Artichoke is a nutrient dense superfood. An excellent gallbladder and liver detoxer (extremely good for me today after a late night at Da Polpo with a lot of wino) it’s packed with magnesium, chromium, manganese, potassium, phosphorus, iron and calcium. It’s also very low in calories, around 26 per artichoke!
This is how I like mine:
* Wash thoroughly
* Cut the stalk and trim the outer though green leaves right down
* Bring to boil and let it simmer for 20-40 minutes depending on the size, when you can easily pull a leaf off it’s done
* Drain well and place on a plate. Open up the choke and remove the inner tiny leaves with paper towel (it’s HOT)
*Shave the chokes beard off with a knife. The kids love this!
* Make tiny holes in the base. Add a knob of unsalted butter and Himalayan crystal salt or olive oil
* Pull off the leaves and dip in the melted butter and pull through teeth to remove the soft portion of the leaf.
* When all the leaves are finished, Tuck into the delicious bottom (now soaked with the butter or oilive oil) yum!
To make raw chocolate you need:
* Raw Cacao Butter 125g
* Raw Cacao Powder 125g (less if you don’t like your choc to intense)
* Maca Root Powder 1 Tablespoon Lucuma Powder 1 Tablespoon
* Agave Syrup
* Himalayan Crystal Salt
* Vanilla pod
* Aromatherapy Rose Oil
This post was supposed to be a video of how to make yummy healthy raw chocolate. I got it all on film, even though the tri-pod decided to completely collapse into a heap of metal. But now my laptop has decided to be difficult, to make a long story short the audio doesn’t match the video and now I’m giving up. Aaaaarrrrggghhh! The thing is I’m slightly short of time, as usual. A taxi is picking me and the 8YO up at 4.45am (in exactly 6 hours!) we are off to Chicago and I have obviously not packed. Most of the stuff that I’m planning to bring has actually just been washed, the radiators are covered, the dryer working on full capacity. Stress stress.
Onwards & Upwards …the chocolate was divine..I will try to salvage the edit when we are back home again.
Next to my bed I have a Himalayan Crystal Salt Lamp. It’s basically a lump of salt with a light bulb in the middle. I love the soft glow it gives off it keeps me calm and it also helps to create negative charged ions into the room, making the air more healthy and easy to breathe. You know the calmness that washes over you when you stand next to a waterfall, it’s the negative ions that have that effect, making you feel good.
I wish I could bring it with me on the long haul flight tomorrow.
This Sunday at 9pm I’ll be parked in front of the telly box with a large bowl of home popped popcorn for the season 2 première of Downton Abbey, can’t wait!
Home made popcorn is a great source of Fibre, Folate (important for pregnant- and planning to get pregnant ladies) and Iron, among other nutrients.
But they have to be home-popped!
I stay well clear of micro bags. Microwaving can cause toxic chemicals in the lining of the bag to leak into the popcorn and the ingredient that provides the butter flavour, diacetyl have been linked to health issues among popcorn workers, it even has a disease named after it, “Popcorn worker lung”.
Movie popcorn is also best avoided, cooked in unhealthy oils, artificial colourings and preservatives are added and again that butter flavour aint reel butter.
It’s so easy and cheap to pop your own and the kids love it when they explode all over the kitchen!
This is how I like mine:
1. Pour oil in a large pan. Sunflower, olive oil or virgin coconut oil, they all work well. My favorite is virgin coconut oil.
2. Add 3-4 kernels, when they pop the oil is hot enough.
3. Add the rest of the kernels, I use organic kernels.
4. Take off the heat, when it’s 2-3 seconds between pops.
5. In a pan melt 1 part butter and 1 part virgin coconut oil (beyond delish!)
6. Pour over the popcorn and season with healthy salt, Himalayan crystal salt, comes with 84 minerals.
If you fancy a naughtier sugary choc- version:
Add 1 part high quality choc powder (use a sieve to get rid of lumps) to 3 parts sugar, mix and sprinkle over.
A third version I like is to just add salt and Tabasco! Low in calories and needless to say I don’t have to share this one.
How do you like yours?
I rely on a 3 Pink Drinks to keep me calm, relaxed and stress free.
The first is my evening Rose Water drink. I wish I could send you a sniff through the cloud, the smell is beyond delicious!
The gorgeous rose petals banish depression and relaxes you.
I take this at night, sometimes with a small piece of dark chocolate.
I add two teaspoons of a good quality Rose Water to a small glass of hot water.
The next pink drink is my Sole,the liquid sunshine.
A teaspoon in a glass of water cleanses and replenish in the morning.
Find out how to make Sole here.
And the third pink drink is a special occasion drink, a glass of Champagne with a delicious Hibiscus Flower as garnish.
Hibiscus tea was a favorite of Egyptian Pharaohs, It helps reduce inflammation and is an excellent source of vitamin C.
Put the hibiscus flower in a champagne glass add a teaspoon of the syrup and top up with bubbly, the bubbles make the flower opens up.
Champagne with Hibiscous Flower.
I always wash all my fruit and vegetables even if it says on the label it’s pre-washed, especially if I’m going to eat them raw.
Most fruit and veg grow in fields covered in pesticides, and even if you buy only organic they have been handled by people in fields, warehouses and supermarkets. And it’s not enough to wash them in water alone as most of the pesticides are designed to be water-resistant.
I get fruit and vegetable washes from the health food shop or I make my own.
Make your own home made fruit & vegetable wash
2 Tablespoons of Baking soda
2 Tablespoons of White Vinegar
2 teaspoons of Salt
A Spray Bottle
Mix it up, shake, spray, leave it for a couple of minutes, rub it in and wash off in water.
Chocolate makes me SO happy, how utterly dull life would be without it. Chocolate should be eaten in small quantities and quite often, about once a day I think.
Very good for grumpy grown ups and very good for bringing back children to the here and now (put small square of high quality chocolate in their mouth). I once gave a tiny piece to 3-year-old mid tantrum, omg the effect was instant!
Dark chocolate is at the top of the healing foods pyramid because it’s full of potent antioxidants and contains a bunch of minerals including calcium, magnesium and potassium!
My favorite dark chocolate bar is Amelia Rope’s Dark Spearmint, very delish and refreshing at the same time.
I’m also completely obsessed with anything rose so I also get her Pale Rose flavored milk chocolate bar and….err since I can’t resist salt… the Pale Lemon and Sea Salt infused choc bar also ends up in my shopping trolley.
Amelia has studied herbal medicine and has worked as an aromatherapist right up my street!
3 Things I ♥
It’s obviously illegal to slave away in the kitchen when temperatures rise to 26°. So absolutely no baking this easter, instead we feast on these incredible amazing gluten & dairy free cakes from Sugargrain.
All of their cakes are completely gluten-free and a few of them are also dairy and sugar-free. Grains, seeds & nuts replace wheat and rapeseed, sunflower and coconut oils replace butter. I went for the dairy free cakes since 7-year old is intolerant. Chocolate Stem Ginger Cake (filled with dark dairy free chocolate) & Spiced Ginger Cake(grated carrot, fresh banana and coconut and shortlisted for The Free From Food Awards 2011). Both incredibly moist and delish. Handmade with love, you can tell.
…And when you’ve had your cake perhaps time to go easy on the carbs for a few days. Loving Liz Hurleys organic beef jerky snack. High on protein, low on fat, no nitrates or Msg and only 74 calories a bag.
..have been on the look out for a new fabulous organic shampoo since my hair stopped loving Kerastase. I have a lot of super thin hair and find it really hard to find shampoo’s that work. Have used Rahua shampoo for a while now and it’s bloody brilliant! It gives body and lift, it smells lovely and luxurious . According to the blurb the active ingredient is rahua nut oil, but such a nut don’t seem to exist, hmmm, not good. The thing is there’s no need to sex up the blurb with this shampoo, so I’m a little disappointed… I really don’t care if it’s full of peanut oil, It works and it’s making my hair nice so I will continue using it… for now.
My love of salt is well documented on this blog here, here and here.
Lately we’ve taken it a step further, chillaxing in a room completely covered in salt, while a mixture of salt and air is pumped in to the “cave” like a fine spray.
Our reason for hanging out in this white relaxing room is to reduce 7- year- old’s hay fever which is now in full swing.
We’ve been before to lessen his non stop cough during winter months.
Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine was well into salt inhalation, he recommended inhaling the steam from boiling salt water and in late 19th century physicians in Poland realized that respiratory illnesses were basically non-existent among the salt miners.
I have always wanted to visit the Wieliczka Salt Mine in Poland until that happens the Salt Cave in south London will do just fine.
The negative ionized salt particals that are sprayed into the room, works their way into the respiratory system, clears the mucus, reduces the inflammation and makes breathing easy.
It’s completely natural, there are no side effects -and it’s helping!
It’s recommended for respiratory illnesses like asthma, bronchitis and hay fever, also good for skin conditions like eczema.
Oh yes, It’s good for snoring as well!
A session is an hour-long.
Eeerr, obviously not the place for a first date…
The salt cave in Wandsworth has two rooms one for adults and one for kids.
The 3-year-old loves to play in the salt with a bucket and spade, while my 7-year-old watches a movie.
With such a long and cold winter there has been a lot of colds and flues around. Feels like the kids have coughed themselves through January and February.
I lost my voice for a couple of days last week which was especially frustrating when trying to get the boys to school & nursery in the morning, but I bet the neighbours were more than pleased to have a sleep in…
This video is about the natural home remedies I use when we got a cold a flu.
Here is a list of the products I use and liks to find out more.
Book: Your healthy child with homeopathy by Tricia Allen.
Homeopathy remedies: Ainsworth.
Chest stick: Pittapatta.
Lollipops with propolis and manuka honey: Comvita.
Throat spray with Elderberry: Nature’s Plus.
Thyme & sage, organic if possible.
Himalayan Rock salt for making sole to gargle in.
Video how to make sole.