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The Menu Challenge

Discussion in 'Cookery' started by scottjw, Aug 24, 2011.

  1. So in the task of losing weight, and eating well I thought I would set people this challenge:
    Devise a menu consisting of three courses every day.
    Sounds easy? Well, it should meet the following criteria;
    1. Should be relatively quick and easy
    2. Needs to use quite cheap ingredients
    3. It needs to be quite healthy. Preferably getting your 5 a day, and contributing to weight loss.
    So there it is, hopefully we will get some decent posts. You lot normally deliver. Hopefully through this, everyone will get new ideas, inspiration and get a little hungry. If people want to provide links to recipes, then that could also be helpful.
  2. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    Well, I'm also on a weight-loss tip - finally accepted I need to lose at least 2 stone, preferably 3, so am back on calorie counting. Aiming for 1800 calories a day, using exercise to offset this if I want a treat, which should result in weight loss of about 2lb a week. I don't count the calories as such - I use a website that does it all for me, with me just entering the food I eat and exercise I do.
    Brekkie - Porridge made with semi skimmed milk, topped with dried fruit and honey
    Lunch - Small portion of chicken risotto (leftover)
    Dinner - beef curry (a healthy one with minimal fat and no cream/coconut milk), a potato and pea curry (ditto)
    Snacks - lots of fruit (to make up 5 a day, and to ensure no crisps, biscuits etc. which are nromally my downfall)
    I did a 45 minute brisk walk, which is abour 275 calories, which meant my overall intake was 1800 calories. The downside was no booze because I didn't have the calories! I've done a bit of extra walking today to allow for a beer (which I'm currently enjoying!)
  3. grandelf

    grandelf New commenter

    3 meals or a 3 course meal?

    I have a lot of these I used when dropping from 16stone to almost 12 stone since Xmas

    simple one to start = about 1300 cals so room for a snack as well

    2 weetabix, semi skimmed milk

    3 rounds of bread, with ham and salad
    Muller light yogurt

    with rice

    tea, water, diet coke/pepsi

    the goodfood site has loads of healthy meals to try.

    also worth using http://www.foodfocus.co.uk/registerprompt.php to track the calories you eat/burn.
  4. grandelf

    grandelf New commenter

    some more meal idea, remember to only eat a portion of these! ie if it says serves 4 then you need to serve 4! Bulk them up with veggies (tinned, fresh or frozen - doesn't matter)
    This should give you a good start, and plenty for the freezer!




  5. Si N. Tiffick

    Si N. Tiffick Occasional commenter

    I'm also back on the regime. I never have 3 course meals, though. Here's what I had today:
    Breakfast- Wholemeal toast x 2 with marmalade, 1/2 glass grapefruit juice, a nectarine.
    Mid-morning snack- 2 victoria plums
    Lunch- (packed lunch at school) Spice rubbed, limed chicken breast, baked and served cold and sliced, with a huge mixed salad. Another victoria plum
    Dinner- Devilled whole mackerel, new potatoes with a bit of half fat butter, cauliflower, brocolli, green beans.
    Late evening- Bowl of homemade chicken broth.
    Lot 4lb last week on a similar regime. Sorry, not very inspiring, but it works- I'm not hungry, don't feel deprived and it's not bad healthwise. If I "need" a naughty treat, I have some maltesers or mini cheddars or whatever- just make sure I balance out the rest of the day accordingly.
    Good luck!
  6. modelmaker

    modelmaker Occasional commenter

    I have to confess I've been lucky with weight. I still weight the same as I did when I was 20 and can get into my favourite suit which is about 25 years old. There was brief period I outgrew it somewhat, but thankfully, taking up smoking corrrected this and it wasn't long before I was back to normal.
    On the other hand, my darling wife also blew out dramaticially for a while. She went from a size 10 to a size 16 and was appalled at how she looked in her daughter's wedding pictures. She spent 6 months with Weightwatchers and exercised like crazy and got it off very quickly.
    My belief is it wasn't the exercise or the Weightwatchers diets that did the trick, it was the vast amout of fruit she ate that set her apart from her fellow Weightwatchers colleagues. They say fruit and veg has no points, so fill yourself up on it.
  7. Si N. Tiffick

    Si N. Tiffick Occasional commenter

    Most veg (other than starchy ones) have so few calories as to be negligible, so I eat tons of them. You can't say the same for fruit. If you eat lots of bananas or grapes, say, you'd be as well scoffing sweeties (in terms of calorie content, not nutritional value!)
  8. grandelf

    grandelf New commenter

    todays menu
    breakfast (550 cals)
    scrambled egg (2 eggs) and 2 bacon rashers (grilled)
    1 round of toast

    Lunch (340)
    Left over stir fry from last night (1/2 packet of sainsburys pre packed) with noodles

    tea (500 cals)
    Grilled pork loin
    Carrots and Green beans
    200g of mashed potato (with semi skimmed milk and **** of marg)

    leaving about 200 cals spare for snacks or a pint!
  9. Bethannie

    Bethannie New commenter

    I'm going to try for three 3-course meals a day with three snacks..and still fit the given brief...
    I have no idea what the calories will be...and I go for 'sensible' servings rather than restrictive weighing of everything....this is the sort of food I eat...but I don't generally eat so much....three 3-course meals would be too much! But it's the high-fibre, high fruit/veg non-diet that I like....so let's give this a go.....

    Small glass of Orange Juice (unsweetened)
    Small/Medium bowl of Branflakes with a little dried fruit sprinkled on and semi-skimmed milk
    A medium banana.

    MidMorning Coffee
    about half a dozen unsalted almonds...or a small piece of fruit (but not a banana ...and preferably not an apple - as there's an apple later on)

    Home-made fat-free soup...tomato and red-pepper (can be taken to work in a thermos)
    A wholmeal/granary roll filled with rocket leaves, cucumber and some tuna (tinned, in water not oil), onions too if liked....no butter/spread...if dressing is needed then a little joghurt mixed with herbs.
    Natural Joghurt with a small drizzle of honey and a sprinkle of cinnamon.
    Can of Diet Cola if wanted.

    Afternoon Tea:
    2 gingernut biscuits.

    Small salad - does not have to be restricted to lettuce and cucumber wirth tomato!...try pickled green beans! (a personal favourite!)...grated Kohlrab- with a little joghurt...Shredded fennel with a little orange ...
    Shepherdess Pie....Base of lentils, tomatoes, mushrooms, onions, garlic (I slowcook mine!)...topped with a mash of mixed potato and sweet potato....served with 2 veggies...maybe cabbage (shredded and fried in a pan wiped with oil ...and some caraway seeds added when cooking) and cauliflower.
    Baked Apple (If you want a stuffing try dried fruit soaked in Chai....but remember dried fruit is not 'calorie free;' and as you had dried fruit for breakfast you can't count this second portion as one of your 5 a day...but you've easily had your 5 already!) with a little instant custard if you want. (I have a jar of the instant stuff and make just a spoonful or two of custard when I get a craving)

    Cup of Milk ....with a spoonful of cocoa powder if you want a chocolate hit...I prefer a sprinkle of nutmeg.

  10. Apologies, I didn't mean 3 courses. I don't think I could manage the effort, or the food!
    Some excellent ideas here. I will add one myself soon. But in the mean time...more!
  11. This is what works for me:

    Breakfast (200 cals approx) - fruit smoothie - simply blend whatever fruit you've got to hand with natural fat free yoghurt and skimmed milk. Apparently the air makes you feel fuller longer - works for me anyway!

    Mid morning snack (200 cals) - slice wholemeal toast with teaspoon peanut butter

    Lunch (no idea calorie wise but not many) - salad - usually dolphin friendly tuna or ham with loads of salad leaves and lemon juice as dressing

    Dinner (400 cals) small portion of anything I've previously made and frozen - curry/chilli/lasagne/fish pie with loads of veg.

    Supper (40 cals) Cadbury's highlights hot choc

    Usually works out at around 1300 calories a day. I have an app on the iPhone which works it out for me.

    I dress everything with lemon juice, herbs or chilli and only have gravy on a Sunday.

    My downfall is cakes - I love to bake but my waistline doesn't appreciate it as much as my tastebuds!

    Exercise includes swimming, walking, cycling, aquarobics, horse riding and walking around classroom/school/stage. I always lose weight in the run up to a school production, this year it's scheduled for the last weekend before Christmas so I'll put it all back on again over the jollies. Sometimes it can be as much as a stone-last year it was scarily down to 8 stone 3...
  12. egyptgirl

    egyptgirl Senior commenter

    I used to have the opposite problem - when I first came to the UK, I was underweight. Not hugely so you'd notice, but enough for my GP to tell me that I needed to put on some extra weight. Its taken me a couple of years to get the balance right but this is what I did pre-pregnancy and its what I try to keep to - my intake is roughly 1800-1900 calories a day.
    Breakfast = Homemade granola with Greek yoghurt and fruit.
    Mid-Morning = Usually fruit but is sometimes something else!
    Lunch = If I stop for lunch, I'll have homemade soup .etc. but if I work through I'll have a salad or a tortilla wrap .etc. with fruit and occasionally a packet of twiglets (they only have roughly 97 calories per pack!)
    I don't snack in the afternoon usually - when I'm at work this is usually the time when I'm trying to wrap things up for the day so I can get home at a sensible hour!
    Evening Meal = Varies hugely but it is usually pretty balanced and has lots of veg to bulk it out - much to the horror of my husband! He loves his puddings so I try and indulge him in those but I've worked out 'lighter' ways of doing them!
    You need to remember to include your milk for tea, coffee .etc. in your daily calories - I think 200ml of semi-skimmed is about 100 calories.
    As for exercise, I love running. Its a great way to destress and unwind.
  13. Si N. Tiffick

    Si N. Tiffick Occasional commenter

    Today I had:
    Breakfast- 2 x wholemeal toast spread with hummous, 1/2 glass orange juice, handful of strawberries
    Mid-morning snack- 3 victoria plums
    Lunch- Homemade lentil and ham soup (heavy on the veggies!), 1 slice wholemeal bread for dipping, nectarine
    Dinner- Cottage pie, peas, cauliflower, brocolli, green beans
    Later I plan to have some more strawberries and maybe some popcorn.
  14. Ooooooh! I'll have to join in!
    Breakfast: porridge with either half and apple chopped in or some cinnamon 378kcals
    Snack: fruit and 3 brazil nuts 136kcals
    Lunch: Homemade thing, usually lots of veg, half sweet potato, cous cous (like the innocent pots) 400kcals
    Snack: I give into the need for sweet - that Ryvita Dunk with raisins lasts well - I manage with 2 115kcals
    Tea: could be anything GL: Lamb chops and lentils (Fat Girl Slim recipe) 450kcals
    We like puddings so we often have something fruit based and extravagent:
    Fruit compote topped with yoghurt and demerara sugar, like a brulee 150kcals
    Drinks include fruit juce and Red tea. The juice adds about 50kcals the tea 0
    All of which comes to about 1750kcals - so my scales must be off [​IMG]

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