L.o.t.R.

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 uptightprettygirl who is now Following.

The book series that I have re-read most is The Lord of The Rings by JRR Tolkien.  He creates memorable characters; a unique and believable world; complex languages for different groups of people; and a satisfying story which makes you want to visit it again. A Quest, a Coming-of-Age plot, Star-Crossed Lovers, Overcoming Evil — these books have it all.   March 25 is the day the One Ring was destroyed: the end of evil times and the start of an era when goodness reigned.  In our house, we celebrate LotR day with special foods.  Oddly, although the principal characters are food-loving Hobbits and feasting Dwarves, the author seldom names the foods that are eaten.  Out of the 5 or so instances that ingredients are mentioned, I have crafted two meals. One is eaten at the home of the magical Tom Bombadil and his marvelous wife Goldberry.  The other is based on Hobbits’ enjoyment of mushrooms and rabbit.  We can eat with the Hobbits but not like the Hobbits — they gain weight as adults and being tubby is a bit of a plot-line. We don’t have to be plump, chubby, or stout.  We can Fast.

Bombadil’s Breakfast:   146 calories  5 g fat   2.5 g fiber  10.5 g protein  15.3 g carbs [8.3 g Complex]   312 mg Calcium  NB: the food values given are for the plated items only, and do not include the optional beverages.  PB GF V When Tom Bombadil served his guests breakfast, it consisted of plants, fruit and dairy of his own collection or production. The plants should be watercress [since his wife Goldberry was the River-Man’s daughter] and the fruit shall be Golden Berries [aka Peruvian Ground Cherries], again in a nod to his wife.Bombadil Breakfast

½ oz Camembert cheese                                                                                                                ½ cup watercress leaves or microgreens                                                                                                    ½ cup plain yogurt                                                                                                                         ½ tsp honey                                                                                                                                                      1 oz Golden Berries  [aka: Peruvian Ground Cherries]  OR blueberries                                                              edible flowers [violets, chives, nastursium, or others]                                                                     Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or lemon in hot water                       Optional: 5 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie  [88 calories]

Warm the honey and stir it into the yogurt. Plate the items to your taste and enjoy a magical breakfast in The Old Forest. Wear a blue jacket and yellow hat.

Rabbit Pie: 275 calories   6.6 g fat   4.6 g fiber   25.6 g protein   27.5 g carbs [15 g Complex] 77 mg Calcium  PB  Rabbit is a common meat in recipes the world over. It is high in protein and low in fat. And yes, it does taste like chicken. You could substitute.

Rabbit Pie, baked
Here is the Rabbit Pie for 2 people as it came out of the oven, with the bread on top.
Rabbit Pie, plated
Here is one serving of the Rabbit Pie plated with the bread underneath to catch the juices.

 

 

 

 

                                                             

         

 

 

 

2 oz mushrooms                                                                                                                               4 oz chicken stock                                                                                                                             2 tsp potato starch                                                                                                                         0.55 oz [1 slice] ham from the deli                                                                                                    3 oz rabbit meat                                                                                                                                     ¼ cup onions, chopped                                                                                                                   big pinch dried thyme + big pinch savory + salt + pepper                                                                    ½ Arnold Multi-Grain Sandwich Thin OR a 4” circle cut from whole-grain bread                                     1.5 oz carrots                                                                                                                                               If the rabbit is uncooked: Cut it into bite-sized pieces and quickly cook in a saute pan which has been spritzed with non-stick spray. Remove the meat. Chop and cook the mushrooms in non-stick spray, but do not evaporate all of the liquid they give off. Remove the mushrooms from the pan and set aside. Add the onions and the stock to the pan along with the mushroom juices and ¼ cup water. Simmer to cook the onions. Whisk in the potato starch and the seasonings. Continue to whisk over heat until the potato starch is dissolved. Cook at a simmer until the liquid measures ¼ cup and is thickened. Add the rabbit meat, ham, and the mushrooms. Simmer for a few minutes and taste for seasonings. Pour and scrape into an oven-proof dish. Top with the Sandwich Thin. Bake at 350° F for15 minutes. Cook the carrots. Plate the meal by first putting the Sandwich Thin on the plate, then covering it with the rabbit-mushroom mixture. Pour any extra liquid so that it is soaked up by the bread. Plate the carrots to complete the meal.

Slow Days: French Herb Roast Chicken

People who are new to Fasting often pose the questions: “Can I really eat ‘anything I want’ on a Slow Day?” and “What should I eat on Slow Days?” To answer those questions, I have decided to add some blog posts to show some of the foods we eat on what the world calls NFDs [non-fast days] but which, in our house, we call ‘Slow Days.’ This feature will appear sporadically.

Now for the answers. Can you really eat ANYTHING you want on a Slow Day?  Not really. If you eat too many calories every Slow Day, you will not lose weight. There are many questions asked on the FastDiet Forum which attest to that. Once in a while your can splurge, as long as it isn’t everyday. For what to eat on Slow Days, Dr. Mosley recommends a Mediterranean Diet. As for how we eat, an example follows.

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

French Roast Chicken, mise

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

 

Soup Time

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 for 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.

Winter + Soup — was there ever a more perfect pairing? Here in Northern New England, we do winter.  Robert Frost [Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening] winters.  John Greenleaf Whittier [Snowbound, A Winter Idyl] winters. And in our household, we enjoy the season.  If you don’t like winter, move to a different latitude instead of griping about it.  Winters are dangerous but they are often beautiful and they are good for our local environment. Plus, Spring and Summer are even more enjoyable after a hard winter. The calendar might say that Spring is on the way, but we know better.  Live in the moment and appreciate the weather where you are. During Winter, eat soup.                                                                                                          Today’s meals include a Japanese breakfast soup with a ‘Hot Spring Egg’ and a French dinner soup.  Each will warm your innards.

Japanese Onion Soup with Onsen Tamago Egg:  195 calories  5 g fat  1.6 g fiber  15.6 g protein  24 g carbs [9 g Complex]  43 mg Calcium   PB GF  Our Younger Son prepared this for us one morning after a day of heavy eating and it was a revelation: light yet hearty and so delicious. “Onsen Tamago” means ‘hot spring’ and it is a very different [to me] way to cook a soft egg. HINT: This recipe is enough for 2 servings. Easy to save for another breakfast or lunch one or two days from now.Onsen Tamago Soup

2 two-oz eggs                                                                                                                                  ½ cup sweet onions                                                                                                                         2 cups chicken or beef broth                                                                                                                      3 Tbsp soy sauce                                                                                                                                2 Tbsp mirin                                                                                                                                      1 oz dry  Japanese noodles, such as soba @ 95 calories/ounce                                                  Sriracha, to taste                                                                                                                                garnish: scallions, chopped                                                                                                                 2 oz melon                                                                                                                                  blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or lemon juice & hot water                                   NO SMOOTHIE

Onsen Tomago Egg:    HINT: The eggs can be prepared up to 2 days in advance. 2 whole eggs in shells                                                                                                                           1 liter water   +    1 cup cold tap water                                                                                         Bring 1 liter of water to a boil. Once it boils, remove it from the heat, and add 1 cup of cold water. Using a slotted spoon, place eggs into the hot water and cover. Let sit for 17 minutes, then remove the eggs with a slotted spoon and let sit at room temperature for 5 minutes. Serve hot or refrigerate for up to 2 days. NB: You can cook up to 4 eggs with this same volume of water.

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

Cabbage-Sausage Soup: 264 calories  11 g fat  5 g fiber  14 g protein  25.5 g carbs [22 g Complex]  66 mg Calcium   PB GF   Since this is Jacques Pepin’s recipe, I’ll let him say it: “When the weather gets cooler in the fall, I make soup. I generally cook up a big batch and freeze some for whenever I need it. This one, with sausage, potatoes, and cabbage, is hearty and good for cold weather.”Cabbage Soup

8 ounces mild Italian sausage meat                                                                                               1 ½ cups onions, sliced                                                                                                                             6 scallions, cut into ½-inch pieces (1¼ cups)                                                                                6 cups water                                                                                                                                 1 cup chickpeas                                                                                                                           16 oz potatoes, peeled and cut into ½-inch chunks                                                                       8 ounces savoy cabbage, chopped/sliced                                                                                   1¼ teaspoons salt

Chef Pepin continues, “Break the sausage meat into 1-inch pieces and place it in a saucepan over high heat. Sauté, stirring and scraping the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon to keep the meat from sticking, for 10 minutes, or until the sausage is well browned. Add the onions and scallions and cook for 1 minute. Stir in the water, chickpeas, potatoes, cabbage, and salt and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce the heat to low, and cook for 45 minutes.” Portion for storage or serving. One serving = 1 cup.

Ingredients for next week:

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

watercress or microgreens   10-Grain Cereal, Bob’s Red Mill
plain yogurt, low-fat + honey applesauce  + maple syrup
Golden Berries or Blue Berries reduced fat cottage cheese
Camembert cheese nutmeg  + cinnamon
Whatever you need for your smoothie Whatever you need for your smoothie
Whatever you need for your hot beverage Whatever you need for your hot beverage

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

rabbit meat   +  onions + herb savory salt cod   + garlic cloves
3% fat ham  +  chicken broth + thyme olive oil + boiling potato  + cauliflower
portobello mushrooms + potato starch milk  + carrots  +  black pepper
Arnold Sandwich Thin or whole-grain bread  +  carrots fennel seed  + tomato slices
Sparkling water Sparkling water

Stolen

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.

Isabella Stewart was an excellently-educated young New Yorker of a good family when she married Jack Gardner of Boston. Their honeymoon on the Continent and a subsequent trip for her health lead to Mrs Gardner’s love of the art and architecture of the Italian Renaissance.  Eccentric, larger than life, and rich as Croesus, Isabella was a great collector of art. She and her husband planned to build a museum for their collection and after his death, Mrs Gardner completed their ambition in 1903 — The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in the Fens, in a park designed by Fredrick Olmstead. It is a fabulous place and houses an eclectic array of art.   On March 18, 1990, the museum was robbed.  Five million dollars of art vanished, taken by men dressed as police in a well-orchestrated heist. [The event is always referred to as a ‘heist.’]   To this day, the whereabouts of the art is unknown and the $10,000,000 reward is unclaimed. The tale of the theft is as remarkable and unusual as Mrs Gardner herself.

In recognition of the infamous heist, today’s meals were ‘borrowed’ from other places.  However I always give credit where credit is due and acknowledge my sources: The cookbook from the 1990s version of Peter Christian’s Tavern [New London, NH] and French Regional Cooking by Anne Willan. [‘Mrs Jack’ would have liked the Florentine connection.]  I’m not stealing from anyone, but if you eat like me you might lose a lot.

Ham Florentine Bake: 133 calories  6.5 g fat  1 g fiber  8 g protein  6 g carbs   61.5 mg Calcium   PB GF  This bake is so flavorful that you will not notice the tiny calorie count. Same ‘ham Florentine’ used to fill crêpes for dinner. Same kind of delicious. The ham Florentine is from Shirley Edes’ Peter Christian’s Recipes.Ham Florentine Bake

1 two-oz egg                                                                                                                                       2 Tbsp ham Florentine mixture – see Savory 27 Jan, 2019 [I had put some in the freezer]                                                                                                      2 oz applesauce                                                                                                                                     5-6 oz fruit smoothie [79 calories] or natural apple cider                                                    blackish coffee [53 calories] or tea or lemon in hot water

Set the toaster oven at 350° F.  Spritz an oven-proof dish with non-stick spray. Whisk the egg and stir in the ham Florentine mixture. Pour into prepared dish and bake for 12-15 minutes. Portion the applesauce and pour your choice of beverages. This is a breakfast to prepare often.

Trout with Hazelnuts: 267 calories  18 g fat  3.3 g fiber   21 g protein   6.3 g carbs  75 mg Calcium   PB GF   From Savoie, France comes this recipe, via Anne Willen’s French Regional Cooking. Hannibal is supposed to have dined on local trout as he crossed the Alps with his elephants. Very easy to prepare [the trout, not the elephants] and absolutely delicious. Trout w: hazelnuts + haricots

3 oz trout, boned and trimmed                                                                                                                             1 tsp butter                                                                                                                                                           ½ oz hazelnuts, coarsly chopped 2 oz French green beans [haricots]

Start cooking the beans. Heat a heavy saute pan and spray with non-stick spray. Put in the trout and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Slowly cook the trout on one side for about 3 minutes. Turn the trout to the other side.  Add the butter to the pan along with the nuts. Continue cooking everything slowly until the fish is done, roughly another 3 minutes. Drain and season the beans, plate them with the trout, and top the fish with the nuts in butter. Enjoy your culinary visit to the French Alps.

Ups & Downs

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.

One feature of the book Bridget Jones’ Diary was her frequent recording of her weight — up and down it would go, much to her dismay.  Of course we readers knew it would do that, since Bridget was an ‘emotional eater‘ and often drank too much.  But those fluctuations were very relatable to dieters, even Fasters.  We want to think that once we get to our Target Weight [and there is no magic to that — it is the weight you want to be], we will magically remain there, day after day.  Having Fasted for many years, I can tell you that weight can rise by as much a 2 pounds [0.9 kg or 0.14 stone] from one day to the next. And then a Fast Day or two sets things to right again. Or weight could drop by a pound — inexplicably!  Do not be discouraged if your weight fluctuates. It happens and life goes on.  It is what you do with the information that matters — does it make you stop the Fasting Lifestyle or does it make you double down and do better? Your choice.    On March 15, 1892, the modern escalator was patented, designed to take people up and down stairs without effort.  Did you think that maintaining your weight and avoiding its ups and downs would be without effort?  Fasting is the closest thing to that I know.

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

1 ½ eggs HINT: If you are serving one person, crack three 2-oz eggs into a small bowl or glass measuring cup. Whip up those eggs and pour half of their volume, into a jar with a lid and put it in the ‘fridge for next week                                                    1 oz cooked mackerel   [I clean and cook mine as soon as I get it home, then freeze it.]                                                                                                                        1.5 oz leeks                                                                                                                                                     ½ tsp Dijon mustard                                                                                                                        1 oz strawberries                                                                                                                       Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or lemon in hot water                                     Optional: 3 oz green or berry-yogurt smoothie [38 calories]or unpasteurized apple cider

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

Beef & Beet Salad:   248 calories  8.5 g fat  3.4 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.Beet & Beef Salad

2.75 oz thinly-sliced roasted beef                                                                                                 3.5 oz pickled beets, as thinly-sliced rounds                                                                              1/4-1/2 cup shredded lettuce                                                                                                            dill pickle spear                                                                                                                                1.5 tsp dressing***

Dressing   [makes 6 teaspoons — save the remainder]                                                                                                      2.25 tsp Dijon mustard                             1 Tbsp chopped shallot                                                 1.5 tsp wine vinegar                                     4.5 tsp olive oil

Slice the beef and the beets as matchsticks about 2-3” long. Put 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.

Ingredients for next week:

Breakfast, single portion for Monday:                    single portion for Thursday:

1 two-oz egg 1 two-oz egg   + beef or chicken broth
Ham Florentine [see Savory 27-Feb-’19] soy sauce  +  mirin
applesauce scallion + sweet onion
dry Japanese Soba Noodles [190 cal/ 2 oz]
Whatever you need for your smoothie Whatever you need for your smoothie
Whatever you need for your hot beverage Whatever you need for your hot beverage

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

Trout filet Bulk pork sausage meat
butter chickpeas  + potato
hazelnuts onions  +  scallion
haricots or green beans Savoy cabbage
Sparkling water Sparkling water

Saint Perpetua

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

Today is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent, and tomorrow is the Feast of Saint Perpetua.  In Carthage  at the close of the 2nd Century, there once lived a young Roman matron who was happy to admit to being a Christian. Her mother, several friends, and her enslaved servant Felicity were also converts.  Faced with the usual choice, Perpetua chose prison and death. Felicity, after a pep-talk to reinforce her beliefs, went along. In prison, Perpetua kept a diary.  Up until the day Perpetua and Felicity were taken out to be beheaded, she wrote about her faith.  So it is that instead of being a saint ‘who’s origins are vague’ [as many hagiographies tend to say], we know exactly who she was and when and why and from her own hand. Her infant child and her diary were handed over to friends on the outside, and her fame spread. The story of Perpetua, most fittingly, has been ‘lasting’ [the translation of her name from latin] and to some who do penance during Lent, that season can seem to “go on in perpetuity.”                                                                  Since Perpetua and her Companions lived and died in northern Africa, we will enjoy a breakfast that was born in Morocco, and a dinner featuring lamb and fresh vegetables which surely Perpetua’s wealthy family might well have eaten too.  Whether you are Fasting for Lent or Fasting for improved health, think about Perpetua and the lengths she went to in following what she knew to be the right thing to do.

Moroccan Omelette:   135 calories  8 g fat  1.4 g fiber  10 g protein  7.7 g carbs  49 mg Calcium   NB: The food values given above are for the main dish and fruit only, not the optional beverages.    PB GF    Suggested by our First-born, this is the easiest omelette in the world to prepare. For the compete flavor profile, serve with mint tea.Moroccan Omelette W: Apples

1 ½ eggs HINT: If you are serving one person, crack three 2-oz eggs into a small bowl or glass measuring cup. Whip up those eggs and pour half of their volume, into a jar with a lid and put it in the ‘fridge for next week.                                                 1 tsp or more ground cumin                                                                                                             ½ tsp paprika                                                                                                                                     salt + pepper                                                                                                                                         1.5 oz apple + 2 Golden Berries  OR  5 Bing cherries                                                                       MINT TEA, blackish coffee [53 calories]or blackish tea or lemon in hot water                                       5-6 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie [88 calories] or unpasteurized apple cider

Combine the cumin, paprika, salt, and pepper in a small dish. Whisk just the 1.5 eggs vigorously. Pour into a heated skillet sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. Turn down the heat.  Sprinkle the eggs with the seasonings and leave undisturbed until puffy and the top is set. Remove from skillet, and serve folded or flat. Pour the beverages and enjoy the fruit as a counter-point to the spices.

Lamb Kabobs: 227 calories  6.2 g fat  5 g fiber  22 g protein  31.4 g Complex Carbs   41 mg Calcium   PB GF  This is so easy and so perfect for indoor grilling.Lamb Kabobs w: corn relish

3 oz lamb leg in cubes                                                                                                                             1 Tbsp tomato juice OR water + granulated garlic + crumbled rosemary                                                  1.5 oz red bell pepper, in 1-1/2” chunks                                                                                                1.5 oz zucchini, sliced 3/4” thick, then cut in quarters                                                                     1 oz red onion, cut in chunks                                                                                                             ¾ cup Corn-Tomato Salsa [see Second Fiddles  9-Jan-’19]

Salt the tomatoes and put into a sieve over a bowl to catch the juice.  Combine the tomato juice, garlic, and rosemary with the lamb. Stir to coat and set aside to marinate for 30-60 minutes. Prepare the vegetables and Corn Salsa while the meat sits. Impale the vegetables and lamb chunks on skewers, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Heat a grill pan [indoors] or an outdoor grill and cook the kabobs on all sides. The meat will brown and the vegetables will begin to char a bit. Plate with the salsa for a very colorful meal.

Ingredients for next week:

Breakfast, single portion for Monday:                     single portion for Thursday:

whipped cream cheese 1.5 two-oz eggs
Herring marinated in wine cooked mackerel
Finn Crisp crackers leek  +  Dijon mustard
cherries or strawberries strawberries
Whatever you need for your smoothie Whatever you need for your smoothie
Whatever you need for your hot beverage Whatever you need for your hot beverage

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

hake  + onions +  Feta cheese cooked roast beef slices  +  pickled beets
garlic  + pinch sugar Dijon mustard  + shallot
whole tomatoes, canned red wine vinegar
dry red wine olive oil
Sparkling water Sparkling water

Savory

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

“Savory” is the name for two different herbs: Summer Savory [Satureja hortensis] and Winter Savory [Satureja montana]. “Savory” connotes a rich blend of pleasing flavors. Today, we mean the latter.  Here are three savory, succulent fillings, which are versatile enough to use for breakfasts, to flavor baked eggs or an omelette; or at dinner, when they are so easy to fold into crêpes.

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

HAM FLORENTINE FILLING     makes 1.5 cups     Coming to us from Peter Christian’s     Ham Florentine CrepesRecipes, it can fill crêpes or egg dishes.       ½ cup no-cheese Béchamel Sauce  [SIDEKICKS I, 17-Sept-’17]                                                         1 cup ham in 1/4” dice                                                                                                                     1 cup [5 oz] cooked spinach, fresh or frozen                                                                                       ½ cup chopped celery                                                                                                                      ¼ cup chopped onion                                                                                                                   celery salt + dill + granulated garlic + basil                                                                                            Be sure to squeeze the spinach until most of the liquid is out of it. [save the liquid] Spritz a sauté pan with non-stick spray and add some of the spinach liquid. Cook the celery and onion until the onions are transluscent, adding more spinach liquid as needed. Add the remaining ingredients and cook on low heat until warmed through.

MOUSSAKA SAUCE          makes 3 cups;    ¼ cup = 110 calories   Moussaka Bake w: melonMixed with eggs, it is a hit at breakfast. Or, have it as dinner.                 1 pound ground lamb                                                                                                                           1 pound eggplant                                                                                                                            ¼ cup onion, chopped                                                                                                                        1 c. marinara sauce [Saucy 6-Dec-’17]                                                                                     3/4 tsp [or more] ground cinnamon                                                                                                   Cook the lamb without added fat. Pour off the fat that accumlates and put the lamb in a strainer. Run it under hot water to remove excess fat, then crumble the meat. Peel and cube the eggplant. Chop the onion. Cook the two vegetables in a pan sprayed with non-stick spray until the onion is transluscent. [Add a little water if needed.] Pour in the marinara sauce along with the cinnamon, and continue cooking slowly until the eggplant is soft. Run the sauce through the blender/food processor, then add the meat and adjust for seasonings.

Ingredients for next week:

Breakfast, single portion for Monday:                      single portion for Thursday:

1 two-oz egg  + American/streaky  bacon 1.5 two-oz eggs
tomato, fresh or puree   + Cheddar ground cumin
onion  +  sweet pepper  + filé powder paprika
creole seasoning  +  apple or pear Bing cherries or apple
Whatever you need for your smoothie Whatever you need for your smoothie
Whatever you need for your hot beverage Whatever you need for your hot beverage

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

andouille sausage  +  chicken  + ham cubes of leg of lamb  + zucchini
onion  + brown rice  +  celery + garlic red bell pepper  + garlic powder
sweet pepper  + crushed tomatoes  + chicken broth corn-tomato salsa [Second Fiddles Jan-9-’19]
red pepper flakes  + Tabasco + broccoli cajun seasoning + filé powder rosemary  + red onion    + optional tomato juice
Sparkling water Sparkling water

 

Slow Days: Crab Pasta

People who are new to Fasting often pose the questions: “Can I really eat ‘anything I want’ on a Slow Day?” and “What should I eat on Slow Days?” To answer those questions, I have decided to add some blog posts to show some of the foods we eat on what the world calls NFDs [non-fast days] but which, in our house, we call ‘Slow Days.’ This feature will appear sporadically.

Now for the answers. Can you really eat ANYTHING you want on a Slow Day?  Not really. If you eat too many calories every Slow Day, you will not lose weight. There are many questions asked on the FastDiet Forum  which attest to that. Once in a while your can splurge, as long as it isn’t everyday. For what to eat on Slow Days, Dr. Mosley recommends a Mediterranean Diet. As for how we eat, an example follows.

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

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

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

Fra Angelico

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

When Guido di Pietro was born in the Mugello Region of Tuscany in 1395, no one would have dreamed that this baby of small-town origin would become a major figure in the world of art. Early on, he trained as an illuminator, creating drawings for religious texts. Around 1420, he became a friar in Fiesole, Tuscany, taking the name ‘Fra [brother] Giovanni’.  His artistic work now flowed onto the walls of the monastery where it caught the eye of Cosimo di Medici, who brought the young friar to Firenze in 1439, to a wider world of trends in art. In Firenze, the Renaissance in art was beginning.  Masaccio in fresco; Donatello in sculpture; Brunelleschi in architecture were all looking at the natural world and putting more naturalism in their work. The stylized views of the Gothic school of art were being nudged aside by the art of linear perspective and realistic landscapes. Influenced by these heady ideas, Fra Giovanni’s frescos and paintings show graceful yet fully-grounded people who inhabit realistic spaces which are flooded with light. The Annunciation, c. 1440, shows this well and it is one of my favorite paintings.  His works are sweet without being cloying, emotionally evocative without being over-wrought. After his death on February 18, 1455, people began to refer to him as ‘angelic’ due to the grace of his art and his piety in life. Thus the name “Fra Angelico” was attached to him, though he was never called that while alive.                          The cooking term ‘Florentine’ often means that spinach is a key ingredient.  Fra Angelico painted in the ‘Florentine School‘ of art, which strove for naturalism [as opposed to the ‘Sienese School‘ which was more stylized.]  Today’s menus include spinach and they are delicious.  Gaze at some of Fra Angelico’s work at breakfast and dinner.  Your day will be better for it.

Spinach Frittata:   131 calories  7 g fat   1.9 g fiber  11 g protein  6.6 g carbs [5.8 g Complex] 127 mg Calcium  PB GF  Whether it is breakfast or dinner, Spinach Frittata checks off all the boxes.Spinach Frittata

1 two-oz egg                                                                                                                                        1/6 cup [3 Tbsp] cooked spinach, squeezed and chopped                                                              1 Tbsp cottage cheese                                                                                                                    1/8 oz [2 Tbsp] chopped scallions, white and/or green parts                                                         ¼ oz Manchego OR Cheddar cheese, grated                                                                                    dash of grated nutmeg   +  dash of granulated garlic                                                                       2 oz strawberries                                                                                                                        blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or lemon in hot water                                                    5-6 oz fruit smoothie [79 calories], green smoothie or natural apple cider

Cook the spinach, drain it, and squeeze it in your hands to remove excess water. [TIP: save the drained water for cooking vegetables or pasta]Chop the spinach and mix with scallions, both cheeses, nutmeg, and garlic. Lightly spray a baking dish with oil or non-stick spray. Pour the vegetable-cheese mixture into the dish and arrange so it is evenly distributed. Whisk the egg and pour over the mixture. Bake at 350F for 15 minutes. Plate with the berries and pour the beverages.

Ham Florentine Crepes:   299 calories   11.3 g fat   5.6 g fiber 15.6 g protein   33 g carbs   307 mg Calcium   PB  Peter Christian’s Tavern was a very popular New Hampshire restaurant and their cookbook was a local best seller. The restaurant has closed but the cookbook is a goldmine and it served as the source of this meal. Very easy if the crepes and Bechamel sauce are pre-made.Ham Florentine Crepes

Ham Florentine Filling:    makes 1.5 cups                                                                                              ½ cup no-cheese Béchamel Sauce [see SIDEKICKS I, 17-Sept-’17]                                                1 cup ham in 1/4” dice                                                                                                                    1 cup [5 oz] cooked spinach, fresh or frozen                                                                                        ½ cup chopped celery                                                                                                                            ¼ cup chopped onion                                                                                                                     pinches of celery salt + dill + granulated garlic + basil

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

For the Dinner:       2 crepes [see SIDEKICKS I, 17-Sept-’17]                                                                                               ¾ cup Ham Florentine                                                                                                                   Set the oven to 350 F. If the crepes are frozen, thaw and wrap in a tea towel. Put them in the oven as it warms. When the crepes are soft and pliable, lay them on a baking sheet, covered with the tea towel. Warm the Ham Florentine filling and spoon over half of each crepe. [I saved out a bit of liquid from the filling.] Fold the crepes over the filling and pat in place. Put the crepes in the oven until warmed through. Top with reserved filling before serving.  NB: in the photo above, you see a serving of vegetables. They add 50 calories.

Love Thyself

How this Fast Diet Lifestyle works: Eat these meals tomorrow. On your next Fast Day, eat the meals that will be posted here in 3-4 days.  Eat sensibly the other days of the week.  That’s it.  Simple way to lose weight and be healthier.

Why do you diet? Because you think your body has betrayed you by gaining weight and you want to punish it?  If you are angry at yourself, you will not succeed in improving your health — physically or mentally. You must like yourself well enough to want to figure out why you over-eat and to recognize that having the right relationship with food will help you to be successful.  Eating more health-fully is the key.   If dieting is about ‘punishment,’ it won’t work.  If it is about loving yourself, then you will want to take care of your body and feed it in a way to make it healthy.  Do you think you will be hungry all the time when Fasting?  There are many moods that masquerade as hunger.  If hunger is not the problem, food is not the answer. In Fasting, you will find a better way to eat, focusing on what foods are good for you so that you can feel and look your best.  How can you “Love your neighbor as yourself” if you don’t love yourself?   Be your own best Valentine.                                                                                                                                           In honor of Valentine’s Day, breakfast looks like an indulgence but has lots of delicious nutrition.  Dinner is a meal my Dear Husband and I have often enjoyed on February 14th, and it is very nice indeed.

Fruit Hearts: 198 calories 5.6 g fat 2.7 g fiber 13 g protein 25.8 g carbs 82.6 mg Calcium NB: These values are for the Fruit Hearts alone.PB GF V  This breakfast looks as if it came from the pastry cart, but it fits within our guidelines for Fasting. If you don’t mind doing ‘fiddly food,’ treat someone you love to a special breakfast.Fruit Hearts

1 oz whole-grain bread cut using a 2+” heart-shaped cookie cutter                                                2 Tbsp unsweetened applesauce                                                                                                         2 Tbsp low-fat French Vanilla yogurt                                                                                               1 Tbsp almond meal/flour                                                                                                            fresh fruit of your choosing: fresh raspberries or sliced strawberries or peach slices or blueberries  [The fruit in the center is a ‘Goldenberry’]                                                                      1.1 oz Canadian bacon/back bacon cut into hearts with the same sized cutter                              3oz fruit smoothie [34 calories] or natural apple cider                                                            blackish coffee [53 calories]or tea or lemon in hot water

First, stir the yogurt and almond flour until thoroughly combined. It will thicken slightly. Cut the bread and the Canadian Bacon into hearts.HINT: I did this the night before, storing the bread in a plastic bag overnight to prevent them from drying.Gently cook the bacon hearts so that they are warmed through yet retain their pinkness. Lightly toast the bread hearts. Spread the applesauce evenly over each heart. Pipe the yogurt/almond around the edge of each heart, then arrange the fruit in the center. Sip some low-fat cafe au lait this morning and think lovely thoughts..

Filet Mignon with Tarragon:  278 calories  14 g fat  2.3 g fiber  28.6 g protein  7.2 g carbs [6 g Complex]  49 mg Calcium  GF  We have enjoyed this sumptuous Joanne Harris recipe for years and we still turn back to her My French Kitchen to make it again. HINT: This recipe is enough for two. Worth sharing with a special friend. If serving one, prepare all of the sauce and save it to put in eggs at breakfast or to use at dinner.

2 tsp butter                                                                                                                                       1 portobello mushroom cap                                                                                                               1/4 tsp olive oil   +  1/4 tsp olive oil                                                                                                                                  ½ large shallot [1 Tbsp]                                                                                                                                             2 Tbsp white wine                                                                                                                              1 Tbsp heavy cream                                                                                                                          1 tsp grainy mustard                                                                                                                       ½ clove garlic [½ tsp minced]                                                                                                          2-3 Tbsp fresh tarragon                                                                                                                   two 4-oz filet mignon                                                                                                                           10 spears asparagus, snapped off at the bottom to remove the woody section

Cook the mushrooms on both sides in butter and a spritz of cooking spray. Keep warm off the stove. Heat the oil with a spritz of cooking spray, and cook the shallots until softened. Add the wine to the pan, then simmer for 3 minutes. Lower the heat, add the cream, mustard, garlic, and tarragon. Heat long enough to heat the sauce but do not let it boil. Cook the asparagus. In a separate heavy skillet, heat a drizzle of oil and a spritz of non-stick spray over high. Cook the meat 1-1/2 minutes/side if you like it rare or 2 minutes/side for medium. Place the cooked steak on the mushroom cap, surround it with asparagus, and top it with the sauce. This is easy to prepare and absolutely delicious.

Ingredients for next week:

Breakfast, single portion

1 two-oz egg   +  cooked spinach 1.5 two-oz eggs
cottage cheese   +  scallion  +  nutmeg eggplant  + garlic
Manchego cheese tomato/tomato sauce +  Onion
granulated garlic   +  strawberries pear  +  Herbes de Province
Whatever you need for your smoothie Whatever you need for your smoothie
Whatever you need for your hot beverage Whatever you need for your hot beverage

Dinner, single portion:

no-cheese Béchamel [Sidekicks I 17-Sep-’17]     +     spinach [5 oz]  +  ham no-cheese Béchamel [Sidekicks I 17-Sep-’17]     +  chicken breast
celery  +  onion  + celery salt sherry wine  +  carrot
garlic powder + dill + basil angel hair pasta
2 crepes [Sidekicks I 17-Sep-’17] broccoli   +   Parmesan cheese
Sparkling water Sparkling water