We are living in a strange world at the moment, one where we are now housebound for the foreseeable future to combat the coronavirus pandemic.

Here in the UK #TeamCoco are bringing you new ways to enjoy travel without having to leave the safety of your own home, and what better way to feel worldly than to experience new recipes with international flavours.

We have added a few of our favourite wellbeing recipes for you to try at home while in lockdown, for the days when you need some much needed self care.

Yakult and Yuki Gomi – Udon Noodle Salad with Ginger and Carrot Dressing

Taking inspiration from ikigai, the Japanese concept which encourages us to find richness in our lives – our “reason for being”, Yakult have teamed up with Japanese chef and teacher Yuki Gomi to create some simple and nourishing recipes so we can all enjoy the joy of Japanese food at home.

Ingredients (serves 2)
150g Dried soba noodles, 6 Plum tomatoes, 6 Stems of broccoli (boiled or steamed), 6 Sugar snap peas (boiled or steamed), 50g Red cabbage, ¼ cup Edamame (boiled), 1 cup Mixed salad leaves, ½ tbs Peanut oil, 1 Medium carrot, 1 Small red onion, 1cm Peeled ginger, 80ml Olive oil, 50ml Soy sauce, 50ml Rice vinegar, 1tbs Mirin, 1tbs Honey
Sesame seeds, Spring onion, Chives, Shiso leaves, Coriander, Cress
Bring a pot of water to the boil and cook the noodles for 6-8 minutes. While the noodles are cooking, add a cup of cold water to the pot 2 or 3 times. This will improve the texture of the noodles. Drain the noodles and rinse with cold water to stop them cooking further. Mix with oil and place them in a bowl for serving. For the dressing, add the carrot, onion, peeled ginger, olive oil, soy sauce, rice vinegar, mirin and honey into a food processer. Liquidise until smooth. Slice the tomatoes into bite size pieces, and add these and the salad leaves onto the noodles. Pour the dressing over, just before serving.
Yuki’s Tip
For garnish, use sesame seeds, thinly slices spring onions, herbs (chives, shiso leaves, coriander) and cress. Cooking time depends on the noodle brand. Please refer to package’s instructions for specific timing. You can use sunflower, peanut or olive oil.
Visit www.yakult.co.uk

Essilor.co.uk – Sweet Potato and Spinach Quesadilla

Looking for ways to help maintain healthy eyesight? This South American themed recipe from eye health experts Essilor.co.uk is eye wateringly tasty and has all of the essential nutrients to promote good eye health.
Sweet potatoes and spinach are both essential sources of vitamins and minerals that promote eye health. Packed with beta carotene, the body converts beta carotene in sweet potatoes into vitamin A, a nutrient that helps prevent dry eyes and night blindness. Beta carotene and vitamin A also may help reduce the risk eye infections.

Ingredients (serves 2)
1 sweet potato, 2 tortillas, 100g spinach, 1⁄2 jalepeno chilli – chopped, 1 teaspoon of ground cumin, 1 garlic clove (crushed), 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, salt and pepper for seasoning.
Pierce the sweet potatoes and cook in an oven at 200 degrees for 50 minutes, or until soft. Let the potatoes cool and scoop out the inners. Heat some of the oil in a large skillet and add the garlic, heat for 1-2 minutes until brown, add the sweet potato flesh, spinach, jalapeno and cumin. Cook for 10 minutes stirring occasionally, season accordingly. Spread the filling on one half of each of the tortillas and fold shut, brush with oil on each side and cook on a hot griddle pan for 3 minutes or until brown.
Recipe from Essilor.co.uk (www.essilor.co.uk)

The Good Plates – Monkfish, Chickpeas, and Walnut Gremolata

Chef and mental health ambassador Andrew Clarke has created The Good Plates recipes in conjunction with nutritional therapist Ian Marber, designed to help maintain positive mental wellbeing.
The below Mediterranean recipe was created for David Lloyd Clubs’ The Good Plates, an interactive dining experience pop up where the interiors, food, music, and seating layout were all designed to complement positive mental health.

Ingredients and Method
The Monkfish
600g Monkfish on bone, skinless. Warm unsalted butter or olive oil. Salt and pepper. Steam at 51c for 25-30 mins, pat dry and rub with oil or butter, season with salt & pepper, finish on hot charcoal grill basting with oil or butter, rest and keep warm.
300g dried chickpeas (soaked overnight), drained. 1 onion. 1 carrot. 1 celery stick. 1 leek. 6 cloves garlic. 1 red chilli. Bouquet garnis (rosemary, thyme, bay). 100ml extra virgin olive oil. Put all contents in saucepan, fill with fresh water, bring to boil for 10 mins, reduce to simmer, cook for 1.5/2 hours until soft (make sure always covered with water), cool down and store in the liquid, season when cool.
Whole Roast Chickpeas
200g of drained chickpeas. 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil. 1 sprig rosemary. 2 cloves garlic. Salt, pepper and lemon juice to taste. Warm olive oil in pan with rosemary and garlic over a medium heat, add chickpeas and increase heat, cook for a minute or two until they have firmer texture, season with salt, pepper and lemon juice, keep warm.
Chickpea Puree
300g of chickpeas and just enough of the cooking liquid to cover. 50ml extra virgin olive oil. 1⁄2 1 lemon juice. Salt & pepper to taste. Put all ingredients except the salt & pepper in blender, blitz at high speed until smooth puree, add more cooking liquid if not blending well, season and keep warm.
Pickled Baby Onions
200g pomegranate molasses. 50ml merlot vinegar. 200g baby onions. Roast onions over fire or coals until skins blacken, once cooled remove charred skin, warm molasses and vinegar, pour over onions and keep warm.
Walnut Gremolata
50g roasted walnuts. 25g parsley. 1 lemon zest. 1 garlic clove. 50ml walnut or extra virgin olive oil. Salt to taste. Roughly chop walnuts and parsley, put in small mixing bowl, grate lemon zest, finely grate in garlic, add oil and season.
On large plate put chickpea puree in the centre, monkfish can sit on top, put roasted chickpeas over monkfish (allowing any to naturally fall off), dot pickled onions over and around, finally top with gremolata and serve immediately.
Visit https://bit.ly/39fBxhR for more recipes from The Good Plates


A veteran in global travel, Rachel also loves to explore hidden gems on home turf. She’s a writing connoisseur of Britain’s best hotels, luxury beauty products, and UK food and drink launches.

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