A Curry In The Kitchen

I had a much needed relaxing day at home.  I was supposed to plough my way through a stack of paperwork but instead began lazily with a lie in, catching up on iPlayer downloads from bed and a long leisurely bath.  I still wasn’t in the mood for tackling paperwork so I made some nourishing meals to have in the week instead.

Indian food is a wonderful source of meal ideas for vegans and vegetarians.  One of my favourite recipe books is Madhur Jaffies’ ‘Indian Cookery.’  It contains chapters on recipes for vegetables and pulses.  So I contendely chopped up veggies and munched on an apple as I went.   For lunch we had 2  curries; cauliflower with onion and tomato and carrots, peas and potatoes, flavoured with cumin.  I used yellow tomatoes, hence the final dish was very yellow!

 We ate the cauliflower curry with the carrots, peas and potatoes which was fantastic.  The cauliflower curry was ok but we much preferred the other so I will just share that recipe here.

Carrots, Peas and Potates, Flavoured with Cumin


175 g carrots

175 g potatoes

175 g onions

1 spring onion

3 tbsp mustard oil

1 and a 1/2 tsp whole cumin seeds

2 whole dried red chillies

175 g shelled peas ( I used broad beans from the garden)

1 tsp salt

1/4 tsp sugar


  1. Boil the potatoes until just cooked, drain and set aside
  2. Peel the carrot and cut in to 1 cm dice
  3. Peel the onion and cop coarsely
  4. Cut the spring onion in to very thin slices
  5. Heat the oil in a large frying pan.  When hot add the cumin seeds and let them sizzle for 4-5 seconds
  6. Add the whole chillies and stir them around
  7. Add the chopped onion and cook for about 5 minutes
  8. Add the carrots and peas.  Cook for about 1 minutes, stirring to mix everything, then cover and leave for 5 minutes or until the carrot is tender
  9. Cut the potato in to 1 cm dice
  10. Add the potatoes, salt and sugar ( I didn’t add the sugar) and cook for 5 minutes
  11. Add the spring onion and warm through

This was very easy and was delicious.  It went well with the cauliflower curry but would go,well with most things.  

While the curries were cooking I made a batch of granola, which is really easy.  I loosely followed the recipe in ‘ The China Study Cookbook’.  You put the dry ingredients in one large bowl :  4 and 1/2 cups of oats, 1 cup chopped nuts, 1 cup desiccated coconut and 1 cup of raisins.  You put the wet ingredients in a saucepan: 1 cup water, 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1/3 cup maple syrup, 2 tsp vanilla extract, 1/2 tsp cinnamon and 1/4 tsp nutmeg. Heat the wet ingredients for 2-3 minutes until the sugar is dissolved, mix well in to the dry ingredients and then spread out in 2 baking trays.  Place in a cool oven (140C) for 15 minutes, stir and cook for another 15 minutes, repeat once more then stir and leave in the oven but turn to oven off.

It is extremely easy to make and I used some of the mixture as a crumble topping later on in the day.  The rest is in a large glass jar, ready to be enjoyed for breakfast this week.   
    I also made a rhubarb and apple crumble, using more produce from the garden and some of the granola mixture as topping.    

To cut down on the added sugar I use dates which inthinkmgo particularly well with apples.   

That was all I had all day, but I should admit to having a huge bowlful of the crumble with soya milk custard!

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Farewell Ramsgate

I have had a truly splendid weekend.  I was treated to a day with my sisters on Saturday which we spent at the Spa hotel in Tunbridge Wells.  It was so lovely to see them.  From there I collected Lara and Harvey and we went to Ramsgate.  It was fantastic to wake up there this morning, especially knowing the plan was to have a long walk and the forecast was for sunshine.

We checked the tide times and were on the pavement by 9 am as we wanted to walk round to Broadstairs on the beach, for which we needed low tide.   Unfortunately the tide came in fast and very high so we did the cliff top walk instead, which was wonderful.
 The sea was very lively today which I love, I find it so exhilarating.
   I walked with some delightful company; Keven, Lara and Harvey.
    None of us had breakfasted so we stopped in Broadstairs for brunch.
  Beans on a jacket potato and black coffee at The Old Curiosity Shop.  We then set off for Margate, along the coastal route.
  Cabbages !  
    Kingsgate Castle. 
    My favourite of all the bays and beaches – Botany Bay.
    Walpole Bay.
  Finally at Margate. That sky was so blue today.  We were very tired so tea and a late lunch were next on the agenda at The Cupcake Cafe in the Old Town in Margate.
    There was nothing hearty and animal free so I dove in to cheese on toast.  I felt guilty but it was delicious.
  After walking about 12 miles we decided we needed cake too.  Raspberry and coconut which was very enjoyable if not a bit too sweet.
  We all felt quite weary and so got a bus back to Ramsgate.Everyone helped pack up amd that was it, my last trip to Ramsgate for quite a long time (if all goes according to plan). I felt very sad to go as I am very fond of visiting Thanet.
What a wonderful weekend I had. Fantastic company, some pampering, relaxing and a very long walk in the sunshine. I could do it all again.

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Autumn Abundance

What a gloriously sunny day which was just perfect for a walk in the forest and then gathering some of the produce from my garden and using it.  I prepared food to eat during the week and prepared passatta for the freezer to try and use up some of my tomato mountain.

 Hmmmm, I seem to have loaded my photos in reverse so I will recap my day chronologically, beginning with the most recent. .Harvey has been asking me, for about 4 weeks to make him “a shepherd’s pie like we had at Aunty Lucy’s”.  Here one is; cruelty free, no animal products, lentils instead of beef and every bit as tasty.  The Little Fella was not disappointed.  I really liked it too.  The potatoes were a bit too waxy to mash properly and they were hard to spread so it’s not the prettiest but it looked better on the plate.  I baked it for 25 minutes at 180 C.

 Potatoes mashed simply with vegan spread, soya milk and salt and pepper.  I do concede that spread is not a patch on butter for taste but I needed something g for mashing and I tried this spread.  It’s ok, just, so I am hoping there is a better tasting one out there.  

  I boiled the lentils according to the packet instructions.  5 minutes before they were due to be ready I added the chopped up carrot and celery.  I drained the lentil mix and set aside while I fried some onions.  I added the lentil mix when the onions were soft with a rich tomato paste, garlic, vegetable stock, some flour and yellow tomato passatta.  When it was cooked I poured it in to a baking dish.
  Lentils, carrots and celery – the basis for the shepherd’s pie.  The finished tomato passatta.  It looks like custard so I am definitely reverting to red tomatoes next year.
  Tomato skins and excess water.  After the tomatoes roasted and cooled, they slipped easily out of their skins and in to the blender, where they were blitzed to make a super smooth sauce.
 Tomatoes, ready for roasting and blitzing to make passatta.

  Produce from the garden: celery, tomatoes and a very large cucumber which is probably just useful for juicing.
  Something was munching my tomatoes    – GRRRRRRRRRRR 😫😫😫😫
  The plum tomatoes are beginning to ripen but all was not as good as it looked!  The cherry tomatoes look fantastic.
The plum tomatoes.
   The cherry tomatoes.
The yellow tomatoes have been very prolific.  Apples from the garden which I peeled, cored and steamed and then blitzed with dates as they are not very sweet.
  Apple and date purée which is lovely as it is or stirred in to some porridge or topped with some yogurt.  Breakfast pancakes, served with blueberries and a little maple syrup.
  A little Sunday treat of some pancakes, which we had earned with the walk and these kept us going until supper time.  A late breakfast and an early supper meant we skipped a meal which is a bonus.  Harvey and I took the dogs to Hemstead where we met Lucy and had a lovely walk in the surprisingly warm sunshine.
 So that was a really good day.  I exercised, I ate only plant food and not too much of that either, I had a lovely walk with Lucy, found time to do some painting, spent lots of time with Harvey and made good use of the garden produce.  I have supper prepared for 2 evenings for us and a healthy bowl of stewed Apple, ready for when the sweet cravings kick in.  I feel conent and ready for the week ahead. And Downton Abbey is on 👍

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Sunshine And The Folk From Down Under Come To Sissinghurst

What a beautiful day!  I can see from friend’s FB feeds that there were a lot of parents travelling around the country, depositing their children off at university.  I hope they are not too sad.  So while all that travelling, new beginnings and different ways of life began, I had a fabulous day.

I am always happy when I walk in to my kitchen first thing and find it filled with sunshine, as I did today.

These fruits and veggies were made for juicing.  The apples were fresh picked from the tree and the cucumber was home grown too.   Yummy.
Keven came to see me which made me very happy indeed and he brought his friends and travelling companions, Viv and Ian with him.
First stop was Frankie’s in Staplehurst.  I had a soy milk latte and resisted the cake until they all gave me a piece of theirs to try – it was very enjoyable.    
  Second stop was the beautiful Sissinghurst Castle Gardens which I have not visited for years.  It was stunning and I will let you wander round in peace and quiet, with no distractions from myself.  
  Wasn’t that gorgeous? I can’t believe this is in my village and I haven’t visited for about 10 years!  Keeping it local we then had a late lunch at the Milkhouse who were very kind about accommodating a late lunch due to a misunderstanding over timings.  The spicy bean salad with crispy shallots was a triumph.
  The garlic bread, made with olive oil, was a high calorie low nutritional moment of weakness but it tasted lovely. 

As did the chocolate I had later at home and then a bowl of porridge with fruit and coconut sugar.  I think my resolve goes when I have a drink and I did enjoy 2 lovely glasses of wine with lunch so I may abstain for a while as I really need to shift some weight.

Thank you so much to you all for coming to visit.  It was a lovely day and I really enjoyed it.  Enjoy the rest of your trip and safe travels home on Tuesday.

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Environmentalist And Omnivore – 2 Words That Do Not Go Together

This has been a very long and tiring week. After an amazing but busy weekend, I was up early on Monday to go to Edinburgh for the day. One very long day as I was not home until after 1am!  Luckily my kind manager suggested I work from home on Tuesday, an offer I gladly accepted.

In the evening I watched Cowspiracy.  I had wanted to watch it for a long time and it is now available on Netflix so you can easily watch it.  Please watch it.  It is such an important film. Important for now and for future generations.  There are so many important messages from this film it is hard to pick the most important but here are some of the frightening facts:

Do you boycott products containing Palm oil because of the rainforest destruction involved in its production?  26 million acres of rainforest have been destroyed for palm oil but 136 million acres have been lost for animal agriculture.

Half of the grain and legumes produced in the world today are for livestock, not humans. If that food was provided to humans, no one need go hungry.

Do you try and save water because it’s an important resource?  In the USA today, 5% of water consumed is for domestic use but 55% goes to animal agriculture.  

It takes 2,500 gallons of water to produce 1lb of beef.  So one quarter pounder requires 660 gallons of water.  That is equivalent to 2 months worth of showers.  2 months of showers worth of water for one burger.

Raising animals for food uses 30% of the world’s water consumption, uses 45% of the world’s land and is responsible for 91% of the Amazon’s destruction.

Maybe you don’t eat meat and stick to fish.  The amount of marine life killed during harvesting is too large to count accurately but the estimate is 28 billion animals pulled from the sea last year.  That is so many there is not enough time for species to recover.  For every 1lb of fish caught for eating, an additional 5lb are also caught.  At this rate, the oceans will be dead by 2048.  So too will all the animals that depend on fish such as polar bears and seals.

There are so many more scared facts but I won’t go on.  I urge you all to set aside an hour and a half to watch this film.  Don’t blindly and ignorantly contribute to the destruction of the planet.

So having seen Cowspiracy, I was more determined than ever to remove animal products from my diet.  I have been very erratic with my photography this week but here are some of the meals I have eaten.  They are not necessarily the best but just the ones I photographed.

A grape and grapefruit breakfast one morning at work.
  A very simple lunch; carrots, cucumber and watercress with half a tub of humous. 
    I grew that cucumber 😃
  That was not quite enough to satisfy me but a mug of green tea and bag of popcorn filled me up.  I really like green tea and have been drinking quite a lot recently.  This one is particularly good.  I bought it at River Cottage HQ .  It has brown rice in it which gives it a lovely earthiness and makes it seem very balancing, somehow.  Harvey likes it too and it is very pleasant enjoying a pot together at the end of our busy days.
  For supper tonight I roasted lots of my tomatoes, with a peeled green pepper, garlic cloves, olive oil, salt and pepper.  When it was roasted (about half an hour at 170 C) I blitzed it in the Vita Mix and stirred it in to some wholemeal pasta.  Served with kale crisps.  I rubbed oil and some salt in to some Cavolo Nero and popped them in the oven for 15-20 minutes.  A simple but delicious dinner.  
 Have happy weekends.  And watch Cowspiracy, please.

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Ramsgate Weekend With Keven

This was a very special weekend for my sisters and me as we were spending the weekend together and Keven was going to be with us plus we had some other reasons to celebrate.  Keven lived with us and was part of our lives when we were growing up but he hasn’t been back to the UK from Australia for 35 years so it was a big occasion.

No food shots the whole weekend!  They were not diet worthy and not all healthy either although there were plenty of plant foods consumed too to balance out the alcohol and chocolates.  On the plus side we walked a reasonable amount and spent lots of time outside. On Saturday some of us did a good dog walk first thing round to Pegwell Bay and when we returned we had some lunch and then gathered everyone together.   We had noticed that ‘The Grange’ was open so we went to see inside.
Augustus Pugin built The Grange for himself and his family.  He was one of the most influential architects of the 19th Century and was the designer of the Palace of Westminster, better known as Parliament.  He was a huge fan of Gothic design which was evident throughout his house.
    It was not a very relaxing or calming space to be in,  due to the very lively wallpaper in every room but it was interesting.  You can stay here as the house is owned by the Landmark Trust and they do rent it out.
  The views from the roof were worth the climb up the stairs.  
  The promenade heading West is brilliant for kids (and grown ups and dogs) as it is a long and wide car free space to roam around on.
  The boating lake wasn’t open so the children amused themselves in the arcade instead while we had tea.  We went for an early evening drink in the Queen Charlotte which is a fantastic little pub on Addington Street.  They have a good range of beers and a selection of vinyl records which we had a great time playing.
    On Sunday we began the day with another dog walk, this time round to the East.  We didn’t make it as far as Broadstairs as the tide was up.
    So we walked back to Ramsgate where it was just warm enough to sit outside and have a coffee.
    We went to the Grayson Perry exhibition at the Turner in Margate and had then intended to eat lunch in The Old Town but it was so wet we headed back to Ramsgate and had lunch at home.  Before people started leaving I wanted a picture of my sisters and me with Keven.  It took a few goes.
  We got there in the end.  Welcome back Keven, it was wonderful to have you with us again.  Farewell Ramsgate, you hosted us extremely well this weekend.

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The KonMari Tidying Method and Plums

This has been a busy weekend but very satisfying.  I have eaten very healthily, made two lovely recipes with some plums I bought and done a phenomenal amount of de-cluttering and tidying.  It has been tiring but all very worthwhile.

First of all the tidying bit.  I consider myself to be quite tidy and well organised but my house has seemed rather chaotic recently so my eye was drawn to a comment on a friend’s Facebook page ( thank you Luly and Carmel) about a brilliant book the friend had read this summer.  Intrigued I ordered it and thanks to the speed of the Internet it was on my kindle and ready to read within seconds.  ‘The Life-Changing Magic Of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art Of Decluttering And Organizing’ by Marie Kondo.  

If you want to be tidier and less cluttered then get this book.  It is brilliant !! The key points are to tidy by category rather than space.  So don’t think, ” I am going to tidy my wardrobe”.  Instead think, I am going to tidy my clothes.  You then have to empty all your clothes from everywhere they are around the house, on to the floor.  So I gathered clothes from 3 wardrobes, a large chest of drawers,  the laundry, beside the door and hanging over the banisters and heaped it on my bed. Previouslt, things were neatly hung (I thought) but quite squished

 First of all I could not believe how many clothes I even had as I don’t consider myself a “clothes person “.  I was beginning to regret what I had started!

 Once you have gathered your category, (ie clothes), you go through, item by item, handling each piece and seeing if it “sparks joy”.  This is quite a different question to my usual tidying up questions which are more likely to be, does it fit? Might it fit one day? Might I need it one day? So asking instead, does it spark joy, was quite different.   You have to discard before you organise which makes sense because it is only after discarding that you know what you have left to organise.  While all the wardrobes and drawers were empty, I Cleaned them.

I threw over half my clothes away or donated them to a charity shop!!!!  I I went from 3 wardrobes to just 1.  I realised I didn’t like lots of my clothes so I got rid of them, including 2 huge bin liners full of brand new clothes which didn’t fit but I hoped would one day.  When I get to that size, I will buy clothes then and not grab sales bargains and hope I can wear them one day.

Organising was then a pleasure.  One half of the wardrobe for smart clothes and the other half for everything else.

Dresses on the left and then tops as KonMari says it is better to make a shape of an upward pointing arrow than a downward arrow  which interestingly is how I had it arranged before.  She also recommends colour sorting from dark to light.  I also sorted all my accessories such as jewellery, bags and other stuff.  No basket or box was left unturned.  The hanging things up bit was easy.  I then had to get to grips with the folding so everything you keep in a drawer stacks vertically rather than being layered on top of each other.  I had to look up some videos to understand properly – there are loads on YouTube.  I was glad I persevered because I LOVE it ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️.  I am now on a mission to vertically fold everything possible because it makes it so much easier to find things.  Check out my super tidy sock drawer.  I even finally got round to using the scented drawer liners I have had for years as I was in a use it or lose it mentality.

  Night wear.  Trousers.  So easy to see what is where so no more rummaging through drawers for me.
I tidied my entire room, the bathroom and the linen cupboard except for my trunk.  The trunk is full of keepsakes and I wasn’t up to doing that today.  I did pull out any clothing though and threw it all away apart from some baby things and this old school shirt of mine.  But out when the souvenir t-shirts from inter railing and backpacking trips and from University.  All gone.   My room feels so much clearer and cleaner, it’s great.

I ate really well this weekend.  In fact, looking at the pictures, I ate very lightly and had no alcohol, so I did really well.  On Saturday I had a strange lunch as it was a mixture of the things I cooked Harvey  and some extra veggies I wanted.  I had been so engrossed in KonMari-ing my room I skipped breakfast so this was the first thing I had all day, apart from tea.  Baked beans, boiled new potatoes, steamed broccoli and cauliflower.  No added fats at all.  In the evening I had a mango, plum and banana smoothie with blueberries and coconut.  That was it for the day apart from a couple of apples. 

I missed breakfast again on Sunday, such was my enthusiasm for tidying.  I made a smoothie at about 2 so I had the energy to go to the dump.  3 sweet and simple ingredients.
   It was perfect.
    I did munch on 2 dates, a plum and a banana while I cooked the 2 plum dishes I am about to share, and my dinner which was a lovely stir fry with tofu and the sweet chilli plum sauce I made.  Dinner was half a cup of brown Basmati rice, stir fried onion, broccoli, yellow pepper and mushrooms, plus tofu with almonds and a side of plum sauce.
  That plum sauce is really good as it is sweet and salty and with a kick of heat.  Yum. So didn’t I do well with my eating?  I am very pleased.

So, on to the plums.   I turned to Sarah Raven’s ‘Garden Cookbook’ which is a favourite of mine as the recipes are sorted by what is in season in each month of the year.  She had lots of plum recipes.  I will give you Sarah’s recipe and note where I changed it.  I made double quantities but am giving you the recipes as they are in her book.  These are Victoria plums.

 Plum Sauce


  • 450g ripe plums
  • 2-3 garlic cloves
  • 2 dried chillies or 1 fresh red chilli
  • 3 heaped tbsp soft brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
  • 4 tbsp soy sauce
  • Salt


  1. Halve the plums and remove their stones
  2. Chop the garlic and chilli
  3. Place all ingredients in a heavy based saucepan and simmer for at least half an hour until rich and thick
  4. Pour in to warm, sterilised jars and cover.  They should keep 3-4 weeks in the fridge and it freezes very well.

The changes I made were to use level tbsp sugar and I added 2 dates. I also poured mine in to the blender so it was very smooth.  I enjoyed one portion for supper, popped one jar in the fridge and the other 2 in the freezer.   

   I also wanted to make something similar to a plum compote to have as a dessert or for breakfast so I made the roast plums which Sarah Raven recommends you have with custard.
Roast Plums


  • 1kg plums
  • Grated zest and juice of 1-2 oranges
  • Grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 cinnamon stick broken in 2
  • A few juniper berries
  • 75-100g dark brown sugar

For 2 kg plums I used 3 oranges, no lemon, 3 bay leaves, 1large cinnamon stick, about 10 juniper berries, 100 g Rapadura, whole cane sugar, 1 heaped tbsp molasses and 4 large dates.


  1. Halve the fruit, remove the stones and place in a large oven proof dish
  2. Heat the oven to 180 
  3. Add the orange zest, bay leaves, cinnamon, juniper berries and sugar and finally the Orange juice
  4. Bake in a preheated oven for 15-20 minutes until the plums are tender.

This is fantastic.  Really delicious, with strong flavours of orange and juniper.  The dates were a genius addition as the texture is lovely.  I have set aside a portion for breakfast and put the rest in the freezer so I can share it with my sisters next weekend.   

 Plumtastic.  I have had some good suggestions on Facebook for using my plums so I will have to think about what to do with the remainder.  I hope you all had a good weekend.

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Plant Power

I have made a lot of poor food choices recently.  I could easily have done the same again today because I had another stressful day yesterday and woke up very tired with a busy day ahead of me.  But no – I knew plants would make me feel better so I ate lots of them and guess what ? I do 😃.

Food of the Gods!  Frozen bananas and fresh apricots, blended together into a thick sweet smoothie. It was perfect.  

  I made another smoothie for lunch with bananas, frozen berries, plums and lettuce.  Yes, lettuce.  I wanted to add some greens and I have lots of lettuce in the garden so I used some up. Not bad at all and it felt like it was full of wonderful nutrients, which of course it was.
 I snacked on 3 apples during the afternoon. Dinner was veggietastic.  
  Transformed in to a stir fry with Thai flavours.  I added some mung bean noodles which were a strange texture when uncooked but lovely when boiled and then stir fried.
Served with fresh coriander, soy sauce and sweet chilli sauce. Yummy.   I feel very much better already.  The power of plant food.

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A Sunny Saturday in Malmo

We did have a lovely day today in Malmo and have all concluded that this is a really lovely City.  It is small enough to be able to walk everywhere but big enough to have all the City facilities you expect to find.  It seems friendly, relaxed and laid back.  The sunshine and bright blue sky definitely helped make today one of our favourites of our Scandinavian sojourn.

My eating this month has definitely been vegetarian rather than vegan.  I partly blame being on holiday but in truth, I find it hard to be vegan, even though I am convinced it is a better way to eat, for health, for the environment and for animals.  Sticking to any type of diet is hard on holiday but I decided to try eating vegan all day, to see how I got on and because once back at home, I am being really strict again.

Breakfast was easy, plus I knew what to expect so was prepared when I went downstairs.  I began with fresh fruit.  Followed by black coffee, orange juice and granola with vanilla soya yogurt and strawberry compot.  We did a lot of walking today.  After dropping the bikes back, we walked over to the Ribersborg Kalbadhus, the Cold Baths or Kallis as the locals call it. It has been opened since 1892.  It seems to be open all year round.  

This is a classic wooden bath house, where women go in to the right and men to the left.  In here you can have a sauna, swim in the sea, sunbathe or just relax on the wooden decks.  Being such a sunny day, it was very busy and I enjoyed the experience very much.  Harvey wasn’t old enough to go in ( he didn’t want to anyway) and Lara didn’t want to so they had drinks and waited in the sunshine on the open air sun deck.  Obviously I took no photos inside the baths but this is inside the building in the restaurant area.   

 Next was a long walk to Mollevang Square where I understood there to be a large market selling fruit and a variety of foods from around the world. In particular, there were lots of places selling falafells, allegedly.

 We walked past lovely old buildings and through parks.  
  To the square, by which time we were quite warm and I was thirsty after my sauna at the bath house.  Luckily there were lots of places to buy a drink.
The falafel places I had read about seemed to be inside kebab shops,so we had some fruit instead.  This man was giving away sweet juicey watermelon – thank you very much.  

Dill pickle anyone?  

 There was a lot of ripe and cheap fruit to buy and in the end I had a nectarine. 

 Next stop was a park nearby called Folkets Park, which had a large cafe so we settled in for lunch.

  I had checked  that there was no dairy in the lentil and beetroot salad I ordered but there was a small amount of cheese in it.  I ate it anyway but the lesson learnt was that it is difficult being vegan and travelling in a country with a different language.  I guess the thing to do would be to write out that you are following a restricted diet and list the foods you want to avoid so you can show it to waiting staff.  Then they can read it in their own language and you are not dependant on their English abilities.
The coffee was good and strong and as we planned the afternoon’s activities, we saw that we had done all the things on the must see/do list that we wanted to. 

 Apart from the mini golf and a drink on Lilla Torg.  So,we cracked on.  

 The mini golf was great fun (and not just because I won 😃👍) and when we handed back the clubs, I did indulge in an ice-cream.  Ben and Jerry’s make different flavours for the Swedes.  Many are the same but some are different and this was fantastic. 

   We walked a lot more, back towards the hotel.  Past statues,  

  Past lots of fountains,  

   a very quirky memorial in the form of sculpted shoes,  
 They were life size, as (nearly) modelled by Harvey!  

 We continued walking, past so many open air spaces where people could enjoy the sunny Saturday.  

   We finished our walkabout around Malmo at Lilla Torg, a pretty cobbled square with some buildings dating back to the 14th century. 

   One of my favourite shops. 

 Cold beer and peanuts  
 and a game of cards were a splendid end to a lovely day out.  

 I had already failed the challenge of eating like a vegan so I failed again at supper time.  The lentil and tomato soup must have had milk or cream in it.  

 The mayonnaise, cheese and butter with my main meal were another fail.  I wasn’t very hungry hence the small portion.  

 I finished with a tiny portion of chocolate brownie, another non vegan food.  This is a teaspoon on a side plate so it really was very small.  Can you travel and stick to a vegan diet? Yes of course you can, but it requires discipline and planning ahead.  I am good at planning but hopeless with discipline.

We finished the evening with another round of cards in the hotel lobby.

We head home tomorrow after what has been a very interesting and in the main, extremely enjoyable holiday.  The jury is out on whether our favourite city was Copenhagen or Malmo.  It was not Gothenburg which was worth a visit but not somewhere I would rush back to.  I would like to go back to Copenhagen as we were only there for 24 hours.  When I do go back, I am popping on the train to Malmo to go to the cold baths again.


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Cycling around Malmo

It was sunny today with blue skies and we made the most of it by hiring bikes and cycling around.  We have reflected over supper, that Malmo is a fantastic city, it would be an easy place to live and we all have sore bums so need to cycle more!

Our first stop was at an incredible building called the ‘Turning Torso’.  This is Scandinavia’s tallest building (190 metres high) and it twists 90  degrees from the base to the top.  
   The architecture around here is fascinating and I loved it.  Some was quirky.  Most was very aesthetically pleasing.   

   This area is known as the Western Harbour and is a popular residential district and no wonder why.  The buildings are modern, filled with light and laid out around open spaces.

 There is a fantastic supermarket on site too which reminded me of Wholefoods.  It was laid out and decorated in a way that made you want to browse.  Mary Portas would have approved.   

 They had several in store eating areas too;  a coffee shop, a buffet and a bar!  Plus of course, as we are in Scandinavia, a huge crispbread selection!!   

 They even do local deliveries, the environmentally friendly way.  Another  reason why this would be an amazing place to live …… It’s beside the sea 😃   

  In the distance is the bridge to Copenhagen.  
 There were numerous wide open spaces for sitting and relaxing , accessing the sea and cycling around!

 Cycling is really popular in Sweden and we had cycle paths to ride on everywhere we went.  Luckily none of our bikes ended up in the sea like this one.  We cycled along the length (and back ) of Ribersborg beach.  2 km of sandy beach leading in to very clear waters and studded with numerous piers which were wonderful for walking along, sitting on or just using to access the sea.

This is the bathing house where you can have a sauna and then bathe in the sea water. There is a male half and a female half as you have to go in the nude! I would love to do that but both children are horrified at the prospect but I may go tomorrow.  Alone.   

 These little piers were wonderful.  

  The Baltic Sea is much warmer then the icy Atalntic we swam in from Praia da Luz in Portugal.  
 Next stop was the Malmo museum and castle which housed an aquarium and a fascinating exhibit about the time in 1945 when the castle housed refugees from the concentration camps.  I am not usually a fan of aquariums as I prefer animals to live in their natural habitat but this was interesting and had lots of information about animal conservation.  They also only had smaller sea creatures who hopefully didn’t miss the wide open ocean spaces as much as the larger animals would have done.   

   This exhibit, of eels, made us giggle.  The effect of the glass was to make the person in the dome look much smaller than they really are.   

 So what can we do to conserve animals?  Stop eating them !  We ended our visit to the museum with an unexpectedly profoundly moving exhibit.  At the end of WW2, the castle in Malmo was used to provide a temporary home for hundreds of refugees who had managed to survive the concentration camps.  Here they were cleaned and given fresh clothes and help in finding other family members who survived and a safe place to recover until they could head home.  

There were a series of short films in various categories, for example, one was about a group of ladies who had been in a photo of them arriving at the castle and queuing to be given fresh clothes.  Many years later, a researcher wanted the names to go with the faces and found and interviewed some of the women about their experiences of arriving in Malmo.  

My favourite was the films interviewing the family of survivors, and hearing them talk of life with a family member who had survived such unspeakable atrocities.  It was very moving and is an aspect of survival from the camps that I had not thought much about before.  When we walked in to the useaum it was sunny and there was blue sky.  In fact when we had a break for a cup of tea and a sandwich it was blue skies and we sat outside.  However, and perhaps very appropriately, while we watched the films, there was a sudden storm and torrential rain which added to the drama of the real histories we were watching.  Unfortunately ,  despite the rain, we had to leave as the museum was closing so we had a very wet cycle back to the hotel.

I have realised I didn’t do any food shots today.  Well, I did a lot of cycling so the exercise box gets a large tick.  So too, I am ashamed to say, does the over eating box.  When you enjoy food as much as I do, breakfast and supper buffets are not a dieters friend but I must do better tomorrow!  I will leave you with a photo of one kitchen accessory I do not have; a large ring crispbread holder. This is on the supper counter of the hotels evening meal buffet. 

Have a happy evening.

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