Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

Roasted pumpkin seeds are really tasty, full of goodness and will keep any children entertained as most love getting their hands into those gooey pumpkins and after a good wash they can happily snack on these with a movie.

You can flavor them how ever you like, I used salt and Cajun spice but you could use brown sugar for a sweeter touch or herbs it’s really up to you, try making a few batches and see what you like.

I know some people like to ‘shell’ pumpkin seeds but you really don’t need to, the husk (outer part) is not actually a shell it is edible and they are full of fiber and flavor after seasoning, so don’t bother wasting your time and making a mess because they are delicious.

Pumpkin seeds are full of zinc which is great for your bones, high in fatty acid which helps prevent prostate cancer and they also lower cholesterol so they are a really great snack to have around the house.

Ingredients:

  • Seeds from 1 pumpkin
  • 2 teaspoons of olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon of cajun spice (or other herb/spice)
  • Salt

Directions:

Pull the seeds from your pumpkin and place in a bowl, then separate them from the pumpkin strings and flesh. pour the seeds into a sieve and rinse under cold water until clean, drain well then pat them dry with kitchen paper. When they are dry add your oil, spices and salt to the seeds and mix well to thoroughly cover. Spread the seeds out on a lined baking tray and cook for 45 mins (after 35 mins test one to see i it needs a little extra seasoning. Remove from the oven allow to cool a little then enjoy, store in a ziplock to keep them crunchy and fresh.

Chorizo and Prawn mini skewers

These are tasty little appetizers that will go down a treat at any dinner party, holiday get together or even if you just fancy making something special. I love starters my dad always orders a few different ones instead of a main meal and I think he is onto something because they are usually the most delicious part of your meal and that way you have lots of variety.

This is a Gordon Ramsay recipe and I just love his food, I think he is an amazing chef and much lovelier than he comes across in North America. You should check out his show ‘Gordon Behind Bars’ It is fantastic, he spends 6 months in a UK prison teaching inmates how to pay their way by setting up a business on the inside to sell food on the outside ‘The Badboy Bakery’ It is a great concept and very moving to see men that haven’t had a great start in life, learn a skill and become confident and proud of themselves. I will be looking for the lemon treacle slice when I go home.

I have made these a few times now and they always turn out perfect, you simply fry the sliced chorizo and prawns together untill cooked then layer them on a toothpick with a shred of basil and baked cherry tomato’s and garlic! If you are a really tight on time I would use fresh tomato’s and a drizzle of df pesto!

Ingredients:

  • 16 prawns
  • 16 slices of chorizo
  • 8 cherry tomatoes sliced in half
  • 16 basil leaves tore in half
  • 2 garlic cloves thinly sliced
  • olive oil

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 360°F/180°C, place the sliced cherry tomatoes on a baking sheet topped with a thin slice of garlic and a drizzle of olive oil and a touch of salt. Bake for 30 minutes.

When the tomatoes are about ten mins from being done, add some oil to a pan and fry the chorizo slices and prawns over a medium heat until cooked, keep warm until the tomatoes are finished. Then slide onto your tooth pick, a prawn, piece of basil, slice of chorizo, another piece of basil and top with a grilled tomato slice and garlic. Serve immediately and enjoy!

Gordon Ramsay’s Recipe

The Badboys Bakery Lemon Treacle Slice Review

Kale Chips

If you haven’t tried Kale chips you have to give them a go! I picked mine from my mums garden, she grows lots of lovely veggies! You can find it in the grocery store near the leafy greens. You can also use kale in salads or steam it with other veggies it has a great natural flavour. 

 When I was young we used to get crispy seaweed at our local Chinese restaurant which i think was just deep-fried cabbage, this reminded me of that but much nicer and it’s far healthier. Although it might not look like it they actually are really tasty and a great substitute for crisps (potato chips)

Chris was skeptical when he saw me picking it and telling him how addictive they are but after trying them he loved it and we make them quite a bit now as a good naughty tasting, healthy snack.

Kale has more iron than red meat and more calcium per calorie than milk, it is very high in fiber, a great anti inflammatory and full of vitamins and minerals. It also fights 5 types of cancer, ovarian, breast, colon, bladder and prostate.

So if you haven’t tried it, it’s definitely a vegetable that you should try to include in your diet and Kale Chips I think are the tastiest way to have it, so the next time you are craving crisps or something a little salty give them a go.

Ingredients:

  • 1 bunch of kale
  • 1 tablespoon of Olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of Cajun Spice or seasoning of your choice

Directions:

Pre heat your oven to 325°F, Wash the kale thoroughly with cold water then pat dry with kitchen roll. Remove the rib of the kale with a knife then tear into large pieces. Place the kale in a bowl, drizzle with a little olive oil and toss untill fully coated. Spread out on a cookie sheet that has been lined with foil then sprinkle with Cajun spice (you can use any flavor you like, herbs, salt and pepper, cayenne pepper, paprika anything that takes your fancy)  Place in the middle shelf of your oven and bake for 15 minutes of until the kale is crispy but not burnt. Pop in a bowl and watch them disappear!

Tzatziki, Tahini and Hummus

I like to make my own dips, sauces and preserves. I think its fun, really easy and so much cheaper than buying them especially when a lot aren’t dairy free.

Tzatziki

I love greek food and tzatziki is one of my favourite dips because its low in fat and full of flavor. Its great in wraps instead of mayo and with any BBQ food, I made mine with coconut milk yogurt and you really can’t tell the difference.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of plain coconut yogurt
  • 1/2 a cucumber, peeled and seeded
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons of lemon juice
Directions:
Strain one cup of plain coconut yogurt with either cheese cloth or a regular strainer. then place in a bowl and back in the fridge. Peel and de seed your cucumber then grate using the fine grater (the one opposite the cheese grater side). Press with a spoon to squeeze out any excess water then leave to strain for about ten minutes. Blend the garlic, olive oil and lemon juice then stir into the coconut yogurt along with the cucumber, salt and pepper. Cover and place back in the fridge for at least 30 mins to chill. Serve and enjoy! It will keep well in the fridge for a couple of days not that it lasts that long in my house.

Tahini

I made tahini because I couldn’t find it in my local store and I needed it for the hummus, I also used it to make my version of a quick gomae to go with a pork chop recipe, which was really tasty. I used Bob’s Red Mill white sesame seeds and followed the easy instructions on the back.

Ingredients:

  • 453 grams of white sesame seeds
  • 3/4 cup of olive oil

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 350º, put your sesame seeds onto a baking tray and spread out evenly. Place on the middle shelf and toast for about 8-10 mins stir with a spoon every now and then to make sure they toast evenly. Remove from oven and allow to cool for about 20 mins. Blend with the olive oil until smooth. This will keep for a couple of weeks covered in the fridge.

Hummus
Hummus is really easy and great to use instead of butter in sandwiches as it is full of the good fats you need to get rid of the bad fats, it is also high in fiber, protein, vitamin B6 (Which is great for endometriosis) Folate, Iron and amino acid.
Ingredients:
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1 tin of chickpeas
  • 2 tablespoons of tahini
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • Decorate with a sprinkle of paprika and some extra chick peas

Directions:

You simply blend all of the ingredients until they for a smooth paste then decorate and serve. This will keep for about a week in the fridge you can add a thin layer of oil to keep it fresh longer if you like.