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.

Old N’Orleans

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.

New Orleans has many meanings to many people. The song “Battle of New Orleans” [about the last battle of the War of 1812, no less!]; Mardi Gras celebrations; Anne Rice’s vampires; Bourbon Street; the Jazz and Zydeco music; Hurricane Katrina; and food.   As a major port city, Old New Orleans had foods of the continent and the world brought to its doorstep. Stirred together in a melting pot of Acadians, Indigenous Peoples, trappers and voyageurs, Africans, Spanish, and French, some interesting menus emerged. While many people think that a trip to New Orleans means excessive eating [they don’t call it The Big Easy for nothing], we can sample the local fare without remorse on a Fast Day and be the better for it. Bon appetit.

Cajun ScrOmelette:   283 calories   PB GF   The Cajuns of Louisianna are the same people as the Acadians of Maritime Canada. Summarily removed by the English from the lands they had settled, surviving Acadians were exiled or made their way to the area of New Orleans, then a French possession. The word ‘Cajun’ is an adaptation of the word ‘Acadian.’ Their music and cusine are similar and wonderful.

Cajun ScrOmelette w: orange

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 oz bell pepper                                                                                                                                                           3 Tbsp celery                                                                                                                                                            2 Tbsp onion                                                                                                                                                   Tabasco sauce, ad lib                                                                                                                                      Cajun seasonings , ad lib                                                                                                                                   1.5 oz orange slices                                                                                                                                             optional: black coffee or black tea or lemon in hot water                                                                                          optional: 5-6 oz green smoothie or fruit smoothie

Chop the vegetables and combine with the seasonings. Put in a hot saute pan spritzed with oil or non-stick spray. Cook until softened. Whisk the eggs with the Tabasco and Cajun seasonings, and scramble to perfection.  Pour the beverages, slice the oranges, and pass the Tabasco sauce.

Red Beans & Rice:  280 calories     1 g fat       9.2 g fiber      11.4 g protein    60 g carb  142.8 mg Calcium   PB GF  This is the old classic recipe for the ‘perfect protein’. We were afraid that we wouldn’t like it — it sounds bland — but it is good. Yeah, you’re right, the carbs are way high, but for a once-in-a-while this is OK. HINT: This is enough for 4 servings! Either have a gathering or cut the recipe or freeze for later.

Red Beans & Rice w: gr. beans

1 – 3/4 cups brown rice, cooked   [be sure you leave enough time to prepare]                                  ½ cup celery, chopped                                                                                                                                          ½ cup sweet yellow or other color pepper, diced                                                                                         1 cup onion, chopped                                                                                                                                              2 cloves garlic, minced                                                                                                                                         ¾ cup crushed tomato                                                                                                                              oregano +  black pepper                                                                                                                                          1 and 3/4 cups red beans, drained and rinsed [Goya brand is very good]                                               ½ cup green beans or peas

Cook the rice. Saute the celery, pepper, and onions for 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook 5 minutes more. Add the tomato sauce and seasonings. Stir in the red beans and heat through. When the rice is done, add 1 and 3/4 cups to the mixture. HINT: if there is extra rice, it freezes well. Serve with the cooked green vegetable.  Pass the Tabasco!

Ingredients for next week: breakfast, single portion

1 two-oz egg1.5 two-oz eggs
 apple  +  pear Watercress Sauce: 8 oz watercress, onion
 bacon ricotta cheese
 ricotta & Parmesan cheeses dry mustard
 sage   +  mustard peach
optional smoothie optional smoothie
optional hot beverageoptional hot beverage

Dinner, single portion:

 pollock or other white fish, 4 -5 oz 4 oz beef liver
 1/2 slice bacon, rawgreen beans
 carrots, Brussel sprouts, cauliflower, onions
 Parmesan cheese + cherry tomatoes butter + seasoned flour
Sparkling waterSparkling water