Thursday, 7 July 2016

"Faketella" Truffles (raw, without any refined sugar, vegan)

I have been experimenting with some recipes trying to make my own version of Nutella.

The first batch turned into a chocolate which we just ate.

And the two other batches seemed nice and tasted good but they became really hard, so I made truffles from them. They ended up tasting really good, too.

This recipe is more “guidance”.

1/2 cup of raw cacao powder

1/2 cup raw cacao butter @Sevenhillswholefoods

1 Tbs of coconut oil +Nutiva UK 

1 Tbs of natural erythrol

1 tsp of lecithin ( I used Lecigram, which is a non-GM soya lecithin)

1/2 a cup of hazelnuts

1/2 tsp of pure vanilla powder

pinch of salt

1 Tbs of maple syrup

about 1/2 a cup of chopped hazelnuts +Whole Foods Market 

Grind the hazelnuts to a fine consistency and set aside.

Melt the cacao butter and coconut oil over steaming water.

When it is melted, add the erythrol and the lecithin and whisk for about 3 minutes.

Take off the steam and keep whisking for another 3 minutes, or until the granules of the lecithin are almost all dissolved. The erythrol should be all dissolved by now.

Add the maple syrup, vanilla and salt and whisk for a couple of minutes, until it is all combined.

Stir in the cacao powder and the hazelnuts and mix it with a hand held mixer for a couple of minutes.

Set aside. It should get harder in couple of hours.

Then you can form little truffles and roll them through the chopped nuts. You might have to press firmly to push the hazelnuts into the truffle.


Nutritional information:
Raw Cacao powder is rich in polyphenols which help our body to remove damaging free radicals,
                                  is rich in magnesium and b vitamins, which is beneficial to rejuvenation,
                                  is great source of sulfur, essential for maintaining healthy skin, hair and nails.
                                  Because of its nutritional properties, raw cacao powder is energizing and brain 
                                  stimulating as well.
Erythrol                   is plant based sugar alcohol. It is 100% natural, has fewer calories than all other
                                  sugar substitutes or other natural sweeteners. Does not raise blood sugar or 
                                  insulin levels
Lecithin                   I used it emulsify the mixture but lecithin is also a source of choline which helps 
                                 to dissolve cholesterol.
Hazelnuts                are rich in oleic acid, magnesium, calcium, B vitamins and vitamin E.
                                 this makes them a great anti ager as they have a positive effect on our skin,
                                 heart, bones and muscles.  
So these little balls of joy are not only delicious but they are also full of nutrients. However, do not eat too much of them at once as they do contain some amount of fat (cacao butter and coconut oil).




Wednesday, 6 July 2016

Healthy Afternoon Tea

The sun came out today and it felt like being reborn. Everything felt lighter.

Even though the day was busy and there was a lot to do, I took some time to relax and enjoy the new issue of Natural Health Magazine.

Having an afternoon tea on the terrace just felt like the right idea.

Even Sparkle agreed  and came to join me.

I prepared some fruit salad by combining berries, peaches, cherries, passion fruit, melon and pomegranate seeds and sprinkled it with almonds and walnuts.
I made some tea - one of my favorites - vanilla rooibos from Dragonfly.
It was a really nice afternoon!


Tuesday, 5 July 2016

Enchanted Fairy Salad with Orange Dressing

I found these edible flowers from at the market and bought them because they looked pretty. I decided to create something pretty for my daughter.

For the Salad:
Arrange any washed lettuce leaves (I used a nice red lettuce from on a serving plate.

Add some alfalfa sprouts (I like these from +Riverford  ),

1 thinly sliced radish,

about half a cup of pomegranate seeds,

and several edible flowers.

Now make it all look pretty and then sprinkle with a tablespoon of hemp seeds. I bought mine from

For the dressing:
Combine together all of these ingredients in a jam jar and shake well.
Juice from half an orange
Juice from half a lemon
3 Tbsp of olive oil
1 Tbsp of apple cider vinegar. I love @Biona organic cider vinegar
Small pinch of salt
1 tsp of raw honey.

And enjoy the salad!




Sunday, 3 July 2016

Steamed artichokes with balsamic vinaigrette

Artichokes are great in combating water retention and bloating. They are a great source of antioxidants and folic acid. A perfect anti-aging food!
Steamed Artichokes:
4 artichoke globes +Riverford 
1/2 a lemon
3 cloves of garlic
1 tbs of whole pepper
1/2 cup of wine (optional but recommended for even better taste)
water ( to reach about 2 cm / 1 inch high in the pot)
Wash and clean the artichokes and cut the stems off. Then slice the garlic and add the pieces randomly inside the leaves.

Then place the globes in the pot, put sliced lemon in between the globes, sprinkle with pepper and add wine and water. Steam over low heat.
Check regularly so the water does not evaporate. You will have to add some water throughout the cooking.
It takes about an hour for them to be cooked. It depends on the size and toughness of the globes. You need to test them after about half an hour by pulling one leaf off and if it goes out easily, they are done.  Mine took about 1 1/2 hours to cook.
Prepare your vinaigrette as the artichokes are cooking.
Balsamic Vinaigrette:
2 tsp of good quality balsamic v inegar
3 tsp of Dijon mustard; I like to use +Maille France  
2 tsp of extra virgin olive oil
1 or 2 cloves of garlic, depending how you like it
Pepper and a little pinch of salt; I like to use +Maldon Salt 



Saturday, 2 July 2016

Postworkout exotic Smoothie with Brazil Nuts


What makes this a great drink after you exercise?

Moringa powder from +Aduna (you can get it easily from +Holland & Barrett ) is full of proteins, beta carotene, calcium, potassium and vitamin C. It will help you to recharge quicker.
Baobab, also from +Aduna,  contains more antioxidants than any other whole fruit but it is also packed with vitamin C and fibre.

Pineapple, papaya and kiwi, all bought from my local +Tesco,  have great anti-inflammatory benefits and they also contain good digestive enzymes.
Ginger aids digestion as well and it helps you fight viruses and bacteria, in case you brought some little guests home with you from the gym. I love this organic ginger from +Riverford, which is really reasonably priced.
Watermelon contains high amount of Lycopene which is a carotenoid phytonutrient that's especially important for our cardiovascular health, and an increasing number of scientists now believe that lycopene is important for bone health as well.   

Coconut water contains electrolytes, which you lose during an intensive exercise via sweat, so this way you get the right hydration fast. I really love the +Cocoface Coconuts +Cocoface coconut water.
Passion fruit is also very healthy but I mainly use it because it is my favorite fruit.
Brazil nuts are a good source of proteins but they also contain selenium (about 4 give you the right daily amount).Selenium is especially important for a healthy thyroid function.
Oranges contain Vitamin C and a lot of dietary fibre.

This drink tastes much much better than it looks! :)

1 tsp of Moringa powder
2 tsp of Baobab powder
1 cup of Coconut Water
1 cup of Watermelon
1 cup of Pineapple
1 Orange
1/2 Papaya
1 Kiwi
1 Passion Fruit
about 2cm of Ginger
Blend it together and enjoy it with Brazil Nuts! I used my beloved SalterNutri Pro 1000 that I bought on

Friday, 1 July 2016

Salmon salad with sesame dressing

This is my favorite summer post-workout lunch. It has the perfect taste bud-stimulating combination and is very easy to make. Especially if you prepare the vinaigrette in advance.

It starts like this:
1 head of lettuce (I used a mixture of 2 kinds bought at the market from Wild Country Organic )

2 cups of chopped tomatoes (I chose these delicious sweet cherry tomatoes from +Whole Foods Market )

3 spring onions (using all of the onion; these were nice and crispy from +Riverford )

1/2 of a cucumber

2 avocados

1/2 of a lime 

1/2 of a chili pepper 

1 tablespoon of Coconut oil (my favorite is +Nutiva UK )

some salt and pepper

2 portions of salmon with skin (I like this prepacked wild Alaskan salmon from +Waitrose )

1 Tuna steak ( +Waitrose )
Melt the coconut oil in a hot pan.

Add the salmon (skin side down) and tuna; sprinkle them with salt and pepper and squeeze on 1/2 of a lime.

Cover it with a lid and turn the heat lower.

Let it cook for about 5 minutes.

Then take the fish out, put it on a large plate.

Take the salmon's skin off and return it in to the pan.

Cover the plate with the lid.

Cook the skin on both sides on an open pan until golden and crispy.

Leave the fish to steam under the lid on the plate while you prepare the salad.

Just chop and mix all the vegetables together (except the chili).

Then combine it all together in a bowl.


Sesame dressing:
1/2 cup of Rice Vinegar ( +Clearspring Organic )

3 Table spoons of Toasted Sesame Oil

1/2 cup of Untoasted Sesame Oil ( +Clearspring Organic )

1/2 cup of Tamari Sauce

1/4 cup of Sesame Seeds
1 clove of garlic, pressed

Put all of these in a jam jar and shake well.

Then chop the chili and sprinkle it over the salad with some extra sesame seeds.

Use as much of the dressing as you like and bon apetit!
This is a delicious and very healthy lunch, packed with proteins, minerals and Omega Essential Oils.

Wild Alaskan Salmon is the best fish you can get. It is extremely rich in Omega 3 essential oils, which some studies associate with being able to prolong our lifespan. Tuna is a nice lean protein, but you should not consume too much of it. You should also always eat some Brazil nuts after eating tuna, as it can help your body to eliminate mercury that might be high in the tuna.

Sesame seeds are rich in beneficial minerals and other nutrients like calcium, manganese, copper, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, vitamin B1, zinc, molybdenum, selenium, and dietary fiber. This means they are great for our skin and bones.

Brown rice vinegar has plenty of amino acids which are the building blocks of proteins. Protein plays a crucial role in almost all biological processes. If we do not get enough amino acids from our diet, our metabolic processes are effected which then consequently can lead to weight gain, inflammation and skin problems amongst others.


Please try this salad and let me know what you think!



Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Classic Basil Pesto

Wild Country Organics ( has been selling really nice basil at my local farmers market in the last weeks. Pesto is always very popular in my family and we have been making it twice a week for about a month now!

I used some leftovers of Biona spelt penne This penne is wholegrain and made from spelt flour which means it contains more vitamins, fibre and proteins than wheat pasta. Spelt is an excellent source of vitamin B2, manganese, niacin, thiamin, and copper. As we get older we need to make sure we consume nutrient-dense food. For example manganese is very important for our bone density which slowly diminishes with age. Manganese also helps with collagen production. Collagen is very important in the rejuvenation process as we slowly loose our own ability to produce it as we age. This effects joints and skin. It is therefore important to consume food rich in manganese daily.

Basil is so gentle, so beautifully fragrant and this particular one ended up being slightly sweet. Delicious!  This little green plant is quite rich in phytonutrients and vitamins. It has some anti-inflammatory properties (inflammation is one of our worst enemies when it comes to aging). It is rich in Vitamin A which helps fight free radicals.
Olive oil is one of those special things that every diet talks about. The latest advise says that we should consume a couple of tablespoon a day for good heart health.

Garlic is a superhero in all diets. A tiny little stinky superhero that seems to be able to save you from almost any trouble. It kicks viruses and bacteria in the behind and I read about some research regarding garlic being able to prevent dementia!

Using unrefined sea salt in your dishes is not only good to enhance the taste of the food but can also contribute to the nutritional aspect of the meal - it brings more minerals to the table, such as magnesium, which is great to ease muscle aches after a hard workout.
Parmesan is not only a good source of proteins but also tastes amazing. It is rich in calcium which is important for our bone health. I personally believe in the importance of eating food full of good bacteria which can then establish healthy digestion. Parmesan has an ability to promote the development of Bacillus Bifidus, useful for the maintenance of a healthy digestive system.

Pine nuts, other than containing anti oxidants and magnesium, contain pinolenic acid. Some studies have been done regarding this acid's ability to trigger the release of an appetite-suppressing hormone. There are some companies that sell pine nut oil as part of a weight loss program. Weather this is actually true or not, they are yummy! 
Recipe for a classis pesto:
100g of basil (I used all of it; just washed it and used leaves, stalks and even the little flowering bits)

100g of pine nuts (I toasted mine; just because I like it that way but it is not necessary)

100g  - 120g of parmesan cheese (this depends on the intensity of the flavor; try to put less and then add some more if you want to taste it more in the pesto)

Half a cup of olive oil

2 cloves of garlic

A large pinch of salt

A generous amount of pepper
Just blend it all in and you are done in no time........

It should look like this:
Add it to your pasta of choice and enjoy.......
Let me know if you like it just as much as we do!


Monday, 27 June 2016

A healthy after school snack

My fifteen-year old daughter and her friend came home from school really hungry today. Of course, the first thing they reached for was a sweet treat. I quickly offered them an alternative (well, I know the cookies would travel to the room with them anyway). I sliced some rye sourdough, mashed up an avocado on it, sprinkled it with a little bit of granulated garlic, sea salt, pepper and topped it up with some alfalfa sprouts and a tomato slice.......

Sweet melon and a couple of strawberries nicely complimented the toast.
They really enjoyed it.

Even little Sparkle was interested.....

It is often very hard to offer interesting, yet nutritious food to teenagers. If you want to convince them to snack on something like this then you need to keep presentation in mind. Colors on this toast compliment each other. I believe that a nice colorful plate stimulates our taste buds, making food really appetizing, and it can be energizing for the brain.

Nutritional facts:

Rye sourdough - I bought mine from my local farmers market; it was baked by and it is incredibly tasty. Sourdough bread is full of nutrients and vitamins, such as B vitamins. It contains good bacteria and  it aids our digestion.

Avocado - Avocados are incredibly nutritious as they contain many vitamins and other nutrients, such as folate, vitamin E and C. They are one of the best foods we can eat for getting the glow.

Alfalfa - Just like avocados, we always have alfalfa sprouts in the house. I buy mine from different health food stores or order them from The company that manufactures them is Alfalfa sprouts contain folate, just like the sourdough and avocado. They are also a good source of vitamin K and C. 

This snack is so easy to put together and it offers a great amount of nutrients. I think that teenage girls would especially benefit from a simple snack like this - keep their hormones balanced, brain activated and skin glowing.



Sunday, 26 June 2016

Where I am now...

I started this blog 3 years ago with the goal of achieving a red carpet-worthy body by my 40th birthday. I was 39 back then. I kept my blog alive for only a week but I continued my journey for a little longer. After a lot of researching, studying, reading, experimenting, exercising, cooking and eating, trying and failing and mainly procrastinating, I decided to come back. This time my goal is to achieve and maintain my dream body by living a happy, healthy life.

I feel much healthier and stronger now than 3 years ago. I don't feel tired and agitated and even though I am facing far more obstacles in my life now than I did back then, I can stand face to face with stress without letting it get to me. And even though my financial situation is dire at the moment, and my workload is monumental and unfortunately not yet rewarding, I am handling it all with newly-found strength.  

I took these pictures 12 days ago. I wanted to see if the changes I made paid off. I wanted to compare these to the ones I took 3 years ago. Even though I don't look as good as I wished I did and maybe on the inside I feel more changed than on the outside, I do see a difference.
    now                                  3 years ago

    3 years ago
    now                                  3 years ago
    now                                  3 years ago 

    now                                  3 years ago
My lifestyle was not perfect in the last 3 years, but a lot has changed. I worked hard, I ate well, but I also went through a month-long reward period and that is not the way to do it.
However, in the last 3 months I stepped up. I now exercise 5-6 days a week. Some days it is just for 15 minutes but I stick to it. I eat healthily. I do body brushing when possible and I cleanse my skin every night.
My biggest challenge is lack of sleep. There is just so much to do in a day and sleep seems to be that something that has to give.
Since I took these pictures 12 days ago, I started to include foam rolling into my daily routine. In a couple of days I will take some more pictures to see if that made any difference.
Today's post is my new beginning. For a chronic procrastinator like myself this new beginning feels more like an evolutionary leap than a first step but I am happy I am here now.