Its been a funny old week and sadly not in a hilarious way! We've all been fighting a horrible fluey bug, I was struck down last Saturday, just in time for our 2 night trip to The Wensleydale Heifer, courtesy of the girls for our Christmas, which couldn't be changed! So Alastair and I went and tried to make the most of it, though we were trying to outdo one another with our coughing!
Needless to say we had copious amounts of pineapple, ginger, lemon, manuka honey and coconut oil to try and alleviate the symptoms and a few jacuzzi baths and a few glasses of wine to numb the pain!
Then I was invited onto BBC Radio Scotland Kitchen Cafe programme yesterday, which I was concerned about since I sounded a bit like Kermit the frog and I was worried I'd be coughing through the whole programme!
The programme was in celebration of cauliflower for which I made a chocolate cauliflower cake, yes you read that right!! Its a thing apparently but so wrong on every level! It was awful, it tasted very strongly of cauliflower even though the recipe said it was undetectable and the cake was delicious! Just shows you can't believe everything you read online, even from respected food bloggers!
It was however very moist and gooey but no amount of chocolate chips or date frosting could mask that bitter cauliflower taste or smell! So I will most definitely not be sharing that recipe!
Oh and to top off a bad week, wee Faith my chicken died today. She had been poorly for a while. Her wee friend Grace is most upset, as am I. I've had to give her treats all day and she's been following me round the garden.
She keeps looking for her friend. So for those of you who think chickens have no feelings and are just for eating, you are wrong!! I'll have to contact the British Hen Welfare Trust again to rescue some more wee friends for Grace.
So since I'm not feeling great I'm sharing a well tried and tested family favourite, Italian Rice & Beans, which is just perfect healthy comfort food! Its made with brown rice which is high in protein, fibre and B vitamins. Bags of flavour come from the herbs, sun dried tomatoes and balsamic vinegar with a final flourish from the finely zested lemon rind. Although its a really simple recipe, it definitely packs a punch in the flavour department. I hope you give it a go!
ITALIAN RICE & BEANS
Ingredients Serves 4
2 tablespoons olive or rapeseed oil
1 cup of brown rice (uncooked)
2 or 3 tablespoons of fresh herbs, rosemary, basil, oregano, flat leaf parsley
1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes, finely sliced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 red onion, finely sliced
1 can of beans, borlotti, cannelini, flageolet or butter beans
1 or 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 large handfuls baby spinach
Zest from one or two lemons
1. Start cooking the rice according to the packet instructions. I use short grain brown rice which has a lovely chewy texture but long grain would also work well.
2. When the rice is almost cooked, heat the oil in a large pan and add the onions and garlic, cook on a medium heat for a few minutes. Add the herbs, sun dried tomatoes and beans and cook for another few minutes.
3. Add the balsamic vinegar and a good seasoning of sea salt. Turn the heat down to low.
4. Place spinach in a single layer on top of the beans. Place the hot steaming rice over the spinach and leave for a minute or two until the spinach starts to wilt. Mix gently and taste. Add more salt and balsamic if you think it needs it.
5. Finely grate the lemon zest on top of the rice and serve.
......your health in your hands....
🍃 Health educator🍃