A healthier version of Nutella: Chocolate Hazelnut Spread
There are certain words and terms that are quite simply irksome to my ears: “on a diet”; “detoxing”; and “clean eating” are at the top when it comes to eating behaviours. My philosophy has always been to eat in moderation without cutting out the food you love, to keep active and essentially you should be just fine.
It’s astounding the amount of recipe books that are thrust in our faces using these types of trendy marketing terms.“Souping” is the latest to target those trying to change their lifestyles. Just like these trends yo-yo in and out of fashion, you’ll find your weight also yo-yo’s as you try to find the right balance. Following a 7 day juicing course is one thing, but how do you maintain the weight loss once you start to eat normally again?
I don’t like these diet trends and never have; they aren’t healthy and they will leave you out of pocket and miserable. Denying yourself the food you love only sets you up for failure, as you will inevitably cave in and binge more than before you started. That is why I’m excited to share my thoughts on a refreshing recipe book called Hungry Healthy Happy: How to nourish your body without giving up the food you love.
Like a lot of people, Neil and I first experienced Asian food at the local take away. Every Saturday night was basically Chinese night. Then we decided that we needed to budget better by cutting out the non-essentials, and one casualty of this was the every weekend takeaway. Our love of Asian food didn’t just end there though. When I spotted The Hairy Biker’s Asian Adventures cookbook, I knew it would be a good opportunity to delve into and expand our knowledge of Asian cuisine.
This book covers food from China, Japan, Thailand and Korea. It has starters, mains and desserts, including hearty meals and healthy meals. The recipes themselves are very easy to follow, with simple step by step instructions and each accompanied by a beautiful colour image. And the good news is, you don’t need any specialised equipment for your kitchen. You are encouraged to “rock your wok” but we used a frying pan and our meals came out tasting superb. A wok is something we very much want to invest in now though, as I know we will be cooking meals from this book more regularly. Many of the meals are very quick to cook as well, even though you will need to do some work beforehand – shopping for ingredients and preparing the food (peeling, chopping and sometimes a little marinating). But when it comes to the actual cooking time it’s very quick, and I must say my love for the frying pan continues to grow. The recipes are easy to adapt too, if you can’t find certain ingredients (or they aren’t in season).
This has been a really enjoyable book to create meals with, get inspiration from, and simply admire for the high quality, wonderfully-staged photography of food and places in Asia they visited. (Now I want to visit Japan!).
If you are new to Asian cuisine and want to get started, I thoroughly recommend this cookbook. Most of the recipes are straight forward with perhaps only the sushi ones being on the more difficult side.
Our favourite recipes we’ve enjoyed from the book (so far) have been:
Classy Crispy Beef and Black Beans
Tofu, Aubergine and Lotus Root Stew
Five-spice poached plums
Iced coffee puddings
Are you a fan of The Hairy Bikers? Have you seen their Asian adventures on TV?