Going South

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 amyrichards who is now Following.

“Going South” has several connotations. In a business sense, it means a downward trend in sales or income. To First Nations people of far North America, going South means that something is going wrong, like the food stores going bad. As the Treebeard character muses in the Two Towers movie: “I always like going South: somehow it seems like going downhill.” In modern times, residents of Canada and the Northern US are called ‘snow birds’ because of their going South for the winter.

Today’s foods check off two of the meanings of Going South. We are ‘going South’ for a breakfast of Hoe Cakes which was a popular food item there among all classes of people. The dinner is useful if you have a bin of vegetable about to ‘go South,’ which you can turn into a fine meal. If your attempts at dieting have been going South, try the Fast Diet. It works for us.

Hoe Cakes with Fruit & Yogurt:  173 calories 1.7 g fat 4 g fiber 13 g protein 36 g carbs 75 mg Calcium  PB GF  Here the old Southern meal of cornmeal cakes is updated with healthy fruit and yogurt. HINT: The recipe yields 6 hoe cakes, which is enough for two servings of 3 cakes each.

3 Tbsp yellow cornmeal  2.5 Tbsp hot water  Combine by stirring well to make a mush. Let sit for 15 minutes.
1 oz egg white ¼ tsp yeastStir into the warm cornmeal mush and let sit for 1-12 hours. TIP: I did this the night before.
2 Tbsp cornmeal 2 Tbsp water ¼ tsp saltMix into the mush. If you take some up on a fork, it will sit on the tines, with a little batter dribbling through. If it is not like this, add more cornmeal or more water.
Using a little less than 2 Tbsp of batter, drop onto a hot griddle sprayed with non-stick spray. Make 6 cakes. Cook on both sides. Best if eaten fresh.
per serving: 1/4 cup blueberries 1/2 tsp honey, warmed 4 oz [1/4 c] plain, fat-free yogurt
2 slices Canadian Bacon
Put the yogurt and honey in a small dish and stir to combine. Add the fruit and stir it in.
Warm the Canadian bacon on the same griddle used to cook the cakes.
Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or tea or lemon in hot water or mocha cafe au lait [65] Serve with the bacon. Enjoy the dish of berried yogurt on the side or slathered on the hoe cakes.

Fajitas with Chicken + Vegetables:  286 calories 5 g fat 3.9 g fiber 24 g protein 35 g carbs [ g Complex] 183 mg calcium  PB  A quick, delicious, and a good way to use vegetables. HINT: This recipe serves 2 [two] people.

1 tsp oil + 3 tsp water 6 oz chicken breast 2 cups veg, including: >3 oz sweet pepper + 4 oz zucchini >1 oz red onion + 1.25 oz broccoli 1 tsp chili powder + sprinkle AdoboCut the meat into strips. Cut the vegetables into strips or other edible sizes. Heat oil in wok, stir-fry meat, veg, and seasonings for ~ 7 minutes or until cooked and vegetables begin to brown
four 5” corn tortillasWrap in damp kitchen towel. Nuke 30-45 seconds. -OR- Warm on a griddle or in a dry skillet until pliable and starting to brown.
1 Tbsp plain nonfat yogurt per tortilla Divide the meat/veg among the tortillas and top with yogurt.
1 lime ¼ c cilantro leavesServe as garnish

Fasting for Lent

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.

We are now five weeks into Lent, the Christian church’s period of fasting and reflection. Why is it called ‘lent’? The word is from Old English ‘lencten’ which references the season of Spring. Why is one to fast during Lent? The 40 days are a remembrance of Jesus’ 40-day sojourn in the desert before he began his ministry. During that time he fasted and pondered his life ahead. What should that Lenten fasting entail? After the Council of Nicea in 325 CE, fasting was a serious thing: one meal per day, in the evening, with no meat, fish, eggs, or butter on the table. Today there are still those who do not eat eggs or meat during Lent, especially on Friday. Members of Protestant sects ‘give up’ favorite foods [chocolate; liquor] during Lent or forgo behaviors that they wish to change [smoking; over-eating]. As with any change in behavior, when the trial period is over, does one resume the behavior? 5:2 Fasting should become a lifestyle, not just something to do for a little while and then stop. Lent should make us think about permanent changes. This is a good time to start a Fasting Lifestyle.

The menus for tomorrow feature seafood, not meat. There are no eggs and no dairy. But that doesn’t stop them from being delicious.

Gravlax & Grannies:  126 calories 3.6 g fat 2.3 g fiber 11 g protein 13 g carbs [13 g Complex] 25.6 mg Calcium  NB: Food values given are for the plated foods only, and do not include the optional beveragePB GF  At the Inn at Saint Peters we enjoyed their Smoked Trout with Apples appetizer. It occurred to me that this could be a fine breakfast for those who enjoy a savory/seafood taste in the a.m. I substituted mackerel gravlax for the smoked trout, just because that was on hand, but it was a grey-brown instead of the lighter hue of the trout or the pink of a salmon. Suit yourself.

1 oz mackerel gravlax OR 1 oz smoked trout [DuckTrap brand is very good] 2 oz Granny Smith apple, thinly sliced; each slice cut into 1/2-moons ¼ c blueberries + 2 raspberries for color   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]

Slice the fish with the grain to create thin slices. Arrange the fish and apples in overlapping slices around the plate. HINT: I did this the night before, covered it with clingwrap and put it in the ‘fridge. So quick the next morning!! Brew your hot beverage, blend or shake your smoothie, dish out those healthy blueberries, and breakfast elegantly.

Shrimp with Lime + Cilantro 228 calories 4.7 g fat 1.3 g fiber 30 g protein 15 g carbs [7 g Complex] 90 mg Calcium   PB GF  These are such a popular combination of flavors that there are many recipes on line. This one is from Skinnytaste.com, cut down to a single-serving size and with a few additions.

5 oz raw shrimp, cleaned and halved if large. [I used tiny cold-water shrimp] ¼ tsp ground cumin 1 oz brown rice Maifun noodles 1/3 tsp olive oil + water 2-4 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed ½ of one lime 2 Tbsp or more chopped cilantro/coriander leaves 1 large [½ oz] lettuce leaf

Prepare your mise en place.  Put the shrimp in a bowl. If they thawed in the bowl, pour off the liquid and reserve it. Toss the shrimp with the cumin plus salt and pepper. Cook the noodles in 3 cups boiling water for 3 minutes. Drain, rinse, and reserve. Crush the garlic. Cut the lime in half and chop the cilantro/coriander leaves. Heat a non-stick saute or cast-iron pan. Add the oil and the drained shrimp. Let cook for 2 minutes, then turn over to the other side. Add some of the reserved water if needed to avoid sticking. Put the garlic and noodles in the pan and cook for one minute. Squeeze the juice from the lime over the pan, add the cilantro and stir well. Take off heat. Center the lettuce leaf on the plate and spoon the shrimp on top. Wonderful flavors!

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

1 two-oz egg1.5 two-oz eggs
apple + mustardhorseradish
bacon + sage + pearfresh parsley + beets
Ricotta + Parmesan cheesesapple sauce + cinnamon
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

rabbit meat + portobello mushroom salad greens + fresh parsley
ham + onion + chicken stockcelery + apple + walnuts
herb savory + carrot + thymehard-boiled egg + cooked lamb
Arnold-brand sandwich thinhorseradish dressing
Sparkling waterSparkling water

Mehmet II

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 ParisVitamin who is now Following.

On March 30, 1432, Mehmet, the second of that name, was born in Edirne, Turkey. His father was the Sultan Murad II, and Mehmet received an excellent education: literature, architecture, fine arts, military science, languages [7 of them!], philosophy, and science. At this time in Western Europe, culture was just emerging into the Renaissance. Mehmet went on to found the Ottoman Empire, conquering first Constantinople [now Istanbul] in 1453, which ended the Byzantine Empire. He next conquered the Greek city states, then the Anatolian peninsula, and the Balkan states. He ruled for 30 years and was known for his erudition and for religious tolerance. Mehmet was painted by the Italian Bellini, wearing a distinctive headdress [‘mücevveze”, a tall cylindrical headgear], which became popular with future Ottoman leaders. And, oddly enough, he is my ancestor! How is that possible for someone with French/English/German antecedents? Ah, that is a tale for a future blog about Mehmet’s Son.

In recognition of his Eastern Mediterranean origins, a plate of felafel seems appropriate for breakfast. And the dinner of stuffed cabbage is caught up in the story of a Swedish King captured by the Ottomans.

Felafel Plate:  219 calories 5 g fat 4.8 g fiber 16.3 g protein 30 g carbs [25.7 g Complex] 165 mg Calcium   NB: Food values given are for the main meal only, and do not include the optional beveragePB GF  A simple meal, yet full of nutrition and flavor.

4 felafel patties 4 oz canteloupe melon or pineapple, cubed in bite-sized pieces 3.5 oz fat-free Greek-style yogurt ½ tsp mint leaves  Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories] or lemon in hot water NO smoothie today

Warm the felafel patties or use at room temperature. Chop the mint leaves and combine with the yogurt. Prepare the beverage of choice and plate the food to please the eye.

Danish Stuffed Cabbage:  282 calories 5.7 g fat 5.7 g fiber 35 g protein 25 g carbs 125 mg Calcium   PB GF — if using GF bread   Craig Claiborne’s International Cookbook provided this recipe. Its history involves a Swedish king and the Ottoman Empire. Very royal origin for a common meal found everywhere cabbages are grown.

4 oz turkey meat, raw 2 oz pork meat, raw 2.5 oz veal, raw ½ cup fresh bread crumbs [from whole-grain 70-calorie bread] 2 oz milk 1 oz egg white sage + salt + pepper 4 whole cabbage leaves from a whole head 1/3 c pickled beets dab of mustard

Put the meats, sage, salt, and pepper in the food processor and mince. Spritz a saute pan with non-stick spray and cook the meat until it doesn’t look raw. Cool meat. Combine the bread and milk, stir, let sit until soggy. Add the egg white and meats and stir to combine well. Set aside. Put a head of cabbage in a pot with enough water to cover and bring to a simmer. When the outer layer begins to cook, remove the outer leaf. Return the cabbage to the pan of simmering water. Continue to remove the outer leaves as they cook, until you have 4. Return them to the poaching water and cook until very limp. [Put the rest of the cabbage away for something else.] Cut a ‘V’ at the base of each leaf to remove the thickest part of the leaf’s rib. Orient the leaf so the ‘V’ is away from you. Put ¼ cup filling on the leaf. Fold the near side over the filling, tuck in the sides, and continue to roll. Place seam-side down in an oven-proof dish large enough to hold all four rolls. Pour some of the water in which you poached the cabbage into the dish until it comes 1/2-way up the rolls. Put on a lid or foil and bake at 350 F. for 20 minutes or until heated. Plate with the pickled beets and a dab of mustard. Fit for an Ottoman Emperor.

You OK?

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 strawberryred who is now Following.

OK” [also spelled “Okay”] is a true Americanism which has spread around the world. There are several explanations of how the term came to be. Mostly, it boils down to meaning ‘all right’ or ‘all correct’ which was either intentionally or unintentionally misspelled as ‘orl kerrect.’ When Martin Van Buren ran for as second term as president in 1840, people called him ‘Old Kinderhook,‘ after the town in New York where he was born. “OK” became part of his campaign sloganing. On March 23, 1839, it appeared in print for the first time, in the Boston Morning Post. The term was introduced to the world during World War I, as American doughboys took the saying to Europe. Then it ‘went viral’.

But back to the title of this message — are YOU OK? My little part of the world has very few cases of the COVID-19 — so far. Our governor has declared a state of emergency. Our local school district is closed, as are the churches and libraries. Dear Husband and I are staying close to home and probably you are too. This is a good chance to practice your home cooking, since you won’t be frequenting restaurants. I am not being flippant. Cooking at home is one of the best ways to get some control over what and how much you eat, and thus control your weight. You might even find out that you enjoy it! Here are two of our favorite easy-to-prepare meals. Best wishes for your health.

Avocado-Lobster Bake: 145 calories 7 g fat 2.2 g fiber 11 g protein 10.3 g carbs [9.4 g Complex] 64 mg Calcium  NB: The food values shown are for the egg bake and the fruit, not for the optional beveragesPB GF  When I thought that avocado and ricotta would make a nice bake, Dear Husband had one suggestion: add lobster! Well why not?

1 two-oz egg ¼ oz avocado ¾ Tbsp ricotta 3/4 oz lobster meat OR crab 2 oz pear Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories] or lemon in hot water  Optional: 5-6 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie  [88 calories]

Set the toaster oven to 350 F. Spritz a ramekin or other oven-proof dish with cooking spray and put the lobster meat on the bottom. Mash the avocado with the ricotta, then whisk in the egg. Pour over the lobster, season as you wish. Bake for 12-15 minutes. Slice the fruit and prepare the optional beverages. Sumptuous.

Smorrebrot with Salmon:  257 calories 8 g fat 3.1 g fiber 14 g protein 28.6 g carbs [~15 g Complex] 48 mg Calcium   PB  A classic summer sandwich from Sweden: a delicious meal without heating the kitchen.

1 slice [1.5 oz] sourdough rye bread @ 110 calories [the bread should be dense, not fluffy] 1 Tbsp whipped cream cheese 2-4 large leaves of fresh spinach 1.5 oz thinly-sliced tomato, slice and salt about 30 minutes earlier 1 or 1.5 oz smoked salmon [you have some calorie wiggle-room] ½ hard-boiled egg, sliced 1-2 oz strawberry

Spread the bread with the cream cheese and lay the spinach leaves on top. Place the tomato slices atop that. For the next layer, put down the salmon, topped by the egg slices. Plate with the berries and enjoy a wonderful meal, whether or not it is a hot Summer night.

De la Tour

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.

Georges de la Tour was an artist of the Baroque period. In that school of art, there was drama! there was emotion! there was an intriguing play of light and dark. But de la Tour put his own stamp on art which is unmistakable. Born on March 19, 1593, he was the son of respected bakers in the Dutchy of Lorraine. After working in the studios of local artists, Georges set out on his own. That he married a member of the minor nobility speaks to his rise in status. It is not known how he came to know of the work of the Italian painter Carivaggio, but the connection is very clear. Unlike the influential Carivaggio and sculptors like Bernini, de la Tour traded the action and in your face emotion for a stillness and a deep meditative mood. He loved the contrast of deep shadows and light — most of his paintings are illuminated by a single candle. How masterfully he shows just as much as he needs to in that small amount of light! How much symbolism he conveys with that light as well. Take a look at Joseph the Carpenter to see what I mean, especially how the flame lights up the child Jesus. A true work of art!

Our breakfast is the eponymous food of de La Tour’s home region, but not as a quiche. The dinner shows a harmony of flavors, tinted in the dark tones which the artist favored.

Bake Lorraine: 180 calories 11 g fat 1.2 g fiber 12.7 g protein 7.6 g carbs [4.4 g Complex] 193 mg Calcium   NB: The food values shown are for the egg bake and the fruit, not for the optional beverages.  GF  You’ve heard of Quiche Lorraine? Well, here it is, as a crustless bake, with all the flavor intact. Very do-able for breakfast. Make sure your next meal has lots of fiber, as this meal has next to none.

1 two-oz egg ½ slice uncured bacon 3 Tbsp whole milk ½ oz Swiss cheese [Emmenthaler, Gruyere] pinch cayenne pepper + pinch nutmeg 2 oz strawberries   Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories] or lemon in hot water 

Dice the bacon and cook it until crispy. Drain and blot. Grate or finely chop the cheese. Spray an oven-proof dish with non-stick spray and put the cheese on the bottom. Whisk together the egg, milk, and seasonings. Pour over the cheese, then sprinkle the bacon on top.  HINT: I did all this the night before. Bake in a 350F oven for 17 minutes. Plate with the fruit. A creamy, delicious treat!

Beef & Beet Salad: 243 calories 8.5 g fat 3.2 g fiber 24 g protein 17 g carbs [10 g Complex] 24 mg Calcium  PB GF  This unusual salad was found in James Peterson’s Glorious French Food. Should you have left-over roast beef, this is the dish to try. It is crazy easy. Easy, too, to serve to a group.

2.75 oz thinly-sliced roasted beef 3.5 oz pickled beets, as thinly-sliced rounds a few spinach leaves, cut as chiffonade dill pickle spear 1.5 tsp dressing*** 

***Dressing [makes 6 Teaspoons] 2-1/4 tsp Dijon mustard 1 Tbsp chopped shallot 1-1/2 tsp red wine vinegar 4-1/2 tsp olive oil

Slice the beef and the beets as matchsticks about 2-3” long. Put beef, beets, and spinach in the serving bowl/plate and drizzle the dressing over the top. Gently toss to coat the salad with the dressing. Plate it. Wonderfully simple, yet complex in taste.

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

1 two-oz eggNext time I will discuss fables
lobster meat about fasting.
avocado + ricottaFind a new favorite breakfast
pear in the Archives.
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverage optional hot beverage

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

110-cal sourdough rye breadchicken breast
smoked salmon + spinachsatay sauce + peanut butter
whipped cream cheesecauliflower
tomato + hard-boiled eggcherry tomatoes
Sparkling waterSparkling water

Caroline Herschel

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 fenderf who is now Following.

You may have heard of Caroline Herschel’s famous brother, William who discovered the Planet Uranus. Or his famous son, John. Caroline was another story. Born on March 16, 1750, in Germany, she learned music along with her older brothers. But two diseases in her childhood ended her education, stunted her growth [she never topped 4’3″], and left her partially blind. Her mother was horrified to have a ‘cripple’ for a child and told her she was worse than worthless. The girl became more of a servant than a daughter. Small wonder that, after William was offered a post as composer/choir master at Octagon Chapel in Bath, England, he called for Caroline to be his housekeeper [I think to ‘rescue’ her] and she gladly accepted. William became interested in astronomy and the faithful Caroline, a self-described “well-trained puppy dog,” was his assistant. Soon, she knew as much about astronomy and telescopes as her brother. In 1782, she began recording her own notes about the sky and the following year she discovered two new nebulae. In 1786, Caroline began to discover comets, not as William’s assistant, but in her own right. Eventually, she wrote a new star catalogue, discovered 8 comets, 14 nebulae, and 2 star clusters. Not bad for a woman almost blind in one eye! Thus she made a name for herself in a man’s world: she was awarded a medal and a salary by George III of England, and a gold medal by the King of Prussia. And to think you never had heard of her.

Our meals today, like Caroline, begin in Germany and end in England. Both are delicious. [The meals, not the countries]

German Breakfast:  136 calories 2.8 g fat 4.4 g fiber 9 g protein 15 g carbs [5 g Complex] 104.4 mg Calcium Sturdy whole-grain bread, some curd cheese with chives and a slice of ham will get you going in the morning, just as it does for the inventive Germans.

1 slice 70-calorie whole-grain bread [we like Dave’s ‘Good Seed’] 2 Tbsp small-curd cottage cheese, reduced fat 1-2 Tbsp chopped chives [cheese + chives is similar to ‘quark‘ in Germany] ½ oz slice of 3%-fat ham from the deli, thinly-sliced 1 oz pear   Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [75 calories] or lemon in hot water Optional: 5 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie [88 calories]

The night before: chop the chives/scallion and mash into the cottage cheese to make the curd cheese more creamy. The next morning: toast the bread lightly and spread with the ‘quark-like’ cheese-chive mixture. Place the ham slice on top of the cheese and plate with the pear. Serve with hot beverages of your choice and have a “guten Morgen.”

Pheasant Casserole: 250 calories 9.5 g fat 5.4 g fiber 22.5 g protein 21.6 g carbs [19 Complex] 86 mg Calcium PB This recipe is based on one from English Provincial Cooking by Elisabeth Ayrton and it dates back to the 18th century. Whole partridges were stewed with onion, carrot, and cabbage for 2.5 hours and served on thick slices of bread. Well, this is a modified version and it is delicious. This uses left over cooked pheasant meat and works well.

2-1/2 oz cabbage, sliced 1-1.5” thick 1.5 oz baby carrots, cut in half lengthwise ¼ oz onion rings [which I forgot to put on the top] 2 Tbsp chicken or pheasant gravy 2 oz pheasant [or chicken] meat, cooked and taken off the bone ½ Arnold Multi-Grain Sandwich Thin

Prepare the carrots, cabbage, and onion and steam them for 25 minutes until the carrots are tender. If the cabbage is not yet done, leave it in the steamer with the lid on but off the heat until needed. Warm the pheasant in the gravy + 2 tsp of the water from the steaming liquid. Warm the Arnold Thin in the toaster oven. Plate the bread. Spoon a tablespoon of gravy on top. Place the meat atop the bread. Stir the warm vegetables into the warm gravy and plate them. Put the onion rings on top and pour any remaining gravy over the meat.

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.

Zucchini Haze

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 slimmingteas48 who is now Following.

Its that time again: end of Summer, when the zucchinis multiply like rabbits. You take a tour of the garden after breakfast and spy six dear little squashes, making note to harvest them before dinner. But by late afternoon, they have assumed the proportions of zeppelins and are suitable only for Zucchini Bread or to leave on your neighbors’ doorsteps under cover of darkness. Happily, there are many delicious recipes for this Meso-American squash with the Italian name. [BTW, ‘zucchini’ means ‘squash’ in Italian, so don’t be redundant by calling it ‘zucchini squash.’] We are having zucchini for breakfast and zucchini for dinner. Splendid.

Zucchini Nests for Egg: 122 calories 7 g fat 1.7 g fiber 8 g protein 7.6 g carbs [7 g Complex] 50.7 mg Calcium  NB: The food values given above are for the egg and nest only, not the optional beverages. PB GF Found this recipe online, then I changed it to fit our calorie restriction requirements. Note: the egg used for the photo is a pullet egg, which weighs in a 1.5 oz instead of the 2 oz eggs we usually use. If you can find them, pullet eggs can be useful as they give you the egg flavor but with reduced fat and calories. Pullets, as you know, are merely young hens which lay small eggs until they grow up enough to lay larger eggs. HINT: This recipe makes enough for 2 nests which serve 2 people. Hmmm, I’m not sure how that piece of toast got into the photo, but I’d ditch it and replace it with some fresh fruit!

1 tsp olive oil ¼ cup diced onion 2 tsp fresh sage or 1 tsp dried sage, chopped 1 clove garlic, minced or pressed large pinch hot pepper flakes or 1 jalepeno, chopped 1 c. zucchini, grated on the coarser holes of the box grater 2 tsp cider vinegar 1 oz roasted red pepper parsley, chopped salt and black pepper 2 eggs [2-oz or pullet]  Optional: blackish coffee or frothy mocha cafe au lait  or blackish tea Optional: 5-6 oz berry-yogurt [88 calories] smoothie or green smoothie 

In a non-stick pan, spritz lightly with olive oil or add 1 tsp. Cook the onions until lightly browned, 4-6 minutes. Add the sage, garlic, and hot pepper and stir for 30 seconds. Add vinegar, zucchini, some black pepper, and ¾ tsp salt. Cover and cook about 6 minutes longer. Add roasted pepper and parsley. Cook 6 minutes longer ‘until zucchini is light brown.’ Mine never looked light brown, but it looked done to me! HINT: Do this part the night before to save time in the morning. 

Next morning: Divide cooked vegetables into two heaps [scant ½ cup each] in the saute pan and make an indentation in each heap to form the ‘nest’. Cover and heat for 1 minute. Uncover and break egg into each ‘nest.’ Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Then cover and cook on the stove top for 4-5 minutes longer or until the eggs are cooked to your liking. Prepare your optional beverage and/or smoothie. Now that’s something different!

Zucchini, Stuffed: 300 calories 6.2 g fat 5.4 g fiber 28.8 g protein 25.3 g carbs 141.5 mg Calcium PB GF You can prepare this meal any time of year that you find zucchini at your store. Avoid the notion of using a door-stop zucchini for this recipe. HINT: this recipe makes enough for 2 [two] servings 

In this case, the pound of zucchini produced four boats for stuffing.

1 pound Zucchini, which is 2-3 slim zucchini 5 oz chicken, cooked ¼ tsp olive oil ½ cup onion, chopped 1 clove garlic ½ cup cooked brown rice 2 Tbsp Parmesan cheese, grated ½ tsp salt + ¼ tsp paprika + ½ tsp dill weed + black pepper

Vasco da Gama

How this Fast Diet Lifestyle works: Eat these meals tomorrow, for a calorie total of less than 600. On another day this week, eat the meals from a different post, another day of eating 600 calories or less. Eat sensibly the other days of the week. That’s it. Simple way to lose weight and be healthier.

On May 20, 1498, the first Europeans reached the Indian subcontinent by sea.  Vasco da Gama was the leader of the expedition under orders from King Manuel of Portugal. Up until then, no one had any idea of reaching India by sailing around Africa — but it worked.  By following the currents in the South Atlantic Ocean, da Gama rounded the southern tip of Africa [which the explorer Dias optimistically named the Cape of Good Hope] and then followed the currents up the east coast.  He took on a native pilot and arrived at Calicut [aka Calcutta, now Kolkata].  Da Gama’s return to Portugal with spices and silks earned him wealth and fame.  How did this sit with the Indians?  Not too well, aparently — he was sent back to put down a rebellion against Portugal and then returned as governor in 1524, when he died. Was da Gama’s arrival in India a good thing? Probably not — colonialism is rarely beneficial to the colonized people. But it established a link between ‘East’ and ‘West’ and perhaps some good has come from the mixing of cultures.                                                                                                                                                   The meals today begin with vegetables and Indian curry cooked into eggs. Appropriate since curry is a melange of spices the like of which the Europeans craved.  Dinner is purely Eurocentric: fish and chips with a Portuguese twist: just the sort of thing you get when cultures meet in the kitchen.

Curried Vegetable Bake: 123 calories   5 g fat  1.3 g fiber  7 g protein  11.6 g carbs [9.5 g Complex]   41.5 mg Calcium   NB: The food values given above are for the egg bake and fruit only, not the optional beverages.   PB GF   If you like the warm, spicy taste of curry, then feel free to add more to this dish.

Curry Bake

one 2-oz egg                                                                                                                                     1/2  oz broccoli, cooked and diced                                                                                                              1/2 oz carrot, cooked and diced [HINT: use leftovers from a dinner]                                     1 Tbsp Indian curry powder -OR-  4 Tbsp curry sauce [see Sidekicks I, from Sept. 17, ’17] additional curry powder, salt, garlic powder, all to taste                                                                   2 oz applesauce                                                                                                                                  Optional:  blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea 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. Whisk together the vegetables, seasonings, and the curry powder/sauce until well blended. Whisk the egg into the mixture and turn into the ramekin. Bake about 15 minutes while you portion the applesauce and prepare the optional beverages.

Portuguese Fish & Chips:   260 calories    6.3 g fat     4.7 g fiber   24 g protein    28 g carbs [27 g Complex]    60 mg Calcium    PB GF – if using GF flour  From our favorite dinner place in Souris, PEI, 21 Breakwater , comes this house specialty from the chef’s native cuisine. The batter is so light that it lets the lime-infused fish shine through. The recipe takes little time to accomplish. I have described it in detail so you can be successful.

Portugese Fish & Chips

3 oz tilapia or hake or other firm-fleshed white fish                                                                                                                          1 fl. oz lime juice or lemon juice                                                                                                                    1 egg white + 1 egg yolk, separated                                                                                                  2 Tbsp white whole wheat flour                                                                                                3 oz sweet potato, peeled                                                                                                                 ½ tsp canola oil                                                                                                                                 ½ tsp granulated garlic     +   ¼ tsp paprika    +      black pepper                                                                                                                           2 oz asparagus or broccoli

Marinate the fish in the lime juice with a pinch of salt and pepper for up to 30 minutes. Set the oven to 425 F. Peel the sweet potato and cut lengthwise into 1/4” slices. Cut each slice into 1/4” sticks. Put the oil in the non-stick pan that you will use to cook the fish. Add the potato sticks to the pan and toss about to coat with oil. Combine the granulated garlic, paprika, and pepper, and sprinkle on the potato sticks. Toss to distribute the seasonings. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil with the dull side up. Spray liberally with non-stick spray. HINT: You could do this 1-2 hours in advance. Distribute the potatoes on the pan so they do not touch. Put in oven for 10-12 minutes. Meanwhile, put the asparagus on to cook. Take the fish from the marinade and pat dry with paper towels. Dredge lightly with flour. Whip the egg white into soft peaks. Fold in the egg yolk and remaining flour from dredging the fish. Heat the non-stick pan and spray with non-stick spray. Remove the fries from the oven and turn them over. Return to oven for 10 minutes more. Dip the fish in the egg batter so that it is coated on all sides. Cook the fish on one side over medium heat for 6 minutes, then on the other side for 6 minutes or until fork tender. When fries are done, turn off oven, open the door, and leave the fries in there for up to 5 more minutes. Plate all that good food and live it up.

Stuffed

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.

When my sister and I were children at the table, and my mother would ask, “Would you like some more to eat?”, there were two answers which were not allowed. “I’m full” and “I’m stuffed.” It had to do with the inelegance of the phrasing. [The polite response was, “No, thank you.”]  Heck with that — today we will talk about meals that are ‘stuffed’ and will fill you up on a Fast Day.

Clam-Stuffed Mushrooms:   205 calories   6.4 g fat   4.3 g fiber  18.4 g protein   20.2 g carbs   98 mg Calcium    PB- if you don’t mindClam-Stuffed Mushrooms the meatballs in the stuffing  GF- if using GF bread  So we had these small portobello mushrooms in the ‘fridge, and I thought “Stuff them!” and they were good! And very filling, despite the LOW calorie count.                                                                3.5 oz mushroom caps [four 2-3” mushrooms]                                                                                      ½ cup clam stuffing [see SPICY May 23, 2018]                                                                                2 oz tomatoes                                                                                                                                                  ½ oz SnapPea Crisps                                       Poach the mushrooms briefly [2 minutes] in boiling water to cover. Using a paring knife, dig out any stem in the cap to create more of a cavity for the filling. Chop the stems and add to the clam stuffing. I used a large cookie-scoop to distrubute the stuffing into the caps. Bake at 400° F. for 15-20 minutes. Plate with the cool tomatoes and the crunchy Crisps. Easy to prepare, a treat to eat.

Cucumber Boats with Salmon: 258 calories 12.4 g fat 3.2 g fiber 20.4 g protein 19 g Cucumber Boat w: salmon and 3-bean saladcarbs 162 mg Calcium PB GF  So easy for the summer or anytime.                                     2-¾ oz cooked salmon                                                                                                                    one 3.5 oz cucumber, of which you will use half to serve one                                                                1/2 Tbsp watercress sauce [see Sidekicks II, posted 4 Oct, 2017]                                                  1 tsp Dijon mustard                                                                                                                           1/8 oz leek [2 Tbsp]                                                                                                                                               ½ cup 4-bean salad [see Sidekicks I, posted 17 Sept, 2017]                                             Slice the leek and blanch in a little water in the microwave. In a bowl break up the salmon and combine with the sauce, mustard and leek. Slice the cucumber in half lengthwise and scoop out most of the seeds with a melon-baller. Discard the seeds.  Mound the salmon into the cucumber boats and plate with the 4-bean salad.

Ham-Stuffed Fish: 260 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                                                                                                              1-2 oz carrots, julienned or sliced as coins                                                                                                 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 carrots. Plate the fish and carrots and sprinkle with sliced scallion.