By Kristin Donnelly, Senior Food Editor, Food & Wine
While living in Paris, I performed an unintentional experiment with the French paradox: I ate cheese, pâté and bread almost daily but still lost 10 pounds. Walking miles along the Seine helped, but I'd also started eating the French way: smaller portions of better-tasting food, often with wine. Drinking wine isn't necessarily the key to losing weight, but as countless studies have shown, a glass-a-day habit can increase your life span. Now I live in New York City but still eat the French way, with low calorie, wine-friendly dishes like runny eggs baked over mushrooms and spinach, for instance, and a root-vegetable salad with sliced beef. Add a five-ounce glass of wine (at 110 to 130 calories) and the total calorie count is still under 600. And sometimes, there's enough wiggle room for cheese.
Click Here for More Low-Calorie Meals
Warm Shrimp Salad with Kamut, Red Chile and Tarragon
Warm Shrimp Salad with Kamut, Red Chile and Tarragon Paired with a Minerally Rosé
"Kamut is an heirloom variety of wheat with a sweet, almost buttery flavor. I like pink wine with pink shellfish. Minerally Provençal rosés are especially good with my tarragon-scented shrimp."INGREDIENTS
1 cup dried kamut or spelt berries 4 ounces haricots verts, cut into thirds
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 large shallot, halved and thinly sliced
2 teaspoons minced fresh red chile
1 pound medium shrimp, shelled and deveined
1/4 cup dry white wine or dry vermouth
1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped tarragon
Lemon wedges, for serving
1. In a heavy medium saucepan, toast the kamut over moderately high heat until fragrant, 3 to 4 minutes. Add 4 cups of water and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer over moderately low heat until the grains are tender, 1 hour 10 minutes; drain off any excess water.
2. In a medium, deep skillet, combine the haricots verts with 1/4 cup of water. Cover and steam over moderately high heat, stirring, until crisp-tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Drain.
3. Wipe out the skillet. Melt the butter in the oil over moderately high heat. Add the shallot, season with salt and cook, stirring, until softened, 2 minutes. Add the chile and cook, stirring, until fragrant. Add the shrimp, season with salt and cook, stirring, until just pink, 3 minutes. Add the wine and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Stir in the kamut and haricots verts and cook until hot. Stir in the tarragon, season with salt and serve with lemon wedges.
Notes: One Serving 330 cal, 6 gm fat, 2.2 gm sat fat, 40 gm carb, 6 gm fiber, 30 gm protein.
Whole Roasted Fish with Potatoes and Thyme.
Whole Fish Roasted and Potatoes Paired with an Unoaked, Lemony White
Calories per recipe serving: 388
"Roasted fish recipes as simple as this one can showcase crisp whites with some complexity. I go for a Sancerre." View recipe.
Roast Beef with Root-Vegetable-and-Green-Peppercorn Salad.
Roast Beef with Root-Vegetable-and-Green-Peppercorn Salad Paired with a Cabernet Franc
Calories per recipe serving: 407
"Brined green peppercorns aren't particularly popular, but Kristin Donnelly loves them in a dressing for sweet roasted fall vegetables and roast beef." View recipe.
Eggs Baked Over Sautéed Mushrooms and Spinach.
Eggs Baked Over Sautéed Mushrooms and Spinach Paired with a Light, Fruity Red
Calories per recipe serving: 323
"Drinking wine with eggs at lunch always feels so French to Kristin Donnelly, likely thanks to Elizabeth David's famous essay, 'An Omelette and a Glass of Wine.'" View recipe.
Chicken and Noodles in Spiced Broth.
Chicken and Noodles in Spiced Broth Paired with an Off-Dry Riesling
Calories per recipe serving: 277
"Alternative healers use star anise to fight cold and flu symptoms. Melissa Rubel Jacobson combines the licorice-scented spice with cinnamon and ginger-both stomach soothers-to flavor a restorative chicken-noodle soup." View recipe.Click Here for More Low-Calorie Meals