Mamma Mia, it’s-a pizza! 

I know what you’re thinking. There is no way this girl is about to tell me I can eat pizza.

Well I was determined to find a way to eat a healthier pizza. When I have a craving nothing will stop me from eating it. 

Obviously a dominos couldn’t be had (even though I really miss their beautiful gooey cookies) but I did find a healthier version of a good old pizza. 

First of all, the pizza base. When I was younger I was bought up on pitta bread pizzas, and I really have no idea if they were common or not.. But I sure love them. 

I searched the shelves for wholemeal pitta bread (but white would still work as long as it’s still low fat). Wholemeal bread is lower GI so more diabetes friendly!

But what on earth would I do about the cheese? I’m sure every dieter out there is aware of the high fat content in cheese. Even reduced far cheese is still high in saturated fats. 

Enter Musclefood’s new virtually zero fat cheese. Now the link I’ve posted is for cheddar, but you can also find mozerella and sharp cheddar for all you mature cheddar fans.   

So the toppings were my next issue. I’m sorry everybody but pepperoni isn’t healthy. But you can easily find ham or roast beef in supermarkets with the nutritional information on the front showing how low in fat they are – especially compared to pepperoni. 

Now if you really need to treat yourself to pepperoni then so be it, just don’t tell anyone! 

Create your pizza with pitta bread, tomato Passata, 30g cheese and your toppings. Bake in the oven for 12-15 minutes at 180 degrees Celsius. 

And if you’re a vegetarian just don’t add any meat toppings! 

A perfect pizza every time! 

Happy cooking! 

Henrietta x 

A veggie meal a week keeps you on fleek

You can actually avoid a lot of saturated fat by avoiding meat sometimes. I’m not saying become a vegetarian, but why not have one meat-free day per week?

This little vegetarian treat was a hit when I cooked it for myself and my vegetarian friend. She had it with about four papadums, whereas I had one. Papadums aren’t the healthiest, but if you buy raw ones from the supermarket and pop them in the microwave for 10-20 seconds they look absolutely amazing, taste great and have none of the fats involved in deep frying in oil. This is what I mean by raw papadums.

So here is a very useful recipe from diabetes.co.uk which you can view here.

Vegetarian keema (serves 4)

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Ingredients

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

2 medium onions, finely chopped

200g chopped tomatoes, finely chopped

4 garlic cloves, finely chopped

4 teaspoons ginger, finely chopped

1 green chilli, finely chopped

2 teaspoons fresh coriander

1 teaspoon cumin seeds

1 teaspoon turmeric

300g vegetarian mince (quorn)

100g button mushrooms, chopped

salt to taste

Method

  1. Pour the vegetable oil into a frying pan, and place the pan over a medium heat.
  2. Once the oil’s hot, add the onions and fry until they’re brown, stirring throughout. This should take around 4 minutes.
  3. Whizz the tomatoes in a food processor.
  4. Throw in the garlic and ginger, then cook for another minute.
  5. Mix in the tomatoes and chilli.
  6. Cook for another 4 minutes.
  7. Stir in the coriander, cumin and turmeric.
  8. Cook for 2 minutes.
  9. Place the vegetarian mince and the mushrooms into the mixture and cook for 5 minutes.
  10. Pour 80ml of water into the mixture and simmer for 3 minutes.
  11. Your dish is now ready to serve.

Per serving

198 calories; 7.2g fat; 1g saturated fat; 7g carbohydrate; 17.4g protein; 2.4g fibre

I recommend serving this dish with some brown rice or, as I did, a papadum if you’re feeling slightly less hungry (ha!). 100g cooked brown rice is a (slightly) small amount but is what you should aim for if you’re dieting, but given the low calorie and fat content in the keema you can get away with some extra rice in the dish. 

When following this recipe it is MUCH easier when you actually are cooking for four. When I was cooking for two I had to halve the ingredients and, somehow, got a little muddled so ended up adding water to the keema (hence the leaky water in picture two – it won’t happen to you if you follow the recipe).

Happy veggie cooking!

Henrietta x

Occasional indulgence never hurt anyone

I love risotto.

But, really, risotto? For diabetics? I never thought I would find any recipe for starchy risotto designed to keep blood glucose levels at bay.

Well I found one! And, although my blood sugars 2 hours after my meal were slightly higher than usual (but still in range), why not every so often have some indulgent risotto? So here you have it, found on the diabetes UK website here.

Chicken risotto with spring vegetables (serves 3)

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Ingredients

1 teaspoon olive oil

1 small onion, finely chopped

1 clove garlic, crushed

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, chopped

225g risotto rice

1 litre hot chicken stock

100g asparagus spears, halved 

150g frozen peas

2 tablespoons parmesan cheese

2 tablespoons freshly chopped parsley

salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method

  1. Heat the oil in a large non-stick frying pan, add the onion and garlic and fry for 1 minute. Add the chicken and continue to fry for 2-3 minutes.
  2. Stir in the rice and coat with the oil. Gradually add the hot stock, stirring continuously, allowing each addition to be absorbed before adding the next.
  3. Stir in the asparagus and peas with the last addition of stock and continue to cook. The whole cooking process should take about 20 minutes and the rice should be ‘al dente’.
  4. Stir through the Parmesan cheese and parsley, season well and serve.

Per serving

472 calories; 72g carbohydrate; 28.8g protein; 7.9g fat; 2.4g saturated fat; 3.1g sugars; 1.8g salt

If you’re a vegetarian you can use vegetable stock rather than chicken stock and add mushrooms rather than chicken. It really is a lovely recipe, and I’m so happy I found a risotto recipe that didn’t involve adding heavy cream – and this recipe is certainly not lacking in tasting creamy and indulgent!

The carbohydrates in this dish are slightly higher than desired, hence my blood sugars being slightly raised after the meal, so if you are diabetic than try not to have this recipe regularly. If you’re not diabetic then go ahead and have it everyday! 

Happy cooking!

Henrietta x