Thursday, 31 March 2016

Sugar- What Happens to Your Body When you Consume Too Much Sugar





Too much Sugar is bad for us and we all know this, yet majority of us still eat it- sometimes in large amounts - on a daily basis or even more than once a day.

However if you knew exactly what areas of the body sugar affects and which organs it harms, would it change your unhealthy ways?

Sugar can have a myriad of effects on the brain. According to researchers, excessive sugar consumption can exacerbate depression and anxiety by causing energy spikes followed by crashes.

It also messes with the neurotransmitters that help regulate our mood and could contribute towards dementia in later life.

The online tool for Benenden reveals what else happens to the body when you overindulge on sugary snacks and drinks. And to be honest I am a culprit when it comes to craving sugary drinks :-(

According to researchers, the sweet substance can also play havoc with vital organs in our bodies such as the kidneys, digestive system and genitals.

In women, high blood sugar levels have been thought to contribute to recurring bouts of yeast infections such as thrush.

In men, it can be responsible for erectile dysfunction and lack of sex drive. So it is very important for both men & women to watch the amount of sugar intake we consume.

Meanwhile in children, sugar can affect the heart, bones and immune system. And, of course, it contributes to obesity.

Currently, the recommended daily sugar intake for adults is 30 grams per day, however many people are consuming almost double this amount - the current average daily intake is 58.8 grams.

(source-msn.com/en-gb/health/nutrition)

The below food swaps can cut your sugar intake if you consume them:-



I found this online and thought to share with you..

Low sugar market alternatives- Are you keen to slash your consumption of the white stuff? You'd be making a wise move. Study after study has linked high-sugar diets with obesity, heart disease, type 2 diabetes and bowel cancers, and we all know what those tiny sweet crystals do to our teeth.

In fact, earlier this year a committee of influential scientists advised the government to halve the recommended daily intake of sugar to no more than 5% of total calories consumed – about seven teaspoons – and experts from the World Health Organization (WHO) have also urged us to dump the lumps and limit daily sugar intake to less than 10% of total calories consumed, ideally 5% or less for “additional health benefits”. 

If only it were that easy. From ready meals to snacks, high levels of sugar lurk in all sorts of supermarket food and drink, Check out some of the below for  savvy swaps.



Swap Haagen Dazs Chocolate Salted Caramel Ice Cream for Oppo Salted Caramel Lucuma Ice Cream



Salted caramel ice cream is of course best-avoided if you're cutting down on sugar, but if you really can't resist, it's worth noting that Oppo's version has just 6.7g of sugars per 100g, whereas Haagen-Daz's take on the flavour rocks 22.5g per 100g.
 

Swap Kettle Chips Sweet Chilli & Sour Cream Crisps for Walkers Sensations Thai Sweet Chilli




Enjoy munching on sweet chilli flavour crisps? The fancy Kettle Chips version packs 4.3g of sugars per 100g, while the Walkers Sensations favourite contains only 1.1g of sugars per 100g.

Swap Weight Watchers Carrot Cake Slices for Sainsbury's Taste the Difference Carrot Cake


Tut, tut Weight Watchers for packing a whopping 43.3g of sugars per 100g in these carrot cake slices – unsurprisingly, sugar is the main ingredient. Sainsbury's Taste the Difference version however contains just 29.1g of sugars per 100g.


Swap Sainsbury's Chicken Tikka Masala with Rice for Weight Watchers Chicken Tikka with Basmati Rice

 


If you're a fan of ready meal chicken tikka and want to cut down on sugar, opt for Weight Watchers' version over Sainsbury's own-brand – it contains almost five times less sugar than the Sainsbury's curry.

Swap Cadbury Dairy Milk for Hotel Chocolat Supermilk



Yes, it's more expensive, but Hotel Chocolat's Supermilk is much lower in sugar than the Cadbury classic with just 20g of sugars per 100g against Cadbury's 56g of sugars per 100g.

Swap Belazu Aged Balsamic Vinegar for Aspall Organic Balsamic Vinegar



No wonder Belazu's balasmic vinegar is a taste sensation – it contains an eye-watering 82.g of sugars per 100ml. Aspall's organic alternative on the other hand has only 17.5g of sugars per 100ml.

Swap Vita Coco Natural Coconut Water for Naked Coconut Water



Vita Coco's cult coconut water isn't 100% free from the white stuff. It contains added fruit sugar, upping its total sugar content to 5g per 100ml. Naked Coconut water is just that – with nothing at all added, it has only 2.5g of sugars per 100ml.

Swap Heinz Organic Tomato Ketchup for Heinz 50% Less Sugars & 25% Less Salt Tomato Ketchup



Heinz organic ketchup is its sweetest, even more so than the regular version, with 24.8g of sugars per 100g. If you can't face defecting to another brand, snap up the low-sugar alternative – it contains just 11.4g of sugars per 100g.

Swap Dorset Cereals Simply Fruit Muesli for Morrisons No Added Sugar Swiss Style Muesli




Although it seems like an ultra-healthy breakfast option, muesli tends to be laden with the white stuff - Dorset Cereal's delicious fruity cereal has 28g of sugars per 100g for instance. Look for a no added sugar muesli if you can, like this Morrisons Swiss-style alternative - it contains just 14.5g of sugars per 100g.

Swap Tesco Finest Lasagne Al Forno for Tesco Finest Traditional Lasagne


Bizarrely, Tesco Finest Lasgane Al Forno packs 4g of sugars per 100g, around four teaspoons of the white stuff per ready meal, but the similar Traditional Lasagne – also Tesco Finest – contains only 1.6g of sugars per 100g.

(source-msn.com/en-gb/health/nutrition)



Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Cauliflower Cheese with Gammon

On the menu today is my ever tasty Cauliflower cheese with Gammon. This meal will be a very good Christmas menu to add to your dinner party.

I'm not really a cheese fan, but I love this dish as it does not taste too cheesy :-)

Enjoy & have a great day..xx

Ingredients:-

1 fresh Cauliflower
1 Large Gammon Rasher
1 pint of semi skimmed milk
50g of plain flour
50g of butter
100g of mature grated cheese
2 fresh Tomatoes

Prep time:-20 minutes


Method:-

Trim the cauliflower (leave whole) and simmer until almost cooked. Meanwhile trim fat from the gammon and cut into small pieces. (Leave the fat in, if you don't mind the skin on)

Strain and place in an oven proof dish (shown below).

Now melt the butter in pan and add the flour and cook, gradually add the milk, stirring continuously.

Add the gammon and bring to the boil allowing the sauce to thicken, reduce the heat, add cheese and cook for a few minutes.

Pour sauce over the cauliflower.

Finally slice tomatoes and arrange on the top, place in a hot oven until golden brown and piping hot.




Tuesday, 29 March 2016

Apple Pastries -Recipe

Here's my super amazing, super easy recipe for Apple Pastry. 

I made these over the Easter weekend as I had lots of friends come round to mine. I had a great time making these. 

Now I've been using Puff Pastry alot lately, simply because its just so convenient and I don't have to go through the hassle of making pastry from scratch; also as I had lots of mouths to feed, it came in super handy. (don't judge me lol).

Hope you enjoy..xx

Ingredients:- 
1 Block of ready Made Puff Pastry
2 large cooking apples (I used green apples)
Granulated sugar to taste (any amount, but don't be too generous)
1 beaten egg for glazing

Prep time:- 25 minutes 
Cooking Temperature 180°

Method:- 
Peel and slice apples and cook with a small amount of water and sugar to taste. The apples should be under cooked. Cook for about 10 to 15 minutes, once done allow the apples to cool.

As I made 16 pieces, I rolled the pastry into an oblong shape and marked 16 equal portions.

On eight of the pieces, place some of the cold apple on one side and then fold the other pieces of pastry in half and cut 3 slats in the pastry avoiding the edges as shown below.

As you can see in this pic, I used one half of the pastry to cover the other half, so the remaining 8 pieces goes on the top of the first 8.


Brush the edges of the pastry (oblongs with the apples on) with the beaten egg, unfold the other pieces of pastry and place on top of the apples as seen above.

Seal the edges well and knock up the edges of the pastry then brush with beaten egg. Sprinkle with sugar before baking in the oven at 180°c for 20 minutes until golden brown.

Yep its that EASY :-)

If you do like this recipe, please leave me a comment below. Thanks for reading :-)





Sunday, 27 March 2016

Onion Rings Recipe


Check the video out here:-

I never really get to make onion rings at home; the only time I really eat them is when I go to a restaurant. One of my besties shared this recipe with me so I thought I'll share with my lovely readers :-)

Ingredients:-

1 white onion
50g of plain flour
1 tbsp of baking powder
half a teaspoon of paprika
salt n black pepper to taste
half a litre of very cold sparkling water
50g of golden breadcrumbs
Vegetable or Olive oil- enough to use for deep frying

Method:-

Peel and slice the onion to about 1cm thick, separate them into rings and remove the top layer; place them in salted water for about 20 minutes.

Once done, in a mixing bowl add the flour, salt, black pepper, paprika, water(this needs to be very cold and fizzy) you need the fizz to make the flour mix more absorbable. Now mix well until nice and smooth.

Now towel dry the onion from the salted water and place in the flour mix by making sure the flour mix covers the onion. Now place the breadcrumbs into a plate and place each onion into the breadcrumbs by covering each onion with the breadcrumbs.

Preheat your oil and place each onion into your frying pan; fry for about 2 minutes or until golden brown and crispy.. Easy peasy right :-)

Look how crispy and golden it looks..





Homemade Pizza

I had so much fun making this with my hubby (who also now enjoys baking) & my daughter. 

Now bear in mind she's only 9 months old lol, she actually helped me by passing me the mozzarella cheese :-) lol.

This is my very first time making a Pizza and I didn't want to mess up by adding meat, pork etc. Now that I've tried it and it came out amazing, I'll definately be trying a Meatilicious Pizza next time. 

If you're allergic to cheese like one of my cousins then this is not for you; or if you're watching your weight then please look away lol. Hope you enjoy this if you do make it...

It tasted super yummy and so easy to make..Ok so here we go..

Ingredients:-
For the base I used 1 pkt Pizza Base mix

For the topping
1 tube Sun –Dried Tomato Paste
2 Plum tomatoes
Mozzarella ball
2 tbsp olive oil
Basil leaves or Spinach to garnish
half a tbsp of salt
half a tbsp of black pepper

Prep time- 30 minutes, also remember to preheat your oven to 190°c


Method:-

Now I used Pizza base mix just because it makes life easy for me, rather than mixing from flour stage. Don't judge me lol..

Its really important to follow the packet mix and make the pizza base. Place the pizza dough on the Tray.

For the topping:

Slice the tomatoes and mozzarella cheese, Spread dough with sun-dried tomato paste, then arrange tomatoes and Place mozzarella slices on the top.

Drizzle with the olive oil and season with salt and some ground black pepper. Transfer the pizza to the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until crisp, golden brown and the cheese is bubbling.

Serve immediately and garnish with spinach or basil leaves.


Easy right :-)





Happy Easter Sunday


Happy Easter to all our readers all over the world. Easter is a feast day and a day to over indulge! Make sure you eat and share some Easter eggs with your loved ones :-)


Friday, 25 March 2016

Pineapple Upside Down Cake- Recipe





As its Good Friday today,  we will be celebrating today with a Pineapple Upside down Cake; and if you read my last post you'll know that I've found a new love in Baking...

I think I never used to like Baking because I hate measuring the ingredients, but since I've bought myself a nice Baking scale and some baking utensils, it's ACTUALLY not that bad :-)

So you'll be seeing me bake alot in my upcoming blog posts.

OK so this Pineapple Upside down cake is super easy and when I came across the recipe from one of my colleagues who is a Product Specialist, I almost showered her with too much hugs lol.

I made this using one of our fab Pro Combi steam oven (AEG brand). Now I didn't get to take alot of step by step pictures (so sorry) as I got super excited and my stupid phone died in the process, so I only managed to take one pic. But you know I'll always share my recipes :-)

Ingredients:-

50g of butter
50g of soft brown sugar
225g of drained pineapple rings- (you can buy from any supermarket)
4-5 glace cherries
200g of Self raising Flour
200g of Soft Margarine
200g of Caster Sugar
3 eggs

Prep time is approximately 25 to 30 minutes, cooking time is 40 -50 minutes

Method:-



Carefully line a loose bottom cake tin, Now cream together brown sugar and butter and spread over the base of the cake tin.

Arrange the  pineapple rings on top, placing a cherry in the centre of each pineapple ring.



Place the remaining ingredients in a mixing bowl and combine with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. (If you don't have an electric mixer, mix with a whisk or any cutlery of your choice, as long as you get a fluffy texture).






Spoon mixture over the pineapple rings and bake in the oven (I used an AEG Procombi Steam oven) on quarter steam at 160°c for 40 minutes. After 40 minutes, check the mixture is cooked and leave to cool before serving. Easy Peasy right :-)





Happy Good Friday


Here's to wishing all our readers a Happy Good Friday and a wonderful Easter to come.




Thursday, 24 March 2016

Rasberry Roulade- Recipe

I really enjoyed making this Dessert; as much as I'm not much of a baker, I had so much fun making it with some colleagues and I've found a new love in Baking.

I cheated a little bit by using a Swiss roll :-( but it still tasted amazing.

I'm also sharing my fab recipe with my lovely readers :-)


Ingredients:-

75g of Plain Flour
Pinch of salt
3 eggs
75g of caster sugar
1 tbsp vanilla essence for filling
2 tbsp lemon curd
300ml Double cream
250g Raspberries
Icing sugar to dust

Prep time:- 25 minutes



Method:- Carefully line a Swiss Roll tin, place the eggs & sugar in a large mixing bowl. Whisk until mixture is light & fluffy and holds its shape. Now add 1 tbsp warm water & vanilla essence and fold in carefully. Sift half of the plain flour, using a metal spoon, carefully fold in the flour then

add the remaining flour. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a

spatula. Bake for 12 14 minutes . Sponge should feel firm to the touch. Turn on to grease proof paper and carefully roll like a Swiss roll and allow

to cool down.

Whip cream until thick and mix in the lemon curd, unroll the Swiss Roll and spread the lemon curd cream over the sponge leaving a 1cm margin . Sprinkle over the raspberries

Now using the grease proof paper re-roll and carefully place on serving plate. Finally dust with icing sugar.