It is hard to believe that Fall is at our doorstep already. My gosh, it was difficult enough posting my last update entitled “Summer’s Over” at a time when I began to enjoy the beautiful August, old fashion like “Dog Days of Summer.” Honestly. I am afraid to blink my eyes in fear that when I open them my favorite time of the year will be over and it will be time to don our snow boots.
This is my favorite time of the year, I always loved my early morning walks with my neighbor, but as I mentioned before she moved and I never could find anyone willing to get up early at 6 AM to go walking. Honestly, I miss it so much because it was such a great beginning to my day. Just breathing in the crisp morning air untouched yet by the daily contamination and I really do not think that an artist canvass could bring out the colors that an October rising sun departs in the sky and as it illuminates the breathtaking colors of the changing leaves.
I really didn’t do much Fall decorating this year, but here are some photos of my past endeavors to get you in the spirit of the season.
But at this moment I am excited about experimenting with recipes using all the wonderful produce from my garden as well as my son and both of my son-in-law’s gardens.
Pictured are some of the wonderful vegetables that I worked with for this update.
The tomatoes were the first to go and I was delighted with all the wonderful tasting dishes that I made and as most of us can attest too, nothing taste better than a garden tomato freshly picked from the vine. Not only is that tomato a wonder of nature with its beautiful shape and color and a taste that can satisfy your taste buds, it also mimics the contents of your medicine cabinet with the many medical and nutritional qualities that it has.
One medium tomato contains approximately 22 to 35 calories and is very low in sodium. That same tomato is a good source of Vitamin E, Thiamine, Niacin, Phosphorus and Copper and an excellent source of Dietary Fiber, Vitamin A, Vitamin K, Potassium and Manganese and at least 2% each of Calcium and Iron. Also this vine grown miracle is a wonderful source of lycopene a powerful antioxidant and anticancer agent and although we have been told that eating food whole with less preparation is best, it seems that lycopene is more concentrated in cooked tomatoes.
Perhaps you are familiar with the antioxidant lycopene due to all the press attributed to the many studies that claim that lycopene is important for men to combat the risk of prostate cancer. But women take note, new studies have shown that lycopene is also important for bone health, especially for postmenopausal women.
Remember, I am just sharing my research with you and as always, I suggest that you do your own research and discuss your concerns with your doctor and/or your nutritionist.
CREATIVE CORNER-In the CREATIVE CORNER today is Tim and his wife Kelley from Upstate New York-I personally gave Tim the tag Farmer because of all the beautiful vegetables he and his wife grew in their garden. Like that old sitcom Green Acres starring Eddie Albert and Eva Gabor about a couple that move from the city to the country and unfortunately encounter all kinds of problems, they too were city people, but enjoy every minute of country life and when I asked him what their secret was for having such a successful garden, Tim answered “My neighbors healthy cows manure.” Now that is organic!
The Creative Corner is reserved for my readers who would like to spotlight a creative endeavor-does not have to be a food item, and many of the entrees appear on Google and Bing search engines. To submit a photo and information, as well as contact information if the item is for sale, send to my contact MAY@HealthyCookingForToday.com.
Having been given an abundance of tomatoes and wanting to use them while still fresh off the vine, I was able to experiment with many different means of cooking tomatoes and created some delicious recipes, as well as loading my freezer with containers of tomato sauce using a very simple process that took very little time to prepare.
I do not think that this simple recipe needs to be featured in my recipe section or can be because the section is programmed to list ingredients and amounts, so I am just going to list the steps used to prepare the sauce that I am calling Roasted Tomato Sauce.
Preheat oven to 400 or 425 degrees F.
Line a large cookie sheet with sides with aluminum foil.
1 - Wash tomatoes in a calendar with a spray of warm water. Shake colander to remove excess water and place tomatoes on paper towels and pat dry. Let tomatoes air dry while preparing other ingredients
2 - In a glass measuring cup add olive oil and whatever herbs and spices and any other ingredients that you use when making your favorite pasta sauce and mix to combine.
3 - Cut large tomatoes in quarters and small tomatoes in half and place on the foiled lined cookie sheet and pour the olive oil mixture to cover tomatoes. Toss gently to coat all sides of the tomatoes and place in oven and roast for 20 minutes or until tomatoes just begin to brown. Check often to assure that the tomatoes do not burn. Let the tomatoes cool.
4 - Puree the tomatoes-I use my Vitamix, which can best be describe as a blender on steroids. The Vitamix has a very powerful motor that pulverizes the peels and incorporates them into the sauce, I pour the sauce in a strainer to remove the seeds and any skin remnants. The same procedure would be used if using a blender, which would remove any skin as well as seeds. I then add some Romano or Parmesan cheese to taste.
5 - Your sauce is ready to use as is as a marinara sauce by heating in a saucepan on low or if you prefer a thicker sauce add a can of tomato paste and a tomato paste can of water. I suggest that you experiment with the recipe the first time until you are satisfied with the taste and consistency. Freeze in freezable containers for future use.
Another easy and delicious recipe for serving tomatoes for a cold healthy lunch or light dinner on a hot summer day is stuffed tomatoes. Actually this is one of my favorite go-to Summer recipes because it is simple to prepare.
Wash the tomatoes and gently dry with a paper towel. Cut the top of the tomatoes off and scoop out the pulp with a spoon so that the tomato resembles a small bowl. Place the tomatoes cut side down on a paper towel to drain while preparing the stuffing.
Now this is the time for you to be creative by using anyone of your favorite cold salads, such as tuna, shrimp, egg or a mixture of cottage cheese. You can go crazy with this stuffed tomato recipe.
In the recipe section you will find more interesting recipes for eggplant, zucchini, cucumbers and peppers.
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