5:2 Fast Day Dinner – Soup, Steak with Salad, Cherry Dessert

Simple Vegetable Soup

Simple Vegetable Soup

Simple Vegetable Soup

Per person:

  • 100g frozen veggies (not including potatoes)
  • 1 tsp marigold bouillon powder
  • 300ml water

Simmer 20 mins, blend a little if you like to vary the texture.

70 kcals per serving.


Rump Steak, Garlic Mushrooms, Light Coleslaw, Watercress and Blood Orange Salad

Rump Steak (100g) with garlic mushrooms, coleslaw and watercress salad

Rump Steak (100g) with garlic mushrooms, coleslaw and watercress salad

We don’t often eat red meat and I find even a small portion quite filling, so this seemed like it would be a good choice for a fast day, when it is helpful to eat protein, which the body cannot store – and it is especially needed if you are exercising.

I cooked the mushrooms (2 each, chopped) in a frying pan with the faintest hint of olive oil and a couple of tablespoons of water. The steak was dry-fried. The coleslaw was made with mayo and plain yogurt. With the watercress I added the segments from 1/2 a blood orange (between 2 people) and a few baby tomatoes (I know, not in season, but I like a bit of colour…) and dressed it with the orange juice.

210 kcals

5 Spice Cherry Compote with Fromage Frais

For dessert I got some stoned cherries out of the freezer and put 12 per person in a saucepan, with a pinch of 5 spice powder and about 100ml of water. Cook gently, shaking occasionally, until nicely warmed through. Serve with a little pot of plain 0% fat fromage frais. Note that no sugar was added, the cherries are quite sweet in themselves and the spice gives the whole dish a bit of a lift.

55 kcals

5 Spice Cherry Compote with Fromage Frais

5 Spice Cherry Compote with Fromage Frais

Total for the day for me – 475 kcals. With a breakfast of Smoked Trout and Scrambled Eggs, this was a day with plenty of protein and hardly any carbs.  I think we both felt like we could demolish several hot buttered crumpets and a slice of Christmas Cake somewhere in the middle of the afternoon, as we were feeling not only hungry, but cold as well – but honestly that soon passed with a cup of lime and ginger tea…..

I really feel as though I have had plenty to eat and will be happy to go to bed with just a cup of camomile tea!

5:2 Fast Day Breakfast ~ Smoked Trout and Scrambled Egg

Quick and easy high protein breakfast for a 5:2 fast day

quick and easy fast day breakfast

Smoked Trout and Scrambed Egg – a quick and easy fast day breakfast

  • Smoked Trout (or Smoked Salmon)
  • Egg
  • Pepper
  • wedge of lemon (optional, to serve)

140 kcals ( 45g smoked trout, 1 egg) or 240 kcals (65g smoked trout, 2 eggs)

Use a good non-stick pan for the eggs and you won’t need to add any butter. Use the best eggs you can get, preferably organic free-range. Crack into a jug, whisk lightly with a fork, season with freshly ground black pepper. You can either cut the trout into pieces and mix in with the egg just before serving, or serve the slices with a wedge of lemon.

5:2 Meal Plan Feb 9 -16

We’re on to week 5 of our 5:2 and it’s proving to be straightforward to stick to and the results are pleasing – we are both visibly slimmer. I’m trying to increase my activity level as well with a weekly Zumba class, some cycling and in between using Wii Fit and Wii Zumba.

So my plan for the week ahead. I’m going to the local market on Sunday and will be hoping that they have some lovely seasonal veg to use – at this time of year I might find sprouting broccoli, leeks, parsnips and chicory. Not much happening in my garden, just a few parsnips and some beetroot left. Several of the meals here are based on BBC Good Food recipes, though I nearly always reduce the sugar/fat/carbs even more. I’ll be putting up my own versions as soon as I get tome to write them up.

Note: calorie amounts here are for what I eat myself, my target is 1200 calories on an ordinary day and 400 – 500 on a fast day (I’m only 5′ tall and base my requirements on being sedentary – extra food has to be earnt by exercise!). I serve larger portions to my husband!

Here’s the plan:-


  • breakfast: porridge with a little soya milk – 64 kcal
  • lunch: Home made pizza – 320 kcal for a half portion
    (When I first made these pizzas I thought we would eat a whole one between us, but I usually only eat 1/4 and there is always some left over for tomorrow’s supper)
    Mixed Leaf Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette – 50 kcal
    Satsuma – 30 kcal
  • supper: Indian Chickpea and Vegetable Soup – 170 kcal
    Sardines on Toast – 140 kcal (per slice)
    Chocolate Pear Crisp – 140 kcal
  • extras: 2 glasses of wine and 1 dark Belgian chocolate (we’ve been SO good!)


  • breakfast: wholewheat toast with a scrape of butter and marmite – 110 kcal
  • lunch: Baked Orange Chicken with Seasonal Vegetables – 400 kcal
    (we’ve had this nearly every week recently, I like the fact that I get at least 3 meals from this, plus stock for soup)
    Baked Pear with Amaretti and vanilla ice cream – 140 kcal
    (1 scoop of carte d’Or ice cream on half a hot pear with its crunchy topping. yummy)
  • supper: Indian Chickpea and Vegetable Soup – 170 kcal
    leftover Pizza and Salad – 200 kcal
    Mocha Fromage Blanc – 50 kcal
  • extras: 2 glasses of wine and 1 dark Belgian chocolate (that’s it for treats until next weekend…)

Monday – FAST day

  • breakfast: Scrambled Egg with Smoked Trout140 kcal
    quick and easy fast day breakfast - 140 kcals

    quick and easy fast day breakfast – 140 kcals

    Simple Vegetable Soup

    Simple Vegetable Soup – 70 kcals

  • dinner: Simple Vegetable Soup – 70 kcal
    (100g frozen veggies, 1 tsp marigold bouillon powder, 300ml water per person, simmer 20 mins, blend a little if you like to vary the texture)
    Rump Steak – 100g / 125 kcal,
    Watercress and Orange Salad – 40 kcal,
    Light Coleslaw – 30 kcal
    Mushrooms with Garlic – 15 kcal
    Cherry compote with fromage blanc – 55 kcal
    (frozen cherries, 5 spice powder, a little water, simmer until softened. sprinkle a little spice on the fromage blanc too)
  • Total for the day: 475 kcal
Rump Steak (100g) with garlic mushrooms, coleslaw and watercress salad

Rump Steak (100g) with garlic mushrooms, coleslaw and watercress salad – 210 kcals

5 Spice Cherry Compote with Fromage Frais

5 Spice Cherry Compote with Fromage Frais – 55 kcals


  • breakfast: half a grapefruit
  • lunch: Leftover baked chicken and vegetables
    Cherry compote with fromage blanc
  • supper: Moroccan spiced cauliflower and almond soup
    (this was a big hit last week, so I’ll do a whole cauli this time and freeze what’s left)
    Tuna and bean salad with feta cheese
    Pancakes with lemon and sugar / maple syrup (it’s Shrove Tuesday!)


  • breakfast: wholewheat toast
  • lunch: Thai style turkey stir fry with noodles and prawn crackers
    apple and cheese
  • Chicken fajita wraps (using remaining leftover chicken) with guacamole
    kiwi fruit

Thursday – FAST day

  • breakfast: Porridge with blackberries
  • dinner: Carrot and coriander soup
    Smoked mackerel with a poached egg and wilted spinach


  • breakfast: half a grapefruit
  • lunch: Ham, egg and chips
    (restricted to 100g of chunky oven chips)
    fresh fruit salad
  • Carrot and coriander soup
    Pasta spirals with duck ragu
    fruit with fromage blanc

That’s it. I’ll add in the rest of the calorie counts later, along with any other fruits or veggies that get included.

Baked Orange Chicken with Pumpkin, Parsnips and Peppers

The idea here is to have the enjoyment of a roast chicken, but by using orange juice instead of fat and having other veggies instead of potatoes, the whole meal is lighter and healthier. When there are just the 2 of us for lunch, I can get several meals from an average sized bird, plus then there’s the bones to make stock with for a tasty soup.

a great alternative to a Sunday Roast - Baked Orange Chicken with Pumpkin, Parsnip and Peppers

a great alternative to a Sunday Roast – Baked Orange Chicken with Pumpkin, Parsnip and Peppers

Serves 4
325 calories per serving, 22g carb, 28g protein

  • 1 whole chicken
  • 2 oranges
  • 1 lime
  • 500g pumpkin or butternut squash
  • 1 med-large parsnip
  • 1 red pepper
  • 1 red onion
  • 1 red chilli
  • 1 tbsp jerk seasoning
  • 1 tsp Bisto gravy powder (optional)
  • 300 ml vegetable stock or water

Heat the oven to 180C.

Remove any visible fat from the chicken.

Peel the pumpkin or squash, the parsnip and the red onion. Trim the pepper and  chilli and remove the seeds and pith. Cut all the veggies into wedges and put into a roasting tray.

Make slivers from some of the orange and lime peel (no pith) and reserve. Lightly grate the remainder over the veggies. Squeeze the juice of the fruits and pour half over the veggies. Put the chicken on top and brush the remainder of the juice over. Rub in the jerk seasoning.

Bake for 1 to 1.5 hours, until the chicken is cooked through, basting regularly with the juice.

Put the chicken to rest on a warm serving plate and keep the veggies warm while you make the gravy.

If there is any visible fat in the pan juices, strain it off. Add stock or water to the pan together with the orange and lime rind. I like to use a little Bisto mixed with water to make the gravy a little thicker, but it will have a good colour anyway from the jerk spices. Bring to the boil and simmer for few minutes whilst steaming other veggies to serve with it, such as julienne carrots, broccoli spears and peas.

Serve slices or portions of meat without skin, the wonderful coloured vegetables alongside and gravy with some of the peel to bring the whole dish together.

You could use sweet potato or beetroot instead of parsnip.

Based on a recipe in an old Good Housekeeping cookery club book “Healthy Eating”, 1995.

5:2 Meal Plan Feb 2 – 9

Amazing, this is our 4th week of doing the 5:2 diet and we are both feeling good and looking better!

Here’s my plan for the week, almost completed (my plans run Saturday – Friday). I won’t include breakfast except on Fast Days. My brekkie is usually either a slice of home-made wholewheat toast with marmite (or peanut butter for a treat) or porridge, or occasionally half a grapefruit.

We are trying to switch to having our main meal in the middle of the day and a lighter supper – except of course for fast days when we aren’t having lunch at all!

  • Sat lunch: home made thin crust pizza with parma ham, sundried tomatoes and buffalo mozzarella, green salad. satsuma
  • Sat supper, with friends: guacamole with taco chips. super healthy salmon burgers with rice (based on BBC Good Food recipe), pickled carrot ribbons and steamed broccoli. crepes with lemon and sugar (Candelmas Day treat)
  • Sun lunch: Orange baked chicken with pumpkin, parsnips & peppers. baked pear with amaretti
  • Sun supper: Moroccan spiced cauliflower and almond soup (BBC Good Food). leftover pizza and salad. fruit salad with fromage blanc
  • Mon breakfast: ham and poached egg
  • Mon supper: Vegetable soup. Baked cod with steamed vegetables. Fruit salad with fromage blanc
  • Tue lunch: leftover baked chicken and vegetables. Cherry compote (no sugar) and fromage blanc
  • Tue supper: Grilled halloumi. Rice and beans with tuna. Cherry compote with fromage blanc and crumbled amaretti
  • Wed lunch: Coronation chicken (mayo mixed with yogurt) with avocado salad. half a pear and a satsuma
  • Wed supper: Lentil and coconut curry with cauliflower (based on BBC Good Food), naan bread. spiced pineapple with cinnamon fromage frais (based on BBC Good Food, but much less honey)
  • Thus breakfast: porridge with blackberries
  • Thurs dinner: vegetable sop. smoked haddock with poached egg and spinach. satsuma
  • Fri lunch: Mexican meatballs with wild and basmati rice mix, avocado salad. cheddar cheese. satsuma
  • Fri supper: Chorizo and rocket spaghetti. spiced pineapple with fromage frais

Focus on Flavour – Keeping it Light

Since early January we have been working on evolving our lifestyle with the aim of getting our bodies back to normal, i.e. not ‘overweight’, improving our fitness level and hopefully increasing our chances of living to a ripe old age in good health.

We are following a 5:2 diet (5 days eating normal, healthy meals: 2 days restricted calorie intake – 500 for women/ 600 for men), inspired by Michael Mosley’s “The Fast Diet”

With this in mind I am preparing a lot of our meals from scratch and trying to eliminate unnecessary calories.

I’m going to start trying to photograph our meals, especially when it is something new.

Each week I am planning our meals for the week, so I’m going to share those meal plans here and link to recipes or include my own as and when I can.