Monday, July 27

Gifts from my garden

While we were enjoying the amazing hot sunshine of North Africa, England was having its bout of summer as well. Thanks to my lovely neighbours our garden not only survived but actually thrived while we were away, and we came home to some very happy plants and herbs. Sadly despite my offering nobody came to eat all the chicory lettuces I was growing and they shot up into flowers, but there were still some leaves to be collected as well as beautiful blue flowers, which tasted like a gentler variation of the salad. On top of that I collected not only an armful of basil leaves to make the freshest pesto possible for my courgette 'noodles' but also a bowl of basil flowers. The scent of these beauties was so subtle yet ovewhelming, I could not wait to enjoy them as an aromatic topping for one of my evening salads. Eating flowers is a great idea, as they have a very subtly gentle energy as well as benefitial essential oils and traces of polen, and flowers from herbs such as basil or oregano have a wonderful soft herby taste that will bring your meal alive.

Here you can see one of my creations - a very simple meal, actually. A plateful of green leaves of your choice - mine was watercress, young spinach and chopped cos lettuce, topped with sliced heirloom tomatoes, sprinkled with some basil flowers, a glug of olive oil and a dash of pink himalayan salt. Very simple but scruptious indeed. Sometimes the best meals are the simple ones, as our body can recognise what all the parts are and what it needs to do with them in order to extract all the nutrients effectively. When I eat like this, my body is buzzing with happiness, I sleep well and wake up ready to face whatever the next day brings. Just what we need in this sometimes overwhelming world.

What's your summer favourite?

Friday, July 17

And another year has passed...

Happy birthday to me! Do you know what? I am 38 now... My dear friend Denise just earlier today talked about some 'really old, adult like people', you know, like late 30s... Hmmm. Something to poke her in her ribs about next time then!

I know I wrote a post about how well and raw I ate most of the holiday. Well, the evening of my birthday was one of those days when my dear Cooked Husband would ask if he should start a blog on his own, called something like 'Gracefullyraw exposed', to write about all my foody sins....

Well, who cares. What would you do if you came 'home' from a day at the beach, which you spent windsurfing, reading a lovely book, worshipping the sun and then willing yourself at the end of it all to sign up for a wakeboarding session (eventhough you were afraid of who knows what), and then realising that you can still do it, and having the time of your life (I never grin as much as when I am gliding accross the smooth sea on the wake board), and found this amazing fresh coconutty delight topped with fresh sweet succulent pineapple and juicy orange left as a surpice from the hotel just for you, on your birthday. Would you not eat it?

Weeeeellll, maybe you would share a little bit with your Cooked Husband, but at the same time, you would poke the fork into it, feel how soft, flooffy and creamy it is, and think, that it was surely made and given to you with love, so there can be no harm in enjoying it. And may I tell you, aspiring raw foodist as I am, that it was amazing, delicious and I loved it. Hey - they even left a tiny candle and a book of matches!!! Judge me if you want. I always maintained my view of mind being above the matter, and guilt, as my dear friend Lada said many, many years ago, being overrated!

Whatever you want to do, especially if it is your birthday, just do it. Wake board! Dance! Have your (raw, if you are lucky) cake and eat it too, if that is what you want!

Many happy returns to me ;-) And be sure that I will attempt to recreate this cloudy goodness myself sometimes soon, only this time, of course, raw.

Thursday, July 16

Back from other reality

As I am reading the date of my last post I find it difficult to believe that it has been so long! Truth is, ever since I came back from my Czech home, I have had trouble with time - working a lot on both of my jobs took most of my time and catching up with myself took the rest, so writing was left behind. Well I am now back, at least from my two weeks of holiday in scoldingly hot Egypt, and ready to share some of my life with you once again.

My life in Egypt was close to blissful. Waking up to a blazing sunshine and golden heat every morning and going for an 'early' pre-breakfast swim in the empty bluey sea. Then feasting on lots of watermelon, sprinkled with a juce of some local, small but sparklingly tingly limes, before spending my day swimming, walking barefoot on sand and springy grass, reading, listening to music, creating lots of vitamin D and windsurfing or wakeboarding. Shortly - tough life - I have the bruises to prove it!

Lunch was something small to share with Cooked Husband, if he remembered to return to the beach from his hyper windsurfing sessions, and then some more of the same. As this is mostly a foodie blog, I must tell you all about the dinners. I have never have it so easy to eat raw. We stayed in this hotel on half board, and our breakfasts and dinners were buffet style. There was always fruit, salad and hot food, plenty of cakes and pastries . Somehow anything that was not fresh and juicy left me so uninterested; partially I think it was the heat, but also the cooked food was really not that great. Poor Cooked Husband kept trying, but always ended up disappointed, as everything seemed to have sat on the buffet for some time and was not very fresh any more.

Not so my salads. OMG! I had a large plate of green leaves (would you not have guessed) with lovely local olive oil and more of that zingy lime juice, followed by a huge plate of rainbow of veggies - the tomatoes were a true tomato red colour, sweet and succulent; the cucumbers were small, crunchy and sweet, the carrots were so flavourful and juicy in their own, carroty way... this made the 3/4 of my plate very night. The last small space left was filled with a selection from the rest of the fabulous salad bar. There were some local salads with aubergines and chickpeas, marinated fennel and courgettes, stuffed cucumbers, marinates spicy and sweet peppers, green and reddish black olives - in short, I could eat like that for a very very long time before I was bored! There was something a little bit different every day. It was amazing! Not absolutely everything was raw, but I was more then happy to enjoy a little bit of local hummus, egyptian feta cheese or tzatziki as a small addition to my mountain of raw food.

I was told many times before by my friends or family, who came to stay with me and for whom I prepared yummy healthy meals, that they would be very happy to eat that way if someone made it for them all the time the way I did. Now this was my turn to see what they meant. I am happy enough to eat my simple salads and smoothies at home, but to have a choice from around 20 different salads, all fresh, ripe, coulourful, vibrant, juicy and literally calling me to munch them, staying raw would not be an issue at all.