What you are is what you eat – and everyone wants to be healthy and look their best.
Gordon Ramsay – super-fit chef, marathon runner and high-energy television presenter – is a great advertisement for eating well and staying in the peak of good health.
In his book, Healthy Appetite, he has put together over 100 dishes that are completely in tune with the way we want to eat today – packed with fresh ingredients cooked in the most healthy way to achieve maximum flavour.
Geared around our daily lives, Gordon gives ideas and recipes for healthy breakfasts, lunches, barbecues, suppers, desserts, kids and entertaining, demonstrates healthy cooking methods that guarantee optimum flavour, and tells us which are his own favourite healthy ingredients.
The recipes include mango and smoked chicken salad, griddled squid with roasted peppers and cannellini beans, wild mushroom risotto with baked courgettes and roasted peaches with vanilla and spices.
With its fresh, colourful photographs and clean modern design, this bestselling cookery book is a must have for anyone interested in healthy cooking.
Mango, avocado and smoked chicken salad
2 medium, firm but ripe mangoes
2 ripe avocados
squeeze of lemon juice
300-350g smoked chicken breasts
200g mixed salad leaves, such as
rocket, mache, baby chard or amaranth
2 tbsp pine nuts, toasted (optional)
2 tbsp orange juice
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp wholegrain mustard
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp avocado oil (or olive oil)
sea salt and black pepper
Peel the mangoes and cut the flesh away from the stone into thin slices. Arrange on four serving plates.
Halve the avocados and remove the stone. Peel off the skin and slice the flesh into strips.
Squeeze over a little lemon juice to stop the flesh discolouring, then arrange over the mango slices.
Cut the chicken into thin slices and divide between the plates. Neatly pile the salad leaves in the middle.
For the dressing, whisk the ingredients together in a bowl, seasoning with salt and pepper to taste.
Spoon the dressing over the salad and serve, topped with a handful of toasted pine nuts if you like.
Seared scallops with minted peas and broad beans
24 king scallops, shelled and cleaned
coarse sea salt
250g podded peas, thawed if frozen
300g podded broad beans, thawed if frozen
2 thyme sprigs, leaves only
1-2 tbsp olive oil
small knob of butter
handful of mint, leaves roughly chopped
extra virgin olive oil, to drizzle
Take the scallops from the fridge and set aside while you cook the vegetables.
Bring a pan of salted water to the boil, tip in the peas and blanch for 3–4minutes or until tender.
Scoop them out with a slotted spoon and plunge into a bowl of iced water to refresh. Drain well and tip into a bowl.
Return the water to the boil and blanch the broad beans for 3–4 minutes or until tender. Drain well, refresh in iced water and drain again.
Gently squeeze the broad beans to pop themout of their skins. Add to the peas and set aside.
Put the thyme leaves on a board and sprinkle with 1 tsp coarse sea salt.
Chop finely, then sprinkle the thyme salt over one side of the scallops. Heat a griddle or large frying pan and add the olive oil.
Pan-fry the scallops for 90 seconds on each side, depending on thickness – they should feel slightly springy when pressed. Make sure you turn them in the same order you put them into the pan to ensure even cooking. Remove to a warm plate and rest for a minute while you reheat the vegetables.
Tip the peas and broad beans into the frying pan and add a splash of water and a little butter. Heat for a minute to warm through, season to taste and toss through the mint leaves.
Spoon the vegetables onto warm plates and top with the scallops. Sprinkle with a little more thyme salt if you wish. Drizzle a little extra virgin olive oil around each plate and serve immediately.
Stir-fried duck with noodles
2 skinless duck breasts, about 140g each, trimmed
1 garlic clove, peeled and finely grated
3cm knob of fresh root ginger, peeled and finely grated
1 tsp five-spice powder
sea salt and black pepper
3 tbsp oyster sauce
1 tbsp dark soy sauce
1/2 tsp cornflour, mixed with 2 tbsp water
2 portions of dried noodles, such as thin udon or Chinese egg noodles about 65g each
sesame oil, to drizzle
1—2 tbsp olive oil
1 long red chilli, trimmed and sliced on the diagonal
2 heads of pak choi, leaves separated
3 spring onions, trimmed and chopped
grated zest of 1 lime, plus a squeeze of the juice
Slice the duck breasts thickly and toss with the grated garlic, ginger, five-spice powder and a little salt and pepper. Stir the oyster sauce, soy sauce and cornflour mixture together in a small bowl.
For the noodles, bring a pot of water to the boil. Add the noodles and cook for two minutes less than the suggested time on the packet instructions.
Drain well and immediately toss with a drizzle of sesame oil.
Heat a wok or large non-stick frying pan and add a little olive oil. When hot, add the duck fillets and fry over a high heat for 60 to 90 seconds until golden brown around the edges but not completely cooked through.
Remove to a plate and set aside.
Add a little more oil to the pan and tip in the chilli and pak choi. Stir-fry for a minute, then pour in the sauce mixture. Bring to a simmer, then return the duck to the pan and cook for another minute. The sauce should begin to thicken.
Add the noodles and spring onions to the pan. Toss over the heat until the noodles are warmed through.
Squeeze over a little lime juice and serve immediately, sprinkled with grated lime zest.
Healthy Appetite by Gordon Ramsay is published by Quadrille Publishing (£14.99).
Photography by Lisa Barber.