A new cookbook that presents the many ways that textured soy protein can be used as a healthy and delicious ingredient in the average American kitchen has been published by the Illinois Center for Soy Foods at the University of Illinois. This illustrated, full-color publication entitled Textured Vegetable Protein in the American Kitchen is the second in an ongoing series of soy foods cookbooks.

"Textured soy protein can best be looked at as a typically American soy food," says Barbara Klein, editor of the book and co-director of the Center. "It is a quick-cooking food with the texture and nutritional value of meat. It can serve as a valuable addition to the kitchens of people who are looking for a quick and inexpensive source of protein and a way to cut back on fat in their diets."

Textured soy protein is generally made from whole or defatted soybeans that have been texturized and then ground into granules or chunks of varying sizes. Consumers can buy this product under a variety of names--textured soy protein, textured vegetable protein, textured soy flour, TSP (a registered trademark of PMS Foods LP), and TVP (a registered trademark of Archer Daniels Midland Company). For simplicity, the term "TVP" was used in the cookbook.

"TVP provides a complete protein that includes all the essential amino acids," Klein said. "It is virtually fat free and has no cholesterol. It is also very low in sodium and high in dietary fiber. TVP also retains soy's isoflavones, which are special components in soy that contribute to its ability to prevent disease."

The cookbook was designed in an easy-to-use format, with a spiral binding that allows it to lie flat for efficient use in the kitchen. Nutritional information, including calorie, fat, carbohydrate, and protein counts, is provided for each recipe. It also contains helpful general information on buying, storing, and efficiently using TSP.

The book can be ordered at a price of $15 per copy by calling toll free at 800-345-6087. Additional information, sample recipes, and an on-line order form for the cookbook and the other title in the series, Tofu in the American Kitchen, are also available on the Internet at www.soyfoodsillinois.uiuc.edu.