Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Cookbook Review: The Un-Constipated Gourmet

It's the thing nobody talks about but everyone suffers from at one time or another; constipation. You may think that topic has no business on a food blog and would be more appropriate for a health or medical blog, but try and remember, what goes in must come out, so starting with the source is one of those 'ounce of prevention' type deals. Yes, it's a funny subject, but fiber plays a very important role in our bodies, and not just for purposes of elimination. Fiber helps to keep cholesterol down, our hearts healthy and can reduce the risk of colon cancer, as well.

The Un-Constipated Gourmet by Danielle Svetcov deals with, in a very funny way, not just the subject of constipation, but the very best way to prevent it: what you're eating. Before you run away thinking this will be nothing short of a few recipes including bran muffins and prune whip, think again. Not only is there more to roughage than that, there's a lot more flavor involved, too.

Presented in a simple way, seven chapters and 125 recipes, each recipe is given a T.P. rating, the higher the score, the more likely you are to be hitting the potty in no time flat. I seem to be a number 8, having chosen recipes with that number more often than not. The recipe for Caldo Verde is shared at A Thousand Soups and the recipe for White Bean Dip with Cilantro is here. Danielle describes this as a Latino version of hummus, and my kids and I couldn't get enough of it. How did it, er ... work? Quite well - that's all I'll say here.

This isn't just a book for the colonically challenged, it's filled with just plain good recipes that you'll want to make anyway.

White Bean Dip with Cilantro
Serves 8 as an appetizer

3 (15 ounce) cans cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
3/4 cup olive oil (maybe more)
1/2 cup minced fresh cilantro
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
3 garlic cloves
3 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons chili powder
Salt and pepper, to taste

Process all ingredients in a blender except for 2 tablespoons of cilantro, which are saved for garnish. For added 'go', serve with thick tortilla chips or homemade whole-wheat croutons (essentially thinly sliced, heavily toasted bread, with olive oil and garlic rubbed in).

Get your own copy of The Un-Constipated Gourmet at Powell's Books or Amazon.com.


Marisa @Loser for Life said...

That book title is hysterical!
Sounds interesting - gotta love fiber!

kat said...

Though I'm sure its quite serious this gave us quite a good laugh this morning

Amanda said...

LOL! Great review Anne!