Ryan’s top food bloggers
Ryan picks his favourite Irish food bloggers
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Roz Purcell, Natural Born Feeder - Quinoa pancakes
When it comes to the world of health right now, be it exercise, nutrition, or emotional wellbeing, those currently slaying it as much as this lady are few and far between. I first discovered Roz through a shared interest in the Cycle Against Suicide campaign, and a spike in my intrigue came with discovering her awesome work in the kitchen. The Natural Born Feeder blog maintains a wholesome approach to foods, avoiding processed feeds and frequently incorporating some vegan and paleo style dishes. The blog is very vibrant and it's as if Ireland's top model has brought some fashion to food; colourful smoothies are a huge association I make with the blog. I feel Roz brings life to dull outlooks that are common to food these days, and when I followed this delicious recipe, my old outlook of pancakes as a boring egg-and-flour mix was completely turned on its head.
Firstly, the natural sweetness is one to note here. It's as delicious as layering the pancake with mouth watering maple syrup, when really it's all in the mix; all guilt free and all natural! After making this, I think there's a point where you just hover above the plate, taking in the one-of-a-kind cinnamon aroma. This one is entirely vegan and feel free to play around with any toppings you like, because it's very versatile. As you can see in the photo, I enjoyed them with some natural yogurt and berries but smothering them with peanut or almond butter is ace too! Well done on this one Roz, you really have a knack for this kitchen stuff!
Check out her blog on Natural Born Feeder
The Happy Pear- Avocado chocolate mousse cake
When it comes to testing creations from food bloggers you've come across for the first time, usually it's wisest to start small and gain confidence before moving on up to their more tricky recipes. Well...I completely bypassed this rule with my lively, virtual friends, David and Stephen Flynn.
Emanating from the heart of Greystones, and into the world of YouTube kitchens, are a collection of upbeat food demos from The Happy Pear. What I loved most about making this particular one was that, despite how great their end product looked, I never doubted myself on making it. There was no messing around with ovens or pans, no warning signs screaming 'approaching baking disaster,' or anything like that. Even though it looks hard to make at first glance of the photos, the twins made the recipe so simple and enjoyable to follow!
In terms of consistency and taste, I think this cake is very satisfying, having a combination of both soft and crunch. The base is a compressed paradise of gorgeous wholesome nuts and chewy dates, while the top layer has a well bound cheese-cake consistency. My taste buds are very sensitive to bitter foods so that just meant adding a little less cocoa powder into the mixture, but every one for their own; add it in according to preference. Nonetheless, this is gorgeous, looks striking and certainly one to impress the fam with...(I know I won mine over with it anyway). DELISH!
Susan Jane White- Healthy breakfast bars
To acknowledge this lady as anything less than a massive spark of foodspiration, would be to discredit her ingenuity immensely. Saying that, I hope I'm allowed to add in The Grim Reaper of pesky food cravings, kitchen royalty...or maybe even a sassy kitchen guru?
Just like with my friends above, the second enjoyment I got out of this recipe was the process of following it through. This video of Susan's is infused with many great dimensions: firstly, the instructions are described very simply and clearly, nutritional information is given in a completely non-tedious way, and all that is topped off by her charming style of humour.
I second Susan when she compliments the nutmeg and salt aroma that wafts through the air on making these breakfast bars. Never have I been so impatient sitting by the cooling rack as I was with these guys. They have everything you need when it comes to taste: sweet, but not overpoweringly, nutty, but not so in-your face nutty. The texture is great too, there's just no prospect of gooey here. The oats and walnuts add a crunchy feel, while the baked dates make you feel like you should be getting a slap on the wrist for committing gluttony. They keep very well and your friends will probably say that pigs fly when you tell them you made them. I'll believe you though.
Pat Divilly -Sweet potato hash browns
As an NUIG alumni with an inspirational story written in his tracks, Pat Divilly is a man I look up to immensely. We all know that fitness and nutrition go hand-in-hand, so it's no surprise that the founder of patdivillyfitness.com has made educating us on the best feeds a priority.
The author of many popular cookbooks, including Naked paleo: food stripped bare (which a friend highly suggested I read), also empires a bank of extremely tasty and wholesome recipe videos on YouTube!
This guy has a great personality, which really shines through during this video. His modest attitude was key to making me less panicky about making such a unique dish for the first time. Just like the great Susan above, Pat offered a plethora of nutritional information and he also succeeded in doing it without me switching off. The hash browns came out fantastic in the end, and that was with his advice on adding some more coconut flour if the mixture got a bit gooey. Nice one Pat!