Between the lines of ‘The New Food’ diet doctrine – no salt, no sugar and no oil, butter or margarine – you’re bound to read “no taste.” But when you actually come face to plate with The New Food dish, your mouth will undoubtedly water; the enticing foods pictured on this post are visual testimony to that. One of my primary goals has been to transform the food from bland to delectable.
My philosophy is that “any recipe can be defatted, desalted and de-sugared without sacrificing taste.” The trick is obviously in the preparation, by cooking food in ways that bring out its natural flavour and by adding lots of flavour – “garlic figures strongly in about 97 percent of my recipes. I marinate sauté and season with gusto while staying well within The New Food nutritional bounds – even the restriction that only 10 percent of daily calories should come from fat. Take the Salmon Tartare appetizer as pictured above its recipe; it’s made by marinating chunks of fresh salmon (sans skin, of course) in lemon juice, capers, mustard and parsley. ‘Soaking’ food this way, especially meat, poultry and fish, allows it to absorb the flavour more deeply than just cooking it in a sauce does.
I also pay special attention to the order in which I combine ingredients. I frequently use both fresh and dried herbs and spices in a recipe, adding them at various stages of cooking to create ‘levels’ of flavour that hit the palate at different times. As a result, the food tastes more interesting and satisfying. The vegetables in the Tricolor Pasta, for instance, are sautéed separately from the garlic and basil. (Vegetables retain more flavour when sautéed in stock or wine than when steamed, since some of the flavour leaches out along with the steaming liquid.)
These techniques translate easily from my kitchen to your kitchen. One of my main goals is to show everyone how simple it is to make The New Food a way of life.
Start Your Transformation!
1 lb. fresh salmon, skinned and cut into bite-size pieces.
4 T. capers, rinsed
1 t. lemon juice
2 T. Dijon mustard
2 T. chopped parsley
Radicchio leaves for garnish
6 radishes for garnish
In large bowl, mix together all ingredients except garnishes; chill at least 1 hour to let flavours blend. Serve on bed of radicchio leaves; garnish with radish rosettes and lemon slice.
Serves 6; 114 calories, 15 g. protein, 0.8 g. carbohydrate, 5 g. fat, 42 mg. cholesterol, 330 mg. sodium, 11 mg. calcium, 0.7 mg. iron.
1 lb. tricolor pasta twist
12 baby carrot OR ½ c. sliced carrots
1 c. broccoli flowerets
1 ¾ c. low-sodium chicken stock, defatted
6 baby zucchini, 4 diced and 2 left whole OR 1 c. diced zucchini
6 baby patty-pan squashes, halved
½ red pepper, cut into ½’’ strips
½ c. frozen peas
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 T. chopped fresh basil OR 1 ½ T. dried basil
2 T. Tamari OR low-sodium soy sauce
Cook pasta according to package directions. Rinse. Sauté carrots and broccoli in ¾ c. chicken stock 2 to 3 minutes; add remaining vegetables and continue sautéing about 3 minutes. In stockpot over medium heat, cook garlic and basil in remaining 1 c. chicken stock for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add pasta, Tamari and vegetables and cook over low heat for 1 minute, gently mixing well. Remove from heat and serve promptly.
Serves 6; 339 calories, 14 g. protein, 67 g. carbohydrate, 2 g. fat, 0 mg. cholesterol, 337 mg. sodium, 91 mg. calcium, 4 mg. iron.
VERY BERRY ICE CREAM
2 ½ c. mixed berries, frozen
1 c. sliced banana, frozen
2 T. unsweetened frozen apple juice concentrate (optional)
2/3 c. non-fat dry milk
Ice to thicken
Pinch of cinnamon
1 t. raspberry OR strawberry extract
½ (1/4-oz.) packet unflavoured gelatin (use only if preparing ahead)
Mixed sliced berries for garnish
Before beginning, remove fruit from freezer to soften slightly – about 15 minutes. Add berries and banana to food processor (a blender isn’t strong enough) in small batches, mixing after each addition until creamy. Add apple juice concentrate, if desired, and dry milk; continue mixing. Slowly add enough ice to thicken. Blend in cinnamon and fruit extract. If not serving immediately, stir unflavoured gelatin into mixture before returning to freezer. Serve in frosted parfait glasses; top with berries.
Serves 6; 169 calories, 6 g. protein, 38 g. carbohydrate, 0.4 g. fat, 1mg. cholesterol, 46 mg. sodium, 103 mg. calcium, 0.4 mg. iron.