Saturday, December 24, 2011

Toscatårta and 8 Ways to Banish Holiday Digestive Troubles

Toscatårta (Swedish Almond Cake)

Food Diary (December 24, 2011)
Breakfast: Rolled oats with raisins, coconut and sunflower seeds
Lunch: Eggplant and rice
Dinner: Smoked fish mousse and caviar, meat loaf, potato blini, French fries

When I arrived in Sweden I started working for a company that had a very nice tradition. Every Wednesday afternoon we had a cake or something sweet. Mostly Swedish baked goods were offered and this gave me an opportunity to familiarize myself with what Sweden has to offer. Toscatårta or Swedish almond cake was one of my favourites.

Toscatårta looks like a simple basic cake but don’t let the looks fool you. Rich and moist, topped with crunchy buttery sweet almonds, it is divine. The recipe is available here.
Toscatårta (Swedish Almond Cake)
Today's Favourite Photo
Saint Joseph’s Day Fritters – Zeppole di San Giuseppe

Today’s Favourite Blog
Source: Care2
The timing of the article titled “8 Ways to Banish Holiday Digestive Troubles” seems perfect. I didn’t find the 8 ways particularly useful, perhaps you will find these tips useful:

1. Don’t devour the food.  Take it slowly and chew your food well.  It may sound cliché but chewing mixes food with your digestive enzymes, helping to improve digestion.

2. If you’re stressed out, try to wait until you feel more relaxed to eat.

3. Try not to eat too late at night.  Late-night eating doesn’t allow enough time for food to digest and often causes heartburn and weight gain.

4. Don’t drink too much with meals as it dilutes your digestive enzymes and can result in indigestion and bloating.

5. Eat less food more often throughout the day, rather than eating a huge meal all in one sitting.

6. Supplement with a full-spectrum digestive enzyme product.  It should contain a wide range of enzymes since each one serves a unique purpose.  For example, lipase aids fat digestion, protease aids protein digestion, amylase assists with carbohydrate digestion, lactase assists with digestion of dairy sugars, cellulase and hemicellulase assist with breaking down plant fiber. If you feel bloated and heavy after a meal, pop a few enzyme capsules.  They often eliminate that heavy feeling.

7. First thing in the morning take a probiotic supplement.  Choose a formula that contains a range of intestinal flora such as lactobacillus acidophilus and bifidobacterium bifidus.  By regulating intestinal flora, you will also regulate bowel movements and improve digestion.

8. Eat a small salad with apple cider vinegar prior to eating your holiday meals.  The enzymes in the greens help with digestion while the apple cider vinegar stimulates the body’s natural production of hydrochloric acid to aid protein digestion.  Avoid apple cider vinegar if you have a stomach ulcer.

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  1. Only on wednesdays?! Cheez. Such ill-treatment of their employees.
    Those fried choux pastries are to die for but I'm put off by the deep frying bit. Maybe one day ....
    Good tips but a little late for me ... dinner's done and gone. Devoured, stressed, ate until late, drank too much, huge meal. Asian natural remedy for indigestion ... cumin.

  2. What a delicious almond cake!

  3. This cake looks really scrumptious! It's like a cake and a crumble in one.
    I must say I am also disappointed with the 8 ways... I thought I would find some miracle tips, but I suppose thanks to your blog I know so much about food and health issues that I will be surprised less and less as the time goes.
    I hope your Christmas is full of delightful dishes and that you have wonderful company! Happy Holidays once more!

  4. ping: I know, cakes everyday would have been better. But we could eat as much as we wanted, until it ran out.
    Those tips were more prevention rather than cure, I didn't enjoy reading them

    yummychunklet: thank you

    Sissi: Actually it is a cake and crumble in one. I wasn't pleased with those 8 tips either, it was mostly about prevention rather than cure. Thats no use after we have eaten! Its like being told to not drink so much when we have a hangover:)