The Bite: Color Me Healthy

Food & Fun

When it comes to food, color matters.  Vibrantly colored fruits and vegetables significantly enhance our health and well being through their abundant vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients. Enjoy these benefits and more by eating a rainbow at every meal:

Red foods support the heart and improve circulation. The antioxidant lycopene gives them their rosy hue and helps control high blood pressure, strengthens the immune system and protects the skin from sun damage. 

Yellow and orange foods support the stomach and spleen. They help maintain proper digestion and regularity and decrease inflammation in the joints. Beta carotene provides the color and promotes healthy vision while helping to protect the eyes from cellular damage. 

Green foods support the liver. Nutrient rich, they get their color from chlorophyll that oxygenates and purifies the blood, boosts iron levels and strengthens the immune system, bones, muscles and brain.

Purple and Blue foods support the kidneys. Richly colored from the powerful antioxidant anthocyanin, these foods help protect against cancer and heart disease, help fight inflammation and help prevent short-term memory loss.

Be an artist in your kitchen. Experiment with colorful, nutrient-rich foods for optimal health. Enjoy this brightly-colored and flavored...

 

Tricolor Slaw w/ Kale, Chard, Purple Cabbage & Carrots

Resting the slaw for 30 minutes before serving softens the vegetables. 

Makes 9 cups (4-6 servings)

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Dressing:

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard 

2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

2 tablespoons mayonnaise (optional)

¾ teaspoon cinnamon

½ teaspoon nutmeg

½ cup extra-virgin olive oil

½ teaspoon salt

Dozen twists freshly ground black pepper

 

Salad Ingredients:

½ cup slivered almonds

2 ½ cups young lacinato kale, stems removed and very thinly sliced; leaves halved and thinly sliced

2 cups Swiss chard, stems removed and very thinly sliced; leaves halved and thinly sliced

4 cups thinly shredded purple cabbage 

2 cups grated carrot

1 large scallion, thinly sliced on the diagonal

2 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh basil 

2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley

1 tablespoon thinly sliced fresh oregano

 

Preparation:

1.  Toast the almonds 6-7 minutes in a 350-degree oven. Put aside to cool.

2.  Use a blender to combine the dressing ingredients.

3.  Combine the salad ingredients, except the almonds; place in a large bowl and toss with the dressing.

4.  Salt and pepper to taste. 

5.  Add the toasted almonds just before serving.

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Ginger Tea Pumpkin Custard, Rhonda Adkins

Is there anything more quintessentially fall than pumpkins? While I look forward to picking out pumpkins for carving, I am even more excited to start cooking with them, especially after I tried a new technique that made baking and harvesting the moist flesh easy.  

First, you need to select the proper pumpkin.  The larger more mature pumpkins, while great for carving, have a tough stringy flesh; a small pumpkin gives you a sweeter creamier flesh. 

To select a good cooking pumpkin look for small to medium ones that have firm skin and stems. They should seem heavy for their weight and should not have a “hollow” sound. 

To prepare: preheat oven to 350°F.  Place pumpkin(s) on a baking sheet and bake for approximately one hour (baking time may vary according to the size of your pumpkins). Let the pumpkins cool, split them open and scoop out the flesh, discarding the skin and the seeds (the seeds can be washed and roasted if desired).  For the creamiest texture place cooked flesh in a blender or food processor and puree — one small pumpkin yields approximately one cup of puree.

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