All tagged eat the rainbow

buckwheat tabbouleh

I love the lebanese salad tabbouleh and it works brilliantly with buckwheat rather than bulgar wheat. Buckwheat is a gluten free grain despite the name so this salad is a fabulous gluten free alternative to tabbouleh. This might seem a lot of parsley - but tabbouleh is traditionally a parsley salad with a small amount of bulgar wheat. Parsley is packed with vitamin C and antioxidants and so very good for us.

spiced green falafel

Deliciously spiced, easy tomato and very green these falafel are sure to be a hit. Falafel are traditionally deep fried, but we have baked them with just a brush of olive oil to make them healthier. We have spiced them using a Zhoug paste from Belazu that is seasoned with coriander and jalapeño. It’s easily available from supermarkets.

Green buckwheat salad

I first started using buckwheat in a salad after trying the delicious pink tahini buckwheat salad from Ceri Jones of Natural Kitchen Adventures, which is featured in her app. This green buckwheat salad has been inspired by Cert’s pink salad! Buckwheat is a gluten free seed and is very useful in a gluten-free diet as it gives a grain-like texture. For the health benefits see tip below. Serve this salad as it is or you can add crumbled feta cheese if you want to increase the protein content.

roast tomatoes with chorizo and red rice

This dish uses camargue red rice, which has some great health benefits and is even more nutritious than brown rice (see tip below). We have added choirzo to this dish as it goes so well, however to make this dish vegetarian simply leave it out - it will still be delicious. Look out for nitrate/nitrite free chorizo in your supermarket. This is a great dish for using up a glut of tomatoes or turning large and sometimes rather tasteless supermarket tomatoes into something delicious.

beetroot and herb quinoa salad

I love a salad. In the spring and summer I make sure I have one at least one a day and in the winter I just warm up a few of the ingredients to make a warm salad. To stop myself getting bored I am always changing the ingredients. My salads are never boring with just lettuce and cucumber - I make sure I pack them with lots of delicious vegetables. They are always colourful and contain at least four different vegetables or herbs.

sweet potato rosti

These are so tasty that even my husband who has decided he doesn’t like sweet potatoes loves them! And for him to go back for seconds on a veggie dish is high praise indeed! They could be served for breakfast with a poached egg on top or alongside a green salad for lunch. For most people 3-4 rosti would be enough for lunch – although my husband did eat 6 the first time I cooked these for him!!

weekly make aheads

Making life easier in the kitchen is what we are all about. There are several items that we make on a regular basis so that we always have something tasty to snack on or reach for to pull a meal together. They are a bit like the backbone to our cooking. Helping us to speed things up in the kitchen when we are busy. You could set aside some time each week to make these, say a Sunday afternoon when things are less busy. Or make them throughout the week, whatever suits you. If you want to make sure you always have a well stocked kitchen to assist with getting ahead then do check out our blog post stocking a healthy kitchen.

stocking your healthy kitchen

Changing your habits can be hard and making healthy choices when your kitchen isn’t stocked can be very hard. If your kitchen is well stocked with healthy ingredients then you will find is much easier to rustle up healthy dishes. Our tips below will make sure that your kitchen is stocked with all you need.

The real superheroes

As the health industry continues to boom, there are more and more products claiming to make you healthier and it’s easy to be seduced into thinking that taking a daily ‘superfood’ will help to make you healthier. However if you are sedentary and consume a typical Western diet that is high in saturated fat and low in fibre and phytonutrients then a glass of wheatgrass a day will not protect you from cancer or cardiovascular problems. 

Are you riding the blood sugar rollercoaster?

We all know that sugar is bad for us and does us no favours in our quest to being healthy. However it’s not just sugar in tea and coffee or fizzy drinks that is affecting our blood sugar levels. White bread, pasta, cakes, biscuits and fruit juice all convert to sugar within a few minutes of being eaten. Now you might think this is not a problem and you exercise loads so you’ll burn it off right? Unfortunately it’s not as easy as this. If you suffer from mood swings or find yourself becoming ‘hangry’, have low energy or weight that gathers around your belly then you might feel much better by cutting back on the sugar and white refined carbohydrates.

Boosting your immunity

As the seasons change and the nights draw in it’s the return of the coughs and colds. I always find it’s when the children go back to school after the summer holidays that colds start to make a reappearance. It always amazes me just how quickly someone in the class gets a cold and passes the germs around.

mushroom, spinach & coconut curry

While Val, the French half of The Health Boost is all about blue skies, hot sun and Mediterranean flavours, I am a huge fan of Autumn. Cosy jumpers, snuggling under a blanket, log fires and slow cooks, stews and spicy curry. Well to me this wild mushroom curry sums up those Autumn flavours. So easy to make and totally delicious. Eating out of a large bowl in front of a log fire while wearing a cosy jumper is optional! While most of our recipes are suitable for families my children won’t even touch mushrooms so this only serves 2.

a week of healthy snacks

Kat and I are not really snackers, but with 5 children between us and busy schedules we know that they are often a necessity to keep us all going, mums and children alike. However, with so many supermarkets and health shops increasing their range of so called "healthier option" snacks, it is easy to get confused with the often misleading claim on the front of the packets.The nutritional labels at the back are so often just as confusing. The solution to ensure you know exactly what you eat? Make your own snacks and get the kids involved with flavours. Many of the snack bars sold in the supermarkets or health shops as "healthy" are often still very high in sugar due to the dried fruit content or sugar alternatives used. We have so many great options on the website, baked snacks, raw options, all gluten free and mostly nut-free for a school policy compliant lunch box. We believe that a good nourishing snack should always include protein.

a week of courgette/zucchini recipes

For anyone that grows their own or has family that grows their own vegetables you will be very familiar with how quickly you can suddenly have far too many courgettes (or zucchini as it's known in the States and Australia) to deal with! A couple of years ago I planted for too many courgette plants and I was making everything with courgettes in from cakes to hummus to curries and salads. Well you'll be pleased to know that lots of our recipes contain courgette and here we've compiled them all in one place just for you. The only thing that's missing from the recipes below is a courgette cake - but don't worry we're working on one!!

spiced chard & sweet potato cakes

This recipe came about after a surplus of chard in the vegetable patch that needed using up. I had previously just steamed the chard and used as a side dish, but the family weren't keen on the earthy taste so I needed to be more imaginative. This is the result and it worked. Husband gave it a big thumbs up!

courgette & chickpea salad

In August we are always looking for ways to use up a glut of courgette from the veg patch! This salad recipe is perfect. It's a good mixture of carbohydrates, green vegetables and fat from the avocado and dressing. This stores well in the fridge (without the avocado and dressing) and so can be taken into work for a healthy packed lunch.

harissa baked cod

At the Health Boost we're here to share quick simple and delicious recipes that you can make and enjoy again and again. This cod is packed full of the aromatic flavours of the Rose Harissa and simply baked in parchment paper. It is ready very quickly and can be served on a bed of crushed new potatoes or wild rice and a rainbow of seasonal veggies!

broad bean & mint dip

At the Health Boost we believe that the sure way to sustaining healthy eating on a long term basis is to keep it simple. Few ingredients, inspired by the seasons and available locally. This dip is just that and will make the perfect offering with summer drinks, barbecues served with warm flat breads or corn tortillas.  

a week of salads

We love salads at The Health Boost and nearly every day will have one for lunch and in the summer for supper too. However there's no limp lettuce and starving ourselves with our salads. The key to a good salad is to get the right balance of protein, healthy fats and some slow release healthy carbohydrates so that you aren't hungry again by 3pm. Every salad must contain a palm-sized amount of protein.

pea shoot & cashew pesto

At the Health Boost we love a green pesto. Spring and summer provide us with amazing green herbs, leaves and shoots and the greatest opportunities to experiment with green pesto. A homemade pesto is a great base for a bright and zingy salad dressing if you add olive oil and the juice of a lemon. As a make ahead and refrigerate item, it will become your best friend for a last minute delicious meal. Spoon some on top of a salmon fillet or chicken thighs before sliding in the oven and serve with a side salad.