Smooth as Silk


Compiled by the
Laryngectomee Association
of N.S.W.


Whatever your age, eating is essential for good health and should also be a pleasant pastime. However there are those among us who because of their condition come to regard eating as a chore. Amongst these are those who have chewing or swallowing difficulties and it is for these people that this cookbook is compiled.

We have endeavored to include 'starters', 'mains' and 'sweets while at the same time taking into account a balanced and nutritional diet.

We have also included a few helpful (we hope) hints which will make the meals more attractive.

All of our recipes are suitable for all the family and guests as well so that the one with difficulties does not feel out of the party.


There are I feel two basic rules to follow when confronted by this problem:-

You will soon find this sort of cooking is easy and you will develop your own ideas and hints.


Although it is important to start the day with a good breakfast it is not always easy to think of something smooth and slippery, specially if you have always been the packaged cereal, eggs bacon and toast type.

So here are a few suggestions:-


People with eating difficulties are often happier with lots of little meals, and although there is often nothing more comforting than a good cup of tea with a couple of 'dunked' biscuits, it is often wiser to have something more substantial.
Here are a few suggestions:-


Most of these recipes can also be used as luncheon, or snack meals - adjust servings to suit.

Almost all soups can be served if they are first put through the food processor - so use your own favourite soup recipes. When they are pureed they often look a bit uninteresting so use a garnish to pep them up a bit. Some suitable garnishes are:-

Use your imagination, but make sure the garnish goes with the flavour of the soup.

Parsley goes with just about anything, mint is excellent on lamb vegetable soup, sour cream and cinnamon is very good on pumpkin soup, thyme on poultry soups, tomato paste looks dramatic on cream soups etc etc.


Most family meals can be modified to serve to a person with swallowing/chewing difficulties- it just takes a little thought.

Stews and casseroles can be processed until smooth and served with a selection of colourful pureed vegetables and mashed potatoes. When serving a roast, puree a serve of the meat, put onto the plate and pour the gravy over it.

It is a good idea to cook a quantity of each vegetable to be served to the person with difficulties, puree and freeze in serving sized portions. These can then be quickly reheated in the microwave when required. Vegetables which puree well are :- Pumpkin (choose a dry variety eg JAP);     spinach or silver beet - well drained; peas; carrot; parsnip; swede turnip; young beans; sprouts; cauliflower and grated cheese. Experiment for yourself - drain all vegetables well before pureeing.

Pasta dishes - puree the pasta sauce until smooth and serve over spaghetti cooked a little past al dente. Oriental dishes usually served with rice - puree until smooth and serve with steamed rice noodles.



This often seems more difficult than it need be, but a bit of forethought can go along way.



As many people with swallowing difficulties are in a debilitated state they probably need a high protein diet - here are a few tips for achieving this:

  • Make your own stock and enrich it.
  • Beef Stock: Use meaty beef bones available from your butcher - the higher the ratio of beef and bones to water the richer the stock. Cover the bones with water and bring to the boil and simmer for at least one hour. Strain and set liquid aside to cool and remove all fat. Remove all meat from bones and add this to soup before processing. Cooked meat will process to a fine powder which is all protein.
  • Chicken stock: Using chicken necks or carcasses follow method as for beef stock.
  • Skim milk powder is a good source of protein and can be added to any soups during processing.