Archives for posts with tag: lunch

Asparagus mimosa

It’s that time of year when my lunches often contain some combination of asparagus and egg. I’ve had asparagus with poached egg and asparagus omelette of late, so was looking for something different. This dish makes an interesting change from my standard asparagus-and-egg combos. I had some hard-boiled eggs to use up, so used two in this. If you just use one, you can bring the calorie count down to 215.

Asparagus mimosa (serves 1)

Ingredient Calories per serving
110g asparagus 22
2 hard-boiled eggs 126
1½ tsp lemon juice 2
1 tbsp olive oil 120
1 tsp wholegrain Dijon mustard 5
Chopped herbs to taste 2

Total calories per serving: 275 (215 with one egg)

Method: Steam the asparagus for about 8 minutes, or until tender. Dice the egg(s) or grate finely. Beat the oil, mustard and lemon juice together and stir in the herbs (I used garlic chives). Rinse the asparagus under cold water to stop the spears from cooking, then pat dry and arrange on a plate. Pour the vinaigrette over the asparagus and then sprinkle the egg over the top.

Spring omelette

Egyptian walking onionsThe first vegetable I get from my garden in the Spring is the intriguingly-named Egyptian Walking Onion. This plant was given to me by a neighbour about six years ago and it (or its offspring) has been a permanent feature of my front garden bed ever since. (Indeed, I think it is one of those plants that is quite difficult to get rid of, once established – but I’m not complaining!)

Here I’ve used my first harvest of the year to make a very easy omelette. I had two leftover egg whites to use up, so this one has two eggs and two whites, bringing it to 220 calories in all. If I’d just used two eggs it would have been 185 calories. I suppose I could have just used the egg whites and brought the whole dish down to under 100 calories – but there’s something a bit too Hollywood about egg white omelettes, somehow!

Spring omelette (serves 1)

Ingredient Calories per serving
5g butter 36
5 spring onions/scallions, trimmed of roots and sliced into short lengths 24
2 eggs, beaten 126
2 egg whites (optional) 34
salt and pepper to taste 0

Total calories per serving: 220 (185 without the egg whites)

Method: Melt the butter in a frying pan over a medium heat and add the sliced onions. Cook for a minute, then pour over the eggs. Season with salt and pepper, to your taste and continue cooking until the top of the omelette is set. Fold in half and serve.

Green lentil and tomato salad

I had an over-indulgent day yesterday which resulted in me waking up with indigestion at 4am. Not nice, so I resolved to have a fasting day today to give my system a break. This salad is about as simple a meal as you can get, but it was an easy, filling lunch and soothed my guilty conscience about abusing my body yesterday!

Green lentil and tomato salad (serves 1)

Ingredient Calories per serving
100g/½ cup cooked green lentils 116
40g (5) cherry tomatoes, halved 7
60g iceberg lettuce leaves 8
1 tsp olive oil 40
2 tsp balsamic vinegar 2
salt & pepper 0

Total calories per serving: 175

Method: Arrange lettuce leaves on a plate, then mix the remaining ingredients together and pile on top. If you have some fresh herbs available, it would be good to add some to this dish. Still winter here, so unfortunately not an option for me!

bean corn and cottage cheese salad

Cottage cheese, corn and black bean salad (serves 1)

Ingredient Calories per serving
½ cup cottage cheese 102
½ cup cooked black beans 114
½ cup cooked sweetcorn kernels 62
1 red chilli, sliced 8
salt & pepper 0

Total calories per serving: 285

A very simple but filling salad. If you don’t fancy eating a whole raw chilli, you could replace it with some cayenne pepper or chilli flakes to sprinkle over the top. It would be a bit bland without anything else, I think. And according to a 2011 study, “consuming red pepper can help manage appetite and burn more calories after a meal” – which is an added incentive on a fasting day!

Egg saladA very simple lunch dish.

Egg salad (serves 1)

Ingredient Calories per serving
1 egg, hard-boiled 63
25g iceberg lettuce, shredded 3
25g carrot, grated 10
2 tsps sliced sundried tomatoes in oil 54

Total calories per serving: 130

I’d stopped posting here because I’d mostly stopped fasting, believing that just not eating breakfast and eating sensibly was going to be enough to maintain my post-fasting-diet weight.

Turns out I was wrong about that, and my weight and waistline have been gradually increasing, to the point where I have to be honest with myself and get back to ‘proper’ fasting. I notice from the stats on this blog that a lot of other people are in the same situation after the festive season, so welcome if this is your first visit here and I wish you good luck in your fasting!

So, back to it. I plan on making egg fried rice for supper, and I need something light for lunch just to keep me going. This lentil dal should do the trick. There are two portions here, so I’ll keep one in the fridge for my second fasting day of the week. It’s not the most exciting-looking dish, but it’s warming and comforting on a cold winter’s day like this one (-22°C with the windchill right now!).

Lentil dal

Lentil dal (serves 2)

Ingredient Calories per serving
1 tsp oil 20
1 onion, diced 22
1 clove garlic, crushed 2
1 red chilli pepper, sliced 1
¼cup red lentils 85
1 tsp ground ginger 3
1 tsp ground cumin 4
salt and pepper to taste 0

Total calories per serving: 137

Method: Heat the oil in a saucepan, then stir in the onion and cook until softened. Add the garlic and chilli, cook briefly, then stir in the spices. Add the lentils and a cup of water, then bring to a simmer and cook, covered, for about half an hour to 40 minutes, stirring occasionally. Toward the end of the cooking time, remove the lid and stir, raising the heat if necessary to thicken the dal to your desired texture. Season to taste, allow to cool a little, then serve.

DSC01705-001

A simple, delicious, lunch or supper dish.

Asparagus and Parmesan omelette (serves 1)

Ingredient Calories per serving
5g butter 36
200g fresh asparagus spears, sliced into short lengths 40
2 eggs, beaten 126
15g Parmesan cheese, grated 48
salt and pepper to taste 0

Total calories per serving: 250

Method: Melt the butter in a frying pan over a medium heat and add the sliced asparagus spears. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until tender, then pour over the beaten eggs. Sprinkle the grated parmesan over the eggs and add salt and pepper. Cook the omelette until the top is set (about 3 minutes). Fold the omelette in half and serve.

Chickpea and pepper raita

This is a good (very easy) side dish for an Indian meal – but also makes an excellent lunch or supper on a fasting day (or indeed both, if you can save half of it for later on). The spices listed here are just suggestions – put in whatever you like or have to hand.

Chickpea and pepper raita (serves 1)

Ingredient Calories per serving
1 cup cooked chickpeas 269
1 sweet red pepper, deseeded and diced 37
½ tsp cumin seeds 4
½ tsp fenugreek seeds 6
½tsp mustard seeds 8
½ cup yoghurt (2% fat) 87
2 tsps lemon juice 2
salt and pepper 0

Total calories per serving: 415

Method: Toast the whole spices over a medium heat until they are fragrant, then coarsely grind them with a mortar and pestle. Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl and chill for an hour or two before eating (the dish that is – but you could, too!).

Green lentil, feta and beet salad

Another really simple but filling and tasty salad. Lentils take a while to cook, so I tend to cook two cups at a time and freeze or refrigerate the leftovers to use at a later date. If you have a pressure cooker, it only takes 10 minutes to cook them.

I didn’t get around to taking a photo of this dish, but it was so good that I will be making it again (using one of my frozen batches!) and will refresh this post with a picture then [done!].

Green lentil, feta and pickled beet salad (serves 1)

Ingredient Calories per serving
1 cup cooked green lentils 230
25g feta cheese 66
50g pickled beets 33
½tsp olive oil 20
1 tsp wine vinegar 1

Total calories per serving: 350

Method: Crumble or slice the feta into small pieces and chop the beets up if they are large. Combine all the ingredients and enjoy!

Tuna, chickpea and sweetcorn salad

This is a really easy pantry-cupboard salad to throw together when you need a lunch for work and don’t have a lot of time to make one. Canned chickpeas are great for this, but if you’re feeling more organised, you could also cook dried peas which have been soaked overnight – you then need to simmer them for an hour (or cook for 15 minutes in a pressure cooker). Home cooked chickpeas taste better, but canned is good if you need speed!

Tuna, chickpea and sweetcorn salad (serves 2)

Ingredient Calories per serving
1½ cups cooked chickpeas 214
1 cup cooked sweetcorn kernels (canned is fine) 62
120g (1 small can) albacore tuna 70
1 tsp olive oil 20
1 tbsp wine vinegar 2
salt and pepper to taste 0

Total calories per serving: 365

Method: Drain the tuna, chickpeas and corn and combine in a bowl, adding the oil and vinegar and seasoning to taste. If you’re using frozen corn, steam or microwave it for a minute or two and allow to cool before combining it with the other ingredients.