Celebrating Floralia

My mother loved to celebrate holidays with special foods. Whether the holiday was religious, patriotic, or ethnic, she would find a recipe to go with it. The tradition continues with me.  May 1-4 is the festival of Floralia, the Roman Goddess of Springtime and Flowers. The English celebrate it with baskets of flowers and maypoles.  The French celebrate it by decorating their towns with floral displays and wearing green.  The recipes for today were chosen because they look like or contain flowers. Celebrate the season, eat well, lose weight.

Strawberry Cottage Cheese & Pears                        290 K                                                                                     This is from the Fast Diet book. You can see some other good recipes there, too. I added the pecans to this for deeper flavor and more protein.Strawberry Cottage Cheese with Pear

1 ripe pear of which Comice is the best, but at this time of year use Anjous or Bosc                                       ½ cup fat-free cottage cheese                                                                                                                                           2 ripe strawberries, chopped                                                                                                                                                                    ¼ tsp pecans, finely chopped                                                                                                                                          5-6 oz fruit smoothie or natural apple cider                                                                                                       blackish coffee, blackish tea, or lemon in hot water

Section the pear into 12 slices and remove the cores. Do not peel the pears. Fan the segments on a plate in a circle. Mix the cottage cheese with the strawberries and spoon into the center. Sprinkle with the nuts. Pour the smoothie and hot beverage of choice. Good stuff!

Tuna-Egg-Tomato Salad    283 cal   16.5 g. fat      27.7 g. protein           29.5 g. carbs         Here we have  a Spanish-inspired meal from a cookbook called Everyday Tapas. I took out the potatoes and substituted garbanzo beans. I added the salad greens, too. Feel free to add more greens and tomatoes, there are calories to spare.  The recipe is very simple and delicious as well – perfect to dress up with pansy blossoms [they are edible] to honor a day in spring or summer.  HINT: This makes enough for two meals. Invite a friend or enjoy the left-overs as a lovely lunch the next day. Today’s lettuce will wilt by tomorrow, so plan around that.

Tapas Tuna w: egg & tomatoes5 oz canned white-meat tuna in water                                                                                                        2 egg, hardboiled and cut into 1/2” dice                                                                                                     4 oz tomato, cut into 1/2” dice                                                                                                                       ½ cup garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed    I find Goya brand to be reliable                                                                                              1 cup baby salad greens  [mesclun]                                                                                                            1 ½ tsp olive oil                                                                                                                                                   1 tsp white wine vinegar                                                                                                                             fresh parsley, salt, pepper                                                                                                                      pansy or violet flowers for garnish                                                                                      1/2 slice 70-calorie bread such as Nature’s Own 100% whole grain per person

Drain the tuna and flake the meat into 1” pieces. Whisk the oil and vinegar together and toss with the lettuce. Add everything else, except the flowers, and gently toss to combine with the salad dressing. Garnish with as many flowers as you wish. Serve at room temperature.

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