A recipe for sore eyes

Our eyes can tell us a lot about our general health, and with most of us staring at a screen for hours on end, they deserve some tlc.

This bright sunshine coloured recipe provides just this. Orange coloured squash, whatever the variety, is rich in beta-carotene, an antioxidant compound linked with lowered risks for macular degeneration, cataracts and glaucoma. Curcumin, the active compound in turmeric root, has shown promise in glaucoma protection, thanks to its extremely high antioxidant benefits.

Healthy blood sugar control is essential for eye health, just as it is for our delicate blood vessel membranes and energy metabolism. This recipe has a low glycaemic load, thanks to its generous protein and plant fibre content.

You may not have tried black bean noodles yet, they are easily available online now and their almost 50% protein content makes them an amazing alternative to starchier noodles. Definitely one for the shopping list, especially if you follow a vegetarian or vegan diet.

Serves 2

Ingredients:

1 tsp coconut oil

6 spring onions, chopped finely

2 garlic cloves

1 cm thick piece of fresh ginger

2 or 3 fresh green chillies, plus one for garnish

1 small squash (my favourite is Hokkaido aka Potimarron squash but you could use about 500g of the flesh of any squash or pumpkin)

1 tin of coconut milk

1 tsp fresh chopped turmeric (or powder)

Juice from one lime

1 heaped teaspoon peanut butter

1 tbsp tamari sauce

2 handfuls of fine green beans

100g shiitake mushrooms, sliced

2 tbsp cashew nuts, roasted

2 tbsp chopped coriander

2 tbsp bean sprouts

100g black bean noodles

Preparation:

  • Heat the coconut oil in a deep pan.
  • Add the spring onions, chopped ginger, chillies, garlic and turmeric and soften for one minute then squeeze in the lime juice.
  • Pour in the coconut milk, tamari sauce and around 750ml of boiling water.
  • Add the peanut butter and stir well to mix it in, then the green beans, thinly sliced mushrooms and squash.
  • Simmer for around 10 mins, until squash is soft but still firm.
  • Cook the black noodles separately according to packet instructions and serve in the bowls.
  • Ladle the soup on top and garnish with bean sprouts, fresh coriander, spring onions, chopped chillies and roasted cashew nuts.
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