Recipe and Pic Paradise

How to begin -- I could have put this post in any number of forums -- any of the recipe categories, Equip & Gadgets, Photo Gallery, etc. -- and it would have been at home. But Odds and Ends Recipes fits also.

Second, I regret that I have been "missing in action" for several months. 2013 has not been especially good for us -- we seem to be skirting on the edge of personal disaster every few weeks. I'll only mention two incidents as relevant here. A month ago, while visiting away from home, I had a heart attack and triple bypass (all major arteries blocked 100%, 99% and more than 75%). Believe me, I feel fortunate -- I'm alive and now I'm in good health. One consequence of the surgery is that I suddenly have a remarkable intolerance for salt. More on this in a bit. Then this past Monday, my wife learned that she has a rare, potentially life-threatening allergy to MEAT (as opposed to fish or poultry). No wonder she has had frequent incidents of abdominal distress and even anaphylactic shock reactions over the years! Now, while a vegetarian might shrug, I think most at TVWBB will understand what a HUGE and immediate impact this is to our life-style. There is no treatment -- just no meat!

I don't intend this as a downer post -- I really want to share one of those extraordinary finds that fortuitously coincided with these two events. A forum buddy, Shelly Schacter, has recently published a marvelous little cookbook (and lifestyle primer) that turned out to address both of the difficulties I described above. While it is not explicitly vegetarian nor does he deny meat, his book is so full of great food ideas, tips and (especially) pictures, that I wanted to share it here. You can see a little here , but the book is so much more. As a privately published volume it is a little expensive, but even on my retiree budget, I now consider a gem of a find.

An extract from my post to The BBQ Source where Shelly and I "met":

I just got my copy of Shelly's book this weekend -- it's a marvelous cornucopia of a love story. I wish I could express myself as eloquently as his photos do! A surprise treat for us were the pics of Alice's quilts. Sheila and I always look at quilts on our frequent visits to arts and crafts establishments, but I have NEVER seen quilts of such beauty and just plain hominess as Alice's!

Two days after receiving Shelly's book, we received the regrettable news about Sheila's intense allergic intolerance for meat. Fortunately, this cookbook is filled with great ideas and numerous recipes that focus on other options. As Shelly told me, "you'll share a new way of eating. But there should still be lots of crunch and flavor."

I have not been known as a tofu guy (though I'm not averse to it), but my Chinese restaurant impression of tofu is NOT what Shelly is suggesting. His tofu bolonaise recipe and pics literally twerked my salivary glands and put this dish high on the "must do" list. I'm also not good at coming up with "dressings" -- salads and the like take on a new meaning in Shelly's book -- and he already did all the dreaming about ingredients.

I also need to comment, that with my rather odd intolerance for salt following my heart surgery, it's great to find ways to make food come to life that do not depend noticeably on salt. I had already told Sheila that I will no longer accept prepared spice mixes, rubs, prepared foods, etc. that are so heavily laden (50% or more) with salt -- I'll make my own better tasting and healthier mixes. Shelly gives me a real boost up with his ways of preparing food.

So "thanks", Shelly. For Sheila and I, your book is a special boon.

That's it. I hope some of you here at TVWBB will find this "cookbook" as rewarding as I have.


Tony R

TVWBB 1-Star Olympian
Rich you have been thru alot and I hope you get well. Im going to check out your suggestion. God BLess and take care of your wife..