Gluten and Celiac's Disease

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Fix It and Enjoy It!

Review by W.J. Rayment - Yes, there are thousands of recipe books out there. Some are indulgent, some have health conscious recipes, others contain favorites, some contain delicious concoctions and ... Well, you get the picture. I have even written my own moderately selling cookbook. (I can't say bestselling because it never made anyone's list.) Yet how often have you run across a cookbook that actually contains recipes that are both healthy AND taste good?

In "Fix It and Enjoy It! Healthy Cookbook" I have come across the best of a genre, an excellent cookbook precisely geared for modern living. It includes great tasting recipes. But great tasting recipes are not enough. I demand (and receive) great organization. Recipes are categorized so that they are easy to find and accessible. As expected the reader is treated to main dishes, pastas, salads, desserts, snacks, breads, and soups. Each recipe is clearly laid out in its own column telling the prep time, cooking time, servings, ingredients, and instructions.

As this book was written in conjunction with the Mayo Clinic, there is an added benefit. The reader also finds out how a dish fits into the food pyramid. For example, a dish of Pasta with Broccoli Rabe equals two servings of vegetables, two of carbohydrates, and one of fats. At the bottom of the column there is all the vital per serving information regarding nutrition, calories, fats, carbs, cholesterol, sodium, fiber, etc. And as an added bonus, many recipes include a dietitian's tip at the bottom of the page. For the Pasta with Broccoli Rabe we find out, "The type of fiber in whole-wheat pasta is insoluble - meaning it doesn't dissolve during digestion. Instead, it maintains its bulk, holds on to water, and, as a result, helps prevent constipation." Embarrassingly enough, this is info I really want to know!

Another important requirement for a cookbook is that the recipes be easy to make and the ingredients easy to find. I don't want to have to special order specific grains, or even have to grind my own. I don't want to have to spend hours peeling grapes, or pulling the seeds out of tomatoes. "Fix It and Enjoy It" is a compilation of recipes that have low prep times and short to moderate cooking times.

An interesting concept undergirds the entire book. The idea is that vegetables and fruits should become the centerpiece for a meal rather than the meat or starch. I am a lover of meats and starches myself, so this was a hard concept to first. Ms. Good has chosen hundreds of recipes (there are over 400 in the entire book) that have my salivary glands in mind. The vegetable and fruit main course recipes have a filling feel to them so that the diner is not left still feeling hungry at the end of the meal.

Frankly, my wife has bought me healthy cookbooks before, and every time I wondered why I should not just serve dry Post Toasties instead. Now I have a no-nonsense, healthy cookbook, that not only makes sense, but provides delicious and filling food as well.

Fix It and Enjoy It: Healthy Cookbook, by Phyllis Pellman Good is available at Amazon.

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