How To Energize Fall With Tasty Veggie Cooking

picture of vegetablesAs fall moves into winter, we find ourselves eating heavier, heartier foods, some healthy, some not. Now’s the time to make sure they are all healthy.

Elizabeth Somer, author and nutritionist, suggests we blend the really good veggies like beets, broccoli, spinach, sweet potatoes and leafy greens into our dinner recipes. Here are a few of her tips:

Tasty Veggie Tricks

Discover the rich nutrient power of beets. Toss beets into salads and slaws, add a dash of lemon juice and chili powder.

Make the most of sweet potatoes. Microwave and top them with maple syrup and pecans.

Slice sweet potatoes into wedges, salt, and bake at 425 degrees for 15 minutes for golden fries.

Replace head lettuce in salads and sandwiches with leaf lettuce or spinach, or layer greens into a veggie lasagna with zucchini, spinach, peppers and low fat cheeses.

Use large spinach leaves instead of a tortilla to wrap around cheese, beans, and salsa mixed with spicy peppers and onions.

Add greens to stir fries, soups and stews. Sautee them in a little olive oil and garlic.

Steam or roast brussels sprouts and mash them into whipped potatoes or grate into salads.

WebMD Suggests Savory Roasted Vegetables

Roasting is a natural way to bringing out the sweetness of the vegetables and intensifying their flavors. Picture a platter of roasted onions, carrots, red and yellow peppers, eggplant and asparagus, mixed with roasted garlic.

Four roasting steps

WebMD guide:  Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a pan with foil, and coat the foil with canola or olive oil cooking spray. Cut your vegetables into small chunks or bite-sized pieces.

Add vegetables in a single layer to the pan and spray or drizzle with canola or olive oil. Use about a teaspoon full for each cup of veggies. Toss the veggies as you coat them. Sprinkle on any your favorite seasonings – rosemary or basil, parsley, marjoram, salt and pepper.

Bake until veggies are lightly browned and tender. If your vegetables seem to be drying out, drizzle them with broth, low fat Italian dressing or apple juice. Check your roasted vegetables after 25-30 minutes, turn them over and bake about 25 more minutes. Keep rechecking for browning and dryness.

Decorate a fall table and invite friends, serving the roasted veggies on a huge platter with a big bowl of leafy greens, and a berry fruit tart for dessert. Enjoy!

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