Viking Tales: Harald & Rognvald

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.

…, they don’t ‘Go to White Castle,’ but they did have some ‘excellent adventures.’ They were a real “buddy story” in medieval Norway. Our Harald was born in 852 in Norway, son of Halfdan of Vestfold. Our Rognvald was born in 835, son of Eystein of Maer/Møre. Rognvald and Harald were related, possibly 2nd cousins. [Rognvald and I are related too!] In his youth, Harald had wooed a lass, proposing marriage. She said, in so many words, “What great deeds have you accomplished? Come back when you have something to say for yourself.” Harald decided then and there that his goal was to become king of all Norway – and that he would not cut or comb or wash his hair until he had achieved that. For 10 years he kept that oath, thus he was called Harald Lufa [Harald with the matted hair]. Harald married Rognvald’s sister, Swanhild, and began to conquer the many small earldoms in Norway. The brothers-in-law went a-viking together, to Ireland and Scotland, where rebelious jarls/earls had fled, and from which they harried the Norweigan coast. Rognvald’s eldest son, Ivar, was killed on one of these missions, so to make it up to him, Harald gave Rognvald a Jarldom in the Orkney and Shetland Islands. But Rognvald was already Jarl of Møre in Norway, so he gave the islands to his brother, Sigurd. At last, in 872, Harald became King of Norway, and Rognvald held a celebration for him and his men. When Harald went to have a soak in the bath, Rognvald pointed out that since Harald was now king of Norway, he could cut his hair. The King permitted the Jarl to cut, wash, and style his hair. Rognvald then presented the King to the group with a new sobriquet: Harald Harfager [Harald Fair-Hair]. The name stuck. Unfortunately, Harald’s sons were jealous of Rognvald. Halfdan and Gudrod killed him in 894 by burning his house down with him and 60 supporters in it. So ended a beautiul friendship. A furious King Harald banished Gudrod, but Halfdan escaped punishment by fleeing. The Jarldom of Møre was given to Rognvald’s son Thorir, along with Princess Alof as his wife. You may have seen the character Harald Fair-Hair in the Vikings TV series. He was a real person, and this is how he got his name.

The Orkney and Shetland Islands are part of Scotland now, so we will enjoy Scottish Bannocks at breakfast. For dinner, a genuine Scandinavian treat: the open-faced sandwich called smørrebrød.

Bannock & Bacon:  143 calories 3.5 g fat 1 g fiber 12 g protein 14.6 g carbs 15 mg Calcium  NB: Food values given are for the main meal only, and do not include the optional beverage.  PB  For years we have enjoyed this on Slow Days, only to find that it fits for Fasting, too.

3 two-inch bannock**  2 slices Hormel Canadian Bacon OR Jones brand OR back bacon @ 60-70 calories ½ cup applesauce, unsweetened Optional: 5 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie [88 calories]   Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories] or lemon in hot water 

Prepare the bannock according to the recipe and bake. Warm and lightly brown the Canadian bacon. Plate the applesauce and pour the beverages. Simple and delicious.

**BANNOCK: each 2” bannock = 16 calories 0.5 g fat 0.2 g fiber 0.4 g protein 2 g carbs 4 mg Calcium  This recipe makes the full batch, which yields 3 cups of dry mix. The dry mix keeps well in a sealed glass jar in a cool dry place. Splendid for breakfast or with a soup. NB: 1½ cup of dry mix makes 16 [sixteen] 2” bannocks 

1 cup flour ½ cup white whole wheat flour 1 cup rolled oats, called ‘old fashioned’ in the US, as opposed to ‘instant’  4 Tbsp butter 1.5 Tbsp sugar pinch of salt 1 Tbsp baking powder

Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl and mix. Cut the butter into the dry ingredients until well-incorporated. Measure out the amount you need into a bowl, and put remaining dry mix into a jar for storage. Add 1 Tbsp of milk to the bowl of mix and stir with a fork. Add a little more milk until a stiff dough ball is formed. Roll out on a lightly-floured board until 1/3” thick. Cut out with a 2” round cutter. Gather the scraps together, reroll, and continue to cut out the rounds. Bake on a lightly-greased baking sheet at 400 F. for 10-12 minutes.

Smørrebrød with Turkey: 243 calories 8 g fat 3 g fiber 10 g protein 29 g carbs 18.5 mg Calcium  PB GF – if using GF rye bread From Oslo comes the best of Summer sandwiches: smørrebrød [smeared bread]. Light and flavorful from summer vegetables, this meal is filling and simple to prepare without heating the kitchen. It is a great quick meal in any season.

1 slice [1.5 oz] sourdough rye bread @ 110 calories [the bread should be dense, not fluffy] 1 Tbsp whipped cream cheese 4 large leaves of fresh spinach 1.5 oz thinly-sliced tomato, slice and salt about 30 minutes earlier for best taste 1 oz cooked turkey breast or tenderloin ½ hard-boiled egg, sliced ½ cup Swedish Cucumber Salad**

Spread the bread with the cream cheese and lay the spinach leaves on top. Place the tomato slices atop that. For the next layer, put down the turkey, topped by the egg slices. Season with saltand pepper to taste. Drain the Cucumber Salad and plate. Excellent!

SWEDISH CUCUMBER SALAD: 1 cup = 2 serving 23 calories 0 g fat 0.3 g fiber 0.4 g protein 5 g carbs 14 mg Calcium 

1 cup sliced cucumber 1.5 tsp sugar 1 oz white wine vinegar ½ tsp cold water salt and freshly ground pepper ½ tsp dill

Combine the sugar, vinegar, water, salt, and pepper in a bowl. Slice the cucumbers, spread them out on towels and pat dry. Stir the cukes into the liquid, wetting all the slices. Chill for at least one hour.

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

1 two-oz egg olive oil onion sage1 two-oz eggs 
hot pepper flakes/jalepeno/New Mexico green chiliesbeets + onion
garlic zucchiniham
vinegar roasted red pepperapple
optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

4 two-oz eggs + Esplette or Aleppo pepper1.5 pounds blue mussels
Italian bell peppers — red or greendry white wine
olive oil + Side Salad heavy cream
whole-wheat sourdough breadsweet potato
Sparkling waterSparkling water

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