Good evening everyone,
Today I am going to be talking about my favourite vegetables, which are THE greens.
I love adding greens to my dishes but it has to be quick & easy. I'm going to focus on the greens I use regularly and always have in the fridge/freezer. There are many others, which I eat when I am out and about but they're not necessarily in my fridge every week. These 3 are my favourite and I find them very easy to make tasty and appealing.
Below I've shared 3 of my favourite ways to add these to my diet on a daily basis.
If in doubt add spinach.... This is my motto with smoothies. It's the perfect way to incorporate more greens into your diet (or your children's). They won't even notice when you mix spinach with their favourite fruits.
Some of the health benefits of spinach include, the many phytonutrients it contains that have health promotional and disease prevention properties. 100 g of fresh spinach also contains about 25% of daily intake of iron, one of the highest for any green leafy vegetables. Iron is an essential trace element required by the human body for red blood cell production.
One of our 'go to' smoothies is a "green monster" which is the only way I can entice my son to eat any greens. I throw everything listed below into my nutribullet and whizz it up. It takes seconds to make and is the perfect quick breakfast or drink alongside your toast/cereal/porridge.
1 scoop Arbonne vanilla pea protein
1/2 a banana
Several handfuls washed spinach or frozen spinach
Oat milk or coconut milk
1/2 scoop of Greens Balance
Top up with water
You could also add frozen berries or tropical fruits depending on what you like best. I find the fruit adds some sweetness. If you are trying to reduce the sugar intake, skip the banana and stick to your red berries such a blueberries, blackberries, raspberries etc.
2. KALE CRISPS
Kale crisps are the easiest thing to make on the planet. I was pretty uncertain about kale to begin with but persisted because of the health benefits and now I am pleased to say I've found a way to enjoy it.
The vegetable hails from the cabbage family, which also includes broccoli, cauliflower, and collards.
Some of the health & nutritional benefits for 1 cup of raw kale include:
- It contains nearly 3 grams of protein
- 2.5 grams of fiber
- Vitamins A, C, and K
- Folate, a B vitamin that’s key for brain development
- Alpha-linolenic acid, an omega-3 fatty acid.
In my opinion kale definitely needs a bit of cooking/baking/frying as it can be a little tough/chewy straight up. I like to turn my kale into crisps by baking it in the oven. This entails picking off any hard stalks and placing the kale leaves onto an oven proof tray, drizzle with a very small amount of oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper or you can add some spices to that such as cayenne. Turn the oven up to 180 and place in there. Keep a very close eye on the oven as they burn so quickly. I would say 5 minutes approx if your oven is hot. You want them to turn a little crispy but not burn. I serve mine with a salad like above or on their own.
Salt and Pepper
If you can't be bothered with all of this, you can also buy many different brands of kale crisps from your supermarket and health food stores such as Nature's Larder (if you live in Aberdeen). Another quick way to add kale is to fry it with a little coconut oil and salt.
3. STIR FRY
Anything goes with a stir fry and I honestly add broccoli every single time I make one.
Broccoli is one of the very low-calorie vegetables. It provides just 34 calories per 100 g. It is rich in dietary fiber, minerals, vitamins, and anti-oxidants that have proven health benefits. Al dente is best as it keeps more of the nutrients locked in. If you are trying to conceive or pregnant fresh heads are an excellent source of folates. They contain about 63 µg/100 grams (provides 16% of RDA). Studies have shown that consumption of fresh vegetables and fruits rich in folates during pre-conception, and pregnancy helps prevent neural tube defects in the newborns.
2 x dessert spoons tahini
1 teaspoon coconut oil or sesame seed oil
1 teaspoon honey
1/2 onion chopped
1 head of broccoli chopped
1/2 cup chickpeas
1/2 cup cooked green lentil
1 - 2 cups spinach
1. heat oil in pan and add chopped onion
2. Allow onion to simmer for a few minutes
3. Add tahini and honey
4. Add broccoli & chickpeas & stir to coat in sauce. Allow to fry for a few minutes
5. Add lentils and heat through stirring as you go
6. Lastly add spinach and allow to wilt slightly.
7. Serve with soya sauce on top (optional)
I only fry my veg lightly as I like to keep it crunchy and don't want my spinach too wilted.
Do you love greens or hate them? I'd love to hear how you add them into your food, especially any successful methods of fussy children.