Soup for You

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 Tom Reilly and loseweighttodaystl and Keto Zeal and djsfitt who are now Following.

Winter. Soup. Cold and snow outside. Hot soup inside you. Perfect pairing. Soup as a meal is wonderful and for dieters it can be the perfect solution. One of the benefits of soup is that one batch makes enough for several meals, so future lunches and dinners are taken care of on a busy day. Here are two soups to make those of us in the Northern Hemisphere think of Summer, and which those of you in the Southern Hemisphere can prepare from fresh ingredients. The third recipe is definitely for Winter.

Chowdah:  294 calories 7 g fat 1.7 g fiber 33.6 g protein 17 g carbs 114 mg Calcium  PB GF Here in Northern New England, chowder is king. Cod or haddock is traditional but hake is more flavorful and lower in calories. HINT: This recipe makes one BIG bowl of chowdah, but if you double the recipe, you can freeze the remainder or enjoy it for lunch. If you can, make it one day and eat it the next day for richer flavor.

½ slice bacon ¼ cup onion, chopped 2 oz potatoes, ½” dice 1½ cups fish stock 4 oz cod or hake fillets, cut into 1½” pieces ¼ cup 2% milk salt + pepper + parsley + turmeric

Cook the bacon until it is almost crispy, remove from the pan, blot dry of fat, and chop coarsely. Into the fat in the pan add the onions. Cook slowly until soft and transluscent. In another pan, boil the potatoes in water until tender. Drain [save the water for baking] and salt the potatoes. Put the fish stock, cod, potatoes, and milk in the pan with the onions. Heat slowly until warm. Add the bacon, parsley, and seasonings to taste. [TIP: Best if held in the ‘fridge for 8-24 hours before you heat slowly [do NOT boil] and taste for seasonings again.]

Soupe au Pistou:  212 calories 5 g fat 5.6 g fiber 9 g protein 34 g carbs 74 mg Calcium  PB GF – if using GF bread and pasta  Here is the summer soup of Southern France: garden vegetables with a basil pistou to flavor it. The recipe is from Anne Willan’s Country Cooking of FranceHINT: This makes enough for 9 [nine] one-cup servings or 6 [six] 1-½ cup sv. If 1-½ cup, then 271 calories/bowl, with bread.

½ cup canned white beans, drained and rinsed 1 cup thinly-sliced leeks ½ pound [8 oz] tomatoes, ½“ dice ½ cup carrots, ½“ dice 2 cups potatoes, ½” dice 8 oz zucchini, ½“ dice ½ cup onion, diced 2/3 cup green beans, cut in 1” pieces ½ cup peas, fresh or frozen 1¼ oz short pasta, such as orzo or ditalini ¼ cup pesto, purchased or homemade 1 slice whole-grain sourdough bread

Prepare all the vegetables. Simmer the vegetables in 1 quart of water with salt and pepper for 20 minutes. Add the peas and simmer 5 minutes more. Add the pasta and simmer 2 minutes more. Take off the heat and stir in the pesto. HINT: If possible, cool, cover, and let sit in a cool spot for 8-24 hours to deepen the flavors.  Taste for seasoning. Serve with a slice of whole grain sourdough bread. Delicious for dinner or lunch. Freeze the remainder.

Green Split Pea Soup:  262 calories 1.6 g fat 19 g fiber 20 g protein 46 g carbs [46 g Complex] 30 mg Calcium   PB GF  For years we have loved this soup from Picardy, France which comes to us via Anne Willen’s  French Regional Cooking.  The easiest recipe in the world!  HINT: Makes 6 one-cup servings. What you don’t use today, freeze in serving-sized portions.

16 oz bag dry green split peas + water to soak 1 quart water, for making the soup 2 slices bacon 2 stems of thyme salt + pepper to taste

Put the dry peas in a bowl and add water to cover them by 2”. Let them sit and soften for 1.5 hours. Drain.  TIP: you will not need the soaking water for the soup, but use it to water the houseplants.  Put the peas, bacon, thyme, and water in a saucepan. Bring to a gentle boil, then turn down the heat, cover, and simmer for 1¼ hours.  NB: Not all the liquid will be used up. That’s fine. Remove the bacon and the thyme stems. Using a food processor, blender, or immersion wand, puree the soup. There should be 6 cups. Soup should be loose enough to run off a spoon, but not too thin. Add water, if necessary, to adjust thickness. Taste for seasonings. Cook the bacon in a saute pan until it is crisp. Crumble it and add to the soup. 

Stocking Up

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.

During the Back-to-the-Land movement in the 1960s and ’70s, one of the ‘bibles’ of the people was Stocking Up, published by Rodale Press. It instructed the nascent homesteaders in the ancient arts of preserving food: canning, freezing, drying.  The goal was to save the harvest for times when food was not so available. When dieting, it is a good idea to have some meals in the freezer or foods in the pantry so that you are not caught short on a Fast Day wondering what to eat.  So here are some foods to make in multi-meal batches: prep once, eat often. It pays to stock up.

Seafood Chowder:  275 calories  11 g fat  15 g protein   16 g carbs  GF This makes 10 [TEN!] one-cup servings. It freezes nicely, or it can feed the family.  My husband found the recipe in Yankee magazine. He prepares this every year. It is wonderful. The directions look long and involved but the results are worth it.

Seafood chowder on Wedgewood tile

4 strips thick-cut bacon, diced        1 medium Spanish onion, diced                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 1 pound baking potatoes, peeled + cut in ½” cubes                                                                                            2 pounds steamer clams in their shells                                                                                                       one lobster, weighing 1.5 pounds                1 pound scallops                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 1 pound shrimp, peeled         1 quart whole milk       4 Tbsp butter                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2 sprigs parsley, finely chopped     ¼ tsp paprika + salt + pepper                                                                                                                         

In a medium skillet or saute pan cook bacon until brown and crisp. Remove bacon and reserve. Pour off all but 1 Tbsp fat and add the onions. Cook slowly over low heat, stirring, until translucent [10 mins?]. Set aside with the bacon in a large bowl.

In a separate saucepan, cover cubed potatoes with salted water and boil until almost tender, about 15 minutes. Drain and add to the bacon/onions. Put clams in a large pot and add 1 quart water. Heat to boiling, cover, and cook until clams open, about 3 minutes. Remove the clams but leave the liquid in the pot. Strain the liquid through a sieve lined with paper towel. Remove the clams from their shells and cut them into smaller pieces if necessary. Add to the potatoes, onion, and bacon.

Put the strained clam broth back into the empty pot and bring to a boil. Add the lobster head-first into the boiling broth. Cover and cook for 20 minutes. Remove lobster and let cool. Crack the shell to remove the meat. Cut the meat into 1/2” chunks and add to the potatoes. Heat the broth until boiling. Add the scallops and shrimp. Reduce heat to low. Simmer about 3 minutes, until the scallops + shrimp are just cooked through. Add all the previously cooked ingredients, along with the milk, butter, parsley and seasonings. Heat until steaming but not boiling.

Cover and cool. Let the pot sit in the ‘fridge or on a cool back porch for 12-24 hours. This really enhances the flavors. When ready to serve, heat to steaming hot but do not boil. Freeze what is left over in freezer containers which are the same size as a serving.

Felafel:    1 batch = 648 cal  25.4 g fat  21 g fiber  32.5 g protein    72 g carbs    214 mg Ca                   each patty = 30 cal 1 g fat 1 g fiber 1.6 g protein 4 g carbs 8.5 mg Calcium      GF PB From the good old Moosewood Cookbook by Molly Katzen, these are easy to prepare and, since it makes 26 patties, you will be set up for several future meals.

Felafel w: Cuke Raita

2 cups canned chick peas — [if you use dried chickpeas, you will get a grainer product. Factor in the time to cook them]                                                     1.5 cloves garlic, crushed [add as much as you enjoy!]                                                                                 ¼ cup celery, minced      ¼ c. scallions, sliced        1 egg                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1.5 tsp tahini        ½ t. cumin  ½ t. turmeric                                                                                                                                                            ¼ t. cayenne  ¼ t. black pepper  1.5 t. salt

Combine in food processer until ingredients form a uniform paste. Scoop into a bowl and chill 1 hour. Form into balls on a silicone mat or parchment paper on a cookie sheet. I used a 1 and 1/2 Tbsp scoop and then flattened the patties. TIP: You don’t have to bake them now. You could freeze the patties on a cookie sheet, then put them frozen into bags to cook later. Bake at 400 degrees for 10-15 minutes. The patties should be heated through and have an outside ‘crust’ which is firm to the touch. In most recipes, you will cook them further. At this point you want them to be firm enough to store well. There will be about 25 of them. Use now or cool and freeze for later use.

pantry shelf

Next, stock the pantry.  Here are some things I always keep on hand:       garbanzo [chickpeas] beans, red kidney beans,  large white beans [Cannellini /Alubias], diced tomatoes, canned tuna, chicken stock With these ingredients, you are on your way to a bowl of chili or a plate of antipasto.

Ingredients for next week: breakfast, single portion

1 two-oz egg1.5 two-oz eggs
 reduced fat ricotta cheddar cheese
 Parmesan cheese Worcestershire sauce
 apple    +  bacon dry mustard
 sage  + prepared mustard 1 oz strawberries or pear
Whatever you need for your smoothieWhatever you need for your hot beverage
Whatever you need for your hot beverageWhatever you need for your smoothie

Dinner, single portion:

 roasted red pepper salt cod
 pepperoni   + black olives bell pepper
 garbanzo beans  + green beans  scallion  +  garlic  + onion
 mozzarella tomato
 tomato   +  canned white tuna dumpling: flour, milk, sugar, baking powder, nutmeg
 marinated mushrooms 
Sparkling waterSparkling water