It’s easy to eat healthy right now with all the fresh produce very much in season. Between my small garden, the garden at work, and bags full of produce from Community Support Agriculture (CSA) I’ve stayed busy creating fun new recipes and revisiting my summer favorites.
In our CSA bag this week I got cabbage, leeks, potatoes, broccoli, tomatoes, cucumber and zucchini. I decided to wing it and make up a “chop salad,” recipe, the first picture in this article is the finished product. I chopped up 4 cups of the cabbage, 2 cups chopped broccoli, 1 cup diced cucumber, 1 medium diced tomato and ¼ cup minced leak. Then I added a few ingredients I had at home: 1/2 cup shredded carrots, 1/2 cup dried cranberries, 1/4 cup sunflower seeds, 1/2 cup feta cheese, and a 1/2 cup of pre-made salad dressing with olive oil and herbs. A wide variety of different salad dressings would work. I took it to a potluck that night and it was a hit.
I also made brownies but to mix it up I added 1 cup of grated zucchini to the brownie mix. It turned out very well, it was moist and seemed to rise more. My kids also liked it. Realize adding a cup of zucchini to a brownie mix doesn’t make it the most nutrient dense food, but it still adds a good amount of vitamin C, and some fiber, vitamin B6, and potassium. It also reduced the amount of calories per serving. I also took these to our potluck and no one ever suspected the zucchini and the pan was empty in no time.
With the remaining ingredients, I made bruschetta. Bruschetta is one of my favorite summer dishes. Check out this link for an easy bruschetta recipe. With the remaining ingredients a nutrition team member made Vegetable Whole Grain Pasta Salad at a community program.
- 1½ cup whole grain pasta
- ½ cup vinegar
- ½ cup water
- ¼ cup sugar
- ⅓ cup olive oil
- ⅛ teaspoon pepper
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon dill weed
- ¼ teaspoon parsley or ½ teaspoon fresh parsley
- 3 cups fresh vegetables, chopped
- Cook pasta according to package directions.
- In a small saucepan, combine vinegar, water, sugar, vegetable oil, salt, pepper, garlic powder, dill weed, and dried parsley.
- Bring to a boil then remove from heat to cool.
- In a large bowl, combine pasta and vegetables.
- Pour cooled dressing mixture over pasta and vegetables. Stir well.
- Refrigerate 3 to 4 hours before serving.