Upgrade Your Falafel with Vegetarian Main Dish

chickpea-fritters croppedOne of our latest recipes, Chickpea and Butternut Squash Fritters, is a  restaurant-quality vegetarian dish that uses a unique combination of healthy cancer-preventive ingredients.

A lot of people are familiar with chickpeas in the deep-fried chickpea balls called falafels. But they are usually high in fat and calories. Chickpeas themselves are naturally low in fat; nutty and buttery-tasting. Like all legumes, they provide protein, vitamins, fiber and minerals that make them a staple in dishes ranging from Indian channa masala to Middle Eastern hummus.

Butternut squash is also rich in fiber as well as the antioxidant phytochemical beta-carotene, another cancer-preventive compound. The other ingredients – green onions, garlic, sage, cumin and red pepper flakes – taste great with the nutty chickpeas and subtly sweet squash and offer their own phytochemicals. Add the egg and whole-wheat flour and you get perfect fritters. Continue reading


Healthy, Hearty Sweet Potato Bean Soup

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Photo by Heather Victoria Photography

Beans have always come in handy when animal proteins were scarce; now they can stand in for red meat when you’re trying to cut back to eating no more than 3 ounces of lean red meat per day, as AICR recommends for lower cancer risk.

For a warming and satisfying meal, look no further than our Health-e-Recipe for Sweet Potato Bean Soup. Almost a stew, This rich-tasting soup is based on a rich low-sodium chicken broth enhanced with tomato paste, a product high in the protective phytochemical lycopene.

Simmered with nutritious onions and celery, chopped sweet potato chunks add plenty of the cancer-preventive phytochemical beta-carotene (also present in other orange vegetables and fruits, like carrots). Continue reading


Making Your Lentils Savory in Indian Dal

indian-dalLentils and dry beans are rich in fiber that helps to prevent colorectal cancer. Our Health-e-Recipe for Indian Dal with Yogurt and Cucumbers makes lentils into a savory treat.

Onions, ginger, garlic, cumin and Indian spice mix (“masala”) give these lentils more of the protective phytochemicals found in al plant foods, plus a spicy fragrance that stimulates the appetite. Lentils also contain protein, and dal is a dish eaten daily in India.

Although red lentils are called for in this recipe, you can opt for green lentils instead. Lentils don’t need soaking and can be cooked either to a liquid consistency of soup or simmered longer until they become thick enough to eat as a dip with whole-wheat pita bread. Creamy, cool yogurt and chopped cucumber balance the spices in the lentils. It only takes 30 minutes to prepare this tasty, nutritious dish.

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