Saturday, July 4, 2009

What's In The Pantry? - More Veggies Please

An important part of cooking is having the right ingredients available to you.

You don't need to shop everyday, but if you only shop once a week or less, you're unlikely to have fresh veggies available every day.

Some canned veggies are great, and some not so much - if you currently eat less than 5 different veggies everyday, any extra is a good thing, but try to buy fresh where you can.

Frozen vegetables are okay too, but I challenge you to find any frozen veggies from Australia... peas from New Zealand is the closest I can find!*

One canned staple always handy to keep in the pantry is tomatoes and jars of tomato puree; they make pasta sauce or curry so easy and are full of lycopene, a great antioxidant.

There are also all kinds of canned beans, kidney beans, chick peas, baked beans, borlotti beans, lentils, that are a great addition to any meal; you can include a couple of different kinds in any meat dish or as the main protein in meals like lasagne, along with grated carrot, mushrooms and any veggies you like.

Eating a rainbow of color is also an easy guide; different colored veggies have different and important nutrients.

I often make a game of How Many Vegetables Can I Get Into This Meal... my record is 10 in a spicy soup I made a few weeks ago :)

See how many different veggies you can eat each day, add a piece of fruit or two and before you know it, you'll be getting at least 5 a day and feeling the benefits.

Happy cooking Friends!

*Update: Australian grown peas, beans, broccoli, corn & mixed veggies are now available; the supermarkets are listening...

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