Aloha boys and girls,
Ow yeah, I'm back. I finished my first year at OTCG to study the basics of traditional chinese medicine. I guess I learned a lot, yeah I guess. I'm just busy with the training material every single day and it's just a lot of fun. I read, I think about it, look for logic and find logic. yahooooo (o; logica magica
I came to the conclusion it is tao, a way of thinking and living, rather being a study. I have no clue what it is exactly I want to do with the knowledge within a couple of years. But I don't mind actually. I just luv now and don't worry about later. I have faith in what will come.
What's in the pipeline for next year is already a fact, I'll do ear-acupuncture and meridian study next year. great! looking forward to it.
Anyway, being a foodie♥ I luv to experiment with food so I made this special soup. I just luuuuuuuuuuv the magic of soup. Believe me, I talk about it every day This soup is especially made for people suffering from xue xu and qi xu. It means blood and energy deficiency. So if you feel easily tired and cold this will do you good.
First of all, make your own bouillon. I swear, that's something we all should do again instead of using salt cubes eeeeuh bouillon cubes of course. It is such a major source of warm yang energy and vitamins. So just add carrots, selery, (spring) onions, ginger, chicken, peper and optional coriander roots, sesame oil into a cooking pot of cold water. Have it boil gently for 'bout 3 hours and cool down. At this point you can remove the chicken fat. Make a whole bunch and freeze it for later.
So that's your basis, from this point on, the fun begins. In this case I added shitaki, dried bean curd, extra ginger and red chinese dates called jujube.
Red chinese dates have the ability to stimulate the production of blood and Qi. They taste sweet. My teacher gave us a recipe to lower cholesterol. Just add chinese dates into a jar of vinegar and let it rest for 8 weeks in a dark place. Have a table spoon of the vinegar every day for a limited period of time as your cholesterol can become too low. This can harm the brains! Also shiitaki have the ability to lower cholesterol and encourage Qi.
I don't know about bean curd. I just like the taste.
Have it all boiled for half an hour and enjoy. njom njom
So I finished module 1 @ OTCG. yiihaaaaa
We learned about the basics of traditional chinese medicine and already got familiar with some basic pathology.
The fun thing 'bout it is that you get to know your own pathology and I guess I have Spleen Qi deficiëncy: Sp Qi Xu. Spleen has a major role in the digestive system in traditional chinese medicine. It distils Qi from food and drink, provides the basic for the production of blood (xue).
And Spleen sends Qi upwards while stomach sends qi downwards. When Spleen Qi is deficient your energy goes down and you get less energy, heavy legs, diarrhea,...
Ginseng, ginger, cinnamon and liquorice are all herbs with a positive impact on spleen qi.
Liquorice strenghtens Spleen and augments Qi.
Ginseng is a Qi tonic herb which reinforces the spleen.
So since a few days I drink ginseng green tea from the brand Qi and liquorice tea from the brand piramide, both fairtrade. As in fairtrade you know you have the mentioned ingredient in your product and no synthetic flavors and fragrances. Result: symtoms stopped at once.
Anyway, the reason why I want to talk about this ginseng thing is for something so very much kawaii!
Remember the movie pan's labyrinth? Harry Potter and the chamber of secrets? Ow yeah, you know where I'm going to (o; they both have little ginseng roots babies where they need to take care of. They are so kawaii I do want a tamagotchi ginseng root baby as well (o;
Look how adorable they (both) are:
Euh Stevia whaaat??
Yes, Stevia [stevia rebaudiana] is the oh so sweet stepson of worlds largest suger leaders.
It has been a dirty rat race between world economy and nature itself. But thanks to people like Professor J. Geuns from K.U.Leuven stevia will soon be available on the market. It's actually available in organic shops where I bought mine yesterday in liquid form.
I have a very bad habbit, doing hours on drinking a cup of coffee or tea. So each time I drink my tooth emeal is under attack. Resulting in loads of dental caries. So I switched to saccharin. But for some reason I didn't feel quite comfortable with that product either.
So will stevia be the solution?
This most remarkable little plant is a very strong sweetener.
But not only that! Unlike all other sugers and don't only think about sugercubes and pure suger products, but also additive sugars in food, stevia has no side effects like obesity, cancer, hypertension,...
Imagine you can buy this plant like you buy the mint or coriander plant today in supermarkets. All you need to do is boil 1 amount of water and add 1/8 amount of leaves. Leave it resting for about 10 minutes and remove the leaves. You can keep this in the regrigirator for 2 weeks.
I'm sure you will certainly here about this little miracle very soon.
One more thing I want to share: The founder of Western medicine Hippocrates considered food as medicine. He said, "Your food will be your medicine", like in chinese medicine. But Western medicine has forgotten this completely. "It's even worse, Western experts turned our food into disease-makers and only by desire for $$$.
Stevia is a Yang characteristic which stimulates heat and Qi.
Wanna read more about it?: http://www.eustas.org/
Have you seen this on tv? Well I did on njam. I'm actually not a big fan of all these cooking programs as trop est simplement trop. But I luved this one!! Truly! There's a chef (there's always a chef) with 2 pupils, a blonde one who speaks Chinese and a Chinese one who doesn't speak Chinese HA! And they cross the country looking for traditional recipes. And they certainly found some. Some are dating back from the forbidden city.
Looking at it, it made me wondering where in Belgium one can eat traditional Chinese food. So I googled a bit and found oriental delight in China town Antwerp. They've also been nominated by Gault-Millau with a 14/20. So for my birthday I took the family to Antwerp.
We started with dimsum. And those were really tasteful!! Yummie. For the main courses we took Peking duck, seafood and tofu in a clay pot, chicken with veggies, noodles chicken for the little one,...
The food was ok and a lot. We took a doggie-bag home for another meal or 2. (o; And it was around 170€ (oh my dog!)
But not like Thai or Indian or Malaysian food I'm not really fond of the Chinese cuisine apparently. There's something 'heavy' 'bout it. I don't know.
But I'll keep on trying as I believe in the traditional Chinese cuisine to prevent diseases or to heal from small inconveniences such as colds, diarrhea, fatigue, ...
This weekend I had my first lessons of the program I started @ OTCG on Traditional chinese medicine.
And it was so excited!! I already learned a lot this summer so I was prepared. And everything we saw on 1 day I studied in detail for weeks/months haha. Poor me. But the questions that raised during this self study I could ask now. So I was happy.
Like is there a clear tendency on geographical level on people's yin and yang level?
As stress for imagine is typical for this century and the western area. Stress can reduce your resistance level which leads to a reduced yin level so you have a low yin and regular yang level. This is called deficiency of yin.
This can lead to insomnia, irritability, night sweat,...
The answer was yes. You can see geographical tendences according to the area you live in.
Now something else...
Do you know khao lam? ข้าวหลาม?
It is a delicious traditional thai dessert made of sticky rice, beans and coconut milk. Everything is stuffed into a bamboo stick which is then grilled on a fire. This is so good and now I don't only have to dream about it until we go back to Thailand, but we can buy it in the thai suppermarket at Sint-Katelijnestraat 3 in Brussels. You get 4 pieces from the freezer for about 3-5 €. (I forgot)
Did you know that when you travel to eastern country's and you easily suffer from diarrhea, you just eat sticky rice with every meal. It will prevent you and stop you from having diarrhea.
ok it's summer, but not here apparently.
So I made a stew-like winter dish with cabbage, sunflowerseeds, briefly stir fried in sesame oil and oyster sauce. (I luuuuv the taste of sesame oil!) A large part of oyster sauce is caramel hence very sweet. Lamb with rosemary and garlic in the oven and mashed sweet potato.
Yesterday my son went on a school trip to a children's farm. We needed to make him a lunch package which we call bokes in Belgium. I bet in the Netherlands they don't use that word, but let's see in South Africa,... hmmz not even there. I luv dialect and I try to speak this with my son along with Thai words so he knows a bit of all.
It has been 4 days now since the operation and I feel good, but oh my gosh, I'm always tired. I don't like it but I can't do a thang about it. I rest a lot and eat healthy. I try to get a lot of vitamins but not a lot raw food as I don't want yin to make my body work too much. I keep the energy for other thangs (o; I'll eat some bitter as that's good for the heart.
Based on a tutorial from Anna The Red I made these yin yang chocolates for a Taiji demo in Keerbergen.
Here is the tutorial: Yes here
And it is so much fun to make.
I also need to share you guys I will be going to the hospital on Friday as I need a heart operation. I truly hope all will go well and I'll be in the same health as I am now, even better then. As with my little boy I have so much responsibility and truly, I enjoy my life every single day. I didn't need a bad experience to believe one must cherish life. So please pray for me. xxx
Happy Tuesday all!
It appears there is some new sort of Tofu product in Delhaize which I already ate but I don't know how the package looks like nor the price. I'm talking about small long pieces covered in panko and sesame seeds. Oh My!! So delicious! Let me found out more 'bout this new yummieness and let u know.
Lately I eat more and more vegi instead of meat. I guess it is because of the warm weather as meat is yang and creates heat inside. So why generating heat when it is already warm outside?
Tofu on the other hand is yin so perfect for warm days. I do enjoy the warm weather! And I discovered something very funny. When it is hot like it is now and I smell burning wood, I sooooo hard think of Thailand. That's a strange association no? I luv it (o; I asked hubby where it reminded him of and he said his childhood. Do you have a particular funny association? Or where do you think 'bout smelling burned wood on a hot day? hihihi (๑◕‿◕๑)
This tofu is from Kunming, Province Yunnan China. Hmmz I hope it tasted better then it looked. I'll ask my parents tonight (o; My mom gives a Thai cooking workshop tonight... Suuuure I'll upload some text and recipes here!!
No bento, but I'll upload my pictures tonight.
Hubby was in Malaysia last week so I didn't have much time during the evenings as we (little mini me and me) stayed often at my parents place.
Yesterday I followed a short training on the five elements and study of the meridians @ the gezondheiddschool. I am studying traditional chinese medicine for a few months now and wanted to see where I am now. On one hand I was happy to see I am making good progress and already know a large part of the basis. But on the other hand, this is wasted money. You just can't learn on 1 day when it actually requires intensive study, practice and experience for many years.
So initially I wanted to do moxa therapy within 2 weeks in the same school but I won't do it. As also for this subject there are even risks when you apply moxa in conditions. Same as herbal stamp massage. This is not recommended for older people and children. So therefor, I decide to stop doing such short trainings and learn all @ OTCG as this is the official school for traditional chinese medicine.
Working with people, one must realise you can harm a human beïng just lacking knowledge. And I just don't want do be such a person.
If you are intereseted in buying traditional Thai herbal stamps you can contact me and I'll send them to you. They cost 3.5€ per piece and they are made by a traditional Thai herbalist from Kaset Sombun.
It is nice when you give a massage and then continue with the thai herbal stamp. You work with herbs that warm the body, relax and bring relief to tense and overworked muscles. Press the stamp on the pain points of the body and make rolling movements.
You can use the herbal stamps after steaming 10 to 15 minutes in a steamer or you soak the whole in a bowl of water and heat it 1 to 2 minutes in the microwave. Before you start it's recommended to test the temperature by testing it on the sensitive parts of your skin like on the inside of your arm or hand.
You can reuse them up to 7 time, by putting them in a dry place or in the refrigerator.
Do not use with children and pregnant women and pay attention to diabetes and older people.
Ingredients: Tamarind, Lemon grass, camphor, Turmeric (Curcuma), Kaffir Lime, Ginger, Acacia
Did u know all sorts of cabbages have an inhibiting effect on the growth of cancer cells in various cancers? I am not in favor of cabbages,... I thought so far. But 2 times in row we made savoy and cauliflower and oh my dear lord. It was super delicious!!
So here we go, just cook the vegetables and put it in your food processor, add a small pot of sour cream, p+s and fresh nutmeg and mix it. Don't mix the thang until you have babyfood but leave big pieces in it for structure.
This is just soooo good. Also cold in the summer it is a refreshment.
Cauliflower is neutral. Like chinese cabbage.
Red cabbage is yang.
My little boy enjoyed this bento a lot.
It has been a while I created a bento. But I spent a lot of time reading now about chinese medicine and plato. Yes I know, I am a bit crazy. I also watched some movies like the last airbender and spirited away. These are such great movies and you should see them. Now my little boy always would like to go to the buddhist temple to see luong phoo as he looks like the avatar (o; so funny.
Yin: corn, radish
Yang: shrimps, Laotian black sticky rice
Neutral: beans, cheese
The standard white rice (khaw) is of the neutral type. Also brown rice is neutral. But sticky rice, sweet rice, rice water and rice wine is of the ying type.
Happy Friday to all of you!
First of all, next week I continue posting tons of new creations. And let me make you curious already,... I've made some cool cotton candy chibi totoro's. yipiee!
I am currently looking into the possibilities of becoming a student again, next academic year on the foundations of chinese medicine. This will allow me to continue later on studying the dietetics of traditional chinese medicine and if I still have money left possibly medical qigong.
It's so strange, since a long time I have the feeling of being incomplete, that I am at a point in my life of an important decision and turn. Perhaps this will be it. I don't know. Let's see.
The school I have chosen is OTGC in the Karel de Grote Hogeschool in Antwerp. I am now looking into the possibilities for a babysit, official financial support (training cheques, college allowance) and educational leave. As in Belgium nothing will come to you, you will need to dig into the bureaucratic system to find funds and other advantages.
I'm so excited! You should feel what I feel hihi!
This is a simple bento with corn, cumcumber, carrots, eggs and rice. A little piece of fresh shitaki and ham. Since a few months you can buy fresh shitaki from Delhaize and I'm still so excited about it. They are so delicious!
yin: corn, cumcumber, egg white,
neutral: carrots, yolk, rice, shitaki, ham
A few weeks ago I found a box of vintage skewers in a shop. Probably they got them from the ceiling from 50 years ago. But they are beautifull!!! Here you see the butterfly but there are many more. I'll show you soon.
You see brocolli mashed potatoes, half an egg, flat beans, coconut bread (from Albert Heyn in the Netherlands) and a tangerine. I stuck 3 sausages on the butterfly skewer.
yin: brocolli, egg white
Neutral: potatoes, yolk, flat beans, coconut, tangerine, sausages
Look at how tall my little boy already is! He was so proud he ate 3 petit gervais. hihi
I was super surprised he eats anything! Brussels sprouts, chicory soup with mackerel,... I am astonished but the proudest mom on earth!!
When you feel a li'll bit ill or u are very cold this soup is fantastic! In Thailand it is a traditional breakfast soup and you can get this at different guesthouses/hotels.
I luv this soup, because it's flavours and aromatic touch.
The ingredients are quite common so when you have some rice left overs from the previous day you can easily go ahead and make this deliciousness.
Just for your information: khao means rice and tom means boiled.
2 cups minced meat (pork/beef)
1 cup cooked rice
1 tablespoon nam pla - fish sauce
2 small eggs
2 teaspoons finely minced fresh ginger
2 teaspoons minced cilantro
1 minced spring onion
In a saucepan boil your water and add ginger and pork, stirring to break it up. Reduce heat to a simmer, stir in the cooked rice, and simmer for 2 minutes. Season with the fish sauce. When ready to serve, break a whole egg into each individual bowl. Bring the soup to a boil and ladle over the eggs. Garnish with cilantro and spring onions. Cover the bowls with lids, let sit for a minute to let the egg poach.
yin: egg white
yang: cilantro, ginger, spring onions
neutral: rice, yolk, pork, beef
Because of the many yang ingrediënts this is a good autumn, winter, soup
I made a chickensoup with fresh carrots and peas as I really don't like canned food. Yin Yang food also discourages canned food so we make as many fresh food as possible. The Dalai Lama used to say, be kind whenever possible, it's always possible. So I say, eat fresh and healthy whenever possible hihi. Daan Miles is crazy about corns and as it is corn season so he is a very lucky boy. Broccoli is always on our menu and mister reindeer is on top of Japanese tomoshiraga somen noodles.
Japanese tomoshiraga somen noodles
You can buy them in any asian food shop. Boil them for a few minutes (2-3') and rinse under cold water. This is delicious with a spicy peanut sauce and fresh green raw vegetables.
Good morning all!
The new academic year is starting and it is quite bussy at work as thousands of students arrive in Leuven. A warm welcome to all of them!
A new lesson in yin and yang food: It is recommended to eat mostly neutral food during every meal and less pronounced yin and yang food. As neutral food provides balance.
This is a list of neutral food:
Fruit: tangerines, oranges, blueberries, plums, coconuts, figs, currants, grapes, raisins, apricots, pineapple and papaya.
Vegetables: carrots, string beans, sea vegetables, potatoes, olives, celery, beets, pumpkin, pumpkin seeds, okra, shiitake mushrooms, black beans, lapwing beans, Chinese cabbage, peas, cabbage, cauliflower, black mushrooms, beetroot
Fish and Meat: beef, chicken, pork, pork liver, goose, duck, beef liver, brains, carp, sturgeon, whitefish, mackerel, herring, sardines, scallops (Saint-Jacques), oysters
Nuts, Seeds,...: Seeds, nuts, hazelnuts, rice, brown rice, pearl barley, cereals, bread, tapioca, carob, vanilla, milk, cheese, peanuts, peanut oil, almonds, cashew nuts, pecans, white suger, honey, maple syrup, nutmeg, oats, sesame, sesame oil, olive oil, coconut oil, shepherd's purse, saffron, yolk
In this picture: a fresh summer salad with tomatoes (yin), samphire (neutral), mozzarella (neutral) and letuce (yin).
In the meantime I'm still reading and learning a lot about yin and yang food. And allready questions pop into my head where I need to find answers. One of the questions is: When the balance of your food diet leans often to intens yang food for example, one can get chi accmulation, reduced or reversed chi. Nowadays groups of people eat too much junk food, does that means that some populations have malfunction chi?
Just think about it....
Hi guys and dolls!
Summer holiday is over. While we were waiting and waiting for li'll bits of sun...
I couldn't long more for Thailand. So we keep on dreaming of winning the lotery while Lila Vanille is gone to South-Korea.
Here is my little boy who is growing so hard playing with his nephew in the rain. So lovely!
I did tell u about yin & yang food before, suggesting to eat according to local supplies not shop supplies. I did the exercise already and start buying belgian apples instead of my favorite jazz apples from France.
The second advice on this journey is to look at your geographical location and season.
But before I explain, you need to know yin represents cold and yang represents hot.
yin = cold & fresh
yang = hot & warm
For geographical location advice: in Belgium we live in a cold/fresh area, therefore you must eat more yang food. When you live in Thailand you must eat more yin food. And actually most of us do! yin food can be exotic fruit. So being on holiday or living in Thailand you eat more exotic fruit then here. And don't you love stew in winter when it's cold outside in Belgium? Also when season change adapt your yin & yang balance to the season you're in. Eat salads and fresh fruit (yin) in the summer (yang) and stew, cabbage (yang) in the winter (yin).
I promissed u guys I'll take u on a special journey, so here it starts...
Unlike the West, for centuries the Chinese look at what food does to your body once you've eaten it.
We however, look at what's in food before we eat it and decide on that information if it is good for you or not. In general, not according to u being a unique individual.
The Chinese go one step further. They practice food therapy instead of using medicines. I however wants to balance good energy Qi in my body and live healthy. According to natures flow.
And that is what yin and yang is all about. Universal balance.
Can I seduce u just think about this? Perhaps consider going back to nature together with me?
The first thing you need to know and for me it was hard as I grew up in a society where the sky is the limit and everything is possible: but eat according to local natures supply. Not according the offer in shops.
So for this period of time this is fine: fresh potatoes, Artichoke, Eggplant, Cauliflower, Broccoli, celery, Cucumber, Lettuce, Corn, Mushrooms, Paprika, Haricot, Pumpkin, Radish, Beetroot, beans, Spinach, cabbage, Tomatoes, Carrots // Strawberries, Apricots, Apples, Berries, Grapes, Cherries, Melons, Nectarines, Pears, Peaches, Plums
Also for ecological reason, try to keep the origin of your products locally.
My melody bento with ...
Yin: lettuce, carrots, radish, mashed potatoes, cheese
Yang: chicken, ham
Hello sweet fellow bento lovers!
I am back! I enjoyed a long holiday and felt like chilling for a while. I know some of u became curious about where I was and what I was doing and that's so sweet (o;
For the next season I can promise you an adventure on global level. I will take you all with me on this journey of yin and yang and I'll share my Qi with you.
Along with making loads of bento, cupcakes and deliciousness.
Did you know I am currently working on 85 mickey mouse cupcakes? ♥Lovely♥