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Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Thanks to all the great feedback I received on my last column about a healthy approach to eating, I’ve been experimenting with “Flavor Per Calorie!” Seems there are lots of Bergen folks interested in a simple and delicious way to cook and eat without worrying about dieting and losing joy in the tastes and flavors of food! The theory, again, is the brainchild of food writer Peter Kaminsky and posits that if one chooses to prepare food that maximizes the amount of flavor per calorie, we automatically know to eat less and feel full and satiated.

Here are two recipes that would be perfect for either a Thanksgiving repast or Chanukah meal that offer high flavor per calorie without relying on oils or fats or processed ingredients to do so.

Chestnuts Soup
(Roasting On an Open Fire)

(This recipe is pareve and actually vegan for those relatives who come for holiday meals! It uses seasonal ingredients and the flavors you might find in a turkey stuffing to produce a creamy soup packed with flavor, without any added fat!)

1 onion, peeled and chopped

1 carrot, peeled and chopped

1 stalk celery, chopped

2 bags of peeled chestnuts

1 box Imagine vegetable broth or 4 cups of water and two low sodium vegetable bouillon cubes

salt and pepper

1 Tbsp. sage

1 Tbsp. thyme

1 bay leaf

½ tsp ground cloves

2 Tbsp. chopped parsley

In a large pot, sauté the onion, carrot, celery and chestnuts over medium heat for 15 minutes until tender. Add the broth or water, about 2-3 Tbsp at a time, so that the vegetables and chestnuts do not stick to the pan. Add the salt and seasonings and the broth or water and boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes. Using immersion blender, puree until smooth! Enjoy.

Zucchini Bread with a Secret

This wildly creative pareve recipe is based on one from a cookbook called Forks over Knives. It has great spice and warm fall flavor without traditional fats! It uses a whole avocado to make a great texture! Make as a loaf or as muffins; whether you share the secret ingredient or not is up to you!

1/3 cup almond or soy milk

1 avocado, peeled and mashed

1 Tbsp. ground flaxseed

½ cup sugar or Splenda or maple sugar, if you can find it!

2 tsp. vanilla extract

1 tsp. lemon zest

1½ cups regular, whole wheat pastry or spelt flour

½ tsp. baking soda

½ tsp. baking powder

½ tsp. salt

1½ tsp. cinnamon

¼ tsp. allspice

1 cup grated zucchini (about 1 medium zucchini); use a box grater with the large holes to grate

Optional ½ cup chopped walnuts

Optional ½ cup raisins

Preheat oven to 350°. In a large bowl, mix milk, avocado, flaxseed, sugar, vanilla and zest with a hand mixer until creamy and smooth. Add in flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and allspice. Mix until incorporated. Fold in the zucchini and the walnuts and raisins (if using). Pour batter into 8 x 4 inch loaf pan or two muffin pans. Bake for 1 hour. Enjoy as a side dish or healthy dessert option.

By Rayzel Yaish