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There’s nothing quite like curling up in the sunshine with a good book. Rest and relaxation is just as important as getting fit and active, so this Christmas take a moment to enjoy some paperback delights, with our top picks for Christmas gifts (for ourselves or friends).

As I Was Saying…Jeremy Clarkson
(Penguin, RRP$40)
Whether you are a Top Gear fan or not, there is no denying that Jeremy Clarkson has a way with words. His excitable sense of self and sense of humour often battle with each other, but he also raises some thought-provoking discussions. The beauty of his books is that they are a short burst of cleverness – a collection of his Sunday Times’ columns. Perfect books for blokes to read for quick bites of fun.

 

paleoEating Clean: Living Paleo Rachael Devcich
(Bateman, RRP $39.99)
New Zealand’s own ‘cave girl’ Rachael Devcich provides a refreshingly Kiwi take on the popular paleo approach to cutting out gluten, grains, dairy and refined sugar. Packed with family-friendly recipes, even if you are not an advocate of the paleo philosophy, you’ll love the tasty dishes which are designed for improved health and energy. Great lunchbox and snack ideas – and best of all they are quick and achievable. Please ma’am, may I have some more?

steveOut of the Rough, Steve Williams
(Penguin RRP $40)
Steve Williams hurtled into the international spotlight as (a sometimes outspoken) caddy for Tiger Woods, but he has also caddied for Greg Norman, Raymond Floyds, Terry Gale and more of the world’s greatest golfers. Out of the Rough offers an insight into his sporting career, as well a peek into his ‘other life’ as a philanthropist and accomplished speedway driver. Even if you’re not an avid golf fan, there’s plenty here to enjoy.

 

The Happy Cookbook, Lola Berry
(MacMillan, RRP$39.99)
Lola Berry is the culinary version of Pharrell Williams. Upbeat and addictive, The Happy Cookbook is stunningly presented and the 130 wholefood recipes are much like Lola herself – they have a little extra sparkle. An advocate of nourishment in all forms; from food to wellbeing, Lola offers a warm hand to hold in the journey to better wellbeing. There’s even a chapter on natural beauty with recipes for skin food.
This book is the ultimate Christmas gift for yourself and for people you love.

The Revive Cafe Cookbook 5 Jeremy Dixon
(Revive Concepts, RRP$29.99)
Jeremy Dixon has always been ahead of the game when it comes to healthy eating.  He was a lone wolf in the world of smoothies and plant-based recipes long before they become popular.  His Revive cafes in Auckland are a huge success, along with his Revive cookbook series. This latest offering serves up simple, delicious recipes, packed with goodness and taste. Easy to follow, perfect for creating at home every day and with plenty of suggestions for personalising. Happy eating.

chelseaHomemade Happiness Chelsea Winter
(Random House NZ, RRP $50)
Oh Chelsea, how we love you. Since delighting audiences on MasterChef NZ, Chelsea Winter has become a household name. Followed by hundreds of thousands of fans on Facebook, this new book continues the love affair for honest Kiwi recipes. Homemade Happiness is just that; a treasure trove of recipes packed with love. Chelsea’s mantra that ‘life is too short to eat bad food’ is proved 100 percent, as she transforms everyday ingredients into special family meals.

jamieEveryday Super Food Jamie Oliver
(Penguin Random House, RRP$65)
I am a long-time fan of Jamie Oliver, not just because there’s something oddly appealing about his Pommie lisp, but because of the intent behind his message. His latest book, Everyday Super Food, is exactly on point with what many are trying to achieve; a healthier, happier you.  As well as stunning recipes, this is more like a quick guide to life; with tips on sleep, health and nutrition as well as the power of protein, good carbs, fat and dairy. It’s a blissful dip into health, nutrition and wellbeing. Immerse yourself.

Grilled corn and quinoa salad

(Recipe from Everyday Super Food by Jamie Oliver)

Giving us two of our 5-a-day, this colourful salad also uses quinoa – it’s a brilliant, tasty grain packed with both protein and fibre, and is also gluten-free.

Serves 4
250g regular, black or red quinoa
1 small ripe mango
1 ripe avocado
300g ripe mixed-colour tomatoes
2 limes
extra virgin olive oil
2 corn on the cob
2 cloves of garlic
4 rashers of higher-welfare smoked streaky bacon
1 fresh red chilli
olive oil
20g feta cheese
a bunch of fresh coriander or mint (15g)

Cook the quinoa according to the packet instructions, then drain. Peel and destone the mango and avocado, then roughly chop or slice the flesh, along with the tomatoes.

In a large bowl, toss them with the lime zest and juice, 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil and a pinch of sea salt and black pepper.

Leave to macerate while you grill the corn cobs on a hot griddle pan until nicely charred, then carefully slice off the kernels.

Peel the garlic and finely slice with the bacon and chilli (deseed if you like).

Put it all into a small frying pan on a medium heat with 1 teaspoon of olive oil. Stir and cook until lightly golden, tossing regularly.

Tip into the bowl of macerated veg, add the quinoa and corn and toss it all together, then taste and season to perfection. Divide between your plates, crumble over the feta, pick over the herb leaves and serve.

Calories: 438kcal, Fat: 20.6g, Sat fa: 4.4g, Protein: 15.3g, Carbs: 51.2g, Sugar: 9.4g, Fibre: 3.3g
25 minutes.

Everyday Super Food by Jamie Oliver is published by Penguin Random House.  Jamie Oliver Enterprises Limited (2015 Everyday Super Food)  Photographer: Jamie Oliver

 

 

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