Bare Cupboard Cake – Recipe No. 152


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I haven’t baked or consumed much in the way of sweet puddings or cake for ages. Infact I’m just not using any of my sugar ration and hardly any of my margarine or butter either. I’ve therefore got plenty in my cupboard to do some baking and this is what I’ve done on this bank holiday weekend!

As I am preferring to poach my one shell egg a week, my baking normally has to be egg free. When I came across this wartime recipe online it was perfect! No eggs!

This particular recipe is suitable for vegans too if you use a dairy free margarine or oil.

Was VERY pleased with the taste and consistency of this simple cake and greedily enjoyed a couple of generous slices with hot tea, using my pink vintage china of course!

Hope you enjoy it!

Ingredients

200g caster sugar
2 tablespoons margarine or oil
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon salt
175g raisins, currants or sultanas
350ml water
250g plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

Method

Preheat oven to 180 C / Gas 4. Lightly grease one 7 or 8 inch cake tin.
In a saucepan over medium high heat combine: the sugar, margarine or oil, ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg, ground allspice, salt, raisins and water. Bring to the boil and continue to simmer on low for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool for 30 minutes.
Sift the flour, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda together. Add the flour mixture to the cooled raisin mixture. Stir until just combined. Tip mixture into prepared tin.
Bake at 180 C / Gas 4 for 30-40 minutes until skewer comes away clean from middle.

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Vegetable Soup – Recipe No. 139


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Here’s a pretty standard quick wartime recipe for vegetable soup.

I’m all for making dinners cheaply but sometimes you have to take a short cut now and again, especially if your life is busy. Not strictly in the spirit of the 1940s but it’s still the same food!

In this case, when I was doing shopping in Aldi’s and saw a large packet of fresh chopped mixed veg for soup. At only 99p I thought why not. The veggies inside the pack were fresh leeks, carrots & turnips.

To this I added a couple of fresh chopped potatoes and a couple of tablespoons of dried lentils and cooked the veg in a seasoned vegetable stock.

It made a thin and pleasant soup, enough for 4 large bowls and all I added in addition was some extra salt and pepper.

All this for about 35p a bowl and less than 200 calories!

Ingredients

1 pack of vegetables for soup from Aldi’s (or a chopped turnip, a few chopped carrots, 1/2 large leek chopped)
2 level tablespoons of dried lentils
2 potatoes chopped
1.5 litres of vegetable stock (or any stock)
Salt and pepper to taste

Method

Place chopped vegetables and dried lentils in the stock
Bring to boil and simmer until vegetables/lentils are tender
Add salt and pepper to taste

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I need your help….


facebookhealth I mentioned a little while back that I had finally got myself a full-time job. What with not being able to work in the latter part of my life in Canada and then moving back to the UK, it took two years. To say I am relieved is an understatement…

Just to make things EVEN better, the company that I work for PMS DIECASTING, LASER SCANNING, REVERSE ENGINEERING 3D & GO TOOLS, is wonderfully forward thinking, much like the newspaper I worked for in Canada.

My job is as a ‘Digital Media Coordinator’ and part of my role is creating & maintaining social media streams as well as updating websites.

My employer has given me the go ahead to run with a ‘workplace wellness’ page on Facebook. PMS Diecasting already supports its employees in a number of ways so I think this in addition is a wonderful thing.

You know me, loving food and recipes and always trying to get inspiration from others, I’d like to build a social community where people can share healthy recipes, encourage their employers to support workplace wellness, share their steps towards taking control of their health, being brave to take the first step…. become a ‘Health Hero’.

So we’ve called the page ‘Health Heroes 2015’… It will hopefully go live in a few days, at the moment I am busy adding recipes and content when I get a spare half hour in between other responsibilities here at work.

So I NEED your help… I wondered if you would be so kind as to sign up for ‘Health Heroes 2015’ by liking the page I have created?

CLICK HERE TO LIKE HEALTH HEROES 2015

Look forward to seeing you there and thank you!!!

C xxxx

Chocolate Oat Cakes No 97


These are excellent biscuits/cookies for children. As cookies go they are low in fat, relatively low in sugar and have lots of rolled oats in them. My grown up kids all enjoyed them, and the dog… and as I share this recipe with you, I’m enjoying my second one and thinking I should wrap them up and stick them in the freezer before I eat the 25 that are left.

I like recipes that are easy peasy, quick and tasty and utilize ingredients most of us would find in our kitchen cupboards at anytime. This one fulfills that criteria..

Chocolate Oat Cakes

  • 2 oz (56g) margarine
  • 2 oz (56g) sugar
  • 8 oz (225g) self-raising flour (if using plain add 2 teaspoons of baking powder)
  • 1 breakfast cup (95g) of rolled oats
  • pinch salt
  • 1.5 oz (42g) of cocoa powder
  • milk and water

Method

  1. Rub the margarine into the flour
  2. Add the rolled oats, sugar, pinch of salt and cocoa powder
  3. Mix well and add a little milk and water to moisten and stick the mixture together
  4. Roll into balls and press down until very thin with the back of a fork or alternatively roll out until thin, cut into rounds and prick all over with a fork
  5. Bake in an oven at 190C (380F) for about 15 minutes until golden brown.
  6. Sprinkle with sugar and cool on a wire rack

Makes 30

Victory Day Weigh In – One year on wartime rations!


Today it’s been exactly one year since I started living 100% on wartime rations (British WW2) to see what effect it would have on my health, my morbid obesity…

My heaviest weight ever, prior to weigh-in, one year ago was 345-350 lbs (25 stone) but by the time I weighed in for THIS attempt to live one year on wartime rationing, I had reduced to 299 lbs (21 st 4 lbs).

TODAY, this morning, after one year, of living on wartime rations, I weighed in at 219 lbs (15 st 7 lbs)…

I’ve lost 80 lbs in one year! (and 130 lbs in total) I’m so very, very happy with that.

I’m so happy because a year ago I was scared, I had headaches, dizzy spells that made me fall down, lower crushing back pain on standing and walking (so I just couldn’t go for walks), my pulse raced on any exertion, at rest it raced too, my blood pressure was high, I sweated profusely, I really thought it was going to be a matter of time before something awful happened and despite the public facade of being bubbly and happy, I was depressed.

Today, even with about 60 + lbs still to lose, my quality of life is just amazing. I rarely get a headache, the dizzy spells have gone, no back pain, low pulse at rest, normal blood pressure, I can walk forever and I’m training for my first 5k run!

This is my THIRD attempt at the 1940s Experiment. Both previous attempts before were very successful, I just couldn’t stick with it for more than 4 or 5 months. For the first two attempts I was still a meat eater but also a HUGE vegetable consumer too. Both previous attempts followed the same pattern as this attempt (even though I am now vegan)… initial rapid weight loss as the body detoxified from it’s “modern diet” state, eventually plateauing out and then followed by a very gentle weight loss.

For over SEVEN years now I have been passionate in my belief, that a return to a SIMPLE, UNPROCESSED way of eating, mainly plant based and plant strong diet, with only very small amounts of meat, fish and dairy, is the way to optimum health. I am happy I’ve proved to myself that my theory is correct and that returning to this way of eating, as they did during the war, has ABSOLUTELY improved my health and my quality of life.

At 219 lbs posing with my freebie copy of Wartime Farm which I am about to review for Octopus Publishing on my blog.


An important part of this process was also becoming more active and early into the experiment I decided to start walking. It was tough to begin with as I was still in a lot of pain with my back and experiencing dizzy spells but a lap here and there soon became several laps (yes it was tough, yes I sweated and wanted to give up) and before I knew it, my back pain had gone and I could just walk like everyone else! Walking is the best form of exercise and I am so grateful I can now do this. These days I take myself off for 10 km hikes over all sorts of terrain. The freedom is LIBERATING!

I have made a LIFESTYLE CHANGE for good, for ever..

THANK YOU for everyone who has supported me during my year. EVERY SINGLE MESSAGE and COMMENT has kept me going. Please, you really do not appreciate how this has helped me and I thank you from the bottom of my heart xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

SO WHAT NOW? I still have 60 lbs to go (and still classified as obese). I still want to lose 100 lbs living on wartime rations so I’ve decided to continue, business as usual until I reach 199 lbs and then the third and final phase will be to get to my ultimate goal of 160 lbs. The VICTORY PARTY is on hold until then too. It’s something to aim for, to look forward to, a GOAL!

At 299 lbs
Chest: 59.5 inches
Waist: 56.5 inches
Hips: 62 inches (the tape measure only goes up to 60 inches)
Thigh: 27.5 inches
Upper arm: 16.5 inches
B/P: 176/88 at rest
Pulse: 89 at rest

BMI= 48 (Morbidly Obese)

At 219 lbs
Chest: 46 inches
Waist: 42 inches
Hips: 46 inches
Thigh: 24 inches
Upper arm: 12 inches
B/P: 128/73 at rest
Pulse: 55 at rest

BMI= 35.3 (Obese)

Weight about 335 lbs

Jogging day 4- 1/2 mile


Just a quick update…

I couldn’t help it… the sun was shining, and the dog needed a run so I decided to go take another jog down my lane. I ran down to the bottom 1/4 mile and walked back up and pushed myself to do it all over again.

I haven’t sweated so much in years and years…

But you know what, I felt quite comfortable (well I was jogging very slowly and jogging down the lane is easier as it’s slightly downhill)… it was hard work yes but didn’t feel like it was going to kill me.

Weigh in Tuesday. I think I’ve lost. I’ve eaten plenty but kept my daily intake to around 1800 cals but have started exercising everyday again..

Cheese potatoes


This meal was easy and yummy!

Being vegan I couldn’t use regular cheese but I used a dairy free cheese ( Daiya – the best dairy free cheese I’ve come across).

I try and eat as much RAW food as possible every day so I served my “cheese potatoes” on a bed of baby spinach and it was quite delicious.

Cheese potatoes

  1. Bake one large potato per person.
  2. Cut in half when cooked and carefully scoop out each half.
  3. Mix the scooped out mixture with a little margarine/butter, some salt and pepper and dried mixed herbs and a sprinkling of cheese and fill the potatoes again
  4. Place on baking tray, sprinkle a little cheese over and some more pepper
  5. Cook on a slow grill until a little browned