Donal Skehan: Get creative with fruit & veg
Getting your five a day has never been easier - or tastier - with this delicious smoothie and super satisfying baked sweet potato
Superseed and Sprouts Baked Sweet Potato
A roast sweet potato, although not exactly fast food, is a lifesaver when there is little else in the fridge. Little effort is required and the filling possibilities are endless! This is how I do mine after the indulgent festive season.
4 large sweet potatoes (approx 500g)
1 ½ tbsp rapeseed oil
200g kale, leaves torn from the stem
1 garlic clove, finely minced
½ tsp chilli flakes
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
8 tbsp natural probiotic yoghurt
1 tbsp pumpkin seeds, toasted
Small handful of alfalfa sprouts (approx 50g)
Preheat the oven to 200°C (180°C fan). Place the potatoes on a baking tray and drizzle with about a tablespoon of rapeseed oil. Bake in the oven for 45 minutes, or until tender when pierced with a fork.
Meanwhile, heat the remaining rapeseed oil in a large frying pan over a medium-high heat. Add the kale and fry for 3 - 4 minutes, until wilted and tender. Stir through the garlic and chilli flakes, and season. Slice open the baked sweet potatoes. Top with the kale, a dollop of yoghurt, a sprinkle of pumpkin seeds and some alfalfa sprouts.
Ultimate Green Smoothie
Green smoothies are a tricky art form - get the balance of sweetness and bitterness wrong and you're in for a whole world of pain. A recent visit to Green Beards juice shop in Ranelagh provided the inspiration for this one which is easily the best I have tried. Add whatever other vegetables (spinach or broccoli works well) you fancy, but don't skimp on the medjool dates as they add a vital sweet toffee taste.
1 frozen banana
750ml unsweetened almond milk
1 tbsp chia seeds
1 tbsp matcha green tea powder
4 kale stalks
½ ripe avocado
5 medjool dates, pitted
Add all the ingredients to a high speed blender and blend until you're left with a smoothie consistency. If you find the mixture is too thick add a little water until you have a pourable consistency. Pour into glasses and serve.
If my green smoothie is a step too far but you want to include more fruit in your diet, my Frozen Fruit Smoothie is a great option as it's packed full of vitamins and nutrients. Place 2 cups of orange juice, 1 cup of frozen berries, 1 banana, 1 tbsp of chia seeds and 3 tbsp of rolled oats in a smoothie maker and blend until smooth. This is a great one for kids as it looks appealing because of its vibrant pink colour.
Life in Balance
Every year, my wife Sofie buys me Donna Hay's latest book for Christmas, and this year I found a copy of her new book, Life In Balance, under the tree. If you don't know Donna Hay, she is an industry legend and is Australia's most trusted home cook. She has a multitude of books, homeware and magazines but this new book focuses on one important thing - balance. Pick up a copy online.
Eathos is a café & patisserie, located on Upper Baggot St in Dublin's city centre with a passion for exceptional food. As the name suggests, this eatery endeavours to provide dishes that use only the freshest, local and sustainably-sourced ingredients whenever possible. The menu is studded with Middle Eastern flavours but old favourites like poached eggs on sourdough toast are on offer too. With salads piled high and pastries to tempt even the strictest January dieter, a visit here in 2016 is an absolute must. See eathosdublin.com