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I'm Tom Kerridge - chef, husband and dad.
A few short years ago, I weighed in at almost 30st.
-Mental, innit?! That's at my peak.
I decided I had to do something about it,
so I cut out carbohydrates, quit the booze
and hit the gym, losing 12st.
It worked brilliantly for me,
but it's a strict regime which isn't right for everyone,
like these struggling dieters from my neighbourhood,
whose habits and lifestyles require a different approach.
So, I've set myself a challenge to help 13 locals lose weight for good
with my calorie-controlled recipes.
It is no coincidence that the first three letters of "diet" are "die"!
The NHS recommends cutting calories as the best way to lose weight,
but low-calorie food has a poor reputation.
You punish yourself eating, like, literally, cardboard.
I want to show them and you
that you can cook and eat the food you love and lose weight, too.
This is the bit that makes the dish come to life.
Mm, it's so nice. So satisfying.
And it really tastes like a big treat.
I need to be there for them to show them how they can do it,
and help them along the way, to pick them up when they're down...
-I just want to give up.
Listen, you've done so well. Don't give up now.
Last push, last push, last push!
..and encourage them to support each other, too.
I reckon if lower-calorie food could come packed full of flavour
and in generous portions,
people would have a much better chance
of losing weight and keeping it off for good.
We're eight weeks in, and my local gang of dieters
have worked really hard to change their lifestyles for the better.
I really, 100% believe that this is my new life.
I've helped them tackle their comfort eating,
given them easy recipes so they can find time to cook,
and kept them on track with some indulgent treats.
It's amazing. This ticks all the boxes for me.
I've even targeted their takeaway cravings
with lower-calorie fast food you can cook at home.
-That is really good.
-I'd take that.
You wouldn't know that it's a low-calorie recipe.
Now, with four weeks left of the experiment,
I need to turn my attention to the food they eat
when they're out and about.
To help them and you,
I'm making a delicious and filling lunchtime wrap,
a beautiful tuna nicoise salad with fresh tuna,
and a mouthwatering Mediterranean goat's cheese tart.
But first, some crunchy chocolate snack bars
to help when hunger hits between meals.
Five very simple ingredients. Really easy to make.
Start with 200g of dark chocolate.
At least 70% cocoa solids. It means there's less sugar in it.
Melt the chocolate.
Then, in a bowl, mix 40g of salted popcorn
with 50g of puffed rice cereal.
Add 50g of marshmallows.
I'm just going to cut them up into quarters.
This is the thing that makes it feel like you're having a real treat.
Add 50g of dried cranberries cut in half.
Then get your hands, gently mix everything together.
And then the chocolate.
Mix it together, but you don't want to break it up too much, OK?
Don't crush it about.
Pour into a lined cake tin and flatten it down.
OK, into the fridge for about an hour to set.
Then, once it's firmed up,
just lift it out with the baking parchment,
and cut into 20 squares.
It's a proper treat, that.
You will feel that you've had something special.
Chewy, crunchy, and very chocolaty -
a calorie-counted snack you can eat wherever you are,
like date night at the cinema.
They're like rocky road popcorn.
Tom and Beth are the only couple taking part
in my 12-week weight-loss experiment.
They're really, really nice.
You have seriously eaten all of them. Unbelievable!
22-year-old Tom works in construction.
His eating habits at work
haven't exactly been healthy.
I'm going to building sites a lot.
Eating on the go is a massive thing.
I might find a service station and get the meal deals!
21-year-old Beth has been with Tom for over a year now.
It's been a positive step for her,
but it's also had an unfortunate side effect.
When me and Tom first got together,
we'd go out for a lot of meals,
and he'd come round here a lot and we'd get, like,
four takeaways a week, which is really bad!
I think, after about the first six months,
I did put on 2st, and then I was like,
"Whoa, no. I look ridiculous. None of my clothes are fitting me!"
Since Tom and Beth signed up to take part in this,
they're cooking more at home and have cut back on eating out,
but they don't want to give this up altogether.
They're out with their friends,
and in amongst all the pitfalls and the nightmares
of high-street chain food.
So, I'm going to have a little look at what they order,
see if I can point them in the right direction and help them out.
We have this running joke in my family that I'm, like,
always the first one to the buffet.
I just love food. I just can't say no!
But rather than say no,
I think you should still be able to go out to eat,
but make better choices when you do.
-Hey there, guys. Hello.
-I'm just in time for the ordering.
-Yeah, we're all starving.
-How many calories have you got left?
-I've got 700.
-700 for the rest of the day?
See, that's not bad. What about you, Tom?
I've got about 900.
Tom and Beth have very different calorie allowances.
He's on 2,700 calories a day, while she's on 1,600.
And what about the motivation with each other
regarding the amount of calories that you can have?
I try and eat more in the day so I don't come home
and there's the pair of us on...
-Beth on, like...
-..500 and me on, like, 1,000.
So, what would you do in a situation like this,
where you've got loads of nice things on the menu?
-What would you go for?
-Think of yourself.
You're in a happy space, you're out with your friends,
you're in one of your favourite restaurants, it's good fun.
You know the food is tasty, even if it's the lighter option.
Well, after seeing the under 600 calories,
I'll probably still get a pizza,
cos it's still nice to know that you can have a pizza,
but it'll just have a hole in the middle with some salad.
This time last year, I was so unhappy,
and I really wasn't confident with myself.
And now I just feel like a completely different person.
Well done, you guys. I think that's amazing.
Well, guys, I'm going to leave you to it.
-I have to say, they look amazing.
-It looks good, doesn't it?
-It looks great. It smells lush.
I'm going to go and leave you, stop ruining your evening.
See you later, guys. Nice to meet you. See you later. Goodnight.
It's so good to see Tom and Beth really supporting each other now,
not leading each other astray.
But like all my dieters,
they need more options for their packed lunches,
and this spicy Mexican wrap's just the kind of thing
young Tom could take onto a building site.
OK, there's two base ingredients to this burrito,
and the first one is sweet potato.
I've baked these for about an hour till they're nice and soft.
The trick here is the sweet potatoes.
They have so much more flavour and fibre than regular potatoes.
I'm just going to scrape out the flesh.
Mind your fingers cos it is very hot.
Just with a spoon, scoop out that lovely sweet, orange flesh,
and you give that a little mash up.
And then to add to this, the next base ingredient are these,
and these are black beans. This is two tins here.
I'm going to put half of it into a food processor,
and these are pre-soaked and cooked.
And into that, I'm going to put 50g of toasted walnuts.
Then I'm going to blend this to a paste.
Then you take this paste, you add it to our cooked sweet potatoes.
This black bean paste is where you're going to get
quite a bit of protein into the dish, but also flavour.
Those toasted walnuts work really well together.
Just give it a lovely underlying toasty texture and taste.
Then add the rest of my drained black beans.
And now it's time to get some extra flavourings,
and they're all going to come from spice.
First one - two teaspoons of hot smoked paprika.
Then one teaspoon each of garlic powder, onion powder.
It goes so well with the hot smoked paprika.
And to that, one teaspoon of dried Italian herbs.
Then a good pinch of salt...
..and cracked black pepper.
And then mix it together.
Now I'm going to take this mix
and I'm going to form it into four equal sausages.
Right now, this mix is quite wet,
so don't worry about getting your hands a little bit messy.
So, these four guys are going to sit in the fridge
till they set up - about an hour.
So, after an hour of chilling,
I'm going to bake them in the oven - 180 degrees for 50 minutes.
They smell amazing.
They've just dried out nice and crispy on the top.
I'm just going to make the filling to go with them.
In here, I've got 100g of zero-fat Greek yoghurt,
and to that, I'm going to put two teaspoons
of smoked chipotle paste.
Jalapeno chillies form the base of this paste.
It's hot stuff, but the yoghurt helps to balance the heat.
I'm just going to get one of these lovely tortilla wraps,
and then a large spoonful
of the chipotle yoghurt onto the base.
Going to take one of these fillings,
just sit it on the top, and then going to add the salad -
some sliced iceberg lettuce either side,
some grated carrot.
..and then some freshly grated beetroot.
And then for a proper, authentic Mexican taste, avocado.
So, you're going to use a quarter of an avocado per burrito.
Avocado may be high in calories, but it's packed with goodness,
so a slice or two is worth it.
And then, quite simply, roll it up...
..as tightly as you can.
It's going to be wrapped up and taken to work.
And either end, just twist it to hold it in shape.
There you have it - perfect, meaty-textured,
full-flavoured vegetarian burrito.
This is a generous lunch,
ideal for dieters with bigger calorie allowances
or physical jobs...
Are you all ready for a bit of burrito?
..like young Tom, who's not only made one for himself,
but brought enough for his construction site workmates, too.
-Very good, Tom.
-It's really good.
-It's not bad.
-It's not bad!
Taking my recipes to work seems to be catching on.
Metropolitan Police detective Andy
has brought in a three-course meal for his colleagues.
I come with a feast in a big plastic box.
So, I prepared tomato soup. I also have a nice tortilla.
And then, to finish, I've got strawberry cheesecake.
Right, I'm sold!
When you're at the coalface or you're at the front line
and you're dealing with the whole unpredictable nature of policing,
then that's when the real challenges come,
and that's when you eat the biscuits, you eat the cakes,
you eat perhaps too many kebabs on occasion.
-That is about 180 calories.
-Actually, Andy, that's really nice.
-Could do with a bit of bread with it.
What we can have is the tortilla instead of the bread.
There's a pressing reason behind Andy's decision
to eat more healthily at work.
His silver wedding anniversary is approaching,
and he's going to Barbados.
That's a landmark. It's a good time to set a goal.
I'm going to become Slim Jim.
I'm going to get my photos taken on the beach.
I'm sure I'll have a new pair of swimming shorts, probably.
The piece de resistance.
My strawberry cheesecake recipe uses quark -
a lower-calorie alternative to cream cheese.
-That is lovely. Genuinely.
-Really, really nice. Yeah.
It gets a big thumbs up from Andy's colleagues...
-Lovely. Thanks, Andy.
..but lunch at work doesn't have to be quite so lavish.
Here's my lower-calorie version of a classic tuna salad
you can knock up at home and take wherever you're going.
Come on. Come on in.
And I've invited Beth, Louise and Ki over
to teach them how to make it.
All right, then, guys, how many of you buy pre-packed salads?
-OK. So, this is a version of a salad
that is good for having on the go - tuna nicoise.
-Are we all big fans of tuna nicoise?
Yeah? You don't look convinced! LAUGHTER
I'm being polite. I don't like fish in general, but there we go.
-So, you don't like fish either, Beth?
-Not a massive fan.
Right, I promise you, this is going to change your mind.
So, I'm going to need your help. Just a minute.
These are hard-boiled eggs. I just need to peel them.
OK. Then what we're going to do is gem lettuce -
just going to take the ends off and just build it up together.
Then the next thing is tomatoes.
And then French beans, OK? So, these have been cooked.
I'm just going to cut them in half and sprinkle them all over as well.
New potatoes. OK, these have been cooked and sliced.
Skins still on, OK?
So, that skin gives flavour. It also gives texture.
Then, on top of the potatoes, some sliced red onion.
Loads and loads of natural sweetness. Works really well.
And on top of that, we'll put the hard-boiled eggs.
-It's very orange.
-Yeah, so, it's free-range.
Beautiful free-range egg.
When I say hard-boiled, what I mean is perfectly cooked.
And then, over that, a couple of teaspoons of capers on the top,
and all of a sudden, it brings it to life.
A nicoise salad would not be a nicoise salad without black olives.
Now we're going to cook the tuna steaks.
So, this is the one-cal spray olive oil.
-Are you all using this? ALL:
OK. So, a couple of sprays, both sides.
-So, is that the same as canned tuna?
-So, what happens with canned tuna
is that they pack all the tuna into a can and they cook it in the can.
This is fresh. You can get it from your fishmonger.
You can get it from the supermarket. Have you had it like this before?
No. I think the last time I had fish,
-I was probably about ten, so this is like...
..a brand-new experience for me.
OK, in that case, I'm not so nervous.
I know you're going to like this.
Would you never eat fish and chips, then?
-You would just stay away from that?
-I'd have a battered sausage!
-Really? You wouldn't have fish and chips?
-No, I'm exactly the same.
-Give me a battered sausage
or a saveloy any day, rather than a cod.
So, rock salt, cracked black pepper. This pan has been on the heat.
It's nice and hot. There's no oil in it.
So, the steaks are going to go in, seasoned side down.
Then, whilst they're cooking, I'm going to make the dressing.
So, here, I've got 60ml of Greek zero-fat yoghurt,
two teaspoons of very good extra virgin olive oil, OK?
Two teaspoons of Dijon mustard,
one teaspoon of dried herbes de Provence,
and a little pinch of golden caster sugar.
And then, into that, I'm going to put the juice of one lemon.
OK, so, some chopped basil goes into the dressing -
fresh basil - some freshly chopped parsley,
and that's the dressing made.
And my tuna's cooking, and all I'm going to do is flip it over.
Then, at this point, I'm going to grab another lemon, juice into the pan.
It just steams the bottom of that fish
and helps to cook it a little bit on the other side.
What I'm going to do now is dress this salad.
-That looks really creamy.
-It's lovely, isn't it?
And that's the yoghurt that's come from that.
A little bit of olive oil.
Right, come on, grab yourselves plates.
-Ooh, I'm nervous.
-Knives and forks.
-I'm nervous to try it!
Come on, Beth, break it up. Get in there. Don't be shy.
-Here you are, Ki. That's for you, mate.
-Oh, mate, thank you.
-Here goes nothing.
-Go on, mate.
Go on, girls. Be brave.
-That's really nice. Cos I've never had it before...
..it's just something I don't really know about.
So, I was nervous, but the texture straightaway was really nice.
I associate tuna with cat food, but this isn't cat food at all.
It's not cat food! I'll tell you what, that's...
I've been a chef for 26 years,
and that's one of the best compliments I've ever had!
It must be good if two people who don't even like fish loved it.
It's another great packed lunch for the gang,
like nurse Sam, who, before she started on our diet adventure,
had very dodgy eating habits at work.
When you go on the ward, everyone offers you a biscuit
or chocolates are always available, and I can never say no.
Anything I'm offered, I tend to eat!
She's told me that's all changed now,
but how can I be sure?
So, I'm here to see Sam the nurse at work.
It's a surprise visit. She doesn't know I'm coming.
Knock, knock. I've got an injury!
-Oh, my God!
-Oh, my God!
-Oh, my God!
-Oh, my God, Tom!
-How are you? Are you all right?
-I'm fine. How are you?
I'm really good. I'm really good. How are you, more importantly?
-Yeah, I'm good, thanks.
-Doing all right?
How's she getting on, ladies and gentlemen?
She's doing very well. She's sticking to it very well.
-Where do we get a cup of tea, mate?
-I can make you one here.
Sam's not only given up the impulse to snack on choccy treats,
she's thinking ahead.
I make sure I'm prepared.
So, before, at work, I'd very rarely brought a lunch in.
I would just sort of grab something as I was going,
whereas, now, I'm always prepared, food-wise.
And it's paying off.
Now I'm starting to get sort of the comments now.
So, people are sort of saying, "Oh, you've lost weight."
Yesterday, I actually threw away a pair of my work trousers
cos I spent all day, like, hoicking them up.
That's not your clothes have got too big.
That's you that's got too small for your clothes.
And that means Sam's ready for a rather special new outfit.
She and fiance Bobby got engaged ten months ago,
but, unhappy with her weight,
she's delayed trying on wedding dresses.
Now I've lost a stone, I just feel like I'm in a much better place.
So, along with mum Janet, mother-in-law Pauline,
and best friend Kelly, Sam's going shopping.
Try some dresses on, see what happens.
-Is that one...?
-Yeah, that's a keeper.
-Try that one.
-OK, ladies, we'll see you in a little bit.
The next two and a half hours sees eight costume changes...
I feel like a mermaid!
..one calorie-counted glass of champagne...
-Do I look like a bride?
-Yes, you do.
-It's feeling very real.
Yeah, it's beautiful.
..a few tears...
-Oh, yes! That's better.
-Aw, that's beautiful.
-I can imagine walking down to Bobby like this.
..and a massive realisation about what she's already accomplished.
To have lost a stone
and now be stood in a beautiful wedding dress,
it is an achievement, isn't it?
-You look gorgeous.
-I do feel very gorgeous, actually.
All of a sudden, I looked like I had a really nice body shape
and everything was worth it.
This is what can happen when you take control of what you're eating.
And my next recipe is just the kind of thing
to help the gang boss their packed lunches.
Mediterranean roasted vegetable tart -
a great alternative to a boring sandwich,
and can be made the night before.
I love tarts, and this one is generous and delicious.
It's full of veg, and has a great crunch.
For the pastry, I'm using ready-made light puff pastry,
and because it's lower in fat,
it can be part of your calorie-controlled diet.
All I'm going to do is just trim it
so it fits nicely onto my tray.
Then I'm going to score just the inside of the pastry,
about 2cm from the outside.
Then I'm just going to fork the middle of it
so it doesn't puff up so much through the middle,
but it helps keep it nice and crispy.
I'm just going to put this pastry in the fridge
and let it rest for about an hour.
Whilst that's resting, I'm going to finish chopping
my Mediterranean-style vegetables to go on the top.
I've already got red pepper and a yellow pepper
cut into big, chunky-like pieces.
I'm going to do the same with a red onion and some courgettes.
I'm just going to cut them into chunky rounds.
Tip all the veg into a roasting tray,
and then next into that, I've got four big cloves of garlic.
I'm just going to thinly slice them.
I'm just going to pop the garlic into the veg.
And you can see the veg - they're all cut about the same size.
And this is good cos they'll all cook at about same time.
And then, here, I've got some fresh thyme -
not a huge amount,
but a little of this thyme goes a long way.
It's a big, powerful flavour.
And then next to go with the thyme - a couple of sticks of rosemary.
And then, with your knife,
literally just run it through the herbs.
I'm just going to dust them all over the top of our vegetables,
then going to season it with some rock salt...
..and some cracked black pepper...
..and a few squirts of our low-calorie olive oil.
And then, with your hands,
just get in there and mix all of those flavours together,
and that's ready to go in the oven.
Now the puff pastry.
I'm just going to give it a little brush with semi-skimmed milk.
It just helps to give it a bit of a crust and colour on the top.
And then, alongside the vegetables,
they're both going to go into an oven - 220 degrees.
Puff pastry in the middle shelf, vegetables on the top shelf.
Bake for 25 minutes, then take the veg out
and turn the oven down to 140,
then leave the pastry for half an hour to crisp up.
The pastry is very nice and crispy.
And on to that, I'm going to put these amazing,
beautifully roasted Provencal or Mediterranean-style vegetables.
I'm just going to put them within the parameter
of where we cut around the outside, so it stays nice and neat.
Then, onto that, a small handful of cherry tomatoes
in and amongst the vegetables.
And then, on top, some goat's cheese.
When it's cooked on a tart like this, it's amazing.
Cut the cheese into nuggets about the same size as the veg.
So, we get these little pockets and bursts of cheesy flavour
going all the way through this tart.
Back in the oven once more.
180 degrees for around about 20-25 minutes.
Look at that. Perfect. Amazing.
Last little bit of taste and flavour
is some fresh basil leaves.
Final hint of freshness, and wonderful Mediterranean flavour.
And there you go. That serves four.
Perfect for two of you to have a little bit now,
and then, tomorrow, you can both take a piece to work.
But don't put it in the fridge, all right?
Cos that's when it'll go soft and soggy.
Just wrap it in tinfoil, leave it on the side,
and it's ready to stick in your back pocket and get on the bus.
Don't stick it in your back pocket!
Wrapped in foil, a slice of this in your lunchbox
will make you the envy of the office,
or hospital, or police station, or building site...
After ten weeks of calorie-counted recipes
and regular exercise, the group has seen their body shapes change.
A lot of my clothes have been falling off,
and I've actually just thrown out two bin bags of clothes
cos they don't fit me any more.
-That is really, really nice.
I feel really confident. Yeah, feel really confident.
Could you imagine doing this, like, ten weeks ago?
-I would not be standing here.
And to celebrate this new-found confidence,
dieter and professional photographer Ki
has invited them all to a special photoshoot
at the local cricket club.
This is going to be quite a classic portrait set-up
to really focus on the personalities and the people.
Hopefully, we're a little different than last time we saw each other.
I just love it cos you look around and everybody's faces
have just totally changed. Man, you're looking sharp.
I wouldn't have been so keen having my photos taken,
but I think now that I've lost some weight
and I feel more confident in myself,
I'm ready to give it a go.
Show off our new physiques.
But not everyone's as excited about posing for the camera.
I haven't dreaded it.
I'm just not one who enjoys having their picture taken.
Thanks, everyone, for coming tonight.
From looking at the group, everybody's so much more confident.
I was going to ask for a volunteer to go first,
but you're already up there, so we're going to start.
CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
I'm loving this!
-I like that one.
-That's the one we're going with. There you go.
There's 13 portraits to take, and Sandra sets the standard.
So, do you think you're much happier with that now
-than you would have been three months ago?
-Yeah, that's it, that's it.
That's lovely. Nice.
Displaying new-found confidence...
That's gorgeous, yes.
You look a different man, mate.
..the dieters happily line up for their photos.
Give me a kiss. Nice.
Right, let me see you.
-Nice. Tom, get in here!
You're a new, different guy now.
Oh, Ozi, that is gorgeous!
Do your detective voice, Andy!
-You're arrested for murder.
Last to go are Lee and Ki.
Oh, are we doing this now?
You're going to take mine first, and then I'll take yours afterwards.
-Don't mess it up.
-I won't. I'm going to make you look stunning.
-I need to see those shoulders.
-Oh, that's a good one.
-CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
High-five. Wait till you see these.
Having found out what it's like to be the photographer,
Lee plucks up the courage to become the subject.
Beautiful. Look at that. Lovely.
That was agony!
The group have sent me their latest weights,
and looking at the numbers,
there's so much for them to be proud of.
Young Tom's lost 22lbs since we started. Fantastic job!
And Beth's not only supporting Tom's efforts,
she's lost 8lbs of her own.
Now, when we started, I told the gang
how much they might expect to lose.
At the end of 12 weeks, you'll have lost around about a stone.
Well, I'm delighted to see that Ozi, Sandra and Jenny
have all now reached that milestone,
which means ten out of the 13 dieters
have lost a stone or more so far.
Next time, I try to recruit a new dieter
over a round of golf with Tom and his twin brother.
I tell you what, what sport shall we do next?
Cos this is great!
I feel petrified.
Sam's made the weight for a charity skydive,
but will she actually do it?
And armed with a batch of delicious recipes made for sharing...
..I take the gang for a celebration river cruise
and announce how much weight they've all lost
during our 12 weeks together.
Come on, group hug, group hug, group hug.