Thursday, 12 August 2010

Cheese and Wine, so Hard to Resist

Rhythms, rituals, and routines is the hallmark of my life it seems. I am sure we all share those to some degree. This past summer, which is nearly over, just lacked all of that. I just couldn't get a grip on it, and as a result felt just rudderless.

I have a wonderfully organized garden which has some great vegetables growing like mad in several patches and also I have a studio in an adjacent apartment to ours to work in. However getting out there, getting up there, was/is like pulling teeth. Of course it was so hot so soon this summer, as most would agree, who could do much but complain, wait and argue, (I felt bloated, fat, and tired most of the time) and mostly because I found myself eating the wrong food. Not wrong, but not "appropriate to my health issues".

I do have to pat myself on the back because even though it appeared and was sort of true I wasn't eating very well, I actually was getting in two raw salads a day, and several green smoothies. The problem was I was adding in several glasses of red wine, chocolate and cheese!

Gosh Cheese! Who can not live without wine and cheese, and moreover, who can not love wine and cheese? (except a lactose intolerant person or those few aliens from another planet who wince at the sight or smell of it) Further when you eat cheese you have to have a rich red multi-layered, berry-laced, slightly earthy cabernet or a fresh slightly grapefruit-y, tangy, gooseberry white. Certainly if one has the wine first, the cheese inevitably comes next as one is too happy to care. Life becomes a dream of tastes and delight, one feels a post orgasmic bliss of the soul, the vapors even.

What I love to do is have a mouthful of a nice full bodied red wine, swallow, pause for a minute to get fullness of the taste, then eat a cherry, enjoy that, then take another sip of the wine, and wow! The fruits in the wine go wild. Now to "up the ante" have a piece of a strong blue cheese and then buckle up your seatbelt because that will send you to the moon, and while you are flying you can hear the "hallelujah" chorus in your head. Another fun thing is to have some white wine, get a chunk of Jarlsberg, and do the same, ships ahoy! Seriously cheese makes the wine creamer, the wine makes the cheese nuttier. So wonderful. The more healthy way to do this is to get an organic wine, or better still Whole Foods sells a "no sulfates added" organic wine, and raw goats cheese. These are less acidic for your body which is more healthy. I mention that because if you do fall off the wagon, at the very least you can be somewhat careful.

Chocolate is another one of my pleasures; the reward giving, sinfully delicious, theobromine mind soother! which I have gobbled up like a naughty child hoping not to get caught. What is it about chocolate? It does have some amazing properties, but sadly not the kind we crave. The chocolate we love is heated, processed, has tons of sugar in it, and probably something the FDA and the AMA have also added to keep us addicted, so we don't ever uncover the truth, but that is another essay. Raw cocoa though, is very very good for us in moderation (is that ever possible with this exotic pod). Raw cocoa has many properties that have been enjoyed for hundreds of years- one can experience an almost fruity taste when eaten in its raw state. Please try it with some Lucuma (a low calorie sweetener) or tiny spoonful of honey. Stevia forget it. I have tried so many kinds, it either tastes bitter, or the leaf kind literally smells like poo. No thank you! I'll take a few grams of natural sugar.

Of course all of this is not allowed on the vegan diet, it is so sad. This summer I hope I got away with it, because as soon as my husband goes back to work to teach, it will be time to pull myself up by my boot straps and knock it off! Cancer just loves it when I get all gooey and cheesy, non selective and choosy. So once in Maine, for the last leg of this summer, it is back to the boot camp with occasional cheating (like on our wedding anniversary August 25th). I hope I can keep to it, as my life depends on it. It is so easy to fall of the wagon and stay off. Alas. Still I have my memories...