The Benefits of Eating Frozen Fruit and Vegetables

People usually eat fruits and vegetables for their nutritional values, but they cannot enjoy them when their season is over. When fruits and vegetables are out of season, cooks either have to adapt to eating the produce of the new season or depend on frozen fruits and vegetables. Frozen fruits and vegetables are used for various reasons like ease of using them and their nutritional benefits. Some of the benefits of eating frozen fruit and vegetables are:

Frozen Fruit And Vegetables Are Full Of Nutrients

The nutritional value of fruits and vegetables starts lessening the minute they are picked. So, their nutritional value gets affected from the moment they are plucked and the time you take to eat them after harvesting them. But the nutritional value can be much more than fresh fruits and vegetables as they are frozen as soon as possible after harvesting them. Moreover, they are full of their nutritional elements, including minerals, antioxidants, and vitamins, when they are plucked after their full maturity. Freezing fruits and vegetables at this stage help in locking most of their nutrients in them. On the other hand, the fresh fruits and vegetables you get in the market have to travel a long way to reach you, and during that period, they get enough time to reap and get maturity. So they must be harvested when they could not get the maximum amount of natural nutritional elements. They get ripened artificially during their transit period. So, frozen fruits and vegetables have more nutritional value than their fresh counterparts.

The fact that frozen fruits and vegetables are more or equally nutritious to fresh fruits and vegetables can be proved on the basis of two studies performed independently. These studies were carried out by the scientists of Chester University and Leatherhead Food Research center. They have performed over 40 tests on frozen fruits and vegetables as well as on the products kept in a fridge for 3-4 days to measure and compare their nutritional values. They found that the level of nutrients found in the samples of frozen foods is more than in the comparatively fresher items. Actually, the level of antioxidants, like anthocyanins, lutein, beta-carotene, and polyphenols, found in some of the frozen vegetables and fruits, were higher than in fresh fruits and vegetables. The results of these researches have confirmed that the nutrients are not destroyed when the foods are frozen. It has been found that frozen broccoli lost 10% of its nutrients when preserved for one year, whereas fresh broccoli lost over 50% in just one week.

Frozen Fruit And Vegetables Are Free From Additive

When fruits and vegetables are frozen, no unwanted additives are used while packing them in bags. On the other hand, canned fruits and vegetables have a number of additives in them, even if no sugar or salt is used while preserving them. You can find these additives from fresh fruits and vegetables if you check them minutely, but you cannot find any added material on the fruits and vegetables preserved in freezers.

Frozen Fruit And Vegetables Are Very Easy To Use

If you like to eat fresh fruits and vegetables then you can visit a local market of farmers to get the produce of that season, but in the long run, you will find that it would have been better if you have bought frozen foods. Along with preserving the nutritional values, the frozen foods are easy to use as you need not wash, chop, or peel them. And for that reason, you can pour them directly on your plate to eat them instantly after taking them out of the freezer. The ease of using frozen vegetables and fruits has also been proved through a study on working women. According to this study, on average, almost one hour is spent every day by working woman for preparing, serving and eating the food and cleaning up afterward when she uses frozen fruits and vegetables. But when they use fresh fruits and vegetables then they have to spend at least one hour for preparing, serving and eating each meal. Actually, they save a lot of time to reach and prepare meals with frozen ingredients than fresh ingredients.

Frozen Fruit And Vegetables Can Be Used Flexibly

You can use frozen fruits and vegetables stocked in your freezer in different ways as necessary. You can spread them on the whole-grain toast with butter or use them as a topping on your oatmeal recipe. You can also sauté them with some garlic, herbs, and extra virgin olive oil and add some brown rice pasta or a bit of quinoa or add them in your stir fry dishes as the main ingredient to make delicious recipes of your choice very quickly. Moreover, you can use frozen ingredients throughout the year even when their season is off. Fresh fruits and vegetables, you cannot use them in their offseason, unless they are imported from elsewhere.  

Frozen Fruit And Vegetables Take More Care Of Your Health

Though buying fresh fruits and vegetables is the best way to get nutrition, but it is not necessary. Nutritionists usually suggest eating 4-5 servings of vegetables and fruits every day to remain healthy.  According to a recent study, it has been proven that fruits and more vegetables and fruit are consumed by the people who buy frozen produce than those who buy fresh ones. It makes people eating frozen produce healthier than those using fresh produce as their intake of vitamins and minerals is higher.

There are a number of benefits of eating frozen vegetables and fruits, but that does not mean that you should avoid eating fresh fruits and vegetables.

How to Oven Roasted-Asparagus

Though you can cook asparagus in different ways but roasting them is considered as the most admired way to cook them. If you do not know how to oven-roasted asparagus, then you should read this write-up till the end as it will also introduce you to the mistakes commonly committed by people while cooking this vegetable.

Some Basic Things to Follow

Before proceeding towards the recipe for roasting asparagus you should know about some basic things like the ends of asparagus spears are normally impossible to cook as they are too hard to cook. So you should trim them before starting to cook them. Before oven roasting asparagus, you should season them generously with pepper and salt. Asparagus should be cooked in an oven in a single layer as they will not char if they have crowded your pan.

Recipe of Oven Roasted Asparagus

Roasted Asparagus Ingredients

Ingredients required to oven-roasted asparagus may include:

  • Trimmed stalks of asparagus (2 pounds)
  • Extra virgin olive oil (3 tbsp)
  • Black pepper
  • salt

Directions for Oven Roast Asparagus

Before starting to roast asparagus in the oven, you should preheat the oven up to 400 degrees. Now put a large baking sheet on a large baking sheet in the oven and place generously seasoned asparagus with olive oil on that sheet. Roast the asparagus sticks up to 25 minutes or until they tender.

Some of the Common Mistakes to Be Avoided

While roasting asparagus, people usually make some common mistakes, which can be avoided while roasting them a bit carefully. Some of these mistakes may include:

Use Of Too Big Or Too Small Asparagus Stalks

While roasting asparagus stalks, you should take them of the right size as too thin stalks can be overcooked easily, whereas thick stalks will be more fibrous and woodier. So, they should be medium in size when you are oven roasting them.

Peeling Asparagus Stalks

According to cooking experts, peeling asparagus before cooking is not necessary. Moreover, it will take much time to peel them. Instead of peeling the asparagus stalks, you should cut off their bottom part as the rest of them is edible.

Cut off Too Much Woody Portion

Some people bend the asparagus stalks to remove their woody portion, which is not the right method to remove their inedible part. According to experts, it is a time-consuming method. You should check them by pressing them with your fingers. The stalk will break up automatically, or you can slice it from that point to remove its woody part easily.

Avoiding Blanching of Asparagus

Most cooking experts blanch asparagus, regardless of the method they use for cooking them. It makes easier to start their cooking process. When you are roasting asparagus without blanching it them its outer surface will be charred, whereas from inside, it will remain raw. You should blanch asparagus in boiling highly salted water for 1-3 minutes, according to the size of its pieces. But you should not blanch it for a longer time as it will boil them, which may not be suitable for roasting them.

By avoiding these mistakes, you can easily oven roast perfect asparagus.

Good Reasons To Eat Spaghetti Squash

Spaghetti squash is a very healthy vegetable, packed with vitamins and fiber. It has a neutral taste so that it can be combined with almost all other types of food. It is low in calories, which makes it perfect for people who are on a food regime. Moreover, it is really easy to prepare, even if you are a complete beginner. Here are the biggest benefits of spaghetti squash:

Spaghetti squash is a great source of vitamins

It is loaded with vitamins! One cup of spaghetti squash contains 9% of the recommended daily dose of vitamin C. Do we even need to mention vitamin C? It is crucial for our immune system, it is a great antioxidant, and it is great for skin as it prevents premature aging. One cup of spaghetti squash has 8% of the recommended daily dose of vitamin B6. Vitamin B6 is necessary for the proper functioning of our brain and nervous system. Moreover, it activates some of the hormones responsible for our happiness level, and it can improve our mood and reduce the risk of depression. Spaghetti squash also contains other important nutrients such as manganese, potassium, niacin, and magnesium.

Spaghetti squash is low in calories

Spaghetti squash is perfect for people who want to lose weight or to eat healthily. This watery food is really low in calories but very rich in nutrients. It is difficult to say how many calories one spaghetti squash contains because they come in different sizes and shapes. But we can say how many calories there are in one cup of cooked spaghetti squash: it contains only 42 calories! On the other hand, one cup of traditional spaghetti (without any sauce) contains from 180 up to 220 calories. Now it is clear why more and more people opt for spaghetti squash, as a healthier alternative to spaghetti.

Spaghetti squash contains a lot of fiber

It is a great source of fiber. One cup of spaghetti squash has as much as 9% of the daily dose of fiber. It means that regular consumption of this vegetable can improve your digestive system, eliminate potential problems and lower your blood sugar level. Fiber also helps people who are trying to lose weight, and that’s one of the biggest benefits of this vegetable.

Spaghetti squash is easy to prepare

It is one of the easiest dishes to prepare, and it does not require advanced cooking skills. All you have to do is cut it in half and remove the seeds. Then you should add a little olive oil, salt, and spices and roast it in the oven at 400 F for about 45 minutes. As you can see, it is not time-consuming because while it is roasting you have time to do whatever you want. Once it is roasted, use a fork to make strands that look like spaghetti.

Spaghetti squash can be prepared in many different ways

Above we have described the easiest way to prepare spaghetti squash. You can also use it in various meals that require spaghetti or noodles as one of the ingredients. Spaghetti squash is a great substitute for both of them, and it does not change the flavor or consistency of the dish – it only lowers calorie intake. Spaghetti squash is the perfect solution for people who want to lower calorie intake without having to give up on their favorite meals. It is worth mentioning that it has a very mild flavor so that it can be combined or topped with various ingredients. That way, you can prepare it often, but it will not bore you. Some of the most popular toppings include cheese, veggies, and meatballs. But you can be creative and combine it with any other food that you like. You can not go wrong, and you may end up discovering a great new combination!

Now you should understand with more clarity why many doctors recommend spaghetti squash as a healthier substitute to spaghetti. It has a lot of benefits for your overall health, as well as the digestive system, weight loss, and youthful looks. Once when you try it and see how easy it is to prepare and combine with other food, you would wish you have tried it earlier!

Recipe – Parmesan Cheese Spaghetti Squash

This Spaghetti Squash recipe is deceptively simple.  A sprinkle of Parmesan cheese may not seem like much, but the salty tang of Parmesan brings out the flavor of the Spaghetti squash. Add a little butter and some salt and pepper, and this simple spaghetti squash recipe becomes a delicious addition to your meal.

What is great about this simple recipe?

  • The recipe requires it’s easy
  • The recipe requires minimal prep work, and
  • The recipe requires just four ingredients.

Parmesan Cheese Spaghetti Squash Ingredients

  • 1 medium spaghetti squash
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese or three cheese mix
  • 1/2 stick unsalted butter (melted)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Parmesan Cheese Spaghetti Squash Directions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C)
  • Use a paring knife to poke small cut through over the entire skin.
  • Place the spaghetti squash in a lined baking dish.
  • Bake about one hour or until soft.
  • Remove the spaghetti squash from the oven and cut the spaghetti squash in half.
  • Scoop out and discard the spaghetti squash seeds.
  • Using a fork, scrape flesh in strings into a serving bowl.
  • Toss with Parmesan and melted butter
  • Season to taste with salt and pepper and or Italian seasoning

Servings

  • Makes six servings

Recipe – Paleo Chicken Soup for Two

This is my daughter’s paleo chicken soup recipe, which makes two servings. I like the pictures when she sent them to us, so, I asked her to do a quick recipe and here it is.

Ingredients for Broth

  • 1 pot of water (about 6 – 8 cups)
  • 1 pound chicken thighs (boneless and skinless)
  • 1 packet Sazon Goya con Azafran
  • 2 chopped zucchinis
  • 1-2 cups chopped carrots
  • 10 small potatoes quartered
  • 2 teaspoons Mead and Marrowbone broth concentrate (burn flavor)
  • 2 cups rice (optional)
  • 2 small onions chopped
  • 3 stalks of celery chopped
  • 2 large pinches of Himalayan sea salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon chopped garlic

Ingredients for Garnish

  • 10 small radishes sliced
  • 1 bunch of cilantro (remove leaves and chop)
  • 2 small onions chopped
  • 3 limes halved
  • Cholula hot sauce

Directions

  • Bring a pot of water to a boil
  • Add in all ingredients for the broth
  • Reduce heat to medium
  • Cook until all vegetables are cooked through and chicken is soft (30-45 min)
  • Remove chicken and shred with knife and fork then add back in
  • Serve in bowl
  • Garnish with limes, onions, cilantro, radishes to taste
  • Add hot sauce, salt, and pepper to taste

Advantages of eating in season

Advantages of eating in season are many, but If you are willing to harvest from your backyard orchard, and/or vegetable garden or visit your local u-pick farm and preserve your food you can save a great deal and eat better too. Even purchasing in season at your local grocer can save your family money.

Here is a quick list of some of the benefits:

  • Your produce will taste better.  Produce harvested when it’s naturally at its best will mean it will also taste its best and give you the optimum nutrients.
  • It will save you money. In-season produce is often on-sale produce and or less expensive for a quick sale. Especially, if you are willing to visit the local farmer’s market or visit the local u-pick farms and replace money with a little family work and exercise.
  • You’ll discover new, fruit and vegetable choices. The world of fruits, vegetables, and roots is a larger one than most of our shopping habits indicate. Eating in season will introduce you to new types of fruits, vegetables, and roots and give you more knowledge of nutritious choices. Many heirloom varieties do not ship or store well and therefore will not be in the supermarket.
  • Eating in season also tends to support local growers, which helps the local economy and reduces pollution. Also, as you get to know your local farmer and you will be helping to keep what remains of the local family famil alive for the future. In speaking and making friends with your local farmer you may find there are other opportunities to broaden your diet as many raise heritage livestock, which can make their way to your table. They can let you what crop will next be available and when.

Recipe – Spaghetti Sԛuash Rеd Sаuсе

whether working with the spaghetti squash from your garden or recently purchased from the store this recipe makes a nice weeknight recipe. Because this spaghetti squash recipe uses only the stovetop and the microwave it doesn’t add a lot of heat to the house, so, it can be a year-round family favorite.

Ingredients

  • 1 onion diсеd
  • 1 tsp. оlivе oil
  • 1 plum tomato, seeded and diсеd
  • 1 сuр tomato sauce
  • ¾ tѕр.. orеgano
  • ½ tѕр. salt
  • ¼ tѕр. рерреr
  • 1 lаrgе spaghetti squash, about 5 pounds
  • ¼ сuр Parmesan cheese

Directions

  • In a nonstick ѕkillеt, sauté onion in оil until tranѕluсеnt, about 10 minutes. Add tomato, tomato ѕаuсе, oregano, salt, and рерреr and ѕimmеr over low hеat for 30 minutеѕ.
  • Mеanwhilе, hаlvе spaghetti squash lеngthwisе, and rеmоvе seeds. Cover еасh hаlf with microwave-safe cellophane wrap for cooking, leaving 1 сornеr еxроѕеd. Miсrоwаvе, cut side up, on a plate on high power for 8 minutеѕ. Sԛuash should ѕераratе easily into ѕtrandѕ when donе.
  • Sсrаре out flesh and рlасе in an lаrgе mixing bowl. Mix in tomato ѕаuсе and season to tastе. Dividе into ѕix 2/3-сuр portions and top еасh with 1 tаblеѕроon Pаrmеѕan. Or, if you like you can lay the spaghetti squash out and apply on a platter and cover it with a tomato sauce making the Parmesan available for each to serve their own when they take their helping.

Servings

  • Makes about six servings