The Rainbow Salad

A couple of weeks ago I caught a virus. Let’s have some overshare time now – most viruses cause vomiting and diarrhea, but mine caused my whole body to just seize up. I had an appetite but anytime I ate anything my stomach would go into agonising cramps and swell up to pregnant size. It wasn’t a good look. Anyway, to cut a long story short, I spent 4 days solidly living off overcooked carrot and brocolli. That was all my body could handle. So now I’m out the other side, I’m craving that raw fibrous fruit and veg that I was deprived for that small period of time. 

So I’ve been making a lot of rainbow salads. Here’s how to do it:

In short… Pile as many different raw, brightly coloured vegetables on your plate as possible.

Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

If the colours don’t make your eyes hurt, you’ve not done it right!Image

In this photo, the salad is made up of a bed of spinach and kale, topped with tomatoes, white onion (I’m brave), grated carrot, chopped beetroot, raisins and fresh basil. I also always tend to garnish anything I make with chilli, because if you can top anything with ginger, garlic or chlili, you’re doing your body and your metabolism a favour.

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Now is the time to make a rainbow salad, while the sun is out and the heat is blazing. In winter, you won’t want this kind of thing, but right now it is easy to fill your body with this kind of goodness. So go raw, even just for a meal. “Thanks”, said your bod.

Jazzed up Greek Salad

ImageLast week I felt dehydrated. I was drained, and woke up every day with a headache. Obviously my body was lacking water, but I felt like I was drinking loads.

Time to bring in the back-up… water in food. I decided to make a mammoth-sized salad, greek style – but with added bits, vegetables that are known for being high in water content. I added mushrooms and beetroot, so the ingredients were as follows:

 

Lucy’s Jazzed up Hydrating Greek Salad Bowl

Leaves – kale and rocket (half a mixing bowl full!)

Tomato

Cucumber

Red Onion

Mushrooms (briefly cooked in a teaspoon of coconut oil)

Beetroot

Feta

Plenty of dry oregano, olive oil and lemon juice to dress it

 

It was absolutely delicious and incredibly filling. Remember, a lot of the time you feel hungry, your body is actually just thirsty. You’re dehydrated. Our bodies are about 60% water! And I know I’m not the first blogger to point that out! This is not me saying that every time you’re craving something to eat, you should just drink water. You need to know your own body and judge every feeling individually. I know when I’m occasionally feeling faint and my body actually really needs fuel, and I also know when I’m just restless and a bit dehydrated, so I’m reaching for the peanut butter and the teaspoon!

But this salad did just the trick. It filled me to the brim, and I was peeing non-stop for the rest of the day (now we’ve discussed going to the toilet, we’re all very good friends).

Try it yourself and notice how good you feel. It’s not just the water in all those vegetables, but the nutrients in so much raw food.  Enjoy!

 

See my post on Lucy Salads for other suggestions for mammoth-sized salad bowls to fill you up, and see my post on greek food for breaking down the various advantages of such a salad. And finally, read here why kale is such a fantastic way to bulk up your salad.

 

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Hot Tomato Orange soup

My most recent obsession has been this delicious home-made soup. I made it for a friend, who responded with the following analysis:

First you taste the tomato and think “yum, yeah nice tomato soup”, then you get the kick of the chilli and you’re all like, “woah there, what’s that?” Then in the aftertaste you notice the orange and it’s like, “alright clever dick”.

 

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I liked that analysis, and I think he liked the soup. So here it is, my recipe for Hot Tomato Orange soup. Leave out the chilli if you don’t like spicy and adapt the portion size depending on how many you’re cooking for. This will make a very large portion of soup for 1:

Ingredients:

3 large tomatoes

1 small white onion

1/3 of a chilli pepper

2 cloves of garlic

a teaspoon of dried basil

1 vegetable stock cube

a healthy dash of worcester sauce

a teaspoon of tomato puree

a dash of cinnamon

juice of 1/2 an orange

Firstly chop up your tomatoes and onion and pop them in the pan to sizzle with the garlic, dried basil and chopped chilli. There is actually no need to add any oil in this recipe, as tomatoes are such soggy food and won’t stick to the bottom of the pan. (But olive oil always adds some deliciousness to any meal – so you can decide.) After the tomato and onion have gone soft, crumble the vegetable stock cube in, add the tomato puree, worcester sauce and cinnamon and stir for a little while longer. Then add water (this is a guessing game and it all depends on how watery you want your soup. Remember you can always add more water later, so I’d always err on the side of less than more. Generously cover the vegetables at least though.) When you have left all this to bubble for about 10 minutes, you’re ready to blend it together. Pour the mixture into a blender and let the machine do its magic. The final touch is the juice from the orange. Add this at the final moment, when the pureed soup is back in the pan.

Serve and enjoy 🙂

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ps. Also, it’s crazy low in calories for maximum taste. Another wonderful fasting day meal. The above portion size has about 150 calories in maximum.

The Humble Egg-white Omelette

It’s January, and that can only mean one thing. The world is suddenly full of desperately and suddenly health-conscious fitness wanabees.

Christmas was intense and we all ate and drank more than perhaps we should. But that’s part of the fun! It does however mean that January becomes detox month. This does not need to be the horrible, gruelling experience that people imagine it to be. One of my favourite light-January dinners is a good old egg-white omelette. 

Eggs are a wonderful source of protein, very filling and also easy to cook. However, egg yolk is incredibly fatty. An egg yolk contains 99% of the total fat in an egg, so even though it contains many wonderful nutrients as well, if you are trying to eat lighter and leaner over January, take the yolks out of your omelette and you’ll have a much healthier meal.

Many people dislike egg-white omelettes because they see the yolk as containing most of the flavour, but as long as you keep some garlic, chilli and herbs to hand, no egg-white omelette needs to be bland!

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The above egg-white omelette was made from 4 egg-whites, half a chopped onion, 5 chopped up cherry tomatoes, a clover of garlic and half a chilli pepper.

Served with a mound of lettuce and a small dollop of ketchup, it was a delicious meal (and came to about 150-200 calories tops!)

Happy January!