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  • Healthy Super Foods recipes, part II

  • Today consumers are tossed around with so many different thoughts about what are healthy foods to eat. The recipes compiled here incorporate some of the most recommended healthy foods that people should include in their diets. There are others, but these hold the most value as of researchers’ current data. If you missed last week’s recipes, they can be found online at www.topsailadvertiser.com.
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  • Healthy Super Foods recipes, part II
    Today consumers are tossed around with so many different thoughts about what are healthy foods to eat. The recipes compiled here incorporate some of the most recommended healthy foods that people should include in their diets. There are others, but these hold the most value as of researchers’ current data. If you missed last week’s recipes, they can be found online at www.topsailadvertiser.com.
     
    Wild Salmon
    Salmon has omega-3 fats which can help reduce the risk of sudden-death heart attacks. Consider buying wild salmon since it has less PCB contaminants than farmed salmon. Canned wild salmon is also very beneficial and is ready to use in salads and other dishes.
    Crunchy Pecan and Salmon Fillets
    Serves 4
    ½ cup uncooked quick-cooking oatmeal
    ¼ cup chopped pecans
    1 teaspoon dried sweet basil, crushed
    ½ teaspoon garlic powder
    Salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
    4 salmon fillets, about 4 ounces each
    ½ cup milk
    In a shallow dish or pie plate soak salmon fillets in milk, turn to coat, cover with plastic and refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours.
    In a shallow dish or pie plate mix together pecans, oatmeal, basil, garlic powder, salt and pepper.
    Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly spray a baking sheet with cooking spray.
    Remove salmon fillet from milk and let drip off excess milk. Place salmon fillet one at a time in oat mixture, turning to cot. Place on baking sheet. Repeat with remaining fillets. Lightly spray to tops of the fillets with cooking spray. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until fish is cooked to desired doneness.
     
    Whole Grains
    Whole grains are low in fats and are good sources of fibers, vitamins like selenium, potassium and magnesium; and minerals. They are said to help low the risk if heart disease, diabetes, certain cancers and other health problems. Whole grains are also called cereals.
    Some whole grains are: flaxseed, Chia seeds, oats, barley, bran, whole wheat, rye, quinoa, corn, rice, millet and others.
    Oatmeal Muffins
    1 cup quick-cook oatmeal
    2 cups all-purpose flour
    ½ cup brown sugar, packed
    ½ cup granulated sugar
    1 tablespoon baking powder
    Pinch of salt
    ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1 cup raisins
    ½ cup chopped pecans or walnuts
    1 egg, beaten
    1/3 cup canola oil
    1 ¼ milk
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
    In a large bowl whisk together flour, brown sugar, granulated sugar, cinnamon and a pinch of salt. Stir in oatmeal, nuts and raisins.
    Page 2 of 5 - In another bowl beat egg then stir in oil, vanilla extract and milk, stir to combine. Add this mixture to flour mixture and gently fold in; do not over-mix.
    Fill muffin cups two-thirds full and bake at 375 degrees for 25 minutes or until golden o top. Cool on wire rack.
     
    Garbanzo Beans or Chick Peas
    Garbanzo beans are high in manganese, folate, fiber and protein while low in calories. Helps in regulating sugar for diabetics. Garbanzo beans also called chickpeas and legumes. Add beans to green salads or pasta dishes along with some olive oil, feta cheese and oregano. They also go well in soups and enhance their taste, texture and nutritional value.
    Hummus
    1 can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
    3 tablespoons EVOO, olive oil
    2 cloves garlic, minced and mashed
    ¼ cup chicken broth
    1 tablespoon lemon juice
    Salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
    2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, finely minced
    Combine all ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Serve with tortilla or pita chips and/or fresh vegetables.
     
    Crunchy Chick Peas
    1 15-ounce can chickpeas or garbanzo bans, rinsed and drained
    1 tablespoon canola oil
    1 clove garlic, minced and pressed
    Preheat oven to 300 degrees. In a bowl toss together chickpeas, canola oil, and garlic. Arrange on a baking sheet in a single layer. Bake for one and half hours, gently stirring every 20 minutes.
     
    Butternut Squash
    This squash is very easy to prepare and is filled with Vitamin A and C and fiber.
    1 butternut squash, about 2 pounds, cut in half and seeded
    2 tablespoons butter, melted
    ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
    4-6 tablespoons brown sugar
    Cut squash lengthwise; discard seeds. With the melted butter, brush inside both halves. Lightly sprinkle each one with the ground cinnamon and sprinkle with brown sugar coating the cut edges. Place in a vegetable oil sprayed shallow baking dish. Cover with foil and bake cut side up for 35 to 40 minutes, then uncover and bake for another 15 to 20 minutes until very tender.
    You can double this recipe and save it for another day.
     
    Leafy Greens
    Powerhouse greens like kale, collards, spinach, turnip greens, Swiss chard, cabbage and mustard greens are very healthy and are becoming more popular in recipes. These leafy greens are filled with vitamins and antioxidants and vitamins A, C and K, folate, potassium, magnesium, calcium, lutein, iron and fiber. Sauté with olive oil and garlic or splash with some lemon juice.
    Sautéed Greens
    Page 3 of 5 - 8 ounces Swiss chard
    8 ounces Tuscan Kale or fresh spinach
    2 tablespoons EVOO, olive oil
    3 garlic cloves, minced
    ½ cup sweet onion, finely chopped
    Fresh lemon juice or balsamic vinegar
    Rinse Swiss chard and Tuscan Kale or spinach. Drain and cut stems off and cut leaves into ½-inch pieces or strips. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium heat, then add garlic and chopped onion and sauté until onion is tender. Add greens and simmer, stirring occasionally, until tender about 5 to 8 minutes. When finished add a teaspoon or two of fresh lemon juice or balsamic vinegar, to taste.
     
    Legumes
    Beans, peas and lentils can lower risk of heart disease and possibly breast cancer. The darker the bean the more antioxidants it contains.
    Quick Chile
    1 pound ground beef, chicken or pork
    1 large onion
    1 small can tomato sauce
    2 cloves garlic, chopped
    2 cans red kidney beans, drained and rinsed, or 2 cans black beans
    1-2 teaspoons chili powder, more to taste, if desired
    ½ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
    In a skillet sauté onion until tender, add garlic and sauté another 3 minutes. Remove from pan and add ground meat. Sauté meat until browned on all sides, crumbling meat. Add onions and garlic; stir in. Pour in tomato sauce and stir in chili powder. Add kidney beans and stir; simmer for 20 minutes. Serve over cooked rice or in soft tacos. Garnish with chopped cilantro.
     
    Spinach
    Contains lutein and zeaxanthin, two immune-boosting antioxidants for eye health. Spinach is a healthy – and flavorless – addition to any smoothie. You really won’t taste it.
    Smoothie with Spinach
    Blend together:
    1 cup fresh spinach, long stems removed
    1 cup grated carrots
    1 banana, cut into chunks
    1 cup apple juice
    Ice cubes
    In a blender combine fresh spinach leaves, grated carrots, banana and apple juice. Blend and add about 4 ice cubes.
     
    Garlic
    Allicin, a compound found in garlic, works as a potent anti-inflammatory and it can help to lower cholesterol and blood pressure levels. Crushed fresh garlic releases the most allicin. Don’t overcook garlic, because it loses some of its important nutrients.
    Chicken Breasts and Garlic Butter
    4 boneless chicken breasts
    ¾ cup Italian flavored bread crumbs
    1 tablespoon dried parsley flakes
    ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
    1 egg, beaten
    EVOO, olive oil
    Garlic Butter
    4 tablespoon butter, softened
    3-4 cloves garlic, chopped and crushed
    Page 4 of 5 - 1-2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
    Place chicken breasts between 2-pieces of waxed paper and hit the breasts with a rolling pin to flatten them evenly.
    Stir the Garlic Butter ingredients together mixing thoroughly. Divide into 4-parts and spread on each of the chicken breasts. Roll up the chicken breasts and secure with long wooden skewers or a piece of cooking string.
    In a shallow bowl mix breadcrumbs, cheese, and parsley together. Place beaten egg in another shallow bowl. Brush or dip chicken breasts into beaten egg, then roll in breadcrumb mixture.
    Place breasts on a vegetable sprayed baking pan and drizzle with some olive oil. Bake in a preheated 400-degree oven for about 25 to 30 minutes until golden brown.
     
    Walnuts
    Walnuts contain omega-3 fatty acids, which may help to reduce cholesterol. The antioxidant melatonin is found in walnuts and it helps to regulate sleep.
    Walnut-Apple Cake
    1 cup butter, softened
    2 cups granulated sugar
    4 eggs
    3 cups all-purpose flour
    ½ teaspoon baking powder
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1 cup chopped walnuts
    3 cups, peeled and sliced, Granny Green or Macintosh apples
    Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour a 10-inch tube cake pan.
    In a large bowl cream butter and sugar together with an electric mixer. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Set aside.
    In a large bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, and cinnamon. Fold into creamed mixture. Stir and mix well to combine. Stir in vanilla, and then add walnutsand chopped apples. Mix thoroughly and pour into prepared cake pan.
    Bake at 350 degrees for 60-65 minutes or until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Set aside to cool. Using a butter knife slide along outer edges to release cake and turn out. Cake may be frozen, if desired, for 3-4 months.
    This cake can be made into a loaf, if desired.
     
    Dark Chocolate
    Cocoa powder is rich in flavonoids and antioxidants that have been shown to reduce bad DL cholesterol and increase good HDL levels.
    Chocolate-Chocolate Chip and Raspberry Cheesecake
    1 Graham cracker crumb crust (see recipe below)
    3 8-ounce packages cream cheese softened
    1 ¼ cup granulated sugar
    3 eggs
    1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
    1/3 cup dark chocolate cocoa (I use Hershey’s Special Dark cocoa)
    ¾ cup mini chocolate chips
    1 cup raspberry jam
    Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
    With an electric mixer beat cream cheese and sugar in a large bowl until smooth. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. With a spoon or spatula stir in vanilla and chocolate chips. Pour into prepared crust.
    Page 5 of 5 - Bake 45 to 50 minutes or until almost set. Remove from oven to a wire rack. With a butter knife loosen cake from side of pan. Cool completely and remove side of pan.  Cover and refrigerate for 5-6 hours or until chilled. Garnish with raspberry jam, by spreading it over the top of the cake or putting on a dollop for each serving.  Refrigerate any leftover cheesecake. 
    Crumb Crust
    1 cup graham cracker crumbs
    2 tablespoons granulated sugar
    ¼ cup butter, melted
    Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl stir together graham cracker crumbs and sugar, stir in melted butter and mix well. Press mixture onto bottom and ½-inch up the side of a 9-inch springform pan. Bake 8 to 10 minutes. Cool and set aside.
     
    Lemons
    One lemon has more that 100 percent of the daily need of vitamin C. Citrus flavonoids in lemons may help inhibit the growth of cancer cells and act as an anti-inflammatory. They also have folate and disease-fighting lycopene.
    Lemon Curd
    1 cup butter
    2 1/4 cups granulated sugar
    ¾ cup fresh lemon juice, about 2-4 lemons
    1 tablespoon lemon zest or grate rind
    5 large eggs, lightly beaten
    In the top of a double boiler, place butter. Set over simmering water and let stand until butter is melted. Whisk in sugar, lemon juice and lemon zest until well combined. Gradually whisk in beaten eggs, whisking until mixture is smooth. Cook over simmering water, whisking occasionally for 15 to 20 minutes or until mixture has thickened. Remove from heat and let cool. Cover and refrigerate for at least 5-6 hours or up to 2 days before serving. Serve on toast, muffins or pound cake.
     
    Easy Lemon Pie
    1 prepared graham cracker crust
    1 can sweetened condensed milk
    6 egg yolks, reserve egg whites at room temperature for meringue
    ½ cup fresh lemon juice, about 2-3 lemons
    6 tablespoons granulated sugar
    In a bowl, with an electric mixer, beat together condensed milk, egg yolks, and lemon juice. Pour into crust and refrigerate for 3 to 4 hours.
    Then beat egg whites until they form peaks, add 6 tablespoons granulated sugar, and beat. Spoon over pie and bake in a 375-degree oven until brown, about 5 to 10 minutes.
     
    Hope is a retired professor from North Carolina. She resides in Hampstead for the past 16 years, with her husband Vincent, a retired New York City Police Detective. They have four children located in various states, and are grandparents to six grandchildren. She has been awarded numerous ribbons for her breads and has a Blueberry Festival prize for her blueberry cheesecake, which is presently being enjoyed by cruise ship tourists in New Zealand. 
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