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Tuesday, 17 May 2016

Full of beans :)

17th May 2016
Put your heart, mind, and soul into even the smallest acts.  This is the secret of success.  Sivandanda Saraswati

Another lovely day had yesterday, I do love the sunshine, it makes such a difference to my energy levels.  We had a lovely drive and a walk round Attingham Park, mom enjoyed an eccles cake and a hot chocolate whilst I drank tea.   
Fields of buttercups look amazing, that was my magic moment of the day, the flowers too were gorgeous, I'm not usually a Rhododendron fan but the white ones were particularly spectacular.
I'm sticking to the #trackerpact and I've earned loads of FitPoints too so think I'll make it to Friday as I'm super busy for the next 3 days so just need to eat healthy.  Yesterday had avocado and egg on toast, a particular favourite of mine, just wished avocados weren't so high in SmartPoints, I'd eat them all the time if they were lower.  Our main meal ended up being stuffed mushrooms topped with pastry, I bought them from Morrison's on Friday and they were at the use by date, delicious they are too, had it with a stuffed jacket out the freezer.  My next mission is to use all the food in the freezer rather than buying more, then I can give it, it's annual defrosting.  I had me a cheese sandwich for my tea before a very early night around eight.  

I slept well though, that'll be all the housework, I sorted the utility room and hallway yesterday - you can move in there now!  Only the living room downstairs to do, then I'll move upstairs, bathroom first.  I'm taking advantage of my mood - it doesn't happen often where I want to clean so doing as much as I can before the mood passes.  It's a boringell job and even worse when the suns shining and you just really want to be sat out in it but I need a clean house, it can be untidy as long as it's clean underneath the mess.

I've defrosted fish cakes for lunch today, mom does like a fish cake, not sure what we're having them with yet but I spotted a tin of potatoes in a cupboard, I'll have a mooch when I go downstairs.  Probably should go fetch some veggies, the 10% off at the garden centre is a great offer but it really is out of the way when you're in a rush.  I think I need to get some tinned or frozen vegetables for when I'm out of fresh, but the frozen will have to wait until the defrosting is done!  There might even already be something in there - it's a mess in there too!

I fancy making bean burgers in praise of Vegetarian week, I need to find a recipe.

Here's a simply one I've just found on the BBC website;

Veggie bean burgers

Preparation time less than 30 mins ~ Cooking time 10 to 30 mins ~ Makes 4 burgers, or 12 falafel-sized balls

5sp each burger or 7sp for 3 balls.  If you make breadcrumbs using low calorie brown bread, these would be No Count using the oil from your healthy daily allowance.

Shop-bought veggie burgers are often deep-fried and quite expensive. You can make your own versions at home which can be frozen and then oven-cooked from frozen as needed. They can all be served with dips or as a filling for pittas, flatbreads or wraps. It is good to add a vegetable of some kind - mashed squash, carrot or sweet potato work really well - you can mash these from boiled or roasted vegetables.

400g tin chickpeas or beans such as borlotti, kidney or butterbeans, drained & rinsed (7sp)
 300g/10½oz cooked, mashed vegetables such as carrot, squash) (0sp)
1 garlic clove, crushed or with a garlic press
1 tbsp sunflower, vegetable or olive oil (4sp)
 squeeze lemon juice
pinch ground cumin, coriander or paprika, mild chilli flakes, to taste
freshly ground black pepper
4 tbsp sesame seeds (9sp) or breadcrumbs (8sp) for coating



1.  Preheat the oven to 200C/180C Fan/Gas 6.
2.  Mash the beans or chickpeas as much as you can either with a potato masher in a bowl or with a hand mixer (supervised). Alternatively you could make the mix in a food processor if you have one.
3.  Add the mashed vegetables and garlic and any herbs, spices or tahini that you want to use.
4.  Mix well and the kids can taste and add lemon juice, spices or pepper to their taste.
5.  The mixture then needs to be rolled into four burger-sized balls with wet hands, or make 12 smaller "falafels" - kids have the perfect sized hands for this. Flatten the balls slightly. If you like, you can coat them with sesame seeds, crushed crackers or breadcrumbs for extra crunch.
6.  Drizzle a tablespoon of olive oil on a baking tray and place the "falafels" or bean burgers on top and then turn them all over so that they have a coating of a little oil on each side.
7.  Place the baking tray in the oven and cook for 20-30 minutes, turning the burgers over midway through cooking. Allow to cool a little before serving.


Recipe Tips

You can freeze the burgers uncooked and then bake them from frozen. This will take about 45 minutes for baking at 200C/180C Fan/Gas 6.
Variations to try: carrots or sweet potato with chickpeas, cumin and sesame seeds; carrot with butterbeans and chopped parsley; squash with kidney beans, chopped coriander and ground cumin; parsnips and borlotti beans with chives and paprika.

Right I'm off, I actually think I might already have all those ingredients to make these burgers, mmm maybe if I get the time or inclination.

Ooh hold on, here's a recipe I just found on my computer, an option using canned stuff,

carrot, cumin and kidney bean burger with pitta and lemon and spinach rice.

Burgers = 2pp each

red kidney beans in water 1 can  (7sp)
sliced carrots in water ½ can
onion ½ finely chopped
cumin ½ tsp
fresh coriander a handful chopped
oil a splash (1sp) (or use spray light)
flour 1 heaped tsp (1sp)
For the lemon and spinach rice = 60g = 6sp
rice 60g per person
lemon juice of ½
chicken stock cube ½ crumbled
tinned spinach 1 tbsp drained, to taste

Drain and rinse the kidney beans in cold water. Put in a saucepan and cover with cold water. Add the tinned sliced carrots. Bring to the boil, then simmer on a medium heat for 10 minutes.

In a separate pan, add the chopped onion, cumin and coriander. Drizzle a little oil over, and cook gently on a low heat to soften. When the kidney beans and carrots have softened – test one with a fork, it should mash easily with medium pressure – drain and add to the spiced onions. Mash together with a masher or fork until you have a smooth thick puree, with a mashed potato consistency. Stir in a heaped teaspoon of flour to bind, or refrigerate the mixture for at least an hour.

Heat a little oil in a frying pan on a medium heat. Shape some of the bean and carrot mixture into a ball about the size of a golf ball. Place into the pan and flatten gently with a fork or spoon to make the burger shape. Cook for a few minutes on one side, before turning over gently. They need to be handled with care in the early stages of cooking as they can be quite fragile.

When cooked on both sides, serve hot. Serve in a pitta bread (you can still get WW ones), with lemon and spinach rice.

To make the lemon and spinach rice, boil the rice according to the packet instructions. Add the juice of half a lemon to the cooking water, with half a crumbled stock cube, and drained tinned spinach to taste.

If you have a better bean burger recipe - send it to me!

I'm really off now, have a great day, eat well, smile, laugh and love the life you have - if you don't - change it! If you can't change it, make the most of it BeYOUtiful. xx

One last thing this is a great offer if you haven't been to WW for a while, 3 months with meetings for £28.50, that's almost half price  https://www.groupon.co.uk/deals/weight-watchers-157  great time to return I'd say!

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