Weekend Bites: Can a plant-based, living- food diet improve health?
‘Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food’ wrote Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine.
When Bernadette Bohan was diagnosed with cancer for a second time, she took Hippocrates’ advice on board.
Embracing a plant-based, living-food diet, in conjunction with chemo, radiation and surgery, she noticed remarkable results: her health improved greatly, her skin glowed, her energy levels increased and her waist shrank.
The author of three bestselling books, Bernadette’s newest title is Raw: Recipes for Radiant Living.
More than an introduction to nutrient-dense foods, there’s guidance on kitchen equipment (like a food dehydrarter used in the cracker recipe, right) and key ingredients, alongside 75 wholesome and tasty recipes.
Bernadette’s homemade crackers feature onions, which are useful for the prevention and treatment of many common diseases such as cancer, coronary heart disease and diabetes.
They are amazingly rich in sulforaphanes, a group of phytochemicals, which are disease-fighting compounds found in plant-based foods. Most store-bought crackers contain hidden sugars and hydrogenated fats. When you make your own, you know exactly what you’re eating.
Flaxseeds are a good source of omega-3 fatty acids; they are also rich in fibre and proteins.
Her heart sweets are simple to make and a great alternative to junk food. “They are irresistible, so before you submit to an impulse to buy sweets at the checkout counter, make a batch,” she says. “I use strawberries for the pink ones, and a little turmeric to make the yellow ones.”
Recipes from Raw, by Bernadette Bohan, €24.99, Gill & Macmillan
Crackers about crackers
2 stalks celery
1 white onion
1 clove garlic
140g sunflower seeds
60ml Bragg Liquid Aminos
60ml olive oil
1/2 red chilli, finely chopped
1/2 tsp celery salt
1. Soak the sunflower and flaxseeds (separately) in a cup of water overnight.
2. Rinse off the sunflower seeds, but use all of the gelatinous flaxseed mix.
3. Peel the onions and wash the celery, and chop them finely in a processor.
4. Mix with the remaining ingredients until completely combined.
5. Spread the mixture thinly over two sheets of parchment. Sprinkle with celery salt.
6. Score into the mixture with a pizza cutter to make square or rectangular shapes.
7. Dehydrate overnight. If the crackers are not fully dry, return them to the dehydrator until drying is complete.
Sweet potato crisps
2 sweet potatoes
3tbsp salted vegetable
200ml hot water
Sweet potato crisps
1. Wash and slice the sweet potatoes thinly, with the skin on.
2. Blend the vegetable bouillon with the hot water.
3. Coat the sliced sweet potatoes in the bouillon.
4. Place the sweet potatoes on the dehydrator until crisp.
Lots of lovely hearts
1 ripe banana
400ml tin coconut milk
4 dates, soaked in lemon juice
1. Process the banana and coconut milk together.
2. Add strawberries to half the mixture, and turmeric to the other half.
3. Pour into heart-shaped moulds and freeze.
4. Thaw before devouring the lot.
Ask the expert: Why is it a good time to open a beer-only bar?
Jason O'Connell: Director, Galway Bay Brewery
"The craft beer scene is booming world over. In the US, craft beer accounts for almost 8pc of all beer sales, and Europe is not too far behind. Pretty much every European capital has a dedicated beer bar, where beer enthusiasts can go to try something new or different.
Tastes are becoming increasingly sophisticated and the best beers are being enjoyed much in the same way as a fine wine.
We wanted to do something a bit special with Beer Market, our seventh pub in Dublin, to pare things right back and focus solely on beer. Our aim is for Beer Market to be the best beer bar in Ireland. We are sourcing the world's finest beers, the vast majority of which aren't available anywhere else in Ireland.
On tap at the moment, we have one-offs from the likes of Edge, Naparbier, Buxton, Beerd, Brew By Numbers and Siren, plus the last ever keg of Two Hundred Fathoms, our limited-edition imperial stout aged in Teeling Whiskey barrels.
When it's gone, it's gone! At Beer Market, taps are numbered rather than branded, so the roster of beers on offer will change regularly."
Beer Market, Ireland's first dedicated beer-only bar is located at 13 High Street, Christchurch, Dublin 8, and open daily from noon.