I am now 3 days post-surgery from my gastric sleeve weight-loss surgery and am keen to stay well-nourished and keep food interesting while I’m on the two-week liquid diet. I am also keen to create soups that other family members can enjoy alongside me, so whilst this is a soup for the post-bariatric surgery diet, it is suitable for anyone, and also very good for anyone on a reflux diet.
Ingredients (for one person, or increase according to number of portions)
chicken stock (or vegetable stock if you want to do this as a vegetarian soup), 300-400ml (allow a generous amount as it will boil down. I used my home-made hen stock, but you can use stock cubes/pots
green no-soak dried lentils, approx. 1 tbsp
one thin strip of lean, previously grilled, bacon
one low-fat cheese triangle
Place the stock, lentils and bacon in a pan and cook according to instructions (I brought mine to the boil, boiled without a lid for 10 minutes, then simmered with a lid for a further 20 minutes). Ensure the lentils are very soft by the end of the cooking time, otherwise cook for longer.
Check the stock for taste – if it has cooked down a lot, it may be too salty and require the addition of a little boiled water.
Remove the bacon piece and leave to cool a little. Once it has cooled down, place the stock and lentils into a blender and blitz until there are no pieces left. Then sieve the blitzed soup through a fine sieve, to ensure it is completely smooth (it is essential that no ‘bits’ are present that could get stuck in the surgical staple line of the sleeve gastrectomy during the first two weeks).
When you are ready to serve the soup, reheat it gently in a pan or microwave, adding the cheese triangle, cut into small pieces so it will dissolve better. Stir until all or almost all of the cheese has melted into the soup, serve and enjoy!
Gloriously simple, gloriously good!
Disclaimer: I am not a dietitian or medical professional. These are simply ideas based on meals I have created to suit my own dietary needs and, as I’ve enjoyed them, I wanted to share them. If you are unsure about the suitability of any ingredients or recipes on my blog for your own requirements, please check with a health professional first.
Product Review – Two Cheeses from ‘The Cheese Market’:
Little Wallop and Organic Bath Blue
I was recently contacted by The Cheese Market and asked whether I would like to review one of their cheeses. They kindly offered for me to choose one from their website and I really liked the look of the Little Wallop.
My first pleasant surprise came, therefore, when they sent me not just the Little Wallop but also the Organic Bath Blue, plus some delicious Godminster Rosemary Water Biscuits to go with the cheeses.
I particularly liked the little touch of the ‘We hope you enjoy the cheese’ tag.
The cheeses were courier-delivered and came in solid cardboard packaging, clearly marked as perishable and with lots of padding inside the box (as well as ice packs) to protect and preserve the cheese. So lots more ‘ticks’ there.
Onto the reviews of the cheeses themselves (the water biscuits were delicious, by the way, but much nicer to eat with just a bit of salted butter, rather than masking their delicious rosemary flavour with the addition of cheese):
This cheese is described on ‘The Cheese Market’ website as “a soft washed cheese. When young it has a subtle citrus flavour balanced with salt + a creamy aftertaste. As it ripens it has a slightly pungent smell & flavour due to the rind.”
The one I received was lovely and ripe, with the characteristic slightly pungent smell, without being overpowering. I always prefer the ‘gooey’ parts of goats’ cheese, found closest to the rind, but even the harder-textured centre was delicious. The centre was less ‘goaty’ than the soft gooey bits nearer the rind. The cheese has a lovely balanced flavour, with a hint of nuttiness and pungency and a distinctive ‘goatiness’ about it. The vine leaves wrapped around the rind add an interesting dimension. Almost reminicent of basil flavour, the dried vine leaves add a crunchy texture and a sweetness that balances the cheese beautifully.
The ‘Little Wallop’ is adorably named and definitely a treat to savour and enjoy. At £7.50 for 140g it’s not a low-cost everyday treat, though. But if you’re after a really classy, tasty little cheese to enjoy on its own, with biscuits or perhaps with a full-bodied red wine, then this is definitely one I’d recommend. Make sure you leave it out of the fridge for at least 30 mins to soften to allow you to savour it at its best.
I am quite picky about blue cheese and generally have a preference for lovely creamy Italian Gorgonzola, though I have eaten some delicious Blue Stilton on occasion.
Receiving this blue to review was an unexpected treat and boy, am I glad The Cheese Market sent me it!
This blue cheese is definitely not for the feint-hearted blue cheese beginner. According to the website description, “2014’s winner of the World’s Tastiest Cheese Awards is the magnificent Organic Bath Blue Cheese. Made by The Bath Soft Cheese company in Somerset with organic milk from their own cows and traditionally ripened for 8-10 weeks in their stone rooms. This organic cheese is has a creamy blue veined taste. A must try for all blue cheese lovers + suitable for vegetarians.”
The Organic Bath Blue is strong and pungent, from its aroma to its flavour, it leaves you in no doubt about its character! Rich in blue veins running throughout it, this cheese goes beyond pungency, however. It even LOOKS creamy, as the white parts are not white; they are almost yellow and scream out ‘I am creamy’. This cheese is rich and indulgent. The creamy taste and texture complement the pungency to perfection. A cheese to be savoured! Again, not a low-cost treat at £7.95 for 250g, but it is so rich that its flavour goes a long way. Definitely one you should try if you are a lover of blue cheese and very worthy of its World Champion Award at the World Cheese Awards.
I’d like to have something to recommend for improvement to give a more balanced review, but there was nothing I didn’t like about the cheeses. The only thing I can say is that they are on the pricey side, but then you would expect to pay for this level of quality, not just quality of the cheeses but attention to detail in the packaging and delivery, too. Outstanding!
*About my food reviews:
I received these products free of charge with a request to review them on my blog. This is an honest product review and reflects my opinion (and those of my family members, who have also sampled the products). I did not receive any payment in exchange for the review. If you would like me to review your products, please contact me via Twitter, Facebook or E-mail in the first instance. Thank you 🙂
I know that they taste & look great. I’ve had brilliant feedback, including from an independent retailer (I can’t say too much at this stage, but we’re looking to do a store trial with tasters in the autumn, all being well!). Now I just need to raise awareness of these exquisite Italian morsels 🙂 Any help greatly appreciated!