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Andrew’s Panna Cotta with St Lucian Vanilla Ice cream

Panna Cotta

  • 1 Litre of Milk
  • 1 Litre of Heavy cream
  • 2 Vanilla pods
  • .5 Cup of Sugar
  • 14 Gelatin leaves

Vanilla Ice cream

  • 2 Litres Milk
  • .5 Litre Heavy Cream
  • 2 Cups of Powdered Milk
  • 300ml of Condensed Milk
  • 2 Vanilla Bean Pods
  • 250g Sugar

Method

To make the panna cotta, bring to the boil the milk, heavy cream. Add the scrapped vanilla seeds and the outer pod. This will infuse that lovely vanilla flavor. Add the sugar. Remove from the heat just before it comes to the boil and remove the vanilla pods, leaving the seeds behind.

Take the gelatin and place in cold water until soft.

Add the softened gelatin to the hot milk mixture and stir.

Set in the metal timbale and refrigerate.

For the vanilla ice cream, bring the milk, heavy cream, powdered milk and condensed milk to the boil.

Scrape in the vanilla seeds and throw in the pod as for the panna cotta and add the sugar and whisk until all is incorporated.

Remove from the heat, remove the vanilla pods and then, once the ice cream mix has cooled, add to a ice cream machine and churn.

Remove the panna cotta from the fridge and place in warm water for 5 seconds to make loose and turn out onto a serving plate,  scatter with seasonal berries, add a little passion fruit puree and place the creamy vanilla ice cream into the almond Tuile basket. Serve

Rosemary Crusted Chicken Breast with Warm Apple and Lentil Salad: Seasonal and Healthy !

What you will need

  • 2 tablespoons coarse dry breadcrumbs, preferably Gluten free, whole-wheat
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary, divided
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, divided
  • 4 large chicken breast
  • 3 teaspoons Dijon mustard, divided
  • 2 shallots, finely chopped
  • 1 1/3 cups cooked lentils
  • 1 Granny Smith apple, finely chopped
  • 2 stalks celery with leaves, finely chopped
  • 3/4 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth, or water
  • 2 teaspoons sherry vinegar, or cider vinegar

Method

Preheat oven to 450°F.

Mix breadcrumbs, 1/2 teaspoon oil, 1/2 teaspoon rosemary, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper in a small bowl.

Add the chicken breast to the hot pan which has the rest of the olive oil, and sear until golden brown, about 1 1/2 minutes. Turn it over and spread 2 teaspoons mustard over the meat.

Sprinkle the breadcrumb mixture over the mustard.

Transfer the Chicken breast to the oven and roast for about 15 to 20 minutes.

Leave to rest for a couple of minutes.

Return the pan to medium-high heat (be careful: the handle will still be hot).

Add the shallots, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon rosemary, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper and cook, stirring constantly, until starting to soften, about 1 minute.

Stir in the cooked lentils, apple, celery, broth (or water), vinegar and the remaining 1 teaspoon mustard; bring to a simmer.

Cook, stirring occasionally, until the liquid is slightly reduced and the celery and apple are starting to soften, about 4 minutes.

Cut the chicken into 1/3rds and serve over the lentils.

Make some apple matchstick’s and with the celery leaf decorate the plate, and a little 5 spiced apple puree and dot around the plate

Beef Fillet, Chocolate, Port, Fig, and Brussels Sprouts

Dark chocolate and beef make a perfectly good match. With the sweet fig and earthy sprouts, these are definitely ideal seasonal ingredients.

What you will need:

  • 4 – 190g pieces of Beef Fillet

Sauce

  • 1 tbsp. of juniper berry
  • 50g of thyme
  • 1l of pomace oil, or enough to cover
  • 4 garlic cloves, lightly crushed
  • 500g of beef trimmings
  • 2 tbsp of oil
  • 6 shallots
  • ½ bulb of garlic
  • 10g of thyme
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 10 white peppercorns
  • 150ml of raspberry vinegar
  • 2l of red wine
  • 2l of brown chicken stock
  • 2l of beef stock
  • 50g of fig purée
  • Salt
  • Black pepper

Ganache

  • 50ml of port
  • 125ml of whipping cream
  • 140g of 70% bitter chocolate, chopped
  • 40g of butter, softened

Vegetables

  • 250g of turnips
  • 100g of butter
  • 100ml of chicken stock
  • 12 Brussels sprouts, halved
  • 2 fresh figs, cut into eights
  • 15g of shadow benny

Method:

1. Fry the beef trimmings in oil until browned all over then set aside. Fry the shallots and garlic; add the herbs and peppercorns then deglaze the pan with 100ml of vinegar and the wine

2. Reduce to syrup, and then add the stocks and beef trimmings

3. Cook for 45 minutes skimming regularly. Adjust the seasoning and freshen with the remaining vinegar if necessary. Stir in the fig purée. Pass through a sieve and chill

4. In a pan, toast and lightly crush the juniper berries. Separately blend the thyme with the oil. Add the juniper and garlic cloves to the oil

5. Pour the mixture into a vacuum pack bag with the meat. Leave to marinate while you prepare the other elements of the dish

6. For the chocolate ganache, put the chopped chocolate in a bowl. Bring the port and cream to the boil. Add ½ of it to the chocolate, add the butter and beat until fully combined

7. Add the remaining cream to the chocolate mix and leave to cool. Chill to set

8. For the beef, heat the oven to 180°C/Gas mark 4. Sear the beef in the oil in a hot pan and then transfer to the oven for 5-10 minutes depending on how you like it cooked

9. Add the turnips and cook until browned on one side, turn over and brown on the other side. Pour in the stock, cover and cook until tender

10. Fry the Brussels sprouts in a little oil until tinged brown. Add a knob of butter and 100ml of water and poach until just tender

11. Spoon the chocolate ganache onto the plate, slice the loins in half and position the two sides of beef on top

12. Scatter the sprouts, turnips and figs across the plate then drizzle with the jus.

3 Healthy Holiday Tips

It’s that time of year again when the high calorie foods and drinks are coming at you from every angle. Christmas cookies, parties, and New Years can all be a common over indulgence for many. So what can you do?

This saying holds very true, “It doesn’t matter what you eat between Christmas and New Years, but it does matter what you eat between New Years and Christmas.”

For those that have good eating habits in place, one week of too many calories is not going to be the end of the world. However, for those that need to keep themselves in check, or perhaps don’t eat very healthily, here are a few tips to keep yourself from using that next hole in your belt.

  • Don’t go to a party hungry. It may be the Christmas dinner with your family or that New Year’s Eve party. One thing is for sure, there will be food, and there will be a lot of it! Most choices will be less than ideal. So, in order to save yourself some calories, have a nice healthy meal or snack before you leave the house so that you don’t overdo it at your destination.
  • Bring a healthy dish. There may be unhealthy choices all around you. However, if you contribute and bring a healthy dish to a holiday party, you have at least one healthy option that you can choose. If you struggle with desserts here is your chance to prepare a healthier option that still tastes great. Who knows, you may even “trick” some of your friends and family into trying it!
  • Balance your calories. It takes 3,500 calories to gain one pound. If you have a heavy holiday meal planned for dinner, then go lite on your breakfast and lunch to help balance your day. Keep the big picture in mind and don’t beat yourself up if you make a poor food choice at any given meal. Just get back on track as soon as possible and make some healthy nutritional decisions.  You could also add in some physical activity to compensate for a poor meal as well.

Pumpkin and Goats Cheese Risotto with Rocket and Marshmellow

What you will need:
  • 1 x Pumpkin or you can use butternut squash
  • 2 x cloves of garlic
  • 1 x tbsp. Olive oil
  • 8 x spring onion
  • 25g butter
  • 200g risotto rice
  • 2 tbsp ground cumin
  • 1liter of vegetable stock
  • 50 g parmesan
  • 50 g of rocket
  • 75g goats cheese
  • 50 g marshmellow

Heat the oven to 180 Celsius, Chop up the pumpkin or squash into cubes and roast on a baking tray with Olive oil, then roast for about 30 minutes. Keep half of the roasted pumpkin for garnish and keep warm, and the other half puree to be stirred through the risotto at the end.

While the pumpkin is roasting, you can make the risotto. Crush the garlic and chop the spring onions, put into a pan and drizzle and little olive oil once the garlic and onion are starting to cook, pour in the risotto rice and cumin. Stir and make sure that all the rice is covered and the garlic and onions are not caught.

Slowly start to add a cup of stock at a time whilst you stir the rice and when the stock has been absorbed, add another cup.

Carry this process on until the rice is cooked and add the pumpkin puree and stir through. Add the grated parmesan and season to taste. The risotto should be a beautiful orange colour.

Place the risotto onto a plate, sprinkle with chunks of the roasted pumpkin and goats cheese

Dress the rocket leaves and scatter over the top with the Marshmellows

Serve. Bon apetit and happy Thanksgiving!

Pan Seared Mahi Mahi with a Classic Ratatouille and Fresh Basil Pesto

Ingredients

  • 180g  Mahi Mahi portions
  • 2 aubergines
  • 4 small courgettes
  • 2 red peppers
  • 4 large tomatoes
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • ½ tsp sugar
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • small bunch basil, roughly torn
  • 2 cups packed fresh basil leaves
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino cheese

 

Preparation method

Cut the aubergines into quarters lengthways, then cut the quarters into 2.5cm/1in slices. Cut the courgettes into 2.5cm/1in slices. De-seed the peppers and cut them into bite-sized pieces.

Score a cross in the base of each tomato and place them in a heatproof bowl. Pour over enough boiling water to cover and set aside for one minute. Drain and set aside until cool enough to handle, then peel away the skins. Cut them into quarters, scoop out the seeds and discard. Roughly chop the flesh.

Heat the oil in a flameproof casserole dish and add the onions. Cook over a gentle heat for 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until golden-brown and very tender.

Add the aubergines and courgettes, increase the heat slightly and cook for 2-3 minutes. Stir in the peppers, garlic, sugar, some salt and pepper and half the basil and mix well. Cover and cook over a very gentle heat for 20 minutes.Add the tomatoes to the pan and cook for a further 10 minutes.

Combine the basil, garlic, and pine nuts in a food processor and pulse    until coarsely chopped. Add 1/2 cup of the oil and process until fully incorporated and smooth. Season with salt and pepper.

If using immediately, add all the remaining oil and pulse until smooth. Transfer the pesto to a large serving bowl and mix in the cheese.

Scatter with the remaining basil and serve.

Sesame Seeded Yellow Fin Tuna with Vegetable Tagliatelle, Chilli and Coriander/(Shadow Benni).

What you will need:

  • 1 x 200 g thick yellowfin tuna steak, sustainably sourced
  • 3 tablespoons sesame seeds
  • olive oil
  • sesame oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 2cm piece of fresh ginger
  • 1 tablespoon low-salt soy sauce
  • ½ lemon
  • 3 sprigs of fresh coriander
  • 1 spring onion
  • 1 fresh red chilli
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 zuchini
  • 1 punnit of cherry tomato
  • 1 packet of sundried tomato

Method

Slice the tuna into rough 3cm chunks. Place the sesame seeds onto a tray, then add the tuna chunks, turning them over in the seeds so they’re nicely coated.

Heat a good drizzle of olive and sesame oil in a medium frying pan over a medium heat. Peel and thinly slice the garlic, then add most of it to the pan. Fry for 1 to 2 minutes, or until golden and crisp, then use a slotted spoon to transfer to a plate (don’t drain away the oil!).

Return the pan to the heat and allow to heat up again, then add the sesame-coated tuna to the garlicky oil. Sear on one side for 10 to 20 seconds. Using tongs, turn the tuna over and keep cooking until you’ve seared only four sides of each chunk. Transfer to a plate.

Peel and finely grate the ginger, then add to a bowl with the soy, 1 teaspoon sesame oil and the remaining sliced garlic. Add a squeeze of lemon juice, then mix well to combine. Have a taste and add a squeeze more lemon juice, if needed.

Peel the carrot, and zucchini with a speed peeler making beautiful ribbons. Slice the cherry tomato in half and chop the sundried tomato.

Put a little oil into the wok and then add a little garlic, ginger cook for 1 minute, then add the carrot and zucchini ribbons, remove immediately and leave to slowely cook out !

Add the halved cherry tomato and chopped sundried tomato and remove from the heat.

Cut the seared tuna into slices, roughly 1cm thick, then arrange on your plates. Drizzle over the Asian dressing, scatter the garlic chips on top and tear over the coriander leaves. Trim and finely slice the spring onion and chilli at an angle, scatter on top, then finish with a drizzle of olive oil.

 

Tuna – Eating fish just once or twice per week may reduce your chance of dying from a heart attack by a third. Tuna has a rich source of essential omega-3 fatty acids that lower your risk of heart disease. It contains the two types of omega-3 fatty acids — EPA and DHA — that lower triglycerides, and slow the growth of atherosclerotic plaques.

Cilantro – Cilantro has an amazing nutritional value. This herb is loaded with vitamins A, K and C, minerals, such as iron, calcium and magnesium, and has more antioxidants than most fruits and vegetables.

Apart from lowering LDL cholesterol, one of the benefits of cilantro can also reduce hypertension by lowering blood pressure. The herb is a good source of potassium, magnesium, calcium, manganese and iron as well as low in sodium. This high potassium and low sodium ratio helps control heart rate and blood pressure.

Olive Oil – Studies find that people who regularly consume olive oil are much less likely to develop cardiovascular diseases, including hypertension (high blood pressure), stroke, and hyperlipidemia (high blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels).

Monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs) are considered a healthy dietary fat, as opposed to saturated fats and trans fats.

Sesame Seeds - Among all the nuts and seeds commonly eaten across the world, sesame seeds have been found to contain the highest amount of phytosterols, which are known to lower bad cholesterol.

Ginger – The prevention of nausea and vomiting is the most well-documented use for ginger root. It is particularly helpful in cases of chemotherapy, motion sickness and morning sickness. A study published in “Obstetrics & Gynecology” found that ginger root significantly decreased nausea and the number of vomiting episodes in pregnant participants. Ginger root may also fight inflammation.

Yogic Diet (Satvic Diet)

Yoga and Ayurveda divide the foods into 3 forms:

  • Satvic Diet
  • Rajasic Diet
  • Tamasic Diet

Satvic Food

It is the purest form of food. This is the best food for yoga practitioners. It brings peace to the mind and is nourishing for the body. Sattvic food is great for overall fitness and for a balanced energy flow. Sattvic diet focuses on high prana, living foods – it includes cereals, honey, herbs, sprouts, seeds, nuts, legumes, butter, milk, fresh fruits and vegetables, fresh juices.

Sattvic mind is clear, peaceful and harmonious. When we consume these foods, it produces clear thinking, loving actions, and an open heart. It produces expansion, rather than contraction. It emphasizes increasing prana (life-force) and the subtle elements of air and ether that help open the mind and heart and make them more sensitive. It provides a lightness of body, mind and spirit for peaceful reflection in our meditation and yoga practices.

Rajasic Diet

Rajasic mind is active, restless, aggressive and worldly. Rajasic food may be fresh but heavy to digest. It is salty, dry, sour, hot and bitter. It is not good for the mind-body balance. It tends to excite and over-stimulate the body, and makes the mind restless. Rajasic food includes chocolate, salt, tea and coffee, sharp spices, Meat, fish, eggs, alcohol, caffeine, bleached flours, white sugar and other processed, irradiated foods. Overly-sweet foods.

You must remember that Rajasic foods are of high quality and nutrient density; if it is not fresh then it begins to become Tamasic.

Tamasic Diet

The tamasic mind is lethargic, impulsive, cruel and degenerate. Tamasic Food is not good for the body or the mind. It brings in a sense of inertia, clouds the power of reasoning, and sucks out the energy. It destroys the body’s resistance to diseases.It also invokes feelings of anger, jealousy and greed in people. Overeating is a Tamasic behavior. Tamastic food includes meat, alcohol, tobacco, onions, garlic, fermented foods and over ripe foods. Tamasic foods that are kept overnight (leftovers). It loses its vital essence and may have grown microorganisms. Any foods that involve the harm of another being are also considered tamasic.

sattvic diet is necessary for a pure mind and promotes longevity, goodness, strength, health, happiness, and pleasure.

Too much spice, sugar, or salt may render what was a sattvic food to become rajasic or tamasic.

On this Octoba Yoga, Samantha our Yoga Instructor offering her yogic cooking and tea demo class, join us if you are a yogi!

Creole Spiced Bean and Vegetable Salad with Confit Dorade in Coconut Oil

What you will need

  • tbsp of Olive oil
  • 1 onion
  • Sea salt & black pepper
  • 200g French beans, trimmed
  • 2 courgettes
  • 8 spring onions
  • 400g haricot beans
  • 400g cannellini beans
  • 400g chick peas
  • 250g of tomato, diced
  • Parsley
  • Coriander
  • Mint
  • 1 mango
  • 2 sheets of seaweed nori
  • 750ml of coconut oil

Creole spice mix :

  • 1tbsp paprika
  • 1tbsp basil
  • 1tbsp thyme
  • cayenne pepper
  • chilli powder

 How to proceed 

  1. Warm the Coconut oil to a temperature of around 54c.
  2. Place the dorade into coconut oil and leave to confit.
  3. Heat the oil in the pan and then add the sliced onion with some salt and pepper. Stir over a medium heat until the onion is soft, around 6/8 minutes.
  4. Mix the ingredients for the creole spice mix and add to the onions for 1 to 2, minutes until fragrant.
  5. Add the French beans, courgettes and spring onions into the pan and cook for a further 6/8 minutes until tender.
  6. Dice the mango small and mix with diced onion, tomato and julienne of mint
  7. Take off the heat and then add the beans, the chick peas along with the tomato, toss to mix.
  8. Transfer the salad to the dishes and serve with the dorade wrapped in the nori sheet, mango salsa and wakami seaweed.

3 Tips for Navigating the Supermarket

Follow these 3 simple tips to make smarter food choices on your next trip to the supermarket.

  1. Stick to the Perimeter – Most of the nutritious food choices that are high in vitamin, minerals, and fiber are located in the perimeter of the supermarket. This is where you will find fruits, vegetables, and lean cuts of meat. It is in the center aisles that we find the majority of the highly processed and packaged foods that are not ideal for our health. Make most of your food choices outside of the center isles.
  1. Look at the Ingredients – While some people do actively look at the nutrition facts labels for fat content, carbs, and sugars on specific products, they sometimes forget to look at the actual ingredients that make up that product. Aim for food product choices that have 5 or less ingredients. If you see an ingredient list that looks like a page out of a novel it’s best to leave it and make an alternate choice.
  1. Shop on a Full Stomach – It’s important that when we are doing our shopping that we don’t have an empty stomach and are craving something to eat. These are the times when you may find yourself putting less than ideal food choices into your trolley or cart. Those crisps look extra good, the chocolate cake is staring you in the face, and you are looking to grab everything and anything to eat to satisfy your hunger. Try and have a significant meal before your shopping or at the very least a snack to keep your hunger at bay.

So next time you are in the supermarket see if you can follow these 3 simple tips to ensure that you are making good healthy food choices.