Wednesday, February 18, 2004

Simple steps make leaner burger cutlets

Recipe Rehab

The days may be getting longer, but the weather is frosty, and hearty meals are still in order. Hamburger Cutlets Parmesan make a cozy family weeknight dinner. Ground beef patties are dusted with flour, dipped in egg, rolled in breadcrumbs, and fried in oil. They're then placed in a baking pan, topped with mozzarella covered with spaghetti sauce, sprinkled with Parmesan and baked. Each serving contains 43 grams of fat.

For this rehab, we:

• Replaced the regular ground beef with a very lean (93 percent or better) variety and reduced the amount from 2 pounds to 11/2 pounds. Because there was less fat in the lean beef, the finished size of the cooked burgers was nearly identical to the original.

• Reduced the number of whole eggs from 2 to 1 and added one egg white.

• Did not fry the patties in oil. Instead, we lightly misted the breaded patties with a vegetable oil spray and broiled them. This allowed the saturated animal fat to drip down and away from the burgers instead of being sealed into the meat and absorbed by the breading.

• Used a lower fat (2 grams or less per 1/2 cup) spaghetti sauce.

Results were excellent. Our testers thought our rehabbed burgers were every bit as tasty as the original. In fact, they preferred them because they lacked the greasy appearance and taste of their high fat counterparts.

Reduced to 14 grams of fat per serving, you will surely enjoy this new twist to an old favorite.

Tip of the Week: The light misting of vegetable oil spray on the breaded burgers allow the crumbs to brown more evenly when placed under the broiler.

Hamburger Cutlets Parmesan

11/2 pounds lean (93 percent or better) ground beef

1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

1 teaspoon seasoned salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

1 whole egg

1 egg white

1/2 cup flour

1/2 cup seasoned bread crumbs

6 slices part-skim mozzarella cheese

1 cup spaghetti sauce with mushrooms (2 grams fat or less per 1/2 cup)

2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese

In large bowl, combine ground beef, parsley, seasoned salt, and pepper. Shape into 6 patties.

In small bowl, beat together egg and egg white. Dip each patty into flour, beaten egg, and then bread crumbs. Lightly spray top and bottom of each patty with vegetable oil spray; place patties on broiler pan. Broil about 5 or 6 inches from heat for 5 minutes per side or until lightly browned.

Place browned patties in single layer in 13-by-9-inch baking dish. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Top each patty with slice of cheese. Pour sauce over all; sprinkle with Parmesan. Bake at 400 degrees for 25 minutes. Makes 6 servings.

Before and after

Based on 1 serving ( 1/6 of recipe)

Hamburger Cutlets Parmesan Adapted
Fat43 g14 g
Carbohydrate24 g21 g
Sodium994 mg930mg
Fiber2 g1 g
Cholesterol196 mg114 mg
Calories from fat
Nutritionists recommend those on daily 2,000 calorie diet limit their fat consumption to 65 g or less, cholesterol to 300 mg or less and sodium to 2,400 mg or less per day.

Karen Weber, Pat Streicher and Ellen Illig are registered dieticians at Jewish Hospital's Cholesterol Center. To have your recipes rehabbed, send them to : Recipe Rehab, The Jewish Hospital Cholesterol Center, 3200 Burnet Ave., Cincinnati 45229.

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