It’s been a while ! Where have I been ? What have I been doing ? Does anybody care ?
Well, as you are well aware, December brings the impending festive doom that is Christmas hurtling ever closer in the form of shopping, parties, baking, not to mention that sinking “WHEN DID IT BECOME THE END OF TERM OH MY GOD I HAVE WORK TO DO” feeling, and as such I’ve been very busy. As I type now the hangover runs fresh and raw in my blood (I drank in excess of an entire bottle of wine last night, no unachievable feat by any means but I am feeling it today) but I must push through with eggs and porridge (the best hangover cures; yes, eaten simultaneously) for the upcoming revelry tonight. But it was a whacking great bowl of porridge, and a particularly nicely-cooked egg. Wash it down with a cuppa and I think I’m good to go.
So here is a list of some foodie and some non-foodie Amy-updates that you may or may not wish to know about but that I am going to detail anyway so shut up and read:
I’ve been making a lot of pizza. There are tonnes of dough recipes floating around the internet, I recommend Jamie Oliver’s with wholemeal flour substituted for the one that he states. My preferred topping combination at the moment has to be goat’s cheese, roasted butternut squash, spinach and caramelised onion. I make my own tomato sauce by just blending up about 10-12 cherry tomatoes and simmering with garlic, oregano and 2 tablespoons of tomato puree. Simmer until it turns dark red (it will be an ugly pink before you cook and add the puree !). If you’re savvy with your olive oil usage, choice of topping and portion size, homemade pizza can be totally healthy and guilt-free !
Right now I’m listening to Feist. She’s so good !
I’m moving back home for Christmas tomorrow, which means I get to clean out my fridge. How perfect is that I have half an avocado, some butternut squash, rocket leaves and mozzarella… cue AMAZING SALAD. I love it when everything falls into place.
I decided to stop kidding myself, stop starving myself, and if I’m unhappy with the way I look then just go for a fricken run and stop stressing about every little tiny Christmas treat that tempts me. I’ve hardly been exercising properly this winter, mainly just long walks, and while I haven’t actually gained any weight I can see the change in my body – she is not as toned as she was in the summer ! So no more excuses. 6 runs a week until Christmas along with healthy eating (and not beating myself up about the odd mince pie) to look killer in my party dress. This is the plan.
Today I shaved my underarms for the first time since September. You know it’s getting out of hand when your anti-perspirant fails to penetrate the hair that resides there because there is literally that much. In a similar vein, it’s been a month since I used any kind of shampoo, and I think my hair may be finally about to emerge from its chrysalis, so to speak.
I made chocolate bark. And this is how:
Get a bar of milk chocolate, a bar of white chocolate, and a bar of dark chocolate, about 8-10 crushed digestive biscuits, some shelled and chopped pistachios and some dried cranberries.
Melt the milk chocolate, mix in digestives. Spread into the bottom of a cake tin and put in fridge for an hour.
When solid, melt the white chocolate and mix in pistachios and cranberries. Spread over first chocolate layer. If you want you can put a few whole pistachios and cranberries on the surface for prettiness. Put back in fridge for another hour.
Finally, melt the dark chocolate and drizzle over the top. Back in the fridge until it’s all solid, and later you can break it all up and give it to your friends for Christmas (or eat it all).
It is totally not good for you in any way other than it tastes like solid serotonin. I just cut it all into pieces to present to the Christmas gathering I’m going to this evening and bits of it just kept jumping into my mouth because they were too small to go into the box, but too big to sweep into the bin. I feel a bit sick…
I really, really admire Lady Gaga. There are so many reasons why, check this out. This is one of my favourites from her: “I had a boyfriend who told me I’d never succeed, never be nominated for a Grammy, never have a hit song, and that he hoped I’d fail. I said to him, ‘Someday, when we’re not together, you won’t be able to order a cup of coffee at the fucking deli without hearing or seeing me.” Gaga POWER.
Pistachios are awesome. Just puttin’ that out there.
I’m growing up. I’m becoming more independent. And the more I do so, right now the more I realise how incredibly and indubitably magical the Christmas period is. Whether you celebrate a religious or a commercial Christmas, I think that the sheer longevity of the tradition brings out something so infinitely childlike in all of us, and I love every single bit of it. Every year for practically my whole entire life my family and I have had the same Christmas routine, and there’s just something so surreal about those unchanging rituals, that nostalgia. I will never not love Christmas; nothing compares to the holiday feeling, and I am thankful for whatever force it is that has made it such a beautiful experience for me year after year and kept my family and friends around to share in it with me (save for my late great nan, RIP).
So merry Christmas to y’all, although I’m sure I will be posting between now and then. Make sure you enjoy yourselves, no matter what.