I’ve taken to having two breakfasts – one after I first feed Elena, often before seven, and another when they’re both asleep around nine. The first is usually about a third of a baguette with good salted butter, and a coffee. The second will be more bread, or fruit, or a smoothie… and coffee no.2.
This breastfeeding gig makes me hungry.
But, man, good smoothie! Yesterday’s went something like this:
a pealed nectarine
a handful of frozen blueberries
two generous spoonfuls of greek yoghurt
about a cup of milk
and voila: three out of those five+ a day that we’re all meant to get.
Easily got our five yesterday, probably from dinner alone. Made one of my absolute favourites: spinach cannelloni. There’s half a bush of spinach in there, mixed with a bit of cream cheese, creme fraiche and feta (and really whatever you have or want, if you like to get creative).
Stuff the cannelloni tubes and arrange in an oven dish, then tip a tin of tomatoes and a jar of pasta sauce in with the leftover spinach mixture. Mix all that together and spread over the top of the pasta.
I put a bit of mozzarella, but any grated cheese will probably do, on top and then bake for about forty minutes.
It’s as satisfying as lasagna and way healthier.
One of my other favourite healthy-but-satisfying dinners is the super salad! I fill our plates with lettuce and then make it my mission to turn this into something appealing…
cherry tomatoes, toasted walnuts, some cheese cubed up, some bacon bits, a few croutons, even some boiled potatoes, tossed in a bit of lemon juice and butter. Capsicum slices, cubed cucumber, even fruit: grapes, slices of apple or stone fruit.
I’m food-mad at the moment… I blame breastfeeding, but it’s not actually a bad thing is it, so long as I don’t overdo it and there are plenty of fruits and veggies.
I’ve been doing couscous a lot since arriving in France. I do this in a similar way to how I used to make pasta-salad-ish-thing back home. Basically just chop up all the veggies that need using and do some (mushrooms, always) in the frypan with garlic and butter, leaving the others raw, or steaming them in the microwave, then mixing it all together.
With couscous I always want lots of lemon (juice and rind), some chopped up feta, and sliced sundried tomatoes. These have great potent flavour and make the otherwise-bland couscous fabulous.
You can do couscous as a whole meal or just part of one – a lamb kebab and Greek salad are perfect accompaniment.
The difficulty with eating healthy isn’t so much the meals though, is it? It’s feeling hungry at five when dinner won’t be till seven. It’s the second breakfasts and after-dinner snacks that get us.
At the moment I can’t get enough of this:
peach, tomato and mozzarella, stacked atop some toasted baguette.
Garnished with a little balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper, and a leaf of fresh basil – perfect!
This is as much the taste of summer as lime, I think. I just can’t get enough. Very satisfying and successfully keeps me from nibbling away until – oops! I ate a third of a baguette while Louis ate his dinner.
I have a theory that interesting and complex flavours make me feel full faster. Exhibit A: I’ll eat way more mac&cheese than I will eat curry in one sitting.
Just a theory, but there it is.