Monday 31 December 2018

Monday, 31-12-18 and that 'just like Heinz' soup

Good morning.
Well, it's the last day of 2018, a year that has changed my life considerably.  I started the year in pain/discomfort, facing an operation and starting to lose weight but with a long way to go.
I finish it still losing weight but within sight of my target, almost within a healthy BMI, gallbladder free and a lot fitter and healthier.
 I'm certainly ending the year in a much better place.

This blog is still about being a bit frugal, making the most of what you have got and enjoying your food, albeit with a leaning towards the Slimming World way most of the time now - it's the same and also different.

I'm not into resolutions really but I want to keep on what I'm doing - healthy eating, a bit of exercise and minimising waste to increase basic frugality.  And while on the subject pf waste, I think the size of my portions is creeping up a bit so I shall watch that one carefully.
Accountability in here will remain an important part of it all and I'd like to thank my followers and readers for - well - following, reading, commenting and keeping me accountable!!

So here's today's plans, the last of 2018:
B:  beans on toast, apple or orange
That's about a third of a can of beans (I'll freeze the rest in two portions) and one small slice of toast.  I might spread the toast with a little bit of dairylea light as it stops the toast getting soggy as well as going well with the beans.
SW:  half my healthy extra B for the bread and a little bit of healthy extra A for the cheese spread.

L:  turkey and veg soup with 25g grated cheddar sprinkled over, slice of toast for dunking
This is from the freezer, made last week, and if I say 25g, that compensates for the bit of dairylea as a healthy extra A is 30g cheese
SW:  almost one healthy extra A and the other half healthy extra B

D:  baked salmon, sprouts, carrot and parsnip chips, yogurt and fruit
OK, so they're not chips at all, just frylight roasted veg, but it's psychological, innit?  No?  Oh, OK, it isn't!  :-)
Anyway, whatever I call it, they will be delicious!  It's still Christmas veg - I really did get way too much!
SW:  I'll have some Tesco light seafood sauce on the salmon which will be two and a half syns.

Ss:  30g cheddar to nibble (the other healthy extra A), fruit/veg

I've finally got round to making the legendary SW 'just like Heinz' tomato soup.  It looks weird, all made from cans, but people say it is lovely so I popped off to Morrisons to get . . .
2 tins of tomatoes
1 tin baked beans
1 tin of carrots
a jar of pickled onions (yes, really - you use three or four)
All of the above were in the Savers' range and came to £1.29
To that I added some stock, some water, plus a few extras - a bit of garlic puree and a squidge of tomato puree.
All you do is boil them all up together and zizz them down and I then pushed the lot through a sieve because that's what I usually do.
It was surprisingly nice and, yes, quite Heinz-y in flavour if not totally in texture.  It made six good portions which will freeze OK because there's nothing in it that doesn't and cost under 25p per portion.  When I reheat a portion, I will add a splash of milk for more 'creaminess'.

If you're partying tonight, have a great time!

Sunday 30 December 2018

Sunday, 30-12-18

Good morning.
Definitely back into the swing of things now which is a great relief.  I changed things a bit yesterday as I found a frozen meal which ought to be used up which messed up the balance a bit but no real problem.

The lunchtime toastie was particularly tasty.

So - on to today's plans . . .
B:  bacon and tomato, fruit
A nice, lazy Sunday breakfast.  I might add an egg to that too, or maybe a couple of heck chicken sausages - or both, even!  I've had the sausages in the freezer for a while so it's about time they got used.  I'm hoping to resume my early morning swims this morning so it will be a nice thing to come back to afterwards.
SW: Heck sausages - the ones I have got - are half a syn for two

L:  ham paste and salad sandwich, fruit
 - using the ham paste I made on Friday
SW:  the bread (or maybe a wholemeal pitta instead) is my healthy extra B amnd the ham paste is one syn

D:  Christmas leftovers pasta bake, natural yogurt and pineapple
This is me adapting a SW recipe called bacon and spinach fusilli.  I'm using sprouts instead of spinach and Christmas pasta shapes instead of fusilli and I shall add extra veg such as mushrooms and peppers to bulk it out.  Also, as I haven't used any healthy extra As, I shall sprinkle over some grated cheese.  It should be tasty.
SW:  if I have cheese, 30g is one healthy extra (I might have more).  The rest of the ingredients are free.

Ss:  Just raw veg and fruit

Saturday 29 December 2018

Saturday, 29-12-18

Good morning.

The meal round a friend's last night was absolutely delicious, really scrummy.  A bit naughty, sure, but I had a great time and my feet are back on the road again this morning.

The plans today are . . .
B:  poached egg on potato waffle with fried tomatoes
This should fill me up nicely and the tomatoes, which are getting squishy, do need using up quickly.
A quick and frugal way to cook frozen potato waffles - don't use oven heat, just use your toaster.  It takes a bit longer than toast but is much better than using your whole oven to bake just one waffle.
SW: two syns for the potato waffle (Morrisons)

L:  cheese, onion and cranberry toastie, side salad
I was going to have turkey with this but it's all been dealt with and in the freezer.  I've been craving a toastie so it's nice to be able to plan one in with extra cheese now that we can have two healthy extra As.  The side salad is a very simple one using salad veg bought for Christmas.
SW:  one and a half syns for a tbsp cranberry sauce, one and a half healthy extra As for 45g grated cheddar and a healthy extra B for the bread

D:  vegetable curry,
This will be a lovely big mixed one including potato, so no rice as well.  Still using the Christmas veg plus what's in the freezer and some pulses
SW:  If I use dried coconut milk powder, I will have to add syns - two tsp is three syns

Ss:  raw carrots, 125mls milk (the rest of the healthy extra A)

The above might all go to pot because I had the flu and pneumococcal jabs yesterday and have a bit of a reaction.  At worst, I'll eat less, but I bet the meds will sort me out!

Friday 28 December 2018

Recipe (but far from original): potted ham

Great for using up ham leftovers.  I've done it before and Sooze has mentioned it on her blog, but thought I'd share.

Ingredients to make around nine portions (smallish portions, just right for a couple of slices of toast or a sandwich)
100g soft, light garlic and herb cheese (eight syns)
some slices of good, thick ham, all visible fat removed (I forgot to weigh, sorry)
2 tevel tbsp lighter than light mayo (one syn)
a good pinch of mustard powder
a good splash of lime juice (mine was from a bottle)
salt and pepper (go easy with the salt)
. . ;. or you can use your own seasonings of choice.

Bung it all in a zizzer and zizz round until it's the texture you want.  Adjust seasoning if needed.

I have some titchy little pots with lids, the kind you get single portions of dressing in and I got just exactly nine pots-full so that's one syn a pot now that soft cheese has to be synned.
If you're following the old way, it's as free as makes no difference.

Friday, 28-12-18

Good morning.

Sadly, three pounds on this week, like more or less everybody at group last night.  Oh, well, time to get going again.

On the plus side, I went shopping for new clothes yesterday, all in 'normal' sizes.  Being able to do that was great!

Today's plans
B:  yogurt, apple, orange
Apart from being a light breakfast, I have plenty of fruit to use up so it's nice and frugal in the no-waste sense.
SW:  one syn for the yogurt

L:  the other half of the Christmas-sagne
More leftovers.
This was so nice, I've posted about it separately although the photos are awful and don't make it look nearly as tasty as it actually was, unfortunately.
SW:  two and a half syns for half of the two Dairylea wedges and half a healthy extra A for grated cheese

D:  Out to a friend's for dinner.  I know it won't be SW friendly but I will do my best to be 'sensible', choose carefully and enjoy it all, knowing that I'll be back on track tomorrow.

The new handbook was given out at group yesterday.  There are a number of changes to reflect up-to-date nutritional thinking, a few of which affect me positively.
Beans and peas are no longer counted as 'protein' so are out on SP days.
Soft cheese is no longer an healthy extra A but - big but - dairylea and laughing cow still is - thank goodness.
All wholemeal pittas, not just certain named brands, are now healthy extra Bs
Still on healthy extras, now we are expected to have two As (not one) and one B each day.  More cheese - yay!
Best of all, natural Greek yogurt is now classified as P (protein) so I can do SP days 'properly'.

Yes, it's all playing with figures really but it's nice to be on plan properly.  Now I can genuinely and without fiddling do a mix of extra easy and SP days during the week.  Friday, Saturday and Sunday can be extra easy (the main plan) and Monday to Thursday can be SP, applied flexibly.

Recipe: Christmas-sagna

A leftovers recipe that is scrummy!  It doesn'#t have to be Christmas leftovers, of course, but the one I made was, hence the name.

Ingredients:  I made a portion for one but the ingredients are very flexible.
one sheet of lasagne
spray oil
chopped spring onions - just cut off the worst bit of the green at the top and the roots
chopped pepper - I used a bit of red and a bit of yellow
one mushroom, thinly sliced
a squidge of garlic puree
a pinch of mixed herbs
a tsp chicken stock powder
some tomato puree
a can of chopped tomato
salt and pepper to taste
some leftover bits of cooked turkey and ham, shredded or chopped

five or six sprouts, shredded into thin slices

two triangles of Dairylea Light, each triangle cut into three wedges (you could use more, of course)

30g finely grated very strong cheddar (or 40g of a lighter cheddar but I prefer the stronger kind)

You also need a suitably sized high sided oven dish

In a saucepan or frying pan, pour in some boiling water and some salt and boil the lasagne sheet until it is almost done.  Remove from the water and put it on something it won't stick to - easy leave or parchment - and cover.

Discard the water and in the same pan, spray some oil and add the onion and the pepper, stir well, reduce the heat, cover and let is gently sweat untiul softening, stirring occasionally.  Then add the mushroom slices, spray them, cover and continue cooking.

To the mixture, add some garlic puree, a pinch of dried mixed herbs and the chicken stock powder and mix well.  Then pour in the chopped tomatoes, the tomato puree and a bit of salt and pepper, mix well and allow to simmer away, uncovered, until the mixture has thickened. Add the meat and mix in well.  Taste and adjust seasoning.

Preheat the oven to around 180C
Cut the sheet of lasagne in half.

In the oven dish, layer up the ingredients in this way.  First of all, about a third of the tomato and meat mix, then half of the stredded sprouts, then three little bits of Dairylea light - so it looks like this.

Then add the half lasagne sheet (it just fits right in my dish) and repeat the layering with another thiord of the sauce, the rest of the sprouts, the other cheese triangle and the rest of the lasange.  Finish with the rest of the tomato sauce.

Sprinkle over the grated cheddar and bake in the oven for about 20 minutes or so.

OR - of you want to eat it later, for example, after group when you want something quick but filling, don't add the cheese, cover it with foil and bake it.

Then, twenty minutes before you want to eat, add the cheese, pop it back in the oven and let it reheat until piping hot all through with melted cheese.

Messy photo, I know, but it was really nice.  I only had half, that was more than enough, so that's lunch for today sorted out.

Thursday 27 December 2018

Thursday, 27-12-18

Good morning!

Well, the turkey is now no more and my freezer is fuller than it was.  It took a while to strip the carcass and boil it up but was well worth the time and I can honestly say there has been very little waste this Christmas.  All the sweet things have gone to Beth and Alex and I am left with lots of healthy stuff.  It's nice to get back to normal again apart from finishing off the leftovers - makes me feel frugal, even if it isn't really!

Today, being Thursday, is SW group/weigh day and I'm a bit apprehensive but I don't think I've done too much damage in the longer term, even though I know there will be a gain this evening.  Also tonight we're getting the new handbooks that reflect all the recent changes so I'm looking forward to that very much. 

And here's today's plans.
B:  ham and eggs
The Christmas ham - I'm not wasting that either!
SW:  free

L:  yogurt, apple and orange
SW:  one syn

D:  after group, turkey-sagne, hi-fi bars
A bit sort of made up so I'll let you know how it goes.
SW:  the dairylea is my healthy extra A, there might be a few syns from sprinkled cheese and the hi-fi bars are my healthy extra B

Ss:  fruit, raw veg

Yesterday's dinner was absolutely delicious.  The bubble and squeak cakes, sprouts, turkey, gravy and cranberry sauce.  Half a healthy extra A for the cakes (some dairylea light) and two and a half syns for the gravy/cranberry sauce.

For the cakes I used some mashed potato, a bit of mashed sweet potato, some cooked and shredded sprouts and 40g dairylea light with a bit of salt and pepper. I made the cakes, sprayed them with frylight and baked them in the oven.  Dead easy!  I shall do them again in various forms.

Wednesday 26 December 2018

Wednesday, 26-12-18

Good morning and happy Boxing Day.

Yesterday didn't work out quite as expected - poor Beth has what she thought might be flu but now says it's just a very nasty cold virus, poor lass, so didn't come over and, of course, I won't be going over there today now to be 'spoilt'.  She's not well enough to cope with anything and I don't want to risk getting what she has.  Alex is doing a good job of caring for his lovely mum, bless him.

There's lots of turkey leftovers but between us Alex, Dave and I managed to plough our way through all the veg that I had prepped for four, leaving three little bits of sweet potato and very little else.  All the pigs went, all the sprouts (we all love sprouts in my family), all the carrots, all the roasties and parsnips, all the stuffing . . . and all the turkey I had sliced plus a second carving for Alex!.  Three cheers.
There's plenty of pudding and mince pies left over but Alex will deal with those - he's a bottomless pit!

And I'm back on plan again now, thank goodness!

So, today's plans are . . .
B:  bacon and egg
I want something protein-y to fill me up and get me going.
SW:  free

L:  turkey and veg soup, bread to dunk
An old favourite and I have lots of lovely jellied stock to use.
SW:  The bread will be my heB

D:  turkey, bubble and squeak cakes, sprouts and carrots, gravy and cranberry sauce
Lots of speed today and, yes, it is sort of another Christmas dinner really but so delicious.
SW:  the gravy is just some of that lovely stock with thickening granules, estimated at two syns, the cranberry sauce is one and a half syns and the rest is free

Ss:  raw carrot, fruit, milk (for my heA)

I hope your Christmas was happy and joyous and that you feel well today!  :-)

Tuesday 25 December 2018

Ho ho ho

I wasn't going to post today but someone posted this on a Facebook group and it made me laugh.


Monday 24 December 2018

Happy Christmas

Please click on the link for a card from me to you.  xx

Monday, 24-12-18

Good morning and Happy Christmas Eve to you all!

My first Christmas Day is over and the second one is coming up tomorrow.  In between is a day of calm and peace and I'm applying that to my food as well as whatever else I get up to!

I have to say, the turkey is delicious.  I say 'is' because there's an awful lot left over.  On Wednesday, I will be extremely busy dealing with it all.  Apart from that and the deliberate over-provision of stuffing (no point making it twice), I got the veg and roasties just about right.

And an expensive turkey turns out much better value (for me) once you take family donations into account - not requested but very welcome, nonetheless, as well as the many meals I'm going to get out of it.

Here's today's simple, SW-happy plans.  I'm not fussing too much about healthy extras for a few days, if I have them, I have them, but will be back on a proper plan on Thursday.

B:  yogurt, fresh fruit
The last meal at my parents' home before setting off home.
SW:  one syn for the yogurt

L:  probably turkey and veg soup - a favourite of mine
SW:  free

D:  cheesy turkey pasta; side salad; fruit
I shall do my usual trick of melting dairylea light into cooked pasta and then mixing it with some veg and turkey.
SW:  the cheese will be my healthy extra A

Ss:  NONE!!!  Definitely none.  Well, maybe a few baby oranges but nothing else.

Sunday 23 December 2018

Sunday, 23-12-18

Good morning.

Many thanks for the advice in the comments yesterday, they are much appreciated.  It's interesting that, since the whole gallbladder episode, I really can't stuff myself as I used to as well as not tolerating fatty foods.  It's a sort of built in brake and quite a useful one too.  I'm not sorry!

Today is Christmas Day!  Yes, it is here!  We're having Christmas Day here today and the gang in my home town are having it on Tuesday and I get two Christmas Days as a reward for doing two Christmas dinners!

So here's today's plans.  No SW counting today, I really can't work it all out!
B:  yogurt, apple and orange.
Start the day off right with a nice, light meal.

L:  a sort of buffet thing - ham, Delia's vegetarian sausage rolls (a family traditional favourite), salad, cheese, crisps - all of which I will enjoy a little but only a little.

D:  a pretty traditional dinner - turkey, pigs in blankets, stuffing, troasties, sprouts, sweet potato and roasted parsnips with the usual cranberry sauce and gravy, followed by mince pies, pudding, cheese and crackers.  Oh - and alcohol!  :-)
No, I won't have all of that, I shall pick and choose and generally enjoy it very much indeed.

Ss:  sticking to easy peelers as there's plenty and I so love them.  I never know if they are satsumas or clementines nowadays!

And I'm already planning SW friendly meals from the turkey leftovers!  Curry, hotpot, with pasta, on a jacket potato - oh, yum!

Saturday 22 December 2018

Saturday, 22-12-18

Good morning.
Today isn't going to be easy - or maybe I mean it will be too easy.  I'm doing what Mum and Dad ask for and it's not, definitely not, Slimming World friendly.  I guess maybe it's damage control today which is the opposite of what SW is all about. 
At least, for me, it will be frugal!

B:  porridge with fruit and yogurt.  I guess that's OK!
SW:  half a healthy extra A for the milk and one B for the oats

L:  cheese, ham, pickles and crackers; fruit or mince pie
< sigh >  OK; so, obviously, fruit rather than the mince pie - no hardship.  Dad's got a nice piece of stilton so I'll have a bit of that and will keep the crackers to a minimum.  No butter for me - not hard, because too much fat does tend to cause a few problems.  The cheese will be enough.
SW:  haven't a clue.  I will look up the syn counts as it might stiffen my backbone but I intend to enjoy what I do have.

D:  pizza and salad; mince pies on offer, yogurt for me!
As above really.  A small slice of the pizza and a nice load of salad.
SW:  eeeekkkkk!  The pizza will be one syn though!  :-)

Dinner is a sort of family tradition - we always have pizza on Christmas Eve and, for us, Christmas is tomorrow so today is Christmas Eve.  My brother will be arriving at some point late afternoon so it should be lovely but I will work on portion control and making the best choices.

Friday 21 December 2018

Recipe: ham pate

Not really a proper pate, more a paste/dippy sort of thing but this is very tasty, very simple and great  for Slimming World.

I was carving slices off the Christmas ham just now to take to my parents and you know how it is with a home cooked ham - little bits kept falling off.  I gathered up the bits and some not-so-beautiful tiny slices from the other end of the ham, taking off any fat, and popped it in my mini-zizzer.  Then I added about 120g of low fat soft cheese, a little squidge of garlic puree and maybe a quarter tsp of mustard powder.  No salt and no pepper.

Then I zizzed it all up until it was the texture I wanted.
That's it.

The soft cheese is about one and a half healthy extra As or nine syns and it made enough for three greedy people or four if one was being moderate.  I will take it to my parents' because I think my Dad will really love it.
You could do the same with smoked salmon bits, adding some lemon juice as well.

No photo, sorry!

Friday, 21-12-18

Good morning!

Well, what a relief.  After maintaining last week, this week I lost three and a half pounds, I got my two stone certificate and sticker, I reached my Christmas challenge (and went beyond) AND I was Slimmer of the Week.
Phew.  So very happy about all that.

My BMI has gone down quite a lot too.  It's now 26.1 and it used to be over 42 before the gallbladder crisis.   Just seven more pounds down to get into the 'normal' banding.  Maybe by the end of January?

It means I have lost, on average, half a stone per month which suits me just fine.  Good old Slimming World.

And to cap it all, all my 'taster chicken' got eaten with some very appreciative comments.  I've posted the recipes as a separate thread.

I'm afraid I might have celebrated a bit afterwards.  Oooops!

Today's food:
B:  yogurt and fruit
Something easy as I will be rushing around all morning.
SW:  one syn for the yogurt

L:  really not sure, it all depends on how things go and how quickly I can get away.  If I'm here, I will defrost a home made soup.
SW:  free

D:  salmon with seafood sauce, vegetables
The salmon will be free to me!
SW:  2 syns for the sauce.

It's going to get increasingly erratic for a few days.  I will keep posting but don't expect anything too frugal or particularly Slimming World friendly, although I will look out for opportunities.  I expect a bit of a gain but don't want anything too terrible.

p.s. On reading back, this post sounds a bit of a show-off.  I don't mean it to be, it's just that I am so pleased and very relieved.  Until a year ago, I had given up on anything but staying super-large for the rest of my life - maybe I needed to hit rock bottom before climbing back up again.

Thursday 20 December 2018

Recipe: Chicken round the world

That's what I called what I did.  No photos, I'm afraid.  The photo taken at group didn't come out.
It went down a treat and I came home from taster evening with empty bowls.

Chicken Round The World

You need:
chunks of chicken breast
flavourings/spices of choice

Mix the chicken well with your spice/flavouring in a class or plastic bowl, cover and marinate in a cool place for several hours or overnight.
Heat the oven to around 170C
Line a baking tray with parchment and spray it with oil.
Spread over the flavoured chicken and spray it.
Bake for about 15 mins, then turn chicken over and spray again.
Bake for another 10 to 15 mins until cooked through and just starting to char at the edges.
Garnish as you fancy.
Eat hot or cold.

Indian:  1 tsp tikka spice and 1 tbsp mango chutney (finely chop any lumps of mango).  About 2 syns for the mango chutney

Chinese:  1 tsp five spice powder, 1 tbsp maple syrup and 1 tbsp soy sauce.  1 syn for the maple syrup.

Mexican:  1 tsp cajun spice and 1 tbsp sweet chilli sauce.  About 1 tbsp for the sweet chilli sauce.

The possibilities are endless - just use flavours typical to a country.

Thursday, 20-12-18

Good morning.
A quick one today as I'm going shopping early!

B:  bacon and egg
I find this pretty filling, even though it doesn't look much on the plate.
SW: free

L:  fruit yogurt, apple, orange
A very light lunch as a) it is weigh day and b) it's taster evening so goodness knows how much I will have!
SW  one syn for the yogurtr

D:  no idea.  I'm taking 'Chicken round the world' - tell you about it tomorrow!

Fingers crossed that I have achieved my Christmas target which is to get into the next stone down.  My own scales say I have but there's now always an exact correlation and generally I'm a bit heavier on the SW scales.
Here's hoping!

Wednesday 19 December 2018

Wednesday, 19-12-18

Good morning.
I'm continuing with my 'theme' of being pretty strict with myself this week.  That doesn't mean I'm not having much, goodness no!  I'm doing rather well, in fact, but I'm just being careful with what I have and it seems to be working.

Here's today's plans:
B:  poached egg on toast; orange
Nothing particularly special but I do like poached egg and it's filling as well as frugal.
SW:  half healthy extra B for the toast

L:  leek and potato soup, slice of bread, maybe a Mullerlight yogurt
Leftovers from yesterday's soup which was really delicious.  I have discovered that leek and potato soup is even nicer made with spring onion than ordinary onion.  I had some to use up yesterday so popped them into the soup and the difference was surprising.
SW:  free soup, the other half healthy extra B for the bread and one syn for the yogurt

D:  battered fish, mushy peas; maybe some fruit
Another from the Fakeaways recipe book so I'm hoping it's nice.  The mushy peas are from a tin, nothing special.
SW:  free although if I indulge in a bit of mayo on the fish, that's one syn per level tablespoon.

Ss:  milk (healthy extra A), fruit

Have a good day!

Tuesday 18 December 2018

Tuesday - 18-12-18

Good morning. 
Yet another day that went well yesterday plus some encouraging words from friends at school at the Christmas Coffee and Cakes that might have included 'didn't recognise you', 'vanishing' and 'tiny'!  Now, I know quite a lot of that is contrast as the scales do not lie and nor does a BMI that is still in the overweight banding, but how nice to hear people's kind compliments.  It made refusing the slice of cake a pleasure rather than a punishment!

Today's plans:
B:  bacon, egg and tomatoes
Back on the cooked brekky for a few days because of finding some bacon that really does need to be used up.
SW:  free

L:  leek and potato soup
 . . . because of a leek that needs to be used up - being away for a day longer than usual has its effect!
SW:  The milk I add will be some of my healthy extra A and if I make croutons, that will be my healthy extra B

D:  chicken from other lands with sprouts and maybe peas
I'm trying the chicken marinades I want to use on Thursday - five spice with soy sauce (Chinese), tandoori (or is it tikka, I forget) with soy sauce (Indian) and cajun with sweet chilli sauce (Mexican).   I'll do just a little bit of each and see if it's fit to take out.
The veg are distinctly British but I don't care - I like them!
SW:  free apart from a bit of a syn for the sweet chilli sauce, of which I will use just a tiny amount

S:  fruit, the rest of my heA milk

Monday 17 December 2018

Monday, 17-12-18

Good morning!

Today's plans
B:  fruit yogurt, apple
I need to use up the yogurt!
SW:  one syn

L:  spicy lentil and tomato soup
- yesterday's leftovers and very nice too
SW:  free

D:  spicy mexical bean burger, nice big salad, fruit
The burger recipe is from the Fakeaways book and I will use what I have for the salad - off the top of my head that will be lettuce, tomato, carrot, cucumber and pepper and I might have a bit of cauliflower to break up and toss in too.
SW:  one and a half syns for the burger which I will top with 30g grated cheese for my healthy extra A

S:  fruit, hi-fi bar (healthy extra B)

Sunday 16 December 2018

Sunday, 16-12-18

Good morning.
Another good day yesterday - and by that I mean tasty food, no picking, not expensive!

Today's plans:
B:  porridge with fruit and yogurt
It's the weather for porridge at the moment, isn't it?
SW:  healthy extra B for the oats and half a healthy extra A for the milk

L:  spicy lentil and tomato soup.
Not that spicy really as I'm hoping Mum will have some, just a chilli tickle on the tongue, but tasty all the same.  And frugal, depending on what sort of chopped tomatoes you use.  It's incredible to think that you can pay over a pound for a can of chopped tomatoes!
SW:  free

D:  slow roast pork steak, roasties, parsnips and peas; yogurt
SW:  as the steaks are very lean, this is all free apart from the yogurt which will be one syn.

I must plan meals for the rest of the week.  At group last week I treated myself to the SW Fakeaway recipe book and I might try a few of them.  The spicy Mexican bean burgers look good, as do the zesty turkey kebabs and the tandoori chicken.  Spoilt for choice really!                                   

On Thursday it is a taster evening so I need to think what I will take.  Something chicken-y and spicy, maybe.  What do you think?

Saturday 15 December 2018

Saturday. 15-12-18

Good morning!

Another great day yesterday, totally sticking to plan despire all the goodies on offer.  If I don't lose next week, it won't be my fault, that's all I can say!

Today's plans:
B:  Yogurt and fruit again.  It suits me!
SW:  one syn for the yogurt

L:  There's some of the soup left over from yesterday so I will probably have that.
Leftovers - always a Good Idea!
SW: free

D:  cottage pie with cheesy mash topping, carrots, sweetcorn.  Probably no dessert
SW:  the cheese in the mash will be my healthy extra A and the bisto in the gravy will be around two syns

Ss:  Minimal, I hope.

All frugal 'cos my parents have paid!   :-)
(If that sounds awful, I hasten to add I come up to help them out with stff and they are not at all badly off - I'm not sponging)

Friday 14 December 2018

Friday, 14-12-18

Good morning.
Yesterday went really well.  It was bliss to get back to 'normal' eating again, clear conscience eating, and the sprouts and broccoli were delicious!  :-)
Despite this week's 'maintain', I'm still on track to meet my Christmas target which is to get into the next stone down, providing I can lose two pounds this week.  I'm going to give it a go; after all, even if I fail, I'll still have done some good.  It will keep me off all the nibbly stuff that's all about at this time and it will keep me frugal.

Today's plans:
B:  yogurt and fruit
Lots of fresh stuff is what I crave so this should work well.
SW:  one syn for the yogurt

L:  chicken, bean and veg soup; wholemeal bread
Home made with stock from boiling up a chicken carcass and onion, carrot, sweet potato, squash, peas, sweetcorn, pulses and chicken.  Should be lovely
SW:  the bread is my healthy extra B

D:  salmon, peas, corn, seafood sauce; apple
SW:  two and a half syns for the seafood sauce

Ss:  30g cheese to nibble (healthy extra A), fruit

Frugal doesn't come into it as I'm not paying for the food, but it's not a particularly expensive day. The worst bit is the salmon and I always make an exception for salmon as it's so good for one!

Thursday 13 December 2018

Thursday, 13-12-18

Good morning!

First of all, after popping along to SW at Writtle yesterday (because I can't make it to mine this evening), I find I have maintained this week which is both a relief and mildly disappointing.  Not making excuses but I think it is because usually I eat very light on weighday and I couldn't yesterday, having a friend around.  Also, I'm a bit 'bunged up'!
Well - maybe I am making excuses but I think it is also a reason.
If I make a huge effort, maybe I can lose more than usual by next week.  That will be hard because I'm at mum and dad's but I may as well give it a go and see.

Actually, it is a relief to get back to normal eating again and here's today's plans.
B:  egg on toast, easy peeler orange
I'm not sure if I will poach or fry in the Slimming World way - I don't have to decide until I actually have it anyway.  It's a pretty frugal meal too.
SW:  the toast is my healthy extra B

L:  yogurt, apple and orange
It's what I usually have on a Thursday so I may as well stick to the same as it suits me and I'm used to it.  The yogurt was reduced so that's good.
SW:  one syn for the yogurt

D:  I gather mum and dad have some chicken left over from yesterday so I will concoct a mixture with that and top it with some macaroni with melted cheese triangles as we all love it.  Some green veg (sprouts and broccoli, maybe) will go nicely.  I also gather there's some leftover fruit salad so that will work really well.
SW:  the cheese will be my healthy extra A

Ss:  fruit

Wednesday 12 December 2018

Wednesday, 12-12-18

Good morning.

Stupid o'clock and my over-active brain is not letting me got back to sleep which is a pain!  So I'm downstairs, playing on social media and waiting for sleep to return which in it invariably does, sooner or later.

I'm less rushed this morning but yesterday, once all the chores were done, was lovely.

Here's what the table looked like.

And here's some of the Slimming World friendly things I made.

J. brought mince pies and a fruit salad for dessert - guess what I had.  No - not the mince pie!  My halo is shining brightly.

I have to go to a different SW club this week as I can't make Thursday evening and, fortunately, Jennifer runs some in a local village so I can go today at seven o'clock.  So today is weigh day, not tomorrow.

Today's plans
B:  scrambled egg with smoked salmon
SW: free

L:  I have a friend round for lunch and, fortunately, there's enough leftovers that I don't need to produce any more.  I will stick to the SW friendly stuff and have fruit for dessert.
SW:  Not sure.  There will be some syns or healthy extras bit it's a bit too complicated to work out, like yesterday.

D:  Like lunch to finish off the leftovers of the leftovers.  I know it sounds muddled but they are not the sort of thing one can keep and I don't want to waste anything.

Ss:  none if I can possibly help it!

A really muddled couple of days but I have tried to stay in touch with the healthy eating.  Whether that reflects on the scales tonight, I have no idea so fingers crossed.  Wish me luck (again).

Tuesday 11 December 2018

Tuesday, 11-12-18

Good morning.

Today's plans
B:  apple and orange

L:  buffet lunch here - I'll try to be good

D:  It depends on lunch! 

Very brief today as there's lots to do!
Back properly tomorrow

Monday 10 December 2018

Monday, 10-12-18

Good morning.

Yesterday's food was great.  I made a nice big pot of the soup so have plenty for the rest of the week now.

When in Morrisons, I saw that they are doing smoked salmon bits again so I bought a couple of packs - and now have to use them up!  Oh, the hardship

Today's plans
B:  Bacon and scrambled egg with smoked salmon
Not as expensive as it sounds - could be a lot worse!
SW:  free

L:  spicy lentil soup
Very frugal and delicious too
SW:  free

D:  syn free dirty fries, roasted tomatoes
Also pretty frugal.  Breakfast is a bit more costly but the other two meals make up for that.
SW:  the cheese is my healthy extra A

Ss:  2xhi fi bars (healthy extra B), yogurt (one syn), fruit

The challenge today is that I am prepping for a buffet lunch tomorrow so might end up picking bits.  Summoning a bit of extra December determination.

Sunday 9 December 2018

Sunday, 09-12-18

Good morning.  :-)
Well, I survived the mince pie!  I had just the one, counted the syns, thoroughly enjoyed it and now there are four safely tucked away in the freezer for Christmas Day.  A major achievement for me.  Last year I had to keep off the mince pies (for gallbladder related reasons) but before then I'd have scoffed the lot and bought some more.

Today's plans
B:  porridge with yogurt and fruit
Frugal, as always, and most satisfying with the fruit (from the freezer)
SW:  the oats will be my healthy extra B and I will syn the milk at two syns for 80 mls

L:  spicy tomato and lentil soup
Delicious and frugal.  Now I make soup so much, I find that commercial soups taste artificial, overly sweet and rather tasteless.  Not to mention flippin' expensive!
SW: free unless I make some croutons.  If I do, I will syn them.

D:  loaded leek and potato bake, sprouts
A bit like last night's dinner but with leeks and I'm adding a few more veg as well - mushrooms, for a start.  I will enjoy it, I am sure.
SW:  the cheese will be my healthy extra A

S:  fruit, yogurt (one syn), hi-fi bar (three syns)

Having two healthy extra As won't be a problem in the New Year as there are some changes afoot with the SW programme.  Well, it's not a 'problem' now, of course, but you know what I mean.  That's because one will be able to have two As each day so I can have my milk and some cheese without needing to look them up!  You'd think I'd remember by now but I always feel I have to check.

Saturday 8 December 2018

Saturday, 08-12-18

Good morning.

The December Determination lives on.  I went to the school fair yesterday and managed to resist all the cakes, ice cream, sweets and other stuff I would once have gone for 110%.  It helped that I had dinner prepared at home but, in fact, I didn't really fancy any of it very much at all.  Another step along the road.
And dinner was worth the waiting.  It was lovely.

Now for today's food:
B:  overnight oats with yogurt and cinnamon and some fruit from the freezer
I know I sing the praises of frozen fruit from time to time but it really is a great help.  I'm not sure how it compares with fresh, price wise, but the fact is that you can have just a portion without then having the rest of the fruit to use up - and with larger fruits like pineapple, that makes a difference and makes it much more frugal.
SW:  the oats are my healthy extra B

L:  more of that lovely bacon and bean soup
I did make a lot - very economical, healthy and satisfying.
SW: free

D:  cheesy bacon, onion and potato bake, sprouts, tomatoes
This recipe looks scrummy and isn't shockingly expensive either.  I'll let you know but it's nothing unusual.  I'm sure many of you will have made something similar.
SW:  the cheese will be my healthy extra A

Ss:  Sadly - no, not sadly, but you know what I mean - a friend is coming round and I have promised her a mince pie.  Can I resist?  No probably not.  Thousands of syns!  I've tried to look it up but the SW site seems strangely silent.  If you just go with calories, I reckon it is eleven syns so manageable but only if I stop at one.  I can see I will need to freeze the rest pretty pronto!

Friday 7 December 2018

Friday, 07-12-18

Good morning.
Woo hoo!  I'm really pleased and not a little surprised.  Two pounds off this week.  How that has happened after an 'interesting' weekend, I have no idea but no complaints from this corner.
Just to cap it, I won the raffle too and came home with some of that spiced ribena, some Christmas spice mix, an orange, a lemon and a glass mug for mulled whatever.  I treated myself to some just diluted with water and it's very nice.  It'd be nice diluted with lemonade or tonic or < cough > sparkling wine (but I didn't say that, OK?).
So I'm happy!

Today's plans:
B:  poached or fried egg on a potato waffle, mushrooms
The waffles are from the freezer and Dad sent me home with some mushrooms on Monday so they're free (for me).  Eggs are great value too.
SW:  two syns for the potato waffle

L:  a cheese and onion toastie, tomatoes; apple
I've fancied one of these all week and am really looking forward to it.  It doesn't require a lot of cheese so it's a fairly frugal lunch.
SW:  the cheese is my healthy extra A and the bread is my healthy extra B

D:  salmon, peas, salt and pepper chips.
I've had a lot of salmon recently which is a bit extravagant, I suppose, but it's lovely, it's healthy and it keeps me on track.  I shall have to make up some more salt and pepper spice as I've used up the last lot but that's not a problem.
SW:  free unless I have some mayo with the fries.  I might but if I do I will syn it, of course

Ss:  fruit, yogurt (one syn), hi-fi bar (three syns)

A nice day's food to start the new week off and I feel very motivated.  Here's hoping it lasts!

Thursday 6 December 2018

Thursday, 06-12-18

Good morning.
All seems to be going well at the moment, thankfully.  I have no idea if any weight has gone but I am hopeful that I won't have gained at weigh in this evening.

Today's plans:
B:  bacon, egg and tomato
A fairly standard SP breakfast on Slimming World, not terribly expensive but not all that cheap either.   Sorty of middle of the road really.
SW:  free

L:  apple, orange, mullerlight yogurt
This is becoming my light lunch on weigh day.  It seems to fill me up which surprosed me at first but now I'm grateful that it does.
SW:  one syn for the yogurt

D:  bacon, bean and vegetable soup (or casserole - it's thick and chunky enough!)
I made a pot of this yesterday and there will be leftovers to have over the weekend as well - nice
SW:  free

Ss:  milk (healthy extra A), hi fi bars (healthy extra B), fruit

Wednesday 5 December 2018

Wednesday, 05-12-18

Good morning.
Another good day yesterday - I really only have difficulties when I am up at my parents' so I'm pleased I can stay on track most of the time.
Today, I'm keeping it simple as there's quite a lot on.  I've learnt that the worst thing for me is to leave things until the last moment as that's when I just go a bit bonkers with anything that comes to hand really.

So today's simple plans are:
B:  boiled eggs and toast
A favourite breakfast, not expensive at all and very satisfying.
SW:  the toast is my healthy extra B

L:  bean and veg soup
I always love this one.  I boil up a selection of veg in stock and seasonings until they are all soft, scoop some of the veg out, zizz the rest, pop the rest of the veg back in and add some cooked pulses.  It's ever so easy and tasty too.  And filling!  I will make a big potful and it will do me tomorrow for my main meal after Slimming World group with a bit of added bacon, maybe.
And some of the veg and all the pulses will be from the freezer!
SW:  free

D:  salmon, sprouts, peas; banana and custard
I just really fancy salmon this evening and have some in the freezer.  I simply wrap it in foil and bake it for fifteen to twenty minutes, that's all.  Dead easy.
I said I was keeping it simple today!
SW:  one and a half syns and my healthy extra A for the custard

Ss:  fruit, Mullerlight (one syn)

Tuesday 4 December 2018

Tuesday, 04-12-18

Good morning.
It's nice to be back on track again and yesterday went really well!

Here's today's plans.
B:  bacon and scrambled eggs - and if I can be bothered to go to the freezer in the shed, there might be a bit of smoked salmon there too, as I have some that needs using up.  Mind you, there's a bit of a frost this morning so maybe I won't.
SW free

L:  beans on toast
Has to be frugal to compensate for the smoked salmon!
SW:  the toast will be my healthy extra B

D:  Cuban beef stew.
From the freezer, made ages ago but I do remember it is syn free.  Might also have some sprouts with it for a real flavour clash!
SW:  free

Ss:  milk (healthy extra A), fruit, maybe a mullerlight (1 syn)

Very simple today and using some freezer stuff too.  Can't be bad.

Monday 3 December 2018

Monday, 03-12-18

Good morning.
Sorry I'm a bit late with this.  I decided to wait until I got home before writing.

Today's plans:
B:  baked beans - just baked beans, half a can left over from lunch yesterday
More filling than you would think!
SW: free

L:  lentil and root veg soup, toast to dunk
This is from the freezer and while it won't exactly to conform to my SP with yogurt thing, it's still healthy and tasty.
SW:  healthy extra B for the bread

D:  beef casserole, runner beans, maybe some peas too as I have just a few left in the freezer.  I rather fancy using my healthy extra A milk to make custard for afters.
The beef, the peas and the runners are all from the freezer - the freezer challenge is back on again, after I couldn't find that steak last week.  It'll turn up!
SW:  two and a half syns for the custard powder and I will use stevia for sweetener (less than a tbsp so no need to count it)

Back on the wagon again after a couple of 'interesting' days over the weekend!  I'm holding on to my December Determination!

Sunday 2 December 2018

Sunday, 02-12-18

Good morning!

Well, yesterday went well - the December Determination lasted one day at least which is better than it could have been with a larder full of goodies!
The tomato and lentil soup went down well with everyone.  I'd expected to have a portion left for today but by the time seconds had been ladled out, there was none left.  The lentils make it very substantial too;  I was stuffed!

Today's plans:
fresh fruit with natural yogurt
My parents always have a nice selection of fresh fruit on offer and I brought my own yogurt with me as I always do.
SW:  free

L:  beans on toast
Because . . . no soup left over.  :-)
SW:  the bread will be my healthy extra B

D:  slow cooked lamb*, roasties, parsnips, broad beans; fruit salad
SW:  free, amazing as it sounds!

Ss:  fruit, maybe a fruit yogurt (one syn), milk (healthy extra A)

*Purists will shudder but we love this and Dad asks for it regularly.
I use two lamb leg steaks for three of us and the ones from their local butcher are large.  Sometimes they are in a minty dressing and sometimes not.
I put a some splashes of water and a lamb stock cube in a roasting dish and add the steaks.  I cover the dish with foil and place in a low-ish oven (gas 4, 170C) and cook it for at least an hour, usually longer.
The result is melt in the mouth lamb steaks and a stock that makes a great gravy.

Saturday 1 December 2018

Saturday, 01-12-18

Good morning!

After yesterday evening's little over-nosh, I'm right back on track today!  A new month and a bit of new determination!

Today's plans:
B:  porridge, fruit and natural yogurt
SW:  half my healthy extra A and one healthy extra B

L:  tomato and lentil soup, fruit
It's the sort of day for a smooth, satisfying soup and tomato and lentil should fit the bill as well as being nice and frugal!
SW:  free

D:  macaroni cheese mince bake, veg; fruit salad and a dollop of yogurt
A mince based bottom, loaded with lentils and chopped veg and a top of macaroni with soft cheese melted in, a sprinkling of grated cheddar on top and baked in the oven for about twenty minutes.
SW:  the cheese will be 6 syns more or less

Ss:  fruit, milk (the other half of the healthy extra A)

It's all frugal this weekend because I'm not paying for it all - nice one!