This morning I posted a rave review of Tosca Reno’s Eat-Clean Diet Cookbook. Why rave? Because it’s one of the first healthy-eating cookbooks I’ve tried that caters to those of us who are addicted to high-flavor foods, rather than bland, uninteresting stuff. Yeah, I know there’s a huge market for the latter, so I can’t in good conscience mark books down for catering to it, but damn it’s so good to find a book that caters to people who don’t want to sacrifice an awesome variety of tasty foods in order to be healthy!
We have at least three more book reviews coming out this week, two of which are also cookbook reviews. Stay tuned for a review of the Ghirardelli Chocolate Cookbook, among others!
Seriously, Tosca’s books have helped us enjoy our healthy eating enough that we’ve been able to keep up with it. And that’s great, because it’s helped me immensely. Finally one of those medical scans showed something; my gallbladder is contracting sluggishly. Not a clear-cut case of it needing to come out, so instead of referring me directly to a surgeon my doc is sending me to a gastroenterologist for another opinion. Eating so well using Tosca’s suggestions and things we’ve derived from her books has made me healthy enough that I can actually indulge in a treat now and then—like a small serving of chocolate bread pudding from the Ghirardelli cookbook—with only mild repercussions.
I’ve always had trouble getting myself to eat salads. They’re too much work to make interesting (i.e., include a variety of ingredients); they aren’t very good; etc. I have a new way of handling that, though. I prep some ingredients early in the week. For example, we take some hothouse (seedless) cucumbers, wash them, and run them through the food processor’s slicing disk. Then we stick them in airtight plastic containers in the fridge. I shred or slice some carrots, or buy them pre-shredded, and do the same thing with them. I’ve also started buying baby spinach instead of or in addition to lettuce, because it doesn’t go bad as quickly and it’s really good. Instead of buying large tomatoes I buy small pearl or grape tomatoes.
Anyway, this makes it much easier to toss together a salad quickly that contains plenty of interesting and delicious ingredients. I often add a few nuts or cubes of cheese; you can chop those in advance and store them too. And of course a small amount of dressing works wonders, too. Now you have a salad with lots of flavor that takes just a minute or two to create, no chopping necessary. And since you have containers of cucumber, carrot, spinach, and tomatoes on hand, you can easily toss a handful onto your plate any time you have anything else as well.