I had a friend who used to answer when asked what shall we have for tea, “Jump at the fridge door”. They meant that they would look in it and see what jumped out at them. Well the recipe was so inspired.
Normally when I record a recipe on the blog I have tried it a few times, and even sometimes remember to have a camera at hand so can take some shots, but this time this is not the case. Though it was invented, we thought it tasted so good that it should be recorded before forgotten, and as such it may as well be put on the blog.
The idea of the recipe was one that could be made very quickly, and cooks as being prepared. The ingredients given below make a quick meal enough for two. It took the length of time to cook the noodles – I also prepared and lit the fire whilst doing this at the same time so it is very easy!
PS This will give a slightly crunchy texture to the broccoli (The more it is cooked the less good it does you as cooking breaks down the good bits of it). If you add it before the green pepper it will cook a bit more.
_ We have now made these several times and their only fault is that they taste delicious so you want to eat more of them
Optional extra - can add 70 gms 2.5 oz chopped dark chocolate to the mixture
So finally after 18 months of pain and diet, having lost around 70 lbs in weight. (This equates to a good few inches round the waist and over a shirt collar size) I have finally got back a set of blood results that are normal. My liver has finally settled down and is working normally again.
My doc has said that I am now allowed the occasional treat, and this seemed a good excuse to show a picture of a distillery from Islay.
Pile of Sticks
But I still have to be careful and watch my diet. The docs software (always blame the system if one is giving bad news) says that I still need to loose a few more pounds and have an average weight that hovers around this lower level. I feel as if I will end up as a bag of bones – a bit like this pile of sticks. The good thing about all this is that I have learnt to appreciate and understand a lot more about what I am eating and the affect food has on our bodies. Lets hope that the next test in a few months time is just as positive.
Fig and Walnut Bread
This is something that I have been experimenting with over the last few months as eating bread is something that I enjoy, but have to be careful about as so often it is either full of fat or calories. So I have been trying to perfect a healthy loaf full of goodness that tastes lovely. Hopefully you will agree with me
Dough - being knocked out.
Dough rolled in flour
A brief scan on the internet lists numerous health benefits from the ingredients. I have listed just a few below-
Oats - Oatmeal and oat bran are significant sources of dietary fibre. This fiber contains a mixture of about half soluble and half insoluble fibers. One component of the soluble fibre found in oats is beta-glucans, a soluble fibre which has proven effective in lowering blood cholesterol.
Olive Oil - Using olive oil, a monounsaturated fat, rather than a saturated fats or polyunsaturated fats can:
Walnuts - More than a decade of scientific evidence shows that incorporating walnuts in a healthy diet reduces the risk of heart disease by improving blood vessel elasticity and plaque accumulation. Walnuts have also been shown to aid in the lowering LDL cholesterol (the bad cholesterol)
Dried figs are excellent source of minerals, vitamins and anti-oxidants.
Pumkin Seeds - They promote overall prostate health and alleviate the difficult urination associated with an enlarged prostate.Improved Bladder Function. They contain L-tryptophan, a compound naturally effective against depression. Prevention of Osteoporosis Because they are high in zinc, pumpkin seeds are a natural protector against osteoporosis. Low intake of zinc is linked to higher rates of osteoporosis. Pumpkin seeds effectively reduce inflammation without the side effects of anti-inflammatory drugs.They prevent calcium oxalate kidney stone formation, according to studies. They also Lower Cholesterol as they contain phytosterols, compounds that that have been shown to reduce levels of LDL cholesterol. The same phytosterols that lower cholesterol also protect against many cancers.
Make a hole in the centre of the dough
I use a bread machine to make the dough putting the yeast in first and the liquid ingredients in last. Use a fruit setting and add the chopped nuts and figs when the machine beeps or when the first kneading has finished.
Cut with a knife
When the dough cycle has finished place the dough on a lightly floured surface and knock back slightly
Lightly oil a baking sheet
Shape the bread into a ball
Make a hole in the centre with ones finger
Cut with a sharp knife
Brush with Milk
Sprinkle with pumbin seeds
Allow to rise for 30-45 minutes
Brush with milk
Cut the crust and enjoy
Put into a preheated oven at 200 degrees centigrade
Bake for around 35 minutes (30-40 mins) – It burns very quickly so need to watch and check – ready when hollow sounding when tapped.
Place on rack to cool – and then enjoy - with a nice healthy salad
Yesterday we went exploring south of the Tyne, eventually making our way down to Temple Sowerby, but on the way we stopped off for a morning coffee at the Whitefield Village Pantry. This is run by my friend Dave, and having heard all about it from his partner Ed, I wanted to see what it was like for real.
As I may be accused of being biased in my comments I will let those of Pauline my wife who has never met Dave before be recorded. Along with her coffee, she had a lovely looking flapjack, which I was hoping to have a small bite of (as still on diet), but while Dave was explaining his plans for their garden, the flapjack all vanished with the comment “That was the Best Flapjack I've ever tasted”. She then went on and asked Dave the secret of the recipe, but I will not reveal that here – If you want to find that out you will just have to go to Whitfield yourself and try one. Who knows Dave may tell you, though I know he is very keen on winning the local cake competitions, so he may not be that forthcoming.
It was a shame really that we were not there a bit later as the lunch offerings looked really tasty as well, (not the usual boring fayre) especially as a new lovely looking cake was just coming out the oven as we were leaving. We wish them all the best for the future, and will label them as a “Good Choice Foods” establishment – more on this to come.
I had some potatoes and beetroot that needed eating up and rather than just make a plain vegetable soup I thought I would experiment with a Thai version that is full of good things. The fact that my three monthly medical check-up may have had something to do with this. With a quick search on the internet - Some of the key ones are listed below.
This is a very simple recipe that can be cooking whilst the rest of the meal is being prepared.
Ingredients (enough for 2)
2 Skinned Chicken Breasts (or could be turkey)
8 Chopped & stoned plums
12 Chopped grapes
1 Small finely chopped onion
1 teaspoon of Italian herb mix (or mixed herbs)
1 teaspoon of curry powder
1 drizzle of olive oil
2 teaspoon of marmalade
1 sliced lemon
_ This is the fourth and final part of my blog on how to loose over 50lbs of weight. This will cover my typical menu for the week.
Part one covered incentive, portion size, and meal frequency. Part two covered exercise, hydration, and setting realistic targets. Part three covered the foods that I am allowed to eat and those I do not eat.
I am not a medical doctor or dietician, but due to health reasons was told last year that I needed to loose a significant amount of weight. I have had advice from a number of medical professionals as how to do this, and from their advice I came up with this plan and so far I have now lost over 60 lbs, that is more than 27 kilos, so it does seem to be successful. I have just a few more pounds to go to get to my target weight. - (The lower end of the green band in the doctors BMI chart.). Having successfully lost all this weight, a medical friend said I should share how I did it with others, hence these series of blogs.
So we come to a weeks menu and the aim is to try and make it as least boring as possible. The ultimate as far as to maximise weight loose would be fruit, vegetables, porridge and bran. Nothing else but after a month or so it does become rather boring, so my a typical weeks menu may be as follows
_ Having typed this out it does make me so look forward to the day when I can just enjoy a normal meal, without having to worry about the consequences, or even a drink or two...
_ This is the third part of my blog on how to loose over 50lbs of weight. This will cover the foods consumed themselves.
Part one covered incentive, portion size, and meal frequency. Part two covered exercise, hydration, and setting realistic targets.
I am not a medical doctor or dietician, but due to health reasons was told last year that I needed to loose a significant amount of weight. I have had advice from a number of medical professionals as how to do this, and from their advice I came up with this plan and so far I have now lost over 60 lbs, that is more than 27 kilos, so it does seem to be successful. I have just a few more pounds to go to get to my target weight. - (The lower end of the green band in the doctors BMI chart.). Having successfully lost all this weight, a medical friend said I should share how I did it with others, hence these series of three blogs.
_ So we come to food that is being eaten. The first thing I did was sort out what I could eat/drink and what I could not. Out went
_ In addition I was allowed
_ The base line was bran, oats, fruit and veg normally two times a day with a third meal of something else. I have shared some of the low fat recipes elsewhere in the blog. The main challenge with low fat cooking is that the fat adds flavour to the food. How often have you seen a TV chief drizzle olive oil on a dish just at the point of serving or cook in butter just to give that extra flavour?
To avoid the food tasting bland one needs to add lots of spices to the food, probably anything up to twice the amount normally used. Also curried/hot food tends to taste better when it is low fat than other foods. Another good tip is a teaspoonful of Marmite, takes away the blandness of the food.
As I check on my weight progress every day I can see how I am doing and if doing well and hit my target for the week, then I allowed myself a treat of a bit of a high coca chocolate. If I was not doing so well then the bran/oats & fruit option became my third meal of the day, until I had got back on target again.
In my case hopefully I will hit my target weight in the next couple of months and then I can start to enjoy other foods once again. Whatever I hope this has been helpful and I will keep posting low fat recipes as I experiment.
_ This recipe is just for Colin who was complaining that I had not posted any recently.. Though we had this last night for tea, I forgot to take any snapshots of it so you will have to imagine the beautiful pasta covered in the rich fishy sauce..It only takes about 15 minutes to cook, and a couple of minutes preparation. This makes enough for 2 people
Dyslexic doodles on photography, food (growing, cooking & of course eating), faith and other fascinating things. This is a personal blog expressing my views.