Tricks for quick and healthy summer meals

Summer is one of my favourite seasons, even more since I live in the UK and the warm weather is rather scarce!

Summer is also great for turning to quick & easy meals. Maybe because, with the higher temperatures, it is more appealing to have salad-style food, and there’s less need to eat warm-comforting food in every meal.

Either way, here is a selection of tricks to create meals that are pretty, healthy and perfect for lazy cooks.

Tip #1Buy healthy and you will eat healthy. To be honest, that is probably the most important tip.

Go crazy at the veg corridor, your body will thank you!

Tip #2 – Take advantage of food that doesn’t need cooking. That goes from salad vegetables (tomatoes, carrots, spring onions, lettuce, spinach, cucumbers…) to can food.

When I couldn’t plan my food, I literally carry the ingredients with me and mix them up at work, resulting in yummy fresh lunches every time 🙂

Roasted parsnip, potatoes and sweet potatoes and chickpeas salad with tuna

Tip #3 – Speaking of can food… Have you discovered the wonderful world of cans and tins? I’m not talking about ready-made spaghetti, but about raw Pulses, Lentils & Beans.

They are healthy, don’t need cooking and can be eaten mixed with soups or salads at any time, adding a great amount of nutrients that you won’t get just with veggies – season them with olive oil and salt and voilá, the perfect mix!

Tins also offer us the perfect way to eat more fish: tuna, mackerel, anchovy, sardines, salmon… Most of them come cleaned and seasoned, so you just need to think what to mix it with. Welcome omega 3 fish oils!

Lentils, Spring onions and tomatoes salad with olive oil tuna

Tip #4 –  Don’t be afraid of carbs. Carbohydrates, at the right portion, are not only healthy but actually necessary for our bodies. Cutting them down drastically will affect our energy levels and our mood. So remember the advice from the Hand diet, and start preparing and storing carbs in all shapes and forms (ideally in the wholegrain version): Brown pasta, brown rice, quinoa, couscous, wheat, barley, buckwheat, kamut, bulgar…

Cook them, tupper-them, store them in the fridge and eat them as and when, in company of veg and/or proteins.

Wholegrain pasta with mushroom, onions, chopped tomatoes and chicken sausages. Of course, a big colourful salad to start!

Tip #5 – Make the most of creams and pures. Cold creams are also perfect for the warmer months, and can be cooked and stored all in one go. Veggies that you can use for these are butternut squash, courgettes, carrots, onions, mushrooms or peas. Your imagination is the limit here!

Courgettes with onion & Butternut squash with carrots pures

Tip #6 – Dessert time! Summertime is the season of yummy fruit – and I’m not a fruit person! Supermarkets start having cherries, strawberries, nectarines… Even if the price is sometimes more expensive than the all-season fruit, treat yourself and enjoy, it just will last a couple of months and it is all goodness for your body!

Fruit can also be mixed with natural yogurt as a nice dessert, or chocolate – have you tried strawberries with Nutella?

Bon Appétit my friends!

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