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Super foods

Research studies indicate that certain foods may actually help us to live healthier by reducing our risk of heart disease and cancer.

Many of these plant based foods contain phytochemicals, which are compounds that help to keep our blood vessels clear of disease forming particles called free radicals.

A list of these SUPER FOODS includes berries, citrus fruits, tomatoes, whole grains, leafy green vegetables, garlic, tea and tomatoes. These "power" foods provide the basis for recipes included.


Banana Bread    

1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup flax seed
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup canola oil
2 whole eggs
1 cup banana

In a large bowl, sift together flours, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Mix in flax seed.

Add remaining ingredients and stir until well blended. Spread into an 8 X 4-inch loaf pan lightly sprayed with vegetable oil spray.

Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Yield: 1

  Black Bean Barley Salsa Salad  

2 cups water
1 cup barley
1 cup corn
1 cup tomato
1/2 cup fresh cilantro
1/3 cup bell pepper
1/2 cup onions
1 (15 oz.) can black beans
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon hot sauce
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon pepper

Bring 2 cups water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add barley; cover, reduce heat, and simmer 8 minutes. Add corn (do not stir), and cover. Cook 6 minutes or until barley is tender. Remove barley mixture from heat, and let stand 5 minutes.

Combine barley mixture, tomato, cilantro, bell pepper, onions, and black beans in a large bowl. Combine lemon juice and remaining ingredients in a small bowl. Pour lemon dressing over salad; toss gently to coat.

Yield: 6 cups

    Blueberry Pie

4 cups blueberries
3 1/2 Tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
1 pie crust

Cook pie crust according to recipe or package directions.

Mix water and 2 cups blueberries in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil.

Combine sugar and cornstarch in a small bowl. Add 2-3 Tablespoons of hot liquid from saucepan to sugar cornstarch mixture. Blend well. Add mixture back into saucepan with the blueberries. Stir until the liquid thickens.

Add remaining 2 cups blueberries. Stir gently to blend. Pour into pre-cooked pie crust. Allow pie filling to cool to room temperature before serving.

Yield: 1 pie

Bulgur Stuffed Portabella Mushrooms    

2 cups water
1 cup bulgur
1/2 pound mushrooms
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic
1/4 cup walnuts
1 (10 oz.) package frozen spinach
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 cup low-fat cheese
4 large portabella mushrooms

In medium size covered skillet, saute bulgur in olive until it smells slightly burnt, about 5 minutes.
Add onion, garlic, nuts and spinach, stirring to blend. Continue to saute for two minutes, stirring periodically.

Add chicken broth or water, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Cover and simmer for 5-7 minutes or until moisture is absorbed.

Wash and pat mushrooms dry. Divide bulgur mixture between mushrooms. Place in baking dish.

Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Sprinkle remaining cheese on top. Continue to bake for 5 minutes longer.

Yield: 3 cups

  Crispy Marinated Carrots  

1 pound carrots
1/2 medium onion
1/2 cup green pepper
1/3 cup vinegar
1/4 cup tomato juice
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/4 teaspoon prepared mustard

Cook carrots in boiling water to cover 2 minutes or until crisp tender. Drain. Combine carrots, onion, and green pepper in baking dish. Set aside.

Combine remaining ingredients in a small bowl. Stir until well blended. Pour over vegetables. Toss lightly. Cover and refrigerate 8 hours or overnight. Serve with a slotted spoon.

Yield: 4 cups

    Fresh Fruit Cobbler

5 cups peaches
3/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup flour
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 tablespoons light margarine
1/2 cup skim milk

Combine fruit, 3/4 cup sugar, and cornstarch in a saucepan. Cover and cook over low heat until mixture comes to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and continue to cook until mixture is slightly thickened, about 7-10 minutes. Pour fruit mixture into a 9 inch baking dish or pie plate.

In a mixing bowl, combine dry ingredients and then cut in margarine with a pastry blender. When mixture is crumbly, add milk, making a dough that is soft but not sticky (you may not need all the milk).

Transfer dough to a lightly floured surface. Roll to 1/2 inch thickness, about 9" square or in the shape of the baking dish. Place rolled dough over filling.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until crust is evenly browned.

Yield: 6 cups

Fruit Medley Crisp    

2 cups oatmeal
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup light margarine
1/2 cup brown sugar
3 teaspoons cinnamon
1 quart chopped apples
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons granulated sugar

In medium size mixing bowl, combine oatmeal, flour, brown sugar and 2 tsp. cinnamon. Using fork or fingers, combine margarine with oatmeal mixture until crumbly.

Spoon apples into 9" pie plate or baking pan. Stir in lemon juice, granulated sugar and remaining 1 tsp. cinnamon.

Sprinkle oatmeal mixture over apples.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes

  Fruit Smoothie  

2 cups sherbet
1 cup sliced strawberries
1 whole banana
4 ice cubes
1/4 cup nonfat yogurt

Combine all ingredients in blender.

On high speed, blend all ingredients until smooth.

Yield: 4 cups

    Garden Fresh Salsa

4 large tomatoes
1 small onion
1/4 cup bell pepper
1 clove garlic
1 jalapeno pepper
1/4 cup fresh parsley
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/2 cup fresh cilantro

In a large bowl, combine the tomatoes, onion, bell pepper, and garlic. If jalapeno pepper is desired, wear plastic gloves to finely chop the jalapeno (be careful not to rub your eyes). Add it to the tomato mixture, along with the parsley and cilantro.

Toss with vinegar and mix in the salt, pepper, and cumin. Chill until ready to serve.

Yield: 3 cups


2 cups tomatoes
1/2 cup celery
1/2 cup cucumber
1/2 cup green pepper
1/2 cup onion
1 teaspoon garlic
1 tablespoon fresh parsley
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
3 tablespoons wine vinegar
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 1/2 cups tomato juice
black pepper

Combine tomatoes, celery, cucumber, green pepper, and onion in a large bowl. Sprinkle parsley and garlic over vegetable mixture.

Combine Worcestershire sauce, vinegar, oil, and tomato juice in a jar. Cover, shake to mix well. Pour over vegetable mixture. Toss to mix well. Add black pepper to taste, if desired.

Cover and refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight.

Yield: 6 cups


3 cups oatmeal
1 1/2 cups bran bud cereal
1 cup oat bran
2 cups whole grain cereal flakes
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup nonfat dry milk
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1/3 cup nuts
1/4 cup wheat germ
1 tablespoon cinnamon
4 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 cup raisins

Combine all ingredients except oil in a 9X13 inch baking pan. Stir together until well blended. Drizzle oil over dry mixture. Using fingers, blend in oil until mixture is coated.

Bake at 250 degrees 30 minutes. Turn oven off. Add 1 cup raisins, stirring entire mixture to blend. Leave pan in oven for 1-2 hours, or until cool.

Yield: 9 cups

    Grilled Vegetables

1 medium zucchini
1 medium green pepper
1 medium red pepper
1 cup mushrooms
1 medium onion
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar or red wine vinegar
1 clove garlic

Combine vegetables. Combine olive oil, garlic and vinegar, if desired. Pour over vegetables and toss gently.

Place vegetables in grill basket*. Cook vegetables on readied grill for about 8 minutes, turning frequently.

*No grill basket? Make several aluminum foil "packets" to contain the vegetables and place on the grill. Another option is to place the vegetable mixture on a baking sheet and cook at 400 degrees for 15 - 20 minutes, turning at least once during cooking.

Yield: 6 cups

Italian Saute    

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium zucchini
1 cup mushrooms
1/2 cup green pepper
1/2 cup fresh spinach
1/2 cup red onion
1/2 cup celery
1 medium carrot
1 medium tomato
1 teaspoon garlic
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon basil
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 cup white wine
dash Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup Mozzarella cheese, part skim milk

Coat large non-stick skillet with olive oil. Heat over medium heat until sizzling. Add all vegetables to skillet. Stir-fry 2-3 minutes. Add seasonings. Stir-fry 2-3 minutes longer. Sprinkle with cheeses. Serve warm.

Yield: 6 cups

  Low-Fat Salsa Chicken  

4 each skinless boneless chicken breast
3/4 cup salsa
1/2 cup green onions
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese

Place chicken in an 11 X 7-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Spoon salsa evenly over chicken; top with green onions. Sprinkle with cheese.

Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake an additional 10 minutes or until chicken is done.

Serve with hot cooked rice or baked potatoes.

    Mango Chutney

1 1/3 cups mango
1/4 cup red bell pepper
1/4 cup green pepper
1/4 cup purple onion
1/4 cup cilantro
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup lime juice
1 1/2 tablespoons apple juice
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

Combine all ingredients in a bowl, toll gently. Cover and chill.

Store in airtight container in refrigerator.

Yield: 2 1/2 cups

Marinated Salmon    

1 pound salmon fillet
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon minced ginger

Stir together soy, ginger and garlic.

Brush mixture over surface of salmon.

Allow to marinate for 10 minutes.

Grill or broil 10 minutes per inch of thickness.

  Marinated Vegetables  

Combine all vegetables in large bowl or container with lid. Pour dressing over all. Stir to coat evenly. Sprinkle with basil and garlic. (If fresh basil is available, substitute 1 Tablespoon fresh basil for the 1 teaspoon dried basil.) Store in refrigerator for 2 - 24 hours to marinate.

Yield: 6 cups

    Marsha's Favorite Kale

1 pound kale
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons minced garlic
2 tablespoons pine nuts
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon chicken stock

Saute garlic, onion and pine nuts in oil until lightly browned.

Add kale, stirring to coat with oil. Continue to saute for 5-7 minutes.

Add pepper and chicken broth. Cover and cook over medium heat until greens are tender, about 12-15 minutes.

Roasted Red Pepper and Chick Pea Spread    

1 (16 oz.) can chickpeas
1 (7 oz.) jar roasted red peppers
1/2 cup nonfat sour cream
2 teaspoons garlic
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon cumin

Process all ingredients in a food processor until smooth, stopping to scrape down sides. Cover and chill 1 hour.

Preparation Time: 0:10

  Simple Salmon  

1 salmon fillet

Pat salmon skin dry before cooking. Heat cast iron skillet over medium-low heat. Sprinkle salt to cover bottom of skillet. Place salmon fillet in skillet, skin side down, on top of salt. Cover and cook until salmon is done, approximately 12-15 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fillet. Check center of fillet to test for doneness before serving.

Yield: 1 salmon fillet

    Szechwan Green Beans

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 pound green beans
1 tablespoon soy sauce
3/4 cup chicken broth

Pour oil into large skillet.

Add sesame seeds to hot oil, stirring to coat. Saute until lightly browned.

Add green beans. Stir to coat beans with mixture. Saute until beans are bright green, about 5 minutes.

Add chicken broth and soy sauce. Cover and cook until crispy tender, 5-10 minutes.

Zucchini Boats    

4 zucchini
8 ounces lean ground beef
1 cup tomato sauce
2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
Italian seasoning
1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, part skim milk

Split zucchini in half lengthwise. Using spoon, scoop out center. Place pulp in blender chop until fine.

In a large mixing bowl, add tomato sauce, beef, seasonings and Parmesan cheese to zucchini pulp. Microwave mixture on medium high 5 - 6 minutes.

Stuff zucchini shells with mixture and sprinkle with mozzarella cheese. Place on cookie sheet and freeze. Remove after 2 - 4 hours. Place in plastic bag. Freeze until ready to use.

Microwave boats 10 minutes on high.

Yield: 8 boats