Foods in Wrappers, One

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.

I am fascinated by similarities among diverse cuisines from around the world. In geology, a layer of sedimentary rock can stretch for hundreds of miles. The source material was the same, but as it was deposited small variations creep in so that in some cases the further you follow that stratum, the more it looks like a completely different rock. Around the world there are meals made of food in wrappers.  All with different fillings, all with different seasonings, all with different wrappings: yet all those ancient cooks had a similar inspiration: let’s take this and wrap it in an edible envelope! Today, we will look at four of these, involving corn tortillas, buckwheat crêpes, dumplings, and egg roll wrappers.

Enchiladas Suizas:   293 calories  10 g fat   11.2 g fiber   31.6 g protein  43.4 g carbs  261.7 mg Enchiladas w: winter medleyCalcium PB GF  Rick Bayless relates this recipe in his book Mexico One Plate At A Time. Delicious and easy to prepare. Avoid assembling too far in advance, lest it turn to mush                                          2 six-inch corn tortillas [50 calories each]                   2 0z [½ cup] shredded cooked chicken breast                 ½ cup enchilada sauce: see SPICY II 12 Sept 2018              ¼ cup grated Cheddar or Monterey jack                     1 oz broccoli florets                                                               1 oz cauliflower florets                                                     ½ oz carrot                                                                                  The full recipe was posted on 31-oct-2018

Crêpes w/ Ham & Cheese, Street Version:  272 calories  9 g fat  2.4 g fiber  21 g protein  25 g Ham & Cheese Crepescarbs   212 mg Calcium NB: The photo shows a meal for 2 [TWO]. Or dinner today, lunch tomorrow. This is the familiar street-vendor lunch in Paris, except that the food values will not break the bank on a Fast Day. Very quick and easy to prepare if you had made the crêpe batter before and have it thawed out. HINT: can be prepared in advance and rewarmed later. Good for traveling or planning ahead.                                2 crêpes [see Sidekicks I, 17 Sep-2017]                           2 oz sliced deli ham                                                           1/2 oz deli sliced Swiss cheese                                           1 wedge “Laughing Cow” [Vache Qui Rit] cheese at room temperature                                                     2 oz tomatoes                                                                                                                                                          See full recipe posted on 21-May-2017

Beef Egg Rolls:  per roll — 111 calories  1.7 g fat   1.2 g fiber   7.8 g protein   14.4 g carb   23 mgBeef Egg Rolls Calcium   PB   Lower in calories than carry-out and easier than you think to prepare.            2 oz lean beef steak, cut in strips                                                        1 Tbsp soy sauce   + 1/2 Tbsp oyster sauce                                                                                                             1 tsp. cornstarch                                                               1 clove garlic + 1 tsp ginger root                                                                                                                                         1 cup cabbage, chopped                                                       1/2 cup carrot, sliced in  1/4” thick rounds                                                                 1 scallion     +   1/2 cup sliced onion                                                                                                                               5 egg roll wrappers      + 1 tsp oil                                                  3/4 cup broccoli                                                                                                                                                                               dipping sauce:  Sriracha sauce  +   soy sauce     see full recipe posted on  17-May-2017                                       

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.  NB: This recipe serves two. I ate 2 dumplings, Dear Husband ate 3.pork dumplings w: bok choy

5 pork dumplings  [84 calories each]  see above note for serving sizes                                                                                                                                                3-4 oz bok choy                                                                                                                                                            1 Tbsp hoisin sauce, thinned to drizzling consistency with water                                                          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:

1 two-oz egg  +  flour   +  sugar 1 two-oz egg
ricotta cheese, reduced fat Parmesan cheese
cottage cheese, low-fat 4″ diameter thin ham slice
banana  +  molasses cottage cheese   + apple
no 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:

salt cod   +  fish stock delicata squash
yellow bell pepper  + onion 1 cup Chili Non Carne [4-Oct-2017]
tomato  + scallions  + garlic melon
dumpling [7-Feb-2017]
Sparkling water Sparkling water
















Fannie Farmer

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.

On the shelf in the kitchen is a cookbook that used to have a gold-colored cover. The book’s binding is reinforced with packing tape and the pages are stained with the splatters of cooking. This is the Fannie Farmer Cookbook, 11th edition published in 1965.  On January 6, 1896, the first edition was issued under the title The Boston Cooking-School Cookbook.  Miss Fannie Merritt Farmer, a woman with a disability who did not attend cooking school until the age of 30, had written a book which explained the chemistry of cooking and which established uniform measurement of ingredients that everyone could use. She became a media mogul and culinary icon, the Julia Child or Martha Stewart of her day. The book was an instant success and became the classic of  the American kitchen.  My mother used it faithfully [I have her copy] and gave me my own when I became engaged. So many good recipes! My adaptations of several of them have already appeared in this blog, some recipes used as-is.                                                                                                               The breakfast for this anniversary is an old favorite of our’s, Shirred Egg [p 103 in my copy] and for dinner the thrifty housewife’s go-to: Swiss Steak [p 163]

Shirred Egg:   271 calories  8.5 g fat  3.3 g fiber   15.8 g protein  38.8 g. carb  275 mg Calcium  PB GF– if using GF bread       I learned to prepare this dish when working on my Girl Scout ‘Cooking’ badge. We still eat it because it tastes so good. Easy to serve to guests, too.Shirred Egg

One 2-oz egg                                                                                                                                                                  1 Tbsp half&half   [Blend Cream, 10% milk fat]                                                                                         salt & pepper to taste                                                                                                                                             1/2 Tbsp Parmesan cheese                                                                                                                                    half a slice of 70-calorie bread, toasted                                                                                                            2 oz apple slices or 2 oz strawberries                                                                                                      blackish coffee or blackish tea or lemon in hot water                                                                               5-6 oz fruit smoothie, green smoothie or natural apple cider

Heat the toaster oven to 325° F. Spritz a 1-cup ramekin with cooking oil or spray. Break the egg into the cup, and pour the half&half on top. Sprinkle with cheese, add salt and pepper to taste. Bake for 12-15 minutes, then let sit 2-3 mins while you toast the bread. Plate with the toast and fruit. Serve with your choice of beverages.

Swiss Steak:  267 calories  6.3 g fat  6.5 g fiber   28 g protein  27.5 g carbs   104.8 mg Calcium This is a recipe from Fannie Farmer’s cookbook which I fondly remember from my childhood. HINT: This recipe makes enough for two [2], so save half of it for a future lunch or dinner.

½ pound chuck steak, cut 1 to 1.5” thick                                                                                                          1.5 Tbsp white whole wheat flour + salt + pepper                                                                                         8 oz stewed tomatoes                                                                                                                                            ¼ cup minced green bell peppers                                                                                                                    ¼ cup minced onion                                                                                                                                             herbs to taste, such as rosemary or parsley                                                                                               per serving: ½ cup cut green beans + ½ cup carrots sliced as coins

Leave the meat in one piece or cut into two parts. Combine the flour, salt, and pepper and dredge the meat in it. If you wish, pound the meat with a tenderizing tool or the edge of a sturdy plate. Combine the tomatoes with the vegetables and herbs. Heat a heavy skillet with a lid and spray it well with oil or cooking spray. Brown the meat on both sides and pour the tomatoes over it. Cover and cook very slowly for 2 hours until the meat is very tender, adding water if the tomatoes are in danger of sticking. This can be cooked on the cooktop at low or in the oven at 325 F. Steam or boil the beans and carrots to serve along-side the beef with its sauce.

Emily Dickinson

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 FoodStories who is now Following.

If you were to list New England poets, Emily Dickinson would be right up there. And yet, no one heard of her work until after she was dead.  The Belle of Amherst Massachusetts was born on 10 December, 1830, smack-dab in the middle of a cultural revolution. In religion there was the Second Great Awakening. In politics, there was the growing abolitionist movement. In literature, there was Emily Dickinson penning poems in obscurity as she baked [one poem written on a chocolate wrapper] or cleaned [one poem written on the label for silver polish]. She kept house for her lawyer father and brothers and, according to legend, hardly ever went further afield than the garden of the family home. Her correspondence took her far away as she wrote to distant friends. After her death, her sister had her poems published, leaving readers bemused and/or excited by her verse.  In 1955, her collected works and her letters were printed and Emily Dickinson were rediscovered by an enthusiastic audience.  The poem that haunts me the most is The Bustle in a House, one of her most approachable poems about death. Dickinson wrote that she thought in a ‘New-England-y’ way. So true.                                                                                                                        Emily Dickinson did the cooking in the household, and I approve of good food made from scratch.  When she wrote to her ‘mentor’ H.W. Higginson describing her cooking for the household, she said, “People must have puddings.” In that spirit, breakfast is based on a French pudding, the flameuse which Emily would have liked.  And dinner is an old New England favorite.

Cherry Flamusse:   291 calories     5.3 g fat    2.2 g fiber   15.4 g protein   46.7 g carbs [34 g Complex]  316 mg Calcium   GF – if using GF flour   This breakfast custard is borrowed from the dessert section of the cookbook, and it works very well either way! It is similar to a clafouti, but simpler. Served with cherries or any fresh fruit, it is sure to be a hit. HINT:This makes enough for 2 [two] servings: share with a a friend or save the rest for a future breakfast or dessert. [Without the morning beverages, the dessert has 177 calories.]Cherry Flamusse

2 two-oz eggs                                                                                                                                                                     6 oz milk                                                                                                                                                                   4 tsp flour OR tapioca flour                                                                                                                                    1.5 Tbsp sugar                                                                                                                                                         10 sweet cherries, pitted                                                                                                                                      ½ clementine                                                                                                                                                                                                              blackish coffee or blackish tea or lemon in hot water                                                                                  3 oz  green smoothie or fruit smoothie

Spritz 2 ramekins [or an oven-proof dish with 1.5 cup capacity] with non-stick spray. Cut the cherries in half and arrange on the bottom of the dish. Whisk eggs until foamy, then add flour and sugar, whisking until there are no lumps. Stir in the milk and pour the batter over the cherries. Bake at 375 F. for 20 minutes. Turn the flamusse out of the dish so that the cherries are on top. Plate with the clementine sections, serve with the beverages. You won’t believe this is a ‘diet.’

Red Flannel Hash:  249 calories   9.2 g fat   1.9 g fiber  12.6 g protein  17.8 g carbs [16 g Complex]  43 mg Calcium  PB GF   This is a venerable New England farm meal, with the recipe coming from Hayden Pearson’s Country Flavors Cookbook.Red Flannel Hash

1 cup cooked diced beets (1/3” dice)                                                                                                                 1/3 cup diced potatoes (1/3” dice)                                                                                                                        ¼ cup diced onions                                                                                                                                                      2 slices Canadian Bacon/back bacon, diced                                                                                                                                                                                              one 2-oz egg lots of salt and pepper to taste

Cook, peel, and dice the beets and set aside to cool. [HINT: do this the day before]  Peel and dice the potatoes. Put potatoes into a pan of tap water and put the pan on the burner. Turn on the heat and let the pan sit, uncovered, for 10 minutes or until the water starts to boil around the edges. Take off the heat and leave potatoes to cool in the water. Then drain and set aside. Dice the onions and bacon. Spray a saute pan with non-stick spray and add the Canadian bacon. Cook it as crisp as you wish, or not so crisp. Remove the bacon and set aside. Add the onions with 2-3 Tbsp water, and cook until the onions are transluscent and the water is mostly gone. Now put the potatoes in the pan with the onions, add salt and pepper to taste. Stir until the potatoes are cooked. Add the beets and bacon to the pan and continue to cook until heated through. Meanwhile, fry the egg: sunnyside-up or over easy as you prefer. Plate the hash and top with the egg. Country dining.

St Nick

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.

In art, Jolly Old Saint Nicholas has evolved physically over the many years since he was born in the 3rd century in what was then Greece but is now Turkey.  As early as the 4th century, he was shown as a normally-sized, generic bishop.  And it was the same in the 1600s in England, where celebrating Christmas was frowned upon. When we get to the 1800s the Good Saint, as depicted by Thomas Nast in 1881, looks like a man who should try the Fast Diet.  So does the Coke-swilling Santa of the ads beginning in the 1930s. “Miracle on 34th Street” in 1947 had him slimmer.  Have you seen the ‘picture’ of Saint Nicholas, as determined by a forensic pathologist? He looks a little healthier. Santa today is still depicted as chubby, if not fat.  If you don’t want to look like the ‘Nast Santa’ or the ‘Coca-Cola Santa’, with all the health problems that come with that physique, then it might be time to start Fasting.  Just saying…                                                                                                                                              Our breakfast reflects the Asia Minor origins of the real Nicholas.  And for dinner we have the classic beef stew of Hungary where the saint distributes gifts to children on December 6. In our household, we enjoy the gulyàs every Saint Nicholas Day.

Mediterranean Bake:  288 calories  8 g fat  2.4 g fiber   14.6 g protein   38.5 g carbs   234 mg Calcium  PB GF   Oh! Those sunny flavors!Mediterranean Bake

one 2-oz egg                                                                                                                                                              3 Tbsp Mediterranean Vegetables, see Sidekicks II posted on 4 October, 2017 for the recipe                                                                                                                          1 Tbsp chèvre cheese                                                                                                                                                         salt + pepper + large pinch of Herbes de Province                                                                                         2 oz applesauce     or melon                                                                                                                                   6 oz green smoothie or fruit smoothie or unpasteurized apple cider                                                  blackish coffee or blackish tea or lemon in hot water

Set the toaster oven at at 350° F. Spritz a ramekin with oil or non-stick spray and spoon in the Med. Veg. Pop the ramekin in the warming toaster oven for 30 seconds to warm the vegetables. Whisk the egg with the cheese and seasonings. Pour in the egg mixture over the vegetables and bake in the toaster oven for 12-15 minutes, depending on how you like your eggs. Brew your warm beverage; shake and pour the smoothie; plate the fruit. A fine way to anticipate the joys of Summer.

Gulyàs:  283 calories   9.5 g fat   2.9 g fiber   40.4 g protein   8 g carbs [7.6 g Complex]   42.6 mg Calcium   GF  This version of the famous Hungarian stew is from Craig Claiborne’s International CookbookHINT: The recipe makes 8 servings, so make it once and freeze in serving sizes.Gulyas w: green beans

2 pounds beef chuck [shoulder], cut in 1” cubes                                                                                                    1 Tbsp sweet Hungarian paprika                                                                                                                              1 tsp salt + 1 tsp pepper                                                                                                                                                   1 tsp olive oil                                                                                                                                                               2 onions, chopped                                                                                                                                                   2 Tbsp tomato paste                                                                                                                                             1.5 cups beef stock                                                                                                                                                    per serving: 1 oz green beans                                                                                                                    optional per serving: ¼ oz egg noodles which add 27 calories 1 g fiber 2 g carbs [simple]

Heat the oven to 300 F. Toss the beef chunks with the paprika, salt, and pepper. On the cook-top, heat the oil in a Dutch oven [large, heavy, heat-proof, covered pot] and brown the beef in batches. Move the beef around in the pan to prevent it from sticking. Add non-stick spray or a little water if necessary. Remove the beef to a plate. Add some water to the pan and saute the onions until they are transluscent. Return the beef to the pan and pour in 1.5 cups beef stock. Stir thoroughly, scraping brown bits off the bottom. Cover the pot and cook in the oven for 2-3 hours. Every hour, check the pot and stir, adding more water as needed. Taste for salt at the end. Divide into 8 portions, reserving the remainder for future meals. TIP: Freezes very well. Plate with the green beans and optional noodles. A real Winter treat.

Ingredients for next week:

Breakfast, single portion

2 two-oz egg 1.5 two-oz eggs
fat-free milk      +  10 sweet cherries salami sausage
flour mozzarella cheese
sugar   +  clementine wild greens or arugula
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:

beets Herring marinated in wine   + vinegar
potato beets, canned or fresh cooked
Canadian or back bacon Apple   + lettuce   +   onion
onion  + one 2-oz egg white beans  + hard-boiled egg + pickle
Sparkling water Sparkling water

Francisco Xavier

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 smartmike who is now Following.

Francisco Xavier was a well-traveled man! Born in 1506 in the Navarre Region, now part of Spain, he went to Paris to study theology at the Sorbonne.  There he met Ignatius of Loyola and Pierre Favre. In 1534, they formed the Society of Jesus, aka: the Jesuits.  Their burning desire was to take their message of religion to the world.  Hearing that the Portuguese king wanted missionaries for his outposts, Xavier volunteered. Traveling by sea around the tip of Africa, he preached and taught in Goa, in Malacca, in the Maluku Islands, and in Japan. His next stop was to be China, but a fever killed him on December 3, 1552.                                                                                                                                                               Our meals today will follow in St Francis’ goals and journey. Since he died on an island off the coast of China, our breakfast is the Chinese-inspired Fu Yung Bake.  For his pan-Asian agenda, there is the All-Asian meal of Dim Sum, with its contributions from India, Thailand, and China.

Fu Yung Bake:  294 calories  5.7 g fat  2.9 g fiber  18 g protein  41 g carbs [25 g complex]  349 mg Calcium  PB  Straight out of China, a no-fuss bake.Fu Yung Bake

One 2-oz egg                                                                                                                                                              2 Tbsp crab meat                                                                                                                                                   1 tsp soy sauce                                                                                                                                                             3 Tbsp sprouts [I used broccoli sprouts, but suit yourself]                                                                        2 tsp semolina flour                                                                                                                                                  pinch ground ginger + pinch granulated garlic                                                                                            1 Tbsp scallion, sliced across for garnish                                                                                                          1 clementine                                                                                                                                                         blackish coffee, blackish tea, or lemon in hot water                                                                                           5-6 oz smoothie or natural apple cider

Mix the crab meat with the soy sauce. Combine the semolina with the ginger and garlic powder. Lightly oil or spritz an oven-proof dish. Distribute the crab over the bottom of the dish, then sprinkle the sprouts over top. Whisk the egg with the seasoned semolina and pour over the sprouts and crab. Add salt and pepper if you wish. Bake at 350° F. for 12 minutes. Plate and top with the scallion. Enjoy with the clementine and pour the beverages.

Dim Sum: 302 calories   5.6 g fat   1.1 g fiber   32 g protein   30 g carbs   28.5 mg Calcium   I like to think of Dim Sum as the Asian version of Tapas or Meze: tastes of several different delicious foods. With prepared parts in the freezer, this meal is easy to assemble.Dim Sum Plate

2 oz raw chicken cubes                                                                                                                                           1 tsp prepared Satay Sauce                                                                                                                                 ½ tsp creamy peanut butter                                                                                                                                    2 Momos [see Deli & Delhi, 25 Feb- 2018]                                                                                                                     2 Wontons [see Go West 18 Feb- 2018]                                                                                                               2 tsp chicken stock                                                                                                                                                  1 oz Chinese BBQ Pork for steamed buns [46 calories/oz]                                                                             2 oz tomato

Thaw the chicken. Cream the Satay Sauce with the peanut butter and mix with the chicken meat. Let sit several hours. Thaw the momos, the wontons, and the pork. Combine the stock with 2 tsp water and put the wontons in the broth. Put over heat until the wontons are hot through. Remove them and continue to heat the stock until reduced back to 2 tsp. [Using ceramic soup spoons, I put 1 tsp of stock in each spoon and topped it with a warm wonton.] Thread the chicken onto a skewer and broil for 10-15 minutes, turning to cook the other side. Place the momos in a steamer for about 15 minutes, until they are cooked through and the wrappers are translucent. Heat the pork in the microwave for about 1 minute. Slice the tomato and plate the Dim Sum components in the manner of your choosing.

Rick’s Cafe

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.

In the dark days of WW2, Churchill and FDR needed a place to meet. News blackouts forbade revealing the location, but one clever radio reporter  began his story by saying, “I was over at Rick’s Cafe the other night…”  And everyone knew that he was in Casablanca. Such was the power of the popular movie of that name which was released November 26, 1942.  Bogie, as cynical night-club owner Rick Blaine, and Ingrid Bergman, as resistance-fighter Ilsa Lund, were the star-crossed lovers of the tale, with Dooley Wilson singing “As Time Goes By” in the background. The plot follows several memorable characters and a classic love triangle.  Who is not stirred by the scene where they sing the Marseillaise to counter the Nazis? Who is not in tears during the airport scene?                                                                                                                                                       Our menu today will echo the plot of the movie.  We’ll have a breakfast right out of a Parisian charcuterie, because Rick and Ilsa fell in love there and because “We’ll always have Paris.” And since the entire movie revolves around people trying to evacuate to Lisbon, our dinner will feature Portuguese Fish & Chips in honor of Ilsa and Victor’s escape.

Charcuterie Bake:   278 calories  10 g fat  3.2 g fiber  17 g protein  37 g carbs  198 mg Calcium GF  One Sunday, we invited friends over for what we call a “French Lunch” – bread, sausage, cheese, fruit, wine, and good fellowship. My Dear Husband thought, “I know what breakfast will be.” And he was correct: left-overs reborn as breakfast.Charcuterie Bake w: pears

One 2-oz egg                                                                                                                                                            1/2 oz chorizo sausage                                                                                                                                          ½ Tbsp chèvre cheese, the creamy type                                                                                                             ¼ tsp Dijon mustard                                                                                                                                                large pinch Herbes de Province                                                                                                                         1-1/2 oz pear                                                                                                                                                       blackish coffee or blackish tea or lemon juice & hot water                                                                                                       5-6 oz fruit smoothie or green smoothie or natural apple cider

Set the toaster oven at 350 degrees F. Cut the sausage into a small dice. Cream together with the goat cheese, mustard, and herbes. Spritz an oven-proof ramekin/dish with olive oil or non-stick spray. Whisk the egg with the sausage mixture and pour into the dish. Bake for 12-15 minutes while you pour the beverages and slice the pear. As simple as the meal which preceeded it.

Portuguese Fish & Chips:  260 calories  6.3 g fat  4.7 g fiber  24 g protein  28 g carbs [27 g Complex]  60 mg Calcium   PB GF – if using GF flour  From our favorite dinner place in Souris, PEI, 21 Breakwater comes this house specialty from the chef’s native cuisine. The batter is so light that it lets the lime-infused fish shine through. The recipe takes little time to accomplish. I have described it in detail so you can be successful.Portugese Fish & Chips

3 oz tilapia or hake                                                                                                                                                    1 fl. oz lime juice or lemon juice                                                                                                                               1 egg white + 1 egg yolk                                                                                                                                                    2 Tbsp white whole wheat flour                                                                                                                        3 oz sweet potato, peeled                                                                                                                                                      ½ tsp canola oil                                                                                                                                                                                  ½ tsp granulated garlic                                                                                                                                           ¼ tsp paprika black pepper                                                                                                                                  2 oz asparagus

Marinate the fish in the lime juice with a pinch of salt and pepper for up to 30 minutes. Set the oven to 425 F. Peel the sweet potato and cut lengthwise into 1/4” slices. Cut each slice into 1/4” sticks. Put the oil in the non-stick pan that you will use to cook the fish. Add the potato sticks to the pan and toss about to coat with oil. Combine the granulated garlic, paprika, and pepper, and sprinkle on the potato sticks. Toss to distribute the seasonings. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil with the dull side up. Spray liberally with non-stick spray. HINT: You could do this 1-2 hours in advance.Distribute the potatoes on the pan so they do not touch. Put in oven for 10-12 minutes. Meanwhile, put the asparagus on to cook. Take the fish from the marinade and pat dry with paper towels. Dredge lightly with flour. Whip the egg white into soft peaks. Fold in the egg yolk and remaining flour from dredging the fish. Heat the non-stick pan and spray with non-stick spray. Remove the fries from the oven and turn them over. Return to oven for 10 minutes more. Dip the fish in the egg batter so that it is coated on all sides. Cook the fish on one side over medium heat for 6 minutes, then on the other side for 6 minutes or until fork tender. When fries are done, turn off oven, open the door, and leave the fries in there for up to 5 more minutes. Plate all that good food and live it up.


St Cecilia

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.

There are many famous saints, and Cecilia is one of them. Why? According to the Golden Legend, she was a patrican Roman who was determined to remain chaste as a commitment to Christianity. On the night of her parent-induced wedding, she told her groom, Valerian, that if he touched her he would be killed by her guardian angel. He converted to Christianity and they lived as brother and sister. She died a martyr, as did Valerian. But the story has holes. Cecilia or Cecily lived in the 1st century or the 2nd century; in Rome or in Sicily. She is not mentioned in the early lists of martyrs and does not come on the radar until the late 5th century when Pope Gelasius wrote her name into his Book of Sacraments. In 1599, her body was found in the catacombs [no inscriptions or other identification], and as proof of her saintliness, it was not decayed. Did Cecilia exist? Probably not, according to Franciscanmedia. Even Catholic Online suggest that her Romeo and Juliet story of Platonic Love was written to counter then-popular sensual love stories writtten in Greek. At any rate, Cecilia was associated with music and inspired a flowering of tunes written specifically for church services. Cecilia is remembered more today for the music festivals and works of art she inspired, rather than for her faith.  She has been depicted in music by Handel, in art by Raphael, in poetry by Dryden, and in a choral piece with words by W.H. Auden with music by Benjamin Britten.                                                                                                            Because both ‘sweet cecily‘ and ‘valerian‘ are the names of herbs, our meals today will feature chives, thyme, oregano, and rosemary in a symphony of flavors.

Chive-Parmesan Scramble:    300 calories  10 g fat   2 g fiber   19.5 g protein  27.6 g carbs [10 g Complex]  390 mg Calcium   PB GF   This is the Scramble version of my Dear Husband’s ‘Bake’ of the same ingredients. Still wonderful!Parmesan-Chive Scramble w: kiwi

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 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese                                                                                                                        3 Tbsp minced fresh chives                                                                                                                                   1 oz kiwi fruit                                                                                                                                                              5-6 oz fruit smoothie, green smoothie, or natural apple cider                                                          blackish coffee or tea or lemon in hot water

Whisk together the chives, cheese, and eggs. Turn into a hot pan spritzed with oil or non-stick spray. Scramble to perfection and plate with the fruit. Pour your choice of beverages and dig into a bright breakfast, even on a grey 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. And it is delicious.Chicken Parmesan w: salad

3-½ oz raw chicken breast meat, boneless, skinless                                                                                                 1 Tbsp Parmesan cheese, grated                                                                                                                           1 tsp dried oregano +  1 tsp dried thyme                                                                                                                                 ¼ oz whole-grain breadcrumbs, fresh not dried                                                                                           1 Tbsp milk                                                                                                                                                                  ¼ cup marinara sauce, homemade [see SAUCY, 6 December, 2017] or jarred  + rosemary                                                                                                                                         ¾ oz mozzarella, 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 350°F. 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 and bread crumbs with salt and pepper. Cream the mozzarella and cottage cheeses together until well-combined. Dip the chicken in the milk on both sides. Dredge the chicken in the crumb/cheese/herb 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. 

Ingredients for next week:

Breakfast, single portion

1 two-oz egg 1.5 two-oz eggs
chorizo sausage low-fat ricotta
chèvre      +   pear herbs, dried or fresh
Dijon mustard + Herbes de Province applesauce
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:

tilapia + egg + white whole wheat flour firm-fleshed fish [swordfish/tuna]
sweet potato  + canola oil eggplant  +  red/yellow bell pepper
granulated garlic   + asparagus cherry tomatoes  +  salad fixings
paprika  +  lime juice corn kernels  + butter
Sparkling water Sparkling water


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 SistaSoul who is now Following.

Mushrooms are wonderful. From the standpoint of a naturalist, the life-history and growth-habits are fascinating.  As a forager, I enjoy the thrill of the hunt.

Wild Mushroom assortment
Chanterelles, Meadow Mushrooms, and Fairy Ring Champignons await cooking

As a locavore, how can one resist the foods that grow within a few miles of home?  As a cook, I love their flavor and the way they go well with so many other ingredients.  As a Faster, I can appreciate how a few mushrooms in a dish will elevate the flavor without raising the calorie count.  When it comes to foraging, you must learn from a reliable source — in person. You cross-reference before you pick: where it grows [under spruce trees? on the grass?]; the recognizable traits [color of gills, ring or no ring, texture of stem]; what it is growing on [wood? soil? other?] to be sure of your identification. No one has ever sickened from eating mushrooms at our house. September and October are the best — Fall Chanterelles, Horse Mushrooms, Meadow Mushrooms, Fairy Ring Champignons, the occasional Field Bluwit.  Some are huge!

LArge Mushrooms
These are Horse Mushrooms, Agaricus arvensis.

Some are tiny!  And for the rest of the year, our meals are delicious with the mushrooms we froze in season. Hope you will enjoy mushrooms in our baked eggs for breakfast and in our Vindaloo dinner.  In the latter, if you wish to make the dish vegetarian, just eliminate the pork and keep the mushrooms.

O-M-G Bake:  282 calories   7.7 g fat   2.8 g fiber   14 g protein   38 g carbs  271 mg Calcium   PB GF  Think: Oh My Goodness!  Or: Olive-Mushroom-Gouda.  What Flavor!O-M-C Bake w: applesauce

1 two-oz egg                                                                                                                                                                                       1 black olive, oil cured                                                                                                                                                                                                   ½ oz raw mushroom, chopped, poached in enough simmering water to cover for 20 sec.                                                                                                                                      ¼ oz Gouda cheese, grated                                                                                                                                   2 oz applesauce                                                                                                                                                nearly black coffee or tea or lemon in hot water                                                                                           6 oz green or fruit smoothie or natural apple cider

First set the toaster oven to 350°F. My Dear Husband is the one who prepares the breakfasts. He says to start the coffee next and then to prepare the smoothie. Spritz a ramekin with oil or non-stick spray.  Pit and chop the olive. Put the olive and mushroom in the ramekin. Whisk the egg with the cheese and pour into the ramekin. Bake in the toaster oven at 350 degrees F. for 12-15 minutes, depending on how you like your eggs. Dish up the applesauce and pour the beverages. Delicious.

Pork & Mushroom Vindaloo: 250 calories  7 g fat   4.9 g fiber  21 g protein   15 g Carbs [10 g Complex]   52.5 mg Calcium   PB GF   This unique curry dish comes from southern India. If you can’t find packaged Vindaloo Seasoning, you can prepare your own. HINT: this recipe serves 2 [two].Mushroom-Pork Vindaloo

1.5 Tbsp Vindaloo seasoning, feel free to use more                                                                                                                       2 cloves garlic                                                                                                                                                          ½ tsp fresh ground ginger                                                                                                                                    2 tsp canola oil                                                                                                                                                        ¾ cup onions [2.5 oz]                                                                                                                                              3 Tbsp cider vinegar                                                                                                                                               ½ tsp sugar                                                                                                                                                                5 oz pork tenderloin or turkey breast [1.25 cups cubed]                                                                                7 oz mushrooms [200 g]                                                                                                                                            3 oz broccoli florets, steamed                                                                                                                               ½ cup cooked brown rice

Press the garlic and stir into the vindaloo powder. Combine with the vinegar. Marinate the meat in that mixture for 30-60 minutes. Saute the onions in the oil until beginning to brown. Add the ginger, then add the sugar right away. Pour in the meat with the marinade and stir-fry until the meat is almost cooked. Add the mushrooms and cook over low heat until the sauce is thick. Plate with the rice and top with the broccoli.


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.

Alice in Wonderland? Alice Cooper? No, Alice Margaret Ziegler who was born on November 15.  Were she still with us, she would celebrate her 99th birthday tomorrow. My mother would not have wanted to see her 99th year.  When she was a young woman, she couldn’t imagine wanting to be 40!  Born, raised, and educated in Pennsylvania, she moved to Maryland, Texas, and Connecticut as my father changed jobs. “Whither thou goest” was high on her list of wifely priorities. She loved gardening, herbs, reading the classics, crossword puzzles, English history, Mozart, dancing, poetry, ice cream, hot dogs, and my father. I see her in a look in my sister’s eye.  We often quote her aphorisms. She is still with us.  Since she was a devoted Anglophile, she would approve of Kippered Eggs for breakfast. And for dinner, the meal I used to prepare for her birthday: Chicken and Dumplings.  Here’s to wonderful memories of my wonderful mother.

Kippered Eggs:  294 calories  9.4 g fat  2.7 g fiber  18 g protein  34 g carbs [31 g Complex] 217 mg Calcium  PB GF  Kippers are traditionally served with eggs, but why not have them in eggs? We did and it is terrific!Kippered Eggs w: cherries

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                                                                              0.4 oz kippered [smoked, salted, dried] herring                                                                                          ¼ tsp dried mustard                                                                                                                                                    1 tsp lemon or lime juice                                                                                                                                              4 sweet cherries                                                                                                                                                          5-6 oz green smoothie or fruit smoothie or natural apple cider                                                         blackish tea or blackish coffee or hot water with lemon

The night before: Soak the kipper fillet in warm tap water for 30 minutes. Mince the fish. In a small bowl, combine the juice and mustard, then mix in the fish. Leave it until morning. Next morning: Put the fish with its flavorings into a lightly-spritzed hot non-stick or cast iron pan and warm them. Whisk the eggs and pour over the fish. Let the eggs cook without disturbing them, then fold and plate with the cherries. The beverages are a nice counterpoint to the savory richness of the eggs and herring.

Chicken & Dumplings: 293 calories 6.8 g fat 4.6 g fiber 37.8 g protein 30 g carbs 67 mg Calcium PB  This was a real hit in my parents’ Central Pennsylvania home and it is still a favorite with us. Be aware that it is best made over 2 days, but it basically cooks by itself with a few busy bouts by you. Worth the time and effort. AND this recipe serves 4 [four] people, so have a party serving this great make-ahead meal. If you serve one or two, make the whole thing anyhow, package and freeze the remainder.Chicken & Dumpling w: peas

3 pound whole chicken, preferably a fowl although you will get more meat from a fryer                  ½ cup onion, chopped                                                                                                                                          1/3 cup carrots cut as coins                                                                                                                                  ½ cup celery, chopped                                                                                                                                                   bay leaf  + 3 peppercorns                                                                                                                                                           1.5 tsp Worcestershire sauce                                                                                                                                     2 Tbsp white whole wheat flour                                                                                                                              4 dumplings [see ..Not by Bread.. II-7-’18]                                                                                                            per person:   ¼ cup green peas 

Cut up a 3 pound chicken into leg quarters, breast quarters, back, wings. In a large pot, brown the chicken in a little oil on all sides. Add the vegetables, bay leaf and pepper and water to cover. Simmer on the cooktop for 45 minutes. Add 2 tsp salt, cover, and simmer for another 45 minutes. Strain off the stock and let the fat rise to the surface to cool. Discard the fat. Reserve the vegetables. Cool the chicken and remove the skin. Pull off the meat in chunks: you will use 17 oz meat by volume.   You could stop here.  HINT: save any remaining stock and chicken for excellent soup.  You could stop here.

Measure ¼ cup of stock and whisk in the 2 Tbsp whole wheat flour to form a paste. Meausre 1.5 cups stock and pour into a stovetop-safe serving dish along with the Worcestershire sauce. Add the flour water paste and stir to incorporate. Put the vegetables and chicken meat into the dish and adjust seasonings to taste. You could stop here. When ready to serve, prepare the dough for the dumplings. Heat the chicken mixture and place 4 dollops of dumpling dough on the warm chicken. Let it all bubble gently for 15-20 minutes, then cover the dish and continue to cook for another 15-20 minutes. Steam the peas and pour over the top of the dish before bringing to the table. Serve this simple classic proudly.

Ingredients for next week:

Breakfast, single portion

1 two-oz egg 1.5 two-oz eggs
oil cured black olive Parmesan cheese
Gouda cheese chive  +  kiwi fruit
mushrooms   +  applesauce ricotta cheese, reduced fat
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:

Vindaloo seasoning  + garlic chicken breast   +  Parmesan cheese
mushrooms   + pork  +  ginger fresh bread crumbs  + cottage cheese
canola oil  + onion  +  cider vinegar mozzarella  + salad greens + carrot
broccoli   +  brown rice   + sugar marinara sauce [see Saucy, 6 Dec-’17]
Sparkling water Sparkling water

Guy Fawkes

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 Pamela who is now Following.

Remember, remember the 5th of November,                                                                Gunpowder, treason, and plot…

 Tomorrow will be Guy Fawkes Day, a time to remember the foiled “Gunpowder Plot” of 1605.  A group of Catholic Englishmen who disliked the idea of a Protestant monarch [James I of England, James IV of Scotland who was suppressing the Catholic religion] on the throne of England, decided to blow up the King and all the members of Parliament by putting barrels of gunpowder in the basement of the building where they were all to meet. Guy Fawkes, the original ‘fall guy,’ was captured as he waited to light the fuse on November 5. Rather than meet the traitor’s death of being first hanged, then drawn, then quartered, he fell from the scaffold to his death. His co-conspirators were also caught and executed, but Guy Fawkes gets the spotlight.  Today in England, merry children construct straw effigies, strut them through their neighborhoods asking for “A penny for the Guy?” [the money collected goes to buy candy], then burn the effigies on the Day.  This gives November 5th its other name of ‘bonfire night.’  A thoroughly wholesome and Christian entertainment for the whole family! Oh boy! Let’s celebrate sectarian violence while children play at burning people alive.                                                                                       For Guy Fawkes’ childhood in York, we will enjoy a cottage breakfast of egg and whole-grain pan muffin.  For dinner, we’ll eat Soup Royaume in honor of another foiled plot.  This is the soup that an elderly Protestant woman was cooking when the ‘papists’ tried to invade Geneva in 1602, and she sounded the alarm to save the city.

Cottage Breakfast: 298 calories   7.8 g fat   3.1 g fiber   13.6 g protein   43.8 g carbs   199 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 or green smoothie or natural apple cider                                                           blackish coffee, 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.

Soup Royaume:  152 calories  0.3 g fat  6.3 g fiber  12.6 g protein  24.6 g carbs  84 mg Calcium PB GF  This fine meal for a cool night,  made hearty with autumn vegetables and lentils, is named after the old lady who saved Geneva from invasion by the Savoyards. Add as much seasoning as you wish. Any soup can be improved by preparing it ahead and letting it sit for 8-24 hours.Soupe Royaume

2.5 oz pork loin, raw or cooked                                                                                                                           ½ cup onion, chopped                                                                                                                                        3.5 oz dry lentils, small green ones from France if possible                                                                      3 oz rutabaga/turnip, cubed                                                                                                                                 2 oz carrot, diced                                                                                                                                                      3 oz parsnip, diced                                                                                                                                                   3 cups chopped cabbage                                                                                                                               mace +  dry mustard +  salt +  pepper + caraway seed [optional]                                                                ½ cup frozen spinach, chopped                                                                                                                               3+ cups water                                                                                                                                                                 per serving: several leaves of fresh spinach

Put the pork, onions, and lentils in a heavy saucepan with a little oil and cook until browned. Add the rutabaga/turnip, carrot, parsnip, cabbage and seasonings. Cover with water, using more if needed. Cover and cook for about 1 hour or until vegetables are tender. Taste for seasonings, add the frozen spinach, stir well, and heat through. Divide into 4 equal servings and freeze the servings you don’t need today. Roughly chop the fresh spinach and put it on top of the soup when serving.