Economical, low-fat recipes fit the times


POSTED: Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Times are tough and we all need to lose weight. I speak for myself here, but if you're in my boat—conserving cash but with body fat to spare—today's recipes are for you.



When Waipahu United Church of Christ's benefit cookbook, “;Favorite Recipes,”; arrived, the chapter on tofu was like a beacon.

I picked out a couple of recipes—the Tofu Rice Loaf makes an economical meal that's low-cal, low-fat and cholesterol-free; the tangy miso-tofu dressing, despite it's unfortunate name of Tofu Mayonnaise, makes a great dip, encouraging the consumption of fresh veggie sticks, as opposed to—well, let's say Buffalo Wings.

“;Favorite Recipes”; isn't all this way. Its recipes cover a wide range from the frugal to the fried, in sweeping ethnic variety: Chinese Pig's Feet to Filipino Guisantes to Swiss Steak.

Each chapter begins with thoughts from the Rev. Paul Osumi. “;Give me a good digestion, Lord, and also something to digest ...”;

Proceeds will go to the renovation of the church's community center, which has been stalled for more than a year for lack of funds.

Cookbooks are $15, plus $5 postage, and may be ordered through Waipahu United Church of Christ, 94-330 Mokuola St., Waipahu 96797. To save postage, call 677-3317 and arrange to pick up your books.


Tofu Rice Loaf

1 cup cooked brown rice
1 pound firm tofu
1 tablespoon ketchup
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons soy sauce
3 tablespoons mustard
1/4 cup dried parsley
1/4 cup diced onion
2 slices whole-wheat bread, crumbled
1/3 cup shredded carrots
» Toppings:
1/3 cup ketchup
1/3 cup barbecue sauce

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Combine ingredients and shape into loaf on non-stick cookie sheet. Combine topping ingredients and spread over loaf. Bake 25 minutes, until slightly browned. Cool before slicing. Serves 6.


Approximate nutritional information, per serving: 180 calories, 7 g total fat, 1 g saturated fat, no cholesterol, 700 mg sodium, 21 g carbohydrate, 3 g fiber, 7 g sugar, 11 g protein.


Tofu Mayonnaise

1/3 block firm tofu (about 7 ounces)
7 tablespoons light olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons red miso
2 teaspoons white miso
1 teaspoon sea salt

Combine all ingredients in blender and process until smooth. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours. Keeps up to a week. Use as a dip or salad dressing.


Approximate nutritional information, per 2-tablespoon serving: 100 calories, 10 g total fat, 1.5 g saturated fat, no cholesterol, 250 mg sodium, 1 g carbohydrate, no fiber or sugar, 2 g protein.