03 November, 2016

Time to make your Christmas Cake!

I like to make my Christmas cake ahead of time, so I can liberally feed it with brandy until the big day!  The recipe I use is a slight adaptation of Mary Berry's Christmas cake, substituting brandy for the sherry, and dried apricots instead of cherries.  It's delicious, and really easy to make.

Gingerbread Biscuits

It's getting to that time of year again, when yumminess is all around us.  I find it extremely difficult to diet during the winter, as I love all the Christmassy type foods.  At the moment, I have my dried fruit steeping in brandy for the Christmas cake, and cooking is going to be really hard to do without any snaffling of the exceedingly boozy cake mix!

These Gingerbread Biscuits work really well - be careful not to overcook them though.  They are still nice, but the overcooking diminishes the ginger flavour, and I like that to be really strong.  And don't eat too much raw dough, as you won't have anything left for the biscuits :-)

29 July, 2016

Slimmer of the Month

And a stone lost. So encouraging! I will be wearing that bikini in France next year!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad


26 July, 2016

Chicken Pizza and Chips - but healthy!

Well this was bloody delicious! It started off as a Slimming World recipe but I changed it a smidgen to suit us better. I had the higest praise possible for it from Frazer and Isla. They told me I can make it again! It was a definite hit.

In other news, my lovely iPhone has died. I am so pissed off. The screen just stopped working. I have an appointment at the Apple store on Saturday, but until then I'm phoneless. I feel like my right arm has been cut off! And I have no fitness tracker now either.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad


22 July, 2016

Korean Beef Mince

We had this for dinner tonight. Isla and I really enjoyed it - Frazer was late home and declined the kind offer of our leftovers as he had a very sneaky McDonalds on the way home!

It's a pretty healthy meal - if you want to make it healthier you can substitute the brown sugar for sweetener, and the soy sauce with low sodium soy sauce.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Location:Symington, Biggar

17 July, 2016

Practically Perfect Parenting

So today I am officially old. I just gave my daughter her first driving lesson. I can't believe that I am actually old enough to have a child of 17! I remember learning to drive. It really wasn't 22 years ago was it?

Unfortunately, in order for Isla to learn to drive, we have had to get rid of my lovely old, massive Vectra estate. Just as well really, as I have no idea how I would teach her to parallel park it when I couldn't do it as it was too long! We now have a cute little Fiat Punto Evo, complete with L plates, that will do the job very nicely. And once I have accessorised it to my exacting (possibly less that tasteful) standards, it will look very smart.

I picked Isla up from work this afternoon, and took her to an empty car park to begin the basics. She picked it up quite quickly, and she got the car moving, and drove it around in a big loop 2 or 3 times, although she didn't move out of 1st gear. Then a car came towards her and she panicked! I took over, and we went home. We had about half an hour, which I think was probably plenty for a first go. She did very well though.

I couldn't be more proud of her today.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad


16 July, 2016

Oh where oh where has the summer gone?

Why is it that when the kids are at school we have amazingly hot and beautiful weather, but as soon as they finish the weather becomes shit? We had 3 or 4 weeks in May and June that were scorching (I even got a suntan!), and rain ever since. It's pissing me off, because we now have a lovely garden I can sit in, we're not having the weather to sit in it.

It's all ready for us to sit in. I have bunted the fencing to within an inch of its life, and removed a nasty patch of gravel and chucked down some grass seed which is taking nicely. This week the good weather is due to come back, so I'm looking forward to getting the grass cut, my friend coming over with her kids, getting the paddling pool out and having a garden picnic!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Vietnamese Spring Rolls

So, my first healthy recipe is for Vietnamese Spring Rolls. These are made with rice paper wraps and not deep fried, so they are pretty much fat free. I have worked out that if you do the recipe without honey/golden syrup/maple syrup then you can make each spring roll for around 65 calories and 1.5 syns. The taste is fresh and lovely, and makes a great guilt free snack.

Edited to add:
I can't seem to get this damn blog to show the recipe large enough to read, so I'll give you the recipe in text until I can figure the bloody thing out!

Vietnamese Spring Rolls


2 Chicken Breasts
Rice Paper Wraps
Fine Rice Noodles
1 Carrot, grated
1/3 Cucumber, grated
1 large stick celery, grated if possible
Finely chopped spring onion (scallion)
Whole leaves mint or basil

2 tbsp honey/golden syrup/maple syrup
2 tbsp dark soy sauce
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 tsp ground ginger

Marinade the chicken for at least half an hour in a casserole dish, then place into an over with the lid on, and poach the chicken still in the marinade.

While the chicken is cooking, prepare the vegetables. The ones above are what I use, but you can use others.
Soak the rice noodles in boiling water until soft, then drain and mix in with the grated vegetables.
Once the chicken is cooked, chop it finely, and add it into the mixture.
Put some luke warm water on a large plate to soak the rice paper wraps.
Soak each wrap individually, fill with the mixture, and roll*. Then wrap each one in cling film, and refrigerate.

*To see how to roll the spring rolls, click here.

15 July, 2016

Losing It.

Well, I seem to have been a little bit crap and keeping up with this blog thing. In my defence, life has got in the way a bit. The blog was not high on my list of priorities compared with looking after a baby, moving house, and looking after a husband and teenager as well!

This is about to change though - at least that's the plan!  I have recently started Slimming World, to try to shift some of the baby weight. I've been using that excuse for a long time though, it's baby weight from the first time round 17 years ago!  Anyway, I'm trying to change the way I eat, and the way I look at food, taking into account Food Optimising and syns etc.  So as I try new recipes, I will upload them here. It will encourage me as well.  I have been going for 4 weeks, and in that time I've lost 10lbs, so I can see it's working. The group sessions really help as well - everyone supports and encourages each other, and going along for weigh in every week really does help to keep you on the straight and narrow.

13 January, 2015

Ginger Bread / Parkin

My favourite thing at the moment is Ginger bread, otherwise known as Parkin.  There is something deliciously comforting about a warm slab of it with a cup of tea.  I’m not a big tea drinker, but it does go with this well!  It’s also nice heated in the microwave for about 20 seconds, drizzle a little golden syrup over and serve with ice cream.

I like it very gingery, so I use about 2.5 teaspoons of ground ginger, and sometimes add a teaspoon of cinnamon as well.  When you tip the mixture into the loaf tin, sprinkle some sugar over the top before it goes into the oven.  When you take the tin out of the oven, you need to leave it to cool for ten to fifteen minutes before trying to tip it out.

Edited to add - if you run out of bicarbonate of soda, baking powder will NOT work instead! Lesson learnt this morning!