Marrakesh

I recently took a short break in Marrakesh as myself and couple of friends of mine wanted to go rug shopping and the souks in Marrakesh are renowned for selling beautiful relatively cheap (or much cheaper than the UK) rugs, hand made by the villagers in the Atlas mountains not too far away.

I was amazed at all the wonderful colors in the souks and market especially with all the herbs and spices displayed in beautiful array.

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The herbs and spices included cumin, cardamon, ginger, cinnamon and turmeric amongst others.  The many health benefits they contain include anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidants protecting the immune system, blood sugar regulation, prevention of nausea anti-carcinogenic, promoting heart health, digestive aids as well as others.

We were also shown the health benefits of eucalyptus crystals of which I hadn't seen before.  The seller insisted that inhaling these crystals were the best way to clear sinuses and cure a cold, he demonstrated by adding a shard of crystal to a mug of hot water, the result was fantastic, as one of my friends had had a niggling cough and a blocked nose for a few days and after inhaling this eucalytus infused water was completely cured.  It was amazing.

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All in all my short break in Marrakesh was a successful one.  We all managed to buy a rug and I discovered a new favorite soup which is called Moroccan harira - which although there are variations, is a blend of lentils, chickpeas and tomatoes also including wonderful herbs such as coriander, parsley, turmeric, ginger, cinnamon and pepper making this an extremely healthy meal.

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Visiting Hythe - A Seaside Town in Kent

I was visiting my good friend Kim at the weekend in Hythe in Kent.  She had recently decided that she'd had enough of the big city (London) and wanted to live a quieter, calmer lifestyle so she upped and left and moved to Hythe.

Hythe is an extremely pretty, hilly seaside town with lots of vintage, antique and second hand shops as well as lovely, quaint quirky little shops such as a shop that just sold ingredients for cakes all in glass jars.  Ingredients included various flours, grains, dried fruits and nuts and seeds amongst other cake essentials. 

Five minutes drive away is Folkestone harbour where you can sit on benches and munch on freshly caught cockles, mussels and prawns.  These seafood's are a good source of protein and they are also a good source of iron, iodine, zinc and copper as well as being low in fat.  On chilly mornings you can also enjoy a bowl of delicious freshly made seafood chowder. 

However, what I was really impressed with was all the vegetables that Kim had grown and how green fingered she had become.   She gave me a doggy bag filled with carrots, celery, giant prize winning courgettes and onions.  Vegetables high in vitamin C and other antioxidants which are good for strengthening the immune system which in turn helping to protect the immune system.  The best thing about all these vegetables was that I knew that they were completely organic and had no poisonous pesticides sprayed on them.

 

 Kim's home grown carrots

Kim's home grown carrots

 Kim's celery

Kim's celery

Edible Flowers

Wandering around the farmers market on Sunday I happened upon these wonderful, colorful edible flowers consisting of marigolds and pansies amongst others.

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Unable to resist buying them as I wanted to create something pretty as well as nutritious for my friends who were coming over to mine later.  I also found and bought some courgette flowers and some organic goats cheese. 

When my friends arrived I pan fried the courgette flowers for literally thirty to sixty seconds whilst adding some crumbled goats cheese and flowers on top.  The result was a beautiful, delicious, sumptuous snack of which my friends were extremely impressed.

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