GUEST BLOG BY FAB GIOVANETTI
With January over and the phrase ‘yes please’ becoming more familiar after our health stints, I thought I’d share a few points on earing out and eating at dinner parties. The main issue is that it is undeniably easy to prepare meals at home when you are in control of your nest and all of the ingredients that end up on your plate. Once you head out to dinner it’s like a switch is flipped and suddenly we’re eating like Cookie Monster because “we’re eating out.”However, it does not have to be like that. Don’t get me wrong, I have my fair share of pizza and tacos, but I also value the importance of being prepared about the scenarios of being in a restaurant or at a dinner party.
WHEN EATING OUT
Do your research first. I have to specify: don’t be obsessed with the idea of finding the menu online. Still, most restaurants allow you to have a look, and this could be a great way to take your time and check which option works best for you. Choosing your food before you arrive makes it easier to avoid snap decisions you might regret later.When it comes to choosing your food, if you are looking for lighter options - with a much less obscure list of hidden ingredients, look for dishes that have been steamed, grilled, roasted or poached. Foods that are described on the menu as pan-fried, fried, crispy, crunchy or sautéed will usually contain vegetable oils, flavouring and added sugar - yes, you tandoori chicken may be sprinkled with white sweetness. Should you or should you not have dessert? I usually tend to share dessert, as I tend to have a sweet spot for salty and crispy - see pizza crust. If you are a dessert gal, just have your dessert and enjoy every damn spoon of it. Regret and guilt tastes bitter, and will ruin your sweet finish.
WHEN AT DINNER PARTIES...
Offer to come a bit earlier and cook with your friends - or bring your own food, if you tend to have intolerances or dietary lifestyles that may not agree with the majority (read dinner parties). If I know I am going to have issues feeling full at the party (let’s be honest, when batons and hummus are the only vegetarian option it’s hard to feel stuffed) I tend to have a light bite beforehand.
In the best Italian tradition, I always bring something homemade - mainly sweets - which I know I will eat without feeling over stuffed. Today I am sharing an idea for the perfect dinner party treat.
CHOCOLATE COVERED COCONUT DOUGHNUTS
What You'll Need
180g coconut flour, sifted
250g almond flour, sifted
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
4 large eggs, lightly whisked
125 ml milk of choice
3 tsp almond butter
1 tbsp coconut oil (plus grease)
125g honey (or ay sweetener of choice)
100g of dark chocolate for coating
How to Make
- Preheat the oven to 180C. Grease a 12-donut pan or a mould (much easier to handle!) with coconut oil or butter and set aside.
- In a mixing bowl, add the dry ingredients and swirl together, then proceed to mix the milk and eggs together in another bowl. In a small pan (I like to use bain-marie to avoid disastrous washing up) melt coconut oil and nut butter with syrup and combine both into the dry mixture. Mix well to obtain a thick batter.
- Transfer to greased donut mould and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until cooked through. Remove from oven and let sit for 10 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.
- I tend to wait up to 30 minutes before frosting.
- Using bain-marie once again, melt the dark chocolate in a small pan. Dip the tops of the donuts into the chocolate, and feel free to decorate as you please.
Photo Credit: Fab Giovanetti