Friday, February 5, 2010

Low in Fat, High in Flavor.(recipes).


Saffron Chicken, originally uploaded by rexipe.
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Your guide to eating well everyday

A new culinary revolution is taking place, one in which American cooks are discovering that less fat doesn't have to mean less flavor.

Over the past decade, scientific studies have made it clear that cutting the on the consumption of fat can lower the risk of cancer, heart disease and other ailments, making it one of the most important steps we can take toward achieving good health. And while eating fewer calories should remain a priority, reducing bad fats in your diet is a more direct way to improve--and retain--overall health. Even if you do consume too many calories in the form of fruits, vegetables, starches and legumes, they won't compromise your well-being as much as ingesting excess fat will, particularly saturated fat.

Americans have never been as concerned about eating healthfully as they are now, but they also want food that tastes good. In the interest of maintaining flavor and good health, we offer you recipes for six main dishes--from pizzas to casseroles--that are both delicious and low in fat. And we don't stop there. We've included cooking and shopping tips plus a list of items for outfitting your low-fat pantry. When your meals are based on seasonal produce, whole grains, legumes, fresh herbs and spices they're guaranteed to be good in every sense of the word.

Tamale Pie


Roasted onions, chile peppers and tomatillos give this tamale pie its distinctive flavor.

1 1/2 cups thick-sliced onions
3 large ancho or poblano chile peppers
1 1/2 lbs. tomatillos (about 18), papery
husks removed, and halved
1 clove garlic, crushed and peeled
1 cup water
J cup canned black beans, drained
and rinsed
1 cup canned pinto beans, drained
and rinsed
1 cup cooked quinoa
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. granulated sugar
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
to taste
2 Tbs. finely chopped fresh cilantro

Cornmeal Topping

5 cups water
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 2/3 cups yellow cornmeal
PREHEAT OVEN to 450 [degrees] F. Spread sliced onions and whole peppers on one baking sheet and tomatillos, cut side down, on another. Put both baking sheets in oven and roast until onions are browned and tender and peppers are blistering and swelling, 18 to 25 minutes. Let vegetables cool. Remove skins from peppers, split open and discard seeds.

Reduce oven to 425 [degrees] F. Place tomatillos, roasted onions, peppers and garlic in food processor and pulse until finely chopped.

In large skillet, preferably cast iron, combine tomatillo mixture, water, beans, quinoa, cumin and sugar. Season with salt and pepper and simmer 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in cilantro. Set aside.

Make topping: In 2-quart saucepan, bring water and salt to a boil. Lower heat and slowly add cornmeal, whisking constantly, until thickened, about 4 minutes.

Lightly grease a 9 x 13-inch baking dish. Spread half the cornmeal mixture in prepared baking dish. Spoon filling in an even layer over cornmeal. Spoon remaining cornmeal in a cross-hatch pattern over top. Bake pie until bubbling, about 20 to 30 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving.


Eggplant Parmesan


This version has one-fourth the calories and one-ninth the fat as the traditional.

2 Tbs. red wine
1 medium onion, chopped
3 large cloves garlic, minced
1 large bell pepper, chopped
Freshly ground pepper to taste
2 (28-oz. cans) peeled, whole tomatoes,
drained and juice reserved
1/2 tsp. salt or to taste, plus extra for
salting eggplant
1 large eggplant (about 2 lbs.)
1 Tbs. minced fresh basil
1 tsp. minced fresh thyme
1 Tbs. minced fresh parsley
1/4 to 1/3 cup water or vegetable stock
1/2 to 1 cup dry whole-grain
bread crumbs
3/4 cup part-skim mozzarella cheese,
coarsely grated
1/4 to 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan
IN LARGE POT, heat wine over medium heat. Add onion, garlic and bell pepper and cook, stirring often, until vegetables are tender, about 7 minutes. Season with black pepper. Add tomatoes, cover and cook over low heat until they juice, 5 to 10 minutes. Uncover pot, stir in 1/2 teaspoon salt and simmer gently, partially covered, until sauce thickens, about 1 hour,.

Meanwhile, peel eggplant, then cut crosswise into 1/4-inch slices. Layer in a colander, lightly sprinkling salt between layers. Cover with a plate and set a 2- to 3-pound weight, such as a pot of water, on top. Let sit 30 minutes or longer, then rinse and pat dry.

Preheat oven to 350 [degrees] F. Dip eggplant slices in water or stock, then in bread crumbs until well coated. Spray a large baking sheet with cooking spray and arrange breaded slices on it. Bake about 25 minutes, turn and bake until eggplant is tender and crumbs are crisp, about 10 minutes more.

Add fresh herbs to tomato sauce and simmer a few minutes longer. Add a little salt and reserved tomato juice if necessary. Remove from heat.

Spray bottom and sides of an 8-inch square baking dish with nonfat cooking spray. Spread a thin layer of sauce on bottom and arrange half the eggplant slices on top. Sprinkle about 1/3 the mozzarella over eggplant, spread on a thick layer of sauce and sprinkle on half the Parmesan. Repeat layers, beginning with eggplant and ending with Parmesan.

Bake, covered, until heated through, about 30 minutes. Uncover, then sprinkle on remaining mozzarella and bake until cheese is melted and bubbly, about another 10 minutes.

Remove from oven, let stand 5 minutes and serve hot.


Veggie Pizza


Once you taste your own homemade pizza, you'll never want to buy a pie again. Choose either the Semolina or Whole Wheat Pizza Dough (p. 47).

1 recipe Semolina or Whole Wheat
Pizza Dough (p. 45 and 47)
1 cup grated part-skim mozzarella
4 cups sliced tomatoes
2 cups sliced zucchini
8 cups sliced mushrooms
1 cup sliced onions
2 Tbs. chopped fresh basil
PREHEAT OVEN to 500 [degrees] F. Place a pizza stone, baking tiles or an inverted baking sheet on lowest rack in oven. Divide dough into eight pieces. Working with two pieces at a time, form dough into rounds. Using your fists, stretch each piece into a 6-inch round, or roll on a lightly floured surface. (Keep remaining dough covered with a towel or plastic wrap as you work.) Place round on cornmeal-dusted wooden baker's peel (see glossary, p. 87) or inverted baking sheet, using enough cornmeal so the dough slides easily. Stretch or roll remaining dough.

Sprinkle 2 tablespoons cheese over each round. Arrange some tomatoes, zucchini and mushrooms and a few slices of onion over cheese. Sprinkle with some basil, and salt and pepper if desired.

Carefully slide pizzas onto pizza stone, baking tiles or baking sheet and bake until bottoms are crisp and browned, 10 to 14 minutes. Cut into wedges to serve.


Semolina Pizza Dough


2 cups warm water (105 to 115 [degrees] F)
1 tsp. honey
2 pkg. active dry yeast (2 tsp.)
1 Tbs. olive oil
2 tsp. salt
2 cups semolina flour
2 1/3 cups unbleached white flour
IN LARGE BOWL, combine water, honey and yeast. Let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes. Stir in oil and salt.

Gradually stir in semolina flour and enough white flour to make a firm, soft dough. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until dough is smooth and elastic, about 8 to 10 minutes, adding additional white flour as needed to prevent dough from sticking.

Put dough into greased bowl and turn to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm, draft-free place until doubled in bulk, 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Punch down dough and refrigerate until ready to use (up to 2 days).


Whole Wheat Pizza Dough


2 cups warm water (105 to 115 [degrees] F)
2 tsp. honey
2 pkg. active dry yeast (2 tsp.)
1 Tbs. olive oil
1/2 tsp. salt
3 1/2 cups unbleached white flour
2/3 cup whole wheat flour
IN LARGE BOWL, combine water, honey and yeast. Let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes. Stir in oil and salt.

Gradually stir in white flour and enough wheat flour to make a firm, soft dough. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until dough is smooth and elastic, about 8 to 10 minutes, adding additional white flour as needed to prevent it from sticking.

Put dough into greased bowl and turn to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm draft-free place until doubled in bulk, 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Punch down dough and refrigerate until ready to use (up to 2 days).


`Scalloped' Potatoes with Saffron


This is a very simple casserole based on just one main ingredient--potatoes--yet it's succulent and full of flavor.

2 lbs. boiling potatoes
Salt and pepper
Several pinches of saffron threads
1 to 2 Tbs. virgin olive oil
1 slice dense white bread
cup blanched almonds,
roughly chopped
2 large cloves garlic
1 tsp. paprika
2 cups boiling water
1 Tbs. chopped parsley, for garnish
Preheat oven to 375 [degrees] F. Peel potatoes. Cut into large chunks and place in a baking dish large enough for potatoes to form a single layer. Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with saffron.

In a skillet, heat oil. Tear bread into pieces and fry with almonds until golden, about 5 minutes. (Remove garlic if it gets too dark.) Grind bread-almond mixture with a mortar and pestle or in a food processor with a little boiling water until fairly smooth; then stir in paprika and season with salt and pepper.

Add bread-almond mixture to the potatoes, along with remaining water. Cover dish with foil and bake 45 minutes. Remove foil, stir contents and continue baking until liquid has been absorbed and potatoes are tender. Broil to brown the top. Garnish with parsley.

Per serving: 271 cal.; 6G PROT.; 9G TOTAL FAT (1G SAT. FAT); 436 carb.; 0 chol.; 41mg sod,; 5G fiber

RELATED ARTICLE: Cooking Lighter

* To avoid saturated fats, cut out butter, coconut or palm oil and hydrogenated oils such as margarine and vegetable shortening.

* Replace some of the oil in dressings and marinades with vegetable stock, vegetable juice, wine or lemon juice,

* High-flavored condiments like hoisin sauce, soy sauce, hot sauces and chile sauces add flavor with little fat.

* Serve low-fat breads like pita, bagels, English muffins, lavash and corn tortillas as accompaniments.

* Use cooking vegetable oil sprays instead of oils and saturated fats for sauteing, or cook with a nonstick skillet or well-seasoned cast-iron skillet which requires little or no fat for cooking.

* Enrich sauces and soups with vegetable purees to thicken them

* Poaching, roasting and broiling are all excellent low-fat cooking techniques.

* Use low-fat or skim milk for whole milk, and use whole milk instead of cream; mix nonfat yogurt into sour cream to reduce the fat

* Make use of buttermilk and low-fat varieties of cream cheese, sour cream and mayonnaise.

* Use cocoa instead of high-fat chocolate when baking. Cocoa can also be dusted over cakes for a lower-fat finish.

RELATED ARTICLE: Stocking the Low-Fat Pantry

If you keep your kitchen stocked with these flavorful foods, you won't have to think about your diet. Cooking and eating good food will come naturally.

Applesauce: Unsweetened applesauce can replace some of the fat traditionally called for in many baked goods recipes. It also makes a great low-fat snack. For a little extra flavor, sprinkle with ground cinnamon.

Asian noodles: Readily available in most supermarkets, these noodles can add variety to low-fat meals. Try the following: rice noodles--very long, thin translucent noodles sold in cellophane packages; soba noodles--fiat, grayish brown Japanese noodles made from wheat and/or buckwheat and yam; and udon (oo-DOHN)--Japanese wheat noodles with the thickness of spaghetti.

Buttermilk: This product is naturally low in fat and works well in baked goods. Look for dried buttermilk powder in your supermarket and store it in your pantry.

Cheese: Look for cheeses that are made with low-fat or skim milk. Beware of nonfat cheese, which sometimes has a rubbery consistency and doesn't melt well. A few good choices include: feta--tangy in flavor and ideal for crumbling over salads or cooked dishes; low-fat ricotta; farmer cheese--a form of cottage cheese from which most of the liquid has been pressed; Neufchatel cheese--a soft unripened cheese made from cow's milk that is similar to American cream cheese but lower in fat; and skim-milk mozzarella.

Chilies: There are many varieties of fresh and dried chilies available. They are wonderful for adding flavor and color to a dish. The seeds and veins contain most of the heat, so remove them before using if you prefer. Chipotle chilies (smoked jalapeno peppers) have a sweet, smoky flavor and are available canned in adobo sauce.

Gingerroot: A mainstay in Indian and Asian cooking, this plant is grown for its aromatic, knobby root. The flavor is peppery and slightly sweet and the aroma is pungent and spicy.

Herbs: Fresh are always preferable to dried when possible. Some indispensable varieties to use fresh are basil, cilantro and parsley.

Grains: Whole grains are a great choice for meals because they are Low in fat and high in fiber. Good varieties to keep on hand are bulgur and barley. Other, perhaps unfamiliar, types are quinoa (KEEN-wah)--a roundish, sand-colored grain with a mild, nutty taste, tight texture and high protein; and kamut--a large, golden grain that has a soft chewy texture and buttery flavor; it looks like a cross between a wheat and rice kernel.

Lemon juice: A squeeze of fresh lemon or lime juice will boost flavor. It is also good in dressings and may be used in place of some of the oil.

Lentils: These quick-cooking legumes are a boon to the low-fat kitchen. Brown lentils are an old standby, but other varieties tike French and red are also useful to have on hand.

Mushrooms: There is a wide variety of fresh and dried wild mushrooms available (morel, porcini, portobello, shiitake) in most supermarkets today. All are low in fat and high in flavor.

Mustards: Don't underestimate the flavor power of mustards in sauces and dressings. Keep Dijon and dry powdered mustard on hand, but experiment with the vast array of flavors now available in most supermarkets.

Nonfat egg substitute: This ingredient contains 99 percent egg white and can be used in place of whole eggs in many recipes. Egg substitute contains no fat or cholesterol. Generally 1/4 cup wilt equal one whole egg. Egg Replacer is a brand name for a powdered combination of starches and leavening agents that bind cooked and baked foods in place of eggs. It is sold in natural food stores.

Nonfat evaporated skim milk: Concentrated skim milk fortified with vitamins A and D. It contains up to 0.5 percent milk fat and makes a great replacement for cream in soups and sauces.

Nonstick cooking spray: Commercial sprays are available in olive oil, canola and butter flavors. However, you can also use your own oils in pump bottles and mister bottles now on the market.

Olive oil: When the need for using an oil arises, reach for monounsaturated olive oil.

Pasta: Look for pasta made without eggs for the lowest amount of fat. Couscous, small pellets of semolina, is also good to have on hand.

Rice: Basmati is a long-grained brown or white rice that has been aged to enhance its perfumy aroma and nutlike flavor. It is particularly good with Indian or Asian dishes.

Spices: Every spice cabinet should include dried basil, bay leaves, cayenne pepper, chili powder, ground cinnamon, curry powder, ground cumin, dill weed, ground ginger, dried oregano, dried rosemary and dried thyme.

Tahini: This sesame seed paste is not tow-fat but can add a lot of flavor to foods when used judiciously. It's most common use is in hummus, a Mid-Eastern spread made from chickpeas.

Tamari: A naturally brewed soy sauce that contains no sugar. It is available wheat-free.

Vegetable broth: A homemade version is preferable if you have the time to make it--you can control the amount of salt that goes in it. When using canned broths, choose low-sodium.

Vinegars: Herb vinegars such as dill, tarragon or rosemary are ideal for flavor enhancement in low-fat cooking. Balsamic vinegar, a sweet, aged Italian vinegar is good in salad dressing and marinades. When reduced, it takes on a syrupy consistency that works well in sauces.

Yogurt: Nonfat and low-fat yogurt are as good as their high-fat counterpart in recipes. They can also be used as a substitute for sour cream. Yogurt can be drained and made into yogurt cheese, which is a good replacement for cream cheese.


* Vegetable-Pesto Pizza

Leaving a 1/2-inch edge, spread one piece of pizza dough with homemade or purchased pesto. Sprinkle with shredded mozzarella cheese, then top with sliced plum tomatoes and summer squash. Bake as directed.

* Olive-Onion Pizza

Saute 2 cups sliced onions in a little oil until golden about 10 minutes. Let cool. Leaving a 1/2-inch edge, sprinkle shredded mozzarella over pizza dough. Top with some onions, then sliced black olives and a little chopped fresh rosemary. Bake as directed.

* Tex-Mex Pizza

Leaving a 1/2-inch edge, arrange sliced tomatoes over pizza dough, sprinkle with minced jalapeno peppers, then top with shredded Monterey Jack cheese. Bake as directed and sprinkle with chopped fresh cilantro before serving.


Essential cooking tools that are good to have on hand:

* A well-seasoned cast-iron skillet (it requires very little [or no] added fat for cooking)

* Nonstick skillets and pans

* Nonstick cooking utensils

* Oil mister or pump spray bottle

* Steamer

* Stir-fry pan

* Cast-iron or nonstick grill pan


Here are some of the standardized definitions of the terms manufacturers are allowed to use on their products.

Fat-free: Less than .05 gram (g.)of fat per labeled serving.

100 percent fat-free: Meets requirements for fat-free (less than .05g. of fat per labeled serving).

Low-fat: 3g. of fat or less per labeled serving. Can also be called 98 percent or 97 percent fat-free.

Reduced-fat: At least 25 percent less fat when compared with similar foods.

Saturated fat-free: Less than .05g. saturated fat per serving.

Low saturated fat: 1g. of saturated fat or less per labeled serving.

Reduced saturated fat: At least 25 percent less saturated fat per serving when compared with a similar food.

Low-cholesterol: 20 milligrams (mg.) or less and 2g. or less saturated fat per serving.

Low-calorie: 40 calories or less per labeled serving.

Calorie-free: Fewer than 5 calories per labeled serving.

Light: This can mean one of two things: First, the product has one-third fewer calories or half the fat of the referenced food. Second, the sodium

content of a low-calorie, low-fat food has been reduced 50 percent.

Low-sodium: 35mg. or less per labeled serving.

Sugar-free: Fewer than .05g. per labeled serving.

Milk labels

* Fat-free: Previously labeled as skim milk. As much fat as possible has been removed to less than .05 percent.

* Low-fat: 1 percent milk

* Reduced-fat: 2 percent milk.

* Whole: a whopping 12 percent fat and 8g. fat per cup.

Kathy Farrell-Kingsley is food editor of Vegetarian Times.

Source Citation
Farell-Kingsley, Kathy. "Low in Fat, High in Flavor." Vegetarian Times Jan. 1999: 41. Academic OneFile. Web. 5 Feb. 2010. .

Gale Document Number:A53459047

Disclaimer:This information is not a tool for self-diagnosis or a substitute for professional care. USA, LLC*get the best of the bestPersonalized MY M&M'S® Candies(Web-Page) (Album / Profile)
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