Monday, May 14, 2012

Feeling Sick-What should I eat?

                           I feel like I'm Catching a Cold.


 Today I'm feeling under the weather, my husband has been sick for a week and I was doing everything in my power to not catch this bug that has been going around. I was trying to stay on top of taking  my vitamins and antioxidants and staying hydrated, however today I just feel run down.  I still have somewhat of an appetite and I really was craving VEGETABLES.  I thought about making home made soup but I wasn't in the mood so I came up with this recipe.  

 When your sick you just want comfort food & veggies to me fits that bill.


The weather this week so far has been cloudy could be the reason why I feel like going back to bed, but I made it through the work day.  I had bought some root vegetables and some butternut squash at the Fresh market last week & this recipe is a great way to use what is in your fridge or pantry . 

                                                        (Somewhat organized)

 My food pantry is always stocked with Quinoa, all sorts of whole grain & gluten free pastas as well as brown & basmati rice and Farro (type of wheat-popular in Italy) with this recipe below you can mix & match to any type of starch to your liking.  

I always have some sort of stock on hand Organic vegetable,  beef and/or free range chicken stock so you can always make it with your rice and Quinoa ( substitute for water) and to make soups.  

When I eat healthy I know I'm going to feel better. One of the many reasons why I've chosen to make this for my dinner......


Not only is quinoa high in protein, but the protein it supplies is complete protein, meaning that it includes all nine essential amino acids. Quinoa is a very good source of manganese, a mineral that serve as a cofactor for the superoxide dismutase enzyme. Superoxide dismutase is an antioxidant that helps to protect the mitochondria from oxidative damage created during energy production as well as guard other cells, such as red blood cells, from injury caused by free radicals.


Bacterial and Viral Infections
Test tube and animal studies suggest turmeric may kill bacteria and viruses. But researchers don' t know whether it would work in people. Curcumin (what gives Tumeric the yellow color) is also a powerful antioxidant. Antioxidants scavenge molecules in the body known as free radicals, which damage cell membranes, tamper with DNA, and even cause cell death. Antioxidants can fight free radicals and may reduce or even help prevent some of the damage they cause.


Common Cold is a viral infection which affects our body frequently when our immune system goes weak. Again, the essential oils present in cumin act as disinfectants and help fight viral infections which cause common cold. Cumin also does not let cough formation in the respiratory system as it is supposed to be hot and dries up the excess mucus. Cumin is rich in iron and has considerable amount of vitamin-C, which are essential for a good immunity and keeps infections away.


It is a good source of iron and magnesium. Also rich in vitamins A,B and C also acts as an expectorant.


Garlic is rich in antioxidants, which help destroy free radicals -- particles that can damage cell membranes and DNA, some early evidence suggests garlic may help prevent colds. Those who took garlic when they did get a cold, saw their symptoms go away faster than those who took placebo.


All mushrooms share certain characteristics that help you burn fat and keep illness and disease at bay. Weightloss !!!!YEAH!!! More reason to eat mushrooms however for fighting a bug the vitamins C, B6 and B12 found in mushrooms are responsible for boosting your immune system. This helps flush toxins out of your body that could compromise your immune system. A healthy body means you can focus more on fat burning rather than healing.

Butternut Squash:

Rich in phytonutrients and antioxidants. Squash's tangerine hue, however, indicates butternut's most noteworthy health perk. The color signals an abundance of powerhouse nutrients known as carotenoids, shown to protect against heart disease. It provides significant amounts of potassium, and vitamin B6, essential for the proper functioning of both the nervous and immune systems.


Carrots are also good sources of vitamin B1, vitamin B2, vitamin B6, vitamin K, biotin, fiber, potassium and thiamine and also contain valuable amounts of antioxidant nutrients. Included here are traditional antioxidants like vitamin C, as well as phytonutrient antioxidants like beta-carotene.


Parsnips are the spicy yet pale relative of the carrot. Parsnips provide an excellent source of vitamin C, fiber, folic acid, pantothenic acid, copper,and manganese.  They also offer a very good source of niacin, thiamine, magnesium.  They are a good source of riboflavin, ,and vitamins B6 and E.  Potassium along with omega-3 fatty acids provides a healthy energy boost that won’t leave you feeling sluggish later.


Quinoa with Roasted Butternut Squash, 

Parsnips, Carrots & Portabello Mushroom

Ingredients-( I Always make more Quinoa for leftover dishes)
  • 1 1/2 cups carrots, cut into 3/4″ pieces
  • 1 1/2 cups parsnips, cut into 3/4″ pieces
  • 8 Portobello Mushrooms
  • 2 cups butternut squash, cut into 3/4″ pieces
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 2 cups quinoa
  • 2 large cloves garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 4 cups chicken stock (or vegetable stock for a vegetarian dish)

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a heavy rimmed baking sheet with Aluminum foil .

                                                    Wash & cut all your vegetables.

                                                  Cut into about 3/4″ pieces

                                 The butternut squash will need to be cut into two parts.
                                                               Cut into 3/4″ pieces.
                                                     Cut the remaining  squash in half

                                                                   Scoop out seeds.

                                                          De-gill the mushrooms .
                                                   Grapefruit spoon does a good job.

                                                   I didn't throw away the scraps
                                          my Bunny visitor got a healthy treat tonight.

                                          Much more appetizing than the dead grass.

 Place all veggies on the baking sheet. Spread out the carrots and parsnips into a single layer on one half and the butternut squash on the other and the mushrooms on the end.

                                                         Add a couple garlic cloves.
                                         Drizzle veggies with Extra virgin Olive Oil

                                                                 Add your spices.
                                                I eyeball them in the palm of my hand.
                                                                Then mix together.
                             Spread spice mixture  on veggies except the mushrooms.
                                      Sprinkle with sea salt and freshly ground pepper.

                                    Roast for 45 minutes or until vegetables are tender.
                       The butternut squash will be ready before the carrots and parsnips.

                           While the vegetables are roasting  you can start the Quinoa.

                                       Measure out Quinoa according to pkg direction. 
                                                  1 cup of Quinoa per 2 cups liquid.
                                                 I'm making extra so another cup added.
                                    Rinse the quinoa with water in a fine mesh strainer.

                                                                      Add to pot.

                                                  Add 2 cups of chicken stock.

                                                          Making double batch.
                                                       Add 2 more cups of stock.
                                                       Set on high & bring to rapid boil.
                                                                Cover with lid.

                                                           Reduce heat to low, 
                           and cook covered until quinoa is done and liquid is absorbed.
Check on vegetables and stir around so they all cook evenly.

                   Optional: I add a little garlic salt on the Portobello mushrooms. 

                                                         While dinner is cooking
                           I was able to clean up the Kitchen mess & wash dishes.
           (Normally I leave everything in the sink or my husband does them.)
                               I received 2 cards today. One from my mother in-law . 
                           Thanking me for her Mother's Day present(The Pati Doll).

           I found the other card that my husband left for me by the computer.
                                    He knew I wasn't feeling well today.

                       My husband & my mother in-law always pick the best cards!

                                                               Ok back to Dinner.........

                                              Quinoa is done all the liquid is absorbed

                                                                  Fluff with a fork.
                           Just like you do with rice. Its a delicate grain treat with care.
Cut up the mushroom into bite size pieces.

Spray Quinoa with no calorie/ no fat butter spray.
Top Quinoa with the roasted Vegetables.

                                                      Enjoy! Heres to Feeling Better !

                                Now need some rest I"m going to Bed .....Good Night!

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