Recently I broke into a house. I was having a bad week. Not just one of those days, but a very bad week. First I proceeded to jam a key in the ignition of my car repeatedly getting increasingly frustrated before realising ten minutes into this futile exercise that I had the wrong key. I had locked myself out of my own home with no house or car keys and no phone. I then broke into my own (thank God!) house by virtually pulling apart my son’s bedroom window, got scratched bruised and badly dented. Later, I burned a batch of simple cookies. I baked a dry cake. I overcooked my meat until it tasted like shredded cardboard. I put frozen hash browns and prawns in the fridge – and not to thaw, mind you. I put a pair of good shoes in the bin and spent half an hour looking for them everywhere. I forgot things, kept repeating myself, felt horribly muddled and constantly worried about the early onset of dementia. A bad week. A week that started looking up when I used a blender.
As a creative I find colours and the way they intertwine themselves in nature, utterly fascinating. I find it quite remarkable that any given natural object has so many shades and hues. A peacock. An artichoke. A tree frog. A watermelon. Some are honest and exactly what they seem on the surface, while some are deceptive. Like blueberries. They are the most beautiful sombre navy blue with a lovely matte finish. But on the inside is a completely different story. Unlike a strawberry or raspberry which carries the same colour throughout, blueberries are a bright fuschia on the inside, a vibrant purple pink hue. Amazing!
And when you blitz them in a blender, they create the most beautiful swirls of mauve and bright purples lined with a gazillion tiny flecks of indigo. This poetry of colour in motion tends to shake away your gloom if you watch the science of mixing take over and focus on the steady hum of the blender. It did mine. Like with any lassi, you need a yoghurt base and a good dose of fruit. I added some honey and a smidgeon of vanilla extract. I also added some coconut milk to thin it and the flavour was beautiful. The lassi needs to be consumed almost immediately because if it is stored it tends to split. I had it with my favourite go-to sandwich of beetroot, salmon and sprouts on grain bread. I had it in the garden. It was nice.
It was fitting that I chose blueberries because in addition to being antioxidant powerhouses, they also help keep your mind young and alert. Something I was in dire need of. Although baking a loaf of bread would be my zen-activity, I chose not to do it this time. With my current frame of mind I would have definitely set the house on fire. A lassi strangely, calmed me down. Do you have a favourite pick-me-up thing/recipe/ritual that you like to indulge in when things get too crowded?
BLUEBERRY COCONUT LASSI
A beautiful fuschia coloured drink packed with antioxidants to brighten those end-of-the-week blah moments.
Makes – To Serve 4
2 cups blueberries (fresh or frozen)
2 cups yoghurt
1/2 cup coconut milk
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Put all ingredients in a blender and mix for a few minutes until smooth. Drink immediately.