Wednesday 31 May 2023

Wednesday, 31-05-23

Morning, everyone!

I just want to plug something I got from Aldi yesterday.  It is their 'The Deli Pickled Pink Onion' and it's sliced red onion in a pickling liquid.  I'm not too keen on pickled onions generally but some people recommended it so I thought I'd give it a go and, actually, it is very nice as a sweet pickle.  I had it in yesterday's quesadilla and it was tasty!

Here it is!  It's a new product and I can see I will use it a fair bit - and it is Slimming World free - it might even be speed because onion is speed.

Yesterday's meal photos:

I really enjoyed this breakfast - raspberries, blackberries, blueberries and strawberries for speed fruit and a few grapes which are free.  The yogurt is Aldi's protein yogurt which counts as free and protein on Slimming World. a bit more than I usually have because there was so little left in the pot, it wasn't worth putting it back in the fridge really.

I met a bit of a problem - I didn't have any SW wraps - which count as a B - left but I did have others.  I don't think the ones I used are Bs, in fact I am certain they aren't, but they have to be used, I'm not wasting them, so I'm counting two of them as a B and three syns (going solely by the calories).  A bit annoying but there you go.  No wasting food if I can help it.

Later in the afternoon, I had three small plums.

When it came to dinner, I had made enough salad for both lunch and dinner but felt I needed something hot to go with the tuna jacket - I really hadn't felt warm all day.  So I had some baked beans and very nice they were too although I know it doesn't look very pretty!

I finished off with the usual yogurt.

Today's plans:

B:  bacon, egg, beans, tomatoes and mushrooms
Your classic SW syn free breakfast - yum!  The beans are left overs from yesterday.
SW:  syn free

L:  ploughman's toastie, salad; fruit
I still have ham to use up and am hoping it will all be gone by the end of today.  I'll chop some up small and have it with cheddar and pink pickled onion - a sort of ploughman thing, hence the name I have given it.
The salad is left over from yesterday and I'll probably carry on the pink theme by adding some chopped beetroot to it.  
SW:  one and a half healthy extra As, one healthy extra B

D:  chicken, ham and veg casserole; yogurt
This is a bit of a cheat really.
I'm going to chunk up any remaining ham, soften veg like onion, pepper, baby corn, etc, use some sweet potato I have left over from Monday, cook some cauli and broccoli and maybe some carrot too, and then throw it all in together with the contents of some chicken in white sauce from Aldi plus some chicken stock powder as the sauce is a bit bland.  Also, maybe add garlic and some herbs or spice - I'll take a look at what I have - and serve it a bowl as a lovely, chunky, chicken and ham casserole.
That's the plan, anyway!
SW:  one syn for the chicken in white sauce, probably a couple of syns for thickener as the sauce goes very runny when it is warmed up and half a syn for yogurt

Ex:  something online or a Snippet - I haven't decided yet.  I really enjoyed a Walk with Rick yesterday to Tina Turner music.  Might do another one.

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

Tuesday 30 May 2023

A Slimming World shopping haul

I haven't done one of these for months so I decided it was about time I did.  I'm now trying to just shop twice a month (maybe with a top up for fresh stuff, if needed) and I do have some stuff left which has now been placed at the front to get used first.

So . .  off we go!

First of all, salad veg:
Tomatoes, leaves, cucumber, celery, peppers and radishes.

I also use raw carrots, cauli and cabbage in salads.

I am looking forward to picking my own home grown tomatoes and cucumbers in a couple of months.
I got quite a lot this time, since I discovered the glass jar hack and also because there's more choice as sprint turns slowly into summer.

I wonder what my garden strawberries will be like.
I was quite low on all sorts of veg so - potatoes, sweet potatoes, two cabbages (red and white), cauliflower, carrots, green beans, broccoli, baby corn and mushrooms.
Loads of speed veg there.
Dairy and eggs.
Lots of eggs - I do seem to get through an awful lot of them.  I also treated myself to some lighter creme fraiche which I will need to syn, of course, plus the usual yogurt and milk.
Packets and stuff.
I prefer the tins of mixed bans to the mixed bean 'salad' (not the least salady!) and a couple of cans will do me a while.  The pink pickled onion was recommended - it's shredded red onion in a sweet spiced liquid and it's really rather nice.
I needed replacement SR flour, basmati rice, noodles and baking powder and, although I had some dishwasher tablets, now I have enough to see the month through and some!
And finally - meat.
Apologies for the jelly - I missed it out of the last photo!

Not a lot of meat as there's plenty in the freezer.  I split the pork mince into 5 x 100g amounts for one-person convenience, and the bacon medallions are split into two rasher portions.
Both then go into the freezer for whenever needed.

I was really pleased that it was less than expected and even more pleased that I was able to pay with what's left of this month's money.  Win win!

Tuesday, 30-05-23

Morning, everyone!
I'm really going for it this week.  Low syn as much as possible and no sneaky nibbles, however syn free/speed they might be.  The only 'snack' is the fruit I plan for my lunch and usually reserve until later in the afternoon.  I want that pound off on Friday.  
Yesterday's meal photos:

Not a particularly colourful  breakfast but it was tasty - the eggs were perfect with cooked whites ands runny yolks.  That doesn't always happen!
Leftovers from Sunday and just as nice.  I added half an apple, chopped, to the salad (perfect) with some balsamic vinegar, and finished off the rest of the apple afterwards.

Later on, I had an orange and a banana.

Rather messy looking but very tasty indeed - and plenty of colour.  The 'pie' was so simple and the roasted veg was sweet potato, red pepper, mushroom, tomato and red onion.

Dessert was the usual yogurt and that was that !

Today's plans:

B:  fruit salad, yogurt
SW:  half a syn for the yogurt

L:  ham quesadilla with sweet pickled onion, side salad; fruit
I got this from the BBC Good Food site - it is actually a 'use up leftovers' recipe but it doesn't have to be and I have ham trimmings to use up (that pack of trimmings I got from Aldi was incredibly good value).
I'll use the sugar it says because I don't actually drink the pickling liquid;  I'll just give it a one syn value.  I might keep it for another pickling if it's nice.  Also, I will use a wrap as I usually do, rather than a flour tortilla
Here's the recipe link.
SW:  one and a half healthy extra As for cheese and one B for the wrap while I am estimating one syn for sugar

D:  jacket potato with tuna mayo, salad or veg; yogurt
I was going to use another portion of cooked mince and jazz it up with chilli, etc, but then decided actually I rather fancied tuna.  So tuna it is!  I have a bit of sweet potato left from yesterday so might have that as well although it could keep for Wed dinner instead.  I'll ponder that one.
SW:  up to two syns for mayo (or maybe salad cream) in the tuna and half a syn for yogurt

Ex:  a walk and a Shimmy pre-record.

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

Monday 29 May 2023

Monday, 29-05-23

Morning, everyone!

Yesterday's meal photos:

Breakfast made me feel so happy!  I think it was the maple syrup.  I've not used my maple syrup mich recently but I do love it and it really lifted the pancakes, well worth the two syns it cost me.  Must remember that!
Anyway, with the egg in the pancakes and the 0% protein yogurt, plus that fruit, I felt totally satisfied and, I am not ashamed to admit, the plate may have been lick-cleaned before going in the dishwasher.  Ooops!

A very yummy Sunday lunch.  It looks as if the top of the Yorkshire is burnt - it really wasn't, it was the way the light was shining on it that made it look so dark.

Later on I had an apple and an orange.
Another nice meal - I ate very well yesterday.  The quiche had ham, sweet potato and softened red pepper and onion with three eggs, a dollop of yogurt and 60g grated cheddar for two As.  I had half yesterday and will have the other half today
I really fancied giving my gnashers something to work on so the salad was full of crunchy things - pepper, baby corn, sugar snaps, celery, carrot, lettuce, tomatoes, cornichons, capers and mixed seeds with balsamic vinegar as a dressing.  I'm really glad there's some left over for today; it was packed with flavour and texture.
Then I had the second half of the jelly-yogurt mousse to finish off.
Today's plans:

B:  poached eggs on toast, tomatoes on the side
SW:  one healthy extra B for two slices of toast

L:  crustless quiche, crunchy salad; fruit
Leftovers from yesterday and very nice too.  I think I will add some chopped apple to the salad
SW:  one healthy extra A and half a syn for mixed seeds

D:   upside down potato topped pie, mixed vegetables; yogurt
Basically, this is cooked air fried rounds of potato covering in a dish, a portion of savoury mince on top, then topped with grated cheese and Ninja-ed for fifteen minutes or so - a bit like loaded fries, I guess.  I saw it on YouTube and it looked yummy
SW:  one healthy extra A for cheese and half a syn for yogurt

Ex:  a workout from Snippets

two healthy extra As
one healthy extra B
one syn

Sunday 28 May 2023

Sunday, 28-05-23

Morning, everyone!

Yesterday's meal photos:

I loved this breakfast.  Mango is a free fruit while strawberries and blueberries are speed fruits and the yogurt is free and protein.  It was very refreshing.
Lunch was a bit like a ploughman's without the plough (or the man) - in other words, no bread.  It went down a treat.
Afters was a juicy orange.  Delicious!

I enjoyed this, although it did remind me of why I make one portion of burger/meatball/sausage mixture do two meals.  I was stuffed!

I enjoyed the jelly-yogurt not-really-a-mousse very much indeed.

Today's plans:

B:  pancakes, fruit and yogurt
. . . and, probably, a drizzle of maple syrup too.  I will use 0% yogurt and flavourings so syn free
SW:  half a healthy extra B and two syns for a tbsp maple syrup

L:  roast beef, roasted veg, Yorkie, carrot, broccoli; fruit
I have got two slices of sliced topside from Morrisons deli for my 'roast' beef - it's a great way to manage when you don't want (or can't afford) a whole joint and it certainly saves on cooking and preparation.  I don't think I will have potatoes as I have a sweet potato to use up plus some parsnips in the freezer and the Yorkie is also from the freezer.  I probably won't have gravy.
SW:  half a syn for a tsp horseradish and two and a half syns for a yorkie

D:  crustless quiche, either salad or baked beans; coffee orange jelly-yogurt mousse
I have ham trimmings to use and I will also have some roasted sweet potato (I love sweet potato in a quiche), plus the usual bits and bobs.
I'll make a biggish one to do me for a few days.
SW:  half a healthy extra A (a quarter of the cheese I will use) and, perhaps, some salad cream for two syns.  Also, maybe, half a synsworth of mixed seeds and, of course, one syn for dessert

Ex:  I doubt watching RideLondon cyclists puffing by counts as exercise so I'll find some stuff from Snippets.

half a healthy extra A
half a healthy extra B
eight and a half syns

Saturday 27 May 2023

Recipe: meatballs in a tomato sauce - for my N S Slimming World group friends . . .

 . . . and anyone else who is interested.

(Thanks for the photo, Jen  xx)

Ingredients for meatballs: (for one to two portions depending on how many and what size meatballs you want.  For group, I did x 3 and it made twenty)
100g 5% lean pork mince
one Aldi rosemary and red onion sausage
quarter of a medium onion, finely chopped
15g finely grated cheddar (three syns or half a healthy extra A and it stops the mince being dry so don't miss it out)
seasonings to taste - I used black pepper, salt, garlic granules and mustard powder
spray oil

Place the finely chopped onion with some spray oil (e.g. frylight) in a mug and zap for one minute in the microwave.

Put all the ingredients (apart from the oil) in a blender and zizz until well mixed (or squidge with your hands - blended gives a finer texture).  Check the seasoning by lightly frying just a tiny bit in a pan and adjust seasoning if needed

Using dampened hands, shape mixture into meatballs.  Either place in a large frying pan, spray with oil and cook for around fifteen minutes or so, turning now and again 
place on parchment in a baking tray, spray with oil and bake at about 200 for around fifteen minutes

The idea is to brown them but not totally cook through.

Ingredients for tomato sauce (to make a batch - use what you need and freeze the rest for another time)
one can chopped tomatoes
one medium onion, chopped
stock (I like chicken stock for this but veg would work too)
a few roasted red peppers in brine from a jar, washed and drained
tomato puree - a good squidge
garlic granules or puree
balsamic vinegar
Henderson's relish (the veggie equivalent of Lea and Perrins)
salt and pepper to taste.

Place everything in a saucepan (I rinse the tomato can in half a can of water and add this), bring to a boil and simmer gently, covered, for twenty minutes or so until the onion is soft.  Blend until smooth and then I push it through a sieve to get rid of the very last 'woody' bits.  Check seasonings and adjust and dilute if it is too thick.

Tip the almost cooked meatballs into the sauce, stir them gently until covered, replace the pan lid and simmer very gently until all cooked through (it doesn't take long)

Have with pasta or rice, if you wish.


The meatballs:
Use beef, chicken or turkey mince as long as it is 5% or under.
Vary the seasonings to own taste or to match the meat - e.g. I fancy trying apple and onion with pork or adding some dried cranberries to chicken or turkey
Shape into a couple of burgers or sausages instead or meatballs.
Add one level tsp mixed seeds to the mixture (but don't blend if you want them to stay whole)

The sauce:
Again, vary seasonings to own taste.  It is nice with more chilli.
Make it chunky by adding softened veg after blending - mushroom, more pepper, baby corn, mange tout, etc
You don't have to use meatballs - it's very nice with chicken, etc, too
Add some soft cheese or some 0% yogurt for 'creaminess' - don't overboil or it splits!
Just use the sauce and add some more water or some milk - it makes a delicious soup.
A couple of spoonfuls of the thick sauce makes a nice sauce for a wrap or pitta pizza

The sauce with some teriyaki chicken from an Iceland skewer, some sliced mushroom and some spaghetti.  Yummy!

One portion of meatball mix, made with beef mince and shaped into two burgers.
(Really it should have done me two meals)

A Week of Slimming World Meals

      These photos are a resume of most of the meals I have had over the last week, excluding desserts, snacks, naughty things, etc. It starts on Saturday and goes through to the following Friday.

Slimming World - restricting?  Few choices?  Going without?   Absolutely no way!

For details of syns, healthy extras, etc, see the individual posts.

Saturday, 20-05-23
B:  avocado toast with scrambled eg and smoked salmon, tomatoes on the side
L:  I thought I had taken a photo but obviously not.  It was potato and mixed bean salad
D:  bacon and broad bean carbonara

Sunday, 21-05-23
B:  sweet omelette with fruit and yogurt
L:  roast chicken dinner
D:  cheesy chicken and onion toastie

Monday, 22-05-23
B:  oat and seed smoothie bowl
L:  chicken and melon panzanella salad
D:  huli huli chicken bake with pineapple salsa and coconut rice

Tuesday, 23-05-23
B:  mini breakfast egg muffins, tomatoes and mushrooms
L:  peanut butter and chicken noodle salad
D:  chicken and veg noodles in fresh tomato sauce

Wednesday, 24-05-23
B:  a banana (no photo)
L:  smoked salmon not-sushi, salad
D:  diet cola chicken, broccoli

Thursday, 25-05-23
B:  a banana (no photo)
L:  smoked salmon and cucumber sandwiches (at a Tiptree tea room - no photo)
D:  the rest of the smoked salmon not-sushi, salad

Friday, 26-05-23
B:  taster session at SW group
L:  leftovers of the tomato sauce with pasta, mushrooms and chicken
D:  SW ready meal lasagne - not a success, sadly.

And that's it for this week.

Saturday, 27-05-23

Morning, everyone!
Ooops - one pound on yesterday.  Oh, well, not to worry.  Onward and downward!  I'll do my darndest to get that sorted by next Friday!

The meatballs in tomato sauce that I took to tester seemed to go down well.  I'd hoped to have some left for lunch but there was only a little bit of the sauce left (no complaints - I was chuffed about that) and so many requests for the recipe that I'm doing a separate post in here about it.

I thought Jen hadn't posted a photo but she did  Cheers!

Yesterday's meal photos:

Breakfast was taster session at Group and it was lovely.  Loads of people had brought bits along to share and we felt very well fed.  I made a 'collage' of all the photos Jen took.  I didn't have everything but I did have a good selection.

Lunch was the last bits of the tomato sauce with the contents of a chicken teriyaki skewer, some mushroom and some pasta mixed in.  So tasty!

I had fruit through the afternoon.
This was half of the SW lasagne ready meal from Iceland.  What did I think of it?  er -  I didn't think it was great for three reasons.
WAY too much basil flavour and I'm not so fond of basil.
Not enough meat sauce and too much pasta
No cheese (I decided not to add any cheese to give it a fair test).
I probably won't have the other half.  I know it is a waste but . . . 

However, one good thing about SW ready meals is that the recipe is on the card wrap-around so I'll give that a go sometime, tweaking the balance and using oregano instead of basil.

I finished off with a Mullerlight.

Today's plans:

B:  fruit salad and yogurt
Partly because I'm using up my healthy extra B for dinner so I have chosen not to have pancakes today.
SW:  should be syn free

L:  ham salad; fruit
I have a pack of rather nice looking ham trimmings to use.  I'll probably make a mixed salad with whatever I can grab and sprinkle over some mixed seeds.
SW:  one and a half syns for some chutney and half a syn for half a tsp seeds

D:  cheeseburger, chips, salad; coffee orange jelly-yogurt mousse
I'm making this because, in part, I want a recent photo of another way to use the meatball mix but mainly because it's yummy and like a Saturday fakeaway.
SW:  one healthy extra A, one healthy extra B, one and a half syns for chutney, one syn for dessert (It's two in total and I'm having half today, half tomorrow.

Ex:  A Shimmy pre-record class

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

Friday 26 May 2023

Friday, 26-05-23

Morning, everyone!
Weighday rolls around again and I have no idea.  I'll let you know.

Yesterday's meal photos:

Just the one photo from yesterday because . . .
I just had a banana for breakfast.
Lunch was eaten out.  Thankfully, the Tiptree menu had calories and I went for smoked salmon and cucumber sandwiches for 601 calories (give or take maybe 10% - I'm not sure what the rule is)
So that left me enough calorie room to not worry about going over.

Dinner was the second half of the not sushi and I tried it with balsamic vinegar which was absolutely delicious, as also was the choppy salad.
A Mullerlight finished off the day's grub!

Today's plans:

B:  It's a taster session at group this morning so I've made some sausage meatballs to have with a tomato and roasted red pepper sauce.  Fingers crossed.
SW  Syns unknown right now

L:  leftovers from taster
I am assuming there will be leftovers to bring home.  If not, I will probably concoct an egg mayo salad sandwich with finger salad or something similar.  I do like egg mayo sandwiches and don't have them very often at all.
SW:  either: half a healthy extra A for some cheese in the meatballs and a wholemeal pitta is one B -lus one syn for some brown or bbq sauce drizzled over.
or: one healthy extra B (bread), half a healthy extra A for cheese spread and three and a half syns for one level tbsp nice mayo.

D:  a SW lasagne ready meal, salad; yogurt
OK, this is not like me but everyone at group raves about the SW lasagne from Iceland so I've succumbed and will give it a go.
I have no idea if I will like it or not but - well, we will see.  However, I am definitely adding cheese on top - because it is counted as a free food so cannot possibly contain cheese - and what is a lasagne without cheese?  Nothing, that's what!
SW:  at least one healthy extra A plus half a syn for the yogurt

Ex:  rest day

two healthy extra As
one healthy extra B
definitely four syns, probably more, it's hard to say right now.

Thursday 25 May 2023

Thursday, 25-05-23

 Morning, everyone!

Yesterday's meal photos:

I had no breakfast; I drove off to the shops and enjoyed trawling around so much that I forgot the time.
I didn't miss it one bit.

The not sushi things for lunch were really nice.  They didn't need the soy sauce at all balsamic vinegar would have been better, I think.
Afterwards, I had an orange and later on a pear.

The diet cola chicken was really nice too.  I had a bit of rice left over from making the lunch so added that.  

Dessert was a Mullerlight and I was full for the evening.

Today's plans:

B:  some fruit
I never want very much before having lunch out.
SW:  speed and syn free

L:  eating at Cressing Temple Barns with a friend
There's a Tiptree Coffee thingy there and some helpful person has photo-ed the menu and posted it online.  My friend also does Slimming World so we will have fun decided together, I think.
SW:  no idea but I will try my darndest to make it SW friendly, not because I have to but because I want to.

D:  not- sushi smoked salmon roll thingies, salad; yogurt
Leftovers from yesterday and, usually, I would have them for lunch.  As that's not possible, dinner it is.
SW:  one and a half syns for the rolls and half a syn for the yogurt

Ex:  a walk

No idea today but I will be in calories, I am totally sure, and most likely within syns too.  

Wednesday 24 May 2023

Wednesday, 24-05-23

Morning, everyone!

Yesterday's meal photos:

It was such a delicious day's eating today.

Breakfast:  I made four mini egg muffins and had the last one later on.

This is so much a keeper.  It was lovely.  The salad was just lots of nice crunchy stuff with mixed seeds added in.
I cooked one noodle nest - well, it's hard to do less really - and half I had for lunch and the other half for dinner.
It was the dressing that really made it so good.  reconstituted peanut butter powder, soy sauce, sweet chilli sauce, lime juice, garlic and ginger.  Brilliant!
Afters was the last of some very - er - mature melon.  Very sweet, very juicy and eaten carefully!

Later on I had an apple and an easy peeler
Now, according to the recipe, dinner was supposed to be made with fresh tomatoes but
1)  they're not terribly tasty yet and
2)  I need half a can of chopped tomatoes for dinner today so I decided to use the other half yesterday.  Waste not . . .
The sauce was chopped tomatoes, onion, garlic granules, chicken stock powder, bit of salt, bit of pepper, a bay leaf and a sprig of rosemary.  Those last two I removed after simmering the lot together and before blending and pushing through a sieve.
The rest was onion, pepper, sugar snap, baby corn, all softened, the last of the roast chicken added with the tomato sauce, heated up to piping hot before I added the other half noodle nest, some capers and a few sliced olives.
It sounds more complicated than it really was and, come the summer when I am harvesting my own tomatoes, this will taste absolutely stunning.  It will also be really good as a more creamy sauce with some yogurt or soft cheese stirred in.
I finished off with a Mullerlight.

Today's plans:

B:  egg on toast with tomatoes and mushrooms
SW:  half a healthy extra B for one slice of toast

L:  smoked salmon maki rolls, salad; fruit
Taken from the Free Food on the Go book, p 17
The salmon rolls are a bit sort of sushi-ish although I don't plan to use sushi rice, I plan to use basmati and make it sticky with some mayo.  An abomination, I agree, but that's what I will do.  I will add some finely chopped cucumber and pepper to the rice and, perhaps, some strands of carrot and celery too.  The smoked salmon is the outer wrapping.  We will see.  At the very worst it will end up as a sort of rice salad!
I plan to use 'proper' mayo - I have some Baxter's Simply Delicious mayo that is three and a half syns per level tbsp. - and top it up with the super light stiff, if necessary.
SW:  a possible four and a half syns for mayo

D:  diet coke chicken, vegetables; yogurt
It's not as nice made with diet cola as with real but it will be OK.  I won't be following any specific recipe, just winging it with cola, chicken stock and chopped tomatoes, chicken and vegetables and it will cook in the slow cooker to make life really easy!
SW:  half a syn for yogurt

Ex:  personal training today!

no healthy extra As
half a healthy extra B
five syns