Wednesday 10 November 2010

Tasty lunchies and chin-ups

I've been having lots of fun with the Star Chef and the wide-mouthed Thermos  since I got them and it's SO NICE to have home-made, tasty, hot, nutritious lunches!  Seriously!  The latest one was a spiced soup of parsnips and apple:-

Serves 4 for lunches (approx. 200kcals per portion, 27g carb, 4g protein, 8g fat, 3 portions F&V):-

  • 500-600g Parsnips
  • 1 Medium English Apple
  • 2 Medium Onion, Chopped
  • 15ml Groundnut or other flavourless oil
  • 1 Tsp Cumin Seeds
  • 1 Tsp Coriander Seeds
  • 1 Tsp Powdered Turmeric
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 1 Tsp Ground Ginger
  • 1.25 litres vegetable stock
  • 4 Tbps half fat crème fraîche
  • Toast the coriander and cumin seeds then grind them with a pestle and mortar.
  • Heat the oil in a saucepan, then add the onions and soften for about 5 minutes before adding the garlic.
  • Cook for another 2 minutes, then add the ground spices, along with the turmeric and ginger, stir and cook gently for a few more minutes.
  • Chop the parsnips into 1 inch chunks.
  • Add the parsnips to the saucepan, stir well to coat with the spices and oils, then pour in the stock.
  • Season and simmer for half an hour with the lid off, then half an hour with the lid on.
  • When the soup has been simmering for an hour, remove it from the heat, and use a hand blender to make it smooth - leave a few chunks if you'd like to.
  • When you're ready to serve it, either now or after chilling/freezing into portions, peel the apple and grate it into the soup. Simmer the soup for 3-4 minutes/reheat in the microwave/slow cooker, decant into bowls and add a small dollop (15g) creme fraiche and grind over some black pepper to serve.
I did all of the cooking steps in my Star Chef, first on "fry" mode for the onions, garlic and spices, then on "soup/stew" mode once the stock was added.  Only one pan to dirty, that way.
    I'm trying to wind things back a bit this week after last week's huge exercise haul and the end of the week with a dodgy innards.  So, I've cycled into work once and gymmed once so far (gymming and cycling home tomorrow) but the gymmage has gone a bit hybrid now, mixing two routines for a bit of variety:-
    • Warm up - 500m on L7 on the rower (01:55/500m pace)
    • Squats on the Smith machine - 3x10, Olympic bar plus 35kg
    • Chin ups using the Smith machine for a bar - 3x4, bodyweight
    • Squat and overhead swing - 3x10, 20kg dumb-bell - superset A
    • Reverse crunch with leg raise - 3x15 slowly - superset A
    • Walking lunges with kettlebell - 3x20, 24kg kettlebell
    • Squat, one-arm clean and jerk - 3x20, 14kg dumb-bell
    And today my abs and pecs are saying "HI!" quite loudly :o)

    But seriously!  12 chin-ups!  OK, they were in 3 sets of 4 and apart from the first one in each set they weren't completely from hanging, but I'm still really really pleased with them!  I fully intend to get a photo of me doing some in my new "Strong is the new skinny" tank vest when it arrives :o)


    1. Nice workout! And you've totally reminded me to make parsnip soup. Yum! :-)

    2. It's a great soup and if you swap out the creme fraiche garnish for a smaller dollop of smooth peanut butter, totally Vegan :o)

    3. erk, I mean, if you can do 3x12 chinups, switch to pull-ups.

      Hope that was clearer.

    4. I love soups and yours sounds delicious!