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LE REGIME de la mer
or slimming with seafoods

Tighten your belt and sharpen your taste-buds!

By Philippe Broad 

This book of slim-line cuisine by one of the world's seafood specialists contains no less than 180 mouth-watering recipes using a vast array of shellfish, crustaceans and fish.

When approaching the subject, Jacques Le Divellec and diet specialist friend Yvette Pécau, set themselves the daunting task of putting you back into shape while drooling with pleasure. Too bad we had to stay plump this long, but the wait was worth it.

You'll find no miracle diet based on controversial theories in this book. The first 29 pages devoted successively to L'équilibre alimentaire (balanced diet), Comment perdre du poids (How to loose weight), and La solution: le régime de la mer (The answer: slimming with seafoods), contains a lot of common sense information (which one tends to forget), and plenty of useful tips on how to marry protein, carbo-hydrates and fats to reach the right blend of calories. You'll find a series of handy charts to learn what each slice of toast, raw vegetable salad or glass of wine is about to "cost" you, but the smile does return to your face when you come to the series of tasty menus running from 310 kcals to a party menu at 850 kcals! A minor criticism regarding this section: when one knows the extent to which physical exercise, if only a good steady walk, can be precious in burning excess fat, a chart showing calorie expenditure by type of activity would have made a interesting complement to this section.

The next section (25 pages), devoted to seafoods contains a mine of general information on the different species, their origin and how to cook them or not cook them, as the case may be! If you are new-comer to preparing seafoods, you will find this section particularly helpful. Navigation within the book is made easy thanks to three indexes at the end which allow you to locate a recipe instantly either by alphabetical order, calorie value or main ingredient.

In this way you can start at the bottom of the calorie scale with a Cod's head consommé (40 kcals), then move on to Sautéed scampi with basil (170 kcals), or 7 recipes for Mussels (80 to 260 kcals) - now's the season!, a Salad of lobster, endives and apple (200 kcals), Octopus bouillabaisse ( 240 kcals), Bass roast in clay (240 kcals), Small pan-fried monktails with crispy garlic (405 kcals), Stirr-fried salt cod with wild mushrooms (300 kcals), Red mullet with red pepper and pimento purée (285 kcals) or with olives (215 kcals), Dandelion salad with salmon sticks (260 kcals), Carpaccio of tuna fish (195 kcals) or simply make a pig of yourself with Ailloli at 595 kcals!

If you're really intent on slimming down, just give in to temptation and get on with it. If you simply enjoy cooking, you'll get a lot of pleasure out of this book. There are recipes for all tastes and to suit every purse.

Now, for those of you feeling outrageously fat and determined to make it to the beach this year, click here for the Cod's head consommé at only 40 kcals. Save your pennies whilst you're on this low-budget dish; you'll face a price-hike with the next dish on the calorie scale; Flat oysters with a sabayon of chives! On the other hand if you're at the top of your form, go direct to the top of the calorie scale and sink your teeth into that South of France special, l'Ailloli (pronounced eye-o-lee). Bon appétit! and let's hope publishers in the U.K. and U.S. see the value of translating this book.

LE REGIME de la mer (or Slimming with Seafoods)
Jacques Le Divellec & Yvette Pécau
HACHETTE - Collection Pratique
288 pages (no illustrations of dishes)
Price in France: Frs 95
Available in French only, for the present

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