Spiralizing: Turn Vegetables into Healthy – Creative – Satisfying Meals

Spiralizing: Turn Vegetables Into Health - Creative - Satisfying Meals

A Cozy Kitchen - spiralizing Zucchini into noodles

Image Credit: A Cozy Kitchen – A Manual Spiralizer – Turning Zucchini Into Pasta Noodles

The spiralizer is a culinary gadget that has quickly become a must have in kitchens all around the world. Put simply, the spiralizer is a tool that allows a kitchen cook to turn vegetables into noodles. Lisa Richards author of The Candida Diet (www.thecandidadiet.com) says, “Quitting Refined Carbs? The Spiralizer Is Your New Best Friend.”

With the spiral slicer you can conjure up endless julienne strips of carrot, radish, cucumber, and all kinds of other firm vegetables. The unqiue spirals are perfect to create vegetable stir-fries or pasta.

julienne spiral peelerThe mechanism can be purchased as a manual counter top, hand held or even a julienne peeler.

The counter top spirlizer has sharp blades, that allows you to feed any kind of vegetable through the system, and the hand held has thin blades built into the plastic funnel like gadget, and the julienne peeler is much like a vegetable or fruit peeler.

How A Spirlizer Works

Vegetable SpiralizerThe mechanism is simple. The hand held is made in the shape much like a funnel. Place the vegetable at one end of the funnel, and firmly push the vegetable into the funnel while twisting the vegetable. The built-in blades will spiral the vegetable into noodles.

The counter top spiral is much the same. Using nothing more than gentle pressure, turn the handle and gently slide the vegetable through the spiralizing blades.

The julienne peeler is simple. Just hold the vegetable in one hand while placing the peeler at the top of the vegetable and slide it down over the surface of the produce.

What ever spiraler you chose, you will always be left with perfectly formed vegetable noodles ready for instant use. It really is that simple – there’s no chopping or preparation involved. Choose your vegetable and away you go!

Forking Yellow Summer Squash Pasta and SauceMexican Squash Pasta with Chorizo Meat SauceHere are two recipes that we used a julienne spiral peeler to turn squash into vegetable noodles.

Click here for the recipe to: Mexican Squash Pasta with Chorizo Meat Sauce

Click here for the recipe to: Yellow Summer Squash Pasta and Sauce

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Lentils and Purple Sweet Potato Stew

Lentils and Purple Sweet Potato Stew

Lentils as well as any legume are an inexpensive source of protein, as well  as fat-free, high in fiber and rich in a number of essential nutrients. Adding lentils to your diet offers a number of health benefits, from controlling your weight to promoting heart health.

varieties of lentils You need 25 to 30 grams of fiber everyday, and one half cup of lentils will supply 8 grams of that fiber. Fiber in foods helps suppress appetite, helping you to manage and maintain a healthy weight.  Eating a diet that is rich in dietary fiber also decreases LDL (bad) cholesterol levels in your body.

If you have diabetes or are at risk of developing diabetes, fiber rich foods can also help in the regulation of sugar in the blood stream.

According to the World Health Organization iron deficiency is the most common nutritional disorder in the world, and 1/2 cup of lentils provides 3.3 milligrams in a 1/2-cup serving.

Keep in mind though, that your body can’t absorb as much iron from plant-based foods, including lentils as it does from meat sources. Eating lentils with a food rich in vitamin-C, such as sweet peppers, can help improve absorption.

As you might have guessed by now our featured recipe has lentils, and to  help your body take advantage of the iron in them, the recipe includes vitamin-C sources, including green beans, carrots, and celery.

Our featured recipe is: Lentils and Purple Sweet Potato Stew, and here is what you will need.

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 medium yellow onion, chopped

2 medium rainbow carrots, sliced (colors include yellow, purple, and red)

2 medium celery stalks, sliced

1 bay leaf

1 garlic clove, minced

1 1/2 teaspoons curry powder

2 cups dried green lentils, picked over and rinsed

2 medium purple sweet potatoes, 1/2-inch dice

9 ounces fresh green beans, trimmed and cut into 1/2 inch slices

1 – 14 1/2-ounce can diced tomatoes in juice

1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Himalayan salt and fresh ground black pepper

Whole leaf cilantro and plain Greek yogurt, for garnishing

chopped vegetables for Lentils and Purple Sweet Potato Stew

Prepare vegetables and in a extra- large saucepan, heat oil over medium-high. Add the onion, carrots, celery, and bay leaf. Cook the vegetables while stirring until they are softened, about 5 to 7 minutes. Next add the garlic and curry powder and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.

Next add 7 cups of fresh water and the green lentils. Turn heat to high and bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, cover the pot, and cook 10 minutes.

Next add the sweet potatoes and continue to cook, with the pot covered, until the lentils and sweet potatoes are just tender, about 15 minutes.

Nest add the green beans and can of diced tomatoes with juice, and cook until warmed through, 2 to 4 minutes. Remove bay leaf from stew pot, and add the chopped cilantro and stir until combined. Season with salt and pepper.

Bowl of Lentils and Purple Sweet Potato Stew

Serve with a dollop of yogurt and whole cilantro leaves. Enjoy!!

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Baked Garlic and Broccoli

Baked Garlic and Broccoli

Broccoli is a cruciferous vegetable, capable of irradiating cells from your body that would otherwise become cancerous. It is a vegetable among others in its class that stimulates the lymphatic system to detox your body as well.

As for garlic, it’s your digestive aid, antibacterial, and anti-inflammation friend. If you don’t like garlic, maybe you should get to know it better, because it fights off cancer as well.

Let’s get started with our featured recipe: Baked Garlic and Broccoli. It’s a very simple and tasty recipe, as well as a nice way to enjoy broccoli with the pure flavor of fresh garlic.

Here are the few ingredients you will need.

Ingredients for - Baked Garlic Broccoli1 cup broccoli florets

6-8 garlic cloves

2 tbsp. olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste

This recipe makes two (2) servings. Double it to serve four (4) servings or triple it to serve six (6).

Tenderizing the Broccoli Marinate the broccoli florets for 30 minutes with the olive oil and salt, so that they become tender.

Garlic and Broccoli on a baking sheetPreheat the oven to 350 F for 5 minutes. Spread out evenly the broccoli florets and garlic cloves onto a baking sheet.

Place the baking sheet in the oven, and bake for 10 minutes. Toss the broccoli and garlic, then continue to bake for for another 10-15 minutes or until broccoli browned a little but not burnt.

Baked Garlic and BroccoliRemove from oven and let cool about 3 to 5 minutes. Place into a serving bowl, and make it a side with your favorite meat dish.

If you wish you can add other vegetables to the baking sheet, like carrots or zucchini. Enjoy!

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Good Reasons To Eat Whole Fresh Vegetables Every Day

Good Reasons To Eat Whole Fresh Vegetables Every Day

Many people who my be over weight or obese, are concerned about how to lose weight. When combined with exercise, a healthy diet that consists of complex carbohydrates, healthy fats, and protein, can help you lose weight and maintain a healthy weight, also lowering your cholesterol levels, controlling blood glucose, and improving any other body functions on a daily basis.

Young Lady selling whole fresh vegetables at a farmers market There are so many ideas that my be complex or complicated when it comes to the word diet. Our bodies are an intricate machine, and it needs a variety of whole foods to maintain good health, and vegetables are an interrelated part of that process.

A diet should not consist of demonizing some foods or limiting what you eat. Your diet should be a life style.

We have here a video presentation on the importance of including fresh whole vegetables everyday as part of a life style diet that doesn’t limit you access to foods. As we mentioned our bodies are an intricate machine, and are a part of earth’s nature.

The way food was meant to be naturally seeded, grown, and harvested meets the body’s needs for nutrients, including vitamins and minerals. 

 

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The Broccoli – Essence of Real Food

The Broccoli – Essence of Real Food

The Broccoli – Essence of Real FoodWhen you were a youngster you probably didn’t see what was so great about broccoli. What you didn’t know then, but probably know now is that broccoli is the essence of real food, as it has been dubbed one of many, a super food.

The broccoli from top to bottom is overflowing with macro-nutrients, including vitamins and minerals that are needed for overall health and well-being. This vegetable has been around for millenniums, and has forever been used and viewed as the ideal go-to food.

It’s healthy, can be eaten in a number of different ways, comes with a variety of benefits, is easy to cook, and offers the body a boost of vitamins and minerals in every serving.

Continue reading to get an overall understanding of this vegetable, the essence of real food.

Understanding the Broccoli from Top to Bottom

Broccoli is an edible plant that closely resembles the cauliflower, and is associated to the cabbage family. It’s a vegetable that originated in Italy, and was first mentioned of about 2,000 years ago.

Due to the broccoli’s rich green color, and its counterpart the purple broccoli, both are high in antioxidants and macro-nutrients for excellent health.

Anatomy of the BroccoliAfter harvesting the broccoli plant and removing the root system, it contains three main parts:

  • Flowery Head
  • Leaves
  • Stalk

The root system of the broccoli plant needs nutrient rich soil in order to grow and support the plant and produce its vital vitamins and minerals.

Broccoli plants need to be watered often in order to keep the plant hydrated and well fed as it approaches maturity.

The leaves and stalk are lesser known parts of the broccoli plant because gardeners and farmers often discard these pieces at harvest. However, they are actually edible and highly nutritious.

Broccoli leaves can be long and thin or short and wide and grow along the stalk. They are often blue-green in color and thicken towards the head of the plant.

The crowning head is the part of the broccoli most familiar to people. Sometimes called the curd or the head, the top of the broccoli is most commonly eaten. This head is made of small, dense edible floral shoots. Usually, the head is harvested long before the shoots, or little florets open.

There are two cultivars of broccoli, purple and green, though the green shoots are most commonly cultivated by gardeners. The best environment for planting and harvesting broccoli,  is in full sun, with plenty of water, and nutrient rich soil.

Broccoli Rates High In Nutrition

broccoli head and leavesBroccoli is a great food to eat as it contains various nutrients that hold anti-cancer properties and support a strong, healthy immune system.

Broccoli is an essential source of energy, healthy complex carbohydrates, protein, and low in fat.

Nutrients: Broccoli contains vitamin-C and many of the B-vitamins, including thiamine, niacin, riboflavin and folate. It also has traces of calcium, iron, potassium, and phosphorous.

High Fiber: Need more fiber in your diet? Look no further as broccoli is high in fiber. The fiber in broccoli can help support heart health, lower LDL (bad) cholesterol and helps support healthy weight management because it is filling and low in calories.

How to Prepare Broccoli

Meat and Broccoli Stir-FryBroccoli can be steamed, boiled, microwaved, stir-fried, or eaten raw.

However, over cooking or boiling broccoli has been proven to reduce levels of anti-carcinogenic compounds present in the food. It is therefore best to steam it until it reaches a bright green color, but no longer.

Adding Broccoli to Your Diet

broccoli at the farmers marketAdding broccoli to your regular daily diet can help increase your overall health.

Have broccoli as a side dish at dinner, add broccoli to a salad for lunch, chopped broccoli with eggs or in an omelet for breakfast, and even eaten raw as a healthy snack is a great way to include this essence of real food to your diet (recommended not to eat raw if you have a low thyroid problem).

All parts of the broccoli can be juiced, as it makes a great addition to any green juice. Juice it along with kale, spinach, green apples, celery, cucumber, ginger and lemon.

You’re not a kid anymore, so enjoy the essence of real food. Enjoy eating broccoli.

Enjoy our recipe using broccoli: Chopped Broccoli Tomato and Bacon Salad (includes a video).

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Be Health Wise Don’t Skip Breakfast

Be Health Wise Don't Skip Breakfast

Skipping breakfast is not a wise choice if you want to maintain a healthy body and healthy weight.

It is reported that if you skip breakfast you are 55% more likely to drink carbonated drinks, 40% more likely to eat candy, such as milk chocolate, and 45% less likely to eat vegetables, and 30 % less likely to eat fruits.

When you skip breakfast, you are creating a chain reaction within your body:

  1. You slow down your metabolism
  2. Fat is stored longer in your body
  3. Higher tendency to overeat at your next meal
  4. Gain weight a lot easier and your LDL cholesterol rises

Eating breakfast every morning or at the start of your day you can also:

  1. Give Yourself an Energy Boost to Start the Day
  2. Sharper Focus
  3. Reduces Moring Crankiness
  4. Metabolism Boost
  5. Lose or Maintain a Healthy Weight
  6. Prevents Unhealthy Habits

Download this FREE E Book from us (Splendid Recipes and More) and learn more about the benefits of breakfast: Breakfast for a Healthy You

Here’s a great breakfast to try this morning and if not tomorrow morning than:

Egg and Sauteed Vegetable Breakfast

1 large egg

1 small orange sweet pepper

3 snow peas

3 Brussels sprouts

2 tablespoons butter

1 tablespoon water

Be Health Wise Don't Skip Breakfast

Chop all of the vegetables, and set aside. Next warm on medium heat a small coated ceramic pan (or pan of your choice). Add butter, allow to melt. Next add vegetables, and wait 30 seconds. Break egg over vegetables, add the water and place a lid over the pan. Let cook 1 minute, and 1 minute only.

 

Plate and serve.

Be health wise and enjoy the goodness of breakfast.

 

 

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Vegetables – Natures Perfect Food

Vegetables - Natures Perfect Food

“It’s bizarre that the produce manager is more important to my children’s health than the pediatrician.”  – Meryl Streep
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Eating an abundance of vegetables each and every day is critical for good health, nutrition, weight loss and long term weight management.

Low In Calories

Bell peppers - Vegetables - Natures Perfect FoodVegetables are very low in calories, in fact, many vegetable’s calorie content is insignificant, and so they can be eaten in in unlimited amounts.

Nutrient Rich

They also contain essential anti-oxidants, vitamins and minerals.

Antioxidants protect the body from various types of oxidant stress, cancers and diseases and also increases its capacity to fight against conditions because they increase the body’s immunity potential.

Fiber

peppers - Bell peppers - Vegetables - Natures Perfect FoodVegetables are also important sources of fiber, both soluble and insoluble. Fiber regulates digestion, and protects the body from conditions like hemorrhoids, colon cancer, chronic constipation, and rectal fissures.

Fiber is also essential in weight management as getting the recommended daily dose of keeps you full longer and keeps the body balanced.

Recommended Daily Intake

The United States Department of Agriculture vegetables- peppers - Bell peppers - Vegetables - Natures Perfect Foodrecommends that people eat a minimum of 3 to 5 servings of vegetables every day.

And, those seeking to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight will be glad to know that since vegetables, especially, green ones, are so low in calories that they can safely fill a plate in abundance, which, allows people to eat more while losing weight.

Frozen Versus Fresh Vegetables

Frozen vegetables are just as good and sometimes better than fresh, since, many varieties are available year round. Frozen vegetables also keep much longer and so can eliminate the need to go shopping more often for fresh. Of course, not all vegetables are available in frozen, but, those that are, such as broccoli, spinach, carrots, green beans, lima beans, stir fry mixes, etc., are all great options for healthy cooking.

Green Vegetables

Green vegetables are very low in calories and can be eaten in abundance for good health, energy, nutrients and weight artichokes- vegetables- peppers - Bell peppers - Vegetables - Natures Perfect Food loss.
They are also very low in carbs and so make a great food choice for those who have or are concerned with Diabetes and weight loss. Nutrients include, Fiber, vitamins, A, C, E and K, and also calcium, potassium and magnesium.

Choices

  • Asparagus
  • Green Cabbage
  • Broccoli
  • Swiss chard
  • Bok Choy
  • Spinach
  • Brussels Sprouts
  • broccoli- artichokes- vegetables- peppers - Bell peppers - Vegetables - Natures Perfect FoodCelery
  • Artichoke
  • Cucumber
  • Kale
  • Green Beans
  • Cilantro
  • Snow Peas
  • Sprouts

Green Leafy Vegetables

Dark green leafy vegetables offer the most nutrients calorie for calorie than any other food.

Along with all the nutrients offered by the other green vegetables, they are also a source of various phytonutrients, which include, beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin. These protect the body’s leafy green vegetables - broccoli- artichokes- vegetables- peppers - Bell peppers - Vegetables - Natures Perfect Foodcells from damage and a lot more.

Dark green leaves also contain small amounts of Omega-3 fats, a lot of fiber, and since they are already low in carbs and so high in fiber they generally do not even count carb-wise at all.

Choices

  • Spinach
  • Mustard greens
  • Broccoli
  • Kale
  • Collard Greens
  • Turnip greens
  • Swiss Chard
  • Romaine Lettuce
  • Cabbage
  • Parsley
  • Watercress

Red, Yellow And Orange Vegetables

bell-peppers - leafy green vegetables - broccoli- artichokes- vegetables- peppers - Bell peppers - Vegetables - Natures Perfect FoodColor veggies are rich sources of iron, beta-carotene, vitamin B-complex, vitamin-C, vitamin A, vitamin K, calcium, magnesium and potassium.

Red tomatoes offer high concentrations of lycopene, which is an incredible antioxidant that helps to prevent various cancers.

The American Diabetes Association recommends squash, which, is available year round in both winter and summer varieties. It also provides a high amount of vitamins A and C, B vitamins, along with iron and calcium.

Choices

  • colored vegetables- bell-peppers - leafy green vegetables - broccoli- artichokes- vegetables- peppers - Bell peppers - Vegetables - Natures Perfect Food Carrots
  • Baby corn
  • Corn
  • Squash
  • Tomatoes (though a fruit, it is used like a vegetable)
  • Radishes
  • Peppers

White Vegetables

The University of California Cooperative Extension has reported that white vegetables help to reduce the risk of various health conditions, including, heart disease, cancer and some types of infections. They also help to lower cholesterol and regulate high blood pressure.

white vegetables- Vegetables: Natures Perfect Food Choices

  • Cauliflower
  • Mushrooms
  • Jicama
  • Water Chestnuts
  • Onions
  • Garlic
  • Bamboo shoots
  • Leeks
  • Scallions

Purple Vegetables

Vegetables that have a deep purple color offer phytonutrients, and most importantly the essential antioxidant-rich purple vegetables- white vegetables- Vegetables: Natures Perfect Foodflavonoids.

Purple vegetables, such as, turnips are low in calories and are a good source of fiber, protein and B-vitamins.

Choices

  • Eggplant
  • Turnips
  • Purple Cabbage
  • Rutabaga

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