Category Archives: Food

Discover what dangerous additives may be lurking in your food.

What to do on the allotment in May

So what is there to do on the allotment in May?

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It is the first day of may today and it’s pouring down here in Blackpool, it’s turned really cold too and that glimmer of summer hope has disappeared, the heating is back on and so is a jumper! I am fancying comfort food like rhubarb crumble and custard, but I used the rhubarb in a juice yesterday when the sun was shining.

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What are toxins and how to avoid them

After an influx of new readers (hello you beautiful souls) I thought it would be good to tell you how NWF came about and why we live without toxins and how you can get started on your journey to a purer life free from toxins and find out how to avoid them.

So what’s my story?

Well I will explain how it all started a few years ago. My eldest son James was diagnosed with some kind of autism, ADD and dyspraxia. The doctor was rather vague about this diagnosis and to be honest not very helpful but she was quick to prescribe a ‘cure’ in the shape of Ritalin. I had already read about the effects of Ritalin and other medicines given to children with ADD and ADHD, I knew the outcome wasn’t good all types of side effects including death!

I didn’t want my child on this horrible mind numbing medication but also didn’t want to live with someone who flipped out, had major anger issues, was violent and had no sense of danger. So I did the only thing I could and researched other options, I was surprised how much there was out there to harm our minds and bodies, many of which are in our foods and all have been passed by the food agencies and government as perfectly fine to consume.

I was shocked, outraged and felt overwhelmed by it all. I spent hours, days and weeks on the internet, reading books and researching all the different chemicals, additives, toxins, preservatives, E numbers, MSG, dairy, gluten, colours, flavourings, fillers, caffeine and much more.

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Balance your chakras with food

This is really interesting and something I hadn’t thought of before, recharging your main chakras with food, but it really makes sense when you think about it, I found this on Soul and Spirit magazine today and thought I would share the article on here:

Did you know that you can recharge your main chakras with food? Here’s what you should be tucking into to balance those vibrations…

1. Root chakra

Located at the perineum at the base of your spine, your root chakra is closest to the earth. Its function is concerned with earthly grounding and physical survival, and is linked to your legs, feet, bones and large intestine. It also controls your ‘fight or flight’ response. To give it a boost, opt for grounding root vegetables such as beetroot, carrot, garlic, ginger, turnips, potatoes and parsnips to bring you back to Mother Nature.

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Foraging for wild garlic

Mmmm wild garlic I love you so much!

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Yesterday we went foraging for wild garlic in our local woodlands, within walking distance from Blackpool town centre, the leaves are vibrant and the flower buds are aching to open. It’s the perfect time of year to collect some leaves and turn them into garlic delights. Remember the foraging code though, only take what you need, I only take 2-3 leaves from each plant to leave enough for healthy growth.

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Rainforest Foundation UK launches its 2016 palm oil guide

The Rainforest Foundation UK (RFUK), an environmental charity that supports people living in and around the world’s rainforests, has launched its new annual Palm Oil guide – designed to help shoppers make informed, ethical choices about everyday items on their shopping lists – from biscuits to bread to cleaning products and cosmetics.
 
Large-scale palm oil developments in the rainforest cause deforestation and habitat loss for the wildlife and people who call the forest home. The global demand for palm oil has already devastated millions of acres of rainforest in South East Asia and now companies are turning to Africa. Research by the Rainforest Foundation UK found that more than a million acres of rainforest is imminently threatened in the Congo Basin.
Simon Counsell, RFUK’s Executive Director, said: “The expansion of palm oil poses a growing threat to Africa’s rainforests, as well as to the people who depend on those forests for their livelihoods and culture.” orangutan                                                                                                    Photo credit: One green planet

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Amazing Kitchari to try right now

You know those days where you start reading about something and end up following links and suggestions to various other amazing posts?

Well that happened to me today, I was reading about eating healthily whilst living in a van (I have this obsession at the moment with running away from Blackpool and living in a van) and in the original post there was a link to this recipe, it sounds amazing and so tasty.

Here is the article and recipe from Alexa Nehter who is a yoga teacher, retreat facilitator and author of THE CLEAN YOGI

Kitchari is THE Indian cleansing and healing food. It’s a wholesome, nourishing dish especially for those who want to detox, yet also want to feel sufficiently fueled.

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Aubergine and lentil vindaloo

The wonderful Jack Monroe has updated her blog with another super vegan recipe, this vindaloo sounds delicious and we can’t wait to try it.

jack monroeIf you don’t like aubergine, use mushrooms instead. Red lentils could easily be kidney beans, baked beans, black beans, brown or green lentils, or yellow split peas; whatever you have in the cupboard or like. They are here to add texture and protein; all the other flavour speaks for itself, or rather, shouts and sings and dances.

Serves 2-4 depending on appetite:

3 onions

6 fat cloves of garlic

1-2 tsp chilli flakes

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp cumin

1/4 of a star anise or an 1/8 tsp fennel seeds

a good grind of black pepper, and then another one

2 tbsp tomato puree

2 tbsp vinegar or lemon juice

1 large aubergine or 2 small ones

100g red lentils
First peel and finely slice your onions and toss into a pan with a little oil. Bring to a low heat to start to soften the onions, and add the garlic cloves, whole and peeled. Dice the aubergine and add to the pot, stirring all to disturb and stop it from sticking and burning.

Add your spices, but only half of your chosen quantity of chilli. It is easy to add to, but rather more difficult to temper down if you misjudge it, so I put half the chilli in to cook, and leave half to garnish. It means guests and dining partners can choose their own heat, too, which is ideal if everyone is a little different. So, add the cinnamon, cumin, star anise or fennel, and pepper, and stir well to combine. Add half a cup of water to the pan, and crank up the heat. It doesn’t look brilliant right now but trust me, it geets better.

Thoroughly rinse your lentils. In a separate pan, cover them with water – no salt or the lentils will take an age to cook – and bring to the boil. I was initially tempted to throw them into the pot to make this a one-pot dinner, but lentils produce so much ‘scum’ that rises to the top of the pan, I didn’t want to mar my beautiful adventure, so doubled my washing up… When the water is boiling,  reduce to a simmer for around 12 minutes until soft and swollen. Drain, rinse well to knock off the scum, and tip into the first pan.

Add the tomato and vinegar and stir well. Bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer, stirring slowlly and therapeutically every now and then. It should take around 10 more minutes to meld into this glossy, orange, spicy goodness, and the liquid should thicken to an unctuous sauce. If it is too watery for your liking, bring it back to boil, then reduce the heat and cook a little more. If the thought of 10 more minutes on the gas worries you, give it all a thorough stir, remove from the heat and cover with a plate or foil or baking tray for 20 mins. It takes a little longer but by insulating some of the heat, it will continue to cook and thicken as it cools. – words taken from Jack Monroes blog, photo credit to her also.

I love curry and although vindaloo is too hot for me , Tom really likes it so I will be brave and give it a go!

Hearty vegan stew recipe

You know when it still cool in the evenings right before spring is truly here?

You need comfort food, something like a hug in a bowl, I have tried many times to recreate my mums beef stew without the beef and finally I have made this hearty concoction that fills the brief. Add dumplings to make it even better!

I give you my best vegan stew for 24p a bowl, whats not to love and I guarantee meat eaters will love it too – I tested some haha.

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Living on a budget without losing flavour

I read earlier in the week a cook book I borrowed from the library by Jack Monroe, I got it because I had heard about her before and her budget ( I mean real budget, not Jamie Olivers £22 leg of lamb budget) recipes, it’s a great book, I carried on then reading her blog ( I tend to obsess and read everything when I find something good), that led me to other blogs about this grey area of people who are not on their arses completely, like homeless people or the daily mails image of someone of benefits, they have jobs, they are doing something passionately and working a lot but still struggling to pay the electric bill, or have dropped down from their normal luxury range of food to the basics range, it was pretty eye opening really.

Find the cook book here:

A Girl Called Jack: 100 delicious budget recipes

We tried the 9p – yes you read it right, 9p veggie burgers, I added some chilli flakes to mine and we loved them, although the younger one wouldn’t even try them because they had kidney beans in! Always been a fussy eater – in fact a fussy everything haha.

A little tip which I have taken for granted before, is to bulk cook to save gas and time and I put the washing machine on an eco wash for the first time ever, apparently that saves water.

Asda have come up with a good idea to trail, unfortunately they are not available in the top 3 poorest places in UK, including my very own town Blackpool. The exclusive wonky veg boxes are packed with peculiar potatoes, crooked carrots and curved cucumbers which are all in season, as well as knobbly peppers, cabbages, onions, leeks and parsnips. They’re just £3.50 each.

I think it’s a good idea to tackle the waste caused by the supermarkets being too picky and guessing that customers want perfect veg all the time, it will help farmers too, did you see Hugh’s war on waste programme, that was heartbreaking for the farmers. I actually went to the veg stall in the market (it’s just round the corner now) I haven’t been in there for years, I was so surprised how cheap it was compared to Sainsburys where I normally shop. Of course it isn’t organic and I wouldn’t buy the garlic as it was from China but the occasional veg that’s not part of the dirty dozen has saved me money. Plus I realsied (der me) that I am supporting a small family business.

No more bananas?

As the 1920s popular song, ‘Yes we ‘ave no bananas’ suggests, bananas have long been associated with farce.

But they also happen to be nature’s handiest health and energy snack – and one of the most widely consumed fruits on the planet.

Which left us more than a little shaken by last week’s BBC headlines announcing that a deadly fungus could wipe out our banana supply.

Bizarrely, it seems pretty much every banana consumed in the western world is directly descended from a plant grown 180 years ago in one of Britain’s own stately homes.  Chatsworth’s Cavendish variety became the exporters’ banana of choice because of its resistance to the Panama disease fungus.

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But a study at the end of last year warned that a new strain of the fungus is threatening to wipe out our favoured fruit.

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