Action of Faial

How this Fast Diet Lifestyle works: Eat these meals tomorrow, for a calorie total of less than 600. On another day this week, eat the meals from a different post, another day of eating 600 calories or less. Eat sensibly the other days of the week. That’s it: a simple way to lose weight and be healthier.

In 1594, Spain ruled the Netherlands and England didn’t like it. This was tied up in the Wars of Religion which resulted from the Protestant Reformation. France was trying not to get involved and Portugal was allied with Spain. Spain was angry with England because England had re-established Protestantism and executed Mary Queen of Scots, a Catholic. England was angry with Spain because Spain was suppressing the Protestants in the Netherlands. Furthermore, each nation wanted to be the dominant world power, on the land and the sea. Years of saber-rattling, clandestine aid to partisans, piracy and privateering came to a head in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, at the Azores. Three English ships met up with one of the largest ships of the Portuguese fleet, the 2000 tonne, 32-gun ‘carrack‘ called Cinco Chagas. Bad weather, low food supplies, and disease had weakened the ability of the of the Portuguese crew to fight, but they out-gunned and out-numbered the English ships. In the waters off the Island of Faial, the four ships met. First, cannon volleys. Then three attempts to board the Cinco Chagas — all repulsed. At last, the English succeeded at boarding the ship, to be faced with fierce hand-to-hand combat. Somehow, the rigging of the carrack caught fire, soon out of control as British snipers prevented fire-fighting. Many Portuguese took to life boats, to be killed like sitting ducks by the English. When the fire reached the powder stores, she blew up, killing 100s of Portuguese and many English. The English salvaged everything they could, amounting to $15-20 billion of silver and gems, and returned home. 600 Portuguese were killed, 60 English were killed or wounded. In the scheme of things, was it worth it? Today, the Azores rise from the sea in isolated splendor: beautiful, peaceful, and fertile.

Azores flavors abound in our menu: from the cheese and hot sauce at breakfast, to the fish and limpets at dinner. Azorean cuisine has evolved over the years, as trade agreements were signed and battles were won and lost. The bounty of the sea and land combined on your plate.

Azorean Queso Egg:  158 calories 8.5 g fat 1 g fiber 10 g protein 10.4 g carbs [9 g Complex] 71 mg Calcium  NB: The food values shown are for the egg bake and the fruit, not for the optional beverages. PB GF  Two of the favorite flavors of the Azores combine for this egg dish, and the passionfruit completes the triad.

1 two-oz egg 1.5 tsp Queso Fresco  1 tsp Chorizo Pate  1½ tsp Pimenta do Quejio sauce  2 oz pineapple -OR- ¼ cup blueberries -OR- 1.5 oz banana  Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories] or lemon in hot water 

Cream the cheese, chorizo pate, and Pimenta sauce until smooth. Whisk in the egg, then bake in an oven-proof dish or cook in a saute pan. Slice the fruit and sip some Brazilian coffee for a delicious meal. Pass the Pimenta Sauce!

Grouper Grilled with Limpets: 271 calories 5.6 g. fat 3.3 g fiber 40 g protein 18 g carbs 26.4 mg Calcium  PB GF  Grouper is a popular sportfish in the Atlantic Ocean, from the warm Caribbean to the cooler waters of the Azores. Paired with garlic-grilled limpets and a vegetable medley, this is a meal you might find in many Azorean restaurants.

4 oz grouper or cod filet 4 limpets 1 tsp butter 1 large clove garlic 1 oz sweet potato slices 1.5 oz broccoli florets 1.5 oz carrots salt & pepper

Cut the garlic clove in half. Rub the fish on both sides with garlic, to flavor it. Press the garlic and divide into four equal portions. Cut the butter into 4 equal pieces. Put one portion of butter and one portion of garlic in each limpet. Spritz the fish on both sides with cooking spray or brush lightly with olive oil. Put the vegetables on to cook in simmering water. On a grill, put the grouper and cook on one side for 4 minutes. Turn the fish and arrange the limpets on the grill, putting the shells right on the grid. Cook fish and limpets 4-5 minutes longer, until the garlic butter is sizzling and the fish is done. Plate with salted, cooked veggies for a colorful plate. 

Ingredients for next week: Breakfast, single portion for Monday …………………………… single portion for Thursday:

1 two-oz egg1.5 two-oz eggs 
tomato puree or crushed tomatoesapplesauce or pear
1.5 falafel patty [make in advance] 1.5 Tbsp haggis [make in advance]
blueberries or melon
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

Dinner, single portion for Monday:………………………….. single portion for Thursday:

buckwheat crepes/galettes sourdough rye bread + fresh spinach
Mediterranean Vegetables  + mozzarellawhipped cream cheese + smoked salmon
chèvre cheese + chicken breasttomato + hard-boiled egg
Herbes de Provence or fresh herbsstrawberries
Sparkling waterSparkling water

Battle at Chalons

How this Fast Diet Lifestyle works: Eat these meals tomorrow, for a calorie total of less than 600. On another day this week, eat the meals from a different post, another day of eating 600 calories or less. Eat sensibly the other days of the week. That’s it: a simple way to lose weight and be healthier. Welcome to Simply Splendid Food who is now Following.

In 450 CE, the Roman Empire was in trouble. Borders were being tested by various Germanic tribes called Goths. Ostrogoths, Visigoths — both groups mingled with the Romans along the Rhine River. Then came the Huns from the East, plundering and sacking as they advanced. This changed the equation, especially in 440 CE when Attila became leader of the Huns. Attila, though a skilled warrior, was not interested in conquest. To ensure the loyalty of his men, they needed loot from the lands they invaded. Afterward, they would return to modern-day Hungary until they wanted to raid again. As the Huns advanced, Goths were pushed further West, into Roman lands. In 451, Attila lead his Huns across the Rhine. Entering France, the Huns sacked Tournai, Amiens, and Beauvais. Legend has it that Saint Genevieve was instrumental in averting an attack on Paris. About to enter Orleans, the Huns desisted and headed northeast toward Champagne. The Roman army, assisted by the Visagoths, were hot on their trail and the armies met near Chalons. Despite his seers telling him that the outlook was not good, Attila planned an attack. On June 20, the Romans took the high ground, broke Attila’s line, and sent his troops to flight. The Visagoth leader died, and his son was proclaimed king. The next day, the Visagoths left to their home territory to crown their new leader, Attila and his army marched East to return home, and the Romans breathed a sigh of relief. The balance of power was restored; the Huns were repulsed; Attila could be defeated. Little did anyone know that this was the last victory of the Roman Empire in Europe. Historians claim that Chalons was important as the high-water-mark of the Hunnic invasion, but the victory did not signify much. The Huns wanted loot, not land. Two years later, Attila was dead and his heirs were in disarray. The Germanic tribes became stronger and the Roman empire became weaker. Chalons marked a turning point in European history, just not the one most people thought it was.

Since the invading Huns’ westward push was stopped in France, She gets the honor of providing our menus. Our breakfast is from the central coast, on the Bay of Biscay. The dinner is from France’s southern coast, the Mediterranean.

Leek & Bacon Bake: 153 calories 7 g fat 1 g fiber 8 g protein 14.5 g carbs 87 mg Calcium  NB: The food values given above are for the egg bake and fruit only, not the optional beverages. PB GF  Once you make this, you will want to repeat it.

One 2-oz egg ¼ cup Leek & Bacon Filling**  1½ oz applesauce, unsweetened  Optional: 5 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie [88 caloriesOptional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories] or lemon in hot water dish. 

** LEEK & BACON FILLING: makes ~1½ cups 2 oz American/streaky bacon 3 cups sliced leeks 1 clove garlic ¼ cup Gruyere cheese, shredded 2 tsp mayonnaise/plain yogurt  Saute the bacon in a large skillet, remove and slice into strips. Saute leeks and garlic in the bacon fat until limp. Off heat, stir Gruyere and yogurt/mayo into the mixture.

Combine the egg with the bacon filling. Pour into an oil-spritzed baking dish. Bake at 350 F. for 12-15 minutes. Portion the applesauce and pour the beverages. Umm-umm. And very simple too.

Salade Nicoise: 283 calories 16 g fat 3 g fiber 22.5 g protein 13 g carbs 198 mg Calcium  PB GF A Salade Nicoise is a real treat. Guests might be impressed, but you know that it is very easy to prepare. HINT: If you plan ahead a bit, this meal goes together in minutes. A few days before, eat a meal of baked or grilled salmon, served with green beans. Prepare 3 oz more salmon than you’ll need for that meal and save it for this meal. Also cook an extra bit of green beans and save them in the ‘fridge. TIP: If you won’t need the salmon for a week or more, cooked salmon freezes well. Just leave enough time to thaw it thoroughly. 

3 leaves of romaine, medium-sized 3 oz cooked salmon 3 oz green beans, cooked and cooled 2 black olives, pitted, halved ½ hard-boiled egg, quartered 5 cherry tomatoes 1 radish, sliced DRESSING: 1 tsp white wine vinegar + 1.5 tsp olive oil

Whisk the oil and vinegar in a wide shallow bowl. Add the beans and turn them to coat with dressing. Remove beans to another plate. Coarsely slice the lettuce and toss with dressing. Place the salmon in the center of the salad. Surround it with the remaining ingredients. A wonderful meal in no time flat.

World War I — 1740-1763

How this Fast Diet Lifestyle works: Eat these meals tomorrow, for a calorie total of less than 600. On another day this week, eat the meals from a different post, another day of eating 600 calories or less. Eat sensibly the other days of the week. That’s it: a simple way to lose weight and be healthier.

Those of us who are history-challenged tend to think of wars as unique events. In the last century, there were two ‘world wars’ which were named ‘One’ and ‘Two’ as if no other wars had happened before them. In 1754, a war began that involved many nations and that had battle sites all over the world. In the USA, we call it the “French & Indian War” — not because they were fighting each other, but because ‘we’, as English citizens, were fighting them. In reality, England and France were fighting for control of all of North America. In Europe, France was allied with Austria, and Sweden against Prussia and they called it the “Seven-Years War” which was a continuation of the “War of the Austrian Succession.” Fighting took place all over — in Canada; in America; battles on the sea; in India; in Germany; in Bohemia; in the Caribbean — making it a ‘world war’ indeed. This war certainly did not end war — it set the stage for the American Revolution 20 years later. On June 16, 1745, a rag-tag group of New Englanders and British forces were attacking the Fortress of Louisbourg in Nova Scotia. By hauling cannon overland, through bog and forest, they took the fortress from the unprotected land side, defeating the French — for the moment.

Since this war took place around the entire globe, a breakfast from India — not the Indians of the ‘French & Indian War.’ Dinner involves a meal with ingredients from France and England.

Tikka Masala ScrOmelette w/ Salmon: 149 calories 9 g fat 0 g fiber 12 g protein 5.6 g carbs 48 mg Calcium  NB: Food values shown are for the ScrOmelette and fruit only, and do not include the optional beveragesPB GF  Had a little Tikka Masala sauce [from a jar], and since we love the combo of curry in eggs, this was a sure thing. Ordinarily, we enjoy fruit with the eggs in the morning, but a curry dish is well complimented by a cool cucumber raita.

1½ two-oz eggs  HINT: If you are serving one person, crack three 2-oz eggs into a small bowl or glass measuring cup. Whip up those eggs and pour half of their volume into a jar with a lid and put it in the ‘fridge for next week.  1 Tbsp Tikka Masala sauce @ 20 calories/tablespoon 2 Tbsp/1 Fluid oz plain, fat-free yogurt pinch of garlic powder pinch of ground cumin 1/8 c/0.52 oz diced cucumber ½ oz tomato, chopped 1/8 oz cooked salmon   Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories] or lemon in hot water  Optional: 5 oz Berry Lassi [89 calories] or berry-yogurt smoothie [88 calories]

Stir together the yogurt, cucumber, and spices, and let sit while you prepare the eggs. Spritz a fry pan with olive oil or non-stick spray, and add the tomato and salmon. Warm them while you whisk the eggs with the Tikka sauce. Pour the eggs into the pan and cook to your liking. Remove eggs to the plate, fold, and top with the raita. Prepare optional beverages. This is a recipe to do again.

Pear & Bleu Cheese Salad: 277 calories 18 g fat 5 g fiber 17 g protein 22 g carbs 215 mg Calcium   PB GF  Such a delightful melange of flavors! This is one of our favorite salad meals. If walnuts disagree with you, try pecans or hazelnuts.

2½ cups mesclun [baby greens] 2 oz pear, sliced 1 oz bleu cheese, crumbled 1½ oz tomato, cubed or cherry-type ¼ oz walnuts 1 oz cannelli beans, rinsed and drained 1 tsp olive oil + ¾ tsp white Balsamic vinegar

Toast the walnuts by putting them in a heavy, dry pan and tossing/stirring over medium-high until the nuts become fragrant slightly browned. Whisk the oil and vinegar in a wide, shallow bowl. Add the white beans and the salad greens along with a pinch of finishing salt. Toss to coat with the dressing. Put into the serving plate and garnish with the remaining ingredients. Amazing.

Ingredients for next week: Breakfast, single portion for Monday …………………………… single portion for Thursday:

1 two-oz egg + garlic1 two-oz egg + queso fresco 
leek + American streaky baconPimenta sauce
Gruyere cheese + applesaucechorizo paste
plain yogurt/mayonnaisepineapple or banana
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

Dinner, single portion for Monday:………………………….. single portion for Thursday:

romaine lettuce + cooked salmon4 oz grouper + cauliflower
green beans + black olives + olive oil4 limpets, 2″ in diameter
white wine vinegar + radishbroccoli + carrots
hard-boiled egg + cherry tomatoesgarlic + butter
Sparkling waterSparkling water

Vikings

How this Fast Diet Lifestyle works: Eat these meals tomorrow, for a calorie total of less than 600. On another day this week, eat the meals from a different post, another day of eating 600 calories or less. Eat sensibly the other days of the week. That’s it: a simple way to lose weight and be healthier.

Vikings seem to be popular these days. On Netflix you can choose from several viking titles. Same with Amazon Prime. There are books about vikings. Let’s not forget movies about vikings. Maybe Marvel’s Thor had something to do with it. How accurate are these presentations? Not exactly true to characters and timelines, but then we don’t watch Bridgerton to learn facts about Regency England, do we? The word “viking” refers to a ‘person who is a raider.’ I can’t help seeing a relationship to the Danish/Norse word ‘vik’ which means a bay/river/stream. One advantage that the ‘vikings’ had was that their knarrs [ships] could row or sail far up rivers in shallow water. To “go a-viking” meant to leave Scandinavia on a raiding trip. Why did they do that? Most of the land was already in someone’s possession: many men were Land-Lords, with an estate to feed the family and vassals to pay allegiance to them. This drove others to become Sea-Lords, who lived in coastal manors and derived their income solely from raiding. While the Swedes raided to the East, becoming the Rus, the Norse and Danes raided West, first hitting Lindesfarne, England in 793. After that, the coastal areas of Scotland, England, Ireland, Wales, and France were fair game for raids. Not knowing better, the raiders were called “Danes.” My ancestor, Bernard ‘le Danois,’ was born and raised in More, Norway — yet history calls him a Dane. The Viking Era ended in 1066, when descendants of the Norse, now living in Normandie, sailed across the English Channel in their knarrs and invaded England.

The “Danes” tended to eat only two meals a day, typical of many Europeans of the era. Porridge, vegetable stew, and meat stew were common meals. But we like a more varied diet: eggs for breakfast with a “Danish” slant. Since the Vikings sailed the Mediterranean, we will serve a popular food of that region: felafel for dinner.

Danish ScrOmelette: 140 calories 10.4 g fat 0.5 g fiber 12 g protein 5.6 g carbs [3 g Complex] 242 mg Calcium  NB: Food values shown are for the ScrOmelette and fruit only, and do not include the optional beverages.  PB GF  This breakfast is in honor of the “Danes,” as all Vikings were called by the rest of Europe. The taste of the sea, the Danish cheese, the mariner’s star in the apple: all evoke the Northmen.

1½ two-oz eggs HINT: If you are serving one person, crack three 2-oz eggs into a small bowl or glass measuring cup. Whip up those eggs and pour half of their volume into a jar with a lid and put it in the ‘fridge for next week  ½ oz Danish bleu cheese ½ oz herring marinated in wine 1 oz apple, sliced so you can see the star inside  Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories] or lemon in hot water   Optional: 5 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie [88 calories]

Mince the herring. Crumble the bleu cheese and whisk with the eggs. Hold the apple on its side and slice it so that the star of seeds and core in the middle is revealed. Cut a slice parallel to your cut to end up with a slice that weighs 1 oz. Spray a frying pan with non-stick spray and put the minced herring in the pan. Quickly pour the egg-cheese mixture in the pan. As the egg begins to set around the edges, lift the egg with a fork or spatula and tip the pan so that uncooked egg flows underneath. Continue like that until the bottom is fully cooked and the top is set. [Flip the omelette if you dare, or put it under the broiler if you like your eggs well browned.] Slide the eggs on to the plate next to the apple, pour the beverages, and meditate on the wonders of astronomy.

Felafel with Feta Salad:  285 calories 14 g fat 7 g fiber 12.5 g protein 29 g carbs [25 Complex] 180 mg Calcium  PB GF  What a healthy plate of food! When you have felafel in the freezer, this meal becomes almost instant.

felafel patties  1 cups lettuce [I like to slice large leaves cross-wise into ½” strips]  2 oz tomatoes, cherry tomatoes or cut in ½” cubes 1 oz carrots, grated 1 oz beets cut in large dice ¾ oz Feta cheese in cubes or large crumbles ¾ tsp flavored olive oil ¾ tsp white wine vinegar salt + pepper to taste

Thaw the felafel patties and warm them. If unbaked, heat them in a 400 F. oven for 10-15 minutes. Prepare the vegetables for the salad. Whisk the vinegar and oil, then toss the salad vegetables in the dressing. Top with the felafel and feta crumbles.

Slow Days: Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie

People who are new to Fasting often pose the questions: “Can I really eat ‘anything I want’ on a Slow Day?” and “What should I eat on Slow Days?” To answer those questions, I have decided to add some blog posts to show some of the foods we eat on what the world calls NFDs [non-fast days] but which, in our house, we call ‘Slow Days.’ This feature will appear sporadically. 

Now for the answers. Can you really eat ANYTHING you want on a Slow Day? Not really. If you eat too many calories every Slow Day, you will not lose weight. There are many questions asked on the Fast Diet Forum which attest to that. Once in a while you can splurge, as long as it isn’t everyday. For what to eat on Slow Days, Dr. Mosley recommends a Mediterranean Diet. As for how we eat, an example follows.

Pie is wonderful. In the British Isles, ‘pie’ is a savory concoction, encased in a pastry crust. In the USA, ‘pie’ means a sweetened mixture baked in a pastry shell, topped with a pastry layer or a crumb top or a lattice or with no top at all. Apple pie, cherry pie, peach pie, pecan pie, mince pie, shoo-fly pie, lemon meringue pie — all have their season. May means rhubarb pie and June brings strawberry-rhubarb pie. This combination is so fabulous that it is worth the wait for the two ‘fruits’ to come to ripeness at the same time of year. Last June, Son #2, after a few bites of Sb-R Pie, proclaimed, “This is the best pie you ever made!” I’m happy to share the recipe with you.

First you need a crust. You could buy one or make one of your favorite recipe. Don’t have a good pie recipe? Here you go. A combination of butter and lard makes a good pie crust. Please do not use vegetable shortening. I often use a crumble top or cut out shapes from the following dough to decorate the top.

2 single pie crust or 1 double pie crust
2 cups flour: 1 c. white + 1 c. white whole wheat 1 tsp saltWhisk together in a bowl.
2/3 cup lard or butterCut lard/butter into the flour with a pastry blender or 2 knives until butter is ‘the size of small peas’
5-7 Tbsp ice waterAdd water bit by bit, stirring with a fork after each addition, until dough just holds together.
Gather gently into a ball, wrap, and chill 30 mins.
Divide in two pieces. Roll each out 1/8” thick and ease the round of dough into a 9” pie plate. Trim excess around the rim, crimp edge, and fill the pie.

People used to think that you needed tons of sugar to make a rhubarb pie. Those pies would set your teeth on edge, they were that sweet. I have learned to cut down on the sugar, especially if using a crumble top, which adds sugar. Recently, at a rhubarb pie-baking contest, the judges commented often on how a pie was too sweet, which detracted from the rhubarb taste. When you add sweet strawberries, you can reduce the sugar a little more. Make sure that the strawberries are fully ripe — no white or green areas and deep red all the way to the center. This is a pie to be served warm or cool. Ice cream would be gilding the lily, wouldn’t it?

One 9” pie, serves 8Pie plate lined with pastry dough. Preheat oven to 400F.
2½ c rhubarb, sliced ½” thick
2 c. strawberries, sliced or quartered
Slice the fruit and put into a large bowl. 
7/8 c sugar
3 Tbsp flour [use 5 Tbsp if fruit was frozen] one 2-oz egg
Stir together until combined. Pour over fruit in the bowl. Stir gently to mix the thickeners with the fruit evenly. Pour into the pie plate.
Cover fruit with crumb top or top crust. Leave a gap in crust at middle of pie. Bake in center of a hot oven for 15 mins.
Turn heat down to 350F and bake until the filling bubbles in the center, about 30 mins. Cool on a rack.

Since there are only two of us at the table these days, I often make a smaller pie, 6″ in diameter. That feeds us nicely for two meals, without having to eat the same pie all week long. Happy pie making!

Fred Waring

How this Fast Diet Lifestyle works: Eat these meals tomorrow, for a calorie total of less than 600. On another day this week, eat the meals from a different post, another day of eating 600 calories or less. Eat sensibly the other days of the week. That’s it: a simple way to lose weight and be healthier.

There was a time, from the 1920s-1940s that everyone knew who Fred Waring was. Now he is remembered for a small kitchen appliance, if at all. It is a fascinating tale. Fred Waring, born in Tyrone, Pennsylvania in 1900, had been musical all his life. At age 12, he lead the Boy Scout Fife and Drum Corps. In 1917, Fred and his buddies formed a quartet, playing popular music and singing at high school and college dances. The band became larger, the instruments included banjos, and the band set itself apart by playing AND singing at the same time. After three years of studying engineering at Penn State University, Waring left school to pursue music. He was a showman, introducing unusual lighting effects and choreographed dance numbers for the band. At age 23, Waring took the band to more fame and acclaim in California. There they cut a record, the first to feature group singing. Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians went on to success in films, recordings, Broadway, concerts in Europe, a popular radio show in the 1930s, then a television program from 1949 into the 1950s. By this time “The Pennsylvanians” had grown to 55 musicians and a Glee Club of singers. His music was everywhere and everyone knew his music. In 1936, an inventor wormed his way into Waring’s dressing room to tout the ’emulsifying machine’ for which he had a patent but no backers. Waring was interested and suggested some design modifications. After his band members gave demonstrations at department stores, the Waring Blender [originally ‘blendor’] became a popular kitchen and bar accessory. Waring had a lasting influence on music education, leading workshops for school music teachers for decades. Surely his musicality and showmanship has had more influence on modern musical performers than they know.

What better foods for a discussion of Fred Waring than foods prepared in a blender? “The Pennsylvanians” were once all the rage, and now various versions of the ‘Smoothie’ are in vogue. Tough to make one without a trusty Waring Blendor, or some contemporary equivalent.

Berry Lassi: This is a popular drink in India and I am pleased with how easy it is to make at home. You could drink the entire batch for a meal, or serve it three times as a breakfast beverage on the side. PB GF 1 of 1 Serving: 267 calories 2.5 g fat 3 g fiber 18 g protein 42 g carbs 769 mg Calcium 1 of 3 Servings: 89 calories 1 g fat 1 g fiber 6 g protein 14 g carbs 256 mg Calcium

300 ml/1¼ c plain fat-free yogurt 200 ml/ ¾ c almond milk ½ c frozen berry mix, unsweetened 1 tsp sugar

Put everything in a blender and wizz until smooth.

Fruit Smoothie: 88 calories 0 g fat 1 g fiber 1.5 g protein 21 g carbs 15 mg Calcium   PB GF DAIRY-FREE  This beverage has much more going for it than just plain orange juice. HINT: enough for 4 [four] 5-6 oz servings 

2 oz Rhubarb Mush or banana 20 oz/2.5 cups orange juice OR 20 oz/2.5 cups Crushed Rhubarb 2 oz fruit [all one variety or mixed; we like raspberries, strawberries, black currants, blueberries, apples]   HINT: I make the fruits up in ‘kits’ and keep them in the freezer. They could go into the blender frozen or leave the ‘kit’ on the counter overnight to thaw. Another time-saver!  

Put the fruit in the blender with 4 oz of the orange or rhubarb juice. Run it on “High” to break up the fruit and make it all smooth. Switch setting to “Low” and add the remaining juice. Run blender to combine the liquids. Save the rest for other mornings.

Green Smoothie: 1 of 1 serving = 231 calories 1.5 g fat 5 g fiber 6 g protein 93 g carbs 93 mg Calcium 1 of 3 servings = 77 calories 0.5 g fat 1.6 g fiber 2 g protein 31 g carb 31 mg Calcium   PB GF DAIRY-FREE  Use this as a beverage with some high protein food [ex: hard-boiled egg] on a Fast Day, at breakfast or dinner. HINT: this makes enough for three 6-oz servings.

2 cups mixed greens – spinach, kale, chard – roughly chopped 2 oz banana, sliced 2 oz berries ½ apple or pear 12 oz tomato juice 10 ice cubes

Put the fruit and greens in the blender and swirl it together on ”high” just long enough to break down the fruit and greens. Set blender to “low,” add the juice and ice cubes. Process until smooth. Put what you don’t drink today into a jar in the ‘fridge. Next time you use it, shake it well. If you think it has become too thick, feel free to thin it with water or Rhubarb Juice or OJ.

Ingredients for next week: Breakfast, single portion for Monday …………………………… single portion for Thursday:

1.5 two-oz eggs1.5 two-oz eggs + ground cumin
Danish bleu cheeseTikka Masala sauce @ 20 calories/Tablespoon
herring marinated in wine tomato + cooked salmon + garlic powder
applefat-free plain yogurt + cucumber
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

Dinner, single portion for Monday:………………………….. single portion for Thursday:

felafel pattiessalad greens + pear
2 servings of Side Salad walnuts/pecans + bleu cheese
Tomato + carrot cannelli beans + tomato
beets + feta cheeseolive oil + white balsamic vinegar
Sparkling waterSparkling water

Nathan Hale

How this Fast Diet Lifestyle works: Eat these meals tomorrow, for a calorie total of less than 600. On another day this week, eat the meals from a different post, another day of eating 600 calories or less. Eat sensibly the other days of the week. That’s it: a simple way to lose weight and be healthier. Welcome to Garane Ibrahim who is now Following.

On June 6, 1755, the Hale family welcomed the birth of a son in Coventry, Connecticut. No one knew how famous he would become for being put to death in 1776. Young Nathan was well educated and attended Yale University. He became a school teacher and then war was declared between the American Colonies and Great Britain. Hale’s several brothers enlisted right away and saw action in Massachusetts. Nathan signed up at the end of the school year, joining George Washington‘s army as they moved to New York. Following a loss to the British on Long Island, General Washington realized the need for spies in British-held territory, in order to plan for the next attack. Hale volunteered. There was no training, no handed-down wisdom on how to run a covert operation. Spying was not considered ‘gentlemanly,’ so no one knew how to do it well. Nathan Hale did not do spying well at all. His cover story was that he was a school teacher. Complete with the correct clothing [teachers dressed a certain way back then], Hale slipped over to Long Island in September, 1775. He engaged people in conversations easily enough, but he asked questions too aggressively and acted suspiciously. After confiding his goals to a British counter-espionage agent, Hale was arrested after one week on the job. Tried in a military court in Manhattan, he was hanged the next day. Every school child knows his ‘dying words.’ When asked by a sneering British officer if he had any regrets, Hale is supposed to have said, “I only regret that I have but one life to give for my country.” This was a quote from the play “Cato” by J. Addison, which Hale and his friends at Yale knew well. Did he really say those stirring and defiant words? Possibly not. His college buddies kept his memory alive and might have guessed that he might have said something like that. No one really knows, but eyewitnesses say that he went to his death with courage and dignity. The Nathan Hale Homestead, built over the house where he was born, is an historical site. Hale is Connecticut’s official State Hero. Don’t look at any of his statues to know what he looked like — they were all done posthumously, with no likenesses as a model. One of the statues stands on the campus of CIA Headquarters in Langley, Virginia.

A man as patriotic as Nathan Hale deserves an all-American [made with corn] patriotic breakfast such as this one. For dinner, a very New England meal.

Cornmeal Stars with Fruit Yogurt: 133 calories 3 g fat 4 g fiber 7.6 g protein 21 g carbs [8 g Complex] 46 mg Calcium  NB: Food values given are for the plated foods only, and do not include the optional beverage.  PB GF  Cornmeal and stars are SO American, that they fit in with any patriotic meal. Are there stars in your nation’s flag? This one is for you too.

Cornmeal Stars: 1 egg white 1 egg yolk, stirred 1 Tbsp white whole-wheat flour 3 Tbsp yellow cornmeal Whip the egg white to soft peaks. Fold in the yolk, the flour, and the meal. Put your largest [3-4”] star-shaped cookie cutter in the center of a non-stick pan. Spray the pan and the inside of the star with non-stick spray. Spoon some batter into the star, nudging it into the corners. As it starts to cook, loosen the mold from the batter and remove it. Cook the star on one side until starting to brown, then turn carefully to cook the other side. Repeat until batter is all used up. HINT: This can be done a day or so in advance, storing the stars in a plastic bag.

Per serving: 1.5 stars 2 Tbsp fat-free Vanilla yogurt 2 Tbsp blueberries 2 oz strawberries, sliced or diced [If frozen, they will need to be thawed and drained]   Optional:  5 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie [88 caloriesOptional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories] or lemon in hot water 

Plate the stars, slightly overlapping. Dollop the yogurt on top, then strew with fruit.

Crab Cakes237 calories 7 g fat 4 g fiber 18.6 g protein 17 g carbs 198 mg Calcium  PB  GF- if using GF bread  Rock and Jonah crabs abound on the coast of New England and they are grand as crab cakes. This recipe is from Todd English’s Olive’s Table cookbook.  Note: this is the full recipe and makes 8 cakes – more than you will eat at one meal. Prepare them all and cook as directed.  HINT: This will provide a few future meals.

½ pound crab meat 2 T [1 fluid oz] plain nonfat yogurt  1 tsp Dijon mustard 2 Tbsp. chopped green or white onion 1 Tbsp parsley, minced one 2-oz egg 1 tsp salt & ¼ tsp pepper 1 slice fresh 70-cal bread, crumbled 4 T. flour 2 tsp oil 5 oz asparagus aioli dressing: 1 tsp low-fat mayonnaise few drops of lemon juice pinch each of tumeric and garlic powder

Gently combine the first eight ingredients in a bowl. Dust a large plate with the flour. Using a ¼ c. measure as a mold, form the crab cakes and turn them out onto the flour. There should be 7-8 cakes. Dust the top of the cakes with some of the flour. Heat a non-stick skillet and add 2 tsp olive oil. Handling them carefully, cook the crab cakes until they are beginning to brown on the top and then turn them to brown on the bottom. Cook the asparagus. Prepare the aioli. Put aioli on crab cakes and asparagus. One Fast Day serving = 1-2 crab cakes. Cool the others, wrap in cling film and freeze. Reheat in a toaster oven, since the cakes will have been previously cooked.

Rhubarb Time

How this Fast Diet Lifestyle works: Eat these meals tomorrow, for a calorie total of less than 600. On another day this week, eat the meals from a different post, another day of eating 600 calories or less. Eat sensibly the other days of the week. That’s it: a simple way to lose weight and be healthier.

Spring time is synonymous with rhubarb, ‘the first fruit of the season.’ Rhubarb is not a ‘fruit’ but we treat it like one, adding sugar to make desserts. Rhubarb is very healthy to eat: low in calories, high in fiber, and high in Calcium. Most desserts use large amounts of sugar, which makes rhubarb-eating less healthy. However, there are beverages to be made from the plant’s stalks [the only part of the plant that is edible] which can be very healthy, and today I will share them with you. The beverages’ ingredients include Crushed Rhubarb, Rhubarb Puree, and Rhubarb Juice. [That last one really needs a new name, to sound more appetizing — suggestions will be appreciated.]

Crushed Rhubarb

Makes 6 cups crushed rhubarb
5 cups/1½# sliced rhubarb
4 cups/1 L. Water 
Simmer in a large pot for 20 minutes or until the rhubarb softens and starts to break down.
Stir, crushing rhubarb with back of spoon. Cool.

Uses: The crushed rhubarb and its juice can be used as the liquid in smoothies instead of orange juice. >>>Berry-Yogurt Smoothie   >>>Blueberry Smoothie  >>>Fruit Smoothie   

Rhubarb Puree 

After cooking, run it all through a blender/VitaMix to puree it or use an immersion wand. In our house, we use this puree to supplement orange juice. Why do this? 1] better nutrition 2] makes purchased OJ go further, saving $ 3] less sugar in your diet.

Makes 3 cupscalories fat fiber protein carbs Calcium Sugar 
1 c. rhubarb PUREE, liquid+solid210.2 g2 g1 g4.6 g87.5 mg1.1 g
2 c. orange juice2200 g0 g0 g54 g40 mg48 g
1 c. combined800 g0.6 g0.3 g19 g42.5 mg16 g

Rhubarb Juice — based on a recipe from Fannie Farmer and her cookbook.

Mush on the left, juice on the right

After preparing the Crushed Rhubarb, strain the pulp from the liquid with a sieve or colander. The color of the juice will vary from light pink to greenish-brown depending on the color of the rhubarb stalk. You will now have the clear juice and the solids, aka rhubarb mush. Both have their uses. Yield from full batch of rhubarb: 3-1/2 of juice + 1½ c. rhubarb mush Yield from 2 cups crushed rhubarb: 1½ c juice + ½ cup rhubarb mush USES FOR RHUBARB JUICE with added sugar >>>summer beverage: Add 1/2 to 3/4 cup sugar to 3-1/2 cups warm, strained juice. Chill, and drink over ice garnished with a strawberry and a sprig of mint. Very refreshing. >>>cocktail: ½ cup sweetened Rhubarb Juice + 1 fluid oz rum, served over ice. NOT for a FAST DAY. USES FOR RHUBARB MUSH >>>Rhubarb Pudding >>>Rhubarb Creme Brulee You can also use it as part of the fruit in any smoothie, sweet or savory.

The Crushed Rhubarb, the Rhubarb Puree, and the Rhubarb Juice can easily be hot-water-bath canned for shelf storage throughout the year. Keep the savings going long after the rhubarb patch is covered with snow.

Ingredients for next week: Breakfast, single portion for Monday …………………………… single portion for Thursday:

1 two-oz eggNext week, the topic will be smoothies.
white whole wheat flourFind a new favorite breakfast in Archives
yellow cornmeal + strawberries
fat-free vanilla yogurt + blueberries
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

Dinner, single portion for Monday:………………………….. single portion for Thursday:

crab meat [Jonah or Rock] + asparagus + scallionNext week, the topic will be smoothies.
Plain not-fat yogurt  + Dijon mustard + oilFind a new favorite dinner in Archives
garlic powder + parsley + low-fat mayonnaise
1 two-oz egg + 70-cal whole grain bread + lemon juice
Sparkling waterSparkling water

Jeanne d’Arc

How this Fast Diet Lifestyle works: Eat these meals tomorrow, for a calorie total of less than 600. On another day this week, eat the meals from a different post, another day of eating 600 calories or less. Eat sensibly the other days of the week. That’s it: a simple way to lose weight and be healthier. Welcome to ____ who are now Following.

To say that politics in France in the early 1400s were ‘troubled’ would be a polite way of saying ‘What a mess!!!’ There was no France as we know it. There was no king. Charles VI had been deposed by the English, who declared that English King Henry V and his heirs were next in line for the throne of France. The English controlled one third of what we now think of France, about half the region was controlled by French loyalists, and another portion was the Duchy of Burgundy, independent but favoring the English. Charles, son of Charles VI, should have been crowned but he was weak and lacked authority. Enter a teenager from Lorraine, a duchy just outside of eastern France. Saints had visited her since she was 13 years old, she said, and told her to go to Charles and to save France. This unassuming girl talks local leaders into introducing her to Charles because she says she can get him crowned king. Although Charles hides amid his courtiers, the young shepherdess picks him out of the crowd. The girl, of course, is Jeanne d’Arc, nicknamed ‘La Pucelle’ [‘the Maiden’], and the year is 1429. Charles tests her further by sending her with an army to wrest the city of Orleans from the English. And she does. On the strength of that, Charles and Jeanne went to Reims, the traditional place to crown a French king, to establish him as the head of the nation. The battles went on, Jeanne’s army won often. In May, 1430, she was captured by the Duke of Burgundy’s men and was ‘sold’ to the English. Imprisoned and put on trial, Jeanne was abandoned by Charles VII, by France, and by the church — the pro-England Roman Catholic Church called her a heretic and excommunicated her. On May 30, 1431, Jeanne d’Arc was burned at the stake in front of the Cathedral of Rouen. Twenty-five years later, new inquiries were held, overturning her trial. Jeanne’s restoration was complete in May, 1920 when she was declared a saint, the Patron Saint of France. May seems to be the Month of the Maiden.

Domremy, where Jeanne was born, is in the Lorraine part of France. Lorraine is known as the origin of quiche. In honor of Jeanne’s birthplace, a nod to Quiche Lorraine. Jeanne was killed in Rouen, Normandy, where crepes and galettes are part of the diet. In recognition of Rouen’s role in Jeanne’s death, a meal of galette and local seafood. The life of Jeanne d’Arc impressed me greatly when I read a biography of her in 6th grade. I still am in awe of her courage, her faith, and her life.

Bake Lorraine: 180 calories 11 g fat 1 g fiber 12.5 g protein 7.6 g carbs [4.4 g Complex] 193 mg Calcium  NB: The food values shown are for the egg bake and the fruit, not for the optional beverages.  GF  You’ve heard of Quiche Lorraine? Well, here it is, crustless, yet with all the flavor intact. Very do-able for breakfast. Make sure your next meal has lots of fiber, as this has next to none.

1 two-oz egg ½ slice uncured bacon 3 Tbsp whole milk ½ oz Swiss cheese [Emmentaler, Gruyere] pinch cayenne pepper + pinch nutmeg 2 oz strawberries Optional: blackish coffee[53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories] or lemon in hot water 

Dice the bacon and cook it until crispy. Grate or finely chop the cheese. Spray an oven-proof dish with non-stick spray and put the cheese on the bottom. Whisk together the egg, milk, and seasonings. Pour over the cheese, then sprinkle the bacon on top.  HINT: I did all this the night before. Bake in a 350F oven for 17 minutes. Plate with the fruit. A creamy, delicious treat!

Seafood Galettes: 269 calories  7 g fat 3 g fiber  18 g protein 19 g carbs [10 g Complex]   142 mg Calcium   PB  This recipe is a terrific idea for a quick meal – IF you have Bechamel sauce and galettes in the freezer.  HINT: This recipe makes enough to serve 2 [two] people.

7 oz Ahi tuna fillet OR mixed seafood, cooked and cut in ½” bits 1 wedge Laughing Cow cheese  2 buckwheat galettes  6 Tbsp bechamel sauce without cheese 2-3 Tbsp fish stock 1.5 oz cauliflower florets 1 oz carrot ‘coins’ 2 oz zucchini slices

If your tuna isn’t cooked, poach it gently in fish stock – enough to come half-way up the fillet. Reserve the stock as you will use some of it later. Cut the fish into small chunks. Gently heat and whisk the bechamel with 2 Tbsp fish stock and the cheese until the cheese melts. Add the fish/seafood to the sauce, adding more stock if you wish. Prepare the vegetables and begin to cook them. Warm the galettes, wrapped in tea towel, in the microwave. When the fish and sauce are warm and the vegetables are cooked, plate the vegetables and place the galette on the plate too. Divide the fish and sauce between the two galettes and serve. Delicious!

William of Ockham

How this Fast Diet Lifestyle works: Eat these meals tomorrow, for a calorie total of less than 600. On another day this week, eat the meals from a different post, another day of eating 600 calories or less. Eat sensibly the other days of the week. That’s it: a simple way to lose weight and be healthier. 

Have you heard of ‘Occam’s Razor‘? It is often referenced in movies — the idea that the most simple answer is probably correct. William was born c.1287 in Occam/Ockham, Surrey, England. Some time before age 13, he was schooled at a Franciscan monastery in London. At age 23, he studied theology, either in London or at Oxford, but he did not complete the program. He returned to London where he began to write about theology and philosophy. His views were not well-received. First, he was called to explain his ideas to the Franciscans’ regional meeting, then he was accused of heresy and journeyed to Avignon, France to face Pope John XXII. [Remember that at this time the Papal Court was not in Rome, the Papacy having been hijacked by the French king in 1309.] Also at Avignon was the head of the Franciscans, Michael of Cesna. As a follower of Saint Francis, Michael believed that religious men and women should live lives of poverty. This put him at odds with the Pope who lived lavishly. [The famous vineyards of Chateauneuf du Pape were owned by the French popes.] Michael asked William to review the scriptures and the writings of John XXII to see who had the correct idea. William declared that not only was Michael backed up by the Bible, but that the pope was a heretic. You can imagine how that went over. On May 26, 1328, William, Michael, and some companions sneaked out of the papal compound and fled to the protection of Louis of Bavaria who was at odds with the pope. William continued to write. He was never convicted of heresy, but the church never forgave him for criticizing the pope. Most of that is forgotten, but William’s way of ‘cutting away’ competing ideas has had a long life.

For the rich life in the Papal Court at Avignon, eggs served with truffle cream. For Occam’s stay in Bavaria, pork for dinner.

Truffled Omelette: 146 calories 9.4 g fat 1 g fiber 9.5 g protein 6 g carbs 43.5 mg Calcium  PB GF  Truffle cream adds amazing flavor to food and just a little gives a big kick. This is a simple meal with a complex taste.

1½ two-oz eggs  HINT: If you are serving one person, crack three 2-oz eggs into a small bowl or glass measuring cup. Whip up those eggs and pour half of their volume into a jar with a lid and put it in the ‘fridge for next week.   1 Tbsp truffle cream  1¼ oz apple   Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories] or lemon in hot water Optional: 5 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie [88 calories]

Whisk the eggs and pour into an oil-spritzed saute pan. Cook, undisturbed, until the eggs begin to set. Spread the truffle cream over half of the egg, fold the omelette, and cook further to your liking. Plate with the apple.  TIP: there will be lots of truffle cream left in the jar. Portion it into smaller containers, label and freeze.

Pork Schnitzel:  233 calories 10 g fat 3 g fiber 14.4 g protein 23 g carbs [10 g Complex] 31 mg Calcium  PB  If you find breaded pork loin cutlets at the butcher shop, snap them up for this easy, yet low calorie meal. Have the butcher verify that the cutlet is indeed 3-3.5 oz in mass. [Each ounce = 62 calories 3 g Fat  0.3 g fiber 4 g Protein  4.4 g carbs  6 mg Calcium]

3-3.5 oz breaded pork loin cutlets 2 oz beets 1 oz roasted red potatoes ½ oz mushrooms

Set the oven for 425F. Slice the red potatoes in half and place in an oven-proof pan. Spray liberally with non-stick spray, sprinkle on sakt and pepper, and place in the oven. Set timer for 15 minutes. [Check the potatoes for done-ness at 15 minutes. They may need another few minutes – your call.] While the potatoes cook and the beets warm up in a pan, spray a heavy non-stick skillet with non-stick spray. When it is hot, begin to cook the pork schnitzel. Cook for 2-3 minutes on one side, then flip it over and put the mushrooms in the pan as well. Cook both for another 3 minutes. Plate the pork and vegetables. Pour the mushrooms on top of the schnitzel along with any pan juices. Very simple and satisfying.

Ingredients for next week: Breakfast, single portion for Monday …………………………… single portion for Thursday:

1 two-oz egg + strawberries next week, I will present ways to prepare rhubarb
uncured American baconin beverages and in breakfast dishes.
whole milk + Swiss cheeseFind a new breakfast favorite in the Archive.
cayenne pepper + nutmeg
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

Dinner, single portion for Monday:………………………….. single portion for Thursday:

Ahi tuna + Laughing Cow CheeseFind a new favorite dinner in the Archive.
Bechamel without cheese  + fish stock 
buckwheat galettes
Cauliflower + carrot + zucchini
Sparkling waterSparkling water