"cooking light for weight loss" cookbook? Upon first glance such a reaction is understandable, especially if you're not familiar with chef Kathleen Daelemans, who has been in the trenches of the weight-loss war and not only quickly commands attention with her writing but excites a mind and lifestyle change. Cooking Thin with Chef Kathleen
freely shares the author's own experiences and struggles with weight as a child and an adult, and explains how this trained chef went from a size 22 to a 6. Daelemans has what it takes to be an empathetic role model for those who need to make changes to their diets for physical or mental health reasons. Her advice and recipes are aimed at real people.
Her self-effacing stories are at times painful (such as babysitting the night she should have been going to the prom), but the road that led her to healthy cuisine and weight loss is almost comical (though she certainly didn't believe it to be too funny at the time). After the excitement of moving to Hawaii to launch an Italian bistro at a seaside resort, the author, then a robust 205 pounds, was deflated when she arrived to find she had been replaced and put in charge of the establishment's spa cuisine.
The 200 recipes, as expected, are a mixture of healthy ways to prepare beef, chicken, fish, and vegetables. She has even included some full-fat recipes, such as a rich Lemon and Pecan Loaf. These are accompanied with reminders that it is OK to indulge occasionally, but a trip to the gym or eating "light" during the other parts of the day are the necessary balances to achieve weight loss. Even if it is not weight loss, just a healthier approach to eating you seek, Daelemans's book will inspire and entertain. --Teresa Simanton
From Publishers Weekly
It would be easy enough to hate Chef Kathleen she's cute, thin and the founding chef of one of the world's most luxurious spas. But it's also hard not to fall in love with her sassy conversational tone, her genuine warmth and encouragement (believe it or not, she was once a size 22) and her terrific recipes. Chef Kathleen tells of her own battles with dieting, what finally worked and how she kept the weight off for good. In the same witty, warm tone, she offers up luscious lower-fat lower-calorie versions of such favorites as BBQ Chicken Pizza, Meatloaf and Fast Fried Chicken alongside other healthy alternatives such as Oven-Baked Salmon with Ginger and Lime, Lentil Lemon Soup and Karen's Angel Food Cake. One of the most winning features of the book is the sidebar that accompanies each recipe and includes everything you wish other cookbooks would: tips on variations, time-savers and what to do if "the Queen's coming to dinner." Best of these sidebars is the "Guy-ometer": honest comments from a typical guy (Chef Kathleen's father), ranging from "Well, it wasn't steak... " (Linguini with Zucchini, Basil, Mint, & Parmesan Cheese) to "Now, this is real food!" (Pasta with Italian Sausage and Broccoli Rabe). This is a must-have for anyone who wants to eat healthily, and an invaluable kitchen companion that puts fun back into cooking. Illustrations not seen by PW. (July 1)Forecast: Coming from such a high-profile publisher, and addressing such a widespread need in an amiable fashion, Chef Kathleen's book is poised for commercial success.
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