Tis The Season… To Eat Healthy!

 

Tis the season of blessings, joy, and love… and let’s not forget the good food too! Delicious meals, tasty cookies and cakes, great brunches, and dinners…. and just like that, the next time you will hop on that scale, you will not like what you will see! No need to worry! Myself and Live &Taste have got your back! It is absolutely doable to indulge in the deliciousness of this season while being conscious, aware, and kind to your body. Live & Taste, is the union of two beautiful women, who made the relationship between healthy and delicious possible! I have tried some of their goodies and I have loved them! So I have decided to meet up with them, dig a little deeper and offer you all what you need to know!

 

So before we get to Live & Taste, can you please tell us about yourselves? Who are you? Where are you from? What did you do before?

I’m Laetitia. I was born and brought up in Belgium. I went to law school, to pursue a career as a solicitor. I was partner in a law firm for few years.

I’m Theresa. I was born in Germany, and I grew up between Germany and France. I have a marketing degree and I was a marketing manager in a big travel company.

How was the idea for Live & Taste created? And why the name: Live & Taste (I see what you did with the initials, genius!)

Few years ago, we moved to Bahrain, having the chance to have a career break, and focus on our families. Being in Bahrain gave us the incredible opportunity to meet and become best friends. We started to do a lot of sports to get back in shape, after our respective pregnancies. Naturally, we quickly realized the huge importance of eating well. So, we slowly adopted a fully plant-based diet that was surprisingly appealing and tasty. It was a wake-up call. Then, because people were regularly asking us about healthy tips and recipes and because we love cooking, it was natural to create our blog Live and Taste and to publish healthy recipes!

The name “Live & Taste” was a nod to our first names, you’re right, Laetitia & Theresa!! The idea was: Live happily by tasting great healthy food.

What is Live & Taste?

Live and Taste is a food blog where we publish regularly plant-based (mainly) and healthy recipes. We try as much as we can to publish easy and quick recipes for weekdays and for busy mummies. Our philosophy is based on whole food, unprocessed food, superfood, raw food, refined sugar free, gluten free (mostly) or a limited amount of dairy.

Live and Taste reflects our vegan and healthy lifestyle. It’s a great place for inspiration & motivation for a balanced diet (and we use it as our own cookbook too !).

How do you come up with your recipes? From recipe books, or do you just try random things in your own kitchen?

We have a ton of cooking books and we are continuously looking for inspiration. We have the chance to travel a lot (being in Bahrain helps as we are close to so many beautiful countries) and it gives us a kick of inspiration for new recipes. We like to recreate classic recipes, with veganism and health in mind. We like to find inspiration through other food blogs too.

How do you manage to make beautiful healthy food, that also tastes so good?

The goodness is mostly coming from the combination of flavors, the creaminess (with a healthy sauce that we’ve added), a splash of nut butter on top of a smoothie bowl, a lot of herbs when you roast your veggies, roasted nuts on top of your salads (because sometimes you need something crunchy) etc.…and through the years, we’ve learned a lot about all those vegan ingredients.

Trust us, the way we eat bursts in flavor! And, we love to arrange beautiful pictures for our followers, that’s a big part of our job as food bloggers.

Do you cater for parties and gatherings?

We did few events and Pop up to inspire people to cook our recipes at home. It was a real success and we still do it sporadically. Unfortunately, we have less time right now to do it, as we need to focus first on the media (and to balance work and home).

 Do your kids eat the healthy food you make? If Yes, how do you convince them to even try it? and do you have any tips for other moms on that?

Definitely, they do. The 4 of them have different interests in healthy food but they start to be aware of healthy cooking (and can make a difference with junk food). We would say that to convince kids to try it out, we let them play in the kitchen (in a safe environment), we let them cook with us and let them try the food straight away from the oven tray for example. A great recipe you could try out with them, is our famous “Raw Truffles” (Recipe mentioned below). They can put all the ingredients in a blender, you blend and then, you let them roll the truffles ! For sure, it’s a process you need to repeat: introduce new food several times or hide it at the beginning AND keep it up. They will feel interested in healthy food, if you show them your interest into it!

What are your favorites dishes to make?

 Do we have to pick just one?? Plenty of recipes actually!

In this Christmas season, we would recommend a delicious “hot cinnamon chocolate” (Recipe mentioned below).

You’ll have to mix together 4 cups of almond mylk, 30 gr of dark chocolate (we love the local brand, organic dark chocolate) and 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon and heat it up. It’s a comfy and healthy beverage, that we love to drink while the weather is a bit chilly!

 Where do you see yourself and your business 5 years from now?

We had no idea how long we would eat this way (plant-based diet) but now it’s more than 6 years and we have so much more energy, our skin looks brighter and we feel both more positive. So, we will keep up posting healthy recipes, because we love it. We would like to hit the Pinterest market too, increase our blog traffic, make food videos and maybe, we might create a recipe book. Who knows…

What would you tell women and moms reading this post about healthy living, and if you have any tips for them to be able to have a healthier lifestyle yet still enjoy life’s delicacies?

 A lot of people misinterpret the way we eat and think that a healthy vegan and plant-based diet has to be so much restricted, with a lack of flavor, boring dishes, not enough protein, no more sweet etc.… but it’s actually the opposite. You’ll notice it quickly if you follow us. We feel energized and we do actually a lot of sports (high impact and yoga), while we are eating -a lot of-delicious food. So do not hesitate to look into it a bit more. Learn to care about your body. You will be fascinated by the large range of choices and flavors in our lifestyle. Try to add some vegan dishes to your weekly routine, add more whole food to your diet, reduce as far as possible processed food and refined sugars and SEE HOW IT MAKES YOU FEEL. On top of it, most of our recipes are very easy and ARE FOR ALL EATERS (you can find all the ingredients in Bahrain) and you can prep a lot during the weekend! If you have any questions about transitioning to a plant-based diet or regarding a recipe, just ask and send us a message or comment on the blog or on Instagram,  and we will be thrilled to help you..

Here are the links of the recipes mentioned above:

http://www.liveandtaste.com/recipe/raw-chocolate-truffles/

http://www.liveandtaste.com/recipe/hot-cinnamon-chocolate/

Blog:http://www.liveandtaste.com

Instagram: @live.and.taste

Facebook: LIVE.AND.TASTE

Happy Holidays..!!!

Ouiam

One Brilliant Place For Some Exquisite Food!

 

When you live in an island packed with restaurants, cafes, and eateries, and you are someone like me, you end up going to the same places over and over again, just because you want to avoid the dilemma that comes with too many choices. About 6 months ago, a friend of mine mentioned a new place called “Areesh” that just opened in the lagoon, Amwaj, with middle eastern cuisine, and she wanted to try it. So of course we headed there, not sure what to expect, first: Because the place just opened, and I have been disappointed way too many times with new businesses, either because their staff aren’t trained enough, or not familiar with the menu quite yet, then because I am not a big fan of middle eastern food, so I wasn’t really keen to go but … Why not…?!

 

The minute we entered, I found myself contemplating the décor, such a fantastic combination between chic and simple, with a touch of Fairooz and Jobran Khalil Jobran (Famous Arab artists from the glorious old time) in the background. The choice of colors gave it a modern look, yet the use of Arabic little details like the chairs, the tables, and the old tea pots gave it an authentic taste; but hey…. this lovely décor wasn’t going to fill my growing appetite. It was breakfast time, so we ordered some falafel, Halloumi cheese and hummus, with some tea and coffee. The food came in about 5 minutes, and it was absolutely delicious. The staff were so warm and welcoming. We really enjoyed our experience and since then we became great, loyal customers. So few weeks ago when this same restaurant contacted me to connect with the “Amwaj mamas”, I was beyond thrilled. Not only the restaurant had delightful food, but also a fabulous marketing strategy! They invited ALL the Amwaj mamas to a fantastic breakfast, to introduce them to this splendid corner, where authenticity and modernity go hand in hand.

 

I must say, even though I knew how good their food was, and how nice and warm their staff were, inviting 25 mamas along with their little ones is no joke. Moms with babies (and toddlers) have many needs, and when there are 25 of them, things can very much turn into a chaos!

Once we went in, I was pleasantly surprised with how beautiful the tables looked, the staff took extra care arranging the chairs and tables to make it easier for the moms to come in with their huge bags and bulky strollers. The kids immediately hijacked the place, and you know what toddlers do best? SCREAM!! Of course with 25 of them it was crazy, BUT the staff were so gentle and nice to them, they tolerated the noise, the banging, the loud chitchats between the moms- because the louder our kids get, the louder we must get- the crying, the shouting and screaming, I must say even I was surprised!

We each ordered our drinks: coffees, teas, and juices, which all came in beautiful cups and glasses. Then a cascade of middle eastern food flooded our big table. It was never ending yummy food! Everything,…. you name it: Hummus, Baba Ghanouj, Fatayer, Falafel, Liver, Omelets, and Cheese. Everything was fresh and mouthwatering! Moms and kids enjoyed every single bite! The little ones also enjoyed the colorful balloons they were offered by the very thoughtful staff!

 

What caught my attention even more than the delicious food, was how attentive the owner was! He -himself- kept on checking if every mama was comfortable, and had that highchair she needed, or the coffee she ordered, or the extra chair she wanted. He was calling the waiters to fill them in with who wanted/needed what, and I thought this great attention to details was really exceptional!

All moms were astonished with the kindness and the generosity of the owners of Areesh restaurant, they were also amazed with how good the food was, and how nice and welcoming the staff were. It is definitely one of the best breakfasts Amwaj mamas were ever invited to! So a really huge Thank you to Areesh Restaurant, for your kindness, generosity and attention to details.

 

Areesh Restaurant is THE place for Authentic middle eastern/Arabic food. It is located at Amwaj Lagoon, entrance 6A (parking 5&6). It is open from 9:15am till midnight and they deliver too! So make sure you try it for yourself NOW!!!

Ramadan Special: Open for delivery, daily from 12pm-2am.

Areesh restaurant also have an app that you can use to place your order, and enjoy a 7% discount on all deliveries.

 

 

 

Ouiam

Thank God It’s Friday: Quick, Easy, And Yummy… 

  

Sometimes all you need is a day with your oldest, dearest friend and your beautiful, loving aunt and her cheerful, easy-going daughter! Reminiscing about your wedding day five years ago, and talking about how fast life goes by and how beautiful it all is! So Thankful for these beautiful people with whom I share a very special bond. You know…. those people who are very close to your heart, and who have been there for you in every stage of this life! People whom you talk to about 4 or 5 times a day or maybe days and days go by without hearing from them, yet once you see them you pick up right from where you left! 

So yes… My day was just what I needed! Fresh, full of love ….. And food! Yup foooooood! Talking about food, today I will be sharing a dessert recipe, a delicious and super easy to make dessert! Here is what you will need: 

15g Butter 

2 Tbsp powdered sugar

4 Bananas (peeled and cut into 3 pieces)

100ml double cream 

In a pan, put the butter (over medium heat), once it starts melting add the sugar. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes. Add the bananas, cook for another 1 minute. Then add the cream and stir! Voila…!! 

Try it and let me know… !!! 

Ouiam 

Thank God It’s Friday: A La Naturel .. With Almonds !! 

  
When it comes to food, I always prefer to eat at home. Of course I don’t mind going occasionally to a fancy place and order some fancy stuff! However, preparing my family’s food, gives me an enormous pleasure. Because only then, I can be sure of what I am putting on their plates, how fresh it is, how healthy it is and how yummy it is :)! I always try to use fresh and organic ingredients. I also try to read the labels before buying anything! 

One of the things that we consume a lot in our home, is Almond Butter! Adam and I, love it, and we have it for breakfast almost everyday! It happened that last week we couldn’t find it in any nearby supermarket! So I decided to make it myself, and I was extremely pleased with the result! It is absolutely easy to make, and you can make it the way you like it, with roasted or raw almonds, with honey, with salt, or even with peanuts! And here is how I made it:

– 200g Raw almonds (You can roast them if you want, just put them in the oven for about 15minutes) 
– 1 tbsp Coconut oil (You can use any other oil) 

Blend everything together for about five minutes (depending on how good is your blender).   
In less than 10 minutes, you will have your own natural home-made almond butter!! How cool is that!!! 

Ouiam 

Thank God It’s Friday: Gluten-Free Gone French .. 

  

  
The beauty of every single morning is the ability for a fresh start. A chance to be a better person, to change what’s making you unhappy and look for ways to be happy. A new day for new memories, new smiles, new mistakes and new opportunities! 

So with every sunrise, I count my blessings and I thank God for what I have. I pray for what I wish to have. And food is always one of the things I am extremely grateful for! 

Today I made these amazing gluten-free “Crépes“, and was so pleased with the result that I decided to share the recipe with you! I have to say, it is the easiest and fluffiest thing you will ever make 🙂 

You will need: 
1 ripe banana, with spots on the skin
2 whole eggs 

Butter, for frying-pan

Combine the banana and eggs in a blender, and blend until completely smooth. Melt the butter in a skillet over medium heat, and pour a small amount of batter into the hot skillet. Cook for two minutes, or until the edges begin to look cooked, then flip and cook for another 1-2 minutes! And voila! 

Let me know if you try it ;)! 

Ouiam

Thank God It’s Friday: The Bowl Of Happiness…

  
“Thank God It’s Friday” is back you people! Yes it has been a while, but here we are again :)! 

A hot and a very humid Friday in Bahrain, one of those days that you rather stay at home, in your Pjs, sipping a lemonade and listening to music all day long ;)! We did all the above, the whole afternoon; When it was dinner time, mama had to fix a quick meal and I knew exactly what we needed!! The bowl of happiness! And that is exactly what I made! It takes about 10mins and you will only need: 

1 cup of quinoa (boiled for 15mins) 

1 tbsp vegetable oil 

1 onion (diced)

1 capsicum (cut into small pieces) 

2 minced garlic cloves 

Coriander (few leaves chopped finely) 

200g canned corn

200g canned kidney beans

Salt, pepper, thyme 
After you heat the pan, add the oil, onion, garlic, and capsicum. When all the ingredients are soft, add the canned corn, the kidney beans and the coriander. Season with salt, pepper and some fresh thyme. Add the quinoa, mix everything together and voila!! Bon Appetit! 
Ouiam 

Thank God It’s Friday: The Eggplant Feast! 

  
I just realised that I have missed last week’s post of “Thank God It’s Friday”, and that’s probably because days are flying by, and I can hardly know what day it is without checking my calendar! See that’s the thing about Ramadan, the hours are slow yet the days are so fast! Ramadan is a very busy month, contrary to what one might think, we cook food during Ramadan way more than we do in normal days (which is kind of counterproductive, since this holly month is all about fasting and cleansing our bodies!). I have to admit though, that in our household we hardly make it to the main course, we stick to fruits and dates to break our fast, then some samboussas (will share my recipes for the samboussas sometime soon) and soup for dinner then something light for Sohour. 

Today I made something very light, yet super yummy that Adam, his dad and I love so much! I call it the eggplant feast lol, I will share its recipe with all of you! All you need is: 

2 medium eggplants 

1 tablespoon oil 

Salt and pepper to season

1 tablespoon butter 

1 crushed garlic 

Parsley and coriander (few leaves each, cut finely)  

2 tablespoons tomato paste 

1/2 cup of water

About 6 to 8 slices of Cheddar cheese.

Cut the eggplants into thick slices, season with some salt and pepper. Poor the oil in a pan and add the slices of eggplants, cook them until they become soft, then remove them and let them cool. Mean while, melt the butter in a pan, add the garlic, parsley and coriander, season with some salt and pepper, then add the tomato paste and water, once it thickens then the sauce is ready. In an oven-safe pan, place the eggplant slices, cover them with the tomato sauce, then add the cheese on top, and put it in the oven for about 10mins! We usually have it with some Quinoa and we all love it! 

Bon Appetit! 

Ouiam