GRILLED SEA BASS WITH SALSA VERDE, NEW POTATOES &TOMATOES

This dish reminds me of summer holidays on the Med bursting with flavour from nutrient dense herbs, garlic, capers and an assortment of antioxidant-rich tomatoes. Jersey royal new potatoes which have a distinct, sweet flavour, and whilst many diet camps have shunned the white potato in favour of sweet potatoes, white potatoes are in fact a better source of essential minerals such as iron, magnesium and potassium, as well as being a great source of vitamin C and fibre.  Fish is a lovely light alternative to meat on warm summer evenings and I particularly love Sea Bass.  It’s an excellent source of protein, selenium and omega-3 fatty acids whilst being light and low in calories.

Serves 2 | Prep & Cooking Time: 30 min | Rating: Moderate

Nutrition: approx. 435 calories per serving. Source of omega-3 fatty acids, fibre, iron, magnesium

Ingredients:

  • 1 garlic clove, peeled
  • 1 large handful of fresh flat leaf parsley
  • 1 large handful of fresh basil
  • 1 large handful of fresh mint leaves
  • 1 heaped tbsp capers
  • 1/2 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp Bragg apple cider vinegar (available in LloydsPharmacies nationwide)
  • 4 tbsp good quality extra virgin olive oil plus 1/3 tbsp for frying
  • 2 fillets sea bass approximately 180g raw weight (or other white fish like sea bream, hake or cod)
  • 175g Jersey Royal new potatoes
  • 150g assorted tomatoes plus 1 large beef tomato
  • Sea salt flakes and finely ground black pepper

Method:

  1. To make the salsa verde, de-stem the herbs and finely chop along with the garlic and capers on a large chopping board. Transfer to a bowl, stir in the dijon mustard, apple cider vinegar and slowly add 4 tbsp of olive oil, mixing well. Taste and season with a pinch of sea salt flakes and finely ground black pepper. Transfer to an airtight jar or serving bowl. (This salsa verde recipe makes up to four servings, so the extra can be stored in the fridge for 3-5 days).
  2. Slice the new potatoes into halves and steam or boil for 8 minutes until tender and then remove from the heat.
  3. Arrange the tomatoes onto a large roasting tray with the potatoes and carefully lay the two sea bass fillets on top, skin side up.
  4. Season with sea salt, freshly ground pepper and a 1/3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil. Place under a grill on a medium-high heat and grill for about 10-12 minutes until the fish is cooked and the skin starting to crisp.
  5. Remove from the grill and serve with a tablespoon of salsa verde spooned onto the top of each sea bass fillet. Enjoy!

Created by: Pamela Ryan Qualified Nutritionist*

Website: www.thehealthonist.com

Instagram: @the_healthonist

* Pamela Ryan (Dip.NT, NTOI) is a Qualified Nutritional Therapist recognised by the Nutritional Therapists of Ireland (NTOI), the professional association supporting qualified nutritional therapists. All NTOI members study biomedicine and nutrition for a minimum of 3 years at a recognised college, are trained in clinical practice and must comply with NTOI requirements for Continuous Professional Development (CPD). Nutritional Therapy is an evidence-based approach to maximising health through individually formulated nutrition and lifestyle strategies. Pamela continues to attend training and lectures on a regular basis through various bodies including The Institute of Functional Medicine and The Institute of Health Sciences. These trainings help her to gain increased expertise in the ever advancing field of nutrition.

Coconut Fish Fingers + Smashed Peas

This classic combination gets a healthy overhaul! Coconut, a hint of cayenne pepper, fresh lime, mint and sweet peas make for a light, summertime dish. Serve with a big salad of fresh leafy greens or stuff them inside wholegrain pitta breads for a great picnic lunch. We won’t mind if you add a little tomato ketchup on the side either!

Serves: 2 | Cooking Time: 25 minutes | Rating: Simple

Free From: gluten, wheat, cow’s dairy, refined sugar and meat

Ingredients:

  • 2 fresh cod fillets (about 250g – 300g)
  • 40g coconut flour, almond flour or gluten free plain flour
  • 1 large free-range egg
  • 50g desiccated coconut
  • A good pinch of sea salt
  • 1 tsp ground cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tbsp Optima raw virgin coconut oil*
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 4-5 fresh mint leaves
  • Juice of half a lime
  • 2 tbsp water
  • A pinch of sea salt

To serve:

  • Fresh mixed leafy greens
  • A good quality natural tomato ketchup (optional)

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 200 C (400 F).
  2. Crack the egg into a small bowl and lightly beat. Lay out two small plates, one with the coconut flour and the other with the desiccated coconut.
  3. Slice the fish into finger-width strips.
  4. Coat the fish strips with the flour, dipping them into the egg and then coat them with the desiccated coconut.
  5. Lay each coated strip carefully onto a non-stick baking tray. Sprinkle the goujons with sea salt, cayenne pepper and drizzle over the coconut oil.
  6. Bake for 10-15 minutes, until golden.
  7. Meanwhile prepare the smashed peas. Place the peas into a large bowl and cover with boiling water until thawed. Drain in a sieve and plunge into cool water to stop the peas from losing their colour.
  8. Tip the peas into a blender or food processor. Add the mint leaves, water, lime juice and a pinch of sea salt. Pulse the peas a few times until crushed (you could also do this with a fork, just make sure to finely chop the mint leaves first).
  9. Transfer the smashed peas to a serving bowl. Remove the fish goujons from the oven and pile onto a serving dish with mixed leafy greens. Serve.

NutritionInformation

Created by: Pamela Ryan Qualified Nutritionist

Website: www.thehealthonist.com

Instagram: @the_healthonist

*Available in LloydsPharmacy Stores

CREAMY SQUASH, MUSHROOM & CHARD BAKE – MAIN

This creamy vegetarian bake is proof that comfort food need not be bad for you.  I replaced dairy cream with almond cream (available from health stores) which makes this dish suitable for vegans or those following a plant-based, dairy-free lifestyle. I did include some parmesan cheese to serve, but you can leave it out or sprinkle with toasted chopped hazelnuts for some additional texture or some nutritional yeast for a “cheesy” flavour.

We can be so used to the ‘meat & two veg’ formula that we tend to consider vegetables on their own, as an insufficient main meal. But adding shiitake mushrooms (or brown / portobello / chestnut mushrooms) provides a meaty texture and the addition of almond cream makes this dish more satisfying than you might think.

Mushrooms like shiitake can be hard to find but they’re incredibly nutritious and have been used for centuries in eastern traditions for their medicinal qualities. Shiitake mushrooms have been scientifically proven to help fight obesity1, support immune function2, inhibit the growth of cancer cells3 and support cardiovascular health4. They also provide vitamin D (something we are severely lacking in the northern hemisphere at this time of year!) and have antimicrobial qualities that can help to fight infection.

The recipe serves two people as a main course but you can stretch it to four servings if you want to use it as a side dish served with either Puy lentils or some roast chicken.

(serves 2 as a main course or 4 as a side dish)

Ingredients:

  • 1 small-medium squash (I used a coquina squash)
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin raw coconut oil* or olive oil
  • 125g shiitake mushrooms (or chestnut / brown mushrooms)
  • 150g rainbow chard, stalks removed and chopped finely, leaves torn in half
  • 300ml almond cream (I used Ecomil Cuisine)
  • 1 organic low-salt stock cube (I used Kallo Organic Mushroom Stock Cube)
  • 3/4 pint boiling water
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped thyme
  • 2 sage leaves, chopped finely
  • Sea salt & black pepper
  • Optional: 1-2 tbsp grated parmesan to serve

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 200C / Gas Mark 4 / 400F.
  2. Peel the squash, cut in half and then slice into half moon shapes, removing the seeds. Arrange the squash onto a roasting tray, add the garlic cloves (you don’t need to peel them) and drizzle with a teaspoon of oil. Season and transfer to the oven. Cook until tender (about 25 minutes).
  3. While the squash is in the oven heat the remaining oil in a cast iron skillet or pan over a medium heat. Brush any excess dirt from the mushrooms, and slice them into chunky pieces and lay them into the pan. Cook for about 5 minutes before turning and then add the rosemary, thyme and sage. Cook for another minute.
  4. Pour the boiling water and 200ml of the almond cream into the pan with the mushrooms, add the stock cube and stir. Bring to the boil and then simmer on a low heat for about 10-15 minutes.
  5. When the squash is ready, remove the roasting tray from the oven and leave aside to cool slightly. Remove the garlic cloves and gently squeeze the softened garlic bulbs into the pan with the mushrooms and almond cream (be careful that the skin from the garlic does not fall into the pan). Discard the skins.
  6. Take a lasagne or pie dish and arrange the chard stalks and some of the leaves on the bottom. Arrange a third of the squash on top of the chard and then pour half the creamy mushroom sauce over the top. Repeat 2 more times and then pour the remaining 100ml of almond cream over the top.
  7. Transfer to the oven and cook for about 30 minutes until bubbling and slightly browned on top.
  8. If adding parmesan cheese, remove the dish from the oven, sprinkle over the grated parmesan and place back into the oven for 5 minutes until the cheese is melted slightly. Remove from the oven and spoon the bake onto serving plates. Enjoy!
NUTRITION INFORMATION
Servings Calories Fat Protein Carbs Sugars Fibre
Per half serving as a main course 439 24.6g 7g 40g 11g 4g
Per 1/4 serving as a side dish 110 6.2g 1.8g 10g 2.8g 1g

 

  1. Handayani, D., Chen, J., Meyer, B.J. and Huang, X.F. (2011) ‘Dietary Shiitake mushroom (Lentinus edodes) prevents fat deposition and lowers Triglyceride in rats fed a high-fat diet, Journal of Obesity, 2011, pp. 1 doi: 10.1155/2011/258051.
  1. Dai, X., Stanilka, J.M., Rowe, C.A., Esteves, E.A., Nieves, C., Spaiser, S.J., Christman, M.C., Langkamp-Henken, B. and Percival, S.S. (2015) Consuming Lentinula edodes (Shiitake) mushrooms daily improves human immunity: A Randomized dietary intervention in healthy young adults, Journal of the American College of Nutrition, 34(6), pp. 478 doi: 10.1080/07315724.2014.950391.
  1. Fang, N., Li, Q., Yu, S., Zhang, J., He, L., Ronis, M.J.J. and Badger, T.M. (2006) Inhibition of growth and induction of Apoptosis in human cancer cell lines by an ethyl acetate fraction from Shiitake mushrooms, The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, 12(2), pp. 125–132. doi: 10.1089/acm.2006.12.125.
  1. KABIR, Y., YAMAGUCHI, M. and KIMURA, S. (1987) Effect of shiitake(Lentinus edodes) and maitake(Grifola frondosa) mushrooms on blood pressure and plasma lipids of spontaneously hypertensive rats, Journal of Nutritional Science and Vitaminology, 33(5), pp. 341–346. doi: 10.3177/jnsv.33.341.

 

PAMELA RYAN | NUTRITIONIST | CORPORATE NUTRITION + YOGA

Website: www.thehealthonist.com

Instagram: @the_healthonist

*Available in LloydsPharmacy Stores

CHOCOLATE FRUIT & NUT SQUARES – SNACK

Combining nuts and dates to create tasty raw treats is nothing new, a very well known chocolate confectionery brand has been doing a fruit & nut bar since 1926 and we all remember the ad campaign slogan sung to the tune of The Nutcracker!  I understand that the point to snack foods is that they are convenient. That being said putting an hour’s effort into making your own treats means you have a ready supply in the fridge for weeks, but more importantly you are avoiding ingredients such as artificial flavourings, emulsifiers and inflammatory vegetable fats, as well excessive sugar and trans fats.

A standard shop-bought fruit & nut bar will serve up 270 calories and 30g of sugar, which is  listed as the second ingredient after milk. In comparison this recipe provides 182 calories per serving and only 8g of sugars. There is no added vegetable oils with the only fats coming from the natural fats found in whole nuts and seeds that are linked to improved cognitive function, lower body fat, better blood lipid profile and reduced risk of cardiovascular disease.

Using whole, natural foods provides fibre and a range of nutrients including antioxidant vitamin E, biotin for healthy skin, hair and nails, magnesium, manganese and copper. Even chocolate has its benefits but you must choose the darker kind. The darker the chocolate, the less likely there is to be added ingredients such as soya lecithin and other emulsifiers. I like either Green & Blacks Organic 85% or Lindt as ingredients are simply cocoa, cocoa butter, sugar and vanilla.

Given the sheer variety of nuts, seeds and superfood powders available these days there are endless options to cater for everyone’s tastes. Chocolate and hazelnuts are an age-old match made in heaven but you can use equivalent quantities of other nuts and seeds depending on your preferences or whatever you have available. You can also leave out the chocolate (but why would you want to do that?!).

(makes 16 bars)

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (140g) whole almonds
  • 1 cup (135g) whole hazelnuts
  • 1/4 cup (40g) hulled hemp seeds (NUA NATURALS)*
  • 10 dates (sulphur-free, pitted)
  • 1/4 cup (3-4 tbsp) maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 cup (50g) jumbo oats
  • 2 Tbsp coconut flour(NUA NATURALS)*
  • 100g 85% dark chocolate
  • Coconut oil for lining the baking tray (OPTIMA)*

Topping Options: toasted coconut flakes, cacao nibs, chopped hazelnuts

Instructions

  1. Line a bakingtray with parchment and spread with a little melted coconut oil.
  2. In a blenderpulse the almonds and hazelnuts until they look like a coarse sand.
  3. Add the hemp seeds, dates, maple syrup, salt, oats andcoconut flour. Blitz again until well combined. The mixture should ‘stick’ a little when pressed.
  4. Dump the mixture onto the lined baking tray and use your hands to press down until its about an inch thick. If the tray is larger than normal, fold the parchment in over the free edge of the mixture.
  5. Refrigerate for an hour to set.
  6. In the meantime break the chocolate into small pieces and place into aPyrex dish over a pan of hot water. Make sure the water doesn’t touch the base of the bowl. Allow the chocolate to melt completely and then remove from the stove.
  7. Remove the nut mixture from the fridge and pourthe chocolate over the top, tilting the baking tray around until the chocolate is evenly spread.
  8. Sprinkle with your chosen topping and place back into the fridge to set.
  9. Once set use a sharp knife to cut into squares. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 weeks or in the freezer for 8 weeks.
NUTRITION INFORMATION
Calories Fat Protein Carbs Sugars Fibre
182 13g 5g 13.3g 8g 3g
An excellent source of vitamin E, biotin, manganese, copper, magnesium & antioxidants

PAMELA RYAN | NUTRITIONIST | CORPORATE NUTRITION + YOGA

Website: www.thehealthonist.com

Instagram: @the_healthonist

*Available in LloydsPharmacy Stores

QUINOA & CHORIZO STUFFED ROASTED PEPPERS WITH FETA, AVOCADO & GREEN SALAD – MAIN

When it comes to making healthier food choices, flavour can make a huge difference to your success. Enjoying and feeling satisfied by your meals means you’re less likely to feel deprived.

This recipe is inspired by Spain and South America. Whilst I don’t recommend overdoing cured meats, a little does go a long way. Just be sure to choose a really good quality chorizo sausage with no sulphites (preservatives) or E numbers (the alternative is to leave it out and add a teaspoon of smoked paprika and extra diced vegetables such as tomatoes instead).

Bell peppers have high concentrations of antioxidants.  Just one will provide more than twice the daily recommended amount of vitamin C and almost 75% of recommended daily vitamin A. When it comes to weight loss, its important to get the most nutritionally dense food possible and at only 37 calories per serving, bell peppers provide a wide range of essential nutrients.

Black quinoa is a protein-rich seed originally cultivated in Colorado (the original quinoa hails from the Andes in South America). It is especially abundant in essential minerals, and is grain and gluten-free which is good news for people with celiac.

I’m serving these delicious stuffed peppers with a little crumbled cool Greek feta cheese, unctuous avocado and a light green salad of just rocket leaves and diced cucumber.  Feta is traditionally made from a combination of sheeps and goats milk and is often less inflammatory and allergenic than cheese made with cow’s milk.

Enjoy this dish as a light lunch for 4, or if you’re extra hungry, as a main meal for 2-3 people.

(serves 4)

Ingredients

  • 1 tsp melted coconut oil*
  • Half a medium white onion, peeled and finely diced
  • 100g good quality chorizo sausage
  • 80g uncooked black quinoa (makes approx. 1.5 cups cooked volume)
  • 1 tsp chipotle chilli flakes
  • 2 whole red bell peppers, sliced in half (lengthwise), seeds & white pith removed
  • 50g greek feta cheese
  • 1 medium-sized avocado
  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • 4 large handfuls of rocket leaves
  • 100g cucumber, finely diced
  • 1 tbsp Basil pesto (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 200C and line a baking tray with parchment. Put the pepper halves onto the parchment and drizzle with a little melted coconut or olive oil.
  1. Fill a saucepan with water and bring to the boil. Add the quinoa, reduce the heat, cover with a lid and simmer for 20 minutes.
  1. In the meantime melt a teaspoon of coconut oil in a frying pan over a medium heat, add the onions reduce the heat slightly and sweat for 5 minutes.
  1. Dice the chorizo sausage and add to the frying pan with the onions. Continue to cook on a low heat so the onions take on the colour of the chorizo.
  1. Once the quinoa is cooked, drain any excess water and add to the onions and chorizo. Add the chipotle chilli flakes and lightly season with a pinch of sea salt. Sauté over a medium heat for about 5 minutes.
  1. Remove the quinoa from the heat. Pile the mixture into each of the pepper halves. Cover lightly with foil and put into the oven for 35 minutes (remove the foil after 20 minutes).
  1. Prepare the toppings and salad: peel, de-stone and slice the avocado (squeeze juice of half a lemon onto the avocado to stop it from going brown). Set aside. Crumble the feta cheese into a small dish and set aside.
  1. In a salad bowl add 4 large handfuls of rocket leaves and diced cucumber.
  1. After 35 minutes remove the peppers from the oven and carefully transfer them to a serving plate. Sprinkle the crumbled feta and the avocado slices over the peppers. Season with a little sea salt. Serve  with a teaspoon of basil pesto and a pile of green salad.
NUTRITION INFORMATION PER ONE QUARTER SERVING (including toppings & side salad)
Calories Fat Protein Carbs Sugar Fibre
320 19g 12g 18g 6.5g 7g
A source of protein, vitamin A, vitamin C, magnesium, manganese, calcium, phosphorous and Iron. Gluten Free, Vegetarian, Grain free.

PAMELA RYAN | NUTRITIONIST | CORPORATE NUTRITION + YOGA

Website: www.thehealthonist.com

Instagram: @the_healthonist

*Ingredients available in LloydsPharmacy Stores

Healthy Recipes from LloydsPharmacy Colleagues

We are delighted to be back with you, sharing our very own healthy and tasty recipes. LloydsPharmacy employees are busy helping hundreds of our customers to lose weight with our free Change your Health Direction programme. And we’re having great fun coming up with new recipes that are suitable for anyone trying to lose weight. All of our colleague recipes are available at any LloydsPharmacy branch. Or check back through our blog for all of our recipe posts.

This week, we’re talking about snacks! Snacking is so important but can be difficult to get used to. It seems wrong to eat all the time when you’re trying to lose weight. But it’s important you eat every three hours to prevent becoming too hungry and to keep your energy levels balanced all day. Because what happens when you’re really hungry? You usually go for something sugary, right? So, we’ve shared some amazing healthy snack ideas that have come from our own colleagues. Each is only 150-200 calories and is balanced with carbs and proteins. Let us know what you think!

Best of luck to everyone still sticking with the resolutions!

Naomi…


Healthy Flapjacks

This tasty treat idea comes from our purchasing executive, Ciara Morgan. SheCiara Flapjacks tells us:

‘These flapjacks are both my children’s favourite snacks. I made this recipe up from a culmination of recipes I tried over the years and these are by far the biggest hit. They are particularly great for my 6 year old and I on the drive to crèche before breakfast, and my 11 month old snacks on them through the day. No refined sugar or flour and not a morsel of butter in sight. I make these every Sunday for the week and they last until they’re all eaten on Friday.’

Makes about 20 flapjacks

Ingredients:

  • 4 bananas
  • 2 grated Carrots
  • 2 tbsp. of maple syrup
  • Handful of mixed dried fruit
  • 4 cups of oats
  • Chia seed, flaxseed or mixed seeds can also be added; just substitute a half cup of oats with half a cup of any of them.

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
  2. Chop the bananas and put the grated carrot and maple syrup into a food processor together, mix until almost liquid.
  3. Put the mixed fruit and oats into a bowl and add the wet ingredients, mix thoroughly.
  4. Line a baking dish with parchment paper and pack the ingredients in really tightly. Smooth it all out and place in the oven for up to 30 minutes. The top should feel slightly hard coming out. Take it out of the dish after a few minutes and cool on a wire rack.
  5. Cut them into small squares (about 20) and store in an airtight container in the fridge. I have always eaten these within 6 days so can only guarantee freshness for 6 days.
  6. Enjoy!

Breakfast BiscuitsAvril Cookies

Biscuits for breakfast?! Why not! These quick and easy bickies make a super grab-and-go breakfast or a filling afternoon snack with a cuppa. The addition of hemp seeds provides protein to ensure that blood sugars remain stable. Another great recipe from Avril Reilly, pharmacist and weight-loss coach in LloydsPharmacy, Governey Square, Carlow.

Makes about 6 cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1 ripe banana
  • ½ cup jumbo porridge oats
  • ¼ cup Nua Naturals hemp seeds
  • ½ tsp ground ginger (optional)

Method:

  • Mash the banana very well with a fork. Place the dry ingredients into a bowl and add the mashed banana. Mix very well.
  • Use approximately one tablespoon of mixture per biscuit and place on a baking tray lined with parchment paper.
  • Bake in a pre-heated oven at 180 degrees for approximately 10-15 minutes until golden brown.
  • Allow to cool for an hour. If there are any left, store in an air-tight container J

 

Cheesy Egg MuffinsNicky Egg Muffins

We just love this idea from Nicky Roche, manager and weight loss coach in LloydsPharmacy Kilkenny. Healthy, portable little egg muffins that you can enjoy without worry at just under 100 calories each. They are great for breakfast, snacks, light dinner, or school lunches. They are soft, chewy and dense. The vegetables add texture and fibre so you feel fuller longer. You can make them in advance and keep for up to a week in the fridge. And try them with different vegetables for variety – a great way to get kids to eat their greens!

Makes 12 muffins

Ingredients:

  • 4 medium carrots trimmed and grated, about 1 ½ cups
  • ½ cup diced orange bell pepper
  • ½ cup frozen peas (no need to thaw)
  • ½ cup frozen corn (again no need to thaw)
  • 8 large eggs
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • About 12 teaspoons of grated cheddar cheese

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 190 Celsius. To avoid having to use oil to grease the muffin tray, use a silicon tray.
  • In a large bowl combine the carrots, peas, corn and peppers. You can use any of your favourite veggies, and instead of the carrots you could grate left over potatoes or sweet potatoes.
  • Loosely pile the veggie mix into each muffin cavity to about ¾ full.
  • In a measuring jug lightly beat your eggs and salt and pepper with a fork.
  • Pour the egg into each cavity, to cover the veggie mix to just below the rim.
  • Top each muffin with a teaspoon of grated cheese.
  • Bake in the oven for about 18 – 20 minutes, or until muffins have set. They will rise when in the oven, but will sink back down as they cool. Leave in the tray while cooling on a wire rack.
  • Muffins will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week.

 

Healthy Banana & Walnut MuffinsNaomi Banana Muffins

Sometimes you just need something sweet! These muffins can be a treat, a snack or perhaps breakfast. They come in at just under 200 calories each and taste like way more. This recipe comes from our Health Strategy Manager, Naomi O’Farrell.

Makes 12 muffins using a regular muffin tray

Ingredients:

  • 1½ cups whole-wheat spelt flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 2 tbs melted coconut oil
  • ⅓ cup pure maple syrup
  • 3 small very ripe bananas
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts

Method:

  • Turn your oven on to 180°
  • Line a 12-hole muffin tray with bun cases
  • Whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Make a well and drop in the eggs, oil and syrup. Blend with a fork until fully mixed
  • Mash the bananas and fold them into the batter with the walnuts
  • Divide the mixture evenly into the muffin cases (one dessert spoon per case)
  • Bake for 20-22 minutes until a cocktail stick comes out clean.

 

Easy Energy BallsAvril Balls

Snacking can be tricky. You should eat every 3 hours or so; if you don’t and wait until you’re hungry, you’re more likely to choose something bad! Having healthy snacks to hand ensure you avoid eating the wrong things and keep your energy levels steady all day. Nua Naturals is a great range of products available at LloydsPharmacy. This recipe comes from Avril Reilly, pharmacist and weight-loss coach in LloydsPharmacy, Governey Square, Carlow. One of these is a perfect snack and the rest will keep for a week once stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Serves 1

Ingredients:

  • 60g Nua Naturals Goji berries
  • 40g Nua Naturals Hemp seeds
  • 140g pumpkin or sesame seeds
  • 260g pitted dates
  • 30g raisins (or use extra goji berries instead)
  • 2 tbsp Chia Bia Milled chia seeds
  • 2 tbsp Nua Naturals Agave Nectar (optional)

Method:

  • Mix the pumpkin or sesame seeds, goji berries and raisins using a food processor. Remove and transfer to a mixing bowl.
  • Process the dates separately, until they form a sticky mass and then add to the mixing bowl.
  • Add the hemp seeds and milled chia seeds and mix everything together really well. The easiest way to get a good mix is to use your hands! Add a little agave nectar to bring the mixture together, if needed.
  • Roll the mixture into small balls or press into a lined baking tray and cut into bars once set fully (leave in the refrigerator for a few hours before cutting).

 

 

CYHD: Healthy Recipes from LloydsPharmacy Colleagues!

Welcome to our Healthy Recipe Blog! As part of our Let’s get Healthy for Summer campaign, some of our colleagues have kindly shared their own super healthy meal ideas for you to try. These have all been approved by our in-house Nutritional Coach so you can be sure they’ll help you on your way to becoming a healthier and happier version of you!

We’ll be updating this blog each week with new recipes. Please feel free to let us know what you think and share your own pictures and ideas!

Tasty Lettuce Wraps

salm

A great snack idea from Avril Reilly, pharmacist in our branch in Governey Square, Carlow.

Serves 1 person

Ingredients:

  • 1 small tin of pink salmon
  • 2 tbs cottage cheese
  • 2 gem lettuce leaves

Method:

Just mix the contents of one small tin of pink salmon with a couple of tablespoons of cottage cheese in a bowl & then spoon into lettuce leaves. I used the little gem lettuce but larger lettuce leaves can be used & wrapped around the filling – just use a cocktail stuck to secure it. Another tasty option is to mash an avocado with tinned salmon or tuna & fill the lettuce leaves.

Oatmeal Cookies

oatmeal

Eating healthily doesn’t mean you can’t treat yourself now and again! Why not try these yummy cookies dreamed up by Jessy in our branch in Cabra!

Makes 15 Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1 banana mashed
  • Berries (optional)
  • Oat flakes
  • Vanilla essence
  • Peanut butter (sugar free)
  • Pinch of Cinnamon
  • Pinch of Nutmeg
  • Apple Sauce (make your own if you can!)
  • Chopped nuts

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 175º. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper
  • Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl (oat flakes, cinnamon, nutmeg and nuts)
  • Add the remaining wet ingredients and mix together thoroughly
  • Drop 2 tablespoons worth of the mixture at a time onto the baking sheet, keeping 1.5 inches apart
  • Bake for 20 – 30 minutes.

Loved-Up Pancakes!

panckaes love

A romantic breakfast or dessert from our in-house Nutritional Coach, Nichola Flood! The way to the heart is said to be through the tummy – these yummy pancakes should do the trick!

Serves 2 people

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup coconut flour
  • 2 tbsps honey or maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder & 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup sprinkles
  • For the sauce: 1/2 Greek yogurt / 1/4 tsp vanilla / 2 tsps honey or maple syrup (more or less to taste)

Method:

Making the Pancakes:

  • Preheat a large frying pan over medium low heat.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, honey, salt, baking powder, and baking soda.
  • In a separate medium bowl, whisk together the yogurt, almond milk, egg, oil, and vanilla until well combined.
  • Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Do not over mix. Let the batter sit for 10 minutes.
  • Divide the batter into two bowls, and gently mix half the sprinkles into the first bowl.
  • Lightly and carefully grease your pan.
  • Spoon the batter into four places on the griddle pan. Cook for 2 – 3 minutes, until golden brown. Flip and cook for 1 – 2 minutes on the other side. Remove pancakes to a wire rack.
  • Stir the rest of the sprinkles into the remaining batter, and repeat cooking process.

Making the Sauce:

  • In a small bowl, stir together the yogurt, vanilla, honey, and milk. Add more almond milk until desired consistency is reached.

Sweet Breakfast Omelette

sweet omelette

Tired of the same old breakfasts! Try this take on a traditional omelette from our Health Strategy Manager, Naomi O’Farrell.

Serves 1, approx. 273 calories per serving

Ingredients:

  • 3 egg whites
  • 1 tablespoon porridge oats
  • 1 small banana chopped
  • ½ cup blueberries
  • Flaked almonds or chopped hazelnuts – dessert spoon
  • Chia Seeds – teaspoon
  • Coconut oil – teaspoon
  • Cinnamon, ground – to your taste but I use about half a teaspoon

Method:

  • Use a small or medium frying pan on a low heat. Pop on your coconut oil to melt.
  • In a bowl, add your porridge oats and 1½ of water and stir. Add in your eggs and for a minute, then add all of the other ingredients and mix them up well.
  • When the coconut oil has melted, spread it over the pan. Pour your ingredients into the pan and spread them about evenly. When it’s solid (about 4-5 minutes), fold it over and eat it!

Healthy Banana Pancakes

banana pancakes

Avril Reilly, pharmacist in our branch in Governey Square, Carlow, shares this yummy breakfast treat!

Serves 3-4

Ingredients:

  • 1 & 1/2 cups porridge oats
  • 1 ripe banana, mashed
  • 1 & 1/4 cup coconut or almond milk
  • 1 organic or free range egg
  • 1/2 cup flour ( I used coconut flour but plain flour works equally as well or you can just use extra porridge oats instead)
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 scoops of Heart-Up
  • Coconut oil for frying.

Method:

Add all ingredients to a bowl & blend with a hand blender. Heat a tsp of coconut oil in the pan & once melted, add a couple of tablespoons of the mixture. Cook for a few minutes and then flip to cook the other side. Remove from the pan & leave to rest in a warm oven until the remainder are cooked.

These pancakes can be served with Greek yoghurt (for additional protein) & a tsp of seeds (for healthy fats). Alternatively, they can be eaten cold with a teaspoon of nut butter – equally delicious!! 🙂

Sweet Potato Chips and Coconut Spinach & Mushrooms!

sweet pot

Try these great dinner side-dishes, dreamed up by Ruth Burke, pharmacist in our branch in Churchtown, Dublin. So many superfoods on one plate!!

Serves 1-2 people

Ingredients:

  • 2 small sweet potatoes per person
  • coconut oil
  • paprika
  • handful mushrooms per person
  • handful spinach per person
  • seasoning to taste

Method:

For the chips: Chop your sweet potato into long chunks

  • drizzle with coconut oil
  • sprinkle with paprika
  • Cook in oven at 180°C approx 35-40mins until soft. Turn half way through cooking.

For the Mushrooms and spinach:

  • Chop up mushrooms and cook in a pan with coconut oil. When cooked add spinach and allow to wilt. Sprinkle with black pepper.

I love this with steak cooked in coconut oil – yummy!

Lentil Curry (Dahl)

lentil dahl

A super healthy curry dish from Avril Reilly in our branch in Governey Square. This will last you the whole week and just tastes better every day!

Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 300g red lentils, rinsed well and drained
  • 1 medium onion
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 4 tsp vegetable bouillon powder
  • 1 tin of chopped tomatoes or 1 carton of passata
  • 1 heaped tsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp turmeric (optional)
  • 2 large handfuls of baby spinach (optional)

dalh

Method:

Place the lentils, onion, garlic and bouillon powder into a large pan and add one pint of water. Bring to the boil and simmer for 10 minutes.

Add the tomatoes (or passata), curry powder and turmeric if using. Stir well, cover and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. This curry should form a lovely porridge like consistency – if it is too thick, just add a splash of water or if it is too watery, just leave the lid off and continue to simmer until it thickens up. If using the spinach, just add it for the last few minutes of cooking.

This is undoubtedly one of my favourite recipes, I absolutely love it! It can easily be adjusted to suit your own taste e.g. if you fancy it hotter, just add some chilli or add more curry powder. For a richer, tomato flavour add a couple of tablespoons of tomato puree. It’s such a quick and easy dish to make and it freezes really well. You can add extra vegetables if you like, or serve it with some steamed veg. If you are like me, and hate peeling garlic, just get some garlic paste from the supermarket (I use a gourmet garden one – see photo!) – four teaspoons is equivalent to four cloves of garlic. This curry is even lovely eaten cold or use left-overs to top a baked potato – a handy lunch idea! It also makes a delicious cold snack – a couple of tablespoons on a rice cake is very satisfying.

My favourite way to eat this curry is with added cauliflower and topped with a poached egg!!! Don’t knock it ‘til you try it!!! 🙂

Lemony/Garlicky/Chilli-y Prawn Spaghetti

prawn spag

Our Health Strategy Manager, Naomi O’Farrell, cooks this meal at least once a week. We can see why!

These measurements serve 2-3 depending on how hungry you are – easy one to make for more people though! Approximately 300 calories per serving

Useful equipment:

  • I use a nice big wok for this – it’s so much easier to combine all the ingredients at the end
  • One of those spaghetti lifter-upper things also makes combining and lifting easier.

Ingredients:

  • Zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • 6 garlic cloves finely chopped – I use 6 but you could go with less but hey, it’s good for you
  • 2 medium red chillies finely chopped – again, use less or more depending on your taste buds – I don’t use the seeds
  • Fresh Rocket – 1 cup for each person eating
  • Whole-wheat spaghetti – ½ cup for each person eating
  • 1 tbsp. of Red pesto – I use the one with chilli in it. You could also use a green one but then I’d swap the chillies for green ones so they match – that kind of stuff matters to me 😉 You could also just use a little bit of tomato puree here instead
  • 1 pack cooked and ready-to-eat prawns
  • Dessert spoon coconut oil
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • Sometimes I put in Cherry Tomatoes, sometimes I don’t.
  • Parmesan shavings – if you like for the end – included in my calorie estimates so why not!

Method:

  • Zest your lemon and set it aside
  • Get a bowl and put in your prawns. Juice the lemon over the prawns, add some salt and pepper, mix around a leave aside
  • Boil the kettle
  • Chop your chillies and garlic
  • When the kettle’s boiled, use it to get your spaghetti on – this won’t take long!
  • Medium heat for you wok, melt your coconut oil
  • Add in your chillies and garlic – I like them almost brown
  • When you’re happy they’re cooked, add in the pesto (it will spit, be careful) and your prawns and turn the heat down a little; add some cherry tomatoes here too if you’re using
  • Your pasta should be cooked by now – take it out, rinse and drain it
  • Then add the pasta directly into the wok
  • Add in your rocket and mix the whole lot around
  • Serve in heated bowls, sprinkle your lemon zest over the top and some parmesan if you’re using.

Kale & Eggs

kale & eggs

Another alternative breakfast idea, this time from Ruth Burke, pharmacist in our Churchtown branch. This would have to rightly set up for the day!

Serves 1-2

Ingredients:

  • Coconut Oil
  • 1 handful Kale per person
  • 1-2 eggs per person
  • 1 cup spinach per person, pepper to taste
  • Optional – parmigiano shavings, pine nuts or cashew nuts to garnish

Method:

  • Chop up kale and fry in pan in coconut oil until bright green (leaves will have softened)
  • This can take about 5-10mins.
  • Whisk up 2-3eggs.
  • Season with pepper.
  • Pour on top of kale and stir until eggs are cooked through.
  • All some spinach.
  • Plate up and garnish with parmigiano shavings, pine nuts and cashews!!

Coconut Salmon & Kale

salm & Kale

You really can’t go wrong with Kale. Add in coconut and you’ve got a superfood extravaganza! Try this tasty dinner from our Health Strategy Manager, Naomi O’Farrell.

Serves 2-3 (use one salmon fillet per person)

Ingredients:

  • 2 small sweet potatoes per person
  • 2 handfuls kale per person
  • 2 tbs coconut oil
  • 2 red chillis
  • 6 garlic cloves
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • coconut flakes
  • teryaki sauce
  • soy sauce
  • chilli sauce
  • salt & pepper

Method:

Wash and peel some sweet potatoes and cut them into cubes. Coat them in melted coconut oil and some paprika and stick in the oven on a baking tray at about 200º C – give them a shake and a stir every 10 minutes or so – they should cook for at least 30 minutes so they’re good and crispy. Meanwhile, make a dressing with freshly chopped chillies, chopped garlic, melted coconut oil, chilli sauce, lemon juice, a splash of soy sauce and a splash of teriyaki sauce. Make about half a mug’s worth. Get some kale, wash it then shred it and put it in a baking dish. Coat the kale in some of the dressing, then sprinkle over some coconut flakes. Grab some salmon fillets, place them on the bed of kale, pour on the remaining dressing and a few more coconut flakes then bake in the oven for about 15-20 mins until cooked. These sweet potatoes will make you forget all about chips! The kale will be crispy and a little brown but oh so yum!!