Thursday, 30 November 2017

Avocado Supper Club



Avocados also known as the alligator pear, are considered a superfood as they have lots of health benefits. The avocado is high in protein and has mono-saturated fat which is the good fat. They are low in sodium and fructose but high in potassium, and essential vitamins and minerals such as fiber, vitamin K, B5, B6 and C and foliate.  

Eating an avocado a day helps to lower the risk of heart disease, maintain healthy cholesterol levels and helps the body efficiently absorb fat soluble nutrients. It also reduces arthritis symptoms and lowers the risk of certain cancers. It helps to maintain good eye health and also promotes weight loss.
Avocados can be eaten in salads, smoothies, added to soups and can be substituted as spreads or used in baking too.

Before you eat the avocado make sure your avocado is ripe, it usually takes avocados 4 to 6 days to ripen. You can tell when they are ripe by gently pushing down on them. A ripe avocado should give a bit when you add pressure, if the avocado is hard it means it is not yet ripe. You can speed up the ripening process of the avocado by placing it in a paper bag with a banana or apple. The ethylene gas released from the apples and bananas will cause the avocados to ripen faster.








































I was recently invited to attend a masterclass in Avocado carving followed by a Avocado supper club sponsored by Avocado fruit of life and Hello Fresh Kitchens in London. 


I was unsure as what to expect but believe me, I was totally bowled over with the entire evening. Look at the amazing menu that was served at the supper club.

The evening started with a masterclass and a demonstration by Food Stylist Colette Dike of Fooddeco in the art of Avocado carving.  

To carve the rose you peel the avocado and de -stone it after which you rub it with some vinegar or lemon juice to stop it going black. 

Next you slice the avocado as thinly as possible and then lay out the slices in a long line overlapping each other. Finally starting at one end you start to roll the slices to create the rose which can then be transferred to a rice cake or a plate.


You can serve the Avocado flower as a starter, drizzled with a vinaigrette dressing and garnished with chilli flakes, poppy seeds and rose petals. 


I really enjoyed creating and carving my own avocado rose which I was rather proud of as I had not done it before.



After the masterclass, we had a chance to mingle over more avocado inspired mocktails and cocktails before we sat down to enjoy a delicious avocado themed supper at a beautifully decorated table.


The starter of sweet corn fritters, served with an avocado centre, cherry tomatoes, feta cheese drizzled with tangy dressing and sprinkled with pumpkin seeds was absolutely amazing. I really enjoyed it as it had all the flavours and textures well balanced.


The main course was spectacular, an avocado bun served with a quinoa burger, avo mayo and sweet potato fries. It was very innovative way to use the avocado itself to sandwich the burger.



The highlight of the evening was the dessert, a vegan avocado and pecan chocolate brownie served with dairy free ice cream, chocolate shavings and raspberries. It was delectable and you would not have guessed that the brownie was vegan.



The meal was delicious and I am totally inspired by the recipes and hope to make more use of avocados in my recipes.

 I was a guest at the Avocado supper club and all the views shared in this post are of my personal experience.

Monday, 27 November 2017

Chai Spiced Banana Muffins and The Vegan Cook book review


My favorite all time fruit is banana but I am rather fussy as to how I like like my bananas. I like to eat them when they are just yellow as soon as they go a darker yellow and brown spots appear I don't like them. That is when they are perfect to add to smoothies and for baking.

My second favorite thing is spices and I love masala chai spice, you can read all about my masala chai spice post here which shows you my love for this awesome fragrant tea spice. So when I was reading The Vegan Cookbook by Adele McConnell, I was really excited to see a recipe for Chai Spiced Banana Muffins. I did not need too much persuasion to recreate the recipe.


The Vegan Cookbook  has 100  recipe for breakfast, lunch and dinner together with some love sweet treats and desserts. The book is beautifully illustrated and has inviting food photos.I really like the fact that the author has added symbols to the recipes to annotate if they are soy-free, seed-free, raw, gluten-free, nut-free and sugar free.
The book is perfect for anyone who has newly become vegan as the recipes tips ans ideas are very useful and easy to follow.


Book Details :The Vegan Cookbook By Adele McConnell
ISBN 978-1-84899-338-9
Retails  £9.99

My score for the book: 12/15

Content -4/5
Illustrations-4/5
Recipe Instructions-4/5

** I was sent a copy of the book to review as always all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.







Coming back to the Chai Spiced Muffins, sadly the first batch I made were really dry and not sweet enough as the original recipe does not have any sugar added to it and relies on the natural sweetness of the banana. I recreated the recipe for the second time but this time I added half a cup of brown sugar to the recipe and also sprinkled some sugar on top of the muffins. I also added a touch more liquid and the muffins turned out much better. Vegan muffins do not have the same texture as normal muffins and these were a little more dense, more like banana bread than muffins. Despite this we did enjoy them.



























I took inspiration from the original recipe from the book and below you can see my version that I recreated with minor changes.


print recipe

Chai Spiced Banana Muffins
Delicious Chai flavoured Muffins, that are vegan and healthy too.
Ingredients:
  • 2 cups Plain Flour
  • 1/2 cup (plus 2 tablespoons for sprinkling) Brown Sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Chai Spice
  • 2 Ripe Bananas
  • 3/4 cup roughly chopped Pecans
  • 1/3 cup Sunflower oil
  • 1 teaspoon Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1/2 Cup Coconut Milk
Method:
1. Preheat oven to 190 degrees C/ 375 degrees F2. In a jug add the coconut milk and the vinegar and keep aside.3. In a large bowl, add the bananas and mash them up with a fork. Add the oil and vanilla and the milk mixture from the jug and whisk together.
4.Sieve the flour, spices, baking powder straight into the bowl. Add the sugar and gently fold the mixture till combined. Fold in the chopped pecans.5. Divide the mixture into the cake cases and sprinkle a little brown sugar on the top ,bake in the preheated oven for 25 minutes until golden brown. 6. Remove from oven and cool on wire rack.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 12


** NB If you want to make your own chai spice mixture mix together 1/2 teaspoon cardamon powder, 1/2 teaspoon clove powder, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon powder, 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger, 1/2 teaspoon all spice and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper powder.

Do you enjoy muffins, what is your favorite combination? Do tell me in the comments below.

I also  have a copy of the Vegan Cook Book to giveaway to one simplyfood reader so you too can create your own mouth watering Vegan recipes.

How to enter:
  • Simply complete the Rafflecopter widget below to verify your entries
  • Entries can be via blog comment, Facebook, Twitter etc
  • Please read the rules they form the terms and conditions of this Giveaway
  • Closing date – 18/12/2017 12.00 AM, Open to UK residents over 18 yrs only
How Rafflecopter works:
  • You will need to complete the mandatory entry first – usually making a blog comment. You can do this by clicking on leave a comment at the bottom of the post and leaving your reply in the comment box. Please note your comment will not show immediately as it needs to be moderated however rest assured it will appear on the site, so carry on with rest of entries.
  • Login to Rafflecopter – click to see what the question is. Make a comment answering the question on the blog.
  • Go back to Rafflecopter and click the green button to tell me you have made a comment, this will unlock all the other options. All entries are checked to see that the mandatory question is answered, if its not all bonus entries will become void. 
  • Rafflecopter will tweet, like and follow on your behalf.
  • For information on how to find the URL of your tweet click here. 
  • For bonus entries you can return to this page and enter the daily bonus entries. 
  • If you are still unsure as to how Rafflecopter works please do check out this short video.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Listed On Loquax

Thursday, 23 November 2017

Review and Giveaway ~Nala Cutlery Gift set by Viners



























I love entertaining and host many dinner parties. Together with planning the menu, it is equally important that your tableware goes hand in hand with the menu. Having a beautifully set table with appropriate crockery and cutlery is an equally important part of entertaining. Your guests will love to sit at a table that is beautifully dressed to enjoy the meal.



This Christmas I am planning my table settings to be very traditional with greens, reds and gold. I have chosen gold place mats with red chargers and classic white plates with a simple gold inlay on the rim. To complete the setting I have chosen the most beautiful Nala range of cutlery from Viners.
The Nala range is ombre effect finish that blends from long, elegant matt handles out to a bright mirror polish. 






























It is made from high quality 18.10 stainless steel and finished with a titanium coating. The finish is resistant to corrosion, rust and tarnishing. The 16 piece range comes presented in a flock inlay gift box and consists of a set of  4 x Table forks, 4 x Table knives, 4 x Dessert spoon, 4 x Tea spoons. This stunning cutlery is dishwasher safe and comes with a 50 year guarantee.  


My family have always purchased Viners cutlery, it is long lasting and gives great value for money. The range is available from many kitchen ware stockists and retails at RRP £144


*This post is in collaboration with Viners.

As always I love it when my readers can get a chance to try products that I have used. Viners have been very generous and they have agreed to send one simplyfood reader a set of Nala cutlery  RRP £144 so they too can have a beautiful dinner table at Christmas.

How To Enter


·         Simply complete the Rafflecopter widget below to verify your entries
·         Entries can be via blog comment, Facebook, Twitter etc
·         Please read the rules they form the terms and conditions of this Giveaway
·         Closing date – 14/12/2017 12.00 AM, Open to UK residents over 18 yrs only.

How Rafflecopter works:

  • You will need to complete the mandatory entry first – usually making a blog comment. You can do this by clicking on leave a comment at the bottom of the post and leaving your reply in the comment box. Please note your comment will not show immediately as it needs to be moderated however rest assured it will appear on the site, so carry on with rest of entries.
  • Login to Rafflecopter – click to see what the question is. Make a comment answering the question on the blog.
  •  Go back to Rafflecopter and click the green button to tell me you have made a comment, this will unlock all the other options. All entries are checked to see that the mandatory question is answered, if its not all bonus entries will become void. 
  • Rafflecopter will tweet, like and follow on your behalf.
  • For information on how to find the URL of your tweet click here
  • For bonus entries you can return to this page and enter the daily bonus entries. 
  • If you are still unsure as to how Rafflecopter works please do check out this short video.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, 3 November 2017

Apple, Cucumber and Spinach Smoothie in the Nutri Force Extractor.


My family are smoothie addicts and we adore our fruits and vegetable smoothie combinations. Each morning we take it in turns to make a smoothie for the family so that we can all take a on the go bottle full of this yummy goodness to work.

I usually make this in my Optimum 9400 blender by froothie and its my most used item on my kitchen worktop. However my daughter recently moved in to her new flat having just graduated from University and as much as I love her I was not going to let her take my beloved Optimum 9400 to make her smoothies in. Also her kitchen space is limited so we needed a compact version of a blender that she could use to make her smoothies. We found the perfect blender from Froothie the Nutri Force Extractor which fits on her work top and does the job really well. The blender is affordable, stylish compact, easy to clean and comes with many accessories such as a blend and take cup so you save on extra washing.


THE OPTIMUM NUTRI FORCE EXTRACTOR INCLUDES:

  • 1L Tritan BPA-free cup
  • 450ml Tritan BPA-free cup
  • Extractor blade
  • Grinder blade
  • Stay-fresh travel lids x 2
  • Flip-top lid
  • User manual
  • 30 Day Money Back Guarantee – Includes Return Postage!
  • Access to expert support team
  • Comprehensive warranty



My daughter loves using the blender and as mother I can be assured that she is getting her five a day. My daughter also tells me that she is been making some delicious pesto for her pasta in this blender so I can see a recipe coming up soon for it. Watch this space or alternatively sign up for email alerts so you do not miss any new recipe updates.

You can see in the video below a review and recipe demonstration of the Apple, Cucumber and Spinach smoothie that we made in it.






I used my trusty Nutri Force Extractor for this recipe. It is normally £179.00 but currently it is on offer for just £89 which means that there is a whopping £90 OFF right now. Just use the code AUTUMNSALE 90. That's not all, the fab people at Froothie are offering you lovely readers FREE DELIVERY too (for a limited time)! Just use this code 1572 FREE AMBASSADOR DELIVERY in the comments box when making your purchase, the delivery charge will then be refunded.

The blender is not just for smoothies , it can be used for many other recipes too:
You can also checkout some other exciting recipes and reviews of this awesome blender below:

Janice Pattie-Blender Banana bread
Lorna Korma -Eat myyy thoughts
Choclette Ammar- Beetroot green leaf smoothie
MandyMazliah- Tropical Cauliflower Smoothie


**As an ambassador I am testing the Nutri Force Bender, all views and opinions are my own.This post contains affiliate links.
Related Posts with Thumbnails