October Already!

Seriously, how has the year gone by so quickly? I know they say time speeds up as you get older, but at this rate I’ll be 93 in less than 24 hours!

October is one of my favourite months, but then I am a Scorpio, so what else would you expect? Halloween/Samhain is the best festival of all time in my opinion, hands down beats Christmas and New Year. I really need to be kept away from the decorations sections in the supermarkets because I tend to go a little mad.

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Of course the other great thing about this time of year is the marvellous varieties of squash available. We love pumpkin, and I shall be stocking up and cooking and freezing as many of the big carvers as I can. There does seem to be an increasing selection  of other squashes in the supermarkets here now too, especially if you look in some of the higher end shops like Booths or Waitrose.

Last year I ordered a big box of spaghetti squash direct from a fenland farmer, something I must sort out doing again very soon – the squashes have such a lovely long shelf life that stocking up makes a lot of sense.

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What is your favourite squash recipe? I shall be having a go at a paleoified pumpkin pie again this year, but I want to try something a bit more adventurous too. Having said that, it will probably end up being a pumpkin inspired ice cream, as I plough on with getting my paleo ice cream ebook ready for sale towards the end of the month!

Just to give you fair warning, I’ve set myself a challenge this month – a blog post a day. Gulp. Let’s see if I do better with that than I did with Whole30!

TTFN

 

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Hello Poor Neglected Blog!

I had such plans and hopes for blogging over the last week or two, but life has been chaotic and I’ve just not found the headspace to sit and waffle away here.

I’ve been cooking like crazy, testing out lots of great recipe ideas, some of which have worked, others… well I hear a big fail klaxon in my head!

We had a really lovely Indian takeaway yesterday, except it was direct from my kitchen not a local curry house.

Not bad huh? I’m getting the recipes for everything up and so far we have the samosas, pilau “rice” and Bombay potatoes. The rest will follow in the next couple of days, so you should have them all in time for your very own Saturday Night takeaway, if the mood strikes you!

In other news I was very pleased to take delivery of an actifry this week! I’m blown away by it so far, and it is going to be very useful for a top secret project I’m currently working on. More on that in due course, but it’s something I’m very excited about. I fried the samosas in the actify instead of baking them, and they worked really well, came out nice and crispy and cooked in next to no time. I’m going to try chicken nuggets in it later on, fingers crossed they turn out well, though I can’t honestly see any reason why they wouldn’t.

Today’s excitement was a delivery from Devon Rose, lots of lovely nitrate free bacon and lard, along with an assortment of other delights, including liver and kidneys! I haven’t cooked with kidneys yet so I’m looking forward to that, with some trepidation. Tomorrow I’m hoping to recreate a childhood favourite, Leberwurst. I really hope it tastes as good as I remember from my days in Germany, fingers crossed.

Oh, I almost forgot! I have a code to share with you for a 10% discount off your first order with Devon Rose, you just need to type in TW10RTD at the checkout. They offer a really fantastic service, Richard phoned me to discuss my order and was extremely friendly and helpful.

We went to watch some amazing fireworks the other weekend, take a look at this little video, I think you’ll be as blown away as we were (not literally, thankfully)

i’m sure I’ve missed out some incredibly exciting happens of the last week or two, but I’m buggered if I can remember what! I’m off to join in with paleo hour in a wee while, come along and join in if you’re about between 8pm and 9pm GMT on a Tuesday, it’s a great little community that is rapidly growing. Uk based, but all welcome.

TTFN

Vegetable Geek!

I had SUCH an exciting weekend! Whilst some might have been off hiking mountain trails, jumping out of aeroplanes, swimming along city rivers, I …. well… I went to the supermarket! “OMG! You didn’t?” “Like, WOW man!!”  Yeah… OK, not the most exciting way to spend a weekend I’ll grant you, but seriously, it was very exciting to me. Let me show you…

Now do you see? For those of you who live in more exotic places, I’ll remind you that this is a supermarket in a small, North Yorkshire town, not central London! I mean, seriously? This is beyond exciting to me! I was also very excited to use my lovely ‘shroom basket to bring home some of my goodies in. If you follow me on instagram you’ll have seen this basket in the making process. I am beside myself with pleasure when I look at it, and can’t quite believe that I managed to do such a good job of the sewing.

Isnt that a lovely sight?

But look… there’s more (said in a Jimmy Cricket style. Don’t know who Im talking about? Eek, showing my age there! Here, http://youtu.be/IC4TaV8HEzw

Fab stuff! Lots of ingredients there that Ive never used before, even though I was vegetarian for over 20 years! I definitely eat way more vegetables now than I ever did. We had samphire for the first time with kedgeree  – a family favourite that I paleoified (that will be a word in the next oxford english dictionary!) I’ve been experimenting with the artichokes today – what a stunning vegetable that is! – and there will be a recipe to follow later this week.

The rest of the veg is waiting impatiently for me to pull my finger out and use it before it starts to go off, something of a problem in a modern house in the midst of a heatwave. Talking of which, this is the first time I’ve ever known creamed coconut to liquify in the packet, but it was very handy for a lovely recipe experiment I decided to start working on at 10.30 pm the other night. More of that later, I need to work on my piping skills before I share it with you, but I’ll just say chocolate orange… I’ve also been playing with a very exciting recipe, not one of mine I’m sorry to say, but one the the very clever Tara from Primal Power developed. My children are SO delighted with it I can’t tell you – my 10 year old son actually did a happy dance before leaping on me for a hug when he saw these…

Last night I used the same dough to make pizza. Yes, actual, real, crisp, holds together without crumbling, pizza. It was a momentous occasion in our house! This recipe is bloody brilliant for those of us who have children who sometimes just want to eat “normal” food but who can’t because it just hurts too much. Tara is selling this recipe for the very good value price of $3.95 and honestly, it is well worth it, she has clearly worked really hard to develop this and could have charged way more for something this good! Seriously, go and get yourself a copy. Click here to visit Primal Power.  We used swede in our version which worked really well, and is pretty cheap right now. I will be doing further experiments with this dough and will probably be putting up some recipes in the near future that use it.

ETA: We made Enchiladas and Samosas with it! Totally bloody awesome stuff frankly!

Later this week I’m going to be sharing our path to paleo with you, and talking about a seriously inspiring lady who was partly responsible for our massive change in diet. Til then… eat your veggies  and tell me about them, I’d love to know what your favourites are and how you keep them in good shape in this weather!

TTFN

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A World Without Wheat

My friend Elaine sent me a link to an article the other day – it was this one – go and read it, I’ll wait for you to come back….

We were driving out to the seaside for my daughter’s birthday trip later that day; we drove past fields of wheat and I couldn’t help wondering what a world without wheat would look like.

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Wheat field image from FWallpapers.com

I tried to imagine what would take the place of the vast expanses of gently swaying grain crops, and I got a bit excited! (I’m a simple soul, it doesn’t take much!) Would they be filled instead with vegetables and fruit or grazing livestock? Would we see smaller fields with more hedgerows? Probably not, as in Lincolnshire where they grow a lot of vegetables, the fields are pretty industrial sized.

Would we need more fruit, vegetables and meat to make up for the grain products that people commonly fill up on? Or would eating more nutrient filled foods, and fat, mean we needed to consume less food not more?

I’m not a scientist, so I don’t know the answers to these questions, but I guess if it’s true that 80% of the world population is going to stop eating wheat, we are going to need to ask these questions sooner rather than later.

Wheat, and other grains, take up so much of our available soil that it would change the world, and the little country I live in, extensively. This would have a massive knock on effect for farmers, which in turn would mean big changes in food production and food supply – effectively the entire way our economy and lives are run would change. 

It takes around about 1300 litres of water to grow 1kg of wheat! Our family of 6 directly uses 150,000 litres of water a year – that equates to approximately 115 bags of flour, or just under 2 and a half bags a week! That’s quite a shocking figure when I think about it – we would very easily have consumed far more than that when we were eating wheat – breakfast cereals, pasta, bread, pizza, biscuits etc etc ad infinitum! That is an awful lot of water for a product that caused us a lot of pain and weight gain!

Obviously everything we eat uses water, and probably in equally large measure to the amount wheat uses. Though I’d have thought that when you are growing your own veg and making use of grey water or harvested rainwater you are going to reduce the usage quite considerably, I don’t know, I’m not a scientist.

What I think isn’t taken into consideration though is this: we need to be careful with our water consumption, so with that in mind, isn’t it better for us to use water to grow food that is actually going to help maintain our health, instead of wasting it on a product that is, increasingly, highly toxic to human and animal life? 

Isn’t this a conversation that we need to be having now? I would love to be able to find decent, unbiased, truly scientific information about this subject, but it seems that, as with so many issues related to human and animal health, there are too many polarised opinions to really get at the hard facts. 

I don’t want to hear that going vegetarian or vegan will save the planet, because I just don’t buy that argument – it doesn’t stack up on so many levels for me. I don’t want to hear propaganda from CAFOs or organic farmers; I certainly don’t want to hear how monsanto crops are going to save us all from starvation; I want hard facts not twisted to satisfy an agenda. Is that possible, do you think? Am I alone in caring? What do you think?

 ETA: Just read that Monsanto are effectively pulling out of Europe

 

if you’re interested in keeping up with us you might like to like creatively paleo on facebook or follow us on twitter or instagram or if pinterest is your thing we’re there too! Social media whores, much?!

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