Dana's Favourite Winter ways with Argan Oil

Cold weather calls for comfort food and I particularly love a root vegetable mash!

It's much more exciting than regular mashed potato, even more so laced with the buttery nutty flavour of Arganic. Any combination of root veg will do (think carrots, parsnips, celeriac, sweet potatoes) but I always insist on including some regular potato to add some sturdiness to the texture and make sure it's not too sweet. 

Simply boil your root veg until tender, mash, season with a good amount of salt and pepper, and finish with a good glug of our argan oil. If you are feeling lazy, as I sometimes am, you can keep it rough and ready and even leave the skin on your vegetables. This can be enjoyed in many ways, a personal favourite is with some fish and roast fennel or sautéed leeks. If you are vegetarian it works well with mushrooms and steamed greens.

Next up on comfort food is porridge. I'm a huge fan of this humble, economical, and filling dish and if you aren't I hope I can convert you. It starts with finding the right oats. My favourite are the ‘Daily Oats’ from Rude Health as they seem to really do it with their flavour and texture (the details make a difference). I also insist on adding a pinch of salt. Argan oil and porridge is a match made in heaven, not only does it give the porridge a wonderful texture, it means you are getting the blood sugar levelling properties first thing in the morning. You add the argan oil into your oats at the end of cooking and can keep it simple with some nuts, honey or dried fruit, though if you want to go all out, here is a divine recipe for the ultimate porridge bowl. 

Despite the weather making me feel lazy, work is as busy as ever this time of year and it’s important to eat well. This forces me to think about convenience. One of my go to easy breakfasts are boiled, free range eggs (I swear by Clarence Court which you can get from Ocado where you will also find Arganic) cut in half and finished with a drizzle of argan oil and a pinch of cumin or paprika. I have this alongside a cracker, a cup of green tea and half a grapefruit. 

Finally, I was brought up with the concept that a meal is not a meal without a salad no matter what the weather, and with the right dressing a salad can become the thing you crave the most.

To stick to what's local and in season I've been making the following; celery sliced as thinly as possible mixed with grated raw beetroot and carrots. You want to get hold of organic vegetables if possible, as the flavour will be much more pronounced.  Finish with a handful of roughly chopped walnuts, and a dressing made from 2 parts argan oil to 1 part apple cider vinegar, some salt and pepper. It is delicious and highly nutritious and I urge you to sneak it alongside all your dishes. 

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