Sweet potato dahl with herbed flatbread

This is litteraly my new favourite dish! This is so full of flavor and will give you warmth on those cold winter days.

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Ingredients:

  • 1 medium sweet potato
  • About 2 handfuls of kale
  • 1 small onion
  • 2 garlic gloves
  • 1/2 fresh chili
  • 3/4 cup red lentils
  • Spices: 1 tsp currypowder, 1 tsp Moroccan spice blend, 1/2 tsp smoked paprika and 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2-4 bay leaves
  • A chunk of fresh ginger

Finely chop onion, garlic and chili. Roughly chop sweet potato and kale. Peel and grate the fresh ginger. Rinse lentils.

In a pot (water) sauté onion, garlic and chili for a few minutes. Add spices and lentils. Cover with 0,6 L of water. Bring to a boil and add sweet potato and bay leaves. Cover with a lid, and let it simmer for about 25 minutes.

Meanwhile make your bread by combining 100g wholewheat flour, 1 tsp herbs, 1 tsp onion powder and 1 tsp baking powder. Slowly add water to the mix until you can form a ball. Roll out, sprinkle with paprika and bake for about 10 minutes at 200°C.

When your potatoes and lentils are soft (after 25-30 minutes), squeeze out the juice from the grated ginger and add to the pot. Also add the kale and optional chopped fresh parsley/coriander.

Serve and enjoy!

– Sophie

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I’m on YouTube!

So the title pretty much says it all 😉 I would just like to announce the fact that I finally made a YouTube channel, which is something I’ve wanted to do for awhile. For now I’ll mostly be working with recipe videos, just to get started, but there won’t really be a ‘label’ to what my channel is about. I guess I’ll just see where it takes me.

Right now I’m just super excited as I just LOVE taking pictures, filming and editing. I have my first video up today which is basically the recipe for my easy buckwheat banana pancakes, but with a slight winter(y)-feel (think gingerbread spice, persimmons and music) just to bring out that Christmas spirit 😉 As I said I had a lot of fun putting my first (ever) video together, even though I still have a lot to learn. So feel free to watch and let me know what you think!DSC_0736

Much love

– Sophie

 

Amazing carrot/date bread

This my friends, is like heavenly carrot-cake in a bread form, infused with gooey chunks of caramelly dates. And the best part? You can enjoy all the slices you want, because it is so good for you: high in fiber and carbs, with lots of nutrients and very low in fat.

There’s really nothing better than enjoying a warm slice of this bread, and the amazing spices reminds me so much of Christmas. I’m definitely going to make this bread sooo many times over the holidays 🙂

Prepare yourself for lots of pictures today.. Food is just awesome 😉

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Ingredients:

  • 2 cups wholegrain spelt flour
  • 1 1/4 cup oat milk (or nondairy milk of choice)
  • 1/4 cup coconut sugar
  • About 2 large carrots finely grated
  • About 10 small dates chopped
  • 2 tbsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tbsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 tbsp. baking powder

Preheat your oven to 200°C.

Then combine all the dry ingredients in a large bowl, and mix well:

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Add oat milk, and whisk until it’s smooth and well-combined. Then fold in the grated carrots and chopped dates.

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Scoop the dough into a loaf-pan with parchment paper, and bake in the oven for roughly 40 minutes. (check if a toothpick comes out clean). And enjoy the lovely aroma that will spread in your house!

It’s always a good idea to let the bread cool and set a little bit after baking (even though it’s hard to wait)…

But before you know it, you’ll be left with this goodness:

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Enjoy!

– Sophie

Perfect persimmon pudding

Just three days ago I thought I didn’t like persimmons… Oh how silly I was!! Now I’m soooo in love with this blissful fruit, and I’ve basically been eating them non-stop.

I tried them for the first time last year, and I was just not liking them. I experienced this kind of chalky and dry feeling in my mouth after eating them (maybe they weren’t properly ripe?), and I think that’s what made me dislike them. At the same time they have quite a funny texture! Kinda gel-like actually (but in a good way I promise). So yeah it took a few tries for me to fall in love with these beauties, but I can officially say that I’m hooked!

But then I realized that this fruit had the perfect consistency to make pudding! By blending them with some dates and a few spices you get a rich creamy texture, like you wouldn’t believe it! This reminds me of the ‘real’ stuff, only it taste a million times better. Seriously this recipe is probably the easiest thing to make, and at the same time it’s one of the most delicious things I’ve ever tasted!

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Just make sure that your persimmons are REALLY ripe before you use them. They should feel slightly heavy and very soft when you touch them. When they’re this ripe it should be relatively easy to peel off the skin – but I only do this because my blender is not the strongest. If you have a high-speed blender, then just leave the skin on. Oh and don’t add any liquid to this! You want thick and creamy lusciousneeees!!! 🙂

Ingredients: (1 person)
  • 4 hachiya persimmons
  • 2-4 soft dates (depending on how many you prefer)
  • 1/4 tsp each cinnamon and vanilla powder

Place everything in a blender and blend until thick and smooth.

Pour into a bowl and eat as is, or top with other fruits/dried fruit/nuts (I used some pomegranate)

Now, that was easy right?? 😉

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Enjoy!

-Sophie

My story

So today I’m going to share a more ‘serious’ topic: I’m going to share the story about my eating disorder. This all started about 3 years ago, and it was without doubt the darkest time of my life.. So now sharing and writing about it is actually very scary, but also freeing at the same time.

This is merely a wish to share my experience, what I went through and maybe someone out there can relate and find what I have to say helpful. I just feel like I’ve kept things to myself for too long, so if anyone out there should have any interest in reading my story – this is it.

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Let’s start with how I was before my eating disorder. I’ve always been a happy and active girl. I’ve always had a slim body at a healthy weight, but at the same time I‘ve always loved to eat! But something along the way changed, mainly because aspects of my social life got really bad – I won’t get into too many details about that, but overall there were some people in my life that made me very miserable and I started to feel very lonely. I think the best way to describe it is that it felt like a dark blanket was pulled over my life. I felt like I was empty and completely on my own, and generally not worthy –  and boy have I wasted many tears through that period of time! I felt like I wasn’t in control of anything in my life, so subconsciously I started to project my feelings towards food. (But actually the problem is not the food – the problem is usually other parts of our lives that are consuming us and making us feel powerless).

At this point I was hurting inside, and slowly I started to develope a very hateful relationship to my body. I started to feel disgusted by what I saw in the mirror, and I felt fat (I wasn’t). I felt like I wasn’t good enough, and like I didn’t deserve food. So I started to deprive my body from eating, whilst keeping up with a lot of exercise – thinking that this was the only way I could possibly feel good about myself.

At the beginning, I would only eat carrots throughout the day – and I clearly remember the deep, hollow sound of my stomach growling (screaming “FEED ME NOW!”)… but I didn’t listen. I couldn’t, because my mind was just too much in the way. Exercise (running) was a huge pain for me, because my legs felt like heavy rocks (due to undereating). But I still continued to torture myself and drag them along.

One thing is very clear to me: once the thoughts of restriction, obsessive exercise and punishment were brought into my life (happened in a relatively short amount of time), they were nearly impossible to shake off – and that is where the fight truly began, because all of those thoughts just manifested inside me and got out of control.

Obviously my weight started to drop pretty drastically, and soon my mom started to notice my strange behavior and overall unhappiness. I don’t remember much from the time after this, but all I know is that it was filled with so much confusion, pain and frustration for me but also everyone in my family. I suddenly couldn’t eat around my family because… Well because I just couldn’t stand it. My mind and body was in complete chaos. After I ate something that my eating disorder couldn’t handle, I would collapse and cry.

My weight got lower and lower. I was put on a scale once a week by my doctor, and every time more weight had come off me. I felt terrible. It felt like I was fading away. However, there was always a healthy part of me that couldn’t believe what was going on, and just wanted to breathe, live and feel good again. But that part wasn’t strong enough to overpower my demons at that point. I wanted to change, but I couldn’t because I was hurting so much inside. And I could feel my bones against my skin. Especially my hipbones. A very sick part of me, felt like that gave me comfort.. Ugh I’m not even going to get into that! I remember how I liked being small. I liked the fact that I didn’t take up much space in the world. I just wanted to be held in some ones arms and have someone tell me I was worth it.

My mind was a mess. And from the way I see it now, my brain was so deprived from nutrients/food that it was impossible not to have panic attacks all the time, freak out and only getting worse. Once you’re at such a miserable stage, you do not see what happens clearly – you don’t realize that what you fear the most (food) is what will actually save you. It’s really hard to explain but it’s also like you’re physically unable to do what’s necessary to get better. I was very obsessive about and around food, and everything had to be perfect. I prepared all of my food by myself mainly because I was stubborn and needed the control, which also led to so much stress in my recovery.

My eating disorder got to a point where I was very close to getting hospitalized (IE force feeding, complete bed rest etc.). Somehow I ended up at only 42 kilograms (I’m 173 cm). Now that’s scary stuff! And I was scared at that time – a lot!. I remember it was winter and freezing cold, and everyone didn’t want to let me go outside, because they were afraid I was going to get a heart attack. This was the point where my mom did a brave thing by taking me out of the system and finding me an alternative ‘healer’. She was a lady with her own little ‘business’, and she had previously cured hundreds of others in my situation. She had a loving warm heart which was everything I really needed.

For a long time I wasn’t gaining any weight (it even dropped a little). But this woman kept telling me that it would happen and that she believed in me! I was put on a meal plan (which I slowly adapted to) and slowly the weight gain started to happen. Now I didn’t exactly feel good about it. I was still battling anorexia in my mind. I still had the healthy part of me, who desperately wanted to heal and get better, but I also had the sick part of me that didn’t want recovery. As I said, those thoughts were damn hard to kick out! But at some point along the way you make a choice. You make a choice of who you want to be – In the end I chose not to let my illness define me anymore. Recovery doesn’t happen overnight, it takes TIME and you just have to fight, while accepting that both your body and mind needs time to heal.

But slowly and surely things started to get better. I still keep a lot of notes that I wrote and photographs of my body from the time where I was at my worst (trust me, it wasn’t pretty). But some of the stuff I wrote down is actually very nice to reread. For example:

“Just look at yourself, and realise that this is not a place for you or anyone to live – because it’s not really living at all”
“I never thought I was going to truly feel good about gaining weight. It always scared me to be able to see physical changes in my body. But last night I looked myself in the mirror (something I’ve generally tried to avoid for the past 6 months) I saw something that was –not entirely healthy and normal- but was getting there. I actually looked like I was alive for a chance. Now that I feel a change, I know that what I’ve done has been right all along. I know that I want to feel good again. And most importantly, I know that once and for all I’ll be able to love myself for who I am, and who I’m supposed to be. I’m not giving up”

As you can tell, one of the things I wanted the most was to feel ‘alive’ again. Because for a long time, I didn’t. All an eating disorder does is consume you, while sucking the life out of you. Sorry for the harsh words, but this  is how I see it. I also wrote down a few comments other people gave me during my recovery:

“Sophie, you’ve gotten more light in your eyes”
“You are glowing now”

Those comments just made me want to keep going and grow. Those kinds of comments that are not about physical appearance (that might trigger you and bring you down when you’re at a very fragile state) but instead a reminder that the essence of you -your being- is shining through.

Lastly a few more words of wisdom that I wrote a while back:

“It won’t do to try to live a perfect life. The obsession it brings is only going to holding you back. There’s no such thing as perfect, and by trying to find it, you simply cannot live life to the fullest”

So yes, this is how my story ended up in words. Surely there’s more to be said but I feel like I’ve captured what I wanted to share for now. This is not a closed topic though, and I might come back to it in the future (like what happened after this, etc.).

I truly believe that  we were placed on this earth so that we can embrace life in every aspect – to live abundantly and be healthy, glowing and at peace with ourselves. But life is not just the good parts, and most people will face struggles along the way. It may cause you pain, tears and heartbreak but just know that you’re not alone, you’re worth it and I believe in you.

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Much love ♥

– Sophie

Low fat (but super tasty!) guacamole

Even though ‘low fat’ sounds a bit sad when we talk about guacamole, but that absolutely does not have to be the case, as this is both so flavourful and creamy at the same time!  And just to make things clear, I’m not shaming guacamole (because it’s simply one of the greatest creations out there) I just love this recipe because 1: it tastes AMAZING and 2: it makes a bigger volume for the amount of avocado (and you could totally eat the entire portion on your own). And let’s be honest; I love food and I like to have more dip than just half an avocado mashed. I looove to have this with some baked potatoes/sweet potatoes vedges, but you could also use raw slices veggies or make it as a salad dressing or put in a sandwich. There’s loads of options!

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This is so easy and quick to make, and it will keep in the fridge for about 2 days if you keep it in an airtight container.

Ingredients:
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 1 green onion
  • Juice from 1/2 lemon
  • 1 handful of parsley (or fresh herb of choice)
  • A pinch of cayenne or about half a fresh chili (use according to desired amount of heat)

Chop celery, green onion and chili (if using) into smaller chunks. Add everything to a food processer (if you have a mini food processor, use that! But larger ones will do just fine) and blend away! You can leave it chunky or you can blend it smooth. Scoop into a bowl and serve!

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(I may or may not have a slight obsession with this combo.. )

Enjoy!

– Sophie

A perfect bowl of oats!

So it’s been awhile since my last post, and I’m sorry about that! Ideally I would like to post tons of exciting and awesome recipes all the time, but I’ve just realised that it’s not optimal for me to have those kinds of expectations about myself. Because to be honest, I don’t like experimenting too much in the kitchen.. I like to stick to the food I know and love. And I’m totally a creature of habit when it comes to food! When I find something I like I will make it again and again. So instead of trying to make this blog something that it’s not, I’m just going to keep it more ‘causal’ for now. My blog should reflect me for who I am, and not what my mind want’s me to be – meaning I don’t have to come up with fancy recipes if I don’t feel like it.

Okay enough ramble. Just because I haven’t come up with something new and exciting lately, I can still share my absolute favourite thing to eat right now: OATMEAL! I know, doesn’t sound too exciting huh? But it actually is. I’m kind of fussy when it comes to oatmeal… I don’t like my oats thin and watery, I like them thick and creamy and with amazing flavour! It has taken me a while to perfect my oatmeal recipe to my liking, so even though there’s tons of oatmeal recipes out there,  I thought I would still share how I make it! All vegan, full of fibre and nutrients and really satisfying!

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The trick to make the oatmeal really flavourful is using a really ripe banana. Seriously, don’t be afraid of those ugly looking, almost black bananas when you’re making this! It’s just like making banana bread, the more overripe the bananas are, the better and sweeter the finished product will be. I also use copious amounts of cinnamon in there because I love it so much.. Haha! Just use how much you prefer.

I’ve also had a huge obsession with oat milk lately, or in particular this brand. The only ingredients are oats, water and sea salt and it’s so creamy, tasty and perfect. Highly recommended! But offcourse you could use any other milk in this recipe such as almond, soy or rice.

Ingredients: (1 person)

  • 1/2 cup rolled oats (not quick oats)
  • 1 banana
  • 1 tsp. chia seeds
  • 1 tbsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. vanilla powder OR 1/2 vanilla bean, seeds scraped
  • 1 1/2 cup water + 1/2 cup non-dairy milk

Place the water in a pot and turn up the heat until it boils. Add the oats and stir.

Lower the heat to medium and let the oats simmer in the water for about 5 minutes.

In the meantime, mash your banana well and mix it with the chia seeds, cinnamon and vanilla.

Check your oats. They should have soaked up a lot of the water at this point. Now add the banana-chia mixture and milk. Stir to combine.

Set your heat to low and cover the pot. Leave your oats to simmer for 5-7 more minutes, and stir a few times in between.

When your oats have reached your desired consistency, turn of the heat and remove the pot.

To ensure maximum volume and fluffiness of the oats, I leave the pot to cool for about 10 minutes. You don’t have to do that, but I just like it that way.

Then place the oats in a bowl and add your favourite toppings! As you can tell from the pictures above, I’m loving raspberries, pears and pecans lately.. Oh and dates too. ♥Always dates♥

Enjoy!

– Sophie

Lentil dahl (+ macro rice bowl)

 There’s something truly special about (vegan) Indian food. I love how all the aromatic spices blends beautifully together with different kinds of vegetables and legumes, for an explosion of flavour. Dahl is something I’ve made many times in the past because it’s really easy, affordable and taste so incredibly delicious – especially when served with some fragrant jasmine or basmati rice with a sprinkle of chopped parsley or coriander (Some green peas on the side also serves this dish well). This dish is basically fat free, and provides a good dose of healthy plant-based protein. But trust me, you wont even know this is fat free, because the red lentils will break down and together with the tomato paste it will create a delicious and flavourful sauce!

There’s quite a lot of spices going on in this dish, and if you don’t have all of them on hand that’s absolutely fine. BUT I really do encourage you to get your hands on the listed spices, because they really provide an amazing flavour, and I use them all the time.

And please don’t judge this dish based on it’s appearance! Haha, I promise it tastes better than it looks.

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Ingredients (for about 3 people, if served with rice) 
  • 90g green lentils (preferably ‘le puy’ lentils)
  • 100g red lentils
  • 2 medium onions
  • 1 garlic glove
  • 1 tbsp. finely chopped ginger
  • 1 tsp. each turmeric, cumin, paprika and (optional) garam masala
  • A pinch of cinnamon, cayenne and sea salt
  • 2 bay leaf
  • Approx. 5-6 tbsp. tomato paste
  • 0.8 L water

Start by dicing your onion into small chunks, and chop garlic and ginger finely. Measure out your lentils and put them in a strainer – rinse well.

Sauté onion in a medium pot (in water or oil) for a few minutes. Add garlic, ginger and spices. Stir again for about a minute. Then add lentils, water and bay leaf. Cover the pot and bring to a boil. When it boils, turn heat down so the lentils are slightly simmering. Cook for about 30-40 minutes.

Check if your lentils are tender (they should be pretty soft and squishy). There should still be water left in the pot at this point. Add tomato paste and sea salt and stir well.

Let it set and cool for a while, for best flavour and texture. Then serve! 😉

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And just for another quick meal inspiration:

The other day I had some leftover rice, and I decided to create a macro-bowl kind of dish, with a healthy balance between grains, greens and legumes. It ended up looking like this:

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In this pic I used: jasmine rice, organic frozen edamame beans (that I peeled from their pods), lovely vibrant beet sprouts, creamy avocado cubes and a quick sauté of carrots, kale and green onion seasoned with sriracha. All in all a very filling, delicious and nutritious dinner!

Now, the point of this is that you can mix and match anything you feel like, and make a delicious macro-bowl. For grains you could for example use quinoa or brown rice and then add your favourite greens, legumes and sprouts of choice. Arrange it nicely in a bowl and drizzle with lemon juice/sriracha and you got yourself a super healthy and easy dinner!

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Enjoy!

– Sophie

Raw carob buckwheat porridge

This recipe has quickly become a staple for me, as I’m eating it several times a week! I’ve experimented with different variations of raw buckwheat porridge before, and without doubt, this is my absolute favourite! It’s creamy, thick (depending on how much water/milk you use. I don’t use a lot because I like it a little thicker), and tastes like indulgent chocolate pudding! I use carob powder because I love it soooo much, but raw cacao powder would to the job just fine. Just use whatever you prefer 😉

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It’s relatively easy and fast too, as you leave the buckwheat to soak overnight, so all you have to do in the morning is through everything in a foodprocesser/high speed blender.

Ingredients (1 person):
  • 90g buckwheat groats
  • 4 small gooey dates OR 2 medjooldates
  • 1 medium banana
  • 1 heaping tablespoon carob powder
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla powder
  • A splash of water or non dairy milk (I’ve tried water and almond milk but most of the time I just tend to use water because I find it doesn’t make that big a difference. You only need enough liquid to get your blender going)

The night before: in a container add buckwheat groats and enough water to cover. Place in the fridge overnight.

In the morning: strain and rinse buckwheat. Place in a foodprocesser/blender along with the dates and a splash of water/milk. Blend until almost smooth. Then add banana, carob and vanilla. Blend again until you get a smooth, creamy mixture.

Scoop into a bowl and decorate with your favourite toppings! My favourites are additional chopped banana, fresh raspberries and a few dried figs. But you could use any fruit, dried fruit, nuts or seeds you desire.

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 Enjoy!

– Sophie