Category Archives: Food information

Why I choose plums for the crostata…

Plums are very nutritious low-kilojoule food. One medium-size fresh plum contains only 120 kilojoules and is a good source of such dietary fibres as cellulose and pectin. It also supplies useful amounts of several nutrients, including 6 mg of vitamin C and 150 mg of potassium.

In their dried form some plums become prunes, which are a more concentrated source of kilojoules and nutrients.
Plums contain anthocyanins, the reddish blue pigments that lend them their intense colour. These anti-oxidant pigments may help protect against cancer and heart disease by mopping up free radicals, unstable molecules that damage cells.

Overall they are delicious!!!

Does coffee help to burn fat?

I love coffee! Who doesn’t! But did you know that it actually helps to burn fat?
The caffeine it contains speeds up the metabolism. In nutritional circles, this effect is called a metabolic enhancer and believe me I know – I have been diagnosed with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis disease and since then I’m always searching for food that will help speed up my metabolism. Anyway, we all know that caffeine is a stimulant, and studies have clearly demostrated that it can help burn as much as 10 per cent more calories than normal.
Health experts advise you to limit your intake to a single cup in the morning and another one in the afternoon.
If you do not drink your coffee black, use skim milk instead of whole milk or cream and try it without sugar – you’ll be surprised how quickly your tastebuds adjust. I stopped adding sugar to my coffee when I was 14 years old and since then I cannot drink coffee with sugar, it just doesn’t taste the same!

If you are not like me and you find it just too bitter without sugar, add a piece of vanilla bean or cinnamon stick or a bit of vanilla, almond or your favourite extract to the grounds during the brewing process.

Buying Tips: Buy coffee in a vacuum-packed container. If you are buying coffee, make sure the retailer sells a lot. The flavour decreases the longer it is exposed to air.

Consumer Tips: Coffee loses most of its flavour after it has been ground. If you can, invest in a small coffee grinder and grind just what you need at the moment. Store whole beans or ground coffee in an air-tight container.

Health Plus: Studies show that caffeine is effective in alleviating asthmatic symptoms.

Go on there is no reason not to enjoy coffee – in moderation, of course!!

Here it is a nice recipe with coffee beans if you don’t like to drink it!

Espresso Bean Biscotti
coffee bean biscotti

Preparation time: 10 minutes
Total cooking time: 40 minutes per batch
Makes 40

1/2 cup (80g) almonds
1 1/2 cups (185g) plain flour
1/2 cup (60g) self-raising flour
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1 cup (250g) caster sugar
1/2 cup (40g) espresso coffee beans, placed in a plastic bag and crushed
3 eggs
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence

1. Preheat the oven to warm 170C. Bake the almonds for 5 minutes, then set aside to cool. Line 2 baking trays with baking paper.

2. Sift the flours, bicarbonate of soda, a pinch of salt and the sugar. Add the crushed coffee beans and almonds. Lightly beat the eggs and mix in the oil and vanilla. Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients, add the egg mixture adn mix to a dough.

3. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead gently until smooth. Divide the dough in half. Shape each half into a log 4 cm in diameter. Place one of each prepared tray and flatten the top slightly.
Bake for 25 minutes, or until firm and lightly golden. Leave on a wire rack for 10 minutes.

4. Cut the logs into 1 cm slices. Lay on the baking trays and bake for 6-7 minutes, turn over and bake for a further 6-7 minutes, or until crisp. Cool on a wire rack.


Did you know?

Coffe improves memory and mental function

Regular coffee consumption could help older people. A study on ageing revealed that coffee helped older people think more quickly, improve their memory and have better reasoning. Another study reported that women over 80 with a history of coffee consumption had better performance results on tests of mental function. Lifetime coffee consumption has even been linked to a lower risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

So go on and make the Tiramisu with nice strong coffee!