Thursday, 26 March 2015

Matcha Green Tea Ice-Cream

Do you remember my Organic Matcha Green Tea Powder Review a few weeks back? I shared with you two recipes; Matcha Fruit Shake and Matcha Green tea Loaf. I've been enjoying Matcha Fruit Shakes ever since! I also shared with you another recipe which used the organic matcha green tea powder; my Matcha and Blueberry Oat Bars, which I have also been enjoying, perhaps a little too much!

Today, I want to share with you my fourth recipe; Matcha Green Tea Ice Cream, which is very refreshing and a great ingredient to use in a smoothie!



I've been making Matcha Green Tea ice cubes, which are great to add to drinks. What about trying a few with your gin and tonic? I can't advise whether or not that works as I'm teetotal, but if you try it let me know what you think!

You can make this ice cream using a powerful food mixer and you will have a dessert within seconds, great for impromptu dinner guests. I think you could make it the more traditional way too, although I've not tried this method, thanks to my Vitamix!

Ingredients 

1 Tbsp Organic Matcha Green Tea Powder
300ml Water
75ml Fresh lemon juice
Lemon Zest of 1 lemon
250ml Lemon & lime yoghurt

Method
Mix the Organic Matcha Green Tea Powder with the water until fully combined. Add the lemon juice and rind and stir. Pour into an ice cube tray(s) or ice cube bag(s) and place in the freezer.

Once the ice cubes are frozen remove from the freezer and you're ready to make your ice cream.

Add the lemon & lime yoghurt to your food processor, followed by the ice cubes. Process until the mixture becomes a soft whip ice cream. Please check your processor can handle ice cubes first!

Enjoy!

Any remaining ice cream, transfer to a freezer safe bowl and freeze. You may want to do this in smaller portions as it does freeze very hard.

Quick tip: to double the amount of ice cream after freezing your first batch add a further 250ml of lemon and lime yoghurt, 1 Tsp organic matcha green tea power and frozen fruit (¼ pineapple and 1 banana) and blend again. Remember to break up your first batch of ice cream before adding to the blender.



Jasmine x

Sunday, 22 March 2015

Notice Board: Birmingham & Wing Yip Chinese Supermarket

Back in February my friend and I visited Birmingham, we had a lovely day visiting the art gallery and the new library and wondering around the streets looking for something tasty to eat for lunch! Unfortunately we visited on Monday and the 100% Vegan shop and cafe next door was closed. I was so glad when we found Wagamama's as I knew they had vegan options (I'd already google searched for vegan food in Birmingham). AND they have GOOD vegan options!

Wagamama's are a Japenese noodle bar and they have many restaurants all around the world. Believe it or not this was my first visit to Wagamama's and it was that good I went back 5 days later! On this occasion I treated myself to a yasai itame, which is a dish comprising of rice noodles in a spicy green coconut and lemongrass soup. The dish contains stir fried tofu along with a great selection of vegetables; chillies, beansprouts, red onions and spring onions, bok choi, peppers and mushrooms and is garnished with coriander and served with quarter of a lime to squeeze yourself. It was utterly delicious! We were little piglets because we also had a side dish of wok fried greens; tender stem broccoli and bok choi, stir fried in garlic and soy sauce.

The dishes are all made on the premises and use fresh ingredients, as soon as a dish is made it is brought to your table. Sometimes you don't get all the dishes arriving at once but that just adds to the occasion! 

I know I am probably the last person in the world to have not visited this restaurant before now but just in case I'm not I had to tell you about it! What are you waiting for, book a table but please invite me!

After a wonderful and relaxed lunch we decided to visit Wing Yip Chinese Supermarket. Again this was my first visit but I had heard of its amazing selection of Tofu so I just had to try it out. The supermarket is just over 2 miles from the city centre and we decided to walk there, so we could burn off some calories from our lunch. We had to get the bus back though thanks to the amount of food we bought!

The supermarket was absolutely massive and held so many weird and wonderful food items. A word of caution, the weird was probably non vegan so I would advise that you don't look too closely in the freezer department. You've been warned!

However, there were vegan food treasures to be found including a fantastic selection of tofu! From extra soft through to extra firm and even deep fried! Here's a selection of the food that I bought. My bargain of the day agar agar for under £1!!!!! 



I forgot to include all the tofu I bought in the photograph above and I've since eaten it all! As you know I love Tofu! Planning another visit to the Chinese supermarket for sure, evenif it is to stock up on tofu.

Have you ever visited Wagamama's or a Chinese Supermarket? Let me know what your favourite dish is and where I can find other Chinese Supermarkets to try.

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Black Bean and Spinach Chilli

On the way home tonight I popped into Tesco and I arrived just at the right time, the knocked down veg was being put out and price stamped! I couldn't believe it, I picked up a bag of spinach for 10 pence, bargain or what! I also picked up a few other vegetables and salad items for knock down prices too. Talk about being somewhere at the right time! :o)

On the bus home I was thinking of what I could cook up with my spinach bargain, the bus was cold tonight and I was craving some warmth, curry? chilli? fajitas? I settled with chilli and my mouth was watering thinking about it!



I soon knocked this up when I got in and I savoured every mouthful, the chilli worked its magic and warmed me up from the inside out.

Ingredients - serves 3-4
1 Tbsp Olive oil
1 Onion, finely diced
1 Green pepper, finely diced
3 Cloves of garlic, crushed
1 Tin black beans, drained and rinsed
1 Tsp Smoked garlic
1 Tsp Hot chilli powder
½ Tsp Dried cumin
200g Spinach, chopped
1 Tin chopped tomatoes
½ Tsp Salt
1 Tsp Balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp Tomato purée

Method
Sauté the onion and green pepper in the olive oil for 5 minutes.

Add the garlic and sauté for another minute, being careful not to let the garlic burn.

Add the black beans and stir through. Add the smoked garlic powder, hot chilli powder and dried cumin and stir again. Sauté for another minute, stirring all the time.

Add the spinach to the pan and stir through before adding the chopped tomatoes and stirring again. Leave to simmer for 8 minutes, stirring regularly to ensure the mixture doesn't stick to the bottom of the pan.

Add the salt, balsamic vinegar and tomato purée and simmer for another 2 minutes.

Serve with wholegrain rice.




 Jasmine x

Saturday, 14 March 2015

Notice Board: Suma Soaps Review & Giveaway

Sometime ago I got the chance to try two of the new, gorgeous smelling soaps from the Suma Soap range. There are twelve fragrances in total and I got to try the Patchouli & Hemp Soap and the Peppermint and Pine Soap. 
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COMPETITION NOW CLOSED

And the winner is...................................................Kasim Niaz! Congratulations!
I hope you enjoy your prize.


Thank you to all of you who entered; if you want to try the soaps for yourself you can buy them from Goodness Direct, if you haven't got a Suma account. They really are fabulous!
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suma-soap-wordpress

The soaps are all hand crafted using the finest natural ingredients and pure essential oils. As you already now I'm a massive fan of aromatherapy and I am always using my essential oils at home and work so I couldn't wait to try the soaps. The soaps are even coloured by using herbs, spices, flowers and clays and some include that little bit extra - some strange but true exfoliates. Have you ever used a soap with poppy seeds in - I have, now! 

All soaps are free from parabens, SLS and palm oil and are kinder on the environment. All of the twelve soaps are registered with the vegan society and show the leaping bunny logo which means they are cruelty free products. They are also made in the UK, bonus!


The smell of the Patchouli & Hemp Soap really transported me back to 'festival' days. The smell of patchouli takes me back to the quirky shops of Glastonbury and brings back fond memories of walking around the magic and mystic surrounding the town. 

Its fragrance is musky, almost earthy but inviting and sensual. Patchouli essential oil is great for dry skin and is reported to help with skin blemishes or old scars as it promotes the growth of new skin. It is also said to help release tension and uplift ones mood.


The smell of the Peppermint & Pine Soap is fresh and awakening, if your tired after a long day at work and have night out with the girls planned, but are feeling sluggish then this is the soap for you! It will refresh and boost your mood. Its also great to use first thing in the morning preparing you for the day at work ahead. The added poppy seeds are great for exfoliating your skin and give your skin that soft tingle after use.

Peppermint essential oil is a great skin tonic and has cooling properties which can help with sore and itchy skin due to sunburn or a breakout of spots. Used sparingly it will relieve the itchiness and inflammation.



Both soaps provide a rich and creamy lather that is soooo soft and their perfume permeates the air which is an added bonus. You can smell their fragrance for sometime after using and your skin feels soft to the touch. 

The whole range consists of the following fragrances:

  • patchouli and hemp with sandalwood
  • peppermint and pine oil with poppy seeds
  • aloe vera and wheatgerm oil
  • lavender and lime – with lavender flowers
  • lemongrass with chamomile flowers
  • tea tree and eucalyptus with nettle leaf
  • rosemary and lavender with rosemary leaf
  • grapefruit and mandarin with calendula flowers
  • cinnamon, orange and aduki bean
  • coconut milk and ylang ylang with oatmeal
  • bergamot and green tea with green tea leaves
  • rose geranium with rose petals

Exciting news! I have the whole range of twelve soaps to give away to one lucky reader!

All you need to do to enter is use the Rafflecopter widget below, there are a number of ways to enter and the more entries you make the greater chance you have of winning! 

You can submit an entry by:
  • leaving a comment, telling me which fragrance you would choose first
  • visiting Self Sufficient Cafe on Facebook-we would really appreciate a like, 
  • visiting Suma Wholefoods on Facebook-we would really appreciate a like, 
  • following me on twitter, 
  • following Suma Wholefoods on twitter, 
  • tweet about the give away on twitter 
The competition ends midnight 19th March 2015 and I will announce the winner by 22nd March at the latest. Good luck!