Inspired Food July 2013
Girly Vegan Summer Lunch
Every girl loves to get together with her girlfriends for a girly lunch once in a while. Lunch with the girls is a great opportunity to enjoy a glorious summer’s day sat in the garden with your friends; great company, great chat, fab food and a glass of Pimms or two!
What better way to impress your girlfriends by feeding them a guilt free menu packed full of nutrition that’ll leave them feeling on a natural high. I love entertaining my girlfriends and this month for my birthday celebrations I’ve invited my girlfriends to stay at my little home in the countryside. I want to give them a true Vegan experience so I decided for July’s Inspired Food I’d put together a healthy lunch menu you can try too…
Juicy Pink Juice
serves 4 small glasses
This super charged, beautiful rose coloured anti-oxidant juice will help fight infection and the ageing process! Adopt a diet rich in anti-oxidants for optimal health.
juice 1 cup of red cabbage, 2 red apples, ½ medium pineapple, 1 cup strawberries, 1 cup blueberries and serve as a pre-lunch drink.
Quinoa Salad with Mint and Maple Syrup Dressing
served with homemade hummus & pittas
This is a salad rich in vitamin C and anti-oxidants, it’s crunchy, colourful and very very tasty. Considered an Inca superfood, quinoa is a seed (surprisingly not a grain!) that contains all 8 essential amino acids. Whether you buy the red or white variety, quinoa contains no wheat or gluten so is fantastic for anyone who is gluten intolerant. Also in this salad is potassium rich, h ydrating celery. Red cabbage not only has a great flavour it also is an anti-oxidant and an anti-inflammatory, it’s rich in vitamin C, in fact 6-8 times more than green cabbage.
½ medium red cabbage finely sliced
150g pre-cooked red quinoa drained and cooled
4 large vine tomatoes chopped
2 sticks celery finely sliced
5-6 large lollo rosso leaves lettuce chopped
5-6 large spring green/ cabbage leaves finely chopped
tip: wash quinoa throughly before cooking as otherwise it will have a bitter taste. Quinoa needs to be cooked in boiling water for about 15 minutes, when it’s sprouted it’s cooked. Drain when cooked and leave in the pan with the lid to cool. You can buy red or white quinoa from most health food shops.
assemble all ingredients in a large bowl and add the dressing, thoroughly coating the salad. Serve with a dollop of hummus and lightly toasted wholemeal pittas.
Mint & Maple Syrup Dressing
I find this such a versatile dressing, sometimes I’ll use lemon instead of the cider and balsamic vinegar or use a different herb such as basil for a different flavour, you can even add ginger or garlic, it’s great to experiment to see what tickles your taste buds. Rich in vitamin C mint is also a strong diuretic so helps to eliminate toxins from the body.
1 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons olive oil
1-2 tablespoons maple syrup
2 tablespoons finely chopped mint
squeeze of a lime
freshly ground pepper
pinch of himalayan salt
put all ingredients into a screw top jar and shake baby!
Chick peas (Garbanzo beans) play a big part in the Vegan diet due to their high protein and fibre content. They lower your cholesterol and have a low glycemic index meaning they won’t spike your blood sugar levels which as we know can make you feel tired, increase your food cravings and will play havoc with your weight. There’s always a tub of homemade hummus in my fridge, such a versatile, satisfying food.
2 x tins of pre-cooked chick peas
2 teaspoons tahini
1 teaspoon cumin
2 garlic cloves
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
juice of 2 lemons
water for desired consistency
Put all ingredients in a blender and blend adding water for desired consistency.
This creamy yellow ice-cream has a consistency of a sorbet and tastes divine, a pure taste sensation and a fat free ‘healthy’ indulgence that you could even eat for breakfast! It will give your girlfriends instant energy as well as boosting their immune systems with it’s rich vitamin C content! High in fibre bananas contain potassium which helps control both your heart rate and blood pressure.
4 frozen bananas
1 green apple
1 red apple
Prep: freeze 4 peeled and chopped bananas 2 days before lunch. Make the ice-cream the day before lunch.
Juice the pineapple, lemon, lime and apples. Blend the juice with the frozen bananas and re-freeze for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight. Garnish with freshly chopped banana or pineapple