polenta

Raspberry, blueberry, plum polenta

A lot of chefs say, ‘what grows together, goes together’ and I really do believe in this. Just think about it, summer salads of courgette ribbons, shaved runner beans and summer herbs, savoury winter tarts of beetroot, parsnip and carrot or the combination of end of summer-autumn fruits in this delicious and warming pudding made with plums, raspberries and blueberries, all of which have been growing abundantly in my garden (except the blueberries that I pick from my friend’s down the road). The fruits cooked all together make the most wonderful mix of flavours and lovely juices, whilst the polenta and almond crisp-crumble layer on top adds great texture, with the almond extract adding a marzipan like flavour, yum! Feel free to use other seasonal fruits, blackberry, pear and apple is a lovely combination, or even just apple studded with raisins or sultanas… I love quince too!

Fruit filling

250g plums, stoned weight, about 7-8 plums
120g raspberries, fresh or frozen
120g blueberries, fresh or frozen
2 tsp coconut sugar
Juice of ½ orange (40g/ ml juice)
2 strips orange zest, using a potato peeler
½ vanilla pod, seeds scraped out but do not discard the pod, add it to the fruit too!

polenta

Polenta almond crisp topping

50g polenta (fine or quick-cook)
70g ground almonds
70g brown rice flour
35g coconut sugar
¼ vanilla pod, seeds scraped out
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp pink salt
Finely grated zest of half a lemon
70g coconut oil, melted
1 tsp almond extract

Preheat the oven to 200oC.

To make the filling, remove the stones from the plums and cut them into eight (quarter them then half each slice again!). Mix them in the dish you are using with the rest of the ingredients and leave the mix to macerate whilst you make the topping. I use a small-medium oval pie dish that is 21 x 15 x 5cm deep, but a similar size is fine.

To make the topping, mix together all of the ingredients from the polenta to the lemon zest. Add the melted coconut oil and almond extract and stir to combine and form a breadcrumb-like mix. Remove the empty vanilla pod from the fruit mix, give the mix a good stir with a wooden spoon and then scatter the crisp mix over the top of the fruit. Bake for 15 minutes until the top is golden-brown reduce the heat to …

goji berries

Goji Berry: It’s a Super Food, But Does it Taste Super Good?

I have been trying to eat and cook a lot healthier lately and I came across an awesome superfood called goji berries. As they’ve gained popularity rather recently, I am sure you are wondering: 

What do goji berries taste like?

Goji Berry

I was definitely hesitant to try them out at first because they sound quite exotic, and I had heard not so good reviews about the taste, but you have to try everything at least once, right?

Here’s the lowdown on goji berries, how to prepare them, and why you should start eating this superfood – right now!

Where to Goji?

Goji berries are commonly grown in Asia, mainly in China and in the Himalayas of Tibet. You may also hear them being referred to by different names – Chinese wolfberries of Tibetan goji (source).

Goji Berry

Nowadays, goji berries can be found in some well-stocked groceries – check out your local grocer’s health food section – or in most health food stores. These superfoods are all the rage now, so you should not have a hard time finding them in dried or powdered form. You may have to search a little bit harder for the fresh berries, though.

Berry Good

While goji berries are seeing a resurgence in popularity today, they have actually been around for centuries, used in ancient Chinese medicine.

Goji Berry
  • In Chinese medicine, goji berries are included in immune tonics and blood tonics (source) as they pack a powerful punch of vitamin C, boosting the immune system significantly (source).
  • High in antioxidants, the berries are also anti-inflammatory.
  • They are chockful of micronutrients like vitamin A and iron, and contain a complete set of the eight essential amino acids (source).
Goji Berry
  • A one-ounce serving of the berries has 4 grams of protein and three grams of fiber. They are also fat-free and low in calories. A combination of this is great for a regular bowel movement and promotes weight loss.
  • Loaded with beta-carotene, the berries also promote good eyesight and healthy skin.

The legendary healing properties might be just that, however – a legend. There is no solid scientific evidence on the goji berry’s ability to cure cancer and reverse the effects of aging, so take those bigger claims with a grain of salt.

A Little Bit of Everything

Talking of salt, I bet you’re dying to know by now how these berries taste.…