food, healthy, life, recipes

How to: tummy soother

We’ve all been there, you’re bloated, your belly aches and you’d quite like to die now thank you. 

Here’s a quick recipe for a tummy soothing remedy that costs less than 50p to make. 
You will need: 

One mug from your cupboard

Hot water – a little cooler than boiling. 

A thumb of ginger root (If you can’t find any in the shops, 1/2 tsp dry ground ginger) 

Half a lemon/lemon juice from a bottle 

Pour the water into the cup and let it cool slightly so you don’t scald your tongue. 

Peel and grate the ginger. Wash and half a lemon. 

Put the grated ginger in a bowl and press down on it with a spoon to release the juice. 

Pour the ginger juice into the hot water (I use a tea strainer) and squeeze in the lemon juice. Sip. Adjust juice levels to taste. Drink slowly and in a while you should feel better. 

Ginger helps promote good digestion and soothes the bloat. Lemon is a friend to your liver and helps break down chemicals like alcohol.

If you can stomach it hot water with lemon is a great way to get your body up and at ’em in the mornings. Personally I found it smelt like pancakes but tasted horrific. The ginger version is definitely better. You could also use fresh mint in warm water as mint also helps the digestive system and has anti-inflammatory properties. Or you could buy some tea bags – whatever works for you. 
I am not a doctor or nutritionist – this is just a simple home remedy. For anything more serious please see your GP or visit a hospital. Any ongoing pain in your gut must be addressed with a professional as it could be serious. 

food, healthy, recipes

How to make super easy sauce

Ok, so here’s the thing, jars of sauce never make their way into my trolley – why? Because it is cheap and easy to make your own, not to mention better for you without all the preservatives. Here’s my super easy tomato sauce, which can be used as the base for pasta dishes, curries, and all sorts of other things as it’s so easy to adapt. 

1 tin or carton of chopped tomatoes

1 onion – red or Spanish, finely chopped

1 clove of garlic, finely chopped

Olive oil

Sea salt

Black pepper

Saucepan 

In the pan warm the oil and add the onion and garlic, after a minute or so pour in the tomatoes, stir and allow to simmer. Season with salt and pepper to taste. 

Now onto how to adapt it for different dishes; 

Add chopped fresh chillies with the onion and garlic.

Throw in some ginger or paprika to add depth. 

Basil, oregano and rosemary chopped finely, make a pungent base. 

You can use fresh, dried or frozen herbs and spices. 

It works out cheaper than jars of sauce and you can freeze it. Magic. 

clean eating, food, healthy, recipes

Potato Salad

The humble spud has been accused of a lot recently – contributing to obesity, damaging farmland, being ugly. 

I say enough – clean eating is expensive, spuds are cheap and versatile. Leave them alone.  Here’s my potato salad, serve it as a side at a barbecue, or as my friend recommends, under a grilled chicken breast with broccoli  and salad.  

Serves 4 or more depending on hunger

Ingredients

1 small bag of potatoes – I prefer the small salad ‘new potatoes’ or similar. 

Small pot of yoghurt – I use natural yoghurt

Small pot of sour cream or creme fraiche 

Small bunch spring onions

Fistful of chives

Black pepper

Method

Wash the potatoes and boil till soft. While they’re cooking, chop the chives and spring onions (wash them too!). Mix the yoghurt, sour cream, chives and spring onions in a bowl. 

Once the potatoes are cooked, drain and leave to cool. Once they’re at a temperature you’re happy with (can be served warm or cold), use the sharp point of a knife to remove any eyes, peel off the skins if you prefer (much easier on the little potatoes after cooking), chop into desired size chunks. 

Add to the dressing, mix, season with black pepper, if using, stir again. It can now be served or stored in the fridge for later. Will keep a couple of days in an airtight tub in the fridge but is best eaten sooner.  

Ready to eat
healthy, life, lifestyle

Quip – the iPhone of toothbrushes?

I have always been a bit weird about electric toothbrushes, and until now have dodged them, despite repeated and less than subtle comments from my dentist. But I was offered a pretty decent offer for a Quip toothbrush – advertised as the iPhone of toothbrushes.

You can pick your finish, and I went for a brushed metal finish in copper, it’s a very stylish toothbrush.

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It comes from the US so you have to wait a while, but every three months when it’s time to change the head, a new one will appear in the post.

It’s rather fancy in appearance and has a sticky strip to mount it on the bathroom tiles. It runs off a AAA battery, so you can take it anywhere, unlike the kind that need charging all the time.

My plan was $55 (approx £38) and the replacement heads are $5 – but if you sign up online now, your first head is free and if you register, you can get them free for a whole year – which is what I did. Bargain. I didn’t order the toothpaste as well, mostly because I am fussy about my minty freshness, but that is another option.

I’ll let you know how I get on with my new gadget – a pearly white smile is always a bonus. 😁

food, healthy, recipes

Super easy, super tasty recipe

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This salad has five ingredients.

Rocket
Spinach – stalks removed
Goat’s cheese
Baby figs – sliced
Olive oil

I only made it for one, but add more of each ingredient if you make it for more.

It literally took about two minutes to assemble. You could serve it with sliced baguette, grill the figs, add pine nuts or anything you want.

Then stuff it in your face.

beauty, haircare, healthy, make up, skincare

Skincare Saviours in the Winter Weather

January is finally here and with it more drizzly, wet, cold, miserable weather. Which is hell on skin, even if it’s not as ridiculously sensitive as mine!

Here are my tips and tricks for happy skin in the New Year.

💜 Drink water. An obvious one – what you put in your body is what you get out. We’re 75% water, and without it your skin struggles. It helps keep skin soft and plump, slows down wrinkles, and cleans up the gunk that becomes spots.

💜 Moisturise! water inside – moisture outside. Find one that works for you and slap it on, even if you’re just sitting around the house without make up – feed your skin. Central heating doesn’t help.

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Current favourite moisturiser

💜 Cleanse – personally I think washing my face is a brilliant way to perk up. I always feel a bit more awake and alive with a clean face. Since I got a sonic brush (use once a week) I definitely see a difference.

💜 Don’t neglect your smile. Lips have thinner skin than the rest of your face. Skin that is more prone to cracking and peeling. Invest in a good lip balm. I have dozens, and top up throughout the day.

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The best lip balm ever!

💜 But I can’t see my own nose! With winter comes colds, flu and other nasty bugs. Constant nose blowing leaves the skin around your nostrils damaged, dry and unhappy. A bit of extra moisture never goes awry – a dab of good ol’ Vaseline should do the trick.

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Vaseline & Dr Lipp - dry skin beware!

💜 Don’t sleep in your make up. Seriously. This is horrid. I admit I have done this in the past (I blame the booze) but that way lies breakouts and blocked pores. Invest in a decent make up remover/cleanser and take the face off before you crash.

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Loving these at the moment.

💜 Show your hair some love too. Don a hair turban and let a mask soak in, wash out the pollution and rub in some argan oil. I swear by it – no more split ends and happier hair – brilliant!

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Shiny hair ahoy!

ramblingmads

food, healthy, recipes

Winter salad that doesn’t make you sad

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It doesn’t look like much but this bowl of salad was a-ma-zing!

Based on a Nigella Lawson recipe (#TeamNigella all the way) but altered based on my fridge contents, this tasted so good I might just make it a few more times!

I was aiming for a twist on ceasar salad, but having watched Simply Nigella the other week I was inspired to winterise my food.

The romaine lettuce was cut roughly in half, placed on an oven tray and sprinkled with olive oil and garlic salt (I had no fresh garlic but recently stocked up on Cornish Sea Salt in various flavours), roasted for 25 minutes in the oven at 200°c, till soft and slightly browned.

Meanwhile, I found a few rashers of streaky bacon still in date in the bottom of the fridge. I cut it into little stamps and dry fried (hot pan, no oil) till crispy.

Lettuce went into a bowl, scattered with the bacon, then I dressed it with some delicious hollandaise sauce and a little black pepper.

You could grate some Parmesan or similar over it, add avocado, skip the bacon, add croutons, more garlic, crispy fried onion, anything really. The lettuce stands up well to strong flavours.

Eating healthy in winter can be hard, especially around Christmas, when food seems to specialise in fatty, naughty food. We promise to eat soups and casseroles full of veg but end up eating cake and having cheese and crackers for dinner every day.

It doesn’t help that in the UK fruit and veg is more depressing in the winter – all root veg like swede and turnip, which take some work to make into something tasty and enjoyable. These days you can get most things year round imported but not necessarily the tastiest, and when you’re feeling lazy it can be hard to find the energy in the cold.

So roast your lettuces, play with flavours, raid your fridge and eat delicious, easy peasy food. Yum.

ramblingmads