Healthy fats

Healthy fats;

I was reading on another blog ( – she makes some tasty looking recipes) about celebrating healthy fats during her so-called “hug-a-fat” month. So I have decided to rave about one of my favourite healthy fats… guessed it- peanut butter!

Peanut butter does contain fat, but the huge majority (80%) is unsaturated and it has no trans fat at all! Some research has shown that the fats in peanut butter also help to lower blood cholesterol levels.

As well as all those good fats which are great for skin, hair, nails, it also contains Vitamin E, folic acid and niacin. As vitamin E is a fat-soluble vitamin it only appears in fats, and needs fat to be absorbed by your body. So it is a win-win situation!

Now although I love PB as it is healthy, I mainly love it because it tastes so good! I love it in cookies (replace butter with PB for delicious cookies- see my previous review on the best recipe), I love it in PB&J sandwiches (or wraps), I love it on a crumpet (maybe with a dollop of cherry spread too), I love it in Trek peanut butter bars, I love it in home-made cereal bars, I love it spread on a pink lady apple….

I love peanut butter!

So there is me hugging (well, raving about) my favourite fat! Hooray for hug-a-fat month!

Coincidentally (actually not quite) I had for lunch hazelnut butter on wholemeal bread (also some good fat so it links that way!).

I am so glad it is Friday, I have an 11 mile run planned tomorrow, but the route I did last week I didn’t really like so am going to be getting on to plan a new one.

Randomly I was sent a coupon (for my birthday) from Alpro soya. I have no idea how they knew it was my birthday, I must have signed up to something before. Anyhoo, I got some of those dessert pots (like custard really) as I have tried the yoghurts before and am not keen on the weird flavour- can’t put my finger on it but they tasted strange. So I have a new fave dessert; one pot of dark chocolate Alpro, 80g blueberries (on reflection cherries would be nicer but I had blueberries) and half a pack of Bear Granola Nibbles- Cocoa Cherry Pie flavour. It was so delicious, the granola added the perfect crunch, chewy bits of cherry added a nice chewiness and sweetness. I also have the apple crunch flavour which I think would be lovely with the caramel dessert, and maybe a cooked apple too.

My plans for the weekend (once I have done my work) include more planting, a trip to London and maybe some oatmeal raisin cookies.

Veggie friendly foods

Hooray! My order from ethical superstore turned up today; the millet and quinoa flakes look good- plus lots of protein = veggie friendly. I was thinking of making a muesli blend, but they can also be used warm as a rice-pudding style dessert. Definitely one to try! I also got some cacao nibs (am really looking forward to trying them) and some Divine chocolate covered mango. I have had this already so I know how delicious it is! In addition I had some Meridian Morello Cherry spread (it’s like jam but no sugar, only fruit cooked in apple juice); this is my favourite addition to a PB&J sandwich/ wrap/ crumpet. One blob of peanut butter and one blob of cherry spread on whatever you want! Seriously try it, it’s amazing (incidentally this was my lunch today in a little tortilla wrap, along with cinnamon pears and a yoghurt).

After work I went to get my hair cut (no body pump tonight as the instructor is away- boo), whoops I had not had it cut in months and months! After that I popped to Waitrose to get a few bits. I love their frozen butternut squash- I know it’s lazy to not chop it up myself, but seriously how do people do it? I would quite like an electric carving knife for pumpkins alone, as I always feel like I am about to be on casualty and chop my hand off. I have read to stab them a few times and then microwave to soften the skin. Well that would be OK if I could actually pierce the skin!

So the frozen ready peeled stuff it is for me!

I also got a few other tasty nibbles (pink lady apples were on offer- yay), some boxes of granola bear nibbles (have only got these in Boots before) and some treacle and pecan granola which looks amazing- this will be a post-run snack I feel.

I got home pretty late so have been updating the photos on here (takes me a while to add them to my recipes) and pottering about.

I really do need this weather to warm up; my courgette plants are huge- the window sills all look like jungles and need to get outside into some space! I have heard that the weather this weekend is going to be nicer so hopefully summer is around the corner.

I was reading that soon it is going to be National Vegetarian week, and I often get asked (well usually as soon as people find out I am veggie) why I am vegetarian. I also get offered fish a lot, and no that would mean I would be a pescatarian. It is a bit late now to explain it all, but I will later. I will say that I am not interested in “converting” anyone else, so don’t worry I am not going to become all preachy.

Friday tomorrow yeah!

Waiting for the post…

I am looking forward to the post this week as I have ordered a few bits from I had an email for free postage for any spend over £10, when usually it is higher than that. I do like getting things from there that you can’t normally get in shops. I have ordered some millet and quinoa flakes as I might have a go at making my own muesli (without the yucky dried milk or whey powder that all but Dorset cereals have). I will post the recipe on here once I sort a nice one out. I also ordered some cacao nibs as the cocoa beans from Graze have been super tasty so I might add those to yoghurt to liven it up a bit. Plus some meridian cherry spread (this is so good in 0% yoghurt) and some blueberry spread to try. I often order hazelnut or cashew butter from there too, but have not used all of mine yet and I can’t justify the cupboard space to store things that I don’t need. Fingers crossed it all arrives soon!

For lunch today I tried something new; Rye bread with quinoa and amaranth, spread with cream cheese. I served it with cucumber sticks, pear slices and a yoghurt. It was super tasty! I have had “normal” rye bread before and I am not sure if the flavour is that much different, but it was lovely and dense and filling with that lovely strong rye flavour.

After work I had a Trek Peanut and Oat bar. These are my favourite (although variety is good- I would get bored if I had only these); anything peanut-butter-flavoured is always good. They are made of dates, raisins, oats, peanuts, soya crispies, peanut butter, apple juice, maize starch, ginkgo biloba and ginseng extract. Each bar is 68g, with 239 calories, 11g protein (super filling) and 33g carbs (good for before a workout). Good for a vegetarian (with the protein) and have just read on the pack that they are vegan also. The bar is dense but moist, tasty and filling, and totally delicious!

It is aerobics later on and I am looking forward to it, especially as I missed it last week. If only I could use my new gadget!

Body pump ow ow ow!

Whoa body pump was hard last night! As I had 2 weeks off I was kind of expecting it, but during the lunges track my legs were seriously wobbling like jelly near the end and I didn’t think I would make it! Once I got home (after a shower and putting on PJ’s) I sat down the watch the debate, and treated myself to one of the lovely dark chocolate organic bunnies (my prize- am I getting obsessed with this prize??) from the lovely nak’d people. I had a little look at the website and they do so many amazing looking things. I am most impressed by the ingredients list which is just organic cocoa, organic sugar and organic vanilla. They are very rich (70% cocoa) and perfect with a cup of chai.

After the debate and question time it was certainly bed time! Today I was paying for it; I managed a walk after work but am feeling so stiff! Have ten miles planned for tomorrow morning so I am hoping it will be better by then.
When I got home I found the Nak’d Cashew Cookie wrapper on the table (from the lovely folks and … empty! To be fair I had left it out for my boyfriend to eat as he liked the sound of it. His review; “it was really nice, I thought it would be crunchier but it was soft”. I did take a photo of the wrapper (cute wrapper with bumble bee on it and everything) to be added later.

We had a nice dinner; sausage and bean bake (from Rachel Allen’s Bake) only with a veggie sausage for me. I used to love the Grassington’s courgette and pepper sausages, but I can’t seem to find them anymore and I keep trying other versions but I don’t like ones that pretend to taste like meat, and cannot find one I like. I also made some bread (maybe I should change the name of this to the Rachel Allen appreciate blog?)- after re-watching her on Bake I have tried to copy her kneading style from the cookery school bit, and it really works! I think it helps having nice flour; am still using Dove’s Farm Malthouse Flour which is super tasty.
I have spent a lovely evening chilling out in front of the TV relaxing before my run tomorrow.

Fairtrade ramblings

Today I have been thinking about Fair-trade items and other “ethical” food purchases after getting those Divine chocolate eggs from the lovely folks at natural balance foods. A while ago when I was shopping there was a Fair-trade stall in the shopping centre and they were encouraging people to swap their usual items for fair-trade. Although I was aware that Sainsbury’s did fair-trade bananas and sugar I had never actively looked for the logo before. I had a look in my kitchen and was pleased to see that my normal tea is also fair-trade (but not the chai tea), so I ordered some Fairtrade chai from (and some little bars of Divine chocolate- the chocolate orange one is very yummy). We don’t drink coffee but if we did we would definitely get Fairtrade (after reading Not On The Labelby Felicity Lawrence), and the only other items seemed to be things like biscuits which I don’t really buy (I make them instead!). I have been tempted by Ben and Jerry’s Fairly Nuts flavour (fairtrade vanilla with nuts and caramel- sounds amazing)…

Today has been good; a tasty breakfast (my new fave with Dorset delicious muesli and chopped apple), work was fine and am having lovely Meridian pesto (one of the only veggie pesto’s which uses cashew nuts instead of parmesan cheese) with veggies and spaghetti for tea before I am off to body pump (Tonight’s gonna be a good good night). Plus the sun is shining! After work I popped into the garden and it’s all starting to come alive; my new apple tree has got pretty pink blossom on it, the tulips are flowering, lots of other plants that died back are coming back and everything is covered in buds- Hooray!