Clean eating is simple. Rather than being yet another fad diet, it is about achieving a happy and healthy lifestyle. It can be adapted to fit any kind of routine; all you have to do is be mindful about the food you are eating and cook a little bit more from scratch. Sounds good right?! For me, clean eating resonates because I grew up with home-cooked dinners, with plenty of veggies, and a mother who refused to give my brother and me any processed foods! And the best bit, this isn't about denial. You can still enjoy all those delicious treats, whether that's comforting mashed potato or a decadent chocolate brownie.
So what exactly is it? Well clean eating is about eating 'real' foods. It's about choosing natural foods and trying to eliminate, or at least minimise, processed foods. Think homemade food with fresh ingredients instead of a microwave meal. Fresh, natural foods are more satisfying and nourishing than anything processed. It's also about choosing unrefined over refined food. Think whole grains such as brown rice or quinoa over white bread or white rice. Think also for clean sugars, which include honey and maple syrup. Ultimately, it's about preparing your own meals that are wholesome and nourishing, which will allow you to live a healthier, energised and more balanced life.
Of course, the idea of cooking a little bit more from scratch can be overwhelming. But don't worry - my recipes are simple and easy to follow. Perfect for the novice or inexperienced chef. Try this wonderfully easy lemony chicken tray bake. Packed full of fresh ingredients and flavours, it's a nourishing and balanced meal.
• 400g baby new potatoes
• Olive oil
• Handful of fresh parsley
• 1 garlic bulb
• 4 chicken breasts
• 1 sliced lemon
• 100ml white wine
• 100ml chicken stock - if possible, try and use homemade stock from a chicken carcass.
• Salt and pepper
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius. While the oven is warming up, parboil the potatoes. Trust me, this little step will be worthwhile. Once they have parboiled (and cooled a little), chop them in half and place them in an oven proof dish. Toss with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
Grab a handful of fresh parsley (I have some pots with fresh herbs in on my windowsill - it's amazing having fresh herbs available) and chop roughly. Toss this with the potatoes. Separate the garlic cloves and place them (skins and all) into the dish.
Season the chicken breasts and nestle them in amongst the potatoes (weirdly my packet only had three breasts in - hence three in the picture). Place the sliced lemon on top and drizzle over some more olive oil. Pour in the white wine and the stock.
Roast for 30minutes or until the chicken is cooked. If unsure, give it a poke to see if the juices run clear. Or slice along the side of the breast and check that the meat is white inside. If you slice along the side, then it won't be noticeable when you serve. Serve with either steamed vegetables or a green salad.
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