Friday morning came around very quickly this week. So much so that I had downed half a cup of my morning cappuccino before I realised today was a fast not feast day. Oops. Cappuccino with full cream milk, no less. 56 squandered calories in a mere half cup. Just over a tenth of my daily allowance. Not the most salubrious start. At least I hadn’t downed it all. Be thankful for small mercies.The bigger problem with that half cup of coffee was that it left me feeling hungry for most of the day. Psychosomatic? Perhaps. Reminding me, a little too late, exactly why I had sworn off coffee on fast days.
So this fast day wore on. A little slowly and very much distractedly. Lunch was restricted to a very small bunch of grapes. 15 seedless green grapes. 3 calories per grape. Sitting next to the fruit bowl? A small bowl of mini Easter eggs. A big thanks a lot to my children. I am proud to say I resisted an overwhelmingly strong urge to indulge. Trivial as this might seem, each one of my grapes were the size of those eggs. Calorie differential? 3 calories for a grape versus a whopping 65 for each brightly foiled Easter egg. Sobering food for thought.
As the afternoon wore on I became hungrier and hungrier. And increasingly obsessed with dinner. I wanted something filling and definitely wasn’t in the mood for soup of any description. A brisk walk to my nearest shopping centre. Desperate to fill in time and escape those beckoning Easter eggs. I think I might have driven my local fishmonger mad with my requests to individually weigh almost every blue eye cod fillet in his display. Dinner was a very satisfying seared fillet of blue eye cod with oven roasted cherry tomatoes on a bed of cauliflower and cannellini mash. All that food for an impressive 374 calories. Note to self. Staying on task with the 5-2 challenge is difficult without proper planning. No more winging it. Definitely no cappuccinos on fast days. And remove all temptation from the kitchen bench. Thankfully tomorrow is a feast day. There are some magnificent beef rib eye cutlets waiting to be devoured in the refrigerator.
|2 cups peppermint tea||
|Dinner||Seared blue eye cod with roast tomatoes||
|Cauliflower and cannellini bean mash||
|2 cups peppermint tea||
Seared Blue Eye Cod With Oven Roasted Cherry Tomatoes
Serves 4 – 286 calories per serve
4 200g blue eye cod fillets (240 calories per fillet)
1 tablespoon olive oil (120 calories)
2 garlic cloves, sliced into paper thin slivers (4 calories)
2 cups cherry tomatoes (scored, plunged in boiling water and peeled) (54 calories)
12 basil leaves, torn (5 calories)
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
PREHEAT oven to 200 C
HEAT oil in a large heavy based frypan on high
SEASON fish fillets with sea salt and freshly ground pepper. Sear skin side down in hot frypan until skin is golden and crisp.
TURN fish over, and push gently to the sides of the pan. Reduce heat to medium-low. Add garlic and cook for a few minutes over low heat, stirring occasionally. Do not allow to brown.
ADD tomatoes and basil. Season with sea salt and pepper. Cook on stove top for a few minutes more until warmed through Transfer the pan to a hot oven and bake for an additional 10 minutes or until the fish fillets are just cooked through. Timing will depend on the thickness of the fillets.
SERVE on a bed of cauliflower and cannellini bean mash.
Cauliflower and Cannellini Bean Mash
Serves 5 – 88 calories per serve
1 medium head cauliflower (144 calories)
1 400g can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed (drained weight 250g – 206 calories)
1/2 tablespoon butter (50 calories)
2 tablespoons Greek yoghurt (40 calories)
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
BRING a large saucepan of lightly salted water to the boil on high heat. Divide cauliflower into florets. Add to boiling water and simmer for 8 to 10 minutes until tender.
DRAIN and return cauliflower to the hot saucepan off heat. Cover with a lid and allow to stand 2 to 3 minutes.
ADD the cannellini beans, butter, and yoghurt to the saucepan. Puree until smooth with a stick blender. Season to taste.
REHEAT gently prior to serving.