Google+ Forget dieting forever: April 2012

If you love cooking and experimenting with new recipes - you've come to the right place! Not only do we have delicious recipes - we also share our SUCCESSFUL WEIGHT LOSS story.

Monday, 30 April 2012

Lazy beef curry recipe

Cooking method: Slow cooker
Prep time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 6 - 8 hours in slow cooker (check manufacturers guide)
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp fennel seeds
1 tsp coriander seeds
1 tsp fenugreek seeds
1 tsp turmeric powder

1 kg stewing beef - cubed **
3 medium onions - diced 
couple of garlic cloves - crushed
one whole chilli 
1 tsp turmeric powder
400g tin of chopped tomatoes
500ml stock (chicken or vegetable)
 (2cm) chopped ginger
10-20g of honey 
Begin by making the dry spice mix. Dry fry the cumin, fennel, coriander, fenugreek, seeds in an oil free pan until you can hear the seeds popping. Remove from pan and grind into a powder. Add the turmeric powder.
In a separate frying pan add the diced onions and sweat in a little oil on a low heat. Cook until translucent. Add the crushed garlic and chopped chilli and cook for a few minutes. Place this onion mixture into a large saucepan and add the tomatoes, stock, ginger, and the dry spice mix. Simmer for around 15-20 minutes.
BLEND the whole mixture add the honey (to taste) and sweeten with salt and pepper. Depending on what stock you use will depend on how much seasoning you need.
Brown the pieces of beef and add to the slow cooker. (You may also like to add some more chunky onions at this stage to add texture).
The curry can be slow cooked overnight - check your manufacturers instructions. Or cook for 6 to 8 hours on a medium setting until the meat is tender. 
We estimate this will make 8 portions of beef curry at around 360 calories each. 
Serve with rice - and don't forget to add on those calories.

**We often use a cut of meat called 'skirt' as in this recipe, but if you can't find this you could use 'brisket' or stewing/braising beef.

TIP: The dry spice mix can be made ahead of time. As we use it quite often we make a large batch and store in an air tight container.


Copyright © forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved

To eat or not to eat - that is the question

After 15 months of successful weightloss, we are still losing weight, slowly but surely.  We've taken pictures of our food because so many people asked us (and still ask) what we are eating.  When we show people our pictures - they can't comprehend how we can lose weight eating all this wonderful food.

Recalling my own unsuccessful attempts at 'dieting' - it goes something like this:   Wake up on a Monday morning, determined to 'diet' and lose as much weight as possible in the shortest time possible.  Start cutting back on food - resign myself to give up my chocolate/crisps/wine etc.  Sit down - with good intentions - to my 'diet' meals.  Eat slowly if I can.  Plate seems to have shrunk.  Feel hungry most of the day.  But.... by the end of the day I feel virtuous.  End of the week I've lost a couple (or more) pounds.  Great.  Weekend arrives.  Go a little overboard, then get massive cravings for the things I LOVE to eat.  Seek out food I am craving.  Eat - overeat - tell myself it's ok as I've lost weight. Eat more.  Think -- oh well, I've broken the 'diet' - so eat even MORE.  Tell myself that Monday is just around the corner, so I'll start again.....

So, 15 months ago we said: Don't diet.  We took our calorie allowance and made it our own.  I faced the cream cake and asked myself if I really wanted to spend 500 calories eating it.  I made the choice - to eat or not to eat - that was (actually) the answer.

Copyright © (c)forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.

Monday's weightloss eating plan.

Over the weekend we did a little preparation. It wasn't difficult, and with the help of a slow cooker, we have some wonderful meals to look forward to.

Today it's going to be a butternut squash soup for lunch.  The veg cost £1 and made 4 good portions.  Just sauté some onions, add garlic, throw in the butternut squash (1 kg), vegetable stock or stock cubes.  Simmer until soft.  Blitz.  Season.  This will be lunch with a cheese sandwich.

Dinner is going to be the beef curry and rice.  We've already slow cooked this.  It was made using beef skirt and our own homemade curry powder (which we use in other curry recipes).  Because we cook this from scratch in the slow cooker, we can cut out the fat normally associated with curries - by not using ghee or butter. The beef has enough of its own fat, which is drawn out during the slow cooking process and flavours the dish beautifully.  The slow cooking process gives the curry a good depth of flavour.  I'll post the recipe/pics later.  We do add the ginger/garlic to our mix, so all the flavour notes are there.  We also think the final curry has a lot 'cleaner' and refreshing taste - but that's our opinion (and preference).

Tuesday we are having a mozzarella/ciabatta salad for lunch.

So we're ahead with our planning - which keeps us one step ahead with our weightloss.

Copyright © (c)forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.

Sunday, 29 April 2012


It's unusual to find fresh, uncooked, whole langoustines in our fishmonger - let alone in the supermarket (Morrisons) here in the UK.  So when we saw them at the supermarket - we just had to buy them.  We steamed them lightly with some lemongrass for just 3 minutes. You could use sliced lemon instead.  They were deliciously soft and juicy.  A dozen langoustines later between the two of us, and we were smiling.  A hunk of fresh bread, some salad, and our lunch was done.  Not sure about the calories - a quick look on the internet and it's somewhere around 80 per 100g (but it doesn't state with/without shell).  If we estimate 160 calories each, it's a bargain.

REMEMBER: We all have a calorie allowance - do you know yours?
We began our weight loss journey in January 2011 - and began our blog in June 2011. Here's a link to the first post. (here's the link).
We like to post our main meals to give you an idea of just how far calories can go! It's up to you what you eat.
Read about our UNIQUE METHOD of weight loss and find out how you can have the food and drink you love while losing weight. 
Copyright © forget dieting forever, all rights reserved.

Saturday, 28 April 2012

Pork belly - spicy Chinese style recipe.....

We started the evening with a couple of juicy, sweet oysters.  For the main dish - well we fancied something different, chinese spicy pork belly - and here it is:
CHINESE style belly of pork
We searched the internet for various recipes using the budget cut belly of pork, and came up with our own version.
To begin, we picked up about 1kg belly of pork (minus the ribs) from our butcher.  The skin was scored, and a kettle of boiling water was poured over the meat.  Pat dry.
We seasoned with a mixture of:  2 tsp five spice, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp ground pepper, 2 tsp sugar.  Leave for as long as you can - we left ours for 4 hours, overnight would be better.  Cook on high for the first 10 minutes, then turn the oven down and we cooked ours for about 2 hours.  We had to turn up the heat for the last 30 mins to crisp up the skin.  Amazing!
This was served with a dipping sauce, super smooth mash and pak choi.
SPICY DIPPING SAUCE: (again, the internet provided many alternative versions) we just mixed together approx 5 tablespoons of soy sauce, 2 tablespoons of sweet chilli sauce, a little freshly grated ginger, and a little chopped spring onion and a sprinkle of sesame seeds for show.
TIP: Now the dipping sauce tasted as if it was missing something when we first made it - but when we ate it with the pork, it was fantastic.  Obviously it was missing something...  the pork!!

Now for the calories.... forgetting about the bits we nibbled on as we 'taste tested' the pork, we think the finished dish was about 800 calories.  A little high, but then again, it was very filling, it's our weekend - with a full allowance.  Being full, we didn't fancy dessert.  This dish went well with a light red wine.

Forget dieting. Lose weight eating the food YOU love! You don't have to eat 'special' diet food to lose weight - we lost 7 stone eating all the food on this blog.
REMEMBER: This is not a diet. Everyone has a calorie allowance - (see our page on calories) - do you know what YOUR daily calorie allowance is?
We like to post our main meals to show you what we are eating. You won’t find us posting every last morsel though – but we hope this gives you an idea of how far calories can go!
Read about the UNIQUE METHOD of weight loss and find out how we have lost weight eating the food we love.
Copyright © forgetdietingforever, all rights reserved.

Friday, 27 April 2012

Have your cake and eat it...

This morning I had a boiled egg for breakfast with rye bread and some cheese.  Thinking ahead to lunch, we may have sandwich or salad depending on what's in the fridge.  Last night I couldn't be bothered to cook, so had beans on toast.

When we go out, we try to eat something about an hour before we go, perhaps a bacon sandwich.  From experience we know it's better to eat something before going out.  As I have a cooker with a timer, I may put the oven on and cook a couple of jacket potatoes - ready for when we get back. That way we have something to eat if we want to - which generally we do.  Alternatively, we may make a sandwich for later, or have something we can put in the microwave.  All this preparation stops us taking the easy option - dialling a takeaway.  But, if we really want a takeaway, we'll have one.

Because we control our intake based upon what we want to eat, and not what someone is telling us we should be eating, we don't feel deprived.  It's all positive stuff.  I think back to the failed diets I followed and realise that negativity starts at the beginning: don't eat this, can't have that, this or that is not allowed.  Our 4/3 eating philosophy allows everything.  Our method of eating has helped sustain our weightloss, educate us about food, and more importantly, we can have our cake and eat it.

Copyright © (c)forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.

Thursday, 26 April 2012

Thursday lunch

We love salads.  Corned beef today.  At around 450 calories, this helps boost our weightloss.  The weather is awful, and if I hadn't had the salad ingredients ready to go, I may have had something like beans on toast.  We added a little butter to our new potatoes, a scoop of coleslaw, half an egg and some grated cheese.

TIP: Don't forget to season your salad too - I have been less inclined to eat salty snacks because I now season my food properly!

Copyright © (c)forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Beef meatballs and pasta at 500 calories!

Ingredients - serves 4
 400g lean beef mince
2 large onions - chopped
large tin of chopped tomatoes
herbs - basil, thyme and rosemary (use dried if you wish)
tbsp tomato puree
salt and pepper
sugar or honey to sweeten to taste
breadcrumbs and egg (if using)
Place the meat in a bowl and add one finely chopped onion, garlic and salt/pepper. Season well with salt and pepper, then KNEAD with your hands until the mixture starts sticking together (stretching the proteins).
TIP: If the meat needs to go further - unexpected guests maybe - then just add some breadcrumbs. If you do this you'll probably have to add a little egg to bind the mixture.  Serve with your favourite pasta topped with some tasty cheese. A strong cheese such as parmesan will give you lots of flavour without too many calories!  
Sauté a large onion, add garlic and cook for a minute. Add a large tin of chopped tomatoes and heat through. We used some herbs to flavour - and chose what we had available. We added basil, thyme and rosemary.  Dried herbs are fine too.  Finally add a spoonful of tomato puree and some salt and pepper.  After slowly simmering this mixture so the water would evaporate, we ended up with a thick, rich and tasty sauce - without fat.  Depending on the tinned tomatoes you use you may fin you need to add a very small amount of honey or sugar. Add this sparingly and keep tasting.
We estimate this dish at around 500 calories.
EAT the food you love - like we do. It may just stop you snacking and craving!

REMEMBER: We all have a calorie allowance - why not find out what yours is? We like to post our main meals to show you what CAN be eaten.
You won’t find us posting every last morsel though – but we hope this gives you an idea of how far calories can go!
Read about our UNIQUE METHOD of weight loss and find out how we have lost weight eating the food we love.
Copyright © forgetdietingforever, all rights reserved.

Goat's cheese

Another simple salad using goat's cheese for lunch.  There's a little rye bread, and there was also a side of new potatoes which we also ate.  I would estimate this salad to be around 500 calories - using 200 calories for the cheese.

This will keep the hunger at bay until this evening, when we are going to have beef meatballs with pasta and parmesan.  We're making our own pasta again - this is new to us, but once we made it the first time, we know we prefer it fresh.

Copyright © (c)forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Chicken again...

With plenty of leftover chicken from the weekend, we decided to have this again, with some vegetables.  A sneaky roast potato, some fab Jersey royals, baby carrots and the rest from the freezer!  

This meal is around 500 calories, and perfect for filling up on.  We ate around 6.30pm and had plenty of space for something sweet later. 

Feta salad

The intense flavour of this salad was fantastic and exactly what I was looking for this lunch time.  I'm listening more and more to what my body wants.

Just half a bag of mixed salad leaves tossed with 45g cubed feta, 50g of pasta salad with pine nuts, some chopped tomatoes and 5 minutes later - a 350 calorie salad.  I was starving so added 50g of fresh buttered rye bread (150 cals).  No need for additional olive oil, as there was plenty surrounding the feta and pasta!

Copyright © (c)forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.

Monday, 23 April 2012

Peppers and cream cheese sandwich under 350 calories

Roasting a few peppers while the oven is on makes economical sense.  I was left with some very tasty peppers for my sandwich today.  After roasting I put the peppers into a plastic bag to 'steam', then I removed the skins.
As I was about to throw away the pepper's wrapping, I noticed something more interesting - peppers are very low in calories.  100g of red pepper is just 26 calories.  So my lunch time sandwich consisting of 25g full fat cream cheese plus the peppers/spinach came to under 350 calories.  Nice.

Sunday, 22 April 2012

Roast chicken

Our Sunday roast was delicious and filling.  The gravy (not shown here) was home made, and had a rich colour to it, so no need to add any browning.  We love our roasts - the honey roasted parsnips in particular.  I can remember when I was a child/teenager, filling up on the Sunday roast, and not wanting to eat again for the rest of the day.  This is precisely what happens here - after tucking in, we are full, and don't need to nibble unnecessarily.  It also means we won't want much more to eat later.

It's early evening now, and I still feel full.  The roast dinner may be around 750 calories, but these calories are still working!  

Saturday, 21 April 2012

Crepe suzette - our take.


Ingredients (makes 4)
75g plain flour
200ml milk
1 medium egg (ours weighed 55g)
dash salt
One orange
Castor sugar

Mix together the flour, milk, egg and dash of salt - the crepe mixture should be quite runny.  We use a little butter when frying.  Cook the crepes and put them to one side.

Peel the orange, and segment.  Squeeze out the orange juice and place in the frying pan and reduce down with a few of the segments and some of the rind (pith removed).  When reduced, put the folded crepes back into the pan and add a (generous) dash of brandy.  Sprinkle with a little castor and serve.
Each crepe (without the ice-cream) is approximately 150 calories.

400 cals for crab and scallops with ginger and lime

At around 400 calories this dish is fantastic.  Easy to make, and with the addition of Jersey royal potatoes, absolutely heavenly.  Plenty of calories left for our take on crepe suzette - see recipe.
This dish looks quite spectacular - yet it is so easy to do.  Honestly, as long as you can boil potatoes and carrots, there is very little else to it.  

Ingredients for two people

400g new potatoes
200g mixed crab meat
200g scallops without the roe
small bag of watercress
one shallot
clove of garlic
small amount of veg/chicken stock to cook the carrots in
2 carrots
small piece of ginger (about an inch) - grated
1/2 teaspoon of lime plus a little zest
butter - use a little when crushing the potatoes

We prepared the carrot puree in the afternoon.  Gently fry the shallot and garlic to soften, then put into a saucepan with the carrots and stock (or just use water).  Cook the carrots until soft then liquidize, adding a little salt and pepper to taste.  Next, add the finely grated ginger and the 1/2 teaspoon of lime juice, plus a bit of the zest.  This just needs warming back through, when ready to serve.

Cook the potatoes until soft.  Crush then stir in the crab meat.  We added just a little butter to the potatoes, and I suppose that's why there are so few calories in this dish - a restaurant may add much more (especially in the carrot puree).  Cook the scallops on a high heat.  Use a little oil and butter in the pan, and fry quickly until done.  Our scallops are quite small and we reckon about 1 minute each side.  The worst thing you can do is overcook them.  

This time we decided to make a watercress puree, mainly for colour but also to see how the flavours went together.  We used half the bag of watercress and simply whizzed this up with a little olive oil, salt and pepper with a dash of lemon juice.

Plate up and enjoy!!  We had a good glass of Macon Village with ours... brilliant.

The cost of this dish (for two) was around £10, with the main ingredients being:  dressed crab £3.75 (around 200g of brown & white meat), scallops £4.20 (for around 200g), jersey royals £1.80 (400g).

Copyright © (c)forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.

Thursday, 19 April 2012


Both of us are still experiencing weightloss - some 15 months after we began our eating regime.  We keep to our basic principles as they are easy to follow and sustainable.  We never feel deprived of anything as we can eat whatever we want to eat.  Going back to basics - meat and two veg - and saying 'no' to diet foods has been one of the best things we have ever done.  The reason for this blog - and the pictures of our food - was because so many people could not believe we were eating all the food we said we were eating.  I haven't photographed everything of course (there are limits).  

What we find most interesting is that our body shape is changing quite a lot, and the fat seems to be shifting around.  We know that our slow and steady weightloss is taking place all over our body.  I know that we can continue for as long as it takes to reach our goal.  

Wednesday, 18 April 2012


We love our own home made oven chips.  Just 210 calories for 200g of potato plus one teaspoon of oil.  This oil should be enough to coat the potato before cooking in the oven.

Parboil some Maris Piper or Estima potatoes for about 5 mins. Drain and leave in the pan to steam for a couple more minutes.  Coat with olive/vegetable oil and season with salt.  Place on a hot oiled oven tray and cook for around 30 minutes in a hot oven.

We're having these tonight with egg, beans and mushrooms.  Our total meal will come to around 500 calories.  Shop bought processed oven chips do not have the same structure and can be higher in calories too.  Usually you will find the inside of the chip is processed/mashed.  Our home made chips have a good bite to them and we think they are the real mccoy!!

Jersey royal potatoes

The flavour of these potatoes is indescribable.  Other than - we have to eat them again!  Here they are awaiting their fate.  This gorgeous salad was under 500 calories.  The potatoes weighed around 150g and came to just 105 calories - add a small dob of butter, chopped mint and sprinkle with salt and that's it......

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Home made cottage pie


This was simple enough to make.  Cottage pie is made with beef and shepherd's pie with lamb mince.


1 kg of minced beef
3 onions - chopped
couple of carrots - diced
one leek - sliced
3 cloves of garlic - crushed
salt and pepper
2 tablespoons of tomato puree
dash worcestershire sauce
250ml stock (chicken or vegetable)
150ml of red wine 
1.5 kg cooked mashed potatoes

After frying off a kilo of minced beef, I set this aside over a paper towel.  Fry onions, carrots and leek until softened  then add salt, pepper and some garden herbs - thyme and rosemary.  A couple of spoonfuls of tomato puree, a generous dash of worcestershire sauce and around 250ml of chicken stock all went into the pot.
Finally, I deglazed the frying pan with about 150ml of good red wine.  This formed the base of my pie, which was topped with mashed potato.  All I did with the potato was add some salt/pepper and butter - not a huge amount of butter, but enough to give it a bit of flavour.                                                                                                    
I cooked the dish in the oven at 170 degrees for 80 minutes.  Cook covered with foil for the first 30 minutes as this helps to draw out the juices, then continue cooking uncovered.  (I like it crispy on top).
I would estimate a portion of this to be around 450-500 calories.
Here's the QR code for the ingredients.
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Lose weight eating the food YOU love!
REMEMBER: We all have a calorie allowance - (see our page on calories) and we like to post our main meals to show you what we are eating. You won’t find us posting every last morsel though – but we hope this gives you an idea of how far calories can go!
Read about the UNIQUE METHOD of weight loss and find out how we have lost weight eating the food we love.
Copyright © forgetdietingforever, all rights reserved.

Jersey royals and 400 calories later!

I couldn't resist the new season Jersey royal potatoes.  This is our prawn and crab salad.  We always season our salad leaves and add olive oil - this fills us up for much longer.  A teaspoon of olive oil between two equates to just 20 calories, so why not?  Delicious.  Around 400 calories of great taste!
As this meal is so low in calories we have plenty to play with later.  A biscuit or two if we fancy.  Nothing is banned.  Monday to Thursday we aim for 'good' eating days, and fresh food plays a big part, as it is often lower in calories than pre-packaged equivalents.  At the start of our eating regime, we decided to eat to fill up and eat good quality food, and not diet food.

Copyright © (c)forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.

Saturday, 14 April 2012


We estimate this dish to be around 700-800 calories.  Each fillet steak weighed 200g (310 cals) and the 150g baby roasted potatoes around 200 cals at most.  We roast ours in olive oil.  A selection of vegetables and the sauce will account for the rest of the calories, and we have allowed a generous 200-300 cals for those.
The leftover blackberries from breakfast were so sweet that we decided to make this into a sauce to go with our steak.  Take a glass of red wine (this is for 2 servings), a shot of port and put this in a small saucepan.  Add blackberries to the pan - we used 10.  We saved some for decoration, but to be honest, we found the flavour of the additional whole blackberries overpowering because the blackberry sauce on its own was enough! Showing off has its consequences.  Dice 2 small shallots, don't fry, just throw in with the wine.  Simmer this for half an hour or so.  Strain through a sieve, pushing down to get the blackberries through.  Season to taste. Reduce further until fairly sticky and set aside until ready to serve.  Only when ready to serve, add a small knob of butter and mix through - otherwise the sauce will split.

For party goers - we pre cooked the veg, stopping the cooking process a couple of minutes short.  (The carrots were cooked in orange juice).  The potatoes were par-boiled and coated in olive oil, and go into the oven for a good 30 minutes to roast.  We have even left the potatoes hanging around until ready to start the cooking process on other occasions.  The timings are very easy because all we are doing is warming everything back up.  The mushrooms and steak are really the only thing left to cook from scratch.  So if you have guests coming round, all the prep is virtually done; leaving you to mingle longer and produce the rabbit out of the hat!

Copyright © (c)forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.

Saturday steak night

We're having fillet steak tonight, this time with - exotic mushrooms, baby roast potatoes and a selection of fresh vegetables.  A blackberry sauce completes the picture.  Can't wait.  The recipe and pics will follow.

We've worked out (roughly) that the dish will cost around 700-800 calories.  We've just been for a leisurely walk.  An hour later, we have contributed approximately 300 calories to our day's allowance.  Today is a 'normal' day when we get to eat a normal calorie allowance - that's 2000 for me and 2500 for my other half.  Add the 300 for the walk, and we have ample calories to play with.  We may have burned a few more calories as we carried some shopping which weighed about 5 kg.  As we have each lost much much more weight than this, we were shocked at how heavy just an additional 5 kg felt.

150 calorie fruity yet filling breakfast

I caught sight of the first British strawberries and before I knew it they were in my shopping bag.  They are out slightly earlier than usual, and the flavour is not quite there yet.  But they made a wonderful fresh and fruity breakfast.  I sprinkled a small teaspoon of brown sugar over the chopped strawberries - then left this to marinate for 10 minutes.  The sugar draws out the juices and provides a sweet syrup.  Simply pour over the yoghurt and finish with a drizzle of honey.  We always eat full fat greek yoghurt because we love the creamy texture, plus, it fills us up for longer because the fat takes longer to digest.  As this is so low in calories, we can have a slice of toast should we wish.  I ate 80g of full fat yoghurt and 110g fruit.  My partner had 100g yoghurt.  

Friday, 13 April 2012

Friday night chicken

This meal is so easy to cook - and very economical too.  Just half a chicken, marinated in peri-peri seasoning is enough for the two of us.  The chicken was cooked to our liking - don't overcook or it will be dry.  We served it with buttered new potatoes, salad, corn cob and coleslaw.

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Lunch in a hurry for around 400 calories!

Racing past a good supermarket and picking up a pasta and prawn salad, meant I was half way to eating a delicious lunch.

Arriving home, we pepped up the salad with some of our own bits and pieces.  A nice chunk of home made soda bread - and we were away!  All in less than 10 minutes.

With the bread, the salad came to around 400 calories.  Simple and easy - helping with our weightloss, where our body shapes are changing significantly of late.  

Saturday, 7 April 2012

Seabream. Fine dining under 400 calories!!

Tonight we are having fish, because we really enjoyed the Wild Seabream we had last time on the 18 February.  We've refined the dish since then and we are having it again tonight.  It is - I believe - called Wild Dorade in France and Goldbrasse in Germany.  The whole meal will set us back around 380 calories - unbelievable (and that's allowing for the butter).  This gives us scope for some flambé orange/liqueur crepes later ..... mmm.
This meal was simplicity itself, and very very satisfying.  We bought some lovely fillets from the fishmonger; each weighing around 100g.  The fish was so quick and easy to cook - just make sure it is not overcooked.  We first seasoned the fish skin with salt and lightly dusted with plain flour (tapping off the excess) before cooking it skin side down.  This gives it a nice and crispy skin.  Cook for roughly 2 - 3 minutes then turn it over.  Turn the frying pan heat off, and cook the other side for the same amount of time.  The whole process took about 6 minutes.  We each ate 150g of crushed new potatoes with butter and watercress.   A little butter and salt really does makes this delicious.  I only used around 10g butter for 300g of potatoes, and believe me, this is enough to make it buttery enough. There were a few broad beans on the side, and some chopped fresh tomatoes which had been warmed through.  I was quite impressed by the tomatoes as it added an acidity to the dish, which was quite nice.  I think a lot of Italian dishes use tomatoes and I can see why.  Sprinkle with a little chopped parsley, add a few pea shoots and finish with a generous drizzle of good quality olive oil around.  If anything, I have slightly overestimated on calories, just to be on the safe side.

I can't tell you just how delicious this was, and it disappeared very quickly.  Our guests said the fish tasted like sea bass.  We agree, it also has a similar texture too, but - it is so much cheaper at around £2 per fillet!  With our meal we enjoyed a great glass or two of Voigner.  A good wine is one you enjoy - so if you prefer something else - go for it.

Friday, 6 April 2012

Home made soda bread

How easy was this!  A yeast free loaf using half wholemeal and half white flour.  The texture was perfect.    Experimenting with bread is not as bad as we thought.  We'll be eating this with some prawns/salmon later.

450 calorie chicken casserole and dumpling

After my Twitter account was hacked, I'm hoping everything is back to normal now.   I never send out attachments, I only ever tweet about the food we eat and how we are losing weight.  If you find anything suspicious, please let me know.

With Easter treats just around the corner, we thought we would eat something with fewer calories in today and save ourselves for the chocolate feast.  The chicken casserole with the dumpling comes to around 450 calories.

A pack of chicken drumsticks and thighs are all you need.  Mine are currently in the slow cooker - with the skin on.  I like to extract as much flavour as possible, and this comes from the skin, which will form the basis of my chicken stock.  I'll cook this for an hour or two in the slow cooker, then strain the liquid.  I usually use a fat separating jug - a nifty way to remove the fat.  Then I discard the skin and bones before putting the rest of the chicken back into the pot.  At this point I'll add the flavourings - I use my garden herbs; thyme, bay leaf, parsley, rosemary, salt and pepper.  I'll put in whatever vegetables I fancy - carrots, onion, celery etc.  The liquid will thicken as a result of the slow cooking using the skin/bones.  I may also add some pearl parley as this releases a lot of starch during the cooking process, and thickens the casserole naturally.  I like to let this cool down, and when reheating in a saucepan, I then add some potatoes/dumplings etc.

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Wednesday's meals

Today I had a takeaway salad as I was shopping.  I always read the nutritional details.  I'm generally looking for anything under 500 calories.  My choice today was a pasta / feta & sun dried tomato salad.  The salad was filling and delicious.

This evening we are eating home made chilli con carne.  We'll have this with rice, and the total meal should be under 600 calories.  From Monday to Thursday we try and have 'good' days, eating what we want - but below our normal calorie allowance.  For my partner this means he gets to eat 2000 calories today and I get to eat 1500 calories.  Then Friday to Sunday, we eat a full allowance, which adds another 500 calories to our day!

I'll post my chilli recipe later.

The other thing I have going at the moment is a chicken casserole.  It's so low in calories (around 250 per good portion) and quite filling, but I usually add dumplings and/or potatoes to bulk it up.  A pack of chicken drumsticks and thighs are all you need.  Mine are currently in the slow cooker - with the skin on.  I like to extract as much flavour as possible, as this will form the basis of my chicken stock.  I'll cook this for an hour or two in the slow cooker, then strain the liquid and take the skin and bones off the chicken before putting this back into the pot.  At this point I'll add the flavourings - I use my garden herbs; thyme, bay leaf, parsley, rosemary, salt and pepper.  Then I'll put in whatever veg I fancy - carrots, onion, celery etc.  The liquid will thicken as a result of the slow cooking of the skin/bones.  I like to let this cool down, and when reheating in a saucepan, I then add the potatoes/dumplings etc.

Monday, 2 April 2012

Monday is a good day!

Keeping with the fish theme, we had some really fresh salmon for dinner.  The trip to the fishmonger was well worth it.  We think the cost of the food is comparable with the supermarket, yet the taste is so much better.

This meal is around 450 calories, and packed full of flavour.  After a weekend of eating up to the maximum calories recommended for an adult, we then have 4 days of being good and eating around 3/4 of the recommended daily calorie allowance.  We choose foods we love to eat and fit them into this regime.  
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