Monday, March 3, 2008

Maggie the anti-cook

Most of my "keeper" recipes start with someone else's name. Cathy's Strawberry Pie, Grammy's Russian Tea Cakes, Glenn's baked potatoes, Alison's play dough, Paula's ribs, Martha's Spinach Salad.

None of those recipes start with my name. The reason is I'm burnt out on cooking. Oh, I enjoy food, I would just rather not cook. Dinners at my house look like this: thaw meat from freezer (chicken, pork, beef, or fish); marinate it in whatever salad dressing I have on hand; get my husband to grill it. That's the main course. I'll throw together a salad (thank God for bag salads) and chop up some broccoli, squash, beans, or cauliflower to steam. I love those new steaming bags that you can buy at the grocery stores now. (They're usually near the wax paper and garbage bags.) I'll toss the veges in the bag, steam for 3 to 5 minutes and presto, they are ready to eat.

Since I went on the South Beach Diet a few years back and changed how and what I eat, most of the recipes I own don't work for me. I have incorporated a new treat that reflects my healthier lifestyle - a yogurt parfait. The important thing about this treat is the presentation. It loses a lot in a cereal bowl. Spring for some of those fancy parfait glasses and your dinner guests will think they are at a sumptuous restaurant. Layer your favorite yogurt with your favorite fresh fruit until the parfait glass is nearly full. Dust the top with granola. Serve.

You can call it Maggie's Parfait if you like, but it will really be Your Parfait, since you customize it to your taste.

Maggie Toussaint
No Second Chance, an award-winning book

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