Diet Recipe – Cod with Wild Garlic Pesto

Diet Disaster – Cod with Wild Garlic Pesto – and a glass or two of chardonnay:

If there’s anything that completely ruins my efforts to control my weight, it’s a love of good wine.  Whether I am dining out or at home, I really do enjoy a glass with the food that I’m eating.  Right now I am doing my best to make a return to the 5:2 diet – and the original reason for making this particular meal of cod with wild garlic pesto was to bring a successful fast day to a tasty end.  Sadly, wine isn’t part of the calorie counting on 5:2 fast days (unless you REALLY don’t eat), so after deciding to open my bottle of Aldi Exquisite Collection chardonnay and enjoy a glass, I quickly managed to persuade myself that I’d already ruined the fast – and that as such, I might as well enjoy a second glass.  In future, I just need to stick to the rules and not drink on fast days.  It is only 2 days a week after all.

Aldi exquisite collection is a range of exceptionally good value wines that will suit all occasions.  I’ve already talked about how much I enjoyed the Malbec and the Sauvignon Blanc, but I hadn’t tried the chardonnay.  I thought it might pair well with my cod recipe – as you’ll notice, the cod is slathered in sacla wild garlic pesto and then wrapped in ham.  New World chardonnays can overpower delicate white fish flavours, but by using the wild garlic pesto and ham to enrich the dish, I hoped I might have a great match.
According to the website,
The Aldi chardonnay is  un-oaked, dry and full with a perfect complement of attractive honeysuckle, white peach and mouth-wateringly fresh pineapple. Rich and intense whilst achieving a beautifully balanced and refreshing texture that has been achieved from maturation ‘on the lees’.
Of course my idea had been to have a scant half glass, just to check the pairing.  But, it was delicious (and a very good match – I think it would work well with chicken or salmon too).  So that was the fast day completely blown.

Just as well the Cod with Wild Garlic Pesto didn’t look or taste like diet food.  I ate with a mash made from 50% cauliflower and 50% potato (by weight).  I love cauliflower rice, but when it is mashed by itself it tends to be a little watery.  Just a small amount of potato helps to bind the puree and makes a better texture.

Roast Cod with Wild Garlic Pesto

Prep time 5 minutes
Cook time 20 minutes
Total time 25 minutes
asdasdasdasd Lunch
MiscPre-preparable, Serve Hot


  • 150g Cod Loin
  • 1 piece pancetta or serrano ham (a thin slice)
  • 1 teaspoon Sacla Wild Garlic Pesto
  • Salt and Pepper


Step   1                  Pre-heat the oven to 180C (170C for a fan oven)
Step 2 Season the cod fillet with a little salt and pepper.
Step 3 Cover the cod with a thin layer of wild garlic pesto
Step 4
Wrap the cod in ham, leaving the ends open. Place it 'join side down' on a pre-oiled baking tray
Step 5 Pop in the oven for 15-20 minutes (cooking time will vary depending on the thickness of your piece of cod). Once the cod is opaque right the way through it is cooked.

Now, one medium sized portion of cod has just 150 calories.  So, this plate of food comes in at around 350 calories – perfect for a 5:2 diet fast day (without the wine).   And, with the addition of a little wild garlic pesto from Sacla, and a wrapping of ham, it makes a wonderfully tasty dinner.

With many thanks to Aldi for leading me into temptation…why not find out about their stunning exquisite selection wines

And to Sacla who sent me a wonderful selection of pesto sauces to use in my recipes.  There’s more to come as I work my way through these jars of delicious ideas!

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