Your Soul Food Lovers' Newsletter


Volume #019


Welcome New Friends
What’s New!
Feature Article: Part 3 - Healthier Soul Food Alternatives -
Soul Food Column
Cassandra’s Cooking Tips
Soul Food Care Package
Soul Food Resource Center (New)
Link to Your Gift: New Trends in Soul Food Cooking



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Again, welcome, sit back, relax, and enjoy this newsletter.


Soul Food Lovers’ Cookbook will be going into the second printing in April, 2008.

Soul Food was listed as one of the 5 Top Soul Food Recipe Websites by Associated Content.


Healthier Soul Food Alternatives - Part 3
By Cassandra Harrell

In this issue of Healthier Soul Food Alternatives, I will take a variety of soul food recipes and offer ideas and suggestions for making them lighter and healthier--This is the perfect opportunity for you to start a collection of low fat soul food recipes.

Healthier Soul Food Alternatives - Part 3

Many soul foods salads can be made healthier just be changing a few ingredients around. You can also substitute many items without eliminating taste.

In this issue, I am going to take a few simple soul food low fat salad recipes and discuss each one.

6 carrots, shredded
1 8 ½ ounce can crushed pineapple, drained
1 11 ounce can mandarin oranges, drained
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon Splenda or sweeten to taste
¼ cup low-calorie salad dressing or low-fat mayonnaise

Combine carrots, crushed pineapple, orange sections, lemon juice and Splenda. Add salad dressing; blend well. Yield: 4-6 servings.

3 c. carrots, shredded
2 c. crushed pineapple drained
1 c. raisins, seedless
2 c. red apples, unpeeled and diced
1½ to 2 c. light mayonnaise or salad dressing

Mix carrots, pineapple, raisins, and apples together. Add mayonnaise. Blend well. Chill. Yield: 8 to 10 servings.

Any time a recipe call for fruit, that’s a good thing. However, when there is salad dressing or sugar involved, it becomes a different story. In the recipes above you can use Splenda instead of sugar and low-fat or fat-free salad dressing. Just be substituting a few ingredients, makes these salads a healthy choice.

1 cup low-fat mayonnaise
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon Splenda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
6 cups shredded cabbage
1 cup shredded carrots
3/4 cup onion, chopped

Combine mayonnaise, lemon juice, sugar, salt, and pepper. Mix well. Stir in cabbage, carrots, onion. Cover and chill. Yield: 6 cups.

This low fat cole slaw recipe is a true winner with Splenda and low-fat mayonnaise. It taste great!

1 (12-oz.) pkg. macaroni
1 c. celery, chopped
½ c. green pepper, chopped
½ c onion, chopped
¼ c. pimiento, chopped
1 lb. cooked medium shrimp
½ c. light mayonnaise
1 T lemon juice
½ c. light sour cream
Salt and pepper to taste, optional
Parsley, dried

Cook macaroni according to package directions; drain and rinse in cold water. Combine macaroni, celery, green peppers, onions, pimiento and shrimp. Add mayonnaise, lemon juice, sour cream, salt and pepper to macaroni mixture; blend well. Chill 2 hours. Before serving, sprinkle with parsley. Yield: 4 to 6 servings.

This reduced fat macaroni and shrimp salad is a healthy choice and very nutritious. The light mayonnaise and sour cream is the perfect blend for this low fat dish.

2-1/2 pounds red potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 cup light or reduced fat mayonnaise
1/2 cup low fat sour cream
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon celery seed
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
8 ounces low-fat Monterey Jack cheese, cubed or shredded
2 cups diced fully cooked ham, reduced fat
3/4 cup chopped fresh tomatoes
1/4 cup sliced green onions
1/4 cup minced fresh parsley

Place potatoes in a large saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and cook for 15-20 minutes or until tender. Drain.

In a large bowl, combine potatoes, mayonnaise, sour cream, mustard, celery seed, salt and pepper; mix well. Add cheese, ham, tomatoes, and onions. Mix well. Add parsley on top. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

Several ingredients in this cheesy ham and potato recipe have been reduced down to low fat versions. This salad is very delicious and the reduced fat ingredients does not alter the taste.

Next month, watch for Part 4 of Healthier Soul Food Alternatives. Don’t miss it!


SOUL FOOD COLUMN - What are Southern Peas?


The Southern pea family includes Blackeyed Peas, Cream Peas, Field Peas, and Purple Hull Peas. These peas provide hearty taste in a low-fat, high-protein, high-fiber package.

Crowder peas are also considered southern peas, however, the crowder pea got its name because they are square in shape and a larger pea and are often has the strongest flavor from the other peas.

Southern Peas are grown mainly in Southern states, as they are very susceptible to cold weather. They blossom in shades of purple, yellow, and white and are known for their attractive leaves. Pods hang down or thrust up and out from the stems, changing color as they mature. Most Southern peas produce pods in the 6 to 7 inch range. Mature pods can be eaten whole, like snap beans or snow peas. But more commonly they are left to grow and then harvested at the "green shell" or "dry seed" stages.

The green shell stage is when the peas begin to swell in the pods but they’re still soft, chewable, and sweet. This is the stage at which we can our Southern pea products. These peas can be boiled or baked.

Resources: Information for this article provide by Allen’s Inc.

1 Smoked turkey wing
5 cups water
1 (16-0z) pkg black-eyed peas, or frozen, or 2 cups fresh peas
1 medium onion, chopped
½ teaspoon red pepper
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
Salt and pepper to taste

In a medium pot, combine water, turkey, onion, and red pepper. Cook until turkey is done. Add peas, oil, salt and pepper. Add more water as needed. Continue cooking over medium heat for 20 to 30 minutes until peas are done.



· Learn to read the nutrition label on foods to determine the fat content.

· Try using turkey and leaner bacon, sausage and ham. Read the package for leaner cuts of your favorite cold cuts.

· Meats with the word “loin” or “round” carry less fat and calories.

· Bake or roast raw meat such as beef and chicken. Chicken can be baked in skin to maintain its moisture and taste. Remove skin after cooking.

· Try using sugar substitute instead of regular sugar.

Watch for more exciting cooking tips!



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Cassandra Harrell is an avid soul food lover and the author of the new Soul Food Lovers’ Cookbook with 250 easy-to-follow soul food and southern recipes from three generations of Southern cooks. Throughout the cookbook you’re find helpful cooking tips and fun recipe stories about the dish.

Cassandra Harrell
Editor & Soul Food Advisor
(c) copyright 2007 Soul Food Advisor