salad

Fig Quinoa Salad

Did you know that there are more than 700 varieties of figs around the world?

They’re in season now, but their season is pretty short. Make sure you get them and enjoy every bite.

Figs are not only delicious, but contain various nutrients like potassium, calcium, and fiber.

Enjoy on its own, or add them to pizzas and salads. How about our Fig and Quinoa Salad for tonight?

Figs and Quinoa Salad

INGREDIENTS:

  •  1/4 cup cooked quinoa

  • 1 cup salad leaves (lettuce, spring mix, etc.)

  • 1/2 bell pepper

  • 5 cherry tomatoes

  • 3 figs

  • 5 mint leaves

  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

  • 1 tbsp lemon juice

  • 1 tbsp soy sauce

  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Cook quinoa according to instructions and let it cool (we need 1/4 cup cooked)

  2. Rinse the salad leaves. Rinse and slice bell pepper. Rinse and cut cherry tomatoes. Toss them together in a large bowl.

  3. Rinse and cut figs in half. Add the cooked quinoa, figs and mint leaves to the salad. Toss well.

  4. In a small bowl, mix olive oil, lemon juice, soy sauce, and Dijon mustard.

  5. Pour the dressing on the salad.

REFERENCES:

Farm Fresh and Fast: Figs. University of Georgia Extensions. January 2017. https://www.fcs.uga.edu/docs/FDNS-E-167-8.pdf

Grapefruit Avocado Salad

It is commonly said that the average American gains a few pounds or more during the holiday season (Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day). However, there’s not much data to support this statement, and one study showed only 0.37 kg (0.81 lb) weight gain over the holiday season.

If you gained a lot more than that, that’s okay. New Year is a great time to start changing your eating habit. Avoid any extreme diets because even if you lose weight rapidly, you’ll likely gain it back once you go back to your regular diet. Instead, try to gradually change your habits to a healthier one, and aim for slow but sustainable weight loss.

Increasing your vegetable intake is a great way to eat healthier and have better control of your weight. Eating veggies doesn’t mean that you have to eat boring salad (lettuce + cucumber + tomatoes) everyday. Be creative and enjoy different flavors and textures in your salad - using fruits will add some sweetness and using seeds/nuts will add some crunch.

Grapefruit Avocado Salad

Here is a recipe for our Grapefruit Avocado Salad.

INGREDIENTS:
• 1 ruby grapefruit
• 4 banana shallots (or 2 small red onions)
• Juice of 1 lemon
• 2 Tbsp olive oil
• 1 tsp salt + some extra to massage the shallots
• Handful of salad leaves
• 2 precooked (boiled or roasted) beetroots
• 1 avocado
• 1 small can of butter beans
• Thyme (optional)

DIRECTIONS:
1. Supreme ruby grapefruit- save any juice you get while supreming.
2. Thinly slice banana shallots (or red onions), massage it with salt, and put it in a bowl. Add lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and any juice from the grapefruit. Set aside while preparing the rest of the ingredients.
3. Rinse and dry the salad leaves. Cut beetroots into 8 pieces. Slice avocado. Drain the canned butter beans.
4. On a large plate, start layering the salad leaves, butter beans, beetroots, avocado and grapefruit. Top it with the shallot dressing that you made and sprinkle with thyme.


REFERENCES:
1. Yanovski JA, Yanovski SZ, Sovik KN, Nguyen TT, O'Neil PM, and Sebring NG. A prospective study of holiday weight gain. N Engl J Med. 2000 Mar 23;342(12):861-7. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4336296/

Roasted Pumpkin Salad

Halloween is coming up - what are you going to be this year?

Pumpkin's beautiful bright color comes from an antioxidant called beta-carotene. Diets high in foods with beta-carotene may be associated lower risk of certain types of cancer and heart diseases.

How about some Roasted Pumpkin Salad for dinner today? It’s full of different flavors and textures.

Roasted Pumpkin Salad

INGREDIENTS: (2 servings)
• 1 lb 5 oz cubed pumpkin
• 3 tbsp olive oil
• 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
• 1 tbsp granulated sugar
• 1/2 tsp chili flakes
• Dash of salt and pepper
• 4 handfuls of spinach leaves
• 2 oz pistachios
• 3 oz feta
• Pomegranate seeds (optional)

DIRECTIONS:
1. Mix the pumpkin with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, granulated sugar, chili flakes, salt and pepper. Place them in a baking tray and bake at 390º F for 30 minutes.
2. Rinse and dry the spinach leaves. Place spinach in a bowl, add roasted pumpkin, and top it with pistachios and feta.
3. Sprinkle some pomegranate seeds for a crunch (optional).

Halloween

REFERENCES:
California Department of Public Health. Harvest of the Month. Published: 2012. Accessed: Sep 13, 2018. http://harvestofthemonth.cdph.ca.gov/documents/Fall/Pumpkin/Pumpkins%20-%20Educator%27s%20Newsletter.pdf

Green Quinoa Salad

Preparing your lunch and/or dinner on weekdays is not an easy task, but it’s definitely worth it. It is so much easier to control your weight when you’re preparing your own meals. Here’s an easy healthy recipe for a weekday meal – Green Quinoa Salad.

Green Quinoa Salad

INGREDIENTS (serves 4):
• 1 cup dry quinoa
• 3.5 oz edamame (frozen or fresh)
• 3.5 oz peas (frozen or fresh)
• 12 asparagus spears
• 1 carrot
• Grated zest and juice of half lemon
• 3 tbsp olive oil
• 1 tbsp honey
• 1/2 tbsp balsamic vinegar.
• Handful of coriander
• Salt and pepper

DIRECTIONS:
1. Cook the dry quinoa as per package instructions and spread it on a wide plate to cool.
2. Boil edamame and peas for 4 minutes.
3. Cut asparagus spears in half, blanch for 2 minutes, and leave to cool.
4. Using a vegetable peeler, shave carrot into ribbons.
5. In a small bowl, make the dressing by mixing grated zest and juice of lemon, olive oil, honey, and balsamic vinegar.
6. In a separate bowl, mix the quinoa, vegetables, and coriander (chopped), add the dressing, and sprinkle salt and pepper to taste.

Quinoa contains higher amounts of protein than other grains (~8g protein per 1 cup cooked quinoa), and unlike some plant protein, it is a complete protein (i.e. contains all 9 essential amino acids). It is also rich in fiber, manganese, phosphorus, magnesium, folate, and thiamine.

Quinoa can be used as a substitute for rice and pasta in many dishes. You can also try making a breakfast quinoa cereal with some fruits and cinnamon!

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REFERENCES:
Harvard School of Public Health. The Nutrition Source: Quinoa. https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/quinoa/. Accessed Aug 9, 2018.