What I eat -Mitä syön

My cooker is still broken. Can you imagine?! It has taken four engineer visits and five weeks for British Gas to discover that they cannot find a spare part for our cooker, they cannot fix it and the whole oven-hob combination needs to be replaced. Unreal. Due to this circumstances I cannot unfortunately provide you with many new recipes. I am so looking forward to get a new cooker so that I can actually start baking again. I promised to volunteer by baking cakes for NCT nearly new sales in a few weeks time and I so hope I do not have to cancel it.

In the meantime I thought I would write a post about what I eat on daily basis as many people around me so often note how healthily I live, particularly Britons. I don’t know whether my eating habits are still strikingly Nordic, by saying this I mean home-made and healthy cooking or if they really are naturally very healthy, I honestly don’t know. I think I got a small Heathrow injection during my first year in the UK. Heathrow injection is the metaphor of the weight gain people experience when migrating to London. Well, it is all gone now thanks to breastfeeding and I am back in my normal shape in UK size 6!

I have been always rather health conscious but particularly when I had to start keeping food diary due to my baby’s allergies it suddenly struck me how healthily I ate. I love good food so I would not go for boring and bad tasting healthy meals ever. By glimpsing through my meals and snacks in the food diary the overall impression is pretty healthy. I think my biggest problem has always been that I get excited about some particular food and I keep on eating it day after day until I finally get bored. This is what my dear Aussie husband noticed as a distinctive character in me when we met. It is true, I admit. When I had my cottage cheese avocado phase I ate it every day. When I have my raspberry oatmeal phase (like now!) I eat it every morning…so sometimes I think my diet can turn to rather one-sided if I don’t pay attention to it. Sometimes I should force myself to be more versatile. Maybe this one-sided and repetitive tendency is the key to stick to my weight so easily. It was remarked in TIME article I once read that people who tend to eat same things day after day don’t gain weight for some reason..who knows how fair this statement is but in my case it has worked so far.

In general my approach is tasty food in reasonable amounts. I don’t ever give up on the quality but rather the quantity. Instead of having some awful low-fat yoghurt I have full fat Greek yoghurt full stop. Instead of low fat cream I have only half a tub of double cream. Instead of margarin I use butter to get the full flavour, I just do not add 1cm layer on the top of my bread.

When looking at my food diary I have kept for the past months my usual day starts with either an oven baked raspberry oatmeal.  This is obviously my breakfast at the moment, next month it can be something else that I get obsessed with! The alternative for this raspberry oatmeal is a Swiss style muesli which usually consists of rice milk (or milk) soaked jumbo oats (1dl, so half a cup) , date pieces and raisins, a tiny bit of honey (1 tbsp) or Agave syrup  (1 tbsp) and one grated apple (Royal Galas are my favourites!!).  I am a big fan of oats, I have always been. I use them in everything particularly in baking. Oat is nice, fatty and flavoursome grain and tummy friendly too.

My lunch is usually a salad, a power food salad  which is quite often built around chicken or fish -hot smoked salmon being my favourite. I throw some quinoa, nuts, roasted almond flakes, dried cranberries or raisins in it and I usually make my own olive oil and honey-mustard dressing. If I am out and about I usually order a salad or sushi. My favourite sushi is salmon avocado topped with some roe. Other one I love is a crab roll.  When I was able to eat dairy my favourite salads were either goat cheese or halloumi salad!

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My afternoon snack is usually nuts. I am the biggest nut eater by miles. My husband calls me a chipmunk as I munch so many nuts. The other reason for this nickname is that when I smile my cheeks appear proportionally huge and I do look like a chipmunk! I wish I had beautiful cheek bones but I do not, I have round baby cheeks!

I don’t eat lollies or chocolate candy bars (like Snickers or Mars) as I don’t really like them. I love chocolate but I have never really been the type of person who can smash the whole block of chocolate in one go. I am happy with a few pieces or a small chocolate bar. Maybe my biggest weakness is ice cream, Ben&Jerry Karamel Sutra in particular. It is so sweet with its caramel core that my friend got into labour after eating it. The baby must have gone nuts from the amount of sugar my friend ate when she finished the whole pot on her own! In addition to nuts I also love berries -blueberries, raspberries and strawberries, so I tend to eat them if i have them in the fridge.

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For dinner we usually cook something really nice as I love cooking dinners and having a tasty glass of wine with the dinner. Pastas, risottos, Thai curries or very filling salads with nice meat and fish are our usual type of dinners. For dinner I like to have a good amount of carbs as then I have a full tummy and I sleep better all night long. I do not avoid white flour, I favour it over rye, barley or whole grain. I have always been like that. As Finns usually love rye bread I am an alien in my home country. I do not really eat rye unless it is in so called sweet archipelago bread. I love nothing more than white French artisan baguettes! I enjoy dipping sliced bagutte pieces in good quality olive oil. I use olive oil so much. I go through bottles so quickly that I cannot believe it.

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I don’t use much cream at the moment as you know if you have been reading my blog but if I didn’t have the dietary restrictions due to my baby I would use cream. I always use double cream, but I use it to increase the flavour and make the flavour smoother and well rounded. I don’t pour the whole lot in! For example if I make vol au vent seafood sauce or risotto the maximum I would ever use is 50-100ml! I don’t want to over power the dish with cream as if there is too much of it I find it a bit too heavy and greasy. So overall I think my eating habits are kind of combination of Nordic and French in many ways.

Uunini on yhä rikki, joten uusien reseptien testaaminen ja tänne postaaminen saa odottaa. Neljä British Gasin insinöörikäyntiä takana ja viisi viikkoa kulunut ja uuni siis yhä rikki. Eilen ilmoittivat, ettei oikeaa varaosaa ole saatavilla ja koko uunihärpäke joudutaan vaihtamaan. Miten tämän toteamiseksi on voinut mennä 4 käyntia ja viisi viikkoa???  Uunin korjaus on siis saanut jo koomiset mittasuhteet. Lisäksi epäilys hiipii, että British Gas palkkaa roskakuskeja insinäärien saappaisiin tai toinen vaihtoehto on ettei tämän maan koulutustaso ole hääppöinen. Sillä aikaa kun uunini odottaa korjaamistaan ajattelin kirjoittaa postauksen siitä mitä syön, sillä niin useat ihmiset, etenkin Britit, ympärilläni usein kommentiovat kuinka terveellisesti syön ja elän. Luulen että terveelliset elämäntavat etenkin ruokailun suhteen ovat vielä osa pohjoismaalaisuutta minussa. Pohjoismaissa kotitekoinen ja terveellinen ruoka kun on yhä kovasti arvossaan. Ette usko kuinka usein täällä Lontoossa näkee ihmisten kaupassa ostavan kaiken valmiina, aivan kaiken. Täytyy myöntää, että sain kyllä pienen ”Heathrow piikin” (Heathrow injection) Lontooseen muutettuamme. Heathrow piikki on metafora painonnoususta, jonka Lontooseen muuttavat usein kokevat. No, se on kaikki poissa imetyksen jälkeen ja olen takaisin lähtömitoissa UK:n koossa 6!

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Tyttäreni allergioiden vuoksi aloittamaaani ruokapäiväkirjaa selaillessa huomasin itsekin kuinka terveellisesti itse asiassa syön. Rakastan hyvää ruokaa liian paljon syödäkseni mitään mikä maistuu ”liian terveelliselta” ja mauttomalta. Nyrkkisääntöni on aina ollut herkullista kohtuullisessa määrin. Suurin ongelmani on pikemminkin se, että innostun usein yhdesta ruoka-aineesta tai ruoasta niin paljon, että syön sitä kyllästymiseen saakka. Tämä on itse asiassa ominaispiirteeni, jonka rakas aussimieheni huomasi jo seurustelumme alkuvaiheessa. Ruokavalioni voi siis joskus päätyä hyvin yksisuuntaiselle polulle. Taannoin lukemassani artikkelissa tosin todettiin, että saman ruoan toistaminen päivittäin on useiden ihmisten painonhallinnan salaisuus. Ehkä siis tämä hullunkurinen ominaispiirre minussa onkin auttanut minua kautta elämäni pysymään hoikkana.

Yleisesti ottaen vihaan vähärasvaisia tuotteita, syön aina mielummin täysirasvaista kreikkalaista jogurttia, voita ja kermaa kohtuudella kuin kajoan kamaliin vähärasvaisiin litkuihin. Katsauksena ruokapäiväkirjaani voin mainita, että aamiaiseni on usein vadelmakaurakakkunen -ainakin tällä hetkellä kun vadelmakaurakakkubuumini on käynnissä. Vaihtoehtoisesti saatan syödä sveitsiläisen mysliaamiaisen mikä on siis riisimaidossa tai maidossa liotettuja jumbokaurahiutaleita (n. 1dl), johon olen sekoittanut taatelin paloja, rusinoita tai kuivattuja karpaloita sekä hieman hunajaa (1rkl) tai Agave siirappia. Tähän seokseen raastan yhden omenan (Royal Galat ovat suosikkejani), sekoitan yhteen ja maiskutan joko vadelmien ta mustikoiden kanssa. Kuten huomata saattaa rakastan kauraa ja käytän sitä paljon etenkin leivonnassa ja aamiaisissa.

Lounaaksi syön yleensä salaatin -power food salaatin- mikä tarkoittaa, että heitän salaatin sekaan kinoaa, pähkinöitä, gojimarjoja ja muuta energiaa antavaa. Syön tämän useimmiten kotona ollessani omalla hunaja-sinappi-oliviöljykastikkeella (1rkl hunajaa, 1 rkl ranskalaista sinappia, 1-2 rkl oliiviöljyä. Jos olen kaupungilla päädyn useimmiten joko vuohenjuusto tai halloumisalaattiin tai sushiin. Välipalana mussutan pähkinöitä ja paljon! Olen pähkinähirmu ja siksi rakas aussimieheni kutsuu minua maaoravaksi. Tämä nimi ei juonna juuriaan yksinomaan pähkinänsyönnistäni vaan isoista vauvanposkistani. Niin paljon kun haluaisinkin korkeat poskipäät, ei niitä minulle ole suotu ja lapsenkasvoiset poskeni pullottavat kuin maaoravalla, joka on hamstrannut pähkinöitä talven varalle.

En syö karkkia enkä karkkimaisia suklaapatukoita kuten Mars ja Snickers, en pidä niistä. Suklaata rakastan, mutta sen pitää olla kunnon suklaata ilman ylimääräisiä kommervenkkeja. Paheeni on jäätelö, rakastan Ben&Jerryn Karamel Sutra jäätelöä, jossa on 4cm paksuinen karamellisisus. Ystäväni synnytys alkoi hänen tyhjennettyään kyseisen purkin yksinään. Lääkäriystäväni totesikin, että vauva lienee seonnut sokerihöyryistä ja päätti tulla ulos ja äkkiä ennen kuin saa lisää Karamel Sutraa!

Illallinen on minulle nautinto usein kera lasillisen viiniä. Illalliseksi syömme yleensä. joko risottoa, pastaa, Thaicurria tai täyttävää salaattia lihan tai kalan kanssa. Syömme keskieurooppalaiseen aikaan klo 19-20, joten haluan ruoan olevan hiilihydraattista ja täyttävää, jotta nukun hyvin. En välttele vaalea jauhoa, päinvastoin rakastan sitä enkä juuri välitä rukiista, ohrasta tai täysjyvätuotteista. Olenkin varsin epätavallinen suomalainen, sillä en pidä ruisleiästä ellei se ole makeaa saaristolaisleipää. Suosikkini on tavallinen ranskalainen juureen tehty artisaanipatonki hyvälaatuiseen oliiviöljyyn dipattuna -jam. Käytän oliiviöljyä paljon ja kannan sitä pulloittain kaupasta kotiin. Kermaa en tyttäreni allergioiden vuoksi ole vähään aikaa käyttänyt, mutta normaalisti kyllä. Käytän kermaa kohtuudella ja lisään sitä kastikkeisiin maun pehemennykseksi ja tasapainottamiseksi. Ruokatottumukseni ovatkin ehkä varsin sopivassa määrin yhdistelmä mannermaista ja pohjoismaista keittiötä.

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Mummy diet – Äitiysdieetti

I have often wondered how some women can have pregnancy kilos after being a mum for more than half a year. One of my friends commented on this question in one of the emails we sent to each others by saying ”I think those ladies who still have kilos left after mummy days must have boring babies”. I don’t know how fair this comment is but this applies to my situation at least!

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My ”mummy diet” is very simple. I wake up at 6am at the latest (after waking up 2-4 times a night). I prepare the breakfast for my restless baby. I bounce her in my arms whilst making the porridge, I feed her whilst entertaining her like a circus clown (believe it or not I am doing African drumming at the moment, it is the hit!). After her breakfast I manage to prepare my own breakfast but just when I am about to have it, my baby starts crying again and I cannot finish it as I need to breastfeed her…a new attempt..fails..a new attempt..fails..a new attempt..finally a success and I eat in a speed of a rocket. I take my baby upstairs, change her nappy, I put her to bouncer, I bounce her with my leg whilst putting on my make up.

I keep on bouncing her, entertaining her until it is her morning snack time..same show again..she starts to be tired but doesn’t know how to fall asleep. A new breastfeed, I call this a knock down morning feed..usually it works. I go for a pram walk in the park to keep her asleep then to supermarket to use this nap time efficiently by buying all the food for lunch and dinner. This includes some super heavy spring water bottles and vegetable bags. My baby wakes up just as I am about to start walking back home..she start with a whinge that turns to a cry and she cries and cries. I sing to her, no impact. She cries still so I have to pick her up and take her to my arms. I keep on pushing the pram that weighs like it was full of stones. I do this with one hand, holding my baby in another. Whilst doing this I regret we chose the house that is uphill from the supermarket as I need to always hike uphill with all these bags and baby in my arms. I look like a donkey.

At home I keep on bouncing my baby whilst unloading the shopping into the fridge. It is time to prepare her lunch, I repeat the bouncing, putting her down pattern, never works. I feed her, this time drumming doesn’t work so we need toys. A new game, my dear daughter throws the toys to the ground I pick them up, she throws them down, I pick them up. We play this game and I scoop food into her mouth. My back feels sore.  Finally done. I start preparing my own lunch (usually salad , it is fast to eat and not bad if eaten cold) and I reckon I have never chopped cucumber and tomatoes so quickly. I have no time to do any meat as my baby is cranky. I throw some leftover chicken on top of the salad, I eat it whilst holding my wiggling baby who does not want to crawl on the ground or be left alone with her toys. I have  a cup of coffee -surprisingly warm this time- and yay I got some lunch down. I am still hungry, salad whilst breastfeeding is not enough but there is no time to prepare anything extra as I really need to do some washing too. I carry dirty washing baskets up and down the stairs whilst holding my baby. In my mind I wonder why I let them fill up so full that they are heavier than my usual 20 kilo travel suitcase.

I try an afternoon knock down breastfeed, sometimes it works. I take my baby for another walk so that she would stay asleep even for half an hour. Same story as in the morning, she wakes up 15 minutes before we hit the home door and I end up carrying her in my arms whilst wheeling the pram uphill. It is time for her afternoon snack. This time we start with African drumming and end up throwing toys. I comfort myself, at least she ate it all. Now my baby starts getting her ”evening crankies”.  The alternating game begins. This means I move her from room to room, we have a mirror game in between, I put her to door bouncer, then to the regular bouncer and a new round again. As the clock approaches 5.30pm she gets manic. She wiggles and requires heavier bouncing. At 5.30pm I am too tired to bounce, my hands ache and eyes hardly stay open. I take one rice cake and stuff it into my mouth, some blood sugar.  I open a pack or crisps but manage to get only two into my mouth. I prepare her porridge whilst entertaining her, I sing, I dance and she still whinges. I feed her the porridge. This time no games, good eating, luckily.

I run upstairs to make the bath whilst holding her, I let the water run. I realise all her washed clothes are downstairs. I hold her  and I run downstairs to pick her night romper, I run upstairs with her. I bath her and entertain her by splashing the water and singing songs. I take her away from the bath and I wrap her with the towel. When I get to her room I remember her sleeping bag is downstairs. I run downstairs whilst holding my towel wrapped baby. I run upstairs with my towel wrapped baby. Suddenly I feel something warm against my skin. She weed. Well here we go again. I take her to bathroom and wash her again.  Whilst doing this I realise that all the towels are downstairs as I have not had a chance to bring them upstairs during this day long entertainment show. I take my wet baby to downstairs and wrap her in her towel. I run upstairs hoping she has no more wees to do. I start putting her nappy on. She hates it, she wants to be naked like Adam and Eve.  So I sing and I drum. Nothing works, I give up. As soon as I get her ready I start the knock down good night feed. I see her falling asleep, her eyes are slowing closing and after every minute I feel my body is getting more and more relaxed. Soon I will have my own spare moment. Win. Sleeping baby.

I run downstairs, I prepare a dinner for me and my husband. Usually this is something super carbful like risotto or potato dish!  I have my glass of white wine and take a breath. I haven’t had a chance to snack anything during the day, I have hardly visited a loo myself, I have run like a crazy chicken, I have entertained my baby like a jumping monkey. I reckon I have lifted up weights more than I could ever do at the gym. I have walked at least two hours outside, I have pushed the heavy pram and shopping uphill. I have run up and down the stairs all day long and not alone. No kilos after this. Does your baby not need entertainment? Mine does. All the time. This is my mummy diet. Does it sound familiar?

As crazy as it is I love it and I love her.

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If you felt like this could be a day of your life listen to this song on Youtube. This ”Motherhood feat” video was something that my colleagues told me to watch before going to maternity leave. I was laughing at it back then, now I know what they meant 🙂