Lunch

This is one of my fav musclefood products. I will only ever post honest reviews, I’m not a fan of the chicken, but these, the mince and fish, oh and my precious egg whites. Just wow!!! These turkey hache steaks cook really quick, they go beautifully crispy are packed with protein and are so so so low fat. Syn free too!!! Had mine today with a large salad.

I found a fab code I use. Get 400g Extra Lean Free Range Steak Minc for 99p (Usually £3.50) its less than 5% fat, so free.

Code: NEWYEARMINCE
Expires: 31.01.17
Order up to 5 packs per order!

Link is here http://bit.ly/2j45LuO

Enjoy xxxxximg_3984

Advertisements

Choc chip cookies

Choc chip cookies!!!!!! 1.5 syns & a healthy extra B choice!!!! There’s already a video on my youtube for how I make these. Today’s are using 1/2 an @ohso_goodforyou chocolate bar. It’s the most perfect size for breaking up and using as choc chips!!! No added sugar and packed with a billion good bacteria! Healthy chocolate!!! These cute little bars are just brilliant!! Use code slimming25 for 25% off 😘I also just added a tbs of flavoured fat free yogurt today, I didn’t need any sweetener or flavourings. Just stunning!!!!!! My group have gone mad on them too. We’ve had lots of versions now, carrot, berry, ginger, what can you create??? Tag me and I might share yours. Thanks to Mark for this idea of the adding the chocolate!

Video is here. Feel free to share xx

Carrot cake & banoffee pie

img_3527img_3542img_3543Hey all,

 

I hope you’ve had an amazing Christmas. As promised here’s the recipes for our Xmas day desserts xx

Carrot cake with pineapple frosting
6.5 syns per serving. Serves 8

Ingredients
110g low-fat spread suitable for baking
50g light soft brown sugar
4 tbsp Silver Spoon Sweetness and Light Brown Sweetner
Zest of 1 orange
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 large eggs, beaten
110g self-raising flour, sifted
½ tsp baking powder
2 tsp mixed spice
75g carrots, peeled and grated
For the topping:

110g quark
3 tbsp artificial sweetner
½ tsp vanilla extract
¼ tsp ground cinnamon
175g pineapple, peeled, cored, thinly sliced and cut into triangles
Icing sugar to dust
Method
Preheat your oven to 180°C/160°C Fan/Gas 4. Line an 8in/20cm loose-bottomed cake tin with baking parchment.
Put the spread, sugar, sweetener and orange zest in a bowl and mix. Whisk the vanilla into the eggs, then stir into the sugar mixture (don’t worry if it looks curdled). Fold in the flour, baking powder, mixed spice and grated carrots.
Spoon the cake mixture into the tin and bake for 20 minutes, or until risen and firm to the touch. Turn out and leave to cool.
Banoffee pie

Serves 10.
4 syns per serving

Ingredients
60g low fat spread
10 reduced fat digestive biscuits
2 x 12g sachets powdered gelatine
250g quark
3 x 175g pots Muller Light Toffee yogurt (or any Free toffee yogurt)
1 tbsp sweetener
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 egg whites*
2 bananas
2 level tsp cocoa powder, to decorate
Tip: *Pregnant women, the elderly and babies are advised not to eat raw or partially cooked eggs.

Method
Preheat the oven to 190°C/Fan 170°C/Gas 5 and line a 20cm springform tin with non-stick baking parchment.
Melt the spread in a pan over a low heat
Meanwhile, put the biscuits in a sealable food bag, bash into fine crumbs with a rolling pin and tip into a bowl. Pour in the melted spread, stir well and spoon the mixture into the prepared tin to cover the base, pressing down evenly. Bake for 12-15 minutes then set aside to cool.
While the base is in the oven, dissolve the gelatine in 5 tablespoons of boiling water.
Put the quark in a bowl and whisk until smooth, then whisk in the yogurt, sweetener, vanilla and gelatine liquid.
Whisk the egg whites in a bowl until stiff peaks form and fold into the quark mixture.
Spoon the quark mixture over the biscuit base and smooth the surface with a palette knife. Chill for 4 hours or until set.
Release the pie from the tin and put the pie, still on its base if necessary, on a serving plate. Thinly slice the bananas and arrange neatly on top, then sprinkle with cocoa powder and slice to serve.

 

Bolognese with courgetti & garlic bread!

Omg this was incredible!!!! All day I couldn’t stop thinking about garlic bread!!! I used to love spag Bol with garlic bread!!!

So tonight that’s what I had. I gave mine an extra easy sp makeover. Hubbie had pasta with his.

Recipe :-

Fry off your mince in fry light, I prefer turkey mince, you can use beef or quorn. Just make sure it’s less than 5% fat.

Add 1.5 cloves or garlic. Keep frying. Then add chopped mushrooms, onion, carrots, & celery. Simmer.

Then add loads of Italian mixed herbs, oregano, a small pinch of cinnamon, a splash of vinegar and lots of seasoning.

Next mix up 2 beef stock cubes in boiling water and pour over the mince and veg.

I then add a tin of chopped tomatoes and a good squeeze of purée.

For the bread I pre heated the oven on 200 degrees. Then I halved and sprayed a gluten free schar brown ciabatta roll with garlic frylight and sprinkled on some oregano. Bake them for 7 minutes.

Serve and demolish!!

Syn free and a healthy extra B choice. Stunning.

Enjoy & remember to tag me on social media if you re create.

Happy fopping xxx

Restaurant review

So you all know I love food! Well good food. Indian is one of my favourites. We’ve recently moved to a small village, its in the same town I’m from, but just a bit further out. There’s 2 pubs, a little supermarket, 1 Chinese take away, 1 fish & chip shop, then an Indian restaurant. It looks a bit like someone’s house from the outside! We’ve driven passed a few times, but never eaten there.

We don’t eat out a lot, mainly because I love to cook and I begrudge the syns when I can make it just as good and syn free. My husband however loves eating out, so I suggested trying it out tonight and he jumped at the chance!! I can cook a mean curry, but my favourite restaurant curry, I’ve yet to master to the same standard.

We hadn’t booked, we naively assumed it wouldn’t be very busy, being a village and early evening. How wrong were we, it seems everyone else already knew what we were about to discover.

Despite not booking, they fitted us in. The friendly waiters took us to our table and took our drinks order. They gave us enough time to peruse the menu. Even though I always have the same thing, I still like to read the entire menu! I try and predict what my hubster will order and sometimes I’ll try and influence him so I can try it 😉 Come on, you do the same don’t you girls. I also just like reading menus! Foodies do.

I always have either chicken rogan josh or dansak. These are both 10.5 syns for an average portion, which is 550g. I have boiled rice if doing ee, as this is a free food on Slimming World and then a side salad for my speed free foods. I’m a massive Dansak fan, I know exactly how I like it. This didn’t disappoint. I asked the waiter if I could have either zero oil, or a minimum amount. He said they would use as little as possible and the chef understands that some people want a healthier curry. We had a laugh about it, in other restaurants they’ve not been as accommodating. It either seems to offend them, or they simply refuse saying the chicken has already been soaked in oil!?! Or they’ll say ok, then it comes out swimming in it anyway! They were true to their word here. My husband ordered the desi chicken curry, rice and a chapati.

The curry came out in cute mini pans, the portion was deceptively generous!! The rice was as good as rice can be and the salad was amazing! It even had peas in it, which I loved!! The dansak was incredible. If you’ve never had a dansak, it’s a tomato based curry, with lentils and it has quite a kick. It should be fairly dry and quite thick. Some have pineapple in too, this one did. I’ve got high standards with my dansak and this one exceeded my expectations. It was thick, tasty, packed with really tender chucks of chicken breast and just the right amount of spice. I didn’t want it to end! I said to Chris, if I was at home I would’ve licked the bowl!!!! He was equally pleased with his curry, there was loads of chicken and it was the perfect level of chilli for him. He likes it really hot. Obviously I had to try his too, wow gorgeous!!!img_2601img_2600img_2602img_2603

 

You do feel a bit like your eating in someone’s living room, but it’s bigger inside than you think, I really liked it. It’s a really chilled atmosphere and the staff were so friendly, efficient and attentive. I had a small house red and Chris, a beer. He had poppadoms to start, with tons of beautiful sauces and pickles, plus my fav, the onion salad. I don’t have these, as a poppadom is 4 syns each, that’s without the sauces.

The bill came to £34, which was really good I thought. They do take aways too, there’s a 10% discount on these. We do t have dessert, but if you did want it they do all different flavours of gelato! Much better than some dessert menus in Indian restaurants.

So what’s it called!?! Shah’s. Their Facebook page is here. https://www.facebook.com/ShahsIndianRestaurantTakeAway/
Ignore any negative reviews, we loved it!!!!!!! It does have a good score, but I gave it 5/5 on my review. We did go early, so it wasn’t as busy as it would be at peak times, but from what we experienced, we’d both go back in a flash!!!

When I find somewhere I can eat out, I get so excited!! I normally leave feeling a bit underwhelmed, not tonight!!! They’ll be seeing a lot more of us now!! I can’t shut about it!!

Thanks for reading and if you go, I hope you enjoy.
For more info on eating out in Indian restaurants on Slimming World, read below. Happy Fopping xx

Creamy curries, rich rice dishes and non-stop poppadoms – a night in an Indian restaurant can amount to staggeringly high Syns (and that’s not including the lager to help it down!). But it’s not all bad news for your baltis; there are loads of tikka-tastic ways to enjoy a Food Optimising feast, Indian-style.

The basis for most curries is ghee (clarified butter); the addition of oil and cream is why the Syns start soaring. Indian dining doesn’t have to be a Syn slip-up however. Great options include dishes that come minus the creamy sauce, eg tandoori chicken (marinated in spices and yogurt) and rice dishes such as biryani (meat/vegetables mixed with rice).

Tandoori tips
Starters/side orders – curry accompaniments such as naan bread are a whopping 20 Syns each on average – popping a poppadom saves 16 Syns at just 4 Syns each. Low Syn dips include onion sambal (1 level tbsp is ½ Syn), cucumber raita (1 Syn for a level tbsp), lime pickle (1 level tbsp 1½ Syns) and mango chutney (1 level tbsp 2 Syns).
Chicken dishes – fab for a filling main, Chicken dhansak is 10½ Syns* on Extra Easy. Chicken jalfrezi is 13 Syns*, chicken vindaloo is 12 Syns* and chicken tandoori is 9½ Syns*.
Vegetable dishes – vegetable jalfrezi is 10½ Syns*, vegetable curry is 12½ Syns*, Gobi Aloo Saag is 12 Syns*and vegetable biryani 15 Syns*.
*For an average serving

Member Brian Semple has a top tip for eating out, Indian style.

Whenever I go for an Indian I ask for my meal to be ghee-free. No-one has ever said it can’t be done and it tastes just as good!
While these are some of the lower Syn Indian options, to enjoy a real slap-up Food Optimising feast, fill up on heaps of salad as an accompaniment to your dishes. An average portion of pilau rice is 2½ Syns, you can enjoy piles of boiled basmati rice for Free!

Watch out for… high-Syn starters such as meat samosas (2 small ones are 12½ Syns) and onion bhajis (8½ Syns each).

See the sw website for tons of syn free curry recipes.

If food were a relationship

imageimageimage

This is something I read a while back, I’ve adapted it to link in with food optimising.

It’s really thought provoking!!!

Ask yourself the following. :-

If food were a romantic relationship what kind of relationship would you be in?

Would your family and friends approve?

Is it a loving, caring, respectful one?

Or one fuelled by greed and short term pleasure, is it intense, controlling, abusive, do you feel imprisoned?

 
Is it boring or monotonous?

 
Or strict and regimented during the week, followed by naughty weekends with indulgent flings?? Are you having an affair or cheating on yourself?

 

You’re probably giggling right now, or you might be struck by a light bulb moment. The most important relationship is the one with you. If your relationship with food/drink isn’t getting you to where you want to be at the moment, have a think how you can make it better. How can you get it back to being loving and respecting it? Loving and respecting yourself by fuelling it with healthy filling foods? What’s getting in your way and what would you like to change?

 

We all want happy loving relationships in our life…… Don’t we?

Happy Fopping xxx

 

When in Rome. Our 1st wedding anniversary.

When in Rome!

Hi all. I thought I’d share my experience of Rome with you. We were really torn where to go for our first wedding anniversary, can you believe it’s been a year?!? We were debating in the end between our short list of Rome or Venice. We went with Rome after feedback from others and reading up about it. We wanted a shortish flight and just somewhere to go for a few days.

The flight is straight forward, just over 2 hours, they’re an hour in front in Rome. We got a really early flight from Birmingham to Fiumicino and a late flight back. Meaning we’d get 2 nights and 3 full days there. It was tiring getting up so early, but well worth it.

We did a lot of research on hotels, we wanted somewhere central and modern. We finally found a lovely looking 4 star hotel and booked that, it was called the Monti Palace Hotel. We got a pre booked taxi to the hotel from the airport, it took about 30 minutes, 40 euros. Jesus the taxi driver clearly hated his job!!! He was pushing 70 and obviously didn’t want to be driving around Rome anymore. His Merc must of reached over 100mph!! If you’ve ever been to Rome, you’ll know it’s a road rage hot spot!! Everyone beeps at each other and there’s not always road marks! You literally just hope for the best! He must of exhaled heavily over 10,000 times in half an hour lol! He was just like a balloon loudly deflating! Just retire lol!

So we walked in to the hotel and smiled, it looked perfect. Next minute the receptionist took our names then quickly got on the phone. She explained there was a big problem. I knew straight away we wouldn’t be staying there! The third floor was having construction work done and apparently they’d had a flood. They’d closed the entire floor off and there weren’t any other rooms available. We were so tired after a mega early wake up and really didn’t need this. To their credit they called a hotel down the road, same star and walked us and our bags there.

The new hotel was a four star too, but not as modern, not as “us”. They gave us a key and we went to our room. I took one look and went straight back to reception. They’d only put us in a twin room! It’s our first wedding anniversary, there’s no way we were having twin beds lol!! After trying to encourage us to have the room with the beds pushed together, or a double mattress laid over the top, they eventually found 2 other options. Both were upgrades and the other hotel were paying. We ended up on the top floor with a beautiful balcony and a rather spacious room. It wasn’t as modern as the last place we booked, but for 2 nights it was fine. Can’t complain at getting a superior room for the same price really. So not the best start!

Location wise it was brilliant!! The Colosseum was a five minute walk away, as were the Spanish steps and Trevi fountain. The bus stops for the city tours were really close by too. I’d definitely recommend staying in this area. It was the FH Grand Hotel Palatino. Via Cavour 213, Rione Monti, 00184 Rome. Breakfast was ok, it’s a buffet style set up in a really traditional dining room. There were lots of lovely fruits, cereals and a cream cheese like quark bowl. Then cold meats, boiled and scrambled eggs, cakes, cheese, pancakes and then bacon and turkey sausages. These I wouldn’t eat. So you can be on plan if you wanted to. I’d imagine the other hotels are pretty similar. The staff were great, nothing was too much.

So day 1 we set off early and decided to head for the Colosseum first. I was prepared. For the first time ever I took trainers to wear in the day! If you know me, or follow my pages, you’ll know I only do heels! Everyone had said though Rome was not somewhere you could fully explore with heels on! So I gave in and got some new black adidas trainers, I wanted some that would go with black skinny jeans. Best trainers ever!!! They were so comfortable!!!! Link is here http://www.adidas.co.uk/zx-flux-em-shoes/S76499.html. In hindsight I would’ve pre booked tickets to enter the Colosseum, it would of saved queuing! This place is seriously mind blowing! It’s crazy to think how much history it holds. It looks huge from the outside and inside it felt even grander!! We just explored it ourselves, as opposed to a tour. I get bored of listening to the guides and would rather do what we want to do. My husband asked me to name a famous Rome saying, I couldn’t bloody think of one on the spot, so said “Rome is where the heart is” ha ha obviously I remembered them after. Made him giggle.

After this we walked to the Trevi fountains. The Trevi Fountain (Italian: Fontana di Trevi) is a fountain in the Trevi district in Rome, Italy, designed by Italian architect Nicola Salvi and completed by Pietro Bracci. Standing 26.3 metres (86 ft) high and 49.15 metres. The architecture was stunning, it was my favourite place to visit. It doesn’t feel real, I can’t explain it. You feel like you’re having an outer body experience looking at it, trying to take it all in, as it’s just so grand!!! Loved it!!! You can make a wish by throwing a coin in, quite romantic.

We decided that evening to try the Trastevere district, a more medieval area with tons of traditional restaurants. We love a square!! You know the type, a big square with entertainment and loads of restaurants and bars around the edges. I love people watching, in a none creepy way. The one here is quite small, but lovely. There’s another one close by with another fountain. They love a fountain! I didn’t have a great meal this night. In fact my experience of the food overall was pretty poor. I’m all for traditional food, but I need flavour. We went to a variety of restaurants, some more central and near to tourist attractions and some off the beaten track, more hidden away. None were great, the food lacked flavour and for a food optimiser everything was drenched in oil or had cheese. You can ask for neither, but it wasn’t easy or still came with it anyway. I had really high hopes for the food, but I can make tastier pasta dishes myself, for a fraction of the price. Don’t go to Rome if you want cheap and cheerful! A large beer was 10 euros! The restaurants higher up on trip advisor weren’t in the areas we wanted to visit sadly. I can’t rely on reviews online anyway, as it’s all a matter of opinion isn’t it. Chris doesn’t have the same standards as me about food, he eats anything, so was quite happy! If I’m eating out, which I don’t do often, I want it to be amazing. It needs to be worth the syns for me to really enjoy it. Or better than what I can cook myself.

The second day we decided to do the hop on hop off bus tour. It’s worth doing and cost 18 euros. There’s the city tour or the more local tour bus. They go to the same spots, but the local one is cheaper. They run every ten minutes. You can visit the Colosseum, then hop off at the Vatican to visit St Peter’s Basilica and see the Swiss Guards. Pause at Fontana di Trevi to photograph my favourite fountain. Hop off at Piazza Barberini to take the walkway to Spanish Steps or jump off at the Piazza Venezia to visit the Pantheon and Michelangelo’s Piazza del Campidoglio. We decided to jump off where some of the shops were. These were ok, again a bit disappointing. I got a pair of tights! That’s it! Hubby got a gorgeous jacket and some jeans. Not fair! I love shopping, yes even when on holiday. It’s good cardio 😉 There’s a mix of designer, like Louis Vuitton and Tiffany, then high street stores such as Zara.

St. Peter’s was a very unique experience. We couldn’t enter as there was a service going on, thousands and thousands of people had gathered to see the pope! He was actually there giving a service, we saw him on a big screen. It’s like attending a religious concert! Not sure they’d ever allow Beyoncé or Kayne to perform there though. Not many people can say the say the pope!

We stopped off for coffee, we did this a lot!!!!! Don’t expect a large cup, it’s a tiny cup for 4-5 euros each. Hubbie wanted to try some local gelato, these are everywhere!!! He choose a coffee one, chocolate and Nutella! I had to have a little taste, just to check it was ok of course, OMG amaze!! I took an apple from breakfast and a hi fi bar! It’s made in Italy with cream, so mega high syns, but very very nice!

You do walk miles, most days I averaged 20,000 + steps! Sunday we did 28,000! But I don’t see this as a reason to have more syns, it’s just not my style anymore. Sw is a lifestyle change for me. I knew the milk, oil etc would be syns, so decided not to have my own ice cream. Lunch that day, I did my research and wanted to try La Carbonara. It’s more hidden away and had amazing reviews. It used to be a well kept secret, but now people flock there! When we arrived they were fully booked, I was so disappointed. They close Sundays, so we didn’t get to eat there. Make sure you check it out if you go, book ahead though. I ended up with a pasta and meat sauce dish and a side salad, the restaurant we ate in had good reviews, but again I didn’t rate it unfortunately.

That night we decided to try Campo de fiori, a lively area with more nice bars and restaurants. They had a lovely bigger square here. I also finally had a nice meal lol! Hurrah you cry!!! She’s finally happy with her food!!! Played it safe with fillet steak, it had bacon wrapped around it, a red wine sauce, grilled veg and rosemary potatoes. I was so full!! I didn’t drink much while I was away. I haven’t for a while now. I just had some small beers, then water. The beer is gorgeous there!! It’s not a dressy place really, everyone is quite casual. The streets are so cobbled! You could never wear skinny heels!! There’s a big student culture in this area and it comes alive after 10pm. You can drink on the streets in Rome, the age for drinking is also younger. This didn’t bother us though, we were also warned about pick pockets, again didn’t see this luckily. There are a lot of people selling tours and some beggars, but nothing majorly intrusive. The one thing that is majorly noticeable is the amount of smokers. Everyone smoked!!!! As an ex smoker, this was hard!! Coffee, or a glass of wine and a cigarette was something I used to love! I’m also quitting my E cigarette, when I gave up a few years ago I replaced it with one of these. But I think these can be really addictive too. I only use them when I’m driving long distance or drinking. But I’ve not used it now for a few months. So be prepared if you don’t like smoking.

The final day we wanted to explore a market for something different, so we thought we’d try a larger one. The most famous is the flea market, porta portese. It took forever to walk there!!!! We arrived and if you love 1 euro jewellery or tacky key rings, go. If not, don’t, it’s a jumble sale of tat. Sorry, that’s just my opinion. I wouldn’t recommend making the effort to go. The walk however was fascinating, we saw the locals attending church, little hidden pockets of Rome we’d never of seen and some more rougher areas, we really experienced the different sides to the city. We went back to campo for lunch and found a lovely place. I needed flavour, so had pesto pasta, super oily and lots of cheese, but at least it was tasty. I’d burned over 2,800 calories walking, so that’s something. Chris had a pizza, it was ok, not great though. Pizza just doesn’t do it for me anymore. Years ago I loved it, dominos was a hangover Sunday routine before sw! Now it’s just not as good as I remember. I’m good with this though, as it’s so high in syns!

As we had the entire day we went back to St.Peters to go inside. The queue was crazy long though, so we just explored up to the doors and outside it again. After yet more coffee stops we went for an early dinner. After eating so much pasta and not really enjoying it, I needed something different. There are no well known food places in Rome and hardly any alternative foods, which is lovely, but you do get bored. You won’t see a Starbucks, subway, wagamama etc, we didn’t even see a McDonald’s, which is good! We love Asian and Indian food, after searching for ages we found a Chinese place. I know when in Rome it might sound odd to look for somewhere like this, but I needed different flavours and some spice. I had Singapore chicken noodles, again an old fav pre sw. They were really nice!!! That was our last meal, then we flew home late that evening.

Would I go back? No I don’t think so, I think once you’ve seen all the stunning beautiful attractions, it’s done, ticked off. Going back wouldn’t have the same wow factor for me, seeing it for the first time is amazing. I think I’m happier in more modern places. Barcelona is one of my favourite cities. A mix of beaches, sight seeing, shops, markets, swanky bars and traditional tapas. More my thing. Still, I wanted to visit Rome for the culture and experience and we have. Would I preferred Venice. I’m not sure? I’ll need to go to find out for myself I think. Another excuse for a holiday.

imageimageimageimageimageimageimageimageimageimageimageimageimage

Thanks for reading and Happy Fopping xx