By Fiona Staunton 12 Jan, 2018
Carrots are versatile, inexpensive and nutritious and at this time of year when Irish carrots are in season, with cold dark evenings a soup is ideal.

Serves 4                                         Prep time 15 mins plus cooking
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 sticks celery, finely sliced
1 leek, finely sliced
1 potato, peeled & chopped
450g carrots
1.2 L stock
pepper and salt

  1. Saute the onion, garlic, celery and leek to a pan with 1-2cm water until the water has evaporated.  Season with pepper and salt.
  2. Peel and slice the carrots and them together with the stock and potatoes to the saucepan
  3. Cover and simmer for approx 20 mins until the carrots are tender.
  4. Blend the soup to a smooth consistency, taste and season.

  • Carrot and Orange soup: Add orange zest and juice at the end of making the soup - zest of one and juice of 2 for this recipe.

  • Carrot and coriander soup : Add 1 tsp ground coriander once the water has evaporated when sauteing the onions in water, garnish with freshly chopped coriander.

  • Carrot, ginger and cumin soup: Add an 8cm piece of ginger grated and 2 tsp ground cumin when the water has evaporated from the onions.

  • Indian spiced carrot soup: After the water has evaporated from the onions add, 1 tsp ground coriander, 1 tsp cumin, 1/2 tsp. turmeric and 5cm piece of ginger grated, add juice half a lime just before serving.

  • Carrot and lentil soup: Add 140g split red lentils instead of the potato and add 2 tsp ground cumin.

Serving suggestion:
Serve warm in a bowl with a slice of sourdough bread.  It is nice topped with a swirl of natural yoghurt, milk kefir or cream.

Carrot soup keeps for 2-3 days in the fridge and freezes well, however with the carrot and orange variation, it is best to freeze without the orange and add it later as it can get bitter.

By Fiona Staunton 29 Dec, 2017
This is a delicious quick and tasty way to serve cauiflower.  It seems to be one of the few vegetables for sale in Irish supermarkets that is grown in Ireland lately!

Serves 4-6 as a side                      Prep time 20 mins

1 head cauliflower, thinly sliced
2 red onions, diced
1 tsp cumin seeds
5cm piece ginger, grated
1 tsp turmeric
2 large tomatoes, chopped
Juice 1 lime
Large handful coriander, chopped
1 tbsp olive oil
salt to taste

  1. Heat the oil in a pan on med heat, add cumin seeds, onions and ginger,  fry for 3-5 mins.
  2. Add cauliflower and 80ml water, cover and cook on med- low heat for 5 mins until tender.
  3. Add in tomatoes, coriander and lime, taste and season and serve.
I like to serve this as a side to many dishes.  It also serves as a lovely base for seared scallops.

I often keep this in the fridge and reheat the next day or two.

By Fiona Staunton 15 Dec, 2017

Sechuan peppercorns can be found in any Asian supermarket and they are worth finding for this dish. This is the only recipe I do that is deep fried but it is delicious!

Serves 6-8, depending on squid size


2-3 squid

1 tsp. Sichuan peppercorns

1 ½ tsp. sea salt

3 scallions cut into julienne

1 red chilli, cut into julienne

2 cloves garlic, sliced

Oil for frying

1 egg white

1-cup flour



½ cup mayonnaise

1 clove garlic, crushed

Juice ½ lemon




1.    Cut each squid down the body so it opens up into one piece. Cut diagonal lines at 5mm intervals halfway into the flesh itself, but try not to cut all the way through. Roughly cut each squid into 5cm squares. Cut tentacles into about 5cm lengths.

2.    Heat sichuan peppercorns in a dry wok on a low heat until they become fragrant, about 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat, cool, blend with salt.

3.    To make the aioli, simply whisk all ingredients together..

4.    Heat oil in a wok or pan to 180°C; check this by putting a small cube of bread in it, which should turn brown in 15 seconds.

5.    Whisk egg white in a bowl add squid. Place flour in another bowl and lightly dust squid pieces in the flour, shaking off any excess.

6.    Carefully add the battered squid to the hot oil. Do not overcrowd the wok so the oil keeps its heat. Fry in batches and make sure the oil has reached the correct temperature again before adding more. Cook for about 3 minutes, until a crust forms. Remove squid with a metal strainer and drain on a paper towel.

7.    In another pan, add 1tbsp oil and fry the chilli, garlic and scallions for 1 min. Add in the drained squid, season with the salt and pepper mix, toss and serve.


Variations : You can use calamari rings, less work but the flavour wont be as good.


Serving suggestions : Serve immediately as a canapé, with a cocktail stick or as a share platter.


Storage:   Does not keep, so enjoy now!

By Fiona Staunton 08 Dec, 2017
I love making these with the kids at Christmas and we wrap them up in cellophane bags to gift to all the relatives on Christmas Day!  I made them recently for the school Christmas fair and they sold out quickly.

Makes approx. 40 cookies                      Prep time :30 mins

125 g pecan nuts
225g butter
125g icing sugar
2 tsp. vanilla extract
250g plain flour
Icing sugar to dust afterwards


 Preheat oven to 180°C.
  1. Toast the nuts in the oven for approx 15 mins, until crunchy and lightly toasted.
  2. Beat together the butter, sugar and vanilla until creamy.
  3. Chop the toasted nuts in a food processor until finely chopped.
  4. Mix nuts into butter mixture.
  5. Gently mix the flour into the butter and nut mixture.
  6. Roll into balls, approx. 1.5cm diameter and place onto non-stick baking sheet.
  7. Bake for 12-15 mins, until lightly golden.
  8. Toss in icing sugar when cold and serve up or wrap as gifts.

By Fiona Staunton 01 Dec, 2017

This is a very simple dish to make.  The vegetables are raw and have the added benefit of natures probiotics.  It is a festive version of sauerkraut I teach in my Fermentation workshops.


50g Goji berries

1 star anise

1tsp whole cloves

600g red cabbage

300g beetroot

2 apples, cored

4 tsp fine sea salt

spring water

1/4 cup whey (optional)



1.Soak the goji berries in some water for an hour or two.

2.Wrap cloves and star anise in muslin & set aside.

3. Chop all veg in food processor, holding back some outer leaves of cabbage.

4. Place veg and goji berries in a glass or stainless steel bowl, add salt and massage into veg.

5. Fill the clean jar with the vegetables, add in the muslin spice bag, pour over the whey and press down well.

6. Leave 2cm free at the top of the jar, then place cabbage leaf on top and press down again.

7. Ensure all veg are under the liquid level, if not, add some spring water.

8. Store in a dark place with lid closed for 10-14 days, taste occasionally and refrigerate when ready.

9. Once opened, it will keep for 2 months in fridge, unopened it will keep for 9 months.

By Fiona Staunton 22 Nov, 2017

Cabbage is in season all year round.  This festive dish is delicious and very easy to make.  Best of all it is ideal for Christmas Day and can be made a month in advance and frozen!


450g Red Cabbage

450g Cooking apples

1 tbsp vinegar

2 Tbsp sugar

1 tsp salt

5 star anise

1 tsp ground cinnamon

120ml water

1. Shred the cabbage.

2. Place in a saucepan with vinegar, sugar,salt , star anise (tied in muslin cloth), cinnamon and water, bring to the boil.

3. Peel, core and quarter the apples, lay on top of cabbage, reduce the heat to a simmer.

4. Cover and cook for approx 30 mins with lid on until the water is absorbed.

5. This can be frozen and reheated when needed.

6. Omit star anise & cinnamon if you prefer.

By Fiona Staunton 17 Nov, 2017

Hop over to my recent blog to find out more information about this great healthy eating snack!

Toasted Pumpkin and sunflower seeds


1 cup sunflower seeds

1 cup pumpkin seeds

1-2 tbsp. tamari/Bragg liquid aminos



1.    Soak seeds in water for approx. 1 hr.

2.    Rinse and drain seeds.

3.    Place in a dry pan on the hob over a medium heat for approx. 10-15 mins until all the water has evaporated and seeds are crunchy.

4.    Alternatively, place in an oven at 180°C, on a flat tray for 10-15 mins until dried through.

5.    Sprinkle with 1-2tbsp tamari.


Variations: If you don’t have time to soak the seeds, just simply rinse and toast.


Serving suggestions : serve in a bowl and allow people to nibble away! Package in small containers for snacks on the go or for lunch boxes.


Storage:   Allow to cool completely and store in an airtight container for up to three weeks if they last that long!

By Fiona Staunton 11 Nov, 2017
This is a very simple dish where the vegetables shine through and tastes amazing!
Vegetables should take up half of our plate but often the protein is placed centre stage.  Courgettes and aubergine are often the vegetable specials in the supermarket.  While they aren't grown locally this time of year they are a great versatile vegetable.

Once you do the basic roast recipe you can top the vegetables with lots of different toppings of your choice.  For a vegan alternative, replace the Live yoghurt with coconut yoghurt.

Serves 4   Prep time: 5 mins

4 courgettes
4 aubergines
olive oil
pepper and salt

To serve:
2 tbsp tahini
4 tbsp live natural yoghurt

1. Preheat oven to 180 C.
2.Half the vegetables lengthwise leaving the head attached.
3.Score the aubergine in a criss cross fashion, quite deep through the vegetable
4. Score the courgette a few times diagonally, no need to go too deep.
5. Brush each aubergine with approx 1 tbsp olive oil, mixed with harissa.
6. Drizzle a little olive oil on the courgettes and season with pepper and salt.
7. Roast the aubergine for 30-40 mins.
8. Roast the courgette for 20 mins.
9. To make the dressing, simply mix the yoghurt and tahini.

To serve: Place the roast half vegetables on the plate, skin side down.  Top with the dressing and pomegranate seeds.

Variations: There are so many options here, it depends on individual preference.  Feta, pea, cherry tomato and mint work well.  Chickpeas with tahini, lemon juice and coriander is tasty as is saffron yoghurt with roast cashews and apricots.

Storage: Best eaten fresh but they are also good the next day for lunch!  Store in fridge for 2-3 days at most.

By Fiona Staunton 01 Nov, 2017

This is like your own home made flu shot!


1 part organic garlic cloves (antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral, antiparasitical), chopped

1 part organic white onions (similar properties to garlic), chopped

1 part organic ginger root (increases circulation to the extremities), grated

1 grated horseradish root (increases blood flow to the head)

1/2 fresh chopped Chillies

Rosemary and turmeric optional 

Apple cider vinegar

Fill a glass jar 3/4 of the way full with equal parts of the fresh chopped or grated ingredients. Then cover completely with raw unfiltered, unbleached, non-distilled apple cider vinegar.

Close and shake vigorously and then top off the vinegar if necessary. Keep the jar in a cool, dark place for 2 weeks.

Shake the tonic daily a couple of times.

After 14 days strain and bottle. Filter the mixture through a clean piece of cotton, muslin cloth, fine sieve and bottle and label.

You can then top up with more apple cider vinegar and repeat.  I find I get 3-4 batches from the one batch of ingredients. 

I tend to store in the fridge and drizzle on steamed veg or simply take 1 tbsp on its own.


1 to 2 tablespoons daily, or as needed.

Store in a dark place.

This tonic is extremely powerful, because all the ingredients are fresh. Its power should not be underestimated. It stimulates maximum blood circulation, while putting the best detoxifying herbs into the blood.

By Fiona Staunton 29 Sep, 2017

Turkey is a great source of protein, low in saturated fat , B vitamin and selenium , which is great for maintaining healthy thyroid and immune system. This recipe allows for hidden veg and is delicious served with roast beetroot hummus. 

Serves: 4-6             Prep time: 20 mins



450g minced turkey

1 med courgette, grated (e.g. 100g)

2 spring onions finely chopped


2 tbsp. chopped mint

2 tbsp. chopped coriander

2 cloves garlic, crushed

1 tsp. ground cumin

1 tsp. sea salt

½ tsp. ground black pepper

½ tsp. cayenne pepper


To serve:

Coconut oil for cooking

4 handfuls kale, chopped

Juice ½ lemon

1 fennel bulb shaved

Pinch dried chilli flakes

Salt and pepper

Beetroot hummus (see below)

2 tbsp. pine nuts to serve



1.    Preheat oven to 200°C. Line a baking tray with parchment.

2.    Mix all ingredients for burgers in a large bowl, shape into 18 small burgers, approx. 45g each.

3.    Add a little coconut oil to a non-stick pan on medium heat, cook the burgers until golden, approx. 2 mins each side.

4.    Place the burgers on the lined baking tray and bake for 5-7 mins, until just cooked through.

5.    Return the pan to heat, add a little more coconut oil, add the kale and stir fry for 2-3 mins, add lemon juice, fennel and chilli flakes, stir for another minute. Season with salt and pepper and remove from heat.

Roast Beetroot Hummus

500g beetroot, roast in foil for 40 mins

3 tbsp. tahini

1 clove garlic, crushed

2 tbsp. Extra virgin olive oil

1 tbsp. apple cider vinegar

2 tsp. ground cumin

½ tsp. sea salt

3tbsp. water


Blend all ingredients in a food processor.


Variations: You can replace the turkey with other minced meats, e.g. chicken, lamb, beet, prawn or fish. You can add grated veg to the kale, e.g. carrot, parsnip or sweet potato.


Serving suggestions : To serve, place the kale on the plate, add the burgers with some beetroot hummus on top. Sprinkle with pine nuts.


Storage:   Once cooked, they will keep in the fridge for 2-3 days

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