Delightful, delicious dining

Food is more than calories

One of the myths commonly held in modern Western culture is that food is equal to calories. Some people still think that counting calories is the uninspiring route to a healthy weight. The reality is that food is far more than calories. Which explains why some people eat lots of ‘high calorie’ food and easily maintain a healthy weight, while others just look at food and the pounds or kilos pile on.

One place that health and wellbeing, connectivity and creativity intersect with harmony for me is in the kitchen and around the dining table. I experience a profound sense of satisfaction sitting around our dining table when it is laden with delicious food, the smiling faces of friends and family sharing more than food. Gaining something far more valuable, more life giving than calories. I’ve provided the nourishing food, however the same meal eaten alone won’t have as many benefits as when it’s shared, when the meal created provides nourishment for body and soul.

Here is an example of a recent meal I prepared that was better than ‘balanced’. It was brimming with flavour and colour. It was nutritious and delicious. Inspired by some of my favourite cookbook authors, Yotam Ottolenghi, Hetty McKinnon, Sally Wise and Jo Whitton. There was a cauliflower salad made with roast cauliflower, raw cauliflower blitzed in food processor, dressed up with Italian parsley and pomegranate seeds freshly harvested from our garden. Roast beetroot was taken to the next level with caramelised turnip and bright green edamame beans garnished with thinly sliced radish, spring onions and toasted sesame seeds. Zucchini had been braised in garlic and lemon juice, mash was vibrant orange thanks to sweet potato, pumpkin and carrot. The slow cooker had produced one of Jeff’s favourites, meltingly tender ox tail and beef cheeks, nose to tail eating at it’s best.

I’m an advocate for eating the ‘rainbow’. The more variety of coloured vegetables the better. (My son delights in teasing me that Fruit Loops ticks the rainbow box.)

For dessert I’d made the yummiest pecan pie, the pastry was made with almond meal, and the pie was sweetened with dates and honey rather than highly processed corn syrup. Just reading this activates my taste buds. Dinner anyone?


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