6 Nourishing Autumn Recipes

6 Nourishing Autumn Recipes

  Humans beings, like all beings, have always instinctively known how to live in tune with the rhythms and cycles of the year though our deep connection with nature, but generations of living in towns and city’s means so many of us have forgotten (not lost!) our intuitive nature around how our bodies needs change depending on the season. A lovely way to reconnect to this intuitive self care, is to eat seasonally. That’s as simple as paying attention to whats in season near you. Whats growing? Because if you think about it, OF COURSE the foods that grow close by, are exactly the nourishment our bodies need at that time. It just makes sense, doesn’t it?  I also believe you can trust your cravings (to a point). There are valid reasons we want warm soups, and deserts made with stewed fruit in autumn and winter, these foods are easy to digest and when the weather cools down and we want to stay warm and preserve our energy.  The seasons have always been the inspiration behind my recipes, and being Autumn Equinox I thought I would gather a few of my favourites over the last few years together in one place for you. The 22nd of September is the Autumn Equinox this year. The tipping point in the year where light and dark are in perfect balance, before we head into those shorter, darker days. So this is the time to celebrate and give thanks for all that we have harvested this year and I like to think of this not just in terms of food, but as well...
Blackberry and Apple Crumble Bar

Blackberry and Apple Crumble Bar

  I am so excited about how this gluten free Blackberry and Apple Crumble Bar turned out. The truth is, I was about to make a regular blackberry and apple crumble, but I’ve lost my only photogenic crumble dish. I know, disaster!!! So I thought that by turning it upside down I could solve my need for both crumble AND a blog worthy photograph!  There is an ancient kind of instinct alive in us all to gather and preserve, wether it’s wild edibles such as blackberries, house plants, or even beautiful words and quotes. We all have an affinity for something that we know nourishes us. The simple act itself of gathering and preserving is so ingrained in our ancestry, it just somehow feeds an innate and instinctive part of us human beings, I’m sure that must why foraging feels so deeply satisfying! I always feel inspired to create recipes when there is something wild and in season to gather.. Wild garlic  or Wild garlic,  Nasturtiums, Elderflower, Blackberries,  or Blackberries,  Pears, Plums.. if it’s within arm or sticks reach I’ll be picking it!  It’s my favourite way to slow down, appreciate and connect with nature and forget about time. It serves my need to feel both productive / purposeful and relaxed or switched off all at the same time.   Wild food is usually highly nutritious compared with shop bought ingredients. Because it has to survive in the wild it contains more protective phyto-chemicals, which is great for us because the phyto-chemicals that protect the plants from the elements often also protect our health…  unless it is in fact poisonous, obviously!    I think you...
Blackberry and Beet Greens Smoothie

Blackberry and Beet Greens Smoothie

  This Blackberry and Beet Greens Smoothie is the first of two new blackberry recipes this week. We [me, Ollie, my brothers girlfriend Beckie and my sweet little blackberry face niece Ruby] picked a TON of blackberries last week.   Ollie, being the most nimble and un-phased by [read: Proud of] scratches and nettle stings [11 year boys are really excellent like that!] got most of them for us while we directed from ground level. He got to reap the rewards of his hard work later with this smoothie AND with my Blackberry and Apple Crumble bar, YES crumble, but as a bar.. still with custard of course!    But this smoothie though, it’s really, really good, so full of flavour and nutrition.    What I love about smoothies is they are the perfect way to get kids and boyfriends [and yourself, lets be honest] to eat things like raw beetroot tops! All kids of nutrient dense foods can be conveniently sneaked into smoothies.   Blackberries, like most berries, are full of vitamin C and protective polyphenols, a group of antioxidants most know for their ability to slow tumour growth and be protective against cancer. But antioxidants have so many important roles in the body.. they don’t just keep your skin youthful, their role is protective in all parts of the body.. the phrase prevention is better than cure comes to mind when I think of antioxidants. They clean up damaging free radicals and reduce inflammation in the body, and inflammation is the driving force behind basically all chronic disease.    How to know if something contains antioxidants? The...
Blueberry Gooseberry Grain Free Galette

Blueberry Gooseberry Grain Free Galette

Let me tell you how this blueberry gooseberry grain free galette recipe came to be. As many of you know I am exceptionally proud of my very humble little veg patch, a few berries as some kale literally has me beaming from ear to ear!!! I just find it so exciting and deeply satisfying to watch tiny seeds grow into beautiful nutritious food that tastes amazing and nourishes our bodies with no air miles, no chemicals, no packaging, all from a tiny seed and a little patch of earth. What a miracle mother earth is.  It took me a long time to get round to picking all of my 11 gooseberries (an increase on last year!) because under my little gooseberry bush is my cats favourite place to seek a shady warm patch of earth so all its berries were covered in cat hair (yum! don’t worry I washed them thoroughly!!!) But I was determined to honour these lovely over ripe berries with something simple but equally as delicious. I love galettes because they are so pretty and you can see whats in inside!  I searched around for some gluten free galette pastry inspiration (not my strength) and found one from Against All Grain, I changed it a little because I prefer almonds to cashews and coconut oil to butter, but the original recipe looks spectacular (as do all of Danielles recipes!) Blueberry Gooseberry Grain Free Galette Ingredients Filling  1 cup gooseberries halved 1 Tbs Maple syrup  1 Tbs Lemon Juice Pastry 2 cups almonds 1/4 cup cashews  1/4 cup arrowroot powder 1 Tbs coconut flour  1/4 cup maple syrup...
Orange and Cranberry Choc Chip Cookies – gluten free, vegan

Orange and Cranberry Choc Chip Cookies – gluten free, vegan

  I have a thing about pink and green food, I just want to adorn all my food with pink and green, so I have to confess that these orange and cranberry choc chip cookies initially came about solely because I felt like decorating something with pumpkin seeds and cranberries. Luckily this combo not only looks pretty but tastes excellent, and the addition of orange oil and chocolate chips takes them to the next level of tasty, chewy, crumbly cookie goodness. These cookies are adapted from My New Roots, Sarah B’s salt and pepper choc chip cookies which absolutely need no improvement, I think those are hands down the best cookie I’ve ever eaten, so if you haven’t already made those, you must!  But as I said, for personal reasons I just needed to sprinkle cranberries and pumpkin seeds on SOMETHING, and these cookies popped to mind as the perfect carrier for such prettiness. Also, I have a big bag of millet flakes in my cupboard which need using up and I haven’t really fancied millet porridge for sometime.. so into mostly oat based baked goods they must go! The millet really does add something extra delicious to these cookies, but if you do not already have a bag of millet flakes you are valiantly trying to make it to the bottom of, then go ahead and replace the 1/2 cup millet flakes with regular oats.      Orange & Cranberry Choc Chip Cookies    Ingredients  2 cups rolled oats (gluten free if need be) 1/2 cup millet flakes  2 Tbs dried  cranberries  2 Tbs pumpkin seeds  60g dark...
Gingery Blueberry Green Smoothie

Gingery Blueberry Green Smoothie

If you want to add greens to your smoothie, but are put off by the colour, then I have the answer for you – frozen blueberries or frozen blackcurrants. It really is that simple. When berries are frozen, their water content expands as it turns to ice breaking open the cell walls which contain the deep purple anthocyanin antioxidants, this is a win win, the phytonutrients become more available so we receive more nutritional benefit, and the deep purple disguises a multitude of colour sins in your smoothie! [For example, hemp protein which can turn a smoothie a kind of murky brown green] In this smoothie I have added Super Greens powder from BodyMe, this is a mix of spirulina, chlorella, wheatgrass and barley grass as well as a handful of fresh spinach.   Gingery Blueberry Green Smoothie Ingredients 1 cup blueberries 1 banana 1 handful organic spinach 1 cup coconut water 1 small chunk of ginger 2 brazil nuts 1/2 tsp of spirulina Method: Throw all the ingredients into a high power blender and blend until smooth. Last and add more ginger or coconut water to reach your desired taste and...
Hemp and Apricot Energy Bar

Hemp and Apricot Energy Bar

  Something pretty hilarious happened on Monday night.. in an unexpected turn of events I was on the telly! Yep, I made my TV debut, talking about hemp protein and getting my face all glittered up! If you’re wondering about the connection between hemp protein and glitter, don’t worry, there isn’t one! This year I’ve been taking part in a series called Be Fit Bristol Fit.. the lovely people at Troy TV have been following a few Bristolians who are in some way involved in health, sports and fitness, to showcase what this wonderful city has to offer. They approached me, and so far then have filmed me cooking in my kitchen, my little veg patch, and having some sessions with a personal trainer, it’s fun, and is helping me to get over my fear of video and to not take myself so seriously! So on Monday evening, Made in Bristol TV played my Be Fit Bristol Fit episode and asked me to come into the studio for a chat.. luckily it was so last minute that I didn’t have time to be scared and back out! I rushed home, showered and whipped up a quick protein bar because they asked me to bring in something to talk about relating to sports nutrition. And this is how the Hemp and Apricot Energy Bar came into being. There is SO MUCH goodness in this bar. It would be excellent post workout snack to replace glycogen stores, provide good quality plant protein and essential fats to keep blood sugar stable and our support hormones as well as giving the body some...
Wild Garlic Soup

Wild Garlic Soup

  I cant help but have a little chuckle when I pick wild garlic because it gives me the image of my Grandpa who absolutely detested onions and garlic with a passion, so much so they were not aloud in the house. I vividly remember the look of deep (but comical) disgust on his face, when as small children me and brother picked handfuls of wild garlic and waved it under his nose. I wish I could show you his face, I’m laughing now as I think of it!   I took Ollie and his friend to Leigh woods today to forage for wild garlic to make pesto, we found such an abundance covering the slopes of the valley, I filled my basket and decided to make soup too.. pretty sure my Grandpa would run for the hills if he could smell my house (or my breath!) right now.   This is recipe couldn’t be simpler. It tastes like spring and it is such a beautiful bright green. Ollie at first turned his nose up, but after taking a tiny lick of my spoon asked for a whole bowl full.    Wild garlic has all the antimicrobial, antiviral properties of regular bulb garlic, and is even more effected at lowering blood pressure. Garlic is fantastic for the cardiovascular system.   Wild Garlic Soup    Ingredients  1 Tbs butter, ghee or coconut oil 1 onion 1/2 a leek 2 cups of potato (when chopped into roughly 3cm cubes) 2 packed handfuls of kale  2 packed handfuls of wild garlic (about 80 leafs) 5 – 6 cups (or 1.2 litres) of...
Why ignoring your feelings is sometimes an essential act of self love.

Why ignoring your feelings is sometimes an essential act of self love.

  I know. Ignoring your feelings? Really???   Isn’t it self love about honouring how we feel? To get out of our head and follow what feels good, in each moment?   Yes, absolutely it is.   BUT, it’s also often true that self care can look like the very thing you DO NOT FEEL like doing, in that moment.   Do you ever think “My brain is telling me that this thing is going to make me feel better, but I actually don’t feeeeeel like doing it?   Yep. Sometimes self care can be utterly confusing.   You see, the ego has this extremely well honed skill of making us FEEL like we would rather be anywhere else in the world than facing the very thing that will create the movement, growth, healing and expansion of our truest self, because the ego is perfectly happy staying exactly where it is. In control. Keeping you SAFE!   (STUCK = SAFE, as far as the ego can see).   What I’ve noticed, is that we are taught to expect and recognise resistance showing up when we take a leap in our work, our life path, or relationships with others …stretching the comfort zones and ‘pushing’ ourselves to some extent for our own growth can feel really empowering and exciting!   But self care is supposed to feel good, relaxing, fun or deeply nourishing! So it’s easy to think we are doing something wrong when it doesn’t. So I think it’s really important to acknowledge that resistance can show up in our self care  journey TOO! Resistance can show up every...
Roasted Winter Salad with Quinoa & Kale

Roasted Winter Salad with Quinoa & Kale

This salad is just ticking so many boxes for me right now. Colourful √ Warm √ Sooooo tasty √ Nutritious √ Good fats √ Protein √ Easy √ ….yes I am using a square root symbol in place of a tick because I cant find a tick! Where there is colour there are protective phytonutrient antioxidants, but I’m actually going to champion this salad for CALCIUM! Calcium is not just important for kids growth.. we all need this mineral to maintain our bones and teeth, but also our nervous system and heart health and whole cardiovascular system. Calcium has also been shown to reduce the risk of colon cancer and help reduce and prevent premenstrual tension. A couple of calcium facts for you. We NEED vitamin D for our bodies to actually utilise Calcium and send it where it needs to go. So if your not getting sunshine, a good vitamin D supplements is important during the winter months. Taking calcium supplements without good vitamin D levels can calcify the soft tissues. Calcium and Magnesium must be balanced. More often than not people have too little Magnesium and this can lead to hypertension, insomnia, stress and in fact tension in both the muscles and the mind.. read THIS POST to see if you are deficient in Magnesium. Did you know that Sesame seeds, Carrots, Kale, Parsley and Cashews are all excellent sources of Calcium? AND they are all more observably and better for the planet than cows milk. Win Win. Aside form all of nerdy stuff, this salad is just yum.. I love the balance between rich roasted & gently caramelised onions, beetroots and butternut.. with fresh and lively...