Hi! My name is Fiona and I live in Edinburgh with my husband Mark.
I am a cancer research scientist and have just graduated with my PhD from The University of Edinburgh's Medicine and Veterinary School. It all happened at once, from Miss to Doctor or Mrs in the space of a few months!
I love to read, both fiction and recipe books, a cup of tea, some home baked goody and something to read in my favourite comfy chair is always a welcome pastime. I also can get sucked into TV series currently, orange is the new black and 24 (Yes I know I am years behind everyone else!).
Just before you think I am a total couch potato I will add that, actually, I am not brilliant at sitting still for really long periods of time, I get restless. I love dancing and go to a few classes a week, I weirdly enjoy spinning class too. I have recently started yoga and am truly terrible but am really really enjoying it. Exercise that focuses on stretching and relaxation is, I think, going to be very good for me.
Obviously I love being in the kitchen, the whole experience, from the recipe design, to the prep, to the making and to the eating. I genuinely find it fascinating.
I have/had another blog which I started in 2012, a baking blog (let them eat cake), filled with 234 posts on delicious baked goods, but after much soul searching have decided to retire this blog.
So why the change? Two main reasons have promoted this change. Firstly my health. I started suffering gastrointestinal symptoms and was very quickly informed that I could not have lactose. Fine I thought, I can still bake, with a few substitutions here and there. But then more symptoms appeared and I was told to stay off gluten, better, yet still the symptoms persisted. Baking was a little trickier but by no means impossible. Polyps were found and removed, better, yet symptoms persisted, 8 months later another polyp removed and many biopsies of my colon taken. I am now awaiting biopsy results to see if the cause of my symptoms can be identified. I feel better when I eat non processed home cooked meals and treats than processed food. Lets be truthful even without my symptoms I suspect most people do!
The second reason is not as dire, simply my interests have changed, I still love baking, I made my own wedding cake a couple of months ago!When my now husband and I first moved and got our first jobs post university money was tight. Main meals had to be something that fit a budget and that I knew worked, mistakes would be too costly. One area I could experiment was baking, if a cake went wrong we may not have had cake but we would not go hungry. A few years into working and our financial situation is better, I can experiment with new ingredients, new cooking techniques and I find myself wanting to experiment with everything, savoury and sweet.
So my new blog will showcase food that I love, and that friends and family love. Some will be simple, some will be extravagant, some will be savoury and some will be sweet but one thing is for sure, it will all be food I find delicious.
Nowadays many blogs have 'a thing', a niche. They cater to a certain diet or lifestyle choice. I do not wish to force this blog to do that. I am not a vegetarian or vegan but enjoy this way of eating so plant based dishes will feature amidst meaty plates. Its true I cannot have lactose so will use substitutions, some of these substitutions are still dairy so please do check if you are dairy free. I also find I can tolerate a small amount of goats cheese so don't be surprised when that appears! Right now I have been told to stay off gluten but should I be allowed to reintroduce it please be prepared for an onslaught on freshly baked bread recipes!
I do not seem to fit into a specific diet plan niche, so what do I believe?
I believe in non processed food. I believe in fresh nutritious food prepared at home. Though I am no saint... the occasional processed food stuff is going to sneak in. And so what. If the majority of your diet is unprocessed your body will cope just fine. Trust me.
I believe food should provide energy and vital nutrition to our bodies, when I say nutritious I do not necessarily mean low calorie. No, I mean food full of vitamins, good fats, protein, fibre and carbohydrates.
And I believe treats should be treats. I am all for making them a smidgen healthier if they still taste indulgent BUT sometimes I just want that warm chocolate chip cookie from the oven, and you know what that's ok too!
So welcome to my blog, full of nutritious meals and indulgent treats that will hopefully have you inspired in your own kitchen.