“Red Lorry, Yellow Lorry” is easy. You should try “Yellow Yolk, Orange Yolk”. It is way harder. Why am I sitting here making up tongue twisters? I wasn’t really but I was looking at the lovely egg on toast I had this morning and thinking how orange the yolks are. Yet we always say yolks are yellow. These are definitely orange.
They are delicious eggs too – Burford Browns which I buy in Waitrose. I like eggs and these are the very nicest I have ever had. I prefer the idea of home reared chickens and am always delighted to receive a gift of a box of fresh eggs. But I do like the taste of the Burford Browns the best. And the colour of that yolk.
Definitely orange. Served up on a toasted and buttered slice of wholemeal bread and sprinkled with salt, pepper and paprika. Lovely start to the day.
I was very good with exercise today. I did a dog walk at 8am in the woods over the road and then went on to play tennis for an hour and a half. It was so much fun to be back at the tennis club where we have 2 courts we can use. There were 6 ladies at drills today and it was lovely to be out in the fresh air, hitting balls again.
Lunch was bit of a ‘Ready, Steady, Cook’ challenge. There was a bowl of mashed squash and carrots in the fridge which I wanted to use up. I had also been thinking earlier that my pot of coriander was beginning to look a bit tragic so I snipped off all the most vibrant green leaves and put them in water to try and perk them up a bit. I also had 1/4 of the dressed crab left over from Friday.
Carrot and coriander is a popular soup which I have never actually had so I decided to make it today. With squash and crab.
Squash, Carrot and Coriander Soup
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 onion, peeled and finely chopped
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 350 g scrubbed (if organic) or peeled (if not organic) carrots, cut in to chunks
- 200 g Butternut squash, seeds removed and skin cut off, in chunks
- 1 litre vegetable stock,
- Fresh coriander
- Salt and Pepper
- Creme Fraiche (optional)
- Dressed crab (optional)
- Melt butter in a large saucepan and fry onions and garlic gently until soft.
- Add carrots, squash and stock and bring to the boil.
- Gently simmer until the carrots and squash are tender when a knife is pushed in to them.
- Put the soup and coriander (and crab, if using) in a blender and blitz until smooth.
- Season to taste.
I added a real recipe above in case you want to make this yourselves – you should do, it was delicious. But because I had cooked squash and carrots to use up, what I actually did was to put the veg in a saucepan with the stock ( I have actually run out of onions and garlic), bring to the boil, simmer gently for 5 minutes and then add the crab and coriander and blitz it. So easy! This would work well with left over roasted vegetables too, such as parsnip.
I also had some creme fraiche left over from the weekend from the lovely Hinxden Farm Dairy in Benenden. It is so rich and creamy. Quite divine. So I drizzled some of that in too and it became the most wonderful bowl of soup; full of flavour, sweet and creamy. The crab was barely detectable but it did add a subtle richness. I naturally had seconds as it was actually irresistible.
While I was cooking supper, I had a small mug of the little bit of soup left over from lunch, which I contentedly slurped while waiting for the water to boil.
Supper was spaghetti with salmon, broccoli and cherry tomatoes. I put the pasta in the pan and steamed the salmon and broccoli in a steamer above. I brushed some oyster sauce on the salmon while it was cooking.
A friend of mine, Laura, who lives in Canada, near Toronto, sent me an interesting article last week about how important it is to get enough sleep and how it can help with weight loss. It is from the Dax Moy Personal Training website. They have a blog on the site which has loads of interesting and informative articles about how to help weight loss.
The article about sleep (posted on 1st November) says we should ideally go to bed at 10 pm and sleep until 6 am. This is because we have two ‘repair windows’ during this time.
- The physical repair window. This occurs between 10pm and 2am. This is primarily when the body physically repairs itself.
- The mental repair window and this takes place between 2am and 6am. This is typically when we dream. During this time, we repair ourselves psychologically.
Melatonin is our sleep hormone and at this time of year, our bodies begin to secrete melatonin at around 9pm, as our body should be winding down and getting ready to rest. Melatonin supplementation is an effective treatment for obesity because Melatonin is involved in metabolism control so it is a critical component to weight loss and fat loss. If you sleep at the right times and get enough of it then you will have plenty of Melatonin and you will increase your metabolic rate and lose fat faster.
Lack of sleep increases our Cortisol levels. Cortisol is responsible for us holding on to fat and craving sugar. By getting to bed early and getting sufficient sleep, at least 7 hours, your cortisol levels will not rise so much.
The closer to 10pm, you get to bed, the better.
I have to be very disciplined to be in bed before 10 pm but I do know that when I am tired, I crave refined carbohydrate and sugary foods. After a good nights sleep, I want to exercise and eat more healthily. So whatever the science behind the explanation, sleeping well definitely makes losing weight the next day easier. I’d better get up those stairs. Good night!