October 24, 2012 · 10:27 am


Spooky Snacks and Healthy Halloween Treats
 

Thanks, as always, to our beautiful host Jenn over at Peas and Crayons.

For this week’s foodie party, I’d like to share my eats from yesterday. I wish I could share them with you in person but, failing that, I’ll do my best to describe them and show some pics so you can virtually eat them ;)

Here goes…

Breakfast
Pre-school drop off: warm water & lemon.

Post-school run (30 minute jog along the canal): big bowl of steaming hot porridge, made with Alpro soya milk and flavoured with ground cinnamon. From my ‘pick n mix’ jars, I sprinkled chopped walnuts, Brazil nuts, sliced almonds, hemp seed, ground linseed, goji berries and a drizzle of maple syrup on top. Totally lush!

Lunch
All three of us had a baked red onion bhaji pitta kebab with home-made mango chutney, lettuce and sliced avocado. OMG this was so good!

We all love onion bhajis but they’re not normally classed as a healthy food as they tend to be deep-fried.  A few years ago I tried baking them instead and I was surprised at how well they worked out. We absolutely love them. Sometimes we have them as a starter but, most often than not, we stuff them in a pitta to make a ‘pitta kebab’.

In the past I’ve tried making them with a mix of Indian spices, but Lil’ L much prefers them when I use a mild curry paste, so that’s what I stick with now. I use the Patak’s paste, which is the same one that I use in our veggie korma.

I always make some mango chutney to accompany the bhajis. It’s so quick and easy to make your own chutney and it tastes way nicer than the shop-bought stuff.  A couple of weeks ago I tried a shop-bought chutney and it actually left me feeling nauseous. When I looked at the jar I was amazed by the amount of refined sugar it contained. My home-made version has very little added sweetener, and I use agave syrup which means it’s low GI and free of refined sugars.

Here’s how I make the bhajis and chutney…

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Baked Red Onion Bhajis

Serves 4
Hands on time: 10 minutes    Cooking time: 28 minutes

Ingredients
1 tbsp olive oil + extra for greasing
3 medium-large red onions, sliced into thin strips 2.5cm / 1” long
2 garlic cloves, crushed
pinch of salt
1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tbsp tomato purée
1 tbsp mild curry paste (I use Patak’s)
2 tbsp fresh or frozen coriander, finely chopped
5 tbsp chickpea (gram) flour

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C (160 fan) / 350F / Gas 4.  Line a baking sheet with non stick baking paper and lightly spray with oil.
  2. Heat the oil in a large frying pan (skillet) on a low-medium heat and sweat the onions until they start to turn translucent (about 6 minutes). Add the garlic and salt, and cook for a further 2 minutes. Stir in the lemon juice, tomato purée, curry paste and coriander. Sprinkle in the chickpea (gram) flour and thoroughly mix into the onion mixture.
  3. Scoop an eighth of the mixture (about 2 tablespoons) onto the tray and gently press into a bhaji shape (I use two metal spoons to do this). Repeat to make another seven bhajis. Lightly spray the top of the bhajis with oil and bake in the oven for 20 minutes or so, until lightly browned. Towards the end of the cooking time, keep an eye on the bhajis to make sure that they do not burn.
  4. Delicious served in a pitta or rolled flat bread with romaine lettuce and mango chutney.

Home-Made Mango Chutney (sugar free)

Makes about half a cup of chutney
Hands on-time: 3 minutes
Cooking time: 5 minutes

Ingredients
1 medium-large mango, diced
1 inch piece of fresh or frozen ginger, finely grated
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp agave syrup (or other natural sweetener)
pinch of salt

Method

  1. Place all the ingredients in a small saucepan. Bring to the boil, then gently simmer for 5 minutes. Allow to cool slightly before blending to a smooth consistency, using a jug or stick blender.
  2. Will keep for a few days in the fridge, or weeks in the freezer

It’s as simple as that!

After School Snack
Coffee and bar of dark chocolate at Cafe Nero’s in Bath. Lil’ L had a hot chocolate and lemon & poppy seed muffin. The muffin looked amazing so I must see if I can find a vegan version to try at home.

Dinner
For dinner tonight, we had Angela from Oh She Glows Butternut Squash Mac n Cheeze. This is the second time this month that we’ve had this meal and it’s really rare for us to have the same meal twice in one month. That goes to show how much I love this recipe!

In addition to the butternut squash, this time I added half a bag of fresh spinach (wilted and chopped) and one red romano pepper, finely chopped. The combination of orange, green and red vegetables made this dish really pretty! On top, we sprinkled some pine nuts and Marigold Engevita nutritional yeast with B12 (for yumminess & more goodness!)

One day I’ll have to make this dish in the day time so that I can photograph it. Until then, here’s one of Angela’s beautiful shots for you to feast your eyes on.

Source: ohsheglows.com via Sharon on Pinterest

 

Yes guys, I’ve finally given in and joined Pinterest! The big question is… do I have enough willpower to stop me losing hours on it?  Hmm we’ll see ;)

Dessert
Quick dessert of fresh pineapple, Alpro natural yoghurt and a drizzle of maple syrup.

It was then time for us to snuggle under our new fleecy blanket and read the next chapter of Harry Potter ‘The Philosopher’s Stone’. I love that book and it’s so cool that Lil’ L’s reading it now :)

Enjoy the rest of the week everyone xx

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