Asian dishes are still very new to me and common dishes to you are probably super special for me. I can count the different Asian dishes I have had on one hand. I was having a good scroll through the old interwebs to come up with a different dish to just a curry. Lentils, or dal caught my eye. Before searching further, I asked one of my close colleagues, who happens to be Asian, what lentils were like. My only experience with lentils was from The Young Ones with Neil’s failed attempts at cooking them. I genuinely expected to look at my husband in the process of cooking and say, “but I just looked at them and they blew up!” My colleague told me they were creamy and absorbed whatever flavours you added to them at the end. I went away and did some research and decided on tarka dal.
If you’re looking for an authentic tarka dal, you better jog on. I don’t do authentic and frankly, I’d rather leave that to the more skilled cooks of where this dish originates. Last thing I want to do is offend people calling this authentic and its anything but! Instead, this is my take on the dish which came out pretty dang good! I sent a photo of it to my colleague who gave it his seal of approval, so I can’t be too far off. My recipe for tarka dal is under 400 calories and has a hefty 10g of protein per serving. Low carb conscious people be advised, this is in the higher end of the spectrum. Do not fear, as with anything I cook, it is full of good complex carbs. This will yield you a family sized pot of dal which can either be enjoyed that night or pop it in the freezer and enjoy later on! If you do plan to freeze a portion or two, just remember to stir the tarka into the dal before you freeze it.
Who doesn’t love pizza? If you don’t love pizza then I want to give you a sympathetic hug. I know for a lot of people, pizza is one of the foods they would put up on a list of something they could eat and calories not count. I can completely agree with this. Pizza is doughy, cheesy and packed full of flavour. Unfortunately, it’s also packed full of grease, calories and carbs galore. As a very occasional treat, there is no problem with having a few slices. However, if you’re like me, you could happily eat pizza every week. Doing this with your basic pizza from the takeaway, freezer or supermarket will quickly pack on the pounds. How dare you stab us in the back, you delicious pie.
There are loads of cauliflower pizza base recipes floating around. It is a great replacement to pizza dough and with the right flavours, you can hardly notice. The catch is, it tastes like cauliflower, duh. If you don’t like cauliflower I would be careful about trying this. Even though it doesn’t taste like you’re eating a boiled cauliflower floret, the taste does still come through. Making this pizza completely from scratch is a little time consuming, but I found the time flew by as I really enjoyed making it. There is something liberating about building the base of a meal on your own. Ha, base, do you see what I did there? Any, bad puns aside, this cauliflower chicken pizza comes in at 388 calories per serving. How many servings I hear you ask? 2 servings per pizza. You read that right, 388 calories for half a pizza! Yeah okay, it is quite a bit of food, but I promise you wont feel gobbed and greasy as you would if you ate half of a regular pizza. Also, the carb content in this is much lower than its doughy cousin and is all complex. Come here good carbs, get in my belly.
Chili can be a bit of a naughty dish sometimes. Order this in a restaurant and you’re looking at a calorie overload from cheese, sour cream and crisps to dip in. The other half and I really love chili so ages back I changed up my recipe to be super healthy, tasty and healthy. I swapped beef mince for turkey mince, kidney beans for chickpeas and packed full of veggies. To be honest with you, I prefer the healthier version to the traditional version! Fiver says I can convert you as well.
I saw a recipe advertised by MyFitnessPal for chili cheese courgette boats. The idea really intrigued me and I wanted to test it out. I read through their ingredients and groaned a bit. I know what I like and decided I would stick to that. The only things I have taken on board from their recipe is the courgette boats and I decided to split the kidney beans and chickpeas. Call me big headed, but I couldn’t give up my chili recipe for another one. My take on this recipe clocks in under 400 calories and that includes some cheeky salted tortilla crisps crumbled on the top. It is a little carb heavy, but its all complex carbs (bar the tortilla crisps). If you’re at all worried, just be easy on the carbs that day and you’ll be fine – balance! By all means, ditch the tortilla crisps to bring down the calories and carbs even lower. This is also a protein power house, so it will keep you full for the rest of the evening.
I did get caught up in dancing and singing while I was cooking, so I forgot photos. I will update this recipe with photos the next time I make it.
Tonight’s dinner was the Hairy Bikers Chicken and Mushroom Risotto. It’s been literally years since I’ve had risotto. It’s one meal I really enjoy eating but it is such a pain to make. Not to mention it isn’t typically waistline friendly
Nothing looks more appetising to me than browned fried mushrooms. I would happily sit down and just eat this for dinner!
either! So you can imagine I got excited when I saw this in the Hairy Bikers Hairy Dieters Book 1. I was also shocked to see it was only 317 calories per serving. I apologise in advance, because I’m still feeling rotten and cooking started quite late this evening, I didn’t remember to track the times on how long it took to cook. I can say though, it did take ages as risotto does.
During the week, I don’t start cooking dinner until Ian calls to say he is on his way home. Some nights this means we don’t eat until after 9pm if he leaves work late. I know some of you may be saying to eat without him, but I can’t. Something wired in me wont let me eat my dinner without him, big old sop over here. 7:30 rolled around and he still hadn’t called to say he was on his way home, so I decided I would do as much prep as I could. I was thankful for this later on and I would suggest to anyone making this recipe to prep ahead if you can!
What do you do when you have leftover chorizo and a bag of sweet potatoes? Make a delicious and healthy breakfast! There’s something about eating a cooked breakfast on a Sunday morning that is cozy and comforting. For us it used to be a fry up or a sausage sandwich. Both lovely breakfasts, but not healthy in the slightest. They can both get a bit samey as well. I always try to eat my breakfast with the mister on the weekends and on Sunday’s this means waiting until he wakes up as it is his lie in day. Naomi got me up at twenty past six this morning, so I had plenty of time to think of something to make for breakfast. Now, I would love to eat breakfast with Naomi and we used to when she woke up later in the morning. However, I just can’t eat that early in the morning anymore and she can’t wait to eat til later. This sort of works out as I can make breakfast a bit more adventurous for the adults since I know I don’t have to battle with a picky palette.
I fancied eggs this morning, but I didn’t just want scrambled eggs or an omelette. Rather, I wanted eggs to accompany something else. I had a look through the fridge and cupboards to see what needed using up when I got the idea for hash. Typically hash is made from potatoes but after I lost my weight I try to stay away from potatoes when I can. I love you potatoes, don’t get me wrong, but you’re bad for my waist line. I had a bag of 4 small sweet potatoes, 1/4 bag of fresh kale, leftover chorizo from last nights Spanish Style Chicken Bake and half an avocado from the other day. All of these needed to be eaten up pronto and were perfect to create a sweet potato hash! I paired these with a few other ingredients and bam – sweet potato and chorizo hash for under 400 calories! Now this recipe is high in fat, but don’t go running for the hills. There is such a big misconception about fat and that it’s bad for you. Wrong! Our bodies need fat and it’s important to eat the right fats in our diet. Where this has around 19g of fat, they are good fats from the avocado, egg and coconut oil.
Last week I did a review of Joe Wicks Lean In 15 followed by me trialing 3 different recipes. This week, I will be doing my review of the Hairy Bikers: Hairy Dieters Book 1. I could not wait to dig my little claws into this book as I absolutely ADORE the Hairy Bikers. I drove my husband mad when I was pregnant as they were pretty much all I would watch. I think this contributed to my daughters mad giggles when she sees them on TV, sorry not sorry.
The first recipe I chose to make was the Spanish Style Chicken Bake. This made my belly rumble when I read the recipe because not only does it include my favourite meat but also chorizo. I haven’t cooked with chorizo since I moved to the UK nearly 6 years ago, partly out of fear that it wouldn’t taste the same as it did back in America. After making this, I don’t care if it doesn’t taste the same. Welcome back to my palette, chorizo! Aside from that, for only 370 calories per serving including potatoes you genuinely cannot go wrong.
Dinner tonight was a very quick chicken stir fry with homemade peanut sauce. Very yummy and under 400 calories! I won’t class this as homemade or a recipe as I used a vegetable stirfry pack.
The whole meal took around 10 minutes to make which is perfect for a busy weeknight tea. Typically on Thursday’s we eat quite late due to Naomi being at nursery. She doesn’t go to nursery near our home, so she’s usually back home aroun 7pm. Thus meaning we don’t get to eat sometimes until around 8:30 after she’s been put to bed and we’ve settled down.
Today wasn’t going to be any different until there was a fire at the nursery. Thankfully everyone was alright, but it did mean Naomi had to come home early. Horray for not having to eat right before bed!
This is yet another simple “throw it in the pan” kind of meal. I cooked a large sliced chicken breast in a wok with frylight until it was cooked through. I then threw in the stirfry mix with an added 6 sliced chestnut mushrooms. I let these cook for around 8 minutes while I scrambled 2 medium eggs in a frying pan. I then added the eggs and homemade peanut sauce into the wok and cooked for a few more minutes. That’s it, piping hot delicious stirfry is ready.
The peanut sauce was amazing! I’ve never made it before, but I threw a few things together thinking back to my chow mein ingredients. Mind you, I could only taste it for a second before I lost my sense of taste again, thanks cold. The sauce itself is so simple and uses basic cupboard ingredients. All you need is:
- 2 tbsp peanut butter
- 1 tbsp Greek yogurt
- 1 1/2 tsp light soy sauce
- 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
- splash of water
Thats it! Mix it up until you have a sauce. I didn’t specify an amount of water because everyone has their own idea of how a sauce should be, so just add a splash at a time until you get your desired consistency.
#healthyeating #healthyliving #healthychoices #healthyhappyme #food #fooddiary #weightlossjourney #weightlossmanagement #down67lbs #down4st11lbs #determinedtosucceed #dinner #tea #under400calories #highprotein
Look at this beast! I could eat the page. Way to go, Joe!
Chicken pie is such a hearty and comforting food. It is also usually a high calorie and high fat food. I can’t remember the last time I had chicken pie, so when I saw this in Joe Wicks Lean In 15, I had to make it.
The book doesn’t show any macros or nutrient facts, but I assumed as the recipe calls for double cream it would be quite high. I was so, so wrong. I entered the ingredients into MyFitnessPal and was so surprised when it came out to 377 calories per serving! Praise the chicken pie gods!
Now the book is formed around 15 minute meals and workouts to help keep you lean. This recipe breaks the 15 minute rule and took me more
around 40 minutes. I forgive you Joe because this chicken pie calls for double cream. DOUBLE CREAM. It could take 3 hours to make if it means I can ingest double cream guilt free.
My husband is a big fan of a Chinese takeaway. If he had the choice, I think he would eat it daily. This was one of the harder parts of us choosing to lead healthier lifestyles. I’d be a liar if I said we didn’t have takeaway still, because we do occasionally. We typically have one once a month, where as we used to have 3-4 a week. A WEEK. We would also order enough to feed a small family, no joke. Our normal order for the two of us was chicken chow mein, chicken fried rice, crispy wontons, chicken in black bean sauce, chips and prawn crackers (can you tell we like chicken?). No wonder we were tubby.
I wanted to do something to tell him thank you. He has done a lot for me lately and sacrificed so much for me to change my life and go on my weight loss journey. I know the way to his heart is through his stomach, so making one of his favourite dishes was an easy choice for me.
A normal chicken chow mein from the takeaway can be around 800 calories and over 40g of fat. My version halves this at 374 calories and 17g of fat. Guilt free eating with all the taste!