Friday, June 19, 2009

500 Fat-Free Recipes by Sarah Schlesinger - Review

Recently I was sent a copy of this cookbook and have to admit that I've already read it from cover-to-cover and tried a few of the recipes. It was written in 1994 when the general public and nutritionists thought that fat was evil. Now we know that all fats are not created equal and that some fat in your diet is actually beneficial.

Is that any reason to dismiss this book? Not on your life! The recipes are pure comfort food, even without the fat added. Each recipe uses common foods most of us already have on hand or can easily get at our local supermarket. The lists of ingredients aren't overwhelming, either. There's nothing worse than wanting to try a new dish and finding out you need 20 different ingredients, half of which are either expensive or hard to find.

A couple of my favorite recipes in the book are the Spinach Dip (page 72) served with crispy Wonton Chips (page 76). The Puffed Potato Casserole on page 192 uses only 6 ingredients, is full of flavor, and looks pretty fancy too.

A few changes I make to the recipes are:

~Using a small amount of olive oil

~"healthy butter" (mix half butter with half olive oil)

~"yogannaise" (half regular mayo and half nonfat plain yogurt)

~Extra sharp cheddar cheese and feta cheese (These offer lots of flavor and you can use less. Nonfat cheeses are flavorless!)

~I Can't Believe It's Not Butter spray instead of Butter Buds (The spray is easier to use and I think it tastes better)

These small additions still equal a healthy dish, but with far more flavor and satisfaction.

If you want healthy, hearty recipes that are easy to make and kind to your waistline, I highly recommend 500 Fat-Free Recipes by Sarah Schlesinger.

Rating: 8

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