Butternut squash curry

buternut1

When someone mentions curry to me I often think of a big pot simmering for hours, full of complex spices and hard-to-make sauces. This butternut squash curry is the exact opposite of that…yes, you’ll need a large pot, but there’s nothing complex about this recipe.

You will need:
– 1 large butternut squash (peeled and diced)
– 2 chicken breasts (diced)
– 1 x red onion (chopped)
– 1 x pepper (chopped)
– Baby corn
– Courgette
– Aubergine
– Handful of coriander
– 1 x tin of coconut milk (full fat!)
– 1 red chili (chopped)
– 2 tsp madras curry paste
– 1 tsp cumin seeds

buternut 2

To make:
– Start by placing your diced butternut squash into a microwaveable container with a little water in. Put the container into the microwave and microwave for a few minutes until it starts to soften.
– In a large wok or frying pan, add a little coconut oil and fry off the onion, cumin seeds, chili and madras curry paste before adding the diced chicken breast.
– Once the chicken is cooked, add the vegetables and the butternut squash before pouring in the coconut milk.
– Allow to simmer for 10-15 minutes. Stir in some fresh coriander before serving and remember to save a little bit to garnish the dish with!
– Serve piping hot with either plain rice or cauliflower rice.

There you have it, a super simple, cheap and easy to make curry that takes less than 30 minutes. Of course, it’s healthy too.

Enjoy 🙂

Advertisements

Crystal light balancing therapy at The Sanctuary of Healing

Before my visit to The Sanctuary of Healing I had no idea what a chakra was or whether mine were aligned. All I knew was that I was eager for some relaxation time and to try something different. 

  

The Sanctuary, near Blackburn, believes that our physical, mental, emotional and spiritual energies need to be able to flow freely through our body in order for them to be able to work together to heal the body. 

Spiritual healing is never something I’ve learnt about before or even believed in so I was excited to try one of the treatments and experience something different. 

My friend Liana and I opted for the crystal light therapy treatment which lasted for 30 minutes, although you can opt for a one hour treatment.

The Sanctuary told us that crystal light therapy ‘combines natural healing frequencies with the use of precious gem stones to bring balance and harmony’ to both body and mind. 

A treatment is said to help correct imbalances in the body which can manifest as an illness; in particular IBS, joint pain and sciatica to name a few. It also claims to help with Alzheimer’s disease, arthritis and asthma. 

The treatment uses chakra crystals and colour which are said to radiate energy to each chakra in our body. We had seven lights pointing to the main seven chakras in our body. Chakras are basically  the energy centres in our body according to ancient Indian medicine. 

They are: 
1) The root chakra at the base of your spine.
2) The sacral chakra in your lower abdomen. 
3) The solar plexus chakra in the upper abdomen. 
4) The heart chakra just above your heart. 
5) The throat chakra in your throat. 
6) The third eye chakra in your forehead between your eyes. 
7) The crown chakra at the top of your head. 

So basically what we did was lie on a bed with a ridiculously comfy pillow while one of the therapists adjusted the lights accordingly to align with our chakras. We then had the option of having the lights dimmed or not and whether we wanted soft music on. I opted for both. Then it’s time to relax for 30 minutes and it’s up to you whether you stay awake and watch the lights or go to sleep and let the crystals do the work.

Afterwards people are said to feel more energised, enjoy a better nights sleep, feel less stressed and more relaxed. I can definitely say that I felt more relaxed but I’m dubious as to whether the crystals had anything to do with that but all in all it was a lovely, relaxing and peaceful afternoon. 

Before our treatment we enjoyed some lunch in the cafĂ© which was delicious! We had one of the chefs special pulled chicken and crispy pancetta salads which included a soft boiled egg, coleslaw, shredded carrot, yellow tomatoes and mung beans. In keeping with the treatments at the Sanctuary the menu is of course full of healthy yet delicious options with some delicious looking desserts too. 
The staff we met during our visit were incredibly helpful and answered any questions we had about the food and the treatments and even gave us a guided tour of the meditation facilities on offer. 

  
  
One thing I did take away from the experience was the importance of relaxation. These days even when we think we are relaxing, before we go to sleep for example, we’re actually not. There’s always something distracting us, from phones to our other halves! I’m going to try and make a conscious effort to relax properly before bed to ensure I get the best possible nights sleep, ignoring my phone and maybe putting on some of that soft soothing music! 

Have you tried crystal light therapy or are you a fan of healing? Let me know your experiences. You can Tweet me @HannahBryan91 or email me at hbryan91@gmail.com 

🙂 

Seafood & three tomato courgetti in a spicy tomato sauce

Crazy for courgetti!

IMG_8890 IMG_8902

Looking at the picture on the left you could easily mistake it for a pan of pesto covered spaghetti yet it’s actually one of my favourite “pastas”, courgetti!

Thanks to my handy little spirazlier (which you can spend as much or as little on as you want – mine was ÂŁ13 from Amazon) I’m able to transform this underrated vegetable in to yummy ribbons of courgette as a substitute for pasta. The outcome is a light dish which has the same texture as spaghetti and is quicker to cook than pasta – I love it.

Another food I love is fish and it goes great with courgetti which is how this dish was created. The recipe uses fresh, clean ingredients that are easy to get hold of and the entire dish can be made in less than 40 minutes. Healthy eating doesn’t need to be overly fancy and involve lots of ingredients you can barely pronounce, just eat good stuff! Also, this dish is ridiculously tasty!

You will need: (this served three people, two ladies & one big portion for the other half!)
– Three courgettes, spiralized
– Cherry tomatoes, chopped
– Vine tomatoes, chopped
– Sundried tomatoes, chopped
– 1 tbsp red pesto
– 2 tbsp, tomato purĂ©e
– King prawns
– 2 salmon fillets
– Coriander, chopped
– 2 cloves garlic, chopped
– Kale
– Coconut oil
– 1 red chilli, chopped

To make:
– Start by preheating the oven to about 180 degrees and wrap the salmon in some tin foil before putting in the oven to cook for about 18-20 minutes.
– Heat a tsp of coconut oil in a frying pan and add the chopped garlic, cherry tomatoes, vine tomatoes and chopped chilli. After a couple of minutes add the tomato purĂ©e.
– When the salmon has been in the oven for about 10 minutes put the kale on a baking tray and drizzle with a little oil before putting in the oven to roast for about 10-12 minutes – be careful though as it does crisp up quickly.
– Add the spiralized courgetti to the pan and stir in the pesto, king prawns and chopped coriander.
– Once everything is ready, put the kale in a bowl then add the courgetti pasta and top with a piece of your salmon fillet.

Enjoy and tag me in your creations using #hannahshappypace

Got a courgetti recipe you want featured? Contact me! 

Banana, pecan & choc chip loaf

IMG_5752

 

We all need a little treat from time to time and that’s a fact.

Despite being an advocate of clean eating I am aware that this can sometimes become an obsession rather than a lifestyle choice. When we find ourselves saying no to birthday cake in the office or a festive mince pie at a family bash it’s time that we took a step back and re-evaluated our eating attitudes.

My opinion is that balance is key and by not denying yourself treats you can still maintain a healthy body and a great figure whilst maintaining a healthy mind at the same time.

This is where my banana loaf recipe comes in. I am a massive fan of banana loaf and although you can make Paleo banana cake it was a real banana cake that I wanted. Another reason why I wanted to bake a “real” cake was because baking is not my strong point and I don’t like to be defeated. I was thrilled with how this one turned out and I will definitely be making another in the future.

You will need:  (makes one big loaf)
100g soft butter (and a little for greasing)
140g caster sugar
140g plain flour
1 egg – beaten
2 tsp baking powder
1 tbsp Vanilla essence
4 ripe bananas
85g pecans
35g dark choc chips

To make:
– Preheat the oven to about 180 degrees and grease a loaf tin with a small amount of butter ready for the mixture.
– Begin by mixing together the sugar, butter and egg before slowly stirring in the flour and baking powder.
– Next, mash the bananas in a separate bowl before adding it to the main mixture along with the vanilla essence, pecans and chocolate chips before stirring well.
– Pour the mixture into the tin (it was at this point that more mixture went into my mouth rather than the actual tin, whoops!) and bake for about an hour. Test that the cake is ready by putting a knife or a skewer in and if it comes out clean then the cake is done.
– Leave to cool on a wire rack before slicing and then keep fresh in foil.

This is such a simple cake to make and other nuts or dried fruit can be added depending on what you fancy. Enjoy with a cup of tea as a post workout treat or just as a treat in general! 🙂