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Cookbook Review: "Diabetes & Heart Healthy Meals for Two"

Posted Nov 03 2008 7:59am

The American Diabetes Association recently came out with this cookbook, filled with recipes all designed to make just two portions. Excellent for us students living on our own! The recipes are categorized into Appetizers, Snacks, and Beverages; Soups; Salads; Seafood; Poultry; Meats; Vegetarian Entrees; Vegetables and Side Dishes; Breads and Breakfast Dishes; and Desserts, so there is a wide diversity and sure to be something for everyone.

What first struck me about this book is the presentation. The clean white cover is very classic, and the layout of each recipe is very nicely done with a simple font and clear nutrition facts. In the middle of the book, there's several pages of colour photographs depicting 15 of the dishes.

I like that the majority of these recipes do not rely on processed foods and canned soups, like many of the cookbooks written for one to two people do. This just goes to prove that eating deliciously healthy doesn't mean the meal has to be incredibly fancy or a daunting task!

Quick Herb-Tomato Soup

Do not eat this soup if you are going out in public afterward! The garlic from the hummus is like fire in your mouth. The addition of hummus was such a creative part of the recipe. This was a very easy soup to make but incredibly hot and spicy. I had some when it was cold and it tasted like very thick gazpacho, so that was interesting. This would be good on a cold day, but you only need a few spoonfuls to be satisfied because of the heat.

Roasted Moroccan Chickpeas

Unfortunately, I wandered away while these were in the oven and I proceeded in burning about half of them. Oops.

They were a little bit too crunchy for my liking ( yes Sagan, that's what happens when you burn something ), and I'm not too sure that I would make these again. I recently had some roasted chickpeas that were store bought, and I only found them to taste mediocre as well, so I think that the verdict on this one may be simply personal preference that I happen to not enjoy my chickpeas roasted. At least, assuming that I would feel the same way were they not burned...

Salmon with Blueberry Sauce

This salmon was fantastic. We doubled the recipe to make it for four, and everyone was in agreement that we will definitely need to be having it again. I loved the colour of the dish and the sweetness from the honey and blueberries was the perfect accent.

Serves 2; 3 oz fish and 1/4 cup sauce per serving

- cooking spray
- 2 salmon fillets with skin (about 5 oz each), rinsed and patted dry
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 1/8 tsp pepper
- 1/4 cup low-sodium vegetable broth
- 1/2 tbsp cornstarch
- 1/2 cup frozen blueberries
- 1 tbsp fresh orange juice
- 2 tsp balsamic vinegar
- 1/2 tsp honey
- 2 tsp sliced green onion

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Lightly spray with cooking spray.
2. Put the fish with the skin side down on the baking sheet. Sprinkle the garlic powder, salt, and pepper over the fish.
3. Bake for 20 minutes, or until the fish flakes easily when tested with a fork.
4. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, whisk together the broth and cornstarch until smooth. Whisk in the remaining ingredients except the green onion. Cook over medium-high heat for 5-6 minutes, or until the mixtures comes to a boil and thickens, stirring frequently. Reduce the heat and simmer for 2-3 minutes, stirring often. Remove from the heat. Stir in the green onion. Spoon over the fish. Remove the skin before eating the fish.

Nutrition Information
- 235 calories (90 calories from fat)
- 10 g total fat (1.7g saturated, 2.3 g polyunsaturated, 4.7g monounsaturated)
- 75 mg cholesterol
- 230 mg sodium
- 11 g total carbohydrates (1 g dietary fiber, 6g sugars)
- 25 g protein
Reprinted with permission from DIABETES & HEART HEALTHY MEALS FOR TWO, published by the American Diabetes Association.

Peach-Glazed Chicken and Yellow Rice with Browned Onions

Peach and chicken? Surprisingly, the two complement each other very well! It's so unexpected and very pleasing for the taste buds. The Yellow Rice with Browned Onions, on the other hand, was unfortunately a little bland. It needed a bit of a kick, perhaps with some celery salt or pepper. I did find, however, that mixing the peaches from the chicken into the rice added a bit of flavour.

Pumpkin Cakes

These were super tasty! Very moist and delicious. I would absolutely have them again. And it's good because the recipe only makes two- therefore you won't make a batch and eat half a dozen in one sitting (because I've never been guilty of doing that...)

Overall, I very much enjoyed this cookbook. Most of the recipes are quite simple to put together and require fairly basic ingredients. The recipes are uncomplicated to follow and, of course, they are all very healthy! Some of them might require a little bit of extra spices to boost the flavour (but I assure you that the tomato soup has plenty of flavour already and you certainly won't want to be adding extra garlic!). Do try making the salmon and let me know how it turns out. If you like salmon and blueberries, I'm sure that you'll love this recipe with all its Superfood goodness.

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