Sunday, 18 January 2009

In deep water

The Finlandia ski race is getting closer day by day and yet my week seems to have revolved around Swimming and Basil. The lack of skiing is bordering on the embarrassing but then so is the lack of snow. Due to physical illness and unseasonably warm weather I have been a lazy toe rag all week. However today I was feeling much better so went to Paloheinä at 11am to have a good ski only to find it overrun with rug rats and parents all competing and the track reserved until late into the afternoon. Thinking quickly of a plan B I headed off to Itäkeskus swimming pool. I've always been curious to swim in a giant bomb shelter and the opportunity to work on some fitness and stamina for the big race seemed like a good combination. I managed to swim a kilometre and a half before cramp claimed both my calves mid length but it was a satisfying start considering the lane was helpfully being used by two ladies who were so slow you had to go round them every length which made for a very stop start swimming experience and probably explains the cramp. Just what a peak athlete needs to get in shape!! That was a joke.
I've come home to the smell of banana and carrot bread baking in the oven. Wonderful! I think an afternoon of good movies, tea and cake is coming my way.
Away from the pool and the ski track I made a lovely pesto sauce this week which was so easy I want to encourage you all to do it. The trick is the order everything goes in:
1) Garlic
2) Basil
3) Parmesan
4) Olive oil
5) Pine nuts
Use a pestle and mortar and just add one by one and go gentle on the oil to get the right consistency. I find if you add too much oil you can repair the damage by adding more cheese. If you live in Finland I am going to recommend buying two of the basil plants from the supermarket as one is just not enough to make a really wonderful quantity of tasty, vivid green pesto.
So in the week ahead there will be skiing every night after work and a beer festival on Saturday night. Should be a good week!

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