Thursday, 28 July 2011

Beetroot, carrot and coriander soup and mango on the menu

Hello dear foodies,

As I am on holiday I have more time to cook. I never, ever buy ready meals and I do cook every day, but as I have more time now, I can dedicate more time to it, and that's exactly what I did this morning. So, here is what is on my menu today:

Starter: pieces of cooked beetroot.

I first washed them very well under cold water. Beetroot skin has lots of nutrients so you want to cook them with it on. You also want to keep the roots and a short stem of leaves while cooking them. Beetroot is naturally rich in sodium so you don't need to add any salt in the cooking water. If you want, you can add vinegar in the water for preserving colour and minimising the cooking smell. I didn't do any of that, I just cooked and cleaned them. When they were done, I peeled the skin off with my fingers under the water, cut off the roots and stems and cut the beetroot into pieces. You can add a bit of lemon, vinegar, mustard seeds, chili... I like my beets plain, but you can experiment with different tastes.

Main course - carrot and coriander soup. These are the ingredients:

So here is the list: 6 large carrots, 2 large cloves of garlic, 2 onions (any sort or colour, I just had lots of red onion in my bowl), vegetable stock and lots of fresh coriander. First you cut onion and garlic and saute them in a large pan (I also added red paprika. My nan always used red paprika in her cooking and so I never cook without it either). Here is how it looks:

Once the onions and garlic are brown, add your chopped carrots and saute them together for 5 minutes. Add half a litre of vegetable stock, as much coriander as you like and a pinch of salt. Put the lid on and simmer on medium heat for 20 minutes:

Once the soup was cooked, I used my "best friend" in the kitchen to blend all the goodness together:

And finally for dessert, fresh mango, cut in pieces (no instructions needed for that :-). 

So this is how my healthy little feast looks like:

You can serve your soup with a piece of fresh bread too. And of course, to wash it all down, you need lots of water.

This is a very simple meal with lots of vitamins and nutrients packed in. I am sure you can find other better and more complicated recipes for carrot and coriander soup, but I did not want to consult any books, I just wanted to put things I like together and see what happens. I only made this soup two other times, but had very good feedback from friends and family, so it's now one of my favourite things to eat. If I may say so myself, it is delicious!!

Also, all three things have lots of natural sugar in them, so there is no need for you to sneak into your ladder and get biscuits out. Your body won't crave any sugar if you have this for lunch, so you'll be alright in that department.

And can I just add an important note? I bought everything in Brixton Market for just £2. It will feed two more people tonight and I will still have some left for tomorrow's lunch. A healthy bargain, don't you think?

If you would like tips for eating healthy for the rest of the day, here is what I am doing:

Breakfast - porridge with natural live yogurt. For more taste, sprinkle cinnamon on top (cinnamon is so delicious and good for you!)
Lunch - delicacies I just prepared.
Dinner - small bowl of carrot and coriander soup and a piece of white fish.
Don't ever go hungry, so it is important to have snacks every few hours. My snacks for today are sweetcorn (I love, love, love sweetcorn), leftover beetroot, walnuts and pumpkin seeds.

And to reward yourself and your body and mind, go for a run (or any other exercises you enjoy doing, but make sure you enjoy it). In fact, as soon as I finish writing this, I will go for a short run (only 30 minutes) and do a few cardio exercises (another 30 minutes). I did it at 10pm last night as I was out the whole day and didn't have time to do it before. But I felt very good and pleased with myself afterwards.

However, if you feel lazy to do any of this (we all do sometimes, let's face it), or don't have the time, then make sure you do something you like doing; treat yourself. It can be a movie, eating a chocolate, having a glass of wine, or reading a book, but something you like doing on your own. Whatever you choose, make sure it is something that you enjoy doing. And of course, don't forget to make someone smile. That is important too and it will come back to you tenfold. 

Let me know what is on your menu today. Maybe you can share a few healthy ideas  - I'll be happy to give them a go. 

Have a lovely day and don't forget to be kind to yourself, your body and your mind.

See you all very soon.

Red xx



Jane and Lance Hattatt said...

This all looks very good indeed and we should certainly love to be fortunate enough to be invited to lunch with you.

We too are very fond of beetroot and love Borscht. Our Russian friends make an excellent version of this.

We have lived on Gazpacho for weeks now. The Hungarian tomatoes are perfect for this, far superior to the slightly orange tomatoes that seem to frequent the shelves of English shops. Coupled with fresh bread, nothing else is needed, except, perhaps, for a white peach which we regard as food of the Gods!!

Boye By Red said...

Dear Jane and Lance,

I very much agree with you re tomatoes. I've lived in the UK (London) for 20 years, but have never tasted tomatoes as good as the ones in Europe (specifically Bosnian ones). I love peaches too, but i have to admit I've never heard of white peaches. Curious!

Also, I've been looking through your blog, reading your older posts. You write beautifully and it seems to me we have lots of things in common.
A lunch with you would be wonderful, so who knows, maybe one day we might just meet in one of the cities, Budapest, Brighton or Brixton in London (we also share love for cafes!)

Thank you for visiting and looking forward to reading your next post.

Anonymous said...

Hey Zlata, I just finished preparing all the fruit and veg i bought for a bargain at the market last sunday...did not get time until tonight. I made a big fruit salade with melon and pineapple and i'll have some for breakfast tommorrow.then a salad with fresh lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber boiled eggs and is cold and rainy for days now here, and i could have some of your soup for dinner ;-) XXX email you soon.Virginie.

Fifi B said...

What a fabulous post filled with delicious healthy food and great advice. Your lunch looked great, I especially liked the look of the soup you made and might give it a go over the weekend. I haven't eaten much today, as am getting over a cold, however I did have a vegetable stir fry with some steamed rice. I really loved the end of your post, where you mentioned doing things you love, enjoying life and the importance of making someone smile. Keep having a terrific holiday! Fifi

Boye By Red said...

Helloooo Virginie, how lovely to hear from you. Both your salads sound great. I think i'll make myself the vegetable one.
I remember, years ago Safija and I came to see you when you lived in Camberwell and you made us a similar salad, only you had olives in it too. It was so so delicious, i still think of it as one of the best. Speak soon xx

Fifi, thank you so much for a lovely message. I know i am talking to the converted when it comes to healthy food. You know good food, and i have to say it makes me a little mad to see eat badly. I rarely make vegetable stir fry, but now that you've inspired me, i think i'll give it a go next week.
Also, don't you think it's important to be good to ourselves? People get so stressed out and worried, they don't find the time to enjoy life and do the fun things.
Hope your cold is going away now. I am nursing one too - our bodies are probably over worked and are shocked by all the free time we are enjoying. Speak soon.

Boye By Red said...

I mean to say, see people eat badly, not see eat badly :-)

Ramona said...

Ej draga! Nadam se da ces vidjeti ovu poruku... Ja se vratila sa godisnjeg pa obilazim zanemarene blogove. Ako budes dolazila u nase krajeve obavezno se javi. Moj mail je

Boye By Red said...

Hej gdje si Ramona? Kako je bio godišnji?
Ja idem u Tuzlu za jedno 10 dana, pa možda se i vidimo. Haj ćao za sad.

Anonymous said...

Oh that all looks so tasty and healthy.
What brand is your hand blender? I don't have one and still have never made soup due to this oversight.

Boye By Red said...

Hello Bourbon& Pearls

Thank you for visiting. The hand bkender i have is Braun, and it fabulous. It is easy to use and clean. I got it as a present, but i don't think it's expensive. I definitelly recommend it.

Happy cooking.