Sneaky Chef: Cheat On Your Husband Cook Book

April 15, 2008 10:35:14 AM PDT
For parents of picky eaters, the April 2007 release of The Sneaky Chef: Simple Strategies for Hiding Healthy Foods in Kids' Favorite Meals provided simple, tested solutions for hiding healthy foods in the meals kids crave, and offered a much needed reprieve from dinner time drama.

But it turns out the kids aren't the only ones not eating their veggies. Author Missy Chase Lapine has gone back to the kitchen and created a whole new batch of recipes for the other picky eaters in the family ? the men in the house! The Sneaky Chef: How to Cheat on Your Man (In the Kitchen) (Running Press, April 2008) features recipes that cloak healthy ingredients, ingredients that specifically target men's health issues, in the manliest of foods, foods every guy is sure to love. Healthy, hearty recipes include "Doctor's Choice Chili" with spinach, broccoli and peas to protect against cancer, and "Refried Bean Macho Nachos" with zucchini and cauliflower to maintain a healthy cholesterol level.

THE SNEAKY CHEF: HOW TO CHEAT ON YOUR MAN (IN THE KITCHEN)

Legal Donuts

It'll take a top-ranking detective to identify the healthy ingredients in this seemingly sinful breakfast favorite.

Makes 12 donuts or 6 large muffins

1 cup plus 3 tablespoons Flour Blend (see Make-Ahead Recipe #13)

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon instant coffee granules

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder

1 large egg

1/2 cup sugar

3 tablespoons walnut, almond, or canola oil

3/4 cup Purple Puree (see Make-Ahead Recipe #1)

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Powdered sugar, for dusting

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. If you are making donuts, spray a donut pan or a mini Bundt pan with oil (they come in 6- or 12-mold sizes?use two 6-mold pans if you don't have the 12-mold size). If you are making muffins, line a muffin tin with paper liners. In a large bowl, whisk together the Flour Blend, baking powder, salt, coffee granules, cinnamon, and cocoa powder. In another large bowl, whisk together the egg and sugar until well combined, then whisk in the oil, Purple Puree, and vanilla. Fold the wet ingredients into the dry and mix until the flour is just moistened. Don't overmix.

Divide the batter evenly among the 12 mini Bundt or donut molds or fill 6 muffin cups to the top.

For donuts: Bake 12 to 14 minutes, until the tops spring back when pressed lightly. Loosen the edges with a knife and turn the donuts out over a plate to cool. Dust with powdered sugar before serving.

For muffins: Bake 23 to 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Turn the muffins out of the tins to cool. Dust tops with powdered sugar before serving.

Make-Ahead Recipe #13: Flour Blend

1 cup all-purpose, unbleached white flour

1 cup whole wheat flour

1 cup wheat germ, unsweetened

Makes 3 cups of flour blend

Combine the flours and wheat germ in a large bowl. This blend can be stored in a sealed, labeled plastic bag or container in the refrigerator for up to 3 months.

Sneaky Tip:

A quick replacement for my Flour Blend is Eagle Mills All-Purpose Flour made with Ultragrain®. It's already blended for you! Cup for cup, you'll get more whole grain nutrition than in white flour?with the great taste, color, and texture you expect.

Make-Ahead Recipe #1: Purple Puree

3 cups raw baby spinach leaves

11/2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries, no syrup or sugar added

1/2 teaspoon lemon juice

1 to 2 tablespoons water

Makes about 1 cup of puree

Boosted Buffalo Wings

Eating wings is one of the ultimate guy rituals. Men love to one-up each other on how fiery they can stand them and how messy they can get. Let the men in your life occasionally enjoy this sneaky treat, while we enjoy watching them unknowingly lick cauliflower and zucchini puree off their sticky fingers! These wings go great with the not-so-classic Bountiful Blue Cheese Dressing (page 239), which is loaded with White Puree and low-fat ricotta.

Makes 4 servings

1/2 cup White Puree (see Make-Ahead Recipe #4)

1 cup store-bought barbecue sauce or 11/2 cups Homemade BBQ Sauce*, page 226

Hot sauce to taste

4 pounds buffalo chicken wings (about 32 pieces)

Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

Celery Ribs, cut into sticks

1 cup Bountiful Blue Cheese Dressing, page 239

*If you are using Homemade BBQ Sauce, omit the White Puree called for in this recipe. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Spray a baking sheet with oil.

In a large bowl, mix the White Puree with the barbecue sauce (omit this step if using Homemade BBQ Sauce). Add the hot sauce to taste and set sauce aside. Spread wings on prepared baking sheet and season with salt and pepper. Cook for 30 minutes, then remove from oven and brush on the sauce. Continue cooking for another 5 to 10 minutes, until nicely browned.

Serve with celery sticks and Bountiful Blue Cheese Dressing.

Make-Ahead Recipe #4: White Puree

2 cups cauliflower florets (about 1/2 a small head)

2 small to medium zucchini, peeled and coarsely chopped

1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

1 to 2 tablespoons water, if necessary

Makes about 2 cups of puree

Pour about 2 inches of water into a pot with a tight-fitting lid. Put a vegetable steamer basket into the pot, add the cauliflower, and steam for 10 to 12 minutes or until very tender. Drain. Alternatively, place the cauliflower in a microwave-safe bowl, cover the cauliflower with water, and microwave on high for 8 to 10 minutes or until very tender. Drain. While cauliflower steams, pulse the raw peeled zucchini with the lemon juice (no water at this point) in your food processor. Once the cauliflower is cooked and tender, working in batches if necessary, add 1 tablespoon of water and some of the cauliflower to the food processor with the pulsed zucchini. Puree on high until smooth. Stop occasionally to push the contents to the bottom. If necessary, use another tablespoon of water to smooth out the puree, but the less water, the better.

This recipe makes about 2 cups of puree; double it if you want to store another 2 cups. It will keep in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, or you can freeze 1/4-cup portions in sealed plastic bags or small plastic containers.

Homemade BBQ Sauce

Barbecue sauce is such a manly staple that it begs to be used as a carrier for some healthy ingredients! This quick and versatile sauce can be made as spicy as desired.

Makes almost 2 cups of sauce

Barbell Burgers

Taking fat, juicy burgers away from our men isn't an option, but we can help minimize the damage from the saturated fat in the beef with a healthy hidden dose of oat bran fiber, spinach, blueberries, and tomato paste. Secretly pump-up the burgers at your next backyard cookout and enjoy the rave reviews!

If time allows, make the burger patties ahead of time and chill them for an hour before grilling so they're firmer and easier to handle.

Makes 4 servings

1/4 cup tomato paste

1/4 cup Purple Puree (see Make-Ahead Recipe #1)

1/4 cup oat bran, plus additional as needed

2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 pound lean ground beef

4 hamburger buns or English muffins, preferably whole grain

Optional extra boost: lettuce, tomato slices, or grilled onions and mushrooms

Preheat an outdoor grill to medium-high, or heat an indoor grill pan to medium-high and spray with oil.

In a large bowl, mix tomato paste, Purple Puree, oat bran, Worcestershire sauce, and salt. Add the ground beef, mixing with your hands until well combined. If the mixture is too sticky, add a bit more oat bran.

Using damp hands, shape mixture into four 1/4-pound patties. At this point, the burgers may be prepared a day ahead and kept covered in the refrigerator or frozen. If you are not freezing for future use, proceed to the next steps.

Spray both sides of the burgers with oil and place them on the prepared grill. Cook for 4 to 7 minutes on each side, or to desired doneness.

Serve on whole grain buns slathered with Perfect Pesto, page 223, or One-and-Only Guacamole, page 300, and optional extras.

Sneaky Tip:

Eat pesto to soothe joint pain. In a recent study, basil exhibited the same anti-inflammatory effect as aspirin, but without its harmful side effects. Basil's medicinal properties are tied to the eugenol oil found in the plant.

Make-Ahead Recipe #1: Purple Puree

3 cups raw baby spinach leaves

11/2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries, no syrup or sugar added

1/2 teaspoon lemon juice

1 to 2 tablespoons water

Makes about 1 cup of puree

Thoroughly wash the spinach, even if the package says "prewashed." If using frozen blueberries, quickly rinse them under cold water to thaw a little, and then drain.

Fill the bowl of your food processor with the spinach, blueberries, lemon juice, and 1 tablespoon of water; puree on high until as smooth as possible. Stop occasionally to push the contents to the bottom. If necessary, use another tablespoon of water to smooth-out the puree.

This recipe makes about 1 cup of puree; double it if you want to store another cup. It will keep in the refrigerator up to 3 days, or you can freeze 1/4-cup portions in sealed plastic bags or small plastic containers.

Meet the author

The Sneaky Chef: How to Cheat on Your Man (In the Kitchen)

Tuesday, April 15

1 PM

The Book Stall

811 Elm Street

Winnetka, IL 60093

847-446-8880

7 PM

Barbara's Bookstore

1100 Lake Street

Oak Park, IL 60301

708-848-9140

Contact: Melissa Appleby

(215) 567-5374

melissa.appleby@perseusbooks.com


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