review

Spreading the Word


Easy Tasty Clean is 2 weeks old! Seems a little crazy to celebrate, right?! But it honestly I feel like the idea behind the book is catching on and the word is spreading amongst like-minded people, so that’s nice.

Today I had my first online review of the book published, courtesy of Linzi Barrow at Lancashire Food Blog. She not only reviewed the book but chose to cook the Stuffed Walnut-Topped Mushrooms from the book, which she said she loved as they were a great snack meal and she served them with steamed homegrown green beans. Click on the LF logo to read the review. And for those overseas who are wondering what ‘Lancashire’ is – it’s the English county I live in! It covers an area of about 50 miles by 30 miles and includes places such as Preston and Lancaster, and is not far from Manchester.

So with that review under my belt I was excited to be asked by a different blogger (a fellow health & fitness addict!) if I would like to be interviewed and the book featured on her blog. The owner of the blog is actually a proper real life reporter, appearing on NBC in America and various other channels, so I expect the sort of questions she might ask to be quite probing and I’m looking forward to seeing how that one turns out! Stay tuned!

Today I want to share something with you that I put up on my Facebook page a few days ago, it’s the big blue sign on the right here.

I created this sign after being asked for some diet advice by someone I know through Facebook. This person sent me a sample of their daily food and asked what could they do to improve things and lose a few pounds. So of course I pointed out the sugar that was included in a couple of things and saw that some carbs might need to be added earlier in the day to avoid the fatigue and cravings later on, but the main thing I noticed was that there was hardly any fat in the foods being consumed. This got me thinking about how I used to view fats. All we hear on television and in magazines is that we need a low fat diet.

Only eat low fat products.

Cut out fat and you’ll lose weight.

Eating fat will make you fat.

And I suddenly realised that although it’s obvious to me now that these statements are far from being wholly true, maybe there’s a whole section of the population that only hear what they’re told and are literally avoiding ALL fat. So this is what I posted onto Facebook, in an attempt to dispel a couple of these myths:

Who is afraid of the ‘F’ word – FAT??? You shouldn’t be! Fat is essential to our bodies to ensure proper function and when taken in the right quantities can provide us with energy, keep our minds in tip-top condition, reduce our blood pressure and keep our skin and hair full of life. But it is the healthy, unsaturated fats such as olive oil or nut & seed oils that we need to consume, rather than the saturated fats such as butter. So yes, if you eat too much fat, even healthy fat, this will contribute to weight problems, but similarly if we don’t eat enough fat then we are not providing our bodies with enough of the essential fatty acids it needs to function properly. As a guide, we should eat around 35% of daily calories from fat. Healthy fat. That’s around 20% of our diet by weight. So don’t be afraid to add a little olive oil to your salads or have a handful or walnuts or almonds as a snack, and make sure you consume two portions of oily fish per week, to keep your motor running smoothly!

I hope reading the above helps even one person here. Hands up if you learnt even one little thing.
Interestingly, one of the replies to this post correctly pointed out that so-called low-fat products in the supermarkets are inevitably full of sugar. But the marketing people conveniently forget to tell us this. It shows how irresponsible the food industry can be and only proper education can help us successfully navigate the supermarket shelves in today’s society. Ok, end of lecture 😉
So the title of the post is ‘Spreading the Word’, and that’s what I’d like you all to do now. If you have purchased the ‘Easy Tasty Clean’ book and have enjoyed it, or if you just like reading this blog, please share. Tell your friends, put it on your Facebook, point them in the right direction and let’s get people eating healthier and living the lives they deserve. I will be adding more educational posts in the near future.
Have a great, healthy week everyone.
Janice.

And The Winner Is…


Ten days ago I asked for volunteers to test recipes from my new book, Easy Tasty Clean. You did not disappoint me and many applied for a recipe. I decided to send one out to everyone who applied in the end, after all, where else was I going to find a better opinion on my recipes than from the general public all across the world? So, 18 recipes went out, and I’m pleased to say I have had almost all of the reviews back so thank you to all for taking the time to cook and write up your experiences! The best part is that EVERYONE loved their recipe, all had excellent things to say about the page layouts, the photography, the nutritional information and the instructions. This is what I call a success!

And so now, I have the task of picking a winner out of the hat, to receive a free copy of the book on the day it is released. But, not having a random email picker, I decided to revert to a slightly lesser known method of letting the cat choose from a set of names printed on bits of paper…

and the one she picked up in her mouth and ran off with was…..

Well done to Jennifer B, you will receive an email on Saturday 1st September with a link to download your eBook!

And yes you all read that right, the book will be on sale from Saturday 1st September!!!

Next time I’ll tell you where you can get your hands on a copy and anything else you need to know! So ask away, what else DO you want to know??

Janice.

Loving It!


Last night I came to a realisation… I have just made myself a cookbook that I absolutely LOVE! And I don’t mean that in the way it sounds – I’m not bragging about its beauty, its design or the sheer number of pages, recipes and photographs inside, I mean I love it because I now have a cookbook that I love ALL the recipes in, and it is already becoming my go-to place when deciding what to make for dinner.

Take last night, now that I have ALMOST finished cooking for the book, I got to do something rare – make whatever I wanted and NOT photograph it, and best of all NOT eat it luke warm! So I was like a child in a toyshop, flicking through all the great recipes, seeing which one took my fancy, and it turned out that Thai Style Prawns was my dish of choice! It’s quite a while since I cooked it for the book and back even then I remember running around the house declaring how amazing the taste was, so it was nice to be able to make it for myself again, and sit down and enjoy it HOT! And it didn’t disappoint. In fact I shall be having the same thing again tonight it was so good.

So you see, getting together this collection of clean-eating recipes has been not only something for others to enjoy, but for me to enjoy too! Love it.

Caribbean Style ChickenAnyway, on to what should have been the main topic today (sorry about the distraction above!), my testers have been testing my recipes out and have started to come back to me with reviews…  and the good news is… everyone has loved what they have made up to now! Here are some of my lovely testers’ thoughts on their selected recipes:

  • Tania M made my Caribbean Style Chicken and said, “just made your meal and OMG…..so amazingly delicious!!!!! I am not a very good cook at all but this turned out so good and looked like it was straight from a gourmet resteraunt!! This is definitely going in my binder of recipes to have again!!”
  • Nancy B tried the Vegetarian Curry and said, “it was quite delicious! I am a decent cook but get stuck in a rut and don’t try new recipes or use a lot of spice – probably why I have gotten a little bored with my clean eating :0) I LOVED all the flavor in the recipe!”
  • Nikki T sampled the Apple Spiced Breakfast Bake and said, “This was really easy to make and smelt and tasted great. I loved the look of the recipe, everything was set out well and easy on the eye. I will definitely be making this recipe again. I was really impressed with the layout, I work for a book publishers so was impressed with how professional it looked, many ebooks such as these can look quite basic. The photographs looked great, the food looked very appetising and immediately made you want to make it. It smelt gorgeous when I got it out of the oven, I loved the texture – it was just like bread pudding.”
  • Shannon M cooked the Frittata with Cottage Cheese and reported, “I loved it. It was absolutely delicious. It was so easy to make and I loved that it has such a high protein content because as a vegetarian those dishes are hard to find without consuming a ton of carbs along with it. It’s a very versatile dish as well, the fact that it can be whipped up in short order for any meal of the day means it’s going to become a staple for sure. The photographs are gorgeous and the food looks so yummy. I love the colors that you’ve chosen, the layout and the style. It looks fantastic. I love that I can see the actual dish while I am prepping my own, that’s great. Nutritional information was awesome, I could see what I was going to be consuming and there was no guilt whatsoever! The finished dish didn’t taste at all like “health-food” as you know some healthy recipes can be terribly bland. I also love that this dish can be breakfast, lunch or dinner!”
  • Sarah Z made the Vanilla Protein Pancakes and said, “I have to say this was one of ‘THE’ best protein pancakes I have tasted and I have tried a few. I find with some recipes they leave you with this rubbery, plastic tasting pancake but was quite surprised that these tasted so good and that the portion was quite big so it was a good breakfast that certainly didn’t leave me hungry. I found the instructions were clear and precise, I also liked for the nutritional breakdown. The other good thing I liked about the recipe is the nutritional content is very balanced and included a good fat with the coconut oil. The pie chart is an added bonus for the those people who like a pictorial sample of the nutritional breakdown, and also the added bonus of a picture of the final product. All in all I found this recipe easy to follow, very tasty and I will certainly be making it again.”

I have a few more reviews in but I don’t want to bombard you with them all right now, let’s just say I’m a very happy girl with what I’m hearing back from people. I’ve got lots of confidence that anyone buying the book will find plenty things they like that will hopefully become some of their favourite go-to clean-eating dishes. That’s all I wanted when I started this.

I am still waiting on a few reviews to come back, so anyone who hasn’t sent their review in, please try to get it to my by the end of Wednesday, as I will make the draw for the free book on Thursday out of all those who sent their reviews in. I will contact the winner by email before announcing the result on here next weekend. Get cooking!!!

Next time I also hope to nail down a release date for the book, I’m just waiting on a few important things happening (including me finishing the book, ha ha!) and then I can set that date!

Janice.