HomeHealthArchivesJul 2005

 

LIGHT MEALS FOR HEALTHY ARTERIES

If you don't feel like a heavy meal, try one of these light recipes. Most of the items can be eaten by themselves for a midday snack, or combined to form a complete light meal any time of the day.

Several of the recipes here -- such as a White Omelette, French Toast, and Stuffed Potatoes and "Eggs" -- are perfect when you're just starting to get away from traditional egg breakfasts or lunches. Add a little yellow food coloring and you'll never tell the difference between the low cholesterol and original versions.

In a hurry? Try Pita or English Muffin Pizza, two easy-to- prepare recipes that take only a few moments. A number of these recipes take advantage of PSI's described in later months so the ingredients in your refrigerator will determine how quick these meals are to prepare. For example, if you already have yogurt cheese sauce standing by (described in the next months article), it takes just a few minutes to boil and drain pasta for a filling Pasta With Yogurt Cheese Sauce. Or, scramble two eggs whites with vegetable garlic sauce (also in next months article) for a delicious White Omelette.

Have a little time to spare? Try a tangy white pizza or oriental rice. Or combine recipes for a luncheon or light dinner. Try a stuffed chicken breast with a side dish of pasta salad or a rice filled pepper, for a tasty low-fat meal. If you have chicken left over from homemade soup, and a little extra time, make a batch of chicken croquettes and freeze them for later.

Where noodles or pasta is called for, use a "yolkless" brand that your market might carry. Stay away from "enriched" pasta and egg noodles. The fat and cholesterol you save can be traded for a little extra serving if you're still hungry.

Recipes such as these give you room to experiment with natural food products claimed to lower cholesterol or have other medicinal benefits. Much has been said about green tea, fish, yogurt, ginger and other spices. (In next months article, we'll look at garlic in detail.)

You should also pay particular attention to the types of oils used, both as a recipe ingredient and for frying. While many manufacturers are moving away from tropical oils, the three billion dollar a year United States vegetable oil business is still in turmoil. Even though 16 million pounds of soy oil are sold in the United States each year, and tropical oil sales are dropping, you can't assume that "vegetable oil" on the label means anything.

Of course, the development of fat substitutes, such as Procter and Gamble's Olestra and Nutra-Sweet's Simplesse, may change the situation drastically. Although neither product has yet been approved by the U. S. Food and Drug Administration, it is only a matter of time until one, both, or some similar product is on the market.

Olestra, for example, is a sugar-based fat substitute that's not absorbed during the digestive process -- adding no calories, fat, or cholesterol to the diet.  It is produced by combining sugar with the fatty acids from soybean oil. Odorless and tasteless, but with no nutritional value at all, it can be used in place of fat for deep frying and in products such as margarine, cakes, pies, and ice cream. The Nutra-Sweet product, Simplesse, does have some calories and nutritional value because its made from egg white and milk protein.

These products seem almost too good to be true. But before giving any hasty endorsements, thorough testing is needed to insure no ill side effects. That's why the FDA has been studying Olestra since 1987.

While everyone should watch their cholesterol, not every member of the family might require the same low-fat low-cholesterol diet. Of course, studies show that for everyone's health and happiness, the whole family should strive for a low-fat diet. If at all possible, try to avoid "mine versus their's" menus. Not only does it make preparing meals double the effort, but it presents too much temptation.

But if you can't avoid the situation, many of the recipes here can easily be prepared two different ways -- one serving for those who must watch their diet, another serving for the lucky ones that don't.

Stuffed Potatoes and Eggs is a good example. As with all recipes that require eggs, this calls for adding only the egg whites, discarding the yolks. But it would be easy to scramble the eggs in two batches. First cook the yolkless eggs. Then remove them from the pan and keep warm in the oven while you cook the whole eggs.

Similar techniques can be used with other recipes. For instance, extra cheese to the pizza recipes. Or make them half-and-half: leave your half just as given in the recipe, add extra ingredients on the other side for "them".

When serving, also think of ways to satisfy both needs. Possibly use two different brands of margarine -- spread low-fat margarine on your toast, give them a less suitable brand or even butter. Make them instant hot cocoa, which usually contains palm or coconut oils, whip up fresh cocoa for you. (The recipe is given in October 2005.) There are many ways to stick to your regime while keeping the rest of the family happy.

Pita Pizza

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

1 pita, store bought

0.0

0.0

155

1/4 cup tomato sauce

0.0

0.0

31

1 tsp. grated parmesan cheese

6.0

1.5

40

optional - spices (red pepper)

0.0

0.0

0

This lunch has:

       6.0 milligrams of cholesterol
       1.5 grams of fat
       226 calories

Directions

1.   Split open the pita, into 2 rounds.
2.   Spread each with the sauce.
3.   Sprinkle each half with 1/2 teaspoon of parmesan cheese.
4.   Broil for a few minutes or until cheese melts.

English Muffin Pizza

Prepare the same as above, using an English Muffin instead of a pita pocket. Using an English Muffin with no cholesterol, 1 gram of fat and 130 calories (you may find one with no fat in your market), each serving contains:

       6.0 milligrams of cholesterol
       2.5 grams of fat
       201 calories

French Toast

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

6 slices of bread

30.0

0.0

200

1 egg white

0.0

0.0

15

3/4 cup skim milk

3.0

0.75

65

1 drop yellow food coloring, optional

0.0

0.0

0

1 tsp. margarine

0.0

2.0

20

dash of nutmeg

0.0

0.0

0

Two servings are made, each containing;

     16.5 milligrams of cholesterol(unless you can find bread without it)
      1.4 grams of fat      260 calories

Directions

1.   Heat the margarine in a pan.
2.   To make the batter, beat the egg white, milk, nutmeg, and if desired, food coloring.
3.   Dip both sides of the bread in the batter and brown in the pan.
4.   Turn and brown the other side.

Eat these plain, or with syrup, jelly, or cinnamon and sugar -  but remember you must add this to your list of ingredients and retally the columns.

White Omelette

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

1 portion vegetable garlic sauce

0.0

2.0

43

2 scrambled egg whites

0.0

0.0

30

optional - yellow food coloring

0.0

0.0

0

This makes one serving, with;

         0 milligrams of cholesterol
       2.0 grams of fat
        73 calories

There should be sufficient oil in the Vegetable in Garlic Sauce to fry the egg whites. If your sauce is too dry from storage, add one teaspoon of olive oil. With the oil added, the serving contains:

       0 milligrams of cholesterol
     6.3 grams of fat
     114 calories

Directions

1.   Heat the vegetable garlic sauce over a medium flame.
2.   Add the egg whites and, if desired, a drop of yellow food coloring.
3.   Stir constantly until cooked to your favorite consistency.

If you want your omelet to have a more custard-like consistency, add 1/4 cup of skim milk to the scrambled egg whites and whip in the blender before cooking. With the skim milk, the recipe contains:

       1.0 milligram of cholesterol
       2.3 grams of fat
        96 calories

Serve in a pita pocket, on an English Muffin, rolled in a bread dough (such as Stromboli), or on a homemade sandwich bun. Add the extra milligrams of cholesterol, grams of fat, and calories, if there are any.

White Pizza

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

1 pack of yeast

0.0

8.0

25

1 cup warm waterr

0.0

0.0

0

1 tbsp. oil

0.0

13.0

125

1 tsp. salt

0.0

0.0

0

1 tbsp. sugar

0.0

0.0

54

3 to 4 cups of flour

0.0

4.0

1600

6 tbsp. vegetable garlic sauce

0.9

8.0

172

4 oz. skim mozzarella cheese, grated

64.0

18.0

300

2 tbsp. grated parmesan cheese

36.0

9.0

240

Two pizzas, or four servings, will be made, each serving containing;

        25.0 milligrams of cholesterol
        13.0 grams of fat
         629 calories

Pizza like this is so easy to make and so tasty, not to mention low in cholesterol and fat (compared to the restaurant and frozen varieties), that you will be happy to take the extra time to prepare it.

Directions

1.   Place the yeast and warm water in a bowl and blend until the yeast is dissolved.
2.   Add the oil, salt, sugar and 2 cups of flour and mix until smooth.
3.   Mix in the remaining flour, a half cup at a time, until the dough forms a pliable ball that is not sticky or moist to the touch.
4.   On a smooth floured surface, knead the ball of dough until it is smooth, about 5 minutes.
5.   Place the dough in a bowl, cover with a towel, and let the dough rise until double, from 45 minutes to an hour and a half.
6.   Divide the dough in half, dusting it with flour if it appears to be sticky, and roll each half into a 12-inch to 14-inch round       (dependent on the size of your pizza pan...while we are at it, it does not have to be round, if you would like to prepare a       square or rectangular shaped pizza, be our guest).
7.   Stretch the dough to about the size of your pan.  Try to pick up the round and place it over one wrist. Carefully stretch the       dough by pulling from the center out (next time you pass a pizza parlor, observe the technique).
8.   Pat the dough into the pan. (For an authentic taste, you can sprinkle the pan first with a dash of cornmeal. It has no       cholesterol but about 4 grams of fat and 450 calories per cup. Use just alight sprinkling.)
9.   Pinch the edges for a decorative touch.
10.  Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes or less - if large bubbles form as it bakes, puncture them with a skewer or toothpick.        At this point you can continue with the recipe, refrigerate the crust for a day or two, or freeze it for some future use.
11.  Divide the vegetable garlic sauce between the two crusts and, with the back of a spoon, spread it evenly over the surface.
12.  Divide the cheeses between the two pizzas and sprinkle over entire surface.
13.  Bake at 400 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes or until the cheese starts to bubble.

Pasta Salad

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

8 oz. macaroni or other pasta

0.0

8.0

840

3 tbsp. of vegetable garlic sauce

0.0

4.0

86

1 stick cup washed, diced celery

0.0

0.0

5

1/4 dill pickle, chopped

0.0

0.0

4

1 tsp. lemon juice

0.0

0.0

4

1/2 tsp. sugar

0.0

0.0

9

1 tbsp. shredded carrot

0.0

0.0

4

3 tbsp. imitation or light mayonnaise

15.0

15.0

150

6 servings will be made, each containing;

        2.5 milligrams of cholesterol
        4.5 grams of fat
        184 calories

 

Directions

1.   Boil the pasta, following the manufacturer's instructions, but omit any oil they suggest adding. Instead, lightly stir the pasta       several times, separating any that are sticking together or at the bottom of the pot.
2.   Drain the cooked pasta and place it in the bowl you plan to use for serving.
3.   Blend in the remaining ingredients.
4.   Serve warm or refrigerate to serve cool.  It can be used as a side dish or a main dish.

Noodle Pudding

             0         0           0

                          0         0         324

 

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

8 oz. yolkless noodles

0.0

8.0

840

4 tbsp. margarine

0.0

24.0

240

4 beaten egg whites

0.0

0.0

60

1/8 tsp. cinnamon

0.0

0.0

0

dash of nutmeg, if desired

0.0

0.0

0.0

6 tbsp. sugar

0.0

0.0

324

This will serve 8 people, each portion containing;

       0.0 milligrams of cholesterol
       4.0 grams of fat
       183 calories

If you want to add raisins or chunks of pineapple, add the proper amount of calories to the above numbers.

Directions

1.   Boil the noodles, following the manufacturer's instructions, but omit any oil they suggest adding. Instead, lightly stir the       noodles several times, separating any that are sticking together or at the bottom of the pot.
2.   Drain the noodles, rinse with clean water, and then place in a 12 x 8 x 2 inch serving/baking dish.
3.   Blend in the remaining ingredients.
4.   Bake at 350 degrees for about 35 to 40 minutes, longer if you like a crisp texture.

Oriental Rice

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

2 cups cooked rice

0.0

0.0

280

1 dash sesame oil

0.0

0.0

10

3 tbsp. vegetable garlic saucet

0.0

4.0

86

dash of ginger or 5 spice powder

0.0

0.0

0

1 chopped scallion

0.0

0.0

1

This serves 2 people, each portion containing;

       0.0 milligrams of cholesterol
       2.0 grams of fat
       189 calories

Directions

1.   Add the oil, sauce and spice to the rice and mix well.
2.   Divide the rice onto two plates and sprinkle with scallions.

If desired, add steamed snow peas.

Potato Salad

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

8 potatoes

0.0

8.0

960

3 tbsp. of vegetable garlic sauce

0.0

4.0

86

1 stick cup washed, diced celery

0.0

0.0

5

1/4 dill pickle, chopped

0.0

0.0

4

1 tsp. lemon juice

0.0

0.0

4

1/2 tsp. sugar

0.0

0.0

9

1 tbsp. shredded carrot

0.0

0.0

4

3 tbsp. imitation or light mayonnaise

15.0

15.0

150

6 servings will be made, each containing;

        2.5 milligrams of cholesterol
        3.2 grams of fat
        204 calories

Directions

1.   Boil the potatoes, for 25 to 30 minutes or until tender.
2.   Drain the cooked potatoes and place in the serving bowl.
3.   Blend in the remaining ingredients and mix well.
4.   Serve warm or refrigerate to serve cool.  It can be used as a side dish or a main dish.

Pasta With Yogurt Cheese Sauce

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

2 oz. yolkless pasta

0.0

2.0

210

1 portion yogurt cheese sauce

2.8

1.8

69

Makes one portion, containing;

       2.8 milligrams of cholesterol
       3.8 grams of fat
     279 calories

Yogurt cheese sauce is a PSI described in next months article.

Directions

1.   Boil the pasta, following the manufacturer's instructions, but omit any oil they suggest adding. Instead, lightly stir the pasta       several times, separating any that are sticking together or at the bottom of the pot.
2.   Heat the sauce.

3.   Drain the pasta and arrange on a serving plate.
4.   Pour the sauce over the pasta before serving.

Stuffed Potatoes and "Eggs"

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

4 potatoes

0.0

0.0

480

1/4 cup McKays chicken seasoning broth

0.2

0.03

1.3

4 egg whites, scrambled

0.0

0.0

60

1 portion vegetable garlic sauce

0.0

2.0

43

Four portions will be made, each containing;

        0.05 milligrams of cholesterol
        0.5  grams of fat
      146 calories

This may be served for breakfast, brunch, or lunch.  Include a roll, salad or a vegetable, with
fruit for dessert.

Directions

1.   Bake the potatoes, slightly undercooking.
2.   Cut off the top and scoop out the insides. Use a melon baller, if you have one. (Brown and serve the balls as a side dish or       save for a future recipe.)
3.   Sprinkle the inner potato skin with salt, if desired, and then brush with chicken broth inside and outside.
4.   Bake at 400 degrees for 5 minutes.
5.   Cook the eggs (adding yellow food coloring, if desired) until they reach the consistency of custard.
6.   Heat the vegetable garlic sauce and blend into the eggs as they are cooking, if desired, or spoon on top when cooked.
7.   Divide the egg mixture into the four potato shells, replace the tops and serve.

Rice Stuffed Green Peppers

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

1 recipe Oriental Rice

0.0

2.0

184.5

2 parboiled green peppers

0.0

0.0

100

optional - 1/2 cup Tomato Sauce

0.0

0.0

62

Two portions will be made, each containing;  

       0.0 milligrams of cholesterol
       1.0 gram of fat
     173.2 calories

Directions

1.   Cut the top (about 1/4 inch) off of the stem end of the pepper and using a small sharp knife, remove all of the seeds.
2.   Warm the rice.  Divide the rice into the pepper shells.
3.   If desired, pour tomato sauce over the pepper and rice.
4.   Replace the top and serve.

Potato Pancakes

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

3 potatoes

0.0

0.0

360

1 onion

0.0

0.0

40

2 tbsp. flour

0.0

0.1

50

dash baking powder

0.0

0.0

1

1 egg white

0.0

0.0

15

1/4 cup skim milk

1.0

0.25

23

2 tsp. margarine

0.0

4.0

40

Two servings will be made, each containing;

       0.5 milligrams of cholesterol
       2.2 grams of fat
     264.5 calories

Directions

1.   In a blender, grate first six ingredients until the batter is smooth.
2.   Melt a small amount of the margarine in the pan. (Use the rest during cooking, only if needed to prevent the pancakes from       sticking to the pan.)
3.   Drop the batter by the spoonful into the pan.
4.   Cook on one side, and then turn and cook on the other side.
5.   Serve at once.