The California Prune Kitchen – where healthy meets amazing

28 February 2018

The California Prune Kitchen – where healthy meets amazing

We know how amazing California prunes are with their extraordinary health benefits and their versatility when it comes to creating tasty dishes that the whole family can enjoy. But we were excited to invite a few bloggers and journalists to help them discover this for themselves.


CP kitchen Rosemary Peter Hala

At the end of January we invited food bloggers and journalists to join us at the Good Housekeeping Institute in central London. They were invited to find out about how our premium quality California prunes can not only deliver superfood status nutrition, but also how delicious they can be too.

To help us, our brand ambassadors Hala El Shafie, Peter Sidwell and Rosemary Shrager came along, bringing with them their expertise when it comes to understanding what good food should look and taste like.


You will recognise Hala, famed for her expert advice on prime-time ‘healthy eating’ TV shows such as BBC1’s Eat Well for Less, Channel 4’s How to Lose Weight Well and ITV1’s Sugar Free Farm. She introduced the event, “My role as a Consultant Nutritionist / Registered Dietitian requires me to inspire people to choose foods that will nourish their bodies and deliver the variety and balance of nutrients that we require. Eating should always be a pleasurable experience and I strongly believe that healthy food CAN and SHOULD always taste amazing. Working with Rosemary and Peter today proves just that!”

CP kitchen blog Peter Sidwell

When Rosemary and Peter started cooking some Spelt Pancakes and Sticky Chicken Steamed Buns with a California prune BBQ Sauce, we could all see how, with simple changes to our cooking habits, we can make some very interesting and tasty food for even the most fussy of palates.

For the sticky chicken steamed buns, Peter uses California prunes rather than sugar to create a BBQ sauce that beats hoisin sauce any day. Rich in flavour and texture, the sauce brings the dish together and makes the tastebuds dance.

The spelt pancakes were served with a California prune based syrup that pours beautifully and adds a smokey flavour note that compliments both sweet and savoury dishes.

CP kitchen spelt pancakes

Nutritionally Hala kept everyone up to date with the benefits of incorporating prunes into the diet, alluding to the recent research from Dr Kevin Whelan and Kings College London which demonstrates encouraging results to further enhance the existing EU authorised health claim for prunes (prunes contribute to normal bowel function when 100g are consumed daily). Low stool weight and delayed transit time are risk factors for diseases such as colorectal cancer, haemorrhoids and constipation and increasing fibre intake is the recommended route to reduce the risk of developing these problems. Hello California prunes!

Introducing children at a young age to healthy eating habits that support bowel health with food that they enjoy, was a key takeaway message and one that one of the attending bloggers, My Fussy Eater, was very keen to try with her children. You can tell by the look on her daughter’s face just how much she loved it.

my fussy eater


Hannah from Hannah and Fitness was also inspired. Hannah is a keen fitness fiend but is no way a slave to faddy diets. She could immediately see how she would add California prunes to her diet to satiate and to satisfy any sweet cravings. She was very keen to point out that she would be packing a few prunes to snack on when her training for her next Obstacle Race kicks in too.

hannah and fitness pancakes


Holly Bell, (recognise her from being a finalist from the Great British Bake Off a few years ago?) also came along and was particularly taken with the Chicken tagine that Peter had prepared earlier to serve for lunch. She was diagnosed with early onset of the menopause and was particularly interested to learn about the benefits to bone health of eating prunes.

CP kitchen Holly Bell


The attendees at the event were very excited when it was time to taste Peter and Rosemary’s dishes, declaring the dishes were indeed amazing. We were only sorry not to have been able to accommodate more guests but rest assured the recipes that were demonstrated on the day will be appearing in lots of kitchens.

CP kitchen Happy Guests

If you would like to know more about how Rosemary, Peter or Hala are using California prunes, you can always tweet them yourselves! They are always happy to engage with a fellow California prune lover.

Not only that, when you recreate these dishes in your own kitchens (how could you resist?) post them on your favourite social media platform and tag us so we can appreciate your food and share them with the wider California prune squad.

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