Food & Adventures

Friday 17 June 2016

Time for change update: 9 1/2 weeks

We've been really busy since our last weigh in so we decided to extend our next weigh in to just before our holiday. My original plan was to lose 20lbs before my holiday and I'm happy to say I already surpassed that the last time I was weighed. Since my last weigh in I have lost a further 5lbs which means in total I have lost 27lbs.

Since the last update I've had a few meals out and also tried a few dishes I'd never tried before. Here are my favourite meals from the last few weeks  

Ko Sai in Fenwick's food hall is great for Thai street food. These are mango, chilli and avocado (#teamavocado) summer rolls. 

I've decided to have one meat-free day each week, This is quorn tacos, I recently found out taco shells contain 200 calories each! I found a recipe that replaced taco shells with little gem lettuce leaves and this means you can have three or four of these tacos for the same calories as one normal taco.. 

As you probably know avocado is my favourite food at the minute. Although it is higher in calories that most other fruit/vegetables it is full of the kind of fats you need to be eating to have a healthy lifestyle. Here I used sliced avocado in place of soldiers when I had a boiled egg. 

This is another meat-free dish. Quorn chilli, you can find the recipe here, each portion was only around 350 calories and honestly I couldn't tell the difference between this and chilli made with beef mince.

On a recent trip to the Grainger Market in Newcastle I found a fruit and veg stall selling avocados 6 for £1! I was in avocado heaven as normally I would pay £2-£3 for 2 avocados in the supermarket.

Mrs Cool ordered us a Gousto box which is a meal box which includes the ingredients and recipes for 4 meals. This was the lamb Biryani. It was really easy to make, delicious and very filling.

They say necessity is the mother of invention and that was certainly the case for this dish. We were supposed to have scallop salad but only the scallop, chilli and spring onion turned up when our shopping was delivered. So I also used some garlic and ginger I already had in the store cupboard and stir fried all of the ingredients with some soy sauce. 

This was another Gousto Box dish. Miso-butter noodles with chicken and charred peppers and asparagus. I didn't think this meal looked very photogenic but when I put it on Instagram (you can follow me on Instagram here) it became my most liked photo ever, I think I'm getting the hang of this food photography malarky. 

Now this is quite high in calories from what I usually have but at 630 I don't think that is too bad for what is essentially burger and chips. This is cayenne chicken burger with oregano roast potatoes.

When it comes to breakfast eggs are king. I'd ran out of bread and crispbakes so have to improvise with some hash browns.

As well as eating well I've said before that I've started doing a lot more walking. I recently did one of my favourite walks from Craster to Dunstanburgh Castle in Northumberland. The walk is about 4 miles there and back and has some stunning views of the north east coastline.

Now it's time for our holiday to Calella de Palafrugell in Spain. This is not going to be the start of me falling back into my old lifestyle and although I won't be quite as strict as I have been in the last 9 1/2 weeks I am still going to eat healthy and continue to have as many long walks as I can. I'll be posting some pictures when I come back and might even do a blog post about it.

Well, that's all for now.



Saturday 11 June 2016

Child of the 80's: Television

As I child of the 80's I (rightly) consider the 80's to be the best decade for entertainment. The music was brilliant, the movies were amazing, the fashion was... err, well lets skip that. But the enduring memory I have of the 80's is the TV shows that entertained me and I thought I would take you on a trip down memory lane with some of my favourite cartoons and TV shows that I loved as a kid.


He-man and the Masters of the Universe

The battle between good and evil on the planet Eternia was my absolute favourite. The ultimate hero He-man and his friends like Battle-Cat, Man-at-Arms, Teela and Orko battle the evil forces of Skeletor. What I remember most about He-Man is not just the show but that I had pretty much all of the action figures (they were NOT dolls despite what my Dad used to tell me). I would sit watching the show whilst acting out my own adventure with my toys. Looking back at it now it does seem that the show was a big advert for the toys with massive helping of homo-eroticism but when I watched a few episodes again recently it was still brilliant and brought back so many memories.


Another of my favourites was Thundercats, it is about of group of anthropomorphic cats lead by Lion-O who have to flee from the planet Thundera and arrive on a new planet called Third-Earth. When they arrive they find the evil Mumm-Ra and his minions are terrorising Third-Earth. I think the premise of Thundercats is brilliant, Lion-O has the mind of a child but in an adults body due to a malfunction of his suspension capsule when the Thundercats were travelling through space and has to learn how to be a leader. All of the characters are fantastic and Mumm-Ra has to be one of the best baddies of all time, also Thundercats has the best theme tune of any of the shows I used to watch.


Transformers was another show I used to watch whilst playing with my toys, I would start with a car that looked a bit like a robot and somehow transform it into a robot that looks a bit like a car. Before Michael Bay got his hands on it and shoved Megan Fox and Shia Lebeuf down our throats I loved to watch the battle between he iconic Autobots lead by Optimus Prime and the evil Decepticons lead by Megatron. In this show I always preferred the Decepticons, Soundwave had a cool voice and even cooler helpers in the form of Laserbeak and Ravage, Shockwave was a badass laser connon but Starscream was my favourite, the treacherous jet-fighter was always trying to usurp Megatrons position as leader of the Decepticons.

Honourable Mentions

Some of the other cartoons I watched included Visionaries, Dungeons and Dragons, Bravestarr, MASK and Centurions.

TV Shows

The A-Team

Action packed family fun. No one ever died, no one ever swore and the A-Team could knock up a tank with nothing more that a shopping trolly, some corrugated steel and motor powered by 2 AA batteries. Hannibal, Face, B.A. Baracus and Murdoch were a dream team of soldiers of fortune helping those in need whilst trying to clear their names.

Knight Rider

David Hasselhoff, a talking car and kick ass theme tune. Need I say more?


Part game show, part fantasy series. Three friends would guide a fourth sightless dungeoneer around a computer generated medieval world. I'll never forget the time I nearly killed my sister whilst playing Knightmare as I guided her (whilst blindfolded) around our house and I got her to jump down the stairs, ah good times!

Honourable Mentions

I also used to love Quantum Leap, V, ALF, Red Dwarf and The Young Ones.

What were your favourite shows when you were kid? Let me know your memories of 80's TV.

Well, that's all for now.



Wednesday 8 June 2016

Lane 7: Racing rig

Lane 7: Racing rig exterior

Lane 7 is boutique bowling alley with a difference in Newcastle city centre. It doubles as a bar and restaurant and has other activities on offer like pool tables, ping pong and karaoke. I've been a few times, the food is always great and on a recent work night out we booked the karaoke room and had a great night. Last night Me, Mrs Cool and a few of our friends were invited for a meal from the new menu and to try out the new Racing Rig.

Lane 7: Racing rig track

We arrived and confirmed our reservation and then had a drink at the bar while we waited for the rest of our friends to arrive. Once everyone had turned up we went to our table to have dinner. The food at Lane 7 is the type of food I love, chicken wings, BBQ ribs, burgers, pulled pork and grilled sandwiches. Mrs Cool had the pulled pork bun and I went for The Cuban Press which is essentially a ham and cheese toastie, but what a ham and cheese toastie it is! All of the mains come with either fries or sweet potato fries, we both opted for sweet potato fries.

Lane 7: Racing rig The Cuban Press
The Cuban Press with Sweet Potato Fries
Lane 7: Racing rig Pulled Pork Bun
Pulled Pork Bun with Sweet Potato Fries

After our meal we headed upstairs to the Racing Rig, this new attraction is a miniature racing track for up to 10 racers. When you first arrive your asked to make a race licence, this is to upload your details to the computer to track your laps and time your race.

Lane 7: Racing rig Race Licence

Once you're registered you can take your place in one of the drivers seats, scan your licence so your details are assigned to your car and wait for the race to begin.

Lane 7: Racing rig Cars

The race is so much fun, it took a few laps for me to get the hang of it as I kept over steering and the spinning around, as the cars speed around the track crashing into each other and the walls various racing and car themed songs play (starting with The Chain by Fleetwood Mac obviously) and there is a trackside commentator giving in-race updates. The winner is the first to complete 20 laps and although I finished 2nd in our race I was 8 laps behind the winner, this is probably because I spent a few laps either going backwards or round the track the wrong way. After the race you can get your picture taken on the podium (if you're good enough to finish in the top 3).

Lane 7: Racing rig winners podium

You can find more information about Lane 7 here. The racing rig cost £3 for one turn or £10 for four turns. You don't need to pre book but there might be a queue if its busy. It's recommended for ages 7+ but children under 18 have to leave by 7pm due to licensing.

Here is a video of our night that Mrs Cool did for her blog:

Well, that's all for now.


© Big Stevie Cool. All rights reserved.
Blogger Designs by pipdig