Mrssavageangel Slimming World Week 14

I know, I know. I haven’t written one of these for the past two weeks. That’s due in part to the boy being off on his preschool Easter holidays. I find it so hard to concentrate when he’s around, particularly to write these posts, where I have to think hard about what I want to say. And if I’m honest it’s also in part because I’ve not had much to say. I gained 3lb over the Easter break. I stopped trying so hard when we went away and then it was so difficult to refocus when we came back. Why is that? Why is it so hard to fall back into negative habits, but so hard to stick to new positive ones?

Anyway, I’m disappointed with my results over Easter, but actually when I think about it (and look back at last year’s blog post) it’s almost exactly the same as what happened last Easter. And I pulled it back then. That’s good to know.

So this week, I actually started, albeit very slowly, to turn the tide, with 0.5lb off.

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So I’m back to having lost 13.5lb, dipping just back under the stone. And as that makes me sad, and I don’t like feeling sad, I need to change that asap!

And I plan to do that with the aid of a slow cooker.

My friends have been going on about their slow cookers forever, and this week I finally capitulated and got myself one. And I swear I may never use the hob again 😉. First day I had it I made bolognese and then on Saturday I got hold of the most enormous piece of brisket Waitrose were selling off cheap. Oscar loves watching the Buzzfeed Tasty videos at the moment (over and over!) and they occasionally have slow cooker recipes. One that really caught my eye was one with a huge piece of chuck steak. So when I got this brisket I had to try it. I halved a load of new potatoes, some carrots, placed half the brisket on top of the veg, seasoned and added Worcestershire Sauce, a splash of water and, 5 hours in, a couple of springs of rosemary and thyme. 6 hours on high and BOOM! We had the most amazing dinner. So amazing I didn’t get any pictures 😞. Anyway, the plan was to freeze the other half of the brisket and make pepperpot stew later in the week. Didn’t happen. We just had exactly the same meal on Sunday! Basically we ate half a cow this weekend! Half a delicious cow, mind. And this week I’ve already made Pork Vindaloo from the Slimming World Curry Heaven Book. I made double the amount and one half has already gone in the freezer and the rest is for dinner tonight. I’ll report back next week!

Syn free Slimming World pork vindaloo in the slow cooker!

Syn free Slimming World pork vindaloo in the slow cooker!

So other than slow cooked deliciousness, my other discovery over the past few weeks has been chicken burgers! When I wrote about how much I loved Heck sausages (they’re a freezer staple in this house and we buy them in bulk online!), the very lovely people at Heck Food sent me some of their Chicken Italia Burgers to try. Each burger is only one syn each and blow me if they aren’t blooming gorgeous! And so flipping versatile! I’ve had them as just delicious burgers with jacket potatoes and veg, but they’re fab chopped up and added to things too.

Heck Chicken Italia Burgers. In all their glory!

Heck Chicken Italia Burgers. In all their glory!

One lunch time I was planning to have burger, beans and mushrooms, you know, separately, then I decided to just mix them all together and accidentally invented a lunch time ‘Quick Casserole’. It was amazing and so filling!

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My own invention the ‘Quick Casserole’! Beans, one Heck Chicken Italia Burger and chestnut mushrooms. 1 syn for the lot!

And then another day, inspired by a picture on the IG account of @Shanonnagain58, I had a crack a Mexican style breakfast burrito. Chopped burger, with spicy scrambled egg in a BFree Wrap (1 x HEB) with a side order of mushrooms (I love mushrooms can you tell!). It made so much burrito ‘filling’ that I had trouble picking it up! Amazeballs!

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My attempt at a Heck Burger Breakfast Burrito! 1 Syn + 1 HEB for the wrap.

Who knew a burger could be so much more than just a delicious patty on a bun? I’m just off to place another massive order of sausages (seriously I think I have a bit of a problem with these sausages 😉 ) and I’m totally going to order burgers this time too!

So this week I’m feeling much more positive at my own capabilities than I have been. At least I am today (don’t you find it changes from day to day?). So lets take this a day at a time 🙂

love

Lisa

xxx

 

I honestly love these burgers. They are so delicious and at one syn each so easy to fit into the Slimming World plan. I’d like to thank Heck for gifting them to me. I was not paid to write about them and as always my opinions are my own.

 

 

 

 

Mrssavageangel Slimming World – Week 9

Just a quick one today. For no other reason that I’ve spent the week with, what feels like my old friend, Bronchitus. Mothers Day was a wash out, but other than that I’ve had to push my self from one thing the next somehow. That’s just what mama’s do. My appetite has been all over the place. When I’ve been hungry enough to eat, I’ve only been able to face foods I wouldn’t usually eat (Slimming World or not!) Heinz Chicken and Mushroom soup – childhood much? Hot chocolate, toast. Comfort in the extreme. Which is what you need when you’re coughing your lungs up and you’re not sleeping.

Anyway, I didn’t weigh in last night as I usually do for three reasons. One: I was still feeling pretty rough, two: it was hammering it down and I really didn’t want to walk to group in the rain and three: Oscar was being extra cuddly at bedtime last night, and didn’t want me to leave. So I stayed. And it was totally the right thing to do for all of us. And the fact that I made that choice to stay with my little guy meant I got to hear my very first unsolicited, unprompted, unexpected “I love you” from him, while we lay in the dark quiet of his room. It’s only taken four years. I’d have waited four more ??

Anyway, back to Slimming World. Yeah I decided to weigh and run this morning instead, something I’ve never done before. It meant taking Oscar in with me, but bless him he played in the toy corner like a boss and didn’t even cry when we had to leave the little Mr Potato Head behind. High Five that guy! Oh and I did this:

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Now look, I know they say you always weigh less at a morning weigh in than you do in an evening one, but after how crappy I’ve felt all week, I’ve decided to take this and run with it. I won’t be surprised with a small gain or another maintain next week as things balance themselves out, but right now, at this moment, I’m patting myself on the back. And not just to loosen this god damn cough! Because this means I’ve lost 15lb. And that means I’ve reached my first stone! ??

As I said I’ve eaten a really weird combination of foods this week and so have no new foods or recipes to share, sorry. I wish I had felt well enough to make my own soup, but it’s not what I craved. And when you feel this shitty, you give in to what your body says. What foods to you gravatate towards when you’re feeling proper poorly? I can’t be the only one who goes back to the kitchen of their early childhood!

Hoping for a week of slightly more energy and hopefully some better food choices.

lots of lurgy love

Lisa

xx

 

Mrssavageangel Slimming World – Week 8

“No beating about the bush this week. If you read this week’s other post you’ll know my head’s been well and truly out of the game this week. However, regardless of the cupcakes and the odd bowl of granola (I’m sorry Ben I can’t make you any more. I just can’t have the bloody stuff in the house without eating it ?) meals have been either syn free or on plan and therefore this week’s result was appreciated (even if it’s not what I hoped for when we last spoke)

A maintain. I can live with that. For now. That means I’m still at 12.5lb lost.

I got to talking to another Slimming World member last night who had had a very, very tiny gain. She was so disappointed to begin with, so I asked if she knew why she’d gained. She said she absolutely did and then started telling me about the great time she’d had that weekend. Then she leaned forwards and whispered, conspiratorially, that she should feel bad about the good time she’d had, but that she didn’t. It broke my heart. We should never, ever feel bad for having a good time. Even when we might see it on the scales the following week. When you gain and you honestly don’t know why it’s hard, and if you gain doing something you didn’t enjoy then that sucks, but either way it is what it is. But don’t ever feel bad for gaining weight having a brilliant time. That’s called life. It’s called living.

Piece said.

My favourite dinner this week has been another old Savage Family favourite we haven’t had for ages! It’s a low syn version of a BBC Good Food recipe and here it is:

Mexican Chicken Stew

  • Frylight
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 2 red peppers, deseeded and chopped into largish chunks
  • 3 tbsp chipotle paste (I use the Santa Maria Hot Chipotle Paste for 1/2 syn per tbsp)
  • 2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes
  • 4 skinless chicken breast
  • 140g quinoa
  • 2 chicken stock cube
  • 1 x 400g can pinto beans, drained
  • small bunch coriander
  1. Spray a deep frying pan with Frylight and fry the onions and peppers for a few mins until softened. Stir in the chipotle paste for a minute, followed by the tomatoes. Add a tomato can full of water and bring to a gentle simmer.
  2. Add the whole chicken breasts and gently simmer, turning the chicken occasionally, for 20 mins, until the chicken is cooked through. Meanwhile…
  3. Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil with the stock cubes. Add the quinoa and cook for 15 mins until tender, adding the beans for the final minute. Drain well and stir in the coriander and lime juice, then check for seasoning before covering to keep warm.
  4. Lift the chicken out onto a board and shred each breast using two forks. Stir back into the tomato sauce and season. Serve with the quinoa.

Serves two. As the whole recipe is 1.5 syns, I’d count it as 1 syn per person.

I’ve also used rice in place of the quinoa which works equally well. Or as happened on Tuesday when I couldn’t be bothered to make quinoa or rice when I got in from yoga, I just chucked the pinto beans in the stew and added the lime juice and coriander. It was delicious!

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My very low syn version of Mexican Chicken Stew

I’ve also been shopping this weekend. I desperately needed a new bra, so popped into my ever faithful Bravissimo in Guildford. I tried on about 10 different styles, but I still went back to the same one I already have. Funny isn’t it. Even the assistant seemed surprised that none of the other styles suited my shape! So I have gone up a cup size since last summer, but it’s more important to be properly supported in that area than get upset by a number (or in this case a letter!) :0 I also found a BEAUtiful poncho in Joules and was so, so tempted, but I knew the bras were going to take up most of my money so I left it. But I couldn’t stop thinking about it and when I got home I remembered I had almost exactly what it would cost coming to me from my freelancing. So I well and truly treated myself. Its like nothing else I own and I LOVE it! I looks fab with jeans and boots and will be lovely for spring. And the best part is I found this morning is that I can actually fit it under my coat, so I can wear it even on chillier (or wetter) days. Perfect!

The Tessa Poncho from Joules. I just couldn't resist!

The Tessa Poncho from Joules. I just couldn’t resist!

So this coming week, myself and another girl at my group have agreed to aim for our 1 Stone award together. She has 1lb, I have 1.5lb to lose. It’s going to take some thought and planning (something I’ve not been so good on this week) but I know what needs to be done.

Happy Mother’s Day for Sunday to all the lovely mamas out there (even those of you in the US, who don’t celebrate until May). You’re all amazing and I hope you have a super day!

love

Lisa

xx

 

Mrssavageangel Slimming World – Week 7

It’s difficult to start these posts on the weeks when things have been hard. What do you want to hear? The excuses? And they do feel like excuses. But then these are the little things that have constituted my life this week:

  1. We went out for dinner at our neighbours on Saturday. We had a brilliant time. And wine, so much wine.
  2. Sunday’s resultant hang over required medicating with bacon sandwiches. In white bread from the Farmers Market
  3. I made a bucket load of granola, ostensibly for Ben, but there were days my will power failed me
  4. I’ve had this bloody horrible cough for a week now. Proper chesty and ‘productive’ ? It’s either made me not hungry at all or starving
  5. Monday’s meeting with Oscar’s ‘team’ was unexpectedly negative. And left me in a right state. I don’t want to hold on to anger but how do you let it go? Sadness, anger, all those negative emotions convinced me half a tub of chocolate ice cream was a good idea. It wasn’t.

I won’t lie to you, this week has been hard, in so, so many ways. But….

BUT!

I did exactly what I hoped I’d do.


I didn’t lose, but neither did I gain. What a relief! Me and my SW buddy James did a high five across the room when I got off the scales. It was that much of a celebration! So I’ve still lost 12.5lb. Phew!

This week’s food relevalation has been Oyster Sauce. I’ve been doing Slimming World for more than two years and for some reason I had it in my head Oyster Sauce was high synned so had avoided it. Then at last week’s group I found out it syn free! What? So this week we bought some and it’s been a really welcome addition to the many and varied stir frys I tend to have for lunch. See, always learning!

My favourite meal this week has been an old favourite we haven’t had for blooming ages. I’m still going to Yoga on a Tuesday night and don’t like to eat beforehand (all that folding over I’m afraid I’ll throw up all over my mat!) so we eat when I get in. But starting to cook at 9pm is pretty late and not much fun. So I decided to make something in the day that could just be heated up and remembered an old Nigella recipe Pollo alla Cacciatore. With a few tweaks here and there I can make it syn free. It’s a one pot dish of loveliness that is quick to make, can be made in advance and needs no accompaniment. So I thought I’d share it with you here.

Syn Free Pollo alla Cacciatore

Serves 2

  • Frylight
  • 1 or 2 cloves of garlic
  • 5 Bacon Medalions (or rashers of bacon with the fat removed), diced
  • 6 Spring Onions, finely sliced
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary leaves
  • 6 chicken thigh fillets, all fat removed, cut into bite size pieces
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 150ml stock (chicken or vegetable)
  • 400g can chopped tomatoes
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 can cannellini beans
  1. Spray a large pan with Frylight. Put the garlic into a pan with the, bacon, spring onions and rosemary and fry for a couple of minutes.
  2. Add the bite-sized chicken pieces, stirring well, and sprinkle in the salt.
  3. Pour in the stock and let it come to a bubble before adding the tomatoes and bay leaves. Put the lid on and let the pan simmer for 20 minutes.
  4. Drain and add a tin of cannellini beans and warm through.

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Delicious, nutritious and so simple! Give it a whirl!

So this week I want to get my one stone award. I have 1.5lb to lose and I’m damn well going to get there. After the week I’ve had I owe it to myself to get some happy! And getting that would make me super happy!

As did this outfit. Looking pretty good huh?

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Have a good one

love

Lisa

xx

Mrssavageangel Slimming World – Week 6

Hello!

Sorry this is a bit late going out, but (as you may know) it’s half term this week, meaning I don’t get my 2 hours in Dylan’s or Costa or wherever just to switch off and write. How other bloggers do it, writing solely in the evenings, I really don’t know. I’m usually so pooped by the time he’s in bed, all I want to do is eat dinner and veg out in front of the telly. Anyway, blogging gripes aside, half term has actually been pretty good. We’ve gone out every day and had play dates and made new friends and his language is having a mini explosion. Which, you know, I love. 🙂 This week he has told me he emphatically loves both pizza and carrots. And that he equally emphatically doesn’t like my ‘pumpkins’ (or orange peppers, but who’s counting). Yeah it’s been a good week!

It’s also been a good week for my social life (how come the kids have such better social calenders than us !) Social occasions can often come with their own issues. Do you plan and moderate or do you throw caution to the wind and limit damage around the event It’s a choice and both can work equally well in my experience and usually depends how much you drink ( you can plan all you like but after a couple of glasses of vino Good luck with that!) So this weekend I had Galentine’s Day lunch with the bestie and it was as awesome as I’d hoped. But I did plan ahead. Firstly I knew I wanted onion rings (have you tried the Onion Rings at the White Horse Amazing!) But for my main I checked the menu the night before, made my choice before I even got to the pub, all the things we talk about doing in group. I chose, what looked like the lowest synned option on the menu, a Bulgar Wheat and Quinoa Salad with beetroot, chicken, spinach and seeds. It was delicious, however it was covered, and I mean covered, in dressing. I couldn’t tell you what the dressing was and as it wasn’t mentioned on the menu I didn’t even think to ask them to leave it out, which was a bit of a shame. However it was so amazingly filling I could only manage half the dish! I had one drink, then moved back to diet coke as I knew I needed to keep my wits about me, if only because we had friends coming to dinner that night!

OOTD for our Galentine's Lunch

OOTD for our Galentine’s Lunch.

I like having people to dinner. It gives you so much more control over what you’re eating, without making a fuss. And I’ve yet to meet anyone who is served up a SW friendly dish and rejects it on account of the lack of lard! Saturday’s dinner was a tried and tested Savage household favourite, Pepperpot Stew. A warming spicy take on a winter classic, this Slimming World friendly syn free dish is served with rice and our guests loved it. So much I thought I’d detail it here.

Pepperpot Stew

Serves 4

  • Frylight
  • 800g lean stewing beef, all visible fat removed, cut into chunks
  • 3 red peppers, deseeded and cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 sweet potato, peeled and cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 300g green beans, trimmed and halved
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp jerk seasoning (I use Bart’s spice mix – it’s got a great kick to it!)
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 400g passata with onions and garlic
  • 400ml beef stock
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  1. Spray a large flame and ovenproof casserole (I use my Le Creuset) with Frylight and place over a high heat. Add the beef and fry for 4-5 minutes, or until lightly browned, stirring occasionally.
  2. Add the peppers, sweet potato, beans, garlic, jerk seasoning, wine vinegar, passata, stock and Worcestershire sauce. Season and stir well.
  3. Cover and place in the oven on 180/gas mark 4 for 2 hours, or until the beef is meltingly tender.image

Serve with rice. I cook my rice in vegetable stock and when it’s done I stir through fresh chopped coriander.

Syn Free and delicious! And so handy! I made this the day before and it heats up really well. It meant I could spend more time actually being with my guests and having a good old laugh!

So that was syn free and fine, but then there was wine. And a small amount of lemon tart (although it was served with berries so….). And we had a super night.

Sunday was Valentine’s Day and my lovely hubby eschewed the traditional chocolates and went with beautiful yellow lilies instead. I cooked us a lovely Valentine’s dinner, which included heart shaped Heck sausages. Sausages have always featured heavily in our relationship. Ben doesn’t have an emotional attachment to comfort food in the way I do, but when he’s had a bad day, a sausage sandwich can cheer him no end. In fact in our wedding vows I promised to make him sausage sandwiches, whenever he was “blue”. So to me, sausages always mean love and what better way to express that love than with heart shaped sausages. Heck very kindly sent us some of their limited edition Peck heart shape sausages to try and boy oh boy did they go down a treat! Ben had his in sandwiches, me with jacket potato and vegetables. At 5 syns a pop I used most of my days syns on them. But they were totally worth it! Delicious and juicy and just so cute!

Heart Shaped sausages from Heck. 5 syns each and worth every one!

Heart Shaped sausages from Heck. 5 syns each and worth every one!

Anyway, my point is that although the weekend was large, it was all about trying to find some balance. Finding the place that lets you be you and do the things you love, with the people you love and yet stay in some semblance of control. And do you know what I think I just about managed it.

Slimming World

Nope, I wasn’t expecting that AT ALL! Mega happy dances all round. That puts me at 12.5lb lost in 6 weeks. I’ll take that!

So obviously I am very keen to replicate this loss again this week, if only to reach my one stone. We are out for dinner this weekend (OK, look I don’t usually have this much of a life!) but my darling friend Jane has sourced some Thai themed Slimming World recipes for us all and I can’t wait. But I’m also realistic. Just because it worked last week, doesn’t mean it will work this week. So I’d just be happy not to gain. Anything else is a bonus!

Have a super week

love

Lisa

xx