Google+ Forget dieting forever: July 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 July 2012


We decided to go to the pub for an hour, taking advantage of the dry evening (apparently it's going to rain for a couple of days). A nice - extended - walk there and back clocked up around 250 calories. We came home to a well cooked jacket potato which went perfectly with our planned gammon, egg and beans. At around 600 calories, this dish was very filling and tasty.
If you would like to know more about how we achieved our fabulous weight loss see OUR IDEA.

Simple lunch

Just a few simple ingredients and I was looking at my tuna, egg and cheese salad with new potatoes... with delight. At under 450 calories, this is a perfect lunch. Very filling and delicious.
If you need to take a packed lunch, the potatoes are great eaten cold and coated with a small amount of mayonnaise.
Had we been out, we may have opted for a supermarket version, and adapted it a little - to suit us.
Read Our Idea to find out what we did to lose so much weight while eating what we love to eat.

Menu ideas

Breakfast - is usually quite simple - either cereal and full fat milk, or (like today) we take advantage of the fresh summer fruit on offer. I had peaches which were just about to turn over ripe, and they were deliciously sweet on my full fat greek yoghurt. Cherries are another favourite, and they are juicy and tasty about this time of year.

Lunch - we are having our favourite tuna, egg and cheese salad. We share a large can of tuna, add one small egg each, and about 10g of finely grated cheddar. Today I've weighed out 160g of new potatoes, which we'll coat lightly with a little butter and salt.

Dinner - gammon, egg, chips and salad if we have time. If not it may turn out to be gammon, egg and beans with toast. The chips take a little bit of time to prepare and cook.

Tuesday should follow the same pattern - with a salad at lunch time. We've got a few mushrooms to use up so I can see a cheese and mushroom omelette being the way to go. Dinner is a choice between chinese style pork belly, or something from the freezer such as a chilli con carne and rice.

Why the pounds just slip on....

We made excuses; it was an age thing, it was in the genes - whatever it was it was something we felt we had no control over. I gave in to the 'inevitable' gain in weight, as I just didn't understand it. Just a half pound here and there, didn't really make that much difference at first. I would stand on the scales and brush aside any concerns, because the weight gain was so slow and hardly noticeable. It's not as if I stood on the scales and suddenly weighed a stone heavier. As the pounds slipped on I found myself judging my body size against others, and I would pick out people that were bigger than me to convince myself I wasn't big.
My partner steadily gained weight - but was only eating ONE meal a day! It wasn't as if I was eating huge amounts of food or scoffing in secret either, but the weight just kept on going up. I tried convincing myself it wasn't happening by stubbornly wearing clothes that were too tight and uncomfortable. I'd sit miserably in tight waistbands, maybe with the button undone, just to convince myself I had not gone up a size.
When I looked at myself, I didn't see the puffy face, the bulging midriff, the stocky matron. I saw me how I wanted to see me - just a little plump maybe, but nothing to worry about. I look back at a picture where I remember thinking I was perhaps a little overweight, and I am shocked at how fat I was.
Our journey over the last 18 months has convinced me now that there was only one reason the pounds just slipped on - and that's because I ate too much. I didn't overeat on a massive scale, it was a small amount every day - it could be just 50 calories (2 boiled sweets) over and above what my body required. Just 100 calories extra per day could mean 10 whole extra pounds in body weight per year.

Read how we changed the way we think and came up with OUR IDEA.
Read about how CALORIES DO COUNT and can seriously make a difference to weight loss.

Diets may work in the short term, but I found I never learned anything from them. I always put the weight back on, and for most of the diet, I was either starving or eating something I didn't like. Now, we eat whatever we want, enjoy our food, have lost over 6 stone and finally know how to keep the weight off forever.

Sunday, 29 July 2012

Steak with mushroom gravy and heritage potatoes

With the steam still escaping from the scalloped potatoes, we captured our delicious dinner before devouring in silence. This meal was around just 500 calories - and very tasty they were at that.
We found these knobbly Heritage potatoes and couldn't resist giving them a try. We decided to slice them and sauté until done. The mushroom gravy was made using equal parts chicken stock and sherry (we used about 150 mls), a sprig of thyme, and some dried mushrooms. We boiled up the mixture until reduced by half and left it to go cold so the thyme would infuse before blending, then adding some fresh mushrooms and reheating. No butter, no cream - it was delicious enough without it. We had some spare gnocchi from yesterday's lunch, so fried these alongside the sliced potato.
Read OUR IDEA to find out how we are eating all this fabulous food - and losing lots of weight...forever.
Copyright © (c)forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.

Saturday, 28 July 2012

Links to bbq and spicy rubs

We think the weather and the olympics make a great combination for being outdoors. This weekend will be dominated by more barbecues. Update to follow after we've seen what the butcher has. We've got some spare ribs in the freezer and we'll get those out and boil them until soft before marinating. Here are some other bbq ideas:

Spicy barbecue rub
Curry rub
Chinese spice 

We're think of using our Chinese Spice rub for belly pork and cooking it on the bbq this time.

Also .... as we love experimenting, we're going to have a go at making GNOCCHI for the first time with our own tomato sauce using a tin of tomatoes.

Gnocchi is readily available in the supermarkets and we have used it before. We also had some in a restaurant once - it had been boiled then fried and it was lovely, chewy and crispy! There were just a few pieces served alongside some meat, and it made an unusual change to potatoes.

Thursday, 26 July 2012

When the heat is on....

One of our favourite mid-week meals - tuna, egg and cheese salad. This salad is under 450 calories and the new potatoes were very tasty, wrapped in a little butter and salt. In fact, we season all our food - including salad leaves which a lot of people forget - and because of this, we think we've stopped craving salty snacks. If you ever get the urge to snack heavily on something like crisps (potato chips) - have you ever wondered why? See what we think about salt you may be surprised.

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Light supper or lunch

Another day out, and another pub lunch - a couple of sandwiches and shared a bowl of chips. We explored the area and arrived home late. As it was so hot, we weren't too hungry. The smoked salmon was in the fridge waiting to be finished off, so we ate it with a green salad dressed in olive oil and some apple. My partner had eaten smoked salmon with apple in France and said it was a great combination. It certainly was with the apple adding a welcome tangy crunch. We had a couple of slices of bread with cream cheese - and our total meal would be no more than 500 calories at most. That balanced the day out nicely.

Losing weight eating the food we love!
REMEMBER: We all have a calorie allowance - 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 OUR UNIQUE METHOD of weight loss and find out how we have lost weight eating the food we love.

Copyright © forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved

Monday, 23 July 2012

We love pasta!

And here's our favourite dish of all... It's so easy to make and sits around until all gone! Unlike ready meals which can be high fat, or low on taste if it's the 'diet' version, ours is meaty, creamy and under 450 calories for a huge chunk. Great with salad as we had here, or chips if hungry (try our fab chips). Here's our lasagne recipe - we're never disappointed.
Read OUR IDEA to find out how we are losing so much weight while eating food we love.

Monday and looking ahead - salmon salad

This salmon lunch was tasty. You can see how the salmon is just cooked, and we took it off the heat when the middle was just a slightly different colour. By the time we came to eat, it was perfectly moist and tender.
We had 160g of new potatoes with a little butter and salt, and a watercress salad with olive oil. Our  lunch clocked up around 425 calories.
Looking ahead, I'm making our favourite lasagne, which reheats beautifully, so is an excellent standby.  We'll be eating plenty of salads due to the exceptional weather here. 

Sunday, 22 July 2012


We're using the barbecue for lunch and dinner. The belly of pork is half cooked for dinner - we couldn't get hold of the beef brisket that we fancied. Meanwhile, we had a really tasty lunch of curried grey mullet - cooked on the BBQ. The fish is really strong and meaty, so was able to take on our own curry rub. If you can't find grey mullet, you could use mackerel.
Alternatively use a bought curry powder - but just a mild one. Just a couple of minutes on the bbq and it was moist and delicious. We served ours with a salad dressed in olive oil and some new potatoes with a little butter - both seasoned well. There was 160g of new potatoes and 150g of fish. If you can't get grey mullet, you could use monk fish. This lunch was under 400 calories and very satisfying.

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 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! I'm currently going through the photographs and replacing them with more website friendly versions which will allow the blog to load quickly. 
Read about our UNIQUE METHOD of weight loss and find out how you can lose weight eating the food you love.
Copyright © forget dieting forever, all rights reserved.

Saturday, 21 July 2012

Irish salmon

Here's our fabulous lunch - Irish salmon, scrambled eggs, watercress and easy home made soda bread recipe. The salmon was beautifully soft and delicious - and needed no lemon because its flavour was really just so delicate.
At around 600 calories his will keep us satisfied, and stop us being tempted too much at the Bristol Harbour Festival.
We couldn't get the beef brisket for tomorrow, so settled for belly of pork - which we've got marinating in a barbecue rub. Can't wait.
Read OUR IDEA - to find out how we are losing so much weight while eating fabulous food.

Weekend plan

We're off to the Bristol Harbour Festival after lunch of scrambled egg, smoked salmon and toast. The great thing about this lunch, is that it's quick and really filling. Sharing a small pack of salmon is a bit of a treat, but we're celebrating the sunshine!

I'm sure we'll be sampling all the local produce at the festival at some point. Quite fancy the local pies at Pie Minister. As we will be walking around for a while, and on our feet for most of the time there, I'm sure we will have worked up enough extra calories to dig in and enjoy the food on offer just like everyone else will be doing. We're not sure how the day will unfold so will shop around and prepare for all eventualities! Then, if we do end up back at home for dinner, there's something here waiting to be cooked.

For Sunday we've decided on brisket (belly) of beef. We have been promised good weather - but you never know in England... We were watching an American programme where the beef was cooked on the BBQ and we really fancy trying this out. It does look good. If the weather turns sour, we can always pot-roast the brisket and have it with some Yorkshire puds. Either option sounds great for a lazy Sunday.

We hope to go to the fishmonger today and pick up some salmon and some grey mullet. The grey mullet is one of our favourite curried fish recipes for the BBQ. If we can get this, it may be on the menu tonight if we end up eating in.

Thursday, 19 July 2012


At around 350-400 calories this meal is fast food at its best. I used to be afraid of omelettes - and even tried various versions, such as soufflé style by whisking the egg whites first.  Thankfully my partner knew better than me and he makes a fabulous moist and creamy omelette. Break as many eggs (we used 3 per person) as you are going to use into a bowl, add salt and pepper while whisking. No milk (I used to add milk thinking I had to....not any more). We fried the mushrooms before adding - to get rid of the water. Add some butter/oil to the frying pan, heat through and on a medium to high heat, pour in the eggs and stir around to stop the bottom from burning, when almost set, add the flavourings. We used cooked mushrooms and strong cheddar cheese. The secret is simple - don't overcook. We had some toast with ours.

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Wednesday chicken

Lunch was a quick sandwich so I was looking forward to our evening meal.
The peri-peri seasoning was nice and spicy. The chicken was succulent and the skin crispy (which we do like to eat). A lot of diets suggest not eating the skin, as that is where all the fat is. It actually fills us up more - so we are less likely to snack needlessly.
We think our dish is fairly balanced, and costs about 600 calories (as I forgot to use the coleslaw). There's a little butter on the potatoes and sweetcorn.
We are very close to tipping the scales with a new low weight - so it's an exciting time.

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Slow cooked tagine of Lamb

700g lean lamb (leg)
35g each sultanas and flaked almonds
400g tin chopped tomatoes
400g tin chickpeas
1 tablespoon tomato puree
40g dried apricots, chopped
1 small chilli (I left mine whole and placed in the slow cooker - then removed before serving)
3 cloves garlic - chopped
1 small piece of ginger, grated
2 tablespoons Ras El Hanout rub (large supermarkets should sell this)
600 ml stock - vegetable or lamb
salt and pepper to taste
Marinate the lamb overnight if possible in the Ras El Hanout rub. If you want to you can brown the lamb pieces in the frying pan first. Place all the ingredients into a slow cooker and cook until lamb is soft and tender.
This was easy enough to make using the slow cooker. We made quite a large amount - that should serve 6 people at around 300 calories per portion. If divided by 4 large portions, then the lamb would be around 450 calories. We had a 300 calorie portion - seen here - with rice, yoghurt and flaked almonds bringing the total dish to around 500 calories!
I love slow cooking, it's great to come home to - and with the aroma greeting us as we walk through the door. The meat meltingly tender and soft.
Read OUR IDEA - to find out how we are losing so much weight while eating fabulous food.

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

Monday, 16 July 2012

Cod and chips

I know brown food doesn't photograph well, but this was tastier than it looks! We've made this before.
This time we split the fish up a bit and ended up with fish fingers (goujons if you want to be posh). On the plate there is 100g of cod, and with the breadcrumbs that's around 160 calories. The oven chips were around 250 calories.
We had a thick slice of bread and butter, and some good old frozen peas (what would we do without them). The whole meal was under 600 calories.

This same meal at the fish and chip shop would cost around 800 calories. We were going to pick some up, but decided that as today was a 'good' day, we would make our own. 
CHIPS. We used 500g of Estima potatoes, and cut them into chips. These were then microwaved for one minute, just to start the cooking process. Then we coated them in a couple of teaspoons of oil and put them in the oven for around 40 mins on about 200 degrees C. 
COD. Remove skin and coat with a light dusting of flour. Dip in egg, then fresh breadcrumbs and spray lightly with oil. The fish took about 10 minutes to cook in the oven at around 180ºC.
Losing weight eating the food we love!
REMEMBER: We all have a calorie allowance - 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 OUR UNIQUE METHOD of weight loss and find out how we have lost weight eating the food we love.

Copyright © forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.

Menu plan

If all goes to plan - this is what we're having for the next few days. Tonight we fancy making fish and chips - here's our recipe.

I've been marinating some lamb overnight, and we're having a lamb tagine tomorrow. A lot of recipes use lamb shoulder, but we're using the less fatty leg of lamb mainly because there was a good offer on at the supermarket! I'm going to slow cook this overnight, and once cooked, let it cool off, refrigerate, then heat up when we're ready to eat.

Tomorrow's lunch is possibly the butternut squash soup we made today. Maybe by then the flavours will have developed further - so it will be interesting to taste.

We tend to eat very little processed food, and by doing that, we take control of the ingredients (and calories).

Sunday, 15 July 2012

Gravy - how to make

Once again we're having a delicious Sunday roast. We love roasts. Here's what we had today.

I can remember once being on a 'diet' and not being allowed to have the roast veg - or the gravy! Since ditching diets, we now eat all our favourite foods while losing weight. That includes Sunday roasts - with our own tasty gravy. We make our gravy using the roast meat juices minus most of the fat using this fat separation jug below. That way we get to make a fabulous tasty gravy. Today we roasted the chicken on a bed of carrot, celery, leek, carrot and garlic. When the chicken was cooked, we poured half a litre of water into the roasting tin and gave everything a good stir. Then we strained the juices and separated out the fat before pouring the gravy into a saucepan and reducing to condense the flavour. After reducing the gravy, we tasted and seasoned with salt and pepper. Finally, we add a little cornflour to thicken the gravy - and we may add a bit of gravy browning if it all looks too pale. Honey roast parsnips, roast potatoes and lots of vegetables complete the meal.

If you read 'OUR IDEA' you'll see how we get to eat this fantastic food and still lose weight. Why not join some of our friends who are also seeing good weight loss results by following this idea?

Saturday, 14 July 2012

Red snapper and risotto

We did a rough calorie check on this dish (adapted from a Gordon Ramsey recipe) and  estimate it to be about 575 calories each.  If we add a little to be on the safe side, and we have a fabulous dinner for 600 calories.
Apologies - but I first posted this incorrectly - as red mullet - and have finally got around to calling it red snapper.
This would be a good dish to have with friends - as most of it can be prepared ahead. We love experimenting, and the star of this dish was the pepper sauce. We've made pepper sauce before, but this time we added some vermouth, and the flavour was fantastic.
Begin by frying a chopped shallot and some garlic until soft, add one and a half chopped red and yellow peppers to the pan, cook for a little longer. Add small dash of white wine vinegar to the pan, the vermouth and stock/water. Reduce by half, then whizz in a blender - you may need to add just a touch of sugar to taste due to the white wine vinegar. We did this bit early in the afternoon - so it was ready to go. Add salt and pepper to taste.
The pearl barley risotto was made by using 80g of pearl barley and cooking it in fish stock - but any stock and/or ordinary water will do - until soft. We did this early in the afternoon, then when ready to eat, we heated through and added a tablespoon each of mascarpone and grated parmesan. Add a small knob of butter too, as this will give the dish a real richness. If we were making a risotto with rice, we wouldn't be able to pre-cook like this. Don't forget to season - salt needs to be added carefully, little by little, not enough and the barley is 'missing' something.
The fish fillets were pan fried in butter/oil. We served with some courgettes - sliced with a potato peeler. The clams were thrown into the risotto towards the end of cooking, and we only bought these as they were on offer and looked really tempting and fresh.
Copyright © (c)forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.

Friday, 13 July 2012

Friday apres pub

A few of our friends were off to the curry house - while we went back to our own home for our own slow cooked curry. Here's our recipe for slow cooked BEEF CURRY RECIPE which is so delicious - that we challenge the local curry house!
Our beef curry has so much flavour going on, we were not tempted to stray. It's all about preparation - and this little beauty was in the freezer just waiting to be eaten (apart from the rice). The rice was very easy - all we did was put some basmati rice into a large container, cover completely (plus a little bit) with boiling water and put into the microwave oven for around 5 minutes. Then, to stop the cooking process, I drained and poured cold water through the rice and placed in the fridge until needed. We went to the pub, and on our return, just put the rice back into the microwave until hot.
With less fat and more flavour - who wouldn't love this dish. We ate this with a little bit of bread. It was delicious and as far as we think, much lower in calories than the local curry house. As we didn't have a chapati our meal came to around 500 calories.

Gammon, egg and chips

This was lunch - GAMMON, EGG AND CHIPS.
The gammon slice from the butcher was so big, that we decided to share! This half slice of gammon was around 150g in weight - plenty for a good lunch.
The chips were our own - cooked in the oven. I didn't fancy beans, so a little side salad completed the dish.
For our fabulous method of cooking the chips, see our homemade chip recipe.
We estimate this meal at around 600 calories.

Losing weight eating the food you love! Yes, it's possible - we lost 7 stone in weight with our method.
REMEMBER: We all have a calorie allowance - 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 OUR UNIQUE METHOD of weight loss and find out how we have lost weight eating the food we love.
Copyright © forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.

Jenga breakfast

It's Friday... time to play! We started our day with refreshing peaches and full fat greek yoghurt followed by some toast. Any fruit in season has a very delicate flavour and these peaches just melted in the mouth. They were also quite sweet, so we didn't need to add any honey. In fact, it was so tasty, we'll probably have the same tomorrow.
Greek yoghurt is extremely filling and deliciously thick and creamy. 80g of yoghurt topped with 100g fresh peaches this dish is around 130 calories. Not only is this delicious, but peaches are high in vitamins A and C, and potassium. Some lightly buttered toast will boost our breakfast up to 300 calories and keep us full until lunchtime.
3 small flat peaches gave us around 200g (78 calories) of chopped fruit. So the 6 peaches opposite will add up to just 156 calories! That's approximately equal to a bag of crisps. I know which I prefer - and I know my calorie choice will take longer to eat and be more filling.
Lunch is likely to be a sandwich, but if time permits, we'll have something warm like an omelette and side salad, or poached eggs on toast. We're thinking about curry for this evening?
We get to eat a full calorie allowance today, boosting our metabolism once again.

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Wednesday lunch

As the sun decided to make its entrance, I thought another salad would be perfect. This is around 500 calories (includes the potato salad). I bought some pre-cooked salmon and flaked it over our salad and hard boiled egg. With a few new potatoes and 20 minutes cooking, and I had a lovely potato salad.
The salad was very filling and satisfying, possibly due to the protein. Here it is before I seasoned and drizzled with a little olive oil.
To 300g of potato I added 2 teaspoons of full fat mayonnaise, a splash of olive oil, some salt and diced red onion. Mix together while still warm. So much cheaper to make your own.

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Tuesday lunch - corned beef and cheese salad

Another salad - this time we had corned beef and cheese. The new potatoes were seasoned well and coated in a small amount of butter. We dressed the salad with a little olive oil, salt and pepper. The whole dish (including cooking the new potatoes) took around 30 minutes to prepare. The result was really satisfying and tasty - much better than a quick sandwich. Finely grate a strong cheese - it will go further and look more. The whole meal came to about 450 calories.
Tonight we're having bacon, probably with beans,   mushrooms, egg and some form of potato.


I had noticed my shoes were getting loose. I was even more amazed when I went to buy a new pair and found I had to order half a size smaller. My partner says his shoes are getting too big as well. It's amazed me just where those extra pounds hide! I've been this shoe size for many years, and am amazed that I need to buy smaller shoes now.

Our weight loss is slow and steady, and sometimes we don't even notice where the weight is going from. This slow sculpting catches us unawares at times. If we haven't seen friends for some time, they can be quite surprised at the transformation (more so than us, as we can't see it at times).

This has to be the best way to lose weight - ever. When we thought up "Our Idea", we didn't intend to keep going for this long, but found it very easy to do, so we just kept going. We've had weeks off, just vaguely following the idea, and it still brings great results. We've gone from gradually gaining weight every year, to gradually losing weight - eating everything we love to eat. A food lover's dream.

Monday, 9 July 2012

Slow cooked beef and suet dumplings


Slow cooked beef and suet dumplings

Our beef stew was cooked overnight in the SLOW COOKER. If I had to recommend just one piece of equipment for people in a hurry, it would have to be the slow cooker. Just think of all those wonderful tasty dishes awaiting you as you turn the key in the door.
Brown the beef and place in the slow cooker. Add - leek, onion, carrot, garlic, and turnip, which had all been heated through first. Add herbs - I used some thyme and rosemary and a bay leaf plus one tablespoon of tomato puree.
We also decided to use a piece of star anise (as a lot of chefs seem to do this with beef dishes). There was definitely an extra dimension to the final flavour - with the subtle aniseed coming through.
TIP: I chopped one potato very finely so it would break down and thicken the gravy.
I poured enough beer (ale) and stock/water to cover the meat and vegetables, seasoned with salt and pepper, then left it to cook slowly. Timings depend upon the quantities used.

I made the dumplings according to the packet and served the stew with some carrots and cabbage. We would estimate each serving at around 500 calories with the suet dumplings.
Losing weight eating the food we love!
REMEMBER: We all have a calorie allowance - 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 OUR UNIQUE METHOD of weight loss and find out how we have lost weight eating the food we love.
Copyright © forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.

Monday's meals

For lunch we're having a tuna salad - one of our favourites.
I prepared and cooked a beef stew overnight. I'll make some dumplings and mashed potato and we'll have this for dinner with carrots and cabbage. I'm sure we'll be having this a few times this week with lots of vegetables.  I like to thicken our stews naturally - without using flour. This time, I've cut a small potato into very fine dice so it will break down and the starch will help thicken the stew. It always surprises me that stews are so low in calories - yet so tasty. It would be silly not to cook them.

We were surprised at our cod and spicy lentil meal yesterday. It was fairly low in calories, and we thought we would be hungry later on. But, in actual fact, we never did feel hungry and continued to feel full for hours afterwards. It was as if the lentils were taking their time to digest? We use pulses quite often, but they haven't had quite the same effect (fullness) as the puy lentils.  

Sunday, 8 July 2012

Cod with spicy puy lentils


Ingredients to serve 2 people
300g cod or other white fish - or you could use salmon?
125g puy lentils
one carrot
one stick of celery
two onions
stock and/or water (stock will give it a bit more flavour)
half a red chilli
dash of lemon juice
olive oil for cooking the onion and fish (about dessert spoon)

Looking around the internet some people cooked the lentils in stock, and we've chosen to cook ours using some vegetable stock. We chopped up one carrot, celery stick and small onion in fine dice, and lightly fried for a few minutes until soft. Then we added the vegetables to the lentils in a saucepan and covered with the stock and water - around 280 mls. Simmer until soft (around 20 mins).
To make it spicy, we chopped an onion and half a red chilli (discard seeds) and lightly fried with a little sprinkle of paprika and cumin. Then we added the drained lentils to this mix and seasoned to taste.
We had to take the skin off the cod, because the supermarket left the scales on!! It can be descaled with a very sharp knife and a bit of patience, but for speed we didn't bother. We would have lightly floured the skin side, but didn't need to do this. Instead we gently fried the cod - being careful not to overcook (the tricky bit). As there was no skin, the cod fell apart a bit and our finished dish didn't look as pretty as it could have.
At around 400 calories this dish is unbelievably low in calories, much lower than we expected or would like to eat for dinner. We had a chunk of bread to mop up the juices, and help bulk out our meal. I have a feeling we may need to eat a bit more later, and that will probably be a small sandwich - better to eat rather than snack mindlessly.

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

Brown shrimps

We so loved our tagliatelle with prawns dish that we made a couple of weeks ago, we decided to make the same dish today and swap the prawns for brown shrimps. The tiny shrimps are very sweet and juicy. We had a few fresh peas, which we added for colour.
We estimate today's meal at around 400 calories because we didn't use as many prawns. Add another 150 calories for the fabulous onion bread we made yesterday - which turned out deliciously chewy and tasty (because we cooked it at the same time as our oven chips and the steam made the crust nice and chewy).

Losing weight eating the food we love!
REMEMBER: We all have a calorie allowance - 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 OUR UNIQUE METHOD of weight loss and find out how we have lost weight eating the food we love.

Copyright © forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.

Saturday, 7 July 2012

What's cooking?

Today we had fruit and yoghurt for breakfast, and managed a quick ham sandwich for lunch.
Tonight we're having steak, home made oven chips, and garlic mushroom.  We'll serve with some watercress and a tomato and onion salad. So easy to make. The tomato salad was simple - we sliced red onions and tomatoes and added 1 part red wine vinegar and 3 parts olive oil, then seasoned. If the red onions are too strong, just put them in water for a couple of minutes to reduce the heat. We haven't made this salad before, but apparently it will go with lots of food. It certainly complimented our steak with very few calories!

We'll balance out the meaty (and calorie) content with our fish and pasta dishes tomorrow. We've opted for mildly spiced cod on puy lentils for dinner, and pasta with tomato sauce and brown shrimps for lunch.
Our steak meal was around 800 calories - and our freshly baked onion bread was extra.  Here's our onion bread (which was an experimental accompaniment).

We used 1 teaspoon of onion seeds to 100g of raw onion mixed with 250g flour. If you would like the recipe, then please let us know.

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

Friday, 6 July 2012

Slow cooked pork

We love the weekend.... Today we've swapped dinner for lunch and are having: twice cooked belly of pork, mash and minted pea puree! I was digging around in the freezer looking for some sausages when I found we still had a couple of portions of pork belly made using the method below. It's quite possible that a few sausages would have more calories and fat, than our slow roasted pork belly! As the pork belly was out of the freezer, it wasn't as moist as it was when fresh, but still tasted fantastic.
The mash was made by roasting the potatoes and scooping out the flesh. We won't be wasting any of the potato skin - we've saved them for later, when we'll put them back in the oven to crisp up. The minted pea puree was made last night. Chop a shallot or onion, and fry until soft, add one clove of garlic, add some frozen peas and cover with a bit of water (or stock) and cook until peas soft. Put in a blender with the mint leaves and salt/pepper - and that's it. 

Cooking method

Remove the skin (and ribs if they are attached) from the belly of pork or ask the butcher to do this.
Take a large stockpot and fill up with your favourite stock vegetables, or whatever you have to hand.  We use: carrot, onion, celery, garlic, leek, bayleaf, thyme and rosemary (no salt and pepper).  Cover the meat with any stock or water if you don't have stock.  If you have the ribs, throw them in too. The more flavours you have at this stage, the tastier the dish.  We prefer to use beef stock.  Bring to the boil and simmer for as long as you can - the longer the better (we simmered ours for 5 hours).
When cooked, remove and place meat on a flat baking tray.  Place another flat baking tray on top and add some weight to press the meat together.  After the long cooking, a lot of the fat has disappeared and this 'pressing' stage compresses the meat into a neat shape.  A few large cans will do the job - press for at least an hour.  When you are ready to eat, simply cut out large squares of meat and fry gently until cooked and heated through.
Meanwhile, the pork skin can been scored and coated with oil and salt, and placed in the oven at high temperature to accompany the pork.

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

Thursday, 5 July 2012

Vegetable pasta bake

Vegetable pasta bake. I particularly loved the crunch of the pasta tubes and the intensity of flavour from the roasted vegetable.
Ingredients for 2 or 3 portions:
150g raw pasta
40g mascarpone cheese
40g cheddar cheese (or whatever you fancy)
200g courgette cut into bite size pieces
2 peppers cut into bite size pieces
2 red onions quartered
salt & pepper
good handful of spinach if you have any
I might use some mushrooms next time too.
Chop the peppers and onions into bite size pieces and coat with a teaspoon of olive oil 

Place in a hot oven at around 180ºC for around 20 minutes. 

Remove from oven, add the chopped courgette and place back in the oven for 5 minutes. 

Meanwhile cook the dried pasta for around 7 minutes, drain then coat with the mascarpone cheese, basil, garlic, salt and pepper. 

Add the pasta to the roasted vegetables (adding in some raw spinach at this stage if using). 

Stir in half the cheese, and top with the rest of the cheese.

Place back in the oven until brown/crispy - I gave mine another 30 minutes.
As I've not made this before, I wasn't sure about quantities,  but the whole dish came to around 1000 calories. It will divide into 3 medium portions - but if you're really hungry, then divide by two!

FORGET DIETING and eat the food YOU love. 
REMEMBER: We all have a calorie allowance - do you know yours? 
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 you can lose weight eating the food you love.
Copyright © forget dieting forever, all rights reserved.

Tuesday, 3 July 2012

On the move

Today I was busy and had to take my pick of the food outlets. Being on my feet most of the day meant I was pretty ravenous. There's a startling array of food available, and some healthy looking snacks were, on closer inspection, calorie loaded. I noticed a handy individual tub of nuts contained more calories than some sandwiches on offer. It's easy to eat these innocent looking snack foods without realising what's in them. Size is not everything....

A typical day on the road before we began to lose weight, would often result in many more calories being eaten without recognising it. A fruit smoothie, small pack of nuts and a sandwich can soon stack up as a high calorie option. Pick the wrong sandwich and you could be looking at a meal totalling around 1200 calories. A small portion of fish and chips with a cup of coffee could be less.

So back to my busy day - where I began with cereal and toast. Lunch was a well chosen crayfish salad with a roll and this evening I've ended up with some sandwiches which I bought on the way home. My total calories for the whole day are around 1400 so far. I've got a small pack of sushi to nibble on later if I choose to. It's still a 'good' day for me as I aim for under 1500 calories, despite not cooking and trying to think about what's inside the food outside.

Monday, 2 July 2012

Spicy chorizo

I fancied using up some of Sunday's chicken, so for a change, went for a chorizo and chicken soup. I've made mine with butter beans because I found these were lower in calories than chickpeas. There are at least 4 large portions at about 280 calories, or 6 smaller portions at around 190 calories.



150g cooked chicken, chopped
50g of thinly sliced chorizo
small can of butter beans (or a whole tin if that's what you have)
large tin chopped tomatoes
1 to 1.5 litres chicken stock or water (I started with 1 litre, then added more because it was thicker than I like to eat)
one potato chopped into very small dice - this thickens the soup as it breaks down
150g carrot
2 sticks celery
2 large onions
garlic - I used 2 large cloves
few frozen peas or anything green - for colour if you like
a handful of pasta

Begin by frying the sliced chorizo - don't add any oil as there is plenty in the sausage. Remove chorizo and set on a paper towel.
Use the chorizo oil to fry the onions, carrot, celery, potato and garlic. Add the fried vegetables to a saucepan containing one large can of chopped tomatoes and chicken stock and/or water. Cook this until the vegetables have softened (15 to 20 mins). Remove one third of this mixture and put into a food processor (to thicken the soup). Return to the saucepan then add your flavourings - I used some rosemary and thyme and a good helping of chilli flakes. Use dried herbs if you wish. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Be careful when adding the chilli - use sparingly and add more if needed. I've found that salt can bring out the intensity of the chilli and equally if you do not use enough salt, the heat of the chilli seems to hide. This stage can be made some time ahead (night before perhaps).
Finally, add in the chopped chicken, chorizo and butter beans. I also added some pasta - you can use whatever you have. I used Spatzle as I have some in the cupboard and love it. You could use broken spaghetti or some pasta shapes. Cook until the chicken is heated through. I cooked mine for another 15 minutes.
I left mine for a few hours before reheating and eating, as the longer you leave it the more the flavour will develop. Serve with some grated cheese on top if that's what you fancy (count in the extra calories). Have a sandwich or some toasted croutons to fill up - and help stop snacking later.
Copyright © forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.

Sunday, 1 July 2012

Sunday lunch

We love Sunday roasts. Ours is made with real gravy from the meat juices (which most 'diets' forbid). By using a fat separator, we eliminate a lot of the fat from the gravy. A roast is not the same without some roast vegetables too. So we don't scrimp, and by having food we love, we rarely crave anything. This roast chicken dinner was around 700 to 800 calories.

Oh those scales...

After our Thai meal on Friday we stepped on the scales on Saturday to find we were both a few pounds heavier. We didn't panic. Because we know roughly how many calories we've consumed, we know this gain hasn't come from eating too much. Two pounds in weight is equal to around 7000 calories - which we know we've not eaten. I've searched the internet and found plenty of people experience the same scenario after eating salty food. The water retention that follows is a temporary gain, and should disappear within a couple of days.
For us, being aware of our calorie intake gives us a much better picture of what should be going on with our weight. After standing on the scales again this morning, we can see we were right to ignore temporary fluctuations like this one which has all but disappeared.

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