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Chef Meg Galvin Launches The SparkPeople Cookbook

Chef Meg Galvin works to reverse our overfed and undernourished nation with her healthy recipes in The Sparkpeople Cookbook.

As a society we've become very disconnected from our kitchens and very plugged in with our favorite chain restaurants. We need more convenience all the time, but the price paid is far more than the cost to upsize a fry, it's paid with our health. We are an "overfed and undernourished nation" according to Chef Meg Galvin, master chef and author of the new SparkPeople Cookbook.

She spent more than a year working on the cookbook to help all of us find our way back in to the kitchen without sacrificing time, money, or all that flavor we crave. "There's no deprivation in the book," she told us. "You'll find butter and bacon."

A classically trained French chef who now works as a college professor in the culinary arts, Chef Meg also has three teenage boys and a husband at home. In other words, she doesn't have much more time than the rest of us, and she's got to feed a lot of hungry people. "We're not going to limit people, we're going to teach them to eat flavorful food," she said was the direction for the book.

The SparkPeople Cookbook includes 160 recipes that use real food, offer generous portions, and a lot of flavor. Meg was motivated by keeping cost, time, and accessibility of the ingredients in mind during the book's development. As such, 150 of the recipes can be made in 30 minutes or less, like the Grilled Fish Tacos with Mango Salsa (20 minutes to the table!). The book also uses a lot of seasonal ingredients, which will help you keep costs down. How? Buying certain fish, fruits, and vegetables outside of their season forces the cost to climb. Why do you think tomatoes are so expensive in the winter?

Features of the book include the "Make a Meal," which shows you how to take a beautiful main entree, like the Roasted Pork Tenderloin with Mustard Dill Sauce, and complete it with well-paired sides for a balanced meal.

You'll also find two weeks of complete meal plans that keep your daily caloric count at about 1500 calories. That amount of calories is far less than what most people are eating, more than enough for a day, and can help people realize weight loss.

Chef Meg cautions though that The SparkPeople Cookbook "is not a diet book." Much like the SparkPeople community that encourages healthy living, the cookbook also promotes a healthy lifestyle. She adds that the book is "reflective of how I eat" and that she hopes it will help other people find their way to eating in a healthy, balanced way that doesn't leave them missing the foods they love.

Her other favorite recipes include the Meg-herita Pizza, which uses quinoa in the dough for added protein (and makes it gluten free!), and a Slow Cooker Chicken Salsa, which is a modification of a SparkPeople community member recipe in which she uses her own homemade taco seasoning to get the sodium down to 30mg. There's also a Beef and Bleu Cheese Sauce sandwich that she's pretty proud of.

The SparkPeople Cookbook is ideal for any daily cook who is conscious about healthy eating or managing their weight. Either way, she says desserts like the Dark Chocolate Angel Food Cake will allow you to have your cake and eat it, too!

Order Your Copy of The SparkPeople Cookbook

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