Comfort food is the ultimate remedy to longer nights and shorter days. Plus with some very good TV or a movie, we’re helpless against the tide of sinking into the sofa with something hot and deliciously fatty.
But just as much as we love a good bowl of food (preferably loaded with carbs), we also hate the panic with the onslaught of festive parties, where you then have to shoehorn your comfort food belly into a pair of skinny jeans or that little black dress.
So, is it time for a rethink?
Fancy a warming mash? Then use sweet potatoes, they will reduce the overall cooking time and have a lower glycemic load so they are a good slow release energy source to help keep blood glucose levels balanced throughout the day. They are loaded with Vitamin A and C to support your immune system as winter sets in.
A classic roast
When it comes to your Sunday dinner increase the vitamin, mineral and fibre content by roasting a mix of winter vegetables instead of just potatoes. Including squash, pumpkin, beetroot and parsnip to provide a great mix of polyphenols to support cardiovascular health, up energy levels and your antioxidants.
Always throw in a handful of fresh herbs
Fresh herbs will provide flavour to dishes and means you won’t need to use as much salt, plus support liver detoxification (those few glasses of vino with dinner!!)
Increase plant proteins
Try making a shepherd’s pie with a mixture of green lentils, tomato and dried wild mushrooms instead of minced meat. It can help you regulate your cortisol levels and reduce the overall impact of stress while also aiding liver function.
Avoid white carbs
When you are making a risotto choose brown risotto rice or red rice now available from most supermarkets. This will increase the fibre content promoting gut function and efficiency to keep your bowel movements regular and aid digestion. Plus, packed with extra flavour.
Get your daily oats
A comforting after dinner fruit crumble? Well you could lower your cholesterol level by swapping flour for raw oats in the crumble mix, as the beta glucan bind with cholesterol and carry it out of your body. Also, use ground almonds to increase protein and aid satiety.
Food glorious food…..
My favourite meal of the day is breakfast, and I will often make porridge, this is one of the ultimate comfort foods.
As well as being a great meal to provide sustained energy, it tastes absolutely delicious. Made with water, almond or coconut milk, served hot or cold.
Plus, some of my topping suggestions make it a varied and a very nutritious meal:
Try cacao nibs and crushed hazelnuts almonds or brazil nuts.
Chia seeds, fresh figs or pomegranate seeds (currently in season) and a tablespoon of bio natural yoghurt, sprinkled with hulled hemp seeds
Grated apple, chopped walnuts and a dollop of local honey.
For further advice and upcoming winter foods workshops contact :
Suzanne Garaty <firstname.lastname@example.org