Polish Inspiration

There wasn’t a great deal in my fridge today, and I was home alone, so using up whatever was there seemed the order of the day. 

What I did have in abundance was cottage cheese (7 pots to be exact) my partner is well known amongst our friends for eating a pot a day, but I figured he could spare me some. I also had a small amount of dough left from what I’d made the night before (just a flour and water mix, nothing special) I have a tendency to shove everything back in the fridge thinking that I’ll find something to do with it, and this time it panned out.

Anyway, what came to my mind was Pierogi, which if you don’t know are little Polish (or generally Slavic/Eastern European) dumplings which come with a variety of fillings. One of the most popular? Pierogi Ruskie which has a cottage cheese and potato filling. I understand that the cottage cheese traditionally used is not quite what we mean when we say cottage cheese in the UK (if anyone can explain the difference I’d be interested, I think it’s something to do with the curd size?) but I’m sure it’s similar enough to get away with it. 

Long story short is, a boiled and mashed potato later, I mixed a couple of spoons of the cheese with potato, salt and pepper and crimped up in a few little discs of the dough. 

When I’ve been served Pierogi before it usually came topped with some softened onions or with bacon bits and sour cream, but I didn’t have any of these so I sliced up a bit of smoked ham, and then a little cabbage and mushroom for good measure (another filling for Pierogi by-the-by) and after a quick trip in boiling water and the frying pan. Lunch was served. 

I don’t know how they measured up to the Pierogi your Babcia used to make, but at least they hit the spot (and I didn’t have to go out).

More for my money…

In this instance see calories for money. 

(Although I highly approve of saving money wherever possible too!)

Sometimes when you come home, tired, hungry, you just want to see a huge mound of food on your plate. Not ‘enough’ food, but more than enough. Times like these you have to get your thinking cap on. Normally I advocate for soup, it looks big, feels filling and the excess is made of water (win/win right?) but you can’t have soup all the time.

Now I don’t particularly subscribe to the low-carb ideology, although I do know people who have definitely benefitted from it, I generally feel what works for you, works. Sometimes though it is useful to steal a few ideas…

I really wanted to use up some smoked mackerel and settled on a fish curry, but as an oily fish it was going to take a serious bite out of my 400kcals I aim for with each meal. The other biggest contributor in this dish? The rice. I was slightly loathe to compromise as rice is 100% my favourite carbohydrate, if I could only have one again I would gave rice  breakfast, lunch and dinner. This time however, I opted to for the oh-so-trendy cauliflower rice since I didn’t feel like looking down at a pitifully sized portion.

I have to admit I got a lot of bang for my buck. I wouldn’t replace rice permanently but the cauliflower was pretty complimentary. The curry was made with butternut squash, spinach and potato and the mackerel flaked in so the slightly sweet, slightly nutty cauli wasn’t half bad. And I got an extra veg towards my 5 a day (bonus points). Downsides…curry and smoked fish? Don’t keep your coat in the Kitchen while you’re cooking.

If you have calorie ‘saving’ tips to share I’d love to know! Or suggestions of how you’ve served your cauliflower rice :).

Back in the Kitchen

It’s been a while!

After a super busy year in my ‘9-5’ and getting engaged I am finally returning to the love of my life – food.

As the pre-wedding dress panic is setting in I’m reminded that it’s a constant balancing act to eat food that satisfies your literal needs as well as giving that same enjoyment and satisfaction.

So I will be endeavouring to share my forays into this, most perilous of journeys, to stuff my face with yummy delights and come out of it healthier than when I went in.

First case: Grapefruit halves. The classic dieters breakfast, allegedly kick-starting the metabolism and giving a daily dose of vitamin C.

Dusted with brown sugar and cinnamon I did like it – but I have a particular fancy for sour things, if you don’t, this maybe too much for you. I sliced up the other half with mango and chopped walnuts so might be more palatable for those with a sweeter tooth!

Well that’s breakfast out of the way, and I had better get busy – we’ve got catching up to do :).