Well a very belated Happy New Year to all those who still look in. I did write a New Year blog but I didn't publish, I don't know why. I think it is probably because I am so easily distracted these days, not in a bad way I hasten to add, having the attention span of goldfish is in its own way, quite pleasurable. I can get halfway through a film before realising I have seen it before but carrying on because I can't remember the ending.
And I have always taken a huge amount of joy in learning new things, even if it is the 7th time I am relearning them. I jest, the major things stick, like one of the more recent. It dawned on me that it is not necessary to shop for food as if an apocalypse were on its way or have on hand all the ingredients for an impromptu banquet. Learning to shop and cook for one has been like moving from the dark ages into the renaissance! What's that you say? I don't need to buy a 5lb bag of spuds and keep peeling and chopping them for weeks on end til nothing remains but a mangled pile of stalks? I don't have to torture myself with guilt over vegetables in the fridge I have not turned into soup or healthy fritters. I do not have to fill up my fridge with ingredients for meals I will likely never make.
I have finally realised that ready meals are not the work of Beelzebub. They are in fact perfect for one person. I have come across a few duds, but on the whole I have been pleasantly surprised. Even the M&S ones are cheaper, if you want a varied diet, than buying the basic ingredients. Four good meals, comes to less than £20.00. I have to say I have never eaten so well with such little work involved and little washing up after! I come from a generation where cooking an evening meal was part of the codes and conventions of life. Almost a ritual. Now I feel like an old fogie for taking so long to adapt and dare I say it, enjoy the conveniences that have been available all this time. For example, why buy a loaf and fillings for a sandwich, when you can just pick up any sandwich you desire ready made? A whole loaf will go mouldy and the ham will curl up. I hate waste, and found I was buying lots of food that was not going to be used. I have no need to pack my freezer with leftover meals I won't touch and will throw out in a year because I have no idea what they are.
Now I see the light! My whole approach to food has changed considerably. I still enjoy my food, perhaps more now that I have accepted I'm no longer responsible for cooking for others. Having always made a Sunday dinner, that was a hard one, but letting go of the cost, the prep, the cleaning up after, I'm glad I did. M&S do a fine roast and individual packs of veg, so I can amp up the greens.
And I have rediscovered smoothies. Something that was a big part of a diet I devised myself where I lost 3 stone in 3 months! It honestly does work, that is it's doable, because I show the 'cheats'. Book available on Amazon, lol. Now I am a creamy gal, lol, that is give me a dessert filled with cream, and I'll put another load of cream on top. Ergo, I make my smoothies with lashings of Greek yoghurt, ground nuts, and or, oats. The best fruits I have found are readily prepared and frozen, so no prep needed and no waste. I look on my smoothies as a replacement meal, they are full of 'goodness' and taste delicious. I haven't tried a 'savoury' one yet, so if anyone knows of a good (palatable) one, please let me know. Does spinach really work with apple? I'm not yet that brave to try.
I don't particularly diet these days, if anything it is a struggle to maintain the weight I am, I am destined to be one of those little old ladies who shrinks because I have lost some height as well! Again, I'm not not enjoying it, I quite like like being treated as fragile, just wait til I open me gob! ha ha.
Making the transition to eating for one may have a tinge of sadness, but once you get past that bit, it opens up a whole new world of culinary delights. I think I have always judged ready meals by the standards of the 70's and 80's when curries and rice came in a box (what was the name of that famous brand?). Of course they are nothing like that now, we have every cuisine, beautifully prepared for us in the chilled section.
Of course eating like this has given me lots more time than I probably didn't need but enjoyed nevertheless. And I feel I am eating well, that is, I would be quite happy to be presented with any one of the meals I buy in a B&B with evening meal. M&S also do divine desserts that I am more than happy to have two nights in a row.
Well this wasn't mean't to be an advert for M&S, but eating for one probably affects a lot of people, old or young, so I thought I would share my experience. Not least because I am spending half as much as I did on food, eating a much nicer and more varied diet without ever once having to think if others might not like it. It's liberating! Finally, I can have roast pork, casseroles galore even liver and bacon if I want (I don't want) or fish and chips all prepared to my liking. Tis bliss! So if like myself you have always avoided convenience foods on moral (screwed up catholic or presbyterian 'must work hard' ethics) or fear of calories or unhealthy ingredients, think again. A recent roast lamb mini meal I had was only 254 calories! And it was delicious, I added extra vegetables and had a full plate.
Anyway, a kind hello to all my friends, hope your New Year is going well. My philosophy these days is pretty much we are heading towards some sort of Doomsday or 'Walking Dead' situation and I am in acceptance mode. What will be will be. I have seen enough disaster films to seize a 4x4 and raid a chemist! When I do pop my clogs I can't wait to tell my dad and my mum, that the US elected Donald Trump and the UK elected Boris Johnson. They will roar with laughter and astonishment, especially when I tell them yeah it did go as expected, both were disasters, ergo here I am, ha ha. But I'm not going to get political, I have discovered the art of Zen, I am just a tiny particle of sand and everything is beyond my control. Take care everyone.