Monday, April 27, 2009

Review: Holly Clegg's Trim and Terrific Freezer Friendly Meals

Title: Holly Clegg's Trim & Terrific Freezer Friendly Meals
Author: Holly Clegg
Photography: David Humphreys
Pages: 304
Publisher: Running Press (November 27, 2006)
Genre: Non-Ficiton / Cookbook
Edition: Hardback spiralbound - many thanks to the author for sending me a copy to review! Thanks Holly!!

Perfect for : Personal Use, Hostess Gift, Gift

In a nutshell: Let me start by saying that I love the way this cookbook was put together. It is a hardback, which makes it sturdier in the kitchen, and it is a spiral bound book, which makes it lay flat, so the pages don't shut while you are cooking. In this book, the author helps you to make up meals ahead of time (in 30 minutes or less) that freeze well, which can then be taken out and used for dinner when you are short on time or need a break. Holly Clegg has provided a great list of ingredients and how well they freeze, as well as which containers to use for freezing. As with her other cookbooks, this one is filled with healthy versions of favorite family foods. If the nutritional information was not included, I wouldn't know that these recipes were really healthy!! Some of my favorite recipes include the Artichoke Cheese Toast, Banana Blueberry Muffins, Stuffed Chicken Breasts with Feta, Spinach, and Ham, and a White Chocolate Bundt Cake (see recipe below). This cookbook would be great for everyday cooking as well as entertaining.

Extended Review:
Content: The book includes chapters for the following: a Note on the Recipes, Introduction, Freezing Facts, Freezing Guide, Appetizers, Muffins, Breads and Brunch, Chilies, Stews, and Soups, Sides and More, Poultry, Meat, Seafood, Desserts, Pies, Cookies, and Cakes, Suggested Menus, Cookware Tips, and an Index.

Format: Each chapter starts with a listing of the recipes in the section and the corresponding pages.

Each recipe includes the number of servings, a short description, a list of ingredients, easy to follow instructions that give you the choice to 1. Prepare and Eat Now, 2. To Freeze, 3. To Prepare After Freezing. The bottom of each recipe includes the nutritional information (including a diabetic exchange). All recipes that are vegetarian have the symbol of a carrot next to the name.

There are two main sections of beautiful full-color photographs of some of the recipes - my only wish is that there were photos of all the recipes. :)

Readability: Holly Clegg has written a very easy to read cookbook. The instructions are clear, and the information is helpful.

Overall: Holly Clegg has written a cookbook that is full of healthy alternatives to frozen dinners and take-out food. Including over 200 recipes, all meals are supposed to be made in 30 minutes or less, and can be easily frozen for later use. Holly and her family have tested every recipe by making them, freezing them, and re-heating them to make sure they are still wonderful.

From the Author's website:
Quick and Healthy Recipes You Can Make in Advance: And everything you wanted to know about freezing food and had no one to ask!!

With FREEZER FRIENDLY MEALS, Clegg emphasizes, "Why spend every night in the kitchen when a day or two is all you need to prepare tasty, healthy meals for the entire week?" Not only will cooks find easy-to-make, delicious recipes in Holly's new cookbook, but each recipe has the nutritional information as well as meal ideas to take the guesswork out of trying to decide which would be the best side dish to serve with each entree. And you will enjoy reading all the helpful hints. For instance, not sure which foods freeze well? Wondering how long chicken will stay good frozen?

Best of all, each recipe has three sets of directions: To Prepare and Eat Now, To Freeze and To Prepare After Freezing: If you are looking for a quick nightly dinner or recipes to prepare on your time frame and freeze, these questions, and other useful tips, are answered by the kitchen diva.

Now none of us have an excuse anymore when it comes to making that home-cooked meal every night of the week. Cook in advance, and when you get home after a long, hard day at work, you have everything you need already made...just reheat and serve!!

Nutritional analysis and diabetic exchanges included.

Sample Recipe (From the author's website):

White Chocolate Bundt Cake

Keep these ingredients in your pantry to whip up this unbelievable cake in a pinch. This is another standby favorite I frequently make when I need to take a cake somewhere or to satisfy my craving.

1 (18.25-ounce) box yellow cake mix
1 (4-serving) box instant white chocolate pudding and pie filling
1 cup fat-free sour cream
1/4 cup canola oil
2/3 cup fat-free milk
1 egg
3 egg whites
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
1/4 cup skim milk
1 tablespoon almond extract

1. Preheat oven to 350° F. Coat 10-inch nonstick Bundt pan with nonstick cooking spray.

2. In mixing bowl, combine cake mix, pudding, sour cream, oil, milk, egg, egg whites, mixing until well mixed. Stir in white chocolate chips and pecans.

3. Pour in Bundt pan and bake 40-50 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean.

4. In small bowl, mix confectioners' sugar, milk almond extract; set aside.

5. Cool cake on rack 10 minutes before inverting on serving plate. Drizzle glaze over warm cake.

Makes 16 servings

To Prepare and Eat Now: Slice and serve.
To Freeze: Cool to room temperature, wrap, label and freeze. Recommended freezing time: up to 4-6 months.
To Serve: Defrost, slice and serve.

Note: Different shaped Bundt pans allow for fun types of cakes.

Food Facts
Calories 318
Protein 4 g
Total Carbohydrate 51 g
Total Fat 11 g
Calories from Fat 31%
Saturated Fat 3 g
Dietary Fiber 0 g
Cholesterol 18 mg
Sodium 338 mg
Diabetic Exchanges: 3.5 other carbohydrate, 2 fat

About the Author: (From the author's website)
Holly Clegg, the "Queen of Quick." is author of the trim&TERRIFIC" cookbook series including a diabetic cookbook with the ADA, Eating Well Through Cancer and KIDS COOKING for Mommies with more than 850,000 copies in print, reigning supreme when it comes to healthy, delicious everyday meals and party fare.

Turned off by both diets and tasteless foods, Holly's mission is to give cooks the ability to put a delicious, healthier meal on the table in a time-friendly manner.

As Holly adds cookbooks to her trim&TERRIFIC series, her "never sacrifice taste" philosophy remains intact. Her message is simple: food that is good for you can be delicious and easy to prepare. Holly's reputation for her healthier approach continually garners national media coverage. Holly has made her fast, flavorful and healthy meals on network television shows including and Fox & Friends, NBC Weekend Today Show, The 700 Club, and D-Life on CNBC as well as major local markets nationwide. She writes for national food magazines and Internet food sites. As well as a keynote speaker, Holly also serves as the national spokeswoman for Louisiana Sweet Potatoes and has done media spokesperson work for diet Coke, Pace Salsa/Campbell's Soup, Nature Sweet Tomatoes, and Salmon of the Americas. Holly was featured in a national Teflon/DuPont nonstick ad campaign with her Trim & Terrific recipes in full page ads in national magazines including People, Self, Real Simple, Ladies Home Journal, Bon Appetit, USA Today, plus many more.

A wife and mother first, Holly understands the challenges of the busy person. Her personal experience of running a household of five inspired the subject matter for each of the trim&TERRIFIC books. Her recipes require familiar ingredients and include easy-to-follow instructions and quick tips; this combination is the main focus of her trim&TERRIFIC series.

Holly personally tests all of her recipes in her home and as a result, has three avid cooks. "Children love to cook, and if you include them, you can make positive, lasting impressions," Holly said. Based on her experience, Holly included a Kid's In The Kitchen Chapter filled with fun, delicious recipes in The New Holly Clegg trim&TERRIFIC Cookbook and has the newly released KIDS COOKING for Mommies. If you're wondering if you can really make a healthy impression on kids, Holly has proof. "My youngest child did not have a fast food hamburger until she was 15 years old, and it wasn't because I didn't allow it. I didn't have to pick up fast food for my children because I knew I could get something on the table in 30 minutes."

If you have reviewed this book and would like me to add a link to your review, please include a link in your comment!


stacybuckeye said...

I think I need this book! I've purchased some freezer friendly cookbooks, but was disappointed with them. Thanks for the recommendation.

LuAnn said...

What a fun recipe! I didn't even know there was such a thing as a box mix for white chocolate pudding. Duh. Shows how often I buy pudding that I have to actually mix up myself (I love the little ready-made cups)!

Staci said...

I like freezer friendly foods!! I've been doing more of that lately because our life is busy!! Great review!

The Book Resort said...

That Bundt Cake looks deelish. lol.

Alaine - Queen of Happy Endings said...

I am so excited about you doing these reviews this week. Thanks for the recipes. I have followed you just so I don't miss anything!

Wanda said...

This sounds like a helpfully delicious cookbook. I have a niece who LOVES to cook, this would make agreat gift for her (so long as I could part with).

Janel said...

Sounds like you could set aside a day and end up with a freezer full of healthy meals. I'm going to try to find this one at my library. Thanks for the review!

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