Why so many saints?

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.

Our elder son and I were in the Louvre together. He asked me to show him what I knew about pre-Renaissance art, since I had studied it and he hadn’t. At one point I leaned in toward a medieval work to see the details and the title. “Oh. Saint Barbara,” I said. “I should have known from the tower.” Curious, my son asked what that meant. He had never learned about the “iconography” of saints in art — that every saint has an “attribute,” a symbol to carry, to stand next to, or to wear so that we can recognize them when we see them: in a statue; on a window; in a painting. [Saint Barbara’s symbol is a tower. Saint Catherine’s is a wheel.] He was as intrigued as I had been, sitting in a dark lecture hall viewing slides during Freshman year in college: it was like a secret code book to a world of identification. Fascinating! Thus I became interested in saints [and knowing their iconography got me through many art history courses]. That’s how a “nice Protestant girl” got to know a lot about saints, and why I often choose saints for blog post topics. Some of the saints are old favorites, others are obscure yet interesting. I like their stories and how they fit into old customs and cultures. By their attributes shall ye know them.

Italy and France, respectively, have more native saints than any other countries [Spain is a close third] so our foods today will come from those nations. Breakfast is named after a French Saint and the dinner from Parma recalls their patron saint, Ilario.

St Denis ScrOmelette:  144 calories 8 g fat 2.2 g fiber 12.5 g protein 6.4 g carbs [5.3 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 1 oz watermelon OR 4 Bing cherries   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]

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.

Chicken Parmesan: 238 calories 2.6 g fat 4.7 g fiber 31 g protein 11.4 g carbs 242.5 mg Calcium  PG GF – if using GF bread  At last! The restaurant classic made suitable for Fasters, with lots of protein and Calcium. And it is delicious. 

3-½ oz raw chicken breast meat, boneless, skinless 1 Tbsp Parmesan cheese, grated 1 tsp dried oregano and/or thyme ¼ oz whole-grain breadcrumbs, fresh not dried 1 Tbsp milk ¼ cup marinara sauce, homemade or jarred ¾ oz mozzerella, grated 2 Tbsp low-fat cottage cheese 1 cup baby greens + ½ oz grated carrots ½ tsp olive oil + ½ tsp red wine vinegar

Heat the toaster oven to 350F. Spritz an oven-proof pan with non-stick spray or olive oil. Pour the milk onto a small plate. On another plate combine the Parmesan, herbs, and bread crumbs with salt and pepper. Cream the other two cheeses together until well-combined. Dip the chicken in the milk on both sides. Dredge the chicken in the crumb/cheese mixture to coat it completely. Place on the oven-proof pan and spray with olive oil. Bake the chicken about 10 minutes, until golden. Top the chicken with the marinara sauce, then mound the cheese over it. Broil for 5 minutes until the cheese is melty and starting to brown. Prepare the salad ingredients and toss with dressing. For atmosphere, light a candle stuck in a wine bottle.

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

Next week I will discuss actual
menu choices made while on vacation.
1.5 two-oz eggs 
Choose a new favorite from
the Archives.
2″-diameter slice of pepperoni

mozzarella + bell pepper

crushed tomato + apple
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

Choose a new favorite dinner from
the Archives.
Chicken breast, boneless, skinless

sherry wine + carrot + broccoli

Bechamel sauce with cheese

angel hair pasta + Parmesan cheese
Sparkling waterSparkling water

Astrid Lindgren

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

When our sons were little, we read to them at bedtime and nap-time. Every children’s book was grist for our mill. At some point, we discovered The Tomten and The Fox, by Astrid Lindgren and we were all charmed by it. We read it again and again, along with The Tomten and the Christmas Tomten. Astrid Lindgren was born on November 14 in 1907 on her family’s farm in Vimmerby, Sweden. She grew up to be an author with world-wide recognition for her books, especially the best-selling Pippi Longstocking series. Astrid Lindgren was also a life-long activist for equality; for animal rights; for fair government; for fighting violence against children. She wrote: ‘A childhood without books – that would be no childhood. That would be like being shut out from the enchanted place where you can go and find the rarest kind of joy.’ Read to a child today. Give books to children for birthdays and holiday gifts. Share the joy.

The Swedes like their smoked sausage. We’ll have to substitute for their favorite ‘falukorv‘, but you’ll get the idea when you cook it with eggs at breakfast. Dinner involves, what else — herring, one of the staples of the Scandinavian diet since forever.

Smoked Sausage ScrOmelette: 299 calories 10 g fat 2.7 g fiber 19 g protein 37 g carbs 206 mg Calcium   NB: Food values shown are for the ScrOmelette and fruit only, and do not include the optional beveragesPB GF Having been gifted with Dakin smoked chicken sausage, we decided to make it a breakfast. The sausage adds a nice smokey Autumnal flavor to the eggs. If substituting another sausage, choose one that has 30 calories per ounce.

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.   3/4 oz Dakin Farm cob-smoked chicken sausage, diced 1.5 tsp each oregano and parsley, chopped 2 oz apple OR apple sauce, unsweetened  Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories]  or lemon in hot water Optional: 5-6 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie  [88 calories]

Heat a well-seasoned cast iron or non-stick pan and spritz it with oil or cooking spray. Add the prepared sausage and stir to heat . Whisk the eggs with the herbs and a grind of pepper and pour into the pan, stirring to incorporate the sausage. Cook to your favorite degree of doneness. Plate the fruit, pour your optional beverages and off you go.

Herring Salad:  278 calories 6 g fat 6.8 g fiber 16 g protein 24 g carbs 103 mg Calcium  PB GF  Eating herring goes back centuries in Scandinavia. This fine Old World recipe is from Luchow’s German Festival Cookbook. NB: if you take a MOIA anti-depressent, be aware that herring has high amounts of tyramine. 

 1- 1/2 oz herring marinated in wine, drained 1/4 cup beets, cooked, cooled and diced 1- 1/2 oz apple, peeled and diced 1/4 cup white beans, drained and rinsed 1/2 hard-boiled egg, sliced 2 Tbsp onion, minced 1/2 oz dill pickle, chopped pinch sugar 2 tsp vinegar, or more 1 cup lettuce, shredded

Put the vinegar and sugar in a bowl and whisk until the sugar dissolves. Add remaining ingredients and toss gently until everything is well-incorporated. Taste to see if it needs more sugar or more vinegar. A herring-lover’s delight.

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

1 two-oz egg1.5 two-oz eggs  + Bing Cherries
kippered herring
3% fat ham + leek or scallion
white whole wheat flour
garlic + mushrooms
milk + pear or apple
chicken liver or chicken liver pate
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

shrimp/prawns + parsley
chicken breast + marinara sauce
haddock or other white fish
optional: puff pastry
Parmesano cheese + fresh bread crumbs
smoked haddock + milk
mozzarella + cottage cheese
onion + cloves + spinach
butter + flour + bay leaf
baby greens + carrot + vinaigrette
Sparkling waterSparkling water

Saint Martin

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.

The Feast of Saint Martin used to be a really big thing. Fairs were held; it was the end of the grape harvest in France; and it was the start of the standard pre-Christmas Fasting period. What? You knew about Lent: 40 days of fasting prior to Easter. In olden times, there was a similar time of penance, reflection, and preparation prior to Christmas, beginning at Saint Martin’s day. Saint Martin followed his father as an officer in the Roman army, and was posted to Amiens, France. One cold winter day, he met a half-naked beggar man. Martin took off his cloak, cut it in half, and gave it to the man. His friends scoffed that all anyone got out of that was half a ruined cloak. That evening, Martin had a dream: Christ himself walked into his room — wearing half a cloak. Whew. That would change your life. Martin then converted to Christianity and left the army as a conscientious objector. Although he wished to be a hermit, he was pressured into being the bishop of Tours. Until the end of his life he served the church in France and Italy with great vigor. Martin died in 397 and was buried at Tours on November 11.

Martinsdag [a Northern European name for Martin’s Day] is the time to lay in supplies for winter. This included slaughtering animals to salt or smoke. Thus St Martin’s day is associated with meat-eating all over Europe. From Scotland’s sheep, we have haggis at breakfast and and from cattle pastures the world over, we have beef for dinner. Eat meat and give clothing to the poor on November 11.

Haggis ScrOmelette:  156 calories 9.2 g fat 0.9 g fiber 13 g protein 6 g carbs [3.9 g Complex] 74.4 mg Calcium  NB: Food values shown are for the ScrOmelette and fruit only, and do not include the optional beveragesGF  Haggis could be described as a Scottish lamb sausage. Some of the variety meats in the original recipe are not readily available, so this is an updated/simplified version.

Three 2-oz eggs of which you will use 1-½ 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. 1 Tbsp haggis [see SPICY II 12-Sept-2018 for recipe] 1/2 tsp HP Sauce 1 oz pear slices 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]

Spritz a non-stick pan with olive oil or non-stick spray. Whisk the eggs with the haggis, cheese, salt & pepper to taste and scramble or cook as an omelette in the pan. Plate with the applesauce and pour the optional beverages. A gateway to Scottish cuisine.

Beef BBQ Sliders:  269 calories 5.6 g fat 4.9 g fiber 22.6 g protein 30.7 g carbs 162.6 mg Calcium When a gift box of Corky’s Memphis BarBQue arrived, sliders seemed like a wonderful idea. Such fun to eat and easy to prepare, especially when the filling has been made for you. HINT: This serves TWO. Share with a friend or save half for lunch tomorrow.

3 Martins potato whole wheat slider buns  [MARTINS buns — get it?] 3.5 oz Corky’s Beef BBQ, meat and sauce per serving: 1.5 oz cherry tomatoes + ½ oz carrots

Warm the slider buns while the beef and sauce are heating. Assemble the sliders and cut each in half.  Each serving is three halves of slider. Plate with the vegetables.

Emergency Meals

Sometimes the lights go out. And how do you cope then? We have frequently experienced outages, the worst being in December of 2008. That was the year of a dreadful ice storm that hit New Hampshire like a jack hammer. Phone poles and limbs came down, trees were uprooted, and we had no electricity for 9 days. We have lost power so often [usually in the Winter] that we have a routine. We quickly remove necessary perishables [milk, butter, meat, sausage, eggs, chicken, cheese] from the freezer and refrigerator, and place the items in a camping cooler on the back porch. There, they stay cool enough to use. Then we keep the freezers and refrigerator closed and covered with blankets for the duration. By having a gas cooktop and a pantry full of useful items, we can feed ourselves and even observe Fast Days under most conditions. Recently, Hurricane Dorian plowed across Prince Edward Island where we were staying, cutting off the juice for 48 hours. We coped just fine. The following are Fast dinners we have prepared and enjoyed during black-outs. The gratin cooked nicely on the cooktop, although the recipe would have you broil it at the end. [The gratin would also be a useful breakfast meal, served without any beverages.] And the dumplings were cooked in a bamboo steamer by candle-light, as you might tell by the darkness of the photo.

Egg-Tomato Gratin: 235 calories 10 g fat 4 g fiber 16 g protein 16 g carbs [15 g Complex] 200 mg Calcium  PB GF V Jacques Pepin, in his book Fast Food My Way, tells about this family recipe. HINT: The recipe serves two. Invite a friend or save for lunch tomorrow.

3 hardboiled eggs, peeled and sliced into wedges 3 oz onions, sliced 2 tsp garlic, chopped 1 tsp dried thyme + 1 tsp salt + ½ tsp pepper 1/3 cup garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed 10 fluid oz of tomatoes, drained [save the juice] 1 oz Swiss cheese or Gruyere, grated 

Cook the onions and garlic in some of the tomato juice, about 3 minutes. Add seasonings, tomatoes and the remaining juice. If tomatoes are in large chunks, crush with a fork and add the garbanzo beans. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, simmer covered for 4 minutes. Nestle the eggs in the pan, then sprinkle with cheese. Cover and simmer another 2 minutes to warm everything and to melt the cheese. Excellent antidote to outrageous fortune.

Pork Dumplings Steamed with Bok Choy: 215 calories 8.5 g fat 2.3 g fiber 12.5 g protein 28 g carbs 190 mg Calcium  PB Our older son suggested this ‘starter recipe’ to encourage us to prepare Asian meals. NB: the dumplings were purchased at an Asian market and were very low in calories. You will need to have or to improvise a steamer to cook this.

5 pork dumplings 3-4 oz bok choy 1 Tbsp hoisin sauce dipping sauce: 2 oz black vinegar** + 2 oz soy sauce ** in lieu of black vinegar, combine equal amounts of soy sauce, rice vinegar, and water. 

Set up the steamer [mine is a bamboo version which is used with a wok]. Trim the bok choy to remove the largest parts of the center vein, and arrange the leaves on the platforms of the steamer. Put the frozen dumplings on the leaves. Close up the steamer and position it in a dry wok. Add water to the wok so that it rises over the bottom edge of the steamer but not so much that the water level comes up to the bottom tray of the steamer. Bring the water to a simmer. Let it cook for 10 minutes. Mix the hoisin sauce with some water to thin it. Combine the ingredients for the dipping sauce. Remove the bok choy to the plate and drizzle the hoisin sauce over it. Place the dumplings on the plate and serve with the dipping sauce. Despite the low calorie count, this meal is very satisfying. Other vegetables could be added, as long as their steaming time is the same as the other ingredients.

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

Next week I will discuss how to
start the Fast Diet and how to
stay on it.
Bob’s 10-Grain Cereal or equivalent 
Look for a new favorite breakfast
in the Archives
low-fat milk

blueberries, fresh or frozen


Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

Next week I will discuss how to
start the Fast Diet and how to
stay on it.
purchased dry tortellini
Look for a new favorite dinner
in the Archives
black or Tuscan kale +
red pepper flakes

garlic + tomato

olive oil + Parmesan cheese
Sparkling waterSparkling water

The Mill Town

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 FunnyJokesOf TheDay who is now Following.

We live in a Mill Town. Mill Towns began to spring up in New England in the early 1800s as people harnessed streams and rivers to run a variety of enterprises. Big Mill Towns often had a bad rep — dirty, crime-ridden, filled with the uneducated — not the sort of place ‘nice people’ would choose to live. Bennington, New Hampshire had many ‘mills’ in 1830: paper, knives, fabric, gun powder — all were made in the town. These mills were small affairs — no belching smokestacks, no teeming tenements for workers — housed in family homes clustered along the tumbling Contoocook River. Up until 1842, Bennington did not exist as a community. It was part of the agricultural town of Hancock and it was called ‘factory village.’ Hancock had no river downtown, and so the factories/mills were located in what became the town of Bennington. Now all the mills have closed except one: Monadnock Paper Mill which opened in 1819. Don’t picture some dreadful, noisy factory polluting the river — MPM has been aggressively promoted clean air and water in a carbon-neutral plant. This year they will celebrate their 200th anniversary of making specialty papers and the legacy of the Industrial Revolution in our little town. The Mill whistle still sounds at 7 am, noon, and 5 pm, making a comforting punctuation to the day.

The meals today reflect the town of Bennington’s factory history. One of the first mills was built by James Carken. There he made gun powder — until the mill blew up. Picturesque Powder Mill Pond had a restaurant in the 1980s/1990s that served their signature egg dish. As the mills prospered, immigrants moved to town. Italians [our oldest restaurant is Alberto’s], Greeks, Irish [the Catholic church was St Patrick’s], Swedes, and Swiss all made the town grow. Our dinner of corned beef and cabbage is a real working man’s meal.

Powder Mill Scramble: 141 calories 8.3 g fat 0.7 g fiber 11.2 g protein 6 g carb [5.6 g Complex] 49.8 mg Calcium   NB: Food values shown are for the Scramble and fruit only, and do not include the optional beverages. PB GF This recipe is straight out of Jerry Willis’ Powder Mill Pond Restaurant where it was a favorite. Alas, that restaurant is not more, but you can enjoy this at home.

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 ½ oz smoked salmon ½ oz or 2 Tbsp sliced scallion greens 2 oz melon or clementine or 2 oz sliced apple or 1-1/2 oz mango Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories] Optional: 5-6 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie [88 calories]

Whisk the eggs [salt and pepper may not be needed depending on the seasoning of your salmon]. Pour into a pan which has been sprayed briefly with cooking spray. Quickly, before the eggs set, add the salmon and scallions. Scramble to taste. Prepare your optional beverage. Plate with fruit of choice.

Corned Beef & Cabbage: 299 calories 22 g fat 3.8 g fiber 22.7 g protein 14.8 g carbs 220.5 mg Calcium PB GF Fannie Farmer provides the inspiration for this recipe. Add deli corned beef to creamed cabbage with cheese, and you are in the spirit of mill town America.

3 cups sliced cabbage ¼ cup plain bechamel sauce 2 oz corned beef [pre-sliced from the deli] cut into strips ½ oz deli Swiss cheese salt & pepper

Steam the cabbage for 5 minutes. Stir in the bechamel sauce, corned beef, and seasonings. Put into an oven-proof dish and lay the cheese slice on top. Bake at 350 degrees F. until the cheese melts.

Relief of Leiden

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.

Your name is Cornelis Joppenszoon and you are starving. Not the usual hunger of a young teenage boy – you and your family are literally starving. The year is 1574, and you have lived in Leiden, Holland all your life, under the rule of the hated Spaniards. For the past year, your city has been beseiged by the Spanish army under the cruel Duke of Alva/Alba in an effort to break the Dutch Resistance efforts. Thousands of your fellow-townspeople have died and many begged the mayor to yield. He offered to cut off his right arm to provide food for the people instead! But help is on the way: the dikes were breached to flood the polders around the city and brave William the Silent is on his way with a fleet of rebel soldiers. When they arrive, they hand out white bread and herring to the people. What a relief to have something to eat again! That evening, when part of the city wall collapses, you sneak out to scout around. The Spaniards had left in a hurry: their camps intact and the fires still burning. In a pot over a fire, you find a sort of stew made of vegetables. Hooray! You take it back home and that night your family and friends eat ‘hutspot’ for the first time. The seige is lifted, Spain is in retreat, and Holland might regain her freedom. Now to find more food…. 

Today’s meals reflect the food events of the Relief of Leiden, celebrated every October 3: herring for breakfast and hutspot for dinner. Young Cornelis would be satisfied.

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  PB If you like herring, this is the breakfast for you. It makes a nice change from morning eggs and it is prepared in no-time-flat. NB: Do NOT eat herring if you are taking MOAI antidepressent medicine, as herring is high in tyramine.

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  Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or mocha cafe au lait [65 calories] Optional: 5-6 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie [88 calories]

Do I need to describe this preparation? Spread the cream cheese on the crackers and pile on the herring. Delicious and so satisfying.

Hutspot with Dutch Meatballs: 243 calories 8 g fat 4 g fiber 16.8 g protein 31 g carbs [21 g Complex] 82 mg Calcium  PB GF – if using GF rye bread This recipe from Holland was a hit at our house. The sweet carrots really add something to the potatoes. 

Hutspot: makes 1 cup 2 oz potato, peeled 2 oz carrots, peeled 2 oz onion, sliced salt and pepper to taste Cube the potatoes and put into a sauce pan with water half-way up. Cut the carrots in coins and put on top of potatoes. Slice the onions and put them on top of the carrots. Bring to a boil, turn down the heat. Cover and cook for 20 minutes or until all vegetables are soft. Drain, reserving the liquid. Mash the vegetables, adding reserved liquid if needed. Season to taste.

Dutch Meatballs: makes 6 you will need 2 per person ½ pound ground turkey, 3% fat 1 oz rye bread, crust removed if very hard ¼ cup skim milk 1 shallot [1 Tbsp chopped] 1 egg white ¼ tsp nutmeg + ¼ tsp salt + ¼ tsp black pepper Chop or tear the bread into 1/2” pieces. Put in a small dish and pour in enough milk to wet the bread – you will have some left over. You could cook the meat and shallot or leave them raw [which is what I did] Add the seasonings and egg white. Squeeze the extra milk out of the bread and add it to the meat/seasonings. Heat a non-stick pan and spray with non-stick spray. Measure the meat mixture into ¼ cup portions and gently form into balls. Place in hot pan and cook until brown on one side. Turn and cook further. Turn onto another side and cook until done.

Plating: Plate two meatballs per person, along with the hutspot vegetables and a bit of grainy mustard, if you like.

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

1 two-oz eggno breakfast, but two dinners
scallion
1.5 hardboiled eggs
smoked salmon
canned tomatoes
melon
garbanzo beans
Optional smoothieSwiss or Gruyere cheese
optional hot beverageonion + garlic

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

corned beef
purchased Asian meat dumplings
cabbage
bok choi
swiss cheese
hoisin sauce
Bechamel sauce
black vinegar + soy sauce
Sparkling waterSparkling water

Vitamin A

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 DailyKeto4U who is now Following.

September 30 is the Feast Day of St. Jerome, so naturally we will discuss Vitamin A. What in the world is the connection, you demand. Saint Jerome [342-420] was a prolific writer and he penned a biography of Saint Hilarion [291-371]. Hilarion, like many ascetics, was determined to mortify [punish] his body for its sins. This became a form of orthorexia: eating a diet so rigid and limited that it leads to deficiencies of essential nutrients. Jerome described Hilarion’s resulting health issues: failing eyesight and itching, rough skin. Hilarion added some olive oil to his diet and the conditions cleared up. Thus Jerome gave the first detailed description of a Vitamin A deficiency and a cure for it.

A varied diet is important for good health, which is one of the reasons why I like to post so many different recipes. Plus, we like to experiment with foods and flavors. Which vegetable contains the most Vitamin A? The sweet potato, by a long shot, so we will have it for breakfast. Red meat scores high, especially beef liver, so we will have that for dinner. Good food, simply prepared and in moderation will help you to live a healthier life.

Sweet Potato Pancake Breakfast: 132 calories 1.5 g fat 3.6 g 6 g protein 26.5 g carbs [21 g Complex] 24 mg Calcium  NB: Food values given are for the plated foods only, and do not include the optional beverage. PB GF– if using GF Flour These potato pancakes are a fine side dish and they hold their own as the star of this breakfast.

2 potato pancakes *** 2 oz applesauce 1 slice Canadian bacon/back bacon 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] Warm the pancakes, the applesauce, and the bacon. Savory and delicious.

***Potato Pancakes makes 8  8 oz sweet potato, peeled and grated 1 oz egg [Whisk one entire egg and measure 1 oz of it for this recipe. Use the remainder in baking.] 2 Tbsp minced/grated onion 3.75 tsp white whole wheat flour OR brown rice flour or other GF flour salt 1/2 tsp olive oil Combine the ingredients while you heat a griddle or heavy skillet. Brush 1/2 tsp of olive oil in the pan, then spray with non stick spray. Drop the ‘batter’ in 8 piles on the griddle, then flatten them out to a diameter of 3-4”. Cook on one side, then flip to cook on the other. Save the remaining pancakes for a side dish tomorrow or as part of lunch.

Liver & Onions: 273 calories 10.4 g fat 2.9 g fiber 25 g protein 20 g carbs 43.5 mg Calcium PB When my father was away on business, my mother would serve us liver and onions, which we came to regard as a special treat. Still a favorite on diner menus, still full of protein, Vitamin A, and Iron. 

½ cup onion, sliced 4 oz beef liver 2 tsp flour + salt + pepper ½ tsp butter ½ cup green beans

Cook the onions in a non-stick saute pan with a little water to keep it from scorching. Set the onions aside. Blot the liver on paper towels. Put 2 tsp flour on a plate and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Dredge the liver in the flour, and shake off any extra. Melt the butter in the pan the onions were in and cook the liver over low heat until done. If the pan gets too dry, spray it with non-stick spray. Meanwhile, cook the beans and salt them. Just before the liver is done, add the onions to the pan to reheat.

Hot Enough?

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.

I don’t know what the Winter in the Southern Hemisphere has been like this year, but we in the Northern Hemisphere have been baking! Records for ‘hottest this‘ and ‘hotter that‘ have been set and then broken again. Sometimes people don’t want to eat in hot weather, which can be good for weight loss. But sometimes they drink sugary cold drinks or beer or wine coolers all the while thinking [wrongly] this is the best way to beat the heat. Hydration is good, but real food in moderation is good too. How about eating less by enjoying Fasting meals on three or four days a week in hot weather? There are plenty of no-cook salads in the Archives. Let the Summer inclination not to eat much work to your advantage.

Today’s meals involve no stoves and no ovens. They are easy to prepare and very easy to eat. The breakfast can come cold out of the refrigerator if you prep it the night before. And the dinner is tailor made for a hot night.

Prosciutto & Melon Plate: 125 calories 7 g fat 1.2 g fiber 16.8 g protein 13.4 g carbs [13 g Complex] 135 mg Calcium  PB GF Once again the Inn at Saint Peter’s inspires a breakfast! Nothing beats the salty-sweet flavor combination of this meal. HINT: I plated everything the night before and stored the plates in zipper bags in the refrigerator.

4 oz canteloupe melon [Charentais melon would be fabulous!] 1 oz thinly-sliced prosciutto ¼ cup red onion pickle 0.1 oz shavings of Parmesan cheese fresh basil or mint leaves OR crumbled dried basil drizzle of balsamic vinegar reduction, optional Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or lemon in hot water Optional: 5 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie [88 calories]

Cut the melon into bite-sized cubes [8 pieces look well on the plate]. Cut the prosciutto into 8 long strips [mine were 1”x4”]. Arrange the melon and ham in a circle on the plate with the red onion in the center. Shave off curls of Parmesan and place them on top. If using fresh herb leaves, tuck them in here and there. If using dried herbs, rub the leaves in your palms to crumble over the plate. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar if you wish. Serve with your chosen beverages. Wonderful flavors, however you combine them on your fork.

Smorrebrod w/ Turkey: 243 calories 8 g fat 3 g fiber 10 g protein 29 g carbs [11.5 g Complex] 18.5 mg Calcium  PB GF – if using GF rye bread From Oslo/Copenhagen/Stockholm comes the best of Summer sandwiches: smorrebrod [smeared bread]. Light and flavorful from summer vegetables, this meal is filling and simple to prepare without heating the kitchen.

1 slice [1.5 oz] sourdough rye bread @ 110 calories [the bread should be dense, not fluffy] 1-2 Tbsp whipped cream cheese 4 large leaves of fresh spinach 1.5 oz thinly-sliced tomato: slice and salt about 30 mins earlier for best taste 1 oz cooked turkey breast or tenderloin ½ hard-boiled egg, sliced ½ cup Swedish Cucumber Salad*

Spread the bread with the cream cheese and lay the spinach leaves on top. Place the tomato slices atop that. For the next layer, put down the turkey, topped by the egg slices. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Drain the Cucumber Salad and plate. Excellent!

*SWEDISH CUCUMBER SALAD: makes 1 cup = 2 servings each serving = 23 calories 0.1 g fat 0.3 g fiber 0.4 g protein 5.2 g carbs [4 g Complex] 14 mg Calcium

1 cups sliced cucumber 1.5 tsp sugar 1 oz white wine vinegar 1/2 tsp cold water salt and freshly ground pepper ½ tsp dill

Combine the sugar, vinegar, water, salt, and pepper in a 3-cup container. Slice the cucumbers, spread them out on towels and pat dry. Stir the cukes into the liquid, wetting all the slices. Chill for at least one hour. Drain, and serve with a sprinkling of dill.

Ingredients for next week: 

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

1 two-oz eggnext week I will discuss Breakfast Beverages 
slice 70-calorie whole grain bread
choose a favorite breakfast from
Archives
apple or melon



Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

1/4 pound sea scallops
next week I will discuss Breakfast Beverages
Indian curry powder
choose a favorite dinner from Archives
broccoli

butter + white wine [splash]

Sparkling waterSparkling water

Crecy

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 Melissa who is now Following.

While researching my mother’s French genealogy, I came across my 16th great-grandfather, Jean d’Harcourt, who died on August 26, 1346 at Crecy, France.  Curious, I discovered the facts around the deadly Battle of Crecy. [If you were a fan of the Ken Follett book series Pillars of the Earth [TV series, too], you would know about this battle.] In a dispute over land now in France but held by English Edward III, the armies of the two nations met near Crecy in Normandy. [I suggest you watch the video cited in that last sentence] The English were terribly outnumbered but they had a new weapon of mass destruction: the long bow. With its greater range and speed, the French cavalry was cut down, as were their cross-bowmen. By the end of the battle, the English had won, against all odds, and the Hundred Year’s War was well and truly begun.

“Crecy” is sometimes spelled “Cressy” and so it makes me think of watercress. August is a fine time to harvest this peppery herb, and to make a versatile sauce which goes well in eggs or as a soup or as a sauce. The Battle of Crecy was a dreadful loss of lives. Having Watercress Sauce in your freezer can be a ‘life-saver’ in the kitchen.

Watercress ScrOmelette w:peaches

Watercress ScrOmelette: 291 calories   8.2 g fat  2.5 g fiber   16 g protein  34.4 g carbs  235 mg Calcium  PB GF  Having Watercress Sauce in the freezer in handy cubes sure makes this meal a snap. And is it good!

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, crack three 2-oz eggs into a jar with a lid and put it in the ‘fridge for next week.                                   ½ Tbsp Watercress Sauce [see Sidekicks II, 4 October’2017], well drained                                                  ½ Tbsp ricotta, drained HINT: I set these ingredients out to drain through a fine sieve the night before to make sure there was no extra liquid.                                                                                       1/8 tsp dry mustard                                                                                                                                               1.5 oz peach                                                                                                                                                     optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or lemon in hot water                                                                                   optional: 5-6 oz green smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie

Combine the drained watercress, drained cheese, and mustard. Whisk in with the eggs and cook in a hot saute pan spritzed with olive oil or non-stick spray. Cook the way you like them and plate with the peaches. Pour the beverages and enjoy the summer taste of watercress all year long.

Watercress Soup: 157 calories 5.4 g fat 2.9 g fiber 8.4 g protein 22 g carbs [19 g Complex] 63.5 mg Calcium  PB GF Jacques Pepin’s Good Life Cooking is the source of this recipe. The stream that flows to the beach is the source of our watercress. So low in calories, you might want to add some Finn Crisp crackers for filling fiber or the Caprese Salad for more protein. HINT: This recipe makes 5 cups of soup which serves 4-5 people.

Served with Caprese Salad

2 tsp canola oil 4 oz [weight, not volume] watercress leaves and tender stems 1 cup celery, coarsely chopped 2 cups onion, coarsely diced 2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed 2-1/2 cups good stock – vegetable/chicken/beef ¾ tsp salt 10 oz [weight, not volume] potatoes, peeled, cut in 2” chunks 2 oz [weight, not volume] sweet potato, peeled and cut in chunks per serving: 1 Tbsp chevre cheese  Optional: Caprese Salad– 46 calories 2.2 g fat 0.6 g fiber 3.9 g protein 2.6 g carbs 115.6 mg Calcium PB GF ½ oz mozzerella cheese, thinly sliced + 2 oz tomato, thinly sliced and sprinkled with salt + fresh basil leaves There should be equal numbers of cheese slices as tomato. Arrange the cheese, tomato, and basil in overlapping layers on the plate.  Optional: Hard-boiled Egg 70 calories 4.8 g fat 0 g fiber 6 g protein 0.4 g carbs 28 mg Calcium PB GF Cut a hard-boiled egg lengthwise in quarters and nestle into the plated soup.

Heat the oil in a large saucepan. Add the cress, celery, onion, and garlic, and stir-fry for 2 minutes. Put the stock, salt and potatoes into the pan and bring to a boil. [NB: my stock was very dark, which changed the color of the soup to a darker shade of green] Turn down the heat, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes. Cool slightly then puree in blender/food processor or with immersion wand. If not thoroughly pureed, run through a sieve. Heat the soup before serving. In the bowl, put the chevre in the center, let it soften a bit, then swirl it into the soup. Serve the salad on the side.

Basquaise

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.

Have you ever seen the word ‘Basquaise’ on a menu? It often refers to a sauce served on chicken or fish. The word itself means ‘from the Basque country’ or ‘in the method of the Basque people.’ To the Basque people, it is ‘pipperade’ from their word ‘biperra’ for pepper. So who are the Basques and where is their country? The Basque people are unrelated, both in genetics and in language, to the surrounding people of France and Spain. Their ‘country’ spreads across the border of France and Spain at the Western end of the Pyrennes Mountains. Their culture and unique language developed in isolation over the centuries, escaping intrusion both from the Indo-Europeans [ex: Visigoths] and from the Muslims. The ancient Greeks and Romans knew of the Basques, and even they did not change the culture of the region. Their food is boldly spiced and influenced by fish from the ocean and meat from the pasturelands of the interior. Passionately independent, the Basques work to maintain their ways in a changing world. In the 1800s, economic hard times spread Basques to North America and beyond, just as their cod and whale-hunting ancestors dispersed across the seas in the past.

The ‘Sauce Basquaise’ shows up in our menu today — flavoring the eggs at breakfast in two different preparations. Other ways to use it are in the classic Poulet Basquaise or Cod Basquaise for dinner. Here’s how to make 5 cups of the sauce.

2 Tbsp olive oil Heat the oil in a large saucepan
1 cup chopped onion
3 cloves garlic, crushed and chopped  optional: 2 oz Bayonne/Serrano ham or pancetta, diced 
3 cups red bell pepper, diced [2 large peppers, abt 13 oz]  3 cups green bell pepper, diced [2 large peppers, abt 13 oz] 
4 cups tomatoes, seeded and diced
Add the onion, garlic, ham, peppers, and tomatoes.  Cook over medium-low heat until peppers are tender.
½ cup red wine 5 g ‘esplette’ pepper or ground cayenne pepper 2 tsp fresh thyme ½ tsp saltAdd to the pan. Simmer 10 minutes more.

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

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 and put it in the ‘fridge for next week.  2 rounded Tablespoons Basquaise Sauce ¼ cup blueberries  Optional: blackish coffee [53 calories] or blackish tea or lemon in hot water Optional: 5-6 oz fruit smoothie or berry-yogurt smoothie [88 calories]

Heat a non-stick saute pan which has been spritzed with non-stick spray. Whisk the eggs with salt and pepper to taste and pour into the pan. As the eggs just begin to set, spread the Basquaise Sauce over half of the egg. Fold and continue cooking to your liking. Plate with the fruit and serve the beverage of your choice. Have a spicy day.

Alternatively, if you didn’t have any Basquaise Sauce at your disposal, you could use my version of Jacques Pepin’s recipe for Basquaise ScrOmelette, posted on 30 September, 2015

Ingredients for next week: 

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

1 two-oz eggProscuitto ham
ricotta cheese + mushrooms
melon + Parmesan cheese
peach + blackberryred onion pickle
Watercress Sauce
mint or basil leaves + balsamic vinegar
Optional smoothieoptional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

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

watercress + sweet potato
sourdough rye bread + egg + dill
canola oil + onion + celery
turkey breast + spinach leaves
garlic + stock + potato
whipped cream cheese + tomato
optional: mozzarella + tomato
cucumber + white wine vinegar
Sparkling waterSparkling water