healthy Life #10 HCH Lentil Loaf

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Welcome to another recipe post!

I’ve been looking for straight forward, practical, easy, tasty recipes that can be eaten hot or cold, and High Carb Hannah’s Lentil Loaf fits the bill perfectly.

HCH Lentil Loaf

1 cup brown lentils

1/2 cup red lentils

1 carrot, finely chopped

2 celery stalks, finely chopped (I left these out)

1/2 red onion, finely chopped

1 red, orange, or yellow bell pepper, finely chopped

3 cups water

 

Flax egg: 3 Tbspns ground flax seeds

6 Tbspns water

 

1-1/2 cups oats, blended or processed to make a flour

 

Seasonings: 1 Tbsp Italian seasoning 1 tspn fennel (I used punch puran), 1 tspn onion powder (I left this out) 1/2 tspn cayenne (optional)

salt (my addition)

2 tspoons bouillon (my addition)

Ketchup (or Glaze see below)

Preheat oven or air fryer to 350˚F.

Bring all ingredients from lentils to water to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer uncovered until liquid is absorbed. Meanwhile, mix flax seeds and water to make a flax egg. Set aside. Process the oats into a flour and set aside. Mix seasonings and flax egg together and set aside. When lentil-veggie mixture is done cooking, take off heat and mix in oat flour and seasoning mix. Spread mixture into loaf pan or pans and put into oven/air fryer. (I used two tins and made two smaller loaves.)

Cook uncovered for 15 minutes. Take out loaf, spread ketchup on top of loaf and continue baking for another 5 minutes.

 

Alternative glaze for loaf:

3 tbspns brown sugar

3 tbspns tomato paste

3 tbspns apple cider vinegar

3 tbspns Worcestershire sauce (I used 1 tbspn of tamari soy sauce)

This lentil loaf makes a great base to add other flavours and textures…I’m thinking cashew and apricot or almond and date to make a slightly sweeter loaf, or mushrooms and tamari to give it more umami.

This lentil loaf works well with no fat or oil, but I added a little salt and two teaspoons of bouillon powder after experimenting a few times.

It’s delicious hot, and with the tomato topping, perfect cold…it went down well on the sharing table at our charity dance event!

You can freeze it…I cut into portion sizes and freeze this way, so you can extract just one slice if you wish.

Happy eating!

 

 

 

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Life begins at fifty – Healthy Life #4 Best smoothie ever!

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Thank you so much for joining me again on ‘Life begins at fifty – Healthy Life’. Thank you for liking my posts and following me for more. It’s been lovely to visit your blogs too, and something struck me…I don’t know where any of you are starting your Healthy Life journey from, I mean, I was already a vegetarian (a wheat free one at that!), so I’d already made changes from my previous typical British ‘meat and two veg’ type diet in my twenties and then again, in my thirties.

Making changes to eating habits isn’t easy because that’s what they are…habits, and we get really hooked on them. I remember the realisation that I might never be able to eat wheat based bread again, and how impossible that seemed, but after more than twenty years, I don’t really think about it.

This recipe is something everyone can try, and it ticks a number of the boxes on Dr Gregor’s Daily Dozen (You can find out more about plant based eating and Dr Gregor here https://nutritionfacts.org/)

My good friend Cate gave me the recipe for this awesome smoothie….and I’ve tweeked it for even more goodness!

1 cup blueberries

1/2 cup cherries

1/2 banana

2 cups spinach (or 3)

2 tablespoons ground flax seeds

1 tablespoon peanut butter

6 dates and/or tablespoon date syrup

2 tablespoons cocoa powder

11/2 cups of water (warm if using frozen berries)

2 teaspoons maca powder

2 teaspoons spirulina powder

This makes enough for two people and is great for elevenses or as a boost during the day. The additions I’ve made are the final two, maca powder and spirulina. Maca powder is high in certain minerals including potassium, calcium, magnesium and zinc as well as some B vitamins including B3 (niacin). Its also a good vegan source of iron. Spirulina is known as a nutrient-dense food and is packed full of vitamins, including vitamins A, C, E and B vitamins, as well as a whole host of minerals such as calcium, magnesium, zinc and selenium. In particular, vitamin C and selenium are both antioxidants and help protect our cells and tissues from damage. This algae is also an excellent vegan source of iron.

One glass of this smoothie ticks off 1 berries, 2 fruits, 1 greens, flax seeds and nuts and seeds off your daily dozen and I promise you, you won’t taste the spinach at all! We often add 3 cups of spinach if the blender will take it.

Feel free to experiment….would kale work in this? Can I add more banana to make it more creamy? Or avocada? Or mango?

Have fun and experiment with this versatile and healthy smoothie.

Join me next time when I introduce you to one of my favourite YouTube channels and for an insight into my lunch time salad bowl!

 

 

 

Plant Based Recipe of the Week – Week 2 – Happy Birthday to me!

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Since becoming plant based, I’ve not tried many cake recipes (though I’m aiming to try my son’s recipe for brownies very soon!) so, instead of a birthday cake to celebrate my birthday, I went for my favourite dessert.

A few months ago, I was gifted the Ms Cupcake book ‘The Naughtiest Vegan Cakes in Town’ and went straight to the lemon curd slice recipe. I love a lemon dessert! Usually when cooking or baking something new, I stick to the exact recipe for the first time but this one said 550g sugar and I just couldn’t do it. I’m listing her recipe here with my changes in brackets so you can taste for yourself as to how sharp or sweet you want your lemon curd slice to be.

Lemon curd slice

For base:

200g plain flour (can be gluten free blend)

80g icing sugar

100g margarine/butter (can be dairy free)

80g shortening (I used 80g of dairy free spread, 180g dairy free spread in total)

Half teaspoon salt

Zest of one lemon

For topping:

500ml lemon juice (I used lemon from base + 3 lemons=50ml and topped up with water)

250ml water (I added this water too)

550g caster sugar (I used 150g and it was sharp but delicious)

130g cornflour

Zest of three lemons (juice as above) (adding another lemon will make it more tart but works- when our greengrocer has 10p lemons, I use 5)

130ml soya cream (approx. half the carton)

40g margarine/butter

 

Bake: oven: Gas 4/180ºC/350ºF

Grease or line with baking parchment a 13’ X 9’ tin

 

Makes 16-24 slices

 

Instructions

Preheat oven and line or grease tin.

In a bowl, mix together the flour, icing sugar, fat and lemon zest. (Like making pastry crumbs) Press into prepared tin and bake for about 10 minutes until lightly brown. (If using dairy free marg, it won’t go very brown but 10 mins should do the job) Remove and allow to cool.

Meanwhile, make the lemon curd. (Recipe says use a food processor or blender to blend lemon juice, water and caster sugar but I just stirred it in my large pan and it was fine) Put the cornflour into a separate, small bowl and add the lemon mixture to the cornflour a few tablespoons at a time, mixing together until you have a smooth thick paste with no lumps. Pour this paste back into the pan and stir to combine. Add salt and lemon zest.

On a medium heat, bring the lemon and cornflour mixture to the boil, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, takes about 5 minutes. As the mixture begins to boil, you’ll see it tuning a darker shade of yellow and become thick and glossy. Allow the curd to boil for about a minute, remove from heat. Add the soya cream and marg and mix together. Let the mixture sit for 3-4 minutes and then pour over the curd evenly on top of the cake in the tin.

Allow to sit at room temperatue for at least 30 minutes before placing in the fridge in its tin for at least 2 hours or until the curd has firmed up to a cut-able consistency.

Cut into squares and serve sprinkled with icing sugar if you wish. Store  covered in fridge for up to a week.

I’m sharing more of the birthday love so you can download my first Witchlit novel ‘The Naked Witch’, until 5th December for just 99p/99c and if you enjoy it, you can pay back the birthday love with a few lines of review to help others find my books.

and for my friends across the pond

Thank you for sharing my birthday with me and I hope you come again for more recipes, dance, magic and books. Bright blessings xx

 

How much juice is enough? Part 2

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Into our second week of juicing and, after the busy and exciting Saturday I had, dancing with Tribal Unity at the Lampeter Food Festival, I’m loving it and really feeling the benefits.

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The juice recipes in the book to go with the video ‘Fat sick and nearly dead’ are useful and inspiring. Set out for each season, to encourage use of seasonal and local produce, we’ve tried a number of the ‘summer’ recipes. The food recipes, however, are not to our taste.

DSC_1435These are the quinoa and bean burgers, using the pulp from juicing, coated in nutritional yeast, served on spinach with tomatoes. This was not a successful dinner as spinach was disappointingly tough and burgers inedible. The recipes feel like someone has put together a group of ingredients that are ‘good for you’ rather than any tasting having gone on with the creation of the dish. Cumin powder stirred into a mix and then the whole baked in the oven is really unpleasant and left a hot feeling in my chest all evening. So…..we resorted to our own food.

DSC_1436 My plate on the left shows home made vege burgers while Mike has goat’s cheese and spinach lattice, served with sweet potato, peppers, sweetcorn and spinach. We’ve continued to eat our own food but changed the proportions on the plate. At least half has to be vegetable and less than a quarter each of protein and carbs.

We are drinking a green juice and a fruit juice each day, sometimes adding one more and eating our usual veggie diet. I’m still not eating dairy and I do feel better for it. Here are our three favourite recipes, from the book, online and from my dance teacher, Deana.

Morning Green Glory

4-5 large kale leaves

1 large handful of spinach

3 romaine leaves

1 cucumber

3 celery stalks (which we are omitting following the head slammer reaction!)

1 green apple

1 lemon (peeled or it’s very bitter)

 

Deana’s Morning Wake Up

2 oranges

2 carrots

2 rings of pineapple (about a quarter of a pineapple)

half a mango

2 passionfruit

I’ve been leaving out the mango most days as have only managed to ripen one before it went mouldy, in two weeks! Passion fruit are quite expensive so some days, I’ve been adding a peeled lemon instead.

 

Beet Delight

2 red apples

1 large beet

1 large carrot

1 lemon

This recipe is supposed to have a small turnip in as well but doesn’t need it.

I think two or three juices a day, with a vegetarian diet, upping the amount of vegetables and cutting back on protein and carbs, is a good balanced diet for me. I feel satisfied after my meals and have plenty of energy for physical work on the house and dancing and my mind feels clearer and more focussed when I’m writing.

Happy juicing!

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