Monthly Archives: July 2011

A brilliant summer salad – Oriental Rice Salad

Its time for some recipes on here I think. Here’s one of my favourite summer dishes; Oriental Rice Salad.

Oriental Rice SaladThis dish is not only really tasty, but its easy to make, 100% fat free and keeps in the fridge for a couple of days. Plus, with the exception of a handful of raisins and a spoon of sherry, it only contains foods which are brilliant for keeping weight off. All the other ingredients are fat burning, and almost all are low GI (pineapple, though is medium GI). The ginger adds a bit of heat which also helps boost metabolism.

So tuck in and enjoy, eating as much as you want! As you know I like eating LOADS so I reckon the recipe below will serve 3 decent portions or 4 smaller portions.

Ingredients:

8oz / 225g brown rice

For the sauce:

4 tbsp fresh orange juice

1 tbsp soy sauce

1 clove garlic minced

½ tsp grated ginger

1 dsp sherry

For the salad:

6 radishes, sliced

2oz / 60g bean sprouts

2oz / 60g raisins

1 orange

2oz / 60g toasted or dry fried cashew nuts

2 sticks celery

4oz / 120g pineapple

Instructions:

1.  Cook the rice following the instructions  on the packet. Make sure you rinse well in cold water first to remove dried starch. Make sure your water is boiling when you put the rice in the pan. This helps stop the rice getting sticky.

2. Mix together the dressing of fresh orange juice, soy sauce, minced garlic, grated ginger and sherry. Add some salt and pepper.

3. When the rice is cooked, drain and season with salt and pepper. Then pour over the dressing whilst still warm so it will soak up some of the dressing into the rice. Leave to cool.

4. Meanwhile, prepare the salad. To toast the cashew nuts I recommend dry frying in a non-stick pan for a few minutes.

5. When the rice is cool mix together and enjoy!

 

 

Wandering around …. and feeling great

I believe that feeling good inside is as important to keep weight off as watching what you eat and being active. I know for me that when I feel good inside, and appreciate and admire my body, I treat it better and feel more able to make good choices with food. At its’ most basic level, when I feel good I don’t comfort eat!

Iphone Maps App brill for wanderingOver recent months my maps app on my phone as been really helping. Because I walk everywhere I’ve started just wandering up roads, paths and lanes that look nice; knowing if I get lost my app will help me out, or if worst comes to the worst, I just turn round.

It’s been brilliant. I’ve found so many nice places near where I live; lovely streets, parks and open spaces, guinels and alleyways leading to old farm houses or quaint streets. I’ve met people with lovely dogs and had brief chats I wouldn’t have had. I’ve spotted gorgeous plants and trees and views; simple things bringing real pleasure as I go about my business. And I’ve found shortcuts so I can get around more quickly.

Even in a strange place…..

The other day I was in a strange town headed to the train station. Even then I couldn’t help following a couple of people down this beautiful rose lined path. It took me into this beautiful Georgian courtyard, with gardens full of bright colours and people enjoying the sun. It was a dead end in terms of getting to the station, but a lovely sight and it put a huge smile on my face.

That’s the brill thing about just wandering around on little adventures. If you go wrong, just turLovely hidden back streetsn round and get back on track. And you will probably have learned or seen something that enriches your life along the way.

I had another win in my little detour the other morning. It made me a bit late so I had to really step on it for the rest of my walk. Good thing as walking fast with 3 large bags and a suitcase helped me walk off the 2 glasses of wine I had the night before. A win/win situation in every way. And I still made my train.

Going calorific – do it on your terms!!

Birthday Cake

Thanks to D Sharon Pruitt for the photo

Yesterday on my Facebook page where I post (almost) daily hints and tips about how to keep weight off and end yoyo dieting for ever, I shared that I was going to a party. I knew there was likely to be party food (nibbles, pizza, cake etc) so my hint was to offer to contribute to the food and take low fat/sugar healthy food with you that you are happy to eat. That way you’re adding to the party and managing your food. And everyone’s a winner!

So before we went to the party I took a pic of the large bowl of couscous salad and a no fat roast veg chilli pasta dish I’d made and the strawberries and yoghurt I’d packed.

Talk about words coming back to bite you on the bum! Later on at the party, my friend Sarah who subscribes to the page, gave me a right telling off as she spotted me eating a slice of Thomas the Tank Engine birthday cake. ‘How can you’, she said. ‘You’re supposed to be eating the food you’ve bought not cake!’. I gathered from the chat that she thinks I never eat cake and the like and I’m always ‘good’.

How wrong! I actually do eat cake, chocolate, meals out (Friday night we want for a curry). But I always plan so that I am in total control when it comes to eating high calorie food.

Keeping weight off isn’t about depriving yourself for ever, but it is about being in control of your food. Putting it bluntly, if I am going to eat high calorie food I want it to be food I love and I really want to eat and is nice, not high calorie stuff that other people want me to eat or just because it’s the only food that’s there.

Taking food like a fat free couscous or pasta dish to a party serves two purposes for my weight. I can eat loads of it and love it, and I can still allow myself to eat small amounts of the other food that I want to eat, on my terms.

So be in control – when you do eat high stodge, sugar and fried food, make sure its food you really love. Enjoy it knowing you are in control and balancing out with other food and activity.

Love food, love life!

‘Emergency’ yoghurt

Fat Free YoghurtIn last weeks Apprentice, the lovely Tom came up with the idea of ’emergency biscuits’. I’ve gone one better; emergency yoghurt!!

This weekend I’ve been at a conference for writers – having some great conversations about my forthcoming book. As always with these kind of events, I never leave the food to chance as normally the food isn’t good for someone who is keeping weight off (and actually generally isn’t good full stop). So when I arrived at my destination I nipped into M&S and got my lunch knowing I would be eating a big sit down meal in the evening.

I also did another of my tricks – I say I’m vegan. That way I avoid creamy, cheesy food or meals covered in calorific sauces and veg smothered in butter and what you get tends to be healthier and less fried. Worked a treat last night as I had a lovely meal.

The only flaw (or depending on how you see it the icing on the cake) with this rouse is you then get a different pudding – normally fruit salad. But worry not – perfect opportunity for some ’emergency yoghurt’!

Because it’s fat free, ff yoghurt keeps for ages so you can just carry it around with you and whip out whenever needed!

Tom

Emergency Biscuit Indeed!

Thanks Tom for the idea. Brains, charm and good looks. Let’s hope he can go on and win.