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

Clean Monday

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.

Clean Monday”  Does this sound like something Marie Kondo would do? She probably would. But tomorrow, the start of the 7th week before Easter [in the Greek Orthodox Church], is a very special day in Greece.  It is the beginning of Lent, a time of penance.  Clean Monday, “Kathari Deftera,” commences the night before, with people apologizing to those whom they have wronged. [Clean Conscience]  The next step involves eating fish and sea food — lots of it. [Clean Diet, free from meat]  And don’t forget Flying Kites!!  Families go to parks or the countryside to launch 100s of kites in honor of Spring. [Good Clean Fun]                                                                                                                                                    We should all have a Clean Day at some point.  Start now.  Be kind, crank up your Fasting, and let your kite transport you to a new level of optimism that THIS time, you can lose weight.

Herring Plate:  195 calories   8 g fat   4.4 g fiber   8 g protein   13.7 g carbs [11.7 g Complex]     33 mg Calcium   NB: The food values given above are for the main dish only, not the optional beverages.  PB  V  If you like herring, this is for you.  It makes a nice change from morning eggs and comes together in no-time-flat.  NB: If you are taking an MOAI anti-depressant medication, ask your physician if you can eat herring safely since it is high in tyramine.herring Plate w: cherries

3 Finn Crisp crackers                                                                                                                             1.25 oz herring marinated in wine [not sour cream]                                                                                                2 Tbsp whipped cream cheese                                                                                                                          4 Bing cherries OR ½ cup strawberries, sliced                                                                                     3 oz berry-yogurt smoothie [44 calories] or natural apple cider                                                        blackish coffee [53 calories] or tea or lemon in hot water                                                           Do I need to describe this preparation? Spread the cream cheese on the crackers and pile on the herring. Delicious and so satisfying.

Greek-style Hake:   257 calories   9 g fat   5.5 g fiber  25 g protein   25 g carbs [23 g Complex]  181 mg Calcium   PB GF   The cookbook Ikaria by Diane Kochilas is centered in on of the National Geographic study of locations world-wide where there is the greatest longevity. Thinking that nutrition has something to do with longevity is one direction that study could take you.Greek-style Hake

4 oz hake                                                                                                                                                    ½ tsp olive oil                                                                                                                                    ¼ cup onions, halved then sliced                                                                                                            ½ clove garlic, cut in half                                                                                                             pinch sugar                                                                                                                                      1 cup canned whole tomatoes                                                                                                                     1 Tbsp [½ oz] dry red wine                                                                                                                         1 Tbsp good Feta cheese, crumbled                                                                                                                one Side Salad [see Second Fiddles 9-Jan-’19]

Saute the onion slices and garlic in the ½ tsp oil, adding some water if the pan becomes too dry. Remove garlic and discard. Add tomatoes, sugar, and wine. Cook the vegetables down to reduce the liquid. Lay the fish on top of the vegetables, cover loosely, turn down the heat and cook until the fish flakes [about 10 minutes]. Meanwhile, prepare the Side Salad. Top the fish with the crumbled Feta before serving.

 

 

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

Creole Carnival!

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.                                                                                Welcome to Rekol Group who is now Following.

If people on the Gulf Coast of the USA says, “I’m Creole,” they could be telling you that they are native born or they are saying they are of mixed stock.  In the 1600s, when French and Spanish Colonizers moved to the area, everyone except for the Native Americans was ‘from away.’  After a generation or two, there were people who were native-born of European stock.  The snobs would distinguish them from true Europeans, by designating the born-on-American-soil people as “Creole.”  Later, those bloodlines included Native American and African lineages.  So Creoles became ingredients in the mixture called the American melting pot. So it is with creole food.  This cuisine evolved in New Orleans: a subtile, sophisticated use of local ingredients put together with flavors influenced by France and Arab Africa.  [NB: Creole does not equal Cajun.  Two different people, with two different stories.]                                                                                                                             It is Carnival time in New Orleans: a time to party with the tourists.  Technically, the word ‘carnival’ means “farewell to meat,” as one was supposed to use up all the meat, fats, and eggs in the house so that one wouldn’t eat them during Lent. “Mardi Gras” or Fat Tuesday was the last day to get those foods off the menu.  So tomorrow it will be eggs for breakfast, seasoned with lots of spices and the creole signature of green pepper-onion-tomato.  Those same flavors appear in dinner’s Jambalaya, along with several meats.

Creole Bake: 137 calories  6.5 g fat  2.1 g fiber  8.4 g protein  11.6 g carbs [10 g Complex] 67.3 mg Calcium    NB: The food values given above are for the main dish only, not the optional beverages.    PB  GF   Creole flavors add zip to the morning eggs.Creole Bake w: apples

1 two-oz egg                                                                                                                                       1.5 Tbsp tomato dice or puree                                                                                                           1 Tbsp onion, minced                                                                                                                        1 Tbsp bell pepper, minced                                                                                                               1/2 Tbsp bacon [1/8 oz], chopped and measured raw                                                                                    1.5 tsp Cheddar cheese                                                                                                           Pinch file powder + 1.5 tsp creole seasoning                                                                                              2 oz pear or apple                                                                                                                             5-6 oz fruit smoothie [79 calories] or green smoothie or natural apple cider                      blackish coffee [53 calories], blackish tea, or lemon in hot water

Put the tomato, onion, bell pepper, and bacon in a small pan with a little water and cook until the bacon is mostly cooked. Spritz an oven-safe pan with non-stick spray and set the oven to 350 F.   Whisk the egg and then stir in the cheese, vegetables, and seasonings. Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 12-15 minutes. Prepare your beverages of choice and slice the fruit.

Jambalaya:  275 calories   5 g fat   4 g fiber 14.8 g protein  39 g carbs   81 mg Calcium    PB GF      What else would you eat for Mardi Gras? Or any other time you want delicious Creole  comfort food: jambalaya, of course.   HINT: This recipe makes enough to serve 4 [four]. Invite friends.

Jambalaya w: broc

2/3 cup onion, chopped                                                                                                                   2 cloves garlic, chopped                                                                                                                    2 tsp creole seasoning                                                                                                                         ½ cup green pepper, chopped                                                                                                              1/3 cup celery, chopped                                                                                                                      2 oz andouille  sausage [or sweet Italian], sliced                                                                            3 oz chicken breast, cubed                                                                                                                                2 oz [½ cup] ham, cubed                                                                                                                 12 oz crushed tomatoes                                                                                                                 1/3 tsp crushed red pepper +  1/3 tsp black pepper +  2/3 tsp salt  +   ¾ tsp file powder                                                     ½ tsp Tabasco sauce +  1.5 tsp Worcestershire sauce                                                                              ¾ cup brown rice                                                                                                                                   1.5 cups chicken broth                                                                                                                      2 oz broccoli

Cook the onion in a little water and a dash of olive oil until translucent. Add the garlic and cajun seasoning and cook until fragrant. Stir in the green pepper and celery and then add the meats. Pour in the tomatoes, seasonings and sauces, the rice, and broth. Cover and simmer for 25-40 minutes, stirring every once in a while to prevent sticking. The mixture will not be soupy, as the rice will have absorbed the liquids. Cook uncovered if too much liquid remains. Portion the jambalaya and freeze what you don’t use today.  Prepare the broccoli and plate.

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

 

Saint Walburga

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.                                                                    Welcome to Raluca S. who is now Following.

Saintliness seems to run in families.  This was certainly the case for Saint Walburga. She was born in Devon [now part of England] in 710, to a well-to-do Saxon family.  Her father was St Richard and her mother was Winna, sister of St Boniface [born Winfrid].  Walburga’s brothers were St Willibald and St Winnibald.  [I could not make this up if I tried.]  What does a family of saints talk about at dinner?  Prayer, I suppose. And Fasting, no doubt, since Walburga was known for it.  In her day, Walburga ran several religious houses and some credit her with being the first female author of England and Germany since she wrote a biography of her brother.  After she died on February 25, 779, her tomb seemed to exude a liquid which is said to have healing properties.  Somehow the good saint’s story became tied in with witches and their revels on the eve of May 1st.  Called ‘Walpurgis Night,‘ it is celebrated in Scandinavia and is likened to a little Hallowe’en in the mountains of southern Germany.                                                                                                           In honor of the origins of Walburga, we’ll breakfast in the English countryside.  For her gift of the healing oil, dinner will be the good-for-what-ails-you chicken soup, long touted by grandmothers as a universal panacea.

Cottage Breakfast:   157 calories   7.5 g fat   1.2 g fiber   8.3 g protein   14.8 g carbs 38 mg Calcium   PB  I wanted a breakfast that evoked a cottage in the English country-side, so here it is. The pan muffins are very good.Cottage Bfast A

1 pan muffin [see …Not By Bread…posted 7-Feb-2018]                                                                1 oz applesauce                                                                                                                                   one 2-oz egg                                                                                                                                      5-6 oz fruit smoothie [79 calories] or green smoothie or natural apple cider                                   blackish coffee [53 calories], blackish tea, or lemon in hot water

HINT: I prepared 8 pan muffins from the 10-grain mufffin batter, cooked them, and froze them. I made the remaining batter into muffins to eat on Slow Days. Take one pan muffin from the freezer the night before and let it thaw. Cook the egg to your taste and warm the pan muffin. Dish the applesauce, brew the hot beverage, pour the smoothie. What a sweet and easy meal.

‘Therapeutic’ Chicken Soup:   278 calories   3.4 g fat   5 g fiber   18.5 g protein   36 g carbs [26 g Complex Carbs]   78 mg Calcium   PB  GF — if using GF noodles The recipe is from It’s All American Food  by David Rosengarten. Simple, filling, and Granma says it is good for you. NB: One serving = 2 cups of soup! Eat less if you need to.Therapeutic Chicken Soup

1-1/2 cups excellent chicken broth, homemade or purchased                                                          2 oz [½ cup] parsnips, diced                                                                                                             1 oz [¼ cup] carrots, in coins                                                                                                                         ¼ cup celery, sliced                                                                                                                            2 oz cooked chicken breast, cut in 1/2” cubes                                                                                1/2 oz Pennsylvania Dutch Noodles                                                                                                 3 Tbsp parsley

Prepare the vegetables. Cook the noodles in salted water until just underdone. Drain them and plunge into cold water. Drain again and hold at room temperature until needed.  Heat the stock to a simmer and add 3-4 Tbsp water, which will boil away as you cook. I added the parsnips first and cooked for about 5 minutes, then added the carrots. After another 5 minutes, I put the celery in the soup. Cook until all the vegetables are tender, then adjust the seasoning of the broth. Add the pasta and chicken. It will need extra flavor now since the pasta will have used it up. Add the parsley and cook about 5 minutes longer.

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

Italian Style

How this Fast Diet Lifestyle works: Eat these meals tomorrow. On Monday, eat the meals that will be posted on Sunday.  Eat sensibly the other days of the week.  That’s it.  Simple way to lose weight and be healthier.

“Italian Style” can mean many things.  There is the style of dressing [fashionably].  The style of driving [with abandon]. The style of decorating [looking rustically antique].  The style of living [leisurley]. The style of eating [abundantly].  From films such as “La Dolce Vita” and from books such as Under the Tuscan Sun, non-Italians suddenly get the yen to depart for Chianti-shire and never return. Italian food can be carb-laden [potato-topped pizza is a thing] or light [Mediterranean Diet, any one?] and goes way beyond pasta+tomato sauce+lots of grated cheese.  Today our meals celebrate Italian ingredients!

Aubergine ScrOmelette: 128 calories  7.5 g fat  1 g fiber 10.4 g protein 4.6 g carbs [3.5 g Complex]  61 mg Calcium   PB GF  Eggplant, or malanzana in Italian, goes back to at least the 12th century in Italy.  Once considered a cause of insanity, you could go nuts over the combination of eggplant and tomatoes. They can be cooked and frozen in season to eat all year.Aubergine ScrOmelette w: pears

1-1/2 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 to store in the ‘fridge for next week.                                       1-1/4 oz fresh tomatoes, diced OR same amount of tomato sauce, such as Hunt’s                           1-1/4 oz eggplant                                                                                                                                 ¼ oz onion OR 1 clove garlic, smashed and chopped                                                                      large pinch Herbes de Province + pinch crushed red pepper flakes                                                 1-1/4 oz pear                                                                                                                              blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or lemon in hot water                                                                       5-6 oz fruit smoothie [88 calories] or green smoothie or natural cider

Chop the eggplant and onion/garlic. Simmer the vegetables and herbes in the tomato sauce in a covered pan until they are tender. If too thick, add a little water. Whisk the eggs with the vegetables and put into a hot pan spritzed with cooking spray. Scramble or cook as an omelette. Slice the pears and prepare your beverages. Savor the flavors of summer.

Turkey Picatta:  257 calories   5 g fat   1.3 g fiber   31 g protein   21 g carbs  28 mg Calcium   GF Rush Hour Cooking provided this recipe which is one of our all-time favorites. Quick and delicious.Turkey Piccata

4 oz uncooked turkey breast                                                                                                                                      salt & pepper                                                                                                                                                             ½ tsp olive oil                                                                                                                                                                1 Tbsp white wine                                                                                                                                                      1/3 cup chicken stock                                                                                                                                                                      1.5 tsp lemon juice                                                                                                                                                                   2 Tbsp shallots, minced                                                                                                                                             pinch garlic powder                                                                                                                                                       2 tsp capers                                                                                                                                                                    3 oz tomatoes, sliced                                                                                                                                             ¼ cup brown rice

If starting the rice from scratch, cook it now. Combine the wine, stock and lemon juice. Pound the turkey meat, if needed, to even out the thickness. Sprinkle with salt & pepper.  Slice the tomatoes and sprinkle with some good salt.  Heat olive oil over medium-high heat and saute the turkey on both sides until cooked through, adding a little of the stock mixture if needed. Remove turkey to a plate and keep warm. Add the stock mixture and shallots to the pan along with the garlic powder, stirring up the brown bits on the pan. Cook down until only 3-4 tablespoons of sauce remain. Lastly add the capers. Warm the rice [if using cooked left-over rice] and slice the tomatoes. Plate the rice, drizzling 1 Tbsp sauce over it. Plate the turkey, pouring the remaining sauce on it. Plate the tomatoes.

Ingredients for next week: breakfast, single portion

1 two-oz egg 1 two-oz egg
unsweetened applesauce chicken stock
pan muffin [Not by Bread, 7-Feb-’17] mirin + soy sauce
sweet onion
asian noodles: rice/wheat/buckwheat
Whatever you need for your smoothie Whatever you need for your hot beverage
Whatever you need for your hot beverage Whatever you need for your smoothie

Dinner, single portion:

chicken breast, cooked savoy cabbage
rich chicken broth bulk Italian sausage
carrots potato
celery chickpeas or other white beans
parsnip  +  parsley onions
Egg Noodles scallion
Sparkling water Sparkling water

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.