Healthy comfort food (con’t)

Main meal: Baked Stuffed Vegetables
1 small onion, finely chopped (optional)
1 clove garlic, minced (optional)
1 teaspoon oil (optional)
2 celery stalks, finely chopped
2 tablespoons parsley, chopped
1 cup bread crumbs or cooked grain
Salt to taste
? Saut? onion and garlic one minute
? Add celery and saut? 3 minutes
? Mix with remaining ingredients. Add liquid if necessary
? Serves 4

Variations: Herbs, ginger, raisins, mint, toasted nuts, capers, olives, corn kernels sesame butter, mustard, grated carrots, cooked chopped greens

Onion ? in powerful sulphur-containing compounds that are responsible for their pungent odours and for many of their health-promoting effects. In addition, onions are very rich in chromium, a trace mineral that helps cells respond to insulin, plus vitamin C, and numerous flavonoids, most notably, quercetin.
Garlic ? is rich in a variety of powerful sulphur-containing compounds. While these compounds are responsible for garlic’s characteristically pungent odour, they are also the source of many of its health-promoting effects. In addition, garlic is an excellent source of manganese, a very good source of vitamin B6 and vitamin C and a good source of selenium.
Celery ? contains vitamin C, dietary fibre, vitamin B1, B2, B6, folate, potassium, calcium, magnesium, manganese, molybdenum, iron, phosphorus, and tryptophan. Celery has a diuretic function.
Ginger ? historically, ginger has a long tradition of being very effective in alleviating symptoms of gastrointestinal problems. In herbal medicine, ginger is regarded as an excellent carminative (a substance which promotes the elimination of intestinal gas) and as a food which relaxes and soothes the intestinal tract. Modern scientific research has revealed that ginger possesses numerous therapeutic properties including antioxidant effects, an ability to inhibit the formation of inflammatory compounds.

Dessert: Blueberry Couscous Pudding
1 pint blueberries
3 cups apple juice
1 cup couscous
1 teaspoon grated lemon or orange rind
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
? Mix all ingredients together
? Cover and simmer for 10 minutes
? Turn off heat and let sit undisturbed for 15 minutes
? Spoon onto a platter and arrange into a mound
? Garnish with fresh blueberries and strawberry leaves
? Serves 6

Blueberries ? packed with antioxidants called anthocyanidins, blueberries neutralise free radical Anthocyanins, the blue-red pigments found in blueberries, improve the integrity of support structures in the veins and entire vascular system. Anthocyanins have been shown to enhance the effects of vitamin C, improve capillary integrity, and stabilise the collagen matrix. Research is being conducted on its ability to help relieve varicose veins and haemorrhoids.
Apple ? contain vitamins C and K, along with flavonoids, pectin and fibre. Fibre is showing to help lowered cholesterol and triglycerides.
Cashews ? have a lower fat content than most other nuts. Approximately 65% of their fat is unsaturated fatty acids, plus 90% of this unsaturated fatty acid content is oleic acid, the same heart-healthy monounsaturated fat found in olive oil. Also contains copper, magnesium, and tryptophan.
Almonds ? in addition to almond?s cholesterol-lowering effects, they also have the ability to reduce heart disease risk, which may be partly due to the antioxidant action of the vitamin E. Almonds contain protein, vitamin E, vitamin B2, tryptophan, and dietary fibre. Almonds also contain manganese and copper. These two trace minerals are essential cofactors of a key oxidative enzyme called superoxide dismutase. Superoxide dismutase disarms free radicals produced within the mitochondria.

Recipes from Healing with Whole Foods: Asian Traditions and Modern Nutrition
Third Edition
Author: Paul Pitchford
Publisher: North Atlantic Books
Year: 1993

Conversion Table
1 pint = 2 cups
2 quarts = 2 litres

Nutrional comment by Brad McEwen
BHlthSc, N.D. (Adv.), D.B.M., D.Nut., D.S.M., M.A.T.M.S., M.N.H.A.A
Brad is a Naturopath, Herbalist and Nutritionist. He lectures in Nutrition at one of Australia?s leading colleges and is the author of the book Fighting Fatigue. He received the Award of Excellence in Naturopathy.