What is a gourmet? Webster’s dictionary defines the noun gourmet as someone who enjoys fine food and drink, an epicure; the adjective gourmet as characteristic of high quality or skilled preparation…okay, I’ll take that! Now let us add in parameters: low-fat or fat-free, incredible tastes and flavors. Throw in a 100% Italian family background of chefs and bakers, and there you have it: The Fat Free Gourmet and that would be me, Melinda!

Now that you know who I am, you should know why. it might be good to throw in some personal passion for this endeavor, to, as Emeril L. would say,  “take it up a notch”. High-cholesterol, high blood pressure and two strokes killed my father at the age of 64. He wouldn’t change his eating habits. I was 20, changed mine, and have always eaten a low-fat diet ever since. I suffered a heart attack and subsequent quadruple by-pass surgery at the age of 55, that was eight months ago.. My Cardiologist said that nasty ol’ heart attack would have visited me 10 to 15 years earlier and the outcome may have been completely different had I not practiced  a healthy lifestyle. I’ll take that too!

Why the heart attack if I was eating healthy and exercising? Well, genetics played a part in it too.  I was exercising and had cut the fat but forgot to cut something else: stress. I re-wrote that recipe, and cut more stress out of my life. I’m all good now, no heart damage by the way, my healthy habits got me through the ordeal with flying colors! As an added bonus, I did not have to re-learn eating or exercise habits, I was on the correct road with that, and I am almost as good as new again – a happy-ending to a probable sad story!

Do I eat absolutely zero fat?  Not quite, but I do keep it very low. Do I use my recipes to control the amount of fat that I consume? Absolutely. Do I crave fat? No, the food is fabulous! I can cook anything from fat filled to fat-free, but why should I when both recipes turn out just as epicuriously delicious?! That my friends, is a rhetorical statement of fact.

Give me two hours in the kitchen with you and I will show you how to prepare reduced fat gourmet dishes that will have even your children asking for seconds! Understand that cooking is an art and a science –  cooking with little or no fat is learned. It is not solely a matter of switching out ingredients,  that is where the disillusionment of low-fat and fat-free comes into play. You need the right recipes, some new cooking techniques and you will be good to go! Trust me on this one – would an Italian girl lead you astray when it comes to good food? Not likely!!

So grab a glass of good red wine, Cabernet is my favorite, and a serving of dark chocolate, then let’s visit on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, or check out some of my recipes at:

Epicuriously yours,