WIAW: “Perfectly” Intuitive

“Eating more intuitively has proved greatly liberating for my mind, body and soul. With a memory of continuous planning and precision with meals and food; the taste of freedom fills me with excitement on a regular basis. This rush of sorts, putting me in a sense of elation.  Well what happens when you crash?

I have to commemorate the reason of why I assumed an intuitive approach in the first place. Was it not to further loosen the grip of the eating disorder? To relieve my perfectionist mind of it’s continuous struggle in consuming perfect [in my mind] meals? Surely I cannot expect to hit the nail on the head every single time in consuming the right thing at the right time. There will be slip-ups… I will not always be ” in tune” in the best manner, but this is what intuitive eating is all about. By feeding the anxiety in becoming frustrated and fearful of consuming a food that might not make me feel perfectly comfortable, I am destroying the purpose of learning to eat intuitively. I do not want to move from restriction, only to launch into another form of reigning control over what passes my lips at certain times in the day. I can honestly say I consider barely a food as something to be feared which I regard as an accomplishment… yet the very fact that I dwell on the effect an unfortunate evening of sugar leaves on me – only to entertain the hesitance at ingesting sweets for the days following – is a nudge in the gut to wake up and see the direction I am journeying on to completely break free of all negative -mental- associations with food.   The trials and error all part of the journey in better understanding the way my body works.”

The above rant was the beginning and the end of a draft left hanging about 2 months back. Reading it right now I am pleasantly surprised at the progress I’ve made in eating intuitively since then; all the while losing the image of “perfect”. I thought it would be cool to share and celebrate the good habit I’ve fallen into by listening to my intuition (and my 3rd period!!!) in the past Sunday’s noshings a la Jenn’s famous What I Ate Wednesday party.

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I love starting the day off with a warm hug [in a mug]…

my hug in a mug, piping hot with a splash of full cream milk

double chocolate coffee, piping hot with a splash of full cream milk.

I am head over heals for the hot new coffee to reach our shores: Beanies. Fighting the overwhelming desire to possess ALL THE FLAVOURS, I grudgingly settled on the Double chocolate (but of course) and Amaretto Almond but once home I soon regretted the latter over the French vanilla which I had debated 5 times over.

Over constant trial and error I finally feel like I’ve reached a sugary sweet spot with eating and meal times; to the point where I have an understanding of my “hungry times” and the foods that work for me for the most part. I know that I’m on an oatmeal groove for now – until I crave something different of which I will unhesitatingly venture into.

breakfast

banana oatmeal topped with cinnamon, applesauce, honey and peanut butter.

If you’ve never prepared your oatmeal by frying the banana first – give it a shot some time. I.am.hooked. Other than playing around with toppings and add-ins depending on my mood that morning… oatmeal makes me happy. Why change it?

I enjoy a strong sense of flexibility in my diet; impromptu dessert runs and coffee shop visits nourishes my soul.

snack- chocolate brownie tart

Shopping fuel: chocolate pecan brownie tart with vanilla soft serve.

Heavenly!

After switching snack and meal times around in a frenzy to accommodate a ridiculously wayward appetite.. I am actually content to be experiencing more of a routine in hunger signals. I know that I need a snack or well…dessert between breakfast and lunch.

A lunch [a late one on that particular day] comprising of a fair amount of veggies leaves me most satisfied and energised..

lunch- tuna salad

tuna salad…thyme & olive oil roasted potatoes and steamed broccoli.

I make a mean tuna salad if you ever want to pitch up for lunch and I’m -as is the norm- too lazy to legitimately cook.                                                 Half a mashed avocado, a few tablespoons of Lime & Black Pepper sachet tuna, 1 chopped up dill pickle, 1 small finely grated carrot and a few diced plum tomatoes. You may want to commit that to memory…and please dunk some roast potatoes in there.

The over-analysing of meals, the extra precautions to ascertain if I am truly hungry, the anxiety of “did I consume enough?” to return my health and periods…it can all stop. I am capable of trusting my body and -most importantly- honouring my hunger and cravings.

snack- apple/dates and PB

Evening snack: dates  chopped apple and peanut butter.

New favourite snack! Bonus points for a crispy, slightly tangy apple…the flavours mingle together like magic. Can you perceive how much of a rebel I am in challenging my braces by the level of pulverising the apple received? Uhm yeah, not.

I can eat what I want, when I want to. And I truly believe that without breaking all ties with restrictive eating by completely going a little loco over more processed food, I would not adore more wholesome foods as much as I do today.

supper- chickpea mushroom curry

Supper: avocado quesadilla, chickpea mushroom curry thingy, steamed spinach. Orange juice.

I’m turning into a right old decent chef if I do say so myself. My downfall is the laziness when it comes to kitchen labours…regardless, this chickpea curry (is it an offense to throw the term “curry” with reckless abandon?!) was delicious. I mean, I had it again the evening after. And I have a feeling I coincidently had something closely resembling on the last WIAW I partook in. The detailed procedure as follows: I sautéed sliced onions and some fresh crushed garlic in coconut oil for abit before tossing in about 3 sliced white mushrooms. Seasoned the mushrooms with some sea salt and black pepper and once cooked, tossed in the drained chickpeas. About an 1/8 of a teaspoon of turmeric stirred through and cooked on low for another minute or so.

Ironically enough, I had to release myself of the notion of attaining the instinct of in intuitive eater in order to develop a good sense of intuition myself. It is rather pointless and a waste of energy to berate ourselves over the effects of enjoying an extra serving of dessert or the likes. Our body will deal with it sufficiently, provided we continue to treat it well. Move, rest, eat as we receive the signals when we’ve reached a place of balance.  That’s all folks!

 

What is your view on eating intuitively?

Current favourite dessert?

Cooked or raw veg -predominantly- ?

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Greater victories

A day in terms of hecticified busy-ness can be allocated in one of two standard categories: 1) nonstop bustling, hopping from one task to another. 2) occupied with slow-moving chores that primarily consist of waiting. <-my personal pet hate depending on the specific surroundings. Yesterday was basically that – waiting, oh.my.goose so much waiting. On returning home in the evening I felt slightly overwhelmed; the day was drawing to a close, yet I had barely begun. In a ravenous state with a million and one things looming like a rock over my head, about to crash and splatter my brains (and some major PMS cravings)… I needed coffee. And [leftover] cheesecake. For a very late lunch. As I settled down, allowing the mix of decadent creaminess and sugar to help in regaining a sense of calm and focus, I realized something epic. Food -of any kind or form- is no longer a challenge. Coming home after an extensive period of sitting on my behind without any “activity” and collapsing with dessert because I want it, is not a feat in my eyes anymore. It’s my normal. I’ll crave my veggies soon enough don’t you worry. That’s not to say I am fooling myself in trying to believe that skipping lunch and ODing on dessert is sensible or healthy… it is enjoyable now and again I’ll give it that much. And I am not writing off the fact that for any human overcoming fear foods there isn’t reason to rejoice and jive with delight!

It’s just weirdly fantabulous to know that I don’t have a single fear food. Wait, what!? Yeah really. discovering quoteimage source

Whereas not too long ago there were occasions allocated to greasy, fried foods…and of course it had to be documented and announced because I “challenged” the fear of oils and unknown calories and blah, blah. Now I would only feel inclined to make special mention of a meal or dessert in order to sing it’s praises, or give my critical review – respectively. Like the prawn wrap and chips about a week back…

prawn wraps/chips

Bugger that was glorious.

Food in itself is not an achievement for me any longer… it’s just food. A magnificent part of life, but not one to be battling with and “winning” by cutting out this and will-powering on that.

Oh and the waiting? That concluded to a mini victory toward something huge -hopefully- in the not too far away future 🙂 .

 

WIAW..Do you know?

If the past weekend is anything to go by – winter could be at it’s peak. What happened to my Spring premonitions? Gail winds, air that pierces through like an icy dagger and sunshine completely MIA…. I’ll be holding onto the layering of knits, jumpers and leather for now. Oh and comfort food, you’re not going anywhere. Saturday having been thee coldest day ever, I decided it would be fun to document the day’s eats that served as powerful internal insulation against the elements. Brought to your viewing pleasure through the much-loved celebration of yumminess hosted by her loveliness Jenn.

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DO YOU KNOW that awakening with chocolate chip cookie-cake on the mind – and with said cake in the house – is reason enough to have it for breakfast?

breakfast- cookie cake

Warmed, alongside chilled full-fat milk.

I’m done with tactics of staving off and denying cravings. I know that there is no way I’ll be able to get my mind focusing on other important matters if I fail to allow myself the freedom to just eat exactly what I please. Yes, even if that happens to be pie cake in the early AM. Obviously I went back for another slice…one slice of pie cookie-cake for breakfast just doesn’t cut it. I was seriously impressed at the decent time span I was kept energised after 😀 .

DO YOU KNOW that despite harbouring a set of taste buds highly in favour of well-spiced chicken, I am absolutely opposed to the sight – let alone the handling – of raw meats?

lunch- chicken&veg

Perfectly-spiced chicken, leftover roast potato wedges, steamed broccoli and carrots.

Good thing too. With a Mum and sisters’ who have honestly surpassed the title of “masterchef”, I am undeniably content with keeping away from the behind-the-scenes to every delicious portion. After denying myself of meat for such a long time, consuming it now is always tied with a feeling of liberation and all round fuzziness.

DO YOU KNOW hard-core oatmeal lovers stand a strong chance of craving a bowl during the day if it hasn’t made an appearance in the AM?

sweet&salty oatmeal -snack

with half a banana cooked in…topped with a splash of cold milk, roasted salted cashews, and strawberry jam. Coffee with a dash of coconut milk.

Sweet and salty nailed. I’ve been loving the sparkle a little coconut milk adds to my coffee these days…truth be told – it started off in a bid to use up opened tinned coconut milk and has morphed into an intended act.

DO YOU KNOW even lazy kitchen-slobs are sometimes motivated to put a little extra thought into cooking? But then again, my definition of cooking isn’t everyone’s pot of food either:

chickpea mushroom stew-dinner

chickpea mushroom stew with a wholegrain tortilla. Freshly squeezed naartjie juice.

Heh, how elaborate do I make my meal sound!? Well I believe it deserves a rather exaggerative title, given that it required abit more labour – than is my norm these days – to come together. I would really recommend braising mushrooms together with chickpeas though; the flavour is glorious.

 

DO YOU KNOW chunky applesauce on a warm buttery pastry croissant tastes just like apple pie?

croissant bedtime meal

half with chunky applesauce & cinnamon, half with Nutella. Rooibos tea.

The applesauce even gave the chocolate take a run for it’s money. Apple pie in a matter of minutes? Yes please.

Give me a recent foodie fact; Do you know…..? 

WIAW..magic in the mingling flavors

Can I just warn you at first hand that I am pretty much incapable of excluding the braces into foodie talk! Whaaat, it goes with the territory. For a few days following the monthly visit and having them tightened recently; the act of eating lost its enjoyment once more. Sad days indeed. Every cloud has it’s silver lining though… the minute things got comfortable in the mouth, there are no words to describe how I rejoiced as every smidgen of flavour could be savoured when chowing down. I am relishing the complexity and depth of flavours going on these days, and knowing that there is a celebration of yumminess down at Jenn’s place? It would be an absolute crime to allow memorable explosions on the taste buds to dissolve -forgotten- into the atmosphere.

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Today it’s not about following a day’s worth… kind of resembling my mind in a mish-mash of meals following one theme: identifying the magicalness [beyond the surface] in a mingling of flavours.

breakfastBaked Apple oatmeal sans raisins because I simply wasn’t feeling them. Now in this unsuspecting bowl – do you have any idea of the assortment of flavours creating… magic? Cinnamon-y apple pie drizzled with coconut milk, orange blossom honey and white almond butter. Orange blossom honey, I owe you a heartfelt apology… you tried to entice me as I completely ignored you in favour of old standbys. Well is it too late to go steady? Bahhh whatever, we going steady whether you like it or not. You know what’s the gravest realization? I would not have even acknowledged orange blossom if it didn’t fall into my hands as a gift. Way to earn my love, smart human.

The above breakfast didn’t lack an ounce of “oomph” overall, but on that particular day it wasn’t just enough. Or maybe I was missing the evident lack of AM caffeine which was soon rectified with a double dose.breakfast dessertBreakfast’s dessert if you will: the sweet, milky hazelnut latte mingling with the deep, dark chocolate resulting in the most incredible balance of flavour. Yes that is my idea of balance… not ratios – bang on flavour.

chocolate oatmealRepeat action with a twist: dark chocolate oatmeal with half a banana cooked in, drenched in coconut milk, dusted with cinnamon, topped with chunky applesauce, a drizzle of orange blossom honey and a dollop of peanut butter.

 

soup lunchSpicy butternut corn soup along with an avocado quesadilla and steamed broccoli. I could write a novel on my dream butternut soup, but something tells me it might not fare as a bestseller. Hmm, so let me ramble a short while on how I don’t like my butternut soup: sweet, sour, and creamy. The savoury side of me has enhanced somewhat in recent times – when I’m in the mood for savoury, it has to be savoury. Especially when we’re dealing with a delicate bowl of soup; all too simple to mess up the spice equation. To draw this tale to a halt – this bowl ticked all the right boxes: broth-based, spicy enough to have me sniffling, and chock full off flavour; complementing the “cool” sides masterfully.

koeksisterAllow me to introduce you to – what we call – a koeksister. Originally originated in Malaysia (I think! History is not my strong point) I do hope there is another, more pleasant term for this delightful confection. Because it is a far cry from anyone’s cooked sister… don’t let the name fool you; mixed spiced dough, deep fried and soaked in a sticky sweet syrup before receiving a roll in coconut. Yeah it’s as good as it sounds… and goes down a treat with a hot mug of coffee.

 

schwarma supper

A really bad image of really good food. That happens. Hot homemade – perfectly fluffy – steak shawarma with steamed broccoli, roasted potatoes and roast onion cream cheese. As much as I would like to proclaim one specific component as the “star of the show”, the combined flavours are what optimally satisfied the tummy and the taste buds; down to the huge dose of vitamin C on the side.

 

Do you believe in the magic of mingling flavours?

Favourite type of honey?

Ever needed a dessert after a sweet breakfast?

 

 

WIAW..all in a day

I am what I’d call a spontaneous blogger. Blogging without a schedule ensures I am always enjoying the chance to share with others the insanity residing within my soul. And of course I love subjecting others to my incessant rambling 🙂 . That said, it was last a minute choice (as is my usual) to share Sunday’s eats at the world-renowned party her fabulousness Jenn never fails to throw every week.

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Allow me a confession before proceeding: I actually failed to photograph every meal on Sunday.. but I’ve got most of it, since I instinctively felt compelled to capture all the pretty processed fare, which comprised the majority of that day’s fuel. I am not intending to advocate or encourage tons of  “junk” foods. I am all for as healthy a balance as one is comfortable with. The only reason I was never majorly into fast food was because I wasn’t craving it back-to-back. Well what happens on a random day when mainly “unhealthy” sustenance sound appealing? While this day is not a regular occurrence, it is a day I am proud off as it goes down in history as a successful day of following my intuition.

Starting off the day with a wholesome breakfast makes me tremendously happy..

oatmeal- breakfast

Regular -magical- oatmeal bowl

Pardon the recycled pic; just doing my bit with the whole eco-friendly thing. Our yogurt-well having run dry meant the bowl was a little sadder than usual. Black coffee [in hiding] on the side.

Shopping is not complete without a coffee date/ Mum & daughter QT

Chocolate Chai steamer

Chocolate Chai steamer

This was as delectable as it appears, if not more so. The upside to having braces I guess; reaching out to “adventurous” drinks to satisfy the sweet tooth teeth. I would aptly describe this potion as a spicy hot chocolate, topped with whipped cream, chocolate sauce and tons of cinnamon.

Part of lunch on the way home..

bbq puffs

Crack ❤

Crunchy chips are out of the question — but where there’s a will, there’s a way. Anyone acquainted with the addictiveness that is sweet & spicy bbq puffs?? I may have munched my way halfway through the bag (serving size be damned), settled at the back of a van – with the wind in my face 🙂 – for the trip home.

Lunch at home was quick and uncaptured: a hummus multigrain tortilla wrap with a side of [well] cooked broccoli.

 

For some reason – I cannot for the life of me imagine why 😉 – the family wanted to treat me.

red velvet, vanilla, coconut, strawberry froyo

red velvet, vanilla, coconut, strawberry froyo

I entertained the idea – for a good solid 5 min. – of suing the company for NOT being equipped with a flavour that even closely resembled something “cake batter-y” or “chocolate-y”. Oh and I doubt there’s a creature out there who opts for froyo sans toppings? Braces would do that.

A one-two punch of salt, to soak up the sugar(?)..

Chip & Dip!

Chip & Dip!

Jumping jiminy crickets! I was missing out all along! Why didn’t you tell me how stupendously phenomenal regular fries really are?! Okay so you tried, I’ll give you that much. Coated in salt, THEN slathered in sweet chilli sauce because… ketchup is overrated I despise ketchup. My taste buds are just incapable of getting past that icky-ness. I assumed I was alone on that.. thank goodness for laat lammetjies coming clean then 😉 .

Honestly, I expected myself to be freaking out by now… I mean, I am at a good place with honouring cravings and such – yet without the excuse of “extreme hunger” to fall back on and blame – I had to accept that I really wanted all those treats. In one day. That I was not craving my usual suspects.. and that I am not above “fast food” now and then.

A bedtime snack of a banana and a few spoonful’s of peanut butter straight from the jar occurred, which frankly – seemed rather mundane to bother playing with for a photo shoot.

 

Happy Eating folks!

 

Do you prefer to “schedule” in treats, or eat as the craving hits?

Ketchup: love or hate?

Ever had Chip & Dip? Gosh they make thee best fries ever! What would your dip of choice be?

 

 

 

Cravings

I prided myself in my oblivion to cravings; unable to comprehend how anyone could experience a specific “craving” for a particular food. What is this cravings you speak of? I’m above that. Turns out.. cravings were actually out of my league, due to it’s flame being distinguished under my need for power(<-said in my best Zira imitation) control, resulting in stringent rules and regulations in the simple act of eating.

Its hard to believe that – after attempting to fight it for some time – I’ve come to the point of being quite literally, a dangling puppet to my commanding cravings. You can only substitute cream cheese on toast for milk-tart (when it’s bloomin’ staring at you) for so long. So I would say, if you don’t crave anything ever… be concerned. Or maybe that’s just me. Either way, yesterday – a simple glance of these bars at Amanda’s sent my craving responsiveness into overdrive. Perhaps partly down to it being that time of the month (squeee yay!), but boy I had it baaad. I lazily tried to entice my mind at petty -speedy- replacements, but it all fell flat in my mind’s eye. Ultimately, not too long after: this happened..

granola bars

Mmmhmm yesss, I am a slave to my cravings.

It’s not always smooth sailing though. Today, for some reason unknown to man; had my arteries twisted in an anxious knot. I was hungry, AND I was craving a thingymabob that I could not pinpoint. This usually is a slightly disastrous state for me to be in, and like other times, my instinctive uncontrollable response was to eat all over the place. In a space of four hours I dined on some pasta, roasted butternut, a taste of peanut butter, some chocolate, a bite of a donut…then a little more pasta. I’m not going to lie, I was not the happiest with my less than ideal setup. I would have been pleased if I had followed some structure or pattern, instead of throwing caution to the wind and mixing everything up. What helped in quelling the anxiety from blowing my mind was the satiety that followed. Surely, such a content response meant that I had in fact done the right thing in honouring mind and body? All I wanted was to be satisfied enough to carry on.. and that’s how events unfolded. I felt good, I had eaten enough – albeit “loosely” – and I can get on with my day without obsessing over something I should have eaten.

 

Do cravings dictate what you eat?

Ever crave a “thingmabob”?

 

 

 

 

 

WIAW..because

We don’t need to justify our actions for the world, but in the name of fun: I’m disclosing underlying reasoning to my eats the pass Sunday. Joining the What I Ate Wednesday bash at Jenn’s place, because sharing my meals – without having you literally swiping food off my plate and earning a fist in the face – makes me happy.

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Starting the day of with a hug in a mug…

vanilla latte

vanilla latte

because I’m a wimp in the freezing cold (3-5C) and nothing warms me up like a bunch of dextrins and sugar 😉 . Seriously, how does it result in a such frothy deliciousness with an ingredient list of that calibre 😯 !?

 

Taking a break from my role as an ardent “swirler” in favor of layering…

Oatmeal with half a banana and a spoonful of coconut oil stirred in after cooking, layered with yogurt and cinnamon, topped with Peanut butter and strawberry jam.

oatmeal- layered

 

because “variety is the spice of life”, <- do I have that right? and  believe it or not, I woke up with a vision of Amanda’s hypnotizing bowl from awhile back. Coming off a 2 week long Oat bran rendezvous, I experienced a sudden lusting for my first love on that particular day. Hit.the.spot. Allow me a second to express my grievance at having to -learn- to live without CRUNCHY peanut butter.

 

A sad depiction of an utterly glorious combination…

Butter & honey sandwich with a mug of piping hot Rooibos tea

butter & honey

because I am more interested in getting the food to my face, than bothering to play with it in order to capture things at its most enticing angle.

 

Deliberating that the most effort I am willing to devote into lunch is the act of sautéing spinach..

lunch- casserole

Cheesy spaghetti casserole

because leftovers are spectacular. More so when you didn’t cook it to begin with 😀 .

 

Winging it for an early afternoon snack…

butternut fries using coconut oil, honey & peanut butter

butternut fries using coconut oil, honey & peanut butter

because I had no clue to my exact cravings. A silent squeal of delight at how perfectly this mixture of flavours and textures pleased my tastebuds.

 

An early dinner of takeout…

grilled hake and veggies

grilled hake and veggies

because that’s how I -prefer to- roll. There are times in life whence I need veggies drowning in some buttery concoction, laden with enough spices and salt to transform them into something else.. a delicious something else nevertheless.

 

Diverting from my daily dose of “chocolate mousse smoothie” to a plain ol’ chocolate smoothie come evening…

recycled pic

recycled pic

because it figures my family would become obsessed with avocado’s overnight, inevitably resulting in an unpleasant situation of “avo-less”. Guys! I have become so spoilt with the addition of creamy avo in my smoothies; I almost wept at the lack of.

 

A lullaby in the form of food cake….

vanilla sponge

vanilla sponge

because sleep is only sound when satisfied. And eating will forever trump sleeping pills *cough* . This beauty was freshly baked by Mum.. with love. Naturally, I swooped back in for another slice… because, it tasted good 🙂 .

Happy eating people!

 

Are you a fan of avocado in smoothies?

What is your preferred method of cooking veggies on a daily basis?