Friday, 2 May 2014

Homemade Quorn paella.

Hello to all my lovely readers. I'm sorry for the lack of posts. Since my last post, I haven't really gotten any better with my health or weight. My weight is still slowly, but surely, going up, no matter how hard I try, which is pretty depressing. :( This is mainly why I haven't posted as much. I don't want to just post about how bad everything is and how bigger I've gotten, but I am mentioning it now as I also don't want to lie to all of you and make everyone think I am some kind superior dieter who breezes through dieting and loses weight without any setbacks. People will go through difficult struggles/stages when dieting, and through life in general, and that's just obviously what is going on with me right now. I just can't seem to get out of this rut. :( But I won't stop trying.

But anyway, on a nicer note: here is a very delicious recipe I tried about a week or so ago. It's a very tasty, very flavourful and a very colourful dish which everyone will enjoy - a Quorn paella. Meat and fish-free too, so also suitable for vegetarians! I tried my first ever paella (a seafood one) when I went to Mallorca in March, with college, and it was sooo good! Since then I had been wanting to make one at home. So I've finally got round to doing it. I am so happy with how it turned out. :)

This recipe serves 4 people and each serving is 450 kcals.

- 2 tbsp oil
- 1 brown onion, sliced thinly
- 1 red pepper, deseeded and sliced
- 1 yellow pepper, deseeded and sliced
- 200g fine green beans, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 2 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp saffron
- 1 tsp mild chilli powder
- 250g long grain rice (uncooked)
- 1 green/vegetable Oxo cube (dissolved into 900ml hot water)
- 100g (1 whole pack) Quorn chorizo style slices
- 200g Quorn chicken style pieces
- 400g fresh tomatoes, skinned and chopped
- 200g garden peas
- 3 tbsp fresh flat-leaf parsley, to garnish (optional)


1. In a large frying pan, heat up 1 tbsp of the oil and cook the onions, both peppers and green beans for about 3 minutes.

2. Add in the garlic, paprika, saffron and chilli powder into the pan, give it all a good stir and cook for another 2 minutes.

3. Stir in the vegetable stock (the dissolved Oxo cube) and all of the uncooked rice and cover up with a lid. If you do not have a lid of the correct size, carefully cover the pan with tin foil. Simmer the contents for 20 minutes, stirring frequently.

4. Meanwhile, in a separate frying pan, heat the remaining 1 tbsp of oil and fry the Quorn chicken style pieces for about 2-3 minutes until they go golden.

5. After the 20 minutes of simmering, add the Quorn chicken style pieces, the Quorn chorizo style slices, the tomato and peas into the rice mixture and reduce the heat. Cook this for a further 5 minutes.

6. Remove the pan from the heat and share the paella equally between 4 bowls/plates (or between less bowls if you're feeling extra hungry - if you shared it between 3 plates, it would only be 600 kcal per serving, so not too bad considering). Garnish with the fresh parsley and serve.

P.S. Feels so good to do a blog post again. I have missed it. Sorry again for the lack of posts. I'll try not to leave it as long next time. <3

Thursday, 20 February 2014

The reason I haven't been posting much...

Hello all my regular and new readers. It's been a while... I am extremely sorry for the lack of posts since this new year started. I have been through a lot recently. I'm writing today to explain myself a bit, as I do feel very guilty for the lack of posts, as I used to post so often and I did really enjoy writing my posts and creating my recipes. So here is why I haven't been posting much lately:

One small reason is to do with the ridiculous amount of stress college is causing me. I'm falling seriously behind with college work, mainly due to the other reason... Which is something very personal and I don't want to go into it too much online but as a result of it I've been on daily medication since August 2013.

I found since taking them I felt a bit better about myself, BUT any will power and motivation I once had towards food, calorie counting, cooking from scratch and exercise vanished completely. It didn't bother me to begin with, but my weight has been creeping up and up and up over the last few months. Even with aims, goals and new years resolutions which I put in place for myself to try and get myself back on track, they didn't seem to help. I'd eat when I was hungry and even when I wasn't hungry, simply because I just fancied eating or felt a craving for something in particular. It wouldn't matter so much if the food I was eating was fruit or vegetables, but it wasn't. It was ALWAYS things like cake, pastries, chocolate, takeaways, etc. etc. And I rarely felt any guilt for eating it... I would just sit and eat as much as I physically could until I felt like I was going to be sick. I could not turn any food down, which before I could. Since September I have gained about 1 stone. My clothes are getting too tight and even though it was upsetting me I still couldn't stop myself.

So as of last week, I made a BIG personal decision (without the aid of my GP, which I probably shouldn't of done... but oh well) - I stopped taking my medication completely. I probably should have cut down the dose before stopping altogether, but I just couldn't wait for that. It was something I felt I had to do, as I can't deal with the thought of being fat again. You can all say what you want about that comment, but that's how I feel. After losing almost 4 stone in weight, selling/donating all of your old, bigger clothes and spending hundreds on a new, smaller wardrobe, the last thing you want to do is gain weight again. So, since coming off the medication I have found I've lost my appetite a little (which has helped slightly), I have gained a bit more will power again, I feel constantly dizzy and nauseous AND I have lost 2.75 lbs in a week. Although I despise feeling dizzy 24/7 (even when I'm sat or led down), starting to lose weight again makes it worth it. I will be seeing my doctor some time this week, but for now I will be staying off of my medication. I will only go back on medication if my GP offers me an alternative. So yeah, now I feel I can work towards my personal weight loss goals (even though I only have 9 days until my birthday party, so I have kind of buggered up that goal, but as long as I can fit in my outfit, it's okay).

Right now, I weigh 9 stone 7.75 lbs and have kept below my calorie allowance on MyFitnessPal so far today. I've also booked a place on a Pole Fitness class at the gym tonight, so I'm feeling a little more positive and back on track. 

So, if you were wondering why I haven't been posting, that is why and I am really sorry. Soon I hope to get my motivation back to start posting more regularly and to start cooking from scratch again so I can start posting recipes again instead of apologies for the lack of posts... Lots of love to all my readers. <3 I hope this post doesn't make any of you think any less of me - it has been really hard for me to post this publicly.

Wednesday, 1 January 2014

Happy 2014 & my new years resolutions.

Happy new year to all of my lovely readers! I hope 2014 brings you all happiness and good health. :)

Like the beginning of every single year I make a couple of new years resolutions. This year is no different, so here's mine for 2014:

1. Get back on track with my dieting and fitness.

2. Start saving up my money (mainly towards moving out).

Towards the end half of 2013 my weight has slipped up. Between joining college in September and now I have gained about 10-14 lbs in weight (I'm not 100% sure on my weight at the moment, as I haven't really weighed myself the last couple of weeks as I'm so embarrassed and ashamed of myself about it). I'm not 100% sure why I've gained the weight. It's probably a big mix of the following: eating due to stress; comfort eating; being lazy; lack of willpower; losing all motivation; other peoples influences; and just feeling low in general. Lots of things really. I'm not happy with myself about the weight gain, but I am only human, and what's done is done. I am now ready to get back on track and shift these extra, flabby pounds! I'll be weighing myself first thing tomorrow morning (dreading it). I want to start going back to the gym sometime this month too! I just have to work out how to fit it around my college course effectively.

I used to be really good at saving up my money, but over the last year or so I have not been able to control my spending habits so well. I buy things for the sake of it and not because I need it, and this has taken its toll on all of my bank accounts. So now I've decided to start saving up my money properly again with the main goal of eventually moving out with my boyfriend. I'll be doing this by clearing out my things and selling it then putting the money away and also by putting a bit of money away into my savings each month. :)

Once again, happy new year and good luck with any resolutions you've set yourselves!