Eat Your Vegetables

Eat Your Vegetables – Mama Said.

Some vegetables, flavors intensify as the plant matures, which is why the so-called baby versions have wider taste appeal with just as many health benefits. Experiment with baby artichokes, turnips, squashes, and carrots (the ones sold in bunches, with greens still attached not those sold in plastic bags, which are simply regular carrots, trimmed down.

You can find the babies at larger supermarkets, specialty grocers, and farmers’ markets such as younger brussels sprouts, can even be bought frozen. Not only do many people find baby vegetables more flavorful and less bitter, but they prefer the texture, too. Younger vegetables are more tender and require less cooking, so says Barbara Klein, PhD, professor of foods and nutrition at the University of Illinois.

Oil them up judiciously using fats especially heart healthy ones like olive oil can go far in helping you love your veggies. When fat binds with seasonings and spices, it can transform vegetables from a duty diet item to something downright yummy. The link between vegetable avoidance and certain cancers is strong enough to justify the extra calories.

Raw veggies probably aren’t the first thing you crave when a snack attack strikes, but you’ll be much more tempted to eat them when they’re dunked in hummus, low fat dip, or your favorite salad dressing. Try munching at work, in front of the TV or when surfing the internet. Snacking on veggies away from the dinner table makes eating them feel like less of a health chore.

The poor lonely onion family, which includes leeks, shallots, and garlic, is rich in compounds suspected to fight cancer, says nutritionist Valerie Green, MPH. But for onion haters, the sharp flavors and strong smells can be almost nauseating. Try slow roasting onions, which brings out the sweetness and cuts the sharpness. Brush leeks or sliced onions with a little olive oil,(or ‘real’ butter) wrap in foil packets, and toss on the grill to mild down take the sting.

Tomato’s little secret is making sure you buy those that are vine ripened which eliminates almost all the bitter flavors, says Autar Mattoo, PhD, a molecular biologist with the USDA.

Over mature eggplants are bitter, but the size of this fiber and potassium packed vegetable isn’t your best clue. If your thumb leaves an indent that doesn’t bounce back, the eggplant will be spongy, tough, and bad tasting, even if it’s a little one. To further improve taste, check out its “belly button” at the blossom end, eggplants have either an oval or round dimple. Buy only the ovals.

To reduce eggplant’s bitter tendencies even more, after you slice it, sprinkle it with salt, then wait about half hour, rinse, and proceed with your recipe. Salt draws out water, which contains the bitter tasting compounds.
Eggplants are worth the trouble. The insides of these veggies are high in cancer fighting polyphenols the same chemicals that make apples so good for you.

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12 responses to “Eat Your Vegetables

  1. Why are the oval ends on aubergines better than the round ones?

    Great to know they are so good for you, anyway 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oval ends are present on young fruit, as the fruit grows and matures the rounder the bloom attachment becomes. Very round ends indicate a fully mature or even over ripe fruit.
      I hope this has been helpful.
      Happy Gardening

      Like

  2. I love brussel sprouts, usually with butter but I’ll try oil.

    Liked by 1 person

    • O-No, don’t let me lead you away from eating what ‘You’ like. Some people can’t eat butter, others have a phobia about the fat in butter.
      As for me, I love the taste of real butter and quality olive oil.

      Happy gardening

      Like

  3. Thanks for the advice on egg plant – we thought we were supposed to let them get big! A couple of summers ago, we grew and ate so much, we started getting bad indigestion. Our health care provider told us they are a nightshade and nightshades hurt your stomach, so we dropped them from our diet altogether. Which was terrible because we’d got so good at eggplant parmesan.

    Lately, I’ve heard from you and two other sources, including Lidia Bastianich, that we need to eat the small young fruit, don’t let it “go to seed” . So, we’ll try it again, we’ll take your advice, pick them young, and check the dimple!

    I’d say “Happy Earth Day,” but I know you, like me, celebrate Earth Day 365 days a year.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Big Grin … In my humble opinion, almost all vegetables should be harvested while small, tender and full of home grown flavor.
      Peppers and tomato’s are to notable exceptions.
      Fun healthy eating from your garden

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      • My grandpa had a huge truck garden every year. My grandma would have all her favorite squashes out there, and lemon cukes, and she’d pick them every day. But Gramps loved to grow everything ENORMOUS! Every year he’d grow “banana squash,” and he’d get a couple that would get several feet long, and he’d load them into the back of his pick-up to go around and show his friends. He’d take his rubber knife, and offer them a slice – everybody knew the routine.

        Live and learn!

        Liked by 1 person

  4. The first home grown salads are this month’s treats here in England! Lettuce, rocket, sorrel, Swiss chard and snips of that slimmest member of the onion family, chives. Spring is sprung!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Grin … Yes, spring goodness in waiting for us in our home gardens. Hehe and for those that harvest fresh vegetables form their supermarket produce section.
      Happy Spring Gardening

      Like

  5. Definitely a lot of goodness in veggies.

    Liked by 1 person

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