When my wife was recently diagnosed with breast cancer, one of the most important things was for her to continue to eat well, with an appetising, nourishing and varied diet to boost her immune system during the long haul of cancer treatment.
I am the cook in our house and prepare most of our meals. So I went on the hunt for inspiration to help me produce some really seductive dishes.
With a bit of research online, I discovered The Breast Cancer Cookbook by Professor Mohammed Keshtgar, a consultant at the Royal Free Hospital in London. Published by Quadrille, this is not just a cookbook but provides an explanation of what is involved when you have been diagnosed with breast cancer, and deals comprehensively with treatments, diet and lifestyle influences.
Keshtgar suggests the best foods to eat in order to ensure a healthy diet during and after treatment, as well as foods to eat in moderation and those to avoid. Those of us who live in France, however, may not wish to follow his advice against drinking alcohol!
The book offers over 100 easy, inviting recipes, many illustrated with lovely photos. They have been analysed for their calorie, total fat, saturated fat, sugar and salt contents per 100g and per portion to make them appropriate for inclusion in a healthy, balanced diet. They cover meals for all times of day, from breakfast to dinner, including vegetarian recipes, plus desserts and treats, and even suggestions for (non-alcoholic) drinks.
We’ve already sampled a few, including the coconut and lime roasted chicken and the courgette, pea and feta fritters, which were delicious. We are looking forward to trying more of the appetising recipes, such as apple and cinnamon porridge, celeriac soup, butternut squash and pearl barley salad, fish pie, lamb’s liver with sage and wild mushrooms, and Earl Grey poached pears.