Sunday, 26 June 2011

Cook your way thin

So I've started cooking again. This has been driven mainly by the fact that I can't bear the thought of another butternut squash soup with steamed broccoli dinner. Food rut, anyone?

Also, in an attempt to move from being slim to becoming a waif (bride-in-a-bikini-mission), I've been dipping into the "French Women Don't Get Fat" book, which is the most pretentious piece of food writing I've ever read - how can she write that one of French women's greatest assets is they know how to laugh? Inaccurate at best. That said, it certainly motivated me to get my head around some on piste recipes aimed to shrink my bum while at the same time ticking off the pleasure value box.

My source? Idiot proof recipes which only use basic fresh ingredients (no running around looking for marjoram required) and reviewed by 100s of French women who spend their life cooking, eating and managing to stay inside their skinny jeans. P.s. Google translate will get you through this should you need it.

They have a section called "Get thin!" . None of this "be your best self" or "healthy living" BS you get in the States. I think this would go down rather well in Hong Kong, where people are more than a little frank about each other's size. Last week one of my Honkie colleagues saw a photo of another colleague who she hadn't actually ever met in person, and called her up to inform her that she hadn't expected her to be so fat, and how about laying off the sweeties?! Note that the other colleague is American. Global team building at its best.

Anyway, here's a dish I made this week, which went down rather well and which even a blindfolded monkey could pull off:

Ingredients per person:
2 pieces of filo pastry (go down to City Super and buy it)
1 tomato sliced
1 slice cooked ham roughly ripped
1 slice of goat's cheese
Chopped fresh parsley

Calories: 290 (if you're stingy on the cheese)
Prep and cooking time: 20 minutes (from walking in the door with bags to serving)

Here's the trick that changes this dish from being a blt samousa to being vraiment gourmande:

Get your two sheets of filo pastry and rummage around your kitchen for a ramekin or small bowl. Put the filo sheets (one at a time) inside the ramekin, so you've created a little pocket. Then put all the ingredients in the pocket and close the filo pastry around it. Seal it and then flip. So now it looks like a large round of camembert. So pretty and almost El Buli-ish in the art of disguise. Marmiton has a vid on this.

Stick in oven at 200c for 20 minutes. Serve with leaves and vinagrette.

Future wife ranking spikes upon serving.

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