For Immediate Release: February 6, 2009
eNews: Thanksgiving Rewind
Enjoy some holiday-inspired dishes from AICR’s web-based Health-e-Recipes.
If your objective is to eat a meal with healthy proportions, this “one-pot meal” makes it easy. The nutty flavor of the barley flatters the sweetness of the squash, onions and peppers. Plus, the recipe calls for just enough turkey to add heft and use up your left overs. It also features lots of vari-colored vegetables and whole grains that provide disease-fighting phytochemicals.
Barley, Turkey and Butternut Squash Casserole
2 small butternut squash
2 tsp. olive oil
1 green bell pepper, seeded and diced
1/2 cup minced onion
1 tsp. dried sage
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 cups fat-free, reduced-sodium chicken broth
3/4 cup quick-cooking barley
1/2 lb. cooked turkey breast, cubed or diced
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 4-quart baking dish with cooking spray.
In a large pot of rapidly boiling water, boil squash halves 5 minutes or until not quite tender. Drain. When cool enough to handle, scoop flesh from each half and dice. Set aside.
In a large saucepan, heat oil over medium heat. Add green pepper, onion and diced squash. Sauté 3 minutes. Add sage and pepper and stir to coat. Add broth and bring to a boil. Add barley and return to boil.
Reduce heat to low, cover and cook 10 minutes, until barley is tender and liquid is absorbed. Mix in diced turkey. Transfer mixture to prepared baking dish and top with feta cheese. Bake, uncovered, 30 minutes, or until cheese is golden.
Makes 6 servings.
Per serving: 275 calories, 5 g total fat (2 g saturated fat), 42 g carbohydrate, 18 g protein, 10 g dietary fiber, 368 mg sodium.
Forget the Marshmallows
Spread holiday cheer this year with our sweet potato casserole. This version cuts back on the fat and calories found in traditional casserole recipes. Sweet potatoes are full of vitamins, minerals and cancer-fighting phytochemicals. Steaming them keeps in the moisture, so you don’t have to use butter or cream. It’s also faster than baking them. Placing apples on top instead of marshmallows gives a sweet, healthy, finishing touch. It will be the perfect accompaniment to your fall gatherings.
3 1/2 pounds sweet potatoes (about 6 medium sized potatoes)
1 Tbsp. canola oil
2 Tbsp. pure, dark maple syrup, or to taste
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Nonstick cooking spray
2 tsp. unsalted butter
1 Golden Delicious apple
Nutmeg for garnish
Peel and cut the sweet potatoes into 2-inch cubes. Steam them in a steamer basket, or in a pot with 1/4 cup of water, cover and steam for 10-15 minutes or until the cubes are tender. You can also steam them in the microwave.
Place the sweet potatoes in a large bowl.
Add the canola oil and maple syrup to the hot sweet potatoes and mash with a fork or a masher until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Spray a 9-inch square baking pan with cooking spray. Spread the sweet potatoes into the prepared dish, making an even layer.
Melt the 2 teaspoons of butter in the microwave. Peel, halve and core the apple. Place each half, cut-side down, on a cutting board and cut it crosswise into thin slices. Arrange the slices in overlapping rows to cover the sweet potatoes. Brush the apples lightly with the melted butter.
Bake uncovered at 400 degrees until the sweet potatoes are heated through and the apple slices have softened, about 25 to 30 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature with nutmeg sprinkled on top.
Makes 12 servings, 1/2 cup per serving.
Per serving:110 calories, 2 g total fat (<1 g saturated fat), 22 g carbohydrates,
1 g protein, 3 g dietary fiber, 28 mg sodium.
Satisfying Your Nutty Side
Don’t forget the nuts this holiday season. Cooking with nuts adds rich flavor and crunchy texture to savory and sweet dishes. Although higher in fat and calories than other plant foods, nuts provide heart-healthy fat and are a healthful addition to any diet when eaten in moderation. An excellent nut to try is the hazelnut, which has a distinctively sweet taste and creamy texture that makes any vegetable dish taste great. By toasting the nuts, you enhance their flavor. This vegetable and nut pairing gives you a double dose of nutrition and flavor that can’t be beat.
Broccoli with Hazelnuts
2-3 Tbsp. coarsely chopped hazelnuts
1 lb. broccoli, stems peeled and sliced thin and florets separated
2 tsp. sesame oil
2 scallions, thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
2 tsp. lite soy sauce
In a small skillet, toast the hazelnuts over medium-high heat for 3-4 minutes, until the nuts are lightly browned. Set aside.
In a large pot of boiling water, add the broccoli and blanch for 2 minutes. Rinse it with cold water and drain.
In a large bowl, combine the oil, scallions, garlic and soy sauce. Add the broccoli and toss well. Top with hazelnuts. Serve at room temperature.
Makes 6 servings.
Per serving: 59 calories, 3 g total fat (<1 g saturated fat), 7 g carbohydrates,
2 g protein, 3 g dietary fiber, 99 mg sodium.
Brussels To Brag About
Tender baby Brussels sprouts are so much easier to enjoy than their tougher big brothers--and you can find bags of them in the freezer case. They are a member of the cruciferous family of veggies, which also includes broccoli, cauliflower and cabbage. This version of Brussels sprouts (dressed up with crunchy pecans and sweet-tart dried cranberries) is elegant enough to put on the table at one of your holiday meals.
Brussels Sprouts with Pecans and Dried Cranberries
1 bag (16 oz.) frozen, petite baby Brussels sprouts
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
2 tsp. balsamic vinegar
2 Tbsp. finely chopped, lightly toasted pecans
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Cook the Brussels sprouts according to the directions on the package.* Meanwhile, soak the cranberries for 5 to 10 minutes in hot (but not boiling) water. In a small bowl, stir together the oil, vinegar, pecans and cranberries. Transfer the cooked Brussels sprouts to a serving dish. Gently toss them with the dressing. Season with salt and pepper and serve immediately.
*Fresh Brussels sprouts are available now. If you use fresh sprouts, choose sprouts of a uniform size, preferably small, and steam them in the microwave until they are just tender.
Makes 4 servings.
Per serving:102 calories, 6 g total fat (<1 g. saturated fat), 11 g carbohydrates,
2 g protein, 2 g dietary fiber, 13 mg sodium.
A Dazzling Dessert for the Holidays
Who needs pie? Why not break away from tradition this season with a light and elegant holiday soufflé? This dessert is much simpler to make than you might think, and it’s fabulous for entertaining. While your fellow diners are resting after their big meal, prepare this soufflé so that you can serve it right out of the oven when it’s hot and fluffy. By using egg whites and low fat milk, you will lessen the fat content of this healthy version but not the taste.
Raspberry Custard Holiday Soufflé
Canola cooking spray
2 Tbsp. plus 4 tsp. sugar, divided
1 cup defrosted frozen, sweetened raspberries
1 Tbsp. and 1 1/2 tsp. defrosted orange juice concentrate, divided
3/4 cup low fat (1%) milk
2 Tbsp. cornstarch
1/3 cup seedless raspberry preserves
1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
3 egg whites
Pinch of salt
Spray four 8- or 10-ounce individual soufflé dishes with cooking spray. Sprinkle the inside of each dish with 1 teaspoon of sugar and set aside. In a small bowl, mix the raspberries with 1 tablespoon of juice concentrate and set aside.
To make the custard, in a medium nonstick saucepan, whisk together the milk and cornstarch. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, about 1 minute, until the custard thickens. Stir in the preserves, vanilla and 1 1/2 teaspoons of juice concentrate until the preserves dissolve. Remove the custard from the heat. Cover the surface of custard sauce with plastic wrap and cool to lukewarm. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees while the custard cools.
About 20 minutes before serving time, beat the egg whites in a large bowl until they are frothy. Add salt and continue beating until soft peaks form. While beating, slowly sprinkle in 2 tablespoons of sugar. Continue beating until stiff peaks form. Gently fold in the raspberries and the custard with a rubber spatula until they are almost completely combined. Uncover and gently divide the mixture among prepared dishes, filling each three-quarters full.
Set the dishes on a baking sheet and place on the center rack of the oven. Bake 15 to 18 minutes, or until centers of soufflés are soft but not liquid and tops are lightly browned.
Makes 4 servings.
Per serving: 228 calories, < 1 g total fat (< 1 g saturated fat), 53 g carbohydrate,
5 g protein, 3 g dietary fiber, 133 mg sodium.