A Seeper in Titusville

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.

Edwin Drake had been sent by some ‘sharpsters‘ in New York City to Titusville, Pennsylvania in 1859. ‘They,’ a banker and a lawyer, had bought land along a body of water the locals called ‘Oil Creek.’ Seems there was a petroleum seep up-stream at the source of the creek. Everyone knew that petroleum was good for aching joints and that if you rubbed it on your chest, it would cure a cold. But those sharp operators from the City had other plans: oil for lighting, oil for machine lubrication — native oil to replace the dwindling supplies of expensive whale oil. And they were right in their assumptions. Drake, with no experience in petroleum extraction, cobbled together a team to build a drilling rig, similar to ones used locally to pump out salt brine. [We know today that salt deposits and petroleum reservoirs are linked geologically.] After drilling 80-some feet, quantities of oil seeped to the surface on August 27. OK, it wasn’t a ‘gusher’ of an oil well, but it did usher in the dominance of petroleum in the American economy, for better or for worse. In my opinion as an Earth Scientist, it might be good to leave a lot of the oil in the ground — in case we require it decades or centuries from now. Using it all up now is not the best of ideas IMHO. [Read the long, very interesting article from American Heritage: https://www.americanheritage.com/sitting-gusher]

Since oil and America are so inextricably linked, We will enjoy some all-American foods today: a star-studded line-up of cornmeal and hot dogs. This patriotism is further seen at the Drake Well Museum in Titusville, which is closed on all holidays except Memorial Day, July 4th, and Labor Day.

Cornmeal Stars with Fruit Yogurt: 133 calories 3.3 g fat 4.2 g fiber 7.6 g protein 21 g carbs [8 g Complex] 46 mg Calcium NB: Food values given are for the plated foods only, and do not include the optional beveragePB GF Cornbread and stars are SO American, that they fit in with any patriotic meal.

Cornmeal Stars: 1 egg white 1 egg yolk, stirred 1 Tbsp white whole-wheat flour 3 Tbsp yellow cornmeal Whip the egg white to soft peaks. Fold in the yolk, the flour, and the meal. Place your largest [3-4”] star-shaped cookie cutter in the center of a non-stick pan. Spray the pan and the inside of the star with non-stick spray. Spoon 1/3 of the batter into the star, nudging it into the corners. Loosen the mold from the batter and remove it. Cook the star on one side until starting to brown, then turn carefully to cook the other side. Repeat until batter is all used up. HINT: This can be done a day or so in advance, storing the stars in a plastic bag.

Per serving: 1.5 stars 2 Tbsp fat-free French Vanilla yogurt 2 Tbsp blueberries 2 oz strawberries, sliced or diced [If frozen, they will need to be thawed and drained]   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]

Plate the stars, slightly overlapping. Dollop the yogurt on top, then strew with fruit.

Hot Dog & 4-Bean Salad: 302 calories 12 g fat 3.6 g fiber 20 g protein 18.6 g carbs 103.7 mg Calcium  GF PB  Hot Dogs and summer salads go together, even for Fasters. This meal is very straight-forward, assuming the 4-bean salad has already been prepared.

1 Hebrew National reduced-fat hot dog 1 deviled egg [hard-boiled egg the yolk of which has been creamed with yellow mustard, salt, and black pepper] ½ cup 4-bean salad  2 oz tomato broiled with ½ Tbsp Parmesan cheese

Grill or pan-cook the hot dog. Prepare the deviled egg. Cut out the stem end of the tomato and carve it in half along the equator. Top the tomato with cheese and broil it. Plate it all with the 4-bean salad. Simple food at summer’s end.

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

1 two-oz egg1.5 two-oz eggs 
tomatoricotta cheese
leek + garlic powderdry mustard + peach
basil + pearwatercress sauce
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

raw chicken + potato + onionroast ham + potato starch
rich chicken stock + corn1 cup oysters + their liquid
hard-boiled egg + thyme white wine + milk + peas
optional: sourdough bread70-calories whole-grain bread
Sparkling waterSparkling water

Fly-Over

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. Welcome to amberbam8 who is now Following.

On August 24, 1932, Amelia Earhart become the first woman to fly across the United States. At that time, flying was still novel and few flew for any reason, let alone travel or business. Today, we look down at the crop-lands of the Heartland as we fly from the East Coast to California, and then watch as the landscape changes to the high plains and then the mountains. From 10,000 feet, as seen from Amelia’s plane, it must have been even more impressive. The states below have referred to by most as the ‘Mid-West,’ the ‘Great Plains,’ the ‘Basin and Range.’ Some today call them the ‘Fly-Over States,’ to the great annoyance of the residents there-of, who feel that their voices and concerns are over-looked by the Great and Powerful of the coastal states. There are a lot of good people on both coasts, and a lot of good people in the middle, too, who should not be ignored just because we fly-over their states. Everyone deserves a voice. That’s why free and fair elections are so important.

Iowa and Kansas are in the middle of the USA. They grow a lot of corn. So breakfast will feature that fine vegetable. Dinner is a Summer meal that you could find at any lunch counter in the Heartland. Worth stopping in.

Ham-Cup Egg with Corn: 140 calories 6.7 g fat 1.3 g fiber 10 g protein 11 g carbs [10 g Complex] 36.8 mg Calcium  NB: The food values given above are for the egg bake and fruit only, not the optional beverages.  PG GF Ham and corn are such a grand combination. Easy to prepare ahead for a quick breakfast.

1 two-oz egg 1 slice “Cottage Ham” [4” diameter thin slice of ham] I used North Country Smoke House brand at 21 calories/slice 1 Tbsp fresh polenta [see Second Fiddles I-9-’19] 1.5 tsp red bell pepper, diced Sriracha 3 oz watermelon   Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories] or lemon in hot water  Optional: 5-6 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie [88 calories]

Fit the ham into an oven-proof container that measures 3.25” in diameter and 1.25” deep. [I used a cleaned tuna can. It was perfect.] You will need to snip the ham on 2 sides and overlap the meat to make it fit better into the mold. Combine the polenta with the diced pepper and season with Sriracha/salt/pepper to taste. Whisk in the egg and pour into the ham cup. HINT: I did this the night before and put it in the ‘fridge. Turn on the toaster oven to 350 F and bake the ham cups for 20+ minutes, until the filling is puffed and set. Prepare the optional beverages and the melon. Use a wide knife to loosten the ham cups from the mold before plating. Some of the egg will have oozed into the mold as it baked, but that is easy to remove too. This is a real treat!

Chicken Salad Platter:  227 calories 3.4 g fat 5 g fiber 22 g protein 23 g carbs 107 mg Calcium  PB GF – if using gf crackers Chicken salad is an old favorite – for a sandwich or stuffed in tomatoes or on a salad plate. Without mayonnaise, it is much healthier and just as good.

½ cup chicken salad, chez moi** ½ cup Swedish Cucumber salad 5 sugar snap peas, or more 2 cherry tomatoes, or more 3 Finn Crisp crackers

**Chicken Salad, chez moi  makes 1 cup ½ cup= 121 calories 3.3 g fat o g fiber 9.7 g protein 1.4 g carbs 88 mg Calcium  5 oz cooked chicken breast 4 Tbsp part-skim ricotta 2 tsp yellow Sriracha 2 Tbsp cilantro leaves, chopped salt & pepper to taste   optional: 2 Tbsp minced onion 2 Tbsp mined celery Chop, shred or grind the chicken. Combine with the other ingredients. Taste for seasoning, adding more Sriracha if too dry.

Plate everything in a pleasing arrangement

Slow Days: Summer Desserts

People who are new to Fasting often pose the questions: “Can I really eat ‘anything I want’ on a Slow Day?” and “What should I eat on Slow Days?” To answer those questions, I have decided to add some blog posts to show some of the foods we eat on what the world calls NFDs [non-fast days] but which, in our house, we call ‘Slow Days.’ This feature will appear sporadically. 

Now for the answers. Can you really eat ANYTHING you want on a Slow Day?  Not really. If you eat too many calories every Slow Day, you will not lose weight. There are many questions asked on the FastDiet Forum which attest to that. Once in a while you can splurge, as long as it isn’t everyday. For what to eat on Slow Days, Dr. Mosley recommends a Mediterranean Diet. As to how we eat, some examples follow.

In the Summer, we want our desserts to be light and cooling. Hot pie is out, ice cream is in. I remember when fruited Jello was acceptable. And then chiffon pie was in vogue. Ugh. Both highly processed. A waste of calories, in my opinion. Fruit is always the answer: fresh, real, delicious, versatile, good for you. I don’t usually give nutritional information on a Slow Day Post, because with the Fast Diet you need ‘diet’ only 2 days each week. But these desserts are SO good that the calorie counts prove that one can eat well without going hog wild on calories. Hope you like these!

‘Blue Strawberries’: In Portsmouth, NH, in the 70s/80s, James Haller and friends ran the Blue Strawbery Restaurant. They served a prix-fixe menu with only one dessert: their signature strawberries. Awfully simple to prepare and a delight to eat.

This plate will serve two diners.

5 oz medium-sized strawberries 2 Tbsp low fat French Vanilla yogurt 2 Tbsp brown sugar

On individual serving plate, place the strawberries, spoon out the yogurt in a separate spot, and place the sugar in its own space. Grasp a strawberry by the stem, dip into the yogurt, dip into the sugar. Eat. Repeat

Chocolate-Dipped Strawberries: each: 34 calories 2 g fat 1 g fiber 0.5 g protein 3.6 g carbs 13 mg Calcium PB GF These are so easy to make that I can’t imagine buying a kit at the supermarket. Is this ‘gilding the lily’? Yes! And they are SO good. 

6 fresh strawberries [½-3/4 oz each] with leaves and stems attached 3 oz dark [60-70%] or bitter-sweet chocolate [chocolate chips/bar chocolate/melting wafers] — you will end up using less than 1 oz and will have some left over

Put the chocolate in a wide-mouthed jar or glass bowl and place it in a small pan. Add water to the pan to about half-way up the vessel with the chololate. Gently heat the water so that the chocolate melts. Do not let the heating water bubble, lest water drops end up in the chocolate. Stir the chocolate to make sure it is all melted. Put the berries on a piece of waxed paper [or a silicon mat] on a small tray that will fit in the ‘fridge. The berries must be perfectly dry – no water drops, lest the chocolate ‘seize up.’ Pick up a berry by the leaves/stem and dip into the chocolate until it is coated about 2/3 of the way up. You may have to roll it a bit to coat it. As you remove it from dipping, wipe it gently against the side of the vessel, as you would wipe excess paint from a paintbrush. Lay the coated berry on the waxed paper and continue with the other berries. Put the berries in the ‘fridge to harden and cool. Cool any excess chololate and keep in the ‘fridge for any future use.

S’More: 145 calories 4.7 g fat 0.5 g fiber 2 g protein 24.5 g carbs 22.5 mg Calcium The Girl Scouts of America tell their members that this campfire treat was invented by them. No summer is complete without the gooey-chocolatey goodness of the s’more. The name is a contraction of “I want some more.” I must say I was surprised at the low calorie count.

These are the fixings for THREE s’mores.

1 graham cracker, broken in half cross-wise along the perforations 1 marshmallow – regular size, neither mini nor monstrous 3 sections of one standard Hershey Milk Chocolate Bar

On one of the halves of the cracker, place the chocolate. Cook the marshmallow the way you like it. Put the marshmallow on the chocolate, top with the other piece of cracker. Push down on the top to squish the marshmallow so it oozes out the sides a little. Eat immediately.

Watermelon Sherbet:  54 calories 2 g fat 1 g fiber 1 g protein 9 g carbs 42 mg Calcium   PG GF   Such a delight for a hot Summer night! Goes together very quickly at dessert time. Serve with a simple cookie, such as chocolate biscotti. HINT: One serving = 3/4 of a cup. This is really good!

3 cups watermelon1-½ cup melon Freeze the watermelon cubes in a single layer on a piece parchment paper or foil for at least 3-4 hours.
¾ cup frz melon ½ cup plain yogurt OR lite canned coconut milk/ sweetened condensed milk/ Vanilla yogurt1/3 cup frz melon ¼ cup plain yogurtWhen ready to make, add half the watermelon to the food processor and blend until smooth. Scrape down the sides and add the yogurt/ coconut milk/ condensed milk. 
¾ cup frz melon 3 Tbsp mini choc chips1/3 cup frz melon 1.5 Tbsp mini chipsAdd the remaining watermelon and the mini chips. Blend until smooth and creamy.
Eat immediately or freeze for 2-3 hours for a firmer texture. If frozen longer, leave it out for 30 minutes before eating so it can soften up and become creamy.

Natural Selections

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.

On August 20, 1858, Charles Darwin woke up to a day that was going to bring the world down around his ears. As a 22-year old, he had been the naturalist on the research vessel Beagle in her circumnavigation voyage. What he saw opened his eyes and mind to new possibilities about the variety of life on Earth. He became famous for his journals from the trip, since they formed an exotic travelogue for early Victorians. Very quaint. But now, after 30 years of dithering, his article was going to be published in the Journal of Proceedings of the Linnean Society. A letter from Alfred Russell Wallace, another amateur naturalist who was working on the Malay Peninsula, had shocked Darwin into action: Wallace had developed the same ideas and was going to publish them. What ideas were those? That all the species of plants, animals — all life on Earth — had achieved their characteristics slowly, over time, through a process Darwin called “Natural Selection.” He could not explain how that worked, except that it was similar to how hobbyists bred a variety of dogs and pigeons to look very different from each other. After the publication of “On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection“, and the full book in 1859, the world of science was never the same.

On that August morning, Darwin probably ate a normal breakfast [unless his stress-induced digestive problems prevented it], and might have enjoyed kippers, perhaps with Yorkshire Pudding. The dinner honors Wallace, who’s name was listed as co-author on Darwin’s paper, who was probably eating food very much like Pork Pad Thai in his research area. By the way, when Fasting, a selection of natural foods [as opposed to processed foods] is always preferable.

Kippered Yorkshire Pudding:  226 calories 5 g fat 5.8 g fiber 11 protein 33.5 g carbs [26 g Complex] 102 mg Calcium  HINT: This is enough for 2 [two] servings. Nothing says Yorkshire like the iconic pudding and kippers. This is a meal to eat at home or to take on the road.

1 oz kippered herring ½ cup 1% milk ½ cup white whole wheat flour [or all-purpose, for lower protein and fiber] one 2-oz egg ½ tsp dry mustard + ¼ tsp salt 3 oz pear   Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories]

Soak the kippered herring in water for 30 minutes. Drain and mince. [If the herring is still quite firm, soak it longer.] Whisk the milk, flour, egg, mustard and salt until combined, but do not over-mix. Spray a 7” pie plate with cooking-spray and sprinkle in some kippers. Carefully pour in the Yorkshire Pudding batter, then sprinkle with the remaining kippers. Bake at 400 F for 15-20 minutes, until puffed and golden. Cut into 4 pieces. Plate two pieces per person along with the pear. What a flavor combination!

Pork Pad Thai:  265 calories 7.3 g fat 4.7 g fiber 20 g protein 28 g carbs 94.4 mg Calcium  PB GF  This is our son’s recipe, with a few tweeks by me to make it fit our calorie requirements. HINT: This makes enough for 2 [two] servings. Share with a friend or pack it up for a later lunch or dinner.

1 oz Asian noodles [I used buckwheat soba noodles] ½ tsp oil + 2-3 Tbsp water ½ cup onion, chopped 2 cloves garlic, chopped 2 cups sliced cabbage 1 cup mung bean sprouts or chopped celery 2 oz scallions [about 3], slice in 1” pieces 3 oz lean pork, cooked or raw, sliced into thin pieces about 1” square 6 oz sugar snap peas, cut in half cross-wise one 2-oz egg 2 Tbsp Thai fish sauce pinch hot pepper flakes + 1 tsp sugar

Heat a wok or large cast iron pan. Stir-fry all the vegetables in the oil and 3 Tbsp water for 3 minutes, adding more water if the vegetables ever stop sizzling in the pan. Boil the noodles according to package directions, drain, rinse, and set aside.  If using raw meat, add to cooking vegetables after 2 minutes. Add the raw egg to the pan of vegetables and scramble it in.  If using cooked pork, add it now. Stir the noodles into the wok and combine with other ingredients over the heat. Mix well as you add the fish sauce, the sugar, and red pepper flakes. Pass the Sriracha for added kick.

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

1 two-oz egg + watermelon1 two-oz egg + blueberries 
4″-diameter thin ham slicewhite whole wheat flour
red bell pepperyellow cornmeal + strawberries
fresh polenta + Srirachafat-free French Vanilla yogurt
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

chicken breast + cilantro100-calorie hot dog + tomato
part-skim ricotta + sugar snap peashard-boiled egg + yellow mustard
Swedish cucumber salad + Sriracha4-Bean Salad
cherry tomatoes + Finn CrispParmesan cheese
Sparkling waterSparkling water

At the Diner

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 diner is an American institution. Once upon a time, trains had ‘dining cars’ — watch old movies to see what I mean. When they were phased out, the cars themselves were taken off the tracks and sold. Some were repurposed as small restaurants; other people got the idea to build a restaurant to look like a train car — and the ‘diner’ was born. These eateries had a reputation of being places to get cheap, filling, local food, and awful coffee at any hour of the day or night. Once that reputation was established, a diner could move to become a bricks-and-mortar restaurant and still call itself a diner. “Greasy Spoon”? Maybe, but reliable and homey. So many films noir, so many cop shows had scenes in diners. Norman Rockwell and Edward Hopper, caught up in the zeitgeist, showed diners in their paintings. Very much a part of the American scene.

Today’s menus recall the diner menu: local and basic. And delicious.

Carne Bake: 138 calories 6 g fat 2 g fiber 9 g protein 6.7 g carbs [4.3 g Complex] 34 mg Calcium  NB: The food values given above are for the egg bake and fruit only, not the optional beverages.  PB GF  Carne adovado and roasted green chilis are the signature flavors of New Mexico, and they are wonderful in eggs for breakfast in every South-West diner.

1 two-oz egg 1/3 oz carne adovado ½ oz roasted green chili, canned or frozen 3 Tbsp chopped fresh cilantro leaves 5 cherries    Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories] or lemon in hot water  Optional: 5-6 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie [88 calories]

If the carne or the chilis have a lot of liquid, put in a strainer and let drain overnight or for several hours. Set the toaster oven at 350 degrees F. Spritz an oven-proof ramekin/dish with olive oil or non-stick spray. Whisk the egg with the carne/chili mixture and pour into the dish. Bake for 12-15 minutes while you pour the beverages and plate the fruit.

Meatloaf: 236 calories 11 g fat 5 g fiber 23.5 g protein 13.4 g carbs [11.4 g Complex] 40 mg Calcium Here it is – meatloaf, the kind my mother used to make and you can eat it on a FAST DAY! Who would have thought!

one 3-oz slice of meatloaf** ½ cup peas 2 Tbsp beef gravy   Prepare and bake the meatloaf. Slice into 6 pieces. Plate and enjoy one serving now, with peas of course, cool, wrap and freeze the remainder for a Slow Day or another FAST Day.

**Meatloaf one 18-oz loafMakes 6 slices
½ of a whisked egg [0.9 oz] 3 Tbsp milk 1/3 cup soft bread crumbs, NOT dried 2 Tbsp minced onion ½ pound [8 oz] ground beef ¼ pound [4 oz] ground veal ¼ pound [4 oz] ground lean pork 1 tsp salt + pinch of pepperCombine the ingredients thoroughly  
Bake in a 4″x8″ pan at 350 F for 20 minutes
Pour off any fat before removing from pan.  

Zucchini, Anyone?

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. 

Its that time of year again — the Days of Zucchini. In the Spring, when everyone decided to plant a ‘Covid Garden,’ people forgot that one zucchini plant is enough to feed a family. But that’s one seed out of a package of dozens — so plant more; heck, plant them all! Now you have enough for the village and, if the deer didn’t get them, enough for the county. What to do?? Give it away! To friends [Dear Friends gifted us with 2 zucchini and 2 yellow crook-necks] or to the Food Bank.

It is time for zucchini at breakfast and zucchini at dinner. On non-Fast Days, you can eat it for lunch as well. Might as well enjoy it now: it won’t be fresh from the garden in December, will it? These meals even qualify for the label “Mediterranean Diet.” How ’bout that.

Zucchini-Herb ScrOmelette: 152 calories 8.6 g fat 1 g fiber 11 g protein 7 g carbs 80 mg Calcium  NB: Food values shown are for the ScrOmelette and fruit only, and do not include the optional beverages.  PB GF  Summer squashes were made to be combined with lots of herbs. Then add cheese: bliss! 

1 ½ 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 and put it in the ‘fridge for next week.  ¼ cup zucchini, grated 2 Tbsp fresh herbs [or more!], chopped 2 Tbsp grated Jarlsberg cheese 1 oz applesauce OR 1.5 oz peaches  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]

Put the zucchini and herbs into a lightly-spritzed non-stick saute pan. Cook until softened and most of the liquid is evaporated. Whisk the eggs with the cheese and pour into the pan. Scramble it or cook as an omelette, hence ScrOmelette. Prepare the beverages and plate the fruit. Ahhhh. The taste of Summer.

Zucchini-Feta Fritter Plate: 288 calories 7 g fat 2.4 g fiber 27 g protein 22 g carbs 285 mg Calcium  PB GF – if using GF flour A delightful meal for a hot day: cool, savory, nourishing.

5 zucchini-feta fritters** 3 oz tomato, sliced or cubed or cherry tomatoes 3 oz shrimp, steamed or grilled previously 2 Tbsp plain yogurt

Arrange on the plate and enjoy your easy evening meal.

**Zucchini-Feta Fritters makes 23-24   each: 34 calories 1.3 g fat 0.3 g fiber 1.5 g protein 3 g carbs 34 mg Calcium  PB GF — if using GF flour 1-1/8 pound [18 oz] zucchini + salt 1 two-oz egg 4 oz feta cheese, crumbled or diced ¼ cup fresh dill weed OR 2 Tbsp dried 2 Tbsp fresh parsley ¼ c white whole wheat flour ¼ cup self-rising flour Grate the zucchini and put it in a collander over a bowl. Sprinkle with salt and use your fingers to toss the zucchini to distribute the salt. Let sit several hours or overnight. Press on the zucchini to remove any lingering water. Place the zucchini in a clean bowl and add the remaining ingredients. Combine well. Heat a griddle/large skillet and spray with non-stick spray. TIP: I used a 1.5 Tbsp scoop, but a heaping tablespoon would do as well. Make piles of the batter on the cooking surface, then flatten them so the insides will cook. Heat until well-browned on both sides.

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

1 two-oz egg1 two-oz egg  + pear
carne adovadokippered herring
cilantro + apple/applesaucewhite whole wheat flour
roasted green chilis dry mustard + milk
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

egg + lean ground pork buckwheat soba noodles + egg + oil
onion + whole-grain breadsugar snap peas + onion + scallions
lean ground beef + gravysugar + garlic + lean pork + sprouts
ground veal + milk + peasfish sauce + hot pepper flakes + cabbage
Sparkling waterSparkling water

St. Lawrence

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. Welcome marthabernie who is now Following.

You might ask yourself: Is she going to talk about the Canadian river or about the saint? Both, actually. The Saint was a deacon in the early church in Rome, who was martyred on August 10, 258 CE. Knowing that a crack-down was coming, he is said to have given the church’s wealth to the poor. As a Roman Citizen, he was beheaded, but legend says that he died horribly by fire, cheeky and cheerful to the end. The St. Lawrence River, named after the saint of course, drains the Great Lakes into the Atlantic Ocean, pouring into the wide Gulf of Saint Lawrence. It carries 25% of the world’s fresh water to the sea. The Great Lakes were carved by the action of the glaciers of the Last Glacial Maximum and the river flows along a fault system which accounts for its straight path. The Maritime Provinces of Canada border the Gulf of St Lawrence. Jacques Cartier, arriving in the Gulf on August 10, gave it the name.

From the Maritime Provinces, a fitting breakfast of local flavors. Saints often become ‘patrons’ of certain activities for really twisted reasons. Due to the legend of his death, Lawrence is the patron of grill cooks. Dinner will be grilled.

Maritime Bake:  155 calories 6.5 g fat 1.2 g fiber 16.6 g protein 6 g carbs [5.5 g complex] 84 mg Calcium  NB: The food values given above are for the egg bake and fruit only, not the optional beveragesPB GF  To us, the Maritimes of Canada are all about seafood, potatoes, local cheese, and lots of the herb Savory, winter or summer. Then there are the strawberries: June/July in Nova Scotia; July in PEI; August in Newfoundland. Good people, good food.

1 two-oz egg ½ oz salt cod [cover with water and soak 30 minutes] 1/8 oz Cheddar OR ADL brand “Old/Fort”, grated 1 tsp dried savory ½ Tbsp dry potato flakes + 1 Tbsp water pepper to taste 2 oz strawberries   Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories] or lemon in hot water   Optional:  5-6 oz berry-yogurt smoothie [88 calories]

The night before: 1] stir the potato flakes and water together in a small bowl and let sit to moisten. 2] cover the salt cod with water and soak 30 minutes. Drain and flake into small pieces.  Next morning: Spritz a ramekin with cooking spray. Set the toaster oven at 350 degrees F. Combine the potato, cod, and savory and put into the ramekin. Whisk the egg and pour over the cod. Top with grated cheese and bake 12-15 minutes. Prepare your beverages as you like them and plate the berries.

Blue-Burger: 294 calories 6.5 g fat  4.9 g fiber 31 g protein 27 g carbs [10.3 g Complex] 62 mg Calcium The winter 2004 issue of Eating Well  magazine was the inspiration for this recipe. But this version suits our Fasting needs a little better. It is yummy.

3-oz ground bison meat 4 Tbsp blueberries, fresh or frozen 1 Tbsp egg white ¾ tsp Dijon mustard + ½ tsp Worcestershire sauce pinch garlic powder + large pinch black pepper 1 Martin’s potato slider bun cherry tomatoes, grilled     ½ cup coleslaw made with red cabbage instead of green  

Thaw the meat and break it up in a bowl. Add the blueberries and all the flavorings. Gently combine ingredients with your fingers, without squishing the berries. Shape in a patty using a 4” muffin-cutter as a mold. Try not to pack the burger too much, but it does need to hold its shape. Broil or grill 4-5 minutes per side. Serve on a toasted potato bun. Grilled cherry tomatoes are nice as a topper. And don’t forget the coleslaw.

Keeping the Trains Running

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 five of the week. That’s it. Simple way to lose weight and be healthier.

If you watched television adverts [especially for the evening news] during the past several decades, you might think that there had been a sudden plague of constipation — unlike anything seen before. In truth, many of the remedies described in ancient herbals were for the promotion of bowel movements. Two major causes of this condition are: increasing age [the micro-biota are not working as well] and poor diet. By poor diet, I mean a diet low in fiber, high in simple carbs — like the S.A.D. [Standard American Diet]. Poor diet decreases the health of the micro-biota that help us to digest our food. To help yourself to stay regular, you need to pay attention to fiber. By varying our diet and adding fiber, we improve the micro-biota, which helps us to be healthy and to maintain a healthy weight. How much fiber do you need? Around 30 grams per day.* Eat more vegetables, more fruit, more whole grains — there’s a good plan! *DO NOT jump to that level all at once. Build up to it gradually over several days to give the micro-biota a chance to accommodate to it.

In our family, we ‘keep the trains running’ by having an emulsion of dark green leafy vegetables every day. In plain speech, a vegetable smoothie at lunch. Yes, even on a Fast Day. As Maintainers [our weight is where we want it to be and it is stable], we can allow ourselves the extra calories, especially since it is for a good purpose. The micro-biota just love to digest pureed greens. My Primary Care Physician was giddy about the ingredients of the Green Milk, and how it provides greens, fruit, and Calcium.

Green Milk: 145 calories 0.6 g fat 3 g fiber 10 g protein 25 g carbs 340 mg Calcium  PB GF I drink this for lunch daily because it tastes really yummy.  HINT: When I have fresh greens, I make up kits [everything but the milk] in 1-cup jars and freeze them.

8 oz skimmed milk ½ oz dates, cut into 4 pieces [deglet noor have fewer calories than medjool] 1 oz spinach/kale/Swiss chard, fresh or frozen 1 tsp psysillium husk NB: do NOT ingest within one hour of taking prescription medicine Put everything in the blender/VitaMix/container suitable for using with an immersion blender. Whirl on low speed at first, to break up the ingredients, then at the speed that will pulverize everything to a lovely shade of green. Makes 1.5 cups.

Sludgie: 169 calories 0.2 g fat 5.7 g fiber 2.7 g protein 26.6 g carbs 78 mg Calcium  PB GF From the name, you would think it was just awful – a real ‘hold your nose and drink’ sort of thing. The name is an affectionate nod to the unlovely color and the slow-pouring viscosity. As part of lunch, is really quite palatable.  HINT: This makes 3 cups. Serve one cup/day.

2 oz kale/spinach/Swiss chard, fresh or frozen 2 oz bananas 2 oz figs or prunes or a mixture, each cut into 4 pieces 2-½ c tomato juice 1 Tablespoon physillium husk NB: do NOT ingest within one hour of taking prescription medicine

Put everything into a Vita-Mix [or use the immersion blender] and blend it until it is smooth and uniform in color. HINT: When I get fresh greens, I make up as many one-quart kits as I can and freeze what I don’t need that day or the next. Handy.

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

1 two-oz egg + strawberries1.5 two-oz eggs 
salt cod + herb savoryzucchini + peach
mashed potatoes or potato flakesmixed fresh herbs
Cheddar or ADL cheeseJarlsberg cheese
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

ground bison meat + blueberrieszucchini + feta cheese
coleslaw + Worcestershireegg + dill weed + parsley
garlic powder + Dijon mustardwhite whole wheat flour + self-rising flour
Martin’s potato slider buns + egg whitetomato + plain yogurt + shrimp
Sparkling waterSparkling water

Lammas Oncemore

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. Welcome inthecaldron13 who is now Following.

We’ve come another quarter turn in the old Celtic calendar, from Beltane [in May] to Lammas, the Harvest Festival. It runs for several days, as did all good ancient fests, in the first few days of what the Romans called August [after Caesar Augustus]. The Christians co-opted the old celebrations, turning the original Luignasa into Lammas — a corruption of the words ‘Loaf Mass.’ [Though possibly ‘Lady’s Mass’ since the Assumption of Mary is on the 15th.] Thus the harvest festival, marked by making breads from the new grain, became a church service for blessing loaves of bread [probably from the new grain] at a service dedicated to Our Lady. Thus the Grain Mother, embodied in the corn dollies made from the last grain harvested, became the Virgin Mary and the bread became the eucharist.

We’ll bake a Lammas Bread for breakfast on a Slow Day. For our Fast Day, we will celebrate with foods of Summer: BLTs and vegetables at their peak. For a touch of cereal grains, whole-grain bread at breakfast and whole-wheat pasta at dinner. Take some long stalks of grass and learn how to make a corn dolly.

Breakfast BLT:  191 calories 8.6 g fat 4 g fiber 10 g protein 18 g carbs 54 mg Calcium  NB: The food values are for the meal and fruit only and do not include the optional coffee.  PB GF – if using GF bread   A Summer evening favorite is the inspiration for this filling breakfast.

By wrapping the lettuce leaf around one side, you provide a handy place to hold the sandwich while you bite into it.

1 slice whole-grain bread [such as Dave’s Killer Bread] one 2-oz egg 1 strip uncured bacon [the streaky American type @ 30 calories/slice] 0.75 oz tomato, sliced 1 large leaf of lettuce 3 cherries   NB: with the high calorie count, be mindful of the beverages you add to the meal. Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories]

Eggplant Patties w/ Onion Marinara: 273 calories 4 g fat 8.3 g fiber 46 g carbs [20 g Complex] 43 mg Calcium   PB GF – if using GF bread/flour/pasta Marcella Hazen, in her Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking, gives the recipe for the patties and a sauce in which to serve them. I added the pasta to the meal. Even Dear Husband, who is aubergine-averse, enjoyed these.

A serving should be 4 patties, but only 3 seem to have gotten into this photo…

4 eggplant patties**, portioned with a 1-½ Tbsp scoop 1 oz pasta– If you use a whole grain or high fiber pasta, so much the better ½ cup tomato-onion marinara++ 

**Eggplant Pattiesmakes 7 when using a 1-½ Tbsp scoop = 32 calories each   9 oz eggplant with skin still on 2 Tbsp bread crumbs 1 Tbsp spinach, cut as a chiffonade 1 tsp minced garlic 1 egg yolk 1 Tbsp grated Parmesan 1 Tbsp white whole wheat flour Roast the eggplant at 400F until soft, around 15 minutes. Peel it and cut in rough cubes. Place in a collander over a bowl and let it drain, pressing down lightly. Put in a bowl and add the remaining ingredients. Stir with a fork until well-combined. Heat a skillet and spray with non-stick spray. Using a 1-1/2 Tbsp scoop, place the eggplant mixture into the hot pan, flattening it a bit. Cook on each side until starting to brown.

++ Tomato-Onion Marinara makes 1.5 cups  1.5 cups onion, thinly sliced 1.5 cups canned whole tomatoes. Salt and pepper to taste. Spray a saute pan with non-stick cooking oil and heat it. Add the onions and cook at medium-low until the onions begin to turn golden. Add the tomatoes, chopping them into smaller pieces with a plastic or wooden utensil. Cook until the tomatoes have thickened a bit. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Boil the pasta while the patties are cooking. Heat the marinara, then add the cooked pasta. Put some of the sauce in the center of your plate and position the patties on top. Arrange the pasta and sauce around the center, as pleases your eye.

Slow Days: Lammas Bread

People who are new to Fasting often pose the questions: “Can I really eat ‘anything I want’ on a Slow Day?” and “What should I eat on Slow Days?” To answer those questions, I have decided to add some blog posts to show some of the foods we eat on what the world calls NFDs [non-fast days] but which, in our house, we call ‘Slow Days.’ This feature will appear sporadically. 

Now for the answers. Can you really eat ANYTHING you want on a Slow Day? Not really. If you eat too many calories every Slow Day, you will not lose weight. There are many questions asked on the FastDiet Forum which attest to that. Once in a while you can splurge, as long as it isn’t everyday. For what to eat on Slow Days, Dr. Mosley recommends a Mediterranean Diet. As for how we eat, an example follows.

One of the most popular topics on which I have blogged is that of Lammas. Maybe it is a love of all things Celtic. Maybe it is a yearning for simpler times. Maybe it is a renewal of interest in growing and producing one’s own food. The festival was called Lughnasagh in Ireland; Lunastain, in Scotland; and became Lammas [Loaf Mass] after the missionaries Christianized it. As a harvest festival, it was observed on the mid-Summer cross-quarter day around August 2 — usually August 1, 2,3. At that time the cereal crops* [wheat, rye, barley, oats] were being harvested. Flour was quickly ground from the grain, baked into loaves to be savored by the entire farm family while giving thanks for a successful harvest and offering prayers for future crops. Bread, therefore, is the recipe of the day. *Note: in the UK, cereal crops are all called ‘corn.’ This is confusing to Americans, to whom ‘corn’ is Zea mays for eating on the cob or for popping. When you follow the links, keep that in mind.

Here is a non-yeasted recipe, making something like a biscuit. This is probably the “real” bread for Lammas, since it is prepared quickly. Buttermilk Bread Charm for Lammas goddessandgreenman.co.uk

3 mugs strong white flour 1/2 tsp salt 1 tsp bicarbonate of sodaPlace the flour in a large bowl. Make a well in the centre. Sieve in the blended salt and soda
500 ml of Buttermilk Pour in the buttermilk. Mix well with a wooden spoon or your hand until the dough feels springy.
Sprouted seeds – these represent regenerationMix in the sprouted seeds. If it feels too sloppy, just add a little more flour.
Turn it onto a board and cover with a fine dusting of flour. Pat it with your hands until you have a round shape. Take a sharp knife and score lightly into eight sections, one for each festival. Take time to focus on the bread you have created. Turn the loaf three times saying “From the fields and through the stones, into fire, Lammas Bread, as the Wheel turns may all be fed. Goddess Bless.”
Place on a greased baking tray and pop it into a moderate oven for 20-25 minutes. Keep an eye on it. When the bread is ready, it will change colour and will sound hollow when you tap the bottom.
Cool completely on a wire rack. When it is cool, tie it with Lammas ribbon in your choice of colour – gold, orange, yellow

Sour Dough Fruited Summer Bread: The one I’ll make this year is based on a sourdough, in keeping with all of those who are attempting that during the current lock-down. This bread is easy to make. [Original recipe from Paul Hollywood] With the addition of Summer fruits and whole wheat, it seems fit for a festival.

All the ingredients, ready to mix.
64 g bread flour 64 g white whole wheat flour 125 g active sourdough starter 3.8 g salt 65-88 ml H20 + 2 tsp honeyCombine dry ingredients in a large bowl. Add the honey to the water. Pour it in a little bit at a time and mix with your hands to make a soft dough. You may not need all the water. If you have extra water, add it to the next step.
½ cup chopped dried apricots ½ cup dried cherriesPut the fruits in a small bowl and cover with boiling water. Let sit for 15 minutes, then drain, reserving the water. Add to the dough.
Coat work surface w/ olive oil + knead the fruit into the dough on the oiled surface for 10-15 mins or until the dough is smooth + elastic and the fruit is well-incorporated.
Put in lightly-oiled bowl + cover w/ film. Rise in warm place 5 hr or overnight in a cool place
Knead dough until smooth, knocking the air out. Shape into an oval. Let rise on a well-floured towel [a couche], up-side down, in a loaf pan for 4-8 hrs or overnight in a cool place.
Bread is rising on a floured towel in a small loaf pan to help it to keep its shape.
Reserved soaking water 2 tsp honeyPut in a small pan and simmer while adding the honey. Cook down until it is syrup-y, not runny.
Put a tray of water on the bottom of the oven. Preheat to 425F Gently tip the risen dough onto parchment paper on a baking tray. With a lame or sharp knife, score the top of the bread: down the center, then 3 on each side at an angle – sort of like a fern or the veins on a leaf. When you open the oven, add more water to the tray at the bottom of the oven to produce steam. Bake 30 mins at 425. Brush loaf with fruit syrup, then reduce oven to 400 F and bake 15 mins more.
The very dark syrup made the crust a rich mahogany color. Serve with comb honey.