Thursday, May 1, 2014

Jeff Novick's Fast Food 4: Beyond the Basics - At First Glance

Here's what I wrote on the McDougall forum today about this DVD:

He starts off with a few basics - the 10 Healthiest Packaged Foods, Fast Food recipe template, then goes on to some basic recipes - vegetable broth, marinara sauce, and 3 different tahini sauces. These will be used later in the DVD.
His new set of recipes themselves starts off with 2 different soups - Mushroom Barley and Gypsy. He found frozen diced sweet potatoes in a store and uses them in the Gypsy soup. I wish stores around here carried them, but the only sweet potatoes in the freezer section are the deep fried ones. 
Next comes the entrees. First is the only old recipe from his FaceBook page, the Kasha Varnishkas, but slightly different than what he previously posted there. He's mentioned in the Fast Food 2 video that this was his favorite dish growing up and the one his mom makes for him every time he visits.
The next is Quinoa, Lentils and Greens and uses one of the tahini sauces made earlier.
Couscous, Fava Beans and Peas is next. Another one with tahini sauce.
Mediterranean Millet introduces yet another grain to the stable and also uses the tahini sauce.
The last recipe on the DVD is another of his grandmother's favorite dishes. It's called Tzimmes, or Sweet Potato Stew. This one got a high-five instead of the thumbs up from the Fast Food Twins, so I look forward to making this one soon.
These recipes are not the "glop in a pot" recipes, as someone once described the original SNAP/Fast Food recipes. He introduces new starches, new beans, new sauces, and even new spices. A few recipes use raisins, a few others almonds & pine nuts. Tomatoes are an optional ingredient in the Gypsy Soup and he made it without it here.
Most of the dishes follow his fast food 10-minute guidelines, although for a few, the grains might take a bit longer than 10 minutes to cook or you'll be making one part of the dish while another is cooking, like browning then cooking the kasha in one pan, frying up the onions in another, and cooking the pasta in yet another, before mixing them together and heating them all together with other ingredients to make the final dish.
Another thing mentioned a few times is how many frozen vegetables are no longer packed in 1-pound bags, some as small as 12 ounces, so multiple bags may need to be purchased for the amount needed in a recipe. Each recipe should contain around 2 pounds of frozen veggies, plus the other ingredients.
They all look interesting and sure to be staples along with the original SNAP recipes with this family from now on.

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