THE FOOD HEALER

Eating for overwhelm // white fish with ginger + onions

A lovely soothing dinner to ease a stressful day.

Working under stress, at a fast pace, can mean feeling nauseous and dizzy - and here's where ginger can help.

Onions are good for the heart and reducing high blood pressure, but my belief is also that eating for your heart also nurtures the heart emotion, that overwhelm that can come with stress.

And white fish is soothing on the digestive tract, soft and soothing to eat too.

Serve with a little white rice (which is easier to digest than brown) and with a green vegetable stir-fry, with a little chilli and soy sauce, to give hope and vibrancy  ...

This is a good choice for a dinner to wind down, take some time, allow yourself to relax, let all that jumpiness and tightness unwind a little.

I use my beloved remoska electric cooker for this, but you could put the fish into foil parcels on a baking tray or just straight into an ovenproof dish with a lid - and cook in a medium heat oven.

Here's what you'll need for two:

2 white fish fillets (cod, hake, haddock - up to you)

cooking oil

2 tablespoons ginger, peeled and grated

2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped

1 tablespoon light brown demerera sugar

4 teaspoons fish sauce

the zest and juice of a lime

1 onion, peeled and finely sliced

coriander leaves to garnish, if liked

Put the fish into the remoska, foil or oven-dish and add a few sprays (or a couple of teaspoons) of oil, then the ginger, garlic, sugar, fish sauce, lime zest and juice and a splash of water and cook in a medium oven for 20 minutes or so - check that it's cooked through.

Rachel Redlaw the food healer fish with ginger and onions
Rachel Redlaw the food healer fish with ginger and onions

Cook your rice and any vegetables you'e serving with this ready for when the fish has cooked.

Five minutes before the end of the fish cooking time add a few sprays or a little oil to a non-stick frying pan and cook the sliced onion until soft and golden.

Serve the fish with rice and vegetables and topped with the fried onion and coriander leaves.

Rachel Redlaw the food healer fish with ginger and onions
Rachel Redlaw the food healer fish with ginger and onions


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Eating for energy // steak + broccoli

Eaten alone, these are both still great choices for energy, each being a great source of iron and of B vitamins.

But eaten together they are even more powerful - broccoli is also an excellent source of vitamin C and the body absorbs iron better when it's taken with vitamin C. 

So by adding broccoli to our steak we get maximum energy benefits.

Rachel Redlaw The Food Healer steak and broccoli

And of course, it's also just a great-tasting meal.

First I toasted some flaked almonds in a dry non-stick pan and set aside to add at the end - just for a lovely crunch on top of the broccoli and for extra healthy fats. Don't use peanuts - peanuts are legumes rather than nuts and don't have the same health benefits as nuts!

I trimmed the ends of the broccoli and then put it into a pan of boiling water which I then immediately removed from the heat and let the broccoli sit for ten minutes.

I drizzled my piece of rump steak with a little soy sauce then cooked it on a very hot griddle pan for three minutes on each side (leaving it alone during that cooking time) and then rested it while I stir-fried the broccoli n a few sprays of cooking oil in  a non-stick pan with a little red chilli and a dash of soy sauce.

Note: I like my steak medium-rare to rare so do just cook your steak the way YOU like it!

I love the simplicity of this dinner and also just that magic of how things work together - this is a perfect pairing for energy.



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Immune-boosting, health-giving, soul-food roast chicken

In the darkest of January days, the sleet falling outside, we need to nurture ourselves - mind, body, spirit, and of course what we choose to cook - for ourselves and for others - can also nurture that feeling.

Making something good, healthful.

Something that soothes but also that adds so much natural immune-boosting, digestion-friendly, anti-oxidents in one meal ... today, it's this roast chicken.

Roast chicken is a soul-food, a nourishing, soothing, happiness-inducing food.

There's also something about the time it takes to cook that feels right, in these slower times of year, where we hunker down a little and take a little time to cook something good.

It goes without saying but I'll say it anyway - you can't have soul food from an unhappy hen, so choose organic, free range chicken, with a happy life. A chicken's life needs to be honoured too so use every scrap - make stock when you've finished with the meat.

Using all of our ingredients - meat, fish or vegetable - and avoiding food waste is a key part of our overall health and wellness.

So, organic roast chicken for the soul. 

Every ingredient in this plays a part in providing these health benefits:

boosts the immune system

promotes heart health

anti-inflammatory (great for the joints in these winter months)

aids digestion

can help to reduce blood pressure

Every ingredient is chosen for their health benefits, and also taste benefits - which of course then also aids overall health by the pure enjoyment of our food too.

For this marinade you just need the following (super-immune-boosting) ingredients:

a thumb sized piece of ginger, grated

another thumb-sized piece of turmeric root, grated (if you can't find it, just add 2 teaspoons of turmeric powder)

a good big garlic clove, squashed and minced, and one garlic clove squashed and put inside the cavity of the chicken

1 lemon, half squeezed into the marinade and the other half cut into two quarters and put into the cavity

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

a small pot of natural yogurt, about half a cup

2 teaspoons olive oil

Mix all the marinade ingredients together and massage into the chicken - and do this with love!

We need love in our cooking and taking a couple of minutes to honour the chicken, massage in the added health-boosting marinade, will all make for something extra special.

Leave the chicken to marinade for a couple of hours or overnight and then roast.

I use my beloved remoska - it's a small electric oven - but on this occasion so small it burnt the edges of the chicken.

Rachel Redlaw The Food Healer Roast Chicken
Rachel Redlaw The Food Healer Roast Chicken

But hey - it still reduces waste in electricity heating a huge cavernous oven for one chicken - AND that small space means it steams and cooks and remains beautifully moist.

It takes an hour and a half in the remoska, so probably similar in your oven - just make sure to test it's done and cooked through completely - the easiest way is by putting a knife into the leg and checking the juices run clear.

Rachel Redlaw The Food Healer Roast Chicken
Rachel Redlaw The Food Healer Roast Chicken

(Note on the remoska: do look it up HERE. It's not a slow cooker, it's just a tiny, economical electric oven. The initial outlay is quite a lot, yes, but I've used mine several times a week for over 15 years now, so it does end up in cost-per-use - ha, I nearly put cost-per-wear - very economical, without even factoring in the lower electricity/gas costs).

And then just enjoy your soul-food, health-providing roast ... I like it with a rice salad full of herbs and lemon, or with traditional roast vegetables.

Use the leftovers in all the creative ways you can - HERE's some of my favourites.

Rachel Redlaw The Food Healer Roast Chicken

Make stock from the leftovers and bones.

Make the whole experience one of nurture, thoughtfulness, love, sensuality. 

Yes I do find the act of cooking healthful food for my loved ones, beautifully, mindfully ... sensual - it indulges so many senses to choose to do this.

And this is a power-punch of immune-boosting ingredients to stave off all the winter colds too.

 



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