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Low Fat Lifestyle.com
Low Fat Recipes
Low-fat sour cream can be a substitute for heavy cream or whipping cream used to flavor and thicken creamy soups.
Removing the skin from chicken reduces fat content by approximately 50%. Wow, that's a lot of fat!
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Week of June 29, 2003

Reading Food Labels

Always read nutrition labels. Food labels will show how much fat is in a product, in both grams and calories. Food labels also show how much saturated fat is in a particular item, as well as the percentage of total calories that amount would represent for someone on a 2000 calorie/day diet. NOTE: If a food claims to have "no cholesterol" on the front of the package, it may still be high in fat and saturated fat. Always read the fine print.

The information can seem overwhelming. There are some specific nutritional facts required on virtually all food labels. These are: total calories, calories from fat, total fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, sodium, total carbohydrate, dietary fiber, sugars, protein, vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium, iron.

Food labels may also contain information on polyunsaturated fat, monounsaturated fat, potassium, soluble fiber, and other vitamins and minerals.

The FDA gives full instructions on how to read these labels as well as what they mean. If you are unfamilar with what the terms mean, please follow this link to the FDA Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition. They walk you through step by step. It is also available in Spanish and in PDF format.

Click on this link: Food Labels

Week of June 22, 2003

Reduced Fat Crepes

After you figure out how the first one is done, this is really very easy.

1 large egg egg plus one egg white
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/4 cups (plus) 1% milk
cooking oil spray

Whisk eggs and salt in a large bowl. A little at a time, whisk in flour, then whisk in 1% milk. Cover and let stand 1 hour in refrigerator.

Batter should just coat the back of the spoon. If necessary, add a little ore milk by spoonful to thin consistency. Heat a small nonstick skillet (8 inch works great) over medium-high heat. Lightly and evenly spray with cooking oil spray. Pour 3 tablespoons batter into skillet and swirl to coat bottom of pan evenly. Cook until the top appears dry, loosening sides of crepe with spatula (about 40 to 45 seconds). Turn and cook until light brown spots appear on the second side (about 25 to 30 seconds) Turn the the crepe onto a plate and repeat with remaining batter, spraying with oil when needed. Stack crepes on top of one another until you are ready to wrap and fill. Fill with your favorite fruit and powdered sugar or fruit filling. For savory crepes, just a place a meat or poultry mixture with some type of sauce and enjoy. Great way to use up leftovers.

Week of June 15, 2003

Low Fat Mornay Sauce

1 package butter buds
3 tablespoon flour
2 cup skim milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 cup grated fat reduced Swiss or cheddar cheese

Place all ingredients accept cheese in a sauce pan. Stir over low heat until combined. Add cheddar or American cheese and continue stirring until cheese is melted. Season to taste with mustard, and worcestershire sauce. Serve with vegetables, macaroni, toast, or with savory fillings for crepes . 2 tablespoons equals a serving.

Yield: 16 servings

Week of June 8, 2003
Reducing Fat in Baked Goods. High fat ingredients like margarine, butter, shortening, oil, whipping cream, cream cheese, sour cream and chocolate add flavor to recipes but they also add tons of fat grams and calories to our diet. Besides enhancing the flavor, fat makes pastry flaky, cakes moist and cookies crisp and chewy. Decreasing fat in baked goods can result in a coarser, denser texture. Try these tips to reduce the fat and still retain tasty sweet baked goods.

  • Reduce the amount of margarine, butter or shortening or oil in a recipe by 1/4 or 1/3 of the original amount. You may also use some of the fat and oil replacers on the market - these are primarily made up of fruit purees to keep a moist texture. Sometimes, prune puree or apple sauce may substituted for some of the oils.
  • Substitute skim milk for 2% or whole milk
  • Substitute low fat yogurt, light sour cream and light cream cheese in place of the regular products. Although nonfat counterparts are available, they are not always as successful in bake recipes.
  • Limit the use of nuts. For example, sprinkle 2 tablespoons chopped nuts over a frosted cake instead of adding 1/2 cup of them to the batter. Toasting the nuts prior to addition can also intensify the flavor.
  • Use cholesterol-free, fat free egg products or egg whites in place of whole eggs or at least 2/3 of the eggs called for in a recipe.
  • Use evaporated skimmed milk or fat free sweetened condensed milk in place of whipping cream and regular sweetened condensed milk. You may use low fat or fat reduced whipped topping in place of whipped cream in refrigerated or frozen desserts.
  • Substitute or add flavorings and/or seasonings to replace the flavor lost from fat. For example, add chocolate and rum flavoring to a cocoa sauce for a more intense or deep chocolate flavor.
  • Serve low fat baked items like muffins and coffee cakes warm from the oven. The change in texture is not as apparent when they are warm as when they are cooled.

Week of June 1, 2003
Cajun cooks all agree that to make the perfect gumbo, you have to have the perfect roux. That roux can vary from a light pecan color to a chocolate color. A neighbor of mine from Cajun country said it should be somewhere in between. The trouble is with traditional roux that it is made with 1/2 fat and 1/2 flour.

Here is a great alternative for making a low fat roux that still has that nutty flavor. The following recipe uses shrimp but you can easily adapt your own favorite gumbo recipe made with this roux method. Enjoy!

Shrimp Gumbo - Serves 6

• 1/4 cup flour
• cooking oil spray
• 1 cup chopped onion
• 1 cup chopped green bell pepper
• 1/2 cup chopped celery
• 1 tablespoon minced garlic
• 3 cups low fat chicken broth
• 1 - 15 ounce can diced tomatoes, drained
• 1 cup fresh okra, diced

• 1/4 teaspoon salt
• 1/4 teaspoon pepper
• 1 bay leaf
• 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
• 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
• 1 pound uncooked large shrimp, peeled and deveined
• 4 cups hot cooked white rice
• Chopped green onions and parsley for garnish

Place flour evenly on small pie plate and bake at 400° F for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes, or until flour is brown in color (the color of pecan shells). This process works well in the toaster oven.

While flour is browning, coat a large pot with cooking spray and saute garlic, onion, bell pepper and celery. Cook and stir until vegetables begin to soften, about 3 minutes. Stir in toasted flour and cook for 1 more minute. Add broth and mix well. Add drained tomatoes, okra, thyme, bay leaf, salt, pepper and cayenne. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add shrimp and simmer for 5 more minutes, until shrimp is cooked through. Remove bay leaf and discard. Serve over hot rice in serving bowls. Garnish with chopped green onion and parsley.

Per Serving: 310 Calories; 2g Fat (5.7% calories from fat); 26g Protein; 50g Carbohydrate; 3g Dietary Fiber; 115mg Cholesterol; 471mg Sodium. Exchanges: 2 1/2 Grain(Starch); 2 1/2 Lean Meat; 1 1/2 Vegetable; 0 Fat.


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