Slow Days: French Herb Roast Chicken

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.

Chicken for dinner every Sunday is the American Standard. The politician’s promise of a “Chicken in every pot!” goes back to King Henri IV of France.  He was from the Gascony region and he understood that the peasantry often lacked food. In 1598, he stated his wish that in his realm no working man would be so poor that he couldn’t have a chicken in the pot every Sunday.  Today’s meal is roasted instead of being stewed, and it is called French Herb Roast Chicken. We eat this about once a month. Lots of meat left over to use for Fast meals!

French Roast Chicken, mise

The chicken cavity is sprinkled with dried tarragon, then stuffed with carrot, celery, and onion.  The skin of the bird is showered with more tarragon and paprika.  Set the oven at 425°F.  Before roasting, the bird is draped with 4 half-slices of bacon. Roast the bird for 30 minutes, then baste with beef stock.  Return to oven at 350°F, basting occasionally for another 30 minutes or until the bird is done.  Boil and mash some potatoes and cook the vegetable of your choice.French Roast Chicken, platedGravy is made from the pan drippings with some mushrooms added for even more flavor.  I always get the wings!  The wine is a Pinot Noir.  The meal was delicious.

 

Slow Days: Crab 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.

We are very fond of crab meat. Not the fancy, high-priced Dungeness or Blue crab, but our New England Coast local Rock and Jonah Crabs.  This commodity appears cooked, picked-over, and packaged in fish markets and grocery stores. A half-pound package is perfect for crab cakes or Crab Pasta. Our recipe comes from the Legal Sea Foods Cookbook, based on menus from the Boston restaurant of the same name. The ingredients seem a bit extravagant, but you are serving 2 people and you don’t eat like this every day.  In our house, pasta appears on the menu once each week.   2 oz/person.Crab Pasta recipe

You will notice that the ingredient amounts for TWO PEOPLE are written in on the left.  See also that the amount of pasta allotted per person is TWO Ounces, although the recipe specifies 4 oz/person.  Note also that we described this meal as ‘Exceptional!’

Create a mise en place with your ingredients.  Follow the above instructions. Our pasta of choice for this dish is ‘gemelli.’  Prepare the salad or vegetable of your choice. Plate and enjoy.Crab Pasta, plated

Slow Days: Pissaladiere

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.

Pissaladière is a classic Provinçal food that looks like a pizza [hence its alias: Pizza Niçoise].  More accurately, it could be described as a flatbread topped with fish-accented caramelized onions.  Perhaps in the cafes of the Midi it has become a cliché, but it was new to us when we tried it at home. And we loved it. I used Joanne Harris’ recipe from her My French Kitchen cookbook.

The ingredients are simple: pizza dough [8″ rounds, one per person], tinned anchovies, black olives, Herbes de Province, and caramelized onions. One late summer day, I had a surfeit of onions, so I caramelized and then froze them. [NB: it takes about an hour to cook 3.5 pounds of onions to the point where they are ‘soft and slightly caramelized but not brown’ as Joanne Harris says.] Out they came for this meal, making the preparation very easy.

pissaladiere, mise  èThe pizza dough is shaped and brushed with olive oil. Distribute the onions on top then arrange the anchovies in a lattice pattern. Sprinkle with the Herbes de Province.  Garnish the pattern further by placing olives in the squares created by the anchovy lattice. pissaladiere, plated with brandol      To complete the picture, a simple salad was topped with a lattice of Parmesan curls.  Perfect served with a Bandol wine. The portion shown here is for Dear Husband.  I usually make a meal of 3 slices of pizza + side salad and a glass of wine.  Summer in southern France or Winter in New England, this is a fine meal.

Slow Days: Sister’s Pasta Sauce

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 show that is true.  But once in a while your can splurge, as long as it isn’t every day.  For what to eat on Slow Days, Dr. Mosley recommends a Mediterranean Diet.  As for how we eat,  an example follows.

When our parents were alive and still hosting Christmas at their house, my sister would prepare her special pasta for Christmas Eve.  It is the tradition in many cultures to eat a meatless dinner on December 24, and this recipe from Bon Appétit magazine fills the bill.  It is a lot easier if you start several days before to prepare the sauce. I like to make it much earlier in December and freeze it.Sukey Pasta, mise 1

The sauce involves sautéing 1.5 cups onion and 1 clove garlic in 2 Tbsp olive oil for 5 minutes, then adding basil, red pepper flakes, and 3 cans [28-oz cans] of whole or crushed tomatoes in their juice.  Cook uncovered on low for 2 hours, then add 2 cups chicken stock. Continue to simmer for another 2 hours until the amount of sauce is reduced to 6-8 cups. The resultant rich, flavorful sauce is mostly used in the Christmas Pasta, but it will grace a more humble dish as well.

To complete the pasta dish for four people, cook 12 oz of penne pasta until it is just under-done. [NB: Ordinarily I use 2 oz pasta per serving so this should serve 6 people.  The remainders from this meal can be served as lunch.]  Gently heat 20 fl oz Sister’s Pasta Sauce, adding 1/3 cup of quartered wrinkly black olives or Kalamata olives and 2 cups grated Havarti cheese. Combine with the drained pasta and put in a lightly-oiled casserole dish.  Sprinkle Parmesan cheese on top and bake at 350° F for 20-30 minutes or until the sauce is bubbly and the cheese begins to brown slightly. Sprinkle with fresh basil and serve with Italian Green Beans or Green Salad and a crusty loafSister's Pasta, plated.

I’m always sure to save out enough sauce to prepare the pasta again before Easter, to give a culinary link to the two holidays.

No Hoax

How this Fast Diet Lifestyle works: Eat these meals tomorrow. On Thursday, eat the meals that will be posted on Wednesday.  Eat sensibly the other days of the week.  That’s it.  Simple way to lose weight and be healthier.                                                            Welcome to RoadtoaHealthierLife who is now Following.

The Piltdown Man was one of the great scientific hoaxes ever.  In the years after Darwin’s proposal of the evolution [‘Descent’] of man, both supporters and detractors were hunting for fossil evidence that humans did or didn’t develop from a ‘lower form of life’ — something between an ape and a man. And then it was discovered!!  In a quarry near Piltdown, Sussex, England, in 1912, Charles Dawson unearthed a modern skull with an ape-like jaw and said it was from half a million years ago.  In 1925 and 1937, the discovery was called into question. But the story really unraveled in the 1950s when the skull was analyzed with modern techniques, showing that the bones were not from the same species, nor were they 500,000 years old. Poor old Piltdown, consigned to the rubbish-bin of has-beens.

There have been many pranks in science, but the Fast Diet is not one of them.  Does it work for everybody? Apparently not. But for the many successful Fasters, it is no hoax.

Here is an article from early 2013, which asks if the Fast Diet actually works. I can tell you that it does.  https://www.nhs.uk/news/food-and-diet/news-analysis-does-the-52-fast-diet-work/

In 2016, Johns Hopkins evaluated the Fast Diet to examine the benefits: https://www.johnshopkinshealthreview.com/issues/spring-summer-2016/articles/are-there-any-proven-benefits-to-fasting

In 2018, a Muslim-oriented website touted the benefits of Fasting as a demonstration of faith and how the 5:2 plan fits into their religion. https://www.alaraby.co.uk/english/society/2018/5/14/the-surprising-health-benefits-of-fasting

The benefits of Fasting for the health of your heart were explored in this article:https://www.labroots.com/trending/cardiology/8333/5-2-fasting-diet-benefits-heart

Results show that Fasting has real benefits for diabetics and pre-diabetics. http://www.unisa.edu.au/Media-Centre/Releases/2018/World-first-study-shows-benefits-of-52-diet-for-people-with-diabetes/

And my favorite, the discussion of how Fasting can help you to live longer. Hooray! https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/01/health/fasting-longevity-food-drayer/index.html

Have a good Fast Day tomorrow and join me on a journey to health.

 

Slow Days: Apple-Chicken Crepes

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 tell the tale.  But once in a while your can splurge, as long as it isn’t every day.  For what to eat on Slow Days, Dr. Mosley recommends a Mediterranean Diet.  As for how we eat,  an example follows.

Remember those crêpes we made last month?  [November 10, 2018]  Here’s a delicious way to use some of them. The recipe is from Brittany Gastronomique by Kate Whiteman.Apple-Chicken Crepe recipe

Having had on hand some chicken meat, some apples, and some crêpes — we couldn’t resist having a go at this recipe.  It was our 2nd time of cooking it.Apple-Chicken Crepes, miseAs you can see, the chicken was already cooked, so this was extra easy to prepare.  The chicken/apple/cream/honey/cidre were combined as per the recipe.  The crêpes, previously prepared and thawed, were gently heated before using.  Fill the crêpes and serve!Apple-Chicken Crepes, platedêServed with a simple salad, the meal is excellent.  Add a honeyed cidre called Chouchenn from the Iles de la Madelaine and it is ambrosial.

Slow Days: Turkey Roulade

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 tell that tale.  But once in a while your can splurge, as long as it isn’t every day.  For what to eat on Slow Days, Dr. Mosley recommends a Mediterranean Diet.  As for how we eat, an example follows.

American Thanksgiving is coming up so of course we will eat turkey.  But an entire turkey is too much for two people with smaller appetites, so we have a work-around.  We order a 15-pound turkey from our butcher at Roy’s Market and have it cut in two pieces lengthwise. The two halves are then brined.  One half goes in the freezer for later while the remaining breast [skin still intact] and thigh are boned [skin to stock pot].Turkey Roulade, meat

The leg is put into the stock pot along with the bones, the wing tip, and the giblets. [The resulting stock of course forms the basis of gravy and turkey soup]. The breast is butterflied.Turkey Roulade, butterflied

Stuffing is prepared according to my mother’s recipe. Some is baked in a small dish and 2-3 cups are saved out for the turkey.  Arrange the dark meat overlapping on the white meat so it forms a fairly uniform rectangle. Strew with salt. Distribute the stuffing over the meat, keeping it 1-2″ from the long edges. Turkey Roulade, ready to roll Roll up the meat with the stuffing inside and place the wing [For wing lovers like me!] across one end. [weight = 4.5 pounds]  Tie ‘like a Genoa sail,’ says my Dear Husband.  Extra hands may be needed for this. This is done the evening before Thanksgiving and refrigerated.  The next day, the roulade is baked at 425° F for 30 minutes, then at 325° for up to 45 minutes.Turkey Roulade, roastedSlice 1″ thick and serve with all your favorite sides. So easy to serve. The perfect way to feed two people [three if a son comes home] for one feast, and 2 meals of left-overs.Turkey Roulade, slicedTurkey Rouldad, plated

Happy Thanksgiving!  We have much for which to be thankful.  We need to remember that every day and help those around us who are less fortunate.

There! I Said It Again

How this Fast Diet Lifestyle works: Eat these meals tomorrow. On Monday, eat the meals that will be posted on Sunday.  Eat sensibly the other days of the week.  That’s it.  Simple way to lose weight and be healthier.

On November 8, 1963, a new song was hitting the airwaves. Teenagers swooned over Bobby Vinton‘s crooning, while their parents recognized the tune as a cover of a popular song from 1945. Redd Evans and David Mann wrote it, then Vaughn Monroe recorded it.  Jimmy Dorsey and Nat King Cole covered it in the 40s, cementing its popularity.  But for my generation, as yet unknowing of the Beatles, nothing was like a slow dance to the yearning lyric:

                                                                                                                                                                “I’ve said it, what more can I say,
Believe me, there’s no other way,
I love you, I will to the end,
There! I’ve said it again.”              Sigh.

Today I’m going to say some things that I’ve said before: this Fast Diet works. How do you get started? How do you convince yourself to get on it and stay on it? [see Groundhog Day, posted 2 Feb 2018]  Like the singer of the song, you have to be in love: in love with the idea of being slimmer and healthier, and in love with your self enough to want to make the effort.                                                                                                                                     When you read my recipes, you’ll notice the food values for each. Yes, I’ve worked them out for each ingredient to get those totals. So barring errors in math, they are accurate and here’s why they matter to me.                                                                                         >>calories: rather important if you want to stay within our Fast day limit of 600 per day. If you don’t want to count calories, then I have done it for you.                                                        >>fat: this is total fat.  If one is supposed to limit fat to 25% of calories, then the limit on a Fast Day should be 15 g.  It has been shown that eating fat doesn’t make you fat, but a lot trans fat and saturated  fat in the diet increases the possibility of diabetes. Fasting reduces that possibility. Reduced fat also means reduced calories.                                                                                                    >>fiber: fiber in the diet helps digestion and bowel regularity.  It feeds your gut flora and can help to reduce the risk of colon cancer.  21 grams per day are recommended.                          >>protein: we need to eat lots of protein on a Fast Day to maintain muscle mass. When your body has reduced calories, it begins to go into whatever energy is stored. Fat reserves go first. Hooray! Then the muscles are targeted.  As we age [any age past 35 years], we lose muscle anyway. Lots of protein on a Fast Day [as well as on a Slow Day] can help to maintain that muscle. Exercise helps, to build muscle. ‘Average sedentary male needs 56 grams of protein/day.‘                                                                                                                              >>carbs: carbs come from fruits, vegetables, whole grains, dried beans [Complex carbs], bread, sugars, pasta, white rice and potatoes [Simple carbs].  Simple carbs quickly convert to sugar in the process of digestion.  One reason that Fasting reduces the risk of diabetes is the reduction of Simple carbs in the diet. A ‘low carb’ meal should have less than 35 g of carbs.  If you reduce the Simple carbs on a Slow Day, you will probably lose weight faster.  We aren’t eliminating carbs, but we are being more sensible about which ones we eat every day.                                                                                                                                                                      >>Calcium: this matters for our bones and heart, nerves, and muscles.  1000-1200 mg of Calcium are recommended. Eating your Calcium [ex: cheese] is better than supplements.

Eat well, Fast well, live well.

Ingredients for next week:

Breakfast, single portion

prosciutto  1.5 two-oz eggs
melon kippered herring
red onion pickle dry mustard
cherries
Whatever you need for your smoothie Whatever you need for your smoothie
Whatever you need for your hot beverage Whatever you need for your hot beverage

Dinner, single portion:

tuna steak  +  olive oil 3# chicken
red bell pepper onion  +  celery  + carrot
zucchini     +   lemon juice Worcestershire sauce  + peas
cherry tomatoes dumplings [..Not by Bread… 7 Feb-2018]
Sparkling water Sparkling water

Slow Days: Pork Schnitzel

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 tell that tale.  Once in a while your can splurge, as long as it isn’t every day.  For what to eat on Slow Days, Dr. Mosley recommends a Mediterranean Diet.  As for how we eat, an example follows.

KJL, a local butcher shop offers breaded pork schnitzel, and who can resist?  If this treat is not deep fat fried, it can be very healthy, as well as quick to prepare. “Schnitzel” is not a recipe as in ‘Wiener Schnitzel‘ or ‘Jaeger Schnitzel,’ but rather refers to a thin cut of meat, whether veal or pork, made thinner by pounding.Pork Schnitzel, mise

From the freezer, I took some watercress sauce with cream [top] and some apples sautéed  in butter and sugar [bottom]. The sugar was a good flavor foil to the tartness of the watercress.  Fresh mushrooms [center] were added to those to make a sauce.

The schnitzels weighed 5.25 oz each, so I cut them in half after sautéing in some butter and cooking spray. I ate 1/2 of one, while Dear Husband ate two halves. [The other half went for lunch another day.]  Fresh beets and roasted little potatoes rounded out the meal. Delicious and so simple.Pork Schnitzel, plated

Slow Days: Pizza with Leek & Bleu Cheese

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 tell that tale.  But once in a while your can splurge, as long as it isn’t every day.  For what to eat on Slow Days, Dr. Mosley recommends a Mediterranean Diet.  As for how we eat,  an example follows.

When the boys were young, I’d make home-made, personal-sized [8″ diameter] pizzas and we’d all watch Star Trek, The Next Generation every Saturday.  Memories are made that way.  The boys are dispersed to their own homes [one of them still makes pizza], and we continue to eat pizza, every Saturday. This one is based on a recipe from Fore Street, a favorite restaurant in Portland, Maine. Forestreet Pizza recipe

I make my own pizza shells from scratch. Sometimes I use the recipe from Gourmet magazine, which makes 2. Often I use the Neapolitan recipe from Peter Reinhart‘s American Pie, which makes six balls of dough, 5-6 oz each. I freeze balls of dough to use next week. NB: ordinarily I sauté the mushrooms and leeks before I put them on the pizza.  For some reason I didn’t do that this time.  It was crunchier as a result. Next time, I’ll sauté them.Feor Street Pizza, miseFore Street Pizza, plated

I usually eat 3 pieces of pizza, while Dear Husband eats all of his. This was enjoyed with a Dutcher Crossing red wine and a good friend as a guest.