Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Clearing The First Hurdle

Day Six

Then: 15 stone 5 pounds (215 lbs)
Now: 14 stone 13.5 pounds (209.5 lbs)

Well, well. Who’d have thought it? Nearly six pounds in five days. My weight now has a 14 in front of it, which hasn’t happened for a year or two. So Monsieur le Docteur’s diet might have something about it. Only about 25 pounds to go (and I know it gets a lot harder: you don’t have to tell me). But I think a small hurray is deserved. And all without a single poo.

Yesterday was vegetable day, so today I can only eat proteins, apart from my morning excitement of oatbran, which I completely messed up by forgetting the salt again. Do you think horses would prefer them with salt, or honey and milk? I can’t imagine how any creature could enjoy them plain. Thankfully fat free yoghurt came to the rescue and took the taste away.

Lunch was on the road to Manchester, from M&S again (coriander prawns, some quite good flaked peppery salmon, and Coke Zero, which is a million times better than the Diet variety – which is not saying a great deal as they’re both pretty vile, but Diet Coke does have that appalling aftertaste). And last night, when I got back home late (driving to and from Manchester in one day is a real schlepp, but when the BBC calls, a producer must go), I had a real treat: a pair of kippers from Robson’s in Craster.

Craster kippers (smoked herrings to those outside these shores) are the ultimate treat. They’re a wonderful alternative to bacon and eggs for the English breakfast and I will now offend every person from Scotland or Great Yarmouth – the other main providers of this peculiarly British dish – by saying that the tiny Northumbrian village of Craster, with its smokehouse still run by the fourth generation of the Robson family, produces the very best in the world. Harrods thinks so too, which is where you can go in London for them. And so does the Queen, apparently. If you’re not invited to Buckingham Palace for breakfast, L. Robson & Sons will send them out by mail order. They’re sold in pairs, which used to make me a little sad, because as a child I assume one was female and the other male. I guess they died together and so didn’t have to pine for each other.

I normally grill kippers (or broil, as they say in America) with a little butter on top. It’s only to warm them, as the smoking procedure has already cooked them. But yesterday I discovered that you don’t need the butter, as the fish oil just drips out of them. They make a delicious snack at 11pm. Some people put marmalade on them. That’s just eccentric.

Best of all, yesterday’s vegetables did their job. I’m talking a proper job here, if you know what I mean, and I hope you don’t need further details. However I mustn’t get too excited: Dukan does caution in his book that the first day after you start adding vegetables to the diet, you can put on a couple of pounds (something to do with water retention). Now that would set me in a bad mood for the England game tomorrow. I’m watching the match at a huge barbecue with roast hog and gallons of beer. This is going to be a real test of resolve. And not just for Wayne Rooney.

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