Silent Spring

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 primrosestuart and wildmountainthyme who are now Following.

After September, 1962, everyone was talking about Rachel Carson. Her book Silent Spring had been serialized in the New Yorker and suddenly people thought about the environment and how humans were affecting it. Her childhood love of nature lead to studies at the Woods Hole Marine Institute and a Masters Degree in zoology. Carson then began a 15-year employment at the US Bureau of Fisheries, becoming the chief editor of their publications. After retiring in 1952, Carson wrote books about the ocean which were well-received. Then came the bomb-shell. Silent Spring caught the attention of mothers, “ordinary housewives,” who had found dead birds in their yards and now knew that their children’s health might be threatened by pesticides and industrial chemicals. My own mother was very moved by the book. Despite the tidal wave of attacks from industry, who denigrated her as a communist and cat-loving spinster; despite the fact that she was dying of breast cancer, Carson testified around the country, calling for ‘a grass-roots army to rise up’ [her words] to curb misguided agricultural practices, and rampant, thoughtless production of goods [my words]. After her death in 1964, the passage of much pro-environment legislation was credited to her call to arms. Readers are still affected by reading the book, which is considered one of the most influential books of all time.

Our meals reflect the crusade of Rachel Carson. Corn is mass-produced by agricultural conglomerates. Get your’s for our breakfast from a local farmer. The eggs represent the birds which Carson said were being killed by pesticides, as DDT weakened their shells — leading to a Springtime with no birds. The shrimp live in her beloved ocean, also affected badly by agricultural run-off. Ask yourself what you can do to improve your local environment, then act on it.

Corn-Cilantro Salad Bake: 128 calories 7 g fat 1 g fiber 7 g protein 7 g carbs 39 mg Calcium  NB: The food values given above are for the egg bake and fruit only, not the optional beverages. PB GF  Having had some of this delicious salad left over from a week-end meal, I decided to add it to eggs. Heavenly!

one 2-oz egg ½ oz corn-cilantro salad** 2 oz melon  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 an oven-proof dish with non-stick spray and put the corn-cilantro salad into the dish. Whisk the egg with a pinch of salt and pepper, and pour over the corn salad. Bake at 350F for 12-15 minutes. Plate with the melon.

**Corn-Cilantro Salad  makes 2 cups 3 Tbsp rice wine vinegar 1 Tbsp canola oil ¾ tsp sesame oil 1 cup fresh corn kernels ½ c snipped chives 1¼ oz chopped cilantro Whisk the vinegar and oils together. Stir in the corn and herbs, then let sit for 30 minutes to blend the flavors.

Eggs Fu Young with Shrimp:  246 calories 13 g fat 3 g fiber 24 g protein 10 g carbs 160 mg Calcium  PB GF  Early in our marriage, we bought Jacqueline Heritau’s Oriental Cooking the Fast Wok Way. Later in our marriage, we tried this recipe and loved it. HINT: These ingredients will serve 2 [two] people.

3 oz raw shrimp, shelled Chop the shrimp coarsely and divide in two portions.
½ stalk celery, sliced 1/8” thick
¼ cup chopped mushrooms
½ cup bean sprouts OR sliced bok choy, leaves and stems
3 scallions, sliced 
¼ tsp ground ginger
Prepare the ingredients and divide them equally into two different bowls. Add the shrimp and stir well to combine.
Four 2-oz eggs Whisk lightly and divide equally into 2 containers.
½ tsp sesame oil 
non-stick spray
In a non-stick saute pan, warm one portion of the oil. Also, spritz the pan with non-stick spray. Stir-fry the contents of one of the bowls for 2-3 minutes
Pour one container of eggs over the stir-fried vegetables and shrimp. Tip the pan and lift the edge of the eggs to let raw egg flow underneath to cook. Cover the pan and let the egg cook on one side for 2-3 minutes. Uncover and carefully flip the egg pancake. Cook 1-2 minutes more. Remove to a plate and keep warm in a slow oven.
½ tsp sesame oil
non-stick spray
Repeat with the remaining shrimp/vegetables and the remaining egg.
2 tsp hoisin sauce
2 tsp soy sauce
2 tsp oyster sauce
Stir together in a small bowl to form a sauce for topping.
1-2 oz raw spinach OR Bok Choy, cut chiffonade style
a few tablespoons of water
Heat a saute pan and spray with non-stick spray. Add greens and some water. Cover and cook until greens are limp. Plate with egg pancakes and top with the sauce.

Harvest Home

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.

Come, ye thankful people, come, Raise the song of harvest home. All is safely gathered in E’re the winter storms begin.

This 1844 hymn explains it all: ‘Harvest Home’ is the celebration that marks the end of the harvest. It tells the farm family that all is well for now, that there will be enough food stored to get the family through until the next harvest. Celebrating the harvest takes many forms, and it is documented in the Books of Exodus, Leviticus, and Proverbs. The Romans had harvest festivals, as did the Celts and Germanic Tribes of Northern Europe. In England, the bringing in of the last wain of grain was celebrated with village revelry as well as in art. This would be followed by a feast provided by the employer of the harvesters, all with Gaelic/Celtic cultural overtones. In Reformation-era Germany, churches would have special services called Erntdankfest [harvest thanks fest], a tradition brought to Pennsylvania by Protestant refugees. American Thanksgiving is not a harvest home festival. For one thing, it is too late in the year and for another, the Pilgrims did not have religious holidays. No Christmas, no Easter. American Thanksgiving today is a celebration of general bounty and family, whereas the Pilgrims were just happy to have lived for a year in the new world. This year, Harvest Home in England will be celebrated on September 22. ‘Harvest’ some real food from your local grocery and honor it with good eating. Be mindful of the farmers, grocery clerks, and agricultural workers who brought it to you.

Our meals feature hearty whole grain bread from the harvest, of course, and roast beef which is what the farm workers in England would have expected their land-owner bosses to provide for the festive dinner following the storage of the last grains.

Smoked Salmon & Cucumber Toast: 206 calories 12.4 g fat 4 g fiber 8 g protein 20 g carbs 33.5 mg Calcium  NB: The food values given above are for the plated food only, not the optional beverage. PB Can’t miss with a satisfying, whole-grain breakfast to start your day with wonderful flavors.

1 slice whole-grain bread, 70 calories 2 Tbsp whipped cream cheese ½ oz smoked salmon 4 slices cucumber OR Swedish Cucumber Salad   2 oz strawberries OR 1 oz peach

Lightly toast the bread and spread it with the cream cheese. Top it with the samon and top that with the cucumber. Plate the fruit. Now try to top that for flavor!

Cold Beef Plate: 292 calories 4 g fat 5 g fiber 28 g protein 33 g carbs 17.6 mg Calcium Here’s a simple meal. Use either meat from a roast or from the deli. Rather French, with the cornichons and Dijon mustard.

3 oz cold, sliced beef roast ½ cup [about 3 oz] pickled beets 4 small [0.8 oz total] cornichons 1 tsp Dijon mustard 1 oz sourdough rye bread

Plate to your own aesthetic taste. But do plate it – even though the ingredients come from your ‘deli drawer,’ avoid the temptation to stand in front of the open ‘fridge and just graze. Do it up right and sit down to enjoy it.

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

1 two-oz egg + melon1 two-oz egg + pickle + ham 
corn-cilantro salad: rice wine vinegarpork + Swiss cheese
canola oil + sesame oilmayonnaise + mustard
chives + corn + cilantromelon
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

two 2-oz eggs + shrimp + sesame seedandouille sausage + chicken + ham + onion + broccoli
sesame oil + mushrooms + spinachgreen pepper + brown rice + celery + garlic + file
Bean sprouts + scallions + ginger powder + celerycrushed tomatoes + red pepper flakes + Tabasco
garlic powder + hoisin sauce + soy sauce + oyster sauceWorcestershire + chicken broth + cajun seasoning
Sparkling waterSparkling water

Camargue

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 Senior Accredited Psychotherapist London UK and ketobenefit7 who are now Following.

The Rhone River begins above Lake Geneva [Lac Leman] and flows southward through France to the Mediterranean. At its mouth it is transformed into a vast marshland called the Camargue. If you stopped at ‘marshland’ and thought of Shrek’s swamp, think again. The Camargue is acres of shimmering water, waving grasses, grazing cattle, ‘salt pans,’ mariculture, and rice meadows inhabited by wild white horses, black ‘fighting’ bulls, and hardy people. The Romans were here early on and they taught the people how to harvest salt from the shallows. Rice production grew after a Marshall Plan project to promote the grain in the Camargue. White rice was planted, but over time, the rice grains became red. No one knows why. But did you know that flamingoes are pink because they eat shrimp that eat certain algae? Flamingoes live in the Camargue, along with hundreds of other species of birds. And did you know that Mary Magdelane lived there, along with Sara the Black Madonna? So legend tells us. The Camargue is a magical place, so different from the glitzy tourist spots along the coast that it might be in a separate country. If you can’t visit there, then at least enjoy the food from the Camargue.

The menu for today includes the flavors of the Mediterranean coast and the products of the Camargue.

Olive-Pepper ScrOmelette:  144 calories 9 g fat 2 g fiber 10 g protein 5 g carbs [3 g Complex] 27.4 mg Calcium NB: Food values shown are for the ScrOmelette and fruit only, and do not include the optional beverages.  PB GF  I asked Dear Husband for a new omelette idea, and he suggested these flavors straight out of Provence.

1½ 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, crack three 2-oz eggs into a jar with a lid and put it in the ‘fridge for next week.  ½ oz bell pepper, steamed and diced 1 black olive, pitted and chopped  1/8 oz [by mass] goat cheese/chèvre, diced/crumbled 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]

Whisk the eggs [salt may not be needed due to saltiness of olives]. Pour into a pan which has been sprayed briefly with cooking spray. When the bottom of the eggs have set, add the vegetables and cheese. Fold over, and plate. Brew your optional beverage and take the optional previously-made smoothie from ‘fridge.

Camargue Bowl:  288 calories 4 g fat  10 g fiber 23.5 g protein 29 g carbs 98.5 mg Calcium  PB GF  This meal is all about the flavors and products of the central Mediterranean coast of France, the Rhone Delta: vegetables from sunny gardens, garbanzo beans [introduced by the Berbers], shrimp from the shallows, and Camargue rice from the salt marshes. HINT: This recipe serves 2 [two] and it is worth making the whole thing.

1 ½ cups Mediterranean Vegetables, without chickpeas  1 cup chickpeas 4.5 oz shrimp, shelled, tails removed, cut in ½” pieces if large ½ cup cooked red Camargue rice

Drain and rinse the chickpeas, if canned. Gently heat the Vegetables and chickpeas until warm. Place the shrimp on top. Cover the pan and heat further until the shrimp are cooked, about 6 minutes. Stir in the cooked rice and heat through. Heap the servings into bowls and love it.

Comparing Plans: Plant-Based Diet

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.

What is a Plant-Based Diet? Some say it is the healthiest way to eat. Close to the ground, low on the trophic scale, this way of eating does not mean that you become a vegan or vegetarian. One way to picture it is that any meal, as well as an average of meals for a week, features more plant products than animal products. When I look at a recipe to decide if I can code it “PB” [meaning plant-based], I consider the mass [‘weight’ to you non-science types] of the animal ingredients compared to the plant ingredients. If all the plants out-mass the meat/eggs/fish, then I’ll call it plant-based. You might wonder if you should include some of the new meat-substitutes for this diet. I’d say no: some of them are very high in fat. One way to get more plants into your diet is to challenge yourself to 30-Per-Week. To see how well this way of eating parallels the Fast Diet, view the chart. There are many PB meals in the Archives.

Is this food allowed on this diet…Plant-based On Fast Days
Fatty Animal protein: beef, lamb, porkNoYes
Lean Animal protein: chicken, turkey~2 sv/weekYes, preferred
Eggs Up to 3/ week Yes 
Beer, wine, cocktailsWine, maybeOn Slow Days
Grains, starches: rice, wheat products, pasta, cereal grains Yesin moderation
Nuts + seedsYes in moderation
Beans, legumes: peas, kidney beans, lentils, chickpeasYesYes 
Seafood protein, especially with Omega-3 fats~2 sv/weekYes 
Apples, melons, pears, all other fruitsYesYes 
BerriesYes Yes 
Leafy green vegetables: spinach, chard, kale, lettuceYesYes 
Dairy: Cheese, milk, yogurt A few times/weekSome 
Vegetable oils: olive, canolaIn moderationin moderation
Animal fat: butterNo in moderation
Root vegetables: beets, sweet potatoes, carrotsYesYes 
Other vegetables: onions, tomatoes, peppersYesYes 
Fat Not muchNo 
Protein plant-basedYes. lots 
Higher fiberYes Yes
Daily Carb intakeNot a factorKeep it low
Whole grains Yes Yes
Simple carbs: cookies, pastries, cake, bread, processed foodsNONot on Fast Day
Number of days per week to follow the regimin 7 of 72 of 7
Do calories matter?No Only 600 on Fast Days

Our plant-based breakfast has only 1.5 eggs [that’s 2.7 oz — well within the limit] and as much vegetables and fruit as egg. The dinner has a ‘garnish’ of meat and many-times-more vegetables and rice. Both recipes are a good introduction to a diet of less meat and more vegetables.

Basquaise Sauce ScrOmelette: 153 calories 8.4 g fat 1.5 g fiber 10 g protein 8 g carbs [7 g Complex] 50 mg Calcium  NB: Food values shown are for the ScrOmelette and fruit only, and do not include the optional beveragesPB GF  Basquaise Sauce takes eggs to a new level and it is so easy to use if you already have a batch in the refrigerator or freezer.

1½ 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.   2 rounded Tablespoons Basquaise Sauce  1 oz pear OR ¼ cup blueberries  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]

Heat a non-stick saute pan which has been spritzed with non-stick spray. Whisk the eggs with salt and pepper to taste and 1 Tbsp of the Basquaise Sauce. Pour into the pan. As the eggs just begin to set, spread remaining Basquaise Sauce over the egg. Leave the omelette flat or fold and continue cooking to your liking. Plate with the fruit and serve the beverage of your choice. Have a spicy day.

Tandoori Chicken and Vegetables: 265 calories 5 g fat 9 g fiber 20 g protein 32.6 g carbs 99.5 mg Calcium PB GF  TIP: You can buy jars of tandoori sauce in most supermarkets. Be sure it does not contain corn syrup or sweeteners. Aim for 70-80 calories/quarter cup

2 oz chicken, cooked or raw ½ cup eggplant, cubed 2 oz broccoli florets 2 oz bell peppers, cut in chunks 2 oz zucchini, sliced or cubed  2 oz carrots, sliced ¼” thick or use ‘baby carrots’ cut in quarters ¼ cup brown rice, cooked ¼ c tandoori sauce, store-bought 2 Tbsp plain, non-fat yogurt

Cook the vegetables together in a little water until they are tender. Add the chicken and the sauce. Warm it all. If the chicken is raw, be sure to cook it through. Either stir the yogurt into the sauce or serve it atop the meal. Plate the brown rice [warm it if cold] and serve the chicken and vegetables on top. Perfect for eating on a hot night or a cold one.

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

1.5 two-oz eggs70-calorie whole-grain bread 
bell pepper + black olivessmoked salmon + whipped cream cheese
goat cheese/chèvre cucumber or Swedish Cucumber Salad
strawberriesstrawberries
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

Mediterranean Vegetables https://wordpress.com/post/fastingme.com/10035 cold roast beef + pickled beets
garbanzo beans/chickpeascornichons or dill pickles
shrimpDijon mustard
Camargue red ricesourdough rye bread
Sparkling waterSparkling water

Hometown Heroine: Queenstown

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 healthtofitness and thinrr who are now Following.

Laura Ingersoll was born on September 13, 1775 in Great Barrington, Massachusetts. Her father was a patriot who fought for the American cause in the Revolution against Britain. Who is this woman and why do these mundane facts matter? The Ingersoll family moved to the Niagra Peninsula of Ontario, where Laura married a Canadian named Peter Secord. The marriage caused Laura to side with the Canadians = British when the War of 1812 started, especially since her husband was wounded fighting the Americans at the Battle of Queenstown. “Who is this woman???” you demand. After losing at Queenstown, the Americans still tried to occupy Canadian lands along their border. [Remember: the US was not fighting Canada. Attacking Canada was a proxy for Britain.] Somehow, on June 21, 1813, Laura heard Americans planning to attack an English stronghold at a town called Beaver Dams. Thinking to warn Lt. James FitzGibbon of the plans, she set out to walk to his fort. According to her account, Laura walked through trackless forest, fording four rivers before arriving at the British fort after dawn — or was it after dark?. During her “20 mile walk” she had evaded sentries and been ‘abducted’ by First Nations scouts who escorted her the last part of the way. She told of the impending attack. Two days later, American troops were ambushed on the road and defeated by First Nations fighters and English soldiers. Laura Secord had saved the day! At least that’s what the history books say.** FitzGibbon never mentioned her in his dispatches. Multiple times, Laura, her husband, and her son petitioned the Province for a pension to reward her deed. No go. After the war was over, when either neither side won or they both just stopped fighting, Secord was held up as a hero and her story was embellished with many folksy touches. [My Canadian friends contend that Canada defeated the US in the War! Umm. No.] At long last, during a State Visit in 1860, Edward, Prince of Wales, heard about Laura and he sent her 100 Pounds Stirling [$255 USD/$325 CAD as reward. 100 years after her walk, a chocolatier in Toronto began selling his wares under the name “Laura Secord.” There’s fame for you. **I am not denying that Laura Secord made a difficult trek for the purpose of warning the British. The real story is so different from the myth-making of later writers that it is risible. The Parson Weems Effect took her story and ran with it. We know how she got to the fort on June 22, but I want to know how she returned home….

Laura Ingersoll Secord was born in English-held North America, and aided the English in 1813, so we will have a very English breakfast. Our dinner includes Canadian ingredients and was designed for a Canadian friend.

Toad in the Hole: 157 calories 1.4 g fat 2 g fiber 9 g protein 50 g carbs [8.5 g Complex] 28 mg Calcium  NB: Food values given are for the plated foods only, and do not include the optional beverage. This whimsically-named meal is of old English origin – shades of Kenneth Graham and Beatrix Potter. It begins with a Yorkshire Pudding batter which you need to prepare in advance. The Yorkshire Pudd recipe is from the King Arthur Flour 200th Anniversary CookbookHINT: make the batter the night before to save time in the morning.

Y. Pudd batter: one 2-oz egg ½ cup white whole wheat flour ½ tsp salt ½ cup fat-free milk Mix all the ingredients together and let the batter stand at room temp for 30-60 minutes or in ‘fridge overnight. You will need ¼ cup of the batter per person. HINT: The remainder can be frozen in 1 cup or ¼ cup batches for future meals. When it is time to use the batter, beat it with a rotary beater until it is frothy.

To prepare the breakfast: 1 chicken breakfast sausage [@ 50 cal/link] ¼ cup Yorkshire Pudding batter, well beaten [prepare the batter the night before and refrigerate] 2 oz pear or apple  Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 caloriesOptional: 5 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie  [88 calories]

Heat the oven/toaster oven to 425F. Cook the sausage, using a bit of water in the bottom of the pan since the sausage will render no fat. Pour out any remaining water from cooking the sausage. Spritz 5 holes of a mini-muffin pan with non-stick spray. Dice the sausage or slice into 20 pieces, and put four bits of sausage in each muffin hole. Beat the batter until it is foamy, adding crumbled sage. Pour the batter into the pan over the sausage bits. Pop the pan into the oven for 15 minutes. Slice the fruit, prepare optional beverage, and settle down to a quickly-prepared, fun-to-eat meal.

Lillian’s Dinner: 300 calories 4 g fat 9 g fiber 34 g protein 33 g carbs 94 mg Calcium   PB GF  Here is a meal that I designed for Canadian Friend Lillian P. P. when she flirted with the idea of Fasting. The vegetables would be from her garden, of course. A very simple meal with lots of food. TIP: You could cut the cod down to 4 ounces and the garbanzoes to 1/3 cup if you lack a large appetite.

5 oz cod fillet 2 oz beets, sliced or diced 2 oz carrots, cut as coins 2/3 cup garbanzoes

Bake the cod for 10 minutes at 400F OR pan-fry it on a cast iron skillet for 4 minutes per side. Cook the beets and carrots separately by boiling. Serve the garbanzoes warm or at room temperature.

Slow Days: Chow

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 https://thefastdiet.co.uk/forums/ 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.

The word ‘chow’ has many meanings. The Chow is a medium-sized dog with a curled-up tail. It is a slang word for food. As a verb, followed by the word ‘down’, it means ‘to eat.’ Then there is chow as a relish… In Pennsylvania Dutch areas, chow is a combination of pickled, chopped garden vegetables — cauliflower, onion, carrot — served as a sweet condiment. In the American South, cabbage takes center stage, with unripe tomatoes and red sweet and hot peppers as co-stars. It is served on hot dogs and with black-eyed peas. In Prince Edward Island, we met our favorite: Maritime Chow, aka ‘Acadian ketchup’. We were dining with friends at a small oyster house on the dock at Malpecque Bay. After a dozen oysters, we ordered fishcakes. We asked the young man who brought the food [former oyster-shucking champion] the name of the delicious relish. “Its Chow,” he replied, a bit confused. What is it made of, we asked. “Well…you know…its Chow,” he attempted, “My grandmother makes it.” So I asked my local PEI friends for a chow recipe. Lillian P. shivered and said, “Ugh. Chow. I never make it.” Cathy K. had no recipe. Nona McL. kindly wrote out her recipe for Chow, which in the Maritimes is always made with unripe tomatoes. This is Nona’s recipe.

20 cups sliced green tomatoes 5 cups sliced onions
½ cup pickling salt
DAY 1 Combine and leave overnight
6 cups sugar
2 cups cider vinegar
1 cup water
2 cups white vinegar
pickling spice in a bag
DAY 2 Drain tomatoes + onions and put into a large pot. Add these ingredients to the pot. Simmer 1 hour. Take a little liquid from the pot
¼ cup cornstarch
1½ tsp turmeric
1½ tsp dry mustard
Mix these ingredients with the reserved liquid from the pot. Then add to the pot and cook together for ½ hour.
Put into sterilized 1-pint or ½-pint canning jars and process in boiling water bath for 10 minutes. Makes 9 pints.

Since I had some half-ripe tomatoes, I was eager to get started. By Day 2, I realized that I had neither turmeric nor dry mustard in the pantry. Time to substitute: yellow Indian curry for turmeric and Dijon mustard for the dry mustard. I was pleased with the result and served it at a luncheon, attended by all the afore-mentioned ladies. Lillian tasted it and asked what it was. “Its Chow!” I crowed, “Made with Nona’s recipe.” When Nona tried it, she exclaimed, “That’s not my Chow — you have changed my recipe!” I acknowledged that I had made substitutions… Both of those worthy matrons agreed that “it isn’t Chow, but it is good.” Now I make a batch every year. This is my recipe.

4 cups sliced tomatoes = 1 L.  chose under-ripe ones with some red areas but mostly green
1 cup sliced onions
1.5 Tbsp pickling salt
DAY 1 Combine in a medium-sized bowl and leave on the counter overnight. 
Some red on the tomatoes, but mostly green.
300 ml sugar = 1¼ cup
100 ml cider vinegar = 3.75 fl oz
50 ml water = 1.75 fl oz 
100 ml white vinegar = 3.75 fl oz
1 Tbsp pickling spice  [no mustard seed] in a bag
DAY 2 Drain tomatoes + onions and put into a large pot. Add these ingredients to the pot and simmer one hour.
15 ml cornstarch = 1 Tbsp
½ tsp Dijon mustard, en lieu of mustard seed
3/8 tsp CGE curry
Take a little liquid from the pot and add these 3 ingredients. Stir together until smooth. Add back into the pot, stir, then simmer for ½ hour.
Makes 5 half-cup jars
Process in boiling water 10 minutes

We always serve Chow with Fish Cakes. For this meal, they are made the Maritime way: using Salt Cod instead of fresh fish. I also have a recipe for fish cakes made from fresh fish, from the Legal Seafood Cookbook.

The lovely, savory-sweet, rosy-hued Chow is in the center. Pickled beets are our favorite side dish for Fish Cakes.

As the summer garden winds down and you wonder what to do with all those half-ripe tomatoes, Chow is the answer. Chow down.

Anne de Bretagne

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.

Brittany/Bretagne has long been a land apart. In the Neolithic, people constructed menhirs and the remarkable field of Standing Stones at Carnac. Once, it was called Armorica — a name that shows up in the North-Central coast being called “Cotes d’Armor.” Despite the 56 BCE Roman invasion, the native people still clung to their local language. Next came Celtic people from England, displaced by the incoming Angles and Saxons from Germany. This solidified the affinity between the Bretons and their neighbors across the English Channel in Cornwall — some place-names and the languages are similar. The Frankish Empire rolled over the land, creating the early nation of France, but as the centuries turned, Bretons had their own government, language, coinage, and were exempted from the onerous Salt Tax because they harvested that precious commodity near Guerande. Perhaps this is why the Bretons prefer their butter to be salted. Brittany was a [mostly] independent Duchy from the 900s, governed by an hereditary nobility. Until 1514. The only heir to Duke Francois II was his daughter Anne de Bretagne. She had been engaged many times, but now the duchy was in the hands of a 14-year-old girl, making her a pawn in the game of thrones. The prior King of France had declared during negotiations with her father that the French king should have a say in whom Anne married. So King Charles VIII married her himself in 1491, when she was 15 and he was 20. They were happy together, but had no surviving children at the time of his death in 1498. Anne, age 22, returned to Brittany as Duchess, but of course she had to marry again. The next king of France was her cousin-in-law, Louis XII, which made Anne Queen of France for the second time. Their’s was also a happy union, producing two daughters. Anne was an accomplished administrator, patroness of the arts, and an avid reader. She scribed and read official documents to her unlettered husbands. Had she lived past the complication of her last childbirth in 1514, who knows what mark she would have made in history. Upon her death, her daughter Claude married the future king, Francois I, forever joining Brittany to the nation of France.

Every Breton will tell you that the ‘crepe’ began in Brittany — a fact hotly disputed in Normandy. In Brittany itself, there is discord about the name: in the North and West of the region, they are called ‘galettes,’ while everywhere else they are ‘crepes.’ I use galette to designate the savory ones made of buckwheat, whereas I call the sweet dessert ones ‘crepes.’ Both our breakfast and our dinner today involve galettes. Not at all difficult to prepare at home.

Egg-Mushroom Galette/Crepe: 153 calories 6 g fat 2 g fiber 9 g protein 17 g carbs [11.3 g Complex] 39 mg Calcium NB: The food values given above are for the egg crepe and fruit only, not the optional beverages.  PB  This is yummy and very filling. The eggs are creamy, the mushrooms are earthy, and the crepe is nutty. 

1 galette/savory crepe   one 2-oz egg  1 oz mushrooms, chopped  1 Tbsp chives, chopped 1 tsp thyme generous dash of granulated garlic 1 oz raspberry OR strawberry  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]

Warm the crepe. Spritz the non-stick saute pan with oil or spray and gently cook the mushrooms. Put the chives, thyme, garlic, salt, and pepper in with the egg and beat it up. Scramble lightly with the mushrooms, keeping the eggs moist. Turn eggs out on the crepe and fold the galette over the egg. Plate the fruit. Sip your beverages and have a very fine day.

Leek & Bacon Galettes: 260 calories 5.5 g fat 4.6 g fiber 10 g protein 37 g carbs 114 mg Calcium   PB  Joanne Harris writes in her French Market cookbook about buying these at a market stall in France. Now you can make them at home.  NB: It is easier/quicker if you prepare the galettes/crepes in advance.

This is really yummy!

2 buckwheat galettes/crepes   ½ cup Leek & Bacon Filling ** 2 oz fresh tomato, diced and seasoned with basil or thyme + salt

**Leek & Bacon Filling:  Makes 1½ cups  Excellent in galettes and mixed with eggs. 2 oz American streaky bacon, uncured 3 cups leeks, cleaned and sliced cross-ways 1 clove garlic, chopped ¼ c Gruyere 2 tsp mayonnaise Saute the bacon until it is almost crisp. Remove from the pan, blot, and slice cross-ways. Saute the leek and garlic in the pan with the bacon fat until the leeks are limp. Take off heat and immediately stir in the cheese and mayonnaise. Ready to use

Gently warm the galettes and place them on a baking sheet. Warm the Leek&Bacon filling and divide it between the crepes, spreading it on one half of each. Fold the crepes in half, then in half again, placing them on the baking sheet so that the filled part is upper-most [this prevents unfolding in the oven]. Cut and season the tomato. Warm the galettes/crepes thoroughly in the oven. Delicious!

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

1 two-oz egg1.5 two-oz eggs 
pear OR appleBasquaise Sauce
Yorkshire Pudding batterblueberries
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

5 oz cod filletchicken breast meat + zucchini + eggplant
fresh beetsbroccoli + bell peppers + carrots
carrotplain yogurt + brown rice
garbanzo beans tandoori sauce, purchased: 1/2 cup = 140 calories
Sparkling waterSparkling water

The Canaries

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 Breaking habits support who is now Following.

The Canary Islands lie off the NW shoulder of Africa, 71 miles out to sea. They were first settled in pre-history by unknown people, perhaps fisherman blown off course. The Romans, venturing beyond the Pillars of Hercules, arrived in the 1st century CE and found ruins built by previous settlers. They also found lots of ‘dogs of great size.’ Pliny said that the islands were thus named “Island of Dogs,” or “Canariae Insulae.” Berbers from Morocco called on the islands in 999 CE, but departed. When the Spaniards came in the 1400s, they found a native population living a stone-age life. Eventually the eight islands became the last port of call for Spanish ships headed across the Atlantic or down the coast of Africa. Columbus stopped there on September 6 before sailing West to ‘the Indies.’ Spanish sailors took as pets the little yellow birds that lived on the islands, calling them “canaries.” Back in Europe, the Canary Birds were bred for color and singing ability, and they became the status pet of the rich and famous. In the 1800s, the birds were a fad pet for the masses. Around 1913, John Scott Haldane proposed that small mammals or birds could detect deadly Carbon Monoxide gasses in the air of coal mines. The small animals would sicken or die when the air quality was degraded by undetectable toxic gasses, hence the ‘canary in the coal mine’ as an early-warning system. Today the islands are an autonomous region of Spain. Although the indigenous Guanche language is extinct, Silbo Gomero, a whistled communication method of the Island La Gomera, is being taught in some schools.

The Romans would have recognized the ingredients of our breakfast, and the dinner reflects the tastes of Morocco.

Roman Breakfast: 149 calories 3 g fat 3 g fiber 9 g protein 28 g carbs [21 g Complex Carbs] 35 mg Calcium  NB: Food values given are for the plated foods only, and do not include the optional beveragePB  Though my Roman Breakfast is not the morning meal, this is a very good plate of breakfast food. It is based on ingredients available to Romans in the 1st century BCE. The meal is satisfying and flavorful. Try it.

1 Pan Muffin** OR 0.75 oz whole wheat bread 1 oz pear 1 oz cooked chicken 1 oz radish 1 oz cucumber [optional: ½ medjool date = ¼ oz]   Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories]   Optional: 5 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie [88 calories]

Dice all the fruits and vegetables. Add a good finishing salt and gently stir to combine.  HINT: I did this the night before and refrigerated the mixture. Prepare the pan muffin or take from freezer with time to thaw/heat. In the time it takes to brew the coffee, you can plate the muffin and the fruit-veg mixture. Romans did not drink smoothies or coffee, but we will. Hope you’ll enjoy your throw-back breakfast.

**PAN MUFFIN each: 71 calories 2.5 g fat 1 g fiber 2 g protein 11 g carbs 8.5 mg Calcium 1 cup Bob’s Red Mill 10-grain hot cereal mix  1 and 1/4 cup buttermilk [combine cereal + milk and let sit while preparing other ingredients. 1/3 cup butter 1/3 cup sugar 1 cup unbleached flour 1 tsp salt 1 tsp baking powder 1 tsp baking soda Cream the butter and sugar; mix in the egg. Add the dry ingredients and the cereal/milk mixture. Stir until just combined. Use 2 Tbsp batter for each griddlecake/pan muffin.  [use 4 Tbsp batter to bake in a muffin tin for Slow Days]

Moroccan Tuna: 278 calories 1.4 g fat 7 g fiber 34 g protein 20.4 g carbs  129 mg Calcium  PB GF  Moroccan spice blend can really add zest to a simple meal. 

4 oz tuna steak [frozen tuna steaks at the supermarket are good]  Moroccan spice blend  or ground cumin or mint 1/3 cup white beans, rinsed and drained   1 slice preserved lemon OR 1 slice fresh lemon per person: 1/3 cup peas with mint OR ½ cup broccoli florets sprinkled with cumin OR 1/3 cup green beans sprinkled with cilantro AND  ½ of a clementine

Rub tuna generously on both sides with Moroccan spices. Chop the lemon and stir into the beans. Bake the tuna on a cast iron skillet for 4-5 minutes per side in a 400F oven. When the vegetable is cooked, drain and stir in the seasoning. Section the clementine and plate it all as pleases your eye.

Tomatoes

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.

80,000 years ago, there was a wild plant in Ecuador, Solanum pimpinellifolium, which produced red fruits the size of a cherry. Seeds spread by animals/people traveled south and north, to Peru and Mesoamerica. By 7,000 years BP [Before Present as geologists say], there was a larger tomato being cultivated in Mexico, where they entered the local cuisine. Post Conquest, the Spanish took tomatoes and other local food plants back to Spain. Not so fast! European botanists recognized them to be members of the Nightshade Family, which they equated with poison. Not only were people leery of tomatoes, there was even the legend that tomatoes were the ‘Forbidden Fruit’ of the Garden of Eden, and you sure don’t want to eat that! By the mid 1500s, tomatoes were being grown as a curiosity in Italy and in 1694, the tomato had arrived as a recipe in a cookbook. In September of 1820, a local promoter of good agriculture, Col. Robert Gibbon Johnson, let it be known that he would eat tomatoes, Solanum lycopersicum, from his garden in Salem County, New Jersey, USA. A throng of locals showed up to watch him sicken and keel over in agony. He didn’t die, of course, and people accepted the tomato as a new addition to their cooking. Is there a cuisine between Latitude 45N and 45S that does not use tomatoes? I think not. Although some people associate nightshades with arthritis, the tomato is GOOD for you — high in Vitamin C, Potassium, and the antioxidant lycopene. The United States is the largest producer of tomatoes in the world and ‘Better Boy’ is one of the most popular in home gardens, while other gardeners opt for heirloom varieties.

It was not difficult to choose today’s meals. These tomato dishes are so good to eat that I do hope you will try them. Whenever tomatoes are ripe in your area, eat some fresh.

Tomato-Curry ScrOmelette: 148 calories 8 g fat 3 g fiber 11 g protein 9.5 g carbs [8 g Complex] 78 mg Calcium  NB: Food values shown are for the ScrOmelette and fruit only, and do not include the optional beveragesPB GF  This delicious recipe was loosely inspired by Fifty Breakfasts, a book by Col. A. R. Kenney-Herbert, detailing “dishes men like” and containing many flavors redolent of his years serving the Queen in India.

1½ 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. ½ Tbsp curry powder 2 oz fresh tomatoes, diced and drained 1½ oz strawberries dollop of plain, fat-free yogurt  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]

Drain the tomatoes so that they are not too juicy. Combine with the curry powder and whisk with the eggs. Spritz a fry pan with olive oil or non-stick spray and pour in the egg mixture. Cook to your liking. Top with a dollop of yogurt for the full effect. Prepare the beverages and plate the fruit. A rousing good start to your day.

Tomato Soup w/ Sandwich 289 calories 5 g fat 5.6 g fiber 16 g protein 30 g carbs 210 mg Calcium  PB GF  Comfort food can also be low in calories. The soup recipe is from Fresh Ways with Soups and Stews, published by Time-Life Books. HINT: the soup is enough for 3 servings, so it is worth the time to make enough to freeze for later, rather than making a single serving.

Cook Soup: 1 tsp olive oil 2½ cups onions, chopped 1 cup carrot, thinly sliced 1 tsp fresh thyme or ¼ tsp dried thyme 3 cloves garlic, chopped black pepper 28-oz can whole tomatoes, coarsly chopped with juices 1¼ cup unsalted chicken or vegetable stock ¼ tsp salt

Heat the oil and 2 Tbsp water in a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat. Cook the onion, carrot, thyme, garlic, and pepper for 7-10 minutes or until onions are translucent, adding more water if needed. Add the tomatoes their juice, stock, and salt. Reduce heat and simmer 30 minutes. [more directions later]

Prep Sandwich: 1 slice 70-calorie bread [such as Nature’s Own] ½-oz slice Swiss cheese from the deli ½ oz ham, 97% fat free

Cut the bread in half. Cut the cheese in pieces the size of the bread halves. Construct a sandwich of bread, ham, cheese, bread. Save out one bread-sized piece of cheese. Wrap the sandwich in foil and put in the toaster oven at 350F until cheese is beginning to melt on the inside. Unwrap the sandwich and put the cheese on top. Toast the sandwich so that the top cheese becomes melted and might start to brown.

Finish Soup: 1 tsp ricotta or small-curd cottage cheese 1 tsp plain non-fat yogurt Puree the cooked soup in food processor or blender. TIP: Pour 2 cups [2/3 of the amount] into freezer containers to cool before storing. Put the remaining soup in the serving bowl. Stir the cheese and yogurt together and dollop it in the middle of the hot soup. Use the tip of a knife to pull the mixture out from the middle in several radiating arms. A few grapes add a dash of color.

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

1 two-oz egg1 two-oz egg + mushrooms 
chives + thyme
1 buckwheat galette [savory crepe]
strawberry OR apple
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

4 oz tuna steak + Moroccan spice blend2 buckwheat galettes/savory crepes
white beans, canned leeks + bacon + garlic
preserved lemon OR fresh lemonGruyere cheese + mayonnaise
peas OR broccoli OR green beanscarrot + broccoli + cauliflower OR tomatoes
Sparkling waterSparkling water

Slow Days: Making Peach Wine, DIY Day 2

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 https://thefastdiet.co.uk/forums/ 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.

On a Fast Day, the empty calories of wine are not a good choice. But wine in moderation on a Slow Day is alright. We are making Peach Wine in this blog, continuing from two previous blogs on the topic. THIS IS THE 3RD POST IN THIS SERIES.

DAY 2: Combine all the ingredients and pour into the glass fermentation vessels.

Starter bottle from previous blogThe bottle contents should be bubbly on the top. If not, gently shake it to see if bubbles rise to the top. This tells you that the yeast is activated.
Camden Solution from previous blog large bowl/colanderSterilize a large bowl and a colander with Camden Solution. Pour excess Solution back into its jar.
Mashed peaches in waterStrain the peaches through the colander into the bowl, saving the juice. 
This peach mush can be used to make jam or mix it with maple syrup to spoon onto waffles. Yum.
2 quarts boiling water 2 ¼ pounds granulated sugar
Bring the water to a boil. Put the sugar into the bucket or bowl that had the peaches last night. Pour the water over the sugar to dissolve it. You may need to stir it with a sterilized spoon to ensure that all the sugar goes into solution. Put the lid on it and let it cool for 1 hour. The liquid ought not to cool to room temperature. 

reseved peach juice
½ tsp pectic Enzyme   1 tsp Citric Acid ½ tsp Grape Tannin
Add the peach juice to the sugar – water mixture when it has cooled a little. Then stir in these additives.  They are necessary to balance the flavors of the fruit and the sugar.
Hydrometer hydrometer jar Camden solutionSterilize the hydrometer jar and the hydrometer.
Pour excess Camden Solution back into its jar. 
Pour some of the peach juice+water+sugar into the hydrometer jar to within 1½” of the top. Put the hydrometer into the liquid and give it a little spin to rid it of any bubbles. Read the scale labled Specific Gravity [S.G.] and the scale labled Potential of Alchohol [P.A.] and write down those values in your notes. Pour the ‘wine’ from the hydrometer jar back into the bucket. The P.A. should read around 12%. If it is lower, add more sugar. If it is higher, add some boiled water. Then take another reading.
Starter Bottle The liquid in the bucket should by now be just a little warm. Pour the contents of the Starter Bottle into it and stir to mix. Cover the bucket and let it sit for 15-30 minutes, until the mixture is bubbling and frothing. You should see and hear it!
Fermentation is well under way. See the big bubbles?
1-gallon glass jug 750-ml glass wine bottle funnel 2 air-locks with 1-hole corks
Camden Solution
With the Camden Solution, sterilize the jug, the bottle, the funnel, the corks. Pour the excess Solution back into its jar. Using the funnel, pour the fermenting peach juice into the jug, filling it almost up to the neck. What remains in the bucket goes into the glass wine bottle. Fit the air-locks into the corks and snug the corks into the tops of the glass vessels. Pour Camden Solution into the air-locks, up to the half-way point. 
Now lable the bottles with a little tag to remind yourself: the type of wine; what day you began to ferment the wine; and the value of the P.A. Put the bottles into a dark, sorta cool place where they won’t be disturbed.
Here is our ‘proto-wine’ all ready to sit quietly and work for a while.

At this point, the wine looks very unappetizing — sludge-colored, cloudy, and that icky foam on top. Fear not: as the days progress, the wine will clear, the color will improve, and all the sludge will go to the bottom.

Here it is, labeled as directed, after a few days. Notice the solids, called lees, settling to the bottom. Notice that the foam has died down and that the color is improving.

All you have to do now is to clean up the kitchen and wait 3 [three] months for the next step. THE NEXT STEP IN THE PROCESS WILL BE IN 3 MONTHS. HOPE TO SEE YOU THEN.