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The British Royal Family tends to use alternative medicine practitioners and seems in quite good shape, especially Queen Elizabeth at 85 and the Duke of Edinburgh at 90. What can we learn here and what can we learn from their food choice perspective for celebrations?
Eighteen years ago, the Queen’s naturopathic physician, at that time, made a visit to my American city and was doing health consultations. All of my own family went. Jan de Vries had been trained in Switzerland by famed physician Dr. Alfred Vogel and came back to practice in Britain, with a couple of clinics in London and in Scotland. His view of keeping one’s Health was simple: keep Balance, and if lost, then regain it with life-giving, natural methods.
I think this is why you see such a calm demeanor in Queen Elizabeth, even though her work-load is grueling, especially for a senior citizen. She is surrounded by all that wealth and power and yet she lives a simple-life amidst it, for Balance. And, by all accounts, she’s very healthy in mind and body, just what we’d hope to be at her age.
So, as she walked down the 400 feet from her car at the entry, to the high altar in Westminster Abbey, to attend the wedding of her grandson Prince William Philip Arthur Louis Windsor and Catherine Elizabeth Middleton, we saw an elder to emulate, who took it all in her stride. She also wisely knew not to upset her routine and “party” into the night with the youngsters. Instead, she celebrated with family and dignataries at lunch, with family and friends at dinner, and then retired to Windsor Castle for a normal bedtime, leaving Buckingham Palace to party to 6am!
And, for the food she chose at Luncheon, which was the only menu I saw published, (dinner was in Prince Charles’ purview) (much of the food was sourced from his organic farm for both meals), what can we see as to how to enjoy food at a celebration and yet be prudent?
Here’s the menu, and in all cases, we don’t have the details of the recipe, so these are general comments.
Cornish Crab Pate on Lemon Blini
Pressed Duck Terrine with Fruit Chutney
Roulade of Goat’s Cheese with Carmelized Walnuts
Variety of Palmiers and Cheese Straws (grain carbs / fancy crackers)
Scottish Smoked Salmon on Beetroot Blini (Blintzes)
Miniature Watercress and Asparagus Tarts
Poached Asparagus Spears and Hollandaise Sauce
Quails Eggs with Celery Salt
Scottish Langoustines (a type of small lobster) with lemon mayo, pressed pork and cracklings
Wild Mushroom and Celeriac Chausson
Bubble and Sqyeak with Organic Lamb Confit
Grainy Mustard with Chipolata Sausages
Smoked Scotch Haddock Fishcake with Pea Guacamole
Miniature Yorkshire Pudding with Roast Filet of Organic Beef and Horseradish Mousse
Blood Orange Pate of Fruits
Rhubarb Creme Brulee Tarlets
White Ganache Chocolate Truffle
Milk Chocolate Praline with Nuts
Traditional English Fruitcake
McVitties Chocolate Biscuit Cake from a Palace Recipe.
___ The first thing I noticed was that the food was “local” and in season.
___ Next, the food was organic or sourced from clean waters, etc. and it was weighted towards fish and shellfish, rather than red meats.
___ The portions were small and able to be tailored to an individual’s appetite according to what and how many items a person ate.
___ There were numerous options for Orthodox Jews and Muslims (fish, vegetables, vegetarian foods, fruits) as well as lacto-ovo vegetarians.
___ There was an array of mostly low-fat protein sources or healthy fats.
___ There were nationally-traditional recipes and traditional family recipes used as well as some adventurous ones for “foodies”.
___ There was an abundance of vegetables.
___ Fruit was relied on for most of the desserts.
___ The starchy desserts or accompaniments were not to excess.
I am sure that if you really gorged yourself on these amouse-bouche canapes, you could get a serious calorie count, but if you ate sensibly, this could be quite a delicious and healthy meal.
Now, here’s a Palace recipe which was speculated in The Mirror newspaper, by former Palace chefs, to be served, but it was not chosen. However, as other Palace recipes were not shared, and this one sounds delicious and healthy, this one is a “keeper” for all occasions.
(Serves 12 plus)
2 lbs smoked salmon, thinly sliced and divided
1 lb smoked trout
1.5 lbs unsalted, organic butter, softened, divided into 6 portions *
1 T finely chopped fresh dill
1 t lemon juice
1 lbs smoked mackerel
1 T finely chopped fresh chives
Line a 1lb loaf tin or pate terrine with plastic wrap, overlapping the sides. Take half of the smoked salmon and line the sides and bottom of the loaf tin. Overlap the top edge by two inches, so the salmon will fold over and finally cover the filling at the top-level of the terrine dish.
Remove and discard the skin from the smoked trout. Place the trout in a food processor and chop finely; add 1/3 of the butter to the processor.
Blend again until smooth and add chopped dill and lemon juice.
Carefully put dollops of the trout mix into the terrine and gently link-up and even the level. Place the loaf tin in the freezer for 10 minutes while you prepare the second layer.
Clean the food processor bowl. Remove and discard skin from the mackerel, and place the mackerel into the food processor; chop finely.
Add 2 portions of butter and blend until smooth. Take the loaf tin from the freezer, and spread the mackerel mixture smoothly on top of the trout layer.
Place the loaf tin back in the freezer for 10 minutes while you prepare the third layer.
Clean the food processor bowl yet again. Place remaining smoked salmon in the food processor and chop finely. Add remaining two portions of butter and chives to the processor and blend again until smooth.
Remove loaf tin from the freezer, and spread the smoked salmon on top of the mackerel. Smooth the top.
Fold the overlapping pieces of smoked salmon over the top layer of the salmon spread.
Cover the top with plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight, or for at least four hours, until firm. Remove from refrigerator and lift off top plastic wrap.
Invert the terrine on to a cutting board and remove the loaf tin and additional plastic wrap. Slice the terrine into one inch slices. Serve on salad leaves as a sit-down appetizer or slice the terrine into suitably-sized strips and serve on suitably-sized and shaped crackers, as a canape hors d’oeuvre.
* Do NOT substitute margarine or non-organic butter. Either of those other items are NOT healthy and margarine may also not do the job of solidifying the pate at all.
Best to all — Em
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