So now that I am in my 43rd year thoughts of mortality loom. Eat less. Move more. That’s the secret to a longer life.
But I might be wasting my time. To quote Michael Fitzpatrick (I’m not convinced I can work out who he is but anyway):
“The Japanese eat very little fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than the British or Americans. The French eat a lot of fat and also have fewer heart attacks than the British or Americans.
The Japanese drink very little red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than the British or Americans. The Italians drink excessive amounts of red wine and also suffer fewer heart attacks than the British or Americans. Conclusion: Eat and drink what you like. What kills you is speaking English”.
With these words in mind I proceeded to create the most decadent dish I could think of – served with vast quantities of red wine:
I have a new plate. Yes a plate. I can’t afford a KitchenAid food mixer. I don’t have the space for a pasta press. I owned a bamboo steamer once but it attracted an unpleasant sheen of greasy dust (or maybe that should read dusty grease) and in the end I chucked it.
I can’t even find the crappy cheese grater we bought at the BBC Good Food Show last year. Not that I want to use it; the only thing it could actually grate was thin air and I can’t find a recipe that requires grated thin air.
Anyway back to my new plate; it’s rectangular and white. I like it. It enables you to present your creation in an orderly manner – i.e. in a row, one thing after another.
With a round plate you tend to have to pile everything up in the middle, or you have to arrange things around the plate and it can quickly end up looking like you just threw the food at the plate and kind of hoped that everything would find it’s natural position all on its own.
Which of course it can’t because it’s all (hopefully) dead, and therefore inanimate.
So that’s why I like my new plate. And nice plates need nice things to put on them – so I went for something simple. Tuna is simple – doesn’t need much doing to it and lends itself nicely to flavours from the Orient…
Three years ago we got married. In the run up to that event I got myself a rowing machine. I mean I wasn’t going to spend my honeymoon in St. Lucia blubbering about like a beached whale. Sadly I didn’t stick with it. Once the ring was on it was all downhill. The night of the wedding we ended up eating pizza in a pub in Henley on Thames. You get the idea.
Fast forward to 2013. My ‘emergency diet’ did a job in the fourth quarter of 2012 but things aren’t going well now. I mean last night I ate pork belly and breast-of-duck; and a bottle of wine. And then fell asleep. So today I made a decision – out with the old….
Check out the magic bucket
Of course the problem with preparing great big lumps of tender meat dripping with rich wine-based sauces is that no one else wants to eat them. So in the interests of maintaining a healthy marriage I do like to delve into the depths of vegetarian cuisine.
But chickpeas, lentils….spelt!? Come on. I’d end up growing a tail and start nibbling raw carrot. So I’m always looking out for UVCs (Unusual Vegetable Creations). And here we focus on the Aubergine. ‘Aubergine’? Alright the Eggplant. But I can’t call it that because it neither has the shape of an egg, nor the colour (Why is it called an eggplant? Come to think of it, why is it called an aubergine? I’m renaming it – ‘Purple Shiny Potato’).
Some may remember that I am actually on a diet. Difficult to believe given the amount of food I cook (and now eat – I tried not eating stuff I make but that’s actually more difficult than I thought it would be).
However I do still try to create things that are low fat and low carbs – here’s one such creation: