February 28, 2014

Grapefruit & Poached Egg Salad

Funnily enough, not long after I posted my article on the blog last week, giving you my top tips to stay in shape this winter, both Luke and I got really poorly over the weekend and into the week. We both caught one of those contagious nasty bugs and were left depleted of energy. Being ill is always a humbling experience I find, having to accept to let go and be patient, and look after yourself with tender loving care during the recovery process.

On a totally different topic, did you know that February is National Grapefruit Month? I have a backlog of one year (!) of magazines to read at home (as I tend to read magazines from front to back, in every detail, and buy more than I have time to read!), and I was reading a travel magazine dating back from Feb 2013, in which I learnt that February is the month of the year to celebrate grapefruit. This was the perfect opportunity for me to come up with a recipe that would include this vitamin bomb of a fruit. I chose a savoury dish which is pretty versatile and could be served for a posh brunch, a light lunch or dinner.

Grapefruit & Poached Egg Salad – serves 2
•2 large handfuls salad leaves such as lamb lettuce, ruby chard
•2 red grapefruits
•Salt and pepper
•1tsp wholegrain mustard
•1tbsp cider vinegar
•2tbsp extra virgin olive oil
•2 slices sourdough bread
•2 fresh eggs

1.Place one large handful salad in each plate. 
2.Prepare the grapefruits by peeling them using a knife and separating it into wedges, carefully removing any skins. Spread the grapefruit on top of the green leaves. Reserve any grapefruit juice in a little bowl.
3.Prepare the seasoning: in the bowl in which you’ve reserved any grapefruit juice, add a bit of salt and pepper, the cider vinegar and olive and mix well.
4.Toast the sourdough slices. Place on the salad.
5.Bring a pan of water to the boil. Carefully crack the eggs one at a time in a slotted spoon, shaking out any excess liquid and delicately transfer into the pan of boiling water. Leave to cook for 3min and then take out of the water with a slotted spoon and place one egg on top of each slice of bread.
6.Drizzle with the seasoning and serve straight away.

Salade au Pamplemousse et Œuf Poché – pour 2 personnes
•2 grosses poignées de salade, telle que de la mâche
•2 pamplemousses roses
•Sel et poivre
•1cc de moutarde à l’ancienne
•1cs de vinaigre de cidre
•2cs d’huile d’olive extra vierge
•2 tranches de pain au levain
•2 œufs frais

1.Mettre une poignée de salade dans deux assiettes.
2.Préparer les pamplemousses en les pelant à l’aide d’un couteau et les séparer en quartiers en retirant autant de peau/membranes blanches que possible. Répartir sur les feuilles de salade. Récupérer le jus éventuel dans un petit bol.
3.Préparer l’assaisonnement : dans le bol où vous aurez récupéré le jus, ajouter du sel et du poivre, la moutarde, le vinaigre et l’huile et bien mélanger.
4.Faire griller les tranches de pain. Les mettre sur la salade.
5.Porter une petite casserole d’eau à ébullition. Casser un œuf au dessus d’une écumoire et égoutter l’excès de liquide, puis transférer délicatement dans la casserole. Répéter avec l’autre œuf. Laisser cuire 3min puis retirer du feu et sortir les œufs de l’eau à l’aide de l’écumoire et mettre un œuf sur chaque tranche de pain dans les assiettes.
6.Arroser d’assaisonnement et servir de suite.

February 21, 2014

The Booster - Orange, Carrot & Ginger Juice

What are your tricks and tips to beat the winter blues?

Mine include going outdoors and get active, but also juicing! I get really creative when it comes to juicing and love experimenting with brightly coloured ingredients to lift up my moods. The booster, is certainly a classic, but won’t fail in giving you a vitamin kick and is so bright that it is guaranteed to bring sunshine even in the gloomiest of winter days ;-)

Hold tight, spring is on its way!

PS: you can now follow me on Instagram

The Booster - Orange, Carrot & Ginger Juice - Serves 1
•1 large or 2 small carrots
•3 juicing oranges, peeled
•A 3cm piece of ginger
Place all the ingredients in a juicer and juice. Serve straight away.

Le ‘Booster’ – Jus d’Orange, Carotte & Gingembre – pour 1 personne
•1 grosse carotte ou 2 petites
•3 oranges à jus
•Un morceau de gingembre de 3cm

Mettre tous les ingrédients dans une centrifugeuse ou extracteur de jus et y passer les ingrédients. Servir de suite.

February 13, 2014

Valentine's Chocolates with Pistachio & Orange

While no one was looking, we escaped to southern France for a few days. I had programmed for a blog article to be posted automatically while we were away, but for some reason the article never appeared on the blog!

I decided to postpone this post and because it’s Valentine’s Day tomorrow I really wanted to share with you this recipe for homemade chocolates! We’ve been a bit obsessed with making our own chocolates lately – something I had never really thought I would get into. There’s an utter satisfaction about making your own. Even if buying chocolates from a maître chocolatier will always remain a treat, I was so pleased to be able to make my very own at home. You can opt for the easy version, which consists in melting bars of chocolate and pouring them into moulds, or like I’m showing you today, you can actually prepare the chocolate content yourself. My advice would be to use great quality ingredients, as it will make a difference to the taste and texture. These chocolates really need to be kept in the fridge, or they will tend to melt fairly quickly. We opted for a pistachio and orange filling, but of course feel free to vary – nut butter or caramel would be lovely ideas too. I hope you have a great Valentine’s Day and get the opportunity to treat a loved one or maybe yourself with these chocolate beauties.

Valentine’s Chocolates with Pistachio & Orange - Makes about 25
•50g cacao butter
•50g coconut oil
•3tbsp agave syrup
•A pinch of sea salt
•75g raw cacao powder
•50g pistachio
•Zest of ½ orange, finely grated
•½ tbsp orange blossom water
•1 date

1.Place the cacao butter, coconut oil, agave syrup and pinch of salt in a heatproof bowl over a small pan of water. Heat very gently, until the cacao butter and coconut oil are melted. Take off the heat and stir in the cacao powder with a whisk until well incorporated. Pour a little bit of the mixture in each of the chocolate moulds, so that it makes a layer of about 3mm. Place in the freezer for about 5min to set.
2.In the meantime, prepare the stuffing. Place the pistachio and orange zest in a food processor and blend until you obtain a fine powder. Add the orange blossom water and the date and blend again until it comes together into a ball. Take very small portions of the mix, about ¼ tsp, and roll then between your hands to form a mini ball and then flatten them slightly. Repeat so that you get 25 portions.
3.Take the chocolate moulds out of the freezer and place the little pistachio balls in the middle of each mould, on top of the chocolate layer. Make sure that it is well centred and doesn’t touch the sides of the moulds. Pour more of the chocolate over, so that the pistachio balls are covered. Put in the freezer for about 20min until well set. You can then unmold the chocolates. Keep in the fridge waiting for them to be eaten.

Chocolats de la Saint Valentin Pistache – Orange - Pour environ 25 chocolats
•50g de beurre de cacao
•50g d’huile de noix de coco
•3cs de sirop d’agave
•1 pincée de sel
•75g de poudre de cacao cru
•50g de pistaches
•Zeste d’1/2 orange
•½ cs d’eau de fleur d’oranger
•1 datte
1.Mettre le beurre de cacao, l’huile de noix de coco, le sirop d’agave et la pincée de sel dans un bol au bain-marie. Faire chauffer à feu très doux jusqu’à ce que le beurre de cacao et l’huile de noix de coco aient fondu. Retirer du feu et incorporer le cacao en poudre à l’aide d’un fouet. Verser une petite quantité du mélange dans des moules à chocolat, de façon à avoir une couche d’environ 3mm. Mettre au congélateur pour durcir pendant environ 5min.
2.Pendant ce temps, préparer la farce. Mixer les pistaches avec le zeste d’orange de façon à obtenir une poudre fine. Ajouter l’eau de fleur d’oranger et la datte et mixer de nouveau jusqu’à ce qu’une boule se forme. Prendre une toute petite portion du mélange, environ ¼ cc et la rouler entre vos mains pour former une toute petite boule, puis l’aplatir légèrement. Répéter l’opération jusqu’à l’obtention de 25 portions.
3.Sortir les moules du congélateur et mettre une petite boule de pistache au milieu de chaque moule, sur la couche de chocolat. S’assurer qu’elle soit bien centrée et ne touche pas les bords du moule. Verser du chocolat sur chaque boule, de façon à ce qu’elles en soient couvertes. Remettre au congélateur pendant au moins 20min de façon à ce que les chocolats durcissent. Ils peuvent ensuite être démoulés. Garder au réfrigérateur en attendant de les manger.