- 08 January 2015 < Back to gossip

5 Weeks to Sugar-Free 3 Day Meal Plan: Day One

Homemade Granola with Whole MilkFruit LeatherFrench Onion Soup with toasted bread and cheeseFlapjackShepherd’s Pie and Pea Purée

Day One | Day Two | Day Three


Homemade Granola with Whole Milk

Makes 10–12 portions

  • 250g jumbo oats
  • 50g desiccated or flaked coconut
  • 150g nuts, lightly crushed into pieces (any kind are good, but almonds add sweetness)
  • a pinch of salt
  • 3 tbsp coconut oil (or another type of oil, but coconut oil is best)
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 egg white
  1. Preheat the oven to 150°C/130°C Fan/Gas 2. Line a large baking tray with greaseproof paper.
  2. Put the oats, coconut, nuts and salt in a large bowl. If your coconut oil has set, warm it gently in a pan until just melted. Pour the oil and the maple syrup over the dry ingredients and mix thoroughly so everything is well coated.
  3. Whisk the egg white until it’s frothy. Pour this over the oat mixture and mix thoroughly again. Spread the granola over the baking tray as evenly as you can.
  4. Bake the granola in the oven for 40–50 minutes, turning it over half way through. Start checking after 40 minutes to see if it’s done – it should be lightly browned and dry.
  5. Remove the tray of granola from the oven and leave it to cool completely. Gently break up the granola into clumps as big or small as you want. You will find some of the mixture is loose, but that’s
  6. unavoidable so don’t worry.
  7. Store the granola in an airtight jar – it will keep well for a few weeks. Enjoy it with milk or yoghurt, or just in handfuls when you feel like a yummy snack.


Fruit Leather

  • vegetable oil
  • 300g eating apples or pears
  • juice of ½ lemon
  • 300g berries (blueberries or strawberries are especially good)
  1. Preheat the oven to its lowest setting – usually about 50°C. Line a baking sheet with greaseproof paper and oil it very lightly.
  2. Dice the apples or pears and put them in a saucepan with 50ml of water and the lemon juice. Cover and simmer the fruit gently until very soft. The time this takes will vary depending on how firm the fruit is to start with. Add the berries and simmer for a couple of minutes more until the berry juices have bled into the apples or pears.
  3. Purée the fruit if you haven’t peeled it, then push it through a coarse sieve. Spread the mixture as evenly as you can over the baking sheet. Don’t worry if it seems very thick, as it will reduce down as the liquid evaporates from the fruit.
  4. Place the tray in the oven and leave for 7–8 hours or so. When it’s ready, the fruit leather will be glossy and tacky – but not sticky. Your finger will leave a print on it, but won’t feel sticky when removed!
  5. Remove the tray from the oven. You can then roll the fruit leather up and cut it into rounds or just into strips.
  6. Fruit leather keeps indefinitely in an airtight container. Put greaseproof paper in between the layers to stop them sticking.


French Onion Soup with toasted bread and cheese

Serves 4

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 25g butter
  • 1kg large, sweet onions, sliced into crescents
  • a large sprig of thyme
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 250ml white wine or dry cider (optional)
  • 1.2 litres well-flavoured chicken or beef stock
  • 100g Gruyère cheese or similar, grated
  • 4 thick slices of wholemeal sourdough bread
  • salt and black pepper
  1. Heat the olive oil and butter in a large saucepan, then add the onions and turn the heat down to low. Cover the saucepan and leave the onions to cook for 15–20 minutes, until soft. Stir every so often, just to make sure they aren’t catching on the bottom of the pan.
  2. Turn up the heat and continue to cook the onions, stirring regularly, until they’ve turned a deep golden brown. You will find that any liquid will evaporate during this process.
  3. Add the thyme and garlic and stir for a couple of minutes and then pour in the wine or cider, if using. Allow it to bubble for a few minutes until it has almost completely evaporated. Add the stock and season with salt and black pepper, then simmer the soup for 20–25 minutes.
  4. Preheat the grill to its highest setting. Toast the bread lightly on both sides, then divide the cheese between the slices of toast and press it down. Put the slices under the grill until the cheese has melted and is bubbling, and the bread has browned around the sides.
  5. Put the toasted bread and cheese in deep bowls and ladle the soup on top. Serve piping hot.



Makes about 15 squares

  • 200g unsalted butter
  • 250ml honey
  • 150g chopped dates
  • 400g porridge oats
  • 100g desiccated coconut
  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°C Fan/Gas 4. Line a 30 x 20cm tin with baking parchment.
  2. Put the butter, honey and dates in a saucepan over a low heat. Melt them together, crushing the dates with a wooden spoon so they break up into the butter and honey and get all lovely and squidgy. Stir in the oats and coconut and mix thoroughly.
  3. Pack the mixture into the prepared tin and bake for 20–25 minutes until golden brown. The flapjacks will still seem soft at this point, but don’t worry – they’ll firm up once cool.
  4. Remove the tin from the oven and immediately score the surface into about 15 squares. Leave the flapjack to cool in the tin, then cut it into squares.


Shepherd’s Pie and Pea Purée

Serves 6

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 600g minced lamb
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 2 celery sticks, diced
  • 100g celeriac or swede, finely diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • a few rosemary leaves, finely chopped
  • 400g can of chopped tomatoes
  • 300ml lamb or chicken stock
  • salt and black pepper
  • Topping
  • 2–3 sweet potatoes (about 1kg in weight)
  • 2 tbsp crème fraiche
  • a few knobs of butter, for dotting on top
  1. Heat the oil in a large casserole dish or saucepan. Add half the lamb and brown it thoroughly, allowing a crust to develop on the underside before turning it over. Remove the meat and set it aside, then add the remaining lamb and brown it in the same way. Put all the lamb back in the pan.
  2. Add the onion, carrots, celery and celeriac or swede to the pan and cook for 10 minutes over a medium heat until the vegetables have softened. Add the garlic, cinnamon and rosemary and stir to combine, then add the tomatoes and stock and season with salt and pepper. Bring everything to the boil, then turn down the heat and cover the pan with a lid. Simmer gently for about 45 minutes, checking regularly to make sure the mixture isn’t getting too dry. If necessary, add a little more stock or water.
  3. While the meat is cooking, you can make the sweet potato mash. Preheat the oven to 200°C/180°C Fan/Gas 6. Put the sweet potatoes on a baking tray and bake them for 45 minutes or so until soft. Remove them from the oven but leave the oven on. As soon as the sweet potatoes are cool enough to handle, split them open and scoop the flesh out into a bowl. Add the crème fraiche, season with salt and black pepper and mash thoroughly.
  4. To assemble, put the meat mixture in an ovenproof serving dish. Spoon the sweet potato mash on top, spreading it out evenly and making sure that none of the meat bleeds through, then fork up the mash slightly for a rougher finish. Dot with a few small knobs of butter. Bake the pie in the hot oven for about 40–45 minutes.

Pea Purée

  • 400g peas, fresh or frozen
  • 15g butter
  • ½ tsp dried mint
  • 1 tbsp crème fraiche
  • salt and black pepper
  1. Put the peas in a saucepan with the butter and dried mint. Add 50ml of water and season with salt and pepper. Put a lid on the pan and simmer the peas for about 5 minutes until they are just tender.
  2. Tip the contents of the saucepan into a blender or food processor, add the crème fraiche and blitz to a rough purée. Put the purée back in the pan to keep warm until ready to serve.

Davina’s Five Weeks to Sugar Free: Yummy, easy recipes to help you kick sugar and feel amazing, can be ordered here:

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