FROM THE COOKBOOK SHELF
Although I don’t have a cookbook to recommend, you never pay the full price when it is purchased via Amazon.com. Providing you know the recipient doesn’t have it already, a cookbook is an excellent gift for someone who does a lot of cooking. If you know the kind of cooking or baking that she likes to do, focus on that. For example, if she likes to work with breads, there are many new ones that would make excellent gifts for the holidays.
PORTION–CONTROLLED MEALS CAN HELP DIETERS LOSE WEIGHT
According to a study of 183 overweight or obese people (ages 25 to 65) in the journal, Obesity, portion–controlled meals can help dieters lose weight. All recipients received nutrition and behavioral counseling to help them meet a weight-loss goal of at least 5 percent of their initial weight. Those who consumed packaged, portion-controlled frozen entrées for lunch and dinner (intervention group) lost more weight over 12 weeks than those in the control group, who ate a self-selected reduced calorie diet; 74 percent of the portion control group achieved the weight-loss goal, compared to 53 percent of the control group. The authors concluded that using portion-controlled meals might facilitate weight loss by simplifying the planning and preparation of meals. It also teaches dieters about appropriate serving sizes.
Source: University of California, Berkeley Wellness Letter, November 2016.
FOR BETTER HEALTH SWAP PLANT PROTEIN FOR ANIMAL PROTEIN
Substituting plant sources of protein (bread, pastas, nuts, beans, legumes) for animal sources (processed/unprocessed red meat, poultry, dairy products, fish, eggs) could increase your life span. Researchers writing in JAMA Internal Medicine, August 1, 2016, studied diet and health outcomes among more than 130,000 people, two-thirds of whom were women. They found that animal protein intake was linked to an eight percent greater risk for death in people who also had at least one other unhealthy lifestyle risk factor, such as smoking, heavy alcohol intake, being overweight or obese and physical inactivity. Plant protein intake was associated with a 10 percent lower risk of death.
Source: Weill Cornell Medicine Women’s Nutrition Connection, November 2016.
A SOUP RECIPE WITH LENTILS
Daughter Mary Ann often makes this soup that includes lentils. It is a recipe she adapted from one of Rachael Ray’s.
SAUSAGE, KALE AND LENTIL SOUP
• 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
• 1 onion, chopped
• 1 pound sausage, bulk or casing removed (can replace with sweet sausage, pork or turkey sausage)
• 2 ribs celery, chopped leafy tops reserved
• 1 large carrot, peeled and chopped
• 1 large russet potato, peeled and chopped into a small dice
• 1 sweet pepper, finely chopped
• 1 seeded and chopped jalapenos
• 2 sprigs fresh rosemary, leaves picked and finely chopped
• 2 large cloves garlic, chopped
• ½ tablespoon ground cumin (1½ teaspoons)
• Kosher salt and pepper to taste
• 1 bundle of curly leaf kale, stemmed and thinly sliced
• ¼ cup tomato paste
• 1 cup white wine
• Freshly grated nutmeg
• 1 cup lentils
• 4 cups chicken stock
• 2 cups water
In a soup pot or large Dutch oven, heat 1 tablespoon extra-virgin oil. Add sausage, breaking into small pieces and cook until lightly browned. Add onion, celery, carrots, potato, peppers, rosemary, garlic, cumin, salt and pepper and cook to soften, 8 to 10 minutes. Wilt kale and season the kale leaves with a little fresh nutmeg. Stir in tomato paste for 30 seconds, then add white wine. Cook to reduce by half and stir in lentils, stock and water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, and simmer the soup until the lentils are tender, about 35 minutes. Serve immediately or cool, store and reheat. Serve immediately or cool, store and reheat. Serve with chopped celery greens to garnish. Makes 4 servings.
Source: Rachel Ray recipe adapted by Mary Ann Thaman.
A THANKSGIVING SIDE DISH
Replace the green bean casserole with this colorful casserole.
CASSEROLE OF PEAS AND MUSHROOMS
• 2 tablespoons butter
• 8-ounces fresh mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
• 2 10-ounce packages frozen peas, thawed and drained but not cooked
• 114.5-ounce can bean sprouts, drained well
• 1 5-ounce can water chestnuts, well drained
• 1 can Campbell’s Healthy Request cream of mushroom soup
• 1 small can French’s Onion Rings
Sauté mushrooms in butter for 5minutes. Combine with peas, bean sprouts, water chestnuts and soup. Spoon into 1½-quart casserole. Bake in preheated 350ºF oven for 20 to 25 minutes or until bubbly. Turn off oven. Sprinkle top with onion rings and return to oven long enough to heat topping, about 5 minutes. Recipe makes 6 to 8 servings.