Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Debunking a few myths in one sitting

I don't mean to brag, but I just cooked one of the most yummiests meals ever.  Here it is:

It was indulgent, warming, autumn comfort food at it's best.  And it was healthy. Oh, and super quick.


If you ask most people what 'healthy' food looks like they'll probably talk about salads and the like.  Vegetable sticks and humus, fruit salad. That kind of thing.

It probably wouldn't conjure up images of creamy mash, steaming gravy and hunks of stick to your ribs meat.

But that's where they'd be wrong.

Tonight's dinner was all of those things, and consisted of:

Venison steaks - higher in protein, vitamins and iron than beef and very low fat, not to mention incredibly tasty and quick and easy to cook.  I simply heated some butter, browned all over for 2 minutes then turned the heat down and cooked on each side for a further 2-3 minutes for rare steaks.

NB debunking a butter myth - it is not the devil.  We definitely don't need to eat piles of butter all day every day, but using it in moderation where needed is fine.  Our brains do respond to how satisfying our food is as well and there is no way of replacing the depth or richness of flavour or the silky texture of a sauce made with butter.  Years of experience has taught me that scrimping on these things with good intentions is a false economy.  If your food isn't satisfying, all you want to do is stuff your face afterwards.  Just be sensible with it.  Plus, butter is a totally natural product, no manmade nasties or chemicals anywhere.  Moderation and all that.

Anyway, moving on, we also had red cabbage (full of protective phyto-nutrients).  I'd always thought of cabbage as something quite annoying and slow to cook but I was wrong.  All you need do is chop it up into strips, chuck it into a wok with coconut oil (or whatever oil you have), and stir fry for a bit.  It's lovely if you retain a bit of the crunch and even lovelier if you chuck some freshly squeezed orange juice at it.

I also added a few handfuls of kale into the pan after the cabbage was nearly ready.  Kale is like the king of superfoods, the queen of greens and it's health benefits are almost endless.  It cooks up super quick just flash fried.

NB debunking a frying myth - deep fat frying, ok, not great.  But heating up quickly in some coconut oil, or dry frying or adding a splash of water to the frying pan are super quick easy and healthy ways to get stuff cooked quick.

And finally, the piece de resistance, the icing on the cake, the yummiest of yum on this plate.

The mash.

Or, the cauliflower mash to be precise.

I kid ye not it is the most delicious thing ever. EVER.  I seriously don't know why anybody eats mashed potato with this on offer.

Please just try it.

'It' being:

Chop up a head of cauli.  Steam til al dente.  Chuck on about 2 tspoons grated parmesan, 1 tspoon dijon mustard and a sprinkle of sea salt.  Mash up.

Moan with delight as you taste its supreme yuminess.

Bung it all on a plate with some gravy you just rustled up by adding port/whisky/red wine type stuff to the pan you cooked the venison in and enjoy.

Totes delish, totes healthy, super quick and about as warming, comforting and satisfying as you can get without any of the lardiness.