[Sca-cooks] menu planning for dietary restrictions
Tom.Vincent at yahoo.com
Sun Aug 13 08:35:16 PDT 2006
I've noticed a couple of trends in this discussion:
1. The comparison between low-fat/low-salt cooking and modifications to
accommodate vegans, lactose-intolerance, nut/mushroom/etc allergies, and
2. The repeated implication that 'flavor', 'tasty' & 'yummy' are
incompatible with low-fat/low-salt recipes or recipe modifications.
About #1: If over 60% of the population was allergic to nuts, it would
really be crazy to include nuts in just about *any* feast dish, wouldn't it?
From the Surgeon General
The United States is experiencing substantial increases in
overweight and obesity (as defined by a BMI ≥ 25 for adults) that
cut across all ages, racial and ethnic groups, and both genders.
According to self-reported measures of height and weight, obesity
(BMI ≥ 30) has been increasing in every State in the Nation. Based
on clinical height and weight measurements in the 1999 National
Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), 34 percent of
U.S. adults aged 20 to 74 years are overweight (BMI 25 to 29.9),
and an additional 27 percent are obese (BMI ≥ 30). This contrasts
with the late 1970s, when an estimated 32 percent of adults aged
20 to 74 years were overweight, and 15 percent were obese.
So, a few considerations as to reducing fat & salt in feast recipes can
help present a healthier atmosphere for all attendees, whether they're
watching their diet or not...and at no damage to anyone. A change with
an upside but no downside? That's a good change to make.
About #2: The fondness for the feel or flavor of fat in a dish can be
'unlearned' just as changing from whole milk to 2% or from sugar-sodas
to diet sodas or from salty snacks to healthier snacks can be learned.
We adapt to healthier breads, ingredients, techniques, meats.
Many people use ground turkey or chicken in place of ground beef and
haven't bought or missed ground beef in many years.
Others haven't bought white bread or refined sugar in years.
For people who've adjusted to the flavor and texture of 2% milk, whole
milk tastes like melted butter or cream.
So saying that a low-fat/low-salt dish isn't going to have the flavor of
its 'full-fat/full-salt' original recipe (if, in fact, it ever actually
*had* an original recipe).
Hopefully a time will come when the revised recipe will be the norm and
the original will be considered an aberration, an archaic, obsolete,
The Vikings who settled in Greenland arrived at a time of global warmth,
so there were trees and grassland for their settlement. However, as the
'Little Ice Age' grew and the Vikings destroyed all the trees, they were
forced to rely on fishing and seal hunting as their land animals
succumbed to the cooling weather. Eventually, those that didn't return
to Iceland perished, unwilling to adapt to changing conditions.
> -----Original Message-----
> Gotta admit, I got the same sort of inference out of the words I read.
> Mayhaps a different varuation of the ideas expression would help us reach
> the conclusions you are drawing and expressing to us in the discussions?
> I agree that exceptionally tastey dishes can be made without any or greatly
> reduced X ingredient. Taking off the breading and eliminating the frying
> step can make a lovely dish . . . but then we've created a difierent dish
> entirely, and could have started with a fricasse or some such braised idea
> in the first place. Sure you lose loads of flavor not developing the fond,
> but that can be modified with acids and sweets and bitters elsewhere in the
> dish. Oils carry and adhere flavors to the tongue, and give mouthfeel . . .
> these will be changed if a recipe is changed. No frying means a different
> flavor and texture profile entirely, which is not evil or repugnant; just
> niccolo difrancesco
> I've even thickened a braised dish with breadcrumb, egg yolk AND liver paste
> for some reason (it was in the recipe and made a real flavor differnce as
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