Slow Days: Cajun Catfish Sliders

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

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

Catfish are a fresh-water fish found in many countries around the world, with 30 species in the USA. The states in the center-east of the country are where catfish are most likely to be. Because they are common and can grow quite large, catfish are popular sport and eating fish. Here in New Hampshire, the native species is Ameiurus nebulosus, known to scientists as the Brown Bullhead, and to locals a the ‘horned pout’ [pronounced ‘hornpout‘]. Lakes of easy access sport boats at night, trawling back and forth with lanterns illuminating the water. Everyone knows that means people are hornpoutin’. After seeing catfish at the supermarket a few years ago, and knowing that there was Cajun Seasoning in the pantry, I was seized by inspiration: Cajun Catfish Sandwiches!!

To serve two, we have slider buns, Cajun Seasoning, and 6-8 oz catfish, cut into 4 pieces. The catfish pieces are dredged in the seasoning on all sides, then pan-cooked with a bit of butter/ cooking spray/ or olive oil until done, 3-4 minutes per side. Here’s how to prepare your own seasoning:

Cajun Seasoning:  4 Tablespoons  A dry powder to add to soups, stews, eggs, or fish. 1 tsp salt 2 tsp garlic powder 2½ tsp paprika 1 tsp ground pepper 1 tsp onion powder 1 tsp cayenne 1¼ tsp dried savory 1¼ tsp dried thyme ½ tsp red pepper flakes

I suggest that the slider buns be toasted. For a real summer treat, serve with some form of corn, such as fresh polenta or corn-tomato salsa. Oh! Yummy! Catfish can be sustainably and environmentally raised on fish-farms, making them a good choice when you are looking for fish to buy. An excellent Summer meal.

Gargantua meets Diamond Jim

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.

Francois Rabelais [c. 1489-1533] was a French author who was known for his satire — and his earthy wit. Some would say he went overboard, like an adolescent boy with a locker-room sense humor. In his five-volume series about the giants Pantagruel and Gargantua, he lampooned the upper classes for their conspicuous over-consumption of food. If Rabelais had lived in the late 1800s, readers would have thought that Gargantua was a parody of Diamond Jim Brady, born August 12, 1856. Having acquired a pile of money by legal and ill-legal means, he spent a pile of it on food, diamonds, race tracks, and Lillian Russell. He was obese, with the myriad health issues that go along with that. His reputation was for eating obscene amounts of food at three meals a day, with snacks in between. Despite the fact that his stomach was reported to be 5x the size of others’, there is now some doubt as to whether Diamond Jim actually did eat as his biographers claimed he did..

Our breakfast is luxurious enough for any Renaissance noble and for Diamond Jim. Brady was famous for eating beef steak at fancy restaurants. A 16-oz cut of Prime Rib was called the “Diamond Jim Cut.” Don’t eat like him, but do feel free to indulge in this fabulous filet mignon.

St Denis ScrOmelette: 144 calories 8 g fat 2 g fiber 12.5 g protein 6.4 g carbs [5 g Complex] 57 mg Calcium  NB: Food values shown are for the ScrOmelette and fruit only, and do not include the optional beveragesGF  James Beard’s comprehensive volume American Cooking gives us the recipe for this breakfast. Delicious, and rich, and wonderful. Worth getting up for.

1 ½ two-oz eggs  HINT: If you are serving one person, crack three 2-oz eggs into a small bowl or glass measuring cup. Whip up those eggs and pour half of their volume into a jar with a lid and put it in the ‘fridge for next week.   1 Tbsp leek or scallion, minced ½ clove garlic, minced ¼ oz mushrooms ¼ oz ham [3% fat], minced 1 tsp chicken liver OR chicken liver pate parsley for garnish 4 Bing cherries  Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories]   Optional: 5 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie  [88 calories]

Heat a well-seasoned cast iron or non-stick pan and spritz it with oil or cooking spray. Add the leek, garlic, ham, and mushrooms and stir to cook. Whisk the eggs with the pate and pour over the vegetables in the pan. Cook as thoroughly as you like. The optional beverages are prepared and the fruit is plated. What a remarkable start to your day.

Filet Mignon with Tarragon: 278 calories 14 g fat 2 g fiber 28.6 g protein 7 g carbs [6 g Complex] 49 mg Calcium  GF  We have enjoyed this sumutious 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 diner, prepare all of the sauce and save it to put in eggs at breakfast or to use at dinner.

2 tsp butter 2 portobello mushroom caps ½ tsp olive oil ½ large shallot [1 Tbsp], minced 2 Tbsp white wine 1 Tbsp heavy cream 1 tsp grainy mustard ½ tsp minced garlic 2-3 Tbsp fresh tarragon two 4-oz filet mignons 10 spears asparagus

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 warm 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 1½ 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 for Monday …………………………… single portion for Thursday:

baked beans + ham next Thursday, 2021-08-25,
tomato I will present some Breakfast Beverages
apple or grapes or strawberriesFind a new favorite breakfast in the Archives
mushrooms
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

felafel pattieshttps://wordpress.com/block-editor/post/fastingme.com/11013salad greens + grapefruit sections
baby spinach leaves + pickled beetsavocado + hard-boiled egg
red cabbage slaw + lemon juicechicken
hard-boiled egg + olive oillime-flavored oil + white wine vinegar
Sparkling waterSparkling water

Hieronymus Bosch

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 1981lluciana and Healthy Desire who are now Following.

On August 8, 1516, Hieronymus Bosch died and the legends began. So did the forgeries. Bosch [not his real surname, but he chose it to honor his hometown ‘s-Hertogenbosch] was the most famous painter of his time. While he drew from the compositions of his predecessors, Bosch was the most copied artist for the next century — with many of those works ‘signed’ with his name. His ‘surreal’ style of art struck a real chord with his contemporaries. The late 1400s was a time of pessimism and the church preached that people should fear Divine Retribution. Savonarola with his bonfires was on the same wave-length. Bosch took this to heart since he was a religious conservative who thought that some clergy were part of the problem. His art spotlighted the sins of humankind, constantly repeating that repentance would help us to avoid a horrible punishment in Hell. Few artists were so inventive in their depictions of the netherworld as Hieronymus. One of Bosch’s most famous works is the Garden of Earthly Delights, a triptych begun in 1490. The left-hand panel shows the totally innocent Adam and Eve in Eden, while demons fall from Heaven as Lucifer is thrown out. The middle panel depicts a landscape with rather sex-less, nude, White and Black Barbie-doll figures disporting in all sorts of merriment — activities that will land them in the Hell depicted in the right-hand panel. There, those Barbie-dolls experience the horror of dreadful demons and cruel punishments. The artist was not all about monsters: he produced works on Biblical themes, such as Christ Carrying the Cross [in Vienna]; the Adoration of the Magi; and St Christopher Carrying the Christ Child which show his command of landscape perspective, color use, and depicting the human form. There are only about 20 works which have been attributed to Bosch and many more by his students and copiers.

To me, an hilarious aspect of the Garden of Earthly Delights painting is the giant fruit. In our house, if one picks a particularly large strawberry, it is dubbed ‘an Hieronymus Bosch berry.’ Our breakfast features strawberries and other fruits. To Bosch those represented lust and gluttony — to me, they represent a healthy breakfast. Our dinner involves good ingredients roasted under high heat, but no Fires of Hell are involved.

Red White and Blue150 calories 1 g fat 2.6 g fiber 14.5 g protein 20 g carbs [10.5 g Complex] 331 mg Calcium  NB: Food values given are for the plated foods only, and do not include the optional beverage. PB GF – if using GF bread Ricotta is higher in protein and Calcium than cottage cheese, but you could substitute that if you wish.

½ cup fat-free ricotta ¼ cup blueberries, fresh or frozen [if frozen, keep frozen until ready to use] ½ cup sliced strawberries, fresh or frozen [after slicing, put into a strainer to let the juices drain] 1 slice of 70-calorie multi-grain bread [Nature’s Own/ Dave’s Thin-Sliced] 2 large pinches of cinnamon sugar  Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 caloriesOptional: 5 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie  [88 calories]

Fish Roasted with Vegetables290 calories 5 g fat 5 g fiber 29 g protein 16 g carbs 180 mg Calcium  PB GF Delicious one-pan meal. AND it is low in calories and fat. Can you believe that a women’s magazine had a similar recipe for 425 calories!!

4 oz pollock, halibut, or other white fish 1½ slice [0.2 oz] American/streaky bacon 2 oz carrots in ½” chunks 2 oz Brussel sprouts cut in half 2 oz cauliflower florets, cut in half or quarters 3 oz cherry tomatoes, cut in half 1 Tbsp Parmesan cheese 

Set the oven at 450 degrees F. Cook the bacon in an 8” oven-proof pan, such as cast iron. Remove the bacon, chop it and set aside. Put the prepared vegetables in the pan and toss to coat with the bacon fat. Salt and pepper to taste. Roast for 10 minutes. Remove the pan of vegetables from the oven. If you think they will need more than 10 minutes more of cooking, put them back in for 2-3 minutes. They will not be cooked through at this point. Turn oven down to 400 degrees F. Move the vegetables aside so the fish will sit on the hot pan, with the vegetables nest to it. Salt and pepper the fish. Return the pan to the oven and bake 5-10 minutes more, depending on the thickness of the fish. Sprinkle the entire contents of the pan with Parmesan cheese and bacon. You could eat it right from the pan.

Diet vs Lifestyle

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.

Diet” can mean: a) one’s usual or habitual food [noun]; b) a type of food recommended for a specific purpose; c) a way of eating sparingly to reduce one’s weight. When people say, “I’ve gained my ‘Covid 19’ and now I have to go on a diet” they mean that they are going to eat less to achieve a goal of weight loss. And then what? Can’t tell you how often I’ve heard, “We were on the South Beach/low carb/cabbage soup diet and we lost 30 pounds! And then we regained it.” That’s the trouble with ‘diets.’ You might deprive yourself of certain food groups for a while, but you can’t/won’t live like that for the rest of your life. And the weight comes back.

Lifestyle” can mean: a) the usual way of life of a group of people [noun]; b) associated with or promoting a more desired way of living [adjective]. For a new way of eating or behaving to be ongoing, it must be something you are comfortable to be doing all your life. Can you eat this way and still enjoy a social life? If so, this is described as a ‘sustainable’ behavior. If you are thinking about altering your current “usual or habitual food” to make it so that it will be “promoting a more desired way of living,” then think carefully about the long-term. Slow, incremental weight loss is shown to be preferable to quick weight loss. Learning to eat better for life is the key.

Now you know why I refer to the way we eat as the Fasting Lifestyle. It is a way of eating that requires only two days of behavior change, in the form of eating fewer calories. Look at today’s meals — couldn’t you eat like this twice a week for the rest of your life if it meant that the weight would come off and stay off?

Cheese ScrOmelette:  154 calories 9.6 g fat  1 g fiber 12 g protein 5 g Carb [4.5 g Complex] 108 mg Calcium  NB: Food values shown are for the ScrOmelette and fruit only, and do not include the optional beveragesPB GF  What a classic. Why not eat this often?

1½ two-oz eggs  HINT: If you are serving one person, crack three 2-oz eggs into a small bowl or glass measuring cup. Whip up those eggs and pour half of their volume into a jar with a lid and put it in the ‘fridge for next week.  ¼ oz cheese such as Cheddar or Gruyere 1.5 oz applesauce or 2.5 oz strawberries  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]

Whisk the eggs with seasonings to taste. Grate the cheese. Put the eggs into a hot pan spritzed with cooking spray. Once the bottom of the eggs is set, sprinkle with cheese, fold and plate. Slice fruit, brew optional beverage, blend the optional smoothie or take it from the ‘fridge and shake it before serving.

Antipasto with chicken: 252 calories 11 g fat 4 g fiber 22.6 g protein 29 g carbs 208 mg Calcium  PB GF  This one is a keeper. Simple, off the shelf, pretty on the plate, good to eat. HINT: The recipe and photo show enough for 2 people. Invite a guest who is Fasting, too.

This generous platter serves two.

2 oz roasted red pepper, without oil [I roast my own, slice and freeze them] 2 oz mozzerella, cut into ‘sticks’ [buy it in blocks] 3 oz chicken breast, cooked  5 oz tomato slices 3 oz whole green beans, steamed, drained, cooled 1½ oz marinated mushrooms 1/3 c. garbanzo beans, drained if canned 4 black olives, pitted and sliced 3 slices pepperoni, chopped 1 tsp flavored olive oil flavorful finishing salt chopped fresh herbs 

Prepare the ingredients and keep separate. Combine the garbanzoes with the chopped pepperoni. On a platter, arrange the ingredients in rows as shown in the photo. Suit your own artistic nature as to what goes where. Drizzle on the flavored oil. Be liberal with the fresh herbs.

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

1 slice 70-calorie multi-grain bread1.5 two-oz eggs  + Bing cherries
strawberries +/or blueberries, fresh or frozen3%-fat ham + leek/scallion
fat-free ricotta cheesegarlic + mushrooms
chicken liver pate OR chicken liver
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

4 oz pollock or other white-fleshed fish 4 oz filet mignon + butter + olive oil
American/streaky bacon + cauliflowerportobello mushroom cap + shallot
carrots + brussel sproutswhite wine + heavy cream
cherry tomatoes + Parmesan cheesegrainy mustard + fresh tarragon + asparagus
Sparkling waterSparkling water

James Baldwin

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 Master Magic University and ketodietreviews who are now Following.

James Baldwin was born in Harlem on August 2, 1924. His mother was single and his father was not in the picture. Strike One. His step-father was a Baptist minister and young James had success as a preacher in his mid-teens. But he looked around Harlem and found that he was not happy. Reading was an escape and he read everything he could. In high school, he wrote for the school newspaper and was a published author by the time he was graduated. College had to wait while Baldwin worked to support his mother and his siblings after his step-father died. On the job and on the streets, he was shown that he could not succeed because he was Black. Strike Two. While working part-time jobs, he wrote essays and poems, which lead to work as a reviewer. His former religious life left him with questions about his sexuality. Strike Three. When his best friend committed suicide, Baldwin decided that he had to flee Harlem and the United States. lest he end up as a statistic. With $40 and a one-way ticket, he left for Paris in 1948. All he knew about France was from reading the works of Balzac, but he learned the language and found that felt at home there. His first novel, Go Tell It On The Mountain, was published in 1953. In a later interview, Baldwin said, “The French gave me what I could not get in America, which was a sense of ‘If I can do it, I may do it.’ ” From the other side of the ocean, Baldwin began to write more and more about racism in America and the equal rights movement. On visits to the US, he met and worked with the leaders of the movement. Plays, short stories, and essays were his way of being a ‘witness to the truth.’ Although in his last years he was a professor at an American college, he died in his little house in Provence, with its wonderful view of the Mediterranean.

For his Harlem childhood, a breakfast based on the soul-food favorite, Red Beans & Rice. For his love of France, a meal that would be at home in Provence, just like James Baldwin. Watch If Beale Street Could Talk on Hulu.

Red Beans & Rice Bake: 138 calories 5 g fat 2.4 g fiber 8 g protein 15 g carbs 54 mg Calcium   NB: The food values given above are for the egg bake and fruit only, not the optional beverages.  PB GF  Eggs are a fine vehicle for left-over foods. This combination is particularly good. Plan to make it some morning after the next time you serve Red Beans & Rice.

1 two-oz egg 3 Tbsp red beans & rice  large pinch of garlic powder 1 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]

Spritz a ramekin with oil or non-stick spray and set the toaster oven at 350 F. Whisk the egg with salt, garlic powder, and pepper to taste. Stir in the red beans & rice. Bake for 12-15 minutes. Plate with the pear.

Langostino with Garlic:  264 calories 3.4 g fat 9 g fiber 26 g protein 35 g carb 120 mg Calcium  PB GF  I wish I knew the source of this recipe, because I really like it. ‘Langoustine’ is either a large shrimp or the tail of a Norway lobster, according to LaRousse. Sometimes you find them frozen and when I see them, I buy them. HINT: the amounts shown serve TWO people. This is a good meal to share and more difficult to cut down for one serving. If you are into leftovers, make the whole thing and enjoy it for lunch or even dinner on a Slow Day.

1 tsp olive oil 2 clove garlic, chopped pinch of hot pepper flakes 5 oz langostino chunks or 4½ oz cleaned shrimp/prawns 5 oz broccoli florets or asparagus, cut into 2” pieces 1 cup cabbage, sliced [3 oz] 2 Tbsp dry white wine salt & pepper 15 oz tomatoes, coarsley chopped or canned diced tomatoes ¾ c white beans, rinsed and drained ½ cup fish stock

Pour the tomatoes through a sieve, saving the juice that drains out. Heat the oil in a saute pan or wok. Add the garlic and pepper flakes to the pan and stir for 10 seconds or less – you don’t want to burn the garlic. Add the broccoli [or asparagus] and cabbage. Saute for 3-4 minutes. If the pan gets too dry [ie: no sound of cooking], add some reserved tomato juices and/or some of the fish stock. Pour in the wine, then sprinkle in the salt and pepper. Cook to reduce the wine to almost gone. Add the beans, tomatoes, and remaining fish stock. Cook until liquid is reduced by half, about 6 minutes. Add the langostine/shrimp/prawns and cook to thicken the broth. The prep is fussy, the cooking is quick, the result is delicious. If you wish, serve with a side salad of 1 cup baby greens, sprinkled with a quality vinegar and herbs. Or stir the greens into the saute pan at the last minute to wilt them.

de Tocqueville

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.

Alexis [Charles Henri Clérel] de Tocqueville was born in 1805, during the heady days of the post-French Revolution/Neo-Napoleonic euphoria. Despite the fact that his was a noble family and the ‘enemy’ of the revolutionaries, de Tocqueville was a pro-government man. In 1830, his family ran afoul of the regime and was exiled. But Alexis was still in favor and received a commission to visit America to study the prison system. de Tocqueville and a friend traveled extensively during 1831: from the Gulf Coast to the Great Lakes; along the East Coast, along the Mississippi; and up to Canada. He returned to France and published Democracy in America in two volumes, 1835 and 1840, to great acclaim. Sociologists, historians, and political scientists still read that work today, marveling at the acuteness of his observations and the prescience of his interpretations of American life. After publishing another work, The Old Regime and the Revolution, tuberculosis caught up with him. Alexis retired to Cannes and died in 1859. de Tocqueville said that America was and would be successful if liberty, egalitarianism, individualism, populism, and laissez-faire were in balance. Let’s keep working on that.

If ever anyone came “to look for America” it was de Tocqueville. He knew more about the far corners of America than anyone. But since he never went to New Mexico, I’m guessing he never ate roasted green chilis with eggs — but we will! Our dinner is more French: asparagus and chicken in béchamel wrapped in a galette. Alexis would feel right at home.

Green Chili Scramble: 137 calories 7 g fat 1 g fiber 11 g protein 10 g carbs 59 mg Calcium  NB: Food values shown are for the ScrOmelette and fruit only, and do not include the optional beverages.  PB GF  Ever since his grad school days in New Mexico, Son v.2.0 urges us to put roasted green chilis in everything. The taste with eggs is classic.

Three 2-oz eggs of which you will use 1½ eggs per person 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.   1½ Tbsp roasted green chilis from New Mexico 1½ oz navel orange OR 1.5 oz apple   Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories] or lemon in hot water Optional: 5 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie  [88 calories]

Whisk the eggs with the chilies along with salt & pepper to taste. Scramble to your taste in a non-stick-pan spritzed with cooking spray. Plate with the fruit and dream of the New Mexico landscape [Georgia O’Keefe, not Walter White]

Asparagus & Chicken Galettes: 263 calories 8.4 g fat 3 g fiber 20 g protein 29 g carbs 61 mg Calcium  PB  This is a delightful meal for Springtime or anytime you can get good asparagus. It is made even better by being so simple to prepare. AND it tastes good — what more could you want? HINT: Serves 2 [two] persons.

3 oz asparagus, woody ends snapped off 3½ oz chicken breast, cooked or raw 5 buckwheat galettes   5 Tbsp Bechamel sauce with cheese cherry tomatoes and carrot sticks

Cut asparagus in 1” pieces. If the meat is cooked, shred it into the size pieces you want. If the meat is raw, slice into bite-sized strips. Put the asparagus in water that is strongly simmering for 2 minutes, uncovered, then add the raw chicken. Continue to simmer until both are cooked. Drain off the water and save it [for soup; for baking]. If the meat was previously cooked, add it now along with the Bechamel. Warm thoroughly, adding the cooking water if too thick. Season to taste and spoon onto warmed galettes. Serve immediately with raw vegetables.

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

1 two-oz egg1.5 two-oz eggs 
3 Tbsp red beans & riceGruyere or Cheddar cheese
garlic powderapple or strawberry
pear
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

langostino/shrimp/prawns + fish stockroasted red peppers without oil + whole green beans
olive oil + garlic + hot pepper flakesmozzarella cheese + black olives + chickpeas
broccoli or asparagus + white beanschicken breast meat + pepperoni + flavored oil
Cabbage + dry white wine + tomatoes tomato slices + marinated mushrooms
Sparkling waterSparkling water

Saint Anne

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.

Saint Anne is the legendary mother of Mary, the mother of Jesus. I say ‘legendary’ because there is no biblical reference to Mary’s family, thus legends fill in the gaps. Anne was first named as Mary’s mother in the Gospel of James, penned in 150 CE, which was condemned by St Jerome and three popes for its ‘absurdities’. The oldest church in her honor was dedicated in 550 CE in Constantinople. According to the Christian legend, Anne/Hannah was the wife of Joachim, while in the Quran, she is the wife of Imran. When Mary was a child, Anne dedicated her to a life of service in the Temple — who would think that the Temple was set up for day-care?? Tradition says that Mary became a weaver of prayer shawls and vestments. In the 15th century, it was proposed that Anne’s conception of Mary was by Divine Intervention, just as the conception of Jesus was immaculate. Let us remember that everything we “know” about Saint Anne is conjecture: by clerics and by artists. Anne is a very popular topic for artists, leading to lovely mother-and-child works which portray Mary being taught to read by her mother.

For the Feast Day of Saint Anne, July 26, we will eat foods that have been enjoyed in the levant for centuries. True, there were no tomatoes or bell peppers in the Eastern Mediterranean 2000+ years ago, but we can make up for lost time and enjoy them today.

Shakshuka: 158 calories 8 g fat 5 g fiber 12 g protein 17 g carbs [17 g Complex] 144 mg Calcium   NB: The food values given above are for the egg bake only, not the optional beverages.  PB GF This breakfast from the Eastern Mediterranean is a real treat. If you prepare part of it the night before, then morning meal prep is very easy.  HINT: This recipe serves 2 [two] people. Easily doubled or tripled. This prepares and bakes in one pan!

2 two-oz eggs 1/3 cup sliced onion 1/3 cup sliced red pepper 1 clove garlic, sliced 10 oz whole tomatoes ¾ oz feta cheese, cubed or crumbled 2 large pinches each of ground cumin + paprika + cayenne   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]

Saute onion and pepper, using non-stick spray, until very soft – about 20 minutes. Add garlic and cook 1-2 minutes more until it is tender. Add spices and cook one minute. Add tomatoes, salt, and pepper. Simmer 10 minutes until mixture is thicker and some of the tomato liquid has cooked off. Add feta cheese.  [TIP: you could do this the night before and stop here] Set the oven to 375 degrees F.  If serving two, the mixture could be divided into two separate dishes for baking/serving or kept in one larger dish. Using the back of a spoon, press an indentation in the vegetables, one for each egg. Carefully break one egg per person into the indentations. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Bake 7-10 minutes. If you want the yolk to cook, put a lid on the pan for the last 2 minutes. Garnish with cilantro or flat-leaf parsley.

Felafel Pockets: 273 calories 5.5 g fat 8 g fiber 14 g protein 48 g carbs 90 mg Calcium  PB  This preparation uses two pita pockets from one pita bread. Each serving is 1½ pockets. [HINT: Save the other part for tomorrow’s lunch] 

1 whole wheat pita bread, about 140 calories  6 falefel patties total, 3 per pita pocket  ½ cup vegetable salsa**

Prepare the salsa and let stand while you warm the felafel. Cut the pita bread into 2 equal pockets. If frozen, warm the felafel. Put some of the salsa into each pocket, then add 3 felafel patties. Spoon the remaining salsa on top. Cut one of the filled pockets in half and eat that tomorrow.

**Vegetable salsa: makes 1 cup ½ cup diced fresh tomatoes ½ cup diced red or yellow bell peppers 2 Tbsp red onion, chopped toss vegetables with 1 Tbsp lemon juice

Slow Days: Summertime 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 you can splurge, as long as it isn’t everyday. For what to eat on Slow Days, Dr. Mosley recommends a Mediterranean Diet. As for how we eat, an example follows.

Jacques Pepin is a darned good chef. Perhaps it is the fact that he was formerly the Executive Chef of the Howard Johnson’s chain that caused him to promote simple-to-prepare food that is achievable for the ‘average’ cook. One such recipe, from his book Fast Food My Way, is called Summertime Pasta. [When he talks about Fast Food, he means the kind that is quick to prepare, not the type we eat on a FAST Day***. ] If ever there was a time when one wants to keep prep time to a minimum, Summer is it. It amazes me how easy this meal is on the cook and how fine it is to eat it. We dine on it ourselves and serve it to company. It is that good.

The mise en place for two servings of Summertime Pasta
Sv 4Sv 2 
3 c. tomatoes in ½“ dice
1 ½ c. zucchini in ½“ dice
1 c. white mushrooms, ½” dice
1 tsp salt + black pepper
1/3 c. extra-virgin olive oil  
6 oz diced tomatoes
¾ c diced zucchini
½ c diced mushrooms
½ tsp salt + black pepper
3 Tbsp EVOO
Mix everything in a microwavable glass bowl.
6 oz pasta shells, whole wheat
2 qts water
salt
3 oz shells, whole wheat
1 qt water
salt
20 minutes before serving, bring the water and salt to a boil. Add the pasta and cook about 7 minutes until al dente. Drain.
Microwave the vegetables for 2 minutes or longer until they are lukewarm.
1 c. grated Parmesan cheese ½ c ParmesanCombine the drained pasta with the warm vegetables, then stir in the cheese.
1½ c. Fresh basil leaves, shredded ¾ c. Fresh basil leavesPlate, and top with basil.
Every meal looks delicious with edible flowers as a garnish.

If you wish, you can add chunks of chicken or grilled shrimp to the dish to add more protein. Delicious.

Snow peas are also a nice addition.

***Truth be told, I do have a version of this recipe that is fine for a Fast Day. One of these days, I will share it with you.

Comparing Plans: 30 per Week

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. 

Diets should be designed to help you become healthier, usually by losing weight. And that is a good thing, but often when people diet by cutting out food groups, they become less healthy because there is not enough variety in their food. When that happens, nutrients are lost, along with fiber. But inside your intestines, where your food is digested and absorbed into the body, something else happens: the loss of microbiota. Studies have shown that the less the diversity of your microbiota, the less healthy you are in the long run. The ’30 per Week’ challenge has you aiming to eat at least 30 different plants each week — vegetables, fruits, grains, seeds, leaves — to boost microbiota populations. Think that is difficult? If you eat a slice of whole wheat bread for breakfast, that is from only one plant. If you switch to 10-grain bread, then you are one-third toward the goal! Folks who are following a Mediterranean Diet or a Plant-Based Diet or a MIND Diet will see that this way of eating will be easy to fold into their meal plans.

This plan dovetails nicely with the Fast Diet, since lots of meals can be constructed that meet the <300 calorie goal, but also have a variety of plant matter. It is true that I could eat a breakfast of a cheese omelette which contains no plants at all, but that might be one meal of 14 in a week. Dear Husband and I have found it to be an interesting and highly achievable challenge to eat 30 per Week. Try it!

Is this food allowed on this diet…30 per WeekOn Fast Days
Fatty Animal protein: beef, lamb, porkIn moderationYes
Lean Animal protein: chicken, turkeyYesYes, preferred
Eggs Yes Yes 
Beer, wine, cocktailsWine, maybeOn Slow Days
Grains, starches: whole grain versionsyesin moderation
Nuts + seedsYes in moderation
Beans, legumes: peas, kidney beans, lentils, chickpeasYes Yes 
Seafood protein, especially with Omega-3 fatsYesYes 
Apples, melons, pears, all other fruitsYesYes 
Berries of all kindsYes Yes 
Leafy green vegetables: spinach, chard, kale, lettuceYesYes 
Dairy: Cheese, milk, yogurt In moderationSome 
Vegetable oils: olive, canolaYes in moderation
Animal fat: butterIn moderationin moderation
Root vegetables: beets, sweet potatoes, carrotsYesYes 
Other vegetables: onions, tomatoes, peppersYesYes 
Higher fiberYes Yes
Daily Carb intakeVariety of grainsKeep it low
Whole grains Yes Yes
Simple carbs: cookies, pastries, cake, bread, processed foodsNot recommendedNot on Fast Day
Number of days per week to follow the regimin 7 of 72 of 7
Do calories matter?No Only 600 on Fast Days

The breakfast today contains 5 different plants, while the dinner provides 6 more. See how easy that was?

Flamenco ScrOmelette: 152 calories 7 g fat 2 g fiber 10 g protein 11 g carbs [10 g Complex] 51 mg Calcium  NB: Food values shown are for the ScrOmelette and fruit only, and do not include the optional beverages.  PB GF  The same flavors of a tapas meal now found in your breakfast scramble. Very good.

1½ two-oz eggs HINT: If you are serving one person, crack three 2-oz eggs into a small bowl or glass measuring cup. Whip up those eggs and pour half of their volume into a jar with a lid and put it in the ‘fridge for next week 1½ Tbsp tomato puree ¾ oz bell peppers, chopped 1½ Tbsp onions, chopped 2 pinches cayenne pepper + large pinch chopped parsley + salt to taste 1 oz pear  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]

If starting the night before: Put the peppers and onions in a micro-wave safe container and nuke them for 1 minute. Stir in the tomato puree and the seasonings. Leave on counter overnight.

If starting at breakfast-time: Spritz a saute pan with non-stick spray and heat it. Put the vegetables into the hot saute pan to cook, then add the eggs and seasonings. Scramble together [or cook like an omelette] until the way you like it. Plate with the melon, pour your beverages of choice. Great flavors.

Santa Barbara Salad: 280 calories 13 g fat 6 g fiber 16 g protein 21 g carbs 106 mg Calcium  PB GF  From a Washington Post food column, this salad sings of California.  HINT: This amount serves 2 [two]. Invite a friend or save for lunch later in the week.

½ head Boston or buttercrunch lettuce 1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes ½ medium apple, cored and diced ½ cup diced chicken breast ¼ cup chickpeas 1 oz soft goat cheese 1½ tsp pine nuts 1 Medjool date ½ two-oz egg, hardboiled  per serving: 1½ tsp cinnamon dressing

First prepare the dressing and refrigerate. Next, toast the pinenuts until they just begin to brown. Take off heat and set aside. Shred the lettuce and put in a bowl along with all the other ingredients. Toss with 1½ tsp dressing per serving. Play a Beach Boys song and wear your sunglasses.

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

1 two-oz egg + whole tomatoes1.5 two-oz eggs 
feta cheese + paprika + garlicroasted green chilis
orange/red bell pepper + onionapple
cumin + cayenne
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

6 felafel patties https://wordpress.com/block-editor/post/fastingme.com/11013chicken breast meat, raw or cooked
fresh tomato + one 140-calorie pita breadbechamel sauce w/ cheese
orange/yellow bell pepper5 buckwheat galettes
red onion + lemon juiceasparagus
Sparkling waterSparkling water

Rome Burned

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 edwardlorilla2051tower who is now Following.

In 64 CE, the great capital of the Roman Empire caught on fire. This was a serious problem in the closely-packed city with people cooking over fire at home and giving burnt offerings to the gods in temples. The fire seems to have started in the shops on the grounds of the Circus Maximus — the site of chariot race in the movie Ben Hur. Quickly it spread through the crowded city of one million, burning for six days. Once it was out, it started again. Three days later, 10 of the 14 districts of the city were destroyed. Did the Emperor Nero play his fiddle as he watched Rome burn? No, because violins had not yet been invented yet. Besides, he was out of town, vacationing. Nero laid the blame on that new Jewish sect and cheerfully set out to eradicate the Christians. Nero’s detractors said that Nero was happy about the fire — had even started it as a form of urban renewal — so that he could build a huge new palace complex. Indeed, the fire spurred moves toward city planning. Streets by law became wider and less-flammable building materials were mandated. Fire patrols walked the neighborhoods, looking for fires to control. The Pantheon/Church of Saint Mary and the Martyrs was rebuilt of stone and cement as a result. The unsupported dome of the Pantheon influenced architecture for centuries. Should you ever visit the city, think of the horror of ancient Rome on fire.

The Roman Empire surrounded the Mediterranean Sea, called ‘Mare Nostrum’ or ‘our sea’ by the Romans. Our meals come from the island of Sicily and the waters of the Mediterranean. What would Nero have eaten? Let’s not go there.

Sicilian Bake:  138 calories 8 g fat 1 g fiber 10 g protein 8.4 g carbs 88 mg Calcium   NB: The food values given above are for the egg bake and fruit only, not the optional beverages.  PB GF  Lynn Rosetto Kasper tells of shepherds in Sicily spending the summer in the high meadows with their flocks. They make a salad, based on simple ingredients. That recipe informed the flavors of this breakfast.


1 two-ounce egg half of a 3” diameter thin slice of salami ½ clove garlic, minced 2 Tbsp sheep sorrel or arugula, coarsely chopped ½ Tbsp Parmesan-Reggiano cheese or pecorino cheese, grated 1 Tbsp ricotta cheese 5 cherries  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]

Chop the salami and put it in a small, dry, non-stick skillet with the garlic. Cook, stirring, until salami is getting a little crispy. Take pan off heat and stir in the greens. Spritz an oven-safe dish with non-stick spray. Put the warmed ingredients into the prepared dish. Whisk the egg with the cheeses, plus salt and pepper to taste. Pour into the prepared dish, and bake at 350F. For 12-15 minutes. Plate with the cherries. 

Mackerel Puttanesca: 298 calories 17 g fat 3 g fiber 22.6 g protein 7.6 g carbs 66.4 mg Calcium  PB GF Such an easy summer meal, especially if your sauce is left-over homemade or from the supermarket shelf. Delicious and satisfying. [Don’t be concerned about the fat: since the mackerel is high in Omega 3, the fat is ‘good fat’]

4 oz mackerel or other rich, oily fish ¼ cup puttanesca sauce, homemade or from a jar 2 oz green beans

If using fresh fish, broil the fish for 4-5 minutes per side to cook it.   If using mackerel which has been frozen after cooking, thaw to room temperature. NB: Mackerel does not keep well in the fridge uncooked. If you have to buy mackerel prior to the day you will serve it, filet the fish and broil it as soon as you get back to the kitchen. Then you can hold it for a day or two, or freeze it for longer. Mackerel does not freeze well uncooked. Cook the green beans. Gently heat the sauce and mackerel together in a covered pan until warm. Plate. Done in minutes!