It's my Birthday and I'd cry if I wanted to!
But instead I had a Smoothie Party
with my cute landlady and a few of our friends.
It seemed like a healthy alternative to drinking. Since I'm on the dry
Aline suggested it, and even bought me a smoothy
I also sneaked a few ideas from the menu of a local bar
at the recommendation of my fellow guests at Stasczi and Andrew's wedding
over the weekend. Yep she's hooked another one. You go girl!
It might have been easier if I had a juicer (I'll add one to my gadget wish list),
but the shopping was still unusually straightforward I have to say, mainly requiring the gathering of some attractive-looking fruit,
random herbs, a few cartons of fruit juice, ice cream and some doughnuts.
Once upon a time most of my friends lived in The Haunted House;
a fine Georgian town house in Newington, one of Edinburgh's earliest suburban villa
The house had massive, oddly-shaped rooms packed with mysterious faux-egyptian furniture and furnished with huge onyx fireplaces.
It featured servant's quarters, hidden staircases and hosted many atmospheric parties.
It was at one such party that I (OK, maybe with a little help from my friends) invented the doughnut smoothie
which I decided would also be a feature of this
Hence the doughnuts.
As it turned out, the hardest things to buy were
carrot juice ,
a reasonably ripe pineapple
and a decent vanilla ice cream.
The massive ingredient lists on these commercial ice creams
is truly dispiriting,
I finally settled on Häagen-Dazs
who rebelliously make their ice cream from... cream, milk, sugar and egg yolks.
Compare that with our own Scottish Mackie's
who apparently believe that a
Traditional Luxury Dairy Ice Cream
is best pumped full of glycerine, fatty acid glycerides, sodium alginate and guar gum.
Oooh yum - that definitely says tradition
Just in case the evening wasn't going to be liquid enough,
and also because as usual for this time of year I have a couple of enormous pumpkin to use up,
I made a big pot of good old-fashioned
lactose-gluten-meat-fish-free pumpkin soup
and discovered crispy fried rice ball dumplings
. Which I definitely plan on making again.
What with the not drinking and the not turning into a bacchanalian orgy my birthday party was a very family-friendly affair:
Julia brought her 18-month-old monkey and Anuschka brought her spawn of the devil.
At least - it's the only explanation I have for his evil red-eye in every single photo
To give the devil his due though, he really liked my doughnut smoothies.
That young devil can come again!
You would think, wouldn't you, that all that finely ground fruit would be fantastically good for you?
And that you would would wake up the next day bursting with health and enthusiasm?
Explain then, if you can, how I came to be so massively unwell next morning that I had to take the day off work and spend it sleeping.
Finally waking up at 3 p.m. with a sore throat and a terrible pain in all the diodes down my left side.
What a waste of a holiday - I must have been ill!
Nothing for it but more liquid -
and Aline kindly made me up a cup-full of her family's traditional flu remedy
though she added extra cayenne as she felt I had probably built up more resistance to it than most.
I have to report that her remedy has quite a kick to it, and if you can manage to overcome your gag reflex and force it all down
it feels like it might be doing some good. It certainly brought me out in a cold sweat.
As if not sweating enough had been my problem all along.