Hi friends! Here is a sign of life after some time of absence from the blog sphere. I am still existing!

Some of you have already emailed me to tell me that they missed me and to ask me how I was doing. These emails made me happy and smile a lot. Just know that when you do not hear or read from me, this does not mean I have forgotten or abandoned you, it just means that I have a lot to do. And I will always be back as soon as I can. So this is what I have been up to …

Life has been busy as always, but even more since Christmas is coming closer. This week somewhat was the last chance to run studies before Christmas, since people are gradually getting into this particular mindset resulting from a mixture of elevated alcohol levels due to constant mulled wine consumption, elevated adrenaline levels due to rushing and running errands for Christmas preparation, and elevated spirits due to the other-wordliness of the season. There are psychological effects that can only be found and replicated around Christmas, probably wrecking data quality by augmenting error variance and producing invalid results.

For me, this meant that I was quite busy during the past two weeks to get everything done in time – my supervisor has given me the honor and responsibility to conduct his studies over here while he is in New Zealand, and since he wanted me to collect data for some study, I had a deadline. So, we skyped and exchanged countless emails on the study design, I worked on materials he sent me, and then had to organize everything: doing testruns, collecting a sample for pretesting and gathering feedback on the comprehensibility of the instructions and items, putting the study up with studies from other researchers since we usually share labs (and of course, all labs were already taken until mid December), and finding a budget for paying the participants (which meant begging my way through the whole department). Then, preparing the lab and the study materials such as questionnaires, sampling lists, flyers, billings lists, and so on.

Anyway, I really enjoy this job. It is not mainly a job for money – most importantly, it gets me into actual research business, and I learn so much. I work with high self-determination but also high responsibility, and I really enjoy the challenge. So, I am totally in my element with this. And the best thing is that, due to all my commitment and contributions, I will be on the paper when the stuff gets published – what is likely to happen, since the current study is a follow-up to a previous study which already yielded some interesting results, and both will be published together in one article. You know, the number of your publications is the current in the academia of empirical sciences – this is how the game works, and although this is not the most fortunate condition, you just need publications when you want to sustain in the field. Therefore, having publications – preferably in reputable journals – is a good thing.

Of course, there are also my piano students, and I keep playing myself. And in the meantime, I try to get some work on my thesis done, more or less successfully. The idea of getting it finished this year unfortunately was rather unrealistic, so my new, more realistic goal is to finish it in January, especially since I will present the whole thing in the colloquium at the end of January next year.

Apart from this, social life has kept me busy as well on most evenings (when I would blog and do relaxing things otherwise). There were birthday and goodbye parties, the Christmas dinner of the personality psychology department, the Christmas party of the social psychology department, and various visits to the Christmas market with friends.

Last year, I took you with me on an extended tour over the Christmas market in the inner city. (Click here to relive the ultimate Christmas market experience.) This year, I went up to the Christmas market at the castle with a couple of social psychology friends.

~ the castle Christmas market ~

~ the castle being Christmas-y ~

From the castle terrace, we could enjoy a view over the city beautifully illuminated by countless lights.

And of course, we enjoyed Glühwein, a hot mulled wine sweetened and spiced with oranges, cinnamon, and cloves, that people traditionally have at Christmas markets probably not only in Germany.

I am very blessed now with having such awesome friends! Two of my best friends are also in social psychology, and since we all live for what we do, whenever we meet, it is just a matter of time that we end up with psychology discussions. Over drinks this week, we started collecting ideas and planning upcoming experiments which we will hopefully start conducting by the beginning of the next year already.

~ the three musketeers ~

Finally, after so many months of sagging, just getting along somehow, and worrying about my future, I am finally confident that things will turn out well. I know that great ideas do not come from one person alone, but result from the most inspiring interaction with other people. Especially in science, it is crucial to connect, exchange, and discuss ideas, and for that, you need people who you can totally trust and who would never backstab you. With my lovely co-musketeer ladies, I now have a couple of research ideas going to be pursued in the time to come, and I am looking forward to that like nothing else.

However, all of these things going on were a little too much in the end, and I ended up with getting a migraine the other day. I spend the whole day in bed with curtains drawn and a towel on my face to exclude the light, after returning home from the institute around midday, and then slept for almost 20 hours. Now I am feeling a little better, but having to stay at home to recover ironically gives me an opportunity to update my blog. (This is something for the upcoming New Year’s resolutions – no late-night working and no driving-myself-to-my-limits anymore, and taking more time for other things instead!)

It also gives me an opportunity to provide you with a sick stomach recipe, because my tummy was feeling really weird and I needed to cook something that I would be able to eat without getting myself into trouble. I chose ginger against the nausea, winter squash (I used kuri squash because it cooks down to a nicely mealy consistency) for comforting and easing my stomach, tomatoes for soupiness, and chicken for unproblematic satiety – when I am sick, alone the idea of eating eggs or seafood makes everything worse. Actually, I had made a big batch of this in the morning already, and boxed it since I had a lab day scheduled (which I then had to cancel), and this was good because I could just eat from it throughout the whole day, whenever I woke up and felt hungry, and then went back to bed and continued sleeping.


4 servings


butter or oil
2 tsp of fresh ginger root, peeled and finely chopped
1 medium-sized winter squash (I used kuri squash, but you can also use kabocha or butternut), peeled (according to kind), seeds removed, and cut into pieces
500 g (1 lb) chicken breast fillet, cut into pieces
500 g (1 lb) tomatoes, chopped
salt to taste
pepper to taste
1/2 tbsp ground cinnamon
1 pinch of ground cloves
1 pinch of ground cardamom
1 handful of fresh cilantro


In a big pot, heat some fat and roast the ginger until fragrant. Add the pumpkin and roast it for a minute, then add a little water and cook the whole thing covered for about 5 minutes. Add the chicken and tomatoes, season with salt, pepper, cinnamon, cloves, and cardamom, and cook everything on low to medium heat for 20 minutes. Finally, throw in the cilantro and cook openly until desired consistency, then serve or box or whatever, but anyhow, enjoy!

What kind of food or dish agrees with your tummy when it feels like doing somersaults?

You probably know that I do not eat out very often (for money reasons …), and if I do, I usually order a mixed salad with roasted chicken. The annual Christmas dinner of the personality psychology department, however, is an exception – the professor is not only very kind and generous, but also an absolute foodie, so he always invites his whole department (the secretary, research fellows, PhD students, student research assistents, and the retired professor) to a very nice restaurant, and lots of delicious food and good wine are enjoyed for sure.

This year, the dinner took place at the restaurant in Heidelberg, and two weeks earlier we all received an email with a link to the menu (unfortunately only in German) so we could pick our dishes. I had to translate half of the menu from “Gourmet” into German … (Thank you, Google! ) I am sorry I did not picture all of the dishes, but I pictured at least some of them, and so I am proud to present you my first gourmet food parade!

The dinner started with the entrees some of us had ordered, and this one enjoyed next to me gave me food envy.

~ sautéed scallops with spinach and pine nuts ~

Others had pheasant mousse with truffel splinters on madeira jelly with lamb’s lettuce and brioche, or lettuce salad with chopped walnuts and requefort cheese. Everything looked very good.

Then, there was the main course … It took a little longer until the food was served because everything was freshly made, but the waiting was absolutely worth it, and meanwhile, we indulged in conversations and sipped on excellent wine ordered by the professor – red and white, according to liking. I only had the white wine, and it was just as I love it: dry and light, with a gentle, slightly mineral taste.

Of the main course, I pictured most of the dishes enjoyed that night.

~ turbot fillet with truffles and ribbon noodles on creamy savoy cabbage ~

~ spined loach cutlets with tomato basil sauce and ribbon noodles ~

~ goat cheese ravioli with tomato basil sauce ~

~ sliced duck breast fillet and chestnuts in cognac sauce ~

~ roasted pheasant with savoy cabbage and crispy potato puffs ~

The chef was very nice and brought me just roasted fish and a side of sautéed vegetables, without any gluten or dairy in it (for allergy reasons), so I could totally enjoy this dinner as well. This was my meal:

~ roasted spine loach and sautéed vegetables ~

I think this was the first time I had spined loach, and I was really pleased. The flesh was nicely firm and had a wonderful flavor. My friend (who also works as a research assistent) gave me a bite of her pheasant to try – another first-time experience – and I liked that one as well. It tasted nicely game-y and was wonderfully seasoned.

Desserts ordered where little cones of mousse – chocolate, passionfruit, or gingerbread mousse – that came with a garnish of different fruit.

~ my friend’s mousse au chocolat ~

During the course of the meal (that took several hours altogether), lots of good and inspirational conversations were had, and we also had fun rearranging the table decoration and building little artworks from it. Structure nerd, anybody?

~ as you can imagine, I loved the Smiley ~

~ I made this whirl galaxy ~

I am a little sad this was my last Christmas dinner with the personality department – my contract runs out by the end of December and I will not extend it since my parents can give me a little more financial support for the last months of my studies, and I want to go into another direction with my own research later. Anyway, I would not have been a student research assistant anymore by the end of the next year due to graduation until then. But the time I worked in this department I have always enjoyed, and it will not be forgotten.

Do you come to enjoy a gourmet dinner on occasion? If yes, what was the most awesome thing you enjoyed so far?

Two of my piano students are elderly ladies – one of them learns the piano from scratch, and the other one has taken up lessons again after many years of pausing. They are both very motivated and enjoy the lessons a lot. To show me their appreciation, the first one has given me a beautiful watercolor painting she made herself, that now hangs in my living room next to the piano and perfectly fits in there.

The other one likes to bring me a little something for every lesson – such as a bag of nuts, trail mix, or fresh fruit. For the last lesson, she brought an apple, a banana, and an orange, and since I have not established the habit of eating fresh oranges (maybe I should?), I knew that I would use that one for cooking.

When I thought about what to do with this orange, the idea of something Asian-inspired came to my mind, and with the shrimp I had just bought, accompanied by turnip that is just in season over here – and thanks to Chopinand‘s suggestions to pair turnip with Japanese flavors – a little gourmet dinner was born and happily enjoyed tonight. This recipe is also another tribute to Tammy‘s turnip recovery endeavor. I am so happy I made two servings so I have another one for tomorrow, because this turned out to be really delicious.


2 servings


butter or oil
2 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely chopped
1 tsp of fresh gingerroot, peeled and finely chopped
1 medium sized turnip (about 500 g), peeled and cut into pieces
1 tsp dried wakame (seaweed)
300 g (10 oz) shrimp
1 orange, juiced (if you use organic, also add the orange cest)
1 tsp miso (I used brown rice miso)
1/2 tsp dried chili flakes
1 big handful of fresh dill


Heat some fat in a pan or wok and roast the garlic and ginger until fragrant. Add and roast the turnip cubes, then add a little water and the dried wakame, and cook covered for about 10 minutes, until the turnip is soft and the seaweed has unfolded. Remove the lid and add the shrimp. Stir-fry for a minute or two, then add the orange juice (and orange cest) and miso. Mix everthing well while cooking openly. Season with chili and dill. When the shrimp are done, serve and enjoy.

Do you sometimes cook gourmet meals just for yourself? If yes, which one was the last one you enjoyed?

Hi friends! It has been a week again since I updated my blog … Time just flies by, and as always when I am busy, I feel somewhat detached from real life and not being able to catch up with the things going on around me.

On Tuesday, I had my birthday (), and while I am waiting for my friend to send me the pictures she has taken, I will just show you some of the things that have happened here during the past weeks.

The trees have staged fireworks of colors …

… and then, everything in nature turned inwards and became tranquil and mellow.

For some time, there was a free place in my friend’s office at the institute, and I had the possibility to work there. It was the first time that I had this kind of office experience, and although I was a little concerned in the beginning how I would sustain several hours a day there and still have everything at hand I need eating-wise (not a problem when I work from home with my fridge, stove, and blender just a few steps away), but it went very well. It was nice to experience this separation of working and living space, and of course to have chat and food breaks with my friend.

~ office meals ~

I very quickly got into the habit of preparing meals in advance when I came home in the evening, so I would have something I could take the next day. Several of those recipes I want to post in the time to come because they were really nice, and I am actually quite surprised that I still come up with so many recipe ideas … But the more I cook, the more creative I get.

~ fresh boxes with bean stew ~

One thing that makes me happy is that my tummy is still improving, and after successfully reincorporating legumes again, I now tried brown rice for the first time in months, and this time I could eat it without getting the dagger-in-my-tummy feeling immediately afterwards – what is nice because brown rice is pretty much the only gluten-free grain I really like so far. So it seems that, due to cutting out gluten, casein, and soy protein, my body is gradually recovering, and I can eat things again that would have always been followed by heavy pain before. This does not only refer to legumes and brown rice, but also to vegetables such as kale and savoy cabbage.

Therefore, I will just go on with this kind of diet, and leave you with a couple of pictures of meals enjoyed recently.

~ roasted chicken with onions and kale ~

~ adzuki and green bean stew with winter squash and basil ~

~ lemony fish with spinach and cilantro ~

~ chicken, broccoli, and Chinese cabbage with gingered miso sauce ~

~ steamed fish with fresh tomatoes and cilantro ~

~ adzuki bean and carrot stew with cherry tomatoes and parsley ~

~ turkey and celery in herbed tomato sauce ~

~ roasted chicken, onions, and lamb’s lettuce on tomato salad ~

Do you feel that your cooking and eating has gotten much more creative since you started blogging?

For some time now, I owe my friend Tammy a turnip post. The background story is that she made a turnip post herself in which she wrote her thoughts about turnips often being considered “lowly”, and why she loved that humble vegetable, and then shared a wonderful recipe for stuffed turnips.

I totally agree that turnips are wonderful vegetables – they not only taste good, but also give you a boost in vitamins, minerals, and fiber (see here) – but nevertheless, they seem to be rather neglected by most people. Maybe this is due to the fact that turnips are still associated with times of poverty and very little to eat, such as the “turnip winter” of 1916/1917 in Germany, after WW1, when turnips were one of the very few edible things left, and people made everything from them, ranging from soups and stews to “bread” and “coffee”.

Happily, these times have passed by now. But still, turnips have to be freed from the notion of being a rather low vegetable. To help with this, I want to show you one of my favorite turnip recipes which I know from my childhood already. Both my mom and my grandmom used to make this, and my dad loves it very much. This recipe is a very delicious side dish, and in my version, it is also vegan.


2-3 servings


1 large turnip, peeled and cut into pieces
2 large carrots, peeled and cut into pieces
a little water
125 ml (1/2 cup) almond milk (or other milk)
salt to taste
pepper to taste
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1 pinch of ground cloves
1 handful of fresh parsley, chopped (with some leaves left out for garnishing)


In a pot, boil the turnip and carrot cubes in a little water, covered, until soft (about 10 minutes). Toss the remaining water after cooking, then add the almond milk and season with salt, pepper, nutmeg, cloves, and parsley. Mash the whole thing with a potato masher or blender. Garnish with fresh parsley, serve, and enjoy.

Which is your favorite turnip recipe? Please share (or make a turnip post yourself) to help with re-establishing this loveable vegetable!

Here I am again! Work load, exhaustion, and finally getting sick have kept me from blogging during the past days, and I feel in need of a holiday! Actually, I have not had a real break since Christmas last year, because my jobs and studies are keeping me busy, and I also worked on most weekends because those are usually the times when I finally come to my own things. The progress with my thesis is not as fast as I would have liked, due to all the other stuff on my schedule – organizing and running experiments for my student assistant job, statistics and piano teaching, social life – that affords its time and partially also drains energy.

Since it is not possible to take a couple of days off in a row, what keeps me going is island hopping: To stay calm within troubled waters, it helps to have little islands of peace where you can anchor every now and then, whenever you need it, and find some recreation and tranquility of mind that fuel you to tackle the next episode of your life story.

I try to have island time every day, at least two or three hours, and if there is an opportunity, I may even have a whole island day. So today, I am just showing you my favorite islands.

* * * * *


This one is perhaps the most important island for my mental and spiritual health because it not only relieves my mind from the ongoing clutter and chatter but also serves as an emotional outlet. After an hour of piano playing I feel refreshed and content, and it also makes one of the columns my sense of self is grounded on: When things do not go so well in other parts of my life, the piano is still there and gives me happiness.


I am very sensitive to sounds and noises and hear everything more intense and also hear a wider range of pitch compared to most other people. When I was a child, I noticed my dad coming home before he entered the house, because I could hear from the inside how he stepped on the door sill and burrowed into his pockets for the keys. I could hear what my parents were talking about in the dining room two levels deeper while playing in my room above. I wake up when the flower next to my bed drops a blossom. You get the idea.

Therefore, being in the city with all the people hustling by, sitting in the tram or in a train with scraps of chatter filling the air, or working in the office against the backdrop of keyboard tapping, mouse clicking, and the noise from the main street coming up through the windows, is very tiring for me and gives me a headache.

Music helps with this and works as a protecting cocoon I put around me: I basically change hundreds of simultaneous, competing, and irregular noise sources against one constant, predictable, and pleasant source of music, and that is the whole trick – fading down the world around me.


Since I have started mindfulness practice almost two years ago, it has become a reliable source of energy that is available anytime. I usually spread moments of mindfulness practice throughout the day to prevent the stress from piling up, and this works very well.


This is a new one: Until recently, the idea of lying down on my bed or even taking a nap during the day has seemed rather unattractive and deterrent to me. Now I do it. Just 10 minutes of lying on my back, feeling warm and comfortable, and relaxing all my muscles works wonders.


Thanks to mindful eating practice, I am finally able to enjoy my meals and experience meal times as recreation times. Whenever possible, I do not eat while doing something else anymore, but take 15 minutes or so for just enjoying a meal, and I feel that the food agrees with my tummy much more. Additionally, I am still very careful to stick to compatible foods what basically is lots of vegetables, a lean protein source, healthy fats, reduced carbohydrates, and little sugar.

~ office lunch: lemony turkey roast with tomatos and parsley ~

At home, this is very easy, and on office days, I usually take a lunch box with food I have prepared the night before, along with a bottle of almond milk and a big thermos bottle with tea.


I am taking more and more pleasure in cooking and trying around with various ingredients and seasonings. Cooking is creativity, and when I cook, I like to go to my spice shelf and open some jars and sniffle to find out which flavors might go well together, or I just compose everything in my head.

~ two boards of my spice shelf (there are more …) ~

By now, I have developed the habit to set up a stew, a pot roast, some kind of goulash, or a big pan with several servings of stir fry in the evenings, so I always have nice food at hand I can pack for a lunch box.


I am no person for heavy exercise – jogging, biking, weight lifting do not make me happy. But I need my daily moving. Earlier in my life, I used to do yoga regularly – the sun salutation, directly after getting up. I loved it because the alternating bowing and stretching of all muscles and joints really made me wake up. But then, I got an elbow joint inflammation – due to eating foods on a daily basis I did not know I was allergic against at that time, and this gave me chronical inflammations for many years, some of them being in my joints – that resulted in the mucosa producing free joint bodies which against shredded a nice part of the cartilage. Since then, my elbow joint has been a constant source of concern, and I cannot burden my right arm anymore. So, walking is my favorite kind of exercise now. I have always liked it, because it challenges my body without draining my energy resources, and it is so meditative. So I just decided to make walking my favorite kind of exercise.


Real friends are the people who just like me how I am. I do not have to pretend anything when I am with them, I am just perfectly alright. If I am tired and exhausted and not at all entertaining, they still like me. They care for me and want me to be well. They leave me on my own when I need it, but they are constantly there for me. I have a handful of friends like that, and that is perfectly enough. You know, friendships are about quality, not quantity. Spending time with my friends feels like stroking my heart.

~ dinner with friends enjoyed the other night ~

We talk, cook together, enjoy a glass of wine, or watch a movie and discuss it, and the most important thing is that we mutually respect and appreciate each other. There is criticism sometimes, but it is aimed at getting to know oneself better and being more content and in peace with one’s life. Or to just sustain and get through the things that are challenging currently. I am blessed with these friends.

* * * * *

So, these are my islands that keep me from being gripped by the drowning flood of life. What are your islands?

Autumn is here, and I am in the mood for hearty and warming dishes again. At the same time, cooking time is life time, and sometimes there is not too much leftover life time to stand at the stove once or even twice a day … (Boo. ) For this reason, stews are perfect, because once a little preparation is done, they almost make themselves, never disappoint, and usually yield several servings. And, not to forget, they are the perfect comfort food!

This stew I recently made had those small brown mountain lentils, Indian-inspired flavors, and all the vegetables I had lying around and thought might be fine together: cauliflower, winter squash, and spinach.


6 servings


butter or oil
2 onions, peeled and chopped
6 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely chopped
1 tsp black cumin seeds
1 tsp coriander seeds
250 g (1 cup) mountain lentils
600 ml (2 1/2 cups) water
300 g (10 oz) winter squash (I used kuri squash), cut into small cubes
1 small or 1/2 large head of cauliflower, cut into florets
4 bay leaves
1 tbsp ground garam marsala
1 tsp ground cumin
1 pinch of ground turmeric
1 tsp dried chili flakes
2 tbsp dried marjoram
salt to taste
3 large handfuls of spinach
400 ml (1 3/4 cups) almond milk (or other milk of choice)


In a large pot, heat some fat and roast the onions, garlic, black cumin seeds, and coriander seeds until slightly brown and fragrant. Add the lentils and the water and cook covered at medium heat for about 20 minutes, then add the squash, cauliflower florets, and bay leaves, season with garam marsala, cumin, turmeric, chili, and marjoram, and stew covered for another 30 minutes, until everything is cooked well.

Finally, add a little salt to taste, throw in the spinach, and add the almond milk. Cook openly for 15 or so more minutes for the liquid to reduce, then serve and enjoy. Leftovers can easily be frozen or kept in the fridge for a couple of days, and reheated when desired.

What is your favorite dish for the cold season? Do you have time for cooking every day?

In the face of greeting the cold, I want to share some pictures from a street festival that takes place every year at the beginning of autumn in the inner city. So you see, these pictures are a couple of weeks old already, and I have not posted them in time due to other stuff that had to be done.

Usually, I am not overly fond of street festivals because they are so crowded and noisy (Christmas markets, however, are an exception), but this year I went with two very good friends, and we had a wonderful time on one of the last warm and sunny weekends of the year.

The city was filled with people and music, and all along the pedestrial road and on the squares, there were stalls were you could buy food and a lot of other things.

~ such as these cute little animals ~

~ or exotic lamps ~

~ or Tibetan singing bowls ~

~ or wild garlic pesto and fresh bread ~

It is a traditional thing in Germany to enjoy fermented grape juice in early autumn. This stuff is sweet, sparkling, and slightly alcoholic, and called “Federweisser” when it is made from white grapes, and “Roter Sauser” when it is made from red grapes. The white one is more popular, though.

It is traditionally enjoyed with “Zwiebelkuchen“, a savory pie made with onions, eggs, bacon, and cream.

In front of one chocolate shop, there was a little table set up, and they offered free hot chocolate shots with different flavors.

My friends got one each, but it was not for me because it was make with milk.

We made our way through the whole inner city, and several delicacies were enjoyed along the way (again, not by me).

~ I think this was macadamia maple something ~

~ nutella crêpe ~

~ do you see the nutella wanting for freedom? ~

After all the bustle everywhere, we were happy to find some tranquility in a quiet alley.

~ Buddha statue and prayer flags in the yard of the ethnological museum ~

Then we were ready to throw ourselves back into the crowd. At the inner city train station, a DJ was putting on music, and people were chilling, dancing, and having fun.

~ the train station kiosk had smileys on the menu ~

We headed down to the riverside road to make our way back.

Next to the castle, the old bridge is the most famous emblem of Heidelberg.

~ the gate of the old bridge ~

Next to the bridge gate, there is a bronze monkey holding a mirror to remind people of the vanity and illusionary nature of the world. You can put your head in there, and there always is a group of tourists standing around the monkey and waiting for doing that. But we finally had the monkey for ourselves.

~ the monkey has two mouse friends sitting next to him ~

The most enjoyable part of the whole festival, for me, was the flea market along the riverside road. People sold everything from old tumblers and dishes, cutlery, toys, and grammophones, to vintage clothes, books, and a complete set of indoor furnishing (which I wanted very badly – for myself – because it was so lovely ). I did not buy anything, but just strolling aroung was great fun.

After several hours of walking around, we were very aware of our feet, and ended up chilling in the courtyard of the university mensa.

Now, the warm days are over, and I always wear my winter jacket when I go out. It will not take long until I start heating up my clothes again before putting them on … Hello cold!

I have realized that there was no food post in a while! So, it is high time to change that, and share both one of my favorite blogs and a yummy and original recipe.

~ and an awesome piece of music that sounds like high time as well ~

The blog I picked for today’s episode of the series is long overdue because Jerry is not only one of my earliest and most loyal readers and commenters, but also eats according to the Paleo diet – and unlike many Paleo or Primal eaters who follow this diet with a heavy emphasis on fatty red meat and animal fats including heavy dairy products, Jos eats a very clean Paleo diet free of dairy, rich in vegetables and healthy fats like coconut oil and avocado, and rather light animal foods such as chicken, lean beef, fish, and eggs. You can imagine that all her recipes somewhat touch a familiar ground with me.

And this is, ironically, the reason why I have not made any of her recipes so far: I went to her recipe page, opening all the recipes that seemed appealing to me in new tabs, and ended up with over 30 tabs. The amazing spectrum of seducing possibilities simply paralyzed my decision making skills.

The cruelty about decision making is that when you opt for one thing, you dismiss an array of other things at the same time. With the recipes, this was particularly hard. So there.

But finally – by applying the trick of convincing myself that there will be enough remaining lifetime to try out all her other recipes – I managed to pick a dish. The reason for my choice are threefold (without hierarchy).

First, thanks to the blog I have discovered and became a lover of coconut oil. This should not be at all underestimated, because coconut oil is one of the healthiest and most stable fats available that does not shy high temperatures and is therefore the perfect all rounder. Now, hes also is very fond of eggs, and since I still plan to incorporate more eggs into my diet, I thought this one would made a good starting point.

Second, the recipe is an adaptation of a traditional Indonesian dish she knows from her childhood, and I am a sucker for childhood dishes, especially when they can be adapted in a healthy manner.

Third, I know that I have a couple of vegetarian readers and I wanted to post a recipe that is interesting for you as well. For these reasons, I chose hardboiled egg stew to be the first recipe from her blog to try. The original dish looked like this.

This dish was a real delight. It combines the flavors of tomatoes, orange, curry, and eggs, and it is satisfying and healthy. I followed the recipe quite thoroughly this time, but put in more tomatoes. Here is my version.


3 servings


6 eggs
1 tbsp curry powder
butter or oil
4 onions, peeled and chopped
6 tomatoes, chopped
2 oranges, juiced
1 splash of lemon juice
1/2 tsp chili flakes
salt to taste


In a pot, bring sufficient water to boil and cook the eggs until hard (about 8 minutes). During cooking, the eggs should be completely covered with water. Rinse the cooked eggs with cold water immediately – to make them easier to peel – and let cool. When the eggs have cooled down, peel them and coat them evenly with curry powder. I used about 1/2 tablespoon of curry powder for that, which I put into a bowl for the eggs to take a curry bath in. Then heat some fat in a pan and roast the curried eggs from all sides. This is for the curry spice to stick to them better.

Heat some more fat in a sufficiently large pot and sauté the onions. Add the chopped tomatoes, orange juice, lemon juice, chili, another 1/2 tablespoon of curry powder, and a little salt. Cook covered for about 10 minutes until the vegetables are done, then continue cooking openly until the liquid has reduced to the wished degree. Put in the eggs and carefully mix everything, then serve and enjoy.

Are there any blogs that make you want to cook your way through the whole recipe list? Please share!

One thing German people are quite eager about is separating waste. We separate organic waste, paper and carton, glass, packages and tins, and non-recyclable waste, what means that you will find several garbage tins in every household for the respective kind of waste.

And then, there is bulky garbage. This is basically all kind of waste that takes a lot of space, such as trashy furniture, old fridges, computers, mattresses, and so on.

All these kind of garbage are taken by the litter service at peculiar times, and there are calendars telling you when which kind of waste is going to be taken.

Today, it was bulky waste day. This means that people put out their bulky waste at the street from where it will be taken the other early morning. I also had to contribute something this time because a few weeks ago, this happened.

This was my laundry rack. I was sitting in the kitchen (where I have my working table) and reading something for my thesis, when it suddenly made “clonk!” in my back as my laundry rack collapsed. Well. I kept this broken thing in my apartment for some time until there was bulky waste collection again.

Bulky waste collection also means treasure hunting, because what is someone’s waste may be someone else’s treasure. You see, the bulky waste is taken early in the morning, so people usually put their stuff at the street the day before, and some folks strategically go for that and screen if there are any valuable things to find. Usually, I am none of them, but this time, I was. When I walked to the supermarket for grocery shopping today, I saw a nice chair standing within a pile of other (useless) stuff at the side of the street, and I told myself that I would take that chair, given it was still there when I came back. You know, the early bird catches the worm.

It was. And I dragged it home. Now I have it here in my living room, and it is very weak so I better not sit on it. It needs wood glue treatment and has to have some nails removed (which somebody drove into it who apparently did not know about applying wood glue). And it also needs a nice paint. Here it is, in its current (miserable) state.

Unfortunately, I lack any practical skills and have two left hand with things like this. But I have nice neighbors who are very handy with tools and will show me how to fix it. I actually like the white color and am thinking about painting it with white color again and then put a nice cushion on it. I really like that chair.

So, what would you do with it? Please tell me your ideas!