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Eat What You Want… Diet?

Caught In The Act

We don’t do diets in our house. Or at least I didn’t think we did. Then I Googled ‘diets’ out of interest.

Crikey!

We have the 5:2 diet, Dukan diet, Paleo diet, Atkins diet, Alkaline diet, Cambridge diet, South Beach diet, Slimming World diet, Slim-Fast diet, LighterLife diet, WeightWatchers diet, Rosemary Conley diet and Jenny Craig diet and that’s just for starters

I then Googled ‘Eat what you want diet’. I was surprised to find page after page of differing ‘Eat What You Want Diets’!

Now I have nothing against diets. I’m sure for some people they are the right thing and possibly the only way they will lose weight.

However the people that seem to be on a never ending circle of diets do make me laugh. Because that’s the thing. They do one diet, lose some weight, start eating ‘normally’, put weight back on and then start another diet. And then there’s someone making a lot of money out of these people!
The funny thing is we eat what we want. No. Not the eat all what you want diet. We just eat what we want.

However, we hardly eat any processed food. We don’t eat ready meals… at all (even the microwave has been shut away in the loft!) and if we or the Kids want to have something to eat between meals it’s usually a piece of fruit, not a chocolate bar, bag of crisps or bag of sweets.

We saw a video that someone had posted on You tube. It was a talk by Michael Pollan. If you are interested in food and diet I recommend looking at some of the things he has written.

Michael Pollan Books

One of the things he says is “you can eat as much junk food as you want… as long as you make it yourself”

And it’s a really good train of thought. It’s easy to go and buy chips, pizza, burgers and southern fried chicken from the take-away, you could go every day. However to make these things at home requires time, effort, quite a bit of mess and subsequent cleaning up! Which is why we only have these things occasionally as a treat, even then chips are usually baked in the oven as opposed to deep-fried. Making them yourself also means you don’t get the hidden nasty ingredients in there.

The other thing that Michael Pollan mentions is the amount of sugar, salt, chemicals and hidden fats in processed foods and ready meals. Again something which we don’t really eat.

So it’s funny when you look at the different diets and see that the majority of them say to cut down on processed food and eat more fruit and vegetables.

Well that’s what we do and it’s also what Michael Pollan advocates (although I have given a very simplified version of his advice).

We enjoy food. We cook nearly everything we eat from scratch. We eat fruit. We eat vegetables.

We don’t eat ready meals and we don’t eat a lot of processed food.

We eat what we want… does that mean we’re on a diet? If we are we’ve been on it for over eight years and still enjoying it. Now that must be some diet!

Just please, please don’t give it a name… I would be mortified to Google diets again and find ‘The ‘Ome Made Diet’!

Home Made Kebab by 'Ome Made

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Rebel, Rebel…

 

Those that know me will know I have always been a bit rebellious. Not for any reason. I just didn’t like doing as I was told or what was expected of me. A rebel without a cause!

These days I still like doing my own thing. Not following the crowd. Not following the latest trends.

Kit is the same and I guess it’s rubbed off on our children too.PaperArtist_2014-04-01_09-52-56

And as for commercialism… Grrrr!

The constant bombardment on what we should be buying, wearing, watching, listening and… EATING!

I am very proud of my Kids. They are not constantly demanding we buy them this, that and the other. One Direction? You’ll not hear any of that in our house!

Sure they like their Vans and Converse shoes but at least they are a little alternative.

As for food, well to put it simply… they love it… all of it. They will eat absolutely everything!

However suggest(jokingly) to them that we go for a McDonalds or KFC and we get a resounding NOOOOOO!

We have explained to our children how fast food is made and the type of ingredients that go into it. They have even watched ‘Supersize Me’, they loved it and even demanded to watch it again and again. It really put them off McDonalds.

MissT  tucking into a 'Ome Made burger
MissT tucking into a ‘Ome Made burger

The thing is, are we depriving our children? They have home-cooked food on a daily basis. Plenty of fruit. Plenty of vegetables and salad. They have sweet treats occasionally and the odd bag of crisps now and again. If they are hankering for something between meals they usually help themselves from the fruit bowl.

 

pizza feature blog

 

lamb flatbread

 

No they don’t eat from fast food establishments but they have freshly made pizza, home-made burgers, kebabs and even Southern style coated chicken. Not to mention the curries complete with pilau rice, popadums, chapattis and Nan bread.

 

 

veal burger

 

 

 

And can they eat! They absolutely love their food. Sometimes they haven’t even finished breakfast before they’re asking “What’s for tea?”

Deprived? I don’t think so!

 

Tandoori Dj

They are outside a lot too. On scooters, bikes or just larking about. They walk to and from school every day. It’s not far but it all helps. Then there’s the swimming at the weekend and more recently a bit of a run on Saturday mornings (yeah! That one’s killing me!). Yes. They get plenty of exercise.

 

CurlyE Bowling Banner

 

The thing is, they are a healthy weight, even skinny  by todays standards. They look like me when I was younger (Yes I was skinny once!).

 

 

So when did not eating a proper balanced diet ofMissT sliding hoCurlyE On a Bike... Upright!me-cooked food and not getting plenty of exercise as a child become the norm?

HHH Feature

Well I’m still a rebel because I don’t want myself or any of our family to be normal if that’s what being normal consists of these days.

Maybe now I’m a rebel with a cause!

 

 

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An Unexpected… Pudding

It was a nice sunny day in the summer holidays. We had said our good-byes a few days before to our child from Belarus that had been staying with us for a few weeks healthy respite. So it was just Us and our Kids. Time to chill out and relax.

Blackberry Frangipane

Our Kids had been eager to get their bikes out and have a ride around the local park. And that’s exactly what we did!

Off we set along with a bag of stale bread to throw to the ducks.

Our Kids had a good ride, plenty of exercise and fresh air on their bikes and the ducks were well stuffed.

On the way back home we decided to do a bit of foraging. On the way into the heart of the park we had noticed a patch of brambles with a few Blackberries peeking out that maybe warranted further investigation. And I am glad we did. After 30 minutes of scrambling about in the bushes and us shouting the kids “Don’t pick the ones near the ground… a dog may have peed on them!”, we returned home with just short of a kilo of plump, juicy blackberries.

 

Blackberries

Blackberry crumble seemed like a good idea but then I remembered I had a bit of leftover shortcrust pastry in the fridge but only enough for a base. Hmmm, what to do?

I’m pretty sure someone (Kit!…She has all the good ideas….) mentioned ” Bakewell tart but with blackberries” and there it was. Decision made.

 

 

I can’t call it Blackberry Bakewell tart though because to be honest it bears no resemblance to a Bakewell Tart!

 

So here is my recipe for:-

 

Blackberry Frangipane Tart.

 

Ingredients for 1 large or 2 smaller tarts

 

Shortcrust pastry (500g/1lb) Click the link for a recipe.Tart Case

Strawberry Jam (enough to coat the bottom of your tart… Ooo er!)

Blackberries (700 – 800g)

Caster sugar for sprinkling over the tart.

 

 

For the Frangipane:

100g/4oz butter at room temperature

100g/4oz caster sugar

2 medium eggs, beatenBlackberry Frangipane

100g/4oz ground almonds

30g/1oz self raising flour (a traditional frangipane uses plain but I wanted mine to rise into the blackberries)

 

To Make

Roll out your pastry to about 1/4″ thick and line a well greased flan tin/dish with it.

Slap on a good dollop of strawberry jam and spread to cover the base of the tart.

Blackberry Frangipane

To make the frangipane cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Gradually beat in the eggs and then stir in the ground almonds and flour.

Spread the frangipane on top of the jam.Blackberry Frangipane

cover the frangipane with the blackberries and sprinkle with caster sugar.

 

Blackberry Frangipane 7Blackberry Frangipane

Bake in a preheated oven at 200°C/gas mark 6 for 40 – 50 minutes.

 

Let the tart cool for at least 20 minutes before serving. We had ours with some ‘Ome Made vanilla and Strawberry ripple ice cream. The leftover tart was nice cold, straight from the fridge.

 

Blackberry Frangipane

 

I’m writing this and It’s making me realise… we are very, very lucky in this country.

Sometimes I don’t think we realise just how lucky we are?