Friday, 30 June 2017

It's Raining Fries

In a world where french-fries has become an almost staple meal for people of all age-groups, this dish is sure to keep you munching. Except, here you do not have to worry about the calorie intake and can replace that measurement chart with a grocery list. Here’s presenting – Veggie Fries; a definite YES to fulfill your fried food cravings on a beautiful monsoon day! Ready to wash your guilt away? Let it rain fries!



Here’s 3 ways to indulge away:


1.SWEET POTATO FRIES


sweet potato fries


INGREDIENTS :
For the fries
1 sweet potato
2 tablespoons Healthy Alternatives olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, chopped
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper

For the Greek yogurt chive dip
1 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons chives
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper

METHOD :
1. Preheat the oven to 425°F/220°C.
2. Cut the sweet potato into fries and combine them in a large bowl with olive oil, rosemary, salt, and pepper.
3. Place them in a single layer on a baking sheet lined in parchment paper. Bake for 20 - 25 minutes, flipping them halfway through.
4. Prepare the dip while the fries are baking. Combine all the dip ingredients into a small bowl and set it aside in the refrigerator until ready to use.
5. Happy binging!


2.ZUCCHINI FRIES


Zucchini Fries


INGREDIENTS :
2 zucchinis
1 cup panko
½ cup grated parmesan
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon dried basil
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
2 eggs

METHOD :
1. Preheat the oven to 425°F/220°C.
2. Cut the zucchini into fries and set it aside.
3. In a large bowl - combine panko, parmesan, garlic powder, basil, salt, and pepper.
4. Whisk the eggs in a bowl.
5. Dip the zucchini fries in the eggs, coating it evenly, and then  toss them in bread crumb mixture.
6. Place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 15-20 minutes, flipping halfway.
7. Crunch away with the dip from the above recipe!


3.CARROT FRIES


Carrot fries


INGREDIENTS :
2 carrots
2 tablespoons Healthy Alternatives olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper

METHOD :
1. Preheat the oven to 425°F/220°C.
2. Cut the carrots into fries and combine them in  a large bowl with olive oil, parsley, paprika, salt, and pepper.
3. Place the carrot fries on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper in a single layer. Bake for 20-25 minutes, flipping halfway.
4. Enjoy with the dip from the first recipe!


Walk into a Nature’s Basket store today and start your weekend with a healthy-twist!



Cauliflower Rice




You know it’s a good day when you can gobble up an entire bowl of rice without any guilt or hesitation. Not just any type of rice, but the very efficient - Cauliflower rice.

This paleo fad is a healthy take on the monotonous bowl of rice, giving it a complete healthy makeover with just the same taste and texture. Fluffy and tender like couscous, this super-food which is a part of the cruciferous family is an excellent source of vitamins and minerals, but most importantly contains a cancer-fighting compound known as glucosinolates.  Served with a protein ( eggs / tofu ) & a drizzle of soy sauce, brighten up your day with the perfect blend of healthy yet hearty.


INGREDIENTS :

1 medium-sized head of cauliflower
2 tablespoons Healthy Alternatives sesame oil
1 large carrot, cubed
6 green onions, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 red chillies, chopped
1 tablespoon ginger, crushed
1 cup frozen peas
2 beaten eggs (use scrambled tofu for vegan)
3 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce 

METHOD:

Cauliflower Prep: Shred the cauliflower using the grater or pulsing some rough cut pieces in a food processor; the end product should resemble tiny grains of rice.

Stir Fry: Heat 1 tablespoon of sesame oil in a large pan over medium-low heat. Add the carrots and garlic, and stir fry until fragrant for about 5-7 minutes. Add the grated cauliflower, edamame, and remaining sesame oil to the pan. Stir fry quickly to cook the cauliflower to a soft texture.

Finishing Touches: Make a well in the middle of the rice, turn the heat down, and add the eggs. Stir gently and continuously until the eggs are fully cooked. Stir in the soy sauce and green onions just before serving.

So walk into the nearest Nature’s Basket store near you and be a step away from a healthier you!

The Buddha Bowl

This year has been raining trends and if it has got to do something with a beautiful bowl full of colorful vegetables, healthy grains and proteins, you know you’re on the right path. Is it a path to heaven or to your stomach? You decide with - the Buddha Bowl. Also known as a hippiebowl or a macrobowl, this food fad is definitely taking the world by storm.

So what exactly is a Buddha Bowl? According to Wikipedia’s definition, a Buddha Bowl is “a hearty, filling dish made of various greens, beans and a healthy grain like quinoa or brown rice. Sometimes it will also include toppings like nuts, seeds and dressings for added texture and flavor.”

A Buddha Bowl can be vegetarian, vegan or meat-packed. It all depends on how you decide to stir things up.  Excited? Lets get started!

healthy Buddha Bowl


1.MEAT-PACKED





INGREDIENTS:
1/2  sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2" cubes
1/2  red onion, diced
2 tbsp. Healthy Alternatives olive oil, divided
Kosher salt
Freshly ground Healthy Alternatives black pepper
1 cup baby spinach
1/2 lb. Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 small garlic clove, minced
1 tbsp. soy sauce
1 tbsp. smooth peanut butter
1 tbsp. Healthy Alternatives Floral honey
1/4 c. lime juice
1 tbsp. sesame oil
1 tbsp. Chopped cilantro
1 tsp. Toasted sesame seeds
1/2 avocado, thinly sliced
2 cups cooked Healthy Alternatives brown rice

METHOD:
STEP ONE : Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Spread the sweet potatoes and red onions into a large baking sheet. Drizzle with about 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Season it with salt and pepper and toss it to coat. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until the sweet potatoes are tender.
STEP TWO : Meanwhile, prepare the chicken. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large pan. Season the chicken all over with salt, pepper, garlic powder and ground ginger. Add chicken to the pan and cook it for 6-8 minutes pre-side, or until cooked through. Let it rest for 10 minutes, then cut each breast into 1" pieces.
STEP THREE : Make the dressing. Whisk together garlic, soy sauce, peanut butter, honey and lime juice until evenly combined. Whisk in sesame oil and 1 tablespoon of olive oil until smooth.
STEP FOUR : Divide the rice between bowls. Top it with sweet potatoes, chicken, avocado and baby spinach. Lastly, sprinkle it with cilantro and sesame seeds and drizzle the dressing on top for a mouth-watering, hunger-relieving dish!

2.VEGAN


Vegan Buddha Bowl


INGREDIENTS:
Quinoa
1 Cup Quinoa rinsed
2 Cups Water

Chickpeas
1 1/2 Cups Cooked Chickpeas
Drizzle of Heathy Alternatives Olive Oil or other neutral oil
1/2 Tsp Salt
1/2 Tsp Smoked Paprika
1 Tsp Chili Powder
1/8 Tsp Conscious Foods Turmeric
1/2 Tsp Oregano

Red Pepper Sauce
1 Red Bell Pepper ribs and seeds removed
2 Tbs Olive Oil or other neutral oil
Juice from 1 Lemon
1/2 Tsp Pepper
1/2 Tsp Salt
1/2 Tsp Paprika
1/4 Cup Fresh Cilantro

Extra
Mixed Greens
An Avocado
Sesame Seeds for Garnish

METHOD:
STEP ONE : Start by cooking the quinoa. Bring 2 cups water to a boil, then add the quinoa. Simmer for about 15 minutes until all the water is absorbed. When done, remove from heat and keep covered for about 10 minutes so that the quinoa can absorb any excess water.
STEP TWO : Preheat the oven to 425. In a bowl, toss chickpeas, oil, and spices until chickpeas are evenly coated. On a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, bake chickpeas for 15 minutes. When done, remove from oven and let cool.
STEP THREE : To make red pepper dressing, add all dressing ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth.
STEP FOUR : Finally, assemble the buddha bowl. In the bowl, add quinoa, mixed greens, avocado, and chickpeas. Drizzle everything with red pepper sauce, sprinkle with sesame seeds and feast on some delightful food!

3. VEGETARIAN

Vegetarian Buddha Bowl


INGREDIENTS :
1 cup of Arugula
½ cup of cooked Quinoa
1 cup of Sauteed Brussel Sprouts
1 tbsp of Pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
½ an avocado, sliced
1 tbsp Healthy Alternatives Olive Oil (to cook brussel sprouts)
Salt & Pepper
1 tbsp of Tahini
1 cup of feta cheese

METHOD :
STEP ONE : Cook quinoa according to package instructions
STEP TWO : Sautee brussel sprouts for approx.. 15 minutes until lightly browned and tender
STEP THREE :  Slice half avocado
STEP FOUR : In a large salad bowl mix together argula, cooked quinoa, Brussels sprouts, pepitas and avocado
STEP FIVE : Drizzle tahini or tahini sauce with a sprinkle of feta cheese and enjoy!

Find the best value ingredients at a Nature’s Basket store near you and be a part of this sensational rage.

Tuesday, 27 June 2017

Scintillating Salad Leaves

If the word salad has already wrapped you up in a cloud of depression, fret not as we are here to help you bring your mundane salad back to life! These leafy greens carry the key to your healthy diet regime, you just need to know how to correctly pair your lettuce with the right sauce and seasonings to fully enhance its taste. Ready to toss them up? Let’s get salad.

healthy salad leaves


ARUGULA

Arugula salad leaves


Also called as rocket or rucola, this member of the mustard family is peppery and a little nutty. Young arugula leaves are the kind mixed in salads, usually mixed with other greens in a mesclun mix. Just 2 cups of arugula leaves will give you 50% of vitamin-K and 20% of vitamin-A you will need in your day, and you will just start loving them when you experience the nice and natural cooling effect they have on the body. Make some apple pecan arugula salad for a healthy pre-lunch meal. The best dressings for arugula are citrus-based or those enhanced with sweeter vinegars like balsamic.  It’s flavour is a perfect balance of sweet, spicy, savory, nutty and bitter with a delicately crisp texture to boot making it the ideal go-to ingredient for all things healthy & yum!

LETTUCE

Lettuce


What could we tell you about lettuce that you don’t know already? Low in fat and even lower in cholesterol, spinach is high in niacin and zinc, as well as protein, fiber and vitamins. From soups to sandwiches and raw to cooked, these just go well with anything and everything that you can make in your kitchen. Along with the so many vitamins and dietary fibres it carries, it is also great for your skin. So just add this in your salad and don’t worry about your diet for the rest of the day because lettuce has got your back there!

ICEBERG

Iceburg Lettuce


Also known as crisphead, it is the best thing you can have if you are looking for a hydrating agent and do not to go out and shop. It may not be the most nutritious of salad leaves but this is the thing for you as it will stay fresh in your refrigerator for over a week. Generally the mildest of the lettuces, iceberg lettuce is valued more for its crunchy texture than for its flavour. It is typically eaten cold and raw in salads, sandwiches, hamburgers, tacos, and in many other dishes. Iceberg can be very satisfying when garnished with a heavy dressing such as Buttermilk-Blue Cheese. With its crunchy and mild taste, this could be the ingredient you need to make your salad munchy and fun!

ROMAINE

Ramaine salad leaf


Caesar salad or a taco, this little salad leaf just completes every food item you can think of! Arguably the king of salad greens (and certainly one of the most popular), romaine boasts a light, almost grassy taste and a satisfying crunch. Romaine isn’t just delicious, it’s also particularly rich in folic acid and vitamin-K and will taste the best when served with creamy dressing or dressings that have some richness. Romaine pairs well with other crunchy salad ingredients such as cucumbers and onions, as well as fruit and nuts.

KALE

Kale


All the hype surrounding kale is for good reason–it’s high in fiber and its nutrient content is off the charts. And everyone adores its earthy, slightly grassy taste. The many varieties of kale–such as curly, baby, lacinato–help ensure it’ll never get old even if you eat it several days a week. Kale is as versatile as it is nutritious and it will taste wonderful with your salads, soups, pasta and what not!

BABY SPINACH

Baby Spinach


Popeye was a huge fan of spinach for good reason. Spinach is low in calories and fat-free, yet loaded with nutrients. Baby spinach is regular spinach that is harvested earlier, which makes the leaves small and more tender. Being high in vitamin K, vitamin A and folate it is extremely versatile and can be enjoyed in many ways. Baby spinach is a tender leafy green, so it is especially tasty when served raw in a salad. Pair spinach with fruits, such as strawberries; other vegetables, such as roasted butternut squash or grilled chicken for a delicious yet healthy delight!

So stop thinking and start your healthy diet today with our fresh and healthy salad leaves: Shop online or find the nearest store on bit.ly/2llpwU0

Thursday, 22 June 2017

Make room for mushroom

Recently gaining popularity for being the ‘meat for vegetarians’, the humble mushroom is the new superfood everyone’s talking about! A staple in Chinese medicine and Asian cuisine, mushrooms are a powerhouse of goodness. From pizza to pasta and soup to omelette, mushrooms can go well with just about any dish you prepare in your kitchen. What’s more, they’re naturally low in fat and carbs and are loaded with B vitamins, antioxidants and minerals, which makes them the ideal ingredient for a healthy, yet delicious meal. So don’t let mushrooms be a mystery. We're shedding light on some of our favourite fungi friends.

mushrooms

ENOKI

Enoki mushrooms

Enoki mushrooms are long and thin white mushrooms and more often than not seem to reach out to the East-Asian market. They are generally credited for being healthy, being rich in nutrients, vitamins and minerals. Due to the little tinge of fruity taste in it, it tastes great when used in a salad. However, it can even be enjoyed when used with soup or they can be sautéed with soy sauce and a bit of garlic.

SHITAKE

Shitake mushrooms

Shitake mushroom come along with a great health pack, being good source of vitamin-B and vitamin-D. They are even considered as good sources to assist weight-loss. Along with its speciality of going well with soup, it can even be used well while preparing a risotto or can be used to make a mushroom cognac sauce which can go well with duck confit, pate or even pasta.

SHIMEJI 

shimeji mushrooms

Packed with vitamin-B, potassium and proteins, it can become a great part of your food as it contains beta-glucans. It is also considered as a way to fight tumours and believed to be good for asthma patients. These buttery and nutty mushrooms are usually difficult to cultivate and are native to East-Asia but are even found in northern Europe. They are used extensively now with noodles and seafood.

OYSTER 

Oyster Mushrooms

With a high content of vitamin-C, vitamin-B1, vitamin-B2 and significant levels of iron, zinc, phosphorous and calcium, these oyster cap shaped mushrooms are high in the nutritional level. First cultivated in Germany, sautéed oyster mushrooms are a great side dish for grilled steak, or can be mixed with pasta or rice, or cooked as part of rice risotto to make a delicious meal.

PORTOBELLO

Portobello mushrooms

Mostly seen in the grasslands of north America and Europe, these mushrooms are rich in anti-oxidants. Easily recognised with the open flat cap, these mushrooms can be simply eaten by mixing with onion in a sauté pan with olive oil. They are used extensively in pizzas and lasagne. Other varieties include stuffing the portobello mushrooms with spinach and cheese to make tasty snack for you. 

BUTTON

Button mushrooms

Often called the commercial mushroom, this mushroom originated as early as the 1700’s in France. Button mushroom is an excellent low-calorie food, especially for diabetics. It contains a number of valuable nutrients, including protein, enzymes, B vitamins (especially niacin), and vitamin D2. From manchurian to curry, this mushroom has crept in everywhere and has managed to keep every eater satisfied.

There’s a lot to love about mushrooms. Add more to your everyday meals with a wide variety of mushrooms. Shop online or find the nearest store on bit.ly/2llpwU0

Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Berry delicious ice cream shortcake

The weekend is for sugar and spice, and all things nice! It’s for indulging and snacking on decadent desserts. This weekend, give in to your desires with a delicious shortcake that hardly takes any time to whip up. Small on time, small on effort, but big on taste, this delicious mango berry shortcake is the perfect indulgence!




Summer is here! And so is the best time to relish our most favorite delight – Ice-cream. This simple dessert idea is perfect for the sweltering summer heat and takes just a few minutes to whip together.

What you’ll need:

Our decadent, creamy mango ice cream from L’Exclusif
• Healthy Alternatives Orange juice
Strawberries, Raspberries and Blackberries
Shortbread biscuits
Brown sugar
Fresh mangoes

1.In a bowl, mix all the berries with a table spoon of brown sugar and a table spoon or two of our tangy, thirst quenching orange juice from Healthy Alternatives. Ensure all the berries are generously coated.

2.Dice some mangoes and lay them onto a plate.

3.Take two shortbread biscuits and place a scoop of our delectable L’Exclusif mango ice cream.

4.Pour on the berry mixture.

Voila! You have your yummy berry and ice-cream shortcake ready in just a few minutes!
Get the ingredients for this mouth-watering snack and a lot more at your nearest Nature’s Basket store, or shop online.

Let's talk about ice creams

You may be a sweet tooth or a spicy nut but we can assure you that you will be screaming for this dessert by the end of this article. So, sit back and relax as we take you around the world of ice creams.

International ice creams



Japan’s Mochi Ice Cream

 Mochi Ice Cream


From the land of sushi comes a sticky sweet treat full of sundry flavors in every single bite. A layer of pounded sticky rice or mocha coats the creamy ice cream inside for a candied culinary delight.


Dondurma From Turkey

A scoop with a side of entertainment! The local sellers from Turkey enjoy amusing the crowd by passing the scoop of this stretchy ice cream from cone to cone. The secret to its docile texture lies in the mastic and salep it is packed with.


Granita From Sicily

Granita ice cream


Think of it as a Greek God version of the snow cone. This sweet icy concoction from Sicily is chilled, creamy, slushy and everything you could hope for on a hot summer afternoon.

Mexican Paletas

Mexican Paletas


These fruity ice pops from Mexico or Paletas are a refreshing jolt to your palette. They may be watery and juicy or creamy and milky. All Paletas come in bright colours and interesting sweet & spicy combinations like mango-chile and cucumber lime. Which flavor do your taste buds prefer?

Thai Rolled Ice Cream

 Thai Rolled Ice Cream


Rolls of ice cream? More like rolls of candy-coated joy! In Thailand, Malaysia, Cambodia and the Philippines, ice cream is served in little rolls garnished with all kinds of toppings from coconut to toasted marshmallows to gummy bears and hot fudge.
Tempted to get on a plane right now and taste some of these ice creams yourself? Let us suggest an easier alternative. Shop online or find the nearest store on bit.ly/2llpwU0

Sundaes for Sundays

Sundays are for relaxing and indulging. Sundays are for satisfying your cravings and giving in to your desires. Sundays are for relishing gourmet dishes and desserts.
Sundays are for Sundaes!

Delicious, cold, soothing ice cream, topped with crispy, crunchy toppings, drizzled with fresh summer fruits and a fudgy sauce.
Spend your summer Sundays, indulging in homemade ice cream sundaes using our easy and quick recipes. Not only are they fun to make, but also incredibly tasty. Recipes so good, you won’t be able to put your spoon down!

Banana Split



To make this all time favourite, you will need:

METHOD
- -In a skillet add the butter and brown sugar and mix until the mixture is uniform.
2-Half the banana and caramelize in the butter mixture.
3-Add peanuts to the skillet and caramelize too.

4-Plate the caramelized banana and peanuts and top with 2-3 scoops of vanilla ice cream and a generous drizzle of chocolate syrup


Caramel, Nectarine and Granola Sundae

 Caramel, Nectarine and Granola Sundae

This recipe uses healthy granola bars, salted caramel sauce, and juicy succulent nectarines. Loved by all, this Sundae is best enjoyed with a slice of nectarine pie and some peach schnapps. You’ll need

-A cup of caramel sauce
-1 tbsp unsalted butter
-3 nectarines, diced (We recommend you use crunchy, harder nectarines as the soft ones fall apart while cooking)
-1 cup of your favorite Healthy Alternatives granola – try apple cinnamon!
-Vanilla Ice Cream


METHOD:
-In a pan melt the butter over medium heat.
-Once it melts, add the diced nectarines and stir constantly for about 5 minutes.
-Add the caramel sauce and stir together to combine.
-Remove from heat and divide the caramel and nectarine mix amongst bowls of thick, creamy L’Exclusif vanilla ice cream.
-Top with crispy granola from Healthy Alternatives and enjoy in the summer sun!
-If you’re feeling crafty, hollow out a summer apple and serve your sundae it in.

Candied Maple Bacon Sundae

Candied Maple Bacon Sundae
vanilla and bacon with salted potato chips dipped in chocolate
 
This recipe is for the brave ones. It combines the contrasting flavors of vanilla and bacon with salted potato chips dipped in chocolate! Slightly harder to create, this sundae is a new, different dessert. It’s sweet, it’s savory, and it’s going to become your favorite. You’ll need

-Bacon strips
-Vanilla Ice Cream
-Sour cream 
-Caramel Sauce
-L’Exclusif Salted Potato Chips
-L’Exclusif Chocolate Chips
-Maple syrup

METHOD:
-Melt the L’Exclusif chocolate chips in a microwave
-Dip one side of each potato chip in the paste completely, and refrigerate them, allowing them to harden and cool. The combination of salted potato chips with chocolate will create a pleasant flavor.
-Coat bacon strips with butter, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, chili powder and sea salt.
-Bake the strips for 30 minutes at 350°F until they turn into a golden brown color. Allow them to cool. Then drizzle with some maple syrup.
-In a bowl, place a few scoops of thick, creamy vanilla ice cream and add a dollop or two of sour cream.
-Top with chocolate coated potato chips, crispy coated strips of bacon, caramel sauce and maple syrup, along with a few chocolate chips. Enjoy your dessert!


Take your sundaes (and your Sundays) to a whole new level by serving them in edible bowls. Use cookie cups, hollowed apples, chocolate bowls. Go crazy with your toppings! Try combining different flavors – salty with sweet, savory and bitter! Go the extra mile and add chocolate chips, caramel popcorn, flakes of your favorite cereal.

Get all the scrumptious ingredients you need to make the ultimate sundaes, at Nature’s Basket. Shop online or find the nearest store on bit.ly/2llpwU0

No-Bake icecream cake

Summer involves constantly finding new ways to beat the heat. From coolers to ice creams, we’ve thought of it all.

Ice cream cakes are the newest way to stay cool in this otherwise scorching heat. Minus the trouble of baking and the constant worry that you might burn your kitchen down, ice cream cakes are a quick, yet absolutely delicious way of enjoying the experience of eating a cake.
Check out these easy, tried and tested recipes to beat the heat in a cooler way!

Ice Cream Cookie Cake

Ice Cream Cookie Cake

This one’s a complete family feast and is loved by everyone. It’s easy to make, requires barely 15 minutes to prepare, and could most definitely become a staple dessert after the first few times. To make this decadent cake you’ll need:
METHOD:
-Combine the crushed cookies with the melted butter and press the mixture into a greased, rectangular baking dish.
-Spread on a layer of the thick, creamy vanilla ice cream.
-Continue adding layers and then freeze until it sets.
-Top with whipped cream and chocolate sauce.
-Throw on the some crushed cookie crumbs.
-Add delicious toppings like berries or chocolate chips for that extra indulgence!