Blizzard of ’88

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. Simple way to lose weight and be healthier.

The USA has had some wild weather in the past year, including a snow storm in the state of Texas. People thought that was pretty horrible [and it was, especially as the people and infrastructure were unused to cold], but what would they have done in New York in the White Hurricane of 1888? The storm was preceded by warmth and rain — and then the temperature dropped. Snow began on March 11, continued all night and into the next day and the next. The wind howled, piling the snow impossibly high [52 feet/16 meters in Brooklyn]. Such snow! Forty inches [100 cm] in New York City, coming down impossibly fast and wind-blown. When it was all over, 200 people had died in the city alone, 100 more died at sea, and 100 others in the countryside. In the city, office and store workers had set out to work in the morning and never made it home. Since the trains and trolleys were stopped, those workers had to walk home in the evening — often trying to go 20 blocks in freezing temperatures, wearing inadequate clothing. A shop girl, in thin leather boots and layers of cotton petticoats, had a daunting task plowing through the snowy sidewalks. Many poor souls, men and women, were so exhausted that they sat down on door steps to rest, died of hypothermia where they sat , and weren’t discovered until the snow melted. The storm moved off to the North-East, blanketing New England and the Canadian Maritimes. Nowadays, all it takes is 4 inches of snow to paralyze a major city, but the subways still run underground and the communication wires are safe underground, too. Lives lost. Lessons learned.

Let us peer into the life of a shop girl or factory worker in New York City in 1888. Breakfast and dinner in a cold-water flat with no electricity meant foods that could be stored briefly or bought at a food stall. Thus breakfast might be bread and hard-boiled egg with leftover meat from dinner and the evening meal of soup from a vendor on the way home from work.

Shop Girl’s Breakfast:  231 calories 9 g fat 4.6 g fiber 14.5 g protein 27.5 g carbs 7 mg Calcium  PB The Industrial Revolution brought young women by the thousands from the farm to the city, to work in the factories and as shop girls. Breakfast would have been served cold, made from dinner leftovers and other foods that required little preparation or refrigeration.

1 slice whole-grain bread [no white bread on her budget] 1 two-oz hard boiled egg 1 oz of chicken dinner sausage 1 oz onion, sliced 2 prunes — aka: dried plums [0.6 oz]    Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea

Slice the sausage and the onion. Place in a small pan with some water and a spritz of non-stick spray. Cook until the water has evaporated, sausages have browned a bit, and the onions are limp. TIP: This could be done the night before. And, unlike our Shop Girl, you can reheat the sausage-onion in the morning. Toast the bread lightly and top with the sausage-onion mixture. Plate with the egg and the prunes. Only blackish coffee or tea for our Shop Girl – no stop at Starbucks on the way to work for a fancy brew.

Soup Royaume: 152 calories 0.3 g fat 6 g fiber 12.6 g protein 24.6 g carbs 84 mg Calcium  PB GF  A fine meal for winter, made hearty with autumn vegetables and lentils, it is named after the old lady who saved Geneva from invasion by the Savoyards. Add as much seasoning as you wish. Any soup can be improved by preparing it ahead and letting it sit for 8-24 hours. HINT: This recipe makes 6 [six] servings of 1 cup each.

2½ oz pork loin, raw or cooked, diced
½ cup onion, chopped
3½ oz [½ c]dry lentils**
Put pork, onions, and lentils in a heavy saucepan and cook until browned.
**small green lentils from France, if possible
3 oz rutabega/turnip, cubed
2 oz carrot, diced
3 oz parsnip, diced
3 cups chopped cabbage
½ tsp mace + ½ tsp dry mustard 
1 Tbsp caraway seed + salt & pepper
3 cups water
Add the rutabega/turnip, carrot, parsnip, cabbage and seasonings to the saucepan. Pour in water to cover the vegetables. Cover the pan and simmer for about 1 hour or until vegetables are tender. Taste for seasonings.
½ cup frozen spinach, choppedAdd the frozen spinach, and heat through.
Divide in 6 equal servings.  Freeze what you don’t need today.
per serving: several leaves of fresh spinachRoughly chop the leaves and poke into the hot soup when serving. 

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

1 two-oz egg1 slice Canadian or back bacon 
4″ diameter thin slice hampan muffin [make ahead]
Parmesan cheese + appleapple or apple sauce
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

naan bread @ 106 caloriesfrozen spinach + tuna + peas
ground turkey + zucchinigarlic + onion + olive oil
Rogan Josh Sauce + tomatoanchovy + puff pastry
cauliflower + Indian curry powdermediterranean vegetables
Sparkling waterSparkling water

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