Fruits and Vegetables are Powerful Medicine!

Buying Organic – Priorities

It can be hard or impossible to afford or to find organic for all your fruits and vegetables. So it’s helpful to know how to prioritize. And fortunately there is a way, based on measurement of pesticide residues by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

Some conventionally grown fruits and vegetables just naturally ‘take up’ and retain more pesticide residues. These foods that tend to retain high levels of pesticides are more important to buy organic. They have been dubbed the ‘Dirty Dozen’ (even though they now number 14).

The Dirty Dozen: (more important to buy organic vs conventional)

Apples
Celery
Cherries
Cherry tomatoes
Cucumbers
Grapes
+Hot Peppers
+Kale / Collard greens
Nectarines
Peaches
Spinach
Strawberries
Sweet bell peppers
Tomatoes

The Clean Fifteen™: (least likely to hold pesticide residues)

Asparagus
Avocados
Cabbage
Cantaloupe
Cauliflower
Eggplant
Frozen sweet peas
Grapefruit
Honeydew melon
Kiwis
Mangoes
Onions
Papayas
Pineapples
Sweet corn

Now get out there and shop, and best of luck!

Robert

Butternut squash with Swiss chard

Butternut Squash and Swiss Chard Cowboy Casserole

Butternut Squash and Swiss Chard Cowboy Casserole (Paleo, gluten-free, soy free, salt free, dairy optional*)

This quick one-dish skillet meal is a delicious and hearty vegetarian change of pace. Slower and fancier versions may bake instead and may use breadcrumbs, but I don’t bother. I love one-dish meals!

Total time: 30 mins max (no kidding!)

Ingredients:
Butternut squash (16 or 20 oz package of pre-cubed chunks)
Swiss chard
Onions
Mushrooms
Garlic
*Grated cheese (I use sheep’s cheese)
Butter 2 Tsp (I use goat’s butter or regular cow’s/dairy butter)
Milk 2 oz (I use goat’s milk)
Cooking oil (grapeseed or coconut preferred)
Skillet, spatula, pot holder or hand towel

Directions:
Slice and dice onion and mushrooms. Cut swiss chard into large pieces. (Save any leftovers for omelets). Add oil to a heating skillet.

Add butternut squash chunks, simmer for 7-10 minutes stirring occasionally until slightly soft.

Add onion and mushroom to the squash and simmer for 3-4 minutes stirring occasionally until slightly soft . Add garlic and then swiss chard toward the end of this step, as it cooks (wilts) quickly.

Add 1-2 tablespoons of butter, stir gently as it melts and spread the mixture out in the skillet.

Add milk, pouring to distribute around skillet

Add grated cheese on top and let simmer until cheese is melted and/or brown. Add salt/Mrs. Dash and pepper to taste.

Enjoy and wonder how vegetarian ever got so satisfying!

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Recipe- Huevos Rancheros (gluten free)

Total time: 5-10 mins
This hearty meal is a powerful protein boost any time, my favorite is for breakfast! Traditionally, the dish has a flour tortilla on the bottom, but for gluten-free take it out, I promise you won’t miss it. Seriously, this is a meal that wins hearts and souls! Choose whether you like your eggs a little over-easy with crispy edges (mmm) or the yolk cooked through. (With this recipe I allow myself whole eggs, otherwise I use egg replacer typically for omelets or scrambled.)

Ingredients:
Can of (cooked) refried pinto or black beans (or cooked from dry beans)
Eggs or egg replacer
Onion
Cooking oil (grapeseed or coconut preferred)
Small pot, skillet, spatula, pot holder or hand towel
Grated cheese (I use sheep’s cheese)
Avocado (optional)
Hot sauce (optional)
Sour cream or plain yogurt (seriously it takes the same!)

Directions:
Slice and dice onion. Add oil to a pot. Add onion before pan gets too hot, goal is not to brown the onion. Add cooked beans, stir into the cooking onion, add ¾ cup cold water and cover pot and turn down on low.

Meanwhile heat a skillet (cast iron or ceramic coated preferred) until almost smoking hot. While heating, get eggs ready to be cracked into skillet directly or first into a small bowl or coffee mug.

Have spatula available. Add oil and within 30 – 60 secs crack or pour eggs into skillet. For cooked yolk, spread gently with spatula, otherwise for over-easy do not disturb. Eggs will cook mainly on first side down.

Meanwhile spread refried beans on a plate (I like them hot and they will cool if plated too early).
Use pot holder to hold skillet. Flip eggs over and count to max of 5 secs before harvesting onto plate of beans. Trim or shred cheese (I don’t like to wash shredders) on top of eggs. If you want add sauce, sour cream (yogurt) and avocado.

Gobble up!

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