What a special treat today for Valentine’s day. While I know this spot is billed as Fiction Friday, today’s excerpt is actually a recipe from a new cookbook, The Two Day a Week Diet Cookbook, designed for Amazon’s Kindle. Don’t have a Kindle? You can read the recipes on your computer, smartphone or tablet by downloading the free app. In fact these days I put all my recipes on my iPad so I can easily use them in the kitchen.
Even more of a treat? Today the cookbook is free So buzz over there to get it while you can. I can’t guarantee it will stay free long, but if you miss the promotion, you’ll find it’s reasonably priced every day.
About the time I was finishing No River Too Wide, I realized that I’d been finishing a few too many other goodies, like chips and hummus, neighbor’s homemade pies, pasta. The extras were showing. About the same time a group of writers began an online discussion about a new diet, the 5:2 diet, popular in the UK. Diets get old quickly, but this one was intriguing. So I decided to try it.
Ruth Glick was one of the authors on that loop, and Ruth, in addition to being Rebecca York, the novelist, is a cookbook author. With her friend Nancy Baggett, Ruth put together a wonderful diet cookbook with easy to follow and tasty recipes to try on “fast” days. Today she’s sharing one of those recipes with us.
While the past month has been tough on my diet–a cruise and a cold–I have still to date lost about eight pounds. I’m confident that will continue.
Ruth can and will tell you more about the diet and her writing career, so I’ll turn the blog over to her. In addition to sharing a recipe, Ruth has agreed to answer questions, so if you have any, just comment above. Thank you Ruth Glick/Rebecca York for being here today.
Like most writers, I spend a lot of time sitting at the keyboard. And even though I am pretty faithful about exercising, my lifestyle is conducive to putting on extra pounds. Which was why I got excited when some of my writing buddies started talking on the Novelists Inc. LISTSERV about a new diet called the Fast Diet or the 5-2 Diet.
You eat normally five days a week; and on two days a week, you “fast,” which actually means eating 500 calories for the day. (Guys get 600.) You don’t have to do anything complicated or elaborate. You just have to keep your calories low two days a week.
It sounded too good to be true. But nothing else had worked for me in years, so I decided to give it a shot.
When I lost four pounds on the first try, I was hooked. But unfortunately, there wasn’t a lot of interesting food to eat on diet days. After a couple of boring weeks, I set out to remedy that failing.
In addition to writing romantic suspense novels as Rebecca York, I’ve also written sixteen cookbooks under my own name, Ruth Glick, most with low-cal recipes, so I was pretty sure I could come up with good diet-day selections. And after my initial successes, my next thought was—this diet needs a good cookbook.
Because I knew it would be more fun to work on the project with a friend, I asked my longtime cookbook co-author to join me. And last month, Nancy Baggett and I published The 2 Day a Week Diet Cookbook, since we think the concept of a 2 Day a Week Diet is easier to understand than a “Fast Diet.”
Nancy and I have written nutrition-oriented cookbooks for Rodale, Surrey Books, and the American Diabetes Association. And Nancy also writes for Eating Well Magazine. Both of us firmly believe that no one will eat low-cal recipes unless they taste good. We worked on over 100 recipes and put the best 75 into our book along with 50 pictures. All are 200 calories or fewer per serving, so they fit easily into the 2-day diet. And with the selection of tempting dishes available, we persuaded our husbands to join us on the new lifestyle adventure. We’ve all lost weight. I’ve lost seventeen pounds, Nancy (who never loses on any diet) has lost six, and I had to punch another hole in my husband’s belt so his pants would stay up.
Cauliflower “Couscous” Salad
One thing I love in diet recipes is substituting a low-cal ingredient for a much-higher-cal one while still producing a tasty dish. Here I’ve turned ground cauliflower into couscous. And if you don’t tell diners what they’re really eating, they probably won’t know.
Tip: To quickly cool the cauliflower after microwaving, spread it on a dinner plate, and refrigerate while making the rest of the salad.
Makes 5 60-calorie servings, about 1 cup each
3 cups ground cauliflower (about 4 cups florets)
2 Tbsp lemon juice
1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/4 tsp Italian dried herb seasoning
1 cup tomato cubes
1 cup peeled cucumber cubes
½ cup chopped parsley leaves
1/4 cup sliced green onion tops
Salt and black pepper to taste
1. In a 4-cup measure, cover cauliflower with wax paper and microwave on high power, stirring once, until partially cooked, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove from microwave, and set aside to cool.
2. While cauliflower is cooling, in large nonreactive bowl, stir together lemon juice, oil and seasoning.
3. Stir cooled cauliflower into dressing. Stir in tomato, cucumber, parsley onion, and salt and pepper to taste.
Serve immediately, or cover and refrigerate for later use. Salad will keep in refrigerator for 2 or 3 days.
The 2 Day a Week Diet Cookbook is available for Amazon Kindle.
Rebecca York’s latest romantic suspense novel is Bridal Jeopardy, out this month from Harlequin Intrigue.