Study in Scarlett

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.

Do you remember the first time you read Sherlock Holmes? I was in 8th grade and we must have been doing a survey of literature types. Enter The Speckled Band, an example of detective fiction. I was a fan from then on. In 1887, the debut Sherlock Holmes story was published. In it, the world first heard of a ‘consulting detective;’ first met Dr. Watson; first saw the use of a magnifying glass in a criminal investigation. This first foray, A Study in Scarlett, was a long book in four parts which spanned 2 continents and several decades. It also offended the Mormons. The tale was published in Beeton’s magazine and it was not a hit. But the stage was set for future stories and the world of detective fiction has never been the same. A Study in Scarlett has been a film [1933, starring Reginald Owen; 1968, starring Peter Cushing; 1983, starring Peter O’Toole] and on TV episodes [1968, Peter Cushing; and “Study in Pink,” 2010, Benedict Cumberbatch].

Our foods for tomorrow are studies in red — cherries and tomatoes. Both very good for the health, unlike the poisons and other causes of death in Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s books and stories. Read some Sherlock Holmes today.

Cherry Flamusse: 194 calories 5 g fat 1.3 g fiber 11 g protein 27.6 g carbs [10 g Complex] 157 mg Calcium  NB: Food values given are for the plated foods only, and do not include the optional beverage.  PB GF – if using GF flour  This breakfast custard is borrowed from the dessert section of the cookbook, and it works very well either way! It is similar to a clafouti, but simpler. Baked with cherries or any fresh fruit, it is sure to be a hit. HINT: This makes enough for 2 [two] servings: share with a friend or save the rest for a future breakfast or dessert. [As a dessert [without clementine or beverages], one serving has 177 calories.]

2 two-oz eggs 6 fl oz milk 4 tsp all-purpose OR tapioca flour 1.5 Tbsp sugar 10 sweet cherries, pitted ½ clementine 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]

Spritz 2 ramekins or an oven-proof dish with 1.5 cup capacity with non-stick spray. Cut the cherries in half and arrange on the bottom of the dish. Whisk eggs until foamy, then add flour and sugar, whisking until there are no lumps. Stir in the milk and pour the batter over the cherries. Bake at 375 F. for 20 minutes. Turn the flamusse out of the dish so that the cherries are on top. Plate with the clementine sections, serve with the beverages. You won’t believe this is a ‘diet.’

Egg-Tomato Gratin:  293 calories 10.4 g fat 5 g fiber 18 g protein 21 g carbs 226 mg Calcium  PB GF  Jacques Pepin, in his book Fast Food My Way, tells about this family recipe.  HINT: The recipe serves two. Invite a friend or save for lunch tomorrow.

3 hardboiled eggs, peeled and sliced into rounds 3 oz onions, sliced 2 tsp garlic, chopped 1 tsp dried thyme + 1 tsp salt + ½ tsp pepper 1/3 cup canned garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed 10 fluid oz of tomatoes, drained [save the juice] 1 oz Swiss cheese or Gruyere, grated 2 oz broccoli

Arrange the eggs on the bottom of a 3-cup baking dish. Cook the onions and garlic in some of the tomato juice, about 3 minutes. Add seasonings, tomatoes and the remaining juice. If tomatoes are in large chunks, crush with a fork and add the garbanzo beans. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, simmer covered for 4 minutes. Pour over the eggs and sprinkle with the cheese. Bake 10 minutes at 400 degrees F., then broil 2-3 minutes to brown the top. For a stove-top preparation: Prepare the onions, garlic, tomatoes, seasoning and garbanzos. Arrange the eggs on top, as halves or slices, and top with grated cheese. Cover and warm until cheese is melted.

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

1 two-oz egg, hardboiled3 oz egg = 1.5 eggs 
chèvre cheesebutter + milk
baby spinach greenswhite whole wheat flour
dried Turkish figraspberries
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

1.5 low-fat hot dogs, <110 cal each3 oz breaded pork cutlet
sauerkrautsmall red potatoes
pickled beets + onionbeets
canned white beansmushrooms
Sparkling waterSparkling water

T. Geisel

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.

If the name ‘Geisel’ doesn’t ring a bell, then you probably know him better by his nom de plume, ‘Dr. Seuss.’ Ted Geisel attended Dartmouth College as an undergrad and did cartoons for the school paper. Banned from the paper [for drinking on campus], he invented a new name for himself to continue cartooning — he called himself Dr Seuss, using his mother’s Swiss maiden name. [BTW: in German, ‘seuss’ rhymes with ‘choice.’] After failing to earn a doctorate in English Literature, he drew cartoons for an advertising agency. On a cruise to Europe, the sound of the ship’s engines caused him to say “and to think that I saw it on Mulberry Street,” which became the title of his first children’s book in 1936. Not a big seller. In 1940, he wrote Horton Hatches the Egg, which did very well. Then his publisher sent him a list of words ‘that children could read’ with the idea of using them in a book. Geisel wrote a book with 220 of those words: The Cat in the Hat, published in 1957. [As a child, I couldn’t stand the book: a ‘home invasion’ did not seem funny to me. My favorite is Bartholomew and the Oobleck from 1949.] Despite the fame it brought him, he considered children’s books as ‘literary slumming.’ But he knew how to get children laughing and reading and he did so in 44 books over many decades. Geisel once said, “I like nonsense, it wakes up the brain cells.” Enjoy some nonsense today.

In honor of Dr Seuss’ birthday on March 2, we will of course eat Green Eggs and Ham at breakfast. It was one of our sons’ favorite books [written on a bet that he couldn’t write a book using only 50 words] and it makes for a fine meal. For dinner, an opportunity to channel your inner child: turn French Codfish Brandade into as silly and fanciful a creation as your imagination allows. Then eat and enjoy it.

Green Eggs & Ham: 144 calories 8.8 g fat 1.1 g fiber 12.8 g pro 8.6 g carb [7.5 g Complex] 55.6 mg Calcium  NB: Food values shown are for the ScrOmelette and fruit only, and do not include the optional beverages.  GF These are a treat anytime there is still ham from a roast and the chives are fresh in the garden. This dish is named, of course, for the delightful book Green Eggs and Ham which the narrator insists that he will not eat — not in a box, nor on a train, nor under any circumstances.

Three 2-oz eggs of which you will use 1 ½ eggs per person  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. 1 oz. ground or chopped ham 3 Tbsp fresh chives 2 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]

Whisk the eggs with salt & pepper to taste. Put the white part of the onion into a hot pan sprayed with cooking oil. Stir around for a few seconds. Add the eggs. When bottom of eggs begin to set, sprinkle the ham & green scallions over the eggs, scramble to taste, and plate. Pour the beverages of your choice, prep the fruit, and “Eat them! Eat them, here they are!”

Brandade a la Seuss: 250 calories 5.8 g fat 5.7 g fiber 77 g protein 22.3 g carbs 270 mg Calcium  PB GF  Since salt cod is so popular all over southern France, it follows that Brandade is also a favorite. The garlic, olive oil, and fennel mark this version as Provincal. [HINT: This batch serves 4. Either invite friends or use what you need and freeze the remainder.] The recipe is from Jacques Pepin.

8 oz salt cod ¼ cup potatoes in 1/2” cubes 1 cup cauliflower puree ½ cup milk 4 cloves garlic 1 tsp olive oil ¼ tsp fennel seed + ¼ tsp pepper, more to taste per serving: tomatoes + celery + carrot + broccoli + green pepper

Soak the cod in water for 8 hours. Drain and put in a sauce pan covered with cold water. Bring to a boil, turn heat to low and cook gently for 5 minutes. Drain. Pick over the fish and break it into 1” pieces, removing bones, skin. Put fish in a pan with potatoes, cauliflower, garlic, fennel, and milk. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and gently simmer uncovered for 20-25 minutes until vegetables are tender. Pour it all into a food processor and process it for about 10 seconds. Add the pepper and add the oil with the machine running. Mixture should be smooth and thick. Adjust seasonings. Divide the brandade into 4 portions of 1/2-cup each. HINT: Freeze the portions you are not serving today. To serve today, be whimsical and “Seussical.” Position the brandade in the center of a plate. Use the vegetables to create a strange creature with the brandade as the body. Spiders? hedgehogs? insects? Let your inner child off its leash and have fun. Very traditional flavor in an unusual presentation for Dr Seuss.

H. W. Longfellow

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.

Between the dark and the daylight, When the night is beginning to lower, Comes a pause in the day’s occupation, Which is known as the Children’s Hour. The Children’s Hour, 1859

So wrote a contented Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, describing the joys of being the father of a growing family. He was happy, at last, following the death of his first wife after she miscarried; and his efforts to establish himself as a working poet following not-so-fulfilling years as a college professor. Success came with his poems written in the Romantic Style: Evangeline and Song of Hiawatha, which eulogize the American landscape and people. The mid-1800s were fertile ground for Longfellow’s poems, stories, and essays. But sadness called again, when his wife died of burns from a horrible household accident. Longfellow, in his grief, traveled West of Boston to Sudbury, Massachusetts to escape familiar scenes and people. There he wrote formed the idea for his next famous collection, Tales of the Wayside Inn — a frame-story set in a country tavern where travelers swap yarns. Although widely-read and memorized 150 years ago, only a few of his poems are recognized today: Paul Revere’s Ride and the Wreck of the Hesperus are best-known. I still love his lyrical way with words, which can be stirring and comforting at the same time.

…Then read from the treasured volume the poem of thy choice And lend to the rhyme of the poet the beauty of thy voice. And the night shall be filled with music And the cares that infest the day Shall fold their tents, like the Arabs, and as silently steal away. The Day is Done , 1844

Although born in Portland, Maine, Longfellow is most associated with the Boston area. Thus our breakfast references local foods. The dinner is one that might indeed have been served at the Wayside Inn. Read some Longfellow today.

B-O-S-T ScrOmelette: 161 calories 7.6 g fat 1.5 g fiber 11 g protein 9 g carbs [8 g Complex] 220 mg Calcium  NB: Food values shown are for the ScrOmelette and fruit only, and do not include the optional beverages.  PB GF  The beans are for Boston’s nickname: beantown. The green onions are for the Green Monster at Fenway Park. The shrimp are for the strong maritime tradition of the port. The tomatoes are for New Englanders’ fervent wish to raise just a few ripe tomatoes before the end of summer.

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. 1 Tbsp canned white beans, preferable small ‘navy’ beans 2 Tbsp green part of scallions, sliced 1/4 oz shrimp, preferably tiny Northern shrimp OR larger shrimp chopped 1 oz tomato, diced and drained in a sieve overnight 1-1/2 oz nectarine slices Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait or lemon in hot water Optional: 5-6 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie [88 calories]

Put the beans, onion, shrimp, and tomato in a warm non-stick pan spritzed with non-stick spray or olive oil. Cook briefly until warmed. Whisk the eggs with salt and pepper and pour over the other ingredients in the pan. Scramble or cook as an omelette. Pour the beverages of your choice, plate the fruit, and plate the eggs. 

Red Flannel Hash: 249 calories 9.2 g fat 1.9 g fiber 12.6 g protein 17.8 g carbs [16 g Complex] 43 mg Calcium  PB GF  This is a venerable New England farm meal, with the recipe coming from Hayden Pearson’s  Country Flavors Cookbook .

1 cup cooked diced beets (1/3” dice), fresh or canned 1/3 cup diced potatoes (1/3” dice) ¼ cup diced onions 2 slices Canadian Bacon/back bacon, diced one 2-oz egg lots of salt and pepper to taste

Cook, peel, and dice the beets and set aside to cool. [HINT: do this the day before] Peel and dice the potatoes. Put into a pan of tap water and put the pan on the burner. Turn on the heat and let the pan sit, uncovered, for 10 minutes or until the water starts to boil around the edges. Take off the heat and leave potatoes to cool in the water. Then drain and set aside. Dice the onions and bacon. Spray a saute pan with non-stick spray and add the Canadian bacon. Cook it as crisp as you wish, or not so crisp. Remove the bacon and set aside. Add the onions with 2-3 Tbsp water, and cook until the onions are transluscent and the water is mostly gone. Now put the potatoes in the pan with the onions, add salt and pepper to taste. Stir until the potatoes are cooked. Add the beets and bacon to the pan and continue to cook until heated through. Meanwhile, fry the egg: sunnyside-up or over easy as you prefer. Plate the hash and top with the egg. Ah! Country dining.

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

1 two-oz egg2 two-oz eggs 
chivesmilk + flour
ham from a roast or the delisugar + clementine
pineappl10 sweet cherries
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

salt cod + garlic + fennel seedhard-boiled eggs + onion
potato + cauliflowergarbanzo beans + garlic
olive oil + milk + fennel seedtomatoes in their juice + broccoli
tomato + cucumber + carrotsSwiss or Gruyere cheese
Sparkling waterSparkling water

That Telegram

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.

In 1917, war was marching with heavy tread through Europe. In the USA, President Woodrow Wilson had problems on his southern border with Mexico. Wilson had been elected on the motto “He kept us out of war” due to his reluctance to enter into World War I. We were not at war with anyone but in 1848 the war with Mexico concluded and in 1854, the US bought land on the Mexican border to add to Arizona and New Mexico. Border relations were sometimes tense. In March of 1916, the revolutionary leader Pancho Villa lead a raid across the US border to capture weapons from an arsenal at Columbus, NM to promote his victory over a rival. Then came that telegram. It was sent from the German Foreign Minister to the German Ambassador in Mexico, in code. Intercepted by British Intelligence in January, 1917, the decryption was sent to Washington in late March. There it raised hackles and alarm bells as it was splashed across front pages from coast to coast. Herr Zimmermann had instructed his representative in Mexico to encourage the government to invade the US should Wilson enter the war on the side of the Allies. The quid pro quo? If Mexico would invade the US for us, then after we win the war, Germany will give you back land that the US took from you. That did it. Sentiment across the country switched overnight from non-involvement to pro-war and on April 6, 1917, the US entered the war.

A popular Mexican food gives its flavors to breakfast, while our dinner is named for the charismatic Pancho Villa himself. Here’s hoping for good relations between Mexico and the US.

Enchilada Bake:  140 calories 6 g fat 1.7 g fiber 15.3 g protein 12.5 g carbs [11 g Complex] 75 mg Calcium  NB: The food values shown are for the egg bake and the fruit, not for the optional beverages. PB GF  Since we enjoy enchiladas for dinner, why not have the same flavors at breakfast?

1 two-oz egg 1 Tbsp crushed tomatoes, slightly drained ½ oz fresh green chili peppers, minced 1 Tbsp plain, non-fat yogurt ¼ oz chicken breast, cooked and chopped 1/8 oz Monterey Jack or Cheddar ½ tsp cornmeal ¼ tsp oregano [preferably Mexican] + pinch chili roja [red pepper flakes] 2 oz apple OR applesauce 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]

Spritz a ramekin with non-stick spray and set the toaster oven to 350 degrees F. Put the cornmeal and minced chilis into an ungreased cast iron skillet and toast them over direct heat until cornmeal becomes darker in color and fragrent. Do not let the cornmeal burn or scorch. Remove from hot pan to a bowl. Into the ramekin, put the chicken and the cheese. Whisk together the egg, cornmeal, chilis, half of the yogurt, and seasonings, and pour over the eggs. Bake 12- 15 minutes while you portion the fruit and prepare the beverages. Top the eggs with the remaining dollop of yogurt.

Eggs Pancho Villa: 283 calories 9 g fat 6 g fiber 16 g protein 30 g carbs [29 g Complex] 157 mg Calcium  PB GF  From La Cuisine magazine comes another eggs-for-dinner meal.  TIP: doubles easily.

3/4 cup garbanzo beans, canned, drained, rinsed ¼ cup chopped onions 1 clove garlic, chopped or pressed 1/3 cup crushed tomatoes 1 two-oz egg ¼ oz Swiss cheese, grated ground cumin + chili powder to taste

Cook the onions and garlic in the tomatoes until they are soft.  [HINT: this could be done in the microwave] Add some water if the tomatoes get too thick. Stir in the beans and the spices. Turn into an oven-proof dish about 4” wide. As you can see above, this works well for a small cast iron pan. Poach the egg and put it on the beans/tomatoes. Top with grated cheese and bake at 400 degrees F. for 3 minutes.

Saint Eleuthere

How this Fast Diet Lifestyle works: Eat these meals tomorrow, for a calorie total of less than 600. Later 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.

In Tournai [modern-day Belgium], there lived a man named Eleuthere or Eleutherius. That name is derived from the Greek, meaning ‘free/ independent’. This was in the time after the fall of the influence of the Roman empire in Western Europe. The Christian church was spreading its influence and so were the Franks. By the time Eleuthere was made bishop of his home town, Clovis the Frankish king had dominion over much of what is now France/Belgium/Netherlands/Germany. Eleuthere was determined to convert Clovis to Christianity. With the help of Queen Clothilde, a closet Christian, and the turning of the Battle of Tolbiac [the queen told Clovis to call on Jesus if the battle went against him — it did, he did, and he won the battle], Clovis was baptized in 496. This began the link of the Church and the rulers of Europe, of which much has been written.

Be independant, a la Eleuthere, and eat some unusual foods. Mackerel may be difficult to find in your area, but try to find it for the breakfast below. There is an island in the Bahamas named Eleuthera where surely a version of our dinner selection is enjoyed.

Mackerel-Leek ScrOmelette:  157 calories 9.5 g fat 1.1 g fiber 12.6 g protein 5.8 g carbs [6.2 g Complex] 61 mg Calcium  NB: Food values shown are for the ScrOmelette and fruit only, and do not include the optional beverages.  PB GF  If you can’t find fresh mackerel, substitute another high-Omega-3 fish like salmon or arctic char . 

1 ½ 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 1 oz cooked mackerel 1.5 oz leeks ½ tsp Dijon mustard 1 oz strawberries 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]

Spritz a hot saute pan with non-stick spray and stir in the leeks and mackerel, to soften the leeks and warm the fish. Whisk the eggs with the seasonings and mustard. Pour into the pan and scramble to your taste or prepare as an omelette. Pour the beverages and plate the berries. Oh my!

Lobster ‘Lambi’ & Plantains: 270 calories 8.3 g fat 2.8 g fiber 17.8 g protein 35 g carbs [34 g Complex] 51 mg Calcium  PB GF  A simple meal with flavors of the Caribbean. Easy any season of the year. Ordinarily lambi is made with the meat of the Queen Conch, but if they are unavailable, try lobster tail instead. The plantains are oven-roasted and are a fun new vegetable for us.

3 oz lobster meat 3 oz plantain slices, from a ripe [yellow skin with some black spots] not green plantain ½ Tbsp olive oil 3 oz canteloupe melon 1 lime, cut in half Fresh spinach leaves

Peel the plantains and carefully slice them so they don’t get squished. Place on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper and sprayed with non-stick spray. Brush with the olive oil and sprinkle with a flavorful salt. Bake at 425 F for 10 minutes, then turn the slices and bake for a further 10 minutes.  If the lobster is uncooked, grill it indoors or outdoors while you squeeze juice from half the lime on it. Cut it into bite-sized pieces.  If the lobster meat is cooked already, cut it into bite-sized pieces and squeeze lime juice on it. Place the spinach on the plate with the lobster on top of it. Then arrange the melon and plantains. Keep the other half lime for more juice-squeezing to your taste

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

1 two-oz egg + cornmeal1.5 two-oz eggs 
crushed tomatoes + applecanned white beans
chicken breast meat + green chiliscallion + shrimp
plain yogurt + Monterey jacktomato + peach/clementine
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

0ne 2-oz egg + onionbeets + one 2-oz egg
canned white beans + garlic potato
crushed tomatoes + cuminCanadian or back bacon
Swiss cheese + chili powderonion
Sparkling waterSparkling water

Madama Butterfly

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 Rachel Alexandra who is now Following.

On February 17, 1904, Giacomo Puccini‘s opera Madama Butterfly debuted in Milan at La Scalla Opera House. It was loudly and soundly booed, possibly by a claque of the composer’s rivals, and the opera was withdrawn. This was a stunning blow to Puccini. Ever since he saw an American company perform a short play about an American sailor and his ill-fated affair with a Japanese girl, Puccini wanted to turn it into an opera. He learned Japanese songs from the ambassador’s wife; one of his librettists went to Japan to gain some authenticity. After the disastrous premiere, the team reworked the piece and re-staged it in May to great success. Now the poignant story of the selfish Lt Pinkerton and the trusting Cho-Cho-San [called “Butterfly”] is one of the most popular works in any company’s repertoire and the aria Un Bel Di makes you sad just to hear it, especially when you know the tragic ending.

While we ponder the tale of poor Butterfly, we will eat a very Japanese breakfast which is good tasting and easy to prepare. For dinner, a rather American meal of fish combined with ham and walnuts.

Japanese Onion Soup with Onsen Tamago Egg: 215 calories 5 g fat 2.2 g fiber 16 g protein 29 g carbs [9 g Complex] 48 mg Calcium  NB: The food values given above are for the egg soup and fruit only, not the optional beverages.  PB GF  Our Younger Son prepared this for us one morning after a lot of heavy eating and it was a revelation: light yet hearty and so delicious. “Onsen Tamago” means ‘hot spring’ and it is a very different [to me] way to cook a soft egg.  HINT: This recipe is enough for 2 servings. Very easy to save for another breakfast or lunch one or two days from now.

2 two-oz eggs cooked Onsen Tomago-style** ½ cup sweet onions 2 cups chicken broth 3 Tbsp soy sauce + 2 Tbsp mirin 1 oz Japanese noodles, such as soba @ 95 calories/ounce garnish: scallions, chopped + Sriracha, to taste 2 oz melon   Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories] or lemon in hot water 

**Onsen Tomago EggHINT: The eggs can be prepared up to 2 days in advance. 2 whole eggs in shells + 1 liter water + 1 cup cold tap water Bring 1 liter of water to a boil. Once it boils, remove it from the heat, and add 1c of cold water. Using a slotted spoon, place eggs into the hot water and cover. Let sit for 17 minutes, then remove the eggs with a slotted spoon and let sit at room temperature for 5 minutes. Serve hot or refrigerate for up to 2 days.

Onion Soup: Cook noodles according to package, shock in cold water and put in serving bowls. Place sliced onions and stock into pan and bring to boil. When stock comes to boil, reduce heat to a strong simmer and cover. Cook until onions are soft (they should not be rigid when you pick them up with chopsticks). When onions are almost finished, add soy sauce, mirin, and sriracha and stir. If the liquid has reduced noticibly, add water.  When the onions are finished, pour the onion and broth over noodles. Carefully crack onsen tamago egg into broth. Garnish with green onion and serve the melon on the side. Eat with chopsticks and Japanese soup spoon.

Ham-Stuffed Fish 270 calories 3.5 g fat 23 g protein 16 g carbs 139 mg Calcium  PB GF – if using GF bread  Another recipe of unknown origin. Glad I saved it.

4 oz tilapia or perch 1 oz sliced ham from the deli 1/2 tsp soy sauce + ½ tsp sherry + 1 egg white ½ piece of whole-grain 70-calorie bread 1 Tbsp finely-chopped walnuts 1 oz carrots, julienned + 1 oz celery, julienned + 1 oz beets 1 scallion

Slice the fish so that it is in 2 pieces of equal length and thickness. Crumble the bread into the finest crumbs and blend thoroughly with walnuts. Whip the egg white until it is very frothy. Blend in the soy sauce and sherry. Make a ‘sandwich’ of the ham slice between the two pieces of fish. Dip in the egg mixture to coat, then dip in the bread/walnuts. Cook in a heavy non-stick pan, sprayed with non-stick spray, until fish is cooked – about 5 minutes per side. Cook the vegetables. Plate the fish and vegetables and sprinkle with sliced scallion.

Quid Pro Quo

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.

There are so many words and phrases in the English language which were lifted directly from latin [that’s a lower-case ‘l’ since the language is no longer spoken in daily life]. “Quid pro quo” has seen a lot of use lately. From its early use in medicine, in common law it has come to mean “something for something” or in the vernacular, “you scratch my back and I’ll scratch your’s.” Dieting is a bit of a quid pro quo — you do this and you should get that result. It doesn’t always happen that way — due to illness; or slow transit; or cheating on the diet; or there is a food that causes you to gain weight [for me, it is white rice]; or it is the wrong diet for you. Someone I know tried a low fat diet, but that didn’t do anything; then tried cutting calories every day, but that ended because it seemed like a punishment. Then the Fast Diet worked! Two days of 600-calorie eating [QUID] with the result of losing 1-2 pound each week [QUO]. This could work for you, too. Give it a try.

Sweet Potato Pancake Plate: 122 calories 2.2 g fat 2.6 g fiber 9.4 g protein 26.4 g carbs [21 g Complex] 27 mg Calcium  NB: Food values given are for the plated foods only, and do not include the optional beverage.  PB GF – if using Brown Rice Flour I suppose you could call these ‘hash-browns’ but they look more like pancakes. Sorta. These potato pancakes are a fine side dish and they hold their own as the star of this breakfast.

2 potato pancakes *** 2 oz applesauce 30-grams Canadian bacon/back bacon = 2 slices Jones brand 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]

Prepare the pancakes or warm them if prepared the night before. Warm the applesauce, and the bacon. Savory and delicious.

***Potato Pancakes  makes 8   8 oz sweet potato, peeled and grated 1.5 oz egg [Whisk one entire egg and measure 1.5 oz of it for this recipe. Use the remainder in baking.] 2 Tbsp minced/grated onion 4 tsp white whole wheat flour OR brown rice flour ½ tsp salt Combine the ingredients while you heat a griddle or heavy skillet. Melt a dab of bacon fat or olive oil in the pan, then spray with non stick spray. Drop the ‘batter’ in 10 piles [I used a ¼ cup measure] on the griddle, then flatten them out to a diameter of 3-4”. Cook on one side, then flip to cook on the other. Save the remaining pancakes for a side dish tomorrow or as part of lunch another day.

Squash-Cupped Bison Chili: 215 calories 3.5 g fat 6.8 g fiber 14.7 g protein 34 g carbs 120 mg Calcium  PB GF  What an easy, delicious, and satisfying meal.  HINT: One squash is enough for 2 servings, so invite a fellow-Faster for dinner. Save the remaining chili for another meal later.

Bison Chilimakes 4 one-cup servings per cup – 136 calories 3.2 g fat 4.8 g fiber 13 g protein 14.5 g carbs 57 mg Calcium  4 oz ground bison 15 oz canned tomatoes – in chunks or diced drained in a sieve [save the juice] 1 clove garlic, chopped 1 cup red onion, chopped 1/2 cup green pepper, chopped 3/4 cup canned red or black beans, drained and rinsed 2-4 tsp chili + ¾ tsp salt + ½ – 1 tsp ground cumin   Cook the venison, onion, garlic, and green pepper in some of the tomato juices until vegetables are tender. Add remaining ingredients and cook gently until the chili is hot throughout. Taste to see if it needs more seasoning. 

For tonight’s meal: 5 oz delicata squash, seeds removed one cup Bison Chili or use Chili Non Carne [Sidekicks II, posted 4-Oct-’17] 2 oz melon, as a side savor

Weigh the delicata squash whole and uncut to get a sense of how much will be 5 oz. You will be cutting off one end of the squash and removing the seeds. Cut a small slice off the very end, so it will stand up as a cup for the chili. Put the squash in the microwave oven and cook it until it can be easily pierced with a skewer. Assemble by standing the squash cup in the middle of the plate and pouring the chili in and around it. Then position the melon. Unusual! Teriffic!

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

2 two-oz eggs1.5 two-oz eggs 
sweet onion + beef/chicken brothcooked mackerel
soy sauce + mirinleek + Dijon mustard
scallionstrawberries
Japanese dry noodles, 190 cal/ 2 ozoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

ham slice + walnuts + egg whitelobster tail + plantains
whole-grain bread + carrotslime + olive oil
tilapia or perch + soy saucespinach leaves
sherry wine + beets + scallionmelon
Sparkling waterSparkling water

Saint Scholastica

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 Skinny Spatula who is now Following.

Scholastica was a member of one of those families in the early Christian church when everybody joined the church and became saints. You’ve got Walburga, her father, and her 2 brothers; Nonna, her husband, and her three children; Basil and his 10 saintly relatives; and then there is Scholastica. I often try to imagine a family of saints sitting down to dinner at Thanksgiving….how would that conversation go? But with today’s saint, we know what she and her brother Benedict talked about: prayer, religious life, and the life here-after. They were twins and each was the head of a religious house in Italy. Once a year, they left their cloisters to meet together for a day of conversation, right up until a few days before the death of Scholastica. Unfortunately, Scholastica is better known for a deadly event which began on her feast day, February 10, 1354 [or ’35] in Oxford, England. The students had a day off and went drinking. In one tavern, a student berated the publican for serving lousy wine and threw it on him. Relations between Town and Gown being poor at best, a brawl ensued. The next day, more fighting broke out. After three days and 62 deaths, the Saint Scholastica’s Day Riot was to go down in history as a horrible event.

We will begin our recognition of Scholastica with a breakfast of Italian ingredients and end it with food that those English rioters might have recognized.

Asparagus-Proscuitto Bake: 124 calories 5.9 g fat 2 g fiber 8.3 g protein 9.7 g carbs [9.2 g Complex] 53.5 mg Calcium  NB: The food values shown are for the egg bake and the fruit, not for the optional beverages.  PB GF This is such a great flavor combination as an appetizer, that it must be wonderful with eggs. Yum!

1 two-oz egg 2 Tbsp [1/3 oz] thinly sliced, cooked asparagus ½ Tbsp [1/8 oz] proscuitto, thinly sliced or diced 1.5 tsp Parmesan cheese, grated 1 oz pear   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]

Spritz a ramekin with cooking spray and put the sliced asparagus and proscuitto into it. Set the toaster oven at 350 degrees F. Whisk together the cheese and egg, and pour into the ramekin. Add salt and pepper to taste, bearing in mind that the meat is salty. Bake 12-15 minutes. Slice the pear, prepare the optional beverages of choice. Nice way to start the day.

Steak & Mushroom Pie: 277 calories 4.8 g fat 6.9 g fiber 27 g protein 25.6 g carbs 34 mg Calcium Two very compatible flavors together again, topped [not encased] in puff pastry. Similar to a meal enjoyed at The Sign of the Angel in Lacock, Wiltshire, England. A real treat. HINT: recipe serves 2 [TWO], photo shows one serving.

4 oz grilled sirloin steak [leftover from a previous meal?] 1.5 cups mushrooms 1 Tbsp red wine ¼ cup creamed onions ½ tsp thyme + salt & pepper to taste 1/6 sheet puff pastry [Pepperidge Farm, frozen sheets are easy to find and use] per person: 1/3 cup peas

Thaw the frozen puff pastry for 40 minutes on the counter. Rewrap and return one sheet to freezer. Remove one of the sheets, unroll it carefully, and cut the sheet into 6 squares. [TIP: stack the remaining 5 pieces with waxed paper or cling wrap between the layers. Pop into a zipper bag and freeze for later use.] Cut the steak into 1/2”-1” cubes. Combine the meat with the mushrooms, wine, onions, seasonings in an oven-proof dish just large enough to hold the meat mixture yet large enough to be topped with the puff pastry. Heat the meat mixture until it is warm. Lay the puff pastry on top, decoratively slitting the crust. Bake at 400 F. about 15 minutes, until the crust is well-browned. Cook the peas and imagine that you are in an English country restaurant.

Slow Day: Grilled Vegetable Pasta

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 your 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.

Sometimes, there is a crowd to feed and that’s when we turn to one of our stand-by meals: Grilled Vegetable Pasta with Sausage. The vegetables include: zucchini/summer squash, yellow or orange sweet peppers, red onion, and or other colorful fresh items of the same texture. Choose any pasta you wish — 2 ounces by weight per person. Bratwurst or Italian sausage will do just fine. Make 1-1/2 cups of your favorite white sauce and add 1/2 cup of grated Parmesan cheese.

The colors of the vegetables are echoed in the colorful pasta.

The sausages are grilled, then sliced. The vegetables are sliced or cut into chunks, as you prefer. In a grill basket, toss and shake the vegetables over hot coals, then empty into a large bowl. While one person is doing the grilling, the other preparing the cheese sauce. SLOWLY, over low heat. [Sometimes (often), my sauce ‘breaks’ and becomes clotted. The solution is to whisk flour into the milk to bind the sauce back together.] Cook the pasta and combine everything in the bowl with the vegetables. Easy to prepare and always a hit.

Often, seconds helpings are the norm.

Marvelous Mixtures

How this Fast Diet Lifestyle works: Tomorrow, eat meals with 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.

There are food combinations that we can’t get enough of. Here are three ‘mixtures’ of ingredients which were originally imagined as dinners or snacks — in Haiti, in the USA [under an Italian alias], and France — which also glide into eggs at breakfast time. These are some of our favorites:

HAITIAN CHICKEN PATE FILLING:  makes ~2 cup 1 Tbsp = 100 calories   Use in omelettes, bakes, quiches. 1 habanero pepper ¼ cup chopped onion 2 tsp garlic, minced ½ pound ground chicken ¼ cup shredded carrot 2 tsp no-salt tomato paste 2 tsp lime juice 1 tsp cider vinegar 1 Tbsp chopped scallion 1 Tbsp chopped parsley 1 tsp fresh thyme leaves ½ tsp pepper + ¼ tsp salt 1/8 tsp ground clove + 1/8 tsp ground nutmeg Cut the pepper lengthwise and scrape the seeds out of one half, leaving the seeds in the other half. Chop the pepper. Prepare a mise en place. You will be adding ingredients at rapid intervals, so do the prep now. Spritz a non-stick skillet with non-stick spray. Saute the pepper, onion, and garlic for 3 minutes until tender. Add the chicken and cook 5 minutes, stirring often. Add carrot and cook for 2 minutes. Add tomato paste and stir constantly for one minute. Pour in the lime juice and vinegar, then stir and add the scallion and all the seasonings. Stir, take off heat, and cool. Run it all through the food processor. As an appetizer or dinner treat, roll out puff pastry sheets and cut into 20 pieces. Use 1 Tbsp filling in each piece and bake until golden. 

HAM FLORENTINE FILLINGmakes 1.5 cups  The recipe is from Peter Christian’s Recipes and we think it is delicious. Upper left photo above shows a Bake with this filling and the upper right shows the dinner crepes.   ½ cup no-cheese Bechamel Sauce [see SIDEKICKS I, 17-Sept-’17 ] 1 cup ham in 1/4” dice 1 cup [5 oz] cooked spinach, fresh or frozen ½ cup chopped celery + ¼ cup chopped onion celery salt + dill + granulated garlic + basil

Be sure to squeeze the spinach until most of the liquid is out of it. [save the liquid] Spritz a saute pan with non-stick spray and add some of the spinach liquid. Cook the celery and onion until the onions are transluscent, adding more spinach liquid as needed. Add the remaining ingredients and cook on low heat until warmed through. 

BACON & LEEK FILLING:  makes ~1.5 cups  ¼ cup = 62 calories 1.8 g fat 0.6 g fiber 1.7 g protein 6.4 g carbs 57 mg Calcium This recipe is from Joanne Harris’s book French Market Cookbook and it is useful at breakfast as a bake or omelette filling and at dinner in crepes. 2 oz American/streaky bacon 3 cups sliced leeks 1 clove garlic ¼ cup Gruyere cheese, shredded 2 tsp mayonnaise  Saute the bacon in a large skillet, remove and slice cross-wise. Saute leeks and garlic in the bacon fat until limp. Off heat, stir Gruyere and mayo into the mixture. 

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

1 two-oz egg1 two-oz egg 
asparagus + pearsweet potato + apple sauce
prosciuttoonion + Canadian bacon
Parmesan cheesewhite whole wheat flour
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

grilled sirloin steakdelicata squash + ground cumin
mushrooms + creamed onionsbison meat + melon + chili powder
puff pastry sheetred onion +canned red beans + garlic
peas + thyme + red winecanned tomatoes + green bell pepper
Sparkling waterSparkling water