Catching Points - a food blog

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Why WW isn't working for me.

I haven't posted in ages. Not because I'm not cooking delicious, nutritious food. Nor is it from lack of energy or ideas. My problem is the WeightWatchers. This is the second time I've tried weightwatching, and sure it works, but it's so unbelievably dull. I don't want to count up every ounce of every ingredient I use, I can still keep it healthy without doing so.
When i was younger I was a bit thicker than my friends, without being unnatural at all. My friends were all from arabic cultures and I just happened to hang with the ones that couldn't gain a pound if their life was hanging on it, which the school nurse sometimes thought and had big crisis meetings with them. Problem was that they ate more than anyone else, they just didn't gain. When I was ten I moved to a posh part of town and apparences was everything there. Still the problem wasn't that I was bigger than anyone because I wasn't, I just couldn't afford the clothes or the toys. I still got friends.
I don't know when it sneaked up on me, maybe I was 11 or 12 but my mum started commenting on it on both me and my sister. School had these weighins every year and I was always the one weighing the most and it could be a pound at first but it soon rocketed far above the rest.
When I graduated 9th grade I was bigger than normal, I weighed 80 kg, which is about 200 lbs. I went on a language trip to England where the foods maintain of crisps and fried foods, but I still lost 5 kg. I got home happy but I gained it fast enough.
I soon realized that I comforted myself with food, and my home situation wasn't a happy one.
Over the next 4 years I gained almost 20 more kg, and when I left school I was the biggest I'd ever been. A year after that I met Linda and I started WW for the first time. In two months I lost 15 kg and felt great, but as soon as I had emotional problems I binged. So eventually I had to quit weightwatching because I only ate potatoes.
When I moved out of my mums, I had already planned a trip with Linda. I had gained back all those pounds and I was sad because I was going to warm countries where clothes were superfluous.
Needless to say, my confidence through all these years had been on a low.
I was gone for 3 months with Linda. Starting in India and ending in Australia, but the stop in Thailand in between was the most important one. I met a guy, I fell in love and I felt loved. And somehow that just made me live.
When I got home I had lost 15 kg on simply living. Not denying myself anything I'd wanted. I worked for 3 months and lost 5 more kg and went back to Thailand for another turn. Again I lost weight on just excisting.
When I got home that turn in january 2004 I weighed 78kg. Something I hadn't done since I was 16 (7 years earlier). I started working at the postoffice and I was somewhat happy, I got happier and I never thought of what I ate. Suddenly I was 9 kg lighter and beautiful.
This might sound cruel, but that's when I met my boyfriend. I don't want to blame him fro anything, but he was the opposite to what I had become. He was a true coutch potatoe, and suddenly I was back on old habits. The pounds started to gain without my notice. *Damn*
Then my dad died and I fell into a depression and all of a sudden I was bigger than ever. When I woke up out of my daze I thought that maybe WW will work this time, I was eating healthy I just needed to control the alcohol and chips. But as it feels for me is that as long as I focus my life around food I'll never get past food. And denying myself is only making me annoyed. So from now on, I'll post healthy or unhelathy food but that tasty as hell, and no points will be marked, and if I gain back the 10 kg I've lost so far, I guess I'll have to throw in the towel and admit it, I can't control myself, so put on the straight jacket and force feed me.

I just want to say to those out there who've been big for as long as they can remember, and think that life will be hell without all that food they can't eat... well once you've lost enough to enjoy to move around and flirt and dance, life will be about so much more than food. Don't get stuck thinking you're giving up something that defines your life, but understnad you're gaining a million things more to live for.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Oh Wey for being poor.

I've always had these spur of the moment fascinations. It's been getting friends all over the world through letters (I was up to over 100 people in over 50 countries), the best part was looking forward to getting the mail each day. It's been webdesigning, constantly updating and renewing what I know, evolving and trying everything I can get my hands on. Once it was even trying to excell in writing, trying to get thoughts and words down on paper to be able to gather it all up ina coprehending mash. Eventually I grew tired to most of it...
Lately it's been food, but to be honest I'm losing interest.
Sure, I like to cook and sometimes photograph it, but it's not the passion it was at first, though I had a thousand ideas of what to make. Usually, these days, what keeps me from trying is fear of failing and the lack of utensils in the kitchen.

I mean who would have thought, leaving your parents house, that you would need a potatopress (to translate bluntly from swedish), because it simplifies mashing potatoes... or that a strainer is desperetely needed when you're making rice or simply baking. I just foolishly assumed my colander would do...
I was clever enough to make sure I had a good cooking knife, but a friend ruined that one for me by somehow getting a dent in the blade, don't ask me how, and then claiming not to have noticed... hmmmmm...
Starting to get curious of what to buy I found a whole world I haven't been invited to, where people seem to know what to need or use. For instance I've never used a rice cooker, but I desperetly want one though I have no idea how they work.
I had no idea of all the baking equipment there is and I get frustrated and a bit stressed because I want to buy so much that I can't afford... I also want to make elaborate cakes, but just the decorating will cost me more than a cake from a bakery would. Oh Wey for being poor.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006


I followed Martha Stewarts recipe for Empanadas meticulously, except for the filling for my boyfriends empanadas, because he doesn't like cilantro, nor can he handle much chili, so I just fried some ground beef with some tomatoes and onions for his. It still made him happy.
These were tasty and a great snack! And great to freeze!!

Monday, March 20, 2006

Yummy pasta sauce

This is a Bolognese with a twist sad point is it's fattier...
serves 4 as usual, 4 points each (with pasta 7p)

360 g ground beef
can of chopped tomatoes
6 tbsp half and half max 15% fat
herbs (good idea is chili)

Fry the beef, when it's done add the chopped onion and chopped garlic. Let it fry ona medium heat until the onions are starting to get transparant. Add what ever herbs you like, basil always work and chili really hightens the tastes. Add the can of tomatoes and let it cook to thicken, then add the half and half and do the same thing there.
When it's done add already cooked pasta and mix in the pan, let it cook for a while.
Almost too good to believe ;)

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Hamburgers my way

Ground beef is the easiest ingredient when you're out of ideas.
This is a random idea I got, ground beef hamburger type meal. I haven't blogged in a while and I made this on thursday so I used the left over oven potatoes cut into pieces and fried in a pan.

Hamburger a la Lex, makes 4 large or 8 small burgers
4 p/each if 4 large

360g ground beef
2 pickles
1 onion
1 egg
salt, peppar, chili

Cut the pickles and onions into small pieces. Mix all together and make your burgers. Fry in a pan until well done and serve with a salad and some fried potatoes. Yummy!
I made a sauce by adding half and half to the hamburgers in the pan and added some extra salt and peppar and let it cook a while to make the tastes mix.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Oven Chicken with Root Vegetables

Another extremely easy recipe is this of oven roasted chicken. i do this when I'm lazy and in the mood for something crunchy.
It feeds 4 if you only eat wings, clubs and breasts, if you completely clean it out it feeds atleast 6. If serving 4, without skin this dish is 5p each with skin it's 8p each.

one chicken
10 potatoes
4 carrots
2 large parsnips
a large piece of rutabaga
1 Tbsp of olive oil
3 Tbsp soy sauce
2 garlic cloves, pressed
one chili, I used thai chili

Cut the chicken into pieces. If you don't know how, most beginner cookbooks have picture step by step guides.
Mix the herbs, oil, soy sauce and garlic into a plastic bag. Put the chicken in it and try to mix it all well, covering every piece. Refrigerate the chicken and let it mariante for atleast an hour.
Heat the oven to 225 degrees (celsius).
Cut all the potatoes into wedges, depending on the sizes of the roots, cut them into similar sized pieces.
Into a big oven pan pour the potaotes and roots, and place it in the oven. On a grill above it, put the chicken pieces with the skinless sides up.
Let it all cook/fry for 30 minutes (shake the potatoes now and then). After 30 minutes turn the chicken and let it all bake for another 30 minutes, if the chicken isn't crispy enough after a total of 50 minutes in the oven, put it on grill or up the temperature.
And trust me on this. The roots don't need additional oil because the juice and fat from the chicken will pour all over the roots!

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Salmon and risotto

I love fish, and my most favorite fish (this might be boring) but it's Salmon. Salmon when I eat sushi, salmon when I fry fish, salmon when I make a fish stew or salad, I just love salmon.
I hadn't had fish for a very long while, and I'd also been cheating my risotto for my man by just boiling the rice instead of slowly simmering it into the consistancy that makes it a... yes you got it, a risotto.
But this time I might not have more time than normal but hte stamina, so I did it all from scratch, just hte way I like it.
My meals usually serve 4 because I make lunchboxes for the both of us.

Salmon Risotto serves 4, 7p each
4 dl aviori rice
8 dl hot water
600 g salmon
half a cauliflower head
150 g baby spinach leaves
1 onion
1 garlic clove
2 tbsp parmesan cheese
2 dl yoghurt (I used 8%)
2 tbsp caviar
(any other herb you like)

Start with chopping the onion and the garlic.
Heat a wok or pan on low heat, add some oil and then the garlic, onion, spinach and rice aswell as the herbs and stir to cover all the rice in some oil and heat them a bit, also try to get the onion a bit translucent.
Add 1 dl water at a time. Make sure that the water get cooked off before adding more. (Meaning add 1 dl water, let it simmer and when it's all absorbed into the rice, add another dl of water). Keep this up until all the water is absorbed into the rice.
While you're cooking the rice, fry the salmon in a seperate pan. Choose to either have 4 filés or make alot of square pieces.
Add the parmesan to the rice and the cauliflower. When the cauliflower's just the way you like it, it's done.
I made a sauce to it all with yoghurt, some lime and the caviar.

Monday, March 13, 2006

"American" Pancakes

I call these american pancakes because these are the thick pancakes my sister taught me when she came back from the States when I was younger.
Not only did I like these more, but they were easier to make, so now everytime I'm too short for ideas, or Elvira is over, I make "american" pancakes...
I'd love to hear an american view of these pancakes because you should know if I make them right... and ofcourse they are without any pancake mix because I want to know what's in my food...

American pancakes serves 2, 6p each
2 dl flour
2 dl yoghurt (I used one with 0,5% fat)
2 eggs
2 tsp baking powder

Start with seperating the eggs. Whisk the eggwhites to a marengue like mix (you don't have to take it really that far). Mix together the other ingredients and then fold in the egg whites so the dough gets light and fluffy.
Heat a pan with some butter in it and then add about 1 dl (half a cup) of dough into the pan, have the heat on a medium. When thebubbles on the dough stop closing themselves, turn the dough over to bake the other side.

When one's done I'd eat it if I were you. I used to love to have a bit of butter on it and some sugar but that's not really healthy weight watching style so I just had these the way they were which goes done just fine aswell.
This is a perfect base for pancakes, just add sugar or chocolate chips or blueberries etc to get your favorite pancakes!

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Erins Profiterolls

I finally tried erins profiterolls and it took me a while to understand everything... but it went rather well. At least at first.
The dough went extremely smoothly by, even with my boyfriend bugging me about shit that made me take my eyes off the butter and water boiling, leading it to almost over cook.
But it all went well later. Ofcourse I didn't get that these rolls wont rise, so the first batch were bite sized, which really aint much to fill, so I quadrupled those to make the size I wanted to fill with the chicken salad. And since I love both parsley and lime, I loved it. My boyfriend approved of it but I think he'd secretly enjoy something with mayo and no parsley. What are these green things is a common frase he uses...
In the end extremely tasty and easy to make, and something we'll do more often, maybe with the dough spiced and something else to fill the rolls with. I felt that they're ten times tastier hot than when they get to cool down. I like bread right out of the oven, but then agian who doesn't??

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Daniels Meal

It's not often my boyfriend cooks, so when he called me from work yesterday to say he wanted to have the honour I was first sceptical... Chili again? Or according to him, his specialty (and fattening) egg sandwiches?
He sometimes forget I'm WeightWatching so his ideas are usually tasty but greasy... but yesterday he called and said he wanted to make me some raw fried potatoes, beef and salad. Acctually I added the salad but he never says no to it (anymore).

So I was treated to a nice meal yesterday. Unfortunetly he forgets that spices give more taste once heated and incorporated in the meal through frying or cooking, so the potatoes tasted like white peppar and nothing else, which kinda burnt your mouth. But look at how he'd arranged everything! He was especially proud of the salad!

Friday, March 10, 2006

The best doggie treat

I sometimes buy my dog bagged doggie treats. But just as I try not to stuff myself with artificial shit, I think he deserves nothing but the same right as I've got, so it's dried pigs ears or pigs tails or dried anchovie pieces.
My boyfriend however loves to buy all shit they've got, to see what the dog likes the most.
In the end however, the only thing that makes the dog really guard the treat are home made liver candy. To make these treats the only thing you have to do is, is buy the cheapest liver in the store if you're broke, I bought lamb liver because it's low fat (my dog is hyper sensitive against fat) and he seems to like it the most. Cut it into small squares and then put it in the oven on an extremely low heat (I put it on 100 degrees celsius/212 F) and let it dry completely (it takes hours, so do it over night). The drier the better because it'll keep longer and the dog has to work a little to get it all digested, which for me is always success. Anything that keeps him from swallowing everything whole makes me happy.
Trust me, the appartment will smell and the dog will guard the oven with his life. But anything to make our precious babies happy, right??
Keep these treats in an airtight container when done, they'll keep for a long while but better safe than sorry...

Thursday, March 09, 2006

When the cat's away...

My boyfriend doesn't like the look, taste or smell of any exotic cheese, while I love cheese. I love love loooove cheese. So since we live together and I like his kisses I just don't eat my beloved cheese as often as I'd like, ofcourse the fact that they are a hell of alot of points count into the factor aswell.
But today he was eating at his grandmothers so I took the opportunity that lay before me and made a chevre and danablu salad.
I used about 70 g of cheese which was about 6 points. Yeah a hell of a lot! But worht it. Yummy!!!

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Lamb ragu

I was at my mums office today to fix some legal stuff, when done I sat down with some of her co-workers for some coffee. I was chatting with my mother about what to make for dinner when her boss said I should make a lamb ragu. So I just followed his steps and added a few of mine...

Lamb Ragu for 4, 6p/pers
lamb 1 kg with bone or 500g without
any vegetables and roots you have at home and/or like
some butter
one can of whole or chopped tomatoes
1 tbsp cornstarch

Rub the lamb with the the herbs (I used coriander, peppar, salt, chili, parsley) and fry them lightly in the butter. You want the taste of the lamb to come out. Add the vegetables, tomatoes and some water. Let it all simmer for 1-2 hours so the meat will release from the bone.
Remove the lamb from the mix and cut it into pieces, give the bones to your dog if you've got one, it'll love them and don't worry he/she can digest them!
Here's where I differ from my mums boss, I ran the vegetable mix through a strainer
added some cornstarch to the fluids. I let it thicken and then added the meat.

I added some broccoli afterwards, because I like vegetables in my food! I used some of the fluids for the rice I made, delicious!!!

Tuesday, March 07, 2006


There are few easier or tastier pasta sauces than a puttenesca.
My mum taught me this sauce at a young age and told me something about how it's the poor womans food, basically the idea originally was to use what you've got at home, but the main ingredient is anjovies.
The key ingredient is time. You have to let it simmer for quite a while to let it thicken and let all the flavours wed as my mum would say.
This is just out way of making puttenesca, I know alot of people as with meatballs, have their own idea of what is right. Just experiment and use what you've got. I hardly ever got any fresh herbs at home at this point (being broke and it being winter) but basil is excellent for this dish!

Puttenesca serves 2, 1pt/pers
1 pkg (50g/0,11 lbs) of Key sardelles/anjovies (I use sardelles rolled with capers)
1 onion, finely chopped
1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
2 ripe tomatoes

Start with putting a pot with water to boil. Cut cracks into the tomatoes and put them into the water for a short while. This is to peal them and not to cook them so a few minutes will do. When done, peel them under cold water. If it's a hassle just use a can of whole tomatoes, but don't use the juice and the taste is not as good as fresh tomatoes.
Put a pan on low heat, put the anjovies with it's oil in it and mash them together with a fork. Add both the onion and garlic and mix together. Fry until the onion is getting a bit softer. Add the chili, as much or as little as you prefer but remember since this is supposed to boil a while, the taste and heat hightens.
Chop the tomatoes into really small pieces and add them to the mix and let it all simmer on a really low heat but for a really long time. You want the tomatoes to be completely mushy and you want as much fluid to boil off as possible. Taste to see if you need to season it any more. Enjoy with your favorite pasta!

Monday, March 06, 2006

Swedish Meatballs

Before I start I must confess that this week of absent has been because of a huge move combined with completely endulging in things I havne't let myself eat for a while. Bad Lex BAAAAD Lex. hopefully things are going back to normal starting now.

raw balls Erin made meatballs with a seasoning pack and somewhere inside I could feel my body cringe by the thought because is there anything simpler than to make extremely tasty meatballs??
Some people make them of only lean ground beef but I prefer to use 2 parts beef and one part pork. It makes the meatballs juicier and tastier. Here's the recipes for meatballs (every swede will say theirs is the standard but I guess we all have our own way of making them but when it comes down to it they are basically all the same), also for the sauce and simple mashed potatoes...
And since the stores hardly ever have small packages of meat these days, I made alot of meatballs and froze them in the freezer, so next time I wont have to do them from scratch.

800 g (approx 1,67 lb) ground beef
500 g (approx 1,10 lb) ground pork
3 dl (approx 1,27 cups) oat grain
3 dl cream (I used 17% fat, it's worth the points, the taste is great)
2,3 Tbsp potato starch (or cornstarch)
3 eggs
3 onions
3 cloves garlic
salt (by taste)
peppar (by taste)
soy (by taste)

Start with putting the grain in a large bowl. Mix in the starch and then soak it in the cream. Let it sit and swell for atleast 10 minutes.
While the grain swells, chop the onions and garlic and fry it gently to just soften it up, don't let it get any colour.
Mix all ingredients in the grain once it's done swelling, try not to mix too long and the best tools.. are your hands...
Once mixed choose cooking style. Either you fry eveyrhting in a pan or in the oven. the oven is easier for larger bashes but the pan gives them a better colour. If you choose the oven (like I did for this huuuuuge batch) put it on 275 degrees celcius (527 F). Roll consistant size of the balls. If you choose small ones make sure they are all small so they have the same cooking time. If you can't do that by hand, use a measurement like for instant a tablespoon.
I made 120+ meatballs from this batch which meant each ball was about 1 point. The entire dough was 114 points rounded up. Knowing that just make the amount you have the energy for.

For the sauce (for 4 people)
2 Tbsp butter
3 Tbsp flour
5 dl (2 cups) stock (room temperature or cold)
2 Tbsp cream (17%)

The stock is from after you're done frying the meatballs, add water in the pan and let it simmer for a while and then keep it for the sauce. If you don't think it tastes enough add a square of meatbouillon (I try not to because of hte artificial flavourings).
Melt the butter in a pot, mix in the flour and take the pot of the heat, add a bit of hte stock and mix until the butterflour mix is mixed in completely to the fluids. Add the rest of the stock and then put the pot back to the heat. Whisk until it starts to boil, and then let it simmer an thicken for atleast 3 minutes. If you want to add some soysauce for colouring and sealth taste yourself through it. Add the cream in the end.

Mashed potatoes for 4
about 7 big potatoes
2 Tbsp butter
½ cup milk

Peel the potatoes and cut them into cubes, cook until extremely soft, pour off almost all the water, mix or press the potatoes into a mash and mix with the butter and the milk. Nutmeg is a tasty twist to it aswell.