5:2 Diet Fasting and Feasting!
Lemon Chicken with Cannellini Beans and Rosemary Recipe
Feasting and fasting, that’s what the 5:2 Diet is mostly about, and one of the reasons I have stuck to it for so long; let’s just put this into context, when I say feasting, I don’t mean a table laden with banquet style food and pewter jugs overflowing with wine and ale. No, it’s simply a term used for eating as normal in between fast days, which, are NOT fast days with no food, but days of low-calorie meals with a daily allowance of 500 calories for women and 600 calories for men. The reason that this intermittent style of dieting has proved so successful for me is the lack of “forbidden” food, a very negative term that makes me feel instantly rebellious! It’s also another reason why I have always liked the Weight Watchers diet, I am a life-long member, and I try slot the principles of Weight Watchers in and alongside my 5:2 diet wherever possible, as there are no “forbidden” foods there either, just sensible calorie counting albeit by points.
In my weekly meal plan yesterday, Meal Planning Monday, 5:2 Diet Fast Days and Pesto Pasta with Parmesan Recipe, I mentioned that I had created a new recipe, for those wanting to eat fewer calories or for those of you who are following the 5:2 diet; and here it is, a delectable light casserole, Lemon Chicken with Cannellini Beans and Rosemary. I am rather pleased with this recipe, not just because it is very filling and extremely flavoursome, but because my husband, who is NOT following any diet, asked if he could have some for his lunch, as the aromatic fragrance of the lemons, cumin and garlic infused the kitchen and apparently titillated his taste buds! And, it comes in at a rather low and surprising 275 calories a portion,that’s one steaming bowl of beans with chicken, herbs and tomatoes – perfect for a main meal on a fast day, as well as for anyone not on a diet when served with crusty bread.
This easy recipe is on the table in under half an hour and makes use of some handy store cupboard and pantry ingredients, such as cannellini beans, lemon, cumin and of course fresh herbs from the garden. Think of it as a lightened-up version of a cassoulet or a simple casserole, but with lean chicken and fresh cherry tomatoes; the addition of low-fat yoghurt makes it creamy and the cumin seeds add an aromatic bite to the dish. I am sure that this dish would also be wonderful with other beans, such as butter beans, but DO check the calories as not all beans are the same. As a quick comparison and example, 400g of Butter Beans is 375 calories whilst 400g of Cannellini Beans is 338 calories – there isn’t much difference, but is all adds up in a recipe.
This was my lunch for today and I am feeling replete, as well as feeling as if I have not eaten “diet food”, a term I hate to see and hear! I hope that if you try this recipe, you will enjoy it as much as we did, it’s back to feasting and normal food tomorrow as well as some bread baking! That’s it for today, see you later, Karen
As this uses a goodly amount of herbs in the recipe, I have entered it into Herbs on Saturday, a monthly herbal challenge that I run, which is being guest hosted by the lovely Vanesther this month over at Bangers and Mash!