So all your efforts to get healthy, starting from searching for authentic organic foods have been running into a brick wall? And the much-hyped-about diet trends you always start off enthusiastically don’t see the light of the second day. And let’s face it, the sheer effort of cooking, baking or simply putting together a decent meal after a hectic day overwhelms you.
If the weighing scale doesn’t seem to tell you the story you hope to hear and celebrity bods seem like dreams, here’s your chance at redemption. Get on top of health and everything healthy with these recipes by well-known chefs. And worry not! There’s enough of cheese and chocolate in these quick fixes. Use natural ingredients such as dates, honey and watermelon to quench your sugary food cravings without the added calories.
Watermelon feta salad
- 1kg watermelon seedless, chilled
- 100gm of feta cheese
- ¾ cup fresh basil chopped
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 lime juice
- 1/3 cup orange juice
- Salt to taste (this recipe has about 1½ teaspoons)
- 1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- Cut out rind from watermelon. Chop the fruit into 1 inch cubes while cutting them into cubes; remove the seeds from it.
- In a small bowl, whisk together olive oil, lime juice extracted from fresh lime, orange juice, salt and pepper. This is the dressing for the salad.
- In a large bowl, combine watermelon cubes, crumbled feta and basil leaves. Toss gently until ingredients are combined well. Transfer to serving bowl.
- Drizzle the dressing over the salad. Stir gently to integrate the cheese and dressing into the salad.
- Garnish with lettuce and micro greens (This recipe uses arugula, mustard and mint, which gives a fresh, green and crunchy texture to the salad.)
Citrus Avocado Quinoa Salad with Honey Walnuts
- ½ cup walnut halves or pieces
- 1 tablespoon honey
- ½ cup dry quinoa
- 1/3 cup onion finely chopped
- 1 orange peeled and segmented
- ½ chopped mango
- 1 avocado chopped
- 1 cup pomegranate seeds
- 1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 2 tablespoons orange juice
- Juice of one lemon (about 2 tablespoons)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 1800C. In a small bowl, gently stir the walnuts and honey until evenly coated. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spread the nuts in a single layer. Bake 10-15 minutes, tossing every five minutes to keep from burning. Remove from oven, and let it cool before using.
- Place quinoa and 1 cup water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer. Cover and let simmer until all the water has been absorbed (about 10-15 minutes). Cover and let it chill before using.
- In a large bowl, combine the cooled quinoa, onion, orange segments, avocado, mango, pomegranate seeds, parsley, orange juice, lemon juice and olive oil. Gently stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Top with walnuts and serve.
Sneha Singhi (Celebrity Chef: Bake Diaries by Sneha Singhi, FOODFOOD)
Healthy Date Bliss Balls
- 1 cup (175g) dates
- 1 cup (100g) oats
- ¼ cup (65g) peanut butter
- ¼ cup (25g) shredded coconut
- 4 tablespoons (60ml) honey/maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons (15g) cocoa powder + more for dusting
- Add dates to a saucepan of water and let it come to a boil. Drain the water.
- In a food processor, process the dates, oats, peanut butter, coconut, honey and 2 tablespoons cocoa powder together.
- Transfer the mixture into a bowl. Roll the mixture into equal sized balls.
- Dunk the bliss balls in cocoa powder for that extra chocolaty taste and serve.
Gluten-free Quinoa Brownies
- 4 tablespoons (60ml) vegetable oil
- ¾ cup (150g) castor sugar
- 2 eggs
- ½ cup (93g) boiled quinoa
- ½ cup (50g) cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons (8g) baking powder
- ¼ cup (60ml) milk
- Chocolate ganache
- Dried raspberries
- Preheat the oven to 1800C and line a 9-by-9 inch square pan with parchment paper. Leave extra paper around the edges to function as handles – that will help you pull out the brownies when cooked.
- In a large bowl, combine oil and sugar. Let it sit 2-3 minutes.
- Add eggs and mix well so that everything is well incorporated.
- Carefully fold in the boiled quinoa, cocoa powder and baking powder.
- Add in the milk and mix well until the batter comes together.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake the brownies for 20-25 minutes until they are cooked through.
- Once the brownies have cooled completely, cover it with dark chocolate ganache and top it with dried raspberries.
Shivesh Bhartia (Food blogger and author: Bake With Shivesh)...