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Although Barbara C. Unell and Judith Fertig wrote The Back in the Swing Cookbook for breast cancer survivors, it's really aimed at anyone who wants to embrace a more healthful diet. Thus it's fitting that I began reading this terrific cookbook in January, when—like most people—I vow to do better during the coming year.
As usual, I'll start with my thoughts about the design. I love the pink (for breast cancer) and teal color scheme of Back in the Swing, it's cheerful and adds a fun feeling to the book. I especially like the biggish, easy-to-read fonts used for the recipes and the more fun style of the many sidebars and boxes.
Scattered throughout the book, you'll find literary quotes, inspirational stories, quick fitness ideas, myth busters, and well-researched health and fitness information. Unell and Fertig have gathered a wealth of knowledge about staying healthy that deserves a second or even third read.
The recipes in Back in the Swing were based on a specific set of healthful foods and were developed to enhance flavor and still be easy to prepare. The authors concentrated on plant-based dishes, but many of the main dishes include lean meats and fish. The recipes call for common, real ingredients, although almond milk is often used instead of cow's milk. And best of all, the dishes are low calorie, full of nutrients, and very appealing.
Here are some of the recipes (I picked one from each chapter):
- Old-Fashioned Chocolate Pudding with Fresh Berries
- Spiced Blueberry Applesauce Muffins
- Sea Breeze Mocktail
- Thai Lettuce Cups
- Citrus Sesame Chicken Salad
- Cheese Tortellini with Artichoke-Roasted Red Pepper Sauce
- Island Fish Tacos with Fresh Pineapple Salsa
The Back in the Swing Cookbook is a great choice for exploring new dishes and for helping you stay on track with your weight, fitness, and health goals. Even the most inexperienced cooks will feel comfortable cooking from this book. Unell and Fertig have made it very easy to serve healthful meals to yourself and your family.
Vegetarian/vegan alert: Most recipes in The Back in the Swing Cookbook would fit a vegetarian lifestyle. Vegans will have more trouble, but I encourage them to take a look for themselves.
Here's a great dish for a busy weekday night that can be eaten warm as a main dish with a side salad and then is good cold for a packed lunch the next day. It's also a wonderful for a picnic or pot luck.
Orzo with Spinach, Garbanzo Beans, and Feta
- 1½ ounces orzo pasta, cooked according to package directions (about 2 cups cooked)
- 1 (15-ounce) can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
- 2 cups baby spinach
- ¼ cup crumbled feta cheese (about 1 ounce)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- salt and pepper to taste
Buy The Back in the Swing Cookbook at an Indie or at bookstore near you. This link leads to an affiliate program
Published by Andrews McMeel, 2012
Source: Review (see review policy)
Copyright © cbl for Beth Fish Reads, all rights reserved (see review policy)