So, what does Olivia eat?
So, after the success of my recent blog ‘Should You Be Eating That Cake Olivia?’
I wanted to give you a deeper insight into my diet. It’s not the perfect diet, but it’s a happy diet. I have so many stresses in my life, I don’t want to stress about what kind of honey I should be adding to my porridge according to the latest fad.
I discovered when I was 19 that I was dairy intolerant. I had no idea why I kept reacting so badly when I ate yoghurts or drank a latte. Imagine my surprise when my mum nonchalantly commented, ‘Oh yes I remember when you were a baby we had to take you off milk for a year as you kept on vomiting!’. No more yoghurts for me.....
I’m good with sheep and goats milk which is a relief because I need something to go on top of lasagne and pecorino works just fine. It also means I don’t miss out on pizza as long as I insist on buffalo mozzarella. I would hate it if I couldn’t have any cheese at all.
One thing I realise about my diet that could be different to other people my age is that I just don’t eat microwave meals (don’t even own a microwave!) and I never use sauces out of jars - they all taste the same, I think it’s the gum, stabilisers and preservatives that they use. There’s a generic ‘canned’ taste about them. I always cook my own pasta sauces and curries. I guess I’d say that I’m not a ‘natural’ cook but over the past few years I’ve made a real effort and I’ve learnt some reliable meals that I can turn to at a moment’s notice.
I always say to people that I eat healthily and what I mean by that is that I have a balanced diet. I eat wholewheat pasta and homemade sauce, brown rice and my partner bakes our nutty, wholewheat bread twice a week. Its got quite a reputation that bread - my family can’t believe we can eat it every day, its so filling!
The other side of that balance is that I just don’t really deny myself anything if I want it. After a show I might celebrate and go out for a steak frites and a glass of Champers. Before the show, not so glamorous, you’ll see me eating McCoys salt and vinegar crisps With a pint of squash ! Ryo Hirano is always laughing at me, he says they only stock McCoys because I eat them. Its usually after I’ve had a really hard day so I think actually that its salt replacement that my body is craving.
I’ve noticed that I’ve cut down on the amount of meat (particularly red meat) that I eat and I guess thats been a conscious decision, I just don’t think its healthy to have it as much as I used to. My dad was a butcher at Sainsburys while I was growing up so our meals were always centred around good quality meat, thats definitely been a change for me, I cant believe how much meat I used to eat!
I love fish but only really shellfish and white fish, I just don’t like the taste of oily fish like mackerel or sardines. I know they’re so good for you but they’re just not for me.
To give you an idea of a typical few days this is what I might eat:
When I make my porridge it’s cooked with oat milk on the hob. Sometimes if I’m feeling fruity I’ll add some golden syrup, nope sadly not honey or seeds like you should, but golden syrup because I like it !
Two massive slabs of toast with marmite or jam. This bread is hardcore, made with wholewheat and seeds.
Pasta Bolognese - Chilli Con Carne etc
If I haven’t had a show the night before and am organised, I’ll bring in meals from home. I use wholewheat pasta/rice, and of course always using my fresh sauces from home.
Out and about in Covent Garden
I’ll nip out and get a tuna baguette from Prèt A Manger or go to Benitos Hat and have a Mexican feast. Quick and easy.
Canteen at Royal Opera House
I love the canteen at work, (so much so, that I’m the ‘canteen representative’ for the Royal Ballet Company). I’ll grab a sandwich or get something hot from the counter, always a good selection to choose from.
When I’m performing in the evening I’ll eat in the canteen again, but if I’m at home then these dishes are my ‘go to’. I like to go out for dinner but can get quite pricy, so opt for these Liv classics.
Chicken Katsu Curry - Fish with breadcrumbs potatoes
Love a breaded fish drenched in vinegar with potato wedges and peas.
Love pasta. It’s so quick and easy after a long day at work.
Piled with lots of fresh salsa and guacamole with nachos on the side !