HomeHealthArchivesSep 2005

 

DINNER SELECTIONS

Don't go overboard on any one product or type of food. Fish is a good example. Some eaters make fish the main staple in their diet. Because it has less fat and cholesterol than meat, they feel they can eat as much as they want, as often as they want. Fish certainly can taste good, and can be prepared in a wide variety of ways. But let's take a closer look by comparing the approximate range of fat, cholesterol, and calories in fish, meat, and poultry.

3 1/2 OUNCE SERVINGS OF

Cholesterol

Total

Saturated

Calories

 

Fat

Fat

 

MG

Grams

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

 

Meat

45 - 122

4.2 - 30.0

2.2 - 14.0

141 - 368

Poultry

55 - 117

1.9 - 16.0

0.2 - 4.6

140 - 258

Fish

40 - 90

1.0 - 18.0

0.2 - 5.0

100 - 270

The figures for fish ignore eel (161 milligrams of cholesterol) and shrimp (195 milligrams); those for meat ignore all organ meats such as kidneys (387 milligrams) and liver (389 milligrams).

Fish generally does have the lowest percentage of calories coming from fat, less saturated fat, and a high amount of Omega-3 fatty acids, thought to reduce cholesterol. But there are meats with as little fat and cholesterol as fish, and it's quite all right to add some variety in the diet. If you must have "meat" -- and can't survive on pasta, soups, and other fleshless food -- then fish and poultry are the best alternatives.

Unfortunately, the biggest problem with fish is not with fat and cholesterol, but from other contaminants. Raw or undercooked seafood can be downright dangerous, if not deadly. When buying fish, ask where it was caught. Avoid fish from waters close to large cities or industrial areas. Then cook the fish well. Eating raw fish is like licking the bottom of the ocean.

Just bear in mind that cooking is still no guarantee that your fish is free of problems. While cooking to the proper temperature may kill some bacteria, it will not remove toxic chemicals or viruses that may be present.

Going overboard also counts for side dishes and beverages as well. Don't ignore other elements of the meal just because you've taken care of the main dish.

For example, most of our meal plans suggest either rice with no fat or cholesterol, or yolkless noodles. But just because it's so easy to boil a handful of noodles, don't be tempted to grab any box in the market. One brand of "Enriched Egg Noodles" contains 3 grams of fat for 2 ounces and is advertised as containing "only 100% pure egg yolks -- no whites."  They don't advertise the cholesterol content. Compare that with another brand containing 100% semolina with just one gram of fat and no cholesterol.

Finally, consider what you drink along with your meal. Most beverages, unless you drink milk shakes, have little or no fat or cholesterol. But as long as you're watching your health you might as well pay attention here as well. One researcher is studying the links between coffee, alcohol, and breast cancer. Others are concerned with the possible effects of sugar substitutes.

As much as possible, select a nice variety of foods that are low in fat and cholesterol yet satisfy your hunger and tastes. The recipes this month do just that. They include entrees with chicken, and pasta; side dishes of potatoes, vegetables, and stuffing; and Pizza Fondue, a party dish that can be eaten slowly while socializing.

Sweet and Sour Chicken

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

2 whole, boned, skinless chickenbreasts (about 14 oz)

300.0

16.0

680

1 egg white

0.0

0.0

15

1 tbsp. cornstarch

0.0

0.0

30

few drops sesame oil

0.0

0.0

10

1 tsp. soy sauce

0.0

0.0

12

1 tsp. salt

0.0

0.0

0

1/8 tsp. white pepper

0.0

0.0

0

1 tomato

0.0

0.0

20

1 green pepper

0.0

0.0

50

1 tbsp. light olive oil

0.0

13.0

125

1/2 cup sugar

0.0

0.0

432

1 Cup McKay's Chicken Style Instant Broth

0.0

0.0

10

2 tbsp. lemon juice

0.0

0.0

5

1 tsp. soy sauce

0.0

0.0

12

dash of salt

0.0

0.0

0

1 clove garlic, minced

0.0

0.0

2

1/4 cup cornstarch

0.0

0.0

120

1/4 cup water

0.0

0.0

0

2 slices pineapple, chopped

0.0

0.0

150

2 scallions, washed & chopped

0.0

0.0

2

steamed snow peas, 1/2 cup

0.0

0.0

30

This makes 4 servings, one breast per person.  Each portion contains:

  75.25 milligrams of cholesterol
    7.3 grams of fat
    424 calories

Directions

1.   Mix the egg white, cornstarch, soy sauce, salt and pepper.
2.   Cut the chicken into one inch squares and marinate in the mixture for a few hours.
3.   Cut the tomato and green pepper into 1/2 inch squares.
4.   Brown in olive oil, then add the chicken.
5.   In a separate pan, heat the sugar, chicken broth, soy sauce, salt and garlic.
6.   Blend cornstarch with water, then add slowly to the broth mixture.
7.   Cook carefully, until thickened.
8.   Add the broth to the chicken mixture.
9.   Add the pineapple (or, if desired, substitute 1/4 cup orange juice).
10.  Simmer until the sauce appears glossy. If more water is needed, add in 1/4 cup increments.

Serve over rice, and sprinkle with scallions and snow peas.

Szechwan Chicken with Cashews

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

2 chicken breasts, whole, boned,skinless, about 14 oz.

300.0

16.0

680

1 egg white

0.0

0.0

15

1 tsp. cornstarch

0.0

0.0

10

1 tsp. soy sauce

0.0

0.0

12

dash of salt

0.0

0.0

0

1 green pepper

0.0

0.0

50

1 onion

0.0

0.0

40

3 oz. bamboo shoots

0.0

0.0

10

1 ounce bean sprouts

0.0

0.0

10

1 ounce  raw cashews

0.0

13.0

163

1/4 tsp. chopped ginger root

0.0

0.0

5

1 tbsp. light olive oil

0.0

13.0

125

1 tbsp. cornstarch

0.0

0.0

30

3 tbsp. water

0.0

0.0

0

1/2 tsp. chili paste

0.0

0.0

10

2 tbsp. Hoisin sauce

0.0

0.0

20

1 Cup McKay's Chicken Style Instant Broth

0.0

0.0

10

2  chopped scallions

0.0

0.0

10

1/2 cup steamed snow pea pods

0.0

0.0

30

This recipe makes four servings, one breast per person. Each portion contains:

    75.25  milligrams of cholesterol
     10.5  grams of fat
      306   calories

Directions

1.   Mix the egg white, cornstarch, soy sauce, salt, and pepper.
2.   Cut the chicken into one inch squares and marinate in the mixture for a few hours.
4.   Cut the green pepper and onion into one inch pieces.
5.   Brown in the olive oil, then add the chicken, bamboo shoots, bean sprouts, cashews, and ginger. For an authentic oriental       flavor, use sesame oil instead.
6.   Blend the cornstarch and water.
7.   Stir in Hoisin sauce and chili paste.
8.   Stir this into the chicken mixture.
9.   Add the chicken broth, scallions and snow pods.10.  Cook slowly until sauce turns glossy.

Serve over rice.

Pizza Fondue

Almost any combination of tomato sauce and low-fat cheese provides a delicious and nutritious food, and Pizza Fondue is no exception. In addition to tasting great, this can be used when social eating cannot be avoided. As a fondue, it takes a little longer to eat without adding bulk, giving you time to talk or duel with fondue forks.

The cheeses used in this recipe do contain fat. Use low-fat equivalents if you can find them. But even as given, just over 23% of the calories come from fat, a small splurge for a tasty and entertaining meal.

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

1 tbsp. oil or soft margarine

0.0

6.0

60

1/2 large onion, diced

0.0

0.0

25

1/2 green pepper, diced

0.0

12.0

25

2 cloves of minced garlic

0.0

0.0

4

1 tsp. each of oregano and parley

0.0

0.0

0

salt

0.0

0.0

0

1/2 tsp. of basil

0.0

0.0

0

1/4 tsp. chives

0.0

0.0

0

1/4 tsp. red pepper

0.0

0.0

0

2 1/2 tsp. of arrowroot

0.0

0.0

45

3 cups thick tomato sauce

0.0

0.0

378

4 oz. grated mozzarella cheese, skim

64.0

18.0

300

2 tbsp. parmesan cheese, grated

36.0

9.0

240

2 oz. mild cheese, grated, low fat (example - edam, cheddar)

60.0

18.8

228

basket of one inch squares of  Italian bread

30.0

6.0

900

This serves four people and each portion contains;

           47.5 milligrams of cholesterol
           14.4 grams of fat
            551 calories           

Directions

1.   Lightly brown in oil or margarine, the onion, pepper, and garlic. Use a pot large enough to hold all of the remaining       ingredients. If you do not have a fondue pan, select a pot that you won't mind placing on the table.
2.   Add the spices and cook one more minute.
3.   Add the arrowroot and sauce, then heat over a medium burner.
5.   At first boil, turn down the flame and add the cheeses. (To make this meal lower in fat, omit the final two ounces of mild       grated cheese.)
6.   When the cheeses have melted, transfer to a fondue pan and serve over heat that is sufficient to keep the cheese melted.

Take a square of bread on a long skewer or fondue fork, and dip it into the pizza fondue.

If you do not have a fondue pan, use the pot itself on a trivet or pot holder. As the mixture cools, reheat it on the stove a few minutes while you continue your conversation.

You can experiment with the ingredients to use less cheese, to suit your tastes.  This would be beneficial in lowering the amounts of cholesterol and fat in this recipe. For example, without the final two ounces of cheese, each serving is now 32.5 milligrams of cholesterol, 9.8 grams of fat, and 494 calories.

Lemon Chicken

The Lemon Sauce

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

1 tbsp. cornstarch

0.0

0.0

30

4 tbsp. water

0.0

0.0

0

3 tbsp. fresh lemon juice

0.0

0.0

12

1 Cup McKay's Chicken Style Instant Broth

0.0

0.0

10

3 tbsp. honey

0.0

0.0

195

3 tbsp. corn syrup

0.0

0.0

167

1 tsp. ketchup

0.0

0.0

25

1 clove minced garlic

0.0

0.0

2

2 tsp. melted soft margarine

0.0

4.0

40

The above ingredients make about 3/4 cup of sauce.  Each of four 3- tablespoon servings contains;

       0.25 milligrams of cholesterol
       1.0 gram of fat
     119 calories

Directions

1.   Mix the cornstarch and water, then set aside.
2.   Place the remaining ingredients in a saucepan and heat.
3.   Add the cornstarch mixture to the saucepan, blend well, and continue heating until thickened.

The Chicken

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

14 oz. white, boneless, chicken

300.0

16.0

680

1 egg white

0.0

0.0

15

2 tsp. melted margarine

0.0

4.0

40

dash salt

0.0

0.0

0

3/4 tsp. soy sauce

0.0

0.0

9

1 tbsp. cornstarch

0.0

0.0

30

6 tbsp. water

0.0

0.0

0

6 tbsp. flour

0.0

0.1

150

2 tbsp. cornstarch

0.0

0.0

60

1 tbsp. oil

0.0

13.0

125

dash baking soda

0.0

0.0

1

2 scallions, chopped

0.0

0.0

2

This serves four people.  Each portion of the chicken alone contains:

     75.0 milligrams of cholesterol
     11.5 grams of fat
    309.0 calories  

With the sauce, each serving contains:

    75.25 milligrams of cholesterol
     12.5 grams of fat
      428 calories  

Directions

1.   Mix the egg white, margarine, salt, pepper, soy sauce, 6 tablespoons of water, and cornstarch in the dish to be used for       marinating.
2.   Cut the chicken into one-inch by two-inch pieces, place in the dish, and coat with the marinade.
3.   Marinate one hour or overnight.
4.   Blend the remaining water, flour, cornstarch, oil and baking soda until smooth and dip each piece of chicken into it before       cooking.
5.   Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a wok or pan with high sides at 350 degrees.
6.   Stir fry the chicken until done.  Drain on a paper towel.

Arrange in a serving dish and serve with the lemon sauce. Sprinkle the scallions on top. Suggestion: serve with rice.

If desired, you may make the chicken without the tempura sauce by skipping step 4. This way, each serving of chicken, without sauce, contains 75.0  milligrams of cholesterol, 8.5  grams of fat, and  225 calories.

Shishkabob Chicken With Vegetables

 

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

10.5 oz. white, boneless chicken

225.0

12.5

465

4 medium partially baked potatoes

0.0

0.0

500

1 cooked ear of corn, cut into 8

0.0

1.0

100

1 onion, cut into thick slices

0.0

0.0

50

1 green pepper, cut into 1" squares

0.0

0.0

50

1/2 red pepper, cut into 1" squares

0.0

0.0

25

8 mushrooms, cleaned

0.0

0.0

55

1/4 cup tomato sauce

0.0

0.0

31

This serves 4 people, 2 skewers per person, each containing:

    56.25 milligrams of cholesterol
      3.4 grams of fat
      319 calories

Directions

1.   Cut the chicken into two-inch by one-inch strips and remove any skin that is remaining.
2.   Cut the potatoes into one and a half inch cubes.
3.   Alternate chicken and the vegetables on a skewer, being sure to include one mushroom and one piece of corn on each.
4.   Marinate with sauce for a few hours.
5.   Barbecue or broil.

Parsley Potatoes

 

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

6 potatoes

0.0

0.0

600

2 tbsp. fresh, washed parsley

0.0

0.0

4

1 tbsp. melted margarine

0.0

6.0

60

salt to taste

0.0

0.0

0

For two servings, each contains;

       0 milligrams of cholesterol
       3 grams of fat
     332 calories

If you like fewer potatoes, divide into three portions, each:

       0 milligrams of cholesterol
       2 grams of fat
     221 calories

Directions

1.   Peel the potatoes, if desired, then cut into bite size cubes.
2.   Boil for 30 minutes or until soft. Drain well.
3.   Melt the margarine on the potatoes and sprinkle with parsley.

Stuffed, Baked Jumbo Shells

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

12 oz. shells, not enriched with egg

0.0

12.0

1260

12 oz. skim, light ricotta cheese

72.0

24.0

560

2 oz. skim mozzarella, grated

32.0

9.0

150

1 tbsp. minced parsley

0.0

0.0

2

2 cups tomato sauce

0.0

0.0

244

This serves 6 people.  Each serving contains;

     17.33 milligrams of cholesterol
       7.5 grams of fat
       369 calories

Directions

1.   Put a layer of sauce in a 9-inch by 13 1/2-inch rectangular baking dish (it should be at least 2 inches high).
2.   Boil the shells until done.
3.   Mix the cheeses with the parsley, then fill the shells with the mixture.
4.   Cover with sauce and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until the cheese starts to bubble or brown.

 

Twice Baked Potatoes

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

4 baking potatoes

0.0

0.0

440

2 tbsp. margarine

0.0

12.0

120

2 tbsp. skim milk

0.5

0.1

11

Dash of  salt, parsley

0.0

0.0

0

1 1/2 tbsp. vegetable garlic sauce

0.0

2.0

43

2 tbsp. sour cream substitute

0.0

3.0

35

dash of paprika

0.0

0.0

0

This makes 4 servings, each containing;

      0.13 milligram of cholesterol
       4.3  grams of fat
       162  calories

Directions

1.   Bake the potatoes at 425 degrees for one hour or until soft.
2.   Carefully cut each potato in half then scoop out the potato into a mixing bowl.  Save the skins - they should look like an       empty shell.  Arrange them on a baking sheet.
3.   Mash the potatoes with a fork.
4.   Add to the potatoes the margarine, milk, pepper, salt, parsley, garlic sauce, and sour cream substitute, then whip      with       an electric mixer until the mixture is smooth.
5.   Spoon the mixture back into the potato skins and sprinkle with a dash of paprika. For a decorative touch, use a pastry       tube to refill the skins.
6.   Bake again for 10 to 15 minutes at 375 degrees.

In place of the sour cream substitute, you could add 2 tablespoons of the Low-Fat Yogurt Cheese sauce. Each serving will now contain:

       0.58 milligram of cholesterol
        3.8  grams of fat
        165  calories

Poultry Stuffing

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

8 slices of bread

40.0

0.0

560

6 tbsp. vegetable garlic sauce

0.0

8.0

172

to taste - sage, dill, celery, salt

0.0

0.0

0

2 to 6 tbsp. water

0.0

0.0

481

This recipe will stuff a whole small chicken or fish, or it can be divided into four mounds to bake under individual chicken breasts. Each of the four servings contains;

       10.0 milligrams of cholesterol
        2.0 grams of fat
      183.0 calories

Double or triple this recipe to stuff a turkey or large chicken.

Directions

1.   Rip the bread into half-inch squares into a large mixing bowl.
2.   Add the garlic sauce and spices, then mix well.
3.   Blend in enough water so the stuffing adheres together but is not soggy.
4.   Loosely place the stuffing in the chicken cavity or divide into 4 mounds in a baking pan to be covered with a chicken       breast. To serve with individual fish fillets, prepare and bake the stuffing in advanced. Place under the fillets before serving.

Acorn Squash With Stuffing

INGREDIENTS

Cholesterol

Fat

Calories

MG

Grams

 
 

 

 

 

2 acorn squash

0.0

0.0

100

1 recipe of Poultry Stuffing

40.0

8.0

732

1 egg white

0.0

0.0

15

spices to taste

0.0

0.0

0

Makes 4 servings, each containing:

       10 milligrams of cholesterol
        2 grams of fat
      212 calories

Directions

1.   Cut each squash in half and remove the seeds.
2.   Bake at 325 degrees for one hour.
3.   Scoop out the squash, leaving four shells.
4.   Mash the removed squash.
5.   Stir in the stuffing and, if desired, spices. If too dry, add the egg white.
6.   Divide the mixture into the four shells then bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes, or until brown.