Maternity Leave Musings…

So… it’s been almost a year since I last posted on Rewired.org.uk. The site had become pretty much exclusively about food, which was super fun and I love coming up with recipes, trying out new ingredients and exploring the world of veganism BUT fast forward a year and so much has happened. Now feels like a good time to add new content and to share a little more with you. There are a few things I want you to know about me and hopefully, through this blog, I can reach out to others with the same or similar experiences, creating a little community of likeminded people – how lovely would that be?! Here are three things that have shaped who I am today:

The D word
The label ‘disabled’ has applied to me since the 27th of February 2014 when I was 26 years old. I had a snowboarding accident and broke my back. My L1 vertebra burst and part of the bone pressed on my spinal cord, leaving me partially paralysed from the waist down. I am now unable to walk unaided although, with a lot of effort, I did manage to get back on my feet with the help of splints and a four wheeled rollator (yes I do look a bit weird walking around town!). As time goes by, I do acknowledge that my determination to walk everywhere has actually disabled me further with regards to how far I can go and how easy places are to access hence I have decided to invest in a posh new wheelchair (more on that in a future post). My aim with regards to the D word is to talk openly about my experiences, good and bad. I want to share information about equipment I have found useful, places I’ve been/want to go and how accessible they are as well as the internal, emotional challenges I face living with a spinal cord injury. I usually choose to laugh instead of cry about my injury – hopefully I can bring some humour to a ‘not so funny’ situation.

 

Mum’s the word
On the 4th of June this year, the biggest, brightest light of my life entered this world – all 5lbs 13oz of him. Reuben is now my favourite human (although my husband is right up there in the rankings too!). Becoming a mum has been the most incredible adventure so far and I’m so excited for all that is yet to come. My world has been turned upside down and I’m loving it. I might not be able to push him in his pram or walk around the house rocking him to sleep but I know I’m the best mum there is for my boy and that he is the perfect son for me. I’ve actually found the challenges of parenthood quite motivating and very rewarding when I overcome them. I want to show everyone that when it comes to raising a child, even with a disability, almost everything is possible – and if something is beyond your ability, there is always another way.

 

Conscious living
It feels like there has been a real shift in recent times when it comes to conscious living. The social movement of veganism is becoming increasingly powerful and it seems that eyes are opening all over the world. This makes me happy. I decided to embrace the vegan diet 2 years ago and never looked back. I definitely still want to share new recipes with you, although when the inspiration comes to discuss vegan-related issues, I will more than likely send the articles over to http://www.livekindly.co (you definitely need to check this website out if you haven’t already). I have found that since going vegan, I have subconsciously become more compassionate and more eager to contribute to the health of the planet and thus live more consciously. Here on Rewired, I will be posting about the little changes I am making over time to lessen my impact on the environment. I will be reviewing cruelty free, vegan products as well as any books, documentaries and anything else I can find of intrigue.

There you have it! I hope you’ll join me here at Rewired, leave a comment, make suggestions, share any ideas you have or all three. I’m excited to get started (again!).

Peace and love

Lucy @Rewired 💕🌿

 

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22. Monster Double Bean Burgers

🍁🍂 Holy moly day 22 of blogtober has arrived. As it’s the weekend, it’s only right that we treat ourselves a little. These monster double bean burgers are a middle finger up to Mac Donald’s and Burger King. Who needs beef when can have spicy Mexican bean burgers?! These are a delicious way to indulge without feel bad about it afterwards.

What you will need (for 2 burgers):
– 4 spicy Mexican bean burgers (Tesco’s own brand are so delicious and they’re vegan! I can’t recommend them enough 👌🏻)
– 3 burger buns
– a handful of lettuce (of your choice)
– 1 tomato
– 1/2 onion
– 1/4 red onion
– pickles
– vegan mayo
– 1/2 tsp smokey paprika
– juice of 1/2 a lime
– ketchup or sriracha
– coriander (optional)

Step 1
Pop your burgers in the oven. Follow the instructions on the packet. (I am assuming you will not be making them from scratch – let’s save that recipe for when we have time/motivation). When they are cooking, you can get the rest of your ingredients together.

Step 2
Finely chop the white onion into super small pieces. Chop some pickles until you get what looks like the same amount chopped as the onion pieces. Add these to a bowl with a few tbsps of vegan mayo and add the paprika and lime juice. Stir well. Yes it tastes bomb!

Step 3
Toast your buns! You can do this in a toaster but I like to just pop them in a pan (no oil needed) to toast for a minute or so on each side.

Step 4
Assemble your burgers (the fun part!). Get your bun bases and put some lettuce on top followed by a burger patty on each. Then spread your lovely pickley mayo over the top and some coriander if you have some. Then add half of the 3rd burger to each one (you may need to flatten out the top half or slice a bit off for the perfect middle slice of bread). Squeeze over some ketchup or sriracha (or both, I’m not judging). On goes the second burger patty topped off with a slice of tomato, red onion and maybe another pickle ❤️ Sprinkle some more coriander if you wish and then it’s time for the closing ceremony! Monster burgers are ready for demolishing!

Nutritional spotlight-
* If you’re like me and you like to know what’s in your food, you may be surprised to know that these monster double bean burgers are healthy ones (as part of a balanced diet obvs).
* Rewired isn’t going to count the calories in them for you as there are not enough to be worried about.
* The ingredients in these bad boys have many health benefits and I will list just a few:
Beans are amazing. Everyone should incorporate more of these into their weekly diet. Cannelini beans help with collagen production, vision and nervous system function and are also great for appetite regulation. Red kidney beans are known to be great for cell development and anaemia prevention.
Tomatoes are packed with vitamins. They are great for your skin, your heart and your eyes. They also help to repair damaged cells from smoking so put your cigarette out and eat some tomatoes.
Onion is such an underrated food. It is so good for you. It can improve your mood, does wonders for your skin and hair and reduces the risk of many types of cancer – yay for onions!

Happy creating!

Rewired 💕🌿

20. PB & Chocolate Chia Bites

🍁🍂 Blogtober day 20 is here and with it comes these bad boys. Packed full of protein, these are a great snack for an added boost of energy.

What you will need (makes 12):
– 1/2 cup of chia seeds
– 1/2 cup of oats
– 1/4 cup of cocoa powder
– 1/4 cup maple syrup or agave nectar
– 1/3 cup peanut butter

Directions
Add all the ingredients into a bowl and mix well. Scoop up some mixture with your hands and roll into little balls. Easy peasy! Leave in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to solidify and keep their lovely spherical shape 😎

Nutritional spotlight-
* If you’re like me and you like to know what’s in your food, you will be happy to know that these balls are healthy ones.
* Rewired isn’t going to count the calories in them for you as there are not enough to be worried about.
* The ingredients in these bites have many health benefits and I will list just a few:
Dark chocolate contains antioxidants and may also lower blood pressure as well as the risk of CVD (cardiovascular disease).
Peanut butter is a wonderful way to introduce good fats and proteins into your diet. You will be helping your heart, your body’s iron absorption, cell development and boosting your metabolism.
Chia seeds are one of the greatest sources of energy around. Per 100g, they contain a whopping 486Kcals, 34.4g of fibre, 16.5g of protein and 30g of fat.

Happy creating!

Rewired 💕🌿

17. Chilli Sin Carne

🍁🍂 Day 17 of blogtober is here and we are over half way through – phew! Today’s recipe is a really warm, filling meal with some really healthy ingredients including protein, carbs and legumes making it a really balanced dish. If you’re not one to read recipes, you can watch my video Here

What you will need (serves 2):
-1/2 red or white onion
– 1 tin chopped tomatoes
– 2 tbsp passata
– 2 garlic cloves pressed
– 2 tsp smoked paprika
– 1 tsp cayenne pepper
– 1/2 tsp ground coriander
– 1/2 tsp ground cumin
– 1 tin mixed mexican beans
– 2 tbsp sweetcorn
– 1/2 a lime
– 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
– salt and pepper to taste
– fresh coriander to garnish
– rice of your choice

Step 1
Finely chop the onion and saute on a medium heat in shallow water until translucent. Then add the smoked paprika, cayenne pepper, coriander and cumin to create a paste with the spices and water for a few minutes. Add the passata, garlic and chopped tomatoes. Season as you go and simmer on a low heat for about 15 minutes.

Step 2
Add the mexican beans, sweetcorn, lime juice and nutritional yeast. Simmer for a further 10 minutes or until you get the consistency you want. Cook your rice as you wait.

Step 3
Season to taste and garnish with lots of fresh coriander.

Nutritional Spotlight-
* If you’re like me and you like to know what’s in your food, you will be happy to know that this chilli is a healthy one.
* Rewired isn’t going to count the calories in the dish for you as there are not enough in it to be worried about.
* The ingredients in this meal have many health benefits and I will list just a few:
Tomatoes are packed with vitamins, They are great for your skin, your heart and your eyes. They also help to repair damaged cells from smoking so put your cigarette out and eat some tomatoes.
Cayenne pepper is thermogenic. It is a natural painkiller and reduces inflammation. It is also a blood glucose stabiliser.
Beans are amazing. Everyone should incorporate more of these into their weekly diet. Cannelini beans help with collagen production, vision and nervous system function and are also great for appetite regulation. Red kidney beans are Known to be great for cell development and anaemia prevention.

Who knew chilli was such a healthy dinner?! Make this one a staple in your house 😎

Happy creating!

Rewired 💕🌿

13. Vegan Tartiflette

🍂🍁 13 is a lucky number today for Blogtober. The tartiflette was one of my favourite meals back in the day. A traditional mountain meal of potatoes, lardons, cream and LOTS of cheese; it is packed full of calories, giving you enough energy to spend the day playing out in the snow or to refuel after such antics. Now things have changed and words like ‘cheese’ and ‘lardons’ no longer fill me with excitement. However, the idea of a tartiflette still makes my heart swell (and probably my arteries) so I really wanted to create something that gives me that same nostalgia, and I think I managed it quite well 😎 To watch the recipe video, click Here

What you will need (to serve 2):
– 8-9 small/medium white potatoes, or 4 large
– 1 white onion
– a handful of button mushrooms
– a handful of black olives
– 1/2 cube veggie stock
– 1 carrot
– 1 medium sweet potato
– 1.5 cups of nutritional yeast
– 150ml rice milk
– 2 garlic cloves
– 1/2 lemon
– salt and pepper to season

Preheat your oven to 200c fan/ 220c convection oven

Step 1, prepare your potatoes
Peel your potatoes and using a mandolin, or a food chopper, slice them so they are about 0.5cm thick. Soak them in cold water to get rid of the starch (the starch prevents the potatoes from turning lovely and soft; no one likes a rubbery potato). Then boil them in veggie stock until fork tender (not too soft as we want them to maintain their shape, think al dente).

Step 2, make your ‘cheesy’ sauce
Peel your carrot and sweet potato. Chop into smaller chunks and boil in 150ml water for about 10 minutes. Add the nutritional yeast, press the garlic cloves and add those along with the juice of your half lemon. Allow this to simmer for another 5 minutes, season and then add the contents of the pan to a blender. Blend until smooth – sorted.

Step 3, last bit of prep
Thinly slice the onion and mushrooms. Fry these off in olive oil (or water) until the onions are lovely and soft and turning golden. Chop the olives in half.

Step 4, assemble (the fun part)
You will want a casserole dish to bake this in. To make a really satisfying tartiflette, it’s all about the layers. First you need to make a layer of the potatoes (one slice thick), then add a thin layer of onions, mushrooms and olives. Season generously. The next layer is the sauce and then repeat until your dish is full. Potatoes. Onions. Mushrooms. Olives. Season. Sauce.

Step 5, bake!
Pop your dish in the oven for 30-40 minutes. I would leave it for 40 if you have time for the perfect texture. If you are making this for more people, obviously you may need to leave this in for longer. You will know when it’s ready because it will be slightly crispy on top but your fork will slide right through to the soft potatoes underneath ✌🏻️

And there you have it. Although it’s pretty much made of just vegetables, it’s quite a rich meal so I serve mine with steamed carrots and green beans to lighten the plate. I highly recommend giving this a go, it will be the least harmful tartiflette you’ve ever eaten 😉

Nutritional spotlight
* If you’re like me and like to know what’s in your food, you will be happy to know that this tartiflette will be the healthiest one you’ve ever eaten!
* Rewired isn’t going to count the calories in this dish because there aren’t enough in it to be worried about.
* The ingredients in this meal have many health benefits and I will list just a few:
Potatoes are awesome. They contain lots of vitamin b6 which is great for athletic performance, helps with brain cell and nervous system activity and is actually good for cardiovascular protection.
Carrots are a source of beta-carotene which is excellent for your heart and your eyes (it is sometimes used to treat age related macular degeneration).
Nutritional yeast is a godsend for vegans. It contains vitamin B12 which is vital as you can’t get it anywhere else other than meat or through shots at the doctors. It is antibacterial, antiviral and also boosts your immune system.

So who’d have thunk it, a tartiflette which is good for your heart?!

Happy creating!

Rewired 💕🌿

4. Bruschetta with homemade Ciabatta

🍁🍂 Happy day four of blogtober! Today I will be showing you how to make bruschetta with home made ciabatta bread. If you don’t have time to make the bread, have no fear. You can just buy some from the supermarket and prepare it the same way to save time. I find it quite satisfying knowing I made everything from scratch and I have a lot of nostalgia for when I used to make this for guests when Mike and I used to work in France as chalet hosts. It looks so fancy and is actually really simple so here goes!

What you will need:

For the ciabatta
– 500g strong white flour
– 1tsp salt
– 1tbsp olive oil
– 400ml luke warm water
– 1 heaped tsp yeast

For the salsa
– 1 white onion
– 1/2 red onion
– 6 salad tomatoes
– juice of 1/2 lemon
– a handful of fresh basil
– salt & pepper to taste

You will also need a garlic clove and some extra olive oil for toasting the bread ✌🏻️
You may also want to drizzle some balsamic glaze over the finished product to make it look fancy and taste heavenly, but this is optional.

Step 1, Making the dough
Sift your flour into a mixing bowl and add the salt and yeast either side of the bowl so they don’t touch. (Don’t ask me why; science).
Make a well in the middle of the bowl and add the water and olive oil.
Fold in the flour and need the dough for 5-6 minutes. Add extra flour if the mixture is too wet. If you don’t have the elbow grease, or can’t be bothered like me, put it in a food mixer and use the hook utensil to do it for you!
When the dough holds and has an elastic quality to it, lightly oil another bowl and place the dough in it. Soak a tea towel in hot water, rinse and cover the bowl. Leave this in a warm space for at least 30 minutes for the dough to expand. Make a cup of tea and relax.

Step 2, Bake!
When your dough is ready, place it in a loaf tin (you may want to lightly oil the tin or use vegan butter/margarine to grease it so the dough doesn’t stick to the sides.)
Pop it into a preheated 200c fan/ 220c convection oven for 20-25 minutes. The bread should have a lovely golden colour when it’s ready.

Step 3, Salsa prep
When you are waiting for the bread to cool, now is a good time to make the topping.
Chop the onions and de-seed the tomatoes and chop them into small 1/2 cm pieces. Tear some fresh basil and put everything to a bowl. Squeeze over the lemon juice and season with salt and pepper. Stir well.

Step 4, Toasting (it’s go time if you bought your bread)
This recipe is not for those who are afraid of oil. It is a treat though and everyone should be allowed to indulge from time to time. When your bread has cooled down, slice it to about 1.5cm thick. You should be able to get about 10 slices from this I reckon. Brush each piece with olive oil on both sides and pop them under the grill for 2 minutes on each side.

Step 5, Plating
Peel your garlic clove and rub it over each piece of toasted ciabatta, be light with this as it can taste quite powerful!
Add the salsa generously and then use the balsamic glaze if you have it. Garnish with extra fresh basil for a beautifully aromatic plate.

Nutritional spotlight –
*If you’re like me and like to know what’s in your food, you’ll be happy to know that this bruschetta is full of goodness.
*Rewired isn’t going to count the calories in the ciabatta or the salsa because as a starter or a snack, there are not enough in them to worry about.
*The ingredients in this recipe have many health benefits and I will list just a few:
Olive oil is rich in monounsaturated fats – don’t be scared of the word fat because this is a good type of fat. It helps to prevent disease including diabetes and cancer and metabolic syndrome. Be careful when frying food with it – always use a low to medium heat to prevent carcinogens from raising their ugly heads.
Tomatoes are packed with vitamins. They are great for your skin, your heart and your eyes. They also help to repair damaged cells from smoking so put your cigarette out and eat some tomatoes 🍅
Basil is an excellent antibacterial herb. It is also anti inflammatory so can ease the pain of arthritis and gastrointestinal conditions.

These are great for dinner parties, you can use two loaf tins to make smaller loaves for crostini or use this original recipe for a starter. I love bruschetta because it tastes great all year round.

Happy creating!

Rewired 💕🌿

Friday Faves

Here are three little treasures I’ve found recently for happiness and health ✌🏻️💕🌿

1. The Body Shop

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For me, living a more conscious life is about making little changes often. Trying to save the planet is too much to take on all at once and I would imagine you are less likely to succeed and more likely to become down trodden with guilt because in this day and age, it’s pretty much impossible to live without doing something that is damaging to your body and/or the environment.
One little step I have taken recently is to buy these beauties from the body shop:

*Coconut milk body lotion
*Coconut shower cream
*Vanilla body mist

They are all vegan (I checked their list of vegan products). Ethics aside, my skin feels softer than ever and I smell like ice cream – yes! I would highly recommend these items to anyone and I’m looking forward to adding to my collection.

2. Big Magic

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Elizabeth Gilbert is a goddess. She is honest and humble and absolutely hilarious. If you’re feeling a little lost on your life path and need a few words of encouragement, Big Magic will be your go to ‘pick-me-up.’

After living in my new home for over 6 months, I finally set up my recording studio in my bedroom and started writing music again. I also downloaded a few photo editing apps to fiddle around with for my food photography. My yoga practice has become part of my daily routine again and I feel more connected to my body now than I have in a long time.

Creative living beyond fear is a reminder that the reason any of us creates anything is because we enjoy it. If there’s one thing I’ve learnt in life so far, it’s that happiness is the key to everything. We don’t have to impress anyone, we don’t have to become successful in the eyes of others. Success is found in a life of fulfilment, having friends to laugh with, partners to love, family ties and activities to inspire us. Thank you Elizabeth Gilbert for giving me the kick up the arse I needed!
3. Hot For Food – Mac N Peas!

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Going vegan is one of the best decisions I ever made. I have found it incredibly easy and also really exciting coming up with new recipes and sharing them with friends and family (although I do have to tell my friends that I’m okay with it if they unfollow me on Instagram as it’s mainly pictures of food and that’s not everyone’s cup of tea).

As we are on the topic of Instagram, I love trawling through pictures of food and picking up tips and ideas for my next meal. I also love YouTube for this. Most online vegan ‘youtubers‘ really annoy me but I’m a little bit obsessed with Hot For Food‘s channel. Last week I tried their Mac N Peas recipe and OH MY. Wow. It’s so simple and easy to follow and the result is the most comforting, indulgent dinner I think a vegan can have. A massive thumbs up from me and I dare you to give it a go yourself, you deserve it! https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=510fDkRzNz4

Happy creating!

Rewired 💕🌿

Rewired

There are times in our lives when our goals and dreams fall flat. Most of us have a picture in our heads of what we think the future should look like and it can be bitterly disappointing when life butts in and gets involved. But the beauty of it all is that plans can change, our ability as humans to adapt is phenomenal. With Rewired, I want to share with you the little treasures I find every day following an unexpected turn in my road. Here’s to fitness, health and happiness!

Rewired 💕🌿

 

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