Day 11: Broadening horizons

I love trying new things. New challenges, new adventures, new food. Going abroad for me has always been about tasting the food a country has to offer. What new flavours, aromas, new textures can I find? What will I be surprised that I like? But when you’re at home, you tend to get into the same routine with the types of foods you eat. When you work full time and your evening hours are limited, you take easy options, not adventurous ones.But the rules of the same routine don’t apply to us any more. We are well and truly being kicked hard out of our normal routine. It’s been shaky, there’s been strain. But actually, the whole paleo thing and now the Autoimmune Protocol thing has also been quite enlightening – not just in an ‘I can’t believe how much crap people eat’ kind of way, but in a ‘there’s a whole world of food I haven’t investigated’ kind of way.

For example, being mindful about eating seasonally when eating paleo (pre AIP) made me look out for seasonal fruit in the supermarket, which is how I ended up buying fresh figs and trying them for the first time in my life outside of a fig roll. You know what that is, right? Boyfriend reliably informs me that it’s a Fig Newton state-side, which is apparently where most of my readers are. Hi!

I also am a big fan of foraging and have always picked blackberries in late summer/ early autumn. But eating paleo took me to a whole new level. Inspired by our hunter gatherer ancestors, I sought out wild fruit and berries wherever I could find it and discovered damsons for the first time. Boyfriend and I had to struggle to get them, but it’s all part of the fun. And when they’re ripe, they taste just like little plums. So worth it.

Foraged damsons

We felt so primal climbing the trees to get these!

Then, when I was in Co-op the other day buying parsnips to make Kettle Chips, I came across a very unusual looking vegetable on the reduced shelf. Eddoes. Have you ever heard of these? I hadn’t. Apparently, they’re from Costa Rica. I did a quick search to make sure they were AIP-friendly and couldn’t find anything to say they weren’t. I did find a lady who had blogged about using them because she can’t have nightshades any more, so that was a pretty good sign. So I bought them and we thought we’d have them tonight. And this is what they look like…

Eddoes, par-boiled with skin on

Yea, I know. Pretty scary-looking gremlin-like things, aren’t they!

That’s them par-boiled with their skin on. They basically look the same before you par-boil them, but less wet and without the steam coming off them. That’s the first step. Then you have to make sure you peel all the skin off, which is fiddly because it’s quite thick and gets stuck in the veg peeler. Also, they’re really quite slippery, which was unexpected and so I had to hold them with a bit of kitchen-roll to stop them sliding about.

They’re pretty scary-looking, but apparently you can just treat them like a potato – mash, boil, fry, roast, etc.

I’ve been craving roast potatoes since Sunday dinner at the weekend. So next, I put them in the oven to roast in some duck fat, salt, and mixed herbs. Boyfriend was cooking our dinner this evening and we were a bit out of sync with the timing – especially not knowing how long these things are meant to cook for. But I think I should have left them a little bit longer to crisp up. Nevertheless, this is the result…

Roast eddoes

They look the real deal, don’t they?

They tasted pretty good. They kind of smelled like corn on the cob, which was weird, but I’m not sure Boyfriend agreed with me about that so maybe my nose has gone funny. The texture is strange and hard to describe. It’s sort of like potato, but then not at the end. Told you it was hard to describe! I think we’ll try them again, but let them cook for longer so they crisp up a little bit more. But if you’re really craving potatoes, try and find some. They’re not half bad.

Let’s see… what else is new to me since the paleo switch. Oh yea, everything made from coconut. Coconut flour, coconut water, coconut milk, coconut cream, coconut butter, coconut aminos (not tried but on order). Seriously, everything paleo and especially AIP has coconut in it. I don’t know what we’d do without it. If I find out I’m allergic to coconut, I might lose my mind.

So, yet again pulling positives out of this situation.

Lesson learned: through losing the foods that are comfortable to you, you discover foods you had never even heard of.

Have you discovered any new foods due to a new way of eating? Any I should try?

Food diary
Breakfast: Black forest, avocado and gelatin smoothie (same as yesterday)
Lunch: ‘Cream’ of broccoli soup – this didn’t go so well for me. I overheated the avocado and it went really bitter.
Dinner: Olive and oil marinated sea bass with broccoli and roast eddoes
Snacks: Handful of dates (last of the bag! No more. I will be strong!)

Pain level (out of 10)
Started out at 2 or 3 this morning, which is a bit higher than usual these days. Calmed down to nearly 0 throughout the entire day. JUst starting to feel the pinch now at 7pm – only at about a 1.


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