Dining in London: Pure Taste

My dad came to visit me on Thursday night after work. As usual of the Young family, we do not tend to have anything planned or organised! It got to 6:30 before we decided to try booking anything.. obviously this was difficult in London.

After realising all of the lovely fish restaurants we fancied where fully booked, the next best choice for us would be any healthy conscious kind of restaurant. Me and my dad are renowned for ordering exactly the same.. when I live at home and we are both training and eating lots, its often a fight for the same food! However it is also fab when were dining out together and can appreciate the same kinds of restaurants.

So by 6:45 after our herbal tea we had in Harrods, we decided to give London’s first Paleolithic restaurant a go- we both eat grains and eggs so do not follow or personally recommend the paleo diet, however I personally can appreciate it for the lack of gluten, refined sugar and anything processed!

The menu at Pure Taste is very strange.. it includes a dietary key which caters to all sorts of dietary requirements such as SCD/GAPS diet, Weston A.Price diet, Vegan, Low carb, Vegetarian etc etc.

Just to get this straight for anyone who might be wondering.. I don’t follow any kind of diet, and I pay absolutely no attention to my weight. I eat a balanced diet (I say balanced loosely as I defiantly eat excessive amounts of fruit), I try to avoid gluten only because I am slightly intolerant in terms of digestion, I don’t eat much meat as I seem to work and feel better on things like beans/chickpeas and fish, and I eat tons of quinoa, rice and sweet potato alongside a heavy amount of plant based foods. I also really try to avoid anything processed such as refined sugar.. because that doesn’t agree with anyone!

Back to the restaurant.. me and my dad are big eaters, so a gluten free bread basket with avocado butter was defiantly on the cards before the starter!

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This was absolutely delicious! It was so good to enjoy a bread basket and it be gluten free.. and I am avocado obsessed, so the butter was amazing!

To start with, I ordered Scallops with apple and parsnip, which were cooked beautifully- and presented. According to the key for anyone who is interested, this starter was: Egg free, suitable for those following the pale autoimmune protocol, whole 30 compliant, no nuts, and low carb! I personally feel quite strongly against following certain diets, especially the last one on that list.. listen to your body and don’t deprive it of anything that is feeding it real nutrients!

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Following the Scallops, more fish! Through the week I tend to eat less fish and more beans/lentils/chickpeas, so when I eat out I almost always order fish! I ordered the Halibut with dukkah, spinach and lemon. The fish came with a top layer of crushed nuts which was an amazing contrast in texture, something I would like to try in my own fish recipes. Nuts are a rich source of protein, omega-3 fatty acids, and dietary fibre, I eat a large handful of nuts or add it to at least one of my meals everyday.

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Dessert? of course! I would never say no to a dessert that is free of refined sugar and gluten! With such a good choice of puddings on the menu, me and dad decided to get two and share.. coconut Panna cotta with lemon sorbet, and chocolate orange ganache. Both were absolutely delicious!

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With compliments of the chef, we got given a tray of mini desserts to sample, (yes I still had room by this point)

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I am not sure what I ate here.. but all four where delicious! I loved the concept of the restaurant, people shouldn’t have to feel like they’re ‘faddy’, ‘picky’ or ‘awkward’ because they care about what they’re eating when they dine out in a restaurant. It is nice that places are starting to accommodate people’s food requirements and preferences when health is involved!

Let me know in the comments for any new restaurants like this to review!

Em x

 

Wish List!

I have a serious shopping problem when it comes to buying whole foods, clothes and sports wear! I literally waste sooo much of my limited spare time scrolling through sites and making shopping bags full of things that I really can’t afford! It really hasn’t helped this year that my placement is working at Harrods.. not only do I want the whole of Shoe Heaven, all of this seasons Chloe and Stella McCartney, but I also have the torture of the sports floor to deal with, (hosting Asics and Sweaty Betty.. oh and Stella McCartney for Adidas!)

I spend so much time in active wear that I find it really easy to justify the need for new kit! It is only typical that I picked a hobby that contains not one, but 3 sports worth of clothes to buy for.. not to mention the gym work that comes with it to add for a fourth!

Just incase anyone out there wants to buy me a gift, or wants some new purchases themselves, here is my wish list for the week,

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– Rapha jersey with arm warmers

– Sweaty Betty bra

– Every Second Counts vest

– Castelli bib shorts

– Asics top

– OMM running jacket

– TYR swimsuit

– Sweaty Betty top

– 2XU Tights

– Lexie Sport Tights

Em x

The Best Brownies Ever!

Beetroot is good for blood pressure a long with many other things! I love it and rarely make a salad without it. But what about in a gooey, indulgent and yummy chocolate brownie? I have seen a few variations of putting beetroot into brownies, and decided to experiment and make my own. You know you have made a successful healthy alternative to something sweet when your 12 year old brother and sweet-toothed mum enjoy them!

1 1/2 cup ground almonds

1 cup coconut flour

1 cup dates

1 tbs honey

1 beetroot

1 1/2 cup coconut milk

2 tbs raw cocoa powder

Blend all of the ingredients with a good food processor, place the mixture into a baking tray and cook in the oven at 150degrees for 25 minutes!

Enjoy!

Em x

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Weekend Training

I got the pleasure of going home again this weekend for one of my best friends 21st’s! I had such a fab weekend that not only involved some fun with my best group of girls, but some great training with my favourite training partner (my dad!)

As I have mentioned in all of my most recent posts, I have been suffering from a groin injury which has resulted in over 3 weeks resting from running or biking, which is really not ideal with a marathon coming up! The last week I had noticed a big difference and was really hoping I would be able to get a run in at home by the weekend. I prepped my usual breakfast (see previous post for recipe details), and got ready with the hope of managing a steady 14 miles to ease myself back in!

Wooohooo, I am defiantly ready and recovered to start training again! It was a really tough run due to the ground, if we weren’t struggling through thick mud or snow, we were sliding on ice.. it was hard going on our legs and a true test for my groin! The run also started off badly when I realised my legs were cold.. because my water belt had leaked the whole bottle down myself and I was soaking! We recovered post run with a thick green shake, (avocado, kiwi, kale, spinach, banana, berries, ginger).

On the sunday I could feel my tired legs after the 3 weeks off! Despite the DOMS and the cold weather, me and Dad decided to take the bikes for a spin! It was a beautiful but cold day today, such a good combination for biking.. I wish I could have recovered with one of my mums Sunday roast’s but I had a train back to London to catch!

Em x

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Breakfast Love

Breakfast is without a doubt my favourite meal! Today the team at work put on a belated work breakfast for me, so I was under instructions not to eat any breakfast before I came in. This was a challenge for me, I spent the first half an hour at work with a rumbling stomach and nothing but food on my mind!

I will often train early in a morning before breakfast, on these days I like to have a breakfast that I have prepared the night before sat in the fridge waiting for me. This is great if I am in a rush, but also so I can get my nutrients in straight after a tough training session!

Here are two of my Favourite pre-prepped breakfasts:

Over night oats

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1 cup of oats (50g)

1 grated apple

1 ts cinnamon

1 cup frozen berries

2 cups coconut milk

Leave over night in the fridge and enjoy cold the next morning, this is one of my favourite breakfasts!

Chia pudding

Chia seeds are full of omega 3, antioxidants and fibre, making them a great start to the day.. the texture once they have set overnight in the fridge is delicious!

4 tbs chia seeds

1 frozen banana

1 medijool date

1 cup frozen berries

2 cups coconut milk

1 tbs desecated coconut

To make the chia pudding, simply mix the seeds, milk, coconut and chopped dates. I like to blend the frozen fruit into a think smoothie, and layer it onto the chia pudding, but it is also just as delicious to mix it all up together or have it without the fruit frozen or blended.

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These are my favourite breakfast’s to make in the morning:

Hot banana oats

This is a very simple breakfast that you can never go wrong with, I tend to eat a lot more cooked oats in the winter time!

1 cup oats (50g)

1 banana

1 tbs cinnamon

handful of berries (optional)

1 cup almond milk

1 tbs nut butter (I like to use almond)

I think microwaving oats ruins them! I would defiantly suggest cooking the oats in a pan, simply mix it all up together and add the nut butter before eating!

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Healthy Ice Cream

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This is my favourite snack ever and I sometimes have it for breakfast! I like to add extra nuts and cocoa powder with this.

2 frozen banana’s

1 cup frozen berries

2 dates

5 tbs coconut milk

blend the ingredients in a good food processor and enjoy!

Em x

Eat Better Feel Better

As I have mentioned in my previous posts on Instagram (emilys_journal), I am currently suffering from a groin strain and having some time off the run to rest it properly, a long with some strengthening exercises. I am a firm believer of grinning and bearing it, I am not a fan of medicine’s and pain killers at all!

After my second week of rest it finally came around to my appointment with the physiotherapist to get his verdict on the best course of action, I’m inpatient and very keen to be training again as I have the London Marathon coming up! First of all he examined me (it was a bad day to wear Bridget Jones pants and forget to bring some shorts), and concluded that all the tough terrain and hills have been too much on my neglected abductors, which have taken the stress and my weakest is now a little torn.

The physio asked what I have been taking to help my groin pain, and seemed really confused when I responded with, ” I have eaten my weight in pineapple, spirulina and added turmeric to most meals. ” It is apparently not the expected solution anymore to eat natural anti-inflammatory ingredients to aid the situation! I appreciate my own knowledge on medicine is almost non-existent, but I am extremely aware of how powerful food can be in regards to how your body works and feels, and who doesn’t love a good excuse to eat their weight in pineapple?

I absolutely love the quote by Ann Wigmore, ” The food you eat can be either the safest and most powerful form of medicine, or the slowest form of poison”.

 

Yummy chocolate Pie

I know lots of people who are put off healthy alternatives to puddings just because they presume they aren’t going to be as sweet or tasty. Anyone who has tried this chocolate pie will definitely agree that it couldn’t get much sweeter! I love to experiment, and came up with this to take to a BBQ in the Summer.

If I am making something sweet I love to include dates into the recipe! Dates have so many nutritional benefits and are such a good source of energy, natural sugar and fibre.. things your average pie from Tesco won’t offer. From a more practical point, dates are also a great way to hold ingredients together!

The base of this pie is gluten, dairy and sugar free! Simply blend together 2 cups of dates, 3 cups of ground almonds, and tbs of honey! Once all the mixture is pressed into the baking tin and in the oven I just waited until it went a nice golden colour and started to make the kitchen smell delicious. The filling is a blended mixture of 2 frozen bananas, half an avocado, 1/2 cup of dates, 2 tbs of cocoa powder and a tbs of almond butter, and left to set in the fridge.. decorate with fruit and nuts of your choice!

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Em x

Natural Beauty Products

Up until recently I had never really given much thought into what I put on my skin. As long as it smells nice and doesn’t give me spots, then it will usually do! I have experienced how the different foods I eat affect the way my skin looks, so surely what I put on my skin must have some sort of affect on my body too.

I  have began to read a bit about natural and organic beauty products, coming to the conclusion that whatever we consume or put on our skin will probably find its way into our bodies.. I wouldn’t eat toxic ingredients, so why would I put them on my face?

I have to admit that I haven’t quite made the transition to makeup yet.. especially now I get discount on the amazing cosmetics halls in Harrods! I have however said goodbye to my alcohol ridden face wipes, and introduced a vegan, ethical, organic plant-sourced cleanser from the brand Nourish, made with pure essential oils.

Here are a few of the products I am using and have fallen in love with, the Jason products smell absolutely amazing! I am keen to try more natural and healthy beauty products, if anyone has any to recommend please let me know in the comments!

 

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Em x

Spirulina Breakfast Bowl

I first got into spirulina after reading Scott Jurek’s book; Eat and Run. Scott Jurek is an American Ultrarathoner, winning many highly regarded races such as the Hardrock Hundred. I couldn’t put the book down and it sparked a huge interest for me about the vegan diet. Scott is confident that his diet is key to his impressive performances, and is motivated by the belief that poor nutrition lead to the illnesses that members of his family had experienced.

Some of my favourite dishes to cook have come from his book, especially his Vegan chilli, which I will make sure to post if anyone is interested. Eat and Run shares Scott’s recovery smoothies which contain spirulina, a natural algae which is incredibly high in protein and iron, making it a fab aid to recovery after tough training sessions. I have also read that it is an incredible natural anti-inflammatory, perfect for athletes!

I love a good smoothie, but for breakfast I like to be able to sit down and feel like it is a proper meal, which is why I created the spirulina breakfast bowl.. just don’t be put off by the colour! – For anyone looking into buying some, I use Naturya Organic Spirulina which I buy from Amazon.

Ingredients:

2 cups of chopped frozen banana

1 cup of frozen berries (I use raspberries)

1 table spoon of spirulina

2 dates

1 table spoon of chia seeds

6 table spoons of coconut milk or almond milk

Blend  all of the ingredients in a food processor or a good blender, serve with strawberries, seeds and nuts (optional) and enjoy!

Em x

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Healthy Food Spots in London

Although I am not a huge fan of living in London, I LOVE the amount of healthy food and drink spots there are everywhere you go. I have no where near visited as many as I want to, but I thought I would share some of my favourite one’s so far.

Wild Food Cafe is located in Neal’s Yard in Covent Garden, even the yard is colourful, bright and healthy looking. Wild Food focuses on plant based dishes, which is something I have incorporated more and more into my diet after reading books; Eat and Run, and Finding Ultra.  I am in love with the concept of the restaurant which you can read all about on their website, which is almost as good as the food!

I visited Wild Food Cafe with a friend last weekend, (she is a self-confessed refined sugar addict) she loved it just as much as me. I ordered a fresh coconut to drink, I am addicted to anything coconut so this was a great thing to find on the menu, and ate the Wild Pizza Special, (raw, dairy-free young coconut cheeze, wild sea purslane & basil pesto, raw cultured tomato & goji berry marinara, Turkish olives, artichoke hearts, avocado), and a side of sweet potato wedges. Everything was delicious, obviously I couldn’t leave without a dessert to go. I picked a special of the day; coconut and banana cheesecake, which was absolutely delicious! IMG_9544IMG_9550

The Good Life Eatery on Sloane Avenue is another good one I visited recently. I had been desperate to try it so I wasn’t put off by the long wait for a table. I ordered some kind of thick green avocado based smoothie, chilli avocado on toast, egg white frittata and a sweet potato dip with crackers, (to share). Everything was delicious, I left with a slice of banana bread and a bottle of cashew milk to take away! I would recommend a visit, so long as you don’t mind waiting for a table!

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Borough Market at London Bridge is one of my favourite places to visit on a weekend, I could spend hours there! My favourite lunch is a veggie stand that sells the best sweet potato and chickpea burgers,  a long side a barley and broccoli salad. Every time I go I also stop by The Natural Smoothie stand and get a High Kick Smoothie (Kiwi, pineapple, strawberry, banana, spirulina, linseed, apple and orange).

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Fresh Healthy Eating Cafe On lexington street is my favourite place in London for fresh juices and smoothies, everything is gluten and dairy free and there is so many to choose from! I also think it is the most value for money, a lot of juice spots in London can be very expensive for their portion sizes. I have also had a fresh salad from here, which was so yummy and fresh!

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There are so many on my list to visit, especially Juice Baby and Tanya’s in Chelsea, let me know if you have any other healthy food spot suggestions for me to try!

Em x