Google+ Forget dieting forever: June 2012

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

Saturday, 30 June 2012

Crab cannelloni

This crab cannelloni makes a delicious starter. At around 220 calories per portion this was one of the most fabulous starters we've eaten so far. We were going to make crab ravioli - until we came across a little recipe we thought we would fiddle around with: crab cannelloni. It's not exactly the original recipe but it's quite close - here's the original RECIPE by Alain Roux.  Low calorie doesn't have to mean low in taste!
The weather was keeping us in, so we retired to the kitchen to play with some ingredients. We used a courgette to garnish, together with some rocket on the side. The dish was a lot easier than it seems, just a bit time consuming (but we enjoyed the challenge). A lot of the prep was done in the afternoon. We also changed the amount of olive oil used - to cut down the number of calories. While we love olive oil, we thought we would restrain ourselves a little (especially after last night's extravaganza). OK so we pushed the boat out this time, but it's what we enjoy now and again!
For two servings we used the following ingredients.
CRAB CANNELLONI
Pasta
30g flour
1 egg yolk
basil leaves
(we only used half of the finished pasta)
We would suggest using ready made lasagne sheets if you don't like playing with food like us.
Brown crab sauce
30g brown crab meat (sieved to get rid of any bones)
30g mascarphone cheese
salt/pepper
White crab filling/tomato sauce
One tomato
5ml olive oil
6 coriander seeds crushed
half teaspoonful chopped fresh basil
80g white crab meat
****

Lose weight eating the food YOU love and forget dieting forever.
REMEMBER: We all have a calorie allowance - (see our page on calories) and we like to post our main meals to show you what we are eating. You won’t find us posting every last morsel though – but we hope this gives you an idea of how far calories can go!
Read about the UNIQUE METHOD of weight loss and find out how we have lost weight eating the food we love.
Copyright © forget dieting forever, all rights reserved.


Low calorie meals

A flavour packed lunchtime treat. We shared a buffalo mozzarella and served it on 80g of toasted ciabatta. I like to use fresh ciabatta, and freeze the leftovers in slices - ready for our next meal. This time I rubbed the toast with some fresh garlic. We warmed through the chopped tomatoes, which was nice against the cold mozzarella. Sprinkle with basil - we used Greek basil which has so much flavour. A good drizzle of olive oil and balsamic vinegar brought the whole dish to around 450 calories.
Copyright © (c)forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.

Weekend plan

Today we are having a much lighter menu. After an evening eating delicious Thai food, and still feeling pretty full, we now fancy fresh salad and fish.

Lunch is going to be a mozzarella salad with ciabatta. For dinner we plan to cook some fish - not quite sure what as we like to see what the fishmonger has available. I've been given a fabulous fish curry recipe, which we would like to try out - perhaps later in the week. Tonight we might have a go at some fish with pasta as a starter, with more fish to follow.

We are planning a Sunday roast with a free range chicken and lots of crunchy roast potatoes, honey roast parsnips and vegetables. 


Friday, 29 June 2012

TGIF

I think we're eating out tonight. Possibly a Thai meal. All I can say is TGIF - where we get to eat our full allowance. Or, as I like to call it - giving our metabolism a great boost...  We haven't got a calorie counter to help us decipher the menu, but we don't want one. Since we started eating properly and getting our metabolism going, we've found that our body seems to regulate itself better. What I mean is, if we do eat out, we don't go overboard - we just eat what we want to eat then - stop. When I was 'dieting' I would devour the restaurant (...really).

Our idea was simple. Get back to eating 3 good meals a day (4 if we want) - but make them tasty and worthwhile. Why not read 'Our Idea' and find out how we are managing to have a social life AND lose weight. My other half only used to eat ONE meal a day, and he piled on the weight. Whatever the science is behind it, he dropped 6 inches around his waist by eating properly, and he says he eats more now. We love good tasty food and prefer not to eat low-fat food.

If we are going out for that meal, weather permitting we'll go for a good stroll beforehand (that gives him one free pint and I get a free glass of wine). Cheers.


Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Double lamb chops

We couldn't resist picking up some Welsh lamb today - as the opportunity arose. Served like this with a small salad and some new potatoes, the meal comes to around 600 calories because the double chops were much bigger. By the time we removed the fat, the meat content is quite small. As the chops were so thick we cooked them for about 5 minutes either side. They were still pink in the middle, and we rested them for about 5 minutes, then put back in the pan briefly and flash fried.

A really simple dish, ready in the time it took to cook the potatoes - 20 minutes. Costs less than a couple of ready meals for two.

Lunch was a salmon sandwich on the move with some crisps and melon. This came to around 500 calories in total. Breakfast was strawberries and greek yoghurt with a slice of buttered toast and marmalade. With tea and coffee, today has still been a 'good' day for me at around 1500 calories in total.  

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

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Busy days

Appointments sometimes get in the way of eating. Take today - we had to be somewhere at 1pm, so we  had to adjust our eating times. I delayed breakfast by eating some melon pieces then having a more substantial breakfast of eggs, toast and cheese (and Marmite....) at around 11am. After the appointment, we were starving - it was 5 pm and we were a couple of hours away from home. We decided to share a supermarket sandwich, and at 180 calories each it seemed to be the better choice. Eating that half a sandwich saved me from a chocolate bar (300 calories) or worse... It was enough to fill us up until we arrived home when we had this chicken fajita wrap. We also prepared our own very quick and easy oven chips, which followed shortly afterwards. Our total meal came to around 600 calories as we had less oven chips than last time.
Copyright © (c)forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.



Winning the weight loss battle

Why are we continuing to lose weight? How are we losing weight? These are the questions we are asked time and time again. When we bump into people we haven't seen for a while, they are amazed at our weightloss. They cannot understand that we have come up with our own solution and lost the weight. We show people the food we are eating, and they cannot believe it.
More often we receive the comment that we both look so 'well'. Friends often point out that our skin looks fabulous and we just look so healthy. Perhaps this has got something to do with the wide variety of food we are eating - nothing is banned. While it's great to receive these kind comments, they actually reflect how we feel. We feel healthier, brighter and lighter.
By not following a diet, and doing our 'own thing' we are continuing our slow but steady weight loss. ONE of the main ingredients of our success has been understanding "CALORIES" (please click on the link).



Monday, 25 June 2012

Beef burger


HOME MADE BURGER

We don't have this very often, but when we do we really enjoy it. To make the beef burgers was easy enough - take some LEAN minced beef, add some finely chopped raw onion, salt, pepper and garlic and mix together. Knead the mixture for a couple of minutes until it starts to stick together, then shape into patties. We had ours plain - but you could add mustard, chilli, cheese... whatever you fancy. In the end we know what goes into our burger - and it's all fresh!
After making the mash yesterday, we had the leftover potato skins. We sprayed these with some good olive oil and sprinkled with salt then put into a very hot oven to crisp up. According to the internet cooked potato skins are around 50 calories per 25g, so we had about 200 calories.  The large burger was about 300 calories, and the egg about 100 calories. We didn't have a bun with the burger, because there wasn't one in the house! We had a side salad instead (with a drizzle of olive oil) and a spoonful of barbecue sauce so our meal was around 650 calories.

If you would like to know more about how we achieved our fabulous weight loss eating all this wonderful food, see OUR IDEA
We all have a calorie allowance - and we like to post our main meals to show you what we are eating. You won’t find us posting every last morsel though – but we hope this gives you an idea of how far calories can go!
Copyright © forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.

Sunday, 24 June 2012

Pork and mash - Chinese style

CHINESE STYLE PORK TENDERLOIN

180g mash - 230 calories (using a little butter/milk)
100g pak choi - 15 calories (according to the packet)
200g pork tenderloin - 325 calories
Hoi sin/sweet chilli dressing - guess around 25 calories


This meal was delicious - and very easy to make. Each serving is estimated to be around 600 calories. We smothered 400g of pork in OUR SAUCE MIX - hoi sin sauce, garlic, ginger and a little soy, marinated over night, then cooked- uncovered - in the oven at 180ยบ for around 20 minutes. It will take longer to cook according to the thickness and starting temperature. If you take it straight from the refrigerator, it will take a little longer to cook. We don't like to serve ours pink. Resting the piece of meat for 5 minutes before slicing will also help keep it moist.
The result was succulent and tasty - not dry at all. We served with some mash and pak choi.
TIP: The MASH was made by baking some large unpeeled potatoes (as if making jacket potatoes) then scooping out the flesh. This makes great mash because it's not water-logged and the flavour is more intense. A similar result can be achieved by microwaving the unpeeled potato. Don't throw away the potato skins either - they can be filled with a little cheese and/or sprinkled with your favourite spice. 
We put ours in a plastic bag and freeze until we're ready to eat them, then spray with a good oil and put them into a hot oven to crisp up.
If you would like to know more about how we have achieved almost 7 stone in weight loss while eating all this wonderful food - see OUR UNIQUE METHOD.
Copyright © forgetdietingforever. All rights reserved.

Prawns and pasta

Now THIS dish will become a favourite for the future. It was quick to make (10 minutes at most) and the flavours bowled us over. Simple, delicate, well balanced - and we could taste every single element.
SPICY TAGLIATELLE WITH PRAWNS

INGREDIENTS - serves two
200g uncooked prawns (if you only have cooked, then just heat these through at the last minute.
140g fresh tagliatelle
2 large fresh tomatoes
sprinkle of chilli flakes (be careful - we used a good pinch)
one large clove garlic
flat leaf parsley to garnish - the flavour was fantastic and we might use more next time
****
The sauce can be made with tinned chopped tomatoes, but we had a few spare ripe fresh ones sitting on the windowsill. Remove skin from the fresh tomatoes - i.e. put a small cross in the bottom of the the tomato and place in boiling water for up to 30 seconds, then the skin should come off quite easily. Chop.
In a frying pan, add a couple of tablespoons of olive oil and fry the diced tomatoes with some chopped garlic (if you like) and some chilli flakes. Heat through for around 2 - 3 minutes. Add uncooked prawns to the pan and continue until they go pink. 
Add the cooked tagliatelle to the frying pan and mix together. After adding the prawns and tagliatelle we noticed the mixture looking a bit dry so we added a couple of tablespoons of the pastas' cooking. Don't forget to season well with salt and pepper - once we added the right amount of salt in particular, the whole flavour of the dish just intensified so much especially the spiciness.
Our tagliatelle with prawns and a chilli tomato sauce came to around 450 calories. With a bread roll and butter an additional 150 calories.

NOTE: You don't have to use prawns, it could be anything - or, just eaten on its own for a quick and cheap meal.
Copyright © forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.

Saturday, 23 June 2012

Rib eye steak

The butcher was excited about these steaks and so were we. We don't usually have this cut of meat, so we're really looking forward to it. Instead of chips, we've decided to make some of our own onion rings. There are a few new potatoes, some baby tomatoes cooked in balsamic vinegar and a watercress and parmesan salad. We're not making a sauce tonight because the tomatoes will create a sauce. I fancy a little blue cheese melted over my steak - I'll wait and see. We have chosen a good Malbec red wine from Argentina to go with this fab meal.

The trick to cooking steaks is ...not to overcook. It all depends on the thickness and the way you like it cooked. Resting is the most important step - we think. Our steaks were rested for about the same length of time as they were cooked. I don't like to see meat juice on the plate, but I don't like overcooked steak - and the resting helps draw the juices back into the meat. What we do is let it rest, then flash fry just before serving to warm it back through. The photo was taken on the iPhone - annoying because our usual camera battery had run out, so apologies for the poor picture!

As the weather held off, we managed to get out into the countryside and our leisurely exercise has burned off a few calories already! We think this meal is higher in calories than we would normally eat, but as we've now burnt a few extra calories, we don't mind. It's Saturday - we love relaxing and enjoying our food using our full allowance.
PICTURE REMOVED DUE TO STORAGE SPACE
Copyright © (c)forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.

Weekend plan

For lunch it's simple - we're having a BLT (bacon, lettuce and tomato) sandwich. Then for dinner we'll have a steak with a mixture of vegetables, including potatoes of some type, salad and we might have another go at some home made onion rings.

On Sunday we plan to cook pork loin as we've done before - Chinese style. We'll probably have this with pak choi and mash again, as it was so delicious. We're not sure about lunch yet, but we think it's going to be a fajita chicken wrap.


Friday, 22 June 2012

Frugal Friday... around 400 calories

We like to use up ingredients - why waste them? Surveying the stocks - we had some potatoes, onions, a couple of slices of ham. What better way to use them up than in one of my favourite (and cheap) supper dishes! Great for baking and returning to. We're going to have ours with mushy peas.

For two large servings at around 400 calories each - I've used 600g of potatoes (Estima, Maris Piper, Maris Peer, Melody - something not too floury) and peel then slice these up quite thinly. Take 2 large onions and thinly slice these. Then simply layer the two ingredients into an oven proof dish, ending with potatoes on the top. Put salt and pepper on each layer. Then take about 100g chicken stock and mix with 50g milk, and pour over the whole thing. Dot the top with butter. This will form our BASIC MIX. It can be cooked in a medium hot oven (180) for an hour or so - until the top starts to go nice and crispy and brown.

You can play with the basic mix, and can add whatever you fancy - ham, cheese, even chorizo etc to the layers. We quite often add some cooked ham (quite low in calories) or leftover cooked sausage if we have some (which you probably won't because they tend to disappear overnight). You could add cream instead of milk if you want some luxury. The thing is, it's a great way to use potatoes and leftover bits without breaking the bank. I'd guess this meal cost me 50p - so great one for students!

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

Friday lunch around 450 calories


After the crunchy lunch, I really fancied some strong flavours, so picked this goat's cheese and bacon salad. It's slightly different today because we used a very soft goat's cheese (100 calories each). A couple of slices of bacon (150 calories) - chopped, cooked until crisp then sprinkled over the salad.
We dressed the salad leave very lightly with a minimal amount of olive oil (20 calories if that), salt and pepper. I added a few lightly toasted pine nuts and a few pieces of crushed walnut (40 calories). Then I mixed about 30g of goat's cheese with enough milk to make it runny (50 calories each), added some pepper and lemon and poured over the salad.
A small chunk of crusty french bread.... perfect. Eat a really tasty salad - enjoy all the wonderful flavours and feeling SATISFIED. We're all worth the effort. This didn't take that long to prepare - just watch you don't pick on the pine nuts... they are very high in calories but look surprisingly innocent.

We estimate this salad to be around 450-500 calories depending upon how large that chunk of bread was! We always try to work out a rough calorie count, but these are only our estimates. Our weight is still trending downwards, so we can't be that far out - and just in case we are, we usually over estimate!

Friday breakfast


Our breakfast was peaches and yoghurt with toast at around 300 calories.

The peaches were a bit of a fiddle to peel, but they were worth it. They have a lovely sweet and delicate flavour - nicer than nectarines we think. My 80g full fat greek yoghurt (120 calories) and 100g of peaches (39 calories) with a drizzle of honey was tasty and filling.

We particularly love the creamy texture of the full fat greek yoghurt.

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Low fat - no thanks

FISH AND CHIPS
When I say no thanks, I'm talking about LOW-FAT PROCESSED FOODS. At the very beginning of our weight loss journey, we decided to ignore low-fat foods. I had been reading the labels on some processed low-fat foods and realised the 'fat' was being replaced with 'sugar' and other chemicals. We had noticed too, that whenever we ate sugary foods - and some of the low-fat foods tasted really sweet - that we were never really satisfied. It also seemed that by eating sugar, we just wanted more... sugar. So we decided to eat food in its most natural state - for example, we would choose a normal yoghurt over a 'low fat' yoghurt. We found these foods satisfied our hunger and helped us to stop snacking.

Because we wanted to lose weight, we had to

That little black dress... and black tie of course.

I'm writing with a smile after trying on some very very old clothes. Fumbling away at the back of the wardrobe, I pulled out a beautiful dress and thought I'd try my luck. Astonishingly - I could zip it all the way up. It's particularly inspiring, as I stood on the scales this morning and it didn't register what I can see - a shape change going on again.

I don't mean a drastic shape change - but I just know there's a shape change going on.  It's always happened like this - we hover for a little while in a weight range, then - the belts get tighter but the scales don't show anything. Even my other half 'knows' before it hits the bathroom scales.

As we persist with (our idea - follow the link) we have not only stopped putting on weight, but managed to reduce it gradually over time. The fact that we are still following this idea, shows us (me in particular) that weight CAN be tackled bit by bit, and every little step can make a difference. No crazy diet to follow and we haven't given up anything either (our family can vouch for that). I don't post everything we eat.... and we do eat.  I know so many people who spend their lives NOT eating so they can stay slim. Taking a leap of faith and eating regular meals was the right thing for us to do. I believe we can all experience the wonderful taste of food - which we all deserve to enjoy. We're all entitled to eat - we all have a calorie allowance.

Over the last few months I've had to buy smaller clothes and that's a costly affair for both of us. My partner has lost 3 inches from his collar size - can you imagine how that would look like if I didn't drag him out to buy smaller shirts! 

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Chicken and avocado

We had some left over chicken and used this in our salad. There was about 100g of cooked chicken breast and half an avocado. The 150g of new potatoes had a little butter and salt on them. We don't swamp our dishes with fat, but have found that a little goes a long way and enhances the taste of the dishes. We also put a teaspoon of olive oil on our salad, because we realise this fills us up more. We tend not to use LOW FAT dressings, because quite often, the fat is replaced with sugar. For some reason, foods containing higher quantities of sugar actually make us more hungry. 

My lunch with crunch

I wanted everything - salad, pasta, bread - I just couldn't make up my mind. So I had this. I often wonder why I fancy foods with crunch? Today I've made up for any longings.
The cheese and ham roll (around 300 calories) was made with Jarlsberg cheese, which I love. I added a little goat's cheese to the tomato pasta (around 150 calories). That leaves the crunchy salad vegetables. A pretty colourful plate at approx 500 calories. Not something you can eat in 5 seconds!
By eating what I fancied, I'm truly satisfied and less likely to go looking for something to make myself feel better. 

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Tonight's fare

I'm eating alone tonight, so it's something out of the freezer for me! I didn't fancy a salad, as I think I ate too many beans yesterday....
I'm going to make my own oven chips (see recipe) which are absolutely delicious, and have these with some (frozen) home made beef curry (see recipe).  The whole meal should come to no more than 650 calories.

I walked to the post office today, and earned myself around 100 extra calories. I can either use those calories and add them to my quota today, or save them towards my weightloss. I'll see how I feel.


Time for the gym

No. That's not what we do! We walk. If we don't have time, we add in extra walking by parking a little further away from wherever we want to be. We use stairs instead of escalators. All these little bits of exercise DO add up. We get immediate benefits from walking, as we relax in the fresh air.We know that fat burning kicks in at around 20 minutes, because we heat up. A longer stroll lasting about an hour means we are burning fat for about 40 minutes. We have experienced the benefits of losing fat without going to extremes. I used to think I had to do something 'strenuous' before I would see results - but our weightloss through moderate exercise has worked.

Going to the gym might take more time out of our day than going for a walk. Driving to the gym, working out and returning home may take a couple of hours, whereas a walk can take half as long with the benefits starting as soon as we step out of the door. Walking is cheaper - no sports clothes to buy, no petrol costs and no membership fees. Since walking, we've realised that just 15 minutes walking can cover quite a distance. Our paper shop is 15 minutes away - we used to drive there, like I'm sure most people would. I've no idea why we didn't think to walk, maybe it's unfashionable? Perhaps that's why past generations were slimmer - they didn't have cars. Now things have changed, and walking is our natural choice. It may take a bit longer than driving, but we save petrol, relax, don't have to fight for a parking space, and... get to lose a bit of weight.

Monday, 18 June 2012

Chicken soup

We decided to use some of the leftover chicken to make our soup. It's difficult to photograph soup, but hopefully this will give some idea as to the end result.
We made a large pot of chicken stock by first boiling, then simmering the carcass for an hour or so together with a few carrots, onions and celery.
We then used approx 2 ltrs of stock to make our soup.
Chop up some fresh celery, onion, carrot and potatoes and put these into the chicken stock. I added 1 tablespoon of tomato puree, and checked the seasoning. Simmer until the vegetables are soft (about 30 minutes), then add the chopped chicken, shredded cabbage and peas (I had some mange tout handy as well) and cook for another 10 minutes or so (until chicken is hot). A couple of slices from a stick of granary and that was lunch.  Lunch is around 400 calories, so we may find ourselves hungry. I've got some cheese and fruit at the ready.
For tonight I've made a beef chilli con carne with kidney and pinto beans. We'll have that with a jacket potato. As the weather looks like it might stay dry, we're going to put the potato in the oven to cook while we go for a stroll. Being prepared takes effort, but it also allows us to relax with time for a leisurely walk to burn off a few calories. Provided we don't stop at the pub... all will be looking good for Monday!!

Losing weight eating the food we love!
REMEMBER: We all have a calorie allowance - and we like to post our main meals to show you what we are eating. You won’t find us posting every last morsel though – but we hope this gives you an idea of how far calories can go!
Read about OUR UNIQUE METHOD of weight loss and find out how we have lost weight eating the food we love.
Copyright © forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.

Sunday, 17 June 2012

Sunday roast

It seems ages since our last Sunday roast, and we really enjoyed this one. To anyone out there who doesn't like cabbage, we urge you to try a 'new season' Savoy. It's sweet rather than bitter and has delicate wafer like leaves. The honey roast parsnips always go down well, and so does the roast potatoes.
We would estimate this dish to be around 800 calories. Because it's so filling, we tend to eat less for the rest of the day. One of the things we keep hearing most (especially from men) is that people tend to skip meals, in an effort to lose weight. We've done the opposite - and are actively eating 3 good meals per day. This boosts our metabolism and we've lost weight. We all have a calorie allowance - so why not spend it on something you really want. We do!

Saturday, 16 June 2012

Indecisive

We were undecided about tonights menu, but fancied picking on different foods for a change, and opted for some 'small plates' (tapas style). Looking around the supermarket, we were a little shocked at the ready made tapas on offer. Most were quite high in calories and fat, unnecessarily so we thought. By choosing the ingredients that go into our own dishes, and the way these are cooked, we have control. For example, by frying our own minced beef, we have the opportunity to remove more fat if we decide to. We don't know what the calorie content of all of our dishes tonight are, but we've eaten this type of food at some good restaurants without injuring our weight loss too much.
As it's Saturday we get to eat a full calorie allowance - and we tend to make the most of it too! Our way of eating is a lifestyle change rather than a diet, and occasionally this will mean we just sit back and relax while enjoying cooking and eating our food. Here's what we came up with for tonight:
Mushroom and stilton ravioli - drizzled with olive oil (we made our own pasta, but a good shortcut is to buy some ready made fresh lasagne sheets)
Cooked crevettes in garlic and shallots (we fried our own raw prawns as it was cheaper)
Cooked chorizo slices
Spicy meatballs (home made... much less fat than the ready made variety) with mozzarella pearls
Olives
Ciabatta slices with a good olive oil and balsamic for dipping
Goat's cheese - if we fancy
Good red wine... of course!
Notes
Cooking the crevettes from raw was so much cheaper and resulted in a very tasty alternative to the higher priced ready cooked variety. They take just a couple of minutes - as soon as they turn pink remove from the heat. 150g of raw crevettes cost just £1.50 and they are so much more tender. We fried briefly in olive oil.
Copyright © (c)forgetdietingforever 2012, all rights reserved.




Saturday lunch

Smoked salmon and scrambled eggs with our own (very easy) soda bread. Around 600 calories for everything. Delicious.

Plan for the weekend

As we've had quite a lot of meaty dishes, we are going to have something different today. For lunch we'll whip up a very quick and easy soda bread. Recipe to follow! We'll be eating this with some smoked salmon and scrambled egg.

For dinner we fancy (at the moment) mushroom and stilton ravioli. If we do make this, we'll post the recipe. We're not sure if we'll have this as a starter, or main course?

Sunday is going to be a simple roast dinner - chicken with roast potatoes and honey roasted parsnips. We're looking forward to that as we haven't eaten a full Sunday roast for a while. 

Friday, 15 June 2012

That Friday feeling

After 4 days of eating a little less - we now get to eat a bit more! We believe we are stimulating our metabolism by eating this way and this has helped our weightloss. When our social life intervenes - as it did last weekend - we join in. The last few days has brought our weight back to what it was before the weekend. We've been on a couple of small walks (each about an hour long) to help. Great.

Our focus on calories has worked for us - we've lost weight. It also means we are healthier than we were. Eating fewer calories for 4 days has helped us learn about what's in our food. Turning the packet over and flicking through the calorie content doesn't take long. We don't eat low fat food, because it doesn't fill us up. We rarely snack because we ARE full up. If I have a snack attack, it's probably because I haven't eaten enough. Eating a good meal is the answer. Eating what we love is the answer. We may not be perfect, but then - who is. After 6 stone weightloss, we must be doing something right.

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Here it is again!

Our evening meal took a slightly different turn. The meal I'd prepared was taking much longer to cook than I anticipated. Hunger got the better of me so I opted for this wonderful minestrone soup I had made yesterday - together with a cheese sandwich. My other half wasn't so bothered (or hungry) - and preferred to wait for the Shepherd's pie. 

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

HAM HOCK SOUP


DELICIOUS HAM HOCK SOUP
Ingredients
400g tin haricot beans (all I had in the cupboard)
200g chopped tomatoes
200g new potatoes
200g cooked ham (TIP: try one of the ready cooked hot ham hock's from the deli counter)
Large spoonful of tomato paste
2 onions
2 sticks celery
A leek if you have one
A little 'new season' shredded Savoy cabbage (or any green cabbage)
garlic to taste
herbs - thyme, rosemary and bayleaf (I used about tablespoon of these mixed chopped FRESH herbs)
handful of carrots
1 litre of water mixed with chicken stock cubes to taste
60g frozen peas
60g pasta (I used Spatzle)
***
Fry the onions, celery and leek for 10 minutes then add garlic and herbs if you like. Add all the other ingredients except the PEAS, HAM and PASTA.  Cook until vegetables are tender (about 40 minutes). I like to blend about 1/4 of the soup, to make it less runny, and then I add the ham and cook until it's heated through. Finally the peas and the pre-cooked Spatzle* go in. One last sprinkle with some strong grated cheese like cheddar or parmesan... and enjoy.
*NOTE: If you only have dried spaghetti, break this into 2cm pieces and throw it in (uncooked) for the last 5 minutes of cooking. You could use your favourite tinned beans if you don't have haricot.
***
I decided to make this great soup, adapting a few recipes to suit the ingredients I had to hand. I added some leftover cubed ham too.  It was quite easy to put together too.
This makes 4 huge portions - at around 200 calories per portion. A nice chunk of fresh bread and some grated cheese ...was all that was required (don't forget to add on these as extra calories).
The planned salad will have to wait until tonight.
Here's the QR code for the ingredients (text format).
QR Code generator

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





Tuesday breakfast

YOGHURT AND FRUIT BREAKFAST
Spurred on after standing on the scales this morning - we are more convinced than ever that balancing out the number of calories is key to weight loss. Breakfast was a tub of ready made mixed fruit salad eaten on 80g of full fat greek yoghurt and a drizzle of honey. I had more fruit than normal, as it was delicious, but the dish was still only around 200 calories, so there's room for a piece of toast if I'm hungry. We enjoy fruit and yoghurt so we eat it.
Lunch is going to be a salad with potatoes and dinner could be pasta with meatballs or a ham and cheese bake?
It has taken years to accumulate the excess weight, and we are happy it is disappearing. Our success tells us that weight gain IS something we can avoid, and actively do something about. More importantly, we have found that because of the slow and steady progress, our weight is far more stable. Excessive weekends (like the last one) do not have the same impact as when I used to 'diet' - where the scales would show wild swings in weight. I would love to magic away the weight in an instant, as I am sure most people would, but I am content in the knowledge that our weight loss method works. Slowly but surely getting smaller (just like we slowly but surely got bigger). Being conscious of what we eat and learning about calories might seem a bit boring, but it is the key to losing weight. We're all worth the effort!

Monday, 11 June 2012

Monday crab and scallops


Here's a delightful salad - colourful and tasty. Mix together white and brown crab meat, add some flash fried scallops and plonk on a bed of salad. Season with olive oil, salt and pepper and you have a fab salad. Add a side of new potatoes with some butter, and our evening meal come in at around 500 calories.

All that nourishment and there's still room for dessert - now that's a good day!

Light lunch?


It's damp and cold, and a salad was just not enticing enough for lunch. Instead we had a couple of slices of home cooked ham, with eggs, beans and lightly fried scalloped potatoes. We think this lunch came in at under 600 calories using a little olive oil to fry our par-boiled new potatoes. Delicious!

Because we fill up at meal times we are less likely to want to snack. I've watched so many people (myself included) under-eating as they try to lose weight, only to resort to the biscuit tin because of hunger! This is how we are losing weight - eating real food, and plenty of it. 

Celebrations...

After a long weekend of celebrations, we return to our 4 days of lighter eating. We've had an early 'weigh in' to give us some idea of where we are. We have both been pleasantly surprised with just a tiny dent, but we know this can be smoothed out in the coming days. Once upon a time, celebrating meant that any 'diet' could quickly turn into a food frenzy. Not any more - because of the way we are losing weight. We didn't have time to stop and count calories either - we just went with the flow. It could be that by losing the weight slowly, we've taught ourselves to listen more to our body and we eat naturally?

Our philosophy is to eat whatever we want. We tell ourselves we can have whatever it is we really want to eat. By doing that we get to take control, rather than food control us. Back in the days of dieting, I would look at a buffet table and notice all the food that I wasn't allowed to eat. The 'naughty' food would end up piled onto my plate and be gone in seconds. Convinced it tasted great, because I hadn't eaten it for such a long time and returning for seconds and even thirds. Now I can look at the food on the buffet table and ask myself what I really would like to eat. Asking ourselves that question each time we eat, we get to make a conscious decision about our food. We believe this has helped reduce cravings for food.

As it's Monday, we'll be asking ourselves what we really want to eat over the next 4 days. Because we are eating slightly less, it's important that we enjoy what we are going to eat. I'm working on our menu for the next few days, and will post this up later.



Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Wednesday's dinner


I must admit, it was nice looking at a colourful plate again!  We used half a chicken - just under one kilo in weight and cooked ours for 40 minutes in a hot oven (fan at 180 degrees). Our thermometer told us it was cooked - and we tend to use this now as a guide as chicken can dry out if overcooked.
We heated up a baking tray and placed the half chicken carcass side down (flatten chicken first). It's not covered with foil, which helps crisp up the skin nicely. 

After a couple of hearty days.....

We've enjoyed a couple of very sociable days - eating and drinking whatever we fancied. It's not easy picking through the maze of food on offer and making the best choice, so we've just had to go with the flow. We found some of the processed food very salty too. We know that with a couple of good days ahead, we'll balance out nicely and the scales will be kind to us too. A little gentle exercise (walking) when the rain decides to go away, will help us continue our weightloss.

Today we had some fruit (tasty strawberries from Kent) and full fat greek yoghurt with a dash of honey for breakfast.

This was followed by poached eggs, bacon and toast for lunch. Tonight we're sharing half a roast chicken (peri-peri) with new potatoes, sweetcorn cobs and rocket/parmesan salad. We bought a whole chicken and split it - very economical. When we have less time and can't think of a good, tasty and filling meal, this peri-peri chicken is one that never fails to please.  

Sunday, 3 June 2012

Sunday dinner

Here's our salmon steak meal. We warmed some (peeled and deseeded) cucumber slices through in the frying pan then added a couple of tablespoons of double cream, chopped dill and seasoned with salt and pepper. The cream cost us about 50 calories each.
Neither of us are chefs.... but the more we cook our own fish, the less afraid we are! The salmon was cooked for about 4 minutes each side, although we think (being picky) it was ever so slightly overcooked. Nevertheless, it was still very delicate and moist.
The whole meal was around 550-600 calories, with our 150g salmon steak taking up around 320 calories.
We like a variety of food, and our fishy weekend works in well as we've got a couple of meaty days ahead! When we make the effort to go to the fishmonger, we tend to get carried away....

So what about bread?

We love bread and what nicer than fresh wholemeal to accompany our crab meat. Because the brown crab meat is so rich and creamy, we used less butter and mayonnaise. We generally use a full fat mayonnaise because we've found it tastes better and is much easier to spread. We end up with all the flavour without too many calories. Crab is quite low in calories too.
A few crunchy crisps on the side and our lunch was a bargain at around 450 calories.

Saturday, 2 June 2012

Crab lunch

This was a fabulous fresh and tasty crab and prawn lunch - with a warm new potato salad. The potato salad was coated in a couple of teaspoons of full fat mayonnaise mixed into warm potatoes and spring onions. The whole meal will probably be no more than 500 calories (and that's over estimating).
We usually eat more on a weekend - having our full recommended daily calorie intake. As we are going to a couple of parties early next week, we're going to try and eat a little less this weekend. As I've said, if our social life dictates, we can swap days around as we please.  

The weekend menu...

We're going for fish this weekend. Today we're having a prawn and crab salad with some wonderfully fresh bread. We've been to the fishmonger and bought some prawns, crevettes, sea bass and salmon.  The crab is huge!  There are some great internet sites out there with instructions on how to remove the meat.  Sometimes we'll just buy a dressed crab but a fresh crab is just so much tastier.  The amount of meat we got from this one will make a couple of salads today and some sandwiches for tomorrow's lunch.
Tonight we're having the sea bass with spicy noodles and onion bhajis.

Tomorrow's dinner is going to be the crevettes with mayo followed by salmon, potatoes and veg - asparagus, corn and peas.  

Friday, 1 June 2012

Friday lunch


Feeling a little hot and bothered with the very hot and close weather, I wasn't sure what to eat for lunch.  My other half scoffed a sausage sandwich, but I fancied tomatoes.  I had a thick, large slice of toast topped with tomatoes and just a little cheese.  There was a sliced sausage on the side - you know how it is - start eating and the appetite comes back... Strangely enough, I found the sausage very very salty today, so really didn't want it.

One bite...

Just 100 calories extra per day could mean we gain 10 lbs extra in weight per year.  Here's what my 100 calories of chocolate looked like... (yes... we do eat chocolate while losing weight).
Most people we've spoken to do not realise that by eating just a few extra calories per day could add up to lots of weight.   Approx 3600 calories = one pound in fat. But all of this is only worth knowing if we are aware of the number of calories or energy our bodies need each day.  I can eat around 1900-2000 calories per day, so if I ask myself .. would I like some chocolate (...hmm that's a silly question), then I'll have it.  I just decide if it's worth it! The morsel of chocolate in the picture is just one third of a chocolate bar... and you'll never guess what happened to the other two thirds (or 200 calories)! TGIF.

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