This week I’m loving – Philadelphia Milka

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As regular readers of the blog will know, I LOVE cheesecake. But why does it have to be so flipping calorific?! Ditto both points for chocolate.

So when I spotted Philadelphia Milka on a recent supermarket trip, I HAD to try it and I’m pleased to report it might just be the best £2 I’ve ever spent!

It tastes just like a good chocolate cheesecake filling and is rich, sweet, tangy and creamy in all the right proportions.

At only 4 Smart Points for a rather generous 30g serving, it’s delicious spread on WW Shortbread Biscuits or a good old digestive for a little cheesecake hit for a fraction of the Smart Points/calorie spend.

If you love a bit of cheesecake too, you might like to make my Breakfast Cheesecake and read my review of Costa’s Baked Vanilla Cheesecake.

Thanks for reading,

FFF

Beef Tacos – 5 Smart Points

Quick and easy to put together for a Friday night dinner, this dish is delicious served with some Cajun Courgettes

Servings: 2

Smart Points: 5 per serving

Time: 15-20 minutes

What you need:

  • 1 tsp oil
  • 250g lean beef mince
  • 1/2 onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tin chopped tomatoes
  • 1/2 tin kidney beans
  • Mexican seasoning
  • 2 taco shells

What to do:

  1. Heat a non-stick pan and add the oil. Soften the onions before adding the minced beef stirring until browned all over.
  2. Sprinkle over the Mexican seasoning and stir in the tomatoes and kidney beans. Continue cooking for about 5 minutes until everything is heated through.
  3. Heat the taco shells in the oven according to the instructions on the packet.
  4. Fill the taco shells with the beef filling and try not to make a complete mess whilst eating. (If anyone knows how to do this, please let me know!)

Cajun Courgettes – 0 Smart Points

Mr FFF has never been the biggest fan of vegetables. Apparently, he only really likes them when they’ve got “some kind of flavour” – other than the flavour of the actual vegetables – so I’m always looking for ways to pep-up his plate! These came about as I tried to use up some leftover courgettes and find something to accompany the tacos we were eating to use up some leftover taco shells.

Servings: 2

Smart Points: 0 per serving

Time: 20-25 minutes

What you need:

  • a couple of courgettes
  • Cajun seasoning
  • spray oil

What to do:

  1. Trim the courgettes and halve lengthways. Slice thickly and put into a roasting tin.
  2. Spray the courgettes with oil and sprinkle them liberally with the Cajun seasoning. Give the tin a good shake to ensure the courgettes are evenly coated.
  3. Roast in a pre-heated over at 180C for 15-20 minutes, turning halfway through cooking.

Top Tip: Add more or less Cajun seasoning depending on how much you like the taste of “actual vegetables”!

Drink of the Week: Marrakech Mint Tea – 0 Smart Points

As I’ve said before, I’m a BIG fan of tea. I’ve got a cupboard full of the stuff; a bit like shoes and handbags, I firmly believe you can never have too many varieties.

This variety is a green tea with peppermint from Whittard.

Inspired by the tea served in the souks of the Moroccan medina, we’ve blended our smoky Gunpowder Green with pure peppermint leaves for a refreshingly nuanced infusion. We’ve even added a sprinkling of blue cornflower petals for a British touch – why not try it the traditional way, mixed with honey or sugar?

https://www.whittard.co.uk/tea/tea-type/green-tea/marrakech-mint-loose-tea-MSTR314633.html

It was a thoughtful present from my amazing cousin who is also a tea lover (she’s a bit of an English breakfast purist, but does enjoy a Biscuit Brew). I love the Moroccan tiled print on the tin and the little flecks of blue cornflower petals in the tea itself.

Being a green tea, you only want to brew it for a couple of minutes otherwise it will taste bitter. And being a loose-leaf tea, you’ll need a teapot and strainer or an infuser but it’s worth the effort: you’ll be rewarded with a slightly sweet, refreshing tea with a hint of smokiness. Perfect for an afternoon pick-me-up when you want something without the heaviness of ‘standard’ tea or coffee.  

Pesto Pitta Pizzas – 13 Smart Points

I made this by accident after planning on making pitta pizzas but finding myself with no tomato puree. The pitta pizzas were an emergency fall back as I’d forgotten to take the fish I was supposed to be cooking out of the freezer (insert face-palm emoji here) so I had to think on my feet. I’d got a half-used jar of pesto in the fridge – obvs – so I decided to substitute that for the tomato puree. It was a great move and these will now be a regular feature on my weekly menu plans.

Servings: 4

Smart Points: 13 per serving

Time to make: 15 mins

What you need:

  • 6 wholemeal pitta breads
  • 6 tsp pesto
  • 160g cheddar cheese, grated
  • 2 slices premium ham, chopped
  • 6 chestnut mushrooms, slice

What to do:

  1. Put the pitta bread on a baking tray and spread each with one teaspoon of pesto.
  2. Sprinkle the cheese over the pitta breads and top each with the ham and mushroom.
  3. Bake at 200C for 10 minutes or until the cheese bubbles and begins to brown.
  4. Serve with a salad made from zero point fruits and vegetables.

Top Tip: I used classic green pesto for this recipe but I’m sure it would be just as delicious with any of the variety of flavours on offer.

Review: Costa Baked Vanilla Cheesecake

I’m a BIG cheesecake fan. I’ve had it instead of a birthday cake a few times, I love baking them and I’ve even been known to eat them for breakfast! (You could do worse than trying my Breakfast Cheesecake recipe BTW)

However, I’m quite particular about my cheesecake so I don’t often order it when I’m out as the risk of disapointment is just too great.But every now and then, I will order one in the name of ‘research’.

On a recent visit to Costa, I did just that, ordering myself a slice of their Baked Vanilla Cheesecake. The cheese was dense, rich and creamy. It wasn’t quite claggy, but almost. The flavour was very vanillary – almost like white chocolate. The base was very thin, crisp and sweet. It tasted as though it had tiny pieces of crunchy caramel in it.

My overall opinion was that it was on the good side of ok. Not brilliant but enjoyable enough and I’ve certainly had worse. Personally I would’ve liked it to have a thicker base and for the cheese to be a bit more tangy.

A massive downside was the Smart Points value. At a staggering 19 points per slice, I’d say it wasn’t worth it and I won’t be ordering it again any time soon.

Do you have a favourite brand of cheesecake or a great cheesecake recipe? Let me know in the comments section.

Thanks for reading,

FFF