Sunday, April 26, 2009

Nutrient Rich on a Budget

As seen on KMGH-TV 7

Food Group by Group: Nutrient Rich on a budget

With money tight, finding the best deals on groceries may become more important to people than buying the groceries they like best, so they may start buying cheap foods they wouldn't otherwise buy.
• Healthier foods may be more expensive, but remember that anything high in fat and low in nutrients isn't cheap either…and you may pay for it in long term health problems
• It is still possible to eat healthy rich on a limited budget.
• Provide tips today, food group by food group to get a nutrient-rich diet.
• Nutrient-rich definition: Foods that deliver a significant amount of nutrients such as vitamins. Minerals and anti-oxidants, for the amount of calories it contains.

Produce section: more nutrients per bite.
• Colorful, delicious
• Use frozen, canned and dried produce
• Think the three “c’s” carrots, collards and cabbage for crunch, color and cost
• Shop at ethnic food markets
• Buy in season-famer’s markets open soon
Visual: Cabbage Salad with California Raisins, frozen broccoli, canned corn, bag raisins, green onions, carrots, cabbage, collards
The cabbage salad takes advantage of a cheap winter vegetable. Apples and raisins add fiber and anti-oxidants that can help decrease risk of certain chronic diseases.

Protein foods
• Foods that deliver nutrition-rich for the calories and the cost
• Inexpensive, vegetarian sources such as beans, eggs, tofu, and legumes
• High-quality proteins, containing all the essential amino acids in the amounts needed by the body, are generally found in animal sources within the diet.
• Try using a smaller, thinner portions of meat, fish, or poultry and extending the dish with whole grains, beans, eggs, and/or vegetables
• Beans, either dry or canned. Beans are full of nutritional benefits, such as fiber and protein, and they're inexpensive.
• Eggs: Traditional for breakfast, can be eaten B-L-D. A new research review, published in the January/February, 2009 issue of Nutrition Today , (1) concludes that the high-quality protein in eggs makes valuable contributions to overall health by promoting muscle strength and by providing a source of sustained energy.
• Confirmed meat eater: Ground beef consumption is up because more people are eating at home and those prices haven't dropped.
• Because of the downturn in business travel and business eating out, steak prices have dropped dramatically. And If you watch the mark down rack in the meat department on Tuesday's, that is typically the best day to find steaks marked down because the meat managers heavy up for the weekend. What doesn't get sold is sold on sale on Tuesday.
Visual: Grilled Vietnamese Beef Salad with California Golden Raisin Relish

• The word "fiber" can often sound less than appetizing, lending itself to images of tree bark
• Adult women should aim to eat more than 20 grams of fiber a day and that men should strive for more than 30 grams per day. Yet, most Americans consume about half the amount of fiber
• Recommendations:
• The first meal of the day is the most important, not only because it gives you energy to start the day, but also because it is one of the best opportunities to load up on fiber. There are a host of high-fiber cereals from which to choose—then add a banana or another favorite fruit to the bowl along with some fat-free milk for a quick and easy fiber fix.
• Look for cereals that say “whole grain.” Up the fiber content by adding California raisins, sliced bananas and chopped walnuts. Only ¼ cup of raisins count as a fruit serving, contributing to your recommended four servings of fruit per day.
Visual: Bowl of oatmeal with bananas, raisins and walnuts

• The dairy group is one that we need to be careful not to shortchange, especially for our children who need at least 3 servings a day
• Milk provides 3 of the 5 nutrients that the Dietary Guidelines say are lacking in most children’s diets-calcium, magnesium and potassium
• Use powdered milk: $2.00 a gal so less than half the price of fresh.
• Purchase milk in bulk gallon containers
• Look at the use by date to get the freshest milk and store in the coldest part of the refrigerator
• You won’t fool anyone that reconstituted powdered milk is the same as fresh as a beverage, but there are some tricks.
o To get good tasting powdered milk make sure you start with fresh dry milk.
o Mix it ½ & ½ with fresh milk for body and flavor, chill at least 4 hours or overnight
o Serve with homemade cookies.
Visual: Box of powdered milk, glass of milk, Raisin, Bran and Oatmeal Cookies

It takes an investment of your time and planning, however in these tough economic times, you can still feed your family with nutrient–rich foods while on a budget.


Cabbage Salad with California Raisins
A creamy coleslaw with apples and raisins.
1/2 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
1 package (16 ounces) prepared coleslaw mix
1/2 cup chopped apple
1/2 cup California raisins
1 tablespoon cumin seeds
In a salad bowl, stir together the cream, vinegar, sugar, salt and white pepper. Add coleslaw mix, apple and raisins; mix together. Sprinkle with cumin seeds. Let stand at least 30 minutes before serving to allow the flavors to blend.

Grilled Vietnamese Beef Salad with California Golden Raisin Relish
Golden raisins, peanuts, sesame and cilantro for an unforgettable relish to serve with grilled beef and rice noodles.

1/4 cup sesame oil
1 cup soy sauce
1 cup hoisin sauce
2 tablespoons chopped garlic
2 tablespoons chopped shallots
2 tablespoons chopped gingerroot
1/2 cup brown sugar
6 beef shoulder tenders (about 5 ounces each)
California Golden Raisin Relish
6 tablespoons unsalted peanuts
6 tablespoons California golden raisins
1/2 tablespoon fish sauce
1/2 tablespoon honey
1/4 tablespoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro leaves

2 cups reserved marinade
2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
1 tablespoon prepared mustard
1/2 teaspoon sriacha hot pepper sauce
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar

6 quarts water
12 ounces rice noodles
6 cups (12 ounces) mesclun
1 cup shredded Napa cabbage
1 cup carrots, cut into matchstick-size pieces (julienne)
1-1/2 cups diced cucumber

Combine ingredients in large mixing bowl; mix well. Reserve 2 cups for vinaigrette. Stir beef into remainder and divide into 2 large resealable plastic bags. Allow to stand in refrigerator overnight.
Combine ingredients in bowl and stir well. Set aside.

Strain 2 cups reserved marinade into small saucepan and bring to boil over medium heat; reduce to 1 1/2 cups. Cool. Combine hoisin, mustard, hot pepper sauce and rice vinegar in blender. With blender running on high, add reduced marinade in a slow steady stream until emulsified. Set aside.

Bring salted water to rapid boil. Cook noodles according to package directions. Rinse in cold water; drain well. Set aside. Toss mesclun, cabbage, carrots and cucumber together in a large bowl; chill.

To Serve
Grill beef on very hot grill for 3 to 4 minutes per side until completely marked and done (145°F for medium rare). Let rest for 5 minutes. Slice very thin and set aside.
Divide noodles and mound in centers of 6 individual plates. Top each with a portion of greens and arrange sliced beef along side. Add 2 tablespoons relish and drizzle all with vinaigrette.

Note: Sriacha pepper sauce can be found in most Asian markets.

Raisin, Bran and Oatmeal Cookies

1/2 cup oat bran
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup lightly packed brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 cups rolled oats
1-1/4 cups California raisins
1/4 cup canola oil
2 tablespoons nonfat yogurt
1 teaspoon butter flavor (optional)
1/2 cup nonfat milk
3 egg whites
2 teaspoons vanilla

Preheat oven to 375°F. Cover baking sheet with parchment, waxed paper or aluminum foil sprayed with nonstick spray. Set aside.

In mixing bowl, combine oat bran, flours, allspice, cinnamon, soda, sugar and salt. Stir in oats and raisins. In another bowl, combine oil, yogurt, butter flavor, milk, egg whites and vanilla. Mix wet ingredients into dry, and stir until well combined. Drop dough by tablespoonfuls onto prepared baking sheet. Bake at 375°F for 15 minutes or until golden. Transfer to a wire rack and cool.
48 cookies