With the Christmas festivities in full flow, it is very easy to join everyone else falling off the wagon in style. It is much harder to stay healthy at Christmas then it is any other time of year, as there are opportunities for indulgence around every corner. However, if you can focus on staying healthy at Christmas, then when January does arrive you will be one step ahead. If you can make good clean food choices at Christmas, it is more likely that you will also feel empowered to keep training and exercise. The feeling of satisfaction from a visit to the gym, or a run in the awful weather is so much stronger when you know most other people will have hung their trainers up by now.
So to help you manage the damage to the waistline this Christmas, while still enjoying the festivities, our very own Annie (aka rockchef) has come up with a 3 course Christmas menu. The dishes have all the taste and feeling of indulgence without any of the processed and refined food that often lands in our pans, our hands and then waistlines. The healthy Christmas cake is my absolute favorite and I honestly think it tastes better than those cakes loaded with butter, sugar and brandy.
So if you want to stay strong, avoid the winter weight gain and feel fantastic, try out some of the Bootcamp Kitchen recipes below. You can also check out Caroline’s top tips to keep you training through winter. Combining healthy food choices with a maintenance exercise routine, is crucial to make sure you start 2018 as you want to go on.
Parsnip Warming Soup
can of cannelini beans
2 white onions
handful of fresh sage
vegetable stock (enough to cover the veg)
Add chicken or turkey if you wish
Chop veg and finely chop sage
put everything in a pan and simmer until the veg is soft, then blitz , add pepper to taste
Add left over chicken or turkey and heat through
Moroccan spiced Turkey and quinoa
2 cups cooked quinoa
handful of dried cranberries
handful of shelled pistachio nuts roughly chopped
Tablespoon chopped fresh mint
2 tablespoons Harrisa paste ( 1 tablespoon tomato puree, 1 tablespoon water, pinch of salt, 1/2 teaspoon ginger, cumin, cayenne and smoked paprika, 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon honey all mixed together)
mix the paste into the cooked quinoa then add nuts and dried fruit, fresh mint and then add turkey and your good to go
Bootcamp Kitchen Christmas Cake
600 g mixed dried fruit or a mix of the following (raisins, apricot, sultanas) 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon vanilla bean extract or paste Â¼ teaspoon nutmeg zest and juice from 1 orange 3 tablespoons Rape seed oil 3 Â eggs 200 g (2 cups) ground almonds 50 g almonds
- Preheat your oven to 150 C / 300 F, fan forced.
- Prepare a 20 cm round cake tin with baking paper lining the sides and the base.
- Combine dried fruit, spice, vanilla, orange zest + juice, Â oil and eggs.
- Add the almonds and mix through.
- Spoon Christmas Cake batter into your baking tin.
- Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Check with a skewer to see if it comes out clean, if not bake for another 30 minutes.
- Cover the top if necessary to prevent over-browning.
- Cool, then remove from the tin and store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 month.