Roasted Tomato Soup

A hearty lunch that warms your bones ❤️
2 pounds tomatoes, quarted (any variety will do)

2 medium red onions, quartered

4 cloves garlic, halved

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon sea salt + more to taste

1/2 teaspoon ground pepper

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 teaspoon dried basil

1/2 cup vegetable stock

1 teaspoon sea salt + more to taste

1/2 teaspoon ground pepper

1/4 teaspoon celery salt, optional

fresh, sliced basil for topping
Instructions
Preheat the oven to 400°F/200°C

Add the tomatoes, red onions, and garlic cloves to a large baking sheet. Drizzle the olive oil over the vegetables, sprinkle half the sea salt and pepper and stir to coat.

Roast the vegetables for 30 minutes. Turn the baking sheet about half way through.

After 30 minutes remove the veggies from the oven and let cool for a few minutes.

Add the veggies to a blender along with the stock and seasonings and blend until smooth. If you want a thinner consistency of soup add more stock to suit your preference.

At this point the soup was still warm enough for us to eat, but you may need to heat it up more on the stove first.

Slice some fresh basil for topping and serve

Healthy(ish) Mince Pies

Tis the season to be jolly! And eat your weight in food!

I’m in love with this healthier version of mince pies!!!

Definitely going to give them a go ready to leave out for santa

Ingredients
Mincemeat:

  • 100g of raisins
  • 100g of cranberries
  • 100g of sultanas
  • 1 apple
  • 1 1/2 tsp of ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp of ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 oranges
  • tsp of vanilla bean paste/extract

Mince Pie Cups:

  • 250g of almond flour
  • 2 tbsp of coconut sugar
  • 2 tbsp of coconut oil
  • 1egg

Directions:
• Juice the oranges and place in a saucepan.

• Chop the apple into little pieces and place in the saucepan with raisins, sultanas, cranberries, vanilla, 1/2 tsp of ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg. Simmer on a low heat for 15 minutes.

• Mix the almond flour with the coconut sugar, 1tsp of cinnamon, coconut oil and egg and combine until a dough forms.

• Turn oven on at 160C.

• Grease some cupcake tins with coconut oil ready to place the almond flour dough.

• Place a tbsp of dough into each cupcake mould and mould into a cup shape ready to place your mincemeat in the middle. Add 1 tbsp of mincemeat into each cup.

• With the left over dough, roll out and then cut out circles that are big enough to cover the top of the cups and place on top.

• Place in the oven and bake for 25 -30 minutes

Mexican Stuffed Peppers

🌟Ingredients 🌟
4 large red and/or green bell peppers/capsicums

1 1/2 tsp olive oil, divided

3-400g extra-lean ground beef

1 cup finely chopped red onion

1/2 tsp ground cumin

1/2 tsp ground coriander

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/4 tsp chilli powder

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 can unsalted black or pinto beans, drained and rinsed

1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels, thawed

2 tbsp organic unsalted tomato paste

2 tsp fresh lime juice

Chopped fresh cilantro leaves for garnish, optional
🌟Directions 🌟
💛Preheat oven to 200˚C. With a paring knife, carefully trim bottoms of peppers so they stand upright; do not cut through flesh. Slice off tops and remove and discard stems; finely chop tops and set aside.
❤️Carefully insert a paring knife into cavities of peppers and trim away seeds and membranes from insides. Wrap each pepper in foil and arrange upright in an 8-inch square baking dish. Bake until slightly softened, about 20 minutes. Remove from foil and set aside until cooled slightly. Reduce oven heat to 180˚C.

💚Meanwhile, in a medium nonstick pan, heat 1 tsp oil on medium. Add beef and sauté, breaking up with a wooden spoon, until cooked through, about 8 minutes. Remove beef from pan, cover and set aside; keep pan on medium heat.

💛To pan, add reserved chopped pepper tops, onion, cumin, coriander, salt and chilli powder. Sauté, stirring often, until softened, about 4 minutes. Add garlic and sauté for 1 more minute. Stir in beans, corn, tomato paste, lime juice and beef. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, stirring, for 5 to 6 more minutes.

❤️Brush bottom of 8-inch square baking dish with remaining 1/2 tsp oil. Stand peppers cavity side up in dish. Spoon beef mixture into peppers, packing tightly. Cover with foil and bake until peppers are tender and filling is heated through, about 35 minutes.

Enjoy 😋

Honey & Garlic Beef stir fry 

Ingredients:

  • Beef steaks
  • Egg or rice noodles

For sauce: 

  • Honey
  • Garlic
  • Cornflour
  • Soy sauce 

– Leave a saucepan of water to boil for the noodles

– cut the beef steaks into strips


The sauce:

Add a few squirts of soy sauce, a squirt or spoonful of honey and a tea spoon of garlic together in a glass

Then squeeze a fresh lime in and add a teaspoon of corn flour


– Throw the strips of beef into a pan and cook

– once the water is boiled throw in the egg noodles


– Chop the peppers and the long stem broccoli


– once the beef is brown, add the vegetables into the mix 


Give it a stir and a fry….

After a couple of minutes add the sauce, followed by the noodles bit by bit and give it a good old mix!


Mix and serve 🙂

Its National Cupcake Week!

Did you know its National Cupcake week?

Yes a whole 7 days devoted to indulging on baking cups filled with assorted sponges and light heavenly creams.

Just because you may be living healthily it doesn’t mean that you have to miss out on all the fun! The key to successful Healthy living is indulging every once in a while, and learning to make happier, healthier choices as a whole while still enjoying life and food!

Here’s a great cupcake recipe that you don’t have to feel guilty about, made especially with our Juiceplus chocolate powder and lots of dessert amazingness in between.

(No Juiceplus, no problem..just switch it for cocoa powder)

Chocolate Mocha Cupcake Recipe

choco-sour-cream-cupcakes-hl-1981656-x

12-14 CUPCAKES

Ingredients:

CUPCAKES

  • 1/2 cup (42g) Juiceplus chocolate powder
  • 3/4 cup (95g) of self-raising flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup of natural honey
  • 1/2 cup (100g) packed light brown sugar
  • ¼ cup melted coconut oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup almond milk

The Coffee fudge FROSTING

  • 1 cup cashew or macadamia nuts (110g)
  • 1/4 cup coffee powder (105g)
  • very scant 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 4 tsp pure maple syrup (10g)

Easy Peasy Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C).
  2. Make the cupcakes:Whisk the powders and salt together in a large bowl until thoroughly combined. Set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs, sugar, honey,  oil and vanilla together until completely smooth. Pour half of the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Then half of the almond milk. Gently whisk and  then
  3. Stir until *just* combined; do not over mix. The batter will be a little thin.
  4. Pour/spoon the batter into the liners – fill only halfway to avoid spilling over the sides

baking.jpg

5.Bake in batches for 18-21 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

6. Allow to cool completely before frosting.

Make the frosting: 

Combine all ingredients together and whisk until creamy.

#winning

There are also many alterations you can make to mix it up a bit

Why not add some caramel extract to add a little sweetness?

Or if you’re not a fan of coffee, stick to just a simple vanilla frosting

chocvanilla

Not a fan of chocolate? Use our Vanilla JP Powder!

vanilla-bean-cupcakes-with-salted-caramel-frosting-createdbydiane

Or try Mint extract, the options are endless!

For mini cupcakes: For around 36 mini cupcakes, line mini cupcake pans with liners or spray with nonstick spray. Prepare cupcakes and frosting as directed. Bake mini cupcakes for 12-13 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Can’t wait to get my baking hat on Sunday..Ready, steady, cake.

LwL x

Clean Beef & Halloumi Burgers

One thing I’ve realised since taking on a more healthy lifestyle is that good food doesn’t have to be boring!

Here’s how to cook one of my new faves: Beef and Halloumi burgers and sweet potato fries – yep all healthy and all on my Juiceplus plan!

Ingredients:

  • 2-4 Beef burgers (we used gluten free but you can use any of your choice)
  • 1 onion
  • Avocado
  • 1 big tomato
  • 1 pack of Halloumi
  • 2 big sweet potatoes
  • Paprika
  • Olive oil

Note: you can choose your quantity of single or double per person.

Sweet potato fries

– Chop the sweet potatoes into chip size chunks

– Throw the chips into a bowl and marinate with olive oil and paprika

– Place on an oven tray and cook in the oven on 225c for approx. 15-20 minutes.

The burgers

– Start by chopping some onion and squashing small pieces into the burger for extra flavour. Remould if needed


– Chop the tomato, avocado and Halloumi into slices.

10 minutes in…

– pop the burgers into a pan and fry with coconut oil


– In the last few minutes add Halloumi into a pan to cook

If timed correctly all should be finished at the same time.

Layer the contents onto a skewer and add the sweet potato fries at the side.

Bon Appetit

Oh you Crazy Bear!

Last week I headed to one of the infamous ‘Crazy Bear’ venues for mid-week dinner. The Crazy Bear group, originally founded in 1993, is a collection of outstanding hotels and restaurants, acclaimed for its Thai cuisine and dramatic decor.

Myself and a few friends headed to their restaurant in Fitzrovia. Most convenient for us as its positioned between Goodge Street and  Tottenham Court Road, and easily accessible after a day of working in the city.

The establishment is lavish, sophisticated, and the perfect setting for a night of epic celebrations.


Of the 4 of us, 2 had just had birthdays, I was celebrating my recent promotion in my business and the last was a bittersweet farewell to my friend Michaela who is moving to Oz next month. So cause for a special occasion I would say!

From the outside you wouldn’t know what this place was. There is no sign on the building; just a plain black canopy across the top. How very mysterious.

The look of confusion at my GPRS instigated a friendly woman at reception to shout,

‘Are you looking for the crazy bear?’

A place so elite that it doesn’t need it’s name on the door perhaps? Or based on an assumption that people who come to dine here should know exactly where it is?

Either way, if you head here, keep an eye out for the Spaghetti House next door, thatll be much easier for you to find.

I waited in the bar downstairs, cocktail in hand for everyone to arrive. The ambiance is very mellow but the decor is edgy yet classy. Red and white leathers and a copper bar.

bar

Upstairs, where you dine there’s a slightly warmer vibe. Subtle mood lighting and dark oak interior that creates a very relaxed and romantic atmosphere.

dine

Thanks to bookatable we got a sweet little deal: 12 courses and a glass of champagne for just £38. Winning.

There are lots of deals for the Crazy Bear Group on groupon too, if you’re anything like me and like to fine dine at a set price.

Often on these multiple course menus, in these more ‘upper class’ restaurants you tend to expect very little food. So the thought of 12 courses didn’t scare me; as i imagined 12 plates of different ‘courses’ that consisted of a singular piece of meat or palm of veg. This was not the case.

There are two simple options for you to choose from, vegetarian or classic.

There is such a variation over the 12 courses. There has to be something you like. The lobster pad Thai was my most favorite and those caramelized courgettes. Wow. If all vegetables tasted like that, no one would ever struggle to eat well!

 

Each course was rich in taste and cooked to perfection. And well worth the cost of the deal! Just be aware that the cocktails are not included. At £12 per pop on average, they can soon sky rocket your bill.

Overall great food, great company and somewhere i’d definitely recommend. The Fitzrovia venue has won The London Lifestyle Awards Best Restaurant, The Evening Standard’s Best Bar of the year, Theme Magazine’s Best Designed and Best Operated Bar, and The Times’ runner up for Best Bar in Southern England. So its fair to say its well sought after.

My next trip to the Crazy Bear will have to be in Beaconsfield, to one of their famous pool parties! See you there.

LwL x