Got Greens

Sometimes simple vegetables can be so beautiful. This was just lightly cooked broccoli, bean sprouts, edamame and cucumber with a little brown rice vinegar, oil and sea salt:

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Brussel sprouts delicious

Brussel sprouts have the potential to be exquisite. These were incredibly simple. Hot oil, sprouts chopped in half, add to oil chopped half down. After a bit, put a lid on. Add a bit of water if needed to get the pan juices. Sprinkle with flakes of fine sea salt.

Sauteed Brussel Sprouts with Sea Salt

Sauteed Brussel Sprouts with Sea Salt

Cooked this way they get a sort of sweetness. Broth could be added instead of water. If you have no objection, I recommend trying this with duck fat, but butter and vegetable oils– including coconut oil– work as well. You can have it going while you cook something else. If only brussel sprouts were not so expensive!

Spring vegetables

Finnish spring vegetables are finally starting to be available here, including beautiful radishes from the Lindroth farm near Turku.

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I only buy those radishes when I can get them really fresh. The leaves are great to eat as well; I wash them in several waters and put them into a curry, or sauté them. It was wonderful to see the beautiful colours again!

This salad had a very very easy dressing, with sesame seeds toasted in macadamia nut butter, salt and a nice unsweetened rice vinegar. Yums.

Steel-cut oats in Helsinki

Organic, Finnish oats from S-Market

Organic, Finnish oats from S-Market

These are what I have been using in our morning porridge lately. It is the closest I have found to steal-cut oats in Helsinki.

My father has favored steel-cut oats for many years, but they have become increasingly lauded by celebrities and doctors alike. I am sure you’ve heard about this, but if you need convincing:

+ By Dr. Robert Lustig, a prominent anti-sugar campaigner and Director of the Weight Assessment for Teen and Child Health Program at the University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine. Interviewed here by the fabulous Leonard Lopate of the radio station WNYC in New York:

http://www.wnyc.org/story/cut-sugar-and-processed-food-and-cut-obesity-and-disease/

+ By Bobby Brown, no less, the beauty magnate, from her book On Beauty: “ I love slow-cooked Irish Oatmeal (you can make it the night before and reheat it the following morning). I load up on calcium with plain Greek yogurt flavored with cinnamon and slivers of roasted almonds.”

And many others. The trend does not seem to have infiltrated Helsinki yet. I don’t quite believe that the health benefits can be so dramatic as to make consumption of rolled oats out of the question. Personally, my strong preference is due to the better texture. The flavor seems richer, the oats are more toothsome and chewy. And–really–not that much trouble.

In Helsinki, I have so far found one relatively affordable source. The oats pictured above, local and organic to boot, are available at the Bulevardi S-Market, which as a surprising number of treasures.

Organic Finnish Oats

Organic Finnish Oats

Breakfast 02.19

Oats, mango, raspberry, coconut flakes, a few cashews and macadamia nuts, flax and hemp seeds, sea buckthorn berries, cardamom, a bit of psyllium. These ingredients are added gradually…

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Breakfast 02.17

Whole organic oat groats (AKA pinhead oats, Scottish oatmeal, Irish oats, steel-cut oats), hulled hemp seeds, ground whole hemp seeds, flax seeds, coconut flakes, coconut meal, crushed cardamom seeds, raw cacao nibs, frozen bananas, frozen blackcurrant berries, a bit of psyllium.

Served with unsweetened almond milk.

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