Find Delicious Balance In Midlife With These Health-Enhancing Recipes

Find delicious balance in midlife with these health-enhancing recipes

Some one wise once said, at 20, we have thehealth and appearance we inherited, at 50,we have the face and body we’ve created.Just as well, then, that new book The MidlifeKitchen (Mitchell Beazley, £25) can set you on the roadto better health for your middle years. Written by SamRice, author of The Happy Eater, and Mimi Spencerof The Fast Diet fame, ‘midlife’ doesn’t have to meanwaiting for the menopause before addressing anyniggling health issues.Maybe you’ve already noticed a few grey hairsappearing, or perhaps you don’t metabolise alcoholas well as you did when you were younger. Either way,now’s the time to take action, say the authors.Rather than promising anti-ageing elixirs or claimingto have a magic-wand attitude to diet, Rice andSpencer have focused on foods that help you stayhealthier for longer. ‘We think of the midlife kitchen asan MOT,’ they say, ‘a time to overhaul and fine tuneyour daily diet to access peak performance for theyears ahead.’Each recipe is colour-coded according to the midlifehealth benefits it brings, so you can design your mealsto harmonise your hormones, enhance your memoryand mood, balance your blood sugar, boost bonesand joint function or support heart health.

Find Delicious Balance In Midlife With These Health-Enhancing Recipes Photo Gallery

There’s a list of 40 foods for the over 40s, plusmidlife takes on kitchen ‘toolbox’ essentials includingGrown-up granola – which gets its crunch from eggwhite instead of sugar; Midlife black sesame seeddressing – packed with cholesterol- and osteoarthritis-protective calcium and iron; LSA – a potent combo oflinseed, sunflower seeds and almonds to ramp up yourrecipes with omega-3, protein, minerals and vitamin E;and a Midlife curry mix with fresh turmeric, whoseactive ingredient curcumin is currently showingpromise as a treatment for Alzheimer’s.The main recipes are delicious and often comewith a side of humour – Middle-aged spread (thinkhoumous with a midlife twist – spinach, butter beanand yoghurt), Ginger & mint muddle (grown-uplemonade) and Bliss burgers (butternut and tofu, witha red quinoa and dukkah crust). Add a dollop of Rawjam thickened with chia seeds and sweetened withmaple syrup and, instead of worrying about ageing,we think we’ll enjoy getting on a bit!


Serves: 2

Per serving: 250 calories, 13g fat (1g sat fat), 25g protein, 0.6g fibre, 7.5g carbs (7.5g sugar), 1.5g salt


A handful of coriander, chopped

A thumb-sized piece of fresh root ginger, peeled and chopped

A thumb-sized piece of fresh turmeric, peeled and chopped

1 garlic clove, peeled and halved

2 spring onions, roughly chopped

1 large red chilli, roughly chopped Juice of 1 lime

2 tsp sesame oil

2 tsp soy sauce

2 tsp runny honey

1 tsp Thai fish sauce


2 trout fillets, about 125g each, skin on

A little olive oil

Sea salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper

Coriander leaves, to serve

1.Place all the salsa ingredients in a food processor and pulse to form a coarse paste.

2.Heat a griddle pan or large frying pan over a high heat. Drizzle the fish with a little olive oil and

season well, then place, skin-side down, in the hot pan, pressing lightly.

3.Cook for 3–4 minutes until the skin turns crisp. Gently flip the fillets, reduce the heat and cook for a further 2–3 minutes until the fish is opaque and cooked through.

4.Serve immediately, drizzled with plenty of salsa.

Find Delicious Balance In Midlife With These Health Enhancing Recipes


Serves: 4

Per serving: 145 calories, 10g fat (3g saturated fat), 5g protein, 3g fibre, 7g carbohydrate (6g sugar), 0.53g salt

1 small carrot, cut into thin strips

1 small courgette, finely sliced

50g red cabbage, very thinly sliced

50g sugar snap peas, sliced

½ a pepper (orange, yellow or red), sliced

2 spring onions, sliced diagonally

1 mild red chilli, deseeded and thinly sliced

A handful each of beansprouts, coriander leaves and mint leaves

20g peanuts, crushed

2 tsp Midlife sesame seasoning (see box)


2 tbsp coconut milk

1 lime, juice and finely grated zest

1 tbsp crunchy peanut butter

2 tsp each soy sauce and tahini

1 tsp each Thai fish sauce, sesame oil and maple syrup

1cm piece of fresh root ginger, peeled and finely grated

1 garlic clove, crushed

1 lemon grass stalk, finely choppe

1.Place all the vegetables and herbs in a large bowl and mix well.

2.Place all the dressing ingredients in a jar, seal with the lid and shake well until combined.

3.Drizzle the dressing over the salad and toss well to coat, then arrange on a serving plate.

4.Top with the peanuts, seeds and some mint sprigs, and serve.


Makes: 8 small or 6 large falafel Per serving: 500 calories, 17g fat (2g saturated fat), 22g protein,19g fibre, 55g carbohydrate (7g sugar), 1.1g salt


400g can chickpeas, drained and rinsed Large handful of flat leaf parsley

1 tsp ground coriander

1 tsp ground cumin Juice of ½ a lemon

1 egg

Sea salt flakes, freshly ground black pepper

1 tsp olive oil

Find Delicious Balance In Midlife With These Health Enhancing Recipes


1 tbsp Midlife sesame seasoning (see right) or sesame seeds and 1 tbsp Midlife LSA (see right) or ground almonds


2 wholemeal pitta breads

2 carrots, peeled and grated

2 tbsp houmous

1.Place all the falafel ingredients, except the

olive oil, in a food processor and blitz to

coarse paste. Shape the mixture into 8 small or 6 large patties.

2.Roll each falafel in your chosen coating, patting so it sticks well. They can be chilled at this point and cooked later.

3.When ready to cook, heat the olive oil in large frying pan, add the falafels and fry 5–7 minutes on each side until golden brown on the outside and cooked through.

4.Serve in warm pittas, with the grated carrots and houmous.

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