Mama’s Bolognese Sauce – Syn Free – Makes 8

Well I have been fancying spaghetti bolognese so decided to make my mum’s sauce up in a huge batch so I could have meals during the week and make a lasagna too.  So I dug out the slow cooker and prepared my tiny kitchen for armageddon….

This is the entire space I have for food prep in my kitchen, a single work surface, the empty space under it used to house a dishwasher, so it’s really not that big but I manage.



  • 500g 5% Lean Mince or Quorn Mince
  • 2 Tins Chopped Tomatoes
  • 400g Mushrooms
  • 1 Packet Passata (500g)
  • 2 Carrots
  • 2 White Onions
  • 2 Sticks Celery
  • 1 tbsp Tomato Puree
  • 5 Bay Leaves
  • 1 tsp Easy Garlic
  • 1 tbsp Mixed Herbs
  • Dash of Worcestershire Sauce


  • Put the chopped tomatoes, passata, tomato puree, herbs, garlic and Worcestershire sauce in the slow cooker and turn on high.
  • Peel and chop the carrots, celery, onion and mushrooms and add them to the slow cooker.  You will then have a massive pot of veggie bolognese sauce, you can leave it at this stage if you want to but I like to add beef or quorn mince.
  • So brown off your mince and add it to the pot, mix in and then leave it for 8 hours, stirring once every few hours.

spag-bol-collage-1It will look like you have a very dry mix at first.

But as you leave it to cook the water from the veggies will release and towards the end it will be very saucy and you can take some of this out if you want to, it is up to you how much sauce you want.

The photo below shows at the start and then at the 4 hour mark. Look at all that saucy goodness.

spag-bol-collage-3And all this is syn free….. so dig in.  For me this make 8 portions which I used 4 of to make a lasagna and then portioned out and froze the other 4 portions of lunches during the week.

I miss my mum but making this reminds me of time spent in the kitchen with her and learning from her, I think this dish was ingrained in my brain by age 10 as I used to make it with her as I was a nosy, hyperactive little shite.  I hope that you enjoy it as much as I do.



Weigh In

Well even after giving in to a pizza this weekend, I still managed to lose 1lb this week.

Not the best loss but I am happy with this.  As long as I am losing I am happy with everything that comes off.

Last week was LONG and felt like hell, between work and these bloody medications causing havoc on me I was strung out and a mess.  I am so tired and the constant pain that even codeine is not working on just made it a bad week.  So by Saturday I had had enough and gave in to cheesy, doughy goodness.

But since I stuck to plan the rest of the week that seems to have balanced it out.

So this week I will go back to eating my body weight in pasta since that seemed to work the first week round.


This Week on Slimming World

Well this week was my second week on Slimming World and the same as last week I have eaten more than I ever did while I was calorie counting.  I just hope that I can lose more weight this week.

On Wednesday I managed to forget my lunchbag in the morning but the lovely ladies in our canteen were able to sort me out with a suitable lunch.  Baked chicken with Chipolata spices, green beans and boiled new potatoes.


On Friday I had fancied fish and chips so I made a side trip to the supermarket on the way home and picked up a lovely smoked cod fillet in a herb and lemon sauce, made some Slimming World chips and added in the mushrooms and spinach I am addicted to.


Then since it is the weekend I wanted to have some nice hearty breakfasts and so I broke out the turkey rashers, paired them with my Healthy Extra B – a slice of wholemeal bread.  Once again I added in the addictive spinach and mushrooms to both meals, on Saturday I added baked beans and Sunday a dry fried egg (got to love cast iron pans).


For tea (and several lunches during the week) I made up an Italian Chicken Pasta Bake, this is a syn free meal if I allocate the cheese as my Healthy Extra A.


I am hoping that my blogging through this attempt at Slimming World I will be able to stay more on track, keep your fingers crossed for me.

Syn Free Italian Chicken Bake – Serves 4

This is a lovely filling recipe and if you allocate the cheese on it as your Healthy Extra A then it is Syn Free.



  • 500g Chicken – Cut into bite size chunks
  • 200g Dried Pasta – I used Radiatori but you can use whatever shape you have to hand
  • 500g Passata
  • 1 Large Onion, Chopped Finely (Speed Food)
  • 200g Mushrooms, Sliced (Speed Food)
  • 4/5 Handfuls Baby Spinach (Speed Food)
  • 2 Garlic Cloves, Crushed (Speed Food)
  • 160g Low Fat Cheese, Grated (Syn Free is used as Healthy Extra A)
  • 1 tbsp Tomato Puree
  • 2 tsp Dried Basil


  • Cook your pasta in a large pan of salted water and drain when cooked through.
  • Preheat your oven the Gas Mark 6 / 200 C / 400 F
  • In a large pan over a medium high heat, cook the chicken, onion, garlic and mushrooms until the chicken is browned and the onions soft, approx 10 minutes.
  • Now add the passata, tomato puree and basil and simmer for approx 5 minutes.
  • In a large ovenproof dish place a layer of the baby spinach leaves.
  • Add the pasta to the sauce and pour half the mixture into the ovenproof dish.
  • Add the remainder of the baby spinach leaves and then pour the remainder of the pasta and sauce mix into to dish.
  • Sprinkle the cheese over the top of the pasta mix.
  • Put on the middle shelf of the oven and bake until the cheese is melted, for my oven this is approx 25 minutes but will vary depending on your oven.

This recipe serves 4 but if you are hungry then just syn the cheese on the extra portion.  I hope you enjoy this as much as I do


Trying Slimming World Again

Well I have finally decided enough is enough, I am too fat.  I know this is because I eat the wrong things and after trying calorie restriction for nearly a year and being hungry all the time and then giving in and bingeing I decided I needed a change.

So since some of the girls at work were having good results on Slimming World I thought I would give it a go.  So I walked down into the village and joined up, and boy was I in for a shock when I saw the number on the scales, 18st 10lbs, YIKES!!

So here’s to giving it a go.