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Thread: Almost-Primal Orthodox Christian Lenten Eating and Cooking page 5

  1. #41
    Antiochia's Avatar
    Antiochia is offline Senior Member
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    Primal Fuel
    Yes -- I didn't know it either before DH and I became Orthodox. Here is more information on Orthodox Fasting if you are interested:
    The Fasting Rule of the Orthodox Church

    And they are actually "guidelines" rather than rules -- goals to aim for. Some of us need the additional protein of fish with backbones, and that is allowed in consultation with your spiritual father. My priest told me about what one of our older Greek members said to him years ago. Her mother in Greece had told her "Fast well while you are young. When you get old you will be unable to keep the fast." Also, there are quite a few churches where the priest just says to go ahead and eat fish with backbones, but everyone knows this is a suggestion and not according to the original guidelines.

    We get pretty tired of shrimp by the end of Lent. Shrimp is no longer a delicacy for us -- it is just fasting protein.
    Ruth

    "I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody."
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    See my journal, The Balancing Act: Integrating Primal into My Life, for menu plans, musings, and more.

  2. #42
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    Okay -- another confession -- this morning I had oatmeal. I know, I know. My other "not-Primal" digression. Oats are the only grain I eat now (except for a little rice at a Lenten Potluck). I figure once in a while oatmeal won't hurt, and I only eat it soaked. Here is how:

    SOAKED OATMEAL
    I got this idea from Sally Fallon's book Nourishing Traditions. You start this the night before. Put your oatmeal into a saucepan (or the top of a double boiler). Also, I just read that if possible, add a tablespoon or two of rolled rye flakes per cup as part of your measurement of oatmeal. It will help with the production of phytase to eliminate phytic acid. (See How to Soak Grains for Optimal Nutrition - The Nourishing Home. For each cup of oats add 1 cup of water and according to Sally Fallon add EITHER 2 tablespoons buttermilk, OR whey, OR yogurt, OR kefir, OR vinegar (I use raw vinegar), OR fresh lemon juice.

    I use the vinegar option, but I think 2 tablespoons per cup of oats is way too much, and too sour. When you think of it, to create a sour milk that is equivalent to buttermilk, you add 1 tablespoon vinegar to a cup of milk. So, if you can use 2 tablespoons buttermilk for soaking your oatmeal, I think 1 TEASPOON of vinegar to use in soaking the oats is quite enough for 1 cup of oats -- if you follow my logic.

    So -- to recap here is my oatmeal recipe for 2 servings:
    In the evening put 2 tablespoons rolled rye in a 1 cup measure and fill the cup with oatmeal
    Dump the oatmeal into a saucepan or double boiler.
    Add 1 cup water and 1 teaspoon raw vinegar.
    Let stand at room temperature over night.

    Next morning add:
    1 cup water
    1/2 teaspoon salt

    Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Then EITHER turn down to a simmer, stirring occasionally until done, about 5 minutes or so, OR using a double boiler, put the oatmeal pot over the simmering-water pot. It will be ready shortly and stay ready for a while.

    I add cinnamon, walnuts, and raisins to my serving (DH prefers plain oatmeal). And I serve it with my cereal milk combination because I think coconut milk is too thick.

    CEREAL MILK
    Mix approximately half coconut milk and half unsweetened, unflavored almond milk. Add a small amount of maple syrup to taste and a few drops of vanilla.

    Another recipe using soaked oatmeal is my Lenten Oat-Nut waffles (see post # 26).
    Last edited by Antiochia; 03-30-2013 at 08:44 AM.
    Ruth

    "I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody."
    ~Bill Cosby

    See my journal, The Balancing Act: Integrating Primal into My Life, for menu plans, musings, and more.

  3. #43
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    hey, if you can tolerate and you need the extra variety during fasting time, definitely understandable. This sounds like a great way to increase one's awareness of food!

    My grandmother fasts every Friday (pre-Vatican II Catholic style, more or less I guess) and she relies one grains a lot I think, but is very discerning at least (steel-cut oats, etc.).
    SAD makes me MAD (a journal about Mongolian food and living with mullings on struggles with GERD, IBS and acne)http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread66073.html

  4. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Antiochia View Post
    Yes -- I didn't know it either before DH and I became Orthodox. Here is more information on Orthodox Fasting if you are interested:
    The Fasting Rule of the Orthodox Church

    And they are actually "guidelines" rather than rules -- goals to aim for. Some of us need the additional protein of fish with backbones, and that is allowed in consultation with your spiritual father. My priest told me about what one of our older Greek members said to him years ago. Her mother in Greece had told her "Fast well while you are young. When you get old you will be unable to keep the fast." Also, there are quite a few churches where the priest just says to go ahead and eat fish with backbones, but everyone knows this is a suggestion and not according to the original guidelines.

    We get pretty tired of shrimp by the end of Lent. Shrimp is no longer a delicacy for us -- it is just fasting protein.
    Thank you for the link, Ruth, it's been a really interesting reading. I was nosing around this board and wondering which where the rules of Orthodox fasting, so my curiosity got satiated ^^ Really interesting recipes and, what Khainag said, a bit of oatmeal to get you through your fasting is not a bad thing.

  5. #45
    Antiochia's Avatar
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    Thank you for reading my little thread and commenting! I've seen a couple other threads with questions from Orthodox Christians about what to do during Lent, and I just decided to be as Primal as possible while following the Lenten practices and write about it. Obviously we can't eat totally Primal, but neither can we eat all of the normal Lenten foods, so it has become quite a balance.

    In some ways it is nice to have the restriction on fish with backbones, because then fish can be a feasting food during the Fast for special days. It you decide to include fish in your fasting menu, then your feasting meal isn't any different from your regular food. (We eat fish on Annunciation, Palm Sunday, or for a celebration like a birthday, patronal saint day, or if the bishop comes to town.)

    Which also brings up another good thing about our Lenten menu -- when the great feast (Pascha, aka Easter) arrives, you don't have to knock yourself out to make a celebration meal. Just the inclusion of meat, eggs, and dairy makes it special. Before I became Orthodox, I always cooked great meals -- although they were CW, at least they were mostly homemade, not processed, but when a special day came around I really had to work to make things extra fancy for the celebration. Now I don't have to go to that much work any more, and it is actually quite a relief!

    I know the fasting rules seem quite strict, but it isn't a sin not to fast -- it's just not fasting, so you don't get the benefit of the fasting. Lenten Fasting is an exercise for your will. You strengthen your will by saying no to things you want. If you can learn to say no to your stomach, it will help you say no to other temptations. Just as it isn't morally wrong to refuse to physically exercise, but if you don't exercise, you don't get the benefits of exercising. Anyway, that's a little of the thinking behind the Lenten Fast -- there is obviously more to it than that, and there are spiritual benefits as well. Also, if you have your church community, you are all doing this together and it is very much a bonding experience.
    Last edited by Antiochia; 03-31-2013 at 08:46 PM.
    Ruth

    "I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody."
    ~Bill Cosby

    See my journal, The Balancing Act: Integrating Primal into My Life, for menu plans, musings, and more.

  6. #46
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    Well, now here's how I did on Saturday & Sunday. I already wrote that DH and I had soaked oatmeal for breakfast Saturday morning. For lunch I tried my hand at making Falafel. I won't share the recipe because it didn't turn out -- Falafel are patties made of soaked chickpeas, with onions, parsley, and spices all ground up together and fried in olive oil. Mine tasted pretty good, but they fell all apart. I'm wondering if I should try including some ground chia seed in the patty mix. Anyway, I served the fried Falafel crumbles on top of a lettuce, cucumber, onion, and tomato salad, with Tahini sauce and sliced avocado on the side. Then, for supper, after church school & Vespers we got take-out fried shrimp. DH had his with onion rings and cole slaw. I had mine with green beans and a side salad (I specified no dressing so I could use my own homemade dressing).

    Today we fasted from all food before the morning service (My, that first cup of coffee after the service tastes wonderful!) and then had a potluck lunch. I ate mostly salad and fruit, but someone had put some dark chocolate with almonds on the dessert table that I couldn't resist! When I got home, I ate some nuts and celery with nut butter.

    For dinner I was going to make a seafood salad, but my godson & family came over, and the mom is allergic to seafood, so I made a Red Lentil Soup instead. The recipe isn't primal, so I'm not including it. I served it with

    CARROT APPLE SALAD
    Sorry - I don't use measurements

    Mix Vegan mayonnaise, apple cider vinegar, and a sweetener to taste (a little brown sugar OR honey OR coconut sugar)
    Add grated carrot, diced apple, chopped walnuts, and raisins in whatever proportion you like. Wonderful easy salad!

    Then, since we had guests I made vegan chocolate chip cookies. Another not-primal recipe, so not included. The great thing about my cookie recipe, though, is that it only makes one cookie-sheet full. It's enough for one meal and then I don't have left over cookies hanging around tempting me.

    Anyway -- forward into the third week of Orthodox Lent! A blessed Easter to all western Christians celebrating the feast today!
    Last edited by Antiochia; 07-12-2013 at 11:22 AM.
    Ruth

    "I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody."
    ~Bill Cosby

    See my journal, The Balancing Act: Integrating Primal into My Life, for menu plans, musings, and more.

  7. #47
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    Gee Whiz! I gained a pound and a half back this morning. I guess that's what I get for eating vegan chocolate chip cookies yesterday -- probably the red lentil soup didn't help either. It's probably water weight -- I think my body needs extra water to digest the starch and sugar.
    Ruth

    "I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody."
    ~Bill Cosby

    See my journal, The Balancing Act: Integrating Primal into My Life, for menu plans, musings, and more.

  8. #48
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    Celebrating Gregorian Easter this weekend with my fiancÚ's family, my future mother-in-law asked me what kind of foods the Orthodox eat for Easter. I felt slightly dumbfounded as I answered, "meat, cheese, and alcohol!" (Alcohol is always a big part of our Pascha experience.) It's funny how people can get so focused on the holiday alone and forget about all the preparation (fasting & various special services/events throughout Lent) that others go through. I don't follow Lent or consider myself Christian now, but I have a lot of respect for people who do! It's also funny to me that this "other" Easter (from their perspective) seems so weird. It's just Easter, only probably more hard-boiled eggs than candy (that was my experience, anyway, and now that I like hard-boiled eggs, I'm psyched!).
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  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by namelesswonder View Post
    It's funny how people can get so focused on the holiday alone and forget about all the preparation (fasting & various special services/events throughout Lent) that others go through.
    Well, that was one of the attractions for DH and me becoming Orthodox. In our former church it was almost as though people were worshiping LESS on the holy days (like Christmas and Easter). It was always a celebratory day, and we went through the motions of reminding people about the reasons for the day, but it was mainly about food, family, and cultural holiday traditions.
    For example, on Easter at our old church, we would not have Sunday School - just an Easter Brunch. The worship service was usually an Easter concert. Then we would go home to a big family fancy meal that I had to knock myself out preparing.

    Now that we are Orthodox, with Lent the whole season changes. We are constantly reminded of our Lenten journey -- in the colors of the vestments, self-examination with confession & encouragement in the faith, the music we sing, the services that only occur during Lent, down to the food that we do and do not eat; culminating in the Pascha service, which is such a wonderful, joyous, mind-blowing worship service. I feel like I am present at the actual resurrection of Christ! When everything finally winds down around 4 in the morning we go home and sleep, but we don't sleep the length of a regular night. We wake up in the morning and have breakfast - BACON! EGGS! YEA! - and it feels like it should be Monday because we already celebrated our Sunday morning Liturgy -- but it is still Sunday -- it is like a day outside of time -- the 8th day of the week -- a taste of the timelessness of eternity! Around 2 pm we go back to church for Agape Vespers and a HUGE potluck dinner -- including lamb roasted on a spit over the coals in the woods in back of the church! YEA again -- I just need to bring a dish of something -- I don't need to knock myself out to prepare a big, fancy meal. And I can sit down and enjoy dinner with friends! Forgive me -- I'm getting carried away with anticipation!

    Quote Originally Posted by namelesswonder View Post
    It's also funny to me that this "other" Easter (from their perspective) seems so weird.
    Yes, I can imagine it would, if you grew up in an Orthodox family --but Orthodox Christianity is not understood in this country and seems foreign. And all its customs, like Pascha, seem exotic. We had no knowledge of it until my daughter brought home an Orthodox boyfriend in highschool. That was going on 16 years ago now -- I had to find out whether or not the Orthodox boyfriend was really "Christian" so I started trying to unobtrusively ask him questions and I became so intrigued by the authenticity of Orthodox Christianity that one thing let to another and we entered the church in '01. So, yes, before 16 years ago, I would have been asking the same questions as your fiancÚ's parents, I'm sure!
    Last edited by Antiochia; 04-02-2013 at 07:59 AM.
    Ruth

    "I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody."
    ~Bill Cosby

    See my journal, The Balancing Act: Integrating Primal into My Life, for menu plans, musings, and more.

  10. #50
    Antiochia's Avatar
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    Well, this morning I dropped back down a couple of pounds so that was a relief! I didn't get to post much yesterday because I got called in to work at the preschool much of the day.

    Meals from yesterday:
    Breakfast: Buckwheat Pancakes (post #3), strawberries, maple syrup
    Lunch: Lenten B.A.S. (post #5)
    Dinner: Sauteed shrimp with Pineapple Terriyaki Sauce (post #29) served over stir-fried cabbage and red & green bell peppers, with sauteed asparagus on the side. A piece of dark chocolate for dessert with a cup of hot green tea.

    This morning I had my quick *cereal* (post #2) and lunch was a Lenten B.A.S. at the preschool again -- the children are starting to ask me -- "Miss Ruth, why do you always bring salad?"
    Ruth

    "I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody."
    ~Bill Cosby

    See my journal, The Balancing Act: Integrating Primal into My Life, for menu plans, musings, and more.

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