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on February 13, 2004
After my husband's heart attack, I immediately went on a search for heart-healthy foods and found the American Heart Association's "Big Red Book." (Yes, it's true. I took his heart-attack as a great excuse to buy more cookbooks.) So far, each of the recipes has been a hit, especially the "Chicken Curry in a Hurry." But the biggest hit of all was the "Easy Apple Cake" teamed with the Caramel Custard Sauce from the recipe for poached pears with the same sauce.
So in an unusual move, I ordered a second copy of this cookbook, but this time the hard cover edition especially after I looked at the paperback and noticed the number of creases in the spine. And then I ordered nearly all of the other cookbooks from the Heart Association.
The recipes are generally short, simple, and do-able on a weeknight. The use of spices is nice, although you may, as one reviewer suggested, want to add more spices (for example, I like a LOT more curry in my curries). But what's nicest is the wide variety of recipes, including quite a few vegetarian recipes that make a nice change. (Be sure to try the Spaghetti with Lentil Sauce. Delish.)
In all, this one is a real gem and goes up on the bookshelf next to "The Joy of Cooking," "Brilliant," the old "Pillsbury Baking Book" inherited from my grandmother, and, of course, the Betty Crocker "Cooky Book," back in print after all these years.
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on February 12, 2002
I had to switch to a very low-fat diet for health reasons, and I dreaded it: I remember the "bad old days" when a "tasty" low-fat meal was a plain lean hamburger patty, a scoop of nonfat cottage cheese, and a tomato slice. Those days are gone, and the AHA cookbook reflects the new options available for tasty, healthy eating!
The recipes are great, and are quite diverse; there should be many items in each section to please all palates and tastes. The recipes are presented clearly and are easy to follow. The paperback edition doesn't quite lay flat on a surface, but I understand there's a spiral binding that would solve that problem. Most useful for me is that each recipe page has a breakdown of per-serving nutritional information (calories, fat [broken down], cholesterol, sodium, and fiber). This makes it simple to plan a meal menu while keeping within my daily dietary guidelines.
Also very useful are the appendices. While some of it may seem basic, everyone could probably use a refresher on how to read a nutritional label on packaged food, or how to shop for and prepare various items. Sample menus are helpful, as are the "quick foods" that list which recipes are easily prepared -- it's almost as easy to whip up some of these healthy items as it is to tear open a bag of chips!
If you want (or, more importantly, need) to start eating better, but don't want to go back to the "bad old days," I highly recommend the AHA cookbook!
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on May 22, 2002
When a heart important to my heart was told by his doctor that he has high blood pressure, my own went up. All priorities suddenly shift, and you realize there is nothing but nothing more important than the good health of those that you love. I immediately went on a hunt for a cookbook that would satisfy the palate but also keep us heart-healthy. I quickly came across this cookbook. What better sense than looking to an association that deals specifically with the health of the heart? Yes, but.... what about taste? A good diet is only as good as the tingle of the tastebud; it won't do you any good at all if you don't eat what's good for you.
I've made meals from most all of the sections in this cookbook. Fish, poultry, vegetables, even dipped into the desserts. We have both been pleased with the tasteful results. Low on salt and fat, but high on flavor. Good sense paired with good food - that works! From chicken with broccoli and mushrooms in a creamy sauce, to zucchini stuffed with spicy vegetables, to a rice pudding that was all comfort food, we did not miss what was missing: that nasty stuff that clogs arteries and hammers the heart and adds the slops to the waistline. My only negative is purely an esthetic one... I love to see a photo of what I am about to prepare for the first time. No photos here. But that's a small matter and not enough to keep me from going back to this cookbook again and again.
Best of all? My sweetheart is a healthy heart. Blood pressure is right where it belongs.
Bon appetit!
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on August 18, 1999
Last February 1999 I was hospitalized for several weeks with a heart problem. After I was discharged I knew I had to do something about my weight. I purchased the New American Heart Association Cookbook and changed my eating habits. Using the recipes from this cookbook, along with an excellent walking program, I have lost almost 50 pounds between the end of February 1999 and August 1999. There are way too many good recipes for me to list, but several of my favorites are: Chicken Fajitas (I use the low-fat tortilla wrappers that you can find in any store), Crispy Baked Chicken, Asian Grilled Chicken and Vegetarian Chili. The best recommendation I can make for this book is to tell you that my doctor now tells me that I have a very healthy heart and I sincerely believe that I owe it to my walking program and the excellent recipes from The New American Heart Association Cookbook.
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This book contains many delicious recipes that are simple to make. Moreover, there is a wonderful selection of appetizers, soups, salads, entrees, vegetable dishes, breads and desserts. A bountiful array of fruits and vegetables are featured in each recipe category. As a clinical nutritionist, I have high regard for a cookbook that presents easy to prepare, heart healthy recipes that use many different foods thereby allowing people to enjoy a wide variety of foods in their diet. I encourage readers to explore a most impressive compilation of healthy and tasty recipes. This cookbook will effectively promote adherence to contemporary dietary recommendations and, thus, help lower the incidence of coronary disease. A wonderful virtue of the many recipes is enjoyable eating and, at the same time, heart health!
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on May 6, 2002
Like many people these days, I'm trying to improve my diet... but I love good food! I've wasted my money on several "healthy" cookbooks only to find the recipes were simply terrible.
This book is the exception. Simply put, the recipes are easy to prepare, original, and very tasty. You'd never guess you were eating "healthy." We've tried about a dozen recipes so far, and every one has been a success.
The book also includes cooking tips and advice that are helpful for any type of cooking, and good advice on healthy shopping.
If you want to improve your diet without sacrificing the joy of preapring and eating good food, buy this book.
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on February 17, 2002
Short and sweet review. If you are reading this you've either discovered you have high cholesterol or you've been diagnosed with a ticker problem. On top of everything else the diet they've recommended is bland and boring and leaves you hungry.
Get this book quickly. I've always enjoyed cooking, but meals are more fun than ever now - and they are good for my family and me!! These recipes make boring foods delicious and satisfying. My wife and I figure the intelligent mix of spices is the key. But who cares, get this book and enjoy eating again - you've got enough to worry about.
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on February 25, 2003
I bought this cook book to try and get started on a healthy eating track, but no picutes make it hard to get motivated.
The dishes themselves are easy to make. Some dishes I have had to add some extra seasonings, because they were too bland.
Some recipes were regular recipes just with substitutions ie instead of eggs use apple sauce etc.
Other than that it is a good cook book, but you have to be willing to read through it to get an idea if it is a dish you would like to prepare.
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on May 7, 2002
I prefer to cook with just my imagination, but this is a terrific book when my inspiration and creativity needs a boost. I'd say that over 80% of the recipies are things that my family enjoys, while most of my other books rarely come in above 30-40%. The bredth and depth of each section is just right and the nutritional information is particularly helpful. Instructions are easy to follow.
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on August 26, 1999
This is the best book for I have used when trying to cook for a healthy heart. There are thousands of recipes to chose from, easy to elaborate. The entrees are well seasoned, and the instructions are very easy to follow. I had the old version, and this one is 100% better. I recommend it to anyone who is trying to eat healthier.
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