Thursday, 4 June 2015

Blueberry and Banana 'Nicecream'





All scream for Nice Cream!!

I think Nice Cream is one of the best things invented ever. If you haven't tried it, or heard of it, where have you been! You are missing out. Nice cream, is an ice cream made of blended frozen bananas. It is super yummy. You can mix in any fruits that you want to flavor the nicecream, or add chocolate powder, and dates for a chocolatey flavor. 

I find that the bananas are quite hard to blend when frozen. But i don't have a super duper high speed blender. I find adding a little coconut water helps the mixing process, but it does create a wetter mix. You can refreeze after you have blended to make a scoopable ice cream. 



It is best to wait until your bananas are very ripe, black spotted, before you freeze them. This is a great way to use up any uneaten bananas, although i personally only eat really raw bananas anyway as they are easier to digest. 

Blueberry Nice Cream

4 Frozen ripe Bananas
1 cup frozen blueberries
A dash of coconut water

Any toppings you like ie cinnamon, fresh fruit, raisins :)

Blend frozen bananas, and coconut water until icecreamy texture. Either add the frozen blueberries and sir in with a spoon to create a 'ripple' or blend to flavor the ice cream. 

You can re-freeze the nicecream if you want it to be scoop-able, or it straight away. 





Fruit island - oh and i have vegan tees!

 Helloooo chickpeas. It has been such a lovely day today, really hot and sunny. Although the sun has started to go down now, and it has become a little chilly, i am still lounging on the grass attempting to soak up the last few rays! I always feel much better when it is sunny.

The last couple of days i have been focusing on an island diet as previously mentioned. Which, simply is a mono diet. You are strictly meant to only eat one fruit, normally bananas, watermelon or oranges. But loads of that fruit in order to get enough calories in.  The idea of this, is a high carb, high natural sugar but low fat diet. I personally have combined a few fruits. I am eating bananas, oranges, melons and blueberries. I occasionally nibble the odd date too if i need an energy boost.

It seems like a lot of sugar. From the standard 'recommended daily amount', yes, you consume way over the recommendation. But here is the clever part. But cutting out all fats, including nuts, avocados etc, your body uses the sugar as energy. If you were to eat the fats as well, they would block the sugar from entering your bloodstream and the excess sugar is then turned into a fat store. Pretty neat.

So as long as you cut the fat out, you can eat as many bananas, oranges, dates and berries as you like. Drink wise, i have tons of coconut water, lemon infused water and green teas. I occasionally make a black coffee too ( but that is normally if i am stuck in the office and it has been a long day!)

I have been trying to drink a lot of my bananas, by blending into smoothies with coconut water. The oranges, i just eat tons of! And the blueberries i add to frozen bananas to make a 'nice cream' which is amazing and i will post a recipe up tonight :)

To some, a pure fruit diet may sound crazy, I have to admit, it did to me before i tried it. But i actually feel fantastic. So i deffo recommend giving it a go. I am going to keep it up all summer, but lay off if i go out for a meal with friends etc, as otherwise it would be ridiculously tricky. It is hard enough finding anything vegan on menus as it is!

In other news, I have vegan t-shirts! I have wanted some for ages. I found some really cute ones on Etsy, but they were from the US and delivery costed a fortune. Luckily, one of my friends recently went over to the US and he bought them back for me. :).

I don't like to force my veganism or beliefs on others. But a few slogans on tees doesn't do any harm.

I am off to eat some yummy Blueberry Nice cream and i willl post the recipe up too. :)


Monday, 1 June 2015

For the love of Fruit

I am soaking up the Vit C tonight with a huuge bowl of oranges covered in deliciously yummy cinnamon. This morning i went for a run before work and swallowed a little fly - ( bad vegan? ). EEk. Anyway ever since then my throat has been really itchy and tickly. Now it could be because of the little fly, but most likely i am coming down with a bug, or cold and i really cant be doing with that right now! I would like to think with all the fruit and veg i consume my immune system is pretty good. So i am hoping i will beat this tonight and wake up fine and dandy tomorrow morning.

My brother sent me a book in the post a few weeks ago which was a nice, yet strange surprise. Strange as i don't read. It is not that i cant physically read, but i cant seem to concentrate on a book long enough to read more than a page. Or i have been telling myself that for years to the point that i believe it, and even picking up a book feels odd. The book he sent me was 'Swallow This' by Joanna Blythman. It is all about unraveling the food industry, and finding out what is in foods, even ones labelled as 'fresh' and untouched not just processed. It really seems like my kind of book so i am going to give it a go and i will report back!


I have a new motivational quote, or line i guess to keep myself upbeat and moving forward. I say it to myself when i am running, and feel like i want to stop and walk for a bit. ( which i dont actually allow myself to do!) 

'What is the point of giving up. What would it achieve?'

I am not sure where this came from, or why it suddenly popped into my head but it did, and it works. Say i have run 4 miles, my legs are pretty tired but i have told myself today i am running a minimum of 5 miles. I want to stop, but what would i gain? If i give up now, i would only regret it and wish i hadn't. What would i actually achieve? Nothing. Then i carry on, finish my 5 miles and often run a few extra because i have motivated myself. 

I used to be extremely good at giving up and failing. I have an extremely black and white personality. I either do something, and nail it to the point it is incredible and perfect. Or i sack it in, give up completely and never go back. It can be a good trait to have. I have achieved so many great things. But also failed at, and lost many too. It means i get highly addictive, i have an extremely addictive personality. That is why i have never and will never gamble! Haha that wouldn't be a good move. 


Mono Mealing! Mono meals mean eating meals of single items, specifically fruits as it is easier for the body to digest. You may have heard of banana island, or watermelon island. Where you simply just eat that fruit, in various forms ie smoothies, frozen, etc for a specific period of time. Well right now i am half islanding! I am having about 4 bananas for my breakfast, often in a smoothie form or frozen and blended into a 'ice cream'. Then for lunch either a mono meal of melon, or oranges - or  a Litre of orange juice or coconut water. And for dinner a mono meal of bananas, melon or oranges again. It doesn't sound like a lot but the idea is that you eat a vast amount of each of the foods, and make sure you make up 2000-4000 calories per day. So you are no way starving. Fruits are full of sugar, water and carbs - And so far i feel pretty great.

I am not being too strict. I am allowing myself the occasional actual meal if i go out or just fancy something different. You have to listen to your body after all. But i am really keen how this fruitarian mono meal plan turns out. I have heard of loads of people who have had great results - health wise.



I had real funny looks in the supermarket today. I don't think people are used to seeing so much fruit in one trolley. I bought about 2 x the amount of oranges shown in the picture too, plus a load of green tea :) .

Fruit is just the best.

<3 

This is a pic from a photo shoot i went to with my sister and cousins yesterday. It surprises me how different i look since becoming vegan. I often get told that i am being unhealthy, or have lost too much weight. But i hugely disagree. I feel the happiest and healthiest i have ever done. I am physically fitter, and motivated, and love to keep busy when previously i could sit around and do nothing for days. I eat a stupid amount of fruit and veggies that give me so many nutrients and vitamins. My hormonal system was messed up, since the age of 14. That is 9 years ago! When i had my ED, and it was pretty bad at 14, 15 years old, - My menstrual cycle messed up and pretty much stopped completely for 9 years. That is because for 9 years my body was unhealthy. Even though i actually weigh less now than i have for many years, i am extremely healthy and my hormonal cycle is up and running again. 

Real, clean, healthy fresh foods heal your body. 

<3



Friday, 29 May 2015

Liquid Fast Day!

If you follow me on Instagram, you will already know about my liquid fasting for today! I find Instagram is a much quicker way to upload, and easier to update so it has become my first point of posting recently. 

Liquids seem to suit my digestive system, and i used to have smoothies and juices for most meals except dinner. I am not sure why i stopped really - but i became more bloated and i am now back on the liquid wagon. I do miss solid foods, and am not against having solid snacks and dinners. I just feel i need a few days of pure liquids to detox right now

This morning i was in a rush! I got up a little later than i had planned, so quickly did a few core exercises and rushed to go prep my breakfast and lunch to take to work with me. 

Breakfast was a hydrating and cleansing green smoothie. With shock horror - coconut water. Haha. I love the stuff. When cleansing, you want to increase the water. So in juices and smoothies you want to choose fruits and veggies with a high water content.

Cleansing green smoothie

2 Stalks celery
1/4 cucumber
1/4 rhubarb
2 handfuls spinach
200ml coconut water
  


Lunchhh was delicious. It is unusual that i have fresh berries around as i normally buy frozen for cost / convenience. But my mum has been staying with me for a few days and went shopping - Result :) 

A stable for most my smoothies is Bananas. They work as a blending agent but also help you to carb up. Grapes have a high water content and lovely natural sweetness so they needed to join the gang.

Strawberry, Banana & Grape Smoothie

1 Large Banana
5-10 strawberries
1 handful red grapes
100ml coconut water
100ml almond milk


I am unsure what to have for dinner tonight. And pudding! ( or i will make a big mother of a smoothie and have a dinner / pudding smoothie all in one). That sounds like a plan.

Maybeee i will make miso soup, and then a small cocoa & chia smoothie. 
Far too many options. Whoever said vegans have nothing to eat!?

I have a long day at work today so i better get busy. 

<3

Thursday, 28 May 2015

Carrot & Apple Juice, Berry Smoothie & Sprouted Quinoa Pizza


The aim today was to start a liquid fast. Purely for the fact that i feel my body needs some rest and a little detoxing as i have become quite bloated recently and feel a little sluggish. I need to get my energy back and kick-start my body again.

I had liquid meals for breakfast and Lunch, but remembered that i had some quinoa sprouting which needed to be used today otherwise i would have had to just through it away. Which i wasn't okay with doing! So i made myself a non liquid dinner tonight, which was a really tasty pizza. Full on liquid fast starts tomorrow!

Breakfast was Carrot & Apple Juice. I love the taste of carrot juice, it has to be one of the faves. To properly detox, you are meant to cut all fiber out from the diet. Hence why i am liquid fasting, rather than juicing as i still want to keep my fiber. However, when it comes to juices such as carrot & apple, the pulp isn't that great to drink. I do have an actual juicer machine, but it is at the back of a cupboard and a nightmare to clean. I ended up blending the ingredients, and then putting it through a sieve, so only the juice came through.

Carrot & Apple Juice 

2 Carrots 
2 apples
50ml coconut water
1tsp ginger
1tsp turmeric 






For Lunch i made a fruity & creamy smoothie. It was immense. I now stick to using coconut water as a base for most of my drinks, as it has so much more nutrients and flavor than water, but less fatty / calorific than using a milk.

Today, i came to the realization that i am still recovering from my ED. To everyone around me it seems obvious. But i guess i am super strict on what i do, and don't eat. I have a huge list of foods i feel i shouldn't eat, even though they are vegan, plant based and clean. There is nothing particularly wrong with these foods, i just have a fear of them, and only eat them on the very odd occasion i am out, or someone else has cooked dinner especially.

Examples :

Rice - all kinds
Pasta ( even whole grain or Gluten free )
Bread ( even wholegrain, rye, & raw sprouted )
Potatoes
Sweet potatoes / Yam
Some beans
Too many pulses such as lentils
Tofu
Soya meats

Even writing that lists sounds silly. I know that everything on it is super healthy. Especially the tofu, beans, soya meats etc. And i do eat lentils, beans, and very occasionally rice in sushi. But i have this general fear of all of the above. I would much rather make myself a huge bowl of veggies, or salad. I do eat a large amount of fruit and veggies, and i am not ever hungry or calorie deprived. But i think i lack protein and more bulky, starchy carbs. In fact i know i do.  I am working on it! I am not stupid, i know the nutritional value of basically every food out there! I know eating some rice, or sweet potatoes is good for me. Even Tofu, super good! Just have to break down those silly walls in my mind.

Beautiful Creamy Berry Smoothie

2  Large Bananas
1 cup of mixed strawberries, raspberries, blueberries
200ml Coconut water
1tsp vanilla essence
( i wanted to add some mixed spice too but i didn't have any )



Now THIS is a pizza. Pizza is something i would not normally even imagine eating, but a friend on instagram uploaded a picture of a pizza using a Quiona base. So i thought i would give it a go. Unfortunately i had started to soak my quinoa long before i decided to liquid fast, but, i have to say it was worth the fast fail!

I couldn't believe how crunchy and tasty the base was. I will deffo be making this again in the future :)

Sprouted Quinoa Pizza

150g Quinoa - soak for 8-24 hours
2tsp Cider Vinegar
salt
pepper
2 tsp mixed herbs


Topping 
Tomato pasata
veggies of your choice - i used mushrooms, olives, sweetcorn, tomatoes, spinach & nutritional yeast

Soak your quinoa in water for 8-24 hours. Drain, and blend with cider vinegar, salt, pepper and herbs. It will for a thick white looking paste / dough. Place the mixture onto a lined baking tray, and shape into a large circle. You want it to be about 1cm thick. 

Cook in the oven for 10-15 mins, then carefully flip over and cook the other side for 5-10 mins. Put the tomato pasata, and the toppings onto your pizza and cook for a further 5-10mins.

Wednesday, 27 May 2015

Edamame Bean Spaghetti, Cinnamon apple oats & Fresh Fruit salads


I am sitting at work right now buzzing to go for a run. I actually cant wait to get home, get my gym gear on and run milesss. It has become a drug, or just a way to totally chill and relax. I completely zone out when i run. It is not often my head clears to the point i am thinking about nothing, in fact, apart from when i am running that never happens. I think too much, far too much! I am going to attempt to push the 5 mile mark tonight, if my legs work. I went for a cycle with my dads cycling club yesterday morning and boy was it hard. I was doing okayy actually until the last 30 mins when i hit that 'wall' and going up hill was such an effort. I pushed through though, as always! 28.32 miles, not too bad! Surprisingly my legs don't hurt one bit today - i'm pretty happy about that! But i have decided in general i need to start eating more protein if i want to keep up the amount of exercise i am doing. 



Talking of eating... i really do like to listen to my body. I feel a little bloated and 'full' recently, even though i haven't over eaten. I think a liquid fast is on the cards soon to re-vamp my system!

I thought i would post some of my meals. Below is my breakfast. I always start my day with a green tea and occasionally have a coffee afterwards. I had a long cycle so felt i needed a little extra pazazz yesterday. I have a real thing for oats now too, but only raw :). They are full of great carbs, protein and a little bit of healthy fats. Great to start the day with. I had 1 cup of oats, 1 chopped apple, almond milk and topped it off with some yummy cinnamon.


A few weeks a go i was up in London to get my hair done. Even though i am actually a qualified hairdresser myself, getting my own professionally done have never been a huge priority of mine. But i decided it was about time i went and got it sorted, rather than doing it myself! I have had dark hair for ages, and i wanted to lift the colour a little ready for summer. 1/2 head of highlights and 3 hours later, my hair was sun kissed and just as i imagined. Result.

I popped into the Wholefoods Market on the way back, and found these Edamame bean spaghetti packets! I used to love pasta, but very very rarely eat actual pasta these days. I only do if i am at someone elses house for dinner. Edamame beans are soya beans, so full of protein and fiber. The spaghetti is purely beans and water, nothing else. And you can soak them in water for 8 hours instead of boiling them if you prefer. The process to form edamame beans into spaghetti shapes happens just over the allowed 'raw' temperature. So depending how strict you are on your raw foods, you could soak and have these on a raw diet.

Taste wise they are great. I love courgette and carrot noodles, but they really lack the texture of spaghetti. These bean spaghetti shapes mimic real pasta perfectly and if you didn't know it was beans, you would never guess. I mixed my spaghetti with some veggies, cashews, toasted sesame oil and seeds.




Annddddddddd a beautiful bowl of fresh fruit. I love fruit. All fruit. Especially bananas :) I seem to munch handfuls of raisins throughout the day too because i am greedy. There are far worse things to snack on though!


I am trying to decide if tomorrow i should start a 3 or 5 day detox. i will do 3 days, and then see how i go. A liquid detox is basically, just liquids. You can juice detox, where you cut out all fiber too, ie pulp in smoothies. But i think a liquid detox will suffice for now. I will be just having smoothies, juices, lots of water, green tea and possibly make some veggie soup or broth for dinners if i am craving something a little warmer.


 <3

Saturday, 23 May 2015

Mini RAW Carrot Cakes [ with a coconut cream frosting ]



Wow it was a beautiful day today. I drove down to The New Forest to visit my parents and sister this weekend. Today was so sunny that I sat outside on their balcony and sunbathed most of the morning. It was Lush. My sister and I went of a 4 mile run across the open forest and i was pretty pleased that at the end, Laura was totally out of breath and i could have carried on for miles, still. I don't think i have ever been fitter than her before. I remember the last time i drove down, possibly only a month or so ago, i couldn't even keep up. I am amazed how my fitness has improved and extremely proud at myself for sticking to a routine. 

Now onto these incredible little treats. They taste soo bad for you but are ridiculously healthy!  Before going vegan, i loved carrot cake. I have previously tried one raw carrot cake before, using an online recipe, but honestly i wasn't keen. I thought I would give it another go, making up my own recipe and adding in various ingredients by taste to create the perfect raw carrot cakes :) And they were perfect. So tasty and completely satisfied my craving!




Now, i realised the key to these cakes was reducing the moisture in the carrots. Ideally, you should use the left over carrot pulp from a juicer. Or, grate you carrot, and try to squeeze out as much juice as possible using a cheese cloth, or sieve. If the carrot contains too much moisture, the mixture will not hold or stay in shape. Another good tip is to not to over blend the mixture. If you blend the mixture too smooth, more water will be released for the ingredients and form a wetter mix.


Mini Raw Carrot Cakes

  • 3 cups grated carrots (about 3 or 4 carrots)
  • 1 cup soft dates
  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup raisins
Mix all the ingredients in a blender until well mixed, but not smooth. ( over mixing will result in a mixture that is too wet)
Place the mixture into cup cake moulds, ideally silicone, or shape into small round cakes. Place and keep in the fridge. 



Coconut Cream Frosting

160ml can coconut cream
1tbsp Lemon juice
1tbsp Agave Syrup


Whip the coconut cream with an electric whisk. The coconut cream will thicken slightly. Fold in the lemon juice and Agave syrup.
Place the frosting in the fridge to set. ( this will take approx 2 hours).