Being good to your body can be a rewarding experience for your tastebuds too.
If, like me, one of your New Year resolutions was to be healthier and fitter - here are some recipes to help keep you on track.
Weight loss is not the focus, instead it's about creating delicious dishes that promote energy, strength and vigour. Tasty, healthy and positively bursting with vitality, these recipes can be made for lunch or dinner.
The freshest of ingredients are a good place to start because they contain more vitamins. Look for ingredients such as beetroot, spinach, raw salmon, parsley, ginger and oranges, all of which are accessible and full of vitamins and antioxidants.
I have also added a few ingredients that are renowned for their goodness. LSA is a combination of ground linseed (also known as flaxseed), ground sunflower seeds and ground almonds. Full of fibre, protein and omega 3, it is a bit of a wonderfood that can be sprinkled on to cereal at the start of the day or whisked into a vinaigrette to drizzle over the grilled summer vegetables. It is also effective in lowering cholesterol and cleansing the bowel and liver.
I buy LSA at my local fruit and vege store but you can also just whizz the ingredients together yourself in a food processor. It does need to be kept in the fridge.
I adore tofu, especially when dusted with rice flour and lightly fried until crispy. Spoon over a little sauce made from dashi (fish stock), mirin, lemon and soy then serve with shredded spring onions, sliced cucumber and slivers of the freshest salmon you can get your hands on. This dish is a wonderful mix of textures with the crisp tofu, silky salmon and crunchy fresh cucumber. It also provides one of the most easily digestible forms of protein with all the goodness of the essential oils in the salmon. Make more than you think you might need - it is a very moreish dish.
The third recipe uses quinoa, which has become readily available and is known as a supergrain. "Super" because it has more protein than any other grain, is gluten-free and has high levels of calcium, zinc, magnesium, B vitamins and potassium. It is easy to prepare - just throw into a pot of salted water and cook like pasta - and well worth checking out.
Fresh ginger can be shredded finely and added to the salad for its invigorating freshness and restorative qualities. Add grilled chicken or fish, diced tomato, spinach leaves and parsley, mix together and enjoy the flavours. Your tastebuds and body will love it.
Eating as many raw ingredients as possible provides the greatest amount of goodness. If raw fish doesn't appeal, slice it very thinly then dip into a sauce before eating - delicious. When making any type of salad add a handful of fresh herbs and salad leaves to boost the vitamin intake.
* What are some of your favourite healthy recipes? Have you cooked with quinoa?By Amanda Laird Email Amanda