Foodie block and recovery

Hello lovelies! Isn’t it chilly? The South of England hasn’t been affected too badly with snow but I know a lot of other places have been hit so I hope everyone is safe and not suffering too much with the chaos that usually ensues in Britain when it snows. And all those not in Britain but in other snowy places too! Where I work was dusted just a little bit but nothing major.


Everything just looks so beautiful with a white overlay…

And on a snow-related note, Ben and me have booked our holiday to go skiing in Bulgaria for two weeks time! I’m so excited. I’ve never been skiing before (except at a dry ski slopes) so I’m hoping I will pick it up and enjoy it. We will have lessons as well though. I’m just worried as honestly I am the most clumsy person alive. Knowing my luck I’ll slip up just walking to the hotel and break something!!

But back to business. It’s WIAW. That lovely half-way point in the week where we can nosey around at other blogger’s food. Check out Jenn’s blog for more info!

I’ll show you what I ate on Sunday as this week has been rather boring and repetitive (halloumi salad again, tuna salad at work, chicken…).

So on Sunday morning I got up after a lazy lie-in and decided to finally crack on open the waffle-maker my parents got me for Christmas. I wanted to use up some pumpkin that I still had lurking in the freezer so I flicked through some recipes and then decided on THIS one (which I’ve previously used for pancakes). In retrospect the batter was probably a little too thick for my waffle-maker, but with my lack of waffle-making experience I missed this vital point.


Hmmm, and this was the better one of the two. Doesn’t look like the waffle in the recipe picture does it haha.


Aaaand here’s the second beauty. I have much to learn about waffle making I think…

However, despite it’s rather unkempt appearance, it tasted divine. I dolloped a big spoonful of Alpro soya yogurt on top and had a side portion of PB2.


It definitely filled a hole!

After breakfast there was the funness that is household chores (woohoo for ironing and hoovering…not). Then Ben’s mum popped over for a visit which was lovely. Her birthday is soon and we were discussing birthday ideas which is all very exciting.

Lunch was another portion of butternut squash soup with chickpeas using my frozen coconut milk method.


I am stuffed after this soup. Honestly, stuffed. I probably should make smaller portions…nahhh.

Lately I’ve been in a foodie rut; experiencing a foodie block if you will. I just couldn’t seem to work out just what I fancied eating. I love making new recipes and trying new things but nothing was appealing. Just the same old (dare I say, boring) meals were all that I could think of. Now there’s nothing wrong with cooking the same thing over and over if you really enjoy it. But I like to experiment and find new meals that I love. I also love spending an evening at the weekend cooking listening to my new favourite podcast Marathon Talk now that I’m doing Jantastic (thanks, Maria!). I find cooking very relaxing.

But over the weekend I got myself out of that rut! I made a two-toned cottage pie on Saturday night:IMG_3455

Half normal potato for Ben and half cauliflower mash for me.

Then for dinner on Sunday I tried out THIS recipe. As Ben and me aren’t huge beef eaters I decided to switch it to some turkey breasts instead so basically it’s balsamic turkey and pepper stew.IMG_3467

It was quite rich and very filling. But absolutely delicious! A heart, warming, comforting stew to commiserate the end of the weekend.


If you’re a beef fan I’d totally recommend using beef as I think the flavours would probably work amazingly. But I’m just not a huge fan of the chewy texture. Turkey was a good alternative though.

My half-marathon training is still going well (I’m sorry if I’m becoming a bit of a broke record on this). I’m really enjoying the variety of runs and feel like I’m improving. My last run was Monday and it was a 3 mile speed run (basically I just ran as fast as I could).


I was quite happy with that – especially as that was on a very cold Monday morning. Sniffing all the way, lovely.

I’ll be running at lunch today with two guys I work with so that should be fun. If I’m honest I much prefer just getting up early and getting the run done and then feeling happy for the rest of the day. I’m not a fan of delaying it until later. Plus, the shower at work is fairly rubbish.


But running with people is much better than running alone! So I think we’ll probably do 3 miles? Who knows!

My strength training now comprises of a quick 20 minutes once a week (mainly to maintain my ability of a 3 minute plank – heaven knows how long it took to get to that point!!)…I know I should keep it up but with all the running and Pilates, I honestly cannot be bothered. Oops. Did I say that out loud? After the half I’ll get back into it but it’s not my main priority now.

And that’s all folks! Have a great Wednesday – it’s practically Thursday now surely..?

What do you prefer: running or strength training?

What new recipes have you been enjoying – please share!! Smile

Comfort food heaven

Isn’t it lovely that it’s the weekend? First ‘proper’ week done and dusted, Christmas just a blissful memory now. One of my highlights of this week? My dad falling asleep in a meeting at work [I work at the same company as him – though we rarely work together]. And my dad snores so loudly like you wouldn’t believe so it was pretty noticeable. It was quite funny. In his defence, the room was quite warm and the meeting wasn’t exactly what you’d call scintillating. As my dad is part of the top management team he sort of gets away with it, but it didn’t stop people giggling haha (me including).

Speaking of my dad actually, he is trying to get healthy this year. He’s got some weight to lose and is doing something about it! We have a teeny tiny gym at work:


Basically two bikes, one treadmill, one elliptical machine, and one rower. But he went and did 20 minutes on the treadmill at lunch! I was so proud. And he’s being more mindful about what he’s eating. I just hope he keeps it up!

So the weekend started with my new favourite meal on Friday night. I based it on THIS recipe.


Easy Chicken Paprika (serves 1)

  • 1 medium sweet potato (really depends on how hungry you are – I was very hungry)
  • Chicken breast, cubed
  • Small onion, diced
  • Approx. 1 cup vegetable/chicken stock
  • 1 tbs. cream cheese (I used light)
  • 2 tbs. paprika

[I didn’t have any cayenne pepper so I used a few herbs (thyme & rosemary) just to add some depth.]

Grate the sweet potato (I didn’t bother peeling).

– Sauté the onion in a bit of oil until soft, then add the sweet potato. Let the potato soften for a bit.

– Add the chicken and paprika.

– After about 5 mins, add the stock and turn down the heat a bit.

– When the liquid has been absorbed, add the cream cheese and stir it all up until nice and creamy and hot.

– Add herbs then serve!

It was really filling and deliciously comforting. The original recipe calls for sour cream but I only had Philadelphia cream cheese so I thought it wouldn’t matter too much. It was so good. Definitely a keeper.

Saturday morning I got up, walked Alfie, then went for a 6 mile run.


I’m gradually increasing the length of these longer runs each weekend and it’s going well. I quite enjoy them because the ones in the week are tempos, or intervals, or speed runs. So there’s a lot of focus on actual running while you’re running that’s needed and they’re quite intense and tiring runs. But even though the weekend run is longer, it’s a lot more relaxed. I can let my mind drift and just run. I do look at my Garmin to make sure I’m not slacking of completely though and try and maintain an 8min/mile speed as it’s a comfortable but still hard pace. I’m just scared about getting to the 8 mile plus runs as there the runs I haven’t done much of at all…

Then I showered, ate breakfast (standard oatmeal) and hopped off to Pilates. It’s starting to get tougher now that we know the basics. Lots of repetitions and harder movements that really give a burn to my muscles. And this morning (Sunday) I woke up feeling very sore.

Ben and me then took Alfie for a lovely walk enjoying the fabulous January weather.


Absolutely tipping it down. It was cold, wet and miserable.

But lunch was warming and comforting! Butternut squash soup with chickpeas.


I also added some coconut milk to it to add some pa-zazz. I had cunningly frozen some coconut milk as I didn’t get through the tin last week. I used an ice cube tray which was great as it meant just popping a load of these bad boys out and dropping them into my sizzling soup.


However, just ‘popping’ them out proved to be a bit of an issue as they seriously weren’t happy about coming out. In the end I used a knife to ping each cube out. And there ensued cubes of coconut milk being pinged straight up to the ceiling and flying back down. Hilarious.


Anyway I dropped the cubes into the soup and they melted away. I then blended it all up and put half a can of chickpeas in and heated it through. Perfect!

After lunch we went to town to buy a few bits and bobs and enjoyed a lovely Costa as well. Heaven knows why I chose an iced cappuccino…

IMG_3446 And we bumped into my parents and my niece, Ellie, which was lovely. So we joined them for a shoe shopping session for Ellie.


Though to be honest, shoes were the last thing on her mind. Everything else on every single shelf in the universe was where her attention was.

For our last purchase, I realised I needed a potato for dinner so we popped into M&S.


Felt a bit silly just buying a potato but what can you do!

Then Ben and me went home. We were shattered by this point and just wanted to be warm and snug inside. And I wanted to wear my new PJ bottoms!


Oh so comfy and soft!

Then I chilled out on the sofa while Ben played on his XBox and I did some reading.



Then it was dinner! I decided to make cottage pie. A two-toned cottage pie! I vaguely followed THIS recipe (but didn’t use ramekins). I used beef mince (this is a shocker as I rarely ever eat beef – I’m just not a fan, it’s a bit tough and dense for me if that makes sense?). I also didn’t have mushrooms and used regular flour instead of potato starch (I’m not even sure what that is). But basically I followed the recipe.


After browning the mince, onion etc. and getting things lovely and tasty I threw it all into a casserole dish. Now, at this point I veered off the beaten path of the recipe. There’s no way in hell I can get Ben to eat cauliflower mash. I mean seriously he won’t. So I peeled, chopped and boiled the above M&S potato while also making my usual cauliflower mash with a goat’s cheese Babybel mixed in as I’d run out of proper goat’s cheese. Then I mashed both sets of, er, mash and covered one half with potato and one half with cauliflower. Then put it in the oven for about 15mins.


Ben’s half was on the left, mine the right. Looks quite funky.


Then proceeded to eat a MAMMONTH portion. But with cauliflower rather than potato I wasn’t over-stuffed by the end but comfortable full (remember, I’m a greedy girl!).

Then the evening was spent chilling with blog reading and internet surfing while Ben played a crazy game…Geometry Wars? Anyone heard of it? It’s quite stressful to watch. Lots of shapes flying about the place and colours exploding. It’s so fast paced, I found it quite gripping to watch haha.


See, even Alfie was mesmerised by the craziness.

And that was our evening! Oh there might have been some chocolates…obviously Winking smile

What have you been up to this weekend?

What’s your favourite comfort food?