Tried and Tested in January 2015

by Jemma on February 27, 2015

in Reviews

Tried and Tested

Happy Friday, you lovely lot!  Hope you’ve all had a great week.  I’ve been given the opportunity to try some fantastic products recently and my January review round-up post includes some awesome healthy living brands that I was generously sent.

Always disclosed is whether I have been kindly sent these products for the purpose of a review or if I’ve purchased them myself to try and share.  In all instances, I will express my honest opinions across all products featured, so here’s what I’ve road tested for the blog in January. 

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 Nua Naturals

Although I don’t think that they’re essential to live a healthier lifestyle I love to experiment with superfood powders and interesting ingredients.  A little while ago I was contacted by an Irish company called Nua Naturals, a supplier of organic health ingredients, to review some of  their products.  I received coconut flour (€4.65), cacao powder (€3.95) and lucuma powder (€10.95).

The companies ethos is based on making small lifestyle changes which can have an impact on your lasting health.  They hope that this can be achieved by using their products every day to nurture your mind, body and spirit.  

All of the products are their own brand, organic and reasonably priced.  Having tried these ingredients before from different brands I was really impressed with the quality of these from Nua Naturals.  Also, the health benefits of each product in the range is labelled on the front of the pouches which I thought was a nice touch because sometimes it can be confusing about what benefits superfoods can offer your body.  I used the coconut flour in my Cashew Cookie Raw Chocolate Cups recipe and I’ve blended the lucuma powder into my homemade snack balls and smoothies and they both taste great.  

Nua Naturals do offer an international shipping service and more details can be found here

You can follow Nua Naturals on Facebook and Twitter

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Birch Box

Monthly beauty subscription boxes are so popular these days and there are lots of choices out there.  Birch Box teamed up with Women’s Health in January with a health, fitness and well-being theme that I was offered to review for the blog.  This particular box was designed to get you to start the year with healthy intentions and  to help you on your way.  It included some big name brands such as Stila, Ren, Philip Kingsley, Green People and Korres to name a few.  Each box is created from 4-5 products picked from a selection of around 18 products.  My box included:

  • Embrace Matcha Green Tea
  • Healgel Intensive
  • Philip Kingsley Body Building Conditioner
  • Stila Lip Glaze
  • REN Glycolactic Radiance Mask
  • ActivBod Cooling Finish Lotion
  • Birch Box and Women’s Health Pilates Band

With all subscription boxes you are likely to receive some products that you wouldn’t really use and for me this was the Philip Kingsley Body Building Conditioner as it doesn’t really suit my hair type.  I can see from the choice of products on offer from January’s box there were some that I would have preferred over some that I actually recieved.  However, it is a nice surprise to not know what you are getting and you may discover a product that you haven’t heard of before and simply fall in love.  I think these boxes work as a lovely little gift for yourself each month, but I was disappointed by the fact you only receive sample sizes of the products that is reflected in the reasonable monthly subscription cost.  

Monthly subscription to Birch Box cost £10 plus £2.95 postage and packaging.  Each box is usually based on different themes depending on the time of year.

You can follow Nua Naturals on Facebook and Twitter

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Booja-Booja

I’m a huge fan of Booja-Booja and have tried a few of their chocolates and dairy-free ice creams in the past and have become one of my favourite chocolate brands.  After introducing their special edition gift collection boxes to the range I was offered to review one.  The truffles came beautifully presented in bright coloured boxes and included some of their most popular flavours: rhubarb and vanilla fool, hazelnut chocolate, banoffee toffee and almond and sea salt caramel. 

All of Booja-Booja’s products are organic, dairy-free, gluten-free and soya free so they are the perfect gift or treat for anyone on a specialist diet.  What I have always loved about this brand is that you can’t tell that they are directed at special dietary requirements, which was highlighted when my friend tried some of them and was surprised by how lovely they taste.  The special edition collection boxes cost £12.95 each.  Stockists include Holland and Barrett, Waitrose and many independent health stores, more details on stockists in your area can be found here

You can follow Booja-Booja on Facebook and Twitter.  

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Buko Organic Coconut Water

I’m really loving the fact that coconut water has become a ‘thing’ in the UK as it’s now so widely available and there are lots of new brands coming through.  I was asked to review Buko an organic coconut water brand that sources its product from GMO-free farms in the Philippines. 

What I like about this brand is how conscientious it is and it’s willingness to help farmers receive the best price for their produce, a cause which perhaps some other coconut water brands ignore.  In terms of taste, the coconut water is lovely and I’ve drunk it to rehydrate after my Pilates classes or yoga sessions at home.   They are available for delivery in the UK and come in boxes of 8 for £15.92 plus shipping.

You can follow Buko on Facebook and Twitter

Have you tried any of these brands before?  What did you think of them? 

What new healthy living products have you been trying out lately?

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Fish curry title

Mainly on a Friday night, I like to have a meal dedicated to a particular cuisine to celebrate the arrival of the weekend.  We used to do Mexican night a lot and even though I still love a taco bowl I’m enjoying my curries at the moment, particularly Indian curries.  

curry 2

There’s always that temptation to pick up the phone and call the local takeaway, which is fine, but when looking for something more healthier it’s always nice to make your own and it’s easier than it sounds.  

Indian-Style Fish Curry With Lemon and Garlic Roasted Broccoli
Serves 4
A lighter and satisfying version of an Indian curry with a roasted broccoli side instead of rice.
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
50 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
50 min
For the curry
  1. 4 portions of white fish fillets (I used cod)
  2. 1 onion sliced
  3. 1 thumb size piece of ginger grated
  4. 2 cloves of garlic grated
  5. 4 tbsp curry paste (choose your favourite)
  6. 400g chopped tomatoes
  7. handful of coriander
  8. 1 chilli (optional)
For the roasted broccoli
  1. 2 heads of broccoli
  2. 3 tbsp coconut oil
  3. 1 lemon
  4. 1 chilli
  5. 2 garlic cloves
To make the curry
  1. In a little oil, add the sliced onion and fry until softened on a medium heat.
  2. Add the garlic and ginger and cook for a few minutes before adding the curry paste and cook for a further 5 minutes.
  3. Pour in the chopped tomatoes and simmer on a low heat for 30 minutes.
  4. Put the white fish fillets into the curry sauce and cook until they are cooked through (roughly 10 minutes).
  5. Garnish with chopped coriander and sliced chilli (optional).
To make the roasted broccoli
  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.
  2. Cut the broccoli heads into florets and place in a baking tray.
  3. Pour over the coconut oil, sliced garlic and chilli.
  4. Slice the lemon and add to the baking tray.
  5. Cook the broccoli for 10 minutes in the oven until it turns tender and crispy.
Celery and Cupcakes http://celeryandcupcakes.com/
Curry 5

Unlike some curries, this one is incredibly light and feels super healthy too.  The fish is a nice half-way house as it’s not too heavy on the stomach, but still satisfying so you won’t miss the red or white meat.  You could use any white fish in this recipe, something that is meaty and doesn’t fall apart when cooked would work great. 

curry 1

One of my new favourite ways to eat my curries is with roasted broccoli in coconut oil, a lighter alternative to rice.   It becomes lovely and tender and goes crispy in the oven.  For us, it works out great as Alfie has his curry with some basmati rice and the roasted broccoli and I pile up a mountain of roasted broccoli on my plate, it’s very addictive! 

Do you have themed meal nights at home?  What is your favourite curry?

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