By COLlive reporter
What happens when a bestselling cookbook author like Victora Dwek joins forces with the certified nutritionist and diet consultant Shani Taub?
You get a cookbook featuring delicious and easy to prepare meal recipes that are low in calories but high in flavor.
That is the essence and goal of the new “Secrets of Skinny Cooking: Mouthwatering Recipes You Won’t Believe are Low Calorie,” published in May 2017 by Artscroll/Shaar Press.
Recipes include Apple Pie Crepes, Italian Roasted Cauliflower Salad, Garlic ‘n Onion Rutabaga Fries or Zucchini Pizza Fries, Skinny Pasta Alfredo, Spinach Stuffed Chicken Thighs, Spicy Chicken Lo Mein, Skirt Steak Over Asian Eggplant and Lemony Baked Falafel.
“There are lots of delicious foods out there,” says Dwek. “Plenty of recipes with fat and sugar that taste really, really good. I think we all know that. But I realized that what people didn’t know… is that light food can be just as satisfying. That’s why I wrote this cookbook, so everyone can feel good about themselves and never, ever feel deprived.”
The book boasts features over 135 easy-to-prepare recipes, with breathtaking photos for each dish, secret techniques and tips for zapping the calories from any dish without zapping the flavor (such as, “How to Sauté and Caramelize Onions Without Oil.”)
Over 288 pages, the recipes offer breakfasts, light salads, veggie sides, friendly carbs, satisfying soups, creamy and dreamy dairy dishes, filling and flavorful mains, and even sweet treats.
The authors also spell out how to make recipes ahead of time and tweaking them to be family-friendly. While Dwek shares cooking tips, Taub provides nutritional information, advice, and motivation.
“A diet should be a way of life that you can live with forever. It doesn’t mean not eating,” says Taub. “A diet simply means that you know exactly what you’re eating, even if it changes as time goes on, whether you want to lose weight or just maintain. A healthy person is never full and never hungry, just content and satisfied.”
Whether you’ve always enjoyed light, healthy eating, or want to lose or maintain weight, Secrets of Skinny Cooking offers more options than you ever thought possible.
Recipe: Red Pepper Fettuccine
Yields 2 servings ▪ Dairy ▪ Sugar-Free
Calories: 241 per serving; Shani Taub Exchange: 1 Bread, ½ Protein, ½ vegetable (medium portion)
This dish is for those who need their hearty pasta dish. There’s half a serving of pasta in each portion; eggplant stands in for the rest. It’s become one of my family’s all-time favorite pasta dishes, high cal or low cal. (Who needs penne alla vodka anymore? I’d rather have this!)
2 oz fettuccine or any wide, flat pasta (such as pappardelle)
1 eggplant, peeled, sliced thinly lengthwise
salt, for sprinkling
1-2 Tbsp Parmesan shavings, for serving
RED PEPPER SAUCE
1 red onion, diced
1 garlic clove, crushed
salt, for sprinkling
1 Tbsp tomato paste
1 red pepper, halved, stem and seeds removed
⅓ cup plain Greek yogurt
 Preheat oven to 425ºF. Prepare pasta according to package instructions; set aside.
 Cut eggplant slices into long, thin strips a little wider than your pasta. Place into a colander; sprinkle with salt. Let sit for 20 minutes over a bowl or in the sink; rinse and dry.
 Place pepper cut side down on a baking sheet coated with nonstick cooking spray; bake until skin blisters, about 40 minutes. Let cool; peel pepper and discard peel.
 Meanwhile, add eggplant slices to a baking sheet; bake for 20 minutes.
 Prepare the sauce: Coat a sauté pan with nonstick cooking spray; heat over low heat. Add onion and garlic; sprinkle with salt. Cover pan; cook until onion is soft, 7 minutes. Stir in tomato paste.
 In a blender, combine onion mixture, red pepper, and yogurt.
 When ready to serve, coat the sauté pan with nonstick cooking spray; heat over low heat. Add pasta and eggplant strips to the pan. Add red pepper sauce; toss to coat. Season with salt to taste. Serve topped with a sprinkle of Parmesan shavings per serving.
Shani Says: I love when vegetables are added to stretch a dish. Since a man can have 2 breads for dinner, he can have the entire recipe for only 2 breads, 1 vegetable, and ¾ protein! It’s a huge dinner! Omit the Parmesan and enjoy it along with a piece of fish.