Tag Archives: chilli

Healthy Eating…How to lose weight and eat the foods you love!

-No-more-diets-salmon-tomatoes

No more diets!

 

Hello and welcome to Carol’s Bootcamp…I hope you are all well and getting comfortable on this new path of No Diets just healthy eating…

It has certainly taken me a while and I do think my lifestyle now is conducive to my eating habits…Interestingly one of the comments I had on this post said exactly that and how a natural selection of food choices within the traditional diet where I live is followed here…

I do in my role as a food writer and an advocate for a healthy lifestyle read much about food and I am reading a very interesting book on Food Forensics…Scary but when I have finished reading it I will read it again and then hopefully I will remember a bit more of what I have read and be able to digest it more thoroughly.

It makes me think and I have made small changes to certain things while reading this book .. I now make my own fresh chopped tomatoes for spaghetti, chillies etc any recipe which calls for tinned tomatoes… Why? Because I don’t like the fact that the inside of my tomato tins are coated with BPA… which reacts with the acid in foods and is known to be tied to hormonal disruption and reproductive dysfunction…

So I make my own, freeze in portions and not only is it better for our health it saves money…

I have never understood how the common consensus is that to eat healthily it costs you more…It is a lie peddled to the consumer by manufacturers and the ilk…

I spend less and eat better…I shop locally, at farmers markets, we swap food between neighbours where we live… I get lots of bananas and the man opposite has more mango trees than I do so I get mangoes from him…The man in the corner shop always gives us something free… I don’t know if it is because I always buy my som tam ( Papaya Salad) from him …He does the best som tam I have tasted this side of Thailand. Or because being European he gets a little bit of street cred or kudos when people see me sitting and eating his food…

Papaya Salad Som Tam

I grew Papaya trees and gave all the neighbours some and this is what we do we share any excess from what we grow so everyone is happy…

I can hear you saying but we don’t live there…NO you don’t BUT when I was in the Uk…I grew herbs, potatoes, other vegetables and the same policy applied… we shared… I also only had a small garden there so grew things in tubs etc..even a balcony and a kitchen window sill can hold a few pots it gives a sense of satisfaction when you grow something the same satisfaction I get from making something…especially when it was something I had previously bought …

So…

No-diets-No-excuses

Who do you cheat??? Yourself!

 

Tofu...I will soon be having some lovely recipes for you from the lovely Dolly from KoolKoscherKitchen which I am sure may even persuade me to try Tofu…

A few people I know suffer from gout, very painful and I wrote a post on low purine foods...It made me think how much the food we eat affects our health…For example how many food items do you have in your kitchen or garden which are natural painkillers?

Out of 20 natural painkillers, I have 12 in my kitchen and apart from two which I rarely by, I do buy the others on occasions…

Mine were ginger, cloves, cider vinegar, garlic, turmeric, yoghurt, oats, salt, water, horseradish, honey and tomato juice…How many of those do you have and use on a regular basis??? My point is I was reading an article about a very famous person and due to a leg injury had a painkiller addiction… I have since read a few more articles and this is quite common and doctors are still prescribing Tylenol…

I know plants and the like won’t stop all pains but some of the above I remember my mum using and do think that for some aches and pains we could use natural painkillers??? Do you use any natural remedies passed down through your family?

I suppose what I want from all this is as natural a lifestyle and eating habits as possible which hopefully will improve our whole body’s health and maybe…just maybe we will as a nation stop popping so many pills when we can control much through our diets. Surely that has to be better…Doesn’t it?

What are your thoughts on this ???

Time for a recipe

Pickled Red and Yellow Cherry Tomatoes.

red-yellow-thai style-pickled-tomatoes

Red and yellow pickled tomatoes

Ingredients:

  • 30 cherry tomatoes I mixed different colours.
  • 1-2 green Thai chillies finely sliced
  • 3 tbsp Fish Sauce
  • 6 tbsp rice wine vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp sugar.
Pickled-cherry-tomatoes-red-yellow

Pickled red and yellow cherry tomatoes

 

Let’s get pickled!

Mix together all the ingredients in a small bowl. Take a cocktail stick and prick the tomatoes a few times this allows the brine to infuse nicely.

Put the tomatoes in a sterilised jar or a Tupperware container and cover with the marinade mix.

Put in the refrigerator …these can be eaten after one day and within 4 days. The juice can then be used as a marinade for fish or added to salads.

Steamed Salmon

Thai style steamed salmon with coriander and fish sauce, chilli and lime.

If using the pickle juice I just add some chopped coriander a finely sliced spring onion or shallot and then put over the top of my fish and seal the foil then bake in the oven until the fish is cooked…

A lovely light lunch served with c.auliflower rice or steamed rice.

I hope you are enjoying these healthy eating posts and that you excuse my little occasional rants …If you love these posts please share it would make me happy and let me know in comments what you think and how you are getting on…

Connect to Carol( Moi)

Blog: https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/ Twitterhttps://twitter.com/TheRealCarolTFacebookhttps://www.facebook.com/carol.taylor.1422

Pinterest ( 1): https://www.pinterest.com/caroltaylor56/pins/

 

 

 

 

 

Smorgasbord Health – Cook from Scratch with Sally and Carol Taylor – Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkin seeds who would have thought just what health benefits that little seed can provide for us…Well…Sally has and it is all here in one post with recipes … A one-stop post for healthy food and good health information….I hope you enjoy x

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

Welcome to the series where I provide the nutritional health benefits for a food and Carol Taylor works all week in the kitchen to provide delicious recipes to include in your regular diet. I hope you will go over to her new blog which she has just started: http://myhealthyretirement.com/welcome-to-orienthailiving-my-first-post/ and discover more about her beautiful home in Thailand.

This week we are going to be featuring pumpkin seeds which are not only delicious but contain some very important nutrients that make this a snack that every man should eat once or twice a day.

When I was researching my men’s health book I came across some interesting statistics with regard to the very common problem of an enlarged prostate. In fact if you live to the age of 90 – 9 out of 10 men will have the condition!  Any man over the age of 50 who has a reduction…

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Fish Friday…. Sea Bass with Lime, ginger and fennel…

Wow, where does the time go it’s Friday…Fish Friday I just don’t know where the time goes it just flies by…

I hope you enjoyed the recipe last week I just love fish and would be quite happy to eat fish six days out of seven….

This recipe was just sort of made up ..we had a friend staying with us from England and decided to steam some fish the Thai way but it was too big for our steamer so instead we baked it in the oven covered with foil and just removed the foil 5–10 minutes from the end of cooking and it was very nice.

Sea Bass with Lime, Ginger and Fennel.

Fish with Lime and fennel

Ingredients:

  • 2  Sea bass/ Bream or Carp – whole, scaled and gutted
  • Bunch fennel fronds or you can use while fennel sliced we just stuffed the cavity with the fennel fronds.
  • 3 Shallots – peeled and halved (for fish cavity)
  • 1  Bulb Garlic – unpeeled, halved (for fish cavity)
  • Thumb of Ginger – Sliced finely (for fish cavity)
  •  Lemon or Lime, (remove the skin because the skin makes it bitter) this was a tip I picked up after we had made ours… from my  Thai daughter in law…. Always something to learn about cooking…

For the Sauce:

  • Dark & Light Soy Sauce 
  • Splash of coconut oil  or a splash of Chilli Oil 
  • Sugar
  • Lime
  • Fresh Chilli 

Garnish (optional)

  • Few sprigs Coriander chopped
  • Spring Onions – sliced longways 

Let’s Cook!

Preheat the oven to 180 C

.
Place the fish on a baking tray.

Prepare the vegetables and stuff inside the fish and around the tray. Make some diagonal cuts across the fish and push in a slice of lime… Drizzle with some olive oil and cover with foil.
Bake for 40 mins, then remove the foil and turn up to 250 C for a further  5-10 mins till skin is golden brown and crispy.
Rest for 5 minutes.

Fish with lime and fennel (2)

In a pan add a splash of oil and sweat the spring onions being careful not to burn them.  Pour in about 50/50, ( 75 ml altogether) of a mix of dark soy sauce and light soy sauce then add about a tbsp of sugar ( I add slightly less) and a tbsp lime juice.

Taste for the balance of sweet, sour and salty. If it is too sweet, add more sour, if it is too salty add more sweet, if it is too sour add more sugar. I prefer mine on the salty, sour side rather than sweet but it really is a personal preference

Add fresh chillies of course I do…lol

Then pour all over the tray of baked fish. 
Garnish with coriander and/or strips of fresh spring onions.
Serve with steamed rice.

Enjoy!

This is a very simple fish dish to make and it virtually cooks itself but experiment because if I don’t have fennel I stuff the fish cavity with coriander, Thai Basil, spring onions, really whatever I have in the garden or the fridge…

Just in case you missed previous weeks then here they are… 

Prawns and Asparagus

Thai Prawn cakes

Thank you have a lovely weekend x

Fish Friday…Thai shrimp cakes and Thai sweet chilli sauce recipe.

It’s Friday and as a child, we always had fish on Fridays and I know that many people in the UK still follow that tradition of fish on Fridays  …

Which made me think and  I am going to give you a fish dish on a Friday it was always battered fish and chips for us but there are so many lovely recipes using fish that I am sure I can find many varied fish dishes for you and if you have a favourite one that maybe you have eaten somewhere and don’t have a recipe..just a name or the fish and what it was cooked with then let me find that recipe for you…

Now that could be a challenge could it not???

These little fish cakes are called prawn or shrimp cakes and vary somewhat but very popular in Thailand. They are generally eaten as a starter or as part of a meal which would consist of other dishes maybe a curry, some stir-fried morning glory or mixed vegetables, maybe a whole steamed fish with herbs or crispy garlic some som tam( Papaya Salad) and always a sweet chilli dip and  sometimes as well a blow your head of chilli dip… Not all Thais like hot food as one would assume…

Let’s Cook!

Thai Shrimp Cakes.

Thai Prawn Cakes (2)

This makes about 20 small cakes/patties or 10 larger ones.

Ingredients:

  • 400gm of fresh prawns deveined/peeled and finely chopped.
  • 100gm chicken meat( we used half a breast) finely chopped.
  • 6/8 very finely sliced lime leaves.
  • 2/3 tsp red curry paste.
  • 2 tsp fish sauce.
  • A tiny splash of coconut milk.
  • 50 gm homemade breadcrumbs or you can crumble panko breadcrumbs.
  • Coconut oil or oil of your choice to fry the cakes.

Mix all these ingredients together with your hands..yes it’s sticky and messy but how we do it…no mods cons here in a basic Thai house.

But of course, if you want to use your food processor then that’s fine, to be honest, I don’t  get mine out if I am just making this amount…hands are easier to wash than all the food processor bits.

But if you have a food processor and want to do it that way then put all the ingredients in and blitz away until smooth.

Finally, form into cakes /patties then heat some oil in a pan and cook turning until browned both sides. Cook in batches.

Drain on some kitchen paper.

Serve as a snack or with your meal with sweet chilli sauce or with a spicy Thai dip although most restaurants here send them out with a sweet chilli dip.

Thai Sweet Chilli Sauce:

Thai sweet chilli sauce

This recipe makes about half cup of sauce which is ideal for me because if I buy a bottle I end up throwing it away either because I have had it in the fridge or cupboard so long or I have read the label.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup of rice wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup white sugar plus 2 tbsp.
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 3 tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 tbsp sherry if you don’t have sherry then this article gives you replacements for sherry in cooking
  • 2 cloves of garlic grated/ minced or very finely chopped
  • 1/2 -1 tbsp dried chilli crushed ( 1 tbsp is hot) or chilli pepper flakes.
  • 1 plus 1/2 tbsp cornstarch or arrowroot dissolved in 3-4 tbsp water.
  • Optional.. Sometimes I julienne a small piece of carrot or red pepper and add to the mixture during the reduction period of cooking.

Put all the ingredients into a saucepan except for the cornflour mix. Stir to combine and bring to a rolling boil. Reduce the heat to a slow rolling boil and cook for 10 minutes or until the mixture had reduced by half. Lower the heat and add the cornflour mix, stirring until the sauce has thickened. Taste and adjust the seasoning more sugar if not sweet enough for you and if not hot enough then more chilli.

This is so quick and easy to make and far superior to shop bought sauces and without the preservatives.

Enjoy!

N.B. 

MANY RECIPES for Thai prawn/shrimp cakes do not use chicken as well, we do as it adds a bit of firmness to the cakes and the splash of coconut milk is our variation as well.

Until next Friday when I will have another fish dish for you stay safe, have a lovely weekend and laugh a lot as laughter is the best medicine you can get and it’s FREE.

If you have missed any of my recipes which I have done in a collaboration with Sally from Smorgasbord Health 2017 then here is the link https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/cook-from-scratch-with-sally-and-carol-recipes/ these are published every Wednesday and full of health benefits from Sally and recipes from our chosen theme by moi (Carol)

 

 

Smorgasbord Health 2017 – Cook from Scratch with Sally and Carol Taylor – Mushrooms.

This weeks post from Carol ( Moi) and Sally is Mushrooms…Sally tells you all about the many benefits of eating mushrooms and why you shouldn’t….I supply the recipes and typos…On re-reading for the hundredth time I have spotted a few.more..Drat!..It just shows I am human…I am…lol

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

Welcome to the next article in our series Cook from Scratch with Sally and Carol Taylor. At first we were a little concerned about the length of the posts as they including both the health benefits and some delicious recipes from Carol.. but apparently it is not a problem.

We do suggest however, that you bookmark and then read when you can put your feet up and read with a cup of tea, or even better a glass of wine.  Our aim is to elevate everyday food to not just culinary delights but also to share why that food is so healthy for us to eat in our regular diet.

First.. why are mushroom so good for us?

According to the ancient Egyptians, over 4,000 years ago, eating mushrooms granted you immortality. The pharaohs even went as far as to ban commoners from eating these delicious fungi but it…

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Smorgasbord Health 2017 – Cook From Scratch with Sally and Carol Taylor – Brussel Sprouts.

Sprouts! You know you love them! Or do you????
I hope that after you have read the health benefits that Sally has presented for you and perused the recipes that you will be tempted to try them…They are coming into their season now and are at their best, so easy to prepare and cook…Enjoy!

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

Welcome to our weekly post where I look at the health benefits of my favourite foods and Carol Taylor provides delicious recipes so that you can include these foods in your diet. Brussel sprouts are not necessarily the most asked for vegetable by children as they do have a slightly bitter taste (actually the healthy element of the Brussels), but if you prepare them following Carol’s guidance, they should be a hit with all the family.

Variety is the spice of life….and our bodies need a wide variety of foods to extract all the nutrients it needs to be healthy.

We are just coming into the Brussel sprout season and I shall be taking full advantage. I eat cabbage all year round, but Brussels are so much easier to prepare and are a powerhouse of benefits all on their own.

The Brussel sprout is a miniature cabbage and is usually…

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