Sugarbird's Sweet Nothings

I am passionate about food. And cooking. And baking. And running. Come and find a new recipe, a funny story, some strong opinions and whatever else I feel like throwing in the mix today.

Archive for the ‘Healthy(ish)’ Category

December 8th, 2011 by Clarabella

Soba Noodle, Aubergine, Mango & Tofu Salad

I eat too much cake. Its a fact. And rather unavoidable given my occupation. So in the evenings, when the cake baking is done and my tastebuds and stomach are craving something savoury, I do try to cook healthy foods. When I want to be even more super duper healthy, I meander over to 101 Cookbooks or my copy of Super Natural Every Day and pick something from Heidi’s collection of super whole and healthy recipes.

The problem I do have with her recipes though, is that there are some ingredients I don’t even know what they are, let alone where on earth, here in Manchester, England specifically, I would be able to get hold of them. What is Tempeh? Where do I find black sesame seeds? These are questions that perusing her book has left me with. So, I do often have to improvise a little bit when cooking her recipes, and add my own ingredients or alternatives. Read the rest of this entry »

July 14th, 2011 by Clarabella

Apricot Breakfast Crisp

I had been neglecting breakfast for a while. It had been ages since I had made some vanilla-ey, banana-ey porridge, and I was in the breakfast doldrums. Dry toast or cardboardey cereal was getting me down. So I went looking for inspiration. First in the greengrocer down the road. I had originally gone in there looking for an onion or something equally mundane, but I emerged with a large box of apricots.

I cannot remember the last time I had a fresh apricot. Sure, I’ve had dried ones in my granola on occasion, but real, fresh, tart little copper beauties, not for a very long time. So I grabbed them. The colour of them seduced me. Look at them, can you blame me? I was powerless to resist the loud orange call.

Read the rest of this entry »

June 30th, 2011 by Clarabella

Creamy Vanilla Risotto Rice Pudding

It is no secret that I have a mild fetish for rice pudding. If I come across a new recipe for rice pudding, whether it be Blueberry Brown Rice Pudding, or just Old Fashioned Rice Pudding. All puddings of rice are good by me. So when baking angel Joy the Baker posted a new Rice Pudding recipe, that was not only a delicious looking pudding, but a completely new method of making a rice pudding, how could I possibly resist.

Rice pudding is just a comforting eating experience. Its like a warm duvet, fluffy socks, or soft pyjamas. Its like a velvety, creamy, delicious hug. And I am in dire need of hugs and warm comfort at the moment so I feel totally justified in making rice pudding for dinner. Read the rest of this entry »

June 19th, 2011 by Clarabella

Super Natural Brocolli Gribiche

Last month I discovered Heidi Swanson and her latest book Super Natural Every Day. I have been trying to make my lunches and dinners a bit on the health side lately, and that is how I came across Heidi’s site. Her focus on primarily natural, whole foods and ingredients that can be used and prepared at home. Now I cannot pretend to be giving up butter, sugar or chocolate, but I do believe that balance is important an in order for me to get away with baking as much as I do, I need to balance all the indulgent baked bounty with some nutritious, good for you, give your arteries a hug healthy stuff. The good thing is that I do really enjoy healthy food. I love vegetables and quinoa and brown rice (even when its not in pudding form) and I am quite happy to often cook vegetarian.

So when I got hold of Heidi’s book and started reading about the virtues of quinoa, tofu, soba noodles and chickpeas, I did start making an mental inventory of what is in my brimming cupboards at home. I do have white flour and sugar, and I could certainly make an effort not to eliminate these as a lot of baking demands these components, but to mix things up a bit. Start mixing in whole flours and brown sugars and even more nuts and fruits and good stuff. I can do that 🙂 Read the rest of this entry »

May 19th, 2011 by Clarabella

Toasted Almond Breakfast Granola

Sometimes all the cake can be too much. Too much sugar. Too much butter. Too much unhealthiness. I am not a healthy eating fanatic, not even close. But sometimes you need a break from the cake.

So what do I do when I feel like this? I look around for something wholesome, and tasty, and good. Something that will balance the cake, but make me smile at the same time, no kale and cucumber smoothies or cranberry juice detox diets. Just wholesome goodness. And granola and banana and yoghurt tick those boxes for me.  Read the rest of this entry »