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Don't Think Diet, Think Delicious! (June 12, 2008)

Excessive during the winter? Weren't we all... but now's the time to get back on track, get in shape and stay that way! The proven approach is exercise and diet, and while we did sign up with a personal trainer, we've got to watch what slips between the lips!

Been told to watch your blood sugar? Well, we heard that message, and it turns out a whole lot of people over 40 have also had that point made to them by their doctor! In Canada alone, more than 2 million people have some form of diabetes, and the numbers are escalating rapidly. It's not just Canada, either; this is a world-wide crisis! Unchecked, the condition can have disastrous results...

Whoa, hold on we cried! Great food and wine are a major part of the good life, and visions of bland, boring meals floated like a spectre... Until we found three excellent cookbooks not only full of menu ideas and recipes that would suit the most discerning diner, but also containing good clear information to keep us on track and healthy!

Best-selling authors and Registered Dietitians Marg Howard and Marjorie Hollands have been writing about health and food for years, and it's no wonder that the most up-to-date version of their original book, Choice Menus, is the #1 recommended book of diabetes educators in Canada. First published in 1993, Choice Menus features 124 menu flaps for breakfast, lunch dinner and snacks... which gave us the choice of what to eat when, and still keep important tabs on carb and calorie intake!

Diabetes Comfort Food, by Johanna Burkhard and R.D. Barbara Selley, Nutrition Editor, contains more than 225 tasty recipes good for everything from Sunday night suppers to sophisticated dinner parties. Alongside each recipe is a "Choices per Serving" information box and complete nutritional analysis per serving, which works beautifully, as we can keep a tally of important fibre intake, watch the sodium and monitor those pesky carbohydrates!

Katherine Younker, R.D. and Certified Diabetes Educator, has authored the Complete Canadian Diabetes Cookbook. While the more than 250 recipes are obviously diabetes-suitable, more importantly for all the rest of us, they are dishes that you'll want to prepare again and again. All these cookbooks were published in cooperation with the Canadian Diabetes Association, and together they give you hundreds of recipes you'll love.

Can't get much better than that! Now where's the bathing suit section?

On today's menu:

Download this article in printable form as an Adobe Acrobat PDF (133 KB)


 

Cheese Smothered Onion Soup

Oh yum. We've just been out on the slopes all day, and I'm cold and hungry! This rich, savory soup will be just the ticket; the assertive flavour of onions mellows and sweetens when cooked until golden and perfect with all that divine cheese! A little salad on the side completes the meal! This classic from Diabetes Comfort Food. Darling, let's sit by the fire for a while longer…

Serves 6

  • 2 Tbsp soft margarine or butter (25 mL)
  • 8 cups thinly sliced Spanish onions (about 2-3) (2 L)
  • ¼ tsp dried thyme leaves (1 mL)
  • ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper (1 mL)
  • 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour (25 mL)
  • 3 cups reduced-sodium beef broth (750 mL)
  • 3 cups water (750 mL)
  • 6 slices French bread, about ¾-inch (2 cm) thick
  • 1½ cups shredded light Swiss cheese (500 mL)
  1. In a Dutch oven or large heavy saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add onions, thyme and pepper; cook, stirring often for 15 minute or until onions are tender and rich golden colour. Blend in flour; stir in broth and water. Bring to a boil, stirring until thickened. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer for 15 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, position oven rack 6 inches (15 cm) from broiler; preheat boiler.
  3. Arrange bread slices on baking sheet; place under broiler and toast on both sides.
  4. Place toasts in deep oven proof soup bowls; sprinkle with half the cheese. Arrange bowls in large shallow baking pan. Ladle hot soup into bowls. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Place under boiler for 3 minutes or until cheese melts and is lightly browned. Serve immediately.
Nutritional Analysis per Serving
Calories
226
Carbohydrate
30 g
Fiber
3 g
Protein
13 g
Fat, total
9 g
Fat, saturated
4 g
Sodium
595 mg
Cholesterol
17 mg
 

Canada's Choices per Serving
2 Carbohydrate
1 Meat & alternatives
1 Fat

America's Exchanges per Serving
1 Starch
2½ Vegetable
1 Medium-fat meat
½ fat

Tony's wine recommendation:
A light dry red – Beaujolais, Valpolicella, Pinot Noir, Bourgogne Rouge


 

Seafood Pasta Pizza with Dill and Goat Cheese

You change a few ingredients and voilà! A better version of an old favourite – in this case, pizza updated with goat cheese and seafood! Watching your gluten as well? No problem, as GF (gluten-free) pasta makes a great crust! Honey, pass the pan please... and perhaps just one more glass of wine! From Compete Canadian Diabetes Cookbook.

Serves 6

  • 6 oz broken GF linguine (150 g)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup 2% milk (75 mL)
  • 8 oz whole (shrimp, scallops, squid) (250 g)
  • 1 tsp vegetable oil (5 mL)
  • 1 ½ tsp crushed garlic (7 mL)
  • ¾ cup diced sweet red peppers (175 mL)
  • ¼ cup chopped green onions (50 mL)
  • ¼ cup sliced red onions (50 mL)
  • 1 cup cold seafood or chicken stock (250 mL)
  • 1 cup 2% milk (250 mL)
  • 3 Tbsp all-purpose flour* (45 mL)
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh dill (75 mL) (or 1 Tbsp/15 mL dried)
  • ½ cup shredded mozzarella cheese (125 mL)
  • 2 oz goat cheese (50 g)
  1. Cook pasta in boiling water according to package instructions or until firm to the bite. Drain and place in a mixing bowl. Add egg, milk and cheese. Mix well. Pour into pan and bake for 20 minutes.
  2. In a large nonstick skillet sprayed with vegetable spray, sauté seafood just until cooked, approximately 3 minutes. Drain and set seafood aside.
  3. In the same skillet, heat oil; sauté garlic, red peppers and green and red onions for 4 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, in small bowl, combine stock, milk and flour until smooth. Add to skillet and simmer on low heat until thickened, approximately 2 minutes, stirring constantly.

*Gluten-free diet: substitute arrowroot powder or cornstarch.

Nutritional Analysis per Serving
Calories
309
Carbohydrate
28 g
Fiber
1 g
Protein
24 g
Fat, total
11 g
Fat, saturated
6 g
Sodium
521 mg
Cholesterol
123 mg
 
Choices per Serving
2 Carbohydrate
3 meat and alternative

Tony's wine recommendation:
Sauvignon Blanc – New Zealand, Loire Valle Sancerre, Ontario Sauvignon Blanc


 

Warm Tortellini, Asparagus and Tomato Salad

Well perhaps not the pizza today, let's try this wonderful quick salad instead. The classic oil and vinegar dressing gives the dish lots of oomph, and it makes perfect salad for lunch with friends or a sophisticated Sunday night supper! Seconds, please! From Choice Menus.

Serves 6

Each serving: 1 1/3 cups (325 mL pasta mixture over salad greens)

  • 3½ cups frozen or fresh cheese-filled tortellini (825 mL) (350 g pkg)
  • 2 cups sliced asparagus (about ½ lb/250 g) (500 mL)
  • ¼ cup coarsely grated parmesan cheese (50 mL)
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh basil (or 1 Tbsp/15 mL dried) (50 mL)
  • 2 Tbsp each red wine vinegar and balsamic vinegar (25 mL)
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil (15 mL)
  • 1 to 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 4 cups assorted greens (1 L)
  • 1 cup halved cherry tomatoes (quartered if large) (250 mL)
  • 2 green onions, sliced

In large pot of boiling water, cook pasta according to package directions, adding asparagus during last 3 minutes of cooking. Drain and toss with cheese.

Meanwhile, in large bowl, combine basil, red wine and balsamic vinegars, oil, garlic and pepper to taste. Add greens, tomatoes and onions, toss to combine.

To serve, place ¾ cup (175 mL) of the assorted greens on 6 individual plates and top each with 1 1/3 cups (325 mL) of the pasta mixture.

Nutritional Analysis per Serving
Calories
264
Carbohydrate
35 g
Protein
11 g
Fat, total
10 g
Fat, saturated
3 g
Sodium
273 mg
 
Choices per Serving
2 Carbohydrate
1 Meat and alternatives
1½ Fats

 

Tony's wine recommendation:
A medium-bodied, dry white: Sauvignon Blanc, Soave, white Burgundy


 

Stuffed Pork Tenderloin

We love pork and fix it when we can. This combination with the caramelized onions in the stuffing and a mustard-honey glaze on the meat both contribute a dazzling entrée! Your next dinner party for sure! From Choice Menus.

Serves 6

Each serving: 2 slices with stuffing (90 g)

  • 2 pork tenderloins (¾ lb/375 g each)
    Stuffing:
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil (15 mL)
  • 2 medium onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar (15 mL)
  • ¼ tsp each salt and freshly ground pepper (1 mL)
  • 1/3 cup fresh bread crumbs (75 mL)
  • 3 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley (45 mL)
  • Grated rind of 1 orange
    Glaze:
  • 2 Tbsp Dijon mustard (25 mL)
  • 2 Tbsp liquid honey (25 mL)
  • ¼ tsp freshly ground pepper (1 mL)

With sharp knife, cut each tenderloin lengthwise from end to end, being careful not to cut through to other side. Set aside.

Stuffing: In non-stick skillet, heat oil over medium heat; sauté onions, stirring frequently for about 20 minutes or until deep golden brown. Stir in vinegar, salt and pepper; cook for 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in bread crumbs, parsley and orange rind. Set aside.

Place filling along length of one tenderloin. Top with second tenderloin and tie with string. Place meat on rack set over a foil-lined roasting pan.

Glaze: In small bowl, combine mustard, honey and pepper; brush over pork. Roast in 375°F (190C) oven for 40 minutes or until cooked through and juices run clear (internal temperature will be about 160F (70C). Cover and let stand for 10 minutes before carving into ½-inch thick slices.

Nutritional Analysis per Serving
Calories
264
Carbohydrate
35 g
Protein
11 g
Fat, total
10 g
Fat, saturated
3 g
Sodium
273 mg
 
Choices per Serving
1 Carbohydrate
3 Meat and alternatives

 

Tony's wine recommendation:
Riesling, semi-dry (Kabinett or Spaetlese), Viognier, Pinot Gris from Alsace


 

Lemon Fool with Fresh Berries

Well, we had a choice, and decided to serve this updated, creamy Lemon Fool this at this weekend's dinner party. Good news when entertaining; this dessert is ideal as it can be assembled earlier in the day! From Diabetes Comfort Food. Authors Burkhard and Selley trimmed the fat in the custard and whipped cream with low-fat yogurt. This rich dessert, when combined with fresh berries and fruit, will still give you a nutritionally balanced dish! A perfect finish to any meal!

Serves 8

  • 2 Tbsp cornstarch* (25 mL)
  • ½ cup cold water (125 mL)
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar (150 mL)
  • 1 Tbsp finely grated lemon zest (15 mL)
  • 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (15 mL)
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 cup plain low-fat yogurt (250 mL)
  • ½ cup whipping cream (125 mL)
  • 4 cups fresh berries, such as sliced
  • strawberries, raspberries or blueberries (1 L)
  • Additional berries, fresh mint springs and grated lemon zest for garnish
  1. In a small saucepan, combine cornstarch with water; whisk until smooth. Add sugar, lemon zest, juice and egg yolks; cook over medium heat, whisking constantly until mixture comes to a full boil; cook for 15 seconds. Remove from heat and pour into a large bowl. Let cool slightly. Cover surface with plastic wrap; refrigerate for 2 hours or until chilled. (Recipe can be prepared to this point up to 1 day ahead.)
  2. Whisk lemon mixture until smooth. Whisk in yogurt.
  3. In bowl, using electric mixer, beat cream until stiff peaks form. Gently fold into lemon-yogurt mixture.
  4. Arrange half the berries in six parfait or large wine glasses. Top with half the lemon fool; layer with remaining berries and lemon fool. (Recipe can be prepared to this point and refrigerated for up to 4 hours.) To serve, garnish with whole berries, mint springs and grated lemon zest.

*May be used in a gluten-free diet.

Nutritional Analysis per Serving
Calories
186
Carbohydrate
29 g
Fiber
2 g
Protein
3 g
Fat, total
7 g
Fat, saturated
4 g
Sodium
30 mg
Cholesterol
68 mg
 

Canada's Choices per Serving
1½ Carbohydrate
1½ Fat

America's Exchanges per Serving
½ Fruit
1½ Other carbohydrates
1½ Fat

Tony's wine recommendation:
Ontario Icewine, Riesling Auslese


 

For permission to publish information and photographs, we wish to thank:

HarperCollins Publishers, Toronto for Choice Menus by Marjorie Hollands and Margaret Howard. © 1993, 2007 by Marjorie Hollands and Margaret Howard. Photography by Hal Roth/Assisted by Paolo Christante

Robert Rose, Inc. Toronto for Complete Canadian Diabetes Cookbook, edited by Katherine E. Younker. Text © 2005 Robert Rose, Inc. Additional text © 2005 Katherine E. Younker. Photographs © 2005 Robert Rose Inc.

Robert Rose, Inc. Toronto for Diabetes Comfort Food by Johanna Burkhard. Barbara Selley, Nutrition editor. Text © 2006 Johanna Burkhard. Photographs © 2006 Robert Rose Inc.

For more information, contact:
The Canadian Diabetes Association: www.diabetes.ca
The American Diabetes Association: www.diabetes.org
The UK Diabetes Association: www.diabetes.org.uk
The Australian Diabetes Association: www.diabetesaustralia.com

 

Happily enjoyed by Helen Hatton and Ron Morris.

Download this article in printable form as an Adobe Acrobat PDF (133 KB)

 

 

 

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