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Weight Watchers: Fabulous & Filling

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      12.07.2010 16:26
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      Lot's of ideas and inspiration

      I have been a member of weightwatchers for a couple of years now and along the way I have collected quite a few recipe books. It's become a bit of an obsession really and I have far more than I really need now.

      I now only buy weightwatchers recipe books because they are such good recipes and always fairly low in fat and healthy - I dont need anything else.

      When I buy a new recipe book I judge it on how many recipes I like the look of. If there are quite a lot I know its been a good buy. I knew this was a good buy almost immediately because there was so many recipes I really liked the look of and wanted to try.

      The book cost just under £10, which is pretty standard for a recipe book. There are 192 pages and it is a paperback roughly A4 sized.

      Inside the book the chapters are split into the following Introduction, Breakfast, Lunches and light bites, Midweek meals in minutes, Cooking for one, Vegetarian, Family favourites, Comfort food, Celebrate, Something on the side, Desserts and Bakes. There is also an index by points value and a basic index.

      All of the recipes have a cleared printed points value per serving and per recipe. There is also a guide to how many calories are in each recipe, how many it serves, a guide to how long it takes to prepare and cook and weather it is suitable for vegetarians and freezing.

      I really do have a hate of recipe books that dont clearly list the method. when I'm cooking, I'm busy and sometimes stressed or on a time limit. That is why it is important that the method and ingredients list are clear and simple, which is just how they are laid out in this book.

      Out of all of my recipe books, I would say I use this one the most because there is just so much variety and choice. My favourate recipe so far is the cheese and tomato bread pudding. It is cheap to make, a very quick and simple recipe and very tasty and filling.

      There are still quite a few recipes that I haven't got around to trying yet, which again shows what good value this book was for me. I often manage to try new recipes very quickly, but there are so many in this book that it's taking me ages!

      Another plus point about this recipe book is that there are lot's of coloured pictures of the dishes. I think that it is really important to know what a dish should look like, otherwise how do you know if you got it right?

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      19.05.2010 20:00
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      I follow by this book, every, single, day.

      Since starting my diet, I have found that weight watchers fabulous and filling book has been my bible!

      The weight watchers fabulous and filling book does exactly what it says on the colour and provides tonnes of recipes for "fabulous & filling" meals!

      If you are looking to begin a diet, I would certainly recommend this book to anyone, as long as you follow the weight watchers point scheme properly, you will soon be on the road to losing weight!

      Although, don't forget that you must exercise as well as following the weight watchers scheme, because you will lose weight much, much faster!

      Some people think dieting is full of only eating fruit and salad, but the weight watchers fabulous & filling smashes this rumour out of your mind, diets are no longer boring with weight watchers!

      There are also other dieting books in the weight watchers cookery book range, i found that one of their books gives a delicious recipe for a meat feast pizza that is of course.. low fat... AND delicious!

      Hope I helped :)

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        08.04.2010 17:59
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        A great book that everyone can use

        The Weightwatchers Bible - as my daughter and I call it - has kept our weigh loss on track and fun.

        ~~~~ WHY AM I REVIEWING THIS COOKBOOK?~~~~

        I joined weightwatchers 12 weeks ago with my daughter who was desperate to get rid of her baby weight. I was happy to tag along as I needed to shift a 'few pounds' - well 12 weeks later I've lost 1 stone and 2lbs and she has lost 1 stone 10lbs. The weightwatcher Fabulous and fillings book has been a major factor in keeping us both on track because of the fantastic recipes and ideas.

        ~~~~Price & Availability ~~~~

        If you are a Weightwatcher then you can buy this at your meetings. If you're not you can go to the weightwatcher.co.uk website and order it for £9.95.

        I have also noticed several copies appearing on ebay from as little as £1.00. What a bargain - even if you are not on the weightwatchers (WW) plan but would just like some healthy eating recipes that are tasty and filling this book is a must.

        ~~~The cover~~~

        The front cover shows a tasty 'Rosemary Roast Chicken' dish that has a points value of 6 and will fed 4 people. The photograph is colourful and clear showing the dish on a deep red table. The Weightwatchers name/logo stands out in white with the title Fabulous & Filling in bright pink and bright lime underneath.

        The back cover has the same deep red background with 4 photos showing the following recipes;
        * Sweetcorn Fritters with Spicy Tomatoes (points value 3 - serves 4)
        * Teriyaki Beef Udon (points value 6 - serves 1)
        * Spinach, Mushroom & Chestnut Torte (points value 3 - serves 6)
        * Fig & Raspberrry Clafoutis (points value 2 - serves 6)
        I expect some of you are wondering what the heck this 'points value rating is' - I will explain that further on.

        The Book itself is A4 size and has fantastic full page coloured photos of the recipes on every other page, giving you the finish product next to the recipe.

        I must admit I have found this really helpful to inspire me when looking through the book to plan the meals in advance. The quality of these photos are unbelieveable.

        Above these wonderful snaps shots of tasty dishes there is detailed information about the contents of the book.

        The Inside front flap hits your senses with bright pink pages and delightful photo of Hot Chocolate Pudding (points value 4 - serves 6)

        The Inside back flap shows the WW points kitchen scales and info on how to buy them. Above this there is a paragraph about the author and her career. Tamsin Burnett-Hall has written 6 books in total for WW after her own successful weight loss.

        Before I go onto review the book itself, let me take 2 mins to explain the points system. When joining WW your daily food intake is based around how many points you are allowed. These points are worked out through a little quiz -

        ***The Quiz***

        Female: score 3 - Male:score 9 (bit unfair but there you go)
        Age: 16-20 score 5. 21-35 score 4. 36-50 score 3 etc..
        How many stones you are: score for each stone - so 11 stone score 11 etc
        Height: under 5ft 4 score 1 - over score 2
        Daily life style - sitting down most of day 0. Occasionally sittin but mainly standing 2, walking mostly 4 or hyscially hard work 6.

        So you add up your score and that's your daily points allowance - you do have to remember when you drop down to the next stone (eg I've just gone from 11 to 10) you must take off a point.

        There is the option to do a fast start of 18 points that you can do through the diet however you shouldn't remain on it for more than 2 weeks.

        You can save up to 4 points a day - then use these at the weekend or if you are going out anywhere for a meal or drinks.

        So as you can see the points system is vital and this book gives you points value of every recipe next to the title of the dish plus vegetarian options and had this reduces the points of the meal.

        ~~~~ The contents of the Book~~~~

        Opposite the actual contents page there is a great selection of information about the points system, 'filling foods' and how to find them (they are highlighted in green), the V vegetarian ssymbol, which dishes can by frozen (highlighted by a little blue snowflake and recipe notes that give good advice on standard definitions used throughout the books.

        ~~~~ Contents Page~~~~

        This page lists the sections found of course and this is - I believe- one of the reasons this book is such a success - the various chapters will apply to every reader. Let me tell you how;

        Introduction - Whole page photo displaying the Cheese & Tomato Bread Pudding (points 5 - serves 4) just incase the previous full colour shots had got your taste buds going - opposite page gives you information about what to look for when planning your meals and where in the book you can find easy advice on the recipes.

        ~~~Chapter 1 - Breakfast~~~ -
        7 pages of wonderful breakfast recipes
        with full colour photos on the opposite page giving you a fab idea of what the meal will look like.

        The breakfast contained in this book have been chosen to suit all - even if you're like me 'you don't do breakfast' there is something that will appeal.

        Favourite from this section - and I have them on a regular basis especially when having no time in the morning to prepare a brekkie - is the Banana Power Bar.

        The bars can be made up in a batch of 10 then frozen - they take 1 min to defrost in the micro so make a great breakfast with my coffee. They have a points value of 3 ½ and as I said the recipe will make 10 bars. They take 10 mins to prepare & 25 mins to cook. The ingredients consist of low fat spread, golden syrup, demerara sugar, flour, porridge oats, dried cranberries, pumpkin seeds, banana & an egg.

        Other dishes in this section range from Cinnamon & Sultana Porridge (points 4), Apricot & Yoghurt crunch (points 3), Peach & Mango smoothie (P2) - I will refer to points as P from now on, One dish baked breakfast (P3) Scrambled egg & smoked salmon muffin (P4 ½) this is another amazing dish to start a day with - I have prepare this one often on a Sunday as it goes down a treat with everyone. Potato cakes with ham & eggs is another fav although does take 35mins to prepare, so again one for the weekend when you're not rushing off to work, (P3 ½). For those who like a bite with their morning start the Sweetcorn fritters with spicy tomatoes would be right up your tongue taste buds - (P3) serves 4 and only takes 20mins to do. The Sunshine breakfast egg is another quick recipe taking only 10 mins and has a points value of 3. Fancy a bit of sausage? Then the sausage & potato sauté (P3) will be a great little number for you.

        To finish the breakfast chapter WW have added a little something for the sweet tooths amongst you. The Apple & Raspberry muffins are unbelievable - however I will warn you this recipe makes 12 and they are 2 ½ P each - you will not be able to have just one - so take the advice in the book and freeze them as soon as they cool, only take 1 out at a time.

        So as you can see the suggestions in this section will cover all types of breakfast or 'I don't do breakfast' eaters.

        ~~~Chapter 2 - Lunches and light bites~~~

        This section consists of a variety of soups, salads, toasties, wraps & a bagel option.

        I often prepare the Carrot, squash & pepper soup at the weekend and then freeze it into 6 servings. I can then take them to work straight from the freezer and find they have just about defrosted by lunchtime. The recipe is really easy to follow - taking 10 mins to prepare and 20 mins to cook. The soup is a smooth, thick, orange soup that has a lovely sweet taste with a subtle hint of paprika. The best bit - it's a 0 yes ZERO points value - so I can have 2 slices of WW bread and a WW roasted peanut bar - which leaves me completely full for only 2 ½ points - This is a great lunch option if you know you are going out or having friends around for drinks - you can save on your points for the drinks!!
        There is also a Mediterranean vegetable soup with 0 points and it is full of chunky bright veg. For those of you who like a spiced soup the Curried Sweet Potato & lentil (2 ½ P) would be a tasty option.

        The final 2 soups are Courgette, pea & mint (P2) and a Tomato, Celery & Apple soup (P ½).
        As you can see these soups are great filling ways of saving points and staying satisfied at lunch time.

        If you prefer sandwiches you will love the French Toasties recipe (P4 ½ )- the Dijon mustard brings out the taste of the smoked ham beautifully and compliments the egg coating that you fry the sandwiches in. (this is also a fab supper if you have spare points and feel puckish during the evening)

        A Salsa Beef wrap or Lime & Coriander Chicken Bagel give a new twist to a lunch idea both having P5 ½ .

        There a 3 salads that are all very different ingredients - Spiced Couscous (P5),Tricolore Pasta (P4 ½) , Chicken, grape & Potato (P4) and last the Rice Noodle salad with prawns (P ½).

        What I really like about the format of the recipes is the handy hints of optional ingredients you can add to suit your taste, the veggie option and the highlighting in green of all Filling Foods (foods that keep you satisfied for longer).

        ~~~ Chapter 3 - Midweek meals in minutes ~~~

        This whole section contains meals that can be ready in 30mins or less and is one of the most used sections I've used, especially being a full-time working mum. The most popular dish from this section, with my family is the Quick Herby Chicken Curry (P3) - I make 2 servings - each one serving 2 people- but one serving I use quorn chicken pieces for my veggie daughter - each serving is only P3 so you can add side dishes from chapter 9 - my son usually wants the oven sauteed spiced potatoes and they do work a treat together.

        So what else can you do in 30mins - there are 2 pasta dishes both taking 15mins - a Gnocchi with tomato & bacon (P6), Herb-crusted Plaice with tomatoes again both take 15 mins (P4) a Honeyed duck noodle bowl (5 ½ P) which is amazing is you're a duck lover and goes very well with the spiced potatoes mentioned earlier.

        Fancy Lamb ? - try the Mango Masala Lamb steaks - this was a real hit with a friend who wasn't a great lover of lamb but did fall for this dish. There are several other lamb dishes throughout this book and all have very unique flavours and different styles.

        My granddaughter has a particular favourite in this section - the Beef Fajitas (P6 ½) she loves the tastes and way she can hold them in her hand. Because they are made from lean beef, fresh peppers mushrooms and 0% fat Greek yoghurt all the ingredients are really healthy.

        Other recipes in this section are Smoked Salmon linguine P5 (that my non-veggie daughter has written down and tried at her house - apparently is 'totally gorgeous ').

        Minted lamb pittas with tzatziki (a mint & cucumber, greek yoghurt dressing)P5.
        Spiced Salmon with pea puree (P6) although I'm not a great lover of salmon the photo of this dish looks very good so may give it a try when the BBQ comes out.

        Pan-fried Turkey & Ham Escalopes (P4) -these look like a good dish for buffets and only take 15 mins to cook.
        The Tangy Chicken with crushed potatoes (P4) is this one dish my son really wants me to do when he gets back from camp - the sugar snap peas suggestion will compliment the poultry well.

        This chapter finishes with a good old Pork & rosemary dish with lemon rice (P7 ½ ) it looks wonderful so will try this when I have 4 for tea.

        ~~~Chapter 4 - Cooking for One~~~

        Up until this week I hadn't really looked at this section - however, with my son on camp and me not working this week I thought I delve into these pages. Here are several of the dishes that jumped out at me;
        Indian Omelette (P2 ½ ) takes 10mins. Cider & mustard chicken with brown rice (P3 ½ ) or the mushroom & chick pea gratin (4 ½ P).
        I went for the Cider & mustard chicken but used a Quorn chicken fillet, knocking off ½ point in doing so.

        The meal only took me 20mins to cook and it was wonderful - the cider and course grain mustard worked so well together given the dish a sweet, spicy and warming taste. I have a feeling you could try using a sweet, white wine instead of the cider or a non-alcoholic wine if you don't drink. My daughter said she replaced the rice with a large green leaf salad & Sweetcorn and it was great too.

        I am not going to list every dish in the following sections because - if you are still reading at this point- are probably feeling very hungry and want to sign off to go eat or you may just be getting bored of reading about recipes.

        The Next Few chapters - I will review quickly and pick out just one favourite that I have tried.

        ~~~Chapter 5 - Vegetarian~~~

        This chapter is obviously my eldest daughter's favourite section of the book - however I have found that I have become a frequent visitor to these recipes myself.

        Her favourite - Potato, Spinach & Cauliflower Curry - (P1 ½) 25 mins to prepare and serves 4. We have it as a main dish and the boys usually have it with a slab of meat of some kind - both ways are fantastic and the dish is extremely filling.

        My Favourite - Sausage & Apple Toad in the hole with onion gravy- (P4 ½ ) - I make the batter mix as one but cook 2 types of sausages - the Cumberland Quorn for us girls and Irish recipe ones for the boys and cook in 2 separate dishes. I usually a pile of vegetables to this dish to add colour and ensure everyone is full.

        There are various rice dishes, a gnocchi recipe, tasty mushroom burger, bean moussaka & several bakes that will delight both veggies and non-veggies.

        ~~~Chapter 6- Family Favourites~~~

        This section is a fantastic selection of family dinners that will really help the Weightwatcher who is cantering for a hungry family whilst trying to stick to the points system.

        There is a version of a cottage pie that is a wonderful dish that can be made as a veggie option too. The only tricky bit I found when making this was grating the potatoes and carrots for the topping. But the final dish was well worth it.

        Traditional Roast Beef is here - on yes you can still have your beef and eat it (sorry that's cake isn't it?)

        There is also the gammon joint covered with a cranberry glaze for those little porky lovers.

        The Roast Chicken dish from the front cover appears in this section and is certainly worth following - especially the tip amount how to keep the breast moist.

        For the veggie there are some more great ideas for large family dishes such as the Cheese and Tomato bread pudding that looks very similar to a cheesy lasagna.

        I really love the final dish of stuffed mushrooms in this section that can be made as a side dish or great starter.

        ~~~Chapter 7 -Comfort Food ~~~

        These meals do take a lot longer to prepare but they are really satisfying and some just like the good old pub favourites.

        They range from chicken stew & turkey casseroles to beef and dumplings, spicy meatballs to sauage & potato hotpot.
        These dishes range from 2 ½ points to 7 points - they vary in prep & cooking time from 30 mins to 60 mins but every recipe will warm and fill the coldest of tummys.

        My favourite - the Sausage & potato hotpot (P4 ½ ) cooking time 20 to prep, 60 mins to cook - and certainly worth the wait. The smell you get wafting from the oven is so good.

        ~~~Chapter 8 - Celebrate~~~

        This chapter is fantastic if you are entertaining, with inspiring starters to impressive main courses. Many of the dishes can be prepared before hand to save you precious time on the day.

        The Tequila Chicken has been a hit in my house - my guest didn't even know they were eating WW food.

        For the red meat lovers then the Peppered steak with mushroom sauce (P3 ½ ) is a massive hit. My daughter's partner couldn't believe his eyes when she cooked this for him. I couldn't believe she had cooked meat.
        There is a fab Honey mustard Quorn fillet with baby veg for your veggie dinner guests - I have had this one several times because the mustard & honey works brilliantly together - you can exchange the quorn for skinless chicken breast just add ½ point.

        ~~~Chapter 9 - Something on the side ~~~

        The side dishes here are great to compliment all the main dishes - they vary from vegetable bakes to roast potato dishes to gratins.

        Some of the gratins and bakes I have actually had as a lunch the following day - if on the odd occasion there has been a portion left over.
        They heat up well and don't lose their flavours.

        The Cornbread Muffins make 12 each one being 1 ½ P - and didn't take long to cook - these work really well with the soups and make a great change from a slice of bread. They can be frozen - to stop you eating more than 1 !!

        ~~~ Chapter 10 - Desserts and Bakes~~~

        See you can have your cake and eat it - well with Weightwatchers you can. There are 14 amazing recipes here that sweet tooth lovers will die for.

        Cheesecakes, fruity salsa, strudels, sponge & chocolate puddings, brownies, drizzle cakes & a great favourite of ours - Crispy Chocolate moments.

        The Chocolate Orange Brownies (P1 ½ each) I have now perfected. They take 10 mins to prepare, 15 mins to cook and 1 hr to chill - if there aren't any little hungry fingers around)

        ~~~ What Else Makes This Book Good?~~~

        At the back of this book every recipe is listed under an ascending points value chart - this makes choosing and planning menus easy and quick to do. It helps vary your meals so that boredom doesn't set in and willingness to stick at it wanes.

        The alphabetical index that completes the final pages shows which dishes are veggie so again easy to plan menus and stay on top of the game.

        ~~~Conclusion~~~

        Recommend it - without a doubt - not just for WW but for all who wish to inspire healthy eating and varied dishes that look tasty and delicious.

        This is a book full of 192 mouth-watering recipes that we call our Kitchen Bible.

        Thanks for reading and hope you have enjoyed.
        X hev (on ciao & dooyoo)

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