Anniversary 5:2 Meal Plan

Anniversary? Yes, I’ve been maintaining my weight on 5:2 for a year today!

Scotch Eggs with Light Coleslaw Griddled Courgette Salad _MG_2492

 

 

 

 

 

I was so thrilled to achieve my healthy weight target (55kgs for me, which is somewhere in the middle of the normal BMI range for my height and age) let June, but I am even more delighted to have been able to stay there. I gave myself a 2 kg range to stay within (53 – 55) and in the last year I have not gone below the bottom, and only temporarily very slightly over (like when I have been away on holiday and not fasted for a week).

So I thought it would be of interest to show you a typical menu plan for a week, bearing in mind that I have a TDEE of about 1300 without exercise, so I don’t have a lot of calories to play with, but I certainly eat well and pretty much what I want.

_MG_3346

 

 

 

 

 

Ok here’s my meal plan for the next week. It’s BBQ weather! I still have lots of strawberries, the cherries are ripening, artichokes are ready and the shops are starting to be full of summer fruits. Recipes for dishes in bold text are included in  5:2 Healthy Eating for Life, those in italics are in Focus on Flavour. Some recipes are new and once I have cooked them again and calorie counted them, I will share them with you.

  1. Friday
    • Ham, Egg and Chips
    • fresh fruit
    • Spanakopitta – spinach and feta filo triangles (recipe here)
    • Lemony Lamb Kebabs with Wholewheat Pita  (recipe here) and Greek Salad with Feta and Olives 
    • Homemade Strawberry ice cream drizzled with strawberry coulis and sprinkled with strawberry dust from my latest thing, dehydrated strawberries
  2. Saturday
    • Thin Crust Wholewheat Ham and Chorizo Pizza with Green Salad with Seeds
    • fresh fruit
    • Spring Rolls (if I am able to buy fresh beanshoots, I will make them myself)
    • Chicken Satay with Satay Sauce, cucumber, spring onion and carrot ribbons and Beanshoot Salad. Maybe a little rice to go with it
    • Cheesecake in Chocolate Cups with Strawberries
  3. Sunday
    • Globe Artichoke hearts with lemon juice and melted butter
    • Leftover pizza and salad
    • fresh fruit
    •  Out for dinner
  4. Monday – Fast Day
    • Harira style Soup (vegetables in a spicy tomato based broth) 125
    • Harissa-rubbed Chicken breast with vegetable accompaniments  250
    • Poached Spiced Cherries with Fromage Frais – 100
  5. Tuesday
    • Peppered Mackerel with Avocado, Cherry and Walnut Salad and Minted Beetroot Salad
    • fresh fruit
    • BBQ Sweetcorn
    • Moroccan style Chicken Kebabs with Kachumber Salad drizzled with argan oil, Wholewheat Maneesh (seedy flatbread) and yogurt with ginger
    • Poached Spiced Cherries with filo sesame wafers
  6. Wednesday 
    • A picnic of Oven Baked Scotch Eggs,  Black Pepper Chicken Sticks with Spicy Tomato Dipping Sauce and Light Coleslaw with Cherries
    • Strawberry Marshmallow Mousse
    • Chargrilled Courgette Salad (recipe here)
    • BBQ Toulouse Sausage with spicy Puy Lentil Salad
    • Cherry and Choc Chip Gelato
  7. Thursday – Fast Day
    • Italian Vegetable Soup – 124
    • Haddock in Saffron Sauce – 205 with cauliflower rice (recipe here)
    • Mocha Dessert – 87 with a few blueberries (recipe here)

Pizza

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • I usually start my day with two cups of tea (with soya milk as I don’t like dairy milk).
  • Breakfast on non-fast days is a plain yogurt with a few berries and one slice of wholewheat toast with almond butter and marmite; or two slices of toast. Black coffee. I don’t eat breakfast on fast days.
  • Mid morning on non-fast days I have a small capuccino made with soya milk. On fast days I have espresso.
  • Mid afternoon I have a herbal or ordinary tea.
  • While preparing dinner I have a glass of water kefir.
  • On non-fast days I do usually have wine.  As we often don’t eat dinner until 8pm or so, if I have a glass of wine before dinner, I will also have some nuts. At the weekend I enjoy having one or two pieces of dark chocolate after dinner, but I rarely think of chocolate these days!
  • I drink plenty of water and occasionally a glass of unsweetened lemon squash

I hope you have a great week! I’m looking forward to it…. 🙂

Focus on Flavour soon to be on Amazon and Kindle…

I’m very excited that my first cookery book Focus on Flavour, Recipes inspired by living in South West France, will soon be available on the Amazon bookstore in printed form and on kindle! It is also already available on the Apple ibook store.

Focus on Flavour

This book was first self-published in 2008 and has been available in printed form through Lulu since. At one time they made it available on Amazon, but then the rules changed and it needed a new revision. So by way of preparation for publishing my NEW 5:2 Healthy Eating for Life book, I thought I would get to grips with the process, working with my existing content.  I have used Amazon’s own Createspace self-publishing resource. I got the final version of the book and cover uploaded on Sunday – the printed copy is already dispatched! I can’t wait to see it! Once I have checked the proof, I will be able to make it available for all. More news as it happens!

The paper of the new Amazon book is a little lighter weight, but the cost is a good deal less. Instead of selling a printed copy at 30€ I will be able to offer it for less than 20€.

As for the kindle version, I am using KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing) and this time, my e-book will be properly formatted to make the most of the e-reading experience.I will know what the e-book costs once I have completed my upload – just working on the boring indexing, cross-referencing and double-triple checking now.

Coming soon!  And then, the 5:2 recipes, which I have been working on all this year 🙂

I’m normal! At least weight-wise….

After goodness knows how many years of being overweight, I have now achieved a major target – I am in the healthy, normal zone of BMI for my age and height! Thank you Michael Mosley for revealing the benefits of 5:2 to us! I really think that this has radically changed our lives for the better.

Not only do we look better, but we feel more energetic and have been able to tackle a major change of outlook. With the prospect of improving, rather than declining health, we are now considering moving aboard a barge and exploring the canals of Europe. Having lived on a yacht for several years in the Caribbean earlier this century, this isn’t such a major upheaval as it might seem for us, but before we can undertake such an activity, we need to sell our house, so this week I have spent time on creating a website for that http://houseinfrancewithincome.com/ – hence not much in the way of updates here!

But of course we are still eating healthy food and are planning to continue with the 5:2 way of life. I still have a couple of kilos to lose to get comfortably under 9 stone and well within the healthy BMI zone and Graham is finding that he is hovering around his target quite comfortably.

Here’s a few of the interesting and flavourful meals we have eaten this week. I’ve not had time to write up the recipes or check the calorie counts exactly, but I can assure you that these will all fit into a healthy, balanced meal plan designed to keep you slim 🙂 I hope they will inspire you  :-

Wholewheat Tagliatelle with Tenderstem Broccoli and Chilli

Wholewheat Tagliatelle with Tenderstem Broccoli and Chilli Flakes with Parmesan – based on recipe in Delicious magazine

Sticky Chicken with Rice and Sweetcorn

Sticky Chicken on a bed of stir-fried vegetables, with Camargue Red and Brown Rice with Sweetcorn and Satay Sauce

Scotch Eggs with Light Coleslaw

Oven Baked Scotch Eggs with Light Coleslaw

Flageolet, Pepper, Spring Onion and Guindilla Salad

Flageolet, Red Pepper, Spring Onion and Guindilla Pepper Salad

Crustless Asparagus and Smoked Salmon Quiche

Crustless Asparagus and Smoked Salmon Quiche with Cauliflower Mash

A duo of beetroot, celery and apple salads

A duo of beetroot, celery and apple salads with a tahini and yogurt dressing

Baked Fish with Caper Dressing and Salsa Brava

Baked Salmon with Caper Dressing and Salsa Brava

Pea, Lettuce and Sorrel Soup

Pea, Lettuce and Sorrel Soup

Stuffed Pancakes au Gratin with a fagot of asparagus

Stuffed Crepes with a cheesy sauce, with a fagot of asparagus and a fennel, radish and rocket salad

 

If you do find inspiration from my blog, the best way I can think of for you to say thank you, would be to help support the sweet granddaughter of my closest childhood friend. Little Lexi Sky was born with muscular dystrophy and cerebral palsy and has a difficult life ahead of her. She requires 24 hour care and equipment that is not covered by the NHS. Any donations would be so gratefully received, thank you.  Please go to http://tinyurl.com/LexiSky

Leek and Crunchy Carrot Gratin

This is a very flavourful vegetarian main which is low enough in calories to have on a 5:2 Fast Day or as part of a calorie-counted healthy eating plan :-
Leek and Crunchy Carrot GratinOr serve as a side dish with chipolata sausages :-

Leek Gratin with Chipolatas

 The calculations for calories came out differently on MyFitnessPal than on my recipe card, below. Either way, no more than 265 kcals for the portions of gratin shown here.

The caraway seeds add a really interesting flavour. 

Leek and Crunchy Carrot Gratin
Serves 5
A yummy leek based vegetarian main dish, or a good accompaniment to sausages (baked in the oven at the same time). With the vegetables, milk, cheese, breadcrumbs and nuts, this has a good balance of ingredients.
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
25 min
Total Time
45 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
25 min
Total Time
45 min
Ingredients
  1. 500g leeks, cut into chunks
  2. 150ml vegetable stock or water
  3. 1 tsp caraway seeds
  4. sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  5. 250ml semi-skimmed milk
  6. 10g unsalted butter
  7. 1 tblsp plain flour
For the topping
  1. 60g fresh wholewheat breadcrumbs
  2. 2 medium carrots, grated
  3. 75g grated hard cheese
  4. 15g chopped walnuts
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 180c.
  2. Put the leeks in a saucepan with the water and seeds.
  3. Bring to the boil, cover and then simmer for 7 to 10 minutes, until the leeks are softened.
  4. Remove the leeks with a slotted spoon to a baking dish.
  5. Pour the remaining liquid into a jug and make up to 300ml with milk.
  6. Melt the butter in a saucepan and add the flour to make a roux.
  7. Gradually add the liquid, beating well after each addition, to make a smooth sauce.
  8. Simmer the sauce for a couple of minutes, stirring.
  9. Check the seasoning.
  10. Pour over the leeks.
  11. Mix all the topping ingredients together and sprinkle over the top.
  12. Bake in the oven for 20 - 25 minutes, until golden.
Notes
  1. I used oddments of cheese that I had left - a little cheddar, some comté and some crumbled blue sheep's cheese, which gave an interesting mix of flavours.
Adapted from The Ultimate Healthy Eating Cookbook (1999), consultant editor Anne Sheasby
Adapted from The Ultimate Healthy Eating Cookbook (1999), consultant editor Anne Sheasby
Focus on Flavour http://www.focusonflavour.com/

5:2 Mediterranean Meal Plan for week 11

Now updated with photos and calorie counts.


Swiss ChardContinuing my tour of light and healthy Mediterranean cuisine this week, with influences from France, Morocco and Italy, but adding in a little inspiration from elsewhere to spice it up a bit.

I’ll be aiming to use asparagus and rhubarb as key seasonal ingredients. At the market this morning, I also bagged a lovely bunch of watercress, some Swiss chard and a very healthy looking bunch of pale and interesting carrots.

Behind the carrots are some early globe artichokes – my favourite way of eating these is with loads of butter, so I’d better find a more healthy recipe before I add those to my meal plan!

A few less dishes on this plan – I am finding that we often have left-overs to use up, as I am still buying and cooking more than we are actually eating!  

Rainbow Carrots

This is week 11 for us on our 5:2 diet. I am over 2/3 of the way to my target healthy weight now, having lost 8.7 kg (19lbs), which is absolutely brilliant. My husband meanwhile has lost nearly 15 kg and has revealed that there was a six pack there, all along… 🙂

So this week we’ll do another 2 fast days and the rest of the time we’re keeping light on the carbs, so as not to lose momentum – but there are plenty of delicious treats along the way, as I focus on flavour and make light but tasty versions of some of our favourite dishes to share with you.

 

Spring vegetables with sesame crispRed Mullet with Coconut Lime Sauce and Puy Lentil SaladRhubarb Compote with Cardamom Custard

Saturday: dinner for friends ~ 550 kcals

  • Cucumber, Broad Bean, Pea and Apple Salad with Sesame Filo Crisps
  • Red Mullet with Coconut Lime sauce, Puy Lentil salad and Watercress Salad
  • Rhubarb and Orange Compote with Cardamom Custard

Sticky Marmalade Duck with Celeriac Mash and Red Onion ConfitAsparagus, Comté and Mustard Pockets
 

 

 

 

Sunday: local specialities and home grown rhubarb

  • Asparagus Filo Pastries with Grainy Mustard and Gruyere ~100 kcals
  • Sticky Marmalade Duck with Celeriac Mash, Red Onion Confit and Swiss Chard ~310 kcals
  • Fromage Blanc with Apple and Ginger ~ 120 kcals

Carrot and Cumin Salad  Baked Fish with a Mustard Masala Plum Kulfi

Monday ~ Fast Day with an Indian kick

  • Scrambled Egg with Smoked Trout ~ 130 kcals
  • Watercress Soup ~60 kcals
  • Carrot and Cumin Salad ~40 kcals
  • Fish with a Mustard Masala, served with Kachumber Salad ~200 kcals
  • Plum Kulfi ~50 kcals

Spring Minestrone Soup Turkey Saltimbocca with Celeriac and Chard RostiBeetroot and Chocolate Cake

Tuesday: Italian day

  • Summer Minestrone Soup ~100 kcals
  • Turkey Saltimbocca alla Romana with a Muscat Jus, served with Celeriac and Swiss Chard Rosti ~230 kcals
  • Beetroot and Chocolate Cake (1/2 serving) ~112 kcals

Chicory and Mushroom SaladCod with Tomato and ChorizoBlood Oranges with Dates and Pistachios

Wednesday: Moorish influences

  • Chicory and Mushroom Salad
  • Cod with Tomato and Chorizo Sauce, served with Grean Beans and French Fries
  • Sliced Blood Oranges with Dates and Pistachio

Simple Vegetable SoupStuffed Salmon Fillet with Steamed VegetablesFruity Tiramisu

Thursday ~ Fast Day Italian style

  • Vegetable Soup ~60 kcals
  • Stuffed Salmon Fillet with steamed vegetables ~225 kcals
  • Fruity Tiramisu ~120 kcals

 Baked baby Beetroot with Spiced Walnuts and Goats Cheese_MG_0918_MG_0928

 
Friday: a Moroccan menu with a Mexican twist

  • Baby Beetroot Salad with Spiced Walnuts and Goats Cheese ~235 kcals
  • Merguez Sausages with Cous-cous, Ginger Yogurt , Baked Butter Beans with Spinach and Carrot Salad ~225 kcals
  • Mojito Cheesecake ~175 kcals

As I go through the week, I’ll be checking my recipes and calorie-counting them, putting some of them up here on my blog. I’m also working towards my 5:2 recipe book…..

 

Hazelnut and Agave Syrup Baklava ~ 110 calories each

I do like a challenge!

I was asked if I could come up with a less syrupy version of baklava and as I had some filo pastry left, I decided to give it a go.  

I’m pretty pleased with the result: crispy, nutty and slightly sticky Baklava at only 110 calories a slice!

Hazelnut and Agave Syrup BaklavaNotes on the ingredients:

I had some agave syrup that I bought for us to try – it is low GI, so better for you as a sweetener than sugar, and while it is processed, it is not synthetic. It is also sweeter than sugar so you need less of it. You could use honey or maple syrup or sugar syrup if you prefer, but as you wouldneed to use more for the same sweetness, the end result would be higher in calories. I didn’t add any sweetness to the pastry itself.

For nuts, I chose to use ground hazelnuts, though I think that walnuts or (unsalted) pistachios, or any other nuts would work just as well.  

I wanted to use rosewater in the syrup, but didn’t have any, so I used orange flower water instead. I think the flowery note makes it more middle-eastern, but if you can’t get either then probably not the end of the world! Maybe use a little lemon juice instead.

I used a slivers of lemon zest in the syrup, but orange zest would also be nice.  

I had a few sheets of filo pastry left, 4 I think, plus a part sheet. So I cut them all to a smaller size, about 20 x 30cm, which I folded over to make my baklava 20 x 15 approx and used the trimmings to make up the layers as well. When baked, I cut this into 8 portion sized pieces – I got a little distracted just before putting it in the oven and didn’t cut it into shapes before baking it. Didn’t seem to matter really, I just had to be a little careful with cutting it after I had poured the syrup over.

I wouldn’t make a whole trayful unless we had a lot of guests.  As it is, if you are prone to being indulgent with sweet things, it might be better to make just half the quantity!

So this recipe makes enough for 8 servings, coming in at around 110 calories each. It was an absolute winner with vanilla ice cream, as it was not as sticky as a traditional baklava. Now we have another 6 pieces to eat 🙂

Hazelnut and Agave Syrup Baklava
Yields 8
flaky and nutty filo pastry with a low GI syrup
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
50 min
Total Time
1 hr 5 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
50 min
Total Time
1 hr 5 min
For the pastries
  1. 4 sheets filo pastry
  2. 50g ground hazelnuts
  3. 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  4. 20g unsalted butter
For the Syrup
  1. 25g / 1 tblsp agave syrup
  2. 1/2 tblsp orange flower water
  3. 3 tblsp water
  4. 1/2 tsp vanilla essence
  5. lemon zest, finely sliced
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 160c.
  2. Melt the butter in a small pan.
  3. Cut your filo pastry into pieces about 20 x 30cm (8 x 12 inches).
  4. Keep the filo that you aren't using wrapped up in cling film or under a damp cloth.
  5. Take one piece and lay it on the baking sheet, doubled over, so that it is 20 x 15.
  6. Brush a little melted butter between the layers and on top (it doesn't need to cover everywhere, just a few light brush strokes).
  7. Repeat with another piece of filo, so that you have 4 layers, lightly buttered.
  8. Spread half the hazelnuts evenly over the pastry and sprinkle with a little cinnamon.
  9. Put another 3 or 4 layers of pastry on, using up any odd pieces, (keeping at least one good looking slice aside) and brushing a little butter on each layer, and on top.
  10. Add another layer of hazelnuts and cinnamon, saving about a half a spoonful of hazelnuts for the top.
  11. Finish with a final 3 or 4 layers filo, lightly buttered and ending with a nice smooth piece on top.
  12. Sprinkle with the remaining hazelnuts.
  13. It's traditional to cut the baklava at this point, into rectangles or triangles, making 8 portions from this quantity.
  14. Bake in the oven for about 50 minutes, turning midway if your oven tend to cook unevenly, until golden brown.
  15. About 10 minutes before the end of cooking, mix your syrup ingredients together in a small saucepan and heat gently.
  16. Remove the baklava from the oven and pour the syrup over.
  17. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Notes
  1. Depending on the size of your filo sheets, you may be able to do more or less layers, but you can use any odd pieces in the middle layers, as long as you start and finish with whole ones.
  2. Serve with coffee, or a small glass of sweet wine, such as Muscat de Beaumes de Venise or Monbazillac. Really very good with a scoop of vanilla ice cream (add 50 calories).
Focus on Flavour http://www.focusonflavour.com/

Apologies for any discrepancies between my calorie estimates and those of my recipe cards. I don’t have control over how it calculates the ingredients and it may be using different products than the ones I have entered and used in MyFitnessPal. If it is critical to you, work with the higher figure!

5:2 My Flavourful Meal Plan for week 9

This week I went to the market in Montaigu-de-Quercy. Lots of lovely fresh seasonal local produce to choose from!

 Montaigu de Quercy _MG_0370 

_MG_0399

I came home with my bags laden :-

lettuces, endive, bean shoots, swiss chard, leeks, brown mushrooms, young turnips, carrots, jerusalem artichokes, watercress, beetroot, radishes, goats cheese, pears, apples and satsumas – and the first asparagus (from Spain).

 

Each week I am trying to feature seasonal produce, but I’m also trying to use up food that I have stored in my freezer, much of which is home-grown.

So my actual plan for the week, updated with calorie counts, designed with flavour in mind for healthy, satisfying  well-balanced meals, which will work for an intermittent fasting and weight loss lifestyle. I’m not showing cups of tea or my standard breakfast, but numbers are included in the daily totala:-

_MG_0375 Sunday ~ 1300 kcals 

  • lunch: leftovers – Pizza and Spanakopitta, Veg Stir Fry with Satay sauce (370); satsuma (30)
  • dinner: Herby Roast Chicken (Alain Ducasse) with Roasted Roots, Braised Turnips and Peas (410);
    Raspberry Cinnamon Meringue (75)
    + 200 kcal of treats (wine and chocolate)!

 

_MG_0368 Monday ~ Fast Day 490 kcals

  • breakfast: Scrambled Egg with Smoked Trout – (140)
  • dinner: Watercress Soup (60); Tuna Steak with ginger and garlic, steamed Asparagus, Beanshoot, Mushroom and Radish Salad (200)
    Baked Pear with Amaretti (100)

 

_MG_0386

Tuesday ~ 1185 kcals

  • lunch: Watercress Soup (60) with cracker (30); 2 Chipolata Sausages with Cauliflower Mash and leftover braised vegetables (360); Satsuma (30)
  • supper: Asparagus Filo Pastries (150); Coronation Chicken Salad (260); Roquefort and digestive biscuit (150); Raspberry Cinnamon Meringue (75)

 

_MG_0387 Wednesday ~ 1275 kcals

 

 

_MG_0388 Thursday ~ Fast Day – 500 kcal

 

 

_MG_0381 Friday: tbd!

    

I’ve updated last week’s meal plan with what we actually ate and the calorie counts. You’ll find my recipes here

I hope you find some of my ideas inspirational and useful.

As always, if you have any questions, please ask. 

Watercress Soup – only 60 calories

I just love the big bunches of watercress that you can buy in French markets. Watercress is rich in vitamins A and C, calcium, iron and folic acid. A bunch like this makes an easy and delicious soup in under 30 minutes. Just the thing to break your fast with.

watercress

Watercress Soup

Serves 4, only 60 kcals per serving

  • I large bunch watercress (450g)
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 10g unsalted butter
  • 1 litre of vegetable stock, made with 10g Marigold Bouillon powder
  • 10g potato flakes
  • a grating of nutmeg

_MG_3264Discard any really coarse stalks from the watercress, as they can be too peppery.

Wash, drain and chop the remainder of the bunch, reserving a few tips for decoration.

Heat the butter in a large pan and gently sauté the onions, stirring from time to time, until softened but not coloured.

Add the chopped watercress, stock, nutmeg and the potato flakes, then simmer gently for about 10 minutes.

Blend until smooth.

Serve with a garnish of watercress leaves, or a swirl of crème fraîche.

Watercress is rich in vitamin C, calcium, iron and folic acid.

5:2 Meal Plan week 8 ( Mar 2 – 9 updated)

Week 8: Now updated with actual meals and calories counts.

I’ve been reading Alain Ducasse “Nature” so I’m inspired by that this week. His recipes are new to me, with some interesting ideas and combinations and slightly different techniques.

Seasonal produce from my shopping in Lauzerte market: broccoli, cauliflower, leeks, rocket, watercress, spring onions, radishes, pears and clementines. Some  parsnips, beetroot and  salsify from the garden too. 

We eat very well on limited calories: portion sizes are small, but there is plenty of variety – normal days are 1200 kcals for me, 1800 for my husband. If we want to eat or drink more than that, we exercise! I try and include fresh fruit and raw vegetables every day, as well as lots of cooked veggies. Many of our normal meals could equally be used on a fast day.

This meal plan is intended to support weight loss of 1 – 2lbs a week for us.

Saturday  _MG_3111 _MG_3362 _MG_0190 Vanila Soya Custard with Banana

    • 1/2 a pink grapefruit, 1 slice w/w toast with 5g butter and marmite – 163 kcal 
      Porridge with prunes and 1/2 banana – 195kcal
    • Home-made Pizza 320 / 480 kcal
      Mixed Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette – 30 kcal
      Satsuma – 30 kcal
    • Spicy Pumpkin Soup  120 kcal with crackers + 54kcal
      Hummus with a strip of wholewheat pitta bread – 65 kcal
      Tuna and Bean Salad with Feta – 230 kcal
      Vanilla and Banana Soya Custard – 166 kcal

Sunday _MG_3080 Herby Roast Chicken Pear with Chocolate Meringue

      • 1/2 a pink grapefruit – 52 kcal 
         toast and marmalade – 220kcal
      • lunch: Moroccan Spiced Cauliflower & Almond soup (BBC Good Food –  but using less olive oil and almonds) -160 kcals
        leftover Pizza 160 kcal
        Green Bean Salad with Tuna – 115 kcal
        satsuma – 30kcal
      • Herby Roast Chicken (Alain Ducasse) with seasonal vegetables – 280 kcal
        
Chocolate Pear Crisp – 120 kcal

Monday – FAST day 

quick and easy fast day breakfast - 140 kcals Watercress Soup 

Tuesday  Turkey Chilli _MG_0248 Fromage Blanc with Ginger

      • Guacamole (85 kcal) with a few Taco Chips
 – 150 kcal 
        Turkey and Bean Chilli
 with brown rice and accompaniments – 260 kcal
      • satsuma – 30 kcal
      • Broad Bean and Goats Cheese Tartines (Alain Ducasse, see above)
      • Fromage Blanc with crystallised ginger (see photo above)

Wednesday

Thursday – FAST day

Simple Vegetable Soup <70  kcals _MG_0302 _MG_0303

Friday _MG_3080 Spanakopitta and Salad

      • Spiced Cauliflower and Almond Soup – 150kcal
      • ham, egg and chips (100g oven chips) – 285 kcal
        poached spiced cherries – 40kcal
      • Spanakopitta with Salad – 250 kcal

If you have any questions about anything, please don’t hesitate to comment, or contact me through the Facebook 5:2 Intermittent Fasting group, where you’ll find me – Belinda Berry or on twitter @bp_berry

5:2 Fast Day Dinner – Greek Night! Low Fat Hummus, Lean Lamb Stir-Fry with Feta

For a change I thought of having lamb for our last fast day dinner in February. One thing led to another, and our meal became greek inspired….

Low fat Hummus and Crudités

I’ve been making hummus since my sister showed me how when I was a teenager. Usually I would be more generous with the tahini paste and olive oil, but when it came to eating it, I don’t think either of us noticed anything missing! If you left out the tahini altogether, it would save 20kcals per serving – personally I love that sesame flavour that it adds, which sets apart home made from so many of the shop bought ones.

Low-fat Hummus

Makes 8 servings of 70kcals each. With crudités – 100kcals.

  • 1 can of chickpeas, drained (265g drained weight)
  • 25g tahini (about 2 level tblsp)
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 clove of garlic, crushed
  • cold water
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper, plus a sprinkle to garnish
  • a drizzle of olive oil (1/2 tsp max)
  • optional garnish: finely chopped mint or coriander

Put the chick peas, lemon juice and garlic into a blender and process until almost smooth, adding water as necessary to keep the blender going and to get the consistency the way you like it – firm is good for scooping up with crudités, then you can make it slightly more sloppy for a normal day when you can dip toasted pita bread into it! Mix in the cayenne pepper and season to taste. I rarely use salt when cooking these days, but on a fast day it feels like a need a bit to help with hydration.

This amount makes 8 fast day sized helpings of 50grams weight (approx 2 tbsp).

Serve in individual dishes (to avoid fighting!) and sprinkle with a little cayenne pepper and a tiny drizzle of olive oil (remembering that 1 tsp of olive oil = 40 kcals….)

Serve with crudités. I used 100g celery, 50g carrot, 30g radish, 50g cucumber and 50g fennel between the 2 of us – 30kcal each.

(Leftovers will go with some wholewheat pitta bread tomorrow and be followed by lamb kebas…)

Lean Lamb Stir-Fry with Feta

I had 3 lean leg steaks in the freezer. After trimming them to remove all separable fat, I had enough meat for our main fast day dish, plus a slightly larger amount for kebabs the following day. (Saves £s as well as lbs, this way of eating!)

Lean Lamb Stir-Fry with Feta

Serves 2, His and Hers portions – 340/240 kcals

  • 165g lean leg of lamb, cubed
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds, toasted and ground
  • 1/2 tsp coriander seeds, toasted and ground (I usually have a jar of these two spices mixed together, which I use often!)
  • 1 medium onion, sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 50g carrots (3 small)
  • 100g celery (3 sticks)
  • 120g cauliflower florets
  • 180g tomatoes (2 large)
  • 80g mushrooms (2 large)
  • 135g spinach
  • 80g savoy cabbage (about a 1/4 of a whole head)
  • 1/2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • seasoning to taste
  • 25g feta cheese

Rub the spices over the lamb and set aside while you prepare the vegetables.

If the spinach has large leaves, discard the stalks and tear the leaves into a few pieces. Halve the tomatoes and cut each half into 4. Slice the mushrooms. Slice the carrots diagonally. Cut the celery into diagonal chunks. Cut the cabbage into wide strips.Lean Lamb Stir-Fry with Feta

Heat half the olive oil in a wok over medium heat. Cook the lamb until nicely browned on all sides. Remove and set aside. Add the onions and garlic and stir fry for a couple of minutes. Next add the carrots, celery and cauliflower and cook a few more minutes. Add the mushrooms and tomatoes. Continue to stir fry as the tomatoes break down and start to release their liquid. You may need to add a little water if they are not particularly juicy, but try not to dilute the luscious flavours too much! Next add the cabbage and give that a minute or so before you add the spinach. Before the spinach has completely wilted down, return the lamb to the pan and mix together well.

Divide into two (unequal!) portions and add sliced or crumbled feta to the top. This makes such a difference to the overall enjoyment of the dish, don’t be tempted to omit it!

His portion

340 kcal portion

We would really have relished a bit more of the cheese on top, but no calories to spare, as we finished our meal with a small helping of 0% fat fromage blanc, topped with a sprinkling of toasted almonds. Maybe it was lacking a drizzle of honey, but hey, it’s a fast day, and you know what?

Her portion

240 kcal portion

We were both happily satiated by our greek inspired dinner.

After a breakfast of porridge with blackberries for me and porridge with prunes for him, that came in for the day just under our targets of 500/600 kcals.

These recipes can be used as part of any weight loss programme or as part of a normal healthy diet. A little carbohydrate in the form of pitta bread and rice, or even oven baked jacket fries, would go well with this meal on a non-fasting day.

These recipes use seasonal ingredients for Februrary :  Cauliflower,  Cabbage and Carrots

If you try these recipes and have any suggestions for improvements, or any comments, I’d love to hear from you.