January – Week 3, Phase 1

January – Week 3, Phase 1

Here we are again, back to phase 1. How are you feeling? I caught a cold so I am really happy I have a batch of turkey chili I made on Saturday. This chili is excellent, a meal in both phase 1 and phase 3 (with the addition of some sliced avocado or a green salad with olive oil).

We have made it half way!

Menu for phase 1, day 1

BreakfastOvernight oatmeal with fresh blueberries. Did you know that oatmeal freezes well? I made a batch of overnight oatmeal in canning jars, stuck the extra jars in the freezer, and defrosted one overnight in the fridge. The next morning I simply reheated it in the microwave. You will need to add some extra liquid, rice milk or oat milk is good. Please reheat on low so it doesn’t boil over and make a mess in your microwave (like I did).

Sous Vide Overnight Oatmeal

Snack – More blueberries (they were on sale)

LunchTurkey, white bean and kale soup with an orange

Turkey, Kale and White Bean Soup

Snack – Tangerine

DinnerTurkey and Vegetable Chili (everything you need in one bowl)

Turkey Chili

Soup days are perfect for when you are not feeling in tip top shape, and I love having a meal in a single bowl.

 

January – Turkey Chili

January – Turkey Chili

Okay, I know there are about a million recipes out there for chili. I have a whole Pinterest folder full of them. Why do you need one more? Well…what about easy, almost fat free, delicious, full of healthy vegetables, suitable for both phase 1 and phase 3 of the Fast Metabolism Diet, and lastly an insurance policy in the freezer. Chili is the answer for the question “what shall we have for dinner?” frequently posed at 6 pm when everyone is tired, hungry, and grumpy. That’s the kind of insurance I’m talking about. It’s good with rice, with cornbread, poured over a baked potato, garnished with cheese or avocado or chips or cilantro or chopped onion or sour cream, use it in a burrito bowl or rolled in a taco. Whew! And it is delicious just as is, perfect for lunch or dinner on a chilly day. You have lots of options.

This recipe makes a big batch, four quarts of chili. Enough for to put a quart or two in the freezer.

2 cups of chili are a phase 1 meal, garnish with half a sliced avocado for phase 3. Because of the large amounts of legumes, it counts as a starch as well as a protein.

Turkey Chili

4 quarts of Turkey Chili

Turkey Chili

Makes 4 quarts – 8 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 pounds of ground turkey
  • 1 large red onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro or parsley
  • 1 heaping tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon red chili flakes (depending on how spicy you like your chili)
  • 2 cans of black beans
  • 1 can of pinto beans, drained
  • 4 cups of chopped zucchini
  • 2 red peppers, chopped
  • 1 32 ounce can of chopped tomatoes with juice
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt plus more to taste

Directions:

  1. Brown the turkey over medium heat in a large heavy bottomed pot, add a tablespoon or two of water if it sticks.
  2. Add the onion, herbs, chili powder, cumin, garlic and red chili flakes to the pot. Cook on until the onion softens, about 10 minutes.
  3. Add the 2 cans of black beans with their liquid, the drained pinto beans, and the tomatoes. Bring to a simmer and turn down the heat. Simmer 40 minutes.
  4. Add the zucchini, red pepper and salt, simmer for another 40 minutes to an hour.
  5. Taste for salt.
  6. Garnish with chopped cilantro, thinly sliced cabbage, avocado, sour cream, cheese, etc.

    Turkey Chili

    Turkey Chili

This recipe is adapted from one in the Fast Metabolism Diet.

 

January – Week 2 phase 3

January – Week 2 phase 3

I know, I skipped a post about Week 2, phase 2. That is because I have been consumed by getting the Oakland house ready to sell and haven’t had time to write a post. This is going to be a very short one.

The diet is going well and my friends and I are already seeing results. Clothes that haven’t fit in months now do, pounds have been lost, and our waists are whittled. There are complaints about grogginess in the morning without caffeine, I miss my morning cup of black tea as well. We are hopeful that will slowly disappear. The expanded menu in phase 3 makes it easier on the weekend, reason to start the Fast Metabolism Diet on a Monday.

Tomorrow is the Women’s March, it is predicted to be a big one in Oakland. Our temporary home is only a few blocks from the end of the march, which will be fun.

Menu for today:

Phase 3, week 2

Breakfast – sprouted wheat toast with almond butter and sliced tomato

Snack – I admit to going off diet here and going for the easy, handful of mixed nuts which is the snack from phase 2

Lunch –  roast chicken with greens (salad from down the street), apple

Snack – more nuts

Dinner – Salmon with mashed cauliflower and sweet potato, green beans

Have you tried the Trader Joe’s frozen sweet potato “pellets”, they also have frozen cauliflower. They are not bad. I combined the two together for a fast sweet potato and cauliflower mash. I found them in the frozen section. Let me know if you have tried them. I think either would be excellent combined with the frozen mashed potato “pellets”. I admit to using them for a quick mashed potato side (not on the diet) with cheese and butter.

I will stop by the store on the way home, tomorrow will be better.

This was the day 2 of phase 3 breakfast

egg, toast and tomato

January – Fast Metabolism Week 2 phase 1

January – Fast Metabolism Week 2 phase 1

Here we go again, back at phase 1 for two days. How are you doing? The waist on my jeans is looser, yippee!

I did an experiment last night with cooking oatmeal sous vide. I found that the overnight cooking did not require a change in the recommended oats to liquid ratio. And, I much prefer the steel cup oats to regular rolled oats (even the more expensive organic type). Another recommendation is to try and find unsweetened oat milk and replace half the recommended liquid with oat milk. Of course you could also use regular milk or half and half (rice milk didn’t do much) or coconut milk…oh my the possibilities. But in phase 1 stick to oat milk. This time I didn’t add any fruit. The freeze dried fruit is definitely better. If using any other type (including raisins) add them after the oatmeal is cooked.

Breakfast: Overnight oatmeal with fresh blueberries and cinnamon

Sous Vide Overnight Oatmeal

Snack: Pear

Lunch: Open faced turkey sandwich with mustard, tomato, cucumber, red onion and arugula.

Snack: Apple

Dinner: 5 Hour Beef Stew with Brown Rice

5 Hour Beef Stew

I miss that morning dose of caffeine but don’t have a headache, just find I am a tad slower first thing.

Remember your exercise, some form of aerobic activity today. And drink lots of water.

January – 5 Hour Beef Stew

January – 5 Hour Beef Stew

This recipe was first posted in November 2013, but I think it is due for a re-write. As well I wanted to adapt it to the Fast Metabolism Diet, which was amazingly easy to do. You don’t need to be on the diet to appreciate this wonderful meal. It is so easy, you just mix everything together in a large bowl, pour it into a casserole dish, cover and leave in a low oven for 5 hours. Time to catch up on some of the Harry Potter movies that are playing in marathon session on TV this weekend. Your whole house will be filled with wonderful smells. This recipe is good enough to serve company. It is appropriate for phase 1 or 3.

The original idea came from a cookbook (mine now well-used, stained, and tattered) called Cold-Weather Cooking by Sarah Leah Chase. She was one of the co-authors of the Silver Palate Good Times Cookbook. She lives in Nantucket and the recipe is perfect for stormy, cold evenings.

 Serve it with mashed potatoes, or pasta, or mashed fat-free cauliflower (recipe to follow).

Note: I would not transfer this recipe to a slow cooker, it will have far too much liquid. Slow cooker recipes need an entirely different formula for success. Also, please check your tapioca label if you need this recipe to be gluten-free, not all of them are. Minute Tapioca is gluten-free.

5 Hour Beef Stew

5 Hour Beef Stew

 

(6-8 servings)

Ingredients:

  • 2 ½ lbs of lean beef stew meat, cut into 1 – 1 ½ inch cubes
  • 6-8 carrots, peeled and cut into chunks the size as the meat
  • 3 parsnips, peeled and cut into chunks the same size as the meat
  • 6-8 shallots, peeled and left whole
  • 4 cloves of garlic, 2 finely chopped and 2 peeled but left whole
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, or 1 teaspoon dried
  • 1 tablespoon herbs de Provence
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional if your family does not like spicy food)
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 ½ cups of sugar-free vegetable juice, tomato juice or a large can of tomatoes, puree in your blender with additional water to make 2 1/2 cups if necessary
  • 1/2 cup dry red wine, water or broth
  • 1 tablespoon of Dijon mustard
  • 3 ½ tablespoons of tapioca, I used Minute Tapioca
  • Chopped parsley for serving

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 275 degrees F
  2. In a large mixing bowl combine the beef with all the vegetables. Season with the garlic, herbs, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes. No, you don’t need to pre-brown the meat! I know, I didn’t believe it either but I’ve made this many times and it works.
  3. In a small bowl whisk together the tomato juice, wine or water or broth, mustard, and tapioca.
  4. Add this mixture to the meat and vegetables, stir to blend well.
  5. Transfer the stew to a large casserole or Dutch oven. Cover tightly and cook 5 hours without opening the lid or disturbing.
  6. Taste for salt, some tomato juices are very salty. Add more freshly ground pepper as desired.
  7. You can serve this directly or refrigerate overnight and reheat the next day.
  8. Garnish with chopped parsley

 

5 Hour Beef Stew

5 Hour Beef Stew

5 Hour Beef Stew

Use your imagination as far as vegetables. I used carrots, parsnips and shallots this time. In the past, I’ve added turnips, potatoes, boiling onions, kohibrabi, celery root and elephant garlic. Use this recipe as your canvas for what you find at the market or in your garden.

Serve with mashed potatoes, baked potatoes, pasta, or this amazing fat-free cauliflower mash. 1/8 (about 1 cup) of the recipe would be a phase 1 dinner with some brown rice or pasta. A sweet potato would also be nice with it.

If you have some, serve the pickled mustard seeds on the side. I did and it was a good counterpoint to the richness of the meat. Horseradish would also be good.

Add a salad freshly gathered from the garden, you have an easy weeknight dinner which feels much fancier than it is.

Fat-free Cauliflower Mash

Fat-free Cauliflower Mash with Beef Stew

2 – 3 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 head of fresh cauliflower, washed and broken into florets. Woody stems peeled and chopped
  • 1 head of fresh garlic, peeled and left whole
  • 1/2 bunch of green onions or scallions, roughly chopped, white and light green parts only
  • 4 cups of chicken or vegetable broth
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Add the cauliflower, scallions and garlic to a large pot.
  2. Add the chicken or vegetable broth
  3. Bring all back to the boil and simmer for 20-25 minutes until everything is very tender
  4. Pour into a colander over a large bowl, saving the broth.
  5. When slightly cooler, puree in your blender or food processor, adding broth as needed until you have a smooth mash.
  6. Taste for salt and pepper.
  7. Save the cauliflower cooking water for soup.

This is creamy, and delicious. But…it is not rich mashed potatoes. You could add cream and butter but that would be defeating the purpose. If not restricting dairy, I might add some cottage cheese to the blender with the cauliflower. I think that would up the flavor profile a bit. Puree both until very smooth and creamy. Make sure you add enough salt, that is a key element.

 

 

 

January – Fast Metabolism – Phase 3

January – Fast Metabolism – Phase 3

It’s time for phase 3, three days of phase 3. After phase 1 and 2 this will feel like a banquet. Phase 3 is designed to be good for your heart, hormones and it generates heat to speed weight loss. It is a high healthy-fat, moderate-carbohydrate, moderate-protein, and low-glycemic fruit phase. Frankly it is the way I could eat every day.

You can eat olives, avocados, coconut oil, olive oil, hummus, almond butter, berries, wild rice, sprouted grain bread, salmon and sweet potatoes to name a few. Oh my!

Look for my phase 3 recipe for Coconut Curry with Chicken (I will post it on Saturday or Sunday morning). It is a perfect Sunday supper and can be made completely vegetarian if you leave off any meat and add chickpeas.

Winter Coconut Curry

What does a phase 3 day look like:

Breakfast – fruit, fat/protein, grain, veggie

Snack – healthy fat, veggie

Lunch – fat/protein, veggie, fruit

Snack – healthy fat, veggie

Dinner – fat/protein, veggie, grain/starch

It’s the weekend (Friday is the beginning of the weekend isn’t it) and many of you are eating out with friends. Before you go to the restaurant, take a look at the menu and plan your meal. I am eating out tonight and realize that the place chosen does not have a lot of healthy options, but there is a dinner salad and I can add a lean protein. Ask for the salad dressing on the side, olive oil and vinegar are allowed in phase 3. Ditto you can have tomatoes and avocado, a few chickpeas, and grated carrots. Sounds like the dinner salad at most restaurants, leave off the croutons.

One of the amazing things about the Fast Metabolism Diet is the reduction of cellulite and flab. Most diets leave you with excess skin and flab to deal with. This diet seems to tighten your skin as you loose weight. At the end of the diet last May I didn’t have those unsightly rolls which require Spanx to prevent roll over.

My day is going to look like this:

Breakfast – sprouted wheat toast, half an avocado, sliced tomato and red onion. Tomato counts as a fruit here. (You can tell I like onion. James Beard used to eat onion sandwiches, I’ve always thought that sounds delicious).

Phase 3 breakfast

Snack – hummus with cucumber sticks

Lunch – tuna salad with sliced cucumber, with 1/2 grapefruit

Tuna and 4 cooked shrimp, minced and mixed with 2 tablespoons of hummus, 1 tablespoon of finely chopped red onion, red chili flakes and a squeeze of lemon. Taste for seasoning and serve with sliced cucumber dippers.

Tuna/shrimp salad

Tuna/shrimp salad with cucumber slices as dippers

Snack – hummus with celery

Dinner – mixed salad with lean protein (I will let you know how I do at the restaurant). They turned out to have a wonderful steak salad on the menu. I only had to ask them to leave off the cheese and bring me plain vinegar and olive oil for a dressing. 

How are you doing? How are you feeling?

January – Fast Metabolism – Phase 2 Day 2

January – Fast Metabolism – Phase 2 Day 2

Day 4 of the Fast Metabolism Diet. How are you feeling? I woke up this morning with more energy than usual and I don’t miss that morning dose of caffeine…progress. I am experimenting with herbal teas. Do you have a favorite for the morning? The Numi teas with turmeric have been my “go to’s” so far but I am looking forward to branching out.

As a reminder of today’s program:

Breakfast – Protein, veggie

Snack – Protein

Lunch – Protein, veggie

Snack – Protein

Dinner – Protein, veggie

My own menu looks like this for the day:

Breakfast – 2 slices of turkey bacon scrambled with 2 egg whites and a handful of baby spinach

Turkey Bacon with Egg Whites and Baby Spinach

Snack – 1/4 cup of mixed raw nuts

LunchTurkey breast with a salad of sliced cucumbers and red onions

Turkey Breast – Cooked Frozen and Sous Vide

 

Snack – 1/4 cup of mixed raw nuts

Dinner – 1 slice of turkey bacon sautéed with shrimp. Asparagus on the side.

 

Casey and Quinn get the benefit of those lovely yolks in their dinner tonight.

Egg yolks

Egg yolks? For us??? We are digesting breakfast and keeping you company while you write.

Don’t forget your water and phase 2 exercise includes some form of weight work. Take heart, phase 3 and avocado is on the horizon.