I watched the lovely Ella Mills on you tube the other day out of curiosity as the 'clean eating' movement was garnering criticism in the press. She was making a 'risotto' by puréeing squash and pouring it over rice. That ain't a risotto, honey. That's puréed vegetable mixed with boiled rice. Risotto is made with Arborio rice, stock and takes time over a gentle heat. It's a bit like calling me Sophia Loren when I'm obviously not her.
I despair and have much experience of being a vegetarian- I used to live on soya mince and other 'good' stuff. Having been brought up eating bloody steak I eventually relented and returned to my carnivorous ways when I began working in London where the pace is relentless and the hours long. London is so competitive that you could arrive at work and before you've eaten your croissant, be shown the door. Stamina and balls are required to survive London and a vegan diet would leave you exhausted, cold and prone to much farting. Hardly conducive to schmoozing clients on The Sunday Times Rich List.
Here's the thing that all these deluded and no doubt, overly idle devotees are missing: a vegan diet was derived for the purpose of achieving spiritual awareness. By not consuming meat and the energy of animals, one was meant to become enlightened and closer to reaching nirvana or bliss. Meat is grounding- it is heavy and hard to digest and keeps us rooted. In order to achieve enlightenment, the body must be light and the mind clear. The yogi in India who's life is dedicated to spiritual awakening survives on fruit, nuts and pulses and would not dare to corrupt his pathway to bliss by consuming animals products, even cheese or eggs.
The trend of clean living is nothing new but its application in today's society is as always, misguided. One wonders who comes up with the next trend for the sheep to gobble because that's what it is. The irony in the preparation and purchase of ingredients of the 'clean living' movement is that it is expensive and relies on processed vials of this- or-that extract or powdered roots or enzymes extracted from the tooth fairy's breath. Let's be clear- those vials are overpriced and are made by a large scale manufacturer whose sole purpose is to turn a profit. The supreme irony therefore is that in order to clean out our systems, become healthier and save animals from being killed for food, we should spend more and support globalisation in all its destructive glory.
The lovely Ella Mills is 25 years old with an excellent pedigree. She clearly saw a gap in the market hewn from her own experience of eating badly, saw the light as it were, and in the process improved her health and her bank balance. Good for her. But as a serious French cook myself who loves food, the preparation of it, the respect for it and in memory of all those during the occupation of Paris who during WW2 ate cats to survive, please don't tell me that this trend of 'clean eating' is anything more that complete nonsense. If you want to get healthy- eat unprocessed food in as close as possible to its natural state. And don't eat a lot of it. Everything in moderation except fads of which none is better than any at all.
My homemade organic lamb stew with hand made buttery dumplings.
Photo copyright SvD.
And here's what I look like now- in my 50s, stressed out, work long hours, up at 5am to walk my hounds, red wine every single day with supper. No health problems, ideal weight, normal blood pressure. Just suffering with an aversion to gullibility.