Tuesday 31 August 2021

Tuesday, 31-08-21

 Good morning.  Last day of August.  Tomorrow, September, will either be the last three weeks of summer or the start of Autumn, depending on what calendar you follow.  I go with the astronomical date so Autumn starts from Sept 22nd this year.  Three weeks when we could maybe have a bit of sunshine.

Despite the plateau, I seem to have lost five pound this month, a bit slower than I had hoped but at least it has stopped the comfort eating gain and started reversing it.  I'm good with that although at this rate I will get back to target just in time to gain some again over Christmas.  lol

Talking of Christmas, have you started thinking about it yet.  I'm afraid I have, I love a good long lead up to Christmas and this year might be a bit different, I don't know yet.  With Dad no longer with us, some of the things we cooked/did may no longer be cooked/done.

Yesterday's meal photos:

Not the prettiest bowl of breakfast I have ever had but it was lovely and just what I fancied on a very dull and slightly damp morning.  One chocolate weetabix, 100ml milk, a nectarine and some yogurt with added butterscotch zero calorie 'syrup'.  Mmmmmmm.
Lunch was great.  I did just what I had said - I sprayed and then toasted a slice of wholemeal until it was golden and crunchy, spread some light soft cheese with cracked black pepper over it, then added the leaves, a bit of watercress and the ham before topping with one portion of my home made spicy onion chutney (which, by the way, mellowed as it cooled so it isn't too hot at all, it is just right for me).
You can see what I had on the side for salad stuff.

Then I had a very juicy pear for afters.
Dinner was fab.
I adapted the spaghetti carbonara recipe in the new SW magazine.
I used wholewheat tagliatelle, ham instead of bacon, 30g hard Italian cheese (more than the recipe asked for) plus one egg yolk (see below for what happened to the white) and one tbsp lighter crème fraiche to make the sauce (with some garlic granules and black pepper)and I softened onion, yellow pepper and mushroom to go with the ham.
Oh, and runner beans instead of salad.
I cooked the tagliatelle and drained it, leaving a tiny bit of pasta water in the pan.  I put the tagliatelle back in the pan (keeping it off the heat), added the sauce and the other bits and stirred while the sauce warmed up in the residual heat and thickened.  I had kept back a bit of cheese so that sprinkled over the top.  It was so good!
These two recipes went so well together, the yolk for the carbonara and the white for the dessert.
In a dish I put 55g strawberries, halved, and 45 g blueberries with a little sprinkle of sweetener.  I whisked the egg white until at the soft peak stage, then added two level tsps caster sugar and kept beating until it was thick and smooth.  I piled it on top of the fruit and it cooked in a 160C oven for around twenty to twenty five minutes until all lovely and golden.  The fruit had cooked and it was just gorgeous.
This is also in the new magazine and, apart from my own choice of fruit, it was exactly the same.

Because I had both syns and calories, I had a little 200ml bottle of Morrison's prosecco which went perfectly and later on I had an Options choccy drink.
And I was still well within syns and calories.  A delicious day for 1226 calories and eleven syns.

Today's plans:

B:   weetabix, fruit and yogurt
Exactly the same as yesterday, partly because it is so very delicious and partly because the weetabixes (?weetabices?) are pretty old and really should be used up soon.  I have strawberries to use up and a few raspberries and blueberries from the garden.
SW:  half a healthy extra B for the weetabix and half an A for the milk.  The rest is speed or free

L:   tomato and red pepper soup with shredded ham, cheesy toast; fruit
A while ago I made the soup and froze two portions of it.  I have some ham leftover from the Sunday roast so I will shred some and add it to the soup for more 'body'.
With the bread, first of all I was going to just dunk, then I thought about croutons but, because I have a healthy extra AQ to use, I'm going to spray toast the bread, spread over some of my onion chutney, top with grated cheese and melt under the grill.  That should be really nice, like an open toastie!
SW:  one healthy extra A and half a healthy extra B plus half a syn for the chutney

D:  stonebaked chargrilled vegetable and olive pizza, salad; banana and coconut ice cream
The pizza is one of those Sainsbury's ones that are surprisingly low in calories (if not in syns) and the dessert is a frozen banana (I froze it yesterday in expectation), zizzed up with some yogurt and some coconut skinny syrup.  I've not made this before but I gather the banana goes all smooth and creamy and makes for a great texture.  I will let you know!
SW: the pizza is twenty and a half syns which I don't get.  The whole thing is 402 calories so even if there were no free foods or healthy extra cheese, it shouldn't be more than twenty syns. 
I'm using what SW calls 'flexi-syns' for this which is , quoting the web site info, "
setting yourself a higher Syns limit for that day only (having a good think first about what you’d like to use those Syns for) – and fully enjoying them without feeling like you have to compensate before or afterwards. "
So now you know!

one and a half healthy extra As
one healthy extra B
twenty and a half syns using flexible syns

Monday 30 August 2021

Monday, 30-08-21

 Good morning and a happy Bank Holiday to you.
I didn't track calories yesterday.  Weighing portions becomes an issue when one has guests for lunch and I do like to put everything in serving dished so that everyone can help themselves at the table.  Producing scales at that point would be inappropriate.  However, I know it was SW-happy and that's the main thing.

Back on the monitoring 100% today although it was nice not to have to pop everything on the scales and when I have lost this gain and am back to target, double checking for calories will only happen for higher calories foods, not for fruit, veg and salad.

Yesterday's meal photos:

Bacon and egg muffin for breakfast and very nice too!

As mentioned above, I didn't track or take photos of lunch as Beth and Alex were round but it was all 'good'.  Some slow cooked ham (extremely lean), one half new potato, broccoli and runner beans.  I had a bit of Dijon mustard on the ham and that was it.

The light was very odd, hence the rather muddy looking photo, sorry.
I used just 30g cheddar in the cheg so I had 45g feta sprinkled over the salad for my other healthy extra A

I zizzed some frozen cherries with a white chocolate yogurt for dessert and then polished off a nectarine.
The cherries and yogurt is lovely.  As the cherries are chopped up, they semi-freeze the yogurt so it ends up as a frozen dessert.  It does keep in the freezer although it is very granular unless you get it out several times to blend it again, like you have to for ice cream.

Today's food plans:

B:  weetabix, yogurt and fruit
I so enjoyed this on Friday, I'm having it again.  One chocolate weetabix with some fruit, as little milk as possible and some yogurt.
SW:  100 ml semi skimmed is half of a healthy extra A.  One weetabix is half a healthy extra B and the rest is speed/free

L:  open ham sandwich salad; fruit
Leftovers from yesterday's roast dinner, all shredded and melt in the mouth.  I was going to have a one slice sandwich but I might turn it into an open sandwich, I haven't had one of those for ages.
I could spray and toast the slice of bread so it goes all crisp and crunchy, then spread it with some soft cheese with cracked black pepper, top it with some leaves and the slices of ham and have other salady bits and a portion of my spicy onion chutney on the side.  Yes, I really fancy that!  Lots of flavour and different textures.
SW:  half a syn for 34g for my onion chutney and two syns for 25g of that soft cheese with cracked black pepper I showed you in my haul post, half a healthy extra B for the bread and the rest is free/speed

D:  pasta carbonara, salad; fruit meringue
Both these recipes are in the new SW magazine under different names.  The spaghetti carbonara is p56 and the queen of puddings with berries is p 86.
I'm not sure about the carbonara as it looks a bit simplistic but I'll give it a go; I will use wholewheat tagliatelle as I don't have spaghetti, left over ham instead of bacon and I will soften some onion, pepper and mushrooms, finely chopped, to add to the mix  One egg yolk and 30g hard Italian cheese (more than it says) for the sauce and I think I will have a nice meal with some leaves on the side.  Dessert is just some fruit with a meringue made from the egg white and two tsp caster sugar spread over the top and then baked.  Like a lemon meringue pie without the lemon and the pastry - OK, not so much like a lemon meringue pie but you get the idea.
SW:  one healthy extra A for the main course and one and a half syns for dessert - I refuse to syn fruit just because it's had an argument with some heat .  I've checked the calories for the sugar and it is one syn for one tsp and one and a half for two because of the rounding effect.

one and a half healthy extra As
one healthy extra B
four syns

Sunday 29 August 2021

Sunday, 29-08-21

 Good morning.
I spent a very profitable afternoon going through all my most recent foody magazines and  noting the recipes that catch my eye as being my sort of thing and adaptable for SW.  I could just cut them out but I had my magazines on so I think I will do some photocopying with my printer later on.

Yesterday's photos:

Not as colourful as some of my pancake breakfasts but it was scrummy.
I have some smaller eggs so I cut down the oats to 30g, used 25 ml milk and a splash of water.  They were different from the yogurt ones which are somehow softer, but they were just as nice. 
The yogurt was a Light and Free (or Free and Light, I forget which way round) white chocolate flavour, half a syn, and very nice too.

This was the thick cut bacon/thin gammon for lunch.  The salsa was really nice - 45g frozen pineapple (thawed, obviously), some chilli (not enough), 40 peeled and seeded tomatoes, 28g cucumber, plus some mint, all well chopped and mixed together.  It was really good and there was plenty left to have with the salmon in the evening.

Then I had two plums and two easy peelers followed by a nectarine.

Later on, I had 30g cheddar to nibble because I had the calories and needed the healthy extra.

Dinner was quick and simple.  The other half of the salsa went very well with the salmon and you can see it more clearly in this photo.
Last of all, I had a flavoured yogurt.

Today's plans:

B:  bacon and egg muffin, tomatoes on the side
This is the bread muffin, not the egg muffin thing and there will be loads of tomatoes.  :-)
SW:  one healthy extra B for the muffin and one syn for some Crucials bbq sauce which I love.

L:  Sunday 'roast':  slow cooked gammon, runner beans, broccoli, broad beans, roasties, new potatoes; fruit
I've used this recipe from the wonderful Tastefully Vikkie site for the slow cooked gammon, leaving it on low all last night and the house smelled wonderful this morning.  I am sure I can use the residual stock for a nice bbq-ish sauce instead of gravy and I probably won't do the honey glaze at the end.   
I'm having new potatoes, Alex is having roasties and Beth is having both lol.
The broadies, runners and new potatoes are from the allotment so yummy!
I can stick with the restricted eating schedule today as Beth and Al won't be at mine until just before two.
SW:  all the above is SW syn free or speed but the sauce will probably carry a few syns which I will need to consider when I've made it.

D:  cheg and salad; yogurt
I'm aware that I haven't had any healthy extras so I can pile on the 'ch' part of cheg.  I think two eggs and a nice big salad will be perfect.
Rather an eggy day but not to worry.
SW:  up to two healthy extra As for cheese, up to two syns for salad dressing and half a syn for the yogurt

up to two healthy extra As
one healthy extra B
three and a half syns plus whatever I use to make the sauce on the gammon

Saturday 28 August 2021

A little food haul

 The first in an occasional 'series'; what I bought this week.
At the moment I have a freezer and fridge full of stuff so my shopping basket shouldn't be too heavy, should it?
You'd be surprised.  Maybe doing this will help me to rein back a bit . . .

I got all this at Sainsbury's.

I get through a lot of dairy, one way and another.

The flavoured yogurts are lemon (I dearly love lemon) and one toffee.  These are half a syn per pot.  

I think the Yeo 0% is the nicest 0% Greek yogurt you can buy except for Liberte which you can no longer get around here (and it's cheaper than Liberte).  I get through a lot so it's a large pot.  0% Greek yogurt is a free food on SW.

I got some light soft cheese.  These are no longer an A choice but the Philly is two syns for 25g while the soft cheese with black pepper is the same.  It's really nice used instead of butter or melted over things, in sauces or on pasta.

I always like to have some feta around, it's a very useful cheese for sprinkling over salads, etc, and it's a healthy extra A.

Fruit and veg:

Not loads this week because I have fruit and veg left over from last week and now that the garden and allotment are producing, that keeps me supplied.

I didn't really need three punnets but these fruits won't be so nice for much longer so I am making the most.   From left to right, nectarines, apricots and strawberries, all speed food on SW.
Carbs or Healthy Bs.
That's how I think of bread, etc, now.

I actually prefer the wholemeal versions of breads - more taste, more texture, fills me up more.

The muffins are a standard for me.  I wrap them individually and freeze them but I ran out ages ago and didn't get round to getting any more.  One muffin is a healthy extra B or six syns (edited:  no it isn't, it is seven and a half syns).

I've been on the lookout for these soft pittas for ages but Morrisons don't stock them.  Everyone says they are really nice.  One is a healthy extra B or seven and a half syns.

I am very naughty and drink far too many zero sugar fizzy drinks.  In fact I need to try and cut down as they are not the healthiest thing around and I have no objections to plain water so no excuses.

I thought this looked nice so got it to try but it's not as nice as it looks.  It's OK but . . . not again.  All the zero sugar drinks are free on SW.
Meat, fish, etc

I have loads in the freezer but pretty much all single portions.  However, Beth and Al are round for Sunday dinner so I got this gammon joint which looked really nice for me and Alex (Beth will have a Higgidy pie, no photo because it's not for me) and I thought I'd pop it in the slow cooker overnight with some diet cola and various aromatics.

It's not a huge joint but there should be some leftovers for Monday.  I'm thinking salad, of course, with pasta or rice, in quiche . . . it won't go to waste, that's for sure.

And finally, for the cupboard.  
The baharat spice is because I want to make one of the Hello Fresh meals again - more than once, it was so lovely - and it had a sachet of 'North Indian spice mix'.  I Googled and it said either za-atar or baharat spice would do as a substitute.  
The miso soup paste is for the same reason.  I am assuming that it's pretty much the same thing as the jars of paste and, because it is new to me, I got the cheaper one in terms of cost (although the jar is more economical longer term).  Must look up recipes using miso.
The curry paste is for curries - surprise, surprise!
And the last is so gloriously alliterative, I just HAD to have it.  Wonderful, isn't it?  Also, I am a sucker for anything with 'citrus' in its name, I really am.

Most of the dairy will see me over two weeks or longer, the fruit will go quickly as I get through quite a lot at the moment, the muffins and pitta are for longer term in the freezer, the gammon will be gone by the middle of next week and the spices are also longer term. 

So there you are.  My first food haul post.

Saturday, 28-08-21

 Good morning. 
It was sigh of relief time at SW yesterday as the scales registered a pound and a half loss.  I had hoped for more and feared less so I'm happy!

I'm continuing to log everything on Nutracheck and you should have seen Jen's face when I gave her the printouts and asked if she would just check to see if I was missing anything that would slow things down!  The trouble is there's no way of filtering out the elements you don't need but I pointed out the bits that were actually relevant and I had annotated it with As, Bs and syns so I hope it won't take her too long!
I bet she will laugh at me in private though!  All that micro-managing!

I had slight (and semi-planned) blip later on but that's Friday for you!  I managed the planned meals plus rather more.  I reckon these Friday 'blips' are what's slowing things down a bit but it keeps me on track the rest of the time so it's a price I am prepared to pay.
There are so many amazing recipes and ideas around at the moment, if one is prepared to take the time to look, and I know I can fill the rest of my week with food that works within the SW structure and do keep me with a 500 calorie deficit so keeping the interest high really is not a problem.

It's lucky I enjoy cooking, isn't it?

Yesterday's meals:

I had planned for waffles but when I got home I really fancied a chocolate Weetabix.  Goodness knows how old they are, I didn't look, but they tasted fine.  So I had one Weetabix with 50h milk, some strawberries and raspberries and a dollop of Greek yogurt and it was lovely!

The leftovers of Friday's veg chilli.  As always, the flavours had mellowed and, while it was certainly spicy, it didn't need any yogurt to soothe!
Fruit was a pear and a nectarine.

This looks like a very messy plate but it was good!   Finely grated cheese goes a very long way, as do thin cut chips, so it looks more than it really was.  I had one of those little bottles of wine (Merlot) with it - nice!

Then I had some ice cream, bad me, and ended the day both over syns and over calories.  Back on it this morning, good and strict again.

Today's plans:

B:  pancakes with fruit and yogurt
Saturday treat with a pot of proper coffee.  Lovely.
I'll make the pancakes using freshly ground oats, a medium egg and some milk plus a bit of stevia.  There's loads of ways one can flavour a batter but I fancy it simple today.  I usually use yogurt in the batter but, as I don't seem to have any A choices planned for today, I will use milk instead.
SW:  half a healthy extra A one healthy extra B and half a syn (for the yogurt)

L:  gammon with pineapple salsa, small salad; fruit
I don't have gammon but I do have some thick cut back bacon slices which will do fine.  
This is a very simple idea from the Good Housekeeping Fast and Easy Collection.  I Googled and found the recipe:
I may very well jazz up the salsa with a few additions - finely chopped cucumber and maybe some tomato flesh might be nice.  I have a chilli left over from the last Hello Fresh box.
I decided on this because it was a toss up between pancakes and bacon for breakfast and I realised I could actually have both, just not at the same meal!
SW:  the bacon will be free and I will use spray oil rather than sunflower oil so, unless I have some salad dressing, this will be syn free.

D:  salmon, runner beans, broccoli; yogurt
I have loads of salmon in the freezer so time to start using it up!  Maybe a salmon challenge, like the chicken one which isn't quite finished, by the way.  When it is, I will do a post about all the recipes.
SW:  half a syn for the yogurt and I will concoct a little sauce using mayo and tomato puree with a bit of ooomph added.  I expect that will be up to two syns.

half a healthy extra A (so I must work in a bit more, if possible)
one healthy extra B
up to three syns

Friday 27 August 2021

Friday, 27-08-21

 Good morning.
If you watch YouTube slimming vloggers, you will know that a big part of their channel is 'hauls'.  Hauls are just what they bought in the shops - clothes sometimes, but mostly food.  They give syn/calories/points - whatever rocks their particular slimming boat.
I'm just thinking I might do that in here from time to time, as a separate post.

It's weigh in today and I'm really nervous.  After the last weeks of being on plan for little or no result, I have printed off my Nutracheck info and annotated it with syns, As, Bs, etc and, if the results are still poor this morning, I'm going to ask Jen to go through it and see if there are any issues that I'm just not seeing.  I don't think there are but you never know and another pair of eyes is always useful.

Yesterday's meals.
I didn't take one of breakfast.  It was just some fruit and a yogurt, eaten on the run.

Toastie for lunch.  Really tasty.  I didn't use all the chicken I had planned and saved some top add to the chilli.

I had a peach later on.
I used up some of the black beans in what was going to be a black bean and lentil chilli but I also added some red pepper, some courgette and the rest of the piri piri chicken.  In fact, it was a real bits and bobs leftovers creation although I did have a base recipe to start with; even the runner beans were leftovers!
 It was quite spicy so a dollop of Greek yogurt (not creme fraiche, I changed my mind) on the top was just right.
Typically, I only wanted half so that is today's lunch sorted out.

The day's eating finished with a custard and banana Mullerlight.

Today's plans:

B:  fruit and yogurt waffles
. . .  because I love it.  I may need to celebrate, I may need to commiserate.  This will be perfect for either.
SW:  one healthy extra B and half a syn

L:  leftover chilli and konjac rice
. . . or I might be very naughty and have a pitta for a second healthy extra B
SW:  half a syn for the chilli, one for the rice and six syns or another illegal B for some pitta

D:  either salmon, cheesy chips and salad or steak, cheesy chips and salad; yogurt
I have both so I'll see how I feel when it's time to defrost.
SW:    one or two healthy extra As, three syns for a tsp oil for nice, crunchy chips, half a syn for yogurt.
I may have some sort of sauce too but I don't know what yet.  I'll be sure to count it.

one or two healthy extra As
two healthy extra Bs
five and a half syns plus sauce

Thursday 26 August 2021

Thursday, 26-08-21


Yesterday's meal photos:

Nice and filling before personal training - breakfast muffing consisting of two medium eggs, a tbsp nutritional yeast and seasonings of choice while the other fillings were chopped bacon, red pepper, spring onion, mushroom and a bit of chopped chilli.  Delicious and just one syn for the nooch.
The other half of yesterday's dinner with a WW wrap for a B choice rather than the soft taco shells.  So, so tasty and I have posted separately about this recipe.

Then I had a couple of easy peelers.
This is the Santa Fe chicken.  Not too many ingredients, very easy to make and it was absolutely delicious.
I didn't have any taco spice so I used Cajun spice instead.  I used a lot more cheese than it said - 45g for one and a half As.
When I tasted it, it did seem a bit too hot (it does have cayenne!) so I added a dollop of Greek yogurt and wow.  So gorgeous.  Another I am definitely going to make again or adapt it, it was a real taste treat.

I was well full afterwards so decided to give the planned Mullerlight a miss.

Today's plans:

B:  fruit and yogurt
SW:  half a syn if I use Mullerlight

L:  cheesy chicken and onion toastie, salad; fruit
I haven't had a toastie for ages so I'm really looking forward to this.  I have a pack of cooked chicken and the whole pack is one and a half syns so I might just possibly indulge.  I'll use both healthy extras on the cheese because . . . it's a toastie.  You NEED cheese!
SW:  two healthy extra As and one B, one and a half syns for the chicken (if I have it all) and half a syn for the home made balsamic onion chutney (must make some more).

D:  black bean chilli, konjac rice, salad; yogurt
I can't say I am, terribly excited about this but I have black beans to use up and all the ingredients to hand.  It might surprise me.  It asks for soured cream - I have some half fat crème fraiche instead.
(A friend has suggested I use lentils as well - I will ponder on that idea)
Another friend pointed me to a SW recipe for chicken in black bean sauce and that's also on the list of recipes to make.

SW:  one syn for a tsp brown sugar and one for the konjac rice.  A level tbsp crème fraiche is one and a half syns and half a syn for dessert

two healthy extra As
one healthy extra B
six and a half syns

Wednesday 25 August 2021

Recipe: mango chicken with peppers

 I made this as part of a Hello Fresh delivery and thought it nice enough to reproduce as a recipe.  It was served in a wrap with a side salad but this recipe will just reproduce the chicken part as there are so many ways one could present it.

Ingredients for two servings:

a shallot, peeled, halved and thinly sliced
one red, yellow or orange pepper, seeded and sliced longways
250 to 300g diced chicken (breast or thigh)
a red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped (be careful!)
some garlic (I used puree from a tube)
50g tomato puree
zest and juice of a lemon
40g mango chutney (two and a half syns p.p)
North Indian style spice mix

Spray some oil in a pan and heat.  Add the chicken and red pepper with some salt and pepper and stir fry for around seven or eight minutes until the chicken is cooked all over and the peppers have softened.  Add the shallot, stir well and continue to cook.

In the meanwhile, mix together the garlic, lemon zest, half the lemon juice, tomato puree, North Indian spice mix, some of the chilli to taste and mango chutney.
Once the chicken, etc, is cooked, stir in the mixture and stir well until; it is all combined, then cook until everything is thickened and just starting to stick.  Remove from the heat.

That is the basic recipe.  I served it with a salad made from spiralised carrot, shredded lettuce, some of the chopped chilli and a dressing made from half a tsp extra virgin olive oil and the rest of the lemon juice, half piled onto warm soft shell tacos before adding the chicken mix and the other half on the side with some tomatoes.
The taco shell wraps are small and three syns each or use a SW approved wrap for your healthy extra B.

I looked up North Indian spice mix and it suggested either baharat or za'atar mixes, both of which are easily obtainable, or make your own using half tsp garam masala, quarter tsp each of curry powder, ginger powder, chilli powder and cumin, an eighty of a tsp of sugar and a small, crushed bay leaf.

You could turn it into something North African by using a Moroccan spice mix and serving it with couscous.  Quite a flexible recipe, in fact.

Wednesday, 25-08-21

 Good morning.

Yesterday's meal photos:

The mango I used for this was so ripe that it was almost a puree.  Absolutely gorgeous.  I flavoured the yogurt with coconut skinny syrup to give it all a sort of tropical vibe.

A very good way to use up both a bit of sauce from the hunter's chicken the day before and some cooked chicken from a pack.  I just heated them up together in the microwave for a short time.

I had some strawberries and a pear for afters.

I have to say, this Hello Fresh delivery has been absolutely delicious and this was no exception.  Mango chicken wraps.  It was spicy and flavoursome but not really hot and so very easy to put together.

I made the lot up and have half of both the salad and the chicken mixture left for today.

I think I'm going to reproduce it as closely as I can as a separate post recipe.  ( definitely want to make it again.

Today's plans

B:  breakfast muffins, tomatoes on the side.
The usual nix - a bit of bacon, onion, red pepper and mushroom, maybe flavoured with some nutritional yeast, which is a bit cheesy for a fraction of the calorie/syn cost
SW:  all speed and free unless I add some nutritional yeast which is one syn per level tbsp

L:  mango chicken (without taco shells), salad
The second portion of the Hello Fresh meal I cooked yesterday but without the taco shells which are now nicely wrapped up and in the freezer.  I might have a wrap for a healthy extra B instead, in fact, I probably will.
SW:  one healthy extra B, two and a half syns for the mango chicken (mostly the mango chutney and I got it wrong yesterday), maybe a tbsp for mayo on the salad

D:  Santa Fe chicken, runner beans; yogurt
This is something I've never heard of before.  Someone mentioned it in a Facebook group I help to admin, Slimming on a Shoestring, so I looked it up and found this recipe.
It looks pretty simple to make and the only thing I will cut is the leaf coriander because I hate it - soapy stuff.
Basically, it is spiced chicken with a black bean and onion mixture, topped with cheese.  I have a can of black beans plus everything else so it's all go.  I'll let you know what I think of it.
SW:  one healthy extra A (maybe more) for the cheese and half a syn for the yogurt

one to two healthy extra As
one healthy extra B
five syns

Tuesday 24 August 2021

Tuesday, 24-08-21


Yesterday's meals:

A really simple and easy breakfast.  The hardest bit was going out into the garden to pick the blueberries!

I was right - second day panzanella salad was very tasty indeed.  There's lots of salad leaves underneath, I added tomato and cucumber and it was just so delicious.

I had a nectarine late afternoon too.

Dinner was hunter's chicken and it was so good.  I added all sorts of things to the passata including bbq sauce, lemon juice, garlic, wine vinegar, tomato puree - oh, lots of things.
Google Pinch of Nom hunters chicken for the recipe or hop back to yesterday's plans where I put a link.
There's a little bit of sauce left over, not enough to freeze.  I might use it as a sauce for the chicken I'm having for lunch tomorrow
The day's eating finished off with some kvarg.
Today's plans:

B:  fruit salad and some Greek yogurt
I have the dentist first thing and before breakfast but I think it's just to take a mould, not for any treatment.  However, if I do have treatment, I can stick to softer fruit if necessary.
SW:  no syns

L:  mango and lime chicken with salad; fruit
. . . and I might have the little bit of leftover sauce over the chicken.  I'll see how I feel tomorrow.
The chicken is the other half of the M&S pack and I'm definitely getting some more.  It is delicious.
SW:  one and a half syns for the chicken and if I have mayo it will be one syn

D:  the last Hello Fresh meal which is balanced mango chicken wraps; yogurt
I have no idea what the 'balanced' bit is for but it all looks very scrummy.    It's the highest calorie one of this delivery so the rest of the day is 'careful'.
They made a mistake with the soft taco wraps - there are two per portion but they've given me eight when there should be four so I will wrap and freeze the other six.  They are not officially B choices so I will syn them but I will consider them my B choice, I won't have another B today.  
SW:  six syns for the wraps and one for mango chutney.  The rest is all speed/free.  Half a syn for the yogurt.

no healthy extra As or B's (not counting the wraps)
ten syns

Monday 23 August 2021

Monday, 23-08-21

As well as always looking out for new or different recipes to try out,  a very helpful strategy for keeping interest levels up, another thing that really helps is my notebook.

When I sit down to plan, my mind can go completely blank, especially when it comes to lunches.  I need them to be fairly light as I like dinner to be the bigger meal.  That's because after dinner there is the long fasting time before restricted eating starts again at around eleven the next day.

Lunch ideas come at the oddest time and I have learnt that when they do come, I must write them down quickly, before other things crowd them out.

Hence my notebook.  Such a big help.

Yesterday's meals:

I have this quite regularly.  It is tasty, feels really breakfasty and fills me up nicely.   It's pretty love calorie and no syns.
What more could one ask from a breakfast?

A bit later on, I had half a peach (the other half was trying to escape from the fruit bowl) and a pear

I've had this before and know it is nice.  Smoked salmon  blended with Philly light, a bit of mayo, dill, salt, pepper, garlic granules and lemon juice.
I had an apple for afters and later on I had my second healthy extra A in the form of a nibble of cheddar.

I remembered this was nice from the last time.  I am very fond of roasted butternut squash and it goes so well with feta.

I've planned the other portion for lunch tomorrow.

Today's plans:

B:  fruit salad and yogurt
SW:  half a syn if I use a Mullerlight

L:  panzanella salad, tomatoes and cucumber; fruit
This is the other half of yesterday's Hello Fresh meal, reheated.  I didn't add the feta or the croutons - I will do the croutons fresh today - and I think that, as often happens, the flavour will have developed well.
SW:  SW:  one healthy extra A and one B plus three syns for the oil 

D:  hunter's chicken, runner beans; yogurt
This is the next in the Chicken Challenge and it's a Pinch of Nom recipe, found here.
The recipe says it is 314 calories, although I will double check that when I put the recipe together, and I'm allowing 30g cheddar (the recipe says less) and I'm also adding some red pepper and mushroom to the mix.  I don't have all the seasonings the recipe asks for but that's OK, I can sub quite happily!
Also, I am making some passata out of a pile of garden tomatoes so that should really move the flavour on.
SW:  one healthy extra A, up to one syn for some bbq sauce, half a syn for some buffalo seasoning and half a syn for the dessert

two healthy extra As
one healthy extra B
five and a half syns
I'm definitely being an angelic SW girl today - can you see my halo?

Sunday 22 August 2021

Sunday, 22-08-21

 Hi, everyone.
Always on the search for new recipes and ideas, I spent a deliciously enjoyable hour or so thumbing through a Good Housekeeping magazine I bought quite a lot earlier this year called the Fast and Easy Collection.  I now have < counts the list > seventeen definites and quite a lot more maybes to try out.  Well worth the time.

What do you do to keep the interest level high?

Yesterday's meals:

Savoury pancakes with tomatoes and bacon.  Yum!  The pancake mixture made loads (I'd added cheese, of course, so it made more batter than usual) so I had half of them and will freeze the other four for another meal.  I think making a cheesy stack with some savoury mince for a dinner would work really well.

So it was half a healthy B, not a whole B and as I used 30g cheese, half an A as well.

I really should have used a bigger plate, shouldn't I?
I dug out my spiraliser to 'pretty up' the cucumber and carrot.  
The mango and lime chicken was really delicious.  Half of the pack was enough so that's two syns rather than three and a half.

I don't normally post the fruit desserts but this was lovely as well as simple.  The strawberries were just on the OK side of turning so they were extremely sweet and juicy.

This was another Hello Fresh meal to which I added runner beans and some baby corn.  
I've split the left over portion into two and it will do for lunches.

I had yogurt for dessert and, later on, a nectarine.  Not entirely to restricted eating principles but it was lovely!

Today's plans:

B:   bacon, egg, mushrooms and tomatoes
A standard cooked breakfast and very nice with a coffee.
SW:   all speed and free, no syns

L:  smoked salmon pate, crunchy lo-dough triangles, finger salad; fruit
I make the pate by blending some smoked salmon with some philly light, a bit of mayo and maybe a bit of natural yogurt.  I add dill, pepper and lemon juice to the mix.
The crunchy triangles are made by cutting a piece of lo-dough into triangles and baking in the oven until crisp.
SW:  the Philly light will probably be four syns and the mayo one.  The lo dough is two syns which I pay grudgingly!

D:  Hello Fresh panzanella salad with roasted butternut squash and feta cheese
I've had this before and it is really nice.  I've subbed a wholemeal roll for the ciabatta and each portion also needs half a tbsp olive oil which can't really be subbed.
SW:  one healthy extra A and one B plus three syns for the oil and half a syn for yogurt

one healthy extra A
one healthy extra B
ten and a half syns