If you’re looking for a new way to season your vegetables, spice up your fish, marinate your meats, or just create a great dip, then olive oil and balsamic vinegar tastings might be for you.
Olive oil is a staple in most Mediterranean diets and has become popular in Western cooking in the recent decades. Many may not know this, but there are over 20 different types of olive oils, infused with various herbs and spices. When paired with infused balsamic vinegars, the flavor combination possibilities are endless.
Generally when it comes to taste testings wine might come to mind, maybe even cheese or coffee, but never oil. The best way to taste test the quality of olive oil is to place a small amount in a glass, and take a sniff. It should smell fresh. If it smells slightly musty or like cardboard the oil is not pure or has gone bad. Don’t worry if you’re a newbie to all of this, the expert doing the tasting will guide you. And if guzzling a little oil by itself sounds unappetizing, you can always pair the oil with a balsamic vinegar or dip in some bread.
Earlier this past week I was filming on set for a short which explains my lack of posts since Monday. But I’m back.
In the film world, as they say, early is on time, on time is late. Filming is a perpetual game of ‘hurry up and wait’. Setting up, breaking down set, moving camera equipment, and multiple takes later you’re still running out of time…and film. So back to my ‘cure’.
Behind the scenes
I have an on-going list of food allergies so I basically eat clean and am very careful with what I put in my body. When craft services asked me about my food allergies on set, I didn’t want to burden anyone and list out my ridiculous list, so I just stated the major ones like peanuts and seafood. I figured I would just bring my own snacks and cross my fingers that the day’s catered lunch wasn’t going to make me sick or cause me to break out in hives.
My first day on set my skin was slightly broken out in eczema so I was careful with how I ate. The three days of shooting after that I ended up leaving my snacks at home and started eating the food on set just to see if my immunity had improved since I had been avoiding those foods for so long. Not only did my skin NOT break out, but it cleared up completely. The only reasoning I can think of why my skin healed and why I didn’t get sick was because my stress levels were virtually non-existent. I was doing what I loved. Outside of acting, I work a traditional corporate job and with it comes a large amount of stress. Stress I didn’t realize was affecting my autoimmune disease until this week. So I’m starting to think stress has more to do with my food allergies than the foods itself. It’s an important revelation that’ll help me continue healing on my journey. Just goes to show your mind is much stronger than your body.
This post is a part of Fiesta Friday on The Novice Gardener
When I was younger, my mother swore that I was allergic to chocolate. I’d break out into hives and it just wasn’t pretty, so she banned me from eating any form of it. No Halloween candy as a kid. It was a rough life. As I got older, the hives stopped coming and I started feeding my chocolate indulgence again. Life was great and I couldn’t be happier until a year ago the hives returned. I chalked it up to other things I was eating, mainly because I was in denial. Not being able to eat chocolate might as well mean not living, right?
So before I went into full panic attack mode in fetal position and started crying,I asked my nutritionist at the time to test me for Cocoa on my MRT (Mediator Release Test). The results came back and showed I WASN’T ALLERGIC!
Green: Non-reactive Yellow: Moderately Reactive Red: Reactive
So I naturally did what anyone would do, I went to town and bought CHOCOLATE.
And then of course the next day, I broke out again. I felt betrayed. Were my test results wrong?
I looked at the back of the packaging on all my chocolate bars and realized all the added fillers like SOY, which I’m highly allergic to, and other weird things I couldn’t pronounce were on the ingredients list. So I hadn’t been eating real chocolate this whole time, I felt duped by the chocolate companies, and a little relieved. And it turns out after buying organic choclate, things were alright after that. The End.
Moral of the story is that if something isn’t working out for you, try to find another solution. There’s always another way around. If you feel like your skin wreaks havoc after eating chocolate, maybe try picking up the organic kind. These are some of my favorites:
Tastes just like a CRUNCH bar
This post is a part of The Daily Post Daily Prompt: Happy Endings
Hi I’m Rakhi and I’m a recovering coffee addict lover. There’s nothing I don’t like about coffee, except maybe for the fact that it makes me sick:( If you read my first post on how I jumpstarted my recovery to good health by doing a detox, you’ll know that coffee was one of those items on the ‘break up with these foods’ list and it was one of the hardest breakups I’ve ever had to face. I’ve never cried over a guy, but I have for coffee. And cake. I still dream of cake too.
In the beginning of my elimination diet, giving up coffee wasn’t that bad since I liked it for the taste rather than needing it for the caffeine. I felt great, my GI issues went away, my allergies were clearing, and I had all the energy I needed from fruits. But once I introduced it back into my diet, it was like giving candy to a baby. The initial few moments were great, I felt the rush and I wanted more…and then came the crash and the bloating and the joint pains a few days later. I was in denial. I was convinced it was something else I had eaten causing my symptoms to come back again. So I switched from sugar to stevia, and went for an all-natural creamer and that seemed to help. But then I started drinking a cup a day and it became pretty obvious, too much coffee made me sick.
In the beginning I was devastated. No more hot White Mocha Breve’s during fall and winters? A lifetime of summers without Iced Coffees? How was I going to deal? I tried coffee again, because well sometimes, like in any relationship you have to keep working at it to make it work, and I still loved coffee, and I was hoping coffee still loved me back; and it did. Turns out I’m intolerant to coffee in large amounts, but drinking one cup a week won’t make me utterly ill.
Being in great health to me isn’t about having to make great sacrifices but just slight compromises. Being in good health means I can still put on my William Ackerman playlist while I do yoga sun salutations without having my wrists ache. It means walking down to the farmer’s market on a Sunday and coming home to make a great nutritious meal with my family while winding down to some wine. You shouldn’t have to sacrifice taste for health and it’s ok to cheat every once in a while because at the end of the day you deserve what makes you happy.
This post is part of the Daily Post Weekly Writing Challege: Fit to Write
My love affair with cake began at a very early age: portrayed in the picture of me gorging my face on my 5th birthday. I love cake, but cake does not love me. See once upon a time I wasn’t actually as allergic to wheat as I am now. I could tolerate small amounts and be fine. I was, however allergic to eggs and dairy when I was younger, which I thankfully and miraculously outgrew in my teens. I enjoyed my first piece of cake without having my throat close in on itself when I was 15, and from then on it was strawberry shortcakes, cheesecakes, pancakes, almond bear claws, and whatever else really. Unfortunately, a little more than half a decade later my immune system had another surprise for me. I started reacting to wheat. One bite into a multi-grain bread and I had felt like a thousand wasps had stung me on my tongue.
I continued to eat refined wheat aka bleached white flour in the form of white bread, cakes, and pastries and seemed to be ok. No itchy mouth or scratchy throat so I thought I was good. Wrong. Days later I’d break out in eczema or I’d have other related symptoms of fatigue and achy joints, and I let this go on for years. I would always chalk it up to stress, not getting enough sleep or something else I ate. I refused to believe that I was allergic to wheat again just like I was in denial on my 5th birthday that I wasn’t supposed to be eating that cupcake. I learned the hard way of course. Moments after that picture was snapped, I had an allergic reaction and I went off into the corner and cried, but it was my party and I figured I could cry if I wanted to and have my cake and eat it too. Sadly that’s not how the world works for us allergic folk.
But just like I outgrew my allergy to eggs and dairy, I’m hoping I’ll one day be able to have wheat and flour again. I’m taking a break from eating all of it now and letting my gut repair itself by eating clean, but I have faith I’ll heal soon so I can have my favorite, strawberry shortcake in a few birthdays again.
This post is a part of the WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge themed Foreshadow