The recipes included in The Natural Gourmet are the result of a collaborative effort by Colbin and ten students from her Natural Gourmet Cookery School in Manhattan. Each recipe is classified according to the Chinese Theory of the Five Phases, making it easy to combine the various courses to create a balanced, harmonious meal. Among the delicious dishes you'll find are:
-- Curried Apple-Squash Bisque
-- Mushrooms Stuffed with Garlic and Rosemary
-- San Franciscan Pizza
-- Lissa's Homemade Black Pepper Pasta with Scallion-Butter Sauce
-- Stuffed Cabbage Rolls
-- Jalapeno Corn Bread
-- Japanese Red Bean Soup
-- Lentil Croquettes
-- Potato-Cabbage Casserole with Dill
-- Black Bean Salad with Corn and Red Pepper
-- Pasta Salad with Zucchini and Chick-peas
-- Poached Salmon Fillets with Mock Hollandaise
-- Almond Flan with Raspberry Sauce
-- Ginger Lace Cookies
-- Orange Loaf with Walnuts
-- and many more
All the recipes are in keeping with Colbin's belief that food should be whole, fresh, local, and seasonal -- and, of course, delicious. Much more than simply a cookbook, The Natural Gourmet presents a combination of food preparation and philosophy that come together in a plan for healthful and graceful living.
|Publisher:||Random House Publishing Group|
|Sold by:||Random House|
|File size:||3 MB|
About the Author
Read an Excerpt
of Food Selection
Healthy food is more than merely fuel we put into our bodies to make them work at peak efficiency. Properly chosen, the food we eat nurtures mind and spirit, too. To derive a centered and harmonious feeling from your meals and to achieve a state of all-around good health, choose, whenever possible, food that is:
• Whole, therefore, no fragmented (that is, refined or processed) foods, such as sugar, white flour, white rice—all of which have had major nutrients removed. Some fragmented foods may be used as condiments, cooking aids, and flavor enhancers; these include oils and fats, mild sweeteners such as barley malt or maple syrup, fruit juices, tofu. (Note: tofu is considered a fragmented food because it is made by coagulating soymilk, which in turn is obtained by cooking soybeans and discarding the pulp.) Some fragmented foods are considered healthy: wheat germ, bran, blackstrap molasses, extracted juices. Though these foods may be rich in nutrients, they are nevertheless unbalanced, because they are lacking many of the nutrients present in the original food from which they are derived. The latest scientific research shows that whole foods, such as carrots or broccoli, contain health-giving and medicinal qualities. These qualities diminish or disappear when their individual nutrient constituents—such as beta carotene—are used instead.
• Fresh, or if not, then perhaps dried or pickled. Canned, frozen, or chemically preserved foods undermine our energy because their nutrient content is greatly diminished, and they are unpleasant to eat when served just plain or lightly white rice—all of which have had major nutrients removed. Some fragmented foods may be used as condiments, cooking aids, and flavor enhancers; these include oils and fats, mild sweeteners such as barley malt or maple syrup, fruit juices, tofu. (Note: tofu is considered a fragmented food because it is made by coagulating soymilk, which in turn is obtained by cooking soybeans and discarding the pulp.) Some fragmented foods are considered healthy: wheat germ, bran, blackstrap molasses, extracted juices. Though these foods may be rich in nutrients, they are nevertheless unbalanced, because they are lacking many of the nutrients present in the original food from which they are derived. The latest scientific research shows that whole foods, such as carrots or broccoli, contain health-giving and medicinal qualities. These qualities diminish or disappear when their individual nutrient constituents—such as beta carotene—are used instead.
• Fresh, or if not, then perhaps dried or pickled. Canned, frozen, or chemically preserved foods undermine our energy because their nutrient content is greatly diminished, and they are unpleasant to eat when served just plain or lightly steamed. As a test of this concept, imagine yourself being a 100 percent vegetarian and living only on unseasoned canned or frozen vegetables. You don’t even have to do it to get the idea.
• Local, whenever possible. Locally produced foodstuffs are usually fresher and more flavorful, and also more economical.
• Seasonal, whenever possible, or at least from a similar climate. Eating tropical fruit during a cold northern winter prepares your body for hot weather. If it happens to be 15 degrees Fahrenheit outside, it will require more effort for your body to adjust to the cold. Many people on high fruit diets have trouble coping with winters. Of course, some leeway is called for here, because even in the winter we live at 68 degrees most of the time; therefore, springlike foods such as green vegetables and salads are generally appropriate year-round in our centrally heated and cooled society.
• In harmony with ancestral traditions. A tricky proposition, because in our society our ancestors come from many different places. For the majority of our food choices, it is a good idea to use cooking styles and seasonings that our great-grandmothers used. Another rule of thumb is that our major daily choice of whole-grain-and-bean combinations should be that of the continent of our ancestors: rice, soybeans, aduki beans from the Orient; wheat, barley, rice, split peas, kidney beans from northern Europe; oats, barley, lentils from the British Isles; wheat (including bulgur and couscous), chick-peas and lentils from the Mediterranean countries; kasha (buckwheat) and white beans from eastern Europe and Russia; millet and chick-peas from Africa; and corn and black-eyed peas from America. Does this mean that we should never eat ethnic meals from other countries? On the contrary—perhaps the key to international understanding may come precisely from such friendly food sharing. What it does mean is that it may not be a good idea to drop your own ancestral eating habits and adopt those of another country entirely. Every country in the world has its healthy, healing foods, and each person’s body manifests the adaptive mechanisms set up by its forebears. Fresh, wholesome, natural foods prepared in a traditional manner, without modern chemical colorings, flavorings, and preservatives, provide the best foundation for health.
• Balanced. To understand fully the concept of balance as it applies to food, please consult my previous book, Food and Healing. For the purposes of this cookbook, it will help you to think of balancing meals according to:
1. Color. Include something green, something red, something yellow, something white, and something brown in the meal.
2. Flavor. A satisfying meal should offer the five flavors: sour, spicy, salty, bitter, and sweet. Two flavors can be combined in one dish (sour and spicy, for example). The bitter flavor is the hardest to obtain—most people get it from coffee, or perhaps bitter chocolate. In this book you’ll find it mostly in bitter greens.
3. Nutrient complementarity. Choose a grain-and-bean combination for protein and complex-carbohydrate complementarity. For acid/akaline balance, your daily diet should consist of about 40 to 45 percent vegetables and fruit, 35 to 40 percent whole grain, and 15 to 20 percent beans (or animal protein if you’re not a vegetarian) by volume. For a full complement of vitamins and minerals, include vegetables that grow up (green leafy vegetables, such as lettuce, kale, and parsley), down (root vegetables, such as carrots, onions, and parsnips), straight (celery, broccoli), even sideways (squashes, cabbages, tubers).
4. Texture and shape. Include a crunchy food along with the softer ones in a meal (nuts, raw vegetables). Also, avoid having a meal of mixtures: an example of such a confusing combination would be minestrone soup, rice and bean salad, and fruit medley. A better balance with similar ingredients would be minestrone soup, rice croquettes, refried beans, salad, and baked apples; textures and shapes in this case complement one another more harmoniously.
And finally, last but not least, healthy food should be:
• Delicious. If it’s not delicious, why bother? Dutifully consuming food that is “good for you” overlooks the fact that eating is much more than a mechanical refueling of the body. It must also be pleasing to the senses, soothing to the soul. Healthy eating can be a robust and joyful event, or at the very least quite pleasant. Let’s celebrate the miracle of life by enjoying and appreciating that which gives us sustenance.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Many thanks to author Ann Marie Colbin of Natural Gourmet and Foods for Healing. This author provides an abundance of healthy information and recipes for my lifestyle. I'd also like to thank Barbara Meza, a knowledgable friend and licensed Nutritionist in New Jersey. Her support and guidance in natural healing supports the mind, body and soul. If it wasn't for her recommendation of these two books I might not have turned my life around for the best. Since December 2009, results are noticeable, said Barbara Meza. I first became aware of nutritional guidance from Talk-Radio Host(former Dr. Robert Giller) many years ago while offering Alternative Health Services in his Manhattan, NY office. After his death it was a struggle to search for a reputable source that could provide the nutrition my body needed. It wasn't until December 2009 I met Barbara Meza once shopping at Johns Natural Health Food Store in Bayonne, NJ. Recommendation of THE NATURAL GOURMET was a life saver for me. She also suggested meal plans suitable for my lifestyle with well balanced nutrition and delicous recipes that my body requires. Amazed with the lifestyle changes and the self-esteem I'm encountering with natural healing methods. I am forever grateful and share many thanks to these two professional women with their knowledge and compassion. Warm regards, J.A. Zielaznicki Fine Artist http://artistjz.mosaicglobe.com New Jersey