I am a big occasional snacker.
I go through phases of not wanting to eat much at all and feeling as if I can hop on a juice fast any minute, but then there are the phases where I eat CON-STAN-TLY.
I really try to embrace whatever my body is going through and respect its wishes, although it can be hard to distinguish between real hunger and just emotional hunger, i.e. "I am bored" or "I have had a hard day" kind of snacking (quick tip: have a large glass of water or a cup of tea. If you are still hungry 5 minutes after finishing it, you're actually hungry).
If I find that I really AM hungry, it is important to keep some healthy snacks on hand so I don't go off the rails and eat something ridiculous.
This, of course, is especially important when following a dieta so that you may snack away and not stray from the path.
Therefore I would like to share with you some vegan, salt/sugar/gluten free and DELICIOUS sweet and savoury treats that you can have in between breakfast and lunch, or lunch and dinner...
Or maybe, as is the case for me sometimes, between breakfast and second breakfast.
I love sesame seed milk as sesame seeds (unhulled as they contain 90% more minerals than hulled seeds) are particularly rich in calcium as well as other minerals such as copper, iron, manganese, zinc and phosphorus.
It has a rather "sesamy" flavour, one you may come to appreciate over time on it's own but which is very easy to disguise with other flavours.
Sesame seed milk is especially good for maintaining bone health as it offers a calcium rich alternative to acidic and mineral-depleting dairy milk.
To make sesame milk, simply soak 120 grams of unhulled sesame seeds in water overnight.
In the morning drain and rinse the seeds and blend with 1 litre of fresh water in a blender for minimum 30 seconds.
Strain the seeds through a musing cloth or nut milk bag (I've had this bag for almost 2 years now, use it several times a week and it still holds!) and bottle.
Keeps for 36-48 hours in the fridge.
To make the milkshake (for 2):
- 1 large or 2 small bananas
- 500 ml sesame milk
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 1/2 tsp vanilla essence
- 1 tbsp maca powder (optional: this will add a mineral boost as well as a lovely malty flavour)
- Sweeteners of your choice: a couple of dried figs or dates, 2 drops of stevia, 1 tsp honey (optional)
Blend everything together in a blender and serve!
Chia puddings are super healthy, can come in any flavour and texture, can be adapted to the seasons and are very quick and easy to make – the perfect little dessert pot for an impromptu dinner, for example.
Chia seeds are anti-inflammatory and antioxidant. They provide sustained energy as well as maintaining water balance: a great food if you are working on limiting your overall food intake to lose weight.
I am however mostly interested in them as they are rich in essential fatty acids such as omega 3s. Oh, and they are delicious. They fluff up to a "pudding" overnight in liquid and can be used as a base to make many different chia concoctions.
Measure out 15 grams of chia seeds per 115 grams of liquid to make one small, portion-sized pudding.
You may add 2 tbsp berries (I especially love goji berries for a deliciously chewy antioxidant boost), finely chopped fruit or other seeds to the overnight soak, or perhaps serve with sprinkles of finely chopped nuts or dessicated coconut.
Here are some recipe suggestions (per person):
- Chia seeds, freshly squeezed blood orange juice, 1 tbsp goji berries, 1 tbsp passion fruit seeds
- Chia seeds, tiger nut milk, 2 tbsp finely chopped banana, pinch cinnamon
- Chia seeds, 50-50 pineapple juice and coconut milk, 1 tbsp flax seeds, pinch nutmeg, serve with desiccated coconut
- Chia seeds, coconut milk, 2 tbsp goji berries, serve with a teaspoon raw honey and hazelnuts
- Chia seeds, almond milk, 2 tbsp blackcurrants, serve with chopped almonds
Whisk all the ingredients together in individual pots and leave in the fridge overnight
Add the "served with"-ingredients on top before eating.
Naturally sweet Banana granola
A new discovery of mine: a way to make granola without using any sweeteners – not even "alternative" ones!
This recipe can be made in the oven or, if you are lucky enough to have one, in the dehydrator.
- 500 ml oats
- 2 bananas, mashed
- 100 ml pumpkin seeds, soaked overnight
- 50 ml flax seeds, soaked overnight
- 1 tbsp cinnamon
- 1 tbsp gently melted coconut oil at room temperature (if using a dehydrator)
Heat the oven to 180 degrees Celsiusand prepare a baking tray with baking paper.
Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl.
Spread out evenly on baking tray.
Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes, until a light golden brown colour., stirring the oats every 5 minutes or so.
Let cool completely before storing.
Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl.
Spread out on one or two dehydrator trays lined with sheets and dehydrate for 3-4 hours on 42 degrees celsius.
Flip the granola upside down onto a dehydrator tray and dehydrate for a further 4-6 hours.
Let cool completely before storing.
Irresistible nutty kale chips
These kale chips are certainly not only for dieta! I make them all the time and they are great travel companions.
Apparently leafy greens such as kale has the ability to protect us against radiation from the galaxy when we fly. According to a study on pilots funded by the National Cancer Institute, pilots who consumed the most dietary antioxidants suffered the least amount of damage to their DNA and leafy greens seemed to have the upper hand when it came to radiation protection.
This, in combination with their deliciousness and light weight, makes kale chips the perfect plane snack!
This is a recipe that works for dehydrators or for an oven set on the lowest setting in order to keep the nutrients of the kale intact and make the crisps as crunchy as possible without burning them.
- Large bunch of kale (about 2 L firmly packed kale)
- 200 ml cashews soaked overnight, drained
- 3 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 4 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 3 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Tear the kale off its stems (the stems can be juiced or add to a smoothie later), wash it and rip it into little pieces.
Mix all the other ingredients together with a splash of water in a food processor or with a hand mixer. Add more water if necessary to achieve a creamy consistency.
Add the cashew cream to the kale by the handful and massage it into the kale.
For oven: Prepare a baking tray with baking sheets and spread the kale every out. Bake for 10-12 hours on the lowest setting possible, turning occasionally, until crisp.
For dehydrator: Spread the kale evenly on dehydrator sheets and dehydrate on 42 degrees for about 10 hours, turning halfway, until crisp.
Salt free hummus
Crunchy vegetables dipped in creamy hummus... Surely there is no easier and tastier snack than this? And let's not forget healthier!
Chic peas pack a punch when it comes to both fibre and protein and they are full of essential minerals as well. Sadly, store bought hummus is often saturated with polyunsaturated low quality oils and far too much refined salt. Better to make your own!
Hummus can easily be made flavourful without salt and it can be knocked up in less than 10 minutes if you have a can of chic peas on hand and impromptu guests arriving.
It can also be frozen in portions and thawed overnight.
- 1 can chic peas or 375 ml cooked chic peas, drained
- 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- Juice of 1/2-1 lemon (I like my hummus very lemony!)
- 1 clove garlic
- 2 tbsp tahini
- Optional: a handful sun dried tomatoes (the oil and salt free kind), herbs such as coriander, basil and mint, a handful of peas, 1/2 baked sweet potato, 1 roasted red pepper
Mix all the ingredients together with a hand mixer or in a food processor, adding a few splashes of water as you go until you reach the desired consistency.
Eating out in london on the dieta
I love going out to eat and if I am following a dieta for several weeks it is hard for me to avoid the temptation. Luckily there are many wonderful places in London that are more than happily catering to all sorts of dietary restrictions:
Nurture, the company I work for, obviously has a great selection of vegan food and smoothies!
Raw press on Dover st. does delicious juice and salads
Rawligion has an inventive raw food menu and fascinating superfood shots
Roots juicery do fantastic nut milks and juices
Nama does wonderful vegan raw food
Redemption has an all vegan menu and an eclectic mocktail list
Vitao is a vegan oasis slap dash in the middle of the city
Campbells Canal Café is my go-to vegan in north London
... did I forget any? Let me know in the comments below!
I hope you have enjoyed the dieta series and that it has inspired you to cook with less salt, sugar, gluten and dairy regardless of whether or not you are cleansing.