WELL BEING & OTHER STORIES

Recipes, rituals and other stories to realign the body and mind

THANKSGIVING

CHRISTMAS LEFTOVERS ABUNDANCE BOWL WITH ORANGE TAHINI MAYONNAISE

danielle coppermanComment

This recipe came about as I frantically cleared my fridge before going home for the Christmas holidays. I had just co-hosted F.east - a supper club/film club which myself and my friend kicked off with a festive theme, so my fridge was chocka full of leftovers. This recipe is more inspirational than it is instructive. There’s really not a lot to it, but I want to inspire you all to face your fate with leftovers, and make each days ingredients more delicious than the previous. The key to keeping the same ingredients from becoming boring and monotonous is in the dressings. Chutneys and dressings instantly transform a meal and are the quickest thing to make. Each day after Christmas, experiment with different dressings, jams, chutneys and slaws to ensure the sight of sprouts and chestnuts doesn’t make you want to eat your stocking.

INGREDIENTS
Serves One

3/4 Cup Shredded Chicken or Turkey (or other cold meat of choice)
1/4 Cup Coconut Brussels Sprouts / Boiled Brussels Sprouts / Seared Brussels Sprouts
1/2 Cup Leftover Roasted Vegetables (parsnip/carrot/sweet potato/beetroot)
1/4 Cup Chestnuts, roasted
1-2 Handfuls Fresh Spinach Leaves, or choice of other leaves
2 Handfuls of Mung Bean of Alfalfa Sprouts, optional

ORANGE TAHINI MAYONNAISE DRESSING (BEST EVER)

3 Tablespoons Tahini
Juice of Half Fresh Orange (zest, optional)
3 Tablespoons Olive oil
3 Tablespoons Cold Filtered Water
1 Teaspoon Lemon Juice
1/2 Teaspoon Raw Honey or Manuka Honey
1/2 Teaspoon Tamari or a Pinch of Himalayan Pink Salt
2 Teaspoons Poppy or Chia Seeds, optional

METHOD
This is one of those recipes that is so easy it feels like cheating. Simply choose your ingredients (or find whatever you have leftover in the fridge) and combine them all nicely in a bowl. Start by arranging the leaves across the base of the bowl and then build it up with the meat and vegetables. You can also add pulses, nuts and seeds if you have them. 

For the dressing, place all of the ingredients into a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Transfer to a bottle or a jug and stir continuously, adding a little more oil or water to thin it, depending on how you prefer the texture. 

Drizzle the dressing over the salad and either serve like that, or take a few minutes to coat the salad ingredients in the dressing, tossing and mixing the meat and vegetables with your hands.

Top with chopped nuts and seeds (even tastier if you toast them in tamari) and enjoy.

STUFFED MEDJOOL DATES WITH CASHEW CHEESE AND BACON

Snacks, Sugar Free, Brunchdanielle coppermanComment

This recipe is a winner for anyone catering a festive event this time of year. These dates are real crowd pleasers (you can omit the bacon for an equally delicious vegetarian version, and even replace it with wilted chicory leaves). With so many flavours in just one small mouthful, people take a good few minutes to finish one, masticating on each element more than they realise, before commenting on its tastiness. The sweet, chewy texture of the medjool dates, combined with the creaminess of the cashew cream cheese and topped off with a smoky saltiness from the meat is a taste sensation like no other. Perfect as a lunch box snack (easy to pack and easy to transport), served on platters at a canapé event, served as snacks, starters or sides at an informal Christmas gathering or enjoyed as ‘afters’ - part of the cheese board or a cheeky evening snack.

+ I’ve also done this recipe with chestnut cream fillings instead of cashew cream which has worked really well. Simply blend 200g soft chestnuts with 1/2 tin solid coconut milk and a little coconut oil, until smooth. Add salt, tamari, garlic and nutritional yeast for a cheesy flavour, or leave as it is for a subtly sweet, creamy alternative.

INGREDIENTS

20 Dates, pitted
3/4 Cup Cashews, preferably soaked for 2-4 hours
1/4 Cup Macadamia Nuts or Brazil Nuts (optional - or just another 1/4 cup cashews)
1/4 Cup Water
Pinch of Himalayan Pink Salt
1/2 Teaspoon Apple Cider Vinegar
1-2 Tablespoons Nutritional Yeast
1/2 Teaspoon Fresh Lemon Juice
1 Tablespoon Tahini, optional
Fresh Herbs of Choice
200g Organic Bacon or Good Quality Ham (use bacon if you want to cook the dates, and use ham if you want to keep them cold and uncooked).

Optional:
1-2 Shallots or 1 Tablespoon Onions (raw or cooked, either with work)
1 Small Clove Garlic (caramelised with blend better - bake in the oven for 25 minutes until the clove becomes soft)

METHOD
Start by slicing your dates lengthways down the middle, careful to score them and not to slice the whole way through. You want them to open at a hinge, rather than cutting them into two separate halves. Place them on a baking tray lined with baking paper and prepare the cashew cheese. 

Place the cashews, water, macadamia or brazil nuts, salt, apple cider vinegar and lemon juice into a blender and blend on the highest speed. Stop to scrape down the sides, reduce the speed slightly and blend for another minute. Add the nutritional yeast, tahini and shallots if using and blend for a final time, for 1-2 minute, until the mixture is completely smooth. There’s nothing wrong with it being a little lumpy, it will resemble a feta or goats cheese sort of texture, especially once cooked, but i like the cheese to be as smooth as possible. Now, take a teaspoon of the cheese mixture and fill the dates with it. Depending on the size of your dates you may want to use more, or less. 


Now prepare the bacon or ham. You can either wrap the bacon or ham around the stuffed dates, or you can dice the meat and add that to the cheese stuffing too - this works best in larger dates which you are able to almost close. If you are wrapping the dates, slice the bacon in half lengthways, take a date and place it on one end of the meat. Then carefully roll the date along the bacon, wrapping it up neatly until it is covered. Place it back onto the baking tray and repeat with the other dates. This method creates a much smokier flavour in the dates and the cheese as they catch and absorb the smoky flavour of the meat during the cooking process. If you decide to add the meat to the stuffing, simply dice it into tiny pieces, spoon it onto the cheese mixture and mix it in slightly to combine. Return to the baking tray and repeat with the other dates.

When each date is nicely stuffed and wrapped, place them under the grill for 10-15 minutes, until the bacon is fully cooked. Turn the dates over after 5 - 10 minutes so they cook evenly. The dates and cashew cheese don’t need to be cooked through, so as soon as the bacon is done, remove from the oven and leave to cool slightly. Either serve warm on a sharing platter or as canapés, piercing a cocktail stick into the middle of each one to make them easier to eat, or serve as part of a cold buffet, with cranberry chia jam or homemade christmas chutney.

+ Store in the fridge for up to 4 days.

HOT TODDY

Sugar Free, Drinks, Brunchdanielle coppermanComment

I first tried a hot toddy at a festival in Wales, in a tent, at a temperature below freezing. One sip and I soon forgot about my frozen feet and was in perfect harmony. This recipe does’t call for alcohol but as it’s christmas, you should feel very free indeed to add it in yourself (rum, whiskey or bourbon). This recipe is an excellent remedy for the winter months, containing immune boosting orange and medicinal ginger. One essential piece of advice for staying healthy this time of year is to always have a drink with you. Drink plenty of water to keep hydrated and hot, herbal teas to keep you warm, as well as fresh herb and spice concoctions to cleanse your body, nurture your immune system and flush out any toxins. If you have a cold or a sore throat, this recipe is soothing, warming and healing and promises to get you back in good health immediately. The cayenne pepper may seem a little outlandish, but this spice has been used for generations in treating ailments, such as flu, colds, migraines, headaches, heartburn, sore throat, tonsillitis, nausea and much, much more. It is an incredibly cleansing and detoxifying ingredient, so to get the most out of your toddy, be sure to include it. It is also known as a circulatory stimulant, which heats the body and kick starts the digestive system. Combined with honey, lemon and ginger, this drink is the ultimate detoxifying beverage, perfect to keep you functioning throughout the winter, or to relieve symptoms you may already be experiencing as an effect of the cold weather.

INGREDIENTS
Makes One

1 Teaspoon Raw honey
1/4 Cup Fresh Ginger Juice (see METHOD for a blended alternative, or use whole grated ginger to infuse the drink and then sieve it)
1/2 Teaspoon Fresh Lemon Juice
1/2 Cup Water
1 Tablespoon Fresh Orange Juice, optional
Pinch of Cayenne Pepper
1/2 Teaspoon Ground Ginger
1/2 Stick Cinnamon
1/2 Teaspoon Nutmeg
2 Cloves
1 Star Anise
Handful of Cranberries, to serve

METHOD

If you are making the ginger juice, start by juicing a few inches of fresh ginger, or if you don’t have a juicer, place the ginger and the water into a blender and blend until smooth. When your ginger is juicer or liquidised, transfer to a medium saucepan. Add the other ingredients and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 12-15 minutes, to ensure all of the flavours from the spices are absorbed. Add more sweetener if necessary, or more lemon if the mixture is too sweet. You can also add freshly squeezed apple juice for a sweeter drink. Add the alcohol, if using, and simmer for a further 5 minutes, then sieve the liquid into a jug and serve instantly

PUMPKIN PIE AND A POP UP

Sugar Free, Vegetarian, Gluten freedanielle copperman6 Comments

My first and only experience of pumpkin pie up until now was at my best friends house around the age of 13. With an american father, Thanksgiving is a big deal in their house, but I’d never really celebrated it before. At an awkward age of growth spurts and secondary school I almost didn’t even try the pie and tried to turn down the offer politely. It didn’t look especially appealing and i’d never tried it before, so naturally assumed it couldn’t be that special. Thankfully, her mother persuaded me and just one mouthful of that warm, homemade pie has remained a vivid memory in my mind ever since. I think a section of my brain is dedicated entirely to food, and times or occasions associated with certain foods. Sometimes i can even remember a conversation or event simply because i remember the food we were eating, or the restaurant we were in at the time. I can still see that pumpkin pie, fresh out of the oven, sitting on the countertop and can still smell the warmth of its spices. The sheer brilliance of pumpkin pie makes me wonder why it has taken me this long to attempt it myself. It is brilliant enough made with cheap pre-made pastry or shop-bought in festive packaging, but is even more brilliant if you make it by hand, with fresh pastry, and make it without any unnatural ingredients. So if you like that cream, the sugar and the buttery base, look away. You’re not going to like this version. Well, you’re not going to like the sound of this version, but if you do decide to trust me, you’ll realise it tastes just the same, if not better, than what you’re used to. 

Before changing my diet i enjoyed baking brownies and rice crispy cakes on a regular basis - in fact, so often that i knew the recipes backwards, upside down and read with my eyes shut. I’d mastered two very amazing recipes, and they were easy, so making a pie seemed like an impossible task - some kind of art form i was certainly incapable of and which was definitely out of my league. But since i now use vegetables in baking and know how to make pastry with nuts and without gluten, I felt it was about time i revisited that moment in my best friends kitchen, embraced this seasons most delicious ingredients and made that classic holiday favourite, with a lot of things taken out, but with a whole lot of other good things added. 

It’s hard for me to remember exactly how mama coleman’s pie tasted, but to me this one is all that a pumpkin pie should be. The base is different, as it is not real pastry. It is made without butter and with no flour - just nutritious nuts and nourishing coconut oil. Where most pies (especially shop bought pies) taste smooth and artificial, the base of this pie is crunchy, nutty and flavoursome. The filling is amazing, especially for people who are intolerant to gluten or just generally don’t desire the feeling of fullness that comes as a side effect of eating cakes. The filling is so smooth and light and, made with coconut oil and coconut milk, is a kind of creaminess you just can’t find in normal, artificial desserts. If theres one thing you make this winter, let this be it. Far better than chocolate, far better than mince pies and far better than the pumpkin pie you had last year. With this recipe, you can have your cake/pie/cheesecake/vegetables and eat them, all at once. Blissfully unaware that you are eating your way through the holidays to a healthier New Year, thanks to all the vitamins and minerals in pumpkin which will keep your immune system in check this winter. Eat up, it’s basically medicine. You neeeeeed it.

INGREDIENTS

Crust
1 Cup Walnuts
1/2 Cup Pecans
1 Cup Buckwheat Flour
1/2 Cup Coconut Oil, room temperature
1/3 Teaspoon Salt
1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
2 Tablespoon Agave or Date Syrup
1 Teaspoon Cinnamon

Filling
2 Cups Pumpkin, chopped (squash will work too) (if you haven’t the time or patience, buy some organic pumpkin puree from a local health food shop)
2 Tablespoons Agave or Date Syrup
1 Tablespoon Coconut Palm Sugar
1/3 Teaspoon Salt
1 1/2 Tablespoons Cinnamon
1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1/2 Tin Coconut Milk (the solid part only)
4 Tablespoons Coconut Oil, melted
1 Egg
2 Teaspoons Maca, optional
1 Teaspoon Lucuma, optional

METHOD

Heat the oven to 200c.
Start by roasting the pumpkin for the filling. Remove the skin and place in a roasting dish with a little splash of olive oil or some coconut oil, and roast for 25-35 minutes. It needs to be as soft as possible.

Crust
Once the pumpkin is cooked, reduce the oven temperature to 160c.

Blend the nuts in a food processor or blender until they become a fine flour consistency. Pour into a medium bowl and add the flour, salt, vanilla and cinnamon. Mix together with a wooden spoon, then add the coconut oil, combining with your hands. The mixture should begin to form a dough. Make the dough into a ball and it should hold its shape. Take a round baking tray or cake tin, roughly 20cm in diameter (you can also use a rectangle dish if you don’t have a round one) and grease the bottom and the sides with a light coating of coconut oil. Press the dough into tin, making the base no more than 1cm thick, and making sure to press the dough around the sides too. Use a fork to pierce the dough in the middle, and bake for 15 minutes, until it begins to brown, and until it is dry to touch.
Whilst it bakes, make the filling.

Filling

+ TIP: Pumpkins with paler skins generally taste nicer and have a smoother less stringy texture when cooked. Look for crown princes or any with a greyish/blueish skin.

Take the cooked pumpkin and place it in your blender or food processor along with the rest of the filling ingredients. I strongly advise using the egg and also maca if you have it, as the egg provides a vanilla-y flavour and a smooth texture and the maca adds an incredible malty caramel flavour. Blend all of the ingredients together until the mixture is smooth. Add a little more coconut milk or oil if the mixture needs help getting smooth.

When the base is cooked, leave to cool for 5-10 minutes and then pour the filling mixture into it. Spread the filling evenly across the pie base, ensuring it reaches the sides too. Return to the oven and cook for 40 minutes, until the middle of the filling is firm to touch. If it is still quite wet or gooey to touch, leave it to cook for a little longer until you can be sure it is cooked through. The top should begin to brown and crack a little, and you should be able to stick a knife in the centre and bring it out clean. 

Let cool for at least 20 minutes. I prefer it from the fridge as the filling becomes a wonderful consistency, but it is also delicious enjoyed warm. Serve with coconut yoghurt or coconut cream, fresh berries or a warm berry compote.

+ Save the Seeds 
Pumpkin seeds also carry a lot of nutrients, so don’t throw them away. They are high in protein and fibre and also contain tryptophan which is a chemical compound that triggers happiness and positivity and reduces stress. Pumpkin seeds also contain anti-inflammatory properties and essential vitamins and minerals. Toss them in coconut oil or olive oil and your choice of natural sweetener and spices, or use nutritional yeast, tamari and dried herbs and spices to make a quick a savoury snack.

BLEND AND PRESS POP UP

I am excited to announce that next weekend i will be popping up and taking over Blend and Press in Neals Yard. I will be running an exclusive Model Mange Tout brunch menu, and i will be there from 10.30-1.30pm. Pop in and say hi, and choose from my nutritious gluten, grain, dairy and refined sugar free menu. I will be serving Cacao Chia Porridge with Almond Sauce and berries, Sweet Potato Cashew Pudding with Christmas Qnola, Cranberry and Rosemary Compote and Toasted Chestnuts, and Buckwheat Pancakes with Coconut Cream, Tahini and Cacao Sauce.

Prices start from £4.95. Hope to see you there! Come in, keep warm and wake up well!