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27 July 2017

Healthy Spring Summer Rolls

Have you ever realised that you just go with the flow and you desperately need to stop and stare? This has been my condition for couple of weeks recently until I just couldn't neither sleep well, nor relax. And then I decided it was time to change. Maybe not fully change everything but at least my attitude. Because in the end work is just work and "life is what you miss when you are busy making your own plans", right?

Nowadays, we are victims of a speedy life when time is precious and everything is done on our ways. But the thing is, when we are trying to recall even what we ate yesterday we can hardly remember the menu... Hm... Of course! If a person eats, watches a movie, talks to a friend and checks an extremely interesting Instagram account she has bumped into by chance and all of it simultaneously, the brain does not really concentrate on a particular activity. Which means that our body is actually not really expecting the food we are consuming at such moments and we do not even notice how we eat our daily portion in a bite. 

And therefore another trend gets even more popular. SLOW FOOD. Slow living, slow time, slow food... Whatever you call it. We have to just go back to the basics. Eating and enjoying each bite. Because that is what brings us the most benefit. Add a good company to this, cook your food together and then enjoy it at the big table. That is what a slow life should be like... 
My input in the slow living today is a wonderful recipe of spring rolls. Made in the summer but that does not matter because they taste perfect during any season. Done very quickly. And suitable even for parties.

Ingredients:
yields 8 rolls

8 rice paper sheets (*easy to find in the Asian stores)
200 g fresh salmon
1/2 avocado
1/2 yellow bell pepper
1/2 cucumber
10 cherry tomatoes (*my choice San Marzano)
2 cups salad leaves
1 cup precooked black rice
1 cup precooked quinoa
Philadelphia cheese 
fresh herbs
soy sauce
1 tsp Wasabi

The trick with the rice paper is that you need to soak it in a cold water in order to make it flexible and sticky. So prepare a bowl with cold water and set it aside. Wash the veggies and cut them into pieces (medium size, not turning into mush). Wash salmon loin and cut it into long pieces about 1 cm wide and 0.5 cm thick. Put the first sheet of rice paper into the water and keep an eye on it. The water should just cover it. Wait until it gets flexible and take it out. Put it on a plate and start filling. So just put a salmon string into the middle, Then some rice beside it, add veggies alongside, Philadelphia and herbs. Then fold as shown below.
   
Do the same with the second sheet and continue until you wrap all of them. As you've already understood you can use any vegetables you like and be creative.The original recipe would contain sushi rice but using black rice or red rice, quinoa will be much healthier and more beneficial for you so the choice is up to you :)

Serve the rolls with say sauce mixed with wasabi. Just dip the roll into the sauce and enjoy the taste...



Fro home-made to gourmet. 

XoXo
Anastasiya

28 March 2017

Wholegrain Spelt Pizza with Tuna, Egg, Olives and Artichokes

Spring, sun, first flowers, trees bursting into leaves and birds.. Everywhere, singing so loud that you tend to not notice the city noise. They took me. Within the last couple of weeks I took a lot of time travelling and walking. And yesterday I decided that after 13500 steps I have earned a home-made tasty pizza. 

Of course, it wouldn't be me if I had a ready frozen pizza or pizza dough and just put it in the oven to satisfy myself. Noooo :) I consciously choose what I eat following the easiest nutrition rules. One of my own:  substitute white flour with whole wheat flour. Easy? Who told it is difficult to #eatyourselfslim. Not tasty? Try first and you will forget what you've thought rapidly. Inspired by Jamie Oliver and as already promised in my Instagram I am pleased to share this recipe with you. There under tag #gourmetbalance you will find all my food related posts.

Ingredients:
yields one pizza

Pizza dough:
200 g wholewheat spelt flour
80ml buttermilk or kefir
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 whole egg 
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Filling:
60g canned tuna, drained and flaked
150 g grated pizza cheese *(I used Mozzarella)
2 tbsp sweet canned corn (optional*)
3-4 canned artichokes
2 San Marzano tomatoes
4-6 green olives
5 tbsp canned chopped tomatoes in juice or tomato paste
fresh basil
dried herbs
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees. In a medium bowl whisk whole-wheat flour with salt and baking powder. In a separate bowl beat egg with buttermilk and oil. Using a kitchen processor blend it all together with flour to get the dough. It might seem to sticky to you. You may add some flour. But do not add too much. Press the dough on the parchment paper forming a round dough for pizza and lie it onto baking sheet . Spread the tomato paste or chopped tomatoes in juice over the dough and sprinkle with half of the cheese. Bake for about 10 minutes. 

Meanwhile prepare the rest of the filling: cut tomatoes and artichokes. On the prebaked pizza dough spread the rest of the filling and cover it with cheese rest and beat the egg on top in the center. Sprinkle with dried herbs and bake for another 20 minutes until the cheese melted and the egg is baked through. Decorate with fresh basil leaves and serve immediately.

Voila! Easy, quick and so good. From home-made to gourmet. Forgive me, Italy :)

Enjoy each moment.

26 February 2017

How To Grow Cress Indoors?


  Spring is coming... Rare but brightly shines the sun and it brings so much of positive emotions! In order to be fully prepared for spring I decided to detox my body during the #Iquitsugar challenge. As you have already read in my posts some time ago, I have already done this challenge and showed you a lot of recipes that can be cooked during this time. 14 days I teach my body to live without added sugar. As a result I can easily live without eating all the chocolate around me. I get rather picky than "just-give-me-smth-sweet" type :) And my taste gets more sensitive to every sweetness in the food. Plus skin gets smooth and clean. All in all a good start or RESET!

Additionally I decided to add some more vitamins into my nutrition plan. And therefore I grew cress at home and right now will show you how to grow cress indoors. You might have already seen my previous post about cress. Today I want to show you the whole breath-taking process...

Well, first of all you need the seeds. Those you can buy in any home improvement or garden store as well as online.

Next time you buy some vegetables save the plastic food container from a grocery store. Line it with paper tissue or a kitchen towel. Wet the paper and sprinkle the seeds over the surface. Do not make the seeds swim under water. They just need to be wet. Otherwise they will dry out.

Cover your tray with cling film. Put it in a dark place for the first 2-3 days. All you need to do is just sprinkle them with water once a day regularly. Below  you can see how they look day by day.

On Day 3 I took the cling film off and left the tray on the window. It is unbelievable to see how it turns green during the day. And then again daily just sprinkle it with water evenly. 

On the Day 7 I have already enjoyed my home-grown cress during breakfast. And it tastes so fresh and good!!!

Believe me: Cress is worth growing because it’s filled with vitamin C (even more than orange), has anti-cancer effect, is good for your eyes and teeth. You can use it just purely or sprinkle over your food. 

Enjoy every day and see beauty in small things!
 Have a wonderful start of spring!




18 February 2017

Tuna & Spinach Quiche

Amazing, unbelievable and wonderful season is coming.... Spring! A time of the year when nature wakes up and showy us all the beauty. First flowers, small green leaves, juicy grass... So looking forward. My favorite season! And what can be better than getting it all on the plate?! Today in my menu Tuna and Spinach Quiche with Corn. Colorful, juicy, greeny... just like Spring! Enjoy it and get ready!

Ingredients:
yields  24 cm Ø round pie

110 g all-purpose flour
110 g wholewheat flour
1/4 tsp salt
2 tbsp white yoghurt
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2-3 tbsp cold water
2 tbsp butter
450g canned tuna, drained and flaked
200 g fresh spinach
2 tbsp sweet canned corn (optional*)
small bunch of parsley leaves, finely chopped
250ml whole milk
2 tbsp creme fraiche
3 large eggs, beaten
50g Parmigiano Reggiano or any cheese of your choice, grated
salt
pepper 

In a medium bowl whisk whole-wheat flour and all-purpose flour with salt. In a kitchen processor mix flour, butter, yoghurt and oil. Pour 2 tablespoons of ice water over the mixture. Blend again and if the mixture seems dry, add up to 1 more tablespoon water. Wrap the dough into plastic foil and leave in the fridge to rest for minimum 30 minutes and up to 2 days. 

Meanwhile mix the filling in a separate bowl: tuna, spinach, parsley, salt and pepper. Preheat the oven to 180 C. Butter your baking form, mine is 24 cm in diameter. Press the dough into the form and make a thin layer on the bottom as well as on the sides. Bake the dough for 10 minutes. Then fill it with tuna-spinach mixture. Decorate the top with sweet corn for more colors. 

Whisk eggs with milk , cream fraiche and cheese. Pour it all onto the filling to cover it and bake for 40 minutes until the edges get golden brown. Let the quiche cool down and enjoy this packed with protein pie. 

Healthy, easy and so tasty.

Gourmet Balance: From home-made to Gourmet!



23 December 2016

Best Christmas Recipes

Hello there! Long time - no see. And already Christmas. The time flies with the speed of light. And since we all have to be ready and fit for Christmas I prepared a Special Edition ""Best Christmas Recipes".

As you know my priorities when cooking are time and health. Therefore the recipes are made of good ingredients, less sugar, more love, less fat, more harmony. All in all a perfect choice for you if you DO CARE :)

Here they are, my TOP RECIPES for your 3-course Christmas menu:

Starter

I find it very convenient to make an exact menu for the evening so that you do not get lost with all the different dishes on the table and the most important - so that you do not overeat as this is the worst we can do for our bodies. Therefore I propose to prepare a very easy, fresh and tasty appetizer.
For example, one of these:
 Fresh Figs with Roguefort and Balsamic Sauce

King Prawns with Mango-Avocado Salsa on a Carrot Pillow  

Main Course
 
 For the lovers of tender lean rabbit mean I have a special recipe from Paris - Rabbit under Creamy Wine Sauce with Rosemary
 

For those who want a real Christmas atmosphere with seasonal products on the table, here is the best venison recipe - Bacon Rolled Venison Tenderloin under Wine-Cranberry Sauce on an Arugula Pillow

And if you like duck I have something for you  - Baked Duck Breast with Fresh Salad 

Dessert 

 In our family the number one cake is always my  Chocolate Naked Cake with Mascarpone Cream and Fresh Berries .

However, you are always welcome to have a cozy  tea time with typical Christmas treats like ginger cookies. I have a wide range of recipes here. For example, Easy Ginger Bread Christmas cookies  or Hand Made Ginger Cookies that you can by the way also use as Christmas tree decorations. Or for sweet marzipan lovers - Marzipan Hearts in Dark Chocolate .
Mmmm , Yummy!!!!!


 And the next day you finally have time to prepare a complete breakfast like one of those in Breakfast Section here

My Breakfast Special is Wholewheat Banana Date Bread .

Wish you a lot of fun, merry Christmas and do not forget: everything is good in moderation!!!!