This is the low-fat book cooks who care about wholesome, vegetarian-inspired food have been waiting for. Each of the more than 280 recipes are as delicious and trustworthy as those in the Moosewood Collective's previous books, and vibrant flavors and generous portions are still a hallmark of every dish. Because the Collective's primary goal is always to make great tasting food they resisted the notion of doing a low-fat book until they were convinced they could make low-fat dishes as flavor-packed as their regular favorites. "We've mostly been interested in gourmet cuisine at Moosewood Restaurant, not deprivation diet food," say the authors. "So, it's a happy surprise that the dishes we created for this cookbook don't come off as merely healthful diet foods. The food is exciting, ethnically diverse, and satisfyingly delicious. Moosewood Restaurant Low-fat Favorites is as much a celebration of the pleasures of eating as it is about low-fat cooking."
In Moosewood Restaurant Low-fat Favorites the Collective emphasizes a few changes in basic cooking techniques to apply to everyday recipes and they offer tips and ideas for sustaining a low-fat lifestyle. They bake rather than fry, replace high-fat ingredients with healthy substitutes (no artificial ingredients allowed!), and use butter and oil very moderately. What is lost in fat is gained in bold, intense flavors. "When fashioning low-fat recipes, taking a nip here, a tuck there, we sometimes need to add a little embroidery, an embellishment such as extra herbs, spices, fruit or vegetable purée, vinegar, sun-dried tomatoes, dried mushrooms, miso, soy sauce, or garlic," explain the cooks at Moosewood Restaurant. "Our gingerbread gets extra flavor and moisture from chunks of pear rather than from butter and egg yolks. Two small calamata olives enliven the Caesar Salad Dressing. A little sauerkraut adds interest to an Italian mushroom stew."
Fat will not be missed in mouthwatering recipes like Guacamole with Asparagus, Chinese Orzo Vegetable Salad, Spring Vegetable Paella, Indian Potato Pancakes, and Creamy Dairyless Rice Pudding. Along with those creative dishes, one of the most appealing parts of Moosewood Restaurant Low-fat Favorites is finding low-fat variations on familiar favorites such as Macaroni and Cheese, Shephard's Pie, and Dark Chocolate Pudding. An added bonus is that the Moosewood Collective has made sure that the ingredients used in the recipes throughout the book are very accessible--easily found in most well-stocked supermarkets.
In the nutritional, glossary, and guide sections of Moosewood Restaurant Low-fat Favorites the Collective gives explanations of nutritional terms, instructions for how to glean the information you need from nutrition labels, a brief overview of vitamins and minerals, and guides to ingredients and cooking techniques. These three important sections, combined with the deliciously appetizing recipes, are a wealth of encouragement for low-fat eating and living a healthy lifestyle. The fourteen chapters range from savory soups and main course salads to creative side dishes and aromatic Mediterranean and Asian-inspired dishes. With chapters which range from healthy breakfasts and lunch foods to a collection of fish recipes and more than twenty truly delectable desserts, Moosewood Restaurant Low-fat Favorites is sure to set the kitchen standard not only for health-conscious cooks, but also for those who have come to rely on the Moosewood Collective's easy, earthy approach to cooking.
A Recipe from Moosewood Restaurant Low-Fat Favorites
Orzo and Green Herbs
Total preparation time: 15 minutes
This is a handsome, quickly prepared dish, and when the hot pasta warms the fresh herbs and extra-virgin olive oil, a lovely fragrance is released. Orzo and Green Herbs can accompany steamed or roasted vegetables, main-dish salads, or simple grilled or broiled fish.
6 or 8 cups water
1 cup orzo (about 7 ounces)
1 cup finely chopped mixed fresh herbs (thyme, chives, garlic, chives, basil, sage, oregano, parsley, marjoram, chervil, tarragon)
2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt freshly ground
black pepper to taste
Bring the water to a rolling boil in a large, covered pot. Stir in the orzo and cook for about 7 minutes, until al dente.
Place the herbs, oil, salt, and pepper in a serving bowl. When the pasta is ready, drain it and add it to the bowl. Toss well and serve immediately.
Per 5.50-oz. serving: 235 calories, 7.7g protein, 3.6g fat, 43.4g carbohydrates, .5g saturated fatty acids, .7g polyunsaturated fatty acids, 1.9g monounsaturated fatty acids, 0mg cholesterol, 305mg sodium, 2.3g dietary fiber
Excerpted from Moosewood Restaurant Low-Fat Favorites by The Moosewood Collective. . Excerpted by permission of Clarkson Potter, a division of Random House LLC. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.