food to glow

feel good food that's good for you

Sauteing cucumber may sound odd, but it is a very French way of using cucumber. Here it is paired with smoky freekeh and hearty, filling black lentils for a warm Poor old cucumber. Not a serious contender nutritionally (all that water you see), an afterthought for the salad bowl, grudgingly eaten as batons and dipped into no-fat dip as a dieter’s punishment. In other words, a bit low on the food totem pole.

But it has been getting a bit more love recently. Not big love, like freekeh, or dirty burgers or courgetti. But big enough if you are a cucumber. You may have even been indulging in a bit of cucumber appreciation yourself if you are a water drinker like I am, and trying to keep it interesting. Hm, now there’s an adjective usually never associated with cucumbers.  Continue Reading

The combination of nectarine and tomato may sound odd but it is an absolutely brilliant taste of summer when combined with a few special ingredients. Whether you call it a bruschetta, tartine, posh toast or breakfast, this is bursting with summer flavours.I can’t believe it is almost the end of August. I’m not ready to let it go.

One of the reasons is that here in Scotland we are experiencing a late burst of summer, after a rather underwhelming (okay, quite miserable) July and early August. Out of necessity I have shed my jeans and sweaters for shorts and flip flops, and my consumption of fruit and salads is at an all-year high. Nights – still long so far north – are newly sultry and uncomfortable; cooking at the hob is minimal. This may not sound a big deal to many of you, but here in Scotland such moments are rare enough to be of note. Continue Reading

Cool down and treat yourself with these healthy chocolate raspberry fudgsicles, made with Greel yogurt and a special, super healthy ingredient. I suppose most of us need another ice lolly recipe like we need another hole in the head. But before you wander away and look at prettier pictures (these are fairly scrappy. sorry) can I just point out that these taste a hell of a lot nicer than they look. Despite the healthy ingredients, and the brownness of it all, these are indeed fudgesicles. Or at least fudge-like sicles.  Continue Reading

Honey-Harissa Greens with Black Bean Pasta >> Just a few healthy ingredients - one of them super special and full of fibre and protein - make this a quick midweek meal for the more spice adventurous among you. The greens and pasta type are adaptable to your taste, and the options for colourful and complementing garnishes are considerable. Milder option is also given.The eagle-eyed among you (all of you?) may have noticed the absence of any small, black-skinned oval beans in this pot. Do you feel cheated? Were you hoping to see dots of creamy, ebony-skinned beans caught up in a tangle of saucy pasta and wholesome greens? Well, even if you were – and that is another direction this recipe can lead you –  please believe me when I tell you that black beans are present –  just in the form of pastaContinue Reading

Ripe market or homegrown tomatoes are essential for this slow-cooked, subtly smoky - and very versatile - relish/sauce. Here it is served with a borlotti bean, zucchini and sweetcorn frittata, but use it as a pizza sauce, bruschetta topping, as a pasta sauce or rolled into savoury pancakes. Even served simply with a pile of crispy flatbreads and some cheeses. A true taste of summer. Those of us fortunate enough to have space for a greenhouse, a sunny patch of garden, allotment, or indeed – in my case – a brilliantly-bright conservatory, are rubbing our hands in either glee or tense anticipation. Months of tending, cutting out pesky suckers, watering, feeding and tying up are about to pay off with a motherlode of eagerly-anticipated tomatoes.

Our three tomato plants are comically tall owing to my reticence in taming their lush growth. We finally cut them back (despite there being plenty of gorgeous wee bracts at the top) when they reached about 8 feet tall. The lower growth is straggly and unkempt-looking but the top is heavy with glossy green orbs, tinged with the red – and black! – they will become. I’ve picked a few early fruits and eaten them straight off the vine – salty-sweet, and very juicy.

I know you lucky folk in warmer climes have been there and done that with much of your summer crops – beans, peas, watermelons, zucchini, yada yadabut in the cooler and wetter UK our waiting is possibly that much sweeter.  Continue Reading

Win friends and influence people by turning your kitchen into your own vegan Chipotle! We love this spicy tempeh sofrito as a colourful burrito bowl but it is equally good wrapped in soft corn tortillas, in Romaine leaves for a carb-free option or in quesadillas. We've even had leftovers in an omelet.If you can get past the awkward title I promise – hand on heart – that you will not just like this dish, you will absolutely love it. But first, a confession: it has tempeh.

Is that a deal-breaker? I hope not. 

Now, I don’t know about you and your nearest and dearest, but we here at food to glow haven’t always been overly keen on the odd bod pulse cake that is tempeh. Old greedy guts me is better at appreciating its rather earthy charms, but Andrew and Rachel have always been reluctant consumers of this most nutritious form of soy. Until now. In fact, in a food to glow tempeh recipe first, the pan of tempeh sofrito was not only wiped clean, but one of my testers – I won’t say who – was hunting around for any spare dishes of it that might be lurking for photographs, i.e. sat on a board by the front door. Continue Reading

Summer desserts don't get much simpler, delicious or nutritious than this Watermelon & Lime Granita with Chia Seeds. The chia eliminates the need to scrape and scrape to get the desired crystalline texture; contributes to satiety; and helps to keep this simple ice dessert from spiking blood sugar levels. Win-win!A wonderfully refreshing and healthy dessert for summer.

Granita is the quintessential Italian summer dessert, made of fine frozen crystals of strong coffee or fruit juice. While granita di caffe is possibly the most popular way to enjoy this iced treat – at least in Italy and in posh Italian restaurants on this side of the world – I can think of nothing better than whiling away a sultry afternoon with a fruit ice in hand, watching the world drift by. And at home, how blissful to sit, contented after a meal of simply prepared vegetables and pasta, and let the sparkling shards of this homemade watermelon granita melt gently between tongue and palate. Heavenly. Continue Reading

Griddled Bread & Halloumi Salad with Green Tahini Dressing // food to glowTo mangle a well-known English phrase: dressings maketh salad. This might not be strictly true, but dressings and sauces can certainly be deal-breakers.

Dressings and sauces are the pearl necklace, Louboutins, or Hermes scarf to a simple salad. Or they should be. That just-so accoutrement that if got wrong ruins the whole look – or taste; but if spot-on is oh so right. And not showy about it. Continue Reading

zucchini and chard tart // food to glowSimple savoury tarts like this are my summer go-to for a quick-to-the-table mid-week meal.

Is that enough hyphens for one sentence? ;-)

Actually, I make a version of this all year-round for my cancer nutrition classes. Sometimes with asparagus, sometimes with hummus (!) instead of cheese; occasionally I go a bit bolder and layer it up – almost too heavily so that it bends if you dare pick it up rather than knife and fork it – with roasted winter vegetables. Whichever way I make it, there is never any left. It seems almost everyone loves a bit of pastry. I serve it with loads of salads to counteract the fact that we are having pastry.

My only chance to get in look in myself is to make one at home. One for each of us so that there is no eyeing up who has the biggest piece. I grew up with a sister so fairness and equity in slices and spoonings is very important.  Continue Reading

baked two-cheese stuffed squash blossoms // food to glowSquash blossoms are the ultimate in edible flowers. Unlike nasturtiums, borage, violets and other pretty posies consigned largely to salad and ice cube duty, squash blossoms can be stir-fried, frittata-ed, casseroled, gratineed and, most notably, stuffed. If you have loads of blossom go ahead and knock out successions of risottos, pizzas, frittatas and casseroles, where they will add a pretty and uber-seasonal note to each dish. However, if you have only a few precious farmer’s market blooms, my vote is always  for stuffed. Plated up in their crunchy panko coats these little morsels shine on their own with a chilled glass of white wine, whispering “it’s summer.” Continue Reading

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