Thai Green Curry with Vegetables

Following on from the amazing recipe I shared recently for Raw Carrot and Ginger Soup, I would like to share another absolute delight from the kitchen of the beautiful Amatara Resort in Phuket!

You can make this curry with any combination of vegetables that you desire, but great options are baby corn, carrots, courgettes, mushrooms, broccoli, and red pepper.

The inclusion of fresh basil is one of my favourite parts of this recipe, and really helps to create the distinctive and delicious flavour of the dish. It also doesn’t hurt that basil is bursting with goodness, such as vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, manganese, copper, and calcium!

Ingredients:

  • 25g green curry paste
  • 250ml coconut milk
  • 50ml vegetable stock
  • 10ml soy sauce
  • 3g kaffir lime leaves
  • 5g coconut nectar
  • 20g eggplant
  • 15g fresh basil leaves
  • 5g red chilli
  • Small bowl of mixed vegetables
Method:
Heat the coconut milk in a large pan for a few minutes before adding the green curry paste. Stir well.
Oil your wok and add your selection of vegetables. Heat for a few moments and then coat with the curry paste sauce. Add vegetable stock, kaffir lime leaves, soy sauce and coconut nectar to the wok and bring to the boil before adding the eggplant. Add the fresh basil leaves with the chilli and then serve.
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Almond Tofu Curry

You can’t beat a good curry and this super healthy, super tasty recipe is a testament to that! The sweet potato forms just a small part of the recipe but is actually where a lot of the sustenance and nutrition lies! Sweet potatoes are especially high in vitamin A, vitamin B5, thiamin, niacin and riboflavin! They are also high in carotenoids, which is where their fantastic colour comes from!

Adding tofu to this dish also helps to make it a filling, wholesome meal. Tofu contains beneficial amounts of protein as well as being a great plant-based source of calcium. Tofu also contains a type of phytoestrogens, known as isoflavones. These plant hormones have health boosting properties and are thought to protect against osteoporosis, heart disease and certain types of cancer.

To make this curry for two people you will need the following ingredients:

1 onion, diced
2 chillies, finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
An inch of ginger, finely chopped
1 cup of whole almonds
1 tablespoon of tamarind paste
A dash of water
1 tablespoon of coconut oil
1 block of firm tofu, cut into chunks
400ml of coconut milk
200ml of vegetable stock
1 large sweet potato, cut into chunks
2 cups of broccoli, chopped
1 cup of fresh spinach

Almond Tofu Curry2To get started you must first place the onion, chillies, garlic, ginger, almonds and tamarind paste into your food processor with a dash of water. You can then blitz into a paste. Feel free to add a dash more water if necessary.

Almond Tofu Curry3You can then add this paste to a large skillet with the coconut oil and cook on a medium heat. After a few moments you should then add in the chunks of tofu. Stir the skillet and cook for 15 minutes before adding in the coconut milk and vegetable stock. Continue to stir well and then add in the sweet potato and broccoli. Leave to cook for ten minutes before you add in the spinach and then cook for a further five minutes before serving.

You can either eat as it is or serve over brown rice or quinoa.

This is a recipe from an upcoming course on my e-learning portal, The Flexi Foodie Academy – head there now to check out what’s already on offer!

Carrot and Cannellini Bean Curry

This recipe is a gorgeous twist on your typical curry! This creamy and spicy curry hits the spot on those cold winter days and fills your body with goodness.

Cannellini beans are white in colour and kidney shaped. They are available all year round and are quite high in fibre! Their mild flavour makes them great for including in a wide variety of dishes – as does their great nutritional profile! As well as being rich in fibre they are also full of protein and an amino acid known as leucine, which is great for helping the body to recover from exercise. Cannellini beans are free from fat which makes them the perfect food for dieters!

Carrot and Cannellini Bean Curry4To make two or three servings of this curry, you will need the following ingredients:

1 tbsp of coconut oil
1 medium onion, finely diced
1 large sweet potato, peeled and cubed
3 carrots, peeled and cubed
14fl oz / 400ml can of coconut milk
1 tsp of ground turmeric
1 tsp of ground cumin
1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
2 cups / 16fl oz / 450ml vegetable stock
14oz / 400g can of chopped tomatoes
14oz / 400g can of cannellini beans
2 cups / 5oz / 140g fresh spinach, roughly chopped

Carrot and Cannellini Bean Curry1The first step is to place the coconut oil in a large skillet (frying pan) on a medium to high heat. You can then add in the onion and gently sauté for five to six minutes, stirring often. You should continue to cook and stir until the onions have softened and are starting to caramelise.

Next, add the sweet potato and carrots, and continue to sauté for a further eight to ten minutes, stirring often. You can then add the coconut milk, turmeric, cumin, and chilli and cook for a further two to three minutes, stirring occasionally.

Carrot and Cannellini Bean Curry2In a separate pan, on a high heat, bring the vegetable stock to the boil. Then add the vegetable stock to the skillet and stir well to combine. Bring to the boil for a couple of minutes then reduce the heat to a gentle simmer.

The next step is to add the tomatoes and cannellini beans and leave to simmer for a further 15 minutes. Finally, add the spinach in the last two to three minutes of the cooking time. Serve immediately either on its own or with your choice of grain.

This is one of the recipes from my soon to be released book – Eat Real Foods! You can pre-order your copy in the UK by clicking here and pre-order your copy in the U.S by clicking here!

Aubergine and Cauliflower Curry

It isn’t difficult to find a recipe for the perfect curry but it is difficult to find a recipe that is as healthy as it is delicious! With this recipe I am confident that I have reached the best amounts of both! The combination of cauliflower and aubergine provide fantastic nutritional benefits, and that is not to mention the health kick provided by the added ginger and brown rice too.

As you will all know, I am a big lover of whole grain foods and serving this curry with brown rice will not only make it taste better but will also ensure you are nourishing your body at the same time! Whole grains contain a massive range of vitamins and minerals, many of which are lost when a grain is processed into a different product! So opting for the whole grain variety of any food will ensure that you are getting the best amount of health boosting properties in your meal as possible!

The following ingredients will serve two – three people:

1 onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1 cup of uncooked brown rice
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh ginger
1 aubergine, chopped into 2cm chunks
1 small cauliflower, in small florets
1 yellow pepper, chopped into 2cm chunks
1 Tbsp. Curry Powder
4 Tbsp. tomato puree
A handful of coriander, chopped

aubergine_curry_cauliflowerSo to get started, the first thing you will need to do is cook the rice in a large pot of water over a high heat for 25 minutes until it is soft.  Then, remove it from heat and drain. Next, in a large frying pan, fry the onion, the ginger and the garlic for between three and five minutes.  Next, add the aubergine, cauliflower and yellow pepper with two tablespoons of olive oil.

The next step is to heat this pan over a high heat for between ten and twelve minutes. After this time these ingredients should all be cooked through.  You can then mix in the curry spice and tomato puree. Spend the next two minutes stirring the pan before you serve with the rice and then top with coriander.  Season with salt and pepper to taste if required.

Leafy Green Curry with Mushrooms

As much as I love the Christmas season I’m not too keen on the weather that comes with it! Having a delicious hot meal in the evening can make all the difference to your mood, especially if you are beginning to feel drained by everything that goes hand in hand with the festive season. This Leafy Green Curry with Mushrooms is just the thing to fill you with nutrition and satisfy your appetite at the end of your day. To make enough for two people you’ll need the following ingredients:

leafy_green_curry_with_mushrooms_the_flexi_foodie2

1 tsp of coconut oil

½ a tsp of turmeric

1 tsp of cumin seeds

¼ of a cup of fresh basil

2 large tomatoes, finely chopped

1 tbsp of fresh grated ginger

1 cup of mushrooms

2 cups of fresh spinach, finely chopped

1 cup of kale, finely chopped

1 clove of garlic, finely chopped

1 red chill, finely chopped

2 cups of fresh broccoli

leafy_green_curry_with_mushrooms_the_flexi_foodie5So to begin, heat the oil in a medium sized frying pan and once hot, add the cumin seeds and leave for just 30 seconds before including the chopped tomato too.

leafy_green_curry_with_mushrooms_the_flexi_foodie3Next, grate the ginger into the pan and add the chopped chilli. Lower the heat and chop your mushrooms into thin slices.

leafy_green_curry_with_mushrooms_the_flexi_foodie5If the pan begins to get dry at this point then feel free to add a splash of water. Once the mushrooms are sliced, stir together for four or five minutes before adding the kale, spinach and broccoli into the pan.

leafy_green_curry_with_mushrooms_the_flexi_foodie7Let this cook for a few more minutes and then include the chopped garlic. At this stage you can add a little bit more water if necessary as well as salt and pepper to taste if you require. Your curry is now ready to serve!

Sangita’s Tofu Curry

My friend Sangita was kind enough to share this recipe with me although it was originally intended as a prawn curry dish! To give this recipe my own touch, I’ve substituted tofu in to create a veggie alternative! Curry is a wholesome dish that is perfectly satisfying at the end of a long day and with ample opportunity to include a combination of herbs and spices, it is great for your body too! To make this recipe for yourself and three others, you’ll need the following ingredients:

sangita's tofu curry grassrootsandgrains2

2 medium onions
450g block of firm tofu, cut into small chunks
½ a block of coconut cream
1 teaspoon of cumin
4 ground cardamom pods
2 teaspoons of coriander
2 teaspoons of turmeric
2 teaspoons of chilli powder
Lime juice to taste
1 inch of root ginger
3 tablespoons of safflower oil
Lemon juice
Salt and pepper

Before you start preparing the curry, you should first add your desired amount of rice to a pan of hot water and leave to cook.

So to begin, you should chop the onions into small pieces and peel and slice the ginger. Next you can drizzle some of the safflower oil into a pan and fry these two ingredients together for two to three minutes. Whilst continuing to fry, include the cumin, cardamom, coriander plus the turmeric and chilli powder. Stir the contents of the frying pan together well before adding in all of the tofu.

sangita's tofu curry grassrootsandgrains3

Now you can turn the heat down a tad whilst you create the coconut milk. Do this by mixing the block of coconut cream with 475ml of boiling water in a jug and stirring well before pouring into the pan. Turn the heat back up and allow everything to cook together for between five and ten minutes.

sangita's tofu curry grassrootsandgrains4

Before you take the curry off the heat, check to see if the rice is ready and if so drain off any excess water and serve onto dishes. You can then season the contents of your pan with salt and freshly ground black pepper before serving over the rice. Garnish with a dash of lime juice and enjoy!

sangita's tofu curry grassrootsandgrains8

Curry is often thought of as an indulgent dish that is neither good for the body or your waistline, however when prepared with the correct ingredients and not full of fatty products, curry can actually be a healthy meal. Not only this but it isn’t too difficult to make and is loved by many! Also, by using tofu as an alternative to meat in your curries, you are providing the body with numerous healthy benefits. These benefits range from lowering your cholesterol count to helping protect against certain cancers. It is also believed that consuming tofu will help keep bones strong as it is a great source of calcium. Tofu is also full of vitamin E and is a fantastic source of protein. Every 100g of tofu contains approximately 17.19g of protein, making it easy to see that you can still meet your daily recommended allowance from this meat alternative!

The inclusion of spices like turmeric, cumin and coriander are also good ways to boost the nutritional value of your meals and also add to the taste. Also, when cooking it is preferable to avoid the traditional oils which have become the norm and instead opt for a healthier alternative. Safflower oil has been used since the Ancient Egyptian times and is a bi-product of a plant which is also widely used for colouring, flavouring and medicinal purposes.

sangita's tofu curry grassrootsandgrains6sangita's tofu curry grassrootsandgrains7

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Why Turmeric is the New Kale!

Turmeric is a spice that is most commonly associated with curry dishes, beyond this it is also a very versatile ingredient that has a huge range of health benefits. The spice itself is a derivative of the root of the Curcuma longa plant, which has an orange flesh and a rough brown skin.

As well as being used in cooking, turmeric also has other useful properties, most commonly being hailed as an anti-inflammatory in some Eastern medicine practices. The conditions that it is believed to treat are wide and varied from flatulence to jaundice and toothache to chest pain. Studies suggest that turmeric prevents cholesterol oxidising in the body which contributes greatly to the protection of your cardiovascular system. Due to turmeric being able to encourage the liver to increase the amount of messenger proteins that are being produced, it is in turn able to reduce cholesterol in the body. Many studies also now suggest that turmeric is a a great defender against certain neurodegenerative problems, such as Alzheimer’s disease. Less commonly it has also proved useful as a dye for textiles.

Getting more turmeric into your diet doesn’t have to be a difficult process. If you love curry then you can happily slip a teaspoon or two into your recipe; this will work well regardless of the type of curry you are making, be it meat, fish or vegetable. You can also use turmeric in many other recipes such as to sautée vegetables or even in soups.

When it comes to vitamins, turmeric is a fantastic source of vitamin B6, this is essential for maintaining your blood vessels and preventing heart disease. This spice is also a great source of iron, manganese, potassium and fibre. Iron has so many amazing benefits, especially for muscle and brain function. Similarly, manganese and potassium ensure healthy bones as well as blood pressure and blood sugar levels respectively.

As you can observe, turmeric is an all round excellent spice for both its medicinal properties and flavour qualities; one  that should be included in your everyday diet!

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