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Food Shopping

I love living in Turkey but have over the last 5 years had to get used to a whole new way of shopping.

In the UK am I worked full time. If I ran out of food mid week I ate take always until I could get to the supermarket again. Sunday mornings were shopping time….. I’d meet my friends at the supermarket of our choice, eat a full cooked breakfast…after all it’s bad to shop when you are hungry, and then do the weeks shopping. Trying to think of things that wouldn’t go bad, or take to long to cook after a hard day at work. Lots of things in boxes that could get zapped in the microwave.

Here we shop for fresh fruit and veg at the local markets. Meat and fish is purchased as we want it at the cheapest place we locate. At the moment we are paying 1.50tl each for trout…. that’s about .45p. I had a good deal on some lamb shanks last week 23.50tl for 2 that’s less than £6 and they were huge. But it’s all very spontaneous…… We have the “what shall we eat for dinner?” conversation everyday at about 6pm. I come up with an idea and my husband goes and buys the ingredients.

It all sounds wonderful…right? Healthy fresh home cooked food. Fresh meat and vegetables. Nothing in the freezer. But there is always a but……

Today we have been really busy. We have a long 4 day bank holiday weekend coming up so we had bills to pay and errands to run. We got home exhausted. My lovely husband and a little nap, we drank tea and watched television and then realised we were hungry with not much in the house.

Neither of us fancied going out….and the supermarket certainly didn’t appeal. So tonight was the store cupboard challenge. What could I produce for dinner using only things we already had in the house?

I ended up cooking a potato and lentil risotto and topped it with hard boiled egg and raw onion. My husband was very unenthusiastic about it when I described it. But he did agree to try it……. He loved it…he ate two big bowls full and asked why I hadn’t cooked it before. No answer to that….except I am a true domestic goddess.

I have added the recipe in the recipes section. But thought a bit of an explanation might be needed before you were tempted to try it.

Like Cacik but not Cacik

Cacik is a yoghurt dish served with bread or as an accompaniment to various meat dishes. Turkish people will eat yoghurt with most things but not fish.

I get bored with plain Cacik. I do like it but really fancied something a bit different tonight.

This has a garlic and lemony flavour and went really well with our chicken.

Plain yoghurt 400 grams
Tablespoon Olive oil per 200 grams I used 2
1/4 teaspoon of sumac
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 tea spoon salt
2 cloves of garlic peeled and very finely chopped. You could use purée but I prefer it with the little lumps.

Add the seasoning to a dish, add the garlic and the olive oil and mix well. Add the yoghurt and stir well. It will keep in the fridge for a couple, of days but you will find the flavours get stronger. I prepared mine about 2 hours before I needed it to give the flavours a chance to develop without been over powering. The sumac gives it a lovely hint of lemon.

Give it another stir just before you serve it to mix the oil which will separate slightly and accumulate around the edges.

Raspberry Ketones……….

Well what can I say? Regular readers will know that my knees are knackered and arthritis has set in with vengeance. One of the perks of the diagnosis and I am joking when I say perk…is that I now need to lose another 10kgs.

I have a group of friends who have leapt to my support who are all dieting alongside me. I am forever grateful for them been there and for our Monday weigh ins when I find out how much I have lost.

I have been in full diet mode since February and have lost precisely nothing. I started by giving up sugar in tea….about 20 lumps a day. My weight has dropped by 400g and gone up by 400g and gone down again…..but that’s it.

So I ordered a diet plate. It’s much smaller than my normal plates and has sections for meat or fish, carbohydrates and vegetables. I’ve used it since March and no I haven’t lost any weight but I am always hungry.

Finally someone was raving about raspberry ketones and colon cleanse….so with 10 kilos to lose I thought it was worth a try just to get me off to a good start and heading in the right direction. Three weeks down the line….and I’ve lost…you guessed it a big fat nothing.

The instructions on both packets say take one or two a day. I’ve tried the one of each and have as of yesterday doubled it to two of each. Fingers crossed the scales will start heading in the right direction.

I will keep you posted but at the moment I think I have just fallen victims to the hype the only thing that is actually lighter is my purse….but that’ll be the £25 I spent on the tablets.

Weigh day tomorrow…..if the scales still says the same I will be opening the last box of emergency Maltesers and scoffing quite a lot.