Recipe: Fat Free Salad Dressing

Della says…

Fat Free Salad Dressing

This is by far the tastiest salad dressing I’ve ever had – it’s become a speciality in our house – guests always ask for it now!


1 heaped teaspoon of wholegrain mustard

1 tablespoon of fat free tomato based dressing (I use a dollop of hot pepper sauce because I like it spicy. But you do need some kind of tomato based dressing to offset the other flavours. Tomato puree will work if you can’t get fat free tomato based dressing – they seem to be quite rare these days).

2 or 3 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar

A dash of soy sauce

2 or 3 tablespoons of Teriyaki marinade (my favourite is Kikkoman Teriyaki – available in big supermarkets)

A little garlic if liked.

Fresh herbs (optional but chives work well)

(the beauty of this dressing is that you can just use whatever you have handy. The core ingredients are wholegrain mustard, tomato based fat free dressing, balsamic and soy sauce.  I tend to see what I’ve got in the cupboard. There is no olive oil and you really don’t need it.


Mix ingredients together well and leave to marinade. It can be kept in the fridge (covered) for a week to ten days. It’s better if you make it the day before you need it.

Recipe: Fat Free Chocolate Cake

Della Says…

Chocolate Swiss Roll
Slightly different angle

What if I told you that this swiss roll is totally fat free. Sugar free too. In fact, you can eat the whole thing in one sitting without worrying about adding a single centimetre to your waistline.

It tastes quite nice too. In fact the first one I made disappeared before I could take any photos!

Front View
It’s actually a Slimming World recipe this one. To make it a chocolate cake you need to add a Cadbury’s Hi-light Sachet (sometimes called Options)

4 medium eggs
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla essence
a tub of quark (250g)
3 tbsp of sweetener (level not heaped)

  1. Separate the 4 eggs into two bowls, yolks and whites
  2. Add ½ tub of quark, sweetener, vanilla essence & baking powder to the yolks
  3. Wisk into a creamy consistency and put to one side
  4. Take the egg whites and wisk until stiff
  5. Add half of the egg whites to the egg yolk mixture and stir in gently
  6. Then fold the other half of the eggs whites into the mixture
  7. Take an oven tray, line line with grease proof paper and spray with fry light
  8. Ensure you use plenty of fry light to avoid the cake sticking to the paper
  9. Pour the mixture on the tray/paper
  10. Bake for 10 minutes until golden brown 180c (it doesn’t take very long to bake
  11. Whilst warm peel the paper from the cake (gently) and then lay cake out to cool
  12. I used a big knife underneath the paper to gently remove the cake from paper
  13. While cooling take the remainder of the quark and add sweetener to taste
  14. Spread the quark onto the cake (now cool) and add fruit you are using
  15. I used raspberries and added them evenly across the cake and squished them
  16. Then gently roll the cake up into a roll (like a swiss roll)
  17. Cut into 4-6 pieces – or eat the whole cake yourself

Recipe: cocktail sausage and paprika omelette


Della says

It’s coming up to that time of year when our thoughts turn to comfort food and Christmas – not necessarily in that order.   Well, if you fancy eating some comfort food, but you don’t want to put on any weight before Christmas – you might like to try this omelette. It’s easy to make, very tasty, and has the advantage of being very low fat too.

Serve it on its own for lunch, or with a salad for dinner.

This recipe serves two – or possibly one very hungry eat loadser.   If you can’t manage it all, just refrigerate the leftovers. It’s nice cold the following day.

Cocktail Sausage and Paprika Omelette (very low fat)


Half a packet of cooked Quorn cocktail sausages.  (180g packet)

3 eggs

1 red pepper

1 green pepper

1 small onion

2 green chillis (optional)

Small handful of grated reduced fat mature cheddar


Black pepper and salt to season

Fat free spray to cook



Chop peppers, onion and chillis and cooked cocktail sausages.  Beat three eggs in separate bowl and season. Spray non stick frying pan with two to three sprays of fat free spray (I use Fry light).  Add peppers, onions and chillis. Fry for few minutes till soft, add chopped sausages. Add paprika and chillis if using. Add eggs, cook till lightly set. Sprinkle on cheese and finish under grill. Grill until brown and starting to rise slightly.

NB: Instead of sausages – smoked salmon and prawns work well. So does a can of tuna in brine (drained).  So does chopped bacon or ham (fat removed).

Other optional ingredients: a small can of sweetcorn (no added sugar). Freshly chopped tomatoes. Fresh chives. A handful of black olives (in brine not oil).

Leftover potato also works well (boiled potatoes – not roast!). If using potato, try adding garlic and lots of black pepper.


Recipe: Spicy Leek and Carrot Soup


Della says

This is a rather tasty winter warmer soup.  You can eat it by the bowl full if you’re an ‘eat loadser’. It’s also a handy snack if you’re doing the five two diet because it happens to be very low in calories.

Spicy Leek and Carrot soup – serves two

Ready in about 25 minutes (including preparation time)



2 leeks (approx 145 cals)

3 medium sized carrots (approx 100 calories)

half a can of sweetcorn (80 cals)

1 vegetable stock cube (I use Knorr) (34 cals)

clove of garlic  (negligible)

1 chilli (negligible)

Smallish piece of fresh ginger (negligible)

Salt and pepper to taste

1 teaspoon of Marmite – optional (20 calories)


Chop carrots and leeks roughly, and finely chop chilli and ginger and crush garlic and place in saucepan.

Cover with three quarters of a pint of water. Add sweetcorn. Add stock cube and seasoning and Marmite if using. Heat and then simmer till cooked.

Top Tip. This tastes even better the day after (keep in fridge overnight). It’s less than 400 calories a pan (serves two) so makes a handy and quite filling lunch or part lunch if you are on a ‘fast day’ on the five two diet.



Recipe: Very low fat cheese and onion quiche


Della says

Very low fat cheese and onion quiche – serves four

Ready in about 25 minutes (plus 20 minutes preparation time)


2-3 medium sized potatoes (No need to peel, just wash them and grate coarsely)

4 eggs

1 tub (500g) of fat free cottage cheese.

1 onion (chopped)

120g reduced fat mature cheddar (grated)

Fresh chives to taste

Black pepper



Preheat oven to 180 C

Spray a square quiche pan with Frylight.  Squeeze excess water from potatoes through a sieve. Spread grated potato over base of quiche pan and up the sides. Bake in oven until it has started to brown. (About fifteen minutes.)

Beat eggs in large bowl and then blend with cottage cheese, chopped onion, grated cheese and chives. Season with black pepper and pinch of salt if liked. Pour over the rosti potato base. Bake in oven for 25-30 mins. Should be golden on top and cooked through.

Serve hot or cold with:

Side salad. Or serve hot with baked beans.

This quiche also works very well with the following combinations. Replace the onion and some of the cheese with:

Smoked salmon and black olives.

Red pepper and ham.

Sweetcorn and tuna.

I actually find it’s better the next day (refrigerate overnight). It’s lovely cold.

Feel free to add comments in the box below or on our facebook page.

Recipe: Peter’s Veggie Bake

Peter says

Following the positive feedback to my veggie bean chilli post which inspired many of you to take your life in your hands and turn veggie for meal or two, I thought I’d take you through another veggie meal of mine – behold Peter’s Veggie Bake!

Whoever came up with the “eat five portions of fruit and veg a day” advice neglected to mention that it’s actually easier to do this, and far tastier, if all five portions are in the same meal. So with this in mind…

veggie bake 001

Step 1: Gather your ingredients. You’ll definitely need cornflower, salt, olive oil, milk, butter, cheese, some old bread, garlic, and every type of vegetable you can lay your hands on. I’m using cabbage, courgettes, carrots, broccoli, squash, and parsnips. Root vegetables are especially good in this dish.

By the way, did you know parsnips are higher in carbs than potatoes? Who knew. Anyway…

veggie bake 002

Step 2: ‘Grease’ a large oven proof dish with some olive oil (or butter), then chop your veg and layer inside the dish. Don’t forget several cloves of (roughly chopped) garlic, and maybe some ginger.

veggie bake 003

Step 3: Wait! I almost forgot the chilli! Blimey that was close. You definitely want to get some chilli in there. Why? What do you mean why? Because chillies are great that’s why!

(You’ll notice the broccoli and courgettes haven’t been chopped yet. I ran out of space in the dish. That often happens.)

veggie bake 004

Step 4: Drizzle a little oil on the veg. Remember to season. Maybe get your fingers in there and give it all a really good mix up.

veggie bake 005

Step 5: Right then! Time to start upsetting Della. Bring on the breadcrumbs! Don’t buy packet breadcrumbs (yuk) – instead save bits of old bread in the freezer, and grind them to crumbs in the food processor. I like to add a few sprigs of rosemary at this stage. And oh yes, another chilli.

veggie bake 006

Step 6: Darn it, I forgot the cheese (sorry Della). Take a few chunks of cheese and grind those in with the crumbs. Also, add a little seasoning.

veggie bake 007

Step 7: Grate a handful of the cheese that’s left (sorry Della) and put to one side with the breadcrumbs and the veg.

veggie bake 008

Step 8: Prepare a white sauce. Take a pint of (semi) skimmed milk (cow’s milk or an alternative), add a knob (just a knob) of butter (sorry Della), and warm slowly, adding a couple of teaspoons of cornflour every thirty seconds and whisking continuously. When the mixture begins to stiffen take off the heat immediately.

veggie bake 009

Step 9: Add the grated cheddar cheese.

veggie bake 010

Step 10: Pour over the veg.

veggie bake 011

Step 11: Sprinkle the breadcrumbs on top. If you have any left over put them in a bag and store in the freezer for next time.

veggie bake 012

Step 12: Cover the whole thing with foil (shiny side down). Bake for an hour and a half at around 170 degrees Celsius (Gas mark 3). The longer you bake the better it gets – just try not to burn the top.

veggie bake 013

Step 13: And a little later on this is what emerges… it should be bubbling with deliciousness

veggie bake 014

Step 14: Use a ladle to serve as many portions as necessary. At this stage the ‘bake’ doesn’t have much solidity. It tastes utterly amazing though. Whilst you tuck into a bowlful allow the rest to cool, then cover the roasting dish and transfer to the fridge.

veggie bake 015

Step 15: The following day remove the roasting dish from the fridge and cut the remaining bake into portions. You’ll noticed that it’s ‘set’ over night. It’ll also taste even better! Reheat what you want to eat right now in the oven for five or ten minutes, the remaining portions can be individually wrapped in foil and be frozen (thaw before reheating).

If your bake looks lonely on the plate, try serving with a salad (don’t groan – it works). My salad (pictured here) consists of lettuce, tomato, silverskin onions, and pickled jalapeño peppers. Of course. Don’t forget to dress your salad.

Now it’s going to come as no surprise to some of you that my esteemed co-author almost had heart failure when she saw the list of ingredients: butter, oil, cheese, breadcrumbs… It was almost enough to put her off her fat free dessert (though not enough to prevent her from clearing the plate when I made this dish for her), and once again one of my recipes was called into question. To which I offer the following defence:

Firstly, the point here is not to create a fat free meal, but to help you break your reliance on meat and convenience foods, and re-introduce you to vegetables which are, by their very nature, very low in fats, fabulously good for you, and lip-smackingly delicious… if you use plenty of them.

Secondly, if you’re truly worried about the calorie count I encourage you to use Della’s fat free cooking principles to turn this dish into a slightly more wholesome, guilt-free version.

I’d value your feedback. Feel free to add comments in the box below or on our facebook page.

Three yummy uses for 0 % Total Yoghurt

Della says


Three yummy uses of 0% Total Yoghurt.

Fat free yoghurts feature quite a lot in my diet and I’m always looking for good ones.  Total 0 % is creamy and tastes good. But don’t just eat it as it is. Here are three uses for it that you may not have considered.

  1. For a quick sweet snack, stir a heaped teaspoon of Nutella through it, then dollop over a sliced banana. Awesome and pretty saintly.
  2. Use it to dollop over hot beef chilli (instead of full fat yoghurt or sour cream) it’s lower in calories and has a nicer flavour.
  3. Use it instead of cream on fresh fruit salad. (you can wear a halo while doing this as it’s positively saintly)

And no, I am not on commission. Unfortunately! 

Recipe: Very Meaty Bolognaise

Della says…


Very Meaty Bolognaise – serves four

Ready in about 25 minutes


400 g extra lean beef mince (cook with low fat cooking spray)

1 medium onion

1 pepper (any colour)

125 g mushrooms

4 beefsteak tomatoes

1 can chopped tomatoes with olives

1 garlic clove

Small piece of chopped ginger (tablespoon)

Pinch of paprika

Black pepper

Splash of good quality balsamic

Splash of fish sauce

Small amount of grated reduced fat cheese or parmesan to serve


Roughly chop onion, pepper, mushrooms, tomatoes. Crush garlic, finely chop ginger.

Fry mince until nearly brown using low fat spray (I use Fry Light). Drain off excess fat. Then add garlic, ginger, paprika, black pepper and continue cooking for a minute or so.

Add chopped pepper, onion, tomatoes, continue cooking till these are soft.

Add can of tomatoes, then mushrooms.

Add balsamic, fish sauce and more black pepper if desired.

Simmer till all ingredients cooked.

Serve with:

Try jacket potatoes or fat free chips as a change from pasta (if using pasta, dried is more slimmer-friendly).  Have a sprinkle of reduced fat cheese. Or if you want to be really angelic leave it off. You don’t really need it. This sauce is very tasty and it’s even more tasty the day after you’ve made it when the flavours have had time to marinate.

#Recipe: Apple & Ginger Clafouti

Della says…

Apple and Ginger Clafouti

(serves 8 – or two very hungry eat-loadsers – one slice shown in picture)


Preparation time – about 15 mins (not including cooking)


4 – 5 medium sized cooking apples

500g fat free fromage frais (I use Tesco light choices Natural Normandy Fromage Frais)

4 eggs

5 tbs artificial sweetener – plus sweetener for apple (to taste)

Ginger root – inch or so finely chopped (or ground ginger)

Nutmeg (pinch)

Cinnamon (pinch)

4 Cloves

Vanilla pod or dash of vanilla essence

2 or 3 tbs of water


Preheat oven to 150 degrees C/Gas mark 2.

Peel apples and slice into saucepan (discard cores) Add sweetener to taste, 4 cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, half the ginger, water to stop sticking. Then simmer gently on hob until apples soft.

Meanwhile, beat together the eggs, fromage frais, 5 tbs of sweetener. Add the remainder of the chopped ginger, the vanilla pod if using or vanilla essence.

Spread softened apples over a large flan dish (remove the 4 cloves if you prefer not to bite into them later). Then cover apples with fromage frais mix and bake for 45 to 55 minutes. Keep an eye on it – I find this can burn quite easily once it’s nearly cooked. When it is cooked it will feel spongy and the edges will have started to brown.

You can serve this dessert hot or cold – each are equally yummy, and you can also wear a halo whilst eating it. It is very low fat and delicious.  NB In the picture ours is shown with a dusting of icing sugar – this is not essential, and will detract from its angelic properties 🙂

Recipe: Fruit Kebabs with Strawberry Coulis and Chocolate Dip

Della says…

Fruit jelly sundaes n fruit jelly

Fruit Kebabs with Stawberry Coulis and Chocolate Dip – serves four

These are quite impressive for a deliciously light summer afternoon dessert – when you have guests coming.

Ready in about thirty minutes (not including chilling dips)

For the kebabs

10 or so strawberries

2 bananas

1 lime

Dusting of icing sugar to serve

Mint leaves to garnish

For the coulis

225 g (9 oz) of strawberries

1 orange (2 tangerines work well too)

1 – 2 tsps artificial sweetener

For the chocolate dip

1 pot of natural fat free yoghurt (I use Total 0 per cent)

1 heaped teaspoon of Nutella or any other chocolate spread (but not so heaped you can get the whole jar on it). It’s easier if the Nutella isn’t too cold.

NB Prepare the coulis and chocolate dip first so they can be refrigerated.


For the Coulis

Hull and roughly chop strawberries. Grate orange zest and squeeze orange. Put all the coulis ingredients into a blender and blitz till smooth. Chill. (That’s the coulis, not you. Though by all means chill too if you want to)

For the chocolate dip

Mix together yoghurt and Nutella vey well, then return to fridge to chill. (tiny strips of lime can be used for garnish – if you don’t have any mint handy).

For skewers – do them just prior to eating

Hull and chop the strawberries, peel the bananas and cut into chunks. Grate the lime zest, cut the lime in half and squeeze out juice. Thread strawberries and bananas alternately on to skewers, sprinkle with lime juice and zest then dust with icing sugar.

Very yummy and so virtuous you can put your halo on while you are eating them 🙂

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