Sunday, 21 July 2013

Roasted carrots and chickpeas with hemp pesto and gomasio

It's been so hot recently that I've not really wanted to do too much cooking over a hot oven. We've been enjoying tons of smoothies and juices (I recently discovered turnip juice, it's pretty fabulous) and salads a plenty.

This dish is the exception, only the carrots are roasted, the rest is all chopping, blitzing and mixing and it's really, really easy. We've had this three times in the last week and I'm pretty sure it's on the menu for the coming week too!

Roasted carrots & chickpeas with hemp pesto & gomasio

For the main dish:
8-10 carrots, scrubbed
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil or coconut oil
1 carton chickpeas, drained
4 tsp of gomasio*

 For the pesto:
1 clove of garlic, diced
juice and zest of 1 lemon
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 handfuls of basil, plus a few leaves for garnish
A handful of parsley
1-2 tbsp hemp seeds

Pre-heat the oven to 180-200 degrees.
Slice the carrots into bitesize chunks, coat in the oil and bake in a tray for around 25mins or until nicely browned. Remove from the oven and stir through the chickpeas. While it cools slightly, make the pesto.

Blend all the pesto ingredients together in a mini chopper until creamy with just a little texture left. Drizle over the carrots and chickpeas and stir well to mix.

Finish with a sprinkling of the gomasio and the extra basil leaves. I like to serve this with a big green salad- delish!

*gomasio is a very tasty sesame condiment that comes from Japan.
To make gomasio:
I follow the directions from Alicia Silverstone's book 'The Kind Diet' (which is amazing). She uses 1 tsp sea salt to 6 tbsp of rinsed sesame seeds. You simply dry fry the salt and then the sesame seeds till toasty and puffy, then grind them together with a Japanese version of a mortar and pestal. Although Alicia recommends making it the traditional way, I have had success with a spice grinder too.

You can also buy gomasio on-line from The Natural Grocery Store, here.

Monday, 15 July 2013

Spicy kefir and pear smoothie!

Well, after three rubbish Summers here in the UK, i'm pleased to announce that Summer has finally arrived! We've even reached the 30's- how about that for hot?! It's been so lovely and we've been blessed with so many enjoyable days out including an AMAZING Rolling Stones concert with my Dad in Hyde Park- best concert ever!

So while I'm enjoying the long awaited hot weather, I'm just not in the mood for cooking at all. We've been having a ton of salads, smoothies and really simple meals which has just been perfect.

This morning I made a super creamy smoothie for the girls breakfast using kefir, pears and ginger. They both really enjoyed it, although Fia did think that adding some cacao or carob would have made it better. I think that girl has a serious obsession for chocolate smoothies!
We love to use coconut kefir (which you can now buy at Holland and Barrett) but you could also make water kefir, using maple syrup to sweeten.

To make this recipe completely vegan, replace the bee pollen, with sprinkle of raw cacao nibs or chia seeds!

Kefir & pear smoothie
Serves 2

2 large pears, skin on
1-2 tbsp of Udo's, Flax or hemp oil
2 cups of coconut kefir
1 tbsp bee pollen, chia seeds or cacao nibs
1-2 tbsp raw honey or maple syrup
2 tbsp raw rice protein powder
3 drops of pure ginger extract (make sure it is sugar free!) or to taste

Blend until creamy and delicious!

Veganized Feb 2015.