Saturday, November 10, 2007

Controversy in the cookbook aisle!

I am reading and watching, as much as I can, American newspapers and TV shows. And around a great idea: having American kids eat healthier and fighting against children obesity, a great controversy arose. Two women, who didn’t know each other existence before all that controversial media attention:
- on one side Jessica Seinfeld, well connected, the wife of you-know-who
- and the other side Missy Chase Lapine a former publisher and founder of BabySpa
There is a lot of similarity in their books and recipes and one can easily questioned why those 2 books got on bookstores shelves at the same time ... Honestly I don't have the answer on who copied on whom or if it's only one of those celestial coincidence!
I did talked about Jessica Seinfeld book: Deceptively delicious in a previous post, so I though it would be fair to talk as well about Missy Chase Lapine book: The Sneaky Chef.

If you want to make your own idea about the controversy you can read this article in the New-York times or watch here the Today Show.

After all for years mums were pretty inventive to get their little monsters -euh picture-perfect kids :-)- to eat veggies. Those 2 women are not the Einstein inventors of the purée method, but we can give them the credit for talking about really simple easy to apply at home methods to have healthier meals.
I just have to say: You go girls!

Here one recipe from The Sneaky Chef book (I gave one from Deceptively Delicious in my previous post)

Sneaky Chef masterful mac 'n' cheese

Ingredients (4-6 servings)

Make-Ahead Recipe No. 4: White Puree

2 cups cauliflower, cut into florets
2 small to medium zucchini, peeled and rough-chopped
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1-2 tablespoons water, if necessary

Make-Ahead Recipe No. 2: Orange Puree

1 medium sweet potato or yam, peeled and rough-chopped
3 medium to large carrots, peeled and sliced into thick chunks
2-3 tablespoons water


1/2 pound macaroni (preferably whole-wheat blend)
1 1/2 cups milk
1/4 cup White Puree (See Make-Ahead Recipe No. 4)
1/4 cup Orange Puree (see Make-Ahead Recipe No. 2)
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups grated Colby or Cheddar cheese
Optional extra boost: 2 large eggs


Sneaky Chef Make-Ahead Recipe No. 2 — Orange Puree: In a medium pot, cover carrots and potatoes with cold water and boil for about 20 minutes until yams, and especially carrots, are very tender. If the carrots aren’t thoroughly cooked, they’ll leave telltale little nuggets of vegetable, which will reveal their presence (a gigantic no-no for the sneaky chef).

Drain the potatoes and carrots and put them in the food processor with two tablespoons of water. Puree on high until smooth; no pieces of carrots or potatoes should remain. Stop occasionally to push the contents from the top to the bottom. If necessary, use the third tablespoon of water to make a smooth puree, but the less water the better.

This makes about 2 cups of puree. Double the recipe if you want to store another cup of puree. Store in refrigerator up to three days, or freeze 1/4-cup portions in sealed plastic bags or small plastic containers.

Sneaky Chef Make-Ahead Recipe No. 4 — White Puree: Steam cauliflower in a vegetable steamer over 2 inches of water, using a tightly covered pot, for about 10 to 12 minutes until very tender. Alternatively, place cauliflower in a microwave-safe bowl, cover with water, and microwave on high for 8 to 10 minutes until very tender.

While waiting for the cauliflower to finish steaming, start to pulse the raw peeled zucchini with the lemon juice only (no water at this point). Drain the cooked cauliflower. Working in batches if necessary, add it to the pulsed zucchini in the bowl of the food processor with one tablespoon of water. Puree on high until smooth. Stop occasionally and push contents from the top to the bottom. If necessary, use the second tablespoon of water to make a smooth (but not wet) puree.

Makes about 2 cups of puree. Double recipe if you want to store even more, which can be done in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, or freeze 1/4-cup portions in sealed plastic bags or small plastic containers.

For macaroni: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Butter a 9-inch-square baking pan.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the macaroni and cook according to the package directions, until firm and slightly undercooked. Drain and set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk the milk with the White Puree and salt. (If using eggs, whisk them in with the milk mixture.) Put half of the macaroni into the baking pan and top with half the Cheddar (or Colby) cheese. Next, layer with the rest of the macaroni, and then pour the milk mixture over the top, finishing with the last of the cheese on top.

1 comment:

Bev and Ollie "O" said...

very interesting, we do have English chefs trying to get healthier foods into children, except Jamie Oliver, the obvious one is Annabel Karmel, a food nutrionist who writes recipe books for babies and children and Tana Ramseys Recipes are full of ways to fill and sneak veg into them without making it too obvious to the kids.
I have just started weaning my baby and I have decided to make all the food myself, I do have a lot of satisfaction knowing that there are no additives in his meals.
I enjoyed reading your post and your English is excellent! (I found you through Daring Bakers) x

Share on Facebook