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Thai chicken salad and 12wbt


I look at my reflection in the mirror and am not really happy with what I see. I see an overweight person. A person that no longer really feels like me. I am the one who has let it get this far and well, let’s face it, being a foodblogger or a lover of food in general usually doesn’t help particularly with losing weight. But in the end those are all excuses. So time to kick some butt! It was a mere coincidence that I heard about the 12wbt program from Michelle Bridges. I was checking out Ahn’s blog A Food Lovers Journey and she mentioned the program.


Upon checking it out I was immediately excited. This was just the program I had been waiting for! So I signed up and then the waiting began. I signed up in april but the program starts today officially. Since the beginning of May we’ve been in warmup period, which means that you already have to start thinking about the excuses you come up with that prevent you from exercising or eating healthy. Writing them all down and coming up with solutions to those ‘excuses’. The program focuses in large part on exercising; a combination of cardio and strength training but 6 days a week in total. Whew… That’ll be more then I’ve ever done before.

Ofcourse being overweight by almost 30 kgs means any exercise will put strain on my body. So I am starting with low impact stuff like cycling and walking and go from there. (you can follow what I’ve done in terms of exercise by checking out the sports tracker widget on the right in the sidebar. It will automatically be updated with the latest training)

I am feeling enormously motivated and good about this one. I will do it! Every once in a while I will share the progress I am making and I will then put the little weightloss ticker you see below in the post as well.

Created by MyFitnessPal – Free Calorie Counter

I’m writing this post a little ahead of time so I am hoping it will already show a nice weight loss. I know I’ve talked about losing weight before and I have lost weight before but this feels different. It feels like a real lifestyle change. Something permanent and a way to be healthy and enjoy life to the fullest. So I am ready!

Now to kick start this whole process I am sharing a delicious healthy Thai salad with you, which is very spicy, especially if you make a mistake with the shallots like I did (oops!) so it was a little spicier then intended but I loved the flavors!

Thai coconut chicken salad


  • 100g unsalted cashew nuts (chopped)
  • 4 tablespoons white sesame seeds
  • 2 chicken breasts (poached)
  • 1/2 cucumber (in cubes)
  • 4-5 Asian shallots (finely chopped)
  • 1-2 red chillies (deseeded and chopped)
  • 1 handful fresh mint leaves (torn)


  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 2-3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon grated palm sugar (heaped)
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil


  1. Poach the chicken in about 500 ml chickenstock and a few peppercorns. Simmer for about 10 minutes, Remove from the heat and leave in the hot liquid for another 15 minutes.
  2. Toast the chopped cashews or peanuts in a dry frying pan, and then do the same with the sesame seeds (separately) Set aside for later use.
  3. Shred or tear the chicken into small strips. Rinse and prepare all the vegetables. Combine the chicken, cucumber, shallots and chili in a bowl. Add half of the torn mint leaves and almost all of the toasted nuts and seeds.
  4. Make the dressing in a small bowl, season to taste and pour it over the salad. Toss gently, then top with the reserved nuts, sesame seeds and a few torn mint leaves. Serve at once.
Since I didn't have Asian shallots I used regular ones and made the mistake of putting them in a stickblender, then blended for way to long so 5 shallots ended up being almost an onion puree. Raw that is pretty sharp plus these particular shallots were already sharp without making it worse.When tasting the salad for the first time I was a little shocked at how sharp it was, but adding more of the dressing and a little more lemon balanced it all out and it ended up being delicious. Except for that one bite that probably had too much chili and onion in it!  
Recipe from Under the walnut tree

About the author

Simone van den Berg

Food- and travelblogger from the Netherlands. Loves good food. Loves to taste good food the world over.
She also loves to share travelstories, delicious recipes and ok, cat pictures too. She sometimes feels the need to get really healthy for a while, always mingled with periods of insanely delicious sweets and other decadent treats.
Lives together with Tom and their two cats; Humphrey and Buffy.
Profession: Food photographer

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Welcome In Simone’s Kitchen

Hi. My name is Simone and I believe you can change your life by eating the right foods. I am a certified holistic nutritional coach, food photographer, recipe developer and story teller.

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Travel calendar 2018

March: Blankenberge, Belgium
April: 3 weeks roadtrip through East USA
May: Turkey
May: Germany
June: Germany
September: Newcastle