In a perfect world, we could all have our cake and eat it too. We could savor chocolate cupcakes and lick every bit of ganache off our fingertips without an ounce of guilt.
In the real world, even before we take that first bite, we often hear the tsk tsks of those ever present sugar police, lecturing us about fat, calories, cholesterol, and glycemic indexes.
A Sweet Dash of Aloha: Guilt-Free Hawai’i Desserts and Snacks (Watermark Publishing, 2011) is a wonderful guide for those of us who’d like to find healthier ways to satisfy our sweet cravings without feeling deprived or compromising taste.
Sweet Dash was assembled by the chefs and faculty of the Kapi’olani Community College Culinary Arts Department, and contains close to 100 delicious recipes, lots of expert tips, nutritional info, and suggestions for maintaining good health.
What I like most:
- Convenient, spiral bound format with color photos of most recipes
- Entire chapters devoted to gluten free, no refined sugar, egg alternatives, bread, cake, and family-friendly recipes
- Nutrition Facts table for every recipe
- List of alternative sweeteners like Stevia, Sucanat, Truvia and Agave syrup, explaining their sources and suggested uses
- List of Alternate Flours for Gluten-Free Preparations
- Nutritional Facts for Raw Fruits and Vegetables
- Chapters addressing heart disease and diabetes myths by a doctor and dietitian.
Although this cookbook was created to appeal to the Hawai’i-style palate, the recipes can be enjoyed by anyone who likes cooking with locally sourced seasonal produce and who has access to a good health food store. Except for a few ingredients like lilikoi (passion fruit), Kula strawberries and Okinawan Sweet Potatoes, I’d be able to get whatever I needed to make any recipe right here in Virginia. And with Farmer’s Market season just around the corner, I’m looking forward to finding new ways to enjoy mangoes, pineapple, strawberries, watermelon, melons and berries while being reminded of home.
Looking for some healthy sweet treats you can share with your children? Some of the great kid-friendly recipes in the book: Gingery Fruit and Nut Bars, Monkey Fruits, Blueberry Slump, Cranberry-Chocolate Crunch Cookies, and Crispy Rice Squares, a new take on the familiar favorite which calls for maple syrup, natural peanut butter and brown rice crisp cereal.
Recipes I’m most anxious to try:
- Quick Morning Glory Muffins
- Quick Apple-Date Sticky Buns
- Healthy Applesauce-Spice Cake
- Crustless Broccoli-Cheddar Quiche
- Amond Thumbprint Cookies
- Key Lime-Avocado Pie
A Sweet Dash of Aloha just received this year’s Hawai’i Book Publisher’s Association’s Ka Palapala Po’okela Award of Excellence, the top honor in the Cookbooks category:
So many locally published cookbooks are mishmash collections of ‘local food’ recipes. A Sweet Dash of Aloha is a refreshing well-focused, well-written cookbook that offers a new angle on local flavors and ingredients, combining simplicity and clarity with a sophisticated understanding of food, nutrition and health.
Here’s a video featuring two of the book’s chef authors: Alyssa Moreau demonstrates how to make the Key Lime-Avocado Pie, and Carol Nardello demonstrates Gluten Free Lilikoi Bars. Their hosts are Melissa Chang and Ed Morita.
Special Coupon Offer!!
If you order Sweet Dash directly from the publisher using the code MAY12NEWS, you’ll receive 40% off the retail price of $15.95 (+free shipping on orders of $25+), now through May 31, 2012!
More Recipes from the Book
♥ Cool review of Sweet Dash at Hawaii Book Blog.
I plan to try some of these recipes soon and will report back! ☺
This post is being linked to Beth Fish Read’s Weekend Cooking, where everyone is invited to share their food related posts (fiction/nonfiction/cookbook/movie reviews, recipes, photos, musings, etc.).
Copyright © 2012 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.