recipe: crispy chilli beef and coriander noodles

Now just look here a minute would you? Crispy chilli beef is an utter misnomer right from the off on a slimming blog because in the absence of fat to fry in, they don’t get very crispy. They don’t melt in your mouth like a pocket full of church chocolate and they do have a bit of a kick, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves. But still: if you’re after crispy chilli beef and coriander noodles, and bless you, you must be if you’ve started reading, this will still tickle your pickle.

We’re taking a tiny wee break from the This Time Next Year story this week because it’s A MILESTONE. Sadly not a millstone, that’s my husband and his fat ankles hanging onto our marriage like a sailor in a rough sea, but a milestone in that this will be the very last blog entry from Chubby Towers Adjacent: we are going home! We are! It were all round ASDA, it must be true! Short of the roof developing COVID or the rubble bursting into flame, we are due to be back in our own bed in a matter of days.

And we’re beyond excited. Understand this: it’s now been just shy of ten months since we last hurtled out of our home in a blaze, no pun intended, of polyester and partial nudity. Ten months since I sat in the garden and cried like a bitch whilst Paul tried to wrap me up in a duvet whilst simultaneously hiding the worst of the jizzle-streaks from the neighbours. The original plan was for our insurers to put us up in a hotel until they found a short-term let, but then the world caught a cough and we got fussy about not being able to have the cats with us. We’ve ended up staying exactly where they put us on the first night and you know, it actually hasn’t been bad at all. One small kitchen, a living room and an air-conditioned bedroom.

Don’t get me wrong. I miss the excitement of having a bath at home, reaching behind to grab the shower gel and being accosted by Sola showing how much she loves me by presenting her puckering asterisk-anus at me like a child might show off a drawing they did at school. She does seem inordinately pleased with it, I’ll say that. I’ve missed the wall of ashen faces staring at me as I take the wrong bin out on the wrong day outside of the pre-approved hours. I know at least one neighbour must have been having sleepless nights due to not having my car to tut at, ‘accidentally’ key or covet with his mackerel eyes. All that and more to come when we return, at least.

But the hotel won us round. At first we felt like Alan Partridge and Lynne (you won’t get a coconut if you correctly guess which is which) and lockdown meant it was just us, a few select other guests and the staff and because, in the absence of anything other to do than prime my lungs for COVID, I was outside at the smoking shelter so often they put up a plaque. I am awash with bonhomie at the best of times but faced with the same faces for weeks on end, I would usually cave and give up leaving the room rather than making awkward small-talk. Not with this lot. I’m not writing this in the hope that I get a few IHG points, I promise, but you just couldn’t wish for better staff. Given what a shite year we’ve all been through they have, without exception, been utterly wonderful. Imagine how hard it must be to muster up a polite smile at the sight of me stumbling out of the lift of a morning, face like an unmade bed and my belly spilling over the top of my ‘yoghurt’ stained jeans. They never faltered! I can barely speak to Paul without acidity until around 11am, but there they are, all round the clock, always smiling and professional. They’ve made a frobly-mobly year halfway decent, and you’ll find no better in Newcastle.

Tell you what we won’t miss though: the agony of having to clean the room before housekeeping get here. I know from chatting with staff that they see some unseemly sights working in a hotel but it’s just not in me to leave a beskiddered toilet pan for someone else to clean up. Especially as living with Paul tends to mean you’ll need a pneumatic drill and some strong prayer to get the worst of it. I’m used to it now, the same way that one may get used to a wart on a finger or a haemorrhoid, but no-one else needs that in their lives. Also, the slight angst of knowing that someone is going to look at your rubbish as they empty it and silently tut at the amount of sweet wrappers, fag packets and none-name-brand beans has meant I’ve been responsible for taking the rubbish out most days. To be honest, I’m thinking about getting a pinny and a name-badge and putting in a shift.

Actually, not the worst idea, because that would give unprecedented access to the very best feature of this hotel: it is absolutely and utterly awash with tradies and men who ‘ave a babby at ‘ome but t’wife durnt do it like she used to’. Honestly, if I was single I’d be lollipop-thin, completely white behind the eyes and have lips whittled down to my teeth. Thankfully, Paul’s harsh ways and bewilderingly keenness to maintain the sanctity of our marriage has put paid to any indiscretions, but, let me tell you: it’s been hard. Many times over. Every day I stand at the window like Miss Havisham, waving goodbye with doleful eyes to another departing Network Rail van, only for another one to come barrelling under the security barrier ready to spill another quintet of gas engineers or some other such treat.

Our house then. It is ready to receive us, with a fancy new bathroom and an upgraded kitchen. We’ve painted all the walls a ‘bright’ shade of grey, if only to make a mockery of all of my hun-rhetoric of late. There’s new carpet and a robot or two to sweep up the crumbs. We’ve got new pillows to pluck at whilst we struggle to sleep thinking every snap, crackle and pop is the house bursting into flame again. Luckily, we know the pillows are remarkably comfortable simply by virtue of them being the exact same ones as the pillows they have here. Funny that: see also the bath-towels and a quarter-tonne of dishwasher tablets. It’s a mystery! So, off we go. Back to Chubby Towers and goodbye to Staybridge Suites in Newcastle, with particular (but not discerning) goodbye to the lovely Caterina, Dave, Paul, Philip, Jason and honestly, everyone. Too many names to mention. And this is getting indulgent now, so stop. Sssh.

Let’s do the crispy chilli beef and coriander noodles. That’s crispy chilli beef and coriander noodles, you know, for the sake of the SEO. I must apologise for the shite photography: Paul took the pictures and as he is from a town where electricity was dispensed 50p at a time and inbreeding was encouraged, he doesn’t know how to use the AUTOMATIC focus on a camera. It’s not surprising. His eyes permanently look like he’s anguishing over a Magic Eye puzzle, though I suppose we mustn’t be too scornful.

crispy chilli beef

You deserve someone so much better than anyone who puts coriander on their crispy chilli beef, mind.

crispy chilli beef

I mean, you would, wouldn’t you: our crispy chilli beef?

crispy chilli beef and coriander noodles

Prep

Cook

Total

Yield 4 servings

So, then, crispy chilli beef and coriander noodles! This has gorgeously rich beef mince with some gorgeous, carby noodles on the side. Perfect if you're in the mood for a takeaway. Fool yourself that it's basically a salad by sprinkling some coriander on top, though know that we will forever judge you and never invite you to our famous candlelight suppers.

As you've just read and no doubt are sick of us mentioning by now, we've been trying out recipe kits while we're in the hotel as we've limited space and equipment, and frankly, I can't be arsed to go shopping. We've recently made the switch from Hello Fresh to Gousto as so many of you were recommending them, and so far we haven't been disappointed! This is another recipe ripped off lovingly inspired by those folk at Gousto, but made slightly healthier. If you fancy giving them a go, use our referral link to send some dosh our way and get 50% off your first box, and 30% off your first month. 

Ingredients

  • 500g lean beef mince
  • 2 shallots
  • 2 red chillis
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 30g fresh root ginger
  • 5 spring onions
  • 250g fine egg noodles
  • 2 carrots
  • 8 tbsp of sweet chilli sauce (8 syns)
  • 30ml toasted sesame oil
  • 60ml soy sauce
  • 60ml rice vinegar
  • 10g sesame seeds (optional)
  • 20g coriander

Instructions

  • chop the tops and bottoms off the carrots, peel and then grate
  • peel and finely grate the ginger and garlic
  • peel and finely chop the shallots
  • cut the chillis in half and scrape out the insides, then finely chop
  • next, heat a large saucepan over a high heat and spray with a little oil
  • add the mince to the pan and cook for about 4 minutes until browned
  • meanwhile, trim and roughly chop the spring onions
  • chop the coriander finely (including the stalks)
  • add the grated carrot to the mince and cook for another three minutes, stirring frequently, and then boil the kettle
  • pop the egg noodles into a pan and cover with boiling water until submerged, then bring to a boil over a high heat. Cook the noodles for 1-2 minutes until tender, then drain (reserving a cupful of the water) and put back into the pan, and set aside
  • add the garlic, ginger and chilli to the mince and cook for one minute
  • add the sweet chilli and half of the soy sauce and cook for another 3-4 minutes
  • place the noodles back over a medium heat add the spring onions, remaining soy sauce, rice vinegar and sesame oil and stir well until combined, then remove from the heat and set aside. Add a splash of the reserved water if it needs loosening a bit
  • serve the beef with the noodle, and garnish with the coriander and sesame seeds

Notes

Recipe

  • if, like us, you think coriander is fucking rank feel free to leave it out
  • if you like things a bit stickier, try using dark soy sauce in this - it works a treat
  • no shallots? an onion is fine!
  • if you're a total fanny when it comes to spiciness you can reduce or even leave out the chilli, it's still good

Books

  • absolutely loving all the kind words from you about our amazing new cookbook - please leave a review or order yours here! 
  • our first slimming cookbook can be also ordered of course – full of 100+ slimming recipes, and bloody amazing, with over 5000 5* reviews – even if we do say so ourselves: click here to order
  • our new diet planner is out and utterly brilliant – you can order it here – it'll keep you going through the next six months!

Tools

  • mince that garlic and ginger in no time with one of these microplane graters. It's our No. 1 kitchen gadget!
  • give the pan a good coating of oil with a mister – this is what we use

Cuisine chinese

Hungry for more?

Yeah whatever

J

recipe: turkish-style lamb bulgur pilaf

Was it the turkish-style lamb bulgur pilaf that brought you here? Well, bless you, it is a wonder and a delight and I promise it’ll leave you happy. But, in a rare case of no admin and no chat, we’re going to get straight to part two of our This Time Next Year story. Why? Because I like gabbing and you like reading. As ever, let me know your thoughts! But if you did want to go straight to the turkish-style lamb bulgur pilaf, we won’t hold it against you – just scroll straight to the pictures.

Also: buy our book. I mean here’s a banner and everything.

chapter two: “alreet Davvy pet, we’re still fat”

When you last joined us, we were bright orange, dressed like the Thénardiers and ready to face Davina. Hands held and with strict instruction to walk straight forward, smile like threatened cats and walk over to Davina after a brief pause, the doors slid open, and in we went.

Not quite. See, in my haste to make sure we stopped on the mark, I forgot to watch where my feet were going and clattered my left Dr Marten into the door, knocking it off its track. Cut, go again. I apologised profusely and tried to explain that I can’t move more than two metres without knocking something over, but everyone was terribly kind and reassured me that I hadn’t caused a scene. We all knew that I had, of course, but I styled it out with my best ‘what AM I like’ face that I normally reserve for confessing my affairs or mowing down cyclists. Take two then. The music went, the lights went up and the doors opened again, albeit slightly shakily. Out we strode, pinballing off each other’s fat. Quick pause to give the audience time to clap and for the camera crew to pull back on the focus, then we walked over to the sofa to sit with Davina. I say audience: for the first bit there was only a scattering of production staff sitting on rickety chairs – the applause and the crowd reactions were filmed later and slotted in. It’s a weird feeling having to react as though there’s a few hundred people applauding you when all you have in front of you is a bank of cameras and someone who barely looked up from her Puzzler when we walked in. Anyway.

First comment: that was a very, very flimsy sofa. I know this, because I’ve got it at home. Not the actual sofa from the show, I’m not that quite tight that I’d steal large furnishings from ITV, but it was from made.com and I knew from sitting on it at home that it barely took my weight without protest. Add Paul onto that and it was a recipe for us appearing on It’s Alright On The Night with a pizzicato score highlighting our calamity. However, it didn’t fail us, though I could see a flash of alarm cross Davina’s eye when a large crack sounded when we sat down. His name is Paul.

Second comment: Davina was unutterably lovely. We can’t say a word against her, though I did tell my mother that she was a proper diva, swearing at the runners and kicking off about the temperature of her water. My mother is a huge fan and I live for moments of mischief, but had to put a stopper in that fib when her eyes filled with tears. Never meet your heroes, even by proxy. Davina asked all the right questions, made us relaxed and chatty, and we genuinely forgot about the cameras (which you must understand is a novelty for me, my lips are always puckered in a pre-emptive pout) until the chat was over. We’re talking fifteen minutes at most. We made our pledge a couple of times to camera, Davina was pulled out of our gravitational pull and then we were ushered backstage.

It didn’t end there though. Unbeknownst to us, they wanted to do a bit more filming, and the idea was awful – they wanted to film us standing almost nude on a little rotating platform in front of a green screen, with the idea being that they’d repeat the process at the end of the year and then do a morph of us transforming into our skinnier selves. I was mortified: as previously mentioned, I’m fairly body confident, but I was absolutely not ready to stand in front of ITV in my knickers with my boobs hanging out. Paul was even less keen, but hey, we were committed at this point, so off we trundled to the backstage studio. We were given a robe that didn’t fit to wear whilst they farted about with the camera, and then it was my turn to be filmed spinning around like a whirling dervish. All I can remember thinking is how I wished I’d worn better underwear: unless I’m out for a shag, my underwear looks like something you’d wrestle from the teeth of a rabid dog. I don’t so much get the value out of them as break their spirit.

So it was then that I stood on the rotating platform, arms splayed out like I was pretending to be an aeroplane, the cameras started rolling, and round I went. This bit took at least ten minutes and I was under strict instruction not to lower my arms otherwise the tracking would be knocked out. Have you ever tried to hold your arms up for that long? I was sweating like a glassblower’s arse by minute three and by the halfway point, I had to ask them to stop. At least I was on brand as a fat, lazy fucker. Paul lasted no longer, though he pretended to have an inner-ear infection to abort the spinning. He totally hammed it up when he got off the platform too, lolling around the studio like he was at sea. He only righted himself when he saw a little table of sandwiches nearby, but I had to slap them out of his chubby hands and tell him ‘what would Davina say’ – that would become the recurring theme of the next year. All done, we were sent back to the hotel and, after a moment to decant all the towels in our suitcase, made our way home. We stopped halfway in some grotty Little Chef (or similar) and had beans on toast whilst we took in the commitment we had made. A year. A year to lose ten stone each. That’s quite the commitment, especially to someone like me who doesn’t like to look more than three hours in the future. I do remember the waiter giving us a peculiar look – presumably because the sweat dripping off the both of us from being on the wheel had run through our make-up, leaving us looking her that crawled out of the well in The Ring. We didn’t care. We were excited. We were set. We were determined.

We were at Cadbury World the very next day. See before we had committed to This Time Next Year, we had decided to make 2017 the year of twelve holidays – partly because we were sick of being sat in the house, partly because I wanted some fresh material for the blog and, if we’re honest, mostly because holiday dickings are always the best. The one rule was that each holiday had to be a different ‘experience’ and as part of that, we had paid for a ‘mystery tour’ on a coach. I shan’t bore you with the details – you can read part one here and part two here (they’ll open in new windows) – but I will tell you that I’ve never been so close to smashing the emergency exit open and tumbling myself out into motorway traffic. We ended up at Cadbury World in Birmingham and so the very first video we recorded to Davina in our video diaries (more on that in a moment) was one of us talking about how committed we were whilst the Cadbury mascot appeared in the background and Paul had two Double Deckers sticking out of his shirt pocket. I mean, we had our resolve, but they were giving out free chocolate: we’re only human.

The video diaries – part of the commitment was that we were to do a video once a week, always opening with ‘Hi Davina, it’s week XX on our pledge to lose ten stone each, and we’ve...’ followed by some quick story of our weight loss, any successes, any failures. They would then cherry pick any interesting bits to put together in a compilation to show at the end. By week three we were butchering the intro so much that the production staff called up to tell us off – apparently my effortless humour and deadpan delivery of ‘alreet Davvy pet, we’re still fat‘ wasn’t quite what they were after. We filmed ourselves doing all manner of exciting things:

  • sitting on our sofa talking to the camera;
  • sitting in the kitchen talking to the camera;
  • sitting in the car talking to camera;
  • sitting in the garden talking to camera; and
  • talking to the camera whilst standing on a set of scales with ‘gasp’ faces

They didn’t say, but there were definitely some hushed meetings behind the scenes at ITV to try and give us our own prime-time show, I just know it. It turns out that when you don’t move much as a rule, creating exciting videos is bloody hard work. A couple of highlights off the top of my head include doing an eighties fitness routine with a DVD of Beverley Callard in a leotard. We covered ourselves in neon paint and did a full recorded twenty minute workout. Thankfully, it never saw the light of day: it was as horrendous as you can imagine. We looked like a Blue Man Group reunion, if the Blue Men had spent their down years bed-bound through crippling obesity. It’s no wonder the roof tiles came loose later that year – forty stone of pure fat thundering around is going to trouble any structural integrity. Still, the neighbours enjoyed it – we’ve never seen Number 2 peer through her curtains with such intensity before. The dry-heaving was a mean touch, though.

Also in the mix were some shots of us swimming, because of course there had to be. That meant Paul holding his breath underwater with a waterproof camera and me diving in like I was jumping from a burning ferry. The sly fucker filmed it in slow motion too, which meant the sight of my body hitting the water and spreading like Baileys poured into lemon juice. They wanted shots from underneath with me swimming over the top of the camera which necessitated Paul sinking to the bottom of the deep end and filming upwards. As previously mentioned, I’m a big lad and it looks terrible – not too unlike when the boat crashes into the harbour at the end of Speed 2. Paul was down there so long he got the bends and had to be taken away in an ambulance. We changed tack the second time around and Paul filmed me from the spectators bit above the pool, but that was a bust too – because I’ve got such a hairy back, I just looked like a roll of discarded carpet slowly bobbing along. Funnily enough, they didn’t use those clips.

Indeed, quite possibly because we were making such a sham of doing our own videos, they sent their own crew up to our house for the day to film us cooking in the kitchen to show off the twochubbycubs angle of our story. Well, for this to work, you need to know how we normally cook in our kitchen. We select a meal, I dispatch Paul into the kitchen with a flea in his ear about making sure it’s delicious, then I spend the time whilst he’s cooking eating chocolate and turning the SONOS off in the kitchen so I don’t need to listen to his awful music. We are very much not a team. But that didn’t matter, they wanted some ‘us’ shots, so we all crowded round into our tiny kitchen – that’s me, Paul, a sound man, a camera guy and a researcher asking us questions – whilst we struggled through cooking Mongolian beef and answering questions. Paul put a knife through his fingernail which meant stopping to plaster his fingers, I got in the way, it was utterly calamitous. None of the camera crew fancied eating the beef either, which was upsetting: blood only adds flavour, after all. They decided to mix it up by having us sat in front of our Mac ‘answering questions from our adoring fans’ but that fell over because the only questions we ever get in our inbox are ‘wear can i find recepeas hun’ and ‘am allergic to air wot can i have’, which makes our brows furrow so much that it’s hard to look cheerful. I’m the absolute master of the cheesy ‘aaaah well’ smile to camera though (if anyone watched The Middle, me and my Paul refer to it as Frankie Hecking), but they wanted more!

So, change of plan again – they crammed us all into our tiny hallway (good natural light) and the researcher, close enough to my face that I could have sneezed and blown his moustache off, asked us questions. Now, you may know this, but it’s very common in ‘reality shows’ for people to be asked a question framed in such a way that their answers are pretty much scripted. For example, they will not ask ‘how do you feel about your weight loss so far’, but rather, ‘would you agree that your weight loss has meant you’re the biggest best person in the world’ – then ask you to repeat part of the question in your answer. It’s why you get so many people on The Apprentice looking like such utter bellends in their bits to camera. That, and they’re total bellends. They asked how we were finding it (easy, but mainly because we weren’t really trying), how had we supported one another (I helped Paul tie his laces of a morning, he lifted up his belly for oral) and where we saw ourselves in the future (McDonalds, day one after filming the last bit).

Oh! I forgot about the fridge. They wanted some shots of the interior of our fridge, which necessitated a quick trip to Waitrose (where we only shop if there’s a chance someone is going to judge our fridge with a clipped sneer) to stock up on all manner of things that looked healthy. They then put a little camera inside the fridge, pressed record and shut the fridge door. The idea was that they would get a selection of shots of the two of us individually opening the fridge, looking happy and joyous and loudly selecting something healthy with a big smug grin on our face. ‘OOOH A PEPPER’ said I, and ‘GOSH LET’S HAVE AUBERGINE CURRY IT’S A TASTE EXPLOSION’ says Paul. Works in principle and not the worst idea. I failed at the first attempt, pulling out a bag of something and then realising I had not one single fucking clue what they were. The first take of me ends with me holding up a bag of what I now know to be cobnuts and saying ‘what the fuck are these? to Paul off-camera. They didn’t use those bits either.

A final roll of the dice saw us all dispatched to a nearby beach to film some outdoor shots. They’d done some research as to good filming locations and selected one just down the road from us, but I didn’t have the heart at this point to tell him that the sand-dunes become a giant cruising ground at night. That’s not even exaggeration for this story, they truly do – you drive along that road at the right time of night and you can see countless gently bobbing heads glinting in the moonlight. It’s beautiful, in a way. However, the sunlight was on our side – just – so I kept schtum. What followed was an hour of filming us tramping along the beach, holding hands, looking wistfully out to sea together. They had us draw a love-heart in the sand at one point, but Paul got in a huff when I stumbled over his initials. It was all terrifically twee (and surprisingly exhausting, filming the same bits over and over whilst walking on sand), but they didn’t use any of that footage either. Presumably because although I’m talking intently to camera, my eyes keep drifting to just behind shot where some old princess was skipping through the dunes with a bottle of poppers.

We all bid goodnight to one another at that point. It had been a fun day indeed and we learned ever so much about filming and cameras and drones and boom-mics. Paul and I sat on the bench by the beach for a bit and realised that, in all honesty, we hadn’t been taking things as seriously as we ought to and that this was month four and we had only lost a token amount. We needed to up our game. We needed to try harder, otherwise the whole thing was a sham. We agreed to really knuckle down, to work together to hit our goal. Paul mentioned that we should head back, and I told him I’d make my own way home after I’d collected my thoughts. I arrived back a couple of hours later, brushing the sand off my knees and elbows, and together, we came up with a plan to get us to the end. We were going to do this.

OR WILL WE? Spoilers, we sort of do, but that’s for next time.


Now that’s quite enough of your schtick young lady. Let’s do the bloody recipe for turkish-style lamb bulgur pilaf and get it out of the way.

turkish-style lamb bulgur pilaf

This turkish-style lamb bulgur pilaf is a one-pot dish by the way, perfect for you as a lazy slattern!

turkish-style lamb bulgur pilaf

And you don’t need to jizz all over the turkish-style lamb bulgur pilaf, but maybe it helps?

one-pot turkish-style lamb bulgur pilaf

Prep

Cook

Total

Yield 4 servings

Two things to take away from this dinner, please. You can get 10% fat lamb mince from Tesco, or any decent butcher. You can use the normal stuff too if you like, just remember to syn it. Swap it out for beef if you prefer.

And, more importantly, this is a ONE-POT dinner - sound the alarms! That'll save your busting thighs now won't it?

Oh and technically it's 1.25 syns a portion. But go away.

Ingredients

  • 500g 10% fat lamb mince
  • 4 tomatoes
  • 10g mint leaves
  • 2 red peppers
  • 260g bulgur wheat
  • 4 tbsp tomato puree
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 beef stock cube
  • 2 tsp sumac (see notes)
  • 2 tbsp baharat (see notes)
  • 2 dried bay leaves
  • 160g fat-free natural yoghurt

Instructions

  • preheat the oven to 200 degrees
  • heat a large, oven-proof casserole dish over a medium-high heat (or use a frying pan) and spray with a little oil
  • add the lamb mince to the pan along with the oregano, bay leaves and baharat and cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring frequently
  • meanwhile, slice the top off the peppers, remove the core and slice into rings, and slice the tomatoes into wedges
  • add the peppers and tomato to the pan and give a good stir
  • put the dish in the oven, uncovered, and cook for fifteen minutes (if you're using a pan, tip into an ovenproof dish)
  • dissolve the stock cube and tomato puree in 400ml of boiling water, stir, and set aside
  • when ready, remove the dish from the oven and stir through the bulgur wheat and tomato stock
  • cover with a lid or foil, and cook in the oven for another 15 minutes
  • remove the dish from the oven and leave to stand covered for another ten minutes
  • strip the mint leaves from the stems and roughly tear into smaller bits
  • fluff up the bulgur and serve onto plates
  • drizzle or dollop on the yoghurt and sprinkle over the mint leaves
  • finally, sprinkle over the sumac

Notes

Recipe

  • nah, we'd never heard of baharat either - if you can't find any just use equal parts cinnamon, paprika and ground cumin
  • the sumac is optional - if you can't find any a little bit of lemon zest will do the trick
  • beef mince also works well in this one - cook in exactly the same way

Books

  • absolutely loving all the kind words from you about our amazing new cookbook - please leave a review or order yours here! 
  • our first slimming cookbook can be also ordered of course – full of 100+ slimming recipes, and bloody amazing, with over 5000 5* reviews – even if we do say so ourselves: click here to order
  • our new diet planner is out and utterly brilliant – you can order it here – it'll keep you going through the next six months!

Tools

Courses dinner

Cuisine twochubbycubs

Looking for more one-pot dinners? Bless you!

Enjoy, or so help me God Susan

J

roasted pepper, chorizo and mushroom pasta

Well hi! Now I know you’ve come here for the roasted pepper, chorizo and mushroom pasta, and who could blame you? It’s stunning, it’s brave, it’s fabulous, but then so are your twochubbycubs. And whilst we would love to give you that roasted pepper, chorizo and mushroom pasta without delay, that’s not our style. If you’re champing at the snatch for the recipe then just scroll down to the photos, as ever, and it’s right there, a roasted pepper, chorizo and mushroom pasta ready for your lunches or evening meals. Wondering if I can shoehorn roasted pepper, chorizo and mushroom pasta into an opening paragraph in any other ways? Well, there’s one more.

The admin first: thank you, oh so very much thank you, to everyone who has been buying our books and cooking our delicious recipes! Even better, this time around you’re going crazy on social media posting the results of your toil in the kitchen. You need to know that there’s no greater pleasure than seeing eighty-seven chicken alfredos when I open my Instagram feed. It breaks up all the photos of fat men pouting in their knickers but does make having a quick hand-shandy that bit more difficult: I’m usually starving by the time I’ve slicked my knuckles. If you’re on Instagram, make sure to tag us into your stories and shots – we see them all and try to comment where we can, and it really does make things worth doing! We do love you all. If you’re loving the book, please do leave us a review on Amazon, it all helps – and you can buy it below if you’re a bit slow.

Now, today’s writing is actually an excerpt from our ‘about us’ page, which we noticed we hadn’t updated since 2016. You can read the full story of us right here or indeed, wait until the more salacious details hit The Daily Sport. 2016 seems like so long ago, it really does: the things we thought we’d never do: release a cookbook, travel the world, drop our knickers in lorry-parks. When we updated the page it didn’t send a post email out to everyone, and because I demand attention, I’ve decided to include the bit about each other below.

twochubbycubs: James (the writer)

We have experimented with each writing the other’s bio, but frankly, Paul doesn’t put the same level of sass into mine that I desire and so, I’m writing my own. My name is James, I’m 35, six foot two and described, entirely by my own making, as a walking B-Side Pet Shop Boys lyric. Growing up I wanted to be a pilot (but was scared of flying and came from a village where they still scream at the metal dragons when they fly over), a vet (until I put my hand up a sheep’s vagina, though I must stress it was a consensual and monitored situation: I was helping a friend deliver a lamb), an actor (still keeping that one in the bank) and a writer. I’ve always wanted to write ever since a teacher back in middle school graded my mock English Language SATS at a never-before-seen-in-our-school grade 8 – the sense of pride I felt never left me, though I’ll confess to Ms Westgarth (my favourite ever teacher) right now that the piece of fiction I submitted was almost a word for word recap of The X-Files Movie. It feels good to get that off my chest.

My favourite colour is blue (eyes, humour and the lips of my lovers), my favourite band is Muse (too many angsty teenage break-ups involved me sniffling into my long hair to the sounds of Unintended), I’m submechanophobic, mildly trypophobic and a dreadful hypochondriac. I hold my breath when I get in a lift to see if I can make it all the way to my desired floor without passing out. I’m a firm believer in being open about my mental health and long-time readers will know that for all the mettle in my writing, if I’m struggling, I’ll talk about it, because not enough people do. I have four regrets in life with only one that I’ll discuss here: I spent far too much of my life worrying what people think of me. If I could spread one message it would be one of loving yourself, and not in the masturbatory way – though that’s just marvellous too. My confidence now is a relatively new thing and stems entirely from realising that I genuinely don’t give a fuck what the average person in the street thinks I look like, an epiphany that came too late to stop me turning down all sorts of fun situations, both debauched and wholesome. If I could speak to my younger self it would only be to reassure him that he wasn’t a gargoyle and to encourage him to cut his hair short a bit sooner. Nowadays, although admittedly I am prone to periods of introspection when the right person says the wrong thing, I just don’t care. Try it – focus only on those that matter.

Heavy stuff, but then, so am I – I’ve battled with my weight all my life, alternating between one extreme to the other as a hairy Schrödinger’s Fat. When I’m skinny I miss my belly and when I’m fat I miss my toes. At the time of writing I’m back at the stage where you’d deliberate over getting into a two-man tent with me, but I’m happy enough with that. I’m rarely cold and I’m told my gently bobbing boobs are wonderful to sleep upon, plus, I’m now at the age where I can grow a beard, get a paw-print tattoo and market myself as a bear in the gay world. That’s where the cubs part of twochubbycubs is from, by the way – a cub is a young, hairy gay bloke.

I suppose, given I’m now handing over to Paul for his bit, a little about the other, better half of me. I rag Paul out something terrible on here, always making jibes about his weight or his laziness or his inability to order food without embarrassing himself or his insistence on voiding his bowels whenever we go anywhere or his silly rollerskate car or the fact he owns eighteen lumberjack shirts of varying shades of green and blue or the terrifying truth that his mother looks like Zelda from Terrahawks eight months into a meth addiction or the fact he still can’t tie his laces properly and ducks them into the side of his shoes or even that he literally only listens to Tracy Chapman or the small detail of his whistling nose when he sleeps or, whilst we’re here, the fact he chuckles to himself in deep slumber whenever he breaks wind and let’s not forget whilst we’re on a roll the slight vexatiousness of his incapability of making a decision and for good measure can we please talk about the fact he will nod agreement to anything I say and then say what afterwards the same way my nana used to or even the little way he gets himself literally addicted to Sinex Micromist leaving our bedside table awash with camphoric vapour, but I truly can’t imagine a life without him. He rolls (usually buttered) with all my verbal punches and not a single day goes by without him making me laugh. He’s a good egg, both metaphorically and physically, though I take pains not to let any of you know lest you steal him away.

JX

twochubbycubs: Paul (the cook)

Oh bloody hell, my go. Okay, well, I’m Paul – 34, five foot something and I guess you could describe me as the brains, body and face of the blog. I’m much more a ‘behind the scenes’ kind of guy so as much as you might see James pouting away on the feed, I’m lolloping around there somewhere, likely scraping out the crispy bits from the bottom of the Actifry and grinding multivitamins into his tea. As you’ve probably heard us say loads of times I’m the ‘cook’ and do most of the ‘recipe development’ if we’re going to go all fancy-dan about it. I make the stuff, then James goes on and makes everything look pretty, and serves it all directly into your brain. I think it’s a perfect partnership that works amazingly well, even if I do spend 20% of my time trying to bore a hole into the back of James’ head with my eyes for not using bin liners.

I grew up in a boring little village practically in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by sugar beet and burning pig carcasses. Growing up I wanted to be a wrestling team’s ‘relief’ but Connexions didn’t have a leaflet for that, so instead I went with my second choice to work doing the lights for travelling concerts. Of course, being me and scatty and mashed on 20/20 I ended up doing fairly tedious admin jobs until I found a job I actually love doing. Favourite colour? Green. Favourite singer is of course my Tracy Chapman. Voice of angel and the only woman I’d turn for.

As you may be able to tell I’m really quite shy so talking about myself doesn’t come easily. I work full-time in a hospital doing all sorts of things that are tremendous fun but will make your eyes glaze over if I explained it to you. All you need to know is that I look just as dumpy in a pair of polyester scrubs as I do in real life. Imagine an apple crumble poured into a sandwich bag. I suppose I’m a bit more stoic and practically-minded than James – I tend to just get on with things whereas he’ll dream up ideas. Again, together, I reckon we make it work really well. We’re excited to see where twochubbycubs go from here. It’s amazing but a weird feeling to think that just a few years ago we were pulling together these blog posts to share with you all – taking photos on an old iPad in our shitty beige kitchen on our black Wilkos dinner plates. Some of our early stuff makes me cringe so hard my urethra burns, but then going through them it’s brilliant to see how we developed and grew into what we are now. It’s like an html version of marking your kids height on a doorframe.

We might not be the biggest or the best, but damn it, I reckon we do alright – and if you’re reading this I hope you do too! I started all of this not being a confident cook at all – I could barely cook a tin of beans – but just gradually, over time, the more I did the basic things like chopping an onion (without lopping off a fingertip) and searing some beef (without it becoming cremated) we got a bit better and a bit better. To think that we’ve now got cookbooks is something I NEVER would have thought would happen. But here we are! Cooking is something that had never really been of any interest to me and most definitely wasn’t anything that came naturally. The blog was borne out of James’ need to write (and my need for him to be away from under my feet) so to share the labour I’d agree to at least attempt to cook, while he wrote the spiel around it and so the cookery part was pure necessity. Having twochubbycubs means that I’ve been able to learn, entirely from scratch, a brand new skill, and I’m so grateful for it. I’m hoping I get to also grow a heaving bosom like wor Nigella.

Unlike James I’ve been fat all of my life, never really venturing outside of the ‘obese’ category until recently when we went on This Time Next Year. After always being a big boy I find it really difficult to get out of the mindset and bad habits. Having this blog and all of our various challenges over the years has allowed me to find a good routine that works for me, and although I’m not perfect at sticking to it I’m getting better. At the very least, I know exactly what *doesn’t* work for me which is about half the battle. A combination of lockdown, long COVID, living in a hotel and just general ennui means I’ve fallen off the wagon quite a bit, but I’m working back to get to where I was. Learning where you go wrong and getting back on track is all part of the process.

So, yes. That’s me. You won’t see or hear much of me but I am here, beavering away! You’ve got a much better bit of eye candy in James anyway so enjoy it as much as I do. He’s got a lovely arse. For all that we bicker sometimes he’s the cherry to my Lambrini and I couldn’t be without him and twochubbycubs just wouldn’t be here without him and his genius ideas, and actually being the one that gets things from our hob out there to you, which he does almost single-handedly. And for that, I have now almost forgiven him for giving me the clap on our first date.

PX


Still with us and haven’t managed to bring your dinner up yet? Here’s us through the ages!

OK, that’ll do pig, that’ll do. If you want to read the full article and have some time to spare, take a look here.

Let’s do the recipe then: I present roasted pepper, chorizo and mushroom pasta!

roasted pepper, chorizo and mushroom pasta roasted pepper, chorizo and mushroom pasta

roasted pepper, chorizo and mushroom pasta

Prep

Cook

Total

Yield 2 massive portions

If you wanted to make this a veggie recipe (and syn free), you could easily leave out the chorizo. We add chorizo to everything because we're filthy slatterns and honestly I'd brush my teeth with it if I didn't think my dentist would bang me out for it.

Paul doesn't like mushrooms as a rule but is absolutely fine with them in this.

This is another recipe from Hello Fresh that we've adjusted slightly for Slimming World. We're using Hello Fresh whilst our house is being rebuilt and honestly, we love it. If you want to give them a shout follow this link and you'll get £20 off, and also send £20 our way too! We're back home within a month - our own recipes will resume soon - but this way we don't need tonnes of space in our hotel room for all the kitchen bits!

Ingredients

  • 150g of mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 200g of spaghetti
  • two large red peppers, sliced thinly
  • one tsp of garlic puree
  • 50g of chorizo, diced (6 syns)
  • one tbsp of tomato puree
  • one tin of chopped tomatoes with garlic
  • bunch of chives, chopped
  • 100ml of water with a vegetable stock cube in it 

Instructions

  • heat the oven to 200 degrees
  • pop the pepper slices in a bowl with a little bit of oil, tumble them about and then spread onto a tray for the oven, coating with a good dash of salt and pepper - roast them for twenty minutes, turning halfway
  • meanwhile, cook your spaghetti until cooked and drain
  • in a large frying pan (no oil, use the chorizo oil), cook the mushrooms and chorizo until the mushrooms are softened and golden brown and the chorizo cooked
  • add the garlic, tomato purees, tomatoes and stock
  • simmer until thick and glossy, about five mins
  • add the roasted peppers and cooked pasta and stir like the absolute buggery - you want everything coated
  • serve, topping with cheese (if you want) and the chives

I know, we're fabulous.

Notes

Recipe

  • leave out the chorizo if you want a veggie or syn free version
  • swap chives for chilli flakes if you prefer heat
  • add sundried tomato paste if you want to ramp up the tomatoey-ness of it - I don't know it's that is a word, but I don't care, so you crack on young lady

Books

  • our new cookbook is getting rave reviews but then, of course it is: 100 slimming recipes to help you save time and feed your family - order yours here! 
  • our first slimming cookbook can be also ordered now – full of 100+ slimming recipes, and bloody amazing, with over 5000 5* reviews – even if we do say so ourselves: click here to order
  • our new diet planner is out and utterly brilliant – you can order it here – it'll keep you going through the next six months!

Tools

Courses dinner

Cuisine Italian I guess, but who can say?

Snazzy!

Want more pasta recipes? Sure thing sugarboobs:

Swallow that!

J

special post: a favour needed!

Evening all!

Please forgive the brevity of the post and the lateness of the hour, but if any of our readers own a copy of the first book and would be willing to spare us five minutes, we have a little favour to ask.  We have been given a secret project and are looking to hear from you about your experience with the first book, namely any of the below:

  • if you struggle with cooking, how the first book helped you reignite a passion again;
  • if you’ve lost weight following our recipes, especially if you’re doing it for a special cause;
  • if you keep coming back to our recipes because they’re different and not just your average ‘add 100g of sweetener, tears and egg’ bollocks;
  • if you’ve recommended it to anyone else; or
  • if you’ve taught yourself new skills and cooking abilities on the back of it.

You can email us directly on admin@twochubbycubs.com or send us a message via our social media channels. We’d love you forever, and Paul promises not to stare mournfully through your windows if you grant us this one kindness. We have a very tight deadline so the quicker the better!

Thank you to everyone who has contributed so far!

JX

your book questions answered: Fast & Filling

First things first (I only put that in because Paul hates the phrase), an announcement!

Forgive the big advert, but we’ve been asked a lot if there’s gonna be a bundle – this isn’t a bundle so much as it is both books dropping in price to an elegant £18 for the two! Go for it. Click the link to open in a new window!

It’s certainly been a busy few days since book launch! A huge thank you to everyone for buying our book and making it a Sunday Times Best-Seller! That’s the second time we’ve done this and it’s mind-blowing. Remember, it’s just me and Paul here. Bloody love you guys! Anyway, the book launch means we find ourselves answering the same questions a lot from people who are on the fence about the book – so this blog is all about answering those questions! Hope this helps! And if you have already bought the book, please consider leaving us a review on Amazon – it really helps us.

Where can we pick up the book?

An easy one to start! Fast & Filling is available on Amazon via the link above, and is currently priced at a very attractive £10. If you aren’t a fan of Amazon, you can also pick it up online via WH Smith, Waterstones, The Works or many other independent bookstores. If you are abroad it is a little trickier, but we recommend The Book Depository if you are having trouble getting it shipped. Of course, all of the books are also available on Kindle, if you want to go electronic. If you’re old school, you’ll find it in WH Smith and Waterstones on the high street, plus we’re in all major supermarkets. There has been an absolute rush on, which may mean stock issues offline for a couple of weeks, but our publishers are working on that!

What sort of recipes are in the book?

Exactly the same type of recipes as the blog: easy to cook breakfasts, lunches and dinners that taste good, don’t cost a bomb to make and will fill you up. We don’t do diet food, never have, we do proper food with a few healthy swaps. Listen, we’re two chunky lads who can put away a good meal – we know you’re going to be miserable if you’re given rabbit portions because we would be. Unless it’s one of those rabbits that come in plain packaging from lovehoney, and hey, if it is, think of the weight loss from a bit of self-love. These are recipes that you will cook for the family and everyone will eat: not cooking something for yourself and then cooking something delicious for those not on a diet. Put simply: this is good food, done right. You deserve it!

Where can I find the syns for the recipes?

Unfortunately, at the time of writing, we cannot provide the syn values for the recipes ourselves. Syns is a term that belongs to Slimming World and, understandably, they would not like us to use it in our cookbooks. Slimming World have been amazing with us throughout our blog and we absolutely don’t begrudge them this. They allow us to use syns on the blog and social media, and we are very grateful for that! I’ll say this though: all of our recipes are simple enough with no wacky ingredients and as a consequence, they’re easy to work out for yourselves using SW’s online tools. They’re all under 500 calories too.

Have you included cooking times / dietary restrictions / portion sizes?

Yep. After forgetting some of that information in the last book (it was our first time, be kind!), we have made sure it’s in here. All recipes are below 500 calories (that’s per portion) and most, unless clearly indicated, serve four. Where possible, we have made sure to show where recipes are suitable for gluten free too!

Why don’t you use sweetener / Quark / Frylight in your recipes?

Same reason we don’t on the blog. We believe in the philosophy of using good ingredients to make your food the best it can be. That’s not knocking Quark, mind, it has its place, but sweetener is a big bugbear of ours. Yeah, you might save a syn or two replacing say, brown sugar with sweetener, but why? It makes it taste so sweet and artificial! We don’t believe in having to be ‘syn-free’, and it works, because the feedback we get from our recipes is how tasty they are. So if our recipes use a bit of butter, or some honey, or a drop of maple syrup, get it in there. You’ll thank us afterwards! That said, if you’re absolutely set on using Frylight or Quark, shoot for the moon. Do what works for you!

Are there many recipes suitable for vegetarians?

Yes! And I know this because I’ve been asking! It’s no secret we like meat here at Chubby Towers – I’m never happier than when I’m packed with sausage – but at the same time, we’ve made a special effort with this book to up our vegetarian recipes. Not just ‘swap the chicken for Quorn’, either, but using Quorn or tofu or the vegetables themselves as the main ingredient and making them sing. From memory, there’s over 60+ veggie friendly recipes in there. We always welcome feedback too, so if you think we can do better, let us know.

Are the recipes easy to follow?

Absolutely. These recipes are meant to save one thing – time now or time later. So this means the recipes are either easy to cook, quick to put together, easy to scale up or suitable for batch-cooking and freezing. There’s no fancy cooking techniques – I mean, look, it’s us – and if you’re not a confident cook then you will be right at home. We aren’t chefs ourselves you know, and we know there’s nothing more daunting than a huge list of ingredients or steps for cooking. You’ll find neither in here. Also, if you get really stuck, send us a message on Instagram (see below) and we will try and help. One thing we keep seeing over and over in our comments and reviews is that the meals are perfect for family cooking, or those just starting out.

Let me finish this question with a plea: if you struggle to cook, please, just start! The best thing you can do is to start cooking – it’s rare the meal will go absolutely wrong and you can always salvage it. But cooking is all about confidence and that only builds with exposure! So go for it!

How easy is it to make substitutes for difficult ingredients?

We genuinely don’t think there’s any especially difficult ingredients in there – we shop at Aldi and Tesco, and if you can’t get it there, it’s not in our book! One thing we’ve always disliked about other books is where you buy an ingredient, use it once and never again. None of that with us. Perhaps the two unusual ingredients to feature are (and lord, imagine my sigh here) panko and mirin. Panko is easy to find in most major supermarkets – it’s a dried breadcrumb and is usually in the world foods bit. It’s cheap as chips. Mirin might be a little bit trickier – they sell it all over up here, it’s a sweet rice wine, and you’ll find it where you find the panko. You can swap it for a white cooking wine if you like. A plea if you’re just starting out, too – get to know your local speciality supermarkets – so much cheaper than buying in the major supermarkets.

Are the recipes suitable for those on a lower budget?

Yes! We rarely use ‘expensive’ cuts of meat, for example, and look – we aren’t big spenders here. It goes back to the ingredients thing – we use proper stuff you’re likely to have in the cupboard anyway, and if not, we take the cheap ingredients and make them so much more because we cook them properly.

Will the release of the book change anything for the blog?

Nope. This is an important one for us! Our blog was set up in 2014 (crikey!) as an antithesis to the awful diet food that was being circulated at the time. Now, almost seven years later, we’ve got over 700 recipes and, this bit I love, a record of our lives! Our followers all came from this blog and we have zero intention of stopping now. I’m committing to a new recipe every week where I can. We will never charge you to access recipes or try and monetise the fuck out of the blog. There’s a few adverts, yeah, but aside from that, it’s all free all the time. When you stop reading, I’ll stop writing!

How do we follow you on social media?

Ah we’re everywhere!

A note on our Facebook group. One of my favourite acts that I’ve seen blossom is the ‘pay it forward’ scheme operating, where those who are struggling to buy the book are being gifted it by those in a position to help. It was completely unexpected, but speaks so much to the good in our group. There’s a reason you don’t see much negativity in our group: because it’s full of terrific people. I confess myself ridiculously proud of it. A reminder though: if you’re struggling for money, please, don’t be buying our cookbook – save that for when you have some cash! There’s over 700 recipes now in our index and although they don’t look quite so professional in the photos, the food recipes themselves are exactly the same calibre as you get in the book – and for free.

I think that is everything! If you have any questions or you want to show off your food, come show us in the group or on Instagram. If you tag us in, we will do our best to spot you!

Ah actually one final thing.

Thanks guys. I know I’ve said it so many times over the years, but it bears repeating. We would be nothing without you lot buying our books, sharing our recipes and telling everyone about those two fat blokes on the Internet who cook good food. Reading everyone’s nice comments, seeing people actually happy with the food, seeing old cooks and new cooks and everyone in between having a go. Well. You’ll never truly know what that means to us, because, despite being a gobshite who can waffle for days about absolutely nothing, I’ve never quite found the words. Thank you.

Happy cooking!

J&P

recipe: beef, spinach and mango curry

Well hello! Are you here for the beef, spinach and mango curry, you poor unfortunate soul? I’d expect nothing less, given how fabulous it is, and in a rare bit of brevity, I won’t keep you for 1500 words until we get to it. That said, if you’re itching for the beef, spinach and mango curry and can’t wait a moment more, you impolite cow, then scroll down to the pictures where you will be rewarded with everything you need.

Before we start anything, THANK YOU to everyone who is buying our new book. The reviews are superb, the comments on social media are amazing and I am loving seeing so many of you recommending us. It means the world! Please do continue to drop your photos into slimming groups on FB, or copying us in on your Instagram posts. If you haven’t already left a review, we’d love you forever if you did. And finally, if you’re still on the fence…

Anyway. I want to give you some advice. Take a seat, preferably on a chair but if you’ve got good pelvic floor muscles, you can grip onto a bannister or a fence like a limpet. If you’re not one for reading lots of words, that’s fine, we have a handy Instagram summa of the main points right here:

See, one of the main things about running a diet / slimming blog and social media thingamajig is that we get asked a lot of questions, and because I was brought up in a house where I’d get my fingers smacked with a wooden spoon for rudeness, I always try and answer them. The key question we get is ‘how to lose weight’ or variants thereon, and nevermoreso than this time of the year when everyone has put away all the Christmas pudding and turned slightly more spherical than they perhaps would like. I reassure and cajole and try and give the best advice I can, but for years I’ve been saying the wrong thing – go to slimming classes, keep the end in sight, all that tush.

Now, before I go into the main advice, a note of reassurance: I’m not going to tell you not to go to slimming classes. I’m a firm believer that they work – I know they do – for a lot of people, and if you find that way a comfort or it helps with your weight loss, you crack on. We’re Slimming World through and through and that won’t change. But, that said, I encourage you to tinker with your thought process if you do.

We think you should try to lose 1lb a week if you’re losing weight. No more. Don’t get me wrong, if you lose more than a pound a week, great, but your target should be a pound. Every week until the end of the year.

Our reasoning is sound, too. One thing we always used to hear at slimming classes was ‘what’s your target for next week – 3lb? 4lb’ – and then if you have a poor week, or something comes up, or if you have a birthday or a funeral or a stressful visit to the clap clinic, you might not hit that target. What comes next: disappointment. You’re sad because you lost 3lb, and it wasn’t 4lb, rather than being chuffed you’ve lost 3lb. It’s a negative reinforcement that you can do without. Whereas, if you were always aiming to lose a pound, you’d feel brilliant when at the end of the week you can tick it off your list. You’ll create a positive feedback loop in yourself – less stressed about dieting because you’re not ‘trying’ so hard, weight loss at the scales, results showing – and you’re far more inclined to keep going.

Think about it: how many times have you stood on the scales after a week of hard graft and exercise and been gutted because you’ve only lost a pound, or stayed the same? Then if you’re anything like us, you’ll fuck the whole thing off out of frustration, eat a tonne of food to feel better and then the shame circle starts again. It’s why I think we’ve failed so many times at losing weight – slim, sadness, binge, repeat.

This way, there’s far less pressure on you. You’re more likely to succeed. And it gets better: think how many weeks you’ll have where you lose more than a pound, given how quickly weight can fall off when you are sticking to things. By all means tot the total up as you go along, keep the end in sight, but don’t give it your full attention. Stick to your 1lb a week: get it? Got it? Good.

Oh and celebrate your victories. Don’t be dashing down to the chip shop every week, though we always say no food is banned because it bloody well shouldn’t be. But a bit of self-love for your accomplishments is no bad thing, whether it’s a book or a trip out or buying something outrageous from lovehoney.com that makes your neighbours’ lights dim when you’re going full strum.

It all boils down to positivity. Get that nailed, and you’ve got this year sorted. Good luck!

And look at that! We’re done, and only 800 words. I’m getting leaner even in words! Shall we do the beef, spinach and mango curry?

recipe: beef, spinach and mango curry

How’s this bowl of beef, spinach and mango curry for comfort food? Amazing, that’s what.

beef, spinach and mango curry

recipe: beef, spinach and mango curry

Fancy this beef, spinach and mango curry – then get it made!

beef, spinach and mango curry

Prep

Cook

Total

Yield 4 servings

We're still in our evil lair and still on the Hello Fresh boxes for convenience! We've lifted another banger straight from them - lovely comforting stodge with a spicy (but not too spicy!) tinge! If you want to take the faff out of shopping we can't rate them highly enough. A box arrives once a week (or however often you want it to) with all the ingredients pre-portioned out for you, and handy recipe cards so you can just crack on with none of the pissfarting about. If you want to give them a shout follow this link and you'll get £20 off, and also send £20 our way too! 

Ingredients

  • 500g lean beef mince
  • 2 onions
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 300g basmati rice
  • 3 tbsp tomato puree
  • 4 tbsp rogan josh paste (4 syns) (see notes)
  • 100g dried red split lentils
  • 2 beef stock cubes
  • 100g baby spinach
  • 2 tbsp mango chutney (4 syns)

Instructions

  • halve, peel and thinly slice the onions and grate the garlic
  • heat a large frying pan over a high heat and spray a little oil
  • add the beef mince to the pan and cook until browned
  • meanwhile, heat 600ml water in a large saucepan with a bit of salt and bring to the boil
  • add the rice, stir, reduce the heat to medium and cover with a lid
  • cook the rice for ten minutes, then remove from the heat and set aside for a further ten minutes
  • add the onion to the minute and cook until softened, about 4-5 minutes, stirring now and again
  • add the garlic, tomato puree and rogan josh paste to the pan and stir together, and cook for one minute
  • dissolve the stock cubes in 700ml of boiling water, and pour into the pan with the mince
  • add the lentils to the same pan and stir well
  • reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally
  • once the lentils are tender, add the spinach to the pan in handfuls, stirring into the mixture until wilted, then stir in the mango chutney (add a splash of water if needed)
  • fluff up the rice with a fork and spoon into bowls, and top with the curry

Notes

Recipe

  • fancy it meat free? Quorn works just as well!
  • Sainsbury's own brand rogan josh paste is only 1 syn per tablespoon - other brands are around the 2 syn per tablespoon mark, so be sure to check!

Books

  • OUR BRAND NEW COOKBOOK IS OUT NOW! You thought the last one was good? It was, but this sequel is even better! Order yours here! 
  • our first slimming cookbook can be ordered online now – full of 100+ slimming recipes, and bloody amazing, with over 5000 5* reviews – even if we do say so ourselves: click here to order
  • our new diet planner is out and utterly brilliant – you can order it here – thank you to everyone so far for the positive feedbacks

Tools

Courses dinner

Cuisine Indian

Wasn’t that easy?

If you’re after more easy meals, why not have a look over our older stuff? And just for sheer retroness, let’s get these buttons out one last time!

poultrysmallbeefsmallporksmalllambsmallfakeawayssmall lunchsmallpastasmall

Crikey.

J&P

well, welcome to 2021, everyone!

Hello all!

I hope you’re all keeping well – if you’re anything like us, you’re still clutching your belly and wondering whether or not you’re going to need a new lavatory to cope with all the Christmas excess. I do hope so, because Christmas is meant to be about spoiling yourself and after the previous year, we absolutely all needed it. And no – I don’t know why I’m typing this little blog post as though I’m your mad Auntie writing her yearly round-robin from her villa in Benidorm, but fuck it, we’re here now so let’s keep going. I am well, having spent most of the festive period picking Christmas dinner out of my beard and sulking because I couldn’t open my presents early. Paul remains pallid and smelling of soil, but confesses himself reasonably happy. The kids are quiet, but that’s more than likely because we’ve never had them.

Enough of that though. This is just a very quick post to celebrate the launch of our new book, and the excellent reviews it has already received. You can buy it in all supermarkets right now, or otherwise, nip onto Amazon where it is (at the time of writing) £12 delivered. If you paid extra on Amazon, please be reassured the difference will be refunded back to your card! Click the banner to be taken straight there (in a new window, mind, I’m not finished with you yet). It’s a best-seller already, and feedback has been utterly glorious – if you liked the first book, you’re absolutely gonna love this. We genuinely could not be happier with how people have received it – thank you!

If you have it, and you love it, please consider leaving us a review: it makes all the difference! And, please, if you’re a member of any facebook groups, do share us! Spread the word. It’s just me and Paul here and there’s only so much we can do!

Also, if you haven’t already, our first cookbook is currently only £8 on Amazon too! You can click here to buy it – it’s out of stock at the moment but they’ve ordered a tonne more, so it’ll dispatch soon! That plus the new cookbook means over 220 recipes for £20 delivered! Give the gift of cubs!

And finally: well, it all goes without saying at this point. So, because it’s me, let me say it by video. If you’re a fan, I really want you to hear this!

We love you all, very much. Have an amazing New Year!

J

twochubbycubs: 2020 – it is what is

Well, hello there! A slightly different post to wrap up the year, as we are likely to be super busy next week. I will try and squeeze one more recipe before we head into 2021, but hey, I haven’t had a chance to write in a long while and I wanted to sum up our year. 2020 has been our annus horribilis, and not just due to the state of Paul’s anus. Apologies if you saw that joke earlier in the week, but we only have so much in the tank. Let’s talk 2020!

Our year started with the release of our first cookbook, twochubbycubs: the cookbook (it’ll still make an amazing Christmas present for a loved one, just saying) which we loved though didn’t expect to do that well. It did amazingly: we went to the top of Amazon, we broke our own records, and best of all, you all absolutely loved it. That was the biggest success of all, that our dowdy little blog full of swearing and nonsense was welcomed into your homes and you all took the time to tell us you were chuffed with it. That made our year. The publicity machine started, and we were off!

We were thoroughly enjoying the book-signings, the media stuff, appearing on Brexit Radio (no I don’t know either) and dealing with the very occasional person stopping us in the street. Yes, they were asking us for a pound for the bus, but I could tell from the twinkle / conjunctivitis-crackle in their eyes that they knew who we were and were simply too shy to ask us to dance.  We appeared on James Martin where Paul cocked up making a salad and I failed to convince James that I’d make a terrific wife, something I remain sore about to this day, though perhaps not as sore as I’d like.

The first three months were truly a whirlwind – we became Sunday Times Bestsellers, we turned up in (and equally, knocked back) newspapers and magazines. It was all going so well. Then guess what happened to stop all that? That tricksy little thing called coronavirus. Suddenly we were all afraid to cough, shake hands and get up to dickens. For us, all the fun stuff stopped and we fell into line along with everyone else.

Now, we were lucky – I have a job with a terrific business who were already indulging my working from home requests anyway, so not much changed for me. Paul is NHS and as such, had it much worse, having to suffer the indignity of a big rubber mask and blushing when the neighbours start clapping. All was shite, but like everyone else, you struggle on. Luckily, the neighbours issue didn’t continue for long because, in what was a big steamy sweetcorn kernel sat atop the turd that was 2020, our house burned down.

Yes, Chubby Towers went up like a box of knock-off fireworks. Readers from earlier in the year will notice we’ve been staying in a hotel and that’s why. Waking up in the night and noticing that the end of the world seemed to be occurring outside will stay with me forever, as will the giant handprint on Paul’s buttocks from where I slapped him as hard as I could to tell him the house was on fire. He went from fast asleep to swearing at me and then shitting himself within 1.5 seconds.

Whilst I’d often fantasised about having a fireman smashing my back door in and flooding my passage, it was never like this, and certainly never six of them. It’s all very surreal now. I remember sitting in the front garden, cradled by Paul, and crying my eyes out as our house burned. One of the firemen went inside and grabbed a duvet to keep me warm and even through my tears I was mortified to spot the streaks of dried jism splattered across the one he chose. Paul was absolutely incredible – he had the same fright I did and was watching our things go up in smoke, but was there keeping me calm and safe. Never thanked him for that, because I’m me, but he is really is the most remarkable of treasures.

The house was fucked, but thankfully, our insurance were utterly golden and they moved us into the hotel where I’m currently writing this from. It’s a really lovely place, even if only have two rooms have meant Paul and I exist in a permanent state of being one un-picked-up sock from caving each other’s faces in. The house is being rebuild, delayed perpetually by COVID mischief, and the cats are fine (albeit housebound), currently residing with a friend up the road. It’s them I miss more than anything: a bath doesn’t feel complete unless I spend most of it staring into Sola’s bumhole whilst she fusses around the edge of the bath and tries to hide the smell of petrol on her fur.

Living in a hotel has presented another issue though: health anxiety is bad enough when there’s a global pandemic, it’s made even worse when you’re traipsing past strangers in a hallway and getting into lifts with guests who think personal hygiene is wiping their lips with a KFC wetwipe once a year. The resulting anxiety has been a constant low-level thrum, like living near a substation, and it can be exhausting. I’ve had three bad episodes, each more exciting and doctor-filled than the last, and I’ve only recently got on top of the last one. For all I waffle endlessly via twochubbycubs, I keep that side of me far more discreet than most realise, sometimes to my credit and sometimes to my dismay. All I’ll say on that, if you’re reading this in the midst of your own health anxiety, just know that it eases.

We managed to get away to Scarborough for a long overdue filthy weekend back in September. Very excited we were, it being the first time Paul was able to get some time off and me returning, slightly creaky of jaw, back from many weeks in self-isolation (Paul first, me second). We had no sooner received the key and made small-talk with the farmer whose farm we were staying on when Paul received a text message to say he’d been around someone with COVID. A test then revealed he was positive, and I was negative, and we were forced to spend another two weeks apart. I, somewhat inexplicably, didn’t get it, but having him poorly next door was an absolute nightmare: he was calm and collected and although it wasn’t great for him, he didn’t die. I naturally assumed he had died every time he didn’t reply to his Whatsapp of a morning or I heard a cough through the walls. Still, we got through, and it didn’t half show me exactly how much that little ball of butter does for me.

Then, the last couple of months, also been meh. I hate not being able to plan anything, explore anywhere or make any concrete plans because, as we’ve just seen with Boris the Dancing Clown fucking all the tiers up again. I’m not exactly a social butterfly, but I miss spontaneous trips out, holidays away, absolute nonsense. I want to spend Christmas with my family – not with Paul’s, because presumably his mother will resting from scaring the children away at hallowe’en – but everything just feels risky. My parents are fairly old and my mother is 86% pure nicotine at the moment. We’ll see.

So yah: crap year. We’ve all had it, to some degree, but I wanted to put ours down because frankly, I’m a massive egotist and wanted to scratch a writing itch.

But, you know what. It wasn’t a shit year. It wasn’t a shit year at all.

It’s so easy to look back and think what could have been if COVID hadn’t kicked off or if our house hadn’t burned down, but those things happened and that’s that. Take COVID: it’s been a stress, it’s been awful, but we’re lucky in that no-one close to us has been killed by it – hell, I only really know Paul who had it. That can’t be said for so many families around the world and whilst doubtless it’ll hit us in some way at some point, we can be grateful it hasn’t wreaked havoc with us. Cancelling book-signings is fuck all compared to having to bury a loved one.

And anyway: we’ve still managed to have fun, whether together or apart. Evenings with nothing to do have forced us to talk to each other, and I’m reminded why I married him in the first place. We’ve had nights just driving and singing. Paul’s worrying addiction to Lego which I nurtured, allowed to flourish and then knocked on the head when it threatened to bankrupt us. We’ve cooked new things, told new stories and brawled over whose turn it was to go downstairs and ask for more dishwasher tablets. And then, separately, I’ve personally had some amazing, breath-taking adventures with my mates which are the best they’ve ever been. I’ve travelled when I can, with the restrictions meaning nothing being taken for granted. It’s been an incredible journey of its very own.

And the house? Absolute kick in the bollocks, but as I said, our insurance have been amazing: nothing has been a trouble and at the end of it all, our house will look gorgeous and so much more us. Naturally, we’re going to sell it and move to pastures new the second we realise that we can’t fall asleep there without panicking and fretting, but we’ll cross that bridge / Atlantic Ocean when we come to it. The hotel that they put us up in is also used by all the local engineering companies which means my days have been awash with men in dirty hi-vis that I’d cheerfully push Paul into a thresher for. Being away from the house has made us realised that we’ve been putting off doing all manner of things which we’re immediately putting right when we get back there with getting a dog being right at the top of that list. We’ve already decide: it’ll be a Boxer, it’ll be a slobbery little bugger and it’ll be called Goomba. I absolutely can’t wait.

Finally, the best thing of all: twochubbycubs. At the end of this year, our second cookbook will be released, with us using the time together in the hotel to create a beast even better than the first. and we’re off again with plans for 2021. That means that this year we’ve had three published books, deftly handled by the same publisher who Stephen King, my favourite author no less, rings up when he’s got a 50,000 word novel on haunted milk bottles or something. It’s utterly bewildering when we think of it. Even now, we’re a two-man affair (makes a change for me): Paul does the cooking, we do the eating and I do the writing. The success of the first book has meant for the first time in our entire lives we are ‘comfortable’, and fuck knows that’s a decent position to end the year on. We never set out to monetise twochubbycubs: it’s why our website is so old-fashioned that you’ll probably get prompted to install ICQ if you go back far enough. The fact our hobby turned into such an incredible success is still so baffling that even now I doubt it’s ever going to go anywhere.

That’s not meant as braggy, either, and I hope it doesn’t come across as that. But when I sit and mope about what could have been if only we’d done that, or if this hadn’t happened, or if we’d played this a little differently, this is what gives me comfort.

And look, we couldn’t have done this without you. I know we say it a lot in the group, or the dedications in our book, but fuck me f it wasn’t for you lot reading the recipes, sharing our stories, telling your friends or just taking part, this whole thing would just be me writing into my diary and wondering why Clippy never calls me back. We may have made twochubbycubs possible, but you made it happen.

So, this brings me to the final thing I want to say: thank you. Our year may have had some hurdles, but hell if it hasn’t all been worthwhile to get to the end, with you lot following behind with your thighs burning and chests panting. Please don’t ever lose sight of the fact that we love you, each and all, so very dearly, and we will continue to try and give you what brought you all here in the first place: free, decent recipes with a 2,000 word pre-amble where I mercilessly take the piss out of my husband or tell you about the time I farted in a cupboard.

I did want to finish on a nice quote, but the one I had in mind I’m slightly mortified to have since found out came from the Twilight books and I just can’t bring myself to finish on that level of schlock. So, instead, from Francis Bacon – ‘hope is a good breakfast, but it is a poor supper‘ (and he’d know about good breakfasts, being a Bacon). Hope is a wonderful thing to spur you on when you need it, but nights spent in a sea of what-ifs and could-be-ism gets you nowhere other than sitting at 5am with a sad heart and eyebags you travel the world on. Things aren’t as good as they could be, but you’re reading this somewhere warm and safe as opposed to in a hospital bed with Johnny 5 making your lungs work.

Things could always be worse – one to remember!

Have a safe and pleasant Christmas, doing the best you can, and we will doubtless see you all in the New Year.

With endless love and constant pride,

J, and I suppose, P

x

PS: I resisted the urge all the way through, but please, if you do love us, pre-order our new book. We’ve got new cat toys to buy! Click the banner below!

recipe: spinach and chickpea stew

Sometimes you need something that is quick to throw together and sticks to your belly like muck on a lavatory, and honestly, despite that unsavoury opening, this recipe for spinach and chickpea will do the trick. Doesn’t sound like the most exciting in the world, but it’s grand – nicely spicy, no meat and just yessss.

Before we get to the razzmatazz of the recipe, a note about our new book which is available to pre-order on Amazon and WH Smith now. There’s only a couple of weeks to go before this colourful little bugger is in your hands. If you pre-order now by clicking the banner below, if the price drops between then and now, you’ll pay the lower price! We get asked a lot why we didn’t release at Christmas and I would have thought the answer obvious: if someone bought me a ‘lose weight’ cookbook for Christmas, they’d have it pushed up their fundament. So that’s the reason, plus you know, we need time to write these and get the swearwords past our publishers. So! Don’t delay, do order today. If you loved our last book, and so many did, you’ll find even more of us in here!

Anyway, enough admin. Can we discuss hotel breakfasts? For me, the best part of staying in a hotel, aside from leisurely scattering bodily fluids all over someone else’s duvet and stealing everything that isn’t welded down, is the hotel breakfast. Long-time readers will also know that a Premier Inn breakfast is, to me, the pinnacle of good eating: as you’ve seen from both my waistline and my marital indiscretions I believe in quantity over quality, and being able to graze at a trough of heat-lamp solidified Costco fare is an absolute treasure. As it happens, I had cause to find myself in a Premier Inn a while ago (post first lockdown, so shush, snitches get stitches from bitches) and aside from my room being so far from the reception that going out for a cigarette meant crossing two tier levels, it was grand. I live for moments cast in electric magenta. My friend Tall Paul, of similar heft and capacity for eating, was joining me for breakfast.

How can it be possible to get every single item on a breakfast wrong? It was like a Dali interpretation of what a good cooked breakfast should be. Case in point: the toast. When we have previously breakfasted together it is my job to fetch enough toast that the shareholders of Warburtons can book themselves another week in St Moritz. That’s fine: I’m the master of working two rotary toasters at once and make skipping between the two into an elegant polyester ballet. It’s not a taxing affair, yet somehow in the haste to deny us all pleasures in life thanks to COVID, they’ve taken away that responsibility from the customer. You now have to owlishly ask for toast, tempering the amount you want lest the waiting staff wrinkle their noses in disgust and refer to you as Bacon-Tits in the kitchen.

Still, toast isn’t hard to get right, no? After forty minutes, Schrödinger’s Toast appeared: a sheet of midnight carbon on one side, totally uncooked on the other. It explained the wait at least, given they’d clearly prepared the toast by standing outside and holding it up to the December sun for thirty-five minutes like some sacrifice to the Yeast Gods before finishing it off in the blast zone of a nuclear atrocity. To make things worse, they had brought four tiny pats of butter for six slices of toast and everyone ought to know by now that this simply won’t do: we both spread our butter like a whore applies lipstick and we had to pester the waiter for more. He slapped it down on the table with a finality that suggested we weren’t to ask for anything else and a moment later, our breakfast was hurled onto the table with similar venom.

Well.

The bacon was one good vet away from resurrection, the hash-browns had all the structural integrity of an envelope full of custard and they even managed to bodge the beans up. Breakfast beans should be put into a saucepan and gently heated for approximately four days before being served, so the sauce goes as thick as a welder’s apron and leaves little red kisses in the corner of your mouth. This is especially pertinent with my dining companion as looking at the food smeared into his beard is my only reassurance he’s eating properly. Instead, we were given beans that suggested that the cook had parcelled them out individually moments earlier, perhaps wearisome of oncoming rationing measures. Not usually a disaster but when beans serve as the only moisture available on the plate, it becomes far more consequential. I’d have had a wetter mouth if I’d tucked into a plate of those silica balls that come with my boots.

They had made an attempt to gussy up the tomato by cutting it with pinking shears but frankly, if it didn’t work for my circumcision, it’ll do nothing for an ice-cold tomato. And the sausages: a good sausage is either (a) pink, cylindrical and devoid of any identifiable meat bar an eyelash or valve or (b) made with care and attention from animals that get tucked in at night by a kindly nanny. The middle ground is a waterbed of meh and it was in that meh that the sausages bobbed like turds in the sea.

But honestly, it was the egg that finished us off. A fried egg should be white and firm on the outside, with a sealed yolk that you can excitedly dip your toast into. Salt should be liberally applied either via the vessel on the table or your own thankful tears. What we were served was almost a magician’s trick: the perfect looking fried egg indeed, but one that you couldn’t dip your toast into even if you applied it to the sharp end of a wish.com pneumatic drill. I’ve never known an egg fight back – it was as though they had cast it from plaster. My friend likened it to those plastic facsimiles of food you get in the windows of restaurants in Tokyo and I was minded to agree, though disagreeing with him is never truly an option anyway, unless you like to be told why you’re wrong over the course of fifteen minutes, three slideshows and a ‘discussion’ that ends with him looking at you with a sage expression, resting his hand on your shoulder and shaking his head sadly whilst you boil with barely-masked incredulity.

Naturally, as we are British and fat, we ate everything put in front of us and were fully prepared to reassure the waiting staff how delightful the food was had they bothered to check in.

With the main plate finished, my mate nipped outside to smoke, such as he does treat eating as an interruption to his smoking regime rather than the other way around, and I was left alone to my own devices. Of course this is where the waiter took a moment to come over and whether he could get us anything else. I resisted the urge to ask for a pre-emptive air ambulance ride to the nearest gastrointestinal unit and instead requested, somewhat tremulously, some yoghurt. He met my gaze and said ‘cumpit‘ with a raised eyebrow. I confess, I was shocked and at once wondered how he knew – perhaps house-keeping had let him know the state of my room in advance – before realising he was actually saying compote in that gloriously bewildering accent where every syllable is murdered twice over before arriving at the lips. I agreed with him that it would be a sensible addition and he returned moments later with a bowl of yoghurt and a tiny bowl of berries which, rather like the toast, managed to exist in two states at once. I’ve never had my lips frozen and burned at the same time, and I’ve kissed Paul’s mother.

Breakfast finished, we both agreed to never speak of it again, chalk it down as an anomaly and, should the moment take us later, leave a snotty review on Twitter or suchlike. However, neither of us are petty enough to remember the detail, so I’ve simply and reasonably settled for a 1,200 word bitchfit on my blog instead.

Speaking of poorly presented food, here’s the spinach and chickpea stew, actually looking bloody beautiful!

spinach and chickpea stew

How’s that for a plate full of stodge? But it’s so damn fine! Try our spinach and chickpea stew, or shush.

spinach and chickpea stew

Only one syn, and you can leave the apricots out of the spinach and chickpea stew to make it syn-free!

spinach and chickpea stew

It’s like a super quick tagine, this spinach and chickpea stew!

spinach and chickpea stew

Prep

Cook

Total

Yield 4 servings

Warming, slightly spicy, mixed with a tonne of feta - this spinach and chickpea stew is bloody fine!

We've adapted another of Hello Fresh's recipes to make it a bit easier on the waistline and the pocket. This spinach and chickpea moroccan style stew combines a few of our most favourite things and is so rich, you'll love it. If you want to give Hello Fresh a go you can use this magic link to get £20 off, and also send £20 our way n'all. Cheers!

By the way, we ain't on a kickback from Hello Fresh, but until we're out of Chubby Towers Adjacent, it's all we have!

Ingredients

  • 2 onions, thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 10 dried apricots, roughly chopped (4 syns)
  • 2 tins chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 240g couscous
  • 500ml passata
  • 500g baby spinach
  • 160g reduced fat feta cheese (HEA x4)
  • 1 chicken stock cube
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 2 tsp tomato purée
  • 1/2 tsp dried chilli flakes
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 bunch flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped

Instructions

  • crumble half of the stock cube over the couscous and pour over 480ml of boiling water, and stir well
  • cover and set aside
  • spray a large frying pan with a little oil and place over a medium-high heat
  • add the onion to the pan and cook for 4-5 minutes, until softened
  • add the garlic, paprika, tomato puree, chilli flakes, lemon juice, cumin, coriander, pepper and cinnamon to the pan along with the dried apricots and cook for one minute
  • stir in the passata and 100ml of water along with the remaining half of the stock cube and bring to a simmer
  • add the chickpeas to the pan and continue to simmer for another 4-5 minutes
  • stir in the baby spinach in handfuls and cook until fully wilted
  • fluff up the couscous and add half of the parsley
  • serve the couscous in bowls and top with the stew, crumbled feta and the remaining parsley

Notes

Recipe

  • the original recipe uses 'tagine paste' which we've never come across in the supermarket, but the spices in this are almost identical. If you can find tagine paste however feel free to use that instead - you'll need about 2 tbsp
  • if you aren't a fan of feta a bit of natural yoghurt with a bit of salt added will add a nice alternative tang

Books

  • OUR BRAND NEW COOKBOOK IS COMING OUT SOON! You thought the last one was good? It was, but this sequel is even better - it'll be coming out just in time for the new year! Preorder yours here! 
  • our first slimming cookbook can be ordered online now – full of 100+ slimming recipes, and bloody amazing, with over 3000 5* reviews – even if we do say so ourselves: click here to order
  • our new diet planner is out now and utterly brilliant – you can order it here – thank you to everyone so far for the positive feedbacks

Tools

Courses dinner

Cuisine twochubbycubs

Delicious right? Want more vegetarian recipes? Have a gander at these:

Mwah!

J

free digital sample of our new book is here to download!

The wait is nearly over – our next marvellous cookbook, FAST AND FILLING, comes out on New Years Eve! If you want a sneaky peek at what we’re offering, you can download a FREE, exclusive preview with FIVE recipes from the book from Amazon, here. It won’t cost you a penny. All you need is the Kindle app on your phone, laptop, computer, tablet, or whatever the hell you’re reading this on. I say that, I don’t doubt there’s more than a dozen of you trying to read this in that awful curly font on a knock-off carboot tablet that runs scorching hot from the moment you turn it on until it finally bursts into electric flame trying to load up your fourth bingo site of the day. We love you really.

We’re so bloody chuffed with it, the recipes are absolutely amazing. We reckon we really stepped it up for this second book, and if you liked the first one you will LOVE this one! More of the stuff you can’t wait to get into your belly, with all of ’em under 500 calories, AND quick and easy to prep, cook or both. We haven’t messed about with this one, it’s stunning. It’ll sit like a neon rainbow on your shelf. 100 recipes spread over 8 chapters (Bangin’ Breakfasts, Minute Meals, Low & Slow, One Pan, Fakeaways, Tighten the Belt, Veggie Delights and Sweets & Treats). Preorder yours now from Amazon (and don’t forget there’s a guarantee so if the price drops, you’ll only pay the lowest one). We sold out pretty quickly last time so preorder yours now to make sure you have one waiting for you to make a fresh start with all the rest of us on the 1st of Jan! All profits go towards finally getting Paul that dog I promised him after the last book.

Hope you all enjoy!

J