Spice up your life without the calories

If you love spicy food and think you can’t have it because it is high in calories then you might like to try the meal I cooked on Friday.

This is a starter and a main course all for 500 caloriesThe way to do this is to think about how you cook food.  Make the most of vegetables which are great in curries and if you can’t control your portion sizes buy packet rice that you just microwave, where you are not frying it and you will not over do the rice.  For this meal I used Morrison’s Basmati Rice which is usually 2 servings but I divide this by 3 so the rice was just 125 calories per person.

The starter is Tandoori Salmon with Salad

Which you can prepare and cook as follows and both meals are for 2

Take a 75g salmon fillet and marinate it with 1 tablespoon of natural yogurt mixed with a heaped tablespoon of tandoori curry powder and the juice of half a lemon for a least an hour

Then break in to chunks and dry fry in a pan until cooked and slightly charred about 5 minutes in total serve with a green salad and chunks of lemon.

The main is a Keema Curry.

Take 300g of lean steak mince and make into burger shapes and grill until cooked through. Set aside.

Meanwhile finely chop 1 large onion, 1 large carrot, 2 cloves of garlic and add them to a pan with 1tsp of olive oil and a heaped tablespoon of curry powder.

When cooked through add half a tin of chopped tomatoes, 100g of chopped mushrooms and a beef oxo cube mixed in a cup of hot water.

At this point you can add additional flavouring such as ground coriander, cumin, and/or ginger to flavour to your taste.

When this has all cooked through break up the beef mince and add to the pan stirring the meat in so it can absorb the flavours.

Microwave your rice and serve the curry with fresh coriander.  I allow 80 grams of rice per serving for the calories I have shown which is approximately 100 calories for the starter and 400 calories for the main per person. meaning that the whole meal comes in at 500 calories per person.







Summer is great for salads

The summer is great for having salads but often people tell me that they find them boring.

If you have lettuce, cucumber, tomatoes and perhaps some spring onions you will soon begin to find them uninteresting but it is so easy to add things to a salad to liven them up.

Easy things are

  • sliced raw mushrooms
  • celery
  • radishes
  • basil leaves
  • nuts
  • feta cheese
  • olives
  • edible flowers (e.g. nasturtiums)
  • chives and their flowers
  • hard boiled egg
  • tuna
  • spinach
  • raisins or sultanas
  • and of course fruit.

These are just a few of the things that I add to salads to keep them interesting either as a meal or as side for a piece of chicken or salmon for example, so try adding different things and you will soon find them interesting

All Bruton’s recipes were tested to prove that they work

Having food in the freezer can help you lose weight

One of the biggest problems when you are trying to lose weight is having things that are ready to eat when you get in and are wanting to eat your evening meal.

I find that when I cook a meal I can often cook more portions and freeze the spare ones, so that when I have less time I have things that I can take out the freezer in the morning and they will be ready to pop into the microwave when I need them in the evening.

One the recipes that is really good for this is fish pie, as it freezes well and reheats to be as good.

You can then just add a salad or some extra vegetables and you can have a meal on the table in just 15 minutes.

I have included my recipe for a great fish pie if you want to try this



This is 2 servings as taken from the freezer then defrosted during the day and microwaved to be served with more vegetables as pictured above.

Fish Pie             Serves 4              Cooking Time 45 minutes          450 calories per serving 

5 sprays olive oil

500g potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks

225g fresh salmon

225g haddock or cod fillets

425ml skimmed milk

3 tbsp 1 portion spring onions (bunch)

200g low fat soft cheese with herbs

100g broccoli lightly cooked florets

50g petites pois frozen, thawed

100g peeled prawns cooked

1 tablespoon parsley or dill chopped 1 pinch

Salt and black pepper freshly ground

Put the potatoes on to cook in a large saucepan of lightly salted boiling water

Put the fish fillets into a large frying pan with 425ml of the milk. Heat, then cover and simmer for 5-6 minutes, until the fish is cooked.

Cool for 10 minutes, strain off and reserve the liquid.

Spray a large saucepan with olive oil and gently cook the spring onions for 2 minutes, until softened, but not browned.

Add the soft cheese and stir to combine. Philadelphia with garlic and herbs works well.

Gradually add the liquid from cooking the fish, stirring well to mix it in.

Add the broccoli, peas, prawns and parsley or dill, mixing together well and season to taste.

Preheat the oven to Gas mark 7 220c / 425f

Lightly spray a 1.2 litre (2 pint) pie dish with olive oil.

Break up the fish into large chunks, removing skin and bones and put them into the pie dish. Pour the sauce on top.

Drain and mash the potatoes, season, then beat in the remaining 3 tbsp of milk.

Pile on top of the fish mixture and then bake for 25- 30 minutes until piping hot and golden brown.

If you are cooking for two you can freeze the extra portions or if you are cooking for family of 4 then just cook two and freeze one.

Just contact me if you wan to know about how I can help you eat healthily



The way you cook food can make a difference

When you are trying to eat healthily and lose weight you might think that you need to cut out family favourites because they have too many calories but that isn’t always the case.

Just by the way you cook your meals you can make them lower in fat and calories but equally tasty and a great example of this is a cottage pie.

By grilling your mince before adding it and making the dish with tinned tomatoes mushrooms and onions; mixed with a beef stock cube, herbs and some Worcestershire sauce and topped with potato mixed with swede you will be full and satisfied so check out this recipe


Cottage Pie with Herby Mash

450 calories per portion

Prep and cooking time: I hour

Serves 2


1 tsp olive oil

I small red onion chopped

2 carrots chopped

1 stick celery chopped

100 grams mushrooms sliced

200 grams of lean minced beef

200 mls of beef or vegetable stock

1 tbsp of tomato puree

1 tsp mixed dry herbs

1 tsp Worcestershire sauce

Freshly ground black pepper to taste

450g of baking type potatoes

2 tbsps skimmed link

2 tbsps snipped fresh chives

2 tbsps of chopped parsley

To cook

Heat oil in a heavy- based lidded saucepan. Add red onion, carrots and celery and sauté over a medium heat for 6-8 minutes until soft. Stir in the mushrooms and cover for a further minute.

Stir in the stock, tomato puree, dried herbs and Worcestershire sauce and black pepper. Bring to the boil then simmer for 20 minutes stirring occasionally.

Meanwhile make the mince into burger shapes and grill under a medium heat till cooked

Add the minced beef stirring to break up and cook for a further  5 minutes

Meanwhile, peel and cook the potatoes. Drain well and return to the pan adding the milk and the fresh herbs season with black pepper and keep warm.

Heat your oven to 200º/180º fan or gas mark 6.

Transfer the meat to an oven proof dish, top with the mash to cover the meat. Place on a baking a sheet and bake for 20-25 minutes until topping is browned serve with green vegetables.

You can try mixing swede, turnips or parsnips with boiled potatoes for the topping.

You can also use the meat mixture as a jacket potato topping or with spaghetti or lasagne.

If you want to know more about cooking and eating healthily then just get in touch


Sunday Brunch

I think that often when you are trying to lose weight you think you have to give up having traditional breakfasts but that isn’t the case.

Quite often on a Sunday, as I get up later, I have a Sunday Brunch and today this included a bowl of fresh fruit and natural yoghurt and some bacon and eggs



If I hadn’t had the fruit I might have added some baked beans or another rasher of bacon but having scrambled or poached eggs with grilled bacon and adding tomatoes and mushrooms you can have a great breakfast.  As a tip, I poach my mushrooms with a beef Oxo cube as this adds no fat and keeps them really yummy and soft.

Mid afternoon I will have a small snack, maybe some crisp breads and low fat cheese and then I will be okay for my main meal of the day.

In this way I can vary my days but eat well and healthily. If you want advice on eating well and losing weight please feel free to contact me at enquiries@weight-away.org for a free chat on how I could help you.

Lovely light meal in minutes

I know that lots of people really struggle to find time to cook and often resort to take aways or ready meals.  The only problem with this is that often those take aways can be just overloaded with calories.

A  portion of Fish and Chips from a shop would be anything from 750 to 1000 calories (without peas or any sauces)

A 12 inch pizza around a 1000 calories

and a Chicken Tikka Marsala a staggering 1250 calories

Whereas in around 15 minutes you could cook this for less than 250 calories


Just Poach a piece of smoked haddock in some skimmed milk ( I prefer this not coloured yellow but I have shown this for illustration) with a poached egg and a portion of steamed broccoli and it would be ready before you could order or collect a take away.

If you want to know more about eating healthy to enable you to get to the weight you want to be then I would love you to follow my blog for healthy hints and tips or contact me at enquiries@weight-away.org for more information.

Want to lose weight eating delicious food?

Then you might want to try this recipe.


I know that when I started to lose weight I tended to rely on the same meals/recipes all the time until it dawned on me that I could still eat healthily and lose weight while cooking something different.

This recipe is a great family meal and if you haven’t got everything to hand then you can use dried thyme and omit the pomegranate.  Equally if you are vegetarian you can use Quorn and vegetable stock but this will reduce the calories by about 100 a portion.


Serves 4                                                         400 calories per serving

20 prep + 10 minutes resting               30 minutes cooking


4 x 150g chicken breasts

I onion chopped

2 cloves garlic sliced

100g mushrooms

75 ml dry white wine

650ml chicken stock

Zest & juice of a lemon

Pinch of saffron

Sprig of thyme

1 bay leaf

2 tbsp flat leaf parsley

Seeds of a pomegranate

Salt and black pepper

240g dried basmati rice

Olive oil to spray pan

To Cook

Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 4/180º/160ºfan

Soak the pinch of saffron in 2 tablespoons of boiling water

Heat a large pan and spray with some olive oil and add the chicken breasts to brown I prefer to cut the breasts into pieces. Once brown which should only take a few minutes add the onion and garlic and cook for another 5 minutes keep stirring. Add the chopped mushrooms.

Add the wine, stock, lemon zest, juice, saffron and soaking water, thyme and bay leaf and bring to the boil.  Transfer to a casserole dish, cover and bake for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and add the rice.  Replace the lid then return to the oven to bake for 10 minutes then take out of the oven and leaving the lid on stand for 10 minutes.

Stir and serve decorated with the parsley and pomegranate seeds (you can omit these but they give a great texture) Add a green salad and enjoy.