Category Archives: Musings



So this week…. 0.7kgs / 1 1/2 lbs off

So far 6.3kgs / 13.8lbs in 9 weeks.


Happy dance…. Rolling on the floor laughing


Chicken & Garlic Casserole…

We had this for dinner tonight….It was nice. It was tonight Chicken, Lemon & Garlic Casserole but the considered opinion was that there should be no Lemon in it (I used preserved Lemons which is maybe where I went wrong but I don’t think the lemon flavour went right). So next time it’s going to be just Chicken and Garlic. Other than that it was good. I used Chicken breasts this time (because it was what I had) next time I will use thighs
because they don’t dry out I dishes like these. I added 500g Orso pasta (looks like big rice)20 minutes before it was due to finish and we had it with beans. The recipe is meant to do 4 but with the pasta added it easily did the 3 of us and I made up 2 takeaway containers so I can take it to work at night.
I actually did ours in the oven (180C) for about 30 minutes not on the stove top but either way would be easy – it just happened I was making other things at the same time.


  • 900 g skinless and boneless chicken thighs
  • 2 onions
  • 2 large carrots
  • 200 g green beans
  • 4 to 5 sprigs of tarragon
  • Low calorie cooking spray
  • 1 bulb of garlic
  • 700 ml chicken stock
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper




  1. Cut the chicken into chunks. Peel and chop the onions. Peel the carrots and cut into thick batons. Chop the tarragon.
  2. Spray a large non-stick casserole dish with low calorie cooking spray. Place over a high heat. Add the chicken pieces and cook until lightly browned on all sides.
  3. Add the onions, carrots, garlic bulb, stock and Bovril concentrate. Season well and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover tightly with the lid and cook gently for 25 minutes.
  4. Remove from the heat and discard the garlic bulb. Serve sprinkled with tarragon.




Or grate  / peel the garlic and don't remove it.

Sweet Potato Curry…

  • Serves: 4
  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 30 minutes
  • Ready in: 30-60 Minutes
  • Suitable for vegetarians
  • Syns per serving: FREE
  • 1kg sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 2 large red peppers, deseeded and cut into chunks, plus ½ red pepper, deseeded and finely chopped
  • Low calorie cooking spray
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 25g root ginger, peeled and finely chopped
  • ½ tsp hot chilli powder
  • 1 heaped tbsp ground coriander
  • 1 heaped tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp tandoori curry powder
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 3 heaped tbsp tomato puree
  • 160g baby leaf spinach
  • 100g fat free natural yogurt
  • Small handful of chopped, fresh coriander
  • 1 tsp sweetener


  1. Preheat the oven to 220°C/Fan°200/Gas 7.
  2. Put the sweet potatoes and pepper chunks in a large non-stick roasting tin, spray with low calorie cooking spray, season to taste and toss together. Roast for 15-20 minutes, turning halfway, until the sweet potatoes are cooked but holding their shape and roasted at the edges. Keep warm.
  3. Meanwhile, spray a large non-stick frying pan with low calorie cooking spray and fry the onion and finely chopped pepper for 10 minutes, adding a little water if they start to stick.
  4. Stir in the garlic, ginger and all the spices and cook for 1-2 minutes. Season to taste and add the tomato puree and 700ml of boiling water, then bring to the boil over a high heat. Turn the heat to medium and cook for 15 minutes, adding the spinach 2 minutes before the end of cooking.
  5. Remove from the heat and stir in the yogurt, fresh coriander and sweetener. Add the roasted vegetables and gently mix together. Check the seasoning before serving with your favourite rice.

Recipes…..meals ideas…syns…and everything in between…


So I need to get organised…it all goes back to that planning to succeed…like it or not that is a reality. When I’m organised I do succeed..when I have a plan – life is so much easier. When both of those things happen I do lose weight…so I need to get a plan.

I’m not a Slimming World consultant so I’m not in a position to “advise” ….this is my journey…but I’ve joined a load of facebook groups that are based on Slimming World and so I’m trying to get as much support as I can from people going through the same process.

Next I’m going to sort out a load of recipes I can use on my Pepperplate app (I’m telling you out there in www land if you want something you can use to plan and make shopping lists this app is free and it’s ace….well I like it anyway) and I’ll do the menu’s as I did before. That way I can see what I’ve had, see how the week went, I’ll be able to get an opinion from my family re the meals and then keep tweaking things so I have an idea  of what’s working for both me and them.



Now you will possibly have got from the above “title” (or is that just an expression of anguish/ frustration / fed upidness with myself….or all of them) that my weight loss has not been great …in fact it has been the exact opposite of great

I’m sat at home at the moment having been off work for the last 2 weeks – had Pneumonia, which I have never had before and I do not plan on having again as it has been hideous. I haven’t updated my blog for a while and so I’ve come back to make myself accountable again. End of the day I’ve said from day one if someone reads this then all well and good but if not  this is about me putting my journey out onto the www so that I am accountable to myself….I’ve put it out there and so I can’t take it back (if that makes sense).

So I’m starting again….I’ve thought about how I’m going to do this…again. I think slimming world or the principles of it are what I’m going to try and do because they are the principles that lost me so much weight in the past.  The Slimming World menu will also allow me to cook for both me and the family without having to separate two meals which I really like….so it all starts again.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again ….I never said this was going to be easy …it was always going to be honest, warts and all …I wish of course it wasn’t quite so “warty” because I would be having more success but hey it is what it is…so onwards and upwards (or should I said downwards because that’s where I hope the numbers are going to go on the scale!).

Weigh In and weekly plan ~ WEEK 8 & 9


I have been very slack this last 2 weeks so I’m playing catch up … the last 2 weeks have been similar from a  healthy eating point of view as well….and it’s all down to lack of organisation and keeping track of things….there are gaps .

My organisational drop out is due to change of shifts which is not usual as for the last few years I’ve been on night duties this week I was put onto a few days  – I am going to have to do this every now and again and so I’m going to have to get myself organised..because this time I have failed abysmally….

So I’ve got to take the decision to deal with it not see it as a failure (which bottom line …it is) but as a learning tool to deal with future situations. I will have notice that I’m on days but unlike this time I will be prepared. I didn’t stick to my eating as little carbs as possible and I did have some alcohol (I discovered Amaretto sours at the end of a buy shift on an acute mental health unit it was lovely!)…so for the record (with some gaps ….although not as many as I thought actually.

Keto 8

Keto 9

When I weighed myself on Wednesday (which I was dreading) – I’d put on 800g which in the scheme of things I don’t reckon was too bad. I am trying to find the positive in all of this.

Anyhoo onwards and upwards wlEmoticon-smile.png


Pesto Chicken Casserole with Feta Cheese and Olives…..


Serves 4


  • 1½ lbs chicken thighs or chicken breasts
  • 3½ oz. red pesto or green pesto
  • 123 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 8 tablespoons pitted olives
  • ½ lb feta cheese, diced
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • salt and pepper
  • butter, for frying


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
  2. Cut the chicken thighs or filets into pieces. Season with salt and pepper and fry in butter until golden brown.
  3. Mix pesto and heavy cream in a bowl.
  4. Place the fried chicken pieces in a baking dish together with olives, feta cheese and garlic. Add the pesto.
  5. Bake in oven for 20-30 minutes, until the dish turns bubbly and light brown around the edges.

1008 Calories per serving, 3g Carbs

15 minute Garlic Shrimp with Lemon Butter Sauce…



  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 6-8 cloves of fresh garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon caper brine
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • 3 tablespoon butter, cut into cubes
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Heat a large skillet over high heat. Add the olive oil and red pepper flakes and allow the spice to infuse into the oil for 30 seconds.
  2. Add the shrimp to the pan and spread it out so it cooks evenly. Cook for about 1 minute flipping as needed. Add the garlic, lemon juice, and caper brine to the skillet and let cook for 1 minute.
  3. Add 1/2 of the parsley along with the cubes of butter and swirl the pan so butter starts to melt slowly, about 2-3 minutes. As the butter melts it should start forming a thick type of sauce. Add the remaining parsley and stir to combine. The shrimp should be opaque and cooked through. If the sauce starts to thicken too much, you can remove the shrimp to a serving dish and add a teaspoon of water to help thin it out to a pourable consistency. 

This is really easy and I have to say I was surprised but the mix of caper brine and lemon juice added to the buttery saucey goodness is absolutely lush.

So thank you so much Chef John at All Recipes because this has been not only delicious but meant I haven’t had to slave over a stove for hours to have something for tea.

I added a little bit more Lemon and Caper Brine to half the amount of prawns / shrimp because the recipe creates just enough sauce to coat the shrimp. The sauce has got enough flavour to serve with rice or pasta tossed in olive oil but as I’m low carbing I added a cup of cabbage to the mix and cooked until it was wilted (the second day I added some courgette / zucchini too). It was very filling and it’s going to be a regular addition to my planner.

This has 190 calories and 4g carbs per serving  (I had 2 servings for a main meal but without any pasta or rice).


WEEK 7 Weigh in & planner….


So I weighed myself again this morning…well it is Wednesday…

Another 400g (1lb) lost – again this week my eating has been all over the place in between sleeping a lot (we are all still down with whatever it is has invaded us viral wise so again I’m grateful there’s a loss.

So so far 5.2kgs (12lbs lost) wlEmoticon-smile.png

This week I’ve tried to add a bit more information to my planner – thanks to the wonders of pepperplate and the my fitness app I’ve been able to do a mash of the things I’m eating so the numbers in () are calories followed by the carbs.

I’m still trying to keep carbs low but some days I’ve really not bothered. These would be the days like the Galaxy chocolate day ..ahem…hey my eldest son had been to the Brit shop and bought me a bar so I wasn’t going to leave it for someone else to snaffle!!)  and the Chinese Takeaway day when none of us could think what to eat let alone drag ourselves to cook anything. Anyway it will give an idea of not only what I’m eating but what amounts I’m eating and along the way I’ll pop the recipes up. Because there’s no point in putting homemade anything if you don’t know what went into it – the values could be completely off.

Keto 7

So good luck out in weight loss land wherever and whoever you are…just keep remembering if today wasn’t a good one it doesn’t define the rest of your life…it’s how you deal with those not so good days that does that….and if anyone has got any thoughts or ideas out there or great low carb recipes let me know….

Ta ta for now xxx



On my wanderings around the www I found Fathead Pastry which is high in calories and cream cheese (

Fat Head Pastry (the original)

  • 170g / 6oz / 1 3/4cups pre-shredded/grated mozzarellaor Edam/mild
  • 85g / 3oz / 3/4cup almond meal/flour
  • 2 tbsp cream cheese (full fat)
  • 1 egg
  • pinch salt to taste
  • 1 tsp onion flakes

Now I have to say this is delicious but I found an alternative from someone who is not a lover of cream cheese and  as rightly pointed out if you are prone to any digestive inflammation of any kind then cream cheese isn’t helpful….so the alternative I found removes the cream cheese ad replaces it with fat (butter to be exact)…because you need something to give the pastry the elasticity. The removal of the cream cheese also makes it less gooey apparently so I’m going to try that tonight and see how it goes.

Fat Head Pastry (the modified version)

  • 1.5 cups (145g) low moisture, part skim mozzarella cheese
  • 4 tbsp almond flour
  • 3 tbsp coconut flour
  • 4 tbsp butter melted
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup or equivalent sweetener
  • 1 egg

Mix all the dry ingredients in a bowl, then add one well-beaten egg. Stir until well combined. Set aside.

In a separate bowl, melt your mozzarella and fat(s)in the microwave on 30-40% (depending on power) for 2 minutes, stirring and blending after 1 minute.

Immediately add the dry ingredients to this and fold it over and over to incorporate as much of the cheese with the others.

Nuke it for 10 seconds on high, then fold\kneed it until you have a uniform color with no obvious ‘cheesy’ spots.

Repeat the nuke if you if it starts getting hard to work the cheese.

Once you have it uniform, roll it into a ball, then nuke one more time for 10 seconds on high.

Place it between two sheets of parchment or silicon baking mats.

Press down with your hand to flatten it out as much as you can, then using a rolling pin to roll out the dough.