Nutrition: Christmas ideas

Tuesday 08 May 2018

I cannot believe that this time next week it will be Christmas Eve. For that reason I have decided to concentrate on providing some very nice recipe that you might like to try over the Christmas period. Traditionally it is a time for indulging in rich foods that we do not normally eat during the year. Some of you may be doing this and some of you may not. These recipes are healthy!!!!! But a bit special so you can indulge in them without the guilt or food hangover that generally come with Christmas.

I have included a soup, a main course and a sweet treat without sugar!. I hope that you try them and let me know how you get on.

Wild Mushroom and Butter Bean soup
This is rich and creamy tasting but has no dairy. So simple and nourishing. (Serves 4 ,will freeze).

1 tbsp of coconut oil
2 shallots or 1 small onion peeled and chopped.
1 clove garlic crushed.
400g/14oz mixed mushrooms including Shiitake.
700mls/24 fl oz of chicken or vegetable stock.
14 oz can of butter beans drained

1. Heat the oil in a large pan and saute the onion till soft but not coloured.
2. Stir in the garlic and mushrooms and cook for a further 5 minutes.
3. Pour in the stock and simmer for 15 mins then add the beans and season to taste.
4. Blend the soup in a processor, check seasoning and serve.


Lentil Moussaka with Yogurt and nutmeg topping
Similar to the traditional Greek Moussaka but the lamb has been replaced by lentils which have a nutty flavour and the normal rich sauce topping by a much lighter simpler one.  This will serve 4-6 and good served with a crisp green salad to complete the meal.

600g of cooked puy lentils. (drained from a tin)
3 tbsp of olive oil
3 aubergines cut into rounds approximately ¼” thick
2 onion peeled and sliced.
2 cloves garlic crushed.
800g of fresh tomatoes diced.
30g of dried mushrooms soaked for 20 mins then drained.
100mls of stock or red wine.
2 bay leaves.
1 tbsp of each of fresh oregano and mint.
1 tsp cinnamon.

For the topping
½ pt of natural yogurt.
2 whole eggs beaten well.
fresh grated nutmeg to taste.

1.  Preheat the oven gas 6 elec 180’C
2. Warm 2 tbsp of oil in a pan and cook the onion and garlic till soft. Add herbs and cinnamon, tomatoes, mushrooms and stock or wine and cook uncovered for about 20 minutes until reduced by about 1/3rd.
3. Add the lentils and cook for another 15 minutes. Remove from the heat.
4. While the lentil sauce is cooking brush both sides of the aubergine slices with the remaining olive oil and grill on both sides until golden.
5. Lightly oil an oven proof dish and get ready to layer. Start with a thin layer of the tomato sauce followed by a layer of aubergine. Continue in this way until you end up with lentils on the top.
6. Make topping by beating the eggs and the yogurt together till well mixed. Sprinkle in the grated nutmeg. Pour this over the lentils easing to the edges with a spatula.
7. Place in a preheated oven for 15-20 min till golden and bubbling.


Gooey chocolate and raspberry pudding.
something sweet, very simple to make, tastes lovely and actually good for you!!!

Oil for greasing
140g of wholemeal flour
2 tsps of baking powder
1 tbsp of unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp of vanilla essence.
120mls of almond milk (any milk alternative)
120mls of sugar free apple puree. (I use ready made baby food jars if I do not have time to make it myself)
1 tbsp of xylitol
1 small punnet of raspberries or frozen equivalent.

For the Chocolate sauce
2 tbsp of xylitol
1 heaped tbsp of unsweetened cocoa powder.

1. Heat the oven gas 5/160’C. and lightly grease an 8” round baking dish.
2. Put flour, baking powder and cocoa powder in a bowl. Mix together the milk, vanilla. Apple and xylitol and pour into the flour and beat to form a batter. Stir in the raspberries. Spoon into the baking dish.
3. Combine the sauce ingredients with 300mls of boiling water and gently pour over the batter.
4. Carefully put the dish in the oven and bake for 35-40 min until the pudding is firm on top with a gooey chocolate sauce underneath.

This will keep in the fridge for up to 2 days. Enjoy!

All that is left for me to do now is for me to wish you sincerely, all a very peaceful and trouble free Christmas.


Blog originally written by Caroline December 2013

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