Curries are one of my absolute favourites. I love experimenting with different ingredients and spices. For me, it is more about the taste, than the heat of the dish. You can always add a bit more curry powder but without the right spices it doesn’t always taste right.
Chicken Jalfrezi is a classic curry dish, originally created to use up leftovers by frying them in peppers and onion. This recipe serves 2 people and is syn-free.
2 chicken breast fillets
1 large onion sliced
1/2 red and 1/2 yellow peppers deseeded and sliced
1 tin of tomatoes – chopped
Salt and pepper
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp chilli powder
1 tsp garlic granules
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp curry powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground coriander
very low fat natural yoghurt and chopped cucumber to serve
cooked white rice
Cut the chicken breasts into strips and fry in Frylight until cooked through.
Spray a separate frying pan with Frylight and add the cumin seeds, onion, peppers, garlic and ginger and fry for about 8 minutes.
Transfer the chicken to the mixture and stir well.
Add the curry powder, chilli powder, cumin, coriander, salt and pepper and fry for 1-2 minutes.
Stir in the tomatoes. Cover, reduce the heat to low and cook for about 5 minutes.
Serve with a side dish of very low fat natural yoghurt and chopped cucumber.
I had a fantastic evening out for a friend’s husband’s 60th birthday do. The company was good, the atmosphere was good and the music was very funky 70s.
I had a large lunch to make sure I wouldn’t be hungry as I didn’t know what I’d be able to eat at the buffet. The last event I ate out at left me glutened and I was a little wary. However, my friend had been dropping hints such as, “What type of bread do you eat?” and “Can you eat custard?”. I assumed she was preparing something nice for me, and as she is good at baking I was quite excited.
She reassured me about the food and put all the wheat-free items on the same platter, clearly labelled. There were sandwiches and THREE desserts! Across the buffet there was also salad, veg and fruit that I could eat freely. All credit to my friend, the food was delicious. The homemade dessert was very tasty and I’ll be asking for the recipe to share with you all soon. I did go back for seconds of everything so I slipped off the Slimming World wagon a bit. I’m back on today and not worrying about it. I don’t do that very often and I’m just focusing on the fact that I’ve enjoyed myself. I know we can get glutened, even in our own kitchens, where lots of care has been taken. I’m so glad I didn’t, partly because my friend went to all that trouble.
Worried about eating out at a buffet?
Let the hosts know well enough in advance. Give them a couple of ideas of things they could do for you.
Eat plenty before you go. There’s nothing worse than sitting hungry, watching everyone else eat.
Focus on the celebration. You are there for an occasion (maybe a birthday) not the food! Have a drink, soak up the atmosphere, socialise and get dancing.
Worried about catering for a coeliac at your buffet?
Make sure your guest knows where the gluten-free foods are at the buffet.
Put the gluten-free foods on separate, labelled plates.
Don’t use the same knife to cut the sandwiches and cakes, and be careful about cross-contamination from using different knives in the butter. Consider making the gluten-free sandwiches first when you’ve opened the butter so that there is less risk.
Make sure other people involved in arranging the food know about cross-contamination so they don’t touch ordinary bread and then gluten-free bread.
Fresh fruit is a lovely dessert but please provide something a bit naughtier. Buy ready made gluten free desserts so you know you won’t be glutening your guest by mistake with your baking. Marks and Spencers and Mrs Crimbles are always good.
Don’t worry too much. Your guest is there for the celebration, not the food. They will be happy about any effort you have gone to, as this is often a rare occurrence.
A speedy mid-week recipe for Chilli Beef. I used chunks of beef but you could use mince or Quorn if you’d like. It’s great for making up in bulk and freezing for future meals. Mine was served on a bed of crushed Charlotte potatoes. You might like it on rice or as a topper for your baked potato.
The meal is free on Slimming World and gluten free.
200g beef pieces
1 Knorr beef stock cube
1 onion diced
2 carrots in slices
1 aubergine diced
1/2 tin of sweetcorn
tin of red kidney beans
tin of baked beans
2 tins chopped tomatoes
2 tbsp chilli flakes
2 tsp chilli powder
1 tsp dried thyme
boiled Charlotte potatoes
Lightly fry the onion in Frylight for a few minutes.
Add the beef pieces and cook thoroughly.
Add the carrots and aubergine and lightly fry for 3 minutes.
Add the sweetcorn, kidney beans, baked beans, tomatoes, chilli flakes, chilli powder and thyme.
Bring to the boil, then simmer for 15-20 minutes.
Meanwhile boil the potatoes.
Put the potatoes on a plate first, lightly crush with a potato masher and then top with the chilli beef mix.
This recipe is perfect for Slimming World as all the ingredients are synfree. I was really surprised that the Amoy noodles were as they are part cooked – but I checked online and they are. The whole dish is gluten-free if you use gluten-free soy sauce. I used Kikkoman Tamari Gluten Free Soy Sauce but there are others on the market.
200g diced chicken (cooked)
Amoy straight to wok ribbon rice noodles 150g pouch
Pak Choi chopped
Handful of mangetout
Yellow and red peppers diced
Soy Sauce (Gluten free variety)
In Frylight lightly fry the onion and peppers.
Add the cooked chicken pieces and ginger paste and stir well.
After 2 minutes add the pak choi and mangetout and a splash of soy sauce.
After 1 minute add the noodles with a few more splashes of soy sauce.
On Slimming World we are used to not eating too much bread but many of us fit a slice or two into our Food Optimising each week. What gluten-free bread can we have on Slimming World? Of course we can have any bread and count it as syns but it’s much better to use a ‘b’ option and save the syns for something nicer (wine, chocolate, both…)
I personally like Schar’s bread rolls. They last a few months unopened and once opened last for about a week. Currently there are 4 in a pack for £2 from Tesco’s. Each 50g roll counts as a ‘b’ option.
Bfree do a wide range of products including wraps which are really tasty (£3.50 a pack at Tesco’s). I like the wraps lightly fried to eat instead of chapatis. ‘b’ options: 1 x 55g Stone Baked Pitta Bread, 2 slices Brown Seeded Loaf (from 400g loaf), 1 x 60g Soft White Roll or 1 x 42g Multigrain Wrap.
You can have 2 slices of Genius Brown Bread (from 350g loaf) or 1 slice of Genius Triple Seeded Bread (from 560g loaf).
Glutafin also have a wide range and the following count as healthy ‘b’ options: 1 x 50g part-baked white roll, 2 slices of white bread (from 400g loaf), 5 High Fibre crackers or 1 slice of seeded bread (from 400g loaf).
As a general rule you may also have 2 x medium slices of gluten-free wholemeal or multigrain bread as your ‘b’ option.
Slimming World has progressed greatly over the last few years and is now more greatly aware of its members unique dietary requirements. I’ve done Slimming World in the past (when I lost 3 1/2 stone) and have returned to the eating plan this year. I thought it might be helpful to share some of the tips I’ve picked up. I’ve recently been diagnosed with Coeliac Disease too, but I’ll cover this in a separate blog another time.
Fill up on free fruit and vegetables – this goes for everyone on Slimming World! Fresh and frozen fruits and vegetables have fantastic filling power and make me less likely to pick on snacks at other times. (Tesco – Slimming World FREE foods)
Eat regular meals – again this means that I don’t get to that ravenous stage where I want to eat everything in sight. It can help to control blood sugar levels throughout the day. I cook much more and needed to stock up on kitchen supplies. (Slimming World Kitchen Essentials)
Eat carbohydrates with most meals if active – if I’m busy I need the carbs to keep me going. Sometimes in the evening I may cut out the carbs if I am not particularly hungry and don’t need them. If I’m having a lazy evening in front of the TV I don’t always need the carbs.
Don’t follow Extra Easy SP – it’s not advised for those of us with diabetes as cutting out carbs altogether may not be good for our blood sugar control. Instead I try to eat lots of speed foods and protein rich foods. (Slimming World Speed Foods)
Don’t miss breakfast – I can’t manage without the first meal of the day. I used to rely on Weetabix but as I’m now gluten-free I love overnight oats.(Slimming World – Overnight Oats)
Treat a hypo and don’t feel guilty – most of the time we can’t help it if we have hypos. Treat them and move on. I don’t worry about the extra syns. I tend to stick to 10 syns or less per day to account for these little blips.
Remember that everyone’s journey is different – I often joke that I’m on the scenic route to weight loss because it takes me a long time to drop the pounds. Most advice I read says that slower weight loss better and we are more likely to keep the weight off. A pound loss a week is 3 1/2 stone’s weight loss in a year! That can be life changing.
Most importantly: check with your GP or consultant if you are concerned about what you are eating.
Join a Slimming World group locally or online – the support is amazing!
But you can’t eat bread if you are doing Slimming World? Wrong!
You can even make it on gluten-free bread if you need to.
I like Schär White Ciabatta Rolls. They currently cost £2.00 for a pack of 4 at Tescos. Each can be a Healthy Extra ‘b choice’ or 6 syns.
I’ve recently discovered Colman’s mustard powder. Apparently this is how mustard used to be sold in the olden days. It is syn-free whereas jars of mustard have a syn value. It is also gluten-free whereas many versions aren’t. You simply mix the same quantity of powder with water. For most sandwiches you just need 1 tsp.
white ciabatta roll (gluten free if you want)
1 x minute steak
1 tsp Colman’s mustard powder
Cook the minute steak – I used the health grill
Mix 1 tsp of Colman’s mustard powder with 1 tsp of water. Spread the mustard on the bread.
Add the steak, lettuce and tomato.
Want more gluten-free Slimming World recipes? You might like: