WIAW- shades of green

Hey peeps.

I see a lot of the US blogs getting green for St Patrick’s day this week, but being English it is not something I have ever celebrated (nothing against the Irish, but it is not really my culture). But I am loving the green theme (thanks to Jenn) , and this week I have not taken pictures of one day, so I just have a selection of green meals from the last week instead:

A salad for lunch, with rocket leaves covered in strawberry balsamic, cucumber, pistachios , figs, ryvita with pumpkin seeds (they didn’t have the sunflower seed ones which ae my fave, but then the green pumpkin seeds fitted with the theme even more) and some roasted pepper hummus. This was delicious- I loved the figs and balsamic together.

I attempted to make some sweet potato/ kidney bean burgers. I mashed up cooked sweet potato (2 I think) with a tin of kidney beans, some lime juice, some paprika and tomato puree. Then I shaped and baked them (made 8 I think). They probably needed flour or something as they were squishy, but very tasty. I had some with more rocket, roasted courgettes, roasted asparagus, roasted fennel and peppers, and some hummus (I think).

Some  wholemeal pasta with delicious pesto (the stuff I got from Brighton- called Zest- it is amazing) with peppers, courgettes and cheese. It looked more green in real life!

Some mexican casserole bake (which has celery, spinach, red onions, sweetcorn, peppers, tomato passata, quinoa and beans) served with more spinach and some cheese.

I have also been having some lovely fruit salad bowls.

This was a papaya, fig and grapes, with a squirt of lime juice and topped with some vanilla munchy seeds. I won the seeds on facebook, and they are nice, but they are coated in icing sugar which I don’t like so much. I prefer their savoury seeds (which is a surprise coming from me!).

And another one with papaya, plum, grapes, lime juice and munchy seeds. Papaya with lime is such a delicious combination.

I also had some green tea. This one has lemon with it, and it quite nice. It does say to brew for only 2 minutes, which I think helps as I find green tea can taste bitter really quickly. When I have it I think it tastes OK, but I would not normally choose green tea if I had any other option. Ah well, it fits with the theme!

But, do you know what is missing???? Green chocolate!

Phew! The balance has been restored. This was peppermint Drink me Chai, and some Montezuma’s Christmas (ithey lasted a long time!) peppermint truffles. Yum.

Do you do anything for St Patrick’s day? I know my friends who like drinking like to go out as the Guinness is always cheap, but that never appealed to me (and I don’t think it is vegetarian either) so I have never done anything for it. 

Best breakfast (currently)

Well, the best breakfast for this weather anyway.

When it is warm, a smoothie in the morning is lovely. Since discovering peanut flour in smoothies they have featured more for breakfasts- I always found fruity ones a bit too sugary and left me hungry pretty soon. This one had 1/2 frozen banana, a lot of frozen raspberries, some almond milk and some peanut flour. The peanut goes well with the fruit (just like pb&j) and I am sure it would lower the GI of the smoothie too.

Plus a slice of sourdough rye (home-made; I made several loaves and froze them before I went into hospital as I knew I would not have the energy to do all the kneading etc after)- topped with almond butter and some apple/mango jam. Such an amazing combination. I think the rye bread is even nicer once toasted, and I love the combination of nut butter with jam. Mmm.

I have been trying a few of the Dove’s Farm bars that I won last week. The crispy chocolate bar was lovely- much more chewy than I thought it would be, which I really liked. Perfect with a cup of tea after a walk in the cold.

I shared the flapjacks with my parents after they came over on Saturday (my Dad dug two vegetable beds for me, so he needed some energy!)- they were lovely too- nice and moist but not too sweet or sticky. Andy has been  taking some to work too- they won’t last long!

I have also been having my lovely Provamel almond milk which I picked up in Brighton. I was sent some a while back to review (you can see my thoughts here) and I really loved it- it tastes lovely and is sweetened with agave, so better than the Alpro ones which are sweetened with sugar (although this one has double the calories of the Alpro one), and it does not have the sediment like the unsweetened Ecomil one has (anyone else find that with almond milk?). But it is so hard to find- sometimes Holland and Barrett do it, but I never see it in the supermarkets.

I also used the almond milk to make a cheat hot chocolate- I warmed up the milk, added some nesquick powder and frothed it up. A dusting of cocoa powder makes it look all fancy 🙂

Excuse the very bright photo- I had to use my phone because the camera batteries ran out!

I also tried the peppermint Drink me Chai (and had it with a couple of peppermint chocolates)- it was nice, but not as nice as the mango chai I tried the other day. I don’t think I am a fan of mint with black tea- to me the flavours did not quite match up.

What is your favourite breakfast for this time of year? 

Cupcakes at long last!

It seems like ages since I have done any baking, but on Sunday I finally got my fix. We were up early to watch the Grand Prix (not actual time, as that was something silly like 4am!- and Go Button!) so I sat at the table and made some little roses to decorate them with.

I had to colour the icing first, so I used the grape/violet colour I was given for Christmas. I could not quite 100% remember how to make the roses. I had to roll the icing into a sausage shape, then cut it into 7 pieces (or 9- they have to be an odd number of petals). They were then rolled into little balls, and then squashed flat into petal shapes. You start by rolling one into a tube, for the centre, then carefully adding petals around the outside, making sure they overlap.

I was quite pleased with how they turned out anyway.

I made some cupcakes- chocolate ones from the Hummingbird recipe. Although the recipe said it made 12, some of them were very small and even once risen did not go half way up the cases! Usually those recipes make too much.

I did cheat and didn’t make the icing- I had a tub of stuff which I bought before I went into hospital (as I thought I would not want to make it!) so I swirled some of that on, and then added the roses.

I think they look very pretty anyway!

We were going over to Andy’s parent’s for Sunday tea, so I took them along, and they all got eaten- must be a good sign. Sort of Mother’s Day themed with the flowers too.

The weather today has been beautiful and I had not one but two walks! Only short ones, but it was so lovely being outside in the fresh air. I really do think that I need fresh air- I go a bit stir crazy if I don’t get any for a day or two. I saw some pretty birds (jays) and also a rabbit! Nearly as good as seeing one when I am out running. Nearly.

What is your favourite fresh air activity? Flying a kite? Walking by the sea? Opening the living room window? (I might be joking about that one).

Home grown daffodils

Hello everyone.

The other evening me and Andy walked down to our allotment to see how the bulbs were coming along. By the time we took over the allotment last year (late summer) it was too late to plant anything (well, except cabbage as I kept being told, but I don’t like cabbage so wasn’t going to grow it for the sake of it) so in the autumn we planted lots of daffodil bulbs.

Well, lots of them were already flowering, so we picked quite a few, and might get some more at the weekend. Every now and then I get a lovely whiff of their fragrance, it really is fab. I love the fact that we have grown these, and they really smell so strong- I suppose ones from the shop are a week old by the time you buy them, so that may explain it.

Andy is going to do some digging (and my Dad has offered to help too, seeing as I can’t be doing that just yet) so we will hopefully start to get a few things going there. I am feeling excited about it for this year.

I have also been spending time entering competitions! I saw on TV a few weeks ago a story about people who enter loads of competitions- one person had won a fancy treadmill (which she could not even have because it was too heavy for her flat or something) but she was the only person who entered. I won some Dove’s Farm bars as they were celebrating Fairtrade Fortnight. The day before they came I saw that Lucy reviewed them on her blog, so I am looking forward to trying them.

I also won some Montezuma’s chocolate. A whole kilo– not sure how to even start eating it! Think I need to save this until I can start running again.

And some vanilla munchy seeds! These were all free facebook competitions 🙂  I have decided you have to be in it to win it! I get a lot of emails and usually ignore them, but I have also entered things like The Food Network competition (you only have to answer one question) and just cross my fingers.

I have also found that I can while away quite a bit of time on the Dorset cereals site- they have little competitions and mini games and things.

Don’t worry, I have not spent all my time glued to the computer- I have managed one or two short walks each day (and often an afternoon nap!). I have a doctor’s appointment next week and as we have 2 weeks before the Easter holidays I think it is safe to say that I will be returning to work after those, which I am really looking forward to.

Do you ever enter competitions? Have you ever won anything, and if so what did you win?

WIAW- trying to be green

Is it just me that goes off green things after being ill? When I am unwell I revert to the plain carbs- plain toast with some spread (or maybe jam), plain crumpets, maybe some cereal. Anyway, as the theme of WIAW is being green, I did try!


Smoothie with pear, almond milk, peanut flour and frozen fruits (I think raspberry and cherry) topped with a little crunchy cereal. This was so filling but also gave me some brain freeze!


Caramelised onion hummus on sunflower ryvita, with peppers and cucumber for dipping, plus grapes and a graze dip- dried apple with caramel (which I saved for a bit later).

Afternoon snack:

Peppermint tea (that is green- does it count?) and a peanut butter brownie from the freezer. The tea was the best peppermint tea I have ever had, from the Naked Tea and Coffee company in Brighton. So minty. 🙂


Some green- roasted asparagus and fennel (which is more white I suppose), plus butter beans cooked with red onion, peppers, passata, herbs and spinach. I made some kind of tahini dressing with lemon juice- I only used a tsp tahini but I had to add loads of lemon and it ended up being very rich.

Red onion, pepper, basil and oregano.

Add a small drained tin of butter beans and a small carton of passata, plus a little water.

Then add spinach.

This ended up being very rich (maybe from the passata) and I put half in the freezer- it would be like very posh beans on toast I think. Anyway, there was some green from the spinach but it cooks so fast.


A peach yoghurt, which was super creamy.

I had some green (cucumber, spinach, asparagus, peppermint tea and the green herbs) as well as other colours of fruit and veg (important to get a range of nutrients after all) so pretty good I think. I had not had asparagus in ages and after seeing Lucy have it I decided to try some again. It was OK, but I prefer broccoli so I think I would buy that next time instead. Ah well, it is good to have some variety.

Thanks Jenn for organising the link up.

I fancy something with pesto now, after seeing all the other green posts today. So, fave way to enjoy pesto?