Friday, 26 August 2016

The Perfect Fruit Drinks For Bank Holiday BBQ's

The August Bank Holiday is the day that we all dust off our barbeques, grab some food and friends have ourselves a great time! (Weather permitting, of course). Got your food sorted, but not sure what to do for drinks? Never fear, our fabulously fruity (and naughtily alcoholic) will be sure to please the masses. Not to forget the little ones, we've included some sweet and juicy recipes for the kiddies too!


For The Adults

Strawberry Gin
Prep - 15mins
Makes - 1.5 litres
Ingredients - 700ml bottle of gin; 400g punet of strawberries, sliced; 100g caster sugar
Method -
  1. Mix the gin with the strawberries and caster sugar in a large bowl and pour into a 1.5-litre sterilised Kilner jar.
  2. Store in the fridge and stir every two days for three weeks. Strain though coffee filters or muslin cloth to serve.


    Red Wine Cooler
    Prep - 5 mins
    Makes - Enough for 8 people
    Ingredients - 750ml bottle of fruity red wine (Rioja is good); 600ml lemonde; lemon slices, to serve; sprigs of mint, to serve
    Method - Stir together red wine and lemonade. Pour into glasses with lemon slices and sprigs of mint.


     


    Apple Prosecco Punch
    Prep - 5 mins
    Makes - enough to serve 8-10 people
    Ingredients - 400ml cloudy apple juice; 200ml vodka; juice of 2 lemons; 750ml Prosecco; ice; 1 green apple, cored and finely sliced; 1 lemon, sliced
    Method -
    1. Pour the apple juice, vodka and lemon juice into a punch bowl and chill for 1-2 hrs.
    2. When you’re ready to serve add the prosecco, ice and apple and lemon slices to garnish.



    For The Kids

    Watermelon & Strawberry Slushie
    Prep - 10 mins
    Makes - enough for 6 people
    Ingredients - 1 small watermelon; 225g punnet of ripe strawberries, tops cut off; juice of 2 limes
    Method -
    1. The day or morning before you want to drink the slushie cut the watermelon into chunks and remove the skin and seeds. Place half the watermelon wedges into a large freezable bag then pop in the freezer for a few hours.
    2. Once frozen, blitz the frozen watermelon with the rest of the watermelon, strawberries and lime juice until smooth and slushy. Pour into glasses and sip through a straw.


    Homemade Pink Lemonade
    Prep - 10 mins
    Makes - 1 large jug - enough for 6 people
    Ingredients - 8 lemons, plus extra slices to serve; 200g caster sugar, plus extra to tate; 140g raspberry, plus extra to serve; ice, to serve
    Method -
    1. Pare the zest from the lemons with a peeler, removing as little white pith as possible – cut away any pith you can from the strips.
    2. Juice the lemons and mix the juice, zest, sugar and raspberries with 1.2 litres of boiling water. Let cool, then sieve, pressing through juice with the back of a spoon. 
    3. Add sugar to taste and chill in jugs. To serve, add a few lemon slices, raspberries and lots of ice.


    What's your favourite bbq drink? Let us know @office_fruit

    Friday, 19 August 2016

    Natural Skin Saviours

    Here at FFTO HQ we're always looking for the best ways to make the most of our office fruit deliveries, and what better way than using than on our skin? Fruit and vegetables are not only great to eat, but they also have great benefits when applied to the skin topically. So check out our list below, and add some of these to your next office fruit delivery!

    Cucumber 

    Should you get a sunburn, or an ordinary burn, look no further than your fridge. Cool cucumber is soothing to burnt skin not just because it's cool, but it also has antioxidant and analgesic properties which promote healing and further relief from discomfort. Simply cut up, mash the cucumber, and place it over the burn, to help reduce the swelling, redness and pain.




    Lemon

    Lemons are a natural antibacterial, and are rich in Vitamin C and citric acid. They are great for treating skin issues like acne and blackheads, and soothing chapped lips, as well as serving as an effective skin lighter and brightener.


    Pineapple 

    Pineapple contains a large amount of natural bromelain, which has special benefits as it gently exfoliates the skin. Using pineapple juice or pulp topically will help clear off dead skin cells and reveal beautiful glowing skin. 


    Strawberries 

    Apart from a high Vitamin C content, strawberries also contain an important alpha hydroxy acid, known as salicylic acid, which makes them extra beneficial for the skin. Salicylic acid is known best for its use in acne treatments, as penetrates deep into the pores and cleans them out. It can unclog oily pores and stop pimples from forming - winner! This will also help clear our milia, whiteheads and blackheads before they turn into stubborn pimples.




    Have any natural skincare saviours that you'd like to share? Let us know @office_fruit 

    Monday, 15 August 2016

    How to buy healthy food for less

    So as a Fruit For The Office customer, you buy your fruit to have a healthy snack at the desk. But what about buying fruit and veg to eat at home? We always hear about how *expensive* it is to buy healthy foods rather than junk; but surely there are ways to buy fruit and veg but still keep to a budget? Here are our top tips to buying fresh produce for less:

    1. Brave the discount shops

    Shops like Aldi and Lidl (and even Iceland!) are a life saver when you're shopping on a budget. Although they might seem overwhelming, it's best to have a rummage through to see what they have on offer, and watch the pounds drop off your final bill!

    2. Never buy prepared

    Prepared fruit and veg may be more convenient, but the preparation racks up the cost, and also lessens the shelf life of the product. Buy whole product, and prepare it yourself, to save pennies.

    3. Check the sell by, use by and quality

    When you pick up an apple (or banana, or onion....) make sure to pick it up and have a good look at it. Marked produce tends to rot quicker, leaving you with less things to eat, and a potential mess in your fruit bowl! Sell by and use by dates are also a good indication of how long things will last.

    4. Buy in bulk when necessary


    In many places, particularly whole food shops, you can buy your product in bulk to save the pennies. This does require storage, but if you have the room certain items can be bought and stored to use at a later date. Things that are great for this are onions and potatoes.

    5. Buy frozen

    We're always told fresh is best, but frozen fruits and vegetables hold their nutrients, and last a lot longer than fresh.This also helps if you're buying in bulk, as you don't have to worry about use-by dates! 

    6. Buy shelf-life preservers to reduce waste

    There are a lot of items on the market now that can help prolong the life of your produce. From storage boxes, to ethylene gas absorbers (you know, that nasty gas that ruins your fruit and veg!), there's plenty of things that can help you get the most out of your healthy food.
    Can be found here

    Can be found here

    What are your tips for being healthy on a budget? Let us know @office_fruit  

    Friday, 5 August 2016

    All Natural Watermelon Kiwi Ice Lollies

    If you are looking for a healthy alternative to ice lollies this summer, look no further! This watermelon kiwi ice lolly contains only four ingredients, and they're all fruit. Delicious!

    Serves: 5 popsicles
    Ingredients
    • 2 cups watermelon, chopped
    • 1 kiwi, peeled and diced
    • 1 tsp. fresh lime juice
    • 1 Tbsp. agave (or more if necessary)
    Instructions
    1. Blend all ingredients in a blender.
    2. Pour mixture into popsicle mold and place in freezer for a couple of hours. When hardened, pull out of popsicle mold and enjoy!
    Credit: Jen Nikolaus
    Have you tried this fruity ice lolly? Let us know @office_fruit 

    Friday, 29 July 2016

    The Best Fruits To Fuel Exercise

    In today's post we will let you know the best fruits to eat before and after workouts, to make sure you get the most out of your effort!

    Cherries

    Cherries contain melatonin, a powerful antioxidant which relieves stress and helps with inflammation. It can even help reduce strength loss and muscle soreness after exercise, which means you'll recover quicker!



     Bananas

    An extremely popular fruit for all exercise-lovers, bananas are not only high in potassium, but they are almost all carbohydrate. The potassium helps replace that which is lost during exercise, and the carbohydrate helps sustain your blood sugar levels while exercising. Their softness and light taste make them easy to consume even with pre-race nerves, and their natural "wrapper" makes them easy to eat on the road.



    Tomatoes

    Traditionally known as a vegetable, tomatoes are actually a fruit. They contain an anxtioxidant lycopene, and also contain many vitamins and minerals that are helpful to runners, including vitamin B6.


    Raisins

    Packed with carbohydrates, raisins are a great snack for athletes who need an extra boost of energy after burning their resources. They facilitate absorption into the body, but they also stimulate the absorption of protein and vitamins from other foods too. This is critical for muscles to recover, and makes raisins the perfect exercise food.


    Kiwi

    Kiwi can reduce both blood pressure, and offer a better night's sleep. They can even reduce fat levels found within the blood, which improves your cardiovascular health. They contain a wide range of minerals which are essential for replacing those lost during exercise.


    Pineapple

    Like the kiwi, pineapple can lower blood pressure, aid digestion, and can also massively improve bone strength. They contain 75% of the daily recommended mineral manganese, which is essential for developing and repairing strong bones and connective tissue. It also contains carbohydrates, so it is the perfect all round fruit for those iron-pumpers.




    Which is your favourite fruit to eat before and after exercise? Let us know @office_fruit

    Friday, 22 July 2016

    Caramelised rum bananas and ice cream

    This caramelised rum bananas and ice cream recipe is a Jamaican favourite, and is the perfect way to use up any excess bananas left over from your office fruit delivery. Using only four ingredients, it is simple, yet delicious, and bound to spice up your dinner times.

    Here's how to make it..

    Servings: 2
    Prep time: 1 minute
    Cook time: 6 minutes
    Total time: 7 minutes

    Ingredients
    • 2 tablespoons good quality butter
    • 3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
    • 2 ripe bananas (not overly ripe/brown), peeled, cut in half and sliced lengthewise
    • 1 or 2 tablespoon dark run (or leave out for an acohol-free version)
    • Vanilla ice cream to serve
    To make
    • Place the butter and sugar in a saute pan over a low heat, and stir until the sugar dissolves and begins to bubble.
    • Simmer for about 2 minutes and then add the bananas
    • Continue to simmer and turn the bananas for another minute or so 
    • Add the rum, stir and remove from heat. (If making this without the rum, just remove the bananas from the heat at this step).
    • Place a scoop of ice cream in two serving bowls, then top each with 4 pieces of banana. Drizzle with the syrup

    What are your favourite banana desserts? Let us know @office_fruit 

    Friday, 15 July 2016

    A profile on: kiwano melon

    What is it?
    The kiwano melon is a traditional food plan in Africa, and belongs to the cucumber and melon family.

    What does it look like?
    A fully ripened kiwano has an orange rind with prominent spikes. The inside flesh is a slimy green colour, with seeds inside the jelly-like substance.

    Other names?
    Also known as the horned melon, jelly melon, African horned cucumber, hedged gourd, melano and blowfish fruit.

    Where's it from? 
    It is native to Southern Africa, but is now also grown in California, Mississippi, Chile, Australia and New Zealand.

    How do I eat it?
    To eat plain, cut the fruit in half, and gently squeeze one half until the slime-covered seeds ooze out. Or, you can simply scoop out the inner fruit and toss it into fruit salads, use as a garnish or add into cocktails. Only the inside is edible, so do not try to nibble on the spikes!
     
    What does it taste like?
    The flavour is described as a cross between cucumber, zucchini and kiwi, although as it ripens it tastes more like a banana.

    What are the health benefits?
    Some of the benefits of eating kiwano melon are: it aids in weight lost; protects the skin; boosts the metabolism; increases eye health; strengthens bones; optimises digestion; and speeds up wound healing.



    Want to try this exotic fruit? Add a box to your office fruit delivery here.

    Have you tried kiwano melon? Let us know @office_fruit
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