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Happy St David’s Day! Also Richard Burton! Also I want to Strangle This Woman! | Manolo for the Big Girl

Happy St David’s Day! Also Richard Burton! Also I want to Strangle This Woman!

As I’m sure you all know, Sunday is the Feast of Saint David of Wales. Saint David’s Day is the Welsh –and thus infinitely more awesome– equivalent to Saint Patrick’s Day.  Being a daughter of Cymru myself, I firmly believe in observing Saint David’s Day and bringing the spirit of The Dragon to the poor unfortunates who for some unfathomable reason known only to God, aren’t even partly Welsh.

I’ve got my daffodils and leeks all ready to pin on all and sundry, I’ve got a white dress –or maybe not, depending if my red haired cousin from the country comes early*– and for later I’ve got a dark room and a night full of Richard Burton films. (Note: I am a Christian woman, but if you call me during Night of The Iguana, I WILL cut you. Next Monday Hotness is totally going to be Richard Burton. I would have hit that twelve ways to Sunday.)

Mmm Hmmm Richard Burton

dayum.

Anyhoodle.

The only thing I lacked was a potato-free recipe for leek soup. So I went to Chef Google and found this particularly dismal recipe from Mireille Guiliano, author of French Women Don’t Get Fat.

Magical Leek Soup (Broth)

Serves 1 for the weekend

Ingredients

2 pounds leeks

1. Clean the leeks and rinse well to get rid of sand and soil. Cut off the ends of the dark green parts, leaving all the white parts plus a suggestion of pale green. (Reserve the extra greens for soup stock.)

2. Put the leeks in a large pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and simmer uncovered for 20 to 30 minutes. Pour off the liquid and reserve. Place the leeks in a bowl.

The juice is to be drunk (reheated or at room temperature to taste) every 2 to 3 hours, 1 cup at a time. For meals, or whenever hungry, have some of the leeks themselves, 1/2 cup at a time. Drizzle with a few drops of extra-virgin olive oil and lemon juice. Season sparingly with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with chopped parsley if you wish.

This will be your nourishment for both days, until Sunday dinner, when you can have a small piece of meat or fish (4 to 6 ounces — don’t lose that scale yet!), with 2 vegetables, steamed with a bit of butter or olive oil, and a piece of fruit.

What the [redacted]ing [redacted]???

“This will be your nourishment for both days”?! Really? Nourishment?  Where exactly is the nourishment? Because here is the nutritional value of a half-cup of boiled leeks:

courtesy of whfoods.org

Even if you eat ten servings over the weekend –and though I am loath to speak ill of my patron root vegetable, that’s not an appetizing suggestion– you’d still clock in at 80 calories a day.  The strictest medical supervised starvation diet (which I still find highly questionable) according to the NIH is about 800 calories a day. So essentially you would have to eat ten times as much JUST to get to “starvation”.

That is ten pounds of screwed up in a five pound bag. And if Guiliano is trying to talk about the pleasure of eating, where is the pleasure in eating that? Oh yum! Leek broth every three  hours? And I can have parsley too?! The last person to be Alive with Pleasure from a leek. Well, I don’t even want to know about that, but I can’t imagine it’s healthy.

Also, French women DO get fat. One of my favorite big girl blogs is  Le Blog de Big Beauty from Stéphanie Zwicky. Granted, her sartorial choices are not always in line with my own particular taste, but she serves it unapologetically and à la mode, and for that I love her.

So go, buy a leek, wear a daffodil and if you’re Welsh thank your lucky stars, but for the love of Richard Burton (and that’s a whoooole lot of love) DO NOT spend you weekend drinking this juice.

10 Responses to “Happy St David’s Day! Also Richard Burton! Also I want to Strangle This Woman!”

  1. Twistie February 27, 2009 at 7:24 pm #

    No fear on this end! says the lady who started her day with Chilli Colorado and fried eggs over polenta. And for dinner? Sausages, Nappa cabbage, and roast potatoes. It’s a comfort food kind of day at Casa Twistie, and that’s some of what comfort food looks like for me.

    Anyone who thinks it’s healthy for anyone to eat nothing but cups of unseasoned, unadulterated leek broth for an entire weekend (IF you get hungry, eat a little of the leeks???? IF?????? WHAT THE SAM HILL IS THIS WOMAN SMOKING AND WHO IS HER DEALER??????) seriously needs a clue-by-four upside the noggin.

    Mr. Twistie has the excellent luck to be a Japanese Welshman. Perhaps a bit of leek sushi is in order.

  2. Oskiette February 27, 2009 at 7:41 pm #

    This reminds me of that scene in The Devil Wears Prada where Emily Blunt’s character says “I’m on this new diet. I don’t eat anything, and just when I think I’m about to faint, I eat a cube of cheese”. Classic.

    But all jokes aside, when you read that you don’t quite get hit with the ridiculosity of it all until you have it pointed out to you that you’re going to be getting 80 calories a day. At which point you remember that a medium sized APPLE is around 90 calories, and then you feel ill just thinking about it any further.

  3. barbara February 28, 2009 at 7:25 am #

    So, why exactly would you want leek soup with out the potato? I’m genuinely curious!

    Mmm, Night of the Iguana…

  4. Plumcake February 28, 2009 at 11:24 am #

    oh, someone who would be eating it has a potato allergy. I know!

  5. Fabrisse February 28, 2009 at 2:17 pm #

    How are they with carrots? Because a leek and carrot soup would be delightful. I’d sweat the leeks and carrots in olive oil (or butter) before adding a couple of tablespoons of cider and the stock or water. Thyme, bay leaf, and nutmeg (nutmeg is great with leek) would be the spices.

    In defense of Guillard: I love her baguette recipe.

  6. MissSpite March 1, 2009 at 5:16 am #

    Next time, try the Leekspin rave for the modern girl honoring St. David. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_6gVE9Uov2A

  7. buffpuff March 1, 2009 at 2:06 pm #

    Whenever somebody starts wittering on about French women not getting fat, I like to point them in the direction of Allegro Fortissimo – ‘cos, y’know, French, fat, and activists to boot.

  8. Jenny March 1, 2009 at 9:03 pm #

    I also have to recommend Blog to Be Alive – English title, bilingual blog from a lovely lovely French girl…or Belgian? I am ashamed to say that I am not sure. She’s on hiatus right now but she’s adorable. Maybe it should be “French Woman Do Get Fat, But They Are Still Painfully Chic and Can Really Work a Fringe”?

  9. lunadog March 2, 2009 at 4:07 pm #

    Iach y dda! from another Welsh lass.

  10. Thalia March 4, 2009 at 2:02 pm #

    to be fair, the rest of the book isn’t that crazy — the leek soup weekend thing is horrible and weird, but an anomaly. Giuliano is mostly all about “eat something with cream in it and have a glass of wine.” The biggest problem with FWDGF is that she is just unbearably too-too about the special special elegance and joie de vivre and scarf-wearing abilities of le Francais, until you want to smack her on the head with a baguette. Or a bottle of Veuve Clicquot.