Blanch Your Peas, Make a Crisp Twist on Side Salad

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With St. Patrick’s Day and spring just around the corner, I was inspired to make one of my favorite, bright green veggie dishes this weekend: a spring pea, asparagus and mint salad. This salad includes a combination of fresh and frozen produce, is simple, packed full of flavor and filled with a powerhouse of nutrients.

Asparagus is packed with folate and vitamin C, and contains fiber. Added to the asparagus are green peas, which are rich in vitamins A, C and K, and a good source of fiber and folate. I prefer to use as many fresh ingredients as possible, but I used frozen peas for this recipe. Fresh peas can be more difficult to find in the store, and using frozen ones can help reduce the cost of the salad. Read more… “Blanch Your Peas, Make a Crisp Twist on Side Salad”

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    Swap Meat for Spicy Lentils in this Hearty Salad

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    Lentils are one of my favorite pantry staples. These legumes are part of the family of pulses, which also include beans, peas and chickpeas. They are rich in nutrients, inexpensive and versatile.

    Lentils are also hearty enough that they make a great alternative to meat in salads, soups, and burgers. This lentil salad is one of my all-time favorite recipes because it’s simple to prepare with a unique, tasty combination of spices and flavors. Read more… “Swap Meat for Spicy Lentils in this Hearty Salad”

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      Dressing a Salad for Carotenoid Absorption

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      From a health standpoint, it’s tough to beat a vegetable-packed salad. But you may need to top it with enough of a fat-based dressing to get more of the vegetables’ healthy fat-soluble compounds, suggests a new study. 

      The study focused on a handful of the fat-soluble carotenoids, such as lycopene, lutein, and zeaxanthin. Lab studies show these compounds have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. And AICR’s expert report and its updates show that eating foods containing carotenoids lowers the risk of mouth, pharynx, and lung cancers.

      The study was published online in the journal Molecular Nutrition & Food Research.

      In the study, 29 people ate salads topped with three dressings high in different fats: monounsaturated, polyunsaturated, and saturated. The dressings for each fat were canola oil, soybean oil, and butter, respectively. Salads were served with varying amounts of each dressing to represent low-fat (3 grams), moderate (8 grams), and high fat (20 grams). A tablespoon of oil is 14 grams. Read more… “Dressing a Salad for Carotenoid Absorption”

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