In an extract from her Fast Diet Recipe Book, Mimi Spencer rustles up a delicious meal for two which won't bump up your calories

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Mimi Spencer’s Fast Diet Recipe Book  (RRP £14.99, Amazon ), is proving to be a godsend for those of us who are following the 5:2 diet  (or intermittent fasting as it’s also known) while wanting to keep our appetites satisfied.

For a tasty meal that won’t break the calorie count, try this delicious pan-roasted vegetables recipe - whether it’s a fast day or not you’re sure to enjoy every bite.

Calorie count: 261 or 309 with goat ’s cheese

Serves two

This is a premium version of the simple roast veg we endlessly sling in the oven with a ‘slug of olive oil’. It amounts to a proper meal in itself, complete with sticky bits, gorgeous balsamic colour and bursts of spiced flavour. Personally, I’d include the goat’s cheese and save calories elsewhere; it’s too good to miss.


½ tsp cumin seeds

½ tsp nigella seeds

½ tsp mustard seeds

1 tbsp olive oil

1 red onion, sliced

3 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed

½ red chilli, finely chopped

1 red, 1 yellow, 1 orange pepper, sliced

1 courgette, thickly sliced

1 small aubergine, thickly sliced

1 small butternut squash, unpeeled, deseeded and cubed

fresh marjoram

juice of a lemon

1 tbsp good balsamic vinegar

15g Chèvre Basque and sweet pickled guindilla peppers to serve (optional)


Preheat oven to 220°C/425°F. In a small frying pan, gently dry-fry seeds, then add oil and onion and cook until softened. Add garlic and chilli and cook for a further 2 minutes. Place vegetables in a roasting pan and stir in the spiced onion mix, marjoram, lemon and balsamic, making sure that everything is well coated.

Roast in the oven for 20-30 minutes, until caramelised and sticky. Serve with a peppery green salad, plus a  shaving of Chevre Basque and sweet pickled guindilla peppers.

NB: These vibrant colours indicate plenty of beta carotene and other important antioxidants