Wednesday, November 15, 2017

organic vegan food inspiration

årstiderna organic vegan food box, march - april 2017 -

This will merely be an inspiring cavalcade of the organic, vegan food I've been cooking lately as a food ambassador for the Årstiderna vegan food box on Instagram (@veganskamatkassen). The recipes can be found on their website and in the appstore app (in Swedish). But if you find some dish/es especially interesting I'll happy to translate the recipe/s in a separate post. Just leave a comment about your favourite looking recipe.

årstiderna organic vegan food box, march - april 2017 -

This has so far been my absolute favourite dish. A very unassuming looking beetroot quinoa (served with salad, cabbage and carrots in a wrap), that's absolutely jampacked with texture and flavour (who new quinoa, raw beetroot, apple, raisins and a simple dressing of lemon juice, garlic, oil, salt and pepper could create such magic?).

årstiderna organic vegan food box, march - april 2017 -

årstiderna organic vegan food box, march - april 2017 -

Spicy bean tacos with avocado and grapefruit salsa.

årstiderna organic vegan food box, march - april 2017 -

årstiderna organic vegan food box, march - april 2017 -

Okonomiyaki with a spicy rice salad - such a nice new food experience!

årstiderna organic vegan food box, march - april 2017 -

årstiderna organic vegan food box, march - april 2017 -

Bangkok soup with rice and coriander - not a favourite flavour/texture experience. Love coriander, but the rest was just very basic.

årstiderna organic vegan food box, march - april 2017 -

food at home, october - november 2017 (årstiderna organic, vegan food box, food ambassador) -

Potato and leek soup with fried leek and pumpkin seed topping - the soup was really good (if not exciting) but that topping was fantastic!

food at home, october - november 2017 (årstiderna organic, vegan food box, food ambassador) -

Tartlets with creamy stew of asparagus, broccoli, carrot, leek and mung beans - just as tasty as beautiful. Just look at that gorgeous salad... Nature is amazing.

food at home, october - november 2017 (årstiderna organic, vegan food box, food ambassador) -

food at home, october - november 2017 (årstiderna organic, vegan food box, food ambassador) -

Saag aloo with chickpeas and spicy cucumber salad - let's talk about that pickled cucumber salad. I was very sceptical. Apart from pickled red onion I'm no fan of pickled veggies. Or so I thought. This was delicious and such a nice contrast to the spicy, hot saag aloo.

food at home, october - november 2017 (årstiderna organic, vegan food box, food ambassador) -

Spicy noodle wok.

food at home, october - november 2017 (årstiderna organic, vegan food box, food ambassador) -

Hokkaido pumpkin soup with turmeric and roasted corn and pumpkin seeds - absolutely delicious! That roasted fresh corn and pumpkin seed topping, fantastic.

food at home, october - november 2017 (årstiderna organic, vegan food box, food ambassador) -

Cabbage wraps with quinoa and pumpkin and pea hummus with turmeric - that hummus... oh my, tastiness! (Snoopervisors agree.)

food at home, october - november 2017 (årstiderna organic, vegan food box, food ambassador) -

food at home, october - november 2017 (årstiderna organic, vegan food box, food ambassador) -

Chickpea pancake with leek, squash and cherry tomatoes - I find chickpea flour to be rather dry and so was this pancake, but I'm basically just happy that I managed to fry and turn it reasonably unharmed.

food at home, october - november 2017 (årstiderna organic, vegan food box, food ambassador) -

Bibimbap with pak choy, mushroom, leek and carrots - very good. And that pak choy before cooking, gorgeous.

food at home, october - november 2017 (årstiderna organic, vegan food box, food ambassador) -

årstiderna organic vegan food box, october - november 2017 -

Seitan sausage in a bun with pickled red onion and Asian cabbage salad - I was surprised at finding a semi-finished product in the box (but granted I wasn't excited by the idea of making my own seitan sausage). Not very exciting as a meal. But I enjoyed the pickled red onions.

årstiderna organic vegan food box, october - november 2017 -

Wraps with quinoa, red cabbage, carrots, cucumber and peanut sauce.

årstiderna organic vegan food box, october - november 2017 -

Korma curry with chickpeas, sweet potato, cauliflower and tomatoes.

årstiderna organic vegan food box, october - november 2017 -

Latkes pancakes with hummus and tomato-onion salad - really good flavour combo.

food at home, october - november 2017 (årstiderna organic, vegan food box, food ambassador) -

The recipes are for two persons but in general I have no idea how hungry you have to be to finish all that food, so I can usually freeze the leftover food or enjoy it several days in a row. Very practical. I'm just so happy I got this chance - Instagram hashtaggery has certainly been very very good to me over these past few years.

I never enter any competition where it's just pure luck or a lottery (I'm never lucky in lottery anyway). To win by competence or talent is just so much more rewarding as far as I'm concerned. And even if this very honourable food ambassador assignment was something you applied for I consider it an Instagram victory - like the glasses, the dress, the Schwarzwald trip, the muesli, the wee sonny angel. Big, small and everything in between. The combination of image and words, my special winning combo apparently. And how lucky I am to be able to work with what I love. And eat and live the way I want, in a way that's beneficial for both myself and the planet. Lucky lucky lucky me.

NB the empty Årstiderna wooden crates are awesome for little excited snoopervisors too. Such a win win win situation.

Friday, November 10, 2017

love goals

remember remember, december 2016

This post will not be about vegan food. Nor about colourful outfits. It was after all not a promise, just a suggestion. And there's always time for it in another post. Human behaviour is much more interesting to contemplate, wouldn't you agree? Thus this post will be a reflection on love. In general.

Have you seen the TV-commercial with a football player scoring a goal and then suddenly getting mezmerised by a cheering man in the audience, so mesmerized he paves his way through the crowd up on to the stand and there passionately kisses him? I think it's an ad for a Swedish pay-TV company but Google has not been my friend here so I can't alas find a link to it. Anyway, I find the ad amazing and heartwarming. Because the storytelling so cleverly incorporates

a) The kind of passionate, unexpected kiss most of us humans (who have watched too many romantic movies) secretly (or not so secretly) wish for.
b) It's breaking the norms in a grand way. It wouldn't have been nearly as good if it had been a (stereotypically beautiful) man and woman involved.
c) Showing love and kindness instead of the violence and hate we've seen too much of at football games this last decade.

I would go as far as to say it's my new favourite commercial after the wind turbines one.

EDIT: I found it! "We gather all kinds of passion at Canal Digital."

You know the "I want someone to look at me like..." memes? My number one favourite is still Joe Biden looking at Barack Obama. In fact I've put that on my list of life goals. And until that happens I will continue to be a not so crazy cat lady. (Well, I will always be a not so crazy cat lady, because the company of cats rock, but you get the drift.)

There's been a lovely interview series on Swedish television recently called "En kärlekshistoria" (A lovestory) about famous Swedish creative couples who both live and work together. They've been together for 7-30 years (so their ages range from 35 to 80) and the interviews obviously revolve around how they've made their relationships work so well.

I didn't think I would enjoy the series as much as I did, and surely none of the other episodes after the first one (Camilla Thulin is my kindred spirit) would be nearly as good? But you know what, they've all been great in their very own way. I've loved the stories, the ups and downs most couples have shared. And not least the wisdom. Heartwarming. And all the oneliners, eye-openers that make you think, a fine thing indeed. The series is still available on SVT Play (in Swedish, in Sweden of course) so if you haven't had the time to watch it yet I recommend you do.

As far as myself go I did have a really good talk over dinner with that trusted friend the other day. And it was again both heartwarming and reaffirming of the conclusion I'd come to myself, the obvious way to act (or non-act) when things are complicated and not as straight forward as pink, vegan meringues. Which is keeping it simple, trust the gut and the process. Not forcing things, what is meant to be will be. That now embraced notion has served me well all this year, I'm done with being impatient. - Although I still believe impatience is what drives change and growth. Still, a time and place for everything... And I gave myself a promise last year which I'm not about to break. It's a simple question of pride.

Then we laughed a lot too - about that list of what we look for in an ideal partner we've all had at some point or other (and if you say you haven't I say you're a liar). The list that doesn't mean a thing (or at least not very much, your basic values are still the same) when the right one appears. (In fact you might even get moments of realising, why on earth didn't I know this was just what I needed and wanted?) And about the importance of intellectual challenge, humour and laughter. Friends like that are worth their weight in gold.

Later that evening my mother said
- Can I say something without you getting angry?
- Sure.
- *Insert a sentence that turned me into 50 shades of red*

She is clearly so much more insightful than I give her credit for sometimes - yes we should start a YouTube channel pod... Darling little mum.

Today she said something else that made me think a lot about my own behaviour of just being strong and comfortable in myself. I know she's right. And as unfortunate as it might be in some aspects it's also not something that I'm the least bit interested in changing at this reputable age reached. And most of all, if I tried to I wouldn't be true to myself. Which is so very important. And I'd much rather be myself than a unicorn actually. And it isn't a bad thing at all, but it's really interesting that it took all these years to get it. Hello, Eureka moment, I've been a bit clueless. For a very long time.

And after all these love related ramblings I'll leave you with a really sweet movie tip "What if?" - hipster alert high but also with a very clever dialogue, humour and lots of cuteness. Watched it again last weekend. This weekend I've heard it's going to rain lots and lots, so I think a caturday well spent would be watching and laughing at "Bridget Jones's Diary" for the umpteenth time. Accompanied by many cups of tea, snacks and cats. And possibly reminiscing on how close I was to that praiseworthy wet shirt of Mr Darcy a few months ago. As one does now and then.

Tuesday, November 07, 2017

even in a world with pink, vegan meringues life is still complicated

pink vegan meringue, november 2017

Sometimes I miss those early days blogging, when very few friends knew about the blog and I most definitely never mentioned it in work related situations. Even if I've always been very careful and neutral about whom I mention or write about - 

never ever any names and the rule is as always "If I don't want certain people to see or read this I don't publish it". Simple as that. -

I still have a distinct feeling I was more free in my blog writing a few years ago.

The vast majority of my blog readers come from the US - which I find curiously interesting, hello there! - and that's fine and lovely. Other countries, equally lovely. It's when it gets too close to home for comfort I get a bit taken aback. When it suddenly dawns that hey, those colleagues and friends of M - if any of you guys still reads, hello to you too -, those work related people and followers actually do pop in and read. Then I realise I'm not really comfortable to write quite as freely as I used to. Even if I've never been really private I've always been personal and sometimes that feels pretty awkward now too.

And admittedly it's basically my own fault, maybe I shouldn't have mentioned my blog quite as openly to people. And I probably shouldn't have added it to my LinkedIn profile. Or published some posts on Twitter. Used it as my text portfolio. Really, silly me.

On the one hand this ties my hands in writing, on the other hand (the none tied one) it forces me to develop my writing in a new direction. Which will never be completely new since I find that keeping it personal is always the best way to keep it. Still, I'm keeping a fair bit of my emotional life off blog these days. Since I would be really sad if what I would like to write about now in any aspect would affect my professional life in a negative way. It may be silly, it may be true, it may be instinct, it may be over-analyzing. All despite the fact that my gut feeling says yes. My heart says yes, but my head, my practical head says no.

And no matter how much I've come to trust the gut and no matter how much I've grown this last year, this is a hurdle I'm not willing to deal with. I don't even know how. And certainly not in blog.

See, even in a world where something as delightful as pink, vegan meringues exist life continues to be complicated. Or at least us humans complicate things. Especially where emotions are involved.

So to not complicate things further - I will talk this through with a trusted friend tomorrow instead - I will now write a bit about the fact that my poor leaky roof got an emergency fix last week. It was a huge crack straight across the roof, the roofer said he had never seen anything like it and I saw the picture proof. Things will hopefully keep over winter now, but the roof needs complete replacement come spring and the cost for that is a crazy one. Depending on how extensive work that needs doing, but still hello hefty price.

But I have dealt with so much issues this past 1,5 years so of course I will find a solution to this too. For now I'm just grateful I can't hear that sound of drip drip drip anymore.

So, how about some fabulously inspiring vegan dishes in next post? - yes, I thoroughly enjoy my new role as food inspirer/food ambassador. Haven't cooked so many meals in years, tea and sandwiches or porridge is usually fine for dinner en mi casa, now it's hello wonderful flavours and textures galore! 

Or some colourful outfits - haven't done that in a long long time, but as someone kindly asked for that, who am I to say no?

Both most certainly light hearted, non complicated topics. Life is made of that too. Much like sweet pink, vegan meringues.

pink vegan meringue, november 2017
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