Why do I always leave finding something to wear to the Christmas Party until two days before the freaking Christmas Party?!

UPDATE: Why does the BIG FAT FREAKING GIANT ZIT always start emerging on my chin two days before the freaking Christmas Party!?

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Sometimes I wish I didn’t like food so much. I get flamingly jealous of successful losers in slimming magazines who say they don’t really have a problem with food. The fat just sort of sneaked up on them, almost by accident; the cumulative effect of too many ready meals or takeaways or pregnancies or extra glasses of wine. Crikey. They just didn’t put the same enthusiasm into getting fat that I did! Ha!

I remember some folk in my Weight Watchers meetings who said they hated fooling around with food, and were more than happy to stick to the suggested meal plans. Some ate the same cereal for brekkie, made the same sandwich for lunch, boiled and grilled the same meat and veggies for dinner every day. They’d puzzle over the WW food lists and ask, "What the hell is this vegetable? What do I with it?". I’d be wriggling in my seat, fighting the urge to spew out fifteen different ways to slice and dice it.

But I’d stay silent, not wanting to reveal my true identity of Obsessive Glutton Girl. I was envious of these so-called Boring Eaters as they tended to be successful at busting the lard. Probably because they could just consistently stick to The Plan like a machine, and not be so easily distracted by every shiny fatty thing that went by.

Variety is the spice of life but a love of variety often leads to trouble, I tells ya. I gorge on food blogs, magazines and cooking programs. I get excited about new ingredients and recipes. I love the sights, smells and goddamn sexiness of it all. I love creaming butter and sugar with a wooden spoon until my arm aches. I love sitting in front of the oven and watching a cake rise. I love bludgeoning soups with my stab blender.  I love chopping herbs, hearing their little spines break beneath my knife.

I love wandering through markets, food courts and grocery stores. I love standing in front of bakery windows, slurping whipped cream from hot chocolates, reading online menus of restaurants I could never afford to eat in. Not at the same time, obviously.

I recently spent a whole ten minutes staring at a photograph of a broken-up block of chocolate.

Oddly enough I’m more interested in food living in Scotland, home of the deep-fried pizza, than I ever was back in Australia. Being so far away from home has made me more appreciative of (and nostalgic for) the wholesome fare of my childhood. Which is hilarious because at the time I hated eating meat that had once roamed our farm. I hated the weird, nobbly vegetables from our garden. I hated picking apricots and almonds. I remember sitting in the car absolutely mortified as my mother climbed a fence to raid the fig trees on the old Prisoner of War camp site in our town. I used to long for sausages in styrofoam trays, tinned fruit, and Heinz tomato ketchup instead of homemade relish.

So. I am trying to reconcile this ridiculous love of food with the need to be moderate and lose weight. I know it’s possible – just look at Argy, the Greek goddess of the kitchen. She loves food even more than I do, but her archives are littered with wholesome recipes that she has adapted from the original, less healthy versions. That lady can work wonders with a squeeze of lemon, olive oil and "loadsa herbs".

I’m training myself to be as excited by wholesome food as I am cakes or pies. I cannot make cookies without eating half the raw dough, thus I need to curb the baking until I get to my goal weight. So I’ve found some healthy things to get jazzed about. I have bought all the bits and pieces to make sushi, for example. And the other day I ordered a box of organic fruit and vegetables from a local delivery scheme, for the cheap thrill of not knowing what would be inside it, then having to figure out what to do with it.

The box arrived yesterday and it was hella cool. Clementines with the leaves still intact, sweet potatoes caked with dirt, perfectly imperfect carrots, tiny local apples, etc etc. I stared at it for ages, so overwhelmed by indecision then finally said, "Och, fuck it. I’ll just make soup."

15 thoughts on “Clementines

  1. Hi, I linked to you through here and there and I love what you have to say!

    I, too, struggle with weight issues and I LOVE food. I’ve been doing Weight Watchers since August and have lost 30 lbs (13.6 kg) Not bad, but I’ve got 26.7 kg to go! I’m still enjoying food, but a whole lot less of it!

  2. I’m also a “foodie”. I also could never understand how someone could blindly follow those boring diet menu plans. Then that’s what your challenge should be (box of organic produce aside): create a more exciting diet menu! I’m sure people would buy a DG cookbook!

  3. Its tough being a food lover and losing the kilos, Its a challenge since my tastebuds always win the battle LOL
    ps. nutella and i have a special kind of naughty relationship. its secret but you can know about it since you seem to have the same πŸ˜‰

  4. LOOOL @ your soup in the end – HAHAH that is soooo something I’d do when I’m overwhelmed with possibly. Plus reading your post made me aware how much I actually really really enjoy cooking and I should work that into my plan..hhmmm.

    Guess the tricky part is not tasting it while trying to cook it eh?

    Awesome @ the pilates, my thighs are killing me from my workout today – I honestly love it, and it’s such a bonus when you get that soreness that shows you your body had a good work out (without being over strained)

    Enjoy your soupy goodness and wabisabi freshness of market fruit and veg!

  5. MMmmmm. Food…
    I love food. I love healthy food and I love unhealthy food. (Although not to keen on deep fried foods – can’t remember the last time I bought anything from a chip shop.) Like you, I dream of good, fresh food from ‘home’. I visiting in February and am already planning what I’ll eat! Thankfully not too many ‘bad’ foods – except hokey pokey ice cream.

  6. I thought I was the only one who got the Christmas Chin Zit.

    And I hear you on the baking. I used to make awesome homemade bread (that’s part of the reason I started pushing maximum density in the past couple of years), but I haven’t baked a single loaf this year; I know damn well my husband and I would consume the entire loaf the second it came out of the oven. (Though I might make some focaccia to take to my mom’s for Christmas.)

  7. Heya –

    Which box scheme are you using? We’ve tried a few – notably Roots and Fruits (about Β£15 – Β£20 a week), and a few others. Roots and Fruits was the best, but they hiked the price too high, and then, promptly ended the whole program.

    I’m in Glasgow – don’t suppose whoever you’re using delivers here, do they? I ask as we are looking for a good one to start up with again in the New Year.


    PS – I read your blog all the time, it’s great.

  8. I think Nat is on to something! I would love a DG Cookbook with all the fun anecdotes interspersed throughout… Like Cooking for Mr. Latte (but more fun and less snobbish πŸ™‚ ).

  9. You were joking about the deep fried pizza, right? I hope? Please?

    I loved your description of the “stab Blender” and breaking little herb spines – exactly what I needed to amuse me this morning. Thanks!

  10. I’m one of the boring crew – I eat practically the same thing every day, rarely varying my diet at all. It didn’t stop me geting to 230 lbs, but I guess it IS making the losing weight thing a bit easier to cope with.

    Have you checked out Ruth Watson’s Fat Girl Slim? Now those recipes are almost enough to turn ME into a foodie!!

  11. I hear ya on the food thing – I just love food in all forms. In fact if I restrict my choices too much I end up eating more of the “bad” stuff than I would have if I’d allowed a little more variety to begin with. Case in point; I’ve just had a lovely healthy piece of grilled chicken and a side salad, followed up with a Shape yogurt, and a whole box of Cointreau truffles to finish … well they were on a two-for-one special at the supermarket, what’s a girl supposed to do???

    Oh and for anybody wondering – she is NOT kidding on the Deep-Fried Pizza front, believe me – I’ve been there, done that, and survived to tell the tale …

  12. Ohhhhh I smell a change in career???


    You could make it your mission to seek all the freshest produce possible, and deliver it (like the box scheme) but take it a step further…. deliver it with healthy, amazing DG recipes!!

    I’d subscribe!

  13. I sooo get everything in this post, I buy food magazines and collect cook books because I looooove to drool over the food in the photos. Sometimes I cook it, but a lot of the time I know that once its cooked, I will eat it… all of it!

    And the nutella thing… my mouth is watering now πŸ™‚

  14. I am exactly the same. Call me super obsessed food girl. I love everything about food. The taste, the texture, cooking it, eating it, smellign it. Man it sure makes trying to loose weight hard too. πŸ™‚

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