Chickpea Tikka Masala

 

vegan-easy-chickepea-tikka-malasa-3

 

Chickpea Tikka Masala

Serves 8

2 tablespoons coconut oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves – crushed
1 x 2-inch piece of ginger, finely chopped in to a paste
1 tablespoon Garam Masala
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons ground coriander
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon turmeric
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
3 tins of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2 tins of chopped tomatoes (or pasata if you prefer)
1 can full fat coconut milk
1 teaspoon arrowroot powder
Salt to taste
Fresh chopped coriander

Directions

Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onions, a pinch of salt, and sautè until clear, about 6 minutes stirring every now and then. Add garlic and sautè for 1 more minute.
Add ginger and spices and sauté until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
Add chickpeas and diced tomatoes, bring to a boil, lower to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes.
Stir in coconut milk and simmer for 5 more minutes.
In a small bowl whisk arrowroot with 2 tablespoons of water. Stir in the chickpea mixture and cook for 5 more minutes or until the gravy has thickened.
Take a taste and adjust seasoning if needed.
Remove from the heat, sprinkle with chopped fresh cilantro and serve with basmati rice & my 3 ingredient naan bread 

Munch up 🙂

 

Anti-Inflammatory Diet

Inflammatory diseases are those ailments in the body that are characterized by inflammation, which is a biological response by the body’s muscles to harmful matter such as bacteria, pathogen, or cell damage of any form. One thing to point off early is that inflammation, as bad as it may be, is a form of protective measure that a body takes against harm. It functions to get rid of the harmful stimuli. It also purposes to begin the healing process of tissue or cell repair.

Inflammation can be categorized as either acute or chronic. The latter signifies underlying problems which may be undetected diseases. Chronic inflammation causes inflammatory diseases. Acute inflammation, however, is the immediate reactions and response by tissues from harm on tissue or cells. On that note there are different stimuli that cause inflammation. Causes of inflammation include burns, falls, grazes, stress, pathogens, toxins, spills, trauma, and many more. These are but a few of them.

Inflammatory diseases occur due to prolonged inflammation. It may take months or it may take years for the disease to really set in.  As I mentioned earlier, inflammation is a protective response to harmful matter, however the body may fail to switch off this response, which may lead to damage on either cells or tissue or the body generally.

What spells out inflammation?

Redness, swelling, pain, and heat are known signs of any inflammation. Some common inflammatory diseases are as follows:

  • Eczema- inflammation of the gut and liver, resulting in skin eruptions.
  • Sinusitis- inflammation of the sinus cavities
  • Arthritis- inflammation of the joints
  • Fibromyalgia- inflammation of the connective tissues
  • Alzheimer’s- inflammation of the brain cells
  • Multiple Sclerosis- inflammation of the cytokines, resulting in immune system attacking itself

Many inflammatory diseases have agents which aggravate them. Such agents are known to either cause inflammation or worsen an existing condition. Avoiding or reducing contact with these agents is an advisory measure used by doctors in treatment and management of inflammatory diseases. Some of those causative or fuelling agents include insomnia, stress, obesity, which translates to lifestyle diseases, food allergies, intolerance to certain food components, certain preservatives, and the nature of processed foods. In all of these, once a person realizes the causative agent, it is always better to avoid or reduce intake or contact with it. Many food allergies such as protein allergies and soy products cause irritations and for some it can really cause their body to inflame in one way or another.

Treatment for inflammatory diseases

There are a variety of treatment methods for inflammatory diseases ranging from pharmaceutical medications to more holistic, alternative routes. Some rely on pain killers such as aspirin, acetaminophen, opiates, and the like. This is rather short term and with prolonged use could lead to some level of addiction. Others use antihistamines and corticosteroids. These treatments will definitely help, but could delay time taken to handle or manage the real problem. It is understandable to use these treatment options considering the pain and discomfort that comes with inflammation, however, this does not help solve the underlying problem or ailment. It is important to do what you can to get to the root of what is causing the inflammation.

Inflammation due to lifestyle

Some inflammatory diseases may occur due to our lifestyle. The foods and drinks we indulge in may be causative or fuelling agents for inflammation. Processed foods have been known to have negative effects on our bodies. Deep fried foods, roasted, or well done meats are potentially risky for some people. Carbonated beverages have been known to cause irritation to some people as well.

Knowing all the above, it is easier to avoid such lifestyle habits or reduce such products in your diet. This could reduce inflammation or act as a form treatment all together. Such measures are mostly advocated for by nutritionists and dieticians. It is a good treatment measure to curb inflammation related to foods and lifestyle.

Another measure is reducing stress levels in one’s life. Stress is a common and known fuelling agent. The happier and positive a person is the better for them even health wise. Fill your mind with positive thoughts and ideas and learn to surround yourself with like-minded people. Stress normally takes a toll on one’s energy, leaving you drained and sad, which in turn makes you prone to various lifestyle diseases which are otherwise avoidable.

Alternative treatment

Some people who suffer with inflammatory diseases are turning to alternative healing methods for relief and cures.  First, adopting an anti-inflammatory diet is recommended. What this means is that you adopt the belief that what you eat can help reduce your inflammation if you’re eating the right types of foods and herbs.  Here are some wonderful foods you can eat to reduce inflammation:

  • Raw fruits and vegetables
  • Wild seafood
  • Herbs like turmeric, garlic, ginger, and oregano
  • Walnuts
  • Flaxseed
  • Green tea

There are other ways to contend with inflammation as well. Some will incorporate massage therapy, chiropractic therapy, acupuncture, a raw food diet, juicing, energy healing modules, yoga, and other methods. What many people like about alternative healing methods is that there are no harmful side effects associated with them.  Many people are moving toward such methods as either a supplement to conventional treatment or making it their primary treatment. Of course, results vary from person to person and much depends on the type of inflammatory condition going on.

When you can get to the root of the inflammation, it’s easier to heal.  Thought health insurance does not normally pay for many of the alternative healing modules, some professionals are keeping their prices at an affordable level so that people can get in and give them a try.  At the very least, one can adopt a raw food diet, juice, add helpful supplements, and exercise regularly and see if that helps reduce inflammation.  When you can look at treating the disease in a holistic manner, you’re more apt to be able to see some progress when it comes to healing.

The following book by Katie Lee has some great anti-inflammatory recipes to get you started on healing yourself. It’s just $2.99 / £1.99 / €2.99

Anti inflammatory diet

 

Taco Tuesday

Taco Tuesday

I have decided to re-name today, and every Tuesday from here on in, Taco Tuesday! Who doesn’t love tacos? Especially on a drab Tuesday… They are tasty, easy and best of all MESSY!

Mexican spiced pork with a hint of smokey barbeque (or barbecue / BBQ?) served in a crispy corn tortilla shell and topped with avocado. These are great for dinner parties as everyone gets stuck in and makes their own. They are also perfect for kids as they will love assembling. Gluten and wheat free too. Let’s get down to business……

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Serves: 2

Ingredients

  • 2 tsp vegetable oil
  • ½ red onion – diced
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 2tsp ground cumin
  • 1lb / 500g pack lean pork mince
  • 1 ¼ cup / 300ml passata
  • 5 tbsp barbecue sauce
  • 14oz / 400g can black beans – drained and rinsed
  • Small bunch cilantro (coriander) – chopped
  • 8 taco shells
  • 1 ripe avocado – peeled and sliced
  • ½ iceberg lettuce – finely shredded
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Sour cream and grated cheddar – to serve (optional)

Method

  1. In a large frying pan add the oil and when hot add the onion. Add the spices and cook for one minute then add the pork ensuring to break up the mince so it separates, stir until cooked through (it will go white)
  2. Add the BBQ sauce and passata along with four tablespoons of water. Turn the heat up until the sauce starts to bubble and thickens slightly then add the beans. Stir through the cilantro.
  3. Heat the corn tortillas then fill with the pork and bean mixture top with shredded lettuce, avocado, cherry tomatoes, cheddar (if using) and spoon over some sour cream

If this doesn’t cheer you up on a Tuesday I don’t know what will. Tomorrow being Wednesday we will have a day of full eat’s ahead with some more new recipes.

What is your go to food when you’re feeling miserable?

 

WIAW #19 Quinoa Pizza Base ((Gluten Free and NO soaking))

WIAW

 

Sorry for the super SHORT post today I will have recipes and a longer one tomorrow…pinky promise!

Breakfast – Poached eggs and bacon with grilled tomato

Poached eggs and bacon

Lunch – Lettuce Wraps filled with lean ham, onion, peppers & cucumber (only 71 calories!)

Lettuce wraps

Dinner – OMG! Quinoa base pizza that tastes like a proper pizza base! Recipe tomorrow….

Gluten free pizza

Linking up with peas and crayons – go check out the other bloggers WIAW food!

Smoked Mackerel Patè {Gluten-free}

Smoked mackerel pate and  crisp bread with cucumber

Hey guys,

Today’s post is a recipe from my book Gluten-free Meals in Minutes

It is so unbelievably easy to prepare and tastes amazing! It would be a great make ahead starter for Christmas day. You can substitute the mackerel for salmon if you prefer.

Ingredients:

4 smoked mackerel fillets
2 cloves of garlic – crushed
225g / 1 cup cream cheese
Juice of a lemon
2 tbsp fresh herbs chopped (I like parsley)
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
Sea salt and cayenne pepper to taste
Fresh chives, cucumber and gluten-free crackers to serve

Method

  1. Break up the mackerel fillets and place in a food processor with the garlic, cream cheese and lemon juice.
  2. Blend the mixture for a few seconds then add the parsley. Blend again until it is almost smooth. Add the salt, cayenne and Worcestershire sauce to taste and blend to mix well.
  3. Pour the pate in to a dish and cover with cling film. Chill if you have the time.
  4. To serve garnish with the chopped chives and serve with my homemade crackers & sliced cucumber or gluten-free toast. Delish!!

WIAW #18 Gluten-free Blue Cheese & Walnut Bread

What I ate Wednesday is here again! Lets jump straight in…

Breakfast – Gluten-free Blue cheese, Walnut and Thyme bread… I understand it is not everyone’s cup of tea but it is sooooo darn tasty! Recipe will be up later..promise!

Gluten-free bread

Lunch – Homemade Cauliflower and Carrot Soup. It’s freezing here in Ireland now so this is comforting!

Homemade soup

Dinner – Tapas in The Port House, Dundrum with my friend when we were Christmas shopping on Friday. There was prawns pil pil, chickenpeas with chorizo, meatballs, chicken skewers and olives. Delicious!!

Tapas

Snacks – My mini donut (doughnut) maker arrived yesterday so I decided to whip to a batch of pumpkin mini donuts. They are unbelievably light and so tasty. Recipe to follow

mini donuts 20141126-114901.jpg pumpkin donuts

That’s my what I ate Wednesday for this week guys!! Go check out the other bloggers at Peas and Crayons

Happy Thanksgiving Eve to my American readers, I hope you all have an amazing day tomorrow! xx

Breakfast made easy

I have had a lot of queries from readers asking about quick and easy breakfast options, a lot of you skip it and that is just not on… As we all know it is the MOST important meal of the day! I understand people are pushed for time with children, getting ready for school and work, so I have selected a few of my favorite breakfast recipes, some of which can be made ahead so they are a grab and go option. They can be eaten for brunch or lunch too and all recipes are Gluten-free with some Paleo recipes here too.

Wrap

First up is my one egg wraps, you can have these pre-made and in the fridge ready to be filled in the morning. Here is the recipe -> One Egg Wrap and below are some ideas for fillings depending on how much time you have.

  • Bacon with your choice of sauce – who doesn’t love a bit of bacon in the morning?! 🙂
  • Sausage & cheese – very satisfying and will keep you full until lunch
  • Tuna Salad
  • Chicken, Rocket & Cucumber
  • Ham & Egg Mayo

Mini Fritatta

Mini egg muffins or mini frittatas as I like to call them are extremely easy to make. You can cook a batch on Sunday night and you can use right up until Wednesday. Here is the recipe -> Mini Frittata. Again, these can be filled with your favorite ingredients. Below are some suggestions, remember to cut the ingredients in to small dice.

  • Bacon lardons, mature cheddar, spring onion & sun-dried tomato
  • Broccoli, feta & sun-dried tomato
  • Spinach & Parmesan
  • Chorizo, red peppers & parsley
  • Cooked cubed potato & sausage

Breakfast Burrito

The next recipe is from the wonderful Michelle at Cavegirl Cuisine, I made these wraps yesterday and they were delicious (I was so hungry they were gone before I remembered about a photo..oooops sorry! I will get one next time, promise!)

All her recipe are Paleo, you can of course change the filling to your preference but I loved the sausage and egg mixture. Michelle calls this her Breakfast Burrito Pancake and if you are a breakfast skipper I guarantee you will start having it again once you try this OR any of the above recipes!

Is there any other breakfast / lunch recipes you would like to share?