So the excesses of Christmas are over, you've dealt to the leftovers and now you really, really will focus on a summer of healthy eating. That means teeny - or no - portions of meat, plenty of fresh fish or vege-based protein, and loads and loads of vegetables. City lunchers would already know the routine if they had been queuing for takeout from one of the most popular inner city healthy cafes, Revive. Owner and chef Jeremy Dixon reckons he's served over 500,000 meals. He turned his popular regular email and website into a cookbook last year, and sold a whopping 8500 copies. This summer he's launched the second book, packed with fresh, seasonal salads, stir-fries and smoothies. If you're inspired, you can start making up your own recipes with his handy step-by-step guide to creating new combinations. Keep these two recipes to hand to feed the crowds over the holidays.
Many "natural" cafes have their own version of a raw or beetroot salad so I thought we had better have one at Revive too. I tried out some different versions from around the world and came up with this blend which is very delicious and easy to make.
Revive raw salad
Makes 6 x 1 cup serves
1/2 cup sultanas
2 medium beetroot
10 mint leaves
cup sunflower seeds
juice of 1 orange (or 1/2cup orange juice)
2 Tbs honey or date puree
1 tsp salt
4 Tbs oil
1 Put the sultanas in some boiling water before you start, to fatten them and make them juicy.
2 Grate the beetroot and carrots by hand or in your food processor using the grater attachment.
3 In a cup mix the orange dressing ingredients.
4 Drain the water off the sultanas.
5 Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix gently. Make sure you add the juice that comes off the beetroot when you are grating it.
Traditional corn fritters
Makes 10 large fritters
1 medium onion finely diced
1 Tbs oil
2 cups canned or frozen whole kernel corn (no need to defrost if frozen)
1 cup chickpea (besan/chana) flour
up to 1/2 cup water
1 tsp salt
3 Tbs sweet chilli sauce
1/2 cup freshly chopped coriander
Oil (for frying)
Optional: salsa made from tomato, avocado, red onion and coriander
1 Saute the onion and oil until soft.
2 Mix all the ingredients together in a mixing bowl. You may need to add up to an extra half a cup of water to achieve a thick paste.
3 Let the mixture sit for around 20 minutes in the fridge, then stir again. If you are in a rush this is not absolutely necessary but you will end up with a more consistent mix that will stick together better.
4 Fry cup scoops with a little oil in a hot pan (ideally non-stick). Cook for around three minutes each side or until golden brown.
5 Serve immediately with salsa on top.
You can use wholemeal flour instead of chickpea flour in this recipe. When making fritters I make a test one first to check consistency, the heat of the pan and that everything sticks together.
The Revive Cafe Cookbook 2 by Jeremy Dixon, $39.99 published by Revive Concepts. Photography by Jeremy Dixon.
Be in to win:
Weekend Life has one copy of The Revive Cafe Cookbook 2 by Jeremy Dixon to give away.
To enter, go to nzherald.co.nz/weekend, enter your details and the keywords Revive Cafe Cookbook by midnight Wednesday January 9.