Before I got my braces, lots of people said that the early stages were a difficult time for eating and a great time to lose weight. The idea of giving up my normal pile of food at meal times made me feel angry!
I therefore made it a mission to find some meal ideas that I could enjoy without damaging the brace or applying too much pressure on my teeth. A lot of it is about substitution and avoiding really hard and crunchy food. Here’s an example of what worked for me during the first few days.
Cook some porridge or use muesli as a base. Add some fresh blueberries and raspberries or whatever fruit you have in the house. Layer on plain yogurt and drizzle some honey. I found this to be a good substitute for crunchy cluster-type cereal. Exchanging the clusters for porridge or muesli makes for a smoother ride all round!
Any type of salad is gonna be good although it can get caught in the back of the brace. If you have a tooth brush handy, this isn’t a problem. Gobble to your heart’s content!
It’s easy: Fresh salad, hard boiled eggs, tuna (tinned) , raddish, green beans (boiled for a few minutes), new potatoes ( pre boiled) , tomatoes and anchovies if you’re feeling salty! 😉
Ricotta and spinach lasagne
Without laying on the mush, this was kindly made for me by my boyfriend on my first night with braces. It’s a great version of the Italian classic and it’s soft texture makes for a no-skimping, hearty meal without the tooth ache.
You will need:
- Olive oil
- Tinned tomatoes
- Fresh basil
- 2 x punnett of ricotta
- Spinach ( fresh or frozen)
- Fresh Lasagne sheets
- Salt and pepper
The tomato sauce
1) Finely chop one onion, a stick of celery and a carrot. Sweat these in a sauce pan with virgin olive oil for a few minutes. Add one crushed clove of garlic, cook for a few minutes before adding a tin of chopped tomatoes.
2) Make up a cup/half a pint of stock and pour that into the sauce pan and then season with salt and pepper to taste as well as a handful of fresh basil.
Tip: If you find that the sauce is a little bitter, add a tiny bit of sugar. If it’s slightly sweet, a tiny bit of vinegar.
3) Let this simmer on a low heat and leave to cook for 15- 20 mins or until it has reached a nice consistency.
The Ricotta Mixture
1) Mix 2 punnetts of ricotta into a bowl with grated parmesan cheese and a small amount of fresh ( if you can) or frozen spinach.
2) Add 3 tea spoons of grated nutmeg and black pepper.
Putting it together
1) Part boil your fresh lasagne sheets and lay a few in the bottom of a good sized baking dish
2) Start making alternate layers of your tomatoes based sauce, ricotta mixture, pieces of ripped mozerella cheese, grated parmezan and your lasagne sheets. The last layer should be a sheet of lasagne and feel free to add some of your parmesan to the top of this to crisp in the oven.
3) Once your lasagne has been layered, pop the baking dish in the oven for half an hour on 180 ‘ or until lightly golden.