Saint Eligius

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.

It was 580 CE, in Limoges in the Kingdom of Frankia, King Lothar/Chlothar II/Clothaire was on the throne, and Éloi [called Eligius in latin] was born to a farming family. As a teenager, he apprenticed to a goldsmith. A portion of his earnings was supposed to be given to his family, but he gave it to the poor and the enslaved people instead. Éloi’s skills as a goldsmith earned him a royal commission from Clothaire: create a throne [some say a saddle] of gold and gems. The king gave him the gold to use, which would be enough for the proposed item, plus more since goldsmiths usually factored in some ‘waste and loss.’ What they were really doing was removing a large portion of the gold by mixing it with base metals and keeping the gold for themselves. But Éloi was an honest workman. He made a throne/saddle from the required weight of gold and then fashioned another, just like it, out of the remainder, not stealing any of it. So impressed was Clothaire, that he appointed Éloi as Royal Goldsmith in Paris. He made reliquaries for St. Martin and St. Columbanus. In that position, he became wealthy and trusted as one of the king’s advisors. The king sent Éloi to Marseilles to run the royal mint. While doing the king’s bidding, Éloi also bought slaves coming into the port and freed them. The next king, Dagobert, brought Éloi back to Paris to run the mint there. All the while, his faith work increased: he founded a monastery in Limoges, as well as the first religious house for women in Paris. When Dagobert died, Éloi left government work and became a priest. He was immediately made Bishop of Noyon and threw himself into the job of preaching and converting in the Flemish cities of Ghent and Antwerp. One of the most famous legends about Eloi has to do with shoeing a horse. The horse kept kicking, so Eloi took off its leg, fitted the shoe, then put the leg back onto the horse. The king sent Eligius to Brittany to convince them to come under the Frankish umbrella. There are many churches and towns in Brittany named for the saint, including St Ilan in Langeux which was the home base of one of my family’s ancestral branches. Eloi died on December 1 in 660 CE. He is the Patron Saint of Goldsmiths and veterinarians.

Aubergines are enjoyed in Provence, where Eloi founded a monastery, so we will enjoy them in our eggs at breakfast. In Flanders, Hutspot is a favorite food and it might become one of your favorites, too.

Aubergine ScrOmelette:  152 calories  7.6 g fat  2 g fiber 10.5 g protein 11 g carbs [10 g Complex] 64.7 mg Calcium  NB: Food values shown are for the ScrOmelette and fruit only, and do not include the optional beverages.  PB GF  Eggplant and tomatoes are such a fine combination, that you want to eat them with everything. Eating them out of season is a possible too.

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 to store in the ‘fridge for next week.  1¼ oz fresh tomatoes, diced OR same amount of canned, diced tomato 1¼ oz eggplant, peeled ¼ oz onion OR 1 clove garlic, smashed and chopped large pinch Herbes de Provence pinch crushed red pepper flakes 1¼ oz pear 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]

Chop the eggplant and onion/garlic. Simmer the vegetables and herbes in the tomato sauce in a covered pan until they are tender. If too thick, add a little water. Whisk the eggs with the vegetables and put into a hot saute pan spritzed with cooking spray. Scramble or cook as an omelette. Alternatively, cook the eggs as a flat omelette and spoon the tomato-eggplant on to them as a filling, then fold. Slice the pears and prepare your beverages. Savor the flavor of summer.

Hutspot with Dutch Meatballs: 243 calories 8 g fat 4 g fiber 17 g protein 31 g carbs [21 g Complex] 82 mg Calcium   PB GF – if using GF rye bread  This recipe from Flanders and Holland is a hit at our house. The sweet carrots really add something to the potatoes.  HINT: This meal serves two with meatballs left over.

Hutspotmakes 1 cup which serves 2 people 2 oz potato, peeled 2 oz carrots, peeled 2 oz onion salt and pepper to taste Cube the potatoes and put into a sauce pan with water half-way up. Cut the carrots in coins and put on top of potatoes. Slice the onions and put them on top of the carrots. Bring to a boil, turn down the heat. Cover and cook for 20 minutes or until all vegetables are soft. Drain, reserving the liquid. Mash the vegetables, adding reserved liquid if needed. Season to taste.

Dutch Meatballs: makes 6 which serves 3 people ½ pound ground turkey, 3% fat 1 oz rye bread, crust removed if very hard ¼ cup skim milk 1 shallot [1 Tbsp chopped] 1 egg white ¼ tsp nutmeg ¼ tsp salt ¼ tsp black pepper Chop or tear the bread into ½” pieces. Put in a small dish and pour in enough milk to wet the bread – you will have some left over. Add the seasonings and egg white to the meat. Squeeze the extra milk out of the bread and add it to the meat/seasonings. Run it all though the food processor. Heat a non-stick pan and spray with non-stick spray. Measure the meat mixture into 3 Tbsp portions and gently form into balls. Place in hot pan and cook until brown on one side. Turn and cook further. Turn onto another side and cook until done.

Plating: Plate two meatballs per person, along with the hutspot and a bit of grainy mustard, if you like.

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

1 two-oz egg + onion1.5 two-oz eggs + dry mustard
bratwurst sausage + mustardCheddar cheese
parsley + curry powderWorcestershire sauce
catsup + strawberriesstrawberries or pear
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

150 g cod cheeks per person + olive oilgrilled sirloin steak + mushrooms
whipping/heavy cream + Dijon mustardred wine + creamed onions
asparagus + white winepeas + thyme
chives/scallions  + side saladpuff pastry from a purchased sheet of pastry
Sparkling waterSparkling water

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