Behind the scenes of Skinnyo, we let you organise or join challenges that make it a little easier to stay healthy.

The Cold War on Fat

Posted: January 8th, 2011 | Author: hannah | Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , | No Comments »

People are prepared to be tucked, pinched, pulled and sucked to get rid of fat in a flash, but what about being frozen?

A procedure being offered by Zeltiq literally freezes the fat off you. Called CoolSculpting it uses a process known as Cryolipolysis to freeze and destroy fat cells. Over a one to hour treatment lipocytes, or fat cells, are cooled down damaging the cells whilst leaving other cells unharmed. Over the next few weeks, as the cells die, they are recycled by the lymphatic system and the liver.

Studies have shown a 20-25% reduction in the fat layer with each treatment. And with the treatment being painless and non-intrusive you can carry on with your normal daily activities as soon as your treatment is done.

Steadily growing in popularity in the states it looks set to become a chillier alternative to liposuction.


Hannah VS Tom – SOUP

Posted: January 6th, 2011 | Author: hannah | Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

Two perfect soups for warming you up this winter. But which is best?

Hannah – French Onion Soup

Time – 1 hour 45 minutes

Serves – 4

Ingredients

  • 5 Large White Onions – roughly chopped
  • 2-3 Cloves of Garlic – crushed
  • 50g Butter
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Sugar
  • 500ml Beef or Vegetable Stock
  • Large Glass Dry White Wine
  • Salt and Pepper

Melt the butter over a high heat until foaming. I tend to use 10g of butter for every onion, so it’s fairly easy to quantify.

Add the onions, garlic and sugar and cook on a high heat for 5-6 minutes until the edges begin to brown slightly. Turn the heat down low and allow to cook for a further 30 minutes.

The bottom of the pan should be coated in a brown layer of caramelised onion, stir the stock and the wine in with the onions, scraping the caramelised onion from the base of the pan with a spoon.

Season to taste, bring back to the boil and then turn down to the lowest heat, then wander off and allow the soup to cook for 1 hour with the lid off.

Bring back to the boil once more before serving to ensure the soup is piping hot – but be careful not to burn your mouth.

Tom – Carrot and Sweet Potato Soup

Time – 45 minutes

Serves – 4

Ingredients

  • 2 Large White Onions – Roughly Chopped
  • 2 Cloves of Garlic – Crushed
  • 400g Carrots
  • 400g Sweet Potato
  • 500ml Vegetable Stock
  • Salt and Pepper
  • A little chilli powder (if you want a kick!)

Fry the onions and garlic over a medium heat for 5-10 minutes until softened. Add the chopped carrots and sweet potatoes and fry for a further 5 minutes.

Transfer to a large pan and add the vegetable stock. Bring to the boil and allow to simmer for 35-40 minutes until the veggies are soft and tender.

Using a blender or a hand held mixer purée the soup until smooth and creamy. Season to taste and enjoy hot.


Resolutions, Targets and Goals

Posted: January 4th, 2011 | Author: hannah | Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , | No Comments »

A new year is upon us again, and as is customary at this time of year many people start thinking about ways to improve themselves and figure out where they see themselves in a years time. 

The most popular resolutions are of course to get healthier, fitter, exercise more and lose weight – something we like to think we know a little bit about at Skinnyo.

The Skinnyo community has come up with some cracking challenges to get you off to a great start in the new year, here are just a couple which still have spaces left to be filled:

2011 – The Year of Weight Loss

Have a 30 minute walk every day for 3 weeks - Get active with a walk every day.

Beach Body 2011 - Get working on your perfect summer body now.

Water/Green Tea Challenge – Can you cut out soda drinks?

Walk for 15 minutes three times a week – A challenge for those looking for some lighter exercise. 

You can find many more weight loss challenges at skinnyo.com


Christmas Cocktail: Candy Cane Martini

Posted: December 19th, 2010 | Author: hannah | Filed under: Photos | Tags: , , , , , | No Comments »

It might be obvious by now that I have a bit of a soft spot for themed drinks, and although it’s not the best time of year to be promoting even more indulgence, this recipe looked too cute not to share.

- 1 1/2 ounces vanilla vodka

- 1/2 ounce peppermint schnapps
- 1 ounce club soda
- crushed candy canes for garnish

Rim a martini glass with crushed candy canes. Mix vodka, schnapps, and club soda with ice in a cocktail shaker; strain into prepared glass. You could also also hang a candy cane outside of the martini glass, as shown in the picture.

From Exotic Excess


The insects hidden in your everyday food

Posted: December 13th, 2010 | Author: hannah | Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

Do you find the thought of a few beetle legs in your favourite chocolate appetising? How about a locust head in your peanut butter? Or maybe a maggot in your pizza sauce?

It would be nice to think that I’m referring to the rare news worthy occurrences of animals being found in unpleasant places, like the man who found a whole mouse in a loaf of bread, but unfortunately for the squeamish, I’m not. I’m talking about processed foods that we eat everyday. 

FDA guidelines state that chocolate can contain up to 60 insect fragments per 100 grams, peanut butter is a little less at up to 30 insect fragments per 100 grams and tomatoes to be used for sauce are allowed 2 maggots per 100 grams or up to 30 fly eggs. Yummy.

These are just a few examples of the everyday foods from the FDA’s handbook “Food Defect Action Levels”, which outlines levels of natural or unavoidable defects in foods that present no health hazards for humans.

The thought of this might turn your stomach but, as the FDA states, the inclusion of these “natural defects” is completely harmless and some argue that they may even be good for us. 

In his talk from TEDGlobal 2010 agricultural entomologist Marcel Dicke argues that we should be eating insects, and in fact, it’s rather strange that we don’t. Dicke argues the case that insects are not only the environmentally friendly choice for a meat alternative, but that they are also a nutritious and tasty delicacy as well. He claims that 80% of the world already eats insects and that the western world should buck up it’s ideas and get gobbling some grasshoppers.

More worryingly for anyone who feels rather queasy from this idea is Dicke’s theorising that we may not have any choice when it comes to bug munching. With the world population ever rising eventually we may have to turn to our six legged friends to keep us fed.  

I can’t say he’s got me convinced that bugs are the way forward, and if I were ever confronted with a plate of deep fried caterpillars I might consider it for a second before politely declining the offer to pop one in my mouth. 


How to organise a weight loss challenge with Skinnyo.com

Posted: December 11th, 2010 | Author: hannah | Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , | No Comments »


How To Start Your Own Weight Loss Challenge

Posted: October 27th, 2010 | Author: hannah | Filed under: Photos | Tags: , , , | No Comments »
Yesterday we put the latest Skinnyo design online in a very quiet fashion and sent out the first batch of invites. Our homepage is still very simple and you need an invite to get in… but if you would like to use Skinnyo to start your own weight loss challenge you can skip the invite process and do so right now!

Simply follow the link below, sign up in seconds and then go to the challenges tab to start your own. You can then invite your work colleagues, friends or anyone you like straight from facebook, twitter or email.

Start a weight loss challenge


Cheesy Pus Cake

Posted: October 24th, 2010 | Author: hannah | Filed under: Photos | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

What greater joy is there in the world than squeezing a massive spot and seeing the yellow nectar spill forth? Well now there is a way to harness that joy, and to avoid wasting all your spots precious pus – Skinnyo’s Cheesy Pus Cake! Delicious!

Ingredients

For the crust

  • 50g caster sugar
  • 150g plain flour
  • Grated zest ½ lemon
  • Seeds from ½ vanilla pod
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 125g butter, diced

For the filling

  • 600g cream cheese
  • 180g caster sugar
  • 1 tbsp plain flour
  • Grated zest of 1 orange
  • Grated zest of 1 lemon
  • Seeds from ½ vanilla pod
  • 2 large eggs, plus 1 large egg yolk
  • 2 tbsp double cream

First, lets start with the crust. Put the flour, caster sugar, lemon zest and vanilla seeds into a food processor and pulse a few times to mix evenly. Pop in the egg yolk and diced butter and pulse until fully combined.

Shape the mixture into a ball, cover with clingfilm and shove it in the fridge for one hour. Start getting your oven lovely and warm and preheat it to 200°C (or gas mark 6). Butter a 20cm springform tin.

Now start on your delicious cheesy pus filling, you might need to head to nearest high school to harvest some teenage acne, I’d invest in some rubber gloves if I were you… I kid, start by beating together the cream cheese, sugar, flour, grated zests and vanilla seeds until smooth. Add the eggs and egg yolk one by one, making sure each in full combined in the mixture before adding the next. Stir in the cream and leave to one side until needed later.

Take the base of your buttered springform tin. Grab half of your chilled dough and roll it out to a 3mm thickness, it might look a bit fragile but it will be ok. Place the dough onto the tin base and trim the edges so it’s nice and neat. Bake for 10-15 minutes, until set and light golden. Transfer the base with the crust to a rack and leave to cool. Turn down the oven to 140°C, (gas mark 1).

Take your springform ring and clip it back round the base. Roll out the remaining dough until it is 3mm thick and cut it into long, 4cm-wide strips. Use these to line the inside of the ring, overlapping the strips slightly and pushing the joins together to make sure they stick.

Pour the filling mixture into the tin and level the top. Bake for 1 hour. Remove the cheesecake from the oven and allow it to cool completely, then pop it in the fridge until you’re ready to serve it. Before serving, loosen the crust from the sides of the tin with a spatula, then unclip the tin.


Ghoulish Gastronomy – Main Course

Posted: October 20th, 2010 | Author: hannah | Filed under: Photos | Tags: , , , | No Comments »


Muddy Bloody Slugs and Worms

Welcome to the second course of your Halloween Feast.
What goes perfectly after Slime Soup? How about  Muddy Bloody Slugs and Worms? Otherwise known as Hoisin and Soy Sauce Udon Noodles with Mushrooms.

  • 50g Mushrooms
  • 2 Garlic Cloves – Crushed
  • 1 tbsp Soy Sauce
  • 1 tbsp Hoisin Sauce
  • 100g Udon Noodles
  • 2 tbsp Chopped Coriander

Heat a splash of oil in a pan and fry the mushrooms and garlic for 4-5 minutes, or until the mushrooms are nice and brown, then stir in the soy sauce and hoisin sauce. Add your noodles and coriander.

Cook for a further 1-2 minutes, or until the noodles are heated through.

Serve your Muddy Slugs and Worms and enjoy… if you can.


Halloween Starter – Slime Soup

Posted: October 17th, 2010 | Author: hannah | Filed under: Photos | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

Ok, I’ll let you in on a secret… it’s not really slime! Shock! Horror! It’s actually a super easy and yummy pea soup. But you can pretend its made from eye of newt and frog-spawn if you want your guests running for the bathroom, or the door!

If you blend this soup thin enough it can also be served in a glass as a Slimey Shot.

  • 500g Frozen Peas
  • 2 Spring Onions roughly chopped
  • 1L Vegetable Stock
  • 150g Mozzarella (typically one ball)

Cook the peas and spring onions in the veggie stock until tender and cooked through. Drain any excess stock so the soup doesn’t become too slimey.

Roughly blend, making a lumpy slime, add the mozzarella and blend until smooth.

Stay tuned for the next course - Wiggly Bloody Worms – YUM!