We wish you a VEGAN Christmas!
This roast looks so good on the table and it can be a main dish if you are vegan of a side dish if you are not. I even used this recipe as stuffing for the turkey once, and it's divine!!!
1 onion , chopped
2 cloves of garlic , chopped
1 tbsp olive oil
300 g butternut squash , peeled and chopped
200 g carrots , chopped
150 g cashew nuts
150 g cooked and peeled chestnuts
120 g breadcrumbs
1 tbsp light tahini
1/2 tsp each of dried rosemary , sage and thyme
1 tsp yeast extract
1 tsp tomato puree
2 tsps paprika
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Fresh herbs and cranberries to decorate
Preheat the oven to 180C
Fry the onion in the oil until soft and just beginning to colour
Add the garlic and fry gently for a further two minutes
Steam or boil the carrots and squash until soft, mash thoroughly
Grind the cashews and chestnuts in a food processor – not too much, you want ground nuts rather than nut flour
Mix all the ingredients together in a large bowl
Press into a greased 900g/2lb loaf tin or ring mould
Cover with foil and bake in the preheated oven for 1 hour
Remove the foil and bake for a further ten minutes
Leave to stand in the tin for 10 minutes
Turn out onto a board (or glass cake stand as I have here)
Decorate with rosemary sprigs, fresh thyme and cranberries
We all know how difficult it is to stay on plan on Christmas. With that in mind, we put together a list of little things that you can change that won't impact your fun, and will keep you more on track. Check it out!
TURKEY - remove the skin before eating it, spray with oil, and prick the skin.
Turkey is actually a great healthy choice, it's lean meat packed with protein. You will often see low-fat sandwiches made from turkey and people have turkey bacon as opposed to pork as it has less fat content. So where does it go wrong on Christmas Day?
The skin on a turkey, or any other roasted poultry, is where most of the fat lies. This, combined with the amount of oil or butter smothered over it during roasting, means that the skin alone adds around 40 calories per portion. So, all you have to do is remove the skin from the turkey before you eat! You keep the protein and get away from the fat.
Also a few hacks to roast it: before cooking, prick the skin to allow the fat to drain out and roast it on an upturned ovenproof plate so it is not soaking in the fat. Nobody wants to eat a dry turkey, so try to spray a light oil over the bird as opposed to basting it with oil or butter. If you are going to use the meat juices to make gravy, make sure that you drain the fat from it first!
STUFFING - use chestnut instead of butter and sausage
While we may love sausage stuffing, it might not be as desirable when we reveal just how bad it is for you, with 32 g of fat per serving!
Chestnuts are a great alternative to sausage meat when making your own stuffing, they are low in fat and are high in potassium and protein. They also only have 3 g of fat in the chestnut, a number which can be much more easily swallowed. Chestnut stuffing really does taste the same as well, so keep it a secret and see if anybody can tell the difference. You may just even get a few more compliments about the new recipe!
If you are using packaged sausage stuffing, avoid adding butter as it will only add extra fat and can hardly be tasted once you’ve poured gravy over.
THE DANGEROUS EXTRAS - swap pigs in blankets for chipolatas wrapped in turkey bacon, swap butter for spray oil and beware of cranberry sauce.
The extras are often the best parts of the Christmas feast. Pigs in blankets, cranberry sauce, roast potatoes and many other scrumptious treats complete the dinner we love so much. As little as they may seem, many of these extras are a lot naughtier than you might have thought.
Use mini chipolata sausages wrapped in low fat bacon or turkey bacon to create a much less fattier version of pigs in blankets. When roasting your potatoes and parsnips, use a low-calorie cooking spray instead of cooking them in oil or butter. Alternatively, an Airfryer can provide properly-cooked roasties using only 1 small teaspoon of oil, it even halves the cooking time as well! Beware of cranberry sauce and other condiments, as they have a high sugar content and are packed full of hidden calories which could end up adding an extra 100 to your meal.
PUDDINGS - make brandy yogurt instead of brandy butter, you will be surprised of how good it tastes
For those of us with a sweet tooth, Christmas Day is the time to indulge in some delectable delights. With plenty of helpings of rich Christmas pudding and cake, along with grazing on boxes of chocolates, biscuits and sweets throughout the day.
Watch your intake of nibbles, as you can quite easily go through a whole packet of sweets or biscuits without realising it, rapidly adding hundreds of calories on to your day. Christmas pudding is surprisingly low in fat, but the calories begin to add up from soaking it in brandy, custard and cream. Choose fat-free Greek yogurt instead of cream to make it healthier.
Fitbakes offers a range of cakes, gingerbread men cookies and fudges that can help you on this task, check out our online store!
ALCOHOL - vodka might be a good idea
Alcohol is extremely high in calories which means it is always going to be terrible for your waistline. While you can never make alcohol healthy, there are a few tricks to lower your intake. Drink clear spirits like vodka with a diet mixer such as lemonade to lower the amount of alcohol you consume. Whatever you choose to drink, make sure you take regular breaks by drinking water or soft drinks throughout the day. This will help your body to break down the alcohol quicker and will stop you from getting as drunk and saying anything you regret at the dinner table.
While Christmas is a time to enjoy yourself, don’t let overindulgence ruin all of your hard work. It would take 7 hours of intense exercise to burn off all the calories consumed on just one gluttonous Christmas Day.
Moderate exercise throughout the festive period will help you to maintain a healthy weight and could help you to stay away from temptation by focusing you on your goals. Try at least walks after meals, and stay active.
MERRY FIT CHRISTMAS
I love themes to cook and bake, and Christmas is an endless inspiration! This one is a super healthy snack that satisfy your carb craving and looks so pretty!
1 small cauliflower
100 ml hot water
1 tbsp chia seeds
2 tbsp quinoa flakes
1 tbsp of agar-agar powder
6 cherry tomatoes
1 cup of spinach
2 tablespoons light cottage cheese
Method of preparation
Cook the cauliflower until very tender. Process in a food processor or blender until smooth.
Dissolve the agar-agar in the hot water and process with the cauliflower puree for another minute.
Put the puree in the pan and heat, adding the salt, the oregano, the flaked quinoa and the chia. Stir well and let cool.
Spread the dough into a round pizza shape.
Bake at low temperature for 30 minutes - if you want more crispy, you can leave some more.
Boil the spinach.
Blend the spinach with the cottage cheese, seasoning with salt and pepper.
Take the already roasted dough and cut the slices with scissors.
Spread the cover over the slices.
Garnish with sliced cherry tomatoes.
FIT RECIPES BLOG
We post in our blog lots of healthy recipes that you can do yourself at home.