Wednesday, 30 March 2011

A thousand words. Or not.

Aka further experiments with my new Blogpress app...

You know how I said that I wished my blog had more pictures? Yeah, well. This is why it doesn't:

It turns out that one of my many talents is the ability to make perfectly nice platefuls look like dog food. This is stew and mash by the way.

Or this:

This is a spaghetti dish I have been meaning to blog about for ages. Gorgeous. Here, it looks like pale dog food. Note the artistic skewiffness to the set up...

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Monday, 28 March 2011

I love to go a-wandering...

Well, I've finally gone and done it. Yep, the Foodie has got the technology. I've been doing so much travelling for work recently that my poor blog has been somewhat neglected. Now, with the Blogpress app, I can remote post with ease! Well, I think it is with ease. I mean, I haven't actually posted this yet...

I'm a homebody so being away is tough. It's especially difficult, when one is trying to shed some poundage, to be trapped in a fully catered facility where it is possible to eat three courses for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Oh, and biscuits are laid on every time we break for coffee. Damn those biscuits. So far, so good. I'm partly saved by the fact that mass catering - even reasonable quality mass catering - isn't a patch on home-cooked food so I'm not tending to over indulge. As long as I stand FAR away from the biscuits.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Thursday, 17 March 2011

Diet averse

Stew!  (Image taken from

I was on the phone to my Mum the other day, discussing cancelling my subscription to Weight Watchers magazine because I found the recipes a bit “diet-ey”. Which D found amusing for some reason – “Of course they’re dietey,” he said, “It’s a diet magazine.”

I HATE the word diet – although dietey sounds a bit like doughty which I like...but the word diet, and the concept of diet food, stinks of deprivation and misery and steamed vegetables. I can’t count the number of times I’ve read some skinny sleb or other enthusiastically saying that their dinner tends to consist of grilled chicken and steamed veg. I bet they don’t leave the skin on the chicken either. If I thought I had to live on that for the rest of my life I’d attempt hari kiri with a piece of blunt spaghetti.

Take this week, for example. Among other things I’ve put away a great slab of sirloin steak and a rather delicious split pea and ham soup with a crusty, buttered roll for dunking. On Tuesday, I tucked into a hearty beef and red wine stew which I’d found lurking in the freezer, served up with Cheddar dumplings*, mashed potato and creamy leeks. I’ve sampled the new, limited edition Penny Pigs (I assume Penny is Percy’s girlfriend; she is lemon flavoured in any case), eaten several segments of chocolate orange, and a good few fistfuls of Maltesers. None of these things are dietey, or dietesque, in the slightest.

There are concessions, of course there are. I mean, I’m finally learning a bit of portion control – the steaks may have been huge, but there were no potatoes on the side because they just weren’t required and the Maltesers were weighed out. The “creamy” leeks were made with half fat Philadelphia. I haven’t had any wine. I’ve exercised. But, I suppose the point I’m trying to make, is that the concessions have been, relatively speaking, fairly small. I’ve been able to enjoy what I’ve eaten safe in the knowledge that it is a million miles away from a joyless plate of chickenandveg.

And at the scales today, I’d somehow managed to lose 6.5 pounds. I’m willing to make a few concessions for success like that.

*For the recipe, pictured above, pop across to the Delicious magazine website – according to the nutritional info it works out at a pretty reasonable 10 pro points per portion.

Sunday, 13 March 2011

What is the use of a blog without pictures...?

Packet of peanuts for anyone who can identify the quote paraphrased above?  No?  Well, it's from Alice in Wonderland, spoken by Alice herself just before she falls down the rabbit hole.  Only, she referred to a book rather than a blog.  Blogs still being a twinkle in a white rabbit's eye at the time.

It keeps popping into my mind with regards to this blog because I'm extremely lax on the old picture front.  Some of my absolute favourite food blogs always have amazing pictures of gorgeous looking meals strewn throughout them and it always makes me feel a little shabby by comparison.

Yesterday, I had an absolute behemoth of a sirloin steak for tea.  Seriously, seriously huge, but also glistening and tender and totally delicious and would have made a fantastic (if rather carnivorous) blog illustration.  But I only remembered when I was about three quarters of the way through.  And no one wants to see a picture of a mostly-eaten supper.

So instead you get this:

It may look rather unprepossessing - but this is the basis of our rather fabulous smelling tea tonight.  Leeks, carrots, celery, dried split peas and homemade ham stock seasoned with black pepper, mustard powder and dried parsley all bunged in the slow cooker and then left to putter away on low for 6-8 hours before being whizzed up to make a gorgeous, hearty soup.  And I can't tell you how much it warmed the cockles of my heart to be able to use the words "homemade" and "stock" in the same sentence.  Just before serving, I plan to stir through a spoonful of mustard and some shredded gammon that has been languishing in the freezer since Christmas.  Perfect Sunday night fare.  

Thursday, 10 March 2011

Lenten promises

Awww, how lovely it is to be missed! Thank you so much, Peridot, for your comment on my last entry.

I’ve not blogged anything for a while; time just hasn’t been on my side, but neither has inclination, if I’m honest. Of course, in dieting spheres this generally means bad news, and, I must concede, my heart hasn’t been in the counting lately. Apparently, the fact that I have to wear a wedding dress in, oh, six months, is not incentive enough.

It was in the run up to Easter last year that my efforts first started to seriously falter. I can’t even remember why now. So it seems fitting that in the run up to Easter this year I retake my mojo. Yes, for Lent 2011 this particular foodie is giving up giving up on WW. I even made a list of things that would help me use these six weeks to form some good habits, including cutting out all alcohol apart from the odd glass of wine (I appear to have developed a bit of a cider habit of late), exercising three times a week and dragging my sorry behind to a meeting without fail. Unless I have a really good excuse, like illness or death or something.

Actually, Lent has started a day late in our household due to me being away for work for a few days and missing out on pancake day. So we had pancakes last night, mine smeared respectively in lemon juice and sugar, Florentine butter and golden syrup. Gorgeous stuff, and I discovered D’s talent, hitherto concealed, for pancake flipping. A man of many and varied talents, obviously.