Wednesday, 31 August 2005

Thai Rice Prawns Ice Cream

Breakfast was that old favourite three Weetabix with a level teaspoon of sugar and fresh milk.

Then there was lunch, which was a simple Emmental and Potato Salad on Brown sandwich, swiftly followed by two chocolate chip cookies.

Following last Sunday's Chinese and last night's Moroccan meals, I've got a severe spice thing going on and Ursula and I decide to head on down the prom in search of some Thai food.

We wandered for about half an hour along the Torrox Costa seafront, enjoying the setting sun in the distance and the hustle and bustle of all the restaurants and market stalls before settling down to eat.

We started off by sharing a bamboo box of what I think of as Dim Sum, those fantastic looking little dumplings with various fillings. This restaurant, Jing, calls them something else, two words I'm not familiar with and have clean forgotten. These were delicious and went down accompanied by plenty of Soy Sauce and Sambal Oelek, that great, very hot chili paste.

Thai Rice with Garlic and Red Pepper Prawns

To follow I have some Thai Fried Rice and these absolutely fabulous tasting Prawns in Garlic and Red Pepper. The Prawns are cleaned with just a little tail left on to make them easier to handle. A half liter glass of draught San Miguel makes the whole experience even better.

Afterwards we pop in to the ice cream shop next door and get little pots of creamy ice cream. Ursula has Banana and Chocolate whilst I go for Crema Catalana and we wander back along the prom and across the dried up river bed to home.

A couple of hours later I have one square of chocolate and a Madeleine cake.

Tuesday, 30 August 2005

Moroccan Chicken

Moroccan Chicken, Baked Potatoes and Salad

Another busy day doesn't leave time for eating but as the day draws on the reward is some delicious Chicken in Moroccan Spice and Creme Fraiche Sauce with Baked Potatoes and lashings of Salad and it's fabulous washed down with an ice cold bottle of Desperados, that odd French mixture of Beer and Tequila which I can't drink very often but sometimes it's just the perfect drink, such as with this spicy food.


About an hour later I have three squares of Chocolate Fondant.

And a Chocolate Chip Cookie and a Peach Yoghurt.

And an apple.

Working Breakfast

We're out in the country at the villa rental we run, cleaning up between tenants and a hearty breakfast of 3 slices of Toast with Pate is washed down with some great fresh black coffee and then it's straight into the chores.

Monday, 29 August 2005

World's First Fried Egg Omelette?

Nothing at all for breakfast, indeed, nothing at all until lunchtime when there's a Black Pepper Pate on brown sandwich. And later on, two chocolate chip cookies. This is real discipline as I could easily wolf down the whole packet.

Then in the evening I accidentally invent a totally new meal, the Fried Egg Omelette! Obviously all omelettes are made of fried eggs, but this is different, an omelette with a fried egg built in, as you'll see in the photo below.

The world's first Fried Egg Omelette, with Tuna

It started off as a normal omelette, standard recipe, eggs beaten with some herby sea salt and fresh black pepper, but I couldn't find a big enough bowl for 3 eggs, only 2. Some inspiration was called for and it duly arrived - if I can't get the 3rd egg in the bowl, just add it on top! It's all egg, right?

I did a quick search on the internet and found no references to it at all! So I claim a world first, the brand new food, an original Christopher Rose Recipe, the Fried Egg Omelette !!!

The Fried Egg Omelette © Christopher Rose 2005

Oh yes, rounded things off with a delicious little pot of chocolate pudding...

Sunday, 28 August 2005

Chinese Heat

So it's Sunday evening and Ursula wants a Chinese and that I go fetch it. It's not such a bad chore so we choose the stuff and I phone up and order the following:- 1 Spring Roll, Chicken with Black Bean Sauce, Noodles with Vegetables, Chicken in Hot Chili Sauce and Egg Fried Rice.

Sometimes we pick and mix but tonight we don't so just the last two items are for me and they are really good. I thought the sauce wasn't hot at first but after a couple of minutes the heat hits my head and the sweat hits my eyes. Incredible!

That's not quite all I ate today as earlier, whilst watching Manchester United beat Newcastle United on TV, which I am reviewing here for both my Manchester United blog and here on BlogCritics, I had an Emmental on Brown sandwich and two Chocolate Chip Cookies.

Breakfast As Usual

Not even the good news on the diet and weight front can break a 23 year tradition and this Sunday morning's Egg and Bacon Sandwich, though a little over-cooked and greasy, is delicious. Loving it!

Sunday 28th August, 2005, the Weigh-in

Trumpets ring out, drums roll and there is dancing in the streets! The official readings are in and the vast body that is me weighs in at an impressive 77.6 kg! That's 12 stone 3 lbs!! Unbelievable!!!

Writing this blog may not be the world's greatest literary achievement, especially judging by the vast number of readers it enjoys, but it is definitely working in terms of keeping going with the Tapas Diet and helping to keep my weight down.

Every time I get food lust, I get a picture in my mind's eye of having to write down everything I eat, and how embarrassing it is to eat so much. That really helps to resist temptation.

Saturday, 27 August 2005

Cauliflower Cheese Crumpet Chocolate

A busy day punctuated by a breakfast of 2 slices of toast, a light lunch of Cauliflower Cheese and one of those delicious Madeleine buns and much later an apple.

And a crumpet.

And four squares of chocolate fondant. Did I mention I have a major chocolate addiction? Haven't had much recently, I tend to binge and then cut down, until the next time...

Will it pay off at the weigh-in in the morning? I wrote the previous sentence before those last two. Probably should change it to will it show at the weigh-in? We'll soon find out.

Friday, 26 August 2005

Crackers Tortilla Biscuits

Six cheesy crackers, small ones, and a Cheddar Cheese and Branston Pickle sandwich on brown.

And a slice of Spanish Tortilla.

And three chocolate biscuits.

Shreddies Goulash

Early start today and needing fast fuel, breakfast is a full bowl of Shreddies with fresh milk and a level teaspoon of sugar. I love that malty shreddie taste.

Amazingly, lunch is taken at lunchtime and Tapas Diet discipline maintained with another dish of that fabulous Hungarian Goulash and only one of those tasty cheesy dumpling thingies!

A good day for the diet - so far...

Oh yes, I'm not including most drinks in this blog, as it would seem to be even less eventful than the regular content, endless mentions of cups of tea and coffee would be slightly less interesting than watching paint dry. However, as it is a comparatively rare event and it involves a fair few calories, 140 kcal, it seemed worth mentioning I had a can of Coke after lunch.

Thursday 25th August 2005, afternoon and evening

All I've eaten is a Cheddar Cheese and Potato Salad sandwich on multigrain brown, a strawberry yoghurt and 3 biscuits. Feeling hungry.

Add an apple to that.

Thursday, 25 August 2005

Thursday 25th August 2005, Lunch

Yes! Tapas Diet discipline reasserts itself!!

Today's lunch is a perfect example of the Tapas Diet; a perfectly delicious Hungarian Pork Goulash with Cheesy Scones.

Hungarian Pork Goulash

As you can see in the photograph above it looks delicious in the Tapas Dish, though it didn't stay in there for very long...

Thursday 25th August 2005, Breakfast

Today's breakfast consists solely of 3 medium sized slices of toasted brown multi-grain bread with butter and Mushroom Pate. Oh yes, and lots of coffee!

Wednesday, 24 August 2005

Weetabix Tuna Tortilla

Another busy if somewhat uneventful day (yeah, I know!) so here's a quick run down:-

Breakfast was a massive three Weetabix with fresh milk and a level spoon of sugar, no cinnamon this time. On a fairly spartan day, further consumption was limited to a small Tuna and Potato Salad sandwich on Brown multi-grain, 3 biscuits and about a third of a small (20 cm/8") Spanish Omelette. That is all.

Steamed Salmon

I've been a bit busy today so here's a resume:-

Breakfast was Shreddies with milk and cinnamon then nothing at all until about 4-ish but this lovely late lunch was well worth the wait.

Steamed Salmon Fillet with Salad, Roast Potatoes and fresh Orange Juice

This was just as delicious as it looks and a very acceptable exception to the Tapas Dish regimen due to its ultra-healthy nature. Due to the lower prices of food here in Spain, a meal like this doesn't require a massive bank loan and two of these generous portions of fresh Salmon cost less than 4 pounds sterling.

Later snacks include an Emmental on Brown sandwich, a total of 4 biscuits, about half a dozen cheesey nibbley things and an apple but now it's late and I'm off to bed.

Monday, 22 August 2005

Homemade Burger Suppertime

Sometimes plain simple food can be just perfect, it's just not necessary to be flamboyant and cook-y all the time.

Just say no to food snobs and enjoy the perfect simplicity of:-

A homemade Double Beefburger with Salad, Garlic, Tomato Ketchup and a Fried Egg with a can of Coke followed by 2 chocolate biscuits.

And some Chocolate Orange.

And some Chocolate, Belgian plain chocolate, mmmmuummm.

Afternoon Snack Attack

An absolutely delicious Tuna and Salad Sandwich on Brown, washed down with yet more coffee (yeah, I think I do have a bit of a hangover) and 2 biscuits for dessert.

Mushroom Pate Toast Breakfast

Simply 3 small slices of Brown Bread toasted, buttered and with some great Pate with Mushrooms, and, after last night, lashings of black coffee.

Seafront Seafood

For dinner we go down the Paseo Marítimo of Torrox Costa with our visiting friends from Antequera. The seafront is heaving with people, all enjoying the sights of the night market, the busy bars and restaurants and the many street performers, musicians, artists and all.

After several large icy cold beers we end up at a lively seafood restaurant where we share Rosada with Alioli, and some magnificent Giant Prawns with Avocado, Salad and more Alioli, freshly cooked Chips which I quickly cover in some great fresh Olive Oil, and a Baked Potato with Alioli.

I guess you figured out we really love Alioli, that fantastic rich and creamy Garlic Mayonnaise they make so well in Spain!

After several hours of feasting and boozing we totter back home and party some more but without anymore eating!

Sunday, 21 August 2005

Afternoon Grazing

Confessions are supposed to be good for the soul but I don't see much good about this:-

Emmental and Potato Salad on Brown sandwich.

Some crackers and cheese (more Emmental).

Two chocolate chip cookies.

Breakfast Bacon

Yes, I know this isn't the healthiest of foods but it's tradition; Egg and Bacon Sandwich on white with HP Sauce - luvverly!

Sunday 21st August, 2005, the Weigh-in

Tadadadadadaaaaaaa! and today's numbers come in at 78.2 kgs, down 400 gms from last Sunday. Now for a hearty breakfast to undo all the good work.

Saturday, 20 August 2005

Roasted Saturday Night Dinner

We have friends visiting from our "home town" of Antequera and eat Roast Chicken, BBQ Chips, mountains of Salad drowning in Olive Oil and washed down by a really nice still Rosé from Navarra, Togal, followed by an excellent red Rioja, Cepa Divisa, which just rolls down the throat in a smooth and fruity way. Good times are being had!

Got Milk?

Consider this:

Energy 64 kcals| 64 kcals
Protein 3.2 g | 3 g
Carbs 4.7 g | 4.8 g
Fat 3.6 g | 3.6 g
Calcium 119 mg | 130 mg

Pretty identical, right?

However, the first figures refer to this expensive English whole milk, supermarket price 1.94 Euros

and the second set refer to this Spanish homogenized milk, produced in our original Spanish home town of Antequera, supermarket price 0.75 Euros.

The odd thing is that, despite the nearly identical figures, these milks are very different.

The Spanish milk, our regular everyday stuff, is perfectly fine milk and we use it all the time for every kind of use from cooking to drinking.

The expensive English import, in its functional but dull packaging, is much richer, thicker and creamy, despite the fact that it's figures are almost the same. So when I found some not-at-all-easy-to-find-round-here Shreddies in one of the local supermarkets, I knew they would be a welcome change from the more usual Weetabix and grabbed both them and the fancy expensive English milk.

No contest! What a difference in thickness, creaminess and yes, even flavour!! Noticeable even in a cup of tea, the whole milk is so much tastier and richer it makes the simple pleasure of breakfast cereal a whole new taste extravaganza for no extra calorie load.

A comforting thought as I tuck into my bowl of Shreddies, dusted with Cinnamon and a single level teaspoon of sugar for breakfast, despite the much higher cost.

I can't see anything in the figures to justify such a drastic difference, maybe it's something to do with the different diets the cows have, but as an occasional extravagance, expensive English milk rules.

Friday, 19 August 2005

Late Afternoon Delights

Apologies for the corny headline, I have always had problems like that!

Anyway, since that great Lunch, there's been a Tuna and Coleslaw on Brown sandwich, a strawberry flavour yoghurt, 3 small chocolate biscuits, 6 Ritz Crackers and a glass of Orange Juice. And so to bed.

Meatballs Beer Live Longer

No time again for breakfast this morning as we had an early-ish meeting with our new lawyers in Nerja. So I didn't eat anything at all until this great late lunch.

Spanish Meatballs (Albóndigas) with Roast Potatoes, Allioli and Salad + Beer

Corona, from Mexico, is one of the world's greatest beers to my taste - and oddly called Coronita here in Spain as you can see in the photo.

Yes, I know, what about the Tapas Diet? I've been reading up a bit on diet as you might imagine and I've learned that what I'm doing is called Portion Control, which is a posh way of saying "Eat Less" but if you'd prefer a more eloquent explanation please click here. It also embraces Calorie Restriction which many believe helps extend your life expectancy. So, my basic instinct (lol) after last year's great Tapas Bar adventure , that simply eating smaller portions, even if eating more often each day, has got to help lose weight has now got some scientific credibility! And, yes, I hadn't forgotten that this meal is against the rules: It's just sometimes a full meal is deserved and a real pleasure and that's all there is to it!

Thursday, 18 August 2005

Tea and Nibbles

A Cheddar Cheese and Potato Salad sandwich on brown; a peach yoghurt; a fantastic bell-shaped chocolate covered shredded coconut thing; an Apple (yes, Granny Smiths again, when you've got the best, who needs the rest); two biscuits; and one and a half squares of Swiss Orange Chocolate.

Tuna Liquorice Fantasy Food Sex

Not in the mood for breakfast today, so it's just time for a cup of coffee before heading out to Torrox Costa to take care of some chores.

When we get back, Ursula splits a baguette and fills it with some great Tuna Mayonnaise and tons of Mixed Salad, which is both really tasty and nutritious.

Some people try to cut all fat out of their diet as they try to lose weight but I don't think that's the right way to go. It's like you need a little fat to prime the fat pump or whatever it is.

Ursula gobbled a whole bag of some Danish Liquorice Allsorts she's recently discovered (she's a liquorice junkie, amongst her sins!) and I managed to get just one!

One of the hardest things about trying to lose weight on a diet, something they don't prepare you for, so you're not expecting it, can be that as you try to eat less, and less often, you can find yourself thinking about food more and more.

In the last few weeks I've noticed that I'm thinking about food so much more often it's practically obsessive. Not so much as in a healthy "what shall I eat today?" kind of way either, more of a "fantasy food I really shouldn't eat" type of thing.

Fabulous banquets heaving with every imaginable foodie delight or single dishes sailing through my mind's eye like curious UFOs as I entertain, almost smell, all sorts of comparatively forbidden pleasures.

It's not even like a vague fleeting moment of half-memory, but rather more recurrent and persistent images, flavours and smells, oh the smells!

How often? Well, guys think a lot about sex, some surveys have even gone so far as to claim every 10 seconds. I'm not quite at that level, but it's definitely the case that the thing I think about secondmost these days is food, glorious food!

Seems a bit sick really, what with all the seriously hungry people in the world...

Wednesday, 17 August 2005

Wednesday Snax

A bread roll with mature Cheddar and Coleslaw, two chocolate chip cookies - a new brand with chocolate and white chocolate chips and a Catalan Cream custardy dessert with cinnamon - bad diet food but good eating...

Homemade Chicken Curry

After yesterday's grand tour, hunger is biting hard and the awesome Ursula leaps into the breach and whips up a fabulous Chicken Curry using up the leftover Tikka and stuff from a few days back.

Chicken Curry with Boiled Rice, Chapati and Salad

As you can see from the lovely photo, it looks fantastic and tasted even better. I really ought to get Ursula to do a Recipes site to support this one...

Light Breakfast Toast

No road trips today, although we are planning an expedition in search of the hidden villages below the Sierra Nevada next week, so a little light breakfast of three slices of toast. I added Brussels Pate to two of them and a lovely slice of fresh Emmental on the third and finished off with a couple of cups of Coffee.

Tuesday, 16 August 2005

Tuna Salad Tiramisu Melon

*Sings* Suppertime and the living is easy!

Look at this fabulous Tuna Salad, delicious with a drizzle of Olive Oil and a chunk of coarse country bread.

....................Tuna Salad with Pan Campero

I first ate Tiramisu on a visit to the lovely old city of Florence in Italy and have been addicted ever since. It's quite hard to make badly but also not often you find a great one. Obviously, homemade is best but this mass produced one from one of the local supermarkets is well worth eating.


And in this heat, when it's still 25º Centigrade at 11 o'clock at night, this deliucious slice of fresh Melon is both thirstquenching and cooling. Totally fabulous!

....................Galia Melon

Vinuela Picnic

Wow! The scenery around Zafarraya is amazing. It varies from mist-shrouded mountains to hidden plains nestled in amongst the mountains. Here's a map of the area we toured, looping round in a giant circle through the mountains to the East and North of the village. As you'd imagine, it's a huge agricultural area; we saw fields of lettuces, green beans, sweet corn, tomatoes, cabbages, artichokes and even mushrooms!

We travelled about 200 kms and went through huge variations of temperature (between 20 and 30 degrees Centigrade), altitude (0 metres to 1200 metres) and visibility (10s of kms down to barely 100 metres) and picnicked on the shores of the Lake Vinuela reservoir, which due to the year long drought round here, is not looking quite so lush as in this photograph...

The picnic was a delightful but simple fare of Ham with Egg Mayonnaise and Ham and Emmental Cheese sandwiches, a bag of Ruffles and 2 biscuits, all washed down with a can of Coke. Nothing fancy, I know, but good simple food nonetheless.

Breakfast Confession

Off exploring the wild inland countryside around the small mountain village of Zafarraya this morning so a hearty breakfast of three Weetabix is called for, with fresh milk, half a spoon of sugar and lashings of Cinnamon.

Oh yes, must confess that, last night, I munched two whole poppadoms all by myself. Pig!

Monday, 15 August 2005

Homemade Chicken Tikka Vegetable Curry

Mmmmm, I was hoping not to eat again til tonight but this fabulous looking meal was just smelling so good I couldn't resist it. I did manage to confine myself to a small plate although I could have eaten twice as much. Such are the perils of living with a great cook!

Homemade Chicken Tikka and Vegetable Curry with Basmati Rice, Nan and Poppadom

Strictly speaking it's outside the definition of a Tapas Dish just for the sheer size of the meal but I like to think it's within the spirit.

Followed half an hour later by two biscuits with a mug of tea.


Didn't feel like breakfast today, even though I'm always saying how important it is to have a little breakfast in the morning so decided to have a little toast at eleven.

The danger when eating out of regular hours is the temptation to binge, and even knowing that, I still manage to tuck away five slices of toasted white bread, two with Brussels Pate, two with Emmental cheese and to finish one with Oxford marmalade. Tasty.

Sunday 14th August 2005, Snacks

I really don't want a meal after last night's blowout so just a little grazing spread over a period from about 8.30pm to midnight. First off, nine Ritz crackers get the taste buds working with that great salty flavour, no, make that ten!

About 9.40 it's time for a Cheshire Cheese and Potato Salad sandwich; I think Cheshire is one of the world's great cheeses so it's bittersweet that I've just finished off the good stuff from England as the "cheshire" you can buy locally is pants.

Amazingly, that's it, no biscuits or chocolate, so I'm off to bed before the munchie bug bites. G'night.

Sunday, 14 August 2005

Sunday 14th August 2005, Breakfast

And the tradition continues its 20+ years run with the classic Egg and Bacon sandwich washed down with a lovely mug of tea. Bad from a dietary point of view, but as I increasingly often seem to be saying these days, never let your principles stop you from doing the right thing!

Sunday Morning Weigh-in, 14th August 2005

The second of my new series of Sunday Morning weight revelations shows me to weigh in at 78.6 kgs, 600 grams lighter than last week. I'm not totally convinced that scale is accurate mind you, so I'll have to see how it goes.

Saturday, 13 August 2005

Saturday 13th August, Supper

Well, it's been a long day, 250 km round trip, drought and a changeover, so we celebrate a job well done with a full meal.

There's some delicious steak, onions and mushrooms, several mountains of salad, corn on the cob and BBQ Oven Chips, all washed down with this lovely fruity Rioja. Excellent!

Desire for sugar takes hold and I have four biscuits, delicious but bad for the belly line. Aaagh!

Saturday 13th August, Breakfast

It's a busy day today as we have to do a changeover at the villa, so a big breakfast is called for: big in diet terms is a huge THREE Weetabix with fresh milk, a level teaspoon of sugar and a huge dusting of Cinnamon washed down with Orange Juice and Coffee. It'll have to keep me going for a long time.

Saturday 13th August, munchies

A handful of Ritz crackers, a Tuna and Potato Salad on white bread sandwich, 4 biscuits and some orange juice.

Friday, 12 August 2005

Friday 12th August 2005, Lunch

Chicken Fajita with Salsa and Homemade Guacamole

This is one of two chicken fajitas I had for lunch today with tons of salad, lakes of salsa and a mountain of guacamole. I like to roll them up and eat them in my hands, getting all sticky in the process. Awesome!

Friday 12th August 2005, Breakfast

Three slices of toasted brown bread, three different toppings. That lovely hole-y Emmental followed by Brussels Pate and then that excellent garlicy cream cheese Boursin to finish, all washed down with a large glass of Orange juice. Grrreat!

Thursday, 11 August 2005

Thursday 11th August 2005, Snack

Three different chocolate biscuits!

The round one is filled with a somewhat bland chocolate cream but it somehow makes for a tasty everyday biscuit, the other two are just plain chocolate overload. Washed down with some black tea and a strawberry yoghurt.

Thursday 11th August 2005, Supper

Chili con Carne in a Tapas Dish

A little blurry perhaps but this is a hot and spicy Chili (my speciality!) with two slices of brown bread to mop up the sauce. Burn, baby, burn!

Thursday 11th August 2005, Lunch

After such a light breakfast, it was great to have a full meal for lunch today.

This lovely looking dish is Hake (Merluza) with a crispy crumb topping cooked in the oven with some jacket potatoes and served with a mountain of mixed salad and some garlic mayo.

Hake in crispy breadcrumbs with a large salad

It was just as delicious as it looks, if not more so.

Thursday 11th August 2005, Breakfast

A modest two Weetabix, fresh milk, half a spoon of sugar washed down with fresh coffee, a great start!

Wednesday 10th August 2005, evening snacks

Ritz crackers, some Mackerel on buttered brown bread, 3 biscuits, about 3-5 hours ago; feeling hungry now, must resist...

Wednesday, 10 August 2005

Wednesday 10th August 2005, out to lunch

We keep talking about eating out more, trying out more of the great local restaurants and so today we went down to a great little beach bar (chiringuito) called El Rincon de Pepe (Pepe's Corner) right on El Peñoncillo beach.

The view from El Rincon de Pepe

It's a great location, tucked in the lee of the point our flat is on, with a great grey sandy beach and the people running the place are so friendly, it's just a great place to hang out and chill. Now if I could just talk them into installing a wifi point I'd be there all the time.

Prawns Pil Pil, Fried Aubergines and Patatas Alioli

For lunch we started with a crusty bread onto which we poured rivers of lovely fruity Olive Oil. I used not to like Olive Oil and I still have problems with Olives themselves but I'm starting to really like the oil.

This was followed by lightly battered Aubergine (Berenjenas) slices for Ursula and Prawns Pil Pil (Gambas al Pil Pil) for me and we shared a big Baked Potato with a huge mound of delicious Alioli. The Pil Pil is usually nothing more than prawns fried in butter, garlic and some viciously hot chili peppers but done Pepe style adds some white wine and tomato to make the lovely sauce you can see in the photo. Alioli is a superb mixture of Mayo and Garlic which is really thick and creamy and we love it. For drinks I had fizzy water and Ursula Coke and we whiled away a pleasant couple of hours chatting and peoplewatching for a total of 20 Euros ( 14 pounds, 25 dollars).

Wednesday 10th August 2005, Breakfast

Yes, eating some breakfast today. Three slices of toasted white bread, 2 with some yummy Brussels Pate and one with some fresh Emmental slices, all washed down with a black coffee or three.

Tuesday, 9 August 2005

Tuesday 9th August 2005, Daily Roundup

Ensaladilla Rusa

After nothing at all for Breakfast, lunch was a Tapas dish of Ensaladilla Rusa, tea was 3 biscuits and supper was a Cheshire Cheese and Potato Salad sandwich on brown buttered bread. I've felt hungry all day and it's been a huge struggle not to gorge myself stupid, sure hope it's going to pay off when it comes to the Sunday weigh-in.

Monday, 8 August 2005

Tuesday 9th August 2005, Munching after Midnight

3 Biscuits, a Peach Yoghurt, a mug of Tea. Maybe if I went to bed earlier I'd eat less? Tough call, never been good at early nights...

Monday 8th August 2005

Been a bit busy today so here's a quick summary of a whole day's consumption:-

Breakfast just after 9am was a modest 2 Weetabix with fresh milk, a level spoon of sugar and mounds of Cinnamon and was great. Even better was the ham and egg mayonnaise and mixed salad open sandwich that was lunch today. And whilst out and about this afternoon I had a glass of beer in a roadside bar.

But right now I'm looking forward to some Danish Meatballs in Pepper Sauce, Roasted Red Peppers, mini Roast Potatoes and salad that will be supper. Yummy!

And it was, all washed down with another bottle of that great Spanish Cider.

Sunday 7th August 2005, Snacks

a slice of Spanish Tortilla (Tortilla Española), 4 biscuits, a strawberry yoghurt, a fistful of Ritz crackers, an apple, and a mini Twix bar all variously nibbled between 6pm and now

Sunday, 7 August 2005

Sunday 7th August 2005, Brunch

After a busy day yesterday, we had a nice lie-in this morning and fancied rather more than our traditional Egg & Bacon Sandwich.

An excellent late brunch of Bacon, 2 Eggs, Toast, Mushrooms, Swiss Rosti and Baked Beans washed down with a large mug of tea makes a great late breakfast-early lunch and hopefully will be our main meal of the day.

Sunday Morning Weigh-in, 7th August 2005

This is the first of a new weekly feature in which the horrible truth about the effects of the Tapas Diet on the one thing that counts, my actual body weight, will be revealed.

Today's weighing reveals that today I weigh 79.2 kg, so I still have a long way to go to hit the 75 kg target. Bah!

Sunday 7th August 2005, the downright Ugly

a strawberry yoghurt, more ice cream, a mini KitKat and two squares of plain Belgian chocolate

Saturday, 6 August 2005

Sunday 7th August 2005, the Bad

A fair sized portion of Chocolate and Vanilla Stracciatella ice cream and a mug of tea.

Saturday 6th August 2005, the Good

Ensaladilla Rusa in a tapas dish and a glass of orange juice.

Saturday 6th August 2005, Afternoon snack

Remember that Chicken blowout the other day? Well, the multi-talented Ursula whipped up some awesome Coronation Chicken with the leftovers and has just made some delicious sandwiches with some mixed salad on fresh crusty white bread. Like the tiger says, ggrrreat!

Saturday 6th August 2005, early Breakfast

Three Weetabix with fresh milk, a level spoon of sugar and a mug of coffee get me off to a great start to a long day.

Friday, 5 August 2005

Saturday 6th August 2005, the midnight hour

A small tuna and potato salad brown bread sandwich, a handful of Ritz crackers and two biscuits.

Friday 5th August 2005, early Supper

Just a Tapas Dish of Ensaladilla Rusa with a dollop of ketchup.

If I had to pick just one thing to be condemned to eat forever, I reckon it would be this salad. It has lots of flavour but in a muted kind of way and is really nutritious. It's just Tuna, Boiled Egg, Grated Carrot, Onion, Red Pepper, Potatoes, Mayonnaise and some Black Pepper.

Of course, the secret is in how they're mixed together and Ursula's mix is the best I've tasted, way better than any of the store bought stuff, so if you've only ever had it from the shops, try making your own!

It's one of the great paradoxes of living in Spain; the Spanish live longer and are happier than almost anywhere else in the whole of Europe, and that is of course partly down to the Mediterranean diet of lots of fish and lashings of olive oil. On the other hand, lots of food stuff for sale is simply not of the same quality as can be found on the heaving shelves of your local Tesco.

Friday 5th August 2005, what's for tea?

Some more of that homemade Chili con Carne in a Tapas Dish, served with a chunk of baguette - and yes, it is the first thing I've eaten today...

Friday 5th August 2005, night fever

a strawberry yoghurt, a mini KitKat and two biscuits

Thursday, 4 August 2005

Thursday 4th August 2005, Late dessert

Mmmm, the rest of that fresh pineapple with some more of that delicious Catalan Cream with Cinnamon. Served hot this time, it's really good.

Thursday 4th August 2005, Supper

Fabulous early supper - and a total blowout too! Breast of Chicken in Chimichurri Sauce with leftover mashed and roast potatoes, a chunk of Baguette and a mountain of Mixed Salad, washed down with a bottle of delicious Spanish Cider. A real flavour and carbohydrate overload but you have to have the occasional full meal don't you.

And yes, I obviously am aware this is supposed to be the Tapas Diet but someone smarter than me once said "Never let your principles stop you from doing the right thing", which seems like good advice to me.

Thursday 4th August 2005, Breakfast

A quick half hour on the sunbed working on my pathetic tan followed by 4 slices of toast, two with that lovely French cheese Rambol, one with some excellent crumbly mature Cheddar brought over by Ursula's artist mother, Stella Boyle, and to round things off, one with some thick Olde English marmalade, all wished down with a mug of Tea, luvverly!

Wednesday, 3 August 2005

Wednesday 3rd August, evening snack

After a great long walk along the seafront, taking in the sights, people watching, enjoying the street market and the live music with Ursula and the dogs (Molly 7 and Bobby 2), it's back to the flat for supper.

A Tapas dish of that Chile Con Carne I made last night with a chunk of Chapata bread washed down with a cup of tea is simply delicious!

Wednesday 3rd August, afternoon snack

Drank a lot of coffee today, did I say I LOVE coffee? I can quite literally drink 2 jugs a day, one regular in the morning followed by a batch of reduced caffeine (not Decaf) for the afternoon. It really helps with the dieting but probably a little tougher on the bladder! LOL

And thanks to the magic bean, I didn't eat again until late afternoon when I scoffed a Tapas dishful of Ensaladilla Rusa followed by a great crunchy Granny Smith apple.

Wednesday 3rd August, Breakfast

They say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, personally I think the most important meal is the next one, but that's another story. Today I got things going on three, yes three, Weetabix with fresh milk, one teaspoon of sugar and loads of Cinnamon.

I cooked a whole big pot of chile last night and this morning Ursula made loads of her delicious Ensaladilla Rusa so it'll be easy to try and stick to the Tapas Diet this week hopefully.

Tuesday, 2 August 2005

Wednesday 3rd August, night time is snack time

Cheddar Cheese and Branston Pickle on buttered white bread, 2 biscuits and a cup of tea.

Tuesday 2nd August 2005, Lunch in Nerja

So Ursula and I went in to Nerja this morning to do a few things and decided to lunch in town for a change. We ended up at Meson Restaurante Benitez, a large typically Spanish place directly overlooking the lovely little Playa Carabeo.

We shared an Ensalada Mixta which was deliciously simple, eaten with drizzled Olive oil and a crusty bread roll. Ursula went with the Salmon in Orange Sauce (Salmón en Salsa Naranja) and when it arrived, for a moment I wished I had too, it looked fantastic.

However, I was swiftly distracted by the arrival of my Swordfish Benitez (Pez Espada Benitez) which came in an sauce which at first glance looked like a pale gravy but was actual a fine light vegetable and garlic sauce with prawns and shellfish which went fabulously well with the large portion of fish. It was absolutely brilliant, which was just as well as it compensated for the rather overcooked potatoes, celery and asparagus which accompanied it. I washed it down with a caña of draft beer and soaked up the sunshine for a while before we headed off to finish off our chores.

Tuesday 2nd August 2005, Breakfast

Today's ongoing beat the bulge battle of the calories starts with a light breakfast of 2 Weetabix with fresh whole milk, a level teaspoon of sugar and dusted with ground Cinnamon, lovely! Ably supported by some fresh black coffee, again with just a level teaspoon of sugar. That should just about get me through a busy morning of chores and admin.

Monday, 1 August 2005

Tuesday 2nd August 2005, Midnight Munchie

A miniature Mars bar. Me bad!

Monday 1st August, Suppertime

A small portion of leftover Chicken Tikka on a bed of mixed salad with a chunk of Chapata bread on the side, tasting real good.

Chicken Tikka Salad

As if that weren't enough, following on with some fresh Pineapple and Catalan Creme, a Spanish kind of Custard, dusted with my current favourite spice, Cinnamon. Awesome!

Monday 1st August, Lunchtime

Wow, just finished some excellent (frozen) tuna, simply fried in olive oil with some prawns and mashed up garlic. Served on a bed of mixed salad and accompanied by some oven chips, it makes a great light lunch and seems like a real blowout after several days without a main meal.

I drank a bottle of sparkling water and finished things off with a tasty yoghurt and peach dessert. Lovely!

Monday 1st August, late breakfast

3 small slices of white bread toasted and buttered, mmm, 2 with Brussels Paté and one with some magnificient Boursin! Gotta love that creamy garlicy flavour.

Oh, and of course, a cup of tea. These days I like my tea black with just a level teaspoon of sugar. I used to be fairly indifferent to which teabags we used, so long as they were one of the British brands I wasn't bothered which one. The mainland European brands tend to be a bit on the insipid side to my jaded tastebuds.

Following our move to Torrox, we have new shopping opportunities and have recently started getting Typhoo teabags, which I mention only to point out that they just seem to have more flavour than the others, although the little tags on the bag are made with a disolvable glue so it's annoying if the tag gets wet and comes off the little string.

Monday 1st August, late night snack

My late night snack is a Cheshire Cheese and Potato Salad sandwich on buttered 5-seed brown bread. The cheese was brought over by Ursula after her recent visit to NW England and is exquisite. That slight sense of lemon goes perfectly with the crumbly texture and delicate flavour. Cheshire Cheese would definitely get my vote as the Best Cheese in the World.

It can be quite difficult to find QUALITY English food in Spain. The supermarkets do their best but tend to stock the most mass-produced of products, rather than the best. Mind you, there are now many English food shops over here, but they are still either poor quality or massively over-priced...

Late addition: 2 more of those chocolate-y sandwich biscuits, yum.