Kublai Khan

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.

Did Kublai Khan live in a ‘stately pleasure dome’ in Xanadu? Did he feast on honeydew and milk? Mostly. The 5th Great Khan, Kublai established his summer capital at Shangdu/Xanadu in southern Mongolia. As a prince, he had been trained in riding, archery, and warfare. After the death of his brother, Kublai defeated another brother to become the leader of the Mongol Empire on May 5, 1260. To make nice with the conquered Chinese, Kublai called his dynasty the Yuan. A Chinese advisor designed Xanadu according to the principles of Feng Shui and filled the gardens with rare and exotic plants. [The poet Coleridge, who wrote the poem Kubla Khan, never visited the place and made up his descriptions out of whole cloth.] Although Kublai still favored his fellow Mongols in key positions, he freely appointed non-Mongols and even non-Chinese [like Marco Polo] to government jobs. For 30 years Kublai was the Great Khan and ruled over a vast empire, from Eastern Europe to the Pacific Ocean. Kublai Khan was notable for improving infrastructure, relative cultural tolerance, and enhancing trade with the use of paper money. He died of obesity and alcoholism [with goiter and gout for good measure] in 1294. Xanadu was destroyed in 1369 by the Sung Chinese. As for the honeydew? What Americans call ‘honeydew melons’ originated in Egypt/Levant/Western Asia many thousands of years ago. It is entirely possible that they made their way along the Silk Road to the court of the Great Khan.

In the summer, the Mongols enjoyed a ‘white diet’ that was based on dairy products and foraged plants. Thus we begin our day with yogurt and a bread made with milk. In the winter, the Mongols ate a ‘red diet’ that was based on hunted meats. Our dinner will revert to summer, when fish from the rivers would be eaten. We will use ocean fish instead of freshwater fish. The ancient Mongols were subject to goiter [‘fat neck’], caused by a lack of Iodine in their diet. Eating seafood supplies Iodine.

Mongol Morning: 158 calories 1 g fat 2.5 g fiber 10 g protein 34.5 g carbs 229 mg Calcium PB The Mongols were nomadic herders and ate dairy products at all meals. This breakfast is based on dairy, ‘foraged’ plants, and a traditional bread. It is very good.

1 Mongol flatbread** ½ c plain yogurt  ¼ c blueberries/strawberries ¼ c microgreens Optional: 3 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie [44 caloriesOptional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories] or lemon in hot water 

Cook the flatbread or take from ‘fridge. Plate with yogurt, berries, and greens for an excellent breakfast. The yogurt can be spooned onto the bread then topped with fruit or greens, or you may eat these items in any combination you wish.

**Mongol Flatbread: makes 9 breads  1 of 9 = 86 calories 1 g fat 1.3 g fiber 4 g protein 21 g carbs 26.4 mg Calcium  PB The recipe is from ucook.com. The result is delicious. Just great as a flatbread accompaniment, but I would like to try them as pancakes for breakfast.

1 c white whole wheat flour ½ c white flour
1 tsp honey 1½ tsp yeast 1 tsp salt
Combine these together in a large mixing bowl and make a well in the center. 
½ c + 2 Tbsp milk ½ c + 2 T water .Warm milk and water slightly Add to flour mixture and whisk vigorously, 5 mins, to make a smooth batter. 
Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let sit in a warm place 2 hours while dough doubles and bubbles.
Whisk the batter 1 minute and it’s ready to go
¼ tsp vegetable oil Put oil in a nonstick frying pan over med-low heat, then wipe out with a paper towel. Fry ¼ cup of batter at a time, a few minutes on each side, until well browned. Wipe pan at whiles with the oiled paper towel.

Cod for the Khan: 223 calories 2.4 g fat 6 g fiber 24.6 g protein 28 g carbs 176 mg Calcium  PB GF  This meal is based on ingredients from a Mongol Carp Soup. Instead of boiling, the fish is pan-cooked and it comes out well. The Mongols were not known for eating vegetables, but they did include onions in their recipes. The rice would have come from the southern provinces of the Mongol Empire.

Marinated Cod:  4 oz cod fillet ¼ tsp brown pepper, ground ¼ tsp coriander seed, ground 1 ½ tsp onion, chopped 1 Tbsp Chinese wine or sherry Stir together the spices, onion, and wine in a glass pie plate. Marinate the cod on the pie plate, turning often, for 30-60 minutes.

The Dinner: marinated cod  1 cup foraged greens: dandelion leaves, chickweed, chives, sheep-sorrel, spinach ¼ cup onion, chopped ¼ cup brown rice, cooked 1 Tbsp chives, chopped optional: splash of vinegar

Spray a small cast iron pan with cooking spray and add the cod. Cook over medium for 4 minutes, turning to heat both sides. Pour in the marinade, cover, turn down heat and cook for 6-7 minutes, depending on thickness of the fillet. Chop the greens roughly. Put onion in a small pan with ¼ cup water and simmer until transluscent. Add the greens, turn down heat, cover, and simmer to wilt the greens. Heat the cooked rice and stir in chives. Test fish to see if it ‘flakes’ [when a fork is brushed over the side of the fish, the meat comes off in flakes]. Salt to taste and add a splash of vinegar. Plate the fish with the rice and greens, pouring extra pan juices over the fish and rice. Does it make your dream of ruling the world?

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

fat-free milk1 two-oz egg 
firm tofuArnold-brand multi-grain Sandwich Thin = 100 calories
banana + sugar/honey Canadian Bacon @ 20 calories/slice
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

canned garbanzo beans + herbs1.5# asparagus + canned white beans
garlic + Parmesan cheeseonion + chicken stock + chicken breast meat
white wine vinegar + tomato + canned tunapotato + Finn Crisp crackers
salad greens + olive oil + lemon juiceSwiss cheese + Boursin cheese, light
Sparkling waterSparkling water

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