My sister’s and I were raised to be somewhat conscious of what we ate. We grew up eating salads, casseroles, roasts, the occasional ewedu (which we ate with rice/ground rice/semovita/dodo), jollof rice, fried rice (my mum makes an amazing pot), mum’s yummy efo riro… We didn’t eat a lot of Nigerian food and the best part? Sweets/desserts.
Both my parents can COOK – two different styles of cooking. My dad was a chef years ago and he typically made us breakfast on Saturdays (a mean omelette which he still makes weekly). My mum is also a great cook and I spent a lot of time in the kitchen with her.
Being raised by parents who are both passionate about food was fun. Mum would bake with us while in primary school. Dad once had the best chef ever – Mr Denis. He could cook up a storm. His cream caramel was to die for. There was also another awesome chef – Baba (I have forgotten his name) who made the most delicious pies from left over roasts (chicken, turkey). We looked forward to baking with him and packing these as school lunches.
My grandmother is also a great cook. Her jollof rice is the best hands down. Her stew, Amazing, her ila asepo, my my my. Need I say more.
My mum, dad and grandmother influenced my love for food and my passion for cooking. I am a FOODIE. I love everything about food – the taste, the feel, cooking it, serving it… I am one of those who can spend hours cooking. I watch the food channel and love trying out new food (don’t condemn it if you haven’t tried it). I have been cooking since I was in primary school.
If you ask what type of food I cook, I’ll say ‘SOUL FOOD’. I cook based on how I feel and I do not follow a recipe when it comes to meals I have been making for years.
“No one who cooks, cooks alone. Even at her most solitary, a cook in the kitchen is surrounded by generations of cooks past, the advice and menus of cooks present, the wisdom of cookbook writers.” – Laurie Colwin
Lola’s SOUL FOOD has been around for a while, you can ask my closest and dearest. Cooking is what I love to do, I can be in the kitchen the whole day. The downside to knowing about food? Not being able to eat crap (hahaha. Is that really a downside?).
I’m just someone who likes cooking and for whom sharing food is a form of expression. – Maya Angelou
In recent times, I have incorporated consciousness into my SOUL FOOD. What does this mean? I have started making healthier versions of the meals I love, and guess what? They taste as good or even better.
Why healthier meals? After having two children, my body was not the same again. I needed to lose a bit of weight and get toned, so I started going to the gym thrice a week. I seemed to be getting toned and I lost a bit of body fat, but the changes were not visible. I ate mostly healthy meals (mostly home cooked) – loads of salads… (I can eat salads every day), but then I was still eating fried foods – chips and dodo.
Then last August, Fitfam fellowship challenged me – it helped me become more mindful of what I was eating – this meant no more fried plantain, no more french fries (I can have these on cheat days but I hardly do). The accountability factor pushed me and gradually my food choices changed, the way I cooked meals changed too and along came the physical changes that were missing. I have continued with mindful cooking and I absolutely love it.
Are you wondering what mindful cooking entails? Till my next post…..