Posts Tagged ‘vegetables’

The healthiest vegetable award goes to…

Watercress!

watercress

 

A recent study (William Paterson University, America) found that watercress is the most nutrient rich vegetable (nutrients such as fibre, Vitamin D, A etc per 100 calories)

Nutrient density is not a new concept. For those familiar with the concept/theory of ‘Functional Foods’ you would be aware of the health and healing properties of various fruit and vegetable groups, such as, the cruciferous group. This is a great concept for using food as medicine and healing (and preventing disease!) through the use of food.

What’s the easiest way to include more watercress in your diet? Salads! Easily add a handful to any of your usual salads or sprinkle a small amount over meats, pastas and pizzas.

How did the other fruits and vegetables rank? See below! (Source: Time)

Item Nutrient Density Score
Watercress 100.00
Chinese cabbage 91.99
Chard 89.27
Beet green 87.08
Spinach 86.43
Chicory 73.36
Leaf lettuce 70.73
Parsley 65.59
Romaine lettuce 63.48
Collard green 62.49
Turnip green 62.12
Mustard green 61.39
Endive 60.44
Chive 54.80
Kale 49.07
Dandelion green 46.34
Red pepper 41.26
Arugula 37.65
Broccoli 34.89
Pumpkin 33.82
Brussels sprout 32.23
Scallion 27.35
Kohlrabi 25.92
Cauliflower 25.13
Cabbage 24.51
Carrot 22.60
Tomato 20.37
Lemon 18.72
Iceberg lettuce 18.28
Strawberry 17.59
Radish 16.91
Winter squash (all varieties) 13.89
Orange 12.91
Lime 12.23
Grapefruit (pink and red) 11.64
Rutabaga 11.58
Turnip 11.43
Blackberry 11.39
Leek 10.69
Sweet potato 10.51
Grapefruit (white) 10.47

Healthy Gummy Treats

Enjoy eating lollies such as gummy bears but looking for a healthy alternative? Try fruit & vegetable gummy treats!

It’s as easy as….
1. Making 1 1/2 cups of juice (poured into a small pot). I made my juice by blending the ingredients in a food processor rather then a juicer to ensure I didn’t lose any nutrients.
2. Sprinkle over 4 tablespoons of gelatine or agar and allowing it to sit for approx 5 minutes before stirring through the gelatine/agar and ensuring it is mixed well
3. Gently heat the mixture through over the stove for a few minutes to ensure the gelatine/agar is completely dissolved-do not allow to boil!
4. You can add some honey or a tablespoon of Vital Greens/Spirulina powder etc if you wish
5. Pour the mixture into an ice cube tray and slice tin. Refrigerate for a couple of hours to set.

The gummy treats I made below are kale, parsley, cucumber, kiwi fruit & lemon with vital greens added.
You can try any combination….just think about what you would put in your favourite juice!

gummy

Cheesy Vegetable Pulp Muffins

I often make vegetable juices at home and put the pulp into my Bakashi bin to try and minimise waste. Recently though I’ve been wondering how I might use the pulp in some cooking. So, I randomly made up a recipe to make muffins with the pulp, buckwheat flour and cheese. Random!

These are the veggies I used in the juice I was making…..2 cucumbers, 3 carrots, broccoli, 1 beetroot, 1 orange and a few celery sticks

This is my juice ūüôā

This is the bowl of pulp! I removed the larger chunks.

You will also need….
2 Cups of Buckwheat flour
1 1/4 cups of unsweetened almond milk
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 cup of grated tasty cheese

This is what it looked like when all mixed together

Mix everything together and spoon into muffin trays. Bake at 170 degrees celcius for about 15minutes.

Top with extra goodies such as pepitas, sesame seeds or chia seeds.

Makes approx 20 muffins.

Make Your Own Spelt Pasta

For the freshest, best tasting and free of nasties pasta….make your own!
You will need
  • 2¬†cups¬†spelt flour
  • 3 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1¬†pinch salt

Directions:

  1. Sift the flour and salt.
  2. Beat the eggs
  3. Make a well in the flour and then stir in the eggs
  4. Finish mixing with hands and then knead on a lightly floured surface. Knead until the mixture comes together
  5. Cover in cling wrap and allow to rest for 20 minutes.
  6. Roll with a pasta press or rolling pin.
    To make the sauce seen here, roast a variety of vegetables in the oven. Heat a tin of diced tomatoes in a pot on the stove with garlic and basil mixed through. Once hot, add the roast vegetables and cook for a couple of minutes.

Organic Produce

I recently tried produce from an organic food company and was very happy with the loot I received! The quality was great and it felt good to know that I was eating locally grown and sustainable food.

So it got me thinking…..what really are the pros and cons of organic produce?

Pros of Organic Foods

  • Enhancement of soil quality;
  • Some research finds that organic foods are richer in certain nutrients;
  • Although taste is subjective, there is a school of thought suggesting that organic food is more appealing to the tastebuds;
  • Ensures humane treatment of animals;
  • Increases land biodiversity;

Cons of Organic Foods

  • Generally more expensive;
  • Although, there is a greater demand and supply of organic food, it is not as readily available as conventional foods.¬† In saying that, however, big grocery chains are now beginning to stock a wider range of organic foods;
  • Organic fruits and vegetables are produced according to the seasons, making it more difficult to purchase a specific food when needed at any time of the year.

Pros of Conventional Foods

  • Cheaper;
  • Greater supply all year round;
  • Can be purchased at any grocery outlet;
  • Readily available.

Cons of Conventional Foods

  • Toxic residues;
  • Negative effects on the environment;
  • Does not have animal welfare at the forefront of its farming methods;
  • Some research suggests that conventional fruits and vegetables may not be as rich in nutrients as organic foods;
  • Often conventional foods have been stored in cold rooms for many months.
If you live in the Melbourne area, I highlight recommend Organic Origins. They deliver and there are a range of fruit and vegetable boxes as well as other organic food products that they deliver.

Purple Carrots

So purple carrots sound like they are some new GM food….but surprisingly, they are the original carrot! Originally from ancient Persia, they are making a comeback and are full of anti-inflammatory properties and antioxidants.

There are up to 28 times more anthocyanins – the antioxidant that creates the purple-red pigment in blueberries and raspberries – in purple carrots than there are in orange ones.

It can be a bit tricky to find them. I bought them once from a farmers market. I hear that they are available at the Victoria Market also.

10 Vegetable Lamb Shepherds Pie…yum!

As you read in my last post, I’m not very good at following recipes, so don’t expect to see any quantities for the ingredients in this recipe! Do expect however for it to be delicious and healthy!

I have highlighted all of the ingredients you will need to add to your shopping list!

Start by cutting up a small butternut pumpkin and a medium sized sweet potato into chunks. Steam and mash.

Next, you will need the following (diced where applicable):
Broccoli
Cauliflower
Zucchini
Carrot
Onion
Parsley
Garlic

Brown the onion in a pan and then add some curry powder and turmeric.

Next add lamb mince and brown.

Add all of the veggies, except the mashed sweet potato and pumpkin.

After a few minutes mix in a tin of organic lentils and a tin of diced tomatoes.

Once combined, transfer to a casserole dish, cover with mash and then with foil.

Cook for about 35min and then take off the foil and cook for another 10mins.

Enjoy!

It’s all about the Vegies

I came across this blog written by a woman who seems to have the same passion as me….a love of veggies and everything sugar free!
The blog is called ‘For the love of veggies’. Click here to visit it.

Eating a variety of vegetables will change your life! You will see you skin, hair and nails change. It will effect your mood and stress levels. You may also even notice your energy levels improving!

So for those days where it’s all getting a bit much….use this as your mantra!