Luxury Smoked Salmon Christmas Wreath

This delicious smoked salmon salad platter served with an onion cream cheese spread would make the perfect centerpiece of a nibble spread for guests, a delicious Christmas day starter or even a late Christmas Day brunch.

It looks very impressive on the table but it is soooo simple to make and very quick to put together. The combination of ingredients and flavours really work well together and are delicious served on slices of warm crusty bread.

I have used high quality thinly sliced Scottish (of course!) smoked salmon for this dish. The quality is important if you want the flavours just right.

Sprinkled throughout the wreath are bite sized chunks of crunchy cucumbers, ripe avocado chunks, chopped cherry tomatoes, red onion and garnished with spring onions and dill.

I served the wreath up with lemon slices for squeezing on the top and my creamy onion flavoured cream cheese spread. It is absolutely delicious eaten with crusty bread spread with the cream cheese and topped with pieces of salmon and salad.

The ingredient quantities are variable so I’ve based it on what I used to serve my family a small starter portion. So this would feed roughly 4-5 as a nibble or starter. Simply increase if you are serving more.

Ingredients

Salmon Wreath

Smoked salmon slices – about a 400g pack

Half cucumber – quartered length ways then sliced

Half an avocado – scooped whole, sliced then cut into similar sized pieces as the cucmber.

Half a red onion – sliced thinly, then cut into four again

Cherry tomatoes (about 200g) – quartered

2 Spring Onions – Slice thinly

2 tbsp of Dill – chop finely

2 lemons

Cream cheese

1 small tub of cream cheese

Half a red onion, grated or finely chopped

Dill

A squeeze of lemon

Salt and pepper

Crusty bread slices

Split the smoked salmon slices into smaller pieces and display around the plate in a circular fashion. Add the cucumber, avocado, red onion, and cherry tomatoes spread out around the wreath to create a good balance of colour. Sprinkle over the chopped dill and spring onion and season lightly with salt and pepper. Remember it will be quite salty already due to the smoked salmon. Quarter the lemons and display in the middle around the bowl of cream cheese (recipe below).

Empty the cream cheese into a large bowl and add in the grated onion, chopped dill, a squeeze of lemon and season with salt and pepper. Mix well and transfer to a small bowl. Position this bowl in the center of the wreath and arrange the lemon pieces around it.

We spread some slices of the crusty bread with the cream cheese and topped off with pieces from the wreath.

Enjoy!


Christmas Nibble Board

Christmas nibbles…ah!…so many happy memories of our family nibble platters at Christmas time!

I’ve seen many a delicious plate of nibbles in my day, from the excitement of my Mum and Dad bringing out our faves at Christmas to visiting Grandma and Grandad at Hogmany and feasting on scrummy hot nibbles all night when we were wee and then to us as parents ourselves bringing out warm plates of nibbles to our own excited kids!

There’s been many a happy memory around food in our household at Christmas young and old.

I made this somewhat healthier version of a nibble platter to feed the kids the day we collected the Christmas tree, because who has time to prepare huge meals when your all singing Christmas songs and decorating the tree with twinkling lights.

I used fresh fruits, vegetables, homemade crumbly feta almond cheese, sticky mango and sweet chilli sausage bowls and mushroom based sausage rolls. Yummy!

It’s super easy to prepare and assemble and you can of course vary the ingredients loads.

Ingredients

Sliced fruit and vegetables of choice

Vegetarian/vegan sausages

Vegetarian/vegan sausage rolls

Crispbreads for spreading

Crisps

Mango chutney

Sesame seeds

Sweet Chilli sauce

Chopped Spring onions

Cranberry sauce

Black olives

Sun dried tomatoes

Almond Feta Ingredients

2 cups of whole almonds

1 shallot or half a red onion chopped

2 chopped garlic cloves

1 lemon

1-2tbsp of plain yogurt (I used coconut) (optional)

Salt & pepper

Almond Feta Recipe

Soak the almonds in boiling hot water in a bowl for a couple of hours and peel off the skins. Pop the peeled almonds into the blender. Add the chopped onion or shallot, garlic, the juice of 1 lemon, yogurt if using, salt and pepper.

Blend in a high powered blender until completely smooth and taste, adjusting the seasonings as necessary. Add a little water if necessary too. You should have a really thick ‘stick to the spoon’ paste texture.

Lay out a muslin flat on the counter and spoon out the almond mixture onto the muslin. Wrap up into a tight ball and squeeze out the excess liquid over the sink. Tie a knot and hang into a jug, place in the fridge over night. If you don’t have time just squeeze out as much liquid as possible and then shape into a ball. Place in a glass dish and bake at 160 for 30mins or until golden and crispy on the outside.

Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with chopped herbs, sun dried tomatoes or olives etc. Serve with thin crispbreads or oatcakes.

Sticky Sausages Recipe

Cook the vegetarian sausages on a medium heat in the oven. Split into two bowls, coat one batch in mango chutney and the other in sweet chilli sauce. Serve in two small bowls, sprinkle sesame seeds over the mango sausages and spring onions over the sweet chilli ones.

Lay the cheese and sausages out on a chopping board and display the sliced vegetables all around the bowls to make it all look pretty and edible.

Enjoy!


Spicy Bean & Vegetable Curry

This is my fave spicy curry recipe and it’s so quick and easy to make. I love the blend of freshly grated tomatoes, spices and chillies to make the sauce and the fluffy basmati base soaking up all of the delicious flavours. I have made this recipe spicy as I like hot food but you can adjust it to your tastes by adjusting the chilli quantity.

I love to serve my curry up with some fermented foods, pickles, sauces etc. These are great for dipping any additional elements like poppadoms and naan bread in. In this recipe I have used the fermented ‘Tumeric and Black Pepper Kimchi’. It’s the perfect addition to this dish for taste and of course for the numerous health benefits that fermented foods may have.

I hope you enjoy this recipe!

Ingredients

4 tbsp of Coconut Oil

1tsp of mustard seeds

1 tsp of cumin seeds

a pinch of asafetida

6 medium tomatoes grated (or blend in a small blender)

1/2 tsp of tumeric powder

1 tsp of ground coriander

1 tsp of ground cumin

3 fresh sliced hot green chillies (adjust for more or less heat!)

2 finely chopped cloves of garlic

1 tsp of grated fresh ginger

1 tsp of sugar

1 tsp of salt

2 tsp of coconut oil

A selection of sliced fresh vegetables

A tin of beans of choice, kidney beans work really well!

Heat the coconut oil on a medium heat in a large flat pan, I use my large flat cast iron casserole pan. Once the oil has melted add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds and asafetida. When the mustard seeds start popping add in the fresh tomatoes. Stir, then add in the tumeric powder, ground coriander, ground cumin, chillies, garlic, ginger, sugar and salt. Leave simmering on a low heat.

Heat up the coconut oil in another pan and add in the sliced vegetables, beans and cook on a medium heat for 10 minutes. Season and then add into the simmering curry sauce. Cook gently for 20 minutes and serve with freshly cooked basmati rice. I use my pressure cooker settings for fluffy white basmati rice, a rice cooker works well too.

Serve up with pickles, sauces, breads and poppadom. Enjoy!

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Love Angie x


Christmas Tree Wholemeal Spelt Rolls

These fluffy rolls are perfect served alongside the ‘Creamy mushroom & chestnut pate’. Serve them freshly baked, warm out of the oven and pour the drizzle over just as your about to eat them. Delicious!

Recipe – Creamy Mushroom & Chestnut Pate

Ingredients

2tbsp of dried yeast

750ml warm almond milk

50g of coconut oil

950g of wholemeal spelt flour

2tsp of salt

1/2 finely chopped red onion

2 finely chopped garlic

1/2 cup of olive oil

Finely chopped rosemary (or other chopped herbs)

Mix the yeast, warm almond milk and coconut oil together in a large bowl and leave for 15mins. Sift the flour and salt into the bowl. Stir together until a dough forms, adding a little extra flour or milk to create a non sticky dough. I love to use the dough hook on my kitchen aid to form the dough and for the kneading but hands work just as well.

Remove and knead the dough for 10 minutes on a floured surface. Return the dough to the bowl and cover with a clean tea towel. Leave to rise for one hour in a warm place.

Tip the dough back out onto the floured work surface and knead it again. Split the dough in half and keep splitting until you have around 26 small pieces.

Place some of them out onto a greased baking tray in the shape of your choice. I decided on a Christmas tree shape. Leave to rise again for 20minutes.

Bake at 200oc for 20-25mins. Meanwhile fry the onion and garlic in the olive oil on a gentle heat until soft. Set aside for drizzling.

Remove rolls and add the drizzle to serve. Best enjoyed immediately. Enjoy!


Moroccan Chickpea and Spinach Stew

I love the textures of this Moroccan spiced dish! The silky spinach, chunky butternut squash and chickpeas cooked in a delicious spicy tomato based sauce. It’s absolutely divine and works well with the cous cous and additional peas to soak up the flavours.

Ingredients

8 tomatoes

Olive oil

2 tbsp of coconut oil

2 chopped onions

3 chopped cloves of garlic

1 stick of celery finely chopped

1tsp of tumeric or freshly grated

1tsp of cinnamon

1tsp of chilli

2 handfuls of chopped butternut squash (I used frozen)

8 cubes of frozen spinach

A handful of red lentils

1 tin of chickpeas (400g)

A bunch of coriander

1lt of vegetable stock

2 cups of cous cous

1 cup of peas

Salt & pepper

Start with the tomatoes, cut in half and place on a baking tray. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast on a medium heat for 30mins until soft. Blend into a puree and set aside for the sauce.

Heat the coconut oil in a large pan, I like to use my medium cast iron oven proof pot. Add the onions, garlic and celery and cook on a medium heat for 10 minutes. Add the spices and cook gently stirring through the flavours.

Add the vegetables, lentils, chickpeas, vegetable stock and tomato sauce (made previously). Season with salt and pepper and the coriander and slow cook on a low heat for at least 30mins. I like to finish it off in the oven for 20mins.

Boil 3 cups of water in a separate pan and add the frozen peas, cook for a few minutes. Add in the cous cous, season with salt, take off the heat and add a lid to the pan. Leave for 10mins to finish the cooking process.

Serve the stew over the top of the cous cous and sprinkle with some additional coriander.

Enjoy!


Autumn Fall Cookbooks My Faves!

I love cook books! I love the photographs, the graphics and even the smell of a good book, lol! I thought I would share my fave family cook books that I bring out in the Autumn Fall season to stay warm and to keep the family nourished! I hope you find some inspiration here in this video for your own family.

There are links at the bottom of the page where you can buy the books from Amazon, (they are affiliated links and I should probably notify you that I might earn 10p or so if you click it lol!!!!) If you have an independent book shop, order them in there and support small local business instead!

With love x



Aug – Family Breakfast Ideas

We are still in August but to be honest it feels more like September with the colder temperatures and rain we have been having. Below you will find my ‘week of breakfasts’ video which I created from our weekly breakfast meal plan.

We decide on 5 breakfasts for Monday to Friday and repeat those throughout the month. This way I find we eat more variety (yes more!) and we are prepared for breakfast in the morning. Meal planning also helps a lot with budgeting and meal planning and has helped us stick within our budget and even save money from it too.

Click the video below to watch our week of breakfasts in August, I hope you find some ideas for your own family:

Monday – Peanut butter bagels with bananas

Tuesday – French toast sticks with berry topping

Wednesday – Granola and yogurt bowls with fresh fruit

Thursday – Omlette with spinach and cheese

Friday – Granola with almond milk and fruit

With Love


Chocolate Milkshake Recipe

chocolatemilk

I love chocolate milk and especially this healthy homemade chocolate milk recipe made with juicy medjool dates and peanut butter powder!  This recipe is so quick to make and makes a great after school snack for the kids or a treat for the bigger kids at home 😉

DSC04161.jpg

ingredients

Serves 2/3

1 Banana

2/3 Pitted Medjool Dates

1 Tbsp Peanut Butter Powder

3 Tbsp of Raw Cacao Powder

2 Tbsp of Pumpkin Seeds

2 Tbsp of Sesame Seeds

1-2 cups of Almond Milk

Water

You can vary the ingredient quantities a little here and there to your tastes.

Blend all of the ingredients in a high powered blender and serve cold.  Adjust the almond milk or water for your preferred texture.  My favourite is a double cream texture.  In the winter I like to keep the blender on to serve it a little warmer, you could also warm it up on the cooker to make creamy hot chocolate.

Enjoy!

Angie Milne

If you loved this recipe and would like to watch some instructional cooking videos and other holistic health tips and ideas pop over to my YouTube Channel and subscribe to be kept up to date with healthy snacks for all the family!

Natural Living You Tube Channel

 

 


Broad Bean Soup

Just what I needed today after a cold walk with the dogs and collecting leaves with my son for some leaf identification work we were doing.  Such a warming recipe, I served it up with a little drizzle of hemp oil but you could also use olive oil and perhaps some croutons.    mmmm!

Ingredients

3-4 cups of broad beans (frozen or fresh)

1 leek (chopped)

1 onion (chopped)

3 cloves of garlic (chopped)

1-2 red chillies (chopped)

2 tsp of cumin

1 tsp of tumeric

1 tsp of paprika

oat cream, or other dairy free cream ( a dash during blending, optional)

Green Smoothie Bowl

Add all the ingredients apart from the optional cream to the soup pot along with the stock cube and water to just over the vegetables.  Cook for 40-50 mins or until vegetables are tender and blend in the blender (be very careful when blending hot liquids, make sure the blender has the lid on securely) add in the cream of choice if you like to your desired consistency.  Serve with warm wholemeal bread or perhaps a toasted sandwich.

Any questions pop them in the comments below.

Love Angie

If you enjoyed this recipe pop over to my youtube channel for more recipes, holistic health tips, my family life, and my weight loss vlogging!  Thank you! Angie x

Natural Living You Tube Channel


Weight Loss Vlog Week 2

Weight loss diary week two!  :-). A quick look at how much I’ve lost this week, what I had for brekkie before filming and what I do for my exercise routine and personal growth!

I apologise the quality is a bit crap, my camera was playing up and wasn’t focusing properly!  I’ve got it fixed already and have filmed week three in better quality!

Now to get on with my studies and my video editing.

Love, Angie x