You have all this fresh fabulous food now ( plus a few greeting cards and a few gifts for yourself) – Now what?
Healthy cooking does not mean blah, expensive or boring. You just purchased food that is bursting with flavor all on its own so you are one step ahead already. Now we want to keep as much nutritional value as possible, and make the food as health and yummy as possible. As everyone knows, that means cutting the fat and so the calories. The Mayo Clinic is full of recommendations such as roasting instead of frying.. Here are more ideas from the Mayo Clinic website. http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/healthy-cooking/NU00201
Using herbs and spices:Creating meals using spices and herbs is one of the best ways to add color, taste and aroma to foods without adding salt or fat. Choose fresh herbs that look bright and aren’t wilted, and add them toward the end of cooking. Add dried herbs in the earlier stages of cooking. When substituting dried for fresh, use about one-half the amount. The gang of Beauties and Beasties add- Read last week and get your GROW ON for your herbs.
Baking: Besides breads and desserts, you can bake seafood, poultry, lean meat, vegetables and fruits. For baking, place food in a pan or dish surrounded by the hot, dry air of your oven. You may cook the food covered or uncovered. Baking generally doesn’t require that you add fat to the food. The gang of Beauties and Beasties add- baking fish, chicken or veggies in foil with some lemon juice and fresh herbs is easy to cook and clean! Naturally it is good for the taste buds too.
Braising: Braising involves browning the ingredient first in a pan on top of the stove, and then slowly cooking it covered with a small quantity of liquid, such as water or broth. In some recipes, the cooking liquid is used afterward to form a flavorful, nutrient-rich sauce.
Broiling and grilling: Both broiling and grilling expose food to direct heat. To grill outdoors, place the food on a grill rack above a bed of charcoal embers or gas-heated rocks. If you have an indoor grill, follow the manufacturer’s directions. For smaller items such as chopped vegetables, use foil or a long-handled grill basket to prevent pieces from slipping through the rack. To broil indoors, place food on a broiler rack below a heat element. Both methods allow fat to drip away from the food.
Poaching: To poach foods, gently simmer ingredients in water or a flavorful liquid such as broth, vinegar or juice until they’re cooked through and tender. The food retains its shape during cooking. For stove-top poaching, choose a covered pan that best fits the size and shape of the food so that you need a minimal amount of liquid. The gang of Beauties and Beasties add- try poaching salmon ever so easy and soooo good!
Roasting: Like baking, but typically at higher temperatures, roasting uses an oven’s dry heat to cook the food. You can roast foods on a baking sheet or in a roasting pan. For poultry, seafood and meat, place a rack inside the roasting pan so that the fat in the food can drip away during cooking. In some cases, you may need to baste the food to keep it from drying out. The gang of Beauties and Beasties add- don’t forget you can roast veggies too!
Sauteing: Sauteing quickly cooks relatively small or thin pieces of food. If you choose a good-quality nonstick pan, you can cook food without using fat. Depending on the recipe, use low-sodium broth, cooking spray or water in place of oil. The gang of Beauties and Beasties add- our saute pan is used just about every day. Sauteing some opinions with mushrooms is one our favorites to add to almost anything.
Steaming: One of the simplest cooking techniques is steaming food in a perforated basket suspended above simmering liquid. If you use a flavorful liquid or add seasonings to the water, you’ll flavor the food as it cooks. The gang of Beauties and Beasties add- do you have a rice cooker? If you do then start using it- adds no heat to your kitchen, and is basically another type steam cook method.
Stir-frying: A traditional Asian method, stir-frying quickly cooks small, uniform-sized pieces of food while they’re rapidly stirred in a wok or large nonstick frying pan. You need only a small amount of oil or cooking spray for this cooking method. The gang of Beauties and Beasties add- It is so easy to have a high ratio of veggies here and only a little meat.fish, or tofu, so the calories are small and the bulk factor is large.
Enjoy your local food and have a good time feeding yourself, your families, and your friends.