This delicious mixed berry crumble is the perfect way to say goodbye to the summer season.
You can use some of your favourite frozen berries, but the recipe tastes better with something fresh. Make sure to use a springform tin so you can easily store the crumble after it’s done.
250g chopped strawberries
250g fresh blueberries
2 tbsp caster sugar
50g plain flour
30g chopped cashews
40g brown sugar
30g slivered almonds
- Preheat the oven to 180ºC (356ºF), and line your springform tin with canola oil and baking paper.
- Place the strawberries and blueberries evenly on the bottom layer of the pan, making sure to cover any gaps.
- Combine the butter, flour, brown sugar, cashews, and slivered almonds until you have a fine paste. Squeeze it in the palm of your hands, then cover the berries. Take any leftover almonds and cashews then sprinkle them over the top.
- Cook for 30 minutes or until the topping is golden brown and the berries begin to ooze out. The crumble tastes just as good if it’s stored in the fridge overnight.
Image via Leites Culinaria
They often say that you’re only as young as you feel, but what if your brain feels sluggish and your memory seems to be getting worse, making you feel a lot older than you actually are? The good news is that there are certain foods you can eat which should help to slow these signs down and perhaps even improve brain function.
Here are some of the best brain foods around:
They may be small but these tiny fruits pack a lot of punch when it comes to nutritional value and some might say that they are the best brain food that money can buy. Blueberry compounds are easily absorbed into the blood and their huge number of powerful nutrients can improve brain function and protect the brain from oxidative damage. They can also protect the brain from free radicals, inflammation, aging and radiation, so eat up!
Dark chocolate is full of antioxidants and in many studies has been shown to improve blood flow to the brain, cognitive function and verbal fluency. If you’re looking for something to awaken your brain in the short term then consider reaching for some dark chocolate which has more caffeine than milk or white chocolate.
Brown rice and whole grains
Whole grains including oats, millet, some breads and cereals and quinoa contain essential vitamins and folic acid that help improve memory and circulation. They can also prevent the amino acid homocysteine from building up in the body which can decrease your risk of developing Alzheimer’s. Also, the carbohydrates found in whole grains release energy slowly, meaning you’ll be mentally alert throughout the day.
Nuts and seeds
Vitamin E has been shown to stave off cognitive decline, particularly in the elderly, so consider eating a handful of nuts each day to keep your mind sharp. Cashews, hazelnuts, walnuts, Brazil nuts, sunflower seeds, sesame seed and flax seeds are all great sources of vitamin E. This vitamin can also help prevent the blocking of blood vessels and reduce the risk of stroke and Alzheimer’s.
Consuming polyunsaturated fatty acids found in some types of fish could prevent damage to brain cells so tuck into salmon, trout, mackerel and sardines to reap the benefits. The omega-3 fatty acids found in oily fish have also been linked Alzheimer’s and memory loss so by eating more of them you could reduce the risk of developing these diseases.
Image via appforhealth.com
‘Superfood’ is a term to describe a type of food that is supposed to have exemplary health benefits and these days we seem to be hearing this term more frequently. Goji, acai and blueberries have all been labelled with the term ‘superfood’ and they definitely pack a lot of punch when it comes to beneficial properties. Here’s why:
Goji berries are native to the Himalayas but can also be found growing wild in Mongolia – a testament to how well they grow in harsh climates. Most of the commercially produced berries are now grown in China and are sometimes referred to as ‘red diamonds’. For centuries they have been used for culinary and medicinal purposes because of their impressive makeup with all of the essential amino acids, numerous vitamins and fifteen times the amount of iron found in spinach. Although there hasn’t yet been extensive testing carried out on these berries it is thought that they have a range of health benefits.
- The beta-carotene helps to promote healthy skin
- The high levels of vitamin C can help to boost your immune system
- The amino acids help to build muscle and produce energy
- The antioxidants in Goji berries can help to repair cell damage
- In traditional Chinese medicine, goji berries are thought to help with dizziness and eyesight
Acai berries are most commonly found in the Amazon rainforests and for centuries have been known for their healing and energy-boosting properties. The berries grow near the top of the acai palm tree in huge clusters and are highly perishable which means that harvesting them can be extremely laborious because they need to ensure that the fruit is not damaged when picked. Each berry only contains 10% fruit and they have a large seed, but despite this they are packed full of antioxidants, amino acids, vitamins, minerals and fibre. Here is what Acai berries can do for your health:
- The fibre can help to aid digestion
- The antioxidants in acai berries can help to maintain a healthy heart
- The amino acids in acai berries can help with endurance, strength and energy production
- The impressive number and high levels of vitamins can help to boost your immune system
- The antioxidants can help to combat premature aging
Blueberries have been around for centuries and date back to when Native Americans collected them from forests in North America and used them for medicinal purposes. They can now be found worldwide and they belong to the Ericaceae family of woody shrubs that love acidic soil. Other members of the family are the bilberry, cranberry and ligonberry. Blueberries are jam-packed full of antioxidants and are extremely beneficial for our health. Here’s what they are famous for:
- The antioxidants can help to improve cognitive function including memory
- The antioxidants found in blueberries can help to prevent cancer
- They have anti-inflammatory effects
- Blueberries can help to prevent bacteria from sticking to the bladder, urethra and gut
- The anthocyanin in blueberries helps to protect the retina in our eyes from sunlight
- Blueberries can help with the regulation of our blood sugar levels
So why not consider throwing some of these berries into your diet? For me, the benefits are too good to refuse.
Image via puregoodness.net