Monday, 4 February 2013

Slow Cooker-tastic!

Last night wasn't the greatest. I took a JadeyPuss up with me, and settled down nicely at a relatively early time of 11pm, only to wake up at 1.30 am - dinner time on a night shift, no coincidence - and I just couldn't get back to sleep for hours, strangely enough, at about 6.30 the time I'd usually be getting into bed after work. This all meant that I didn't get out of bed until gone 1pm! Being awake at stupid o'clock did have some advantages though, whilst trawling through Facebook I found a thread on a SW support page about Hidradenitis Suppurativa. If you watch Embarrasing Bodies you might have heard of it, and I'll be honest, up until about a year or so ago I didn't realise it was actually a condition. I just thought the painful, unsightly spots/boils/lumps/bumps and discolouration under my arms were just spots, horrible ones, but just spots. However they're not, and the condition is made worse by being overweight. I've suffered since puberty - and after reading descriptions online, I'm definitely at a stage 3. I'm affected under my arms, breasts and stomach and my inner thighs. It was nice, but rather sad, to read just how many people have this problem - and how little help there actually is out there. I'm resigned to the fact that even at my target weight I'll still be desperately looking for clothes with sleeves to hide the disfiguration, but I, and obviously many others, am hoping that just losing some weight will help. It's quite something to think about really, just how many adverse effects on your health being overweight can have.

With most of the day gone, and the weather rather cold and horrible outside I got my jobs out of the way and planted my bum on the sofa :) In fact it took me two cuppas before I even felt like breakfast! When I did  feel like sorting myself out something it was a quick and easy option.

I'm calling it an open sandwich - as I really fancied a sandwich but just a little sandwich wouldn't have done, and so I came up with this instead :) Rather lovely it was too! With fuel in the tank, I decided to finally have a go with my flash new slow cooker, with double compartments!

I thought I might as well cook something for lunch and dinner - and then I'd have plenty of leftovers for work next week too.

How cool is that? A BBQ steak and bean thingum in one side, and minestrone soup in the other! I then settled down to catch up with some Sky+ delights including the Dispatches special on Weight Watchers and the Room on the Broom cartoon from Christmas. I much preferred Room on the Broom :) I then started to plough through some of the 127 episodes of Come Dine With Me whilst waiting for my soup!

I did read the minestrone soup recipe in the Little Book of Soups, but with no celery or cabbage I was already onto a loser, and so I did my usual and made it up as I went along :)

2 tins of chopped tomatoes (blended up as I had no passata)
tin of beans (no cannellini beans)
frozen casserole mix
mixed herbs

I just threw everything apart from the macaroni into the slow cooker and after 3 hours or so, put some macaroni in too and left it for another 45 minutes. Very filling, and very tasty, and I have two more servings for another day (I had to leave them in the slow cooker though as you have to have both sides filled when using it).

Today I've had a massive tea-head on, and so after lunch I had yet another cuppa, but this one was accompanied by a banana and some Mikado, a mixture of Daim and white chocolate. Yummy!

Shot glasses really do make perfect Mikado holders :) With the animals being terrible company (they have all been asleep all bloody day) I plugged away with Come Dine With Me, whilst nestling under a duvet with a Boo on top. (It's got very cold!).

After accidentally having some gorgeous shoes fall into my online shopping  basket, and then checking out...

I've actually been lusting after them for ages, and have seen them drop from £45 to £30 and today they were £15 and they literally just jumped into the basket. Naughty shoes!!

Dinner was supposed to be a BBQ bake, however, it seemed to end up runnier than the soup....not sure how that happened, it was quite nice though, but it needs more BBQ flavour next time methinks! Once again the method was the Lob It All In one that serves me so well ;)

It consisted of:
Quorn steak strips
chunky chopped red onions
mixed peppers
baked beans
tinned tomatoes
2 tsp of Asda Tex-Mex seasoning (2 syns)
chilli and garlic

Just thrown into the slow cooker and, well, cooked! As I say, I think next time I might use fresh tomatoes rather than tinned to limit the liquid, and maybe add some more BBQ flavouring (I need to purchase the Little Book of Sauces I think). It was a filling, tasty dinner though, especially served with the sweet potato wedges and coleslaw, and once again, I have some more left for work this week.

After a chat with The Other Karen about her rather fabulous magic waffles (check them out on her blog) I decided to whip up some magic pancake mix and make some muffins. Such a Domestic Goddess today! Of course, I had to taste them and so had a couple with some fruit and yet another cuppa.

The perfect late night snack/dessert, and for a syn each, not a bad little snack either.

Food Diary

Free Food
LM sausages
minestrone soup (ingredients above)
BBQ bake (minus the seasoning)
sweet potatoes
coleslaw mix

Healthy Extras
A - 250ml semi-skimmed milk
B - 2 slices of wholemeal bread (400g loaf)

1 tbsp tomato ketchup                   1
12 Mikado                                    6
1 tsp Tex Mex seasoning               1
2 tbsp Hellman's extra light mayo   1
2 magic muffins                              2

Total syns                                     11

I'm sorry it's not been the most interesting of days, but the last week has been quite draining, both physically and emotionally and I really did feel like I needed a proper lazy, relaxing day before launching into yet another week of work. On the bright side though, it's only a 4 day week, and next Sunday is my birthday! Yay! The countdown can begin :)

I hope you've all had a lovely weekend - I'll catch up with you again tomorrow, it'll be a late one though as it's my week of working until 10pm! x


  1. Hi, I found you through the other Karen's blog and have to stay I look forward to both of your updates. It great to see what different types of foods you both eat and generally how you fit SW into your lives. I know the feeling about having a lazy day before week of work, I have really struggled this last week. I think its a mixture of it being cold and dark and all i want to eat is stodge and chocolate. Anyway keep posting :0)

  2. really love reading and seeing what you eat gives me inspiration to keep going as you have done so well on you healthy eating plan