“Why does everything you make have coconut in it?”
This was the astute observation of my (then) 6-year old brother, who proceeded to suggest I should open a restaurant and call it “The Coconut Kitchen”.
Whilst I’m not quite at the stage of opening a restaurant, I wanted to set up a blog where I could share my love of food with friends and family (and anyone else who might be interested!). It’s a collection of my own creations, sometimes influenced by other recipes (which I will link to where relevant) or dishes I’ve had at restaurants.
Hopefully this will be a great mix of sweet and savoury recipes you can dip into and experiment with. There’s not always a “recipe” as such, mainly just an indication of ideas what to use to make something delicious. More than anything else, this blog is all about clean, nutritious and COLOURFUL food!
“Why isn’t there a clear recipe to follow?”
This blog is mainly a place for me to document some of my favourite kitchen experiments. If you’re looking for a typical “food blog” which sets out recipes in detail, this isn’t it. I don’t tend to work from recipes myself, and so it would be slightly disingenuous for me to make them up ex post facto. When I say “experiment”, I really mean it! Sometimes, I’ll include suggestions for how my versions could be adapted, or a link to a similar recipe (usually when it has inspired me!).
Having said that, however, please do send me an email/message if you really want to know a recipe that I haven’t outlined properly. I’d be happy to figure it out for you 🙂
“I don’t have time to cook healthy food!”
The purpose of this blog is to show you that healthy food CAN be easy to make, and delicious! People always complain to me that they don’t know how to put ingredients together to make a good dish themselves, without a recipe, or that they just don’t have time to cook. As for the latter excuse, none of my dishes are time-intensive – I prefer something that I can throw together quickly, or leave to cook whilst I get on with something else. I have no time for complicated recipes that require exact measurements, where ingredients must be added together only when at a certain temperature and constantly monitored, or where different altitude can radically alter the end result. All of that faffing about should be left to the professionals, as far as I’m concerned. As to the excuse that people don’t know where to start: get creative! Think about flavours you like, or combinations that you’ve tasted in restaurants. It’s very rare for flavours to be so awful together that you won’t be able to eat the end result!
I hope you’ll be able to use the ideas I post here as inspiration for your own experiments.
“Will I need to invest in lots of fancy ingredients?”
Not particularly. Whilst over time I’ve stocked up on supplies that I can then dip into, it’s very rarely crucial that you have access to exactly the same ingredients to be able to produce a similar end product. If, for example, I’ve used black garlic, you could get a similar flavour by using a bit of garlic and maybe using balsamic vinegar elsewhere in the recipe to get that sweet, tangy taste to come through. Feel free to ask me if you need help with substitutions!
“What if I don’t like coconut?!”
Not everything has coconut in it, although it is true that most of my baked goods do! Everything I make is gluten and dairy-free (with the odd goat’s milk exception), and if it’s necessary to add a sweetener I usually go for fresh/dried fruit.
“I don’t/can’t/won’t eat [X].”
Although I do make vegan/raw desserts (and meals) on occasion, most of my dishes will include meat, fish or eggs of some description. However, knowing what it’s like to not be able to eat certain things, I’m happy to try new recipes to accommodate other dietary requirements – just give me a shout 🙂
“So…what do you actually know about food?”
I’d hope I know quite a bit…but of course there’s always much more to learn! In terms of kitchen skills (particularly efficient chopping!) I’ve definitely got a long way to go; in terms of presentation/food photography you may be able to see for yourself that I again have quite a bit to learn!
In terms of flavours, I love trying new dishes and cuisines, and hope that some of those influences come across in my cooking.
In terms of nutrition, I’ve completed a course in Advanced Nutrition for Sports and Exercise (Professional Diploma Level 5) with the Health Sciences Academy. I’ve also completed a nutrition course accredited by the Association for Nutrition.
What do you do with all that food?!
Eat it! To fuel my training, of course 😀 I’m in the process of getting my athletics coaching licence, and regularly act as pacemaker at some of the biggest 10ks and half-marathons in the UK. If you’d be interested in having a me as a running coach / personal pacemaker for a race you have coming up, please feel free to get in touch 🙂
(Photo credit to @butterfly.becca on instagram!)