Teach Middle East Magazine Jan-Feb 2018 Issue 3 Volume 5 - Page 44

Taste it Share it THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING HEALTHY BY MATHEW BRODERICK A s a biology teacher and restaurant reviewer, I am often at odds with myself as I eat lots of amazing food, but I am aware of the health dangers. Combine that with the typical busy teaching lifestyle, and I find my weight increasing, my body tired, and my overall health slipping away from me. I do not need to be a Biology specialist to know that I am not looking after my body well enough to meet the demands of teaching. However, there are so many healthy options for UAE educators; from home delivery options to healthy cookbooks, healthy dining and takeaways. As a self-confessed ‘foodie’ and lover of all things buttery, I automatically dismissed the healthy takeaways but have been mightily impressed by Kcal, The Fit Food Kitchen, and Jim’s Kitchen Table. These places provide a superb range of great-tasting food that keeps the calorie count relatively low. A special mention goes to Tawa Bakery in Abu Dhabi for their gluten- free menu; the food tastes as good, whether that be chocolate eclairs, cakes, or pizza. store cupboard essentials and ‘cheat’ jars of different pastes has made my life easier and cheaper. I can already feel healthier and this is bringing extra ‘energy’ into my teaching. A second book that I would also recommend, is Recipes From Modern Flavors Of Arabia by Chef Suzanne Husseini. This is a great chance to embrace the wonderful diversity of Middle Eastern cuisine, but with a modern touch. I have tasted Suzanne’s Freekah Salad and it brought together classic ingredients such as pomegranate and freekeh, but created the only salad that I have ever posted on Instagram. This book is a great starting point for those of you that want to be healthy and embrace the local culture while doing so. My hot new tip for you to try, if you fancy a special night out, is Toro Toro at Jumeirah Etihad Towers in Abu Dhabi. Prepare yourself for a Latin American feast, by chef Richard Sandoval, but get there early and enjoy some of the best views on the terrace, with your pre-dinner drinks. The guacamole is smoked and out of this world, but be sure to order the Crispy Prawns and Beef Empanadas, to feel as happy as I did. What are your healthy go-to recipes that keep you going during a tough teaching week? Bon appetit! Matt Broderick @finediningmatt on Instagram As part of my role, I am fortunate enough to review newly-opened restaurants in Abu Dhabi and Dubai. With that in mind, you cannot beat quality home-cooking, especially if it is quick and easy to boot. Not to mention how much your family will love you when you produce restaurant-quality dishes. My recent quest for healthiness was kick-started by a UK television show; Jamie Oliver’s Quick and Easy Food. A TV cookery show will always introduce me to a new dish or two, but this particular series had me adding fifteen new recipes to my repertoire (much to my wife’s delight!). I bought the accompanying book and have been cooking quick, healthy meals ever since. Each recipe has pictures of the five ingredients, as well as the finished dish, so that home cooks can cook with confidence. In recent weeks, my wife has been treated to Epic rib-eye steak, Ginger shakin’ beef, Sticky lamb chops, Quick Asian fishcakes, as well as a less-than-healthy Cherry chocolate mousse (oh my, that was good!). So, how do I fit all of this in, as a teacher and parent? The key is to plan ahead and do your weekly shop on Saturday. Jamie’s method of using 42 | Jan - Feb 2018 | | After The Bell Mathew is a teacher of Science in Abu Dhabi. He is the author of 18 science books, an editor for international curricula and an experienced food journalist. Follow Matthew @finediningmatt on Twitter.