A FANTASTIC SELECTION OF RECIPES BY DAPHNE LAMBERT
Spring into summer
At last Summer has arrived and now is the time to enjoy the bounty that it has to offer. The new season asparagus is here along with parsley, fennel and chervil. And if you're lucky some delightful cherry tomatoes. All these herbs and foods remind us that the warmer weather is here and it's time to enjoy those heady days of Summer before they slip away with a variety of fresh fruit and vegetables.
Asparagus, radish & dandelion salad
Asparagus is crammed full of beneficial phytonutrients
12 asparagus spears
16 dandelion leaves
2 handfuls salad leaves
12 radish cut in half
bunch of chervil roughly chopped
handful sprouted sunflower seeds
2 tablespoons hemp oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
salt and black pepper
Plunge the asparagus into boiling water for 1 minute, drain* and refresh with cold water
In a large bowl whisk together the hemp oil & lemon juice, season well with salt and pepper.
Add the dandelion leaves, salad leaves, asparagus, radish, sunflower seeds and chervil to the bowl and very gently mix together.
*Drain through a sieve over a bowl to catch the water which you can save as a base for soup.
Summer quinoa salad
grated zest & juice of 1 lemon
6 tablespoons olive oil
½ teaspoon salt & couple of twists black pepper
handful flat leaf parsley roughly chopped
handful fennel fronds roughly chopped
handful chervil roughly chopped
2 handfuls mange tout finely sliced
12 radish cut in quarters
12 cherry tomatoes cut in half
4 spring onions finely sliced
1 medium cucumber diced
handful soaked sunflower seeds
Place the quinoa in a pan with three times the amount of water. Bring the water to the boil and simmer the quinoa for 5-7 minutes until tender but not soft. Once cooked drain in a sieve, lightly rinse and leave to cool.
In a large bowl whisk the lemon juice and olive oil together and season with salt & pepper. Toss all the herbs and vegetables in the dressing, then tip in the quinoa and gently mix together.
ADUKI BEAN SALAD
110g aduki beans
110g broad beans (shelled weight)
75g fresh peas (shelled weight)
6 sun dried tomatoes
2 spring onions finely sliced
1 handful basil roughly torn
1 handful flat leaf parsley roughly chopped
1 tablespoon chopped oregano
3 tablespoons of olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Cook the aduki beans for 45 – 60 mins or until tender, drain, refresh and cool. Cook the broad beans and cool (peel if you prefer) . Finely shred the spinach. Finely shred the sun dried tomatoes. In a large bowl combine the broad beans, spinach, aduki beans, uncooked peas, sun dried tomato, spring onions, basil, parsley & oregano. Season well with salt and pepper. Mix together olive oil and balsamic and mix into the salad. Turn into a dish and serve.
TOMATO & GARLIC FLAT BREADS
250g Bread for Life wholesome brown flour
100ml tepid water
1 tsp fine sea salt
100 ml olive oi1
tomato & garlic topping
6 tomatoes, quatered, seeded and diced mixed with 4 finely chopped cloves garlic
Mix the yeast, water and honey together and set aside. In a bowl combine the flour and salt add the yeast mixture, half the olive oil and enough water to make a soft, slightly sticky dough, cover and leave for ten minutes. Rub a little oil on a work surface and gently knead the dough for a couple of minutes. Place in a clean lightly oiled bowl, cover and leave for 1 hour. Rub a little of the remaining oil on a work surface, then pat the dough to a rectangle and fold it in by thirds each way, flip over and cover. Leave for 30 minutes and repeat the process 2 more times. Rub a little of the remaining oil on a work surface, then pat the dough to a rectangle and fold it in by thirds each way, flip over and cover. Leave for 30 minutes and repeat the process 2 more times. Lightly oil a baking tray approx 13cm x 18cm gently roll or pat out the dough to fit the tray. Scatter over the tomato and garlic mixture, cover and leave for 20 minutes. Bake in the centre of a hot oven 220 for about 30 mins or until golden brown.
Lightly oil a baking tray size gently roll or pat out the dough to fit the tray. Scatter over the tomato and garlic mixture, cover and leave for 20 minutes. Bake in the centre of a hot oven 220 for about 30 mins or until golden brown.
MUSCAT CAKE WITH GOOSEBERRIES
serves 10 - 12
3 elderflower heads
zest and juice of a lemon
350g butter + a little extra
100g fine polenta
350g ground almonds
6 tablespoons Muscat dessert wine
Preheat oven to 180˚C/350˚F/gas mark 42 salmon
6 tablespoons elderflower cordial
6 tablespoons of Muscat dessert wine
700g gooseberries, topped and tailed
Gently heat the elderflower syrup & muscat wine mix in the gooseberries and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and cool.
Butter & line a 25cm round cake tin with parchment paper
Carefully remove the elderflower petals. Place them with the remaining cake ingredients into a bowl of an electric mixer. Set on full speed and beat until light and fluffy. Pour the cake mixture into the tin and bake for about 30 minutes or until firm and golden. (lower the heat after 30 minutes if it is not firm and cook for a further 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and leave to cool in the tin for 5 minutes before turning out.
Serve the cake with spoonful of the gooseberry compote.
Foods that support a strong immune system
Our immune system depends on many nutrients to work effectively and the ideal immune-boosting diet is really no different from the ideal everyday diet but if you are a bit-off track at the moment here are a few pointers.
The thymus gland produces hormones responsible for immune activity and special white blood cells called T cells, which destroy infected cells. T cell activity and the production of antibodies depend on vitamin B6. Spinach, turnip greens, leeks, cauliflower, broccoli, brussel sprouts and shiitake mushroom, all in season at the moment, are a good source of vitamin B6 as are whole grains.
Vitamin C intake is essential to immune function. Vitamin C helps immune cells to mature and improves the performance of antibodies and macrophage. Citrus fruits, cauliflower, broccoli and kale are good sources and all abundant at the moment. Other good sources are strawberries, blueberries and raspberries in the summer and rosehip, elderberries and blackberries in the autumn. Preserve these fruits to have in the Winter months. Vitamin C along with vitamins A & E and zinc & selenium are important anti-oxidant nutrients – they disarm the free radicals which invaders produce.
Eat fresh green leaves every day. The chlorophyll in green leaves supports our immune system by combating unhealthy colonies of bacteria, yeasts & fungi in the body and reduces inflammation.
Good bacterial balance in the gut is important for immune function. Eat plenty of lactic ferments like sauerkraut and kefir.
If you work inside all day you are probably not getting enough sun. When we lack vitamin D our immune systems are vulnerable to bacteria and viruses. Eggs, yogurt, shiitake mushroomsare good sources as well as fatty fish – herrings, sardines, mackerel, wild salmon.
Garlic is a wonderful antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal and turmeric, ginger and cinnamon are powerful spices to add to your immune boosting diet.
Eat plenty of good fat, cold pressed olive oil and organic butter are both beneficial. Fresh seeds and nuts are rich in essential fatty acids as well as vitamin E, zinc and protein. Cooking with poly unsaturated oils creates toxic trans-fatty acids and exposure to air creates rancidity. Altered oils of this nature suppress the immune system.
Make certain you eat three meals a day. If you are battling adrenal fatigue, diabetes, weight issues, hormone or blood sugar problems you may need to eat 5 smaller meals. If all your commitments
allow try to take a few early nights and allow your body to rest and restore. Never underestimate the positive effect to the immune system from having a good 8 hours sleep!
Baked mackerel fillet with green leaf salad and a citrus-chilli dressing
4 mackerel fillets
2 tablespoons olive oil
juice and zest of half a lemon
1 clove garlic finely chopped
Selection of green leaves (watercress, mizuna, lamb's lettuce, mint, fennel, flat leaf parsley).
Dressing: 2 tablespoons orange juice, 1 tablespoon lime juice, 4 tablespoons olive oil, 1 small chilli seeded and chopped, salt and pepper.
Mix the olive oil, garlic and lemon together. Place the mackerel fillets in an oiled baking dish and pour over the marinade, leave for 15 minutes. Pick over the leaves and divide between 4 plates.
Blend all the dressing ingredients together in a processor.
Bake the fish in a moderate to hot oven, 180 degrees celcius, for 12 minutes. Place a fillet on top of the leaves on each plate and spoon over the dressing.
Chunky vegetable and white bean soup
A diet rich in vegetables and pulses supports the immune system.
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion chopped
4 garlic cloves chopped
1 carrot peeled and diced
2 sticks celery diced
1 leek trimmed, washed and cut into slices
1 turnip peeled and diced
1 tsp tomato puree
1 litre vegetable stock
400g tin of haricots beans
1 head of broccoli florets
large handful finely shredded spinach
handful of chopped parsley
Cook the onion and garlic in the olive oil until tender
Add the carrot, celery, leek and turnip and cook for a further 2 minutes
Stir in the tomato puree, add the stock, bring to the boil and simmer gently for 20 minutes.
Add the haricots beans and cook for a further 10 minutes.
Add the broccoli and the spinach, cook for a further 2 minutes, stir in the parsley, season and serve.
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