Fruits and Veggies — More Matters

Fruits and Veggies — More Matters

Feature Article:

A new foundation, Produce for Better Health Foundation www.pbhfoundation.org , and a Web site, www.fruitsandveggiesmorematters.org , has been developed to help consumers, particularly parents, incorporate more fruits and vegetables into their daily diet.

It''s no secret that eating more fruits and vegetables helps reduce your risk of diseases, such as heart disease, cancer, stroke and obesity. In the past, it has been reported that fresh is best, but according to the latest round of research, fresh, frozen, canned, dried and 100 percent fruit and vegetable juice, all contribute nutrients to a daily diet that will keep you healthy all year round.

The Web site offers expert cooking advice, nutrition information and shopping tips. For example, the Web site offers 37 cooking tips, including how to incorporate fruits and veggies into your normal routine by adding to your favorite pasta dish, how to steam vegetables the easy and quick way (which will help it retain more nutrients) and many other tips. The recipes below are a sampling of the many recipes that are downloadable for you and your family.

Carrot Tuna Vegetable Dip

This tasty and satisfying kid-pleasing dip is great for the young grazers (and adults, too) and can also be used as a sandwich spread. Each serving provides an excellent source of vitamins A and C and a good source of folate, potassium and fiber.

Per Serving: 118 calories, 14 grams protein, 2.5 grams of fat, 10 grams of CHO, 3 grams of fiber, 438 mg sodium.

Preparation Time: 30 minutes or less

Serves: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 4 c assorted snacking vegetables* such as: baby carrots, cucumbers, cauliflower and/or broccoli florets, cherry tomatoes, zucchini, and mushrooms
  • 1 celery stalk, chopped
  • ½ c chopped carrots
  • 7 oz. can water-packed tuna, drained
  • ¼ c nonfat mayonnaise or creamy-style salad dressing
  • 2 tsp. prepared horseradish
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp. black pepper
  • ¼ tsp. hot pepper sauce
  • 2 tsp. basil, crushed if dried, chopped if fresh
  • 1 large egg, hard-boiled and chopped

Instructions

Select desired vegetables, wash, prepare,* and place in groups on serving platter, surrounding a small serving bowl. Cover all with plastic wrap and chill until ready to use. To prepare dip: place chopped celery and carrots in blender container and, using the pulse setting, chop until very fine.

Add drained tuna, mayonnaise, horseradish, salt and pepper, and hot pepper sauce and blend on MEDIUM and then HIGH speed until smooth. Stop blender and scrape sides if needed. Remove to serving bowl and stir in basil and chopped hard-boiled egg. Adjust seasonings if desired. Chill for 15 minutes and serve.

*Chef''s Note: Most raw vegetables, such as carrots, celery, broccoli, zucchini and cauliflower, slowly dry out on vegetable trays. Tomatoes, mushrooms, and cucumbers are a few that need no special attention. To enhance color and help prevent drying during service, try blanching the firmer vegetables. Simply place each color group, working light to dark, in active boiling water for 5 to 15 seconds, being careful not to cook the vegetables, and then plunge directly into cold, icy water. When fully cooked, drain well and arrange on serving platter. The blanched vegetables will remain crisp and brilliant in color.

Shopping List

  • 4 c assorted snacking vegetables* such as: baby carrots, cucumbers, cauliflower and/or broccoli florets, cherry tomatoes, zucchini, and mushrooms
  • Celery
  • Carrots
  • 7 oz. can water-packed tuna
  • Nonfat mayonnaise or creamy-style salad dressing
  • Prepared horseradish
  • Hot pepper sauce
  • Basil
  • 1 large egg

Credit: Recipe was developed for Produce for Better Health Foundations (PBH) by Chef Carmen I. Jones, CCP. This recipe meets PBH and Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) nutrition standards that maintain fruits and vegetables as healthy foods. With permission: www.fruitsandveggiesmorematters.org .

Curried Shrimp in Carrot Nest

It sounds exotic, but this quick and easy dish — using five basic ingredients, a few common ingredients and a few common extras — is a showstopper, with color, presentation, and flavor. Each serving provides an excellent source of vitamin A, and a good source of vitamin C, calcium, magnesium and fiber.

Per Serving: 277 calories, 26 grams protein, 10 grams of fat, 22 grams of CHO, 4 grams of fiber, 574 mg sodium.

Preparation Time: 30 minutes

Serves: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 c coarsely shredded or julienne carrots (may be purchased)
  • 1 extra large onion, chopped to yield 2 cups; reserve 2 tbsp
  • 1 ½ tbsp. sugar
  • 1 tbsp. water
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil or cooking oil
  • 2 large cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 1 lb. peeled medium shrimp (may be frozen)
  • 2–3 tsp. milk curry powder (if spicier desired, use hot curry powder)
  • 2 tbsp. flour
  • 1 c low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 tbsp. nonfat yogurt
  • 1 tbsp. lime juice
  • Salt and pepper, optional*
  • 1 tbsp. chopped parsley
  • 2 c cooked rice tossed with ½ cup cooked peas and 2 tbsp chopped peanuts, optional*

*Optional ingredients not included in the nutritional information per serving.

Instructions

Place shredded carrots, 2 tbs. chopped onion (only) and sugar in a medium-sized skillet with 1 tbs. water; heat HIGH to boiling, covered. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes, until carrots are barely done. Remove immediately and cool. Reserve. Prepare optional rice suggestion and reserve if desired. Heat oil in a large deep skillet on MEDIUM-HIGH heat. Add garlic and peeled shrimp and sauté until shrimp are opaque and tender. Remove shrimp from skillet and set aside. To remaining oil in pan, add curry powder and remaining chopped onion. Sauté over MEDIUM heat until onions are transparent, coated with curry flavor and somewhat caramelized. Add flour and stir until flour disappears. Add chicken broth and stir continuously until onion curry sauce has thickened. Stir in yogurt, lime juice, and cooked shrimp. Season with salt and pepper if desired. To serve: Warm carrots briefly in pan. Place optional rice mixture in large circle on serving plate. Arrange warm carrots inside the ring, leaving a space directly in the center for the curried shrimp. Garnish with chopped parsley. Serve immediately.

Credit: Recipe was developed for Produce for Better Health Foundations (PBH) by Chef Carmen I. Jones, CCP. This recipe meets PBH and Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) nutrition standards that maintain fruits and vegetables as healthy foods. With permission: www.fruitsandveggiesmorematters.org .

Extreme Zucchini

From the “Cool Fuel Cookbook for Kids.” Each serving provides an excellent source of vitamin C.

Per Serving: 19 calories, 1 grams protein, 0.4 grams of fat, 4 grams of CHO, 1 grams of fiber, 22 mg sodium.

Preparation Time: 30 minutes

Serves: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 c zucchini, with skin, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 medium tomato, chopped into 1-inch cubes
  • ½ c yellow bell pepper, diced
  • ¼ c onion, diced
  • ½ tbs low-fat mayonnaise

Instructions

Combine first four ingredients in a small sauce pan. Cook on MEDIUM-LOW heat until vegetables are tender, about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from stove top and mix in the mayonnaise. Add salt and pepper to taste (optional).

Shopping List

  • 1 zucchini
  • 1 medium tomato
  • Yellow bell pepper
  • Onion
  • Low-fat mayonnaise

Credit: Recipe courtesy of Produce for Better Health Foundation and Shoney''s, Inc.

This recipe meets PBH and Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) nutrition standards that maintain fruits and vegetables as healthy foods. With permission: www.fruitsandveggiesmorematters.org .

Barbara Day, M.S., R.D., C.N., is the publisher and nutrition editor of Kentuckiana HealthFitness and Kentuckiana Healthy Woman. She is the former sports nutrition consultant to the University of Louisville Athletic Department and the United States Navy SEALs. She is the author of “Fast Facts on Fast Food For Fast People” (ISBN 0-9631538-6-2) and “High Energy Eating Sports Nutrition Workbook for Active People” (ISBN 0-9631538-5-4). In addition, Barbara has a private practice specializing in sports nutrition and has a weekly health and fitness radio show on WKJK 1080 AM. She serves on the advisory board of the Mayor''s Healthy Hometown Movement Advisory Committee. She is a member of PE4Life, Coalition for a Healthy and Active America, the American Dietetic Association, NAWBO and Greater Louisville, Inc. She is a runner, cyclist, hiker and grandmother.

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