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Last Sunday, after buying lots of fresh fruit and vegetables, we decided to make a healthy smoothie and somehow we made one every day for a week, because once you get into the routine of making it, it seems to only take a few minutes. Which, let’s face it, is just about all I can manage most mornings when I need to rush off to work. It’s been a particularly busy week for me, and it will definitely be this way for the next month at least. And that is why starting the day with an energy boost to keep me going was a life-saver. It kept me sane.

Sunday: carrot, beetroot, kale, banana

Monday: banana, apple, coconut milk, almond milk, ginger

Tuesday: banana, apple, coconut milk, almond milk, ginger, teaspoon of Energy mix

Wednesday: banana, apple, coconut milk, ginger, goji berries, wheatgrass

Thursday: banana, apple, beetroot, ginger, coconut milk, goji berries

Friday: banana, apple, coconut milk, wheatgrass, ginger, goji berries, hemp protein powder, cocoa nibs

Saturday: banana, frozen blueberries, coconut milk, ginger, goji berries, wheatgrass, hemp protein powder


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After I’d made this salad, I patted myself on the back for quite a while. Not only was it interesting, tasty and colourful – but it was also filling in a feel-good kind of way. Thanks to the quick searches I made for inspiration, I learned how to make these delicious roasted crunchy chickpeas, which I suspect I might get addicted to.

You will need:

2 cups pumpkin, peeled and chopped into bite-size pieces

2 cups Brussels sprouts, halved

3 cloves of garlic

olive oil

baby spinach leaves

1 tsp paprika or chili powder (to taste)

mixed seeds

a handful crushed roasted almonds

1 can chickpeas, drained and dried on paper napkins

juice of half a lime

To make:

Preheat the oven to 180 C

In a deep bowl, mix the pumpkin and Brussels sprouts with 2 tablespoons olive oil, salt and pepper to taste, and paprika/chili powder. Make sure the oil and spices are spread evenly then place the mixture on a baking tray and add the garlic cloves (you don’t need to peel them).

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Bake for 20 minutes, then remove the garlic cloves and check the vegetables. Add a dollop of olive oil if they have started to dry up, and add the seeds (I added some cherry tomatoes at this point too). Bake for another 20 minutes or until the pumpkin can easily be pierced with a knife.

For the chickpeas, follow this method.

Squeeze the garlic out of their skins once you’ve given them time to cool down, and chop finely.

Serve the pumpkin, Brussels sprouts and chickpeas on a bed of baby spinach. Squeeze some lime juice on top and garnish with seeds, garlic, and crushed almonds.

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You will need:

1 can chickpeas

2 tablespoons olive oil

paprika, to taste, about 1-2 teaspoons

pinch of salt

Method:

Preheat the oven to 200 C.

Drain and rinse the chickpeas, and dry them well on some layers of paper napkins. This is a very important step in ensuring that the chickpeas get crunchy in the oven.

In a bowl add the chickpeas, oil, paprika, and salt. Stir with a tablespoon to make sure that the chickpeas are coated evenly.

Lay on a flat baking dish and cook for 20 minutes, until they have browned, and are crunchy.

Consume this protein-packed snack on the day as a substitute for sugary finger foods, in soups, or as garnish in salads. More ideas for making roasted chickpeas here.

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