Monday, July 2, 2007

Loving you with low-fat food

You know that relative of yours that tends to make fattening food and then push it on you at family dinners? That's me. Or at least, that was me. It was my way of showing love to family and friends. But since starting Weight Watchers, I've come to realize that loving one's family members with fattening dishes isn't necessarily, well...loving. But since this is how I know how to love them, whatever would I do now?

The answer was to start trying out lots of new recipes. I've bought a number of new cookbooks as well as downloaded recipes from the internet. Yesterday was the first time I had the opportunity to try some recipes out on a big dinner I made for some friends. This time, it was all relatively healthy fare. The result? Scads of compliments and people going back for seconds (and even thirds!)

Here's what I served:
  • Sticky Chicky: a low-fat barbecued chicken dish from Eat, Shrink, and Be Merry!
  • Couscous with Tomatoes, Scallions, and Lemon: a delicious low-fat but wonderfully flavoured couscous courtesy of The Best Light Recipe by Cook's Illustrated. A friend kept going back to this dish despite the glares of his fiancĂ©e who said he didn't like the couscous she made. Whoops!
  • Chef's Salad Bar: a make-your-own salad featuring leaf lettuce, cherry tomatoes, carrots, Canadian back bacon, cubed hard-boiled eggs, two kinds of shredded cheese, sunflower seeds, slivered almonds, and three kinds of low-fat dressing. Of the dressings, the Basic Vinaigrette (also from Cook's Illustrated) was the one everyone loved the most. One friend even asked for the recipe (which is a very high compliment, her being as near to a chef as anyone I know)
  • Strawberry Shortcake: an invented dessert using store-bought individual angel food cakes sprinkled with a mixture of sherry and strawberry-kiwi juice, filled with low-fat white chocolate pudding, and topped with sliced strawberries and light Cool Whip. Although simple to put together, it looked very impressive and eyes popped when I brought out the plates. My husband took a picture of his dessert and everyone else just dove right in.
I am so pleased. The dinner was beyond successful. Not only did it all taste good, it was as healthy as I could make it. It just goes to show you can show love with healthy food!

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