The Easiest Berry Chia Jam

This simple chia seed jam recipe is made with defrosted blueberries and raspberries (no cooking required)! Eat more nutritious berries with this easy jam.

This one has been a long time coming. Earlier last year, I received an unsettling call from the doctor’s office after a routine visit. Don’t worry, I am completely fine. I am, however, as neurotic as ever. I’m also a natural-born researcher, so I dove straight into the internet for more information. It’s better to do something than to do nothing, you know?

I opened at least fifty tabs to read the latest research about the cancer-fighting, insulin-stabilizing, life-giving powers of whole foods. Food really can be the best medicine—or at least, the best preventative medicine. I love that blogging allows me to promote whole foods via delicious recipes. I don’t talk much about nutrition since I’m not a dietitian, but here we go!

ingredients

I zeroed in some fascinating phytochemicals called ellagic acid, which is found in strawberries, raspberries and other (mostly red-skinned) fruit, and curcumin, which is found in turmeric. The beneficial effects of curcumin are magnified significantly when consumed with black pepper. (Interestingly enough, both turmeric and black pepper are frequently used together in Indian cooking, and Indians have far lower rates of cancer than we do here in the United States. Coincidence?)

Both show a lot of promise in preventing and fighting cancer, among other rather miraculous attributes. I resolved to eat more raspberries and take curcumin supplements. I really don’t eat enough fruit as it is, and figured the supplements couldn’t hurt.

Raspberries posed some problems. For one, they’re not in season year-round and they are really expensive when they’re not. Have you ever spent five dollars on a tiny container of organic raspberries, only to find that they’re moldy when you get home? Majorly disappointing. Plus, I’m only one person, and sometimes fresh fruit gets lost in my refrigerator before I can get to it.

Continue to the recipe…

The post The Easiest Berry Chia Jam appeared first on Cookie and Kate.

What We Eat by Fergal (age 3.5) & Finbar (1 year)

Simple Roast Chicken & Spuds-2

My parents are really crazy. They’re always talking about food. And music. And wine.

And I know my mum has this food blog, so I thought I’d sneak in and tell you a bit about the food that I like to eat. Just to give you a different perspective…

Breakfast

This may be TMI (too much information) but ages ago I had some problems with being a bit ‘blocked up’. So I started having prunes every morning. A habit I’m still loving.

Some mornings I just have toast with Kerrygold Irish butter. Actually I think my mum changed her mind about letting me eat gluten. For ages she used to give me this gluten-free bread which was OK but I’m much happier when there’s real sourdough in the house.

Other mornings it’s yoghurt. Even though my mum makes her own yoghurt, like any self-respecting kid, I’d prefer flavoured yoghurt with cartoon characters on the label. Between you and me I’m surprised she buys it for me.

Last week we had some friends stay and their little girl, Sofia had this really yummy muesli. So Mamma and I made our own muesli on the weekend and it’s my new favourite breakkie! Especially with the sultanas, dates and prunes (yep still lovin’ the prunes).

If there’s black pudding or bacon or sausages, I make a bee line for the pork products! Every now and then I’ll have some eggs (scrambled are my favourite) but I’m not ready to have them every morning like my folks.

OMG and we had the best breakfast the other day… Potato rosti. So so good! Almost as good as potato chips (my all time favourite food after dark chocolate).

Lunch

Most days we have leftovers from dinner which is fine by me. Especially leftover pasta or potatoes.

On other days I have cheese on toast sometimes with some calabrese salami (so good!). My favourite cheeses are Parmesan, Manchego (from Spain) and Ossu Iraty (from the Pyrennees).

And I’ve recently been enjoying cheesey chickpeas and these beans with rosemary.

I think my mamma wishes I could eat canned fish like her sardines, tuna or salmon. But the last few times I ate fish it made me sick – hopefully something I’ll grow out of.

If I’m still hungry I love eating peanut butter on a spoon.

Afternoon Tea

My mamma is working on a new sugar-free baking book at the moment which is awesome because it means there are always tasty treats in the afternoon. I especially love her brownies but this moist chocolate & zucchini cake is really good too (even though it contains vegetables).

Since it’s Summer here at the moment ice blocks made with pureed fruit are one high rotation. The mango ones are my faves but the watermelon and the cherry and yoghurt were pretty tasty too.

Dinner

In the last month we’ve started having family dinner all together. It’s way more fun and I’m finding I’m getting to eat a wider variety of foods. Mamma and Dadda always make me have ‘one little taste’ of everything on my plate.

Luckily there’s still always something on the table that I love to eat like spuds or pasta or sweet potatoes or fried rice or tortillas. So I’m not forced to eat the kale or cauliflower or sauerkraut or broccoli or other crazy veggies my mamma loves.

What Finbar Eats

My little brother Finbar is still a baby. He can’t tell you what he eats so I’ll fill you in.

Mostly it’s the same as me but he just uses his hands and makes a really big mess. Like food goes everywhere. Although now he’s nearly one he’s getting more in his mouth and less on the floor.

Mum usually gives him some fruit at the end of each meal. Blueberries are his favourite but he also loves raspberries, strawberries, mango, watermelon, pears, peaches, kiwi fruit, oranges. Yeah he pretty much eats all fruit, so my folks are always calling him our ‘little fruitarian’.

Anyway I’d better get back to playing with my Lego before anyone notices I’ve been using the computer.

Love,
Fergal
xoxo

ps. Did you enjoy reading this?
I’d love to hear what you think in the comments below… If enough people like it I might risk breaking into Mamma’s studio again 😉

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Fast Roast Rosemary Chicken & Veg

Tray bakes like this are brilliant for family dinners because you just pop everything in the oven and let dinner practically cook itself. Especially great on those evenings where there are a lot of demands on the cook’s attention! They’re also great because you can load up the plates of any little (or large) carb-lovers in the house and save the other parts for the low-carb fans.

enough for: 2 adults
takes: 40 minutes
6-8 new potatoes
450g (1lb) chicken thigh fillets
2-4 sprigs rosemary or thyme
2 handfuls snowpeas (mangetout), sliced
mayo, pesto or hummus to serve

1. Scrub and halve potatoes and pop in a pan of water. Simmer until just cooked, about 15 minutes.

2. Preheat your oven to 250C (480F).

3. Drain spuds and place in a roasting pan with the chicken and rosemary / thyme. Drizzle with oil and sprinkle over some salt.

4. Roast spuds and chicken for 15 minutes.

5. Add snow peas and cook until everything is well browned and the chicken is no longer pink in the middle. Serve in the middle of the table for everyone to help themselves with your sauce of choice on the side.

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Variations

lower carb – replace spuds with 1-2 heads broccoli or 1/2 cauliflower chopped into florettes (no need to boil first).

lemony – halve a lemon and roast with the chicken and veg. Squeeze over the lemony juices before serving.

vegetarian – replace chicken with a truckload of veggies! I’m thinking mushrooms, eggplant (aubergine), capsicum (bell peppers), zucchini, broccoli, cauliflower. Just make sure they’re chopped small enough so they’ll cook quickly. I’d serve with some roast almonds or other nuts for extra protein.

garlicky – pop a few unpeeled cloves of garlic in with the chicken.

carb-lovers / more substantial – increase the spuds or serve with crusty bread and butter.

different meat – also brilliant with good quality sausages

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What to Cook This February

Learn what's in season this month at cookieandkate.com!

Thank you all so much for your kind words on my last post. I have just been feeling so sluggish and out of sorts lately that I felt compelled to share. Your comments made me feel better, and I’m looking forward to trying out some of your recommendations (be sure to check out the comments if you have a case of the winter doldrums, too).

I feel like the multi-vitamin is helping already. Whether that’s the placebo effect or the real deal, I’m not sure, but I’ll take it. Onward! Here are some seasonal recipes to warm you up this February. I hope they inspire you to cook up some wholesome dinners. Spring can’t come soon enough.

Continue to the recipe…

The post What to Cook This February appeared first on Cookie and Kate.