January 2009 Archives

January 2009 Archives

Just Sent This to Michelle Obama

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Dear Michelle,

I wasn’t at the inauguration, but joined the millions at home who were deeply touched. I haven’t felt so much hope—and determination to do my part—in my entire life.

I have two daughters the same age as yours, so I was also happy to hear kind words addressed to Malia and Sasha during the ceremonies. Emily, Sammy and I have had some fun conversations imagining what they would do if they were transitioning to the White House! Exploring for secret passages tops the list at this point.

As the author of three Sneaky Chef recipe books, I was interested to hear that more people clicked on the recipe link for the inaugural luncheon than any other link on the inaugural website! Who can resist a good recipe? Which brings me to why I’m writing this: I’d like to share a recipe with you—or your cook-- that has been a hit with my fans. “Brainy Brownies” is the real deal: yummy, chocolaty treats. They also have a hidden purple puree that stars two nutrition superstars : blueberries and spinach!

I can guarantee that your daughters won’t detect the sneaky twist, and I’m willing to bet you’ll notice the benefits of eating a healthy, non-sugary snack. In fact, while I came up with this recipe for children, it has been just as popular with adults who need a goody that sustains energy and isn’t caloric. May I even suggest that both you and the President, with your figurative plates so full, might enjoy and benefit!

Please accept my deepest respect for what your entire family—including your mother—is willing to do for our nation. And enjoy the brownies for what they are: a delicious treat that makes life in America even sweeter and healthier.

With healthiest regards for you, your family, and all Americans,


Lunchtime Blues

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Dear Sneaky Chef;
I am at a loss......We have recently enrolled our 18-month-old in a
"pre-school" program that requires we pack his lunches.  I have been
a caterer for over 10 years and have no problem designing menus for
any occasion, but when it comes to packing Dominic's lunches, I am
challenged every day trying to find different and nutritional meals
for him.  Please help! –Lunch-time Blues Mom

Texture Issue

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Dear Sneaky Chef,
I have a little different problem. My 2 1/2 yr old son will eat ONLY
baby food veggies. Everytime I try to give him regular SOFT veggies he
cries and refuses to eat anything all together. I've tried to puree
my own veggies to try and break this textural problem. Its obviously
because he doesn't like the textures. Any ideas? I'm so frustrated.
But I don't want to totally eliminate the baby food veggies for fear
he won't eat ANY veggies. HELP!

- Frustrated Mom

How to Stock Your Pantry

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Rarely do I see information that is as useful as "The Minimalist" article that was posted on the front page of the New York Times Dining Section the other day. It lists fantastic healthy and tasty alternatives to so many of the canned, boxed and dried items that often clog up our pantries for months on end.

If you haven't seen it, here's the link: www.nytimes.com/2009/01/07/dining/07mini.html

It's got great, healthy substitutions for everything from bread crumbs and salad dressings to vanilla extract and canned vegetables.

Mark Bittman must have been working on this article for months in order to pull together such a great list of easy, practical and economical information. Anyone who cooks should take a minute to read through this artcile. The recommendations it contains will save you time, money, and most of all, enhance the quality and nutrition of almost any dish you make.

Thanks for the great work, Mark!

The Sneaky Chef is available at fine booksellers everywhere: