Friday 10 February 2012

Low fat food

I'm still rattling about complete with my gallstones. So much for the NHS priority admission within the month - the month has come and gone! So I am playing safe and trying to adapt my eating patterns to a low fat intake. But it's win some, lose some on the recipe front.
I thought that this recipe for carrot and sweet potato fishcakes sounded good.
100g cooked, flaked white fish
50g carrot
50g sweet potato
2 teaspoons of Wasabi sauce
1 teaspoon chopped herbs.

Cook and mash the veg. Combine all the ingredients. Shape into two fishcakes. Roll lightly in polenta and sesame seeds. Place on a greased tray and bake for 20 minutes or so.

Looks nice, doesn't it? disappointing because I could barely taste the fish. Next time I'll make it with smoked haddock and hope that it will be more successful.

I was much happier with this alternative recipe for crumble.

1 tablespoon coconut oil
1 tablespoon xylitol
50g oats
1 tablespoon each of flaked almonds, pistachio nuts, brazil nuts, pumpkin seeds and ground almonds.

Fry the oats in the melted oil and xylitol for a few minutes until they colour. Add all the remaining ingredients. Spoon over your cooked fruit.

This recipe for oaty crisps is from the Fat-Free Vegetarian cookbook.
6 oz oats
3 oz sugar (I halved this)
1 beaten egg
4 tablespoons sunflower oil
2 tablespoons malt extract.

Mix all together and leave to stand for 15 minutes. Place 18 teaspoonfuls on baking trays, flatten with a fork and cook for 10 to 15 minutes.

I use these jumbo oats as they are soft and delicious
(and I'm susceptible to a nice bit of packaging, having worked as an illustrator for advertising and packaging.)

As usual I didn't quite stick to the recipe. I halved the amount of sugar and added chopped pieces of crystalized ginger.

The resulting biscuits looked nothing like the photograph in the book!

Mine were very mis-shapen and the malt extract seemed to have sunk to the base of the biscuit.

No panic, they still tasted good!

In searching for low fat menus I am being introduced to products that are quite new to me. Coconut oil is a very happy discovery, delicious in stir fries as well as in baking. Malt extract is well known to me although I haven't tasted it for many years. I was given a teaspoon of 'Virol' and a teaspoon of cod liver oil every morning throughout my childhood!
It's best not to think about the air miles involved in my new purchases, goods from Sri Lanka, Fiji and different parts of the world. At least I can balance things a little by stepping no further than my garden or the storage shed for winter vegetables.

If you have any tasty low fat recipes I would love to have them.


  1. That fish recipe looks delicious, I'd try it with salmon.
    Sorry to hear that you are still waiting on the health front.

    1. I fear that you might not be able to taste the salmon, you'll need a fish that packs a bit of a punch.

  2. I agree, that fish cake looks really good but I can totally see how sweet potato and carrot would overwhelm whitefish.

    I'm trying to give up sugar, eat more healthily and exercise regularly so I can understand your pain. Well, I don't have gallstones so perhaps I don't.

    1. I'm also trying to subdue my sweet tooth, but you can see from the recipes above that I'm not succeeding very well! I'm also trying to exercise on a regular basis and have bought a step that I jump about on to riotous music. (Don't know if it's toning exactly but it makes me feel cheerful, which is something for February)

  3. Since I no longer have a gallbladder, that wasabi would do me in. I can't do too much fried either, but your recipes do look so very, very good

    1. Dear Starting Over,I am so interested in your reply because many people whom I know have had their gall bladder removed and say that there is nothing to miss and that they can eat what they like. I remain very keen to hang on to my gall bladder and to go down the route of a non-invasive cleanse. I can't do that, however, until I've had an operation to remove the large gallstone that's threatening trouble in my bile duct.

  4. I had forgotten about Malt Extract. As we were four children my mother would buy an enormous jar of the stuff. We lined up and had a teaspoonful of cod-liver oil - horrible - followed by a big spoon of malt extract, which we thought delicious.
    Hope you soon get the call from the NHS.

    1. It was exactly the same ritual in our household. Bruce, our boxer dog stood at the end of the line waiting his turn for a teaspoon of cod-liver oil followed by Virol.I give my fox-terrier, Maisie a small capsule of cod-liver oil every morning. (When I went shopping for malt extract I first bought a jar from the chemist with added cod-liver oil. What a mistake - it tasted revolting! Happily the dog doesn't think so.)

  5. Wish we could still get Flahavan's oats - our Tesco seems to have stopped keeping them. I don't have any low fat recipes but would like some - I try to use as little fat as possible so that I keep my weight (and through that my blood pressure) down.