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The Sun is shining, bees are buzzing, we are dining outdoors and every young lad in the country has a big aul farmers tan. This can only mean one thing. Summer is here and while it seems to last for just one day rather than a full season, it is still the perfect excuse to whip up a cool treat to beat the heat.

 

Bite Size Bowls

This week we are thrilling and chilling that sweet tooth with gluten and dairy free ice cream. This recipe is perfect for those of us who (like myself) are currently staring into a fruit bowl full of almost over ripe bananas. So chop them all up and pop them into the freezer. What you don’t use now for ice cream you can always use later for a smoothie.

Bananas are full of potassium and vitamin B6 but aside from their health benefits they also provide the perfect texture for our vegan ice cream.

This heavenly dessert tastes so good that it must be a sin, but it’s really a saint as we are adding sweet zinc filled strawberries, anti oxidant packed blueberries and magnesium rich cacao nibs (which deserve and entire blog of their own).

What You’ll Need:

  • 3 Bananas
  • 2 Tbsp Raw Cacao Nibs
  • 2 Tbsp Crunchy Organic Peanut Butter
  • Handful of Blueberries
  • Handful of Strawberries
  • Pinch of Sea Salt
  • Maple Syrup
  • 1 Tsp Vanilla Extract (optional)

Ice cream


Method:

  1. Slice and freeze the bananas.
  2. Once frozen add them to a food processor and blend.
  3. Chop the strawberries and add them to the blender along with the blue berries, cacao nibs, sea salt, peanut butter and vanilla extract.
  4. Whiz it all up until the texture is similar to ice cream.
  5. Drizzle with maple syrup and serve in a wafer, cone, bowl or any way you like. 

All the ingredients mentioned above can be found at The Green Door Market. Like us on Facebook and follow me on Instagram as I continue my culinary adventures.      

This powerhouse salmon salad is versatile and tasty while also wedged full of vitamins and minerals.

Salmon itself is one of the most nutritious fish, packed full of iron, zinc, niacin, vitamin B6 and 12 along with a whole host of other nutrients for good health. As well as the mixed grain salad this dish is superb for heart and brain health, bone health and improving thyroid function. Grains such as buckwheat, quinoa and cous cous are high in protein, fiber, vitamins and minerals. We named this the Powerhouse Salad because it would be hard to find a vitamin or mineral that’s not in this dish!

It’s a very adaptable dish. If you don’t like salmon just simply change your meat or skip the meat altogether. It is super filling and my kids love it so it’s a family favourite. If you don’t fancy making it yourself just pop into The Lo-cal Kitchen and give it a try, you can get the salad without the salmon if you wish too.

lo cal kitchen, healthy food, nutrition,fitness,yoga,health,wellness,recipes,meditation,mindfulness,eat,move,live,breathe,love,revitalize,jenny connolly, food, nutrition, wellness,POWERHOUSE SALMON

You’ll need:

  • 150g fillet of salmon
  • 1 tbsp buckwheat
  • 1 tbsp red quinoa
  • 1 tbsp giant cous cous
  • ½ cup of kale
  • ½ cup mixed salad leaves
  • 1 tbsp pomegranate seeds
  • ¼ avocado
  • 1 tbsp pearl barley

for the dressing:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ¼ tbsp. lemon juice
  • ¼ tbsp. maple syrup

 

Ovens vary so this is just a guide: Preheat the oven to 180c Place the salmon on an oven proof dish skin side up and cook in oven for 10 minutes, then turn and cook for a further 8-10 minutes until cooked through but juicy and not dry.

 

With the grains I will often make a larger batch as is done in the Lo-cal Kitchen. Cook buckwheat, quinoa, cous cous and barley according to package instructions. This usually means simmer or soak in warm water but products vary. Once cooked allow the grains to cool and combine.

 

Whisk the dressing ingredients and toss with the grains and chopped kale, making sure to coat the kale well to help it soften slightly. Top with sliced avocado and salmon before sprinkling with pomegranate seeds.

One salad portion with salmon 492 calories 24g fat, 36g carbs, 37g protein

One salad dressing: 131 calories 13g fat, 2g carbs, 0g protein

 

You would be forgiven for thinking that all fruit and vegetables are in season all year round, after all they are available all year round in our local supermarkets!

However, eating seasonally could actually be the best way to eat sensibly as there are real health benefits in sticking to fruit and veg that’s in season.

Here’s why:

  • Produce tastes better – When you eat produce that’s in season it’s a taste sensation as opposed to produce that’s in transit for nearly two weeks. The transit time alone and chilling reduces the flavour. When a fruit or vegetable is ripe and picked fresh not only will it taste better but it’s nutritionally superior too.
  • It’s better value – it stands to reason that when a farmer harvests produce in season it will not only be plentiful but cheaper because storage and transport are not necessary as its usually heading somewhere local.
  • It’s better for the planet too – our planet needs all the help it can get these days and every little helps. Buying local produce reduces fuel to fork costs, helping to reduce pollutant gases into the atmosphere. Growing fruit and veg in season requires lower levels of artificial inputs like heating, lighting, pesticides and fertilisers, making it better for the environment and you.
  • Seasonal vegetables suit our body – Our bodies our wise and we need to move with the seasons. What’s grown in nature each season is what our bodies crave for nourishment and optimal nutrition. In the summer we lean towards berries and salads but in the winter hearty soups and stews made from root vegetables is what we need. So build a comforting friendship with your crock-pot. After all, winter is all about grounding yourself and we can do this through food too.
  • We can support our local farmers –support and connection is really important for our health and wellbeing. When you buy local you not only help to support your local farmer but you also make a real connection to where your food came from.

Here’s a list of what’s in season now:

All year round you will have onions, carrots, chard, mushrooms, spinach, garlic, potatoes and salad leaves.

liz cook veg seasonal winter veg Liz Cook charts BUY HERE

December: Chestnuts, field mushrooms, Brussels sprouts, parsnips, leeks, turnips, pumpkins, celery, rhubarb, red cabbage, kale, cauliflower, swede, cabbage, celeriac, beetroot, pears, cranberries, cooking apples and apples

January: Cabbage, Red cabbage, cauliflower, kale, swede, Brussels sprouts, celery leeks, parsnips, turnips, celeriac, beetroot, rhubarb, apples, pears, cooking apples

February: Purple sprouting broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, beetroot, cabbage, kale, turnip, rhubarb, celery, celeriac, red cabbage, apples, pears, cooking apples

I love shopping local and my! it’s a very different experience to the supermarket. My son is 6 and has built a relationship with the people at my local market. He knows where food comes from and is interested in the process. From farm to fork without all the logistics is preferable where possible. So please try and support our own and shop locally. Here’s a link to the market I attend in Dublin 8. Check it out The Green Door.

Christy Stapleton greendoor

LEAVES PASTA, ALISON CANAVAN, BE COMPLETE, HEALTHY EATING, BUCKWHEAT, PROTEIN, KIDS MEAL, PASTA, WELLNESS, HEALTH COACH, FOOD DEALSA while back I received a small hamper with a couple of packets of pasta. I was immediately intrigued by the idea of a high-protein, free from, pasta made exclusively from buckwheat and chickpeas and decided to find out more.
It was October of last year when I first had the chance to have a chat with Nico and Sabine from Leaves, the creators of #PastaMagic for one of my Wellness Wednesday articles (read the full story here: WELLNESS WEDNESDAY with Nico and Sabine).

Since then this couple (and their little son Aidan) have come a long way: this February they finally launched their #PastaMagic nationwide in a clever single serve portion of 100g, to help with portion control and avoid waste. They currently have 3 flavours out there: Fusilli originale, Penne with Garlic and Macaroni with Sage; all available in SuperValu stores and speciality stores around the country and online on their WEBSITE .

I really like the passion that this young couple have for their mission and what Leaves stands for: helping others achieve a healthier lifestyle in an easier and more attractive way. I truly love their pasta, so it works for me. The idea that in just five minutes (that’s how long it takes to cook this pasta perfectly al dente!) I can get as much protein as a serving of salmon and 3 times more fibre just from my pasta, with a great flavour and texture (forget all those brittle gluten-free alternatives out there) it’s absolutely fantastic!

I met the two again for a tea a few weeks ago and together we decided to partner as I really love to support positive, passionate people that like me are committed to help others to feel better.
So I will be sharing a few interesting recipes with #PastaMagic, and how it fits into my daily life, but most importantly we’ll be offering FREE SHIPPING to all readers when buying from the Leaves Web Store  :simply add the code “Alison” at checkout to avail of the offer.

The pasta on their website costs just €2 (or less when ordered in bigger quantities) for what basically is a full meal in a box for one.

If you try it, I’d love to hear your thoughts about #PastaMagic and how you use it, I hope this product will help many of you feel better in an effortless way.

 

Green smoothie, matcha smoothie, counter culture, powerscourt townhouse center, ronan ryan, pamela flood

If you are in town in the run up to christmas looking for somewhere to eat that’s tasty, healthy and has a great christmas atmosphere you must head to “Counter Culture” in The Powerscourt Center.

Ronan Ryan and Pamela Flood have recently opened a new restaurant which has managed to make healthy tasty which in turn makes healthy cool. One of the biggest lies we have been told is that healthy food is boring which is simply not true as Ronan demonstrates with his food here. For years if you tried any sort of diet it meant bland food and a boring dinner plate tempting you back to your old habits which got you into trouble in the first place.

A healthy lifestyle is not a temporary phase and it should also be tasty and enjoyable. We are told to eat a variety of coloured fresh food every day that appeals to our eye as well our body and health. I have always believed that food is an experience and ‘Counter Culture’ ticks all those boxes and more.

When I popped in last week I had a quick chat with Ronan and here’s what he had to say:
RONAN WHAT INSPIRED THE IDEA FOR COUNTER CULTURE?

I saw a place in Washington called ‘The Protein Bar’ and a friend of mine lived there and was raving about it (so was Oprah!!!) It had substantial healthy cooked to order food as opposed to pre prepared salads.

WHAT DOES THE TERM EATING CLEAN MEAN?

To me it means.. Insecticide free.. Processed food free, sugar free etc.. Freshly prepared really..

WHAT INSPIRED YOUR MENU?

American influence is the main source of ‘ideas’ then just add the Irish local produce to it.

YOU HAVE BEEN IN THE RESTAURANT BUSINESS FOR A LONG TIME IN DUBLIN. HOW HAS IT CHANGED? ARE IRISH PEOPLE NOW MORE HEALTH CONSCIOUS?

There’s a massive difference. We have mostly men coming to us with cholesterol issues or diabetes etc.  People are now paying for years of excess. I include myself in that!!!

sea bass, counter culture, powerscourt center, healthy food, dublin

I have tried quite a few dishes but last week i decided on the delicious baked sea bass fillet above which was served with diced sweet potato and sun dried tomato pesto €15.00. It was a perfect lunchtime meal and I added a smoothie and I might have indulged in a dessert (see below) just to taste obviously and I was not disappointed.

My friend had the vegan salad which had spinach, kale, avocado, quinoa and hempseed pesto (€12.00) and its was so tasty. In fact both were so good we split them to save arguments.

salad, counter culture, powerscourt townhouse center, healthy food, dublin, ronan ryan

But there is so much to choose from from at Counter Culture theres the veal ragu with Moroccan cous-cous and beetroot salad (12.00), turkey escalope with tossed vegetables and salad (€13.00) and then a delicious vegetarian wholemeal wrap with avocado, cucumber, pesto, leaves and tomato & a cup of soup (€10.00)

For dessert they have great protein energy bites and warmed peanut butter brownie with coconut and berry ice-cream but my favourite part of the menu are their fresh juices and all natural protein shakes which Ronan tells me trainer Paul Byrne from Body Byrne helped him with.

I had an ‘afternoon slump booster’ which I needed badly and it had avocado, almond milk, coconut flesh and premium matcha tea. (€5.00) Everyone knows how much I love my matcha tea and this was a tasty and great twist on my usual matcha latte.

MATCHA TEA, HEALTHY FOOD, COUNTER CULTURE, POWERSCOURT TOWNHOUSE CENTER, RONAN RYAN, PAMELA FLOOD

With the shakes you get to choose your base: (€4.00)

  • Almond milk, coconut milk, soy or cows milk
  • Add peanut butter or almond butter
  • Then they add chis seeds, pinhead porridge oats , whey
  • Add fresh strawberries or 85% dark chocolate to make a strawberry of chocolate shake

So really there is something for everyone but don’t take my word for it pop into The Powerscourt Townhouse Center yourself on the top floor. Believe me there is no better way to get renergised for the day!

FOLLOW THEM ON

COUNTER CULTURE DUBLIN FACEBOOK

TWITTER

INSTAGRAM