Archive for February, 2010

Nutritional Therapist In-Store

We had a great day yesterday with Nutritional Therapist Jess Keane in-store to provide advice on a diet based approach to Osteoporosis.  Jess has a great approach to diet and nutrition, and the fact that she is also a cook means that she is able to offer really practical dietary advice.

Jess is booked for a number of themed in-stores on the following dates:

Thurs 25th March:    Pregnancy Care
Thurs 6th May:        Asthma, Allergies & Food Intolerances
Thurs 27th May:       Diabetes

We delighted to offer this service to our customers, and expect these sessions to be very popular.

If you would like to book a free one to one in-store session, please email us at or phone us on 058 23901.

Fair Trade Fortnight

Fair trade fortnight is is here again.  This year the celebration of  all things Fair Trade runs from 22nd February to 7th March.

Unlike the supermarkets, who are usually only interested in fair trade for two weeks every year, we have a great range of fair trade products all year round.

Our Fair Trade range currently includes Dove’s Farm snacks & biscuits, Biofair pasta & cereals, Primeal quinoa, Tropical Wholefoods honey & fruit, Traidcraft sugar, Irish Independent rice, Green & Black’s Maya Gold chocolate, Qi and Clipper teas and Cafe Direct, Equal Exchange and Union hand-roasted coffees.

The guys at Diese Design, who set up this website for us, are fuelled almost entirely by Ubuntu Fair Trade cola.

Chickpea Chilli

200g dried chickpeas (or one 400g tin)
1 onion, finely chopped
75ml olive oil
2-3 red chillies
1 400g tin chopped tomatoes
2 tsps cumin seeds
a handful of chopped fresh coriander
(or 1 tbsp of dried coriander leaves)
salt & pepper

Serves four

This recipe has never failed me & is really quite simple. If using dried chickpeas, you’ll need to soak them overnight and then boil them in lots of unsalted water until tender. This normally takes about an hour, but as with all dried beans it could take up to three. Remember that chickpeas never get soft like other beans.

Gently fry the onion in about a tablespoon or so of the olive oil. Slice the chillies into thin rounds and add them to the onions together with the cumin seeds. Just how many chillies you use and whether you de-seed them depends upon how hot you want the dish to be.

Fry gently for a minute of so before adding the tinned tomatoes, drained chickpeas, the remainder of the olive oil and just enough water to cover everything. If you are using dried coriander leaves add them now. Season & cook uncovered at a brisk simmer until the water has gone and you’re left with a lovely shiny looking sauce.  If using fresh coriander stir, it in just before serving.

This is a really versatile dish that is great as a main course with brown rice or to accompany a piece of grilled meat like a lamb or pork chop. It is even great cold as a lunch, or served as a salad or with a barbeque.


Baked Butter Beans

500g dried butter beans
400g tin of tomatoes
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 tsp dried parsley
1 tsp dried thyme
180ml olive oil
3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
Salt & ground black pepper

Serves four

This is a Greek dish, and if you want to show off, tell people you’re making Gigantes Plaki.

Soak the beans overnight. Rinse, and cook in unsalted water until soft (this usually takes 45 minutes to an hour). Drain and set aside while you’re making the sauce.

Heat the oil in a pan and cook the onions gently for a few minutes until soft. Add the chopped garlic and continue to cook on a low heat for a further minute or so. Add the tomatoes to the pan, together with the herbs and seasoning.

Put the beans into an oven dish and pour the sauce over. Bake in a preheated oven at 350oF/180oC/Gas Mark 4 for 45 minutes.

This is a really versatile dish that is great as a main course with brown rice or to accompany a piece of grilled meat like a lamb or pork chop. It is even great cold as a lunch, or served as a salad or with a barbeque.

If you want to make it meaty, fry some sliced chorizo or other sausage with the onion and garlic and then continue the recipe as normal.


Brazil Nut Loaf

1 large onion
225g mushrooms
2 cloves of garlic
1 tbsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground ginger
2 tbsp olive oil
200g tin chopped tomatoes
1 tbsp tomato puree
200g brazil nuts, roughly chopped
100g wholemeal breadcrumbs
salt & ground black pepper
1 large egg, beaten

Serves four to six

I made this moist & tasty loaf for a vegetarian family member last Christmas. It was so good that everyone else had a slice too.

Preheat the oven to 190oC/375oF/Gas Mark 5 and lightly grease a large loaf tin. Chop the onion in a food processor; add the mushrooms & garlic and whiz until the whole mixture is a thick paste.

Cook the paste with the spices in the oil for 4 to 5 minutes, until the juices run from the mushrooms. Added the tomatoes and tomato puree and cook for a further 4 to 5 minutes to reduce the tomato juice.

Transfer the mixture to a large bowl & add the chopped nuts & breadcrumbs. Season with salt & pepper. Mix in the beaten egg to bind. Spoon the mixture into the prepared loaf tin. Cover with lightly oiled foil and bake for an hour, or until set. Remove the foil and bake for a further 10 to 15 minutes to brown the top.

A simple home made tomato sauce or salsa really brings out the flavour. Served hot, this makes an ideal alternative roast, simply sliced and served with vegetables and roast potatoes. It also tastes great cold with salad.

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