Monday, 15 February 2016

Arthritis Kitchen Gadget Review: The Garlic Card

I have a pile of new arthritis kitchen gadgets to test this year and one of the first I got my creaky joints on was this GarlicCard.

What is it supposed to do?
GarlicCard is a small brightly coloured plastic card with raised bumps on it's surface against which you are supposed to puree a peeled garlic clove.

According to the manufacturer, 'GarlicCard is a Swedish invention for grating garlic quickly and easily. GarlicCard lets everyone enjoy fresh garlic whithout bothering with hard-to-clean garlic presses, razor-sharp graters or time-consuming chopping'.

Sounds great for those of us with arthritis but...

Does it work?
In theory, you simply rub your clove of garlic against the card and you get a fine puree.This video shows you have it is supposed to work.

In practice, you diligently rub your garlic against the card and all you get is a bit of squashed garlic. I don't know whether the problem is partly with me - I find it hard to hold the card steady and manoeuvre the piece of garlic with my stiff arthritic hands . However, it also feels like a slightly pointless invention. Squashing a garlic clove under a knife blade is easy and requires no extra tools. Similarly, garlic presses can be hard to use if you have arthritis but there are some good ones out there and at least they always work.

On the plus side, it is super easy to clean -you can throw it in the dishwasher or rinse it under a tap. 


Overall verdict
F It's a long time since a kitchen gadget has made me quite so angry actually. I love the concept; I love the styling; but, it is less than useless and I can't quite get my head around how something could have gone so wrong between the idea and the execution. 

Wednesday, 3 February 2016

Arthritis Friendly Recipe: Black Kale, Quinoa and Pumpkin Seed Bowl

This kale, sweet potato and quinoa bowl is quick and easy to put together. I like to use leftover quinoa or brown rice that I cooked the night before and leftover roasted sweet potatoes but you could also buy a bag of ready chopped sweet potato and butternut squash and just use that. Equally you can buy 250g pouches or ready cooked rice and quinoa so if you are having a bad flare day do seek them out.

Cavolo nero or black kale is delicious and it's dark colour means it is packed with antioxidants and phytochemicals. Kale is also a useful source of vitamin K. Several studies have suggested that vitamin K may help prevent or slow the deterioration of joints in osteoarthritis but there is little evidence to suggest it can help joint repair once the damage has occurred. There have been few studies about the role vitamin K might play in inflammatory arthritis ( i.e.  rheumatoid, AS, and PsA) however some laboratory experiments have suggested that it might help block the inflammatory processes.

Ingredients:


250g cooked quinoa or brown rice (I used a mix of both)
150g cavolo nero/black kale, finely chopped
A small courgette/zuchinni, coarsely grated
300g cubed cooked sweet potato
1/2tbsp olive or rapeseed oil
1tbsp pumpkin seeds
1tsp smoked paprika
1/4 tsp smoked or regular sea salt

Serves 2-3



Heat the oil in a large skillet or frying pan. Add the chopped kale and stir fry until it has just softened. Add the smoked paprika, courgette, quinoa and cooked sweet potatoes and heat until everything is piping hot.


Sprinkle the pumpkin seeds and smoked paprika over and serve.

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