Healthy Recipes
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Healthy Recipes
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Low Fat Recipes
Some wild game, such as venison, rabbit, squirrel and pheasant, are very lean; duck and goose are not.
Select lean pork such as tenderloin, loin chops, center-cut ham (fresh and cured) and Canadian bacon.
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Week of July 29, 2007

Healthy Ways to Cook Salmon

Baking: Season salmon, then brush with olive oil. Place in a greased baking pan and cook in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for approximately 10 minutes per inch of thickness. Measure at the thickest point. Salmon should flake when done.

Steaming: Use a steamer or steaming basket. Arrange salmon portions on rack, then pour liquid (wine, water, etc.) over fish into pan. Lightly season salmon and add spices and herbs to water. Cover and bring to a boil. Steam salmon one minute per ounce over medium heat. You can also wrap your fish portions in cheese cloth to remove them from steamer in whole pieces.

Poaching: Assemble poaching liquid of a mix of chicken broth, white wine, water. Add one teaspoon of bouquet garni and bring to simmer. Be sure there is enough liquid to cover fish in a skillet. Poach 6 to 7 minutes. Can serve warm with lemon dill sauce or chill in refrigerator and serve cold.
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Broiling: Preheat oven and broiling pan at least 10 minutes beforehand. Quickly wash your fillets or steaks in cold salt water. Then dust the salmon lightly with flour. Light spray the top of the fillets with olive oil and seasonings. Place on broiler rack about 2 to 3 inches from heat. You do not need to turn salmon fillets while they're broiling, however, you should baste the other side with oil. Add a seasoning as desired. Salmon steaks should be turned once to cook both sides and basted as well.

Grilling: If you want to pre-season, it's best to remove skin first so the fish is seasoned on both sides. Season to taste. Try simple seasonings like salt, pepper and dill, or sprinkle with Old Bay or similar seasoning. (If you marinate, do not let salmon or any other fish sit in a marinade more than 15 minutes before cooking, as the acidic ingredients will begin to break down the flesh and make it mushy.)

Preheat the grill to medium-high. Lightly oil the grill rack, two-sided grilling basket or aluminum foil. Cook the fish until opaque, turning once during cooking. This will not take long, about 8 to 10 minutes, so watch it carefully. Make sure that no flame touches the fish directly.

Week of July 15, 2007

How to Choose the Best Summer Melons

Cantaloupe: Cantaloupe, the most popular member of the melon family, is also one of the hardest fruits to choose well. Youhave probably seen people shaking, squeezing, weighing, and smelling them. A ripe, un-refrigerated cantaloupe will emit an earthy and sweet aroma, but unless you're fortunate enough to shop in an outdoor market, this isn't much help as most indoor markets keep fruit refrigerated.

Though some fruit guides attest that a "heavy" melon equals a ripe melon, the lift test is not always ideal when confronted with a mountain of melons at a crowded market. Another tactic for choosing cantaloupe is to go for the one with a rosy glow. (more of orange color poking through the netted skin than green.) A cantaloupe should also give ever so slightly to pressure on the blossom end (opposite the stem end). Cantaloupe is at its finest from June to September.

Honeydew: The honeydew is one of the most mysterious melons out there. Though the same rules generally apply as for cantaloupe (a sweet smell when unrefrigerated, a yield to gentle pressure on the blossom end), a honeydew's opaque rind and large size make it more difficult to distinguish the good from the bad. The honeydew's peak season is slightly later in the year than that of the cantaloupe — late July or August rather than June.

Watermelon: If you are trying to pick a sweet watermelon, look at the area where a watermelon has rested on the truck, or on the ground, or on the fruit stand (where it tends to flatten out and turn yellow). The wider the spread of this area, and the more intensely yellow the color, the sweeter and riper the watermelon. Though less foolproof, you can also try knocking on the melon—a thud indicates the melon is ripe; a hollow sound indicates it's still got a way to go. Watermelons are in season from May through September.

Week of July 8, 2007

Tips for Choosing, Storing and Serving Vegetables

Here are suggestions to help you select the highest quality vegetables when you're shopping, ways to store them once you get home, and tips for preparing and serving vegetables to enhance their flavor and retain their nutrients.

Selecting

  • Look for brightly colored vegetables. The best items have blemish-free surfaces and regular, characteristic shapes and sizes.
  • Sort through and discard any damaged items. Bruises and nicks can attract molds, which can lead to spoilage of an entire bag of vegetables.
  • Leaves or greens should be crisp, not wilted.
  • Buy only the fresh vegetables you plan to eat within a few days. Long storage time reduces nutrient levels, appeal and taste.
  • Choose in-season vegetables. Typically, the closer you are to the growing season, the fresher your produce and the better it tastes.
  • Enjoy packaged vegetables when out of season. Frozen vegetables are low in sodium and sometimes offer more nutrients than do less-than-peak-condition fresh vegetables, as they're processed quickly after picking. If you choose canned vegetables, look for those without added salt.

Storing

  • Store fresh vegetables according to their type. Place root vegetables, such as potatoes and yams, in a cool, dark place. Store other vegetables in the refrigerator crisper drawer.
  • Don't wash vegetables before storing. Make sure all produce is dry before storing.
  • Throw away produce you've kept too long. Discard vegetables that are moldy or slimy, smell bad, or are past the "best if used by" date.

Serving

  • Wash vegetables thoroughly to remove dirt and pesticide residue before cooking. If possible, use a small scrub brush to help clean potatoes, cucumbers or other vegetables that have skin you eat.
  • Leave edible peels on vegetables whenever possible. The peels of many vegetables — especially potatoes — contain considerable amounts of nutrients and fiber.
  • Enjoy many vegetables raw. Keep bell peppers, broccoli, carrots, cauliflower, celery or other raw vegetables ready to eat in your refrigerator.
  • Use quick-cooking techniques. Stir-frying, steaming and microwaving are quick-cooking methods. Long exposure to higher temperatures leads to some loss of nutrients. Try to use as little water as possible when cooking vegetables, and consider reserving any cooking water — which contains nutrients — for adding to soups, stews or sauces.

Week of July 1, 2007

Old Fashioned Lemonade

There is nothing quite as satifying in the summer as a cold glass of old fashioned fresh squeezed lemonade.

It does not matter if you are trying to cool down after mowing the lawn or just relaxing at a summer cookout, nothing adds a bit of chill and resfreshment like this summer time favorite.

• 1 3/4 cups white sugar *
• 8 cups water
• 1 1/2 cups fresh squeezed lemon juice
• Mint leaves for garnish

In a small saucepan, combine sugar and 1 cup water. Bring to boil and stir to dissolve sugar. Allow to cool to room temperature, then cover and refrigerate until chilled.

Remove seeds from lemon juice, but leave pulp. In pitcher, stir together chilled syrup, lemon juice and remaining 7 cups water. Serve over ice. Garnish with mint if desired.

* COOKS NOTE: I have also used Splenda® and it tastes great too - not too tart and not too sweet.

 


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