Add nutritious, natural ingredients for a healthier you
(Family Features) When it comes to making tasty meals for your family, you probably know that ingredients matter. From vitamins and nutrients to sugar and acidity, it’s important to know what you’re using in your recipes at every meal and how each ingredient can impact all parts of the body.
To help understand how ingredients matter and how quality ingredients can keep your body healthy, consider these tips from registered dietitian, celebrity nutritionist and healthy cooking expert Keri Glassman, MS, RDN.
- Mind your veggies. Nearly everyone knows veggies are a vital part of any healthy diet. They are high in antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, and pack loads of fiber, but not everyone knows what health benefits you get from specific vegetables. For example, Brussels sprouts are packed with vitamin C to support your immune health and dried figs are known for lowering blood pressure and optimizing digestion.
- Just add lemon. Water with lemon can aid in digestion and boost your immune system due to its high vitamin C content, so adding it to water is one way to reap these benefits. While including lemons in your diet has its perks, it’s also important to know they are acidic in nature and eating highly acidic foods can impact your oral health.
- Be mindful of acid attacks. Every day, everyone’s mouths go through hundreds of “acid attacks,” mainly due to eating and drinking. While a variety of foods can have positive health benefits, they also carry acids that can weaken tooth enamel. To help combat this, take advantage of the acid-neutralizing power of baking soda, an ingredient found in Arm & Hammer Toothpastes. Baking soda helps neutralize acids, while gently cleaning and removing plaque, so your teeth and gums stay healthy and strong. Find more information at ArmandHammer.com.
- Say hello to healthy fats. Nuts carry healthy unsaturated fats and omega-3 fatty acids, which are good for cardiovascular health, mental health and cholesterol, so they can be a natural component for a healthy diet. Fat can be your friend, but stay mindful about not going overboard, as the calories can add up fast.
- Avoid added sugar. Sugar can cause inflammation in people’s bodies and is known to potentially impact cardiovascular health and weight, and can have a negative effect on our teeth. Sugar is often a sneaky ingredient that can be found in condiments and salad dressings. Avoid added sugar by making homemade dressings using lemon juice, oil and herbs, or checking labels to make sure you avoid added sugar whenever possible.
Shaved Brussels Sprout Salad with Pecorino and Hazelnuts
Recipe courtesy of Keri Glassman, MS, RDN
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup hazelnuts, lightly crushed
- olive oil, to taste
- rosemary, to taste
- salt, to taste
- pepper, to taste
- 4 cups shaved Brussels sprouts
- 1/2 cup dried figs, chopped
- 1/3 cup finely sliced red onion
- 4 tablespoons Lemon Dressing
- 1 grapefruit, segmented
- 1/3 cup shredded pecorino cheese
- Heat oven to 375° F.
- To make Lemon Dressing: mix olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper.
- On lined baking sheet, toss hazelnuts with olive oil, rosemary, salt and pepper, to taste.
- Roast 10-15 minutes, or until lightly brown; let cool.
- In large mixing bowl, toss roasted hazelnuts, Brussels sprouts, figs, red onion and dressing until combined.
- Plate about 1/4 of mixed salad, top with a few grapefruit segments and sprinkle with
Source: Arm & Hammer Toothpaste
Add tasty, crunchy grapes to seasonal dishes
(Family Features) The holiday season is typically marked by gatherings of friends and family. Whether you’re hosting overnight guests, drop-in visitors or an important seasonal meal, taking a fresh approach to the menu can make the get-together more special.
As you prepare for the festivities, consider recipes that feature healthy ingredients such as versatile California grapes, which come in three vibrant colors – red, green and black – and can add a palate-pleasing crunch and plenty of taste to everything from main dishes to sides and even desserts. Heart-healthy grapes are also perfect on their own as a snack and their natural beauty can help enhance any table as an edible garnish or fresh centerpiece.
Using grapes as a featured ingredient in your holiday dishes can provide a fresh twist on seasonal dishes, such as this Grape Dutch Baby or these Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Grapes and Balsamic Glaze. For dessert, use the natural sweetness of grapes to create a smooth Grape Caramel Sauce that can be served as a topping for ice cream or other seasonal desserts.
Seasonal Entertaining with Grapes
While the beautiful, vibrant colors of grapes can add visual interest to recipes, they can also serve a variety of purposes when hosting:
- Grapes can make for easy decorations when placed in bowls, on platters or draped from a cake plate.
- Grapes can be “frosted” with sugar, spices and chopped nuts then served as a finger food or used as a garnish to decorate cakes, cookies, puddings, mousses and other seasonal desserts. Simply dip grape clusters in liquid gelatin then roll in your desired mixture.
- Grapes make for a quick and easy hostess gift. Wrap multi-colored grape clusters in tissue paper then place them in a basket or tin tied with ribbon.
Find more holiday recipes at GrapesfromCalifornia.com.
Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Grapes and Balsamic Glaze
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes
- 1 pound Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved lengthwise
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- pinch of salt
- freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 cup red California grapes
- 2 tablespoons ready-to-use balsamic glaze
- Heat oven to 450° F.
- On baking sheet, toss sprouts with olive oil, salt and pepper, to taste, until sprouts are well-coated. Roast until deep golden brown, about 17-20 minutes, turning sprouts halfway through roasting. Stir in grapes and roast 3-5 minutes. Transfer to bowl and drizzle with glaze or drizzle platter with glaze and pile sprouts on top.
Nutritional information per serving: 150 calories; 3 g protein; 20 g carbohydrates; 7 g fat (42% calories from fat); 1 g saturated fat (6% calories from saturated fat); 0 mg cholesterol; 30 mg sodium; 4 g fiber.
Grape Caramel Sauce
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
- 1 pound green or red California grapes, divided
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/3 cup heavy cream (optional)
- large pinch of salt
- ice cream
- In blender or food processor, combine 12 ounces grapes with lemon juice and puree. Set aside. Coarsely chop remaining grapes.
- In medium saucepan, combine sugar and water then bring to boil, stirring a few times. Simmer without stirring, brushing down sides of pot with brush dipped in water if crystals start forming. When mixture has turned deep, golden brown, remove from heat and whisk in pureed grapes until smooth sauce has formed. Turn on heat and simmer until mixture has reduced by one-third and forms smooth caramel sauce. Whisk in cream and salt; stir in chopped grapes and serve over ice cream.
Nutritional information per serving of sauce: 200 calories; 40 g carbohydrates; 5 g fat (22% calories from fat); 3 g saturated fat (14% calories from saturated fat); 15 mg cholesterol; 60 mg sodium; 1 g fiber.
Grape Dutch Baby
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes
- 3 large eggs
- 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 2/3 cup low-fat milk
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 5 tablespoons unsalted
- butter, divided
- 2 cups red California
- grapes, halved
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
- confectioners’ sugar
- Heat oven to 450° F. Put large (10-inch) cast-iron or ovenproof skillet in oven.
- With electric mixer on high speed, beat eggs until frothy then beat in flour, milk, vanilla and salt, and beat until smooth, about 1 minute (batter will be thin). Remove skillet from oven and add 2 tablespoons butter, swirling to cover pan. Pour in batter and return to oven. Bake until puffed and golden brown, 14-19 minutes.
- While pancake is baking, in another skillet over high heat, melt remaining butter and add grapes, brown sugar and cinnamon, if desired. Cook until grapes are heated through and sugar has melted. Spoon grapes over pancake, sprinkle with confectioners’ sugar and serve.
Nutritional information per serving: 280 calories; 6 g protein; 22 g carbohydrates; 18 g fat (58% calories from fat); 10 g saturated fat (32% calories from saturated fat); 180 mg cholesterol; 380 mg sodium; 1 g fiber.