Hi there folks. As the summer ends, you may find yourself looking for that perfect “back-to-school” dinner to share stories over. Let me see if I can help you out!
Let’s take up the spice a notch with this week’s Padron peppers. These green guys aren’t considered to be too spicy, but rest assured, they do have a kick. They are most commonly served as tapas, or appetizers, in Spanish cuisine. The simplest way to prepare them is with 2 teaspoons of oil (canola, vegetable or grape seed), 1/2 pound of the peppers, and lightly salted to taste. Cook until each side begins to “blister”, which should take 2-3 minutes. Serve hot! [taken from About.com]
To get a little fancier, try this recipe for Blistered Padron Peppers with Buttermilk Aioli.
Another foreign treat we have this week is sapotes, or cactus fruit. There are many different types of sapotes found in Mexico, Central and South America. These fibrous fruits are full of anti-oxidants, vitamins and minerals that boost your body’s systems with their juicy flavor. Sapotes can be eaten like any other fruit. You can cut it up and eat it plain, toss it into some greek yogurt, mix it into a fruit salad, or even make smoothies with them. It is a very versatile and delicious sweet treat!
Now how about an oldie but goodie? BEETS!
Try this simple recipe for Basic Roasted Beets [taken from Chow.com]:
- 3 medium beets (about 1 1/2 pounds)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Heat the oven to 375°F and arrange a rack in the middle. Rinse the beets and trim off any leafy tops. Wrap completely in aluminum foil and place in the oven. Roast until tender and easily pierced with a knife, about 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Remove from the oven and let cool.
- When the beets are cool enough to handle, peel using a paring knife or by pushing the skin with your fingers.
- Slice the beets, drizzle with olive oil, and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Also, check out this site for some killer beet recipes!
Beets have many health benefits, such as anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant benefit; these two powerhouse qualities can help prevent cancer and maintain overall body health. To learn more details about beets’ nutrition, see here. Nutrients found in beets have been proven to aid in the Phase 2 of detoxification, in which cells pair up with toxins to neutralize and eventually excrete them.
Detoxifying the body is so important and so beneficial to maintaining a clean, working life machine. Ever find yourself in a sluggish rut, where you just feel a little out of sorts? The compounding of stress, diet and bad habits create massive strain on your body and mind. It is recommended to cleanse once a year, via a juice diet or vitamin cleanse. However, not everyone can afford that or has time for that so here are some alternative ways to keep your body clean [taken from Gaiamlife.com] :
- Reduce or eliminate alcohol, caffeine, and tobacco products. Not only does this help your body and mind, but it helps your wallet too!
- Reduce or eliminate refined sugars and saturated fats.
- Drink at least 2 quarts of water per day. Hydration is key!
- Practice deep, full breaths during your day; in and out through your nose, really lifting up through the diaphragm. Try it when you’re driving to work, or walking around the grocery store!
- SWEAT! Get active, and stay active.
I hope that everyone has a fantastic week!
Remember: “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food” -Hippocrates