I figured out why I've been in 'cooking limbo' lately.
It's this silly 'regime' (diet) I've subjected myself to.
Remember last year when I discovered that, while I was 'perfectly in the middle of my weight range' by U.S. standards, in France I was fat!
In order to be 'perfectly in the middle of my weight range' by French standards I had to lose 14 lbs.
At the time I decided to put a wee bit of effort into it and, maybe, drop 5 or 6 lbs…. Just enough that the French docs would no longer harass me. It was summer, after all, and with all the gardening and other outdoor work it shouldn't be too difficult.
So I cut out a bit of snacking, started a proper exercise program and dropped 8 lbs by fall.
Well done, I thought, slightly spraining my arm patting myself on the back.
Done and dusted.
No more of this diet stuff.
I'll just keep it off and that will be that!
I did keep it off – well, okay, that second box of chocolates at Christmas did cause me to gain 2 lbs, but my winter and summer weight has always varied by 2 or 3 lbs… No big deal.
What got me seriously back onto the 'regime' was cleaning out my file cabinet.
Selective memory had me believing that I had weighed roughly the same most of my adult life…. maybe a slight upward creep, but nothing serious.
I found some old gym exercise records that, shall we say, refreshed my memory.
20 years ago I weighed 125.
I was fit, yes; worked out at the gym 5 days a week, yes; and was younger, also yes.
But still that number was there….
If the French docs thought I should weigh 126….
And I had, according to my now refreshed, memory weighed 125….
Fine, I thought.
Just suck it up and do it.
I did – well, almost, I still have 1 lb to go, but it's gardening season again, so I'm not worried.
My point, you may now ask?
Most of my cooking has been on the lower end of the calorie scale lately.
I didn't think it would be interesting. It didn't inspire me to want to post.
I now think my previous opinion was in error.
This was a very interesting salad.
We had this as a first course. Diet or not, we still always have a first course on the weekends…
At a properly set table with candles, cloth napkins and nice wine..
(During the week, we still have the candles and cloth napkins…. but cheaper wine ;-))
2 eggs, hard boiled
8oz (250gr) asparagus, green or white
2 oz (60gr) spicy chorizo, sliced thinly
2 green garlic
2 tsp olive oil
4oz mâche (lamb's lettuce)
2 tsp Dijon-style mustard
1 tbs fresh, snipped tarragon
1 tbs fresh, snipped chives
1 1/2 tbs tarragon white wine vinegar
3 tbs olive oil, the good stuff
Snap off ends of asparagus and roll cut into 1.5 inch (4 cm) lengths. Trim and slice green garlic.
Heat olive oil in nonstick skillet. Add green garlic, asparagus, and stir-fry over medium-high heat for 5 minutes, until they are crisp-tender and starting to brown. Add chorizo and fry 1 minute longer.
Peel eggs and cut into chunks.
In a large bowl whisk together mustard and vinegar. Slowly drizzle in oil, whisking constantly. Add herbs.
Add eggs, asparagus, green garlic and chorizo to vinaigrette. Stir to coat well.
To serve: Divide mâche and arrange on 2 plates. Spoon salad on top, pour a glass of rosé and savour every bite.
Followed by Home – Smoked Salmon, new potatoes and more asparagus… Spring!