Late Summer/Early Fall Roasted Veggies from ZOOM Cooking Class on 9/24/21

Early last week I reviewed Serving Up the Harvest by Andrew Chesman on www.menupause.info.  (Put the cookbook name in the SEARCH box in the lower right hand corner of my Home Page.) I have included as many of the items from her list in the cookbook that I liked or were available, with the emphasis on fresh and organic. Since this is a cooking by the strings-of-your apron recipe, feel free to add or subtract items you dislike & use more or less of the items to your taste and appetite. I also added spices & other items I use in my cooking, like garlic and ginger.

P.S. I had planned on doing a separate posting on diet and menopause, since September is Menopause Awareness Month, but I realize that the most important piece of information I have learned about food and menopause is to eat an alkalizing diet, which means mostly plant-based, since meat, dairy, grains and beans are for the most part, acidifying. So I recommend that you subscribe to www.saveourbones.com and check out Vivian Goldschmidt’s excellent information and alkalizing dishes. (I plan to review her e-book, Bone Appetite and will continue to create plant-based recipes that reflect more alkalizing ingredients. Also,if you GOOGLE Menopause Awareness Month, you will find more information about this natural process for women. Menopause is not a disease, so instead of calling these changes symptoms, I just call them changes and we can adjust our diets, exercises, and behavior to adapt gradually to these changes and move into PMZ, post-menopausal zest!

Enjoy!

Late Summer Early Fall Roasted Veggies over Fresh Greens


          Ingredients (Organic preferred)

Veggies:

Purple eggplant (salted for 10 minutes, rinsed and patted dry)
Bell Pepper (red, yellow or orange)
Fennel bulb
Okra or zucchini
Sweet Potato
Leek or Onion
*Corn Kernels (optional)
Fresh Greens (I used Org. Spring Mix)

Oil & Spices:
Garlic, Ginger, Curry powder or other spices of your choice
Avocado Oil (Spray or toss with the oil)
Salt (optional)

* I could not find organic corn (even though it is on the Clean 15, I wanted organic), so I purchased org. corn kernels in a can with no BPA lining and no GMO corn.  (Go to the Environmental Working Groups’s www.ewg.org for the Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen list of foods.)

 

Directions:

  1. Make sure all the vegetables are washed well and dried. (They roast better if they are not wet. Place pieces directly on cookie sheet, lightly oiled, as you wash and cut them.)
  2. Slice the salted, rinsed and dried eggplant into bite-sized chunks or slices.
  3. Slice bell pepper and remove white veins and seeds and slice or cut small chunks into bite-sized pieces.
  4. Slice fennel into strips.
  5. Slice zucchini into bite-sized pieces or cut okra pods in half.
  6. Slice sweet potato and leek/onion thinly.
  7. Add 1-2 sliced garlic and ginger pieces and any spices you are using and toss with veggies. Add oil and toss again, adding salt if you choose to.
  8. Place the tray in the oven and turn on broil. Broil for about 5 minutes and then turn veggies over. Broil another 5 minutes or to desired crispness. The closer the tray is to the broiler, the less time you need, so I check my veggies every 3 or 4 minutes to be sure they aren’t burning. (*If using corn, add during the last part of the grilling.
  9. Remove broiled veggies from cookie sheet and place on a bed of fresh, organic greens washed & dried, tossed with a dressing of your choice. (Or serve over cooked quinoa or rice that you start to make before you broil/roast the veggies.)

NOTES: Keep in mind that the veggies shrink, so what may look like a lot on the tray will be reduced to about 1/2 to ¾ of what you started with. This dish can be served hot or cold. I usually make enough to have them hot over the greens for dinner and then the next day toss them into my lunch or dinner salad, both chilled, adding some dressing.

P.S. For a complete meal in a dish, I add roasted tofu on a tray below the cooking sheet for the vegetables. The tofu can also be served hot or cold, tossed with some tamari soy sauce (Tamari is made without wheat).  If you are not a vegetarian, feel free to add cooked chicken or fish.

Also, this class fell on Succoth, my favorite Jewish holiday when an outdoor booth (sukkah) is decorated with fruits & veggies!

Very fitting!

 

Healthy Bytes

In the July 30th issue of TIME Magazine, there is an interesting health article in their View category entitled Grocery Store Rx: 7 foods to keep you healthy. The article focuses on the issue of inflammation, the one of the latest “hot topics” in health literature. While the article explains that inflammation is our own body’s healthy response to combatting disease, too much inflammation can lead to health problems, from autoimmune diseases to cancer to high sugar/high fat foods. Here is their list of foods to help “tamp down inflammation.” The article also makes suggestions on how to incorporate them into your diet. (I might add, make them organic, especially those you cannot peel.)*

  1. Mackerel– A Mediterranean staple with (good) fats help fight Alzheimer’s and heart disease.
  2. PearsThe high fiber in  pears can be good Rx to those with diabetes and arthritis. Foods high in fiber contribute toi a healthy microbiome (gut).
  3. SpinachA good source of vitamin E, spinach may help protect against molecules that cause inflammation. and because of its dark green color, spinach is nutrient-dense.
  4. Bell Peppers – Bright red bell peppers are high in antioxidants* and low in starch and contain capsaicin, known for its pain-reducing and inflammatory-reducing properties.  (*a substance that inhibits oxidation, especially one used to counteract the deterioration of stored food products. source: Oxford Dictionaries)
  5. Buckwheat – This non-glutinous “grain” may help reduce the blood level marker C-reactive protein, a sign of inflammation. People with celiac can usually tolerate buckwheat, which is actually a seed, not a true grain.
  6. Pomegranate Seeds – These tiny tart seeds  are another good source of antioxidants (See #4) that may help lower cholesterol and blood pressure. And a compound in these seeds target brain inflammation. (they are now available already pre-packaged without the skin and membranes.)
  7. Black Tea – Green tea and black tea come from the same plant. Both have benefits, but black tea is good for helping to keep your arteries open and contains antioxidants that may protect cells from damage.

Remember, eat foods in as close to their natural state as possible
and eat organic as much as possible, so your foods are clean and intact.

*If you go to ewg.org (Environmental Working Group), you can download your own list of the Dirty Dozen & Clean 15.