Monthly Archives

April 2018


By Recipes No Comments

Serves 2

This is the perfect accompaniment for a main meal. Chickpeas are extremely versatile, cheap and nutritious. Just half a tin contains around 150 calories and 9 grams of protein. By comparison a medium chicken breast contains roughly 30 grams, so for a plant source of protein this is pretty good! And fibre – you’ll find over 7 grams, we are supposed to be getting 30 grams per day, that’s over 20% just from half a tin. This recipe has just 4 ingredients (excluding salt and pepper) and can be an easy store cupboard staple! I often enjoy this with some pan-fried chicken, alternatively grilled halloumi would also be delicious. Just be careful with oil and ensure you only add one teaspoon to the pan, its so easy to go a little overboard and with something like oil that can mean excess fat and calories for really no reason at all!

1 red onion
1 tin of drained and washed chickpeas
Rapeseed oil
3 teaspoons harissa paste
Salt and black pepper

Peel and roughly chop the onion
Heat 1 teaspoon of oil in a large frying pan
Add onion and cook over a medium-low heat for 10 minutes
Drain chickpeas and rinse under cold water
Add them to the pan with a pinch of salt and pepper
Add in harissa and a dash of water, then mix together, turn heat to low and continue cooking for 10-15 minutes. If the mix becomes really dry just add a little more water.
Store in the fridge for up to 4 days


By Recipes No Comments

Makes enough for 2 (depending on the pack size)

I didn’t really get into using tofu until earlier this year, but I’m glad I did. Most people I speak to just don’t really know what to do with it, hence they get confused and just avoid it. But not only is it a great source of protein for non meat eaters it’s also easy to cook and Has a long shelf life so can form part of your store cupboard staple. With the weather warming up and the days getting longer, naturally we feel like lighter meals so why not give it go. Either plain or smoked is fine (I prefer smoked but if you haven’t made it before then perhaps just go for the plain)

1 pack of firm tofu (plain or smoked)
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 teaspoon olive oil
A thumb size piece of ginger, finely chopped or grated
Juice of 1 lime

Remove the tofu from the pack. Some packs wont need draining and others will, read the label to find out if it does or not. If it does – wrap in a tea towel. Place this on a side plate and place another one on top. Sit a tin of beans on top and leave for a minimum of 30 minutes.
Mix the remaining ingredients together to form a marinade.
Slice the tofu into pieces about ½ a centimetre thick then lay in a tray or dish and pour the marinade over ensuring there is some on every piece. Place in the fridge over night if possible but if not just an hour or so will do.
Preheat your oven to 200C.
Line a large flat baking tray with greaseproof paper.
Carefully remove the tofu and place on the tray. Bake for 20 minutes, then turn and bake for a further 20 minutes.
Once it’s golden it’s done.
Enjoy with a crunchy raw slaw or even as a snack. I’ve been known to grab a few slices from the fridge on the run out the door. The picture above is a lunch bowl I made late last year, anything goes.

Protein water, two words which should never be paired

By Food for thought, Rants No Comments

I know……it’s not new and in the last twelve months we’ve seen protein added to a plethora of products. Some for good reason and others not so much. In the snacking market there are now tasty bars with added protein, not to mention the quark/yoghurt combo on chilled supermarket shelves to name a few. We are almost in the realms of protein fortification. Although generally in nutrition we refer to food fortification in reference to micronutrients such as vitamin D or B and minerals iodine and calcium.

Protein water. So firstly, there’s nothing really wrong with water in general, it doesn’t need to be changed, perfectly fine how it is. We use it to hydrate our bodies which are made up of around 50-60% of it (1). We’ve already got sparkling and several sugar free flavoured varieties as well as coconut water. And then this turns up. There are several brands on the market and I honestly commend anyone who is trying to start up their own business in a market which is saturated with new products. But please, if I can ask just one thing – food and drink has to actually taste nice. Forget the claims, forget how good it supposedly is for you or what it’s going to do because if you don’t like it you won’t go back for more. And if you do then perhaps rethink your priorities.

I thought, why not, and gave it a try. I was excited, I’d seen this product and wanted to try it, I opened the lid, slowly, carefully and took one sip. Then almost spat it out. The taste was so strong of something artificial, even though it contains no artificial colours of flavours? It went in the bin. 20 grams of protein, no thanks. You see you can get that (and many other nutrients might I add) from food.

½ a medium chicken breast

150g of cottage cheese

3 whole eggs,

200g of Greek yoghurt

to name a few.

Taste is key, it’s what keeps us loyal to certain foods. So, use water for its sole purpose – hydration and food for its purposes – a few which include providing us with protein and micronutrients too. Let’s not mess with the things which are already doing ok. Please.


  1. Royal College of Nursing, DIY Health Check Point.