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 ‘Salads’ 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 »

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 »

March 31st, 2011 by Clarabella

Butternut Goats Cheese Salad and the Dawn of the Spring

There was something different in the woods last night. As I ran through them I could see that they were not the same as they have been. I have to confess that I am a little slow on the uptake and it took me a while to figure out what it was. It was the green. The woods are coming back to life after the grey and brown of winter. Spring is spreading its life-giving fingers through the trees and over the ground, colouring everything green. Last night’s run really heralded in the start of the spring and the promise of summer to me. It was light and a bit of blue sky and real sunshine even made an appearance through the trees, a welcome sight after a day of monochrome greyness. The final stretch of that run route takes me through a farm, and I had to laugh out loud to myself as I picked my way through the muddy farmyard, under the watch of the sheep. They were just so funny, lying around on the ground just looking at me. I could not figure out if there expressions were the blank stare of a not too bright animal, or wary curiosity, or indignantion at my trespassing through their mud. Whatever it was I had to laugh.

So today’s post is not about a lamb as you may think from my opening sheepy statement, but it is about a lovely Butternut and Goats Cheese Salad that I made last week while on my low-carb pre half marathon eating regime. It was a super tasty and a bit of a final hurrah to the winter squash. Although I do love my butternut so I am sure I’ll still get hold of the odd one here and there in the summer. But its the principle of bye-bye winter, hello spring. When roasted butternut is sweet, yet savoury, crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside, and with the paprika and cumin it gets a lovely crisp, spicy outside.

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March 13th, 2011 by Clarabella

Ceviche – Courtesy of the Daring Cooks

Kathlyn of Bake Like a Ninja was our Daring Cooks’ March 2011 hostess. Kathlyn challenges us to make two classic Peruvian dishes: Ceviche de Pescado from “Peruvian Cooking – Basic Recipes” by Annik Franco Barreau. And Papas Rellenas adapted from a home recipe by Kathlyn’s Spanish teacher, Mayra.

I have never had ceviche before although I have heard of it. Being a huge fan of sushi the prospect of raw fish did not put me off at all. The thought of using it in a whole new way was exciting, and I decided that I wanted to do something different with it. Make it stand out. Make something thats not like anything I’ve had/seen/made before. So I looked around online and read loads of recipes using white fish, salmon, herbs, and then one caught my eye. Scallop and Peach Ceviche.

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