Eleanor Blair (lnr) wrote,
Eleanor Blair

2: the best low fat: ISBN 1-40540-522-8

Now I wouldn't normally think of myself as reading a cookbook, since I usually just use them for reference, but for once I did read this from start to finish. It's actually surprisingly good for a book which seems to have no author, and which has no hits on looking up the ISBN on google. I found it in Booksale, the el-cheapo bookshop, for a fiver.

It's full of large full-colour pictures of each meal, and simple clear looking instructions. It has suggestions of variations, and tips on how to make some things a little easier. There's a large selection of recipes, some of which are vegetarian (and I notice it even warns cooks to beware of worcestershire sauce when cooking for vegetarians). It has some recipe suggestions for teaming things together for a whole meal for friends or a dinner party. Each recipe has full nutritional information as well as timing and portion size information, and there is an index at the back which seems to be adequately comprehensive. And not least the spiral binding makes it easy to lay the book out flat at whatever page you're using.

As for the recipes themselves, well obviously they're all fairly low fat, but more than that they actually mostly look quite *interesting* as well. Some of them are fairly plain and simple, but some are more elaborate, or at least have the appearance of being so which is always handy when cooking to impress. Lots of them using interesting mixes of herbs and spices, and there are influences from france, germany, sweden, mexico, china, thailand and indonesia, to name but the ones I immediately remember. In fact the indonesian black rice pudding looked fab. And as well as variety of flavour they've largely been designed with an eye for looking attractive on the plate as well. They come with some ideas for variations perhaps for a less spicy version, or to avoid an ingredient you don't like, and they also have suggestions for where to find some of the ingredients.

Not all the recipes are low in sugar, and many of them use a lot of meat or a lot of starchy staples, which means some of them would need a fair bit of adaptation to be able to eat them on the slimming world diet I'm following. But a surprisingly large number are just perfect exactly as they are. The introduction is a fairly standard intro to low-fat cooking, but seems well written. Overall I think it's one hell of a bargain book, and I'm glad I spotted it.

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