Now that Bonfire Night is here and I'm talking about how the weather affects our food choices and some healthy foods for Bonfire Night on BBC Radio Scotland Kitchen Cafe so I thought I'd quickly write a blog post to share some simple, healthy ideas to make your Bonfire Night Celebrations go with a bang! Big thanks to my lovely hand models Megan and Daniel from Juice Warriors for holding my paper cones of nuts and popcorn! They did eat them after I took the photos!
I have to admit its not a time of year I particularly enjoy, our dog Ben is absolutely terrified of fireworks and shakes uncontrollably when he hears them, which these days is not just on the 5th but for a few days before and after, so he's going to the kennels in the country this year.!
Soup in a mug always goes down well and there are many simple and delicious options to choose from on the blog. Just click on the soup category. I'd recommend Tomato and Chickpea it's so easy and delicious!
So back to some simple, healthy snack ideas. You really want finger foods that you and your guests can enjoy al fresco while you are watching the fireworks.. Also you don't want to be washing lots of dishes so these wee paper cones are perfect, I made mine from a Lidl magazine, half pages for spiced nuts and a full page for popcorn.
Here is the link showing you how to make them, its really easy!
These are delicious and way better than ordinary salted nuts. You can use any combination of nuts and seeds, I used walnuts, cashew nuts and pumpkin seeds but almonds, hazelnuts, pecans would work well too. Nuts are a great source of protein, good fats and minerals and seeds are packed full of antioxidants, protein, calcium and magnesium.
2 cups of nuts
1/2 cup of pumpkin or sunflower seeds
1 tablespoon tamari
1 tablespoon rapeseed oil
1 tsp smoked paprika
1tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp to 1tsp cayenne pepper (depending how hot you like them)
1 tsp sea salt
2 tsps chopped rosemary (optional)
Put the nuts and seeds in a bowl and add the tamari, oil and all the spices and mix well until the nuts are coated in the mixture.
Empty the nuts and seeds onto a lightly greased baking tray, spreading them out into a single layer
Bake in the oven at 180C for around 10 to 15 minutes, shaking the tray to make sure they don't stick.
Cool then serve in paper cones!
Popcorn is a wonderful snack and its a wholegrain so has useful amounts of fibre. Its incredibly cheap to buy and you can make loads which is great for a party. Its a great kids snack and way better than Pringles or artificially flavoured crisps. Its even better if you use coconut oil to cook it in or rapeseed oil both of which are stable at high temperatures and add additional health benefits. A wee sprinkling of Himalyan Sea salt will add 86 trace minerals the body can use as well as a nice salty flavour!
Voila a cheap and healthy snack!
You don't need a popcorn maker, just a good sized solid pot with a lid.
So put enough oil to just cover the bottom of the pot, add a good grinding of sea salt and a single layer of corn kernels. Its important not to add too many or they will overflow and pop all over the place!
Just put the pot on a fairly high heat, put the lid on and hold it on, you will hear the corn start to pop. Don't be tempted to take the lid off or you could be hit in the face or the eye with a hot piece of popcorn, which is most definitely not fun! Give the pot a shake and when the popping stops, turn heat off, remove the lid and you have a pot full of delicious popcorn.
Season with some Himalyan sea salt, pour into large paper cones and enjoy!
Fun Filo Pastries
These healthy pastries make a delicious lunch or snack, are really easy to make and they are really versatile. They are baked in the oven so are pretty much fat free, compared to shop bought samosas which are generally deep fried in questionable oil! Not great for your health on any level! There are lots of alternative fillings but the simple curried filling seems appropriately warming and spicy for eating al fresco on Bonfire night!
1 pack of filo pastry, 30 x 50 cm (12 x 20 in) each,
1 tbsp rapeseed or olive oil
1 tsp coriander seeds, coarsely crushed
1 potato, peeled and diced
1 large carrot, peeled and diced
½ cup frozen peas
1-2tbsp curry paste
1 tbsp chopped fresh coriander
pinch of salt
Quite simply, half and thinly slice 2 red onions. Sauté the onions in a tablespoon of olive oil over a low heat with a pinch of sea salt for 10 minutes until soft. Add a teaspoon of balsamic vinegar and stir for a few minutes.
Crumble or cube the feta cheese and mix together.
Chickpea, spinach and feta cheese
Drain a tin of drained chickpeas, and add to food processor with 100g feta cheese, couple of handfuls spinach, zest of a lemon, tablespoon lemon juice, ½ tsp smoked paprika and blitz until combined.
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