Taking care of your health is important particularly in the winter months where we are prone to the catching the cold or worse, the flu. Along with taking vitamins, exercising and eating in moderation, one important way to ensure that you remain healthy this winter is by eating a healthy diet.
Eating a healthy and varied diet is essential in maintaining a healthy gut and research has shown that a happy gut is important for your physical and mental wellbeing. By eating a healthy diet with all the right nutrients, you can protect and nurture your bodies microbiome. Inside everybody is an ecosystem of bacteria that lives inside of our guts, microbiome is the term used to identify the environment where the bacteria lives.
The bacteria inside of our gut is mostly good bacteria along with some fungi and viruses; continuously adapting to the changing environment whether that be our health, stress, age, gender and diet, all can have an influence on our guts health.
Making sure that your microbiome is healthy is important as they can affect all aspects of your health from irritable bowel syndrome, asthma, depression to anxiety. Being confident that you are feeding your gut the good nutrients is important in being confident that your microbiome is healthy. By ensuring you are eating plenty of probiotics and prebiotics, you are on the first step to a healthy gut.
For those wanting to take care of their health, start by adding yogurt, fresh vegetables, fruit, herbs and spices such as ginger, turmeric and green tea to your diet. Simple products such as garlic, leeks and bananas feature in many diets, but one vegetable that you should incorporate into your diet for a healthier you, is the tasty Jerusalem artichoke. A small vegetable that is not truly an artichoke but is in fact a variety of sunflower, the Jerusalem artichoke comes from North Africa and looks more like fresh ginger.
Cooked in the same way as potatoes or parsnips, Jerusalem artichokes have a fantastic sweet and nutty flavour and are delicious when roasted, fried or pureed into a tasty soup. No matter how you choose to eat this gut-busting vegetable, Jerusalem artichokes are a great source for iron and are fantastic for caring for those important microbiomes.
One great way to incorporate Jerusalem artichokes into your diet is by making a delicious rich and nutty soup; a great lunch or starter for a dinner party. Here is our recipe for an artichoke, wild mushroom and truffle oil soup.
- 1000g of peeled and finely sliced Jerusalem artichoke
- 50g of unsalted butter
- 800ml of whole milk
- 800ml of water
- Salt and sugar to season
- Selection of wild mushrooms
- Truffle oil
-In a large pan, melt the butter with a splash of oil.
-In the pan over a medium heat, add the artichokes with a pinch of salt to cook, cover for around 20 minutes until the artichokes have cooked but have not coloured.
-In the pan, add the milk and water before replacing the lid and leaving until it boils. When it begins to boil, reduce the heat and leave it to simmer for 10-15 minutes.
-In a blender, pour the ingredients from the saucepan in and blitz to create the soup. Pass the mixture through a sieve to remove any large lumps and season to taste.
-If you have brought dried wild mushrooms, you will need to soak them in hot water until they are plump and hydrated, if your mushrooms are fresh you can add them straight into the pan.
-In a frying add some butter with a touch of oil and fry the mushrooms.
-When the mushrooms have cooked to the texture you prefer, you can layer them on top of the soup and with the truffle infused oil, sparingly drizzle it over the soup.