Something that comes up in the recipes is the use of mayo. Sandra suggests using low-fat mayo and/or non-fat plain yogurt. I don't really like low-fat mayo (I think it tastes gross)...yes it saves you calories and fat grams, but it replaces the fat with more sugar (as high fructose corn syrup), sodium, modified corn starch and other "unexpected" ingredients. And actually, most of the fat in mayonnaise is healthy fat (unsaturated); of the 11 grams of fat in 1 Tbsp of mayo, only 1.5 grams are saturated.
Here is the ingredient list for regular Hellmann's Mayo:
INGREDIENTS: SOYBEAN OIL, WATER, WHOLE EGGS AND EGG YOLKS, VINEGAR, SALT, SUGAR, LEMON JUICE, NATURAL FLAVORS, CALCIUM DISODIUM EDTA (USED TO PROTECT QUALITY).
Here is the ingredient list for light Hellmann's Mayo:
INGREDIENTS: WATER, SOYBEAN OIL, VINEGAR, MODIFIED CORN STARCH**, WHOLE EGGS AND EGG YOLKS, HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP**, SALT, LEMON JUICE, XANTHAN GUM**, (SORBIC ACID**, CALCIUM DISODIUM EDTA) USED TO PROTECT QUALITY, PHOSPHORIC ACID**, DL ALPHA TOCOPHEROL ACETATE (VITAMIN E), BETA-CAROTENE**, CITRIC ACID**, NATURAL AND ARTIFICIAL** FLAVORS (SOY), PHYTONADIONE (VITAMIN K), PAPRIKA OLEORESIN.**INGREDIENTS NOT IN MAYONNAISE
All this said, I don't encourage you to start adding mayo to everything...it is still high in calories. I rarely use mayo...I don't get it on my sandwiches (I use mustard - Dijon or yellow - instead; 1 Tbsp of mayo has about 100 cal and 11 g fat...1 Tbsp of mustard has less than 15 cal and less than 1 g fat). When I make chicken salad, I either use less real mayo (I like my salad kind of dry) and/or I use plain non-fat yogurt that I've drained to thicken.
For thickened yogurt - Spoon yogurt into a small sieve lined with paper towels or coffee filters and set over a bowl. Place in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour (overnight would be ideal...the longer it sits the thicker it will be) until some of the liquid from the yogurt is released. Or you can just buy fat-free Greek yogurt such as FAGE, Chobani, or Oikos which is naturally thick.
Try the yogurt thing...its not bad and can be used in place of sour cream or mayo (per 1 Tbsp of: mayo - 100 cal, sour cream - 30 cal, light sour cream - 20 cal, non-fat yogurt - 8 cal).
Chicken Tarragon Salad -
- Per serving - 232 calories, 7 g fat (1 g saturated), 17 g carbohydrates, 2 g fiber, 27 g protein (exchanges: 1 ½ fat, 3 protein, 2 vegetables)
- Notes - If you would rather not use canned chicken, that’s fine…just substitute 1 pound of cooked and chopped chicken breasts; you could probably use less dressing…when I make chicken salad and serve in over a bed of lettuce, I hardly ever dress the lettuce too...I think the dressing on the chicken is enough; I would add more tarragon than the 1 teaspoon the recipe calls for (but I love tarragon)
- Per serving - 204 calories, 8 g fat (2 g saturated), 26 g carbohydrates, 4 g fiber, 8 g protein (exchanges: 1 ½ fat, 1 protein, 1 starch, 1 vegetable)
- Notes - Quinoa is pronounced "keen-wah"; you easily could make your own dressing…2 tablespoons olive oil, 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard, 1 minced garlic clove, and salt/pepper; be sure to rinse the quinoa in a sieve before you add it to the chicken broth (refer to this previous quinoa post); make this a meal (maybe for lunch) by adding some protein…edamame, chickpeas, chicken, shrimp!
- Per serving - 303 calories, 15 g fat (3 g saturated), 17 g carbohydrates, 3 g fiber, 26 g protein (exchanges: 3 fat, 3 protein, 1 starch)
- Notes - I would season the salmon with salt and pepper and maybe use Italian seasoning instead of the herbs de Provence; you may not need to cook the salmon for the full time recommended
- Per serving - 312 calories, 5 g fat (1 g saturated), 26 g carbohydrates, 2 g fiber, 40 g protein (exchanges: 1 fat, 5 protein, 1 fruit, ½ starch)
- Notes - Complete the meal and serve with “Best Black Beans” and steamed green beans; if you eat a smaller portion of chicken (4 oz), the calories and grams of protein will be reduced
- Per serving - 227 calories, 3 g fat (1 g saturated), 23 g carbohydrates, 1 g fiber, 28 g protein (exchanges: ½ fat, 4 protein, ½ starch, ½ vegetable)
- Notes - Make sure you season the pork with salt and pepper too; I would probably cook the entire package (16 oz) of pearl onions with this recipe…more vegetables!
- Per serving - 130 calories, 1 g fat (0 g saturated), 20 g carbohydrates, 6 g fiber, 10 g protein (exchanges: 1 starch, 1 ½ protein)
- Notes - Sandra must not believe in salt and pepper...add it! If you decide to use a fresh chopped onion, you should sauté it first (before adding the other ingredients) until it softens
- Per serving - 97 calories, 5 g fat (1 g saturated), 12 g carbohydrates, 1 g fiber, 1 g protein (exchanges: 1 vegetable, 1 fat, 1/3 starch)
- Notes - Here are some varieties of sweet onions
Here is a quiz on reading food labels. It is from a group that is creating a food scoring system (ONQI) to help shoppers make better choice in the supermarket - it may be put into use later this year.
ONQI stands for Overall Nutritional Quality Index. In theory it will make it easier for consumers to evaluate the nutritional quality by providing a single score for any food or recipe. Here is a sample ranking of food scores.