Project 50k update + Roasted cauliflower & Chickpeas salad

Fellow project 50k losers (weight losers, I mean), for the first time since I started on my Project 50k weight loss journey I saw some real results last week. I climbed up on the weigh scale not expecting much. And lo and behold, I had lost 1.5 kilos in 10 days. I was ecstatic, so delirious in joy that I couldn’t believe what I saw. I didn’t climb up again to check though. I wasn’t going to let anything get in the way of this moment. I sang all day that day.

Roasted cauliflower paneer and chickpeas salad - weightloss meal

There are some things that women are wont to share – maid, a good tailor’s contact and their weight-loss strategy. I am generous with everything except my maid. I am fiercely possessive of her. Here’s the weight-loss strategy I followed over those 10 days – I upped my workout to make sure I burnt a minimum of 500 calories per day. I had the normal breakfast I made for the rest of the family – idli, dosai, oats, upma or cereal. I continued to eat low carb meals for lunch – stir fries, sundal, salads or chapathi and vegetables. I ate dosai or lunch leftovers for dinner. Here’s the important part. I ate dinner by 8 pm every day.

I’d been hearing from many sources that eating an early dinner is crucial. Little did I know that it can make such a significant difference in weight-loss. I absolutely have to credit Aarthi (a dear reader), for this little gem of a tip. Thank you so much Aarthi.

The 12 hour fast is apparently a very popular and largely successful weight-loss technique. You basically confine all your eating to a 12 hour window 8 am to 8 pm or 6 am to 6pm. You don’t eat anything after 8 pm. You can drink water. Studies have found that just sticking to this time window helps burn fat and aid weight-loss. I think it really works. I strongly urge all fellow Project 50k losers to give this a try.

Roasted cauliflower, paneer and chickpeas salad - weightloss meal

While you are at it, here’s one more healthy and hearty salad to eat during your weight loss journey – Roasted cauliflower, paneer and chickpeas spiced to your liking and served on a bed of lettuce leaves. I love this salad because it has all my favourite things – cauliflower, paneer and chickpeas. You can roast them in an oven or roast them in a pan stove-top like I did. Either way works. I tossed them all in paprika, black pepper powder for heat and then drizzled minced garlic, olive oil and lemon juice for a burst of flavour. You can vary the seasoning and dressing in innumerable ways. Make it your own.

Good luck with your weight loss journey! How is it going? Share your story.

Roasted cauliflower, paneer and chickpeas salad
Serves 4
A healthy and hearty salad bursting with fresh flavours!
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
30 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
30 min
  1. Chickpeas – 1 cup soaked, boiled and drained
  2. Paneer – 200 gm, cut into cubes
  3. Cauliflower – cut into florets, 2 cups parboiled
  4. Lettuce – torn roughly to make 3
  5. Garlic – 4 big cloves minced
  6. Olive oil – 4 tbsp + 2 tbsp
  7. Lemon juice from 1 large lemon
  8. Paprika powder – 2 tsp
  9. Salt to taste
  10. Black pepper powder – ¾ tsp
  1. Heat a pan. Add about 2 tablespoons of oil.
  2. When the oil is hot, add blanched cauliflower florets and roast for about 8 minutes or till the cauliflower has nice char marks. Remove to a plate.
  3. To the same pan add 2 more tablespoons of oil and add the paneer cubes. Fry for 3-4 minutes or till the paneer is nicely roasted with brown edges. Remove to the same plate that has the roasted cauliflower.
  4. Now add the drained chickpeas and roast for 3-5 minutes till toasted. Add back the roasted cauliflower and paneer and toss well to mix well.
  5. Add paprika, salt and pepper powder and mix well. Switch off after a minute. Let cool.
  6. Mix olive oil, lemon juice and minced garlic in a small cup to make a dressing.
  7. Once salad is cool, pour dressing over the salad and toss. Serve over a bed of torn lettuce leaves.
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  1. Krithika says:

    Very healthy recipe.pls share more baking recipes too Intermittent fasting is a must try for people with bloating issue. feeling very lite after i started IF. my fasting window is 8 pm to 11 am. anyone else trying out IF for the first time??

    • foodbetterbegood says:

      Thats 15 hours fasting.. I am sticking to around 12-13 hours for now. Yeah, it really is making a difference. Will definitely post more baked dishes.

    • foodbetterbegood says:

      Thank you so much Priya! Yeah, didn’t know such a simple change could make such a big difference. Best wishes with your weightloss too. You are doing great!

    • krithika says:

      Hi Priya! Pls share your diet plan while doing IF. I try to include all like rice ,roti, veg and fruits during eating window.

    • foodbetterbegood says:

      Hi Keerthika, I work out 6 days in a week. Sunday is off. I do alternate days of cardio and weight-training. On the days I do cardio, I make sure to burn 500-600 calories (treadmill+elliptical+cycling combined) in 1 – 1.15 hours. On weight training days, I do 20 minutes of cardio (usually treadmill) and then weights.

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