stuffed onions and a revelation

You want a recipe for stuffed onions – listen, I understand – you can find it just below the next few paragraphs of gibberish. 

Firstly, welcome to all our new subscribers. Not sure what has happened but we seem to have gained over 800 subscribers in the space of a few weeks! Goodness. Just a quick bit of admin before we get started – we’re not Slimming World consultants, so everything we say shouldn’t be taken as gospel, but we have been following the plan for years and are confident our recipes stack up syn-wise. We’re obliged to tell you that we’re definitely not Slimming World Official though. Which is good, as it means I can say fuck. Thank fuck!

Secondly, I know, we’re terrible. We went away on another holiday. Because Berlin, Ireland, Corsica, Iceland and New York just weren’t enough. One of the benefits of homosexuality, see, pink disposable income and no money-draining children to look after. The extent of our responsibility is to make sure that we leave the cats plenty of food to be getting on with and leaving instructions with our lovely neighbours for the alarm code. To be fair, it has been a bit of a topsy-turvy couple of weeks and we needed a break. We decamped to glorious Cornwall for a few days in a lovely cottage with an outdoor bath, and you can be assured that I’ll rattle off a couple of entries of our thoughts on that in due course.

However, we must take a moment to stop with the gurning and sarcasm and be serious for a moment. You’re going to laugh because I’m sure long-term readers will have read sentiments like this several times over on this blog, but we’re recommitted. We had a run of ‘big events’ at the end of March – birthday, a death, a hen party, a work night out, which then followed by a holiday means a big gain. This can’t go on! We can’t keep losing weight for a few weeks and then hoying it all back on in a glut of naughty food and too much alcohol. 

Well, Paul and I have both had that moment of realisation. A simultaneous awakening. I picked up a sack of potatoes in Morrisons (my life isn’t always this cosmopolitan) and realised it weighed five stone. Realistically, I could probably stand to lose one and a half of these sacks. It’s no wonder I ache all the time carrying around all this extra fat – I have arthritis and I should give my joints a rest. I’m tired of getting out of what I thought was an empty bath only for half the bathwater that was dammed behind my back fat suddenly appear with a loud fart noise. I’m sick of worrying whenever I get on an aeroplane that:

  1. the seatbelt won’t fit;
  2. I’ll be sat next to someone who will tut and sigh when he sees me stumbling down the aisle; and
  3. if the plane crashes, I’ll pop the escape slide on the way down, although the resulting blast of air might put out the fire, so perhaps that’s not such a bad thing.

I’m genuinely sad that I have to buy my clothes from online piano-dressers Jacamo or, if I’m lucky, I might find a shirt hidden right at the back of the rail in Tesco that doesn’t make me look like a hot air balloon crash. As I reckon a lot of fat people do, I’m constantly worried that I’m sweaty or that I smell. Which is ridiculous. I wear Tom Ford, for goodness sake. I’m horrendously unfit too – I get out of breath when my mind wanders, let alone a long country walk. More importantly, if I carry on – and if I haven’t already – I’m going to wreck my body and die young. I don’t want to die young, I want to be an old man who shouts at children and releases silent farts on public transport. To be fair, I do both now, but I want to be able to pretend to be deaf to the cries of my fellow passengers.

I know Paul feels the same, and then some. See, whereas I have a decent height to carry off my weight, so at least don’t look like a sphere with a face drawn on it, Paul came up short in the lottery of legs and looks like a wee egg in Build-a-Bear shoes. My dad, always the joker, described Paul as a skip. That’s my dad’s humour (and where I get it from) but Paul will cheerfully agree that he is skip-like – certainly, you can put anything into him without resistance. That’s come in handy during our marriage. I’d love my husband if he became so fat that he collapsed in on himself and turned into a puddle of Crisp ‘n’ Dry and gristle, but as it stands, we’re racing each other to the grave. He’s been told he has a fatty liver – personally, I’d be surprised if his liver didn’t have a butter-top like a breakfast crumpet – and he’s also been recommended to try Orlistat, which immediately and secretly voids any ingested fat out of your anus. We’re refusing on the grounds that we’ve just bought a new car and sofa and the last thing we need is carrot-orange liquid fat seeping out of his underwear. We buy our briefs from Tesco, they’re hardly going to keep the floods back. 

We did have a discussion about continuing with Slimming World, though. Deep down, I do feel that the plan is a little too restrictive and yes, whilst it certainly gets results, there’s a lot of rebounding that goes on with the diet. I’ve seen many, many ‘success stories’ fill out and slip back over the years. I sometimes feel that if we simply followed the calories out being more than calories in rule, we’d probably lose and – whisper it – enjoy it more. I hate the fact that an avocado – a perfectly healthy, good for you snack – has more syns than a Kitkat. I dislike the fact that you’re actively encouraged to almost bathe in Muller Lights, despite them being absolutely loaded with sweetener and sugar – but a drop of honey is dreadful. Plus, it’s all a bit twee. I’m not a fan of the nuclear smiles and the edifying, cloying language used in the magazines and books, either. 

However, it’s what we know, and what we write about, so we’re going to really give it a go. Increase our speed foods. Keep a food diary. Exercise more. Stop being lazy. I’m not promising a post a day but hell, we’ve got several lined up, so stay tuned. I’ll even dust off the knobometer at some point, but not until we’re back to the weight we last left it at. 

Oh: we have Fitbit Charge HRs now – these measure our steps, heart-rate and sleep patterns. My Charge HR’s heartbeat monitor was going mad as I took it out of the box but that’ll be the shock of paying for the fucking thing. If you want to add us as friends, look for and and go from there. If you’re on the fence about Fitbits, get one. What’s the worst that’ll happen? It does look like the world’s chicest bail tag but hey. I’m just glad it got all the way around my wrist – I would have hated to have to email asking for an extension. You can pick one up from Amazon by clicking here – all the various options are set out clearly. Give it a go! When we figure it out, we’ll set up some twochubbycubs challenges and you can win a branded pinny or something.

Finally, thanks all for entering into the spirit of things and giving our Musclefood competition a go – I’ll be drawing out the lucky name tomorrow and sending an email to the winner in the next couple of days. If you’ve entered, keep your eyes open!

Let’s get to the food then, eh? Stuffed onions! No really. Hear me out.

stuffed onions

Don’t they look pretty? We served ours on a bed of couscous because we’re all frou-frou like that. Do you see what I did there? This makes enough mixture to fill six decent sized onions. We used large white onions from Morrisons – they’re an actual thing, not just a description – proper white onions. But you can do this with any large onion, though obviously if it’s a bog-standard onion it’ll be very oniony. Yes.

to make stuffed onions, you’ll need:

  • one 400g pack of extra-lean beef mince (like the ones you get in our fantastic freezer filling Musclefood deal that we’ve secured exclusively for you – click here for that!)
  • six large white onions
  • 125g of chopped onion, which you can take from the onions you cook with
  • pinch of salt and pepper
  • 2 cloves of garlic minced using a fabulous mincer like this one from Amazon
  • pinch of cayenne
  • beef stock cube
  • 1 egg
  • one small wholemeal breadbun (HEB) turned into breadcrumbs
  • optional: chopped peppers, mushrooms, peas

and to make stuffed onions, you should:

  • turn the oven onto 190 degrees
  • to prepare each onion – cut the top and bottom off the onion so that it can sit ‘upright’, with the hole at the top being wide enough to get a tablespoon into – then slowly scoop out the centre of the onion using your spoon. It’s far easier than it sounds, though a messy job. You’ll get a couple of layers out and then you can actually squeeze the rest out, leaving a thick layer on the outside – cover the hole at the bottom with a bit of onion and there you go, onions you can stuff – I stood mine up in a Yorkshire pudding tray so they didn’t tumble over
  • to make the stuffing – fry off the onion and garlic gently until golden, adding the pepper, cayenne and salt as you go – I use a few squirts of Filipo Berio rather than Frylight, boo – up to you if you syn this half syn between four people. If you do, get out now, you’re not for this blog
  • add the mushrooms, peppers or peas if you’re using them
  • add the mince and cook until browned
  • crumble over the beef stock cube
  • whilst everything is hot, crack the egg into the mince and stir vigorously – you don’t want scrambled eggs
  • add the breadcrumbs
  • spoon into the onions, making them nice and packed, and cook for around thirty minutes until golden – keep an eye to make sure they don’t burn!

Enjoy. Serve with speed foods on the side, naturally.

We’re back!




12 thoughts on “stuffed onions and a revelation

  1. I also get incensed at how SW penalises healthy food while glorifying ultra-processed junk food.

    What I do at times is substitute a HeB worth of calories (120ish) with my choice of goodness such as avocado, dark chocolate, coconut oil or other “synful” stuff that is actually recognised as being good for you. My rationale is that my substitutes are not only better for you than a slice of Hovis, but as much if not more filling.

    Same with “tweaks”. If I use free food in a “tweak” that forms the major part of a main meal, I don’t syn it. Why should I? I’m getting the protein/fibre that I would otherwise get in another form and am probably doing better than someone who stuffs themselves with ten Muller Lights a day because they are “free”.

    I’ve lost 3 stone in a year doing it this way. OK, that is not as dramatic a loss as some people have, but I reckon my way is more sustainable in the long term.

  2. Glad to have you back. Missed you. It’s hard enough but having your humour and encouragement helps big time. Good luck getting back into it. xxx

  3. Welcome back to you both, I know I’m not the only one who’s missed you. It’s not just the recipes, the holidays, the cats or the smut (fabulous though this all is). What makes your blog so special is the honesty. Slimming World works, of course it does, but it’s hard sometimes and knowing that other people struggle too means that I for one feel less of a failure as I “draw a line” for the umpteenth time. So thank you so much and best of luck with your new start.

  4. Welcome back!! We’ve missed you! Don’t leave it so long ?

    I’d abandoned SW years ago for similar reasons. However you go about the flab fighting don’t stop posting, you’re making the battle bearable for so many ? Frankly I have days where I’d like to adopt you both ? X

  5. Yes I share a lot of your concerns regarding the healthy foods that are synful and the artificial foods that are free. But I need a plan where I can fill up and slimming world is the only one that does that.
    Regarding the weight back on – that will happen with any diet if you let it. Maintenance really is the difficult part for us podgers. As we put on weight the body merrily creates more fat cells but, once made, they cannot be destroyed. We will always have the same number of fat cells as at our biggest weight. We can empty them, which is what dieting does, but they are just waiting to be filled up again. This is a lifelong struggle sadly.
    Anyway I’ve had a naughty few weeks and really want to lose the weight this time. So I’m with you on the recommitment.

  6. So glad that I am not the only one that thinks that the Muller-Lite bandwagon needs derailing. I was once at a meeting where someone discussed Kale chips ( spraying it to death with fry-lite and then baking till crisp as a substitute for something crunchy to nibble on ). With a completely straight and slightly stern face the consultant told them that as it was a tweak, they would have to syn it as if it were a bag of crisps and so they might as well have the bag of crisps?! My arguing that the kale was waaaaaaay lower in calories and full of good vitamins, minerals and fibre was lost under the lustful looks on everyones faces when they realised their consultant had basically told them they could have a bag of crisps… I follow SW with the caveats that 1) No, I really CANNOT eat as much pasta as I like and expect to lose weight and 2) commonsense must prevail when it comes to what are really healthy choices…

  7. So glad to see you back. Just looked up Build-A-Bear shoes on Ebay. There are no words, well there are two – chuffing hilarious!! xxx

  8. I *think* I’ve just sent you a Fitbit request. I come up as Lisa S, I believe.

    I’ll try not to challenge you to too many workweek hustles! x

  9. Great to have you back. I’m in bed at the moment. Broken rib and a bad cold. Fuck me it hurts to cough. So imagine trying not to laugh at your prose. Mind you it gives my friends and family a rest from me quoting you two all the time. My other half loves your recipes but doesn’t understand my need to read the blog that goes with it. I think you h ave both kicked each other up the arse or something similar. Climb back on that wagon can’t wait to see you down the road to Slimdom

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