Making Kale a Holiday Treat

pasta-shells-kale copy cropThe curly leaves of kale can be much more than a garnish on holiday plates. If you’re confounded by how to prepare kale, you can reap its cancer-fighting benefits in our Health-e-Recipe for Pasta Shells with Garlicky Kale.

Chopped, one cup of these ruffled green or purple leaves contains more than a day’s worth of antioxidant vitamins A and C, plus good amounts of vitamin B-6, calcium and magnesium. Kale also provides cancer-preventive phytochemicals like sulforaphane, quercetin and kaempherol — preserved in this dish by quickly braising the kale for only 3 minutes.

Garlic’s generous allium phytochemicals add more protection and flavor, as do the red pepper flakes. Whole-wheat pasta boosts the cancer-fighting fiber in this dish to 7 grams per serving. And with 13 grams of protein per serving, adding some lean protein or beans can bring the protein total to 20-30 grams. Top it all with some slivers of roasted red bell pepper for a festive look.

Find more delicious cancer-fighting recipes at the AICR Test Kitchen. Subscribe to our weekly Health-e-Recipes.


Salmon Serves Up Omega-3s

seafood plateSweet, spicy and savory flavors team up in this week’s Health-e-Recipe for Sesame Salmon.

Salmon ranks high among fish with the most omega-3 fatty acids, healthy fats found to be heart healthy. Omega-3s are also being studied for their potential to prevent breast cancer, making this recipe timely for National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Albacore tuna, sardines and trout also have plenty of omega-3s, as do walnuts and leafy greens.

Wild-caught Pacific salmon is a good choice and rated on seafood watch lists to be among the least likely to contain toxins from pollutants. In this recipe, we add fresh ginger and garlic – both rich in anti-inflammatory and cancer-fighting phytochemicals. Sesame seeds, too, contain healthy monounsaturated fats.

Good pairings for this delicious entrée are carrots sliced into match-stick pieces and steamed snow peas or spinach.

Find more delicious cancer-preventive recipes by visiting the AICR Test Kitchen. Subscribe to our weekly Health-e-Recipes.


Eggplant Parmesan Makeover

cheesy-eggplant-casserole sm photoPreventing breast cancer and its recurrence means eating a healthy diet and maintaining a healthy weight, researchers advise. But that doesn’t mean you have to live on celery. Our Health-e-Recipe for Cheesy Eggplant Casserole is a satisfying yet low-calorie version of an Italian favorite.

Eggplants and mushrooms both have a texture that is dense enough to substitute well for meat. In this dish, they are combined with scallions and onions, bell pepper, garlic and tomatoes—the healthy ingredients of many delicious Italian dishes.

All of these vegetables contain phytochemicals and the tomatoes contribute vitamin C and antioxidant lycopene. This phytochemical may protect against prostate cancer and is now being studied for possible breast cancer protection as well.

The best part, however, is that the many protective compounds we get from eating a mix of different vegetables reinforce each other’s anti-cancer benefits, according to AICR/WCRF’s report and its updates.

Cheese supplies protein and calcium in this dish. Since the vegetables have so few calories, it’s possible to use moderate amounts of low-fat versions of cottage cheese and mozzarella. Enjoy this hearty, delicious dish as part of a cancer-fighting diet during National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Find more cancer-preventive recipes at the AICR Test Kitchen. Subscribe to our weekly Health-e-Recipes.