Post Rewind: Not Exactly Beer-Can Chicken

July 1, 2013
Post Rewind: Not Exactly Beer-Can Chicken

Todd made us roasted Cornish game hens the other night and I was reminded how, back when I was in my early 20s, I thought Cornish game hens were just the height of chi chi food. I mean, what’s better than having your own little mini-chicken, right? Granted, my culinary landscape has greatly expanded since then, but game hens are still fun food in my book, and I was reminded of the not-exactly beer can chicken Todd and I made 3 years ago around this time and thought it’d be a perfect time to dig that old post out of storage and give it a refresh. And, hey, if you take out the garlic powder (just sub for a bit of garlic-infused oil) this still totally works on a low-FODMAP diet! So without further ado, here’s Pineapple-Can Game Hens, courtesy of the way-back machine from July 2010! Pineapple Game Hen 1 stick (4 oz) butter, softened 1 Tbsp chopped cilantro 1/2 Tbsp lime zest (approx. 1 lime) 1 Tbsp kosher salt 1 tsp rubber sage 1/2 tsp black pepper 2 Cornish game hens, approx. 1 pound each salt, pepper and garlic powder to taste olive oil 2 6-oz cans pineapple […]

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Review: Slimmer by Harry Papas

June 24, 2013
Review: Slimmer by Harry Papas

Normally I wouldn't review a book that focused on a weight-loss diet, but I was intrigued by the chance to read more about the famed Mediterranean diet by an actual dietitian from Greece. I mean, when you want answers you go to the source, right? And this particular diet (as in the lifestyle studied as part of the 1960s Seven Countries Study) is lauded for its ability to lower the risk of heart and stroke as well as affecting ones chances of contracting Type 2 diabetes, certain forms of cancer, and--of course--obesity. So what goes into the traditional Mediterranean diet? ...according to the Seven Countries Study [it] was primarily plant based with an emphasis on fresh vegetables and fruits, whole grains, lean protein (mostly from fish), olive oil, and moderate amounts of wine. Dairy products, including cheese and yogurt, were plentiful and eaten often, while red meat, poultry, and eggs, which were less readily available, were eaten less frequently. Processed foods were virtually unheard of and sweets of any kind were definitely enjoyed in very small portions. Gee, where have we heard that before? Only everywhere anyone with a good head on their shoulders advises about a nutritious diet, that's where! But while it sounds simple enough, many folks know just how tough it can be to stick with those ideals. This is where Papas comes in. His "New Mediterranean Way to Lose Weight" takes these ideals and constructs a detailed 9-week eating plan, broken down into 3, 21-day cycles, with a focus on hearty breakfasts, light snacks of yogurt or fresh fruit, and lots of simply-dressed salads to accompany lunch and dinner.

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Baking the Low-FODMAP Way

June 17, 2013
collection of Bob's Red Mill products on a kitchen counter

As someone who very much enjoys cookies, cakes and other confections (I was a pastry chef, after all) this whole no wheat thing really had me concerned–especially when so many gluten-free baked goods are gritty or crumbly or just plain miss the mark. And since we started the testing portion just after Thanksgiving, I wanted to make sure I could make desserts and sweets that family and coworkers would enjoy that were also safe for me. It was, thankfully, a lot easier than I thought it would be, and it’s mainly due to a book I’ve mentioned before: the Favorite Brand Name Gluten-Free 3 Books in 1 put out by Publications International Ltd. As I mentioned before, I picked it up on the discount rack of Marshalls or TJ Maxx, so it might be tough to find in your regular store, but if you see it, it’s definitely worth picking up. That said, here’s the two most important things I got from that book: replacement flour blends, one for quick breads and cooking making, and one for yeast breads. Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flour Blend 1 cup White Rice Flour 1 cup Sorghum Flour 1 cup Tapioca Flour/Starch 1 cup Arrowroot 1 cup […]

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If You Just Can’t Fathom Going No Salt, Why Not Try LoSalt?

June 13, 2013
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Chances are you or someone you know well has been told at one time or another to watch your/their sodium intake. Sometimes it's because of high blood pressure, other times because of swelling due to water retention, and then there's just your general health to be considered. But salt is not only something we need in certain amounts but it's in an awful lot of things we eat. Especially if what we eat is highly processed--salt is an excellent preservative. Chemically, table salt is sodium chloride, and the sodium is what gets many into trouble. There are other types of salts, though, and LoSalt--a salt substitute launched in the UK in 1984--using a combination of 1/3 sodium chloride and 2/3 potassium chloride. Now, potassium is another one of those minerals our bodies need, but it's not something you want to load up on either. Still, if your doctor is concerned about your blood pressure, LoSalt might be a good option if you just crave that salt-enhanced flavor in your food.

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Review: Meals in a Jar

June 10, 2013
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I've spent quite a lot of time contemplating this new book by Julie Languille over the last couple of months. What I thought was going to be a book of creative, giftable soup mixes and the like instead sent me down the rabbit hole of meal kits and disaster preparedness that's blossomed into a bit of an obsession. I quickly realized that I'd misjudged Meals in a Jar: while there are various dry mixes that would look lovely stacked in a Mason jar with a decorative tag, just like you see on the cover of the book, there is much more to be found in this slim volume. Created with an eye towards making nightly dinner preparation quick and easy, this is also--I think--a must-have book for anyone wanting to put together food storage preparations that is also on a restricted diet. (Yes, I'm talking about FODMAPs, allergies, gluten-free, etc. The whole lot of them.)

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Review: Diabetes Prevention & Management Cookbook

June 3, 2013
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***This is a sponsored post. I received a copy of The Diabetes Prevention & Management Cookbook by Johanna Burkhard and Barbara Allan, RD, CDE for purpose of review. All opinions expressed are my own. Now with that out of the way…*** I grew up with a grandmother with diabetes as well as a cousin with juvenile diabetes. It was something that was all around and I didn’t think too much about it. When I was 19 and diagnosed as hypoglycemic (low blood sugar) and told that it was a good bet that in 30 years or so my pancreas might give out and I’d swing over to diabetes (hyperglycemia), I also wasn’t all that shocked. [It hasn't happened yet, by the way, but my endocrinologist does check my fasting glucose every 6 months when he checks my thyroid levels (just in case anyone was prone to worry).] Back then, I was told to follow a “diabetic diet” by my gp, as the two disorders were treated the same, with low blood sugar not quite as worrisome but still meddlesome. You know that scene from Steel Magnolias? I’ve been there a few times. This directive also caused me some other issues […]

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Review: Cooking for the Specific Carbohydrate Diet by Erica Kerwien

May 20, 2013
Review: Cooking for the Specific Carbohydrate Diet by Erica Kerwien

I received a copy of Cooking for the Specific Carbohydrate Diet for purpose of review. All opinions expressed below are my own. Once upon a time (though I should hasten to add, this is no fairytale) a mother was faced with a sick child and very few answers. Eventually the doctors diagnosed Emily Kerwien’s son with Crohn’s Disease, but it was far from a simple answer. Searching around for anything to help her son live a better life, the Specific Carbohydrate Diet was suggested and Kerien threw herself into learning about an eating plan to eliminates many combative carbohydrates from the diets of those with an Inflammatory Bowel Disease, chronicling her progress on ComfyBelly.com. I was given the opportunity to take a look at Kerwien’s book, Cooking for the Specific Carbohyrdate Diet, to satisfy my curiosity about another diet out there with the aim to make life easier for those with imperfect digestive systems, having recently switch to a Low-FODMAP diet for similar reasons. While the subtitle mentions that the recipes are sugar-free, it should be noted that this talks to refined cane sugars only. Honey is used whenever additional sweetness is required, and the substitution guide in the back of the […]

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