Eating the right foods in the proper order leads to pleasurable and healthy living, promises Michel Montignac, in The French Diet
. His urgent message to Americans: scrap the USDA Food Guide Pyramid and embrace the Glycemic Index (GI)--a standard ranking system he uses to separate "good" carbohydrates from "bad," based on how quickly foods release glucose into the bloodstream. Montignac theorizes that pairing low-GI foods with good fat (like olive oil), and eating foods in a specific order, is a habit that the famously lean French have long practiced. Says Montignac, this diet is neither low-carb nor low-fat; instead, it is "the right-carb and the right-fat diet."
Consider the logic: eat three square meals a day, based on the food-combining rules provided; make lunchnot dinnerthe biggest meal (don't worry about calories); avoid sugar, regular coffee, and the wrong fats. Snacks? No need. Snacking is a poor habit practiced by those whose regular meals dont contain sufficient metabolic staying power; following Montignac's system should solve that problem. Drink wine or champagne--but only in moderation, and only after meals. Montignac's sample menus and 80 recipes feature smart breakfasts, indulgent lunches, dinner entrees, and fruity or chocolaty desserts. He also includes meatless options, but double-check the ingredients before launching into a dish marked "Vegetarian Appropriate;" one such recipe begins with 1/3 pound chopped slab bacon.--Liane Thomas
Amazon.com Exclusive Content
Michel Montignac shares a mouth-watering entrée and two decadent desserts from his personal weight loss and weight maintenance recipe book, exclusively with Amazon.com customers. Bon appétit!
Chicken with Apples and Cider Cream
Phase 1 and Phase 2 (appropriate for both weight loss and weight maintenance)
Preparation: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 1 hour 40 minutes
One 3-pound free range chicken
2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 pounds apples, peeled and coarsely chopped
3/4 cup apple cider
1 cube chicken bouillon
3/4 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons goose fat or olive oil (See Note)
salt, freshly ground pepper, cayenne, and ground cinnamon, to taste
Preheat the oven to 425º
Brush the chicken with a tablespoon of goose fat (or olive oil). Season with the salt, pepper, and cayenne, and place in a roasting pan. Roast for approximately 1 hour 40 minutes, or until juice runs clear.
Meanwhile, heat the remaining tablespoon of goose fat (or olive oil), and sauté the chopped apples, stirring regularly, for about 10 minutes, until the apples are softened. Season liberally with salt, pepper, and cinnamon. Reserve.
To make the cider cream sauce, boil the cider in a saucepan and reduce by three quarters. Add the chicken bouillon cube and dissolve well. Then add the heavy cream. Bring to a boil and turn off the heat. Correct the seasoning if necessary. After the chicken has roasted for about 1 hour 15 minutes, arrange the apples around the chicken in the roasting pan.
When ready, cut up the chicken, coat with the reheated cream of cider and serve with the cinnamon apples.
Note: Goose fat is available in some specialty gourmet shops and can also be ordered from gourmet supply stores online. If you are unable to find it, substitute olive oil.
Phase 2 (appropriate for weight maintenance)
Preparation: 25 minutes
Chilling time: at least 6 hours
14 ounces dark chocolate (at least 70% cacao content)
4 teaspoons instant coffee
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons rum (optional)
zest of 1 orange (organic preferred)
1 pinch of salt
Break the chocolate into pieces and place in a double boiler. Mix the coffee with 1/2 cup of water and the rum, and add to the chocolate. Melt the chocolate, stirring constantly over low heat. If the mixture is too solid, add a bit of water. When the chocolate has melted and the mixture is smooth, remove the saucepan from the stove.
Add half of the orange zest to the pot and stir. Separate the eggs into two mixing bowlsthe egg whites in one, the egg yolks in another. Whip the egg whites, along with a pinch of salt, until stiff. Add the chocolate to the egg yolks, stirring until the mixture has a smooth consistency. Gently fold this mixture into the egg whites. Make sure the egg whites are well incorporated and no chocolate is left at the bottom of the bowl.
You can either leave the mousse in the mixing bowl, first cleaning the rim, or transfer it to a serving bowl or to small individual bowls. Sprinkle the remaining grated orange peel over the mousse and cool in the refrigerator for at least 6 hours.
RaspberryYogurt Ice Cream
Phase 1 (appropriate for weight loss)
Preparation: 15 minutes
Freezing time: at least 8 hours
1 cup low-fat yogurt
1 1/4 cups (about half of a pint basket) raspberries, fresh or frozen
1 large egg white, beaten until stiff
In a blender, puree the yogurt and raspberries. Pour the puree into a large ice-cube tray and leave in the freezer for at least 8 hours.
Cut the frozen mixture into small pieces with a knife. Puree again in the blender.
Add the stiffly beaten egg white and mix thoroughly.
World-renowned diet guru and scientist Michel Montignac was born in southern France. A daily diet of fattening business lunches while working for a large pharmaceutical firm led him to study nutrition. After years of rigorous study of metabolism, he developed a unique diet plan which enabled him to lose 35 pounds in 3 months. Through his ground-breaking work (that has since been corroborated by research conducted at Harvard University), he developed his diet, based on glycemic index, into "The Montignac Method." Montignac self-published his first book, Eat Yourself Slim
, which went on to become an international bestseller. He has since published 8 books which are available in 42 countries and in 25 languages. He has also adapted the diet for use in catering and restaurants.