Eat like a peasant, look like a queen


Last Sunday at church I ran into a friend I’d not seen for a while.  She looked wonderful – at least 25 pounds lighter since I last saw her, and she really glowed!

Of course, I ran right up to her and asked what she was doing, so I could do the same.  She blushed charmingly and pulled me aside. 

“My husband lost his job and we’ve been eating beans and rice and rice and beans,” she said. “The weight loss was unintentional.” 

Ah, the ole Dave Ramsey diet. Apparently it works.

Thankfully, the spouse is back at work, and things are easing up for them, but it got me thinking that maybe a peasant diet might be worth a try.  I  looked up a couple of old recipes from the Frugal Gourmet.  Remember him?  Here’s what we’re doing tonight.

Peasant Stew


1  teaspoon  ground cumin

1/4  teaspoon  salt

  • 1/4  teaspoon  black pepper
  • 6  chicken thighs (about 1 1/2 pounds), skinned
  • 1  cup  chopped onion
  • 1  (14.5-ounce) can Mexican-style stewed tomatoes with jalapeño peppers and spices, undrained
  • 1  (4.5-ounce) can chopped green chiles, undrained
  • 1  (15-ounce) can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1  (15-ounce) can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/4  cup  minced fresh cilantro
  • 1/4  cup  reduced-fat sour cream


Combine cumin, salt, and pepper; sprinkle over chicken.

Place chicken in a slow cooker; stir in onion, tomatoes, and chiles. Cover with lid; cook on high-heat setting for 3 hours. Stir in beans. Cover; cook on high-heat setting 1 hour.

Place 1 chicken thigh in each of 6 soup bowls; ladle 1 1/4 cups stew into each bowl. Top each serving with 2 teaspoons cilantro and 2 teaspoons sour cream.  Only 214 calories, 3.9 g. fat. 

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