Although I’ve been a fan of Masterchef since Loyd Grossman presented the show in its primary-coloured-cornered olden days, it’s rare for me to remember any of the contestants. Jackie Kearney, however, is one I remember because, as far as I was aware at the time, she was the first vegetarian cook to be on Masterchef and, not only that, she was the first vegetarian chef to get to the finals in the show. (I also remember Jackie because, despite being vegetarian, she cooked meat on the show, which I thought was a shame but I suppose she couldn’t just sit out the rounds where they had to cook badgers’ eyeballs with prawn brain jus or whatever weirdo things they make them cook on there).
To help safeguard our nutritional intake and strength our immune system, we need to keep our hearts healthy, but what foods are actually good for our hearts?
Last week I toasted a sandwich in my HealthyFry air fryer and it was undoubtedly the best toasted sandwich I’ve ever had, so yesterday I experimented with a wrap and made an air fried wrap with Violife Creamy (vegan cream cheese available in most supermarkets – you can find it in the chilled ‘free from’ section), olives, mushrooms, capers and sriracha (hot chilli sauce available in most supermarkets) and that was just as good, if not better, so I decided in the interests of the human population (or at least in the interests of the three people who read this blog) to make another and photograph it to share with you before gobbling it up.
We all know about safety in the kitchen – don’t cook with saucepan handles sticking out where they can be easily knocked over, don’t leave hot oil unattended, don’t leave tea towels near the hob where they can catch fire, don’t have plug sockets near the sink, don’t stab someone for interfering while you’re cooking, etc. but what about other less life-threatening kitchen disasters that can occur? Here are a few of mine:
After recently being deported to London from Kent while waiting for my house sale to go through, I’ve been living on Tesco Meal Deals for lunch (much better value than the Sainsbury’s one, in case you were wondering) and pizza for dinner. I’ve had the new vegan Giardiniera from Pizza Express (not as nice as the vegan pizzas in Zizzi, in my opinion), a tandoori paneer pizza at Mr Singh’s (an all-vegetarian pizza place that will also sub dairy cheese for vegan cheese but, trust me, it seriously mings. I’d just go without cheese if you’re vegan) but mostly I’ve been heating up frozen pizza and especially ones from Dr Oetker, such as their Spinaci Pizza which has made a comeback after originally being a limited edition pizza back in 2013.
I am a mother-fucking goddamn genius. After ‘potato cakes’ being on the shopping list for two weeks and being ignored for two weeks and upon me enquiring why my potato cakes had not been forthcoming told ‘I don’t know where they are in Tesco. We have potatoes – make some’ decided that, okay, yes I will indeed make my own potato cakes. They weren’t as good as the ones in Tesco – Tesco ones are dense and you can hold them in your hand, like crumpets (or probably like any other potato cake but my experience of potato cakes begins and ends with the Tesco ones) and the ones I made were like fried mashed potato, probably because they were, um, fried mashed potato.
I’ve been attempting to up my exercise lately, which is all well and good but, with exercise comes appetite and if I burn off 300 calories, it makes me want to eat 1,000, so some healthy snacks were needed to stop me munching on crisps and chocolate.
Back in fuck-knows-how-long-ago, I bought a packet of ready-made polenta. I have no idea why I bought it but I did and it stayed in my cupboard until I realised I was never going to use it and it was approximately twenty-three thousand years out of date anyway, so I threw it away.
Spring is a popular time of year for people to go on a juice diet (or cleanse/fast/detox/whatever you want to call it) to lose a bit of weight in time for the summer or because they’ve been eating unhealthily for a while and fancy a juice diet in a bid to mainline some fruit and veg into their bloodstream quickly. Whatever the reason, and for however long you’re going to be juicing for, here are some tips to keep you on track and stop you from putting down your juice and picking up the pizza menu instead. I’ll also tell you about a new juicer that’s going to be on the market soon – the JUlaVIE (formerly known as the Juisir), which doesn’t require any cleaning. Yes, I said it doesn’t require any cleaning. Okay, you can skip straight to that bit if you want, I won’t be (too) offended.
Popcorn: that ubiquitous cinema snack. Personally, I think eating should be banned at cinemas; all that rustling and munching does my head in but, if people really can’t stop stuffing their faces for a couple of hours, then perhaps only silent snacks should be allowed – say, marshmallows, for example.