Who said making your own lunches is easy and is also cheaper than buying the ready-made stuff? Yes I agree, it may be cheaper , and you know exactly what lurks among your salad leaves if you make it yourself. But how do we keep the lunch ideas going?
Nine months into my office job and I am out. Completely out of ideas. I have done the sandwiches, the salads, the soups and now what? As the picture above will tell you, I have resorted to the ready-made stuff. In this case it was an Innocent Veggie pot, which is one of the better choices out there with only 239 calories for the Thai Tom Yum. Stick a yogurt on the end of that lunch and you’re looking at about 350 calories for a very filling lunch, fantastic. But not everyone, and me especially can afford to buy these babies every day.
What’s your secret weapon for when you’re out of lunch ideas? Innocent is my saviour, but I need to get out of the habit of buying them so often. Time to stop being lazy!
Getting back to your usual healthy habits is tough, we all know that …
After 4 weeks of snacking, drinking fizzy, and stuffing my face with delicious Spanish food while away on holiday, coming back to my diet was hard.
The actual healthy eating is not what I am talking about. I mean the decision which you make when you decide to go back to being healthy, and sticking to it is the problem. This is because when you are out of your usual routine, it is almost too easy to snack on something which will automatically make you feel like the day’s good work is ruined anyway, so you might as well carry on munching. I managed by cooking up something special to remind myself just how tasty healthy food is, and how good it makes me feel.
I came up with these ‘pizza-like’ aubergine slices :)
- 1 Small Aubergine, or Half of a Regular One
- 100g of Cooked Rice
- 100g of Pasta Sauce
- 6 Black Olives
- 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
- 30g of Cheddar Cheese
Begin with cutting the aubergine into 3 thick slices, it can be difficult to find a small aubergine so in that case use half, aim for about 1cm thickness. Fry the aubergine on a frying pan on heated oil, and once slightly browned transfer onto a baking tray, unless you have an oven suited frying pan. Spoon an equal amount of cooked rice on top of each of the aubergine slices. Evenly spread the pasta sauce on top of the rice and place the olives on top, finishing with a sprinkle of cheddar.
Bake in the oven for about 15 minutes on 220 degrees, once the cheese is melted it is ready!
Calories – the prepared potion all together adds up to 600kcal which is good for something which tasted very much like pizza. I served mine up with some simple salad leaves, cucumber, tomato and onion.
I finally got the courage to cook fresh mussels…
Yes, it is pretty weird when you are scrubbing away the shells and you can see the remaining ones opening and closing as they wait for their turn, but all that squeamishness is worth it.
The difference between already prepared and frozen mussels and fresh ones is insane!
The recipe is simple…
- 1 kg of Scottish Live Mussels
- 1 onion
- 5 cloves of garlic
- 100 ml of double cream
- 1 glass of white wine
- 1 tbsp. of butter
Fry the diced onion and garlic on a little butter, and once browned add the wine. Bring to the boil and add mussels and cream, pop a lid on and allow to steam away for around 5 minutes. Any shells which do not open need to be thrown away!
Season the sauce to taste :)
Calories, this is a difficult one to calculate, but this portion is for two therefore it is around 300 kcal per portion.
Me recent posts prove how lazy I am getting as a result of excessive exam revision :P
At this stage in the year I need recipes which won’t waste my precious revision time and ones which will keep my tummy full and happy. So here it is, my cheat vegetarian curry, if it takes you longer than 20 minutes to make, I will just assume you were trying to prove me wrong :P
- 1/2 red onion
- 1/2 a courgette
- 1/2 tinned tomatoes
- 6 mushrooms
- 1 cup full of spinach leaves
- 1tbs of Jalfrezi Curry Paste
- Salt, pepper, chilli for seasoning
- 1 tsp olive oil
Start by chopping up the onion, mushrooms and courgette into whatever pieces you like, I don’t make mine neat or uniform. Fry in a little bit of olive oil until slightly browned and softened. Add tinned tomatoes and curry paste and allow to cook on a small heat for 5 minutes. Just before taking off the heat add the chopped spinach leaves and mix in until wilted, it should not take any longer than 30 seconds. Season to taste, I think the spicier, the more authentic it seems :P
That is it! Serve with some rice and tuck in! :D
Calories – 280 for the whole dish. Remember to add the calories of the rice or whatever you are enjoying my cheat curry with.
By the way, writing all the halve quantities in the ingredients list made me realise that I never mentioned that I usually make my recipes on a 1 person serving basis. If I am making a bigger portion I will point out how many servings it contains. Sorry, my OCD made me point that out :P
Love, hellotummys xx
A recent episode of a program I spoke about already, ‘Secret Eaters’ tested the influence of pause points on how much we eat.
It seems like stating the obvious but just give it a thought. Research shows that we are likely to eat much more food if we do not use pause points in our eating process. For example, when we have a large sharing bag of crisps, we will continue eating even when we no longer feel the need to eat more, just because the pack is open and there is much more available to us. However, if we have the same quantity of crisps but in smaller individual packs, we would eat much less, simply because we would need to reach for, and open a whole new pack.
Also, the empty packs would act as a reminder to how much we have actually eaten, once again resulting in a decreased amount of crisps consumed.
What does this mean to our diet? First of all, share the sharing bags, that is what they are meant for :P But try to adapt this research on a larger scale. A year ago I lived in a studio flat, where access to the kitchen and therefore access to food was easy, the fridge was literally always staring at me. Moving into standard university halls changed that as now the kitchen is a walk away, meaning I am much less likely to grab a snack, and so the distance between myself, and the food in itself is a pause point.
Pause points give you an opportunity to consider whether you actually need more food. Use them!
Love, hellotummys xx
I am determined to continue eating pasta and losing weight…
Most diets forbid pasta/potatoes, especially on an every-other-day basis. But who with a pasta addiction like me can live like that? It’s impossible.
The trick is to keep the amount of ingredients which you add to pasta minimal. The usual’s such as meat/tuna/mayonnaise can push the calories way up. My way of keeping the calories down is using a rich sauce to create a lot of flavour and add ingredients which will enhance the flavour such as olives and cheese.
The best thing about this recipe is that none of the ingredients take away or mask the pasta flavour which I love so much.
A serving this size comes to 550kcal depending on how much cheese you use.
- I used 100g of Spaghetti Pasta
- 1/3 of a large Dolmio jar of tomato and basil sauce
- 30g of cheddar cheese
- 10 Olives
By the way, pasta is great for revision periods when anything besides revising makes you feel guilty, this dish requires 15 minutes from dry pasta to a lovely plate spaghetti.
Hands up who’s planning to enjoy the … acceptable… weather this weekend!
Finally, it is the weekend again and I really feel like saying ‘Why did it take you so long!’ Being swamped by revision for University exams along with getting my summer plans sorted, weekdays are an absolute bore. So when it comes to the weekend I squeeze every last drop of fun out of it. And in this case, every last drop of frozen yoghurt :D
Loads of you will be going out and looking for a snack while you’re at it. So I thought I would stop you in your tacks before you make any horrible buying decisions (my marketing course is really getting engraved in my brain :P). Before you grab an ice-lolly or ice-cream why not give frozen yoghurt a go.
Last weekend we stopped by SNOG at Westfield London, and it was amaaaazing! We did share a large portion hence it looks like a mountain :P
Calories: 100g of frozen yoghurt is 100kcal. So if you go for a medium sized (210g) pot and add some healthy toppings i.e. raspberries and dark chocolate your lovely pot of delicious-ness will not exceed 300kcal. Which is amazing in comparison to let’s say Ben and Jerry’s Cookie Dough which is 320 kcal per 117g, which is less than half of your SNOG yoghurt.
I promise it tastes just like ice-cream, you could fool me and easily make me believe it is ice-cream. Plus, there’s 4 lovely flavours to choose from, Green Tea, Mango, Vanilla and Chocolate and a huge choice of toppings.
Enjoy your SNOG ;)
Love, hellotummys xx