Chefs' Secrets for Healthier Cooking
4 top chefs share tips and recipes for lighter dishes that don't scrimp on taste and style.
An Eye-Opening Diagnosis continued...
"Because the butter will be the first thing you taste, the entire meal
will taste butter-drenched, but with just a fraction of the calories than if it
was butter cooked," he says.
Another of Nischan's tricks is to bypass nonstick pans in favor of cast
"Heat the pan for about 3 minutes over a medium flame, then coat
whatever you're going to fry in a thin layer of oil and drop it in the
pan," he says.
The temperature exchange between the hot pan and the cool food protects the
oil, says Nischan, and you end up using less oil while still searing flavor
into the food.
'Such a Pretty Face'
From the time she was old enough to stand on a chair and touch a bowl, Devin
Alexander knew she loved to cook. She also knew she loved to eat. And by the
time she was teenager, she was packing on the pounds.
"I was the one who always heard 'You have such a pretty face – if only
you weren't so fat,' ", says Alexander, now a slim and celebrated Los
Angeles healthy eating chef and author of the new book Fast Food Fix.
It wasn't until she became an adult that healthy cooking entered her life.
"I decided there had to be a way I could enjoy food and not keep
gaining," she says.
After a stint in culinary school, she found it: A style of low-fat cooking
that not only helped her shed 55 pounds and keep it off for 12 years, but, as
executive chef of Café Renee Catering in Los Angeles, help others do the
The most important lesson she learned: That how you cook is as
important as what you cook.
"If you sprinkle a chicken breast with herbs and sear it in a pan on
medium heat, it's going to taste blah; take that same chicken breast and cook
it at high heat, and you'll seal in the flavors and bring out the spices, and
you'll end up with a dish that tastes entirely different and very
enjoyable," says Alexander.