Category: Food

(Almost) Sugar-free Vegan Nutella.

NUTELLA
NUTELLA! Possibly the best food ever!? Unfortunately also extremely unhealthy and full of added sugar. So for sugar addicts, how exciting is it to create a healthy sugar free delicious version!?

The original recipe I took inspiration from was from Sarah Wilson’s ‘I Quit Sugar’ book, but I changed it slightly as I do not think using maple syrup is too bad for you. From lots of research, I think if sugar is naturally occurring it shouldn’t be so demonized (fructose/fruits, honey, maple syrup) and as long as it is eaten in moderate amounts it is perfectly fine (in my opinion!).

Maple Syrup is harvested naturally from maple trees and contains lots of iron and calcium. Make sure you buy 100% Canadian maple syrup, as maple syrup flavoured syrups will have lots of added sugars!

The taste? Well I think this version is obviously less sweet and more nutty, but it is still pretty convincing and damn well delicious!

You will need:

  • 1 cup Blanched hazelnuts (135g)
  • 200ml Coconut milk
  • 80ml Maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup (30g) raw cacao powder (I bought mine from Amazon here – it’s expensive but a bag will last a while!)
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla powder or vanilla flavour

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To make:

1. Bake your hazelnuts in the oven for 10 minutes.
2. Using a rolling pin and large bowl (or a food processor if you have one), crush the hazlenuts so they are smashed into small pieces – almost like a powder. ( Or you could just buy pre-chopped ones if you wanted too.)
3. Add all your ingredients to a blender or food processor and blend until smooth!
4. Store in your fridge and this should keep for a few weeks. Or eat immediately with fresh strawberries and bananas!

Delicious banana, hazelnut & cranberry flapjacks

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On my quest to eat 1. less chocolate, and 2. less processed sugar, I came to the conclusion that these flapjacks were the answer! They can be eaten for breakfast with a bit of Greek yogurt (mmm) or as a tasty snack. I find the oats and nuts keep you quite full!

There is a bit of sugar in here, but it is from the fruit and honey. A lesser of two evils…

To make these delicious banana treats you will need:

  • 3 mashed bananas
  • 200g oats (gluten free if you are super sensitive – I find oats actually OK)
  • A handful of dried cranberries
  • A handful of chopped roasted hazelnuts
  • Roughly 30ml honey (depending on what honey and how liquid-y it is, you may need more, or less!)
  • 20 ml olive oil
  • A baking tray with baking paper (parchment, don’t use foil or it will STICK!)

To make:

1. Mash your bananas in a big nice bowl, and then add your oats!
2. Add in the honey and give a big stir, you want the oats to stop being dry but you don’t want the mixture to be liquid-y. Pour in your olive oil and keep stirring so it gets less dry.
3. Add your nuts and cranberries and stir to a thick paste.
4. Lay your baking paper on a tray and spread out the mixture so it is roughly 2cm thick, in whatever shape you like!
5. Put in the oven at 200c or gas mark 6 (whatever almost highest is on your oven)!
6. Bake for 20-25 minutess depending on how hard and crispy you like them. I like them softish so keep them in for 20!
7. EAT!

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Eating clean – 2014 fix my tummy.

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Food, fucking glorious food. I never used to be one of those people who ‘lives to eat’, more so I was a bit ‘eat to live’, until I got a full time job, a boyfriend who likes eating out and I moved to central London with some of the best places to eat on my doorstep. I guess you could say I got ‘into food’, like one of those annoying people who call themselves ‘foodies’.

For the past year and a half, I have suffered with IBS (I won’t bore you with the gory details), I had been not-quite-right for a while in the tummy department, which then ended up with me ill and in hospital with a kidney infection and a lot of pain. I had all the tests done to check for anything ‘serious’ and I did not have UC or Crohn’s (thanks universe), but something was/is still not right. Hence being told by doctors I am one of the many lucky millions of 20-something girls with IBS.

I cut out bread, and most other things (lol, panic disorder). Jokes about my brain aside, cutting out bread has got rid of a lot of the naughty toilet running behaviour that my body likes to do, but not completely gotten rid of my IBS. I try not to eat wheat at all, but it is hard (it’s in all the fun food, and those drunken walks home with bagels are happening far too often these days..). I also have realized it’s not just wheat, it seems to be yeast, rye, milk & cheese (lactose) and probably lots of other delicious stuff. I have to tell you, these exclusion diets are pretty boring..

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^Sugar free nutella, um yes please?

Out of frustration and annoyance that my stomach is fucked up almost every other day, alongside doctors fobbing off anyone with IBS to experiment with diet themselves, I have been reading quite a lot about the Paleo way of eating lately, and also the FODMAP diet. These both supposedly offer great relief to people with IBS.

I’ve gotta say, this also makes perfect sense to me, as I’ve found through trial and error that plain vegetables, fruit, meat and fish are probably the only foods that don’t make my intestines do a dance and make me feel like napping 4 times a day.

Also I am 100% a sugar addict. I could happily eat a pack of Tunnocks teacakes in one sitting, or for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Everyone knows how bad sugar is so I needn’t explain why I want to eat less!

It all has to stop! The sneaky bits of bread, the sneaky bits of cake full of gluten and pizza once a week. It is no good, and you only get one body. Over the next few weeks i’m going to try and eat less grains, less sugar and more vegetables, meat and fish and see how it goes!

I guess I will be posting some experiments in ‘healthy people cooking’ soon. The Nutella up there has cost me about Ā£12 in ingredients (one of which I had to source from amazon as even the giant hipster health food shop in East London didn’t stock it, major LOL @ HEALTH FOOD). That’s a fucking expensive Nutella. I’m too poor for this middle class diet shit.

Tonight I also tried to make a chilli sauce out of the Susan Jane White book above and it made me gag (however, it is a beautiful book with lots of amazing looking recipes..). Lets hope this good luck continues. On the upside I have been told about the best veg shop in North London so will be stocking up this week. Thanks Ava and Rose!

If any of you has advice or words of wisdom.. please do help a sister out. x

Shrimpy’s, The King’s Cross Filling Station

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King’s Cross, the place to go when you need to travel North (see: Yorkshire). When hungry, despite a renovation of the station, there’s not much to eat aside from Pret, Starbucks and Giraffe. But fear not! You can be saved if you are hungry for a proper meal before your train ride. As I discovered this week, just around the corner by the canal is this little gem: The Filling Station, and inside is a wonderful little restaurant called Shrimpy’s!

The menu has lots of delicious burgers (including crab burgers if you’re into food as intense as that) and the steak looked AMAZING but at Ā£18 I visited at the wrong end of the month to fork out for that! Next time…

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The drinks were amazing. I had a lemonade with mint, and sugar. And Henry ordered some coffee/tequila/bailieys concoction.
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Inside the place is tiny, and it feels like the building is slightly (for want of a better word).. temporary!? The light is low which gives it such a nice atmosphere, the staff were super friendly and the menu is also designed beautifully.
cheeseBehold the cheeseburger, in the most delicious brioche style bun! God it was good…
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me
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‘Brunch’ at Caravan – London eating

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I always find the word ‘Brunch’ so annoying (pretentious), but lets be honest ‘breakfast lunch’ is always the best food. Me and Henry went to Caravan on Exmouth Market (I’d never been but always wanted to go) and it was pretty good. I also gave my new camera one of it’s first outings (I LOOVVVVE IT). I’m glad I can start to build a little London guide on here now – with lots of my favourite London places for my own reference, and not have to lug around a hefty dSLR. Hopefully someone else might find it useful too!

Henry ate: baked eggs, tomato & pepper ragout and Greek yoghurt with chorizo and me: the ham hock hash with poached eggs and hollandaise sauce. Delishhh.

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All washed down with fresh mint tea. (Good for people with the worst tummies in the world!)pour