The dietary Holy Grail is finding healthier versions of our favourite calorie-dense meals that still satisfy our cravings. Never fear, we asked Lite ‘n’ Easy Executive Chef Brett Johson for some tips.
If you’re on a weightloss journey or just looking to improve your diet, we’re pretty much all looking for a way to turn the unhealthy food we can crave into a more nutritious, less calorie-dense option we can still enjoy without so much guilt.
In our pursuit of this seeming dietary Holy Grail, we asked Lite ‘n’ Easy Executive Chef Brett Johnson how to make our favourite naughty foods much better for us.
“Ultimately we are using vegetables to create textures and get saucy appearances. We have found that when people don’t have as much vegetable to eat through, it’s more appealing,” said Chef Brett Johnston. “We make sure to get two serves into our lunches and three into our dinners so you get your daily recommendation.”
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Brett’s healthier unhealthy substitutions
I actually use eggplant puree as the fat replacement. This is what gives it the creamy texture that you crave. Butter chicken traditionally has a lot of oil and fat. By pureeing the eggplant you feel like it’s fatty but it’s actually healthy.
We use a lot of cauliflower instead of cream. This provides the white appearance, but because we cook the cauliflower out it feels like you’re eating cream. We only add a tiny bit of cream or even milk at the end!
If you mix cashews with water and puree them, it produces a cream. This gives you a nutty and creamy texture and a still white colour. So your soup is actually just cauliflower and cashews but it tastes creamy and delicious, without the cream!
The best way to get flavour without salt is to puree mushrooms. Mushrooms have a natural MSG so it provides an edamame. Steak diane looks creamy but the sauce is mainly pureed mushrooms.
We can actually make meatballs and other lean meats like burgers taste so go by using artichoke as a fat replacement! The fibre and natural oils once pureed create a fatty texture or appearance
Did you know that you can make an amazing chocolate cake or mud cake by using avocado instead of butter and get the same rich flavour and texture?