My Week in Food: Jennifer Irvine

Anna Hunter 13 June 2016
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My Week in Food: Jennifer Irvine

The founder of renowned diet-delivery companies The Pure Package , and Balance Box , Jennifer’s clients include celebrities such as Adele, Erin O’Connor and Hugh Jackman. She told us: ‘one of the benefits of my job is that I have instant access to the delicious meals whenever I want!’. Let’s just see how much celebrity inspired on-the-go food she really eats in her week...

“My meals don’t make sense out of context so I have explained them. They are all about fitting in with my lifestyle as much as they are about nutrition.”

Follow Jennifer on Twitter  @JenniferJIrvine

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Breakfast: This is one of my work-from home days, so I get a lie in- until 6.15am! I normally enjoy breakfast with the family. We keep hens, so eggs are generally on the menu at some point during the day. Today it’s baked eggs with spinach on toasted rye; a nice balance of protein and slow-burning carbs to start the day, perfect for fuelling me for my regular Monday morning workout.

Snack: Once I’ve stopped sweating, I have a snack. I’m a firm believer in the importance and value of snacks, and the meals at both The Pure Package and Balance Box include two a day. Usually it’s something I’ve grabbed from the kitchen which doesn’t need any preparation – some nice fruit and a handful of nuts for example (today I had a banana and some pistachios).

Lunch: If I’ve worked out, I’m usually starving by lunchtime. Today’s lunch was a cold beef and noodle-salad (using leftover beef from yesterday’s roast). Then it’s another snack in the afternoon- The Pure Package’s homemade cashew-nut butter and some slices of fresh apple – before the evening routine of homework and kids’ dinner (I have four kids, so things can get a bit chaotic!).

Dinner: I try at least twice a week to have a home-cooked meal with my husband, just the two of us once the kids are in bed. Today I made delicious steamed wild salmon with herbs, which I served with some asparagus (which I grew) and baby potatoes (which I also grew!) and Delia’s foaming hollandaise sauce; my favourite, and made using our own eggs. I’m feeling particularly virtuous and self-sustaining after this meal!

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Breakfast: Today sees me in our offices and kitchens at Covent Garden Market by 7am, so I skip breakfast at home, and grab something at work. I’m surrounded by chefs and nutritionists so I get lots of advice on what’s best to fuel my day ahead! Today it’s porridge made with big oats, sultanas, full-fat milk, and topped with seeds, banana, cinnamon and honey.

Snack: I’m still pretty full by 11, but have a small snack to carry me to lunch anyway – a handful of edamame beans.

Lunch: My previous snack ties in well with Tuesday’s lunch, which is a selection of dishes from The Pure Package’s Japanese Body Boost meal plan. I stuck to sushi and miso soup, and also some steamed sea vegetables, which I’m fairly fanatical about!

Dinner: Lunch was so good that I put some cartons aside for tonight’s dinner – teriyaki prawns for me and miso-cod for my husband, with lots of steamed veggies and a selection of sauces.

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Breakfast: I often test out a personal trainer midweek, so I hang out with the kids for breakfast , which is a green super-smoothie made with spinach, mint, pineapple, live yoghurt for a protein kick, and a handful of flaxseeds. The kids grimace a bit, which means all the more for me - I purposefully don’t tell them that it’s actually delicious.

Snack: After a pretty gruelling workout, I have a couple of boiled eggs and a banana, which for me is the perfect way to refuel after a workout. I also have some raspberries, eaten on the go as is always the case on workout days.

Lunch: I’m ravenous by the time I get to lunch. Today it’s a business affair at Brunswick House, where the food is fabulous. I have the pea soup, followed by pressed lamb shoulder with sunflower seeds and artichokes, and a side-order of hispi cabbage with miso butter. All of it was pretty incredible.

Snack: Bizarrely I get a few hunger pangs at about four, so I steal some of the chef’s stash of farmhouse cheddar and a pear.

Dinner: Supper at home, which is a salad because I had such a big lunch. Lots of shaved vegetables, leaves and nasturtium flowers from the garden, as well as avocado (sadly not from the garden!) and an incredibly creamy, melt-in-the-mouth burrata, dressed with some extra virgin olive oil and good quality balsamic vinegar. I end up making an enormous portion and only eat half, so put the rest aside for tomorrow’s lunch.

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Breakfast: I’m at work again, and this morning I’m doing a photo shoot for a magazine in our kitchens. My team has put together an impressive buffet for the crew’s breakfast including huge bowls of mixed berries, live yoghurt, and The Pure Package’s famous granola, so we all tuck in.

Lunch: At lunch I’m tempted by the new Balance Box recipes the chef has put out for us to try, but I remember my packed salad.

Snack: I have oatcakes in the afternoon, this time with some smoked mackerel pate, which one of our nutritionists assures me is great for both my skin and my brain, so of course I have extra.

Dinner: I meet my husband for dinner at Coya, a Peruvian restaurant in London, and one of our favourites. As usual, I order a huge selection of ceviche and one of their corn salads, while my husband gets their wild sea bass, some sprouting purple broccoli and patatas bravas. We share the lot.

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Breakfast: Today I’m at home, and start my day by taking delivery of three days’ worth of Balance Box food. I don’t stick to it religiously, but like to use it as a fridge-filler, so I know there’s always something healthy ready to eat or cook at a moment’s notice over the weekend. It’s a perfect system when you have a large family as I do.

For breakfast I dive right in and have our bircher muesli with Californian prunes. Then I hit a fitness class.

Snack: After my workout I have a shake, made with lots of fresh berries, some milk and a dollop of live yoghurt. Then I rush home because I have a group of fabulous girlfriends coming over, who I rely on regularly to test-drive our new Balance Box recipes. I tip it all out into dishes, then eat, gossip, and take food-feedback for the afternoon.

Lunch: This carries on into the afternoon so I snack on Balance Box leftovers.

Dinner: It’s Friday night, which means family dinner then movie time! I make way for my husband on the BBQ, who makes very simple fillet steaks, which we serve with a big warmed-vegetable salad, featuring lots of roasted courgettes, peppers, tomatoes and aubergines, along with oven-baked sweet potato chips. Just before we all settle down in front of the movie I make my famous salted-caramel popcorn, and then we hit play and start the weekend!

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Breakfast: Hurray, it’s the weekend! My weekend is all about food, and usually there’s some work too, but we love to have a big family breakfast. Today it was creamy scrambled eggs with smoked salmon on rye.

Lunch: My husband and I grazed on yummy Balance Box food in the late afternoon.

Dinner: We ate over at a friend’s house. I brought some lime and mango fool for the dessert, which was zingy and light and delicious. The perfect way to round off a dinner party!

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Breakfast: We do another late family breakfast on Sundays- a full Irish this time! Slices of black pudding, poached eggs and roasted tomatoes on toasted rye, with a pot of fresh mint tea and the Sunday papers. Just perfect.

Lunch: We love a traditional Sunday roast; today’s was a free-range chicken with all the trimmings, including stuffing made with freshly-picked sage, and homegrown roasted beetroot.

Dinner: Lunch keeps us full until the evening time, by which stage we’ve got some homemade aromatic chicken and corn noodle soup on the go, made from the carcass of our chicken lunch. It really hits the spot. Afterwards we have a couple of hours of preparing for the week ahead, before it’s bedtime, and Monday again!