Monday, 28 September 2009
Don't you just despise people who constantly refer to people they know as My Dear Friend So-and-so...? I was reading this blog written by this famous person, and she constantly kept on going My Dear friend This told me to do this... and My Dear friend That advised me to do that.... My intestines just revolt at such widespread intimacy with Everyone! I am probably completely unfair, and all these cooks and fitness experts and doctors ARE her Dear Dear Friends. I mean, after all, we are all One Love in a Singular Universe, right? Still, I just hate it. It sounds so preppy and inauthentic. I think the phrase I hate that fucker! Can be much more loving than My dear dear friend. You know what I mean? At least there is some real passion and honesty in that.
I have now been on the Candida diet for exactly one week and one day. Muffins of all shapes and tastes have failed at seducing me. Baguettes and creamy cheeses have no more power over my will of iron. Hamburgers and fries are sending their smoky long fingers after my soul in vain. But coffee.... ohhhhh cooooffeeee... Not a day passes where I don't press my nose against the window of a coffee shop longingly, heavyhearted at being at the outside while all these people are sipping their lattes smugly, not knowing just HOW lucky they are. I sit down uncomfortably close to strangers in order to live vicariously through their uninhibited coffee slurping. I will sneak soundlessly to the cupboard in the kitchen, to smell the last traces of coffee from the secret crevasses of the empty tin...
3 celery stalks
1 young onion (is that what it's called?)
1 pak choi
1 red paprika
1 yellow paprika
a handful spinach leaves
a handful watercress
half a lime
half a green chili
vegan soup stock
You know the procedure... Peel and fry and pour over water. The only thing I did was to put the spinach leaves and the watercress just before pouring over the boiling water...
Tuesday, 22 September 2009
I was so into it.
I strolled through Notting Hill picking up spices and herbs. I bought three cookbooks, spending a fortune, to broaden my horizon and educate my skills. I frigging grilled garlic in the oven! I got weird chili, turmeric, lime leaves, manuka honey and all sort of fun stuff. And then it happened. A friend took a long curious look at my balloon belly and said matter of factly: You probably have fungus in your stomach.
WHAT? Yikes! Fungus? How disgusting is that?
Getting over the initial shock with several cups of coffee and reading up on candida on the internet, I realized that I was not alone. Shared pain is half pain, right? I took another comforting, fruity jet earthy mouthful of freshly ground espresso which I swallowed with a satisfied sigh, of course. Maybe it wasn't so bad, after all.
Then I read about the food that you are absolutely to avoid: EVERYTHING with sugar. Wheat, milk, honey, fruit and even carrots! Hell! Even potatoes! My heart stopped a beat at alcohol. But the worst was still to come.
I scrolled down the kilometer long list and found suddenly the word coffee listed among evil and forbidden drinks. No. Noooooooooooo! What has coffee to do with it? A tear of frustration and sadness rolled down my cheek (could I lick the tear of my cheek (as one does, right? Right?!) or would that too be filled with something sugary a fungi would love to devour and make a thousand babies with???).
Who would I be without coffee in the morning to pick me up and set me straight? I would basically not get out of bed if not coffee was calling my name every morning. Caaaarroliiinne.... Carrrroooolline darling! Come into the kitchen and watch me boil funnily in the espresso machine! Come dig your nose into the wonderfully playful happy fumes!
How can this evil enemy grow in my own body? I see you! You nasty fungi! I have my eyes on you... you... you ugly turd! I will KILL you! I will destroy you! I will regain my belly from you, you terrible destroyer of fun!
And what about all the new exciting soup I had lined up to cook for my soup-friends? The roasted garlic, cream and honey soup? The red wine and spinach soup? The white wine, coriander and bacon soup?
It's back to Red Pepper & Courgette Soup.
Friday, 18 September 2009
As I sat sipping a soy latte somewhere in Notting Hill, I read this little article in some free magazine laying around. It was about all sorts of different calls to 999. Around the death of Michael, there were apparently loads of people wanting to know if Michael was really dead. You have to imagine the urgency of these people's emotions forcing them to call 999. Not only the emotions, but the trust! That wasn't the funniest part though. The best thing was the mother who called in asking about her lost TV remote control. Hahahahahaha! I had to dry my eyes laughing. Imagine this old woman calling emergency for her TV remote! Hahahahahahihihihihi! Her son was a convict, and that had something to do with her thinking calling emergency was a good idea...
2 garlic cloves
2 dl unsalted cashews
Peel and cut the carrots, onions and garlic. Fry the onion and the garlic for a minute, then add the carrots. Add a liter cooking water, 2 table spoons stock and a half spoon of sambal. When the carrots are soft, add the cashews and the lime juice and cook for another few minutes. Blend with hand blender. Sprinkle herbs over it if you want.
(Soup more or less from Peace, Love & Food.)
Thursday, 17 September 2009
I have been secretly smell and taste fantasizing about truffle oil for one or two weeks now. The desire just seem to overcome me. I have felt a little secretive about it, as truffles are soo... soooooo... ahhhmmm... dirty. That pungent, mysterious jet earthy smell. That fleeting promise. That seductive velvety giggle of a taste. Trruffeeeellll... it even rolls flirtily of your tongue. Wanting to find out more, as one does, I read up on those sexy ones on wikipedia. It appears though, that the word actually means lump. Lump? Lump. Ohhhhhh you delicious, little devil... lump?
Lump. LUMP. Lumpp. The more I say it the more I discover the secret qualities and hidden layers in the word. Luuummp. Lummp. If feels sort of fleshy and vulgar in a very appealing way. You naughty... Lump.
1 box of mushrooms
10 smallish potatoes
2 cloves of garlic
1 yellow onion
Cut and peel potatoes, onion and garlic. Cut mushrooms. Fry all in a little olive oil with the chili. Add two table spoons of vegan stock and pour over about a liter of cooking water. Add a dash of nutmeg and the whole cloves. When potatoes are soft, add the cream and a swirl of truffle oil. Cook on low heat for another minute or two.
Mix with hand mixer, add some fresh thyme and a few drops of lime on each serving.
Wednesday, 16 September 2009
I was sitting reading the new Oprah mag when this question popped up in my brain: If you only had one last soup to live, what would you do?
A lentil soup? My mothers fish soup? Something with truffle oil in it?
This question indeed got me thinking. I mean honestly, if one only had one soup to live? I must get more creative here. I bet I haven't yet discovered That soup. There are so many ingredients to try, Rhubarbs to taste, herbs to tickle the senses. I haven't really spread my wings yet at all! What about a Parmesan soup with saffron and lime? What about spicy African beans with coconut and cloves? What about all the soup out there that I haven't tried, that haven't even been yet invented? What have I done with all my life?
I cry for all the divine fumes of melting butter in a pan that I haven't inhaled. I cry for the beans, cheese, vegetables and spices that I haven't chopped and admired and loved and been loved by in return. I cry for all the pastes, thin soups, thick soups, broths and porridge that I have not made a part of me. Yet.
1/3 of a bag of lentils
2 pieces of garlic
2 bay leaves
about 10 whole cloves
Fry the chopped onions, garlic and chili in some olive oil. Pour in the lentils and stir. Pour in a liter of cooking water. Add vegan stock, bay leaves and cloves.
After about half an hour add the cream and cook for another few minutes.
DIVINE! I kept repeating in my head Oh my God! This is so good!
Tuesday, 15 September 2009
I have not cooked a soup today. Disaster. I just felt no motivation whatsoever. Over all I just enjoy a blissful mood. I have a multitude of followers - the mammoth number of FOUR (and how I love them). I receive at least one comment a day, wonderful feedback practically raining on me. What do I need more? Ahhhhh. The life of a star.
And then I stumbled on this article in Oprah magazine about fear and success. To cut it short and adapt it to my own life it says this: Just as failure fuels your fear and keeps you working towards your goal, success mitigates anxiety and weakens your motivation to stick with your regimen...
AHA! This is JUST what I am experiencing now! I feel so successful that I instantly loose my motivation to cook soup. And just yesterday I went to Sainsbury's to get new exciting stuff like mushrooms and bay leaves and lentils to spice up my soup menu.
Well, luckily I happened to read that article. What would one do without Oprah? I have now successfully shed light on my own unconscious behavior and will let the darkness hinder me no further! New, bigger horizons, here I come! Success like I could never have dreamed of, here I am! I might even start cooking with cream and creme fraiche...
Monday, 14 September 2009
After a short holiday from orange soup, orange soup is back. The poor pumpkin has been laying around for a week now awaiting its destiny calmly among some carrots and old butter in the fridge. Time to transcend to a new dimension, my friend. It seemed the pumpkin took the news with a tranquility of mind even the most enlightened guru would be proud of. Hell, I can't even take off my socks at night without separation anxiety. So. Autumn is here and the leaves keep turning red and insisting on falling of the trees. I am clinging on to the last dirty layer of my summer tan. My pumpkin has finally successfully gone from a solid material existence to a more spiritual and lofty one. As shall we all. One's death, another's life.
1 coquina squash
1 pointed red pepper
piece of ginger
coriander & parsley
Peel and remove seeds from squash. Cut into smallish pieces. Peel and cut shallots and ginger. Cut and remove seeds from pepper. Fry the shallots, chili and ginger a few minutes before adding the red pepper and squash. Fry for another few minutes, then add the fresh thyme and two spoons of vegan stock. Stir, then add boiling water to cover the veggies. Sprinkle some fresh coriander and parsley on top.
Sunday, 13 September 2009
I read today in some girl's magazine about a new way of eating where you are neither a vegetarian or a complete carnivore. This 'new' thing is called Flexitarianism. A Flexitarian describes a person focusing on vegetarian food with occasional meat consumption. Hmmmmm... This is exactly what I do, I thought. Why did I not think about coining a name, copyright it and earn a million dollars on it? After this initial jealousy a feeling of lightness overcame me. I AM A FLEXITARIAN! FINALLY I KNOW WHO I AM! I have felt similar rushes of ecstasy when discovering that... I am a Unicorn! (While I was getting into shamanism.) / I am a spiritual master! (Didn't last long.) / I am a Chloe Dress! (still enjoy that one.)
As today I suffer from a slight hangover, I needed a quick and dirty soup fix.
as much chili as you can take
Peel and cut. Fry in olive oil. Mix. Eat. Spit fire.
Friday, 11 September 2009
I woke up tired this morning. It might have something to do with dreaming I had to protect Barack Obama against some evil republican police men. I also woke in the middle of the night stressed about the singular colour scheme of previously posted soups. "Holy Moses! The soups are all ORANGE!" I thought. "I can't post another orange soup!" This raised my stress level considerably. "I need a green or brown soup! Or at least a light yellow or cream..." It took me another hour of deep breathing to get my pulse down to the degree where sleep was again a possibility. So dragging myself out of bed with this vast weight of having to cook NOT an orange soup made me quite miserable. What about the pumpkin waiting to be sliced up and cooked? I have never hated a vegetable before, but now I did. Stupid orange pumpkin. Then, a beam of golden light shone straight into my kitchen window POINTING at some GREEN apples on the table. I was going to have soup for breakfast.
2 GREEN apples
Cut the apples in small pieces. Place in small pan and cover with water. Season with cinnamon. Cook until preferred consistency. Pour over some blueberries and maple syrup.
Mother Mary and Joseph! What damn colour does the thing turn out to be? (But delicious and SO healthy! Thank you S. for recipe.)
Thursday, 10 September 2009
Sitting and working in a dark room all day is seriously damaging my spirit. The old roller blind has given up and stays on half, not moving an inch in either direction. It is dark and cold in here, although I have seen on the internet that the sun is supposedly shining outside. So what to do? Have a big ol' muffin and a creamy hot cup of chocolate? No. Not when you are allergic to milk, sugar and wheat. Instead, I decided to warm up body and soul with a spicy potato soup. Hail Potato! Divine Healer of darkness and cold!
About 10 small potatoes
1 clove of garlic
Peel and chop the potatoes, shallots and the garlic. Fry in a little olive oil with the chili pepper. Add a spoon or two of stock. Add half a teaspoon of all the above listed spices. Turn for a minute. Add cooking water and cook until potatoes are soft.
Add some fresh coriander on top.
Oh, the wonder of a hot potato soup! I really felt much better afterwords. So much better that I actually decided to take a break from writing and go outside. And the internet was right! It was a marvelously sunny day.
Tuesday, 8 September 2009
Today I as I sat reading in the magical Brompton Cemetery, a flash suddenly came to me. I would NOT make the potato and tomato soup as I had planned, but instead use the SWEET potatoes I had bought for something else entirely. HA! What courage! Sweet potato and cherry tomato soup. Good title too. I have never made a soup using sweet potatoes, so this quest excited me enormously. The stake was raised a notch as my pregnant friend invited herself for lunch. How would it taste? I had no idea. What if my friend would be brought into early labor by the upset in her stomach as she ate the thing? Well, I had to try my best.
2 sweet potatoes
1 small box of cherry tomatoes
Peel and cut all the stuff.
Fry the shallots with the ginger (standard procedure in all my soups) and some turns of the chili pepper mill. Add the sweet potatoes and stir, after a minute or two, add the tomatoes. Fry for another minute then add the obligatory 1 1/2 spoon of vegan stock. Stir and then add cooking water to cover the veggies. When the potatoes are soft, add a squeeze of lime and some sambal oelek (chili paste). Mix with hand mixer and season with fresh herbs - I used parsley and thyme.
To this I made an avocado and garlic mix and spread on corn crackers. I didn't want to starve the baby.
The soup turned out well. 'Fantastic', to quote my preggie friend. I think yesterday's was a little better though, if I am to be honest. But not bad, little soup, not bad.
Monday, 7 September 2009
I am just back in London after six weeks in Austria. As I went to see my pregnant friend yesterday, I realized I looked just as pregnant. And she is giving birth in one week. A food baby, clearly. Not that I regret a thing. Not the Schnitzel, the sausages or the chocolate cakes. And not the highly addictive Prückel Creme (espresso in a high glass topped up with a mountain of whipped cream...), the wines (oh, Gelber Muskateller from Lackner Tinnacher) or the occasional cigarillo.
BUT, now is the time to live a little more healthily again. Not for long, maybe, just enough for me to be able to eat LOADS of wonderful things now and then. I am starting my Soup-Time. Because I love soup.
Here the first day's soup:
1 long red pepper
coriander and thyme
peel and cut everything
fry the shallots and the ginger for a few minutes, then put in the courgettes and the red pepper. Let fry for a little more, then put in 1 1/2 spoon of vegan stock and stir.
Pour over cooking water. After about five minutes drop in a half teaspoon of samba oelek. After another five, the veggies should be ready. Squeeze over half a lime, then mix with a hand mixer until the soup is smooth.
Serve with herbs, for example coriander and thyme.
And if you want to boost health, sprinkle over with seeds (I used Linwoods Sunflower, Pumpkin, Sesame Seeds & Goji Berries)
It really tasted delicious. I have to say. I wanted to save some for tomorrow, but I just couldn't stop the soup addict. So I ate all. Yum.