Barcelona…(two weeks and counting…)

Easter fortnight starts this coming Monday.  Then it’s just two 4-day working weeks, with a nice 4-day weekend in between them, and it’s Barcelona here we come!

Not that we’re looking forwards to it of course, or that I’ve started my packing list already…Or that I’m doing my usual panic-stricken brushing-up on my incredibly rusty Castellano

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Here we go again…

Yet again we’ve got the ‘red meat is bad for you’ media circus about a new Harvard study that’s been published.

There’s one thing for sure – it’ll sell papers, be on the telly, get hits on news sites and basically be scaring the bejesus out of people.   I’m pretty sure this ‘news story’ is going viral as I type due to the amount of links suggested by Zemanta.   I’ve also just searched ‘red meat’ on Twitter and yup – quite a few tweets about it (100+ new ones in the past minute) – some are hilarious actually  (I’m going to retweet some of them 🙂 )    I’m also readying myself for comments from people (which can be pretty much ‘in your face’ ) when I put certain foods in my shopping trolley / on my plate / in my mouth over the next few weeks… (I’m actually quite thankful I’m NOT working at the moment as I would have stopped eating my lunch in public based on the types of Read the rest of this entry »


Thank You, Baking Fairies!

I’m an absolute swine for playing around with recipes – well the recipes I decide to cut out and keep, or transcribe from different places into my little Recipe folder, or print out and stick on my fridge if I think it’s one I’ll cooked often.  Pretty much all of my cooking is the ‘make it up as I go along’ method – and to be fair it turns out pretty well most of the time!

Take my recipe for Flaxseed Bread.  We found this on the internet a couple of years ago when we first gave up wheat etc, but wanted / needed a substitute for bread.

Original ingredients:

  • 2 cups flaxseed meal
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1-2 tablespoons sugar equivalent from artificial sweetener
  • 5 beaten eggs
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/3 cup oil

(I don’t use artificial sweetener – when I first made this I used 1 tablespoon of unrefined golden sugar, and used melted coconut oil)

It tastes nothing like bread.  At all.  Flaxseed has a definite ‘flavour’…Its texture however does give you that feeling of ‘comfort-food’ Read the rest of this entry »


Economising – Not Compromising (Well Almost…)

Over the past six months we’ve been looking at reducing our food shopping bill.  I’ve been out of work since July last year and as our ‘Rainy Day’ pot gets smaller and I’m no nearer to finding a new job, I’ve been tightening the purse strings without compromising on eating ‘clean’.

One of the biggest challenges of a ‘Primal’ diet is that it sure does increase your food bill – ‘cheap & filling’ meals full of pasta, or rice, or jacket potatoes, or based on bread just aren’t an option.  That ‘kick-ass salad’ full of wonderful things like avocado, peppers, tasty tomatoes, grated carrot, cucumber, onions, boiled eggs, and some kind of meat is never going to be as cheap as a jacket potato with cheese and beans.  That plate of lovely fresh steamed veggies with a nice piece of steak, or a pork chop, or chicken…same thing.  Bacon and egg for breakfast….well you get the picture.

I used to get a veg box delivered each week from an organic shop on the internet.  We’d get one of their ‘large’ weekly veg boxes but it didn’t have enough Read the rest of this entry »


‘Toast, My Old Nemesis…’

This is a photograph of some Boudin Bakery sou...

Image via Wikipedia

Along with great dark chocolate ice cream, toast is one of the few things that still calls to me since we changed our diet.

Not just any toast – good toast made from slices hand cut from a loaf that’s been made by true baker, not mass produced in a factory, square shaped and tasteless – ‘plastic’ bread.

Granary…sourdough…good rustic white…I really don’t mind which…

Toasted to perfection – crisp on the outside and around the edges of the crust but with that comforting, warm chewiness of freshly baked bread in the middle…

Covered in golden butter (salted of course)…none of this ‘spread’ in its many manipulated, chemically-enhanced and / or ‘reduced fat’ guises.

Yup – ‘good toast’.

And this morning, I decided to have some for breakfast at one of our favourite independent coffee house haunts.

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Cereal, How I (Used To) Love Thee…

I find myself ‘reminiscing’ about things I no longer eat.  Like cereal.

I haven’t eaten cereal since climbing aboard the Primal wagon almost 2 years ago.  We’d tried a ‘low-carb’ diet several years before, when Atkins / South Beach / (insert name of other low-carb diets here) were all the rage – in fact we went with Barry Groves‘ approach from his ‘Eat Fat Get Thin’ book and stuck with it for over a year.  Being ‘true carnivores we found it worked well for us, but went back to the Red/Green approach from a Slimming World diet we’d done on and off over they years, when we wanted to re-introduce baked potatoes, pasta and rice back into our daily food choices – we missed them…

However, Mike was finding his tolerance for rice worsened as he got older, giving him VERY unpleasant side effects that escalated to the point where he’d not be able to breathe due to the amount of swelling in his stomach after eating it.  The swelling was literally giving organs such as his LUNGS no room to expand… :(.  Mint tea was an absolute god-send.  (I must add, rice also makes me feel uncomfortably bloated but nowhere near as bad as Mike).  As is usually the case with intolerances, it’s a food he adores, having been brought up on it as a toddler in Singapore.  His ‘last meal’ would happily be  plain boiled white rice with a soft fried egg on top and soy sauce .  I use the present tense rather than past tense on purpose – the craving hasn’t gone away – just the memory of the pain – and terror the side effects caused –  hasn’t completely disappeared.

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Climbing back on the Primal wagon

To be totally honest, we sort of gently slid off the wagon starting late November last year, ably assisted by my birthday, a trip to New York early December, followed by Christmas, New Year and finally my sister’s birthday weekend last week.

Thinking about it, we didn’t so much as slip as sit on the edge of the tailgate bit at the back, holding on by our fingertips, getting jostled around and watching out for any particularly big potholes that could throw us off it completely.

Don’t get me wrong, we didn’t turn into bread, pasta and french fry guzzling monsters – more like discerning nibblers…

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