RECIPE | Super Salad

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I made some salad for dinner the other day and Orlaith made a bold statement: she said it was the best salad she'd ever eaten! And I don't think she's that far off, it was a mighty good salad and the perfect dish to serve to fussy eaters. It's like pick and mix and so easy to adjust and throw in your favourite veggies to the base ingredients to tailor it to your requirements because, let's face it, salads can be a bit weird sometimes.  If you're working with a lot of different taste buds you can serve optional additions on side plates for people to add as they please.


Ingredients:
(serves 2 generously | 4 side plates)

1 cup cooked couscous
1 handful of lettuce, chopped
1 handful of spinach, chopped
1 handful of baby kale, chopped
2 tbsp mixed seeds, toasted

Extra Options:
1/4 cucumber chopped
1/2 advocado, chopped
1 large tomato, chopped (or a handful of baby tomatoes)
1 handful of fresh herbs parsley/coriander/mint/basil
1/2 or 1 cooked chicken breast per person
2 tbsp feta cheese
(be creative, look at what's in your fridge, chop it up and throw it in)


Directions:

While the couscous (and chicken, if using) is cooking according to pack instructions, chop all the vegetables. Put them all in one bowl unless working with fussy eaters, in which case serve your chosen options on side plates. When the couscous is ready add it to the salad and mix everything up together.

Get your seed mix (I used almond flakes, pine nuts and sesame seeds) and gently toast them by continuously stirring them on a dry, heated pan. Once they've turned a light brown colour sprinkle them on top of the salad. If using feta cheese crumble it on now. Cooked chicken can be served on top in pieces or on a side plate.


Side Note:

Baby kale is a great alternative to regular kale when adding to salads. It's a lot more tender than regular kale which makes it more enjoyable to eat raw. And veggies are always better raw than cooked, and Florette is now selling baby kale by the bag full. On that note, if you're ever looking for salad ideas the Florette website is great with loads of interesting recipes. Check them out HERE.

Enjoy x

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This post was written in collaboration with Florette Salad


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Mother's Day | Hampton Court Palace

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Mother's Day is fast approaching and it's time to plan how we're going to spoil our mums this year! What better way to treat your mother like a princess than spending the day at a palace? Well that's what my mum and I did last weekend at Hampton Court Palace and it was gorgeous.

We started with afternoon tea at the Tiltyard Cafe in the grounds of the palace where we were served a platter of sandwiches and cakes and individual pots of tea and coffee. After having a very healthy week this was such a guilty and indulgent pleasure. The tea and coffee was made to perfection, the sandwiches were very fresh, and the cakes were gorgeous (we were both dying a bit over how good the scones with clotted cream were). It was a really lovely lunch and a perfect way to spoil my mum. Feeling very satisfied we set off to explore the palace.

Hampton Court Palace is one of the homes where King Henry VIII lived. Even though King Henry VIII was a really bad person I found him the most interesting King to learn about at school and one of the only one's I remember much about (history never interested me too much) so it was really exciting being in the place where he lived and walked the corridors. 

The palace is beautiful and displayed in a great and entertaining way. In the dining room there are sound effects of clinking glasses and pouring liquid, we picked up a scratch and sniff card to show what things would have smelt like hundreds of years ago during the reign of King Henry VIII, and you could even glimpse Henry and one of his 6 wives walking through the corridors.

There is so much to do at Hampton Court Palace. You could go on a guided tour, explore the outdoor maze, or enjoy the magnificent gardens and grounds. Over Mother's Day weekend (13th-15th March) there will be a special event held at Hampton Court Palace called Florimania with flower arranging demonstrations from the national association of flower arrangement societies, perfect to celebrate the arrival of Spring!  You can book your tickets for Hampton Court Palace HERE and you can check out other great ideas for Mother's Day Out in London and the rest of the UK HERE
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This post was written in collaboration with AttractionTix and Hampton Court Palace.

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RECIPE | Porridge With Banana And Desiccated Coconut

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I've recently been educating myself more on food and the things we should and should't be putting into our bodies. It's a subject I find really fascinating and I discovered I wasn't nearly as healthy as I thought I was.

Porridge is such a great thing to start your day with! It contains fiber (great for maintaining good cholesterol and blood sugar levels), complex carbohydrates (giving you lasting energy), iron (which helps oxygen get around your body), phosphorus (good for filtering waste out of your body), calcium (which strengthens teeth and bones) and vitamin A (an antioxidant which kills free radicals, and aids cell growth). OK, I'm sold!

I've been on a quest to 'dress up' my porridge bowls and boost the meals nutritional value. Well, breakfast doesn't need to be complicated, or boring for that matter, so keeping the toppings simple is a must for me. Here's one of my new favourites (and honestly, two weeks ago you'd never have heard me say anything with banana in it was a favourite of mine)!


INGREDIENTS:
(serves 1)

1/2 cup organic porridge oats
1/2 cup milk (I use almond milk)
1/2 cup filtered water
1/2 tsp honey (optional. I use manuka)
1 or 2 tbsp desiccated coconut
1 banana, sliced


DIRECTIONS:

Heat the porridge oats in a small saucepan with the milk. Add water (Orlaith likes it all, I like half). If you like things a bit sweet you can stir in some honey while it's heating. Stir the porridge regularly for about 7 minutes until you've reached your desired consistency. Put the porridge in a serving bowl and finally add the sliced banana and sprinkle over the desiccated coconut.

Enjoy x

QUICK TIPS:

If you're a hungry badger like me or you'e cooking for more than one person you can double, triple, even quadruple this recipe as required and adjust measurements to taste.

Porridge oats are meant to be gluten free, however due to farming and manufacturing practices they commonly gets cross contaminated making it inedible for people with coeliac disease and gluten intolerances. There is a brand of oats made by a coeliac which claims to be 100% gluten free. The brand is called Tilquhillie and I'm not sure if they're organic but you can check them out HERE.

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