Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Recipe: Brain Balls

Not the most inspiring name, but I found the recipe for these little fish cakes in a 'brain food for kids' supplement in the Observer magazine in January. Only just got around to trying them out.

The recipe calls for tinned salmon. The salmon I purchased was very bony and scaly. Unpleasant to look at, and rifle through to catch all the little sherds of bone. Consequently about half the tin went straight into the bin, and not into my fish cakes. And the mixture before cooking was, therefore, a little sloppy. However, once cooked, they held together well and were tasty with Whole Earth ketchup, though next time I make them I will add a touch of seasoning to liven them up. Oh, and I'll probably poach and flake a piece of salmon fillet rather than use tinned fish.

Anyway, the recipe can be found here (scroll down).

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Organic Artichoke Tapas Spread

Just recently, one of my most favourite lunches has been a sort of meze plate: oatcakes, goats cheese, perhaps some parma ham and olives, and apple slices. Continuing the theme I recently came across Sierra Rica organic Artichoke Tapas Spread at Tescos. The ingredients are very simple;

Olive oil
Sea salt
Black pepper

There were a couple of other varieties on the shelf, but they contained raisins and red wine vinegar (if my memory serves me well).

I haven't tried it yet, but thought it would make a nice change from hummous, or spreadable goats cheese.


Very subtle, yet tasty. But gets a little monotonous after four days!

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

OMG!!!! Ice Cream!!!!

Quick. Open your copy of Cooking Without by Barbara Cousins (see previous post), and turn to page 245. Seriously, it is AMAZING!!! I realise I haven't actually consumed any ice cream for two and a half years, but this candida-friendly version (maintainers only) seems fairly evocative of the real thing, at least in taste. The ice-crystally texture is more akin to sorbet, but who cares? It's ice cream people!!! (Can you tell I'm just a little bit more than ecstatic about this find?!).

The recipe calls for frozen fruit, and Tesco very handily produces ready chopped frozen fruit (I used banana and strawberry) for smoothies. Which makes this recipe an absolute breeze. Oh, and I used full fat goats milk instead of the recommended soya, rice or almond milk, and it worked out fine. A sturdy blender or food mixer is essential too.

Right, I'm off to have my third helping this evening! *stuffed to the brim with luverly stuff*

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Update and Book review: Cooking Without by Barbara Cousins

First things first. As I'm sure my regular readers must have noticed, I have been absent for several weeks. To cut a long story short, I haven't been very well recently (completely non Candida related!) and had to come home for some much needed R&R. Blogging hasn't been my top priority. And apart from anything else, I have - as a result of leaving Leicester - lost my super-fast broadband connection, to be replaced by an antiquated dial-up modem thingy. It's frustratingly slow. However, that doesn't mean that 'developments' on the Candida front haven't occurred.

I am now on new medication. In fact, the medication I was so concerned about taking before. For the first couple of weeks I really did struggle with the side-effects, which included nausea, complete loss of appetite, aches & pains and feelings of unreality, but since then I've felt increasingly great. And now I'm a super happy bunny - or at least I would be if it would stop raining for five seconds. But, here, we're not interested in that. We're bothered with Candida...

Surprisingly my thrush symptoms have all but disappeared. To reiterate, the symptoms I've had for the past THIRTEEN YEARS have disappeared. The constant itching and soreness - GONE (providing I make sure I drink plenty of fluid)! Ever since I started on the SSRI! Was my Candida problem simply an allergic reaction to stress hormones? I'm starting to think 'yes'. Since I started popping the happy pills I have been able to relax as I haven't been able to relax since, well, I don't know when. The low-level, generalised anxiety has gone. I've turned from a 'glass half empty' to a 'glass half full' kind of girl. IT'S A BLOODY MIRACLE!!! ;)

Oh, and did I mention that I haven't been taking my (extortionately priced) supplements (apart from the multivit and iron)? NO ANTI-FUNGALS at all! It's only been a month, so I'm not going to count my chickens quite yet. But, really, I have made SO much progress over the past month I'm delighted regardless. There's light at the end of that there tunnel. :)

Okay, now onto the main business of this post. The review (or more precisely a brief report) of Barbara Cousin's Cooking Without: Recipes free from added gluten, sugar, dairy products, yeast, salt, saturated fat. Eagle-eyed and sharp of mind regular readers might remember that I reviewed Barbara's similarly titled recipe book on vegetarian cooking 'without' last summer. I was pretty impressed with that (though I had a bit of trouble with some of the recipes), but this meat-friendly collection of recipes is even better. Especially the baking section. So far I've tried the Chewy Fruit Bars (p. 225) - which benefited from 10 mins in the oven - and the Apple, Date and Nut Muffins (p. 216) - which I had with apple juice-sweetened dried cranberries instead of the dates and raisins. Both delicious (relatively speaking!). Keen to make a start on working through the savoury recipes when I get back to student life.