Annette Sym's tips for healthy winter eating: Beef casserole

WINTER can be an easy time to gain weight with tracksuits and baggy jumpers hiding extra kilos gained over the colder months.  But after a few months the sun will shine again and reality will hit, so let's make this winter a healthy one.
Here are my tips for healthy winter eating:

1) Fill up on lots of vegetables at dinnertime, they contain great fibre and will help you feel full. Veggies have a minute amount of fat and are sooo good for you, make veggie soups and stir-fries to keep you satisfied.

2) When making casseroles cut off all visible fat from meat which will halve the fat count. Remove as much fat off the top of stews/casseroles, best to leave the stew to cool and then you will be able to see the fat settle on the top and then scoop it all off. When you buy mince buy the premium mince, you really do get what you pay for with meat, the cheap meat is normally very fatty.

3) Eat fruit even if it is cold, the fibre is important. Why don't you stew your fruit on those cold nights and serve with low fat custard or ice cream.

4) Some great snack ideas over winter are raisin toast, crumpets, cup a soups, or make some low-fat cakes or muffins from my cookbooks. Make batches up and freeze them so you always have something nice to have that is also good for you. A bowl of high fibre cereal is always a great snack.
5) You can't beat a bowl of hot porridge as it is quite filling, low in fat and good for you. Another great filler-upper is a Smoothie (Book 3).

6) If you have the afternoon munchies make a batch of Corn Chips (Book 1) they got me through the 4 o'clock snack time when I was losing my weight. 

7) Use skim milk in hot chocolate drinks and buy the diet chocolate powder drinks in supermarkets they are great tasting and low in fat and not too high in sugar. I like Jarrah Choc o Lait the best. Remember the more you feed your sweet tooth the more you will crave it so keep sweet treats as just that 'a treat'.

8) You need to be hydrated all year round so don't slacken off at winter time. Instead of drinking cold water why not boil your water and add a wedge of fresh lemon, very refreshing and a fantastic way to help cleanse the body. We can often mistake dehydration for hunger so drink lots of water and not only will your skin, hair and body in general benefit you may find you will be less hungry.

Annette's cookbooks SYMPLY TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE 1-7 are sold in all good newsagencies. Visit Annette's website for more tips and recipes. You can also join Annette's page at Symply Too Good FACEBOOK.

Symple Beef Casserole

750g lean stewing steak diced
¼ cup plain flour
cooking spray
1 teaspoon crushed garlic (in jar)
1 large onion sliced
1½ cups carrot thickly sliced
¾ cup parsnip diced
¾ cup swede diced
1 cup celery sliced
2 cups water
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
4 teaspoons salt-reduced chicken stock powder
4 dried bay leaves
¾ teaspoon dried rosemary
¾ teaspoon dried thyme
1 x 400g no-added-salt chopped tomatoes
⅓ cup tomato chutney (in jar)
3 tablespoons Gravox® Lite Supreme
¼ cup water

Preheat oven 180°C fan forced.
Step 1: In a large bowl coat steak with flour. Place pieces of steak into a large non-stick frypan that has been generously coated with cooking spray and brown.
Step 2: Using a large casserole dish (10 cup), place meat and all other ingredients into dish except Gravox and ¼ cup water, combine well, place lid on top, cook 1 hour 15 minutes.
Step 3: Combine Gravox powder with ¼ cup of water and mix into casserole. Place back into oven for a further 15 minutes or until vegetables are cooked to your liking. Pepper to taste.

Variations: Replace steak with 750g raw lean lamb leg steaks, skinless chicken breast or 400g tofu diced.

Suitable to be frozen.

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