Well, here we are, more than halfway through the denial-fest that is January. How is it for you? If you are anything like us you are trying very, very hard to keep the resolutions you made (can it really only be a couple of weeks ago?), but you can feel the willpower flagging. Yes you may have lost a pound or two – but honestly, where’s the joy?
Here at the Green House Hotel, Bournemouth’s eco-friendly luxury boutique hotel, we’ve decided a different approach is in order. If there is one thing we know about our loyal Ladies who Lunch, it’s that they want healthy living without the hair shirt. They know that life is too short to deny themselves every little indulgence. They know all about five a day (or seven, or whatever it is this week). And they know, thanks to the luxurious, tasty, colourful menus at Arbor, the Green House’s two-AA-rosette restaurant and winner of a Golden Trophy in the Dorset Eating Out Award, that top-quality food doesn’t have to be loaded with fat and sugar to make the flavours sing.
Which is why at next week’s Luncheon Club event we’ve invited the head nutritionist at Bournemouth University, Professor Heather Hartwell, to talk to us about ‘Health by Stealth’ – or how to eat anything you want in the most nutritious way possible.
As you might expect from a leading registered nutritionist, Heather has no truck with fads or food group roulette. In fact, she believes, “there are no bad foods, only bad diets”. It’s all about balance and moderation. So we thought it would be interesting to ask Heather to evaluate our £22 January Luncheon club menu, which features a delicious, colourful Winter Salad, a duo of Venison and (whisper it) Treacle Tart, and to share the results at our event, on 22nd January at 12 pm.
So what are Heather’s first thoughts? Not surprisingly the winter salad scores highly with the crunchy beets, pumpkin, seeds and shoots, and the pumpkin oil being “a good source of unsaturated fat”.
While duck meat is rather high in fat, the orange and fennel salad is a good counter-balance, and venison is an excellent lean, low-fat choice for committed carnivores. The braised carrot is pureed without added cream (tick) and the ‘English Feta’ crumbled over the Gnocchi is a low-fat cheese option (tick again).
And the Treacle Tart? “It’s perfectly OK to have treats occasionally as long as you are sensible and have one ear to what you should be doing the rest of the time,” Heather insists, “like choosing fruit based puddings that rely on fructose as a sweetener: then you get the benefits of fibre and vitamins as well.”
Overall then, plenty of Brownie points (oops, sorry to those of you in chocolate rehab). There are still a few places left for our “Health by Stealth” lunch so why not email us on firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more about this and other Green House Luncheon Club events.
The price of next week’s event including 3 course lunch plus tea or coffee with a glass of wine is £22 per person.
Smoked Duck Breast & Confit Duck Leg with Orange & Fennel salad
Winter Salad of Beetroot, Pumpkin, Seeds & Shoots with Crispy Hen’s Egg
Duo of Venison, Red Cabbage & Braised Carrot Roast Butternut Squash
Potato Gnocchi with Roasted Butternut Squash and Mrs Tees Wild Mushrooms (V)