Monday, May 10, 2010

Garden update

I wandered around the garden on Saturday, admiring and plucking ingredients for dinner. Here are some photos.

Em, remember when we planted these as seeds....
Kohl Rabi. I have no idea what to do with these crazy vegetables but will figure it out quick. One will be ready for harvesting in another week or two.
Radish. I ate this on Saturday night with dinner. Yum!
Ladybird that I rescued from drowning. Now go eat aphids...
Beans. These suckers will grow anywhere.
Not much has changed here since Em left. I've still not decided what to plant. Maybe this weekend I'll make some decisions and get some seeds in.
Chester doing his 'king of the castle' routine.
Anyone for celery!?
Only a month or so ago, this was pared back to bare earth. It's amazing how quickly things grow.
That's it for this tour. I've missed out on a few things but will do another round of the garden when some of the newer plants start producing. I'm hanging out for home grown brussel sprouts and broad beans!!  Amazing!! I can't wait!

Roast vegetable salad

Because I had intended to roast vegetables to go with the gnocchi and then changed my mind, I had some cut up pumpkin to do something with. It inspired another idea... a roast vegetable salad that I can eat with tuna for lunches for this week. I started chopping.

I roasted potato, pumpkin and carrot with cumin (whole seeds), smoked paprika, olive oil and salt. When those were done, I dumped them into a bowl and added diced green beans (from the garden), capsicum (from the garden), half a tin of corn and red kidney beans (I'll be using the other half for quesadeas for several dinners this week), celery (from the garden) and rainbow chard (from the garden).

Mixed all around and split into containers, my impromptu roast vegetable salad gives me three generous sized lunches. I'll top each with a can of tuna for a delicious, nutritious and colourful meal. Guess what I'm having for lunch tomorrow!?
And here's the cost breakdown. It's a little pricier than the gnocchi because of the tuna but it's not protein rich enough for me to eat on its own. I also suspect that these serves are going to prove just a touch too generous, so this may end up making four meals.

Potato Gnocchi and Tomato/Bacon Sauce

At the market on Saturday I snagged a 5kg bag of potatoes for $2. With eyes and sprouts, they're not going to last for much longer than a week before they turn inedible, so making potato gnocchi went to the top of the to-do list.

I used a recipe, of sorts, and because I still have lots of gluten free flours, I used rice and potato flour for the mix. They cooked up nicely enough, more spongy and airy than the ones I've made before and well suited to a sauce. I'd intended to roast some vegetables and add tomato to them to go with the gnocchi, but changed the recipe at the last moment.

I have lots of bacon in the freezer and the market haul also netted a good sized bag of onions so I threw together a bacon/tomato sauce, using some of the frozen tomato paste from the freezer to improve the taste. It made six generous sized serves, perfect for lunches.

Each serve works out at $1.10. Not bad for a delicious, filling and nutritious lunch. Here's the breakdown:
Oh, and I forgot... I found a container of frozen cooked pumpkin in the freezer so I tossed that in as well. That would have cost, maybe, at the absolute most, sixty cents, so technically each serving costs $1.20. That's still an absolute bargain, and delicious too!

Anxiety and depression

After years of symptoms, frustration, dietary restrictions and self-diagnosis, it turns out that I've been suffering from anxiety/depression all this time. All those physical symptoms (ALL OF THEM) were a consequence of insufficient neurotransmitters in my body. I'm now taking an anti-anxiety/depression medication and pretty much every symptom has gone. I can eat whatever I want, whenever I want and I don't suffer for it.

I'm embarassed that I put my friends and family through one fad diet after another when all I needed was a once a day pill. I wish I had figured this out much sooner. Not only would I have saved everyone (and myself) a whole lot of inconvenience and distress, but I would have saved a fortune on shonky remedies and naturopaths.

Dwelling on it is pointless. I'm glad that I'm well, or at least on the road to being well. I accept that pride and stubborness prevented me from accepting anxiety as the cause for a long time. I accept it now.