St Bernard

How this Fast Diet Lifestyle works: Eat these meals tomorrow. On Thursday, eat the meals that will be posted on Wednesday.  Eat sensibly the other days of the week.  That’s it.  Simple way to lose weight and be healthier.                                                                             Welcome to Michael H-A who is now Following.

In the 6th century, St. Benedict decided that the Roman Church needed reform, and so he established the austere Benedictine Order of monks. In the 11th century, a further reform was deemed necessary, and the Cistercian Order was begun in France. Enter St Bernard of Clairvaux.  A handsome, well-educated, well-spoken, wealthy young man [born August 20], he could have had success in any field.  But he wanted a vocation in the church more than anything.  After the death of his mother, Aleth, he decided to follow her example of piety and charity.  He, along with most of his brothers and friends, a group of around 30 men, went to join the Cistercian Abby at Cîteaux .  Bernard threw himself into austerity and soon was sent to start a new monastery at Clairvaux in Burgundy. So influential was his preaching, that he had to found more monasteries to accommodate his recruits.  When he went on a preaching tour, mothers locked their sons in their rooms and wives kept their husbands home for fear that they would follow this charismatic priest into the cloister.  The best preserved of his ‘daughter’ houses is the lovely Fontenay Abbey, founded 900 years ago.   Despite a sickly life, made worse by starvation rations and quack ‘cures’, Bernard became one of the most influential men of his time:  advisor to kings and popes; arbitrator of many disputes; and, unfortunately, the champion of the ill-fated Second Crusade. His fervent rejection of materialism should make each of us re-evaluate our relationship with ‘things’ and ‘stuff’ in our lives.

In honor of the Good Bernard, we will enjoy some meals of the French countryside. Wild mushrooms go into the eggs which go into the crêpe for breakfast, despite the fact that crêpes are from Brittany the home of Bernard’s philosophical rival Pierre Abelard. And for dinner, the staple of the diet of monasteries: salt cod, here made into the homey meal of brandade.

Egg-Mushroom Crêpe:  294 calories   6 g fat   4 g fiber   15 g protein  43 g carbs [36 g Complex] 200 mg Calcium PB  This is yummy. The eggs are creamy, the mushrooms are earthy, and the crêpe is nutty.Mushroom-Egg Crepe

1 crêpe, see Sidekicks II4 Oct-’18 for recipe  [HINT: When I make a batch, I often cook all of them, then layer them with waxed paper and freeze what I don’t need now for later.]                                                                                                                                                                   one 2-oz egg                                                                                                                                                                 1 oz mushrooms, chopped                                                                                                                                                1/2 Tbsp chives, chopped                                                                                                                                             1/2 tsp thyme                                                                                                                                                        generous dash of granulated garlic                                                                                                                          1 oz raspberry                                                                                                                                                blackish coffee, blackish tea, or lemon in hot water                                                                                    5-6 oz smoothie or natural apple cider

Spritz a non-stick saute pan with oil or spray and gently cook the mushrooms. Put the chives, thyme, garlic, salt, and pepper in with the egg and beat it up. Put the mushrooms in a baking dish which has been spritzed with oil, then pour the egg mixture into the dish and bake at 350 F for 12 minutes -OR- Scramble the egg lightly with the mushrooms, keeping the eggs moist.  Warm the crêpe until it is pliable but not crisp. Turn the egg out on the crêpe and fold the crêpe over the egg. Plate the fruit. Sip your beverages and have a good day.

Codfish Brandade:  250 calories   5.8 g fat  5.7 g fiber  77 g protein  22.3 g carbs  270 mg Calcium   PB GF   Since salt cod is so popular all over southern France, it follows that Brandade is a favorite meal. The garlic, olive oil, and fennel mark this version as Provinçal. [HINT: This batch serves 4. Either invite friends or use what you need and freeze the remainder.] The recipe is from Jacques Pepin.Brandade w: tomatoes & Carrots

8 oz salt cod                                                                                                                                                              ¼ cup potatoes in <1/2” cubes                                                                                                                                 6 oz cauliflower, in 1″ florets                                                                                                                                           ½ cup milk                                                                                                                                                                                 4 cloves garlic                                                                                                                                                              1 tsp olive oil                                                                                                                                                                       ¼ tsp fennel seed + ¼ tsp pepper, more to taste                                                                                                                     per serving: 4 oz sliced tomatoes  +  2 oz raw carrot sticks or coins  +  parsley to sprinkle

The day before: Soak the cod in water for 8 hours. Drain and put in a sauce pan covered with cold water. Bring to a boil, turn heat to low and cook gently for 5 minutes. Drain. Pick over the fish to break it into 1” pieces, removing bones, skin.     The next day: Put fish in a pan with potatoes, cauliflower, garlic, fennel, and milk. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and gently simmer uncovered for 20-25 minutes until vegetables are tender. Pour it all into a food processor and process it for about 10 seconds. Add the pepper, then add the oil with the machine running. Mixture should be smooth and thick. Adjust seasonings. Slice the tomatoes and spread with brandade, then sprinkle with parsley. Serve remaining amount in a bowl with the carrots stuck into it. Very traditional flavor.

Footnote: one of my favorite memes involves Filippino Lippi‘s painting “The Apparition of the Virgin to St. Bernard.”  Unfortunately, to me, he looks like a petty bureaucrat telling a single mother, “I don’t make the rules, madame.  You left line 34 blank, so you must go to the back of the line or return tomorrow.”

2 thoughts on “St Bernard

  1. The egg mushroom crepe was absolutely delicious! It was very filling & I couldn’t finish my portion, but it & kept me going until late afternoon! This is an excellent meal. I would have it for diiner with a salad too.


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