Here, a weekend's worth of thought-provoking food and wine reading in five fast clicks—starting with a fascinating new plant-based burger named The Beast.
This week's essential reading includes climate change's impact on wine, a voodoo soup to keep you healthy all winter and good news about seedheads working to improve organic produce.
Eric Kayser is running the New York City Marathon for the first time this weekend. He worked with author and sports nutritionist Cynthia Sass to create a $30 prix-fixe menu focusing on the nutritional elements needed for endurance.
Red meat is not having a great month. First pink slime. Now, a new study shows that all red meat is bad for your health, even the delicious unprocessed kind. Read more >
© Quentin Bacon
The Chubster Diet. Here you have “A Hipster’s Guide to Losing Weight While Staying Cool.” Martin Cizmar’s brand-new book notes two definitions of chubster: 1) someone who is proud to be fatty mcfatfat; and 2) the cool guy who is formerly fat. Chapters include How to Work Out (without Looking Like a Tool); there are ratings—from awesome to awful—for Stuff You Can Nuke. Lean Cuisine Chicken with Lasagna Rollatini gets an awful. “Rollatini isn’t actually a type of pasta—it’s not even an Italian word,” notes Cizmar, who lost 100 pounds in eight months after something he refers to as “the Slurpee incident.”
Dukan Diet. Kate Middleton was on it. Jennifer Lopez and Gisele Bundchen reportedly lost their baby weight with it, too. If those three names don’t make you jump on Dr. Pierre Dukan’s diet, you have so much self-control you probably don’t need to lose weight anyway. The Dukan diet, which first came out in France in 2000, is basically a high-protein diet—there are days of pure protein, alternating with days of protein plus vegetables. Unfortunate side effects can include bad breath, constipation, dry mouth and fatigue.
Thrive Vegan Diet. If you’re looking for a diet that’s good for something besides yourself – like the earth – consider Thrive. Created by professional triathlete Brendan Brazier, Thrive focuses on vegan foods that help fuel your way to uber athleticism. Thrive Foods his newest book, includes 200 plant based recipes; if you want a 6-week workout plan, plus old-school-looking photos of Brazier working out, go for Thrive Fitness, and hope that Hugh Jackman, who’s been on the Thrive Vegan diet, will star in the next series of workout photos.
Paleoista Diet. First there was the Paleo diet. Better known as the Caveman diet, Paleo focuses on the diets of our very ancient ancestors with an emphasis on lean meats, seafood, fruits, nuts and vegetables. (Some paleos take it to extremes and donate blood frequently to simulate caveman hunting injuries.) Paleoista does not go that far; instead this book by Nell Stephenson, which comes out in May, is paleo for girls: it means eliminating anything made with sugar, processed grains, legumes and dairy. Which presumably will change the morning Starbucks habits of a lot of wannabe paleoistas.
Gay Men Don’t Get Fat Diet. This is not the place to find a recipe for Seared Ostrich with Dandelion Greens (look to the Paleoista for that). In fact, there are no recipes. Instead author Simon Doonan, the creative ambassador at large for Barneys New York, divides foods into straight (the fattening ones) and gay (the healthy, good-looking ones) and then advises eating both for a healthy diet.
More from Food & Wine:Alice Waters's Pink-Grapefruit-and Avocado Salad)
© John Kernick
Cranberry Panna Cotta
Tacos: Instead of the typical turkey sandwich, wrap the shredded meat in corn tortillas for tacos and top with any leftover vegetables that make sense to you (like green beans and corn). For a little more flavor or heat, try making one of these salsas to go with them.
Vietnamese-style sandwiches: Banh mi are a great way to use up leftover meat—topped with quick pickles, cilantro and chiles, they’re always super-flavorful. For inspiration, here’s a version that uses chicken.
Lettuce wraps: If you’re trying to cut back on carbs, make an easy turkey salad with an herb-inflected mayonnaise dressing and use Bibb lettuce leaves for wrapping. Or, try a version of these spicy Asian lettuce cups with turkey instead of chicken.
Innovative soups: Use the leftover turkey bones and meat to make a warming Mexican-inspired stew known as posole. You can never go wrong with a classic turkey soup. To make it less straightforward, skip the noodles and add kimchi, tofu and ginger for a Korean flavor. Or make a variation of this soothing Colombian soup.
MASHED POTATOES OR MASHED SWEET POTATOES
Make easy mashed potato cakes with olive oil, and top them with a healthy mushroom ragù. Or top a scoop of mashed potatoes with a runny egg and serve with a batch of garlicky braised kale.
Simple soup: Reheat the mashed potatoes gently while whisking in leftover turkey stock for an easy soup. Garnish with a quick herb salad.
Reinvented condiments: Whisk cranberry sauce with mustard to use as a spread for sandwiches, or blend the cranberry sauce with jalapeños, scallions, cilantro and lime juice to taste to make a salsa for your turkey tacos (see above).
Low-fat dessert: Use the sauce to make easy panna cottas. Instead of making cranberry sauce in Step 1, blend 1/2 cup of prepared cranberry sauce into the buttermilk.
Related: Post-Holiday Detox Recipes
In the upcoming October issue, F&W's Well-Being editor Kristin Donnelly presents amazing meals that are only 600 calories—with wine. Until then, she reveals a few ways to sabotage a healthy lifestyle.
2. Eat bland, cardboard-like food. Too often, “diet” is associated with food that tastes bad. If you eat unappetizing food, you'll feel deprived and end up eating too much. Skip anything “lite” that comes in a bag or a box. Instead, treat fresh vegetables as you would a gorgeous cut of meat: Season well and cook only as much as needed. Serve vegetables, with sauce, as your centerpiece, and that beautiful cut of meat as the side dish.
3. Fear fat. Eating fat doesn’t necessarily make you fat. Unless medically recommended, the low-fat diet largely went out with the 1990s. That’s not to say that eating a diet of sausage, grilled cheese and doughnuts will help you lose weight (Plus, they’re all beige. See Step 1.) But fat—whether it’s olive oil or even butter or lard—is necessary for absorbing nutrients, and it supports the immune system. It’s also sustaining: Yes, a gram of fat has twice the calories of a gram of protein or carbohydrates, but fat helps you feel fuller longer, so you eat less. So pass the (teaspoon of) butter, please.
4. Inhale your food. Warning: Eating too much too fast can result in a protruding belly (also referred to as a “food baby” in the movie Juno). In many parts of the world, dining is a leisurely event, which actually has health benefits: When people eat slowly, they tend to savor food more and eat less. Plus, there’s that old health-magazine nugget: Your stomach takes 20 minutes to tell your brain it’s full.
5. Drink to get drunk. The CDC (Centers for Disease Control) now officially recognizes that people who drink moderately (one drink per day for women, and yes, boo, two for men) are often healthier and live longer. Binge drinking, however, is not only unhealthy, it’s fattening. At around 200 calories each, multiple gin and tonics add up, so does wine. And then there’s the aftermath: Pizza with a side of fries starts sounding like a brilliant idea.
Congratulations to Mei Lin, winner of Top Chef Season 12.