Puff Pastry Plum Tarts

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Puff Pastry Plum Tarts Recipe


This is a super easy and quick dessert recipe that you can whip up in an instant.  If you prefer to use home made puff pastry then it will be even better!

Puff Pastry Plum Tarts

This is a really, quick and easy dessert that you can whip up mid week to help you get over the Wednesday slump.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time25 mins
Course: Dessert
Keyword: dessert, pastries, plums
Servings: 6
Author: Janine at New Leaf Health and Wellbeing


  • 1 block ready made puff pastry
  • 1/4 cup Cream Cheese
  • 1/2 tbsp sugar
  • 1/4 tsp mixed spice
  • 5-6 plums stone removed and sliced


  • Pre-heat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas Mark 6
  • Roll out the puff pastry into a large rectangle about 0.5cm thick
  • Cut the puff pastry into six smaller rectangles and place on a greased baking tray.
  • In a bowl, combine the cream cheese, sugar and mixed spice and then spread over the puff pastry rectangles evenly.
  • Arrange the plum slices over the pastry and cream cheese mixture. 
  • Sprinkle over a little sugar
  • Bake for about 10-15 minutes or until the pastry has puffed up and browned.
  • Serve warm


These slices will keep for a couple of days in an airtight container in the refrigerator.  You can also eat them cold if preferred.


I hope you enjoy this recipe – don’t forget you can print it off to keep forever!

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If you have a bit of a sweet tooth you might also like my Fruit’n’nut Chocolate Energy Slice Recipe

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Spiced date and walnut vegan loaf cake

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spiced date and walnut vegan loaf cake recipe


This week, I have another recipe for you.  I have been playing around with some new tech on my website.  I now have a super new recipe layout which hopefully you should be able to print off to use whenever you like.

I’d love to know what you think of it.  Do you like the layout of the recipe, is it easy to read, and is it helpful to be able to print the recipe off?  Let me know in the comments below, or comment on my Facebook Page or Instagram Page.



Spiced date and walnut vegan loaf cake

Enjoy this loaf cake with a cup of tea or coffee for your morning snack.  It's packed full of dates, walnuts and oats to provide a nourishing energy boost without eggs or butter.  
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time55 mins
Resting time5 mins
Total Time1 hr 15 mins
Course: healthy, Snack, vegan
Keyword: dates, healthy, loafcake, snack, vegan, walnuts
Author: Janine Harris, New Leaf Health and Wellbeing


  • 1 cup pitted chopped dates
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 2 tbsps maple syrup
  • 1 1/4 cups plain flour
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 3/4 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp mixed spice


  • Preheat oven to 180C/365F/Gas mark 4 1/2.  Grease and line a 6.5cm x 9cm x 19 cm loaf pan.
  • Place the dates in a heatproof bowl and pour over the boiling water.  Add the maple syrup and allow to stand for 15 minutes
  • Sift the flour and bicarbonate of soda into a mixing bowl.  Add the mixed spice and stir to combine. 
  • Add the oats, walnuts and sugar,  Stir well to combine.
  • Add the date mixture to the dry ingredients, again stirring well to combine.
  • Spoon the mixture into the prepared loaf pan. 
  • Bake for 50-55 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean.
  • Stand for 5 minutes in the tin before turning out to cool on a wire rack.
  • Once cool, the loaf cake should be kept in an airtight container.
  • Serve sliced.


You can serve each slice of loaf cake with a spread of butter, cream cheese or a vegan substitute if desired.  

Wishing you a super week.

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Fruit’n’nut Chocolate Energy Slice Recipe

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fruit'n'nut chocolate energy slice


This is a super indulgent, energy slice.  It is rather high in calories due to the dried fruit and dark chocolate so it’s best to eat it pre or post exercise or as an occasional indulgent treat.

Fruit’n’nut chocolate energy slice


Makes approx. 32 slices


375g mixed dried fruit

125g of chopped nuts of choice (I used pistachios and walnuts this time)

150g dried cranberries

1/4 cup of plain flour

150g butter

1/2 cup of honey

1 egg lightly beaten

200g good-quality dark chocolate



  1. Preheat your oven to 170C.  Grease a 3cm x 18 cm x 28 cm baking tray.  Line with baking paper.
  2. Combine the dried fruit, nuts and cranberries in a large bowl.  Stir in the flour.
  3. Combine the butter and honey in a small saucepan over a low heat.  Cook stirring for about 3-4 minutes or until the butter has melted.  Allow to cool slightly.
  4. Add the honey and butter mixture, plus the egg to the fruit mixture and stir well.
  5. Spoon the mixture into the prepared pan and smooth the surface.  Bake for approximately 30-35 minutes or until golden brown.
  6. Set aside in the baking tray to cool completely.
  7. Break the chocolate into pieces and place in a microwave safe bowl.  Microwave on low for about 2-3 minutes, stirring every minute with a metal spoon, until the chocolate has melted.  Stir well to ensure the chocolate is completely smooth and then spread over the cooled slice.
  8. Refrigerate the slice for about 2-3 hours, until it is completely set and firm.
  9. Cut into slices.  Keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator.


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fruit'n'nut chocolate energy slice


Wishing you all a super week.

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12 Motivational Tips to help you achieve your healthy goals

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motivational tips for healthy goals

Wow, we’re rapidly heading to the end of January.  How did that happen?  Are you still sticking to your New Year Resolutions or have you lost your motivation on the cold winds of winter?

Here are 12 Motivational Tips to help get your mojo flowing again

  1. Focusing on whether you should do a paleo, vegan, keto etc diet is not relevant when you are starting out.  Just focus on simple, doable changes that you can make every day and build on with time, i.e. move more, eat smaller portion sizes, cut back on processed foods and alcohol, try to sleep better and drink more water.  Trying to radically change your lifestyle overnight will only lead to overwhelm and probably failure.  Just start with small, simple, doable actions.
  2. To make changes you have to take action consistently.  Just stick to making your simple changes, but do them every single day.  If you do have a wobble and miss a day, don’t give up.  Tomorrow, just go back to doing your simple steps.  Remember, imperfect action still counts.  So, if you don’t feel like doing a run today, then just go for a walk instead.  This will still count towards your overall goal of getting fitter.
  3. Don’t try to do it all on your own.  Find a buddy/friend/family member or a professional who can help keep you accountable, provide support and information.  Whenever we try to change habits, we will hit obstacles.  That’s when you need help the most.  Don’t be afraid to ask for it.  Most people love to help others.
  4. Who you surround yourself with matters.  Unfortunately, when we want to make changes to our lifestyle, if our partners, family or friends aren’t on board then they can undermine your determination and willpower.  Try to explain to them how important this is to you and that you would really appreciate their help.
  5. Don’t buy or think there is a ‘quick fix’ solution to getting healthy.  Unfortunately, it does take time to master new habits but once you do they will be much easier to stick to for the rest of your life.  Crash diets and magic pills never work in the long term and you will end up where you started, usually worse off financially and health wise.
  6. Remember YOU ARE UNIQUE.  The methods/exercise that worked for your friend or the latest celebrity may well not work for you and your lifestyle.  Don’t be afraid to swap and change your eating or exercise plan over time to make them work for you.
  7. Be realistic! – You don’t have to look like a model or a fitness pro to be a healthier YOU.  Just work on making yourself FEEL better and not on how you look to others.
  8. Don’t compare yourself to others and their health journeys.  We are all different and unique.  You need to find methods that work for you.  The person you are comparing yourself too, may have had enormous struggles or still be struggling.  Most people hide what’s really going on in their lives.
  9. Tell yourself that you can do this!  Everyone can make changes to their lives but we have to believe we can do it.  If you think you may have a mindset issue i.e. you don’t feel worthy enough to be slimmer or fitter, then find a coach or counsellor who can help you.  All humans generally hold mindset blocks on some aspect of their lives – for some it may be body image, for others it may be around money or confidence.  These issues can be fixed with the right help.
  10. Remember why you want to get healthier.  Is it so you can run around the park with your kids, or is it so you can feel more energised everyday?  Write down your reasons, maybe on your phone, so you can check in with yourself whenever you are struggling and need a reminder of why these changes are important to you.
  11. Change brings feelings of fear!  We all have these feelings but fear is not a physical danger.  It is just a feeling.  Acknowledge it as a feeling and then take action and put yourself out there.
  12. Overcome your fear of failure!  The best way to do this is to make changes in small, simple steps.  When you master and accomplish one change, you will gain confidence to go on and tackle your next change.  Crash diets and radical changes to your lifestyle usually bring failure which then confirms your fears.  Don’t follow this route.

I hope these tips help you to refocus your motivation to achieve your healthy lifestyle goals.

Which one did YOU need to hear the most today?

Do you need a bit more motivation?  Why not head over to the New Leaf 52 weeks Healthy Motivation Facebook Group where I give you a weekly healthy challenge, a free recipe and lots of tips and ideas to help keep you motivated.  It’s completely free and is a wonderful private group of likeminded (mainly ladies) people all seeking to get healthy.

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Bonfire Parkin Recipe and this week’s meal plan

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bonfire parkin recipe meal plan


Hello Everybody,

Happy Guy Fawkes/Bonfire night!

Oh dear, it’s been a while since I’ve written a post for you.  The reason – well, there isn’t one really!.  You know, sometimes life just gets in the way.

I’ve been busy with my ‘day job’ plus spending time with the kids over half term.  At times like this, it would be very easy for me to wallow in feelings of failure but I know this will just make the problem worse.  If I allow a failure mindset to take hold,  I know I won’t take any steps to get on with motivating myself to take action.

If you are struggling with making lifestyle changes, then I’m sure you’ve experienced a similar problem.  It’s very easy to ‘fall off the wagon’ when making changes, and then feel it’s just not worth going on because you’ve failed.

If you are facing this problem, then the best approach to take is to just shrug your shoulders, recognise that things didn’t quite go to plan and then pick yourself up and crack straight back on with your goals.  We only fail if we don’t try again.

Whilst I was spending time with the kids yesterday, I made some Bonfire Parkin and thought I would share the recipe with you.

Parkin is a sticky, ginger cake that originates from Yorkshire and Lancashire.  It’s usually eaten around this time of year as a Bonfire treat.  It’s believed the recipe dates back to Pagan times, when baking with oats and spices was part of the celebration of the start of winter.

Bonfire Parkin Recipe

bonfire parkin recipe


100g dark brown sugar

150g plain flour

150g porridge oats or oatmeal

3 teaspoons ground ginger

1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

100g butter

3 tablespoons golden syrup

150ml milk


  1. Grease and line a 20 cm square baking tin.
  2. Preheat the oven to 130°C/250°F
  3. Place all the dry ingredients into a mixing bowl and stir together well.
  4. Place the butter and syrup into a pan and gently melt over a low heat.
  5. Pour the syrup and butter mixture into the dry ingredients and mix well.  Then add in the milk to form a runny batter.
  6. Pour the batter into the baking tin and bake for about 1 hour to 1¼ hours or until the cake is firm to the touch.  Don’t open the oven door for the first hour, or the cake won’t rise.
  7. Leave the cake to cool in the baking tin.  When cool, wrap in foil or place in a storage tin for about 2 hours before slicing.  Parkin does improve with time if kept wrapped in foil or in a cake tin for 2-3 days.

Enjoy by the Bonfire with a hot chocolate!


this week's meal plan

This week’s meal plan:-

I haven’t posted a meal plan for a while.  I’d love to know whether these meal plans help with your meal ideas for the family.  Let me know in the comments or on my InstagramFacebook Page

  • Crumbed chicken, sweet potato wedges and veggies
  • Chinese roasted pork, stir fried veggies and rice
  • Shepherds pie
  • Chorizo and mushroom pasta
  • Pork with peanut butter and sweet potatoes, rice and green veggies
  • Creamy chicken pasta bake
  • Baked salmon, potatoes and veggies


Wishing you all a wonderful week.

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