Posts Tagged ‘Fiber’

Vegetarian Enchiladas

Saturday, January 5th, 2013

veggie enchilada

 

This dish is not only FULL of flavour, it is very healthy and of course contains my favourite…beans.  An easy meal that you can load up with veggies that can be made ahead and heated when you need it? Yes please.  Aaand…Yay Fiber, these enchiladas are full of that good stuff.

You’ll note that one of the vegetables I put in here is Swiss Chard.  As with most leafy greens it’s full of Thiamin, Folate, Phosphorus and Zinc, and is a very good source of Dietary Fiber.  This is why every nutritionist will heavily encourage the consumption of any and all green leaf veggies.  A little tip; the darker green the leaf the more packed with nutrients.  I also like chard because it’s less bitter than kale.

Remember that any of the vegetables you see in this recipe can be substituted for something you prefer.  You could substitute the chard for broccoli, red pepper for green or yellow, skip the mushrooms.  Basically, use your imagination.

Enchilada sauce

  • 398ml (14 oz) can of  crushed tomato
  • .5 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 finely diced small onion
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • .25 ground celery seed
  • 30ml (1 oz) lime juice

Start by sauteing the onion in a sauce pan on medium heat with the cumin and chili powder until you can really smell the spices.  Then just dump the remaining ingredients in and let it simmer on low heat while you prepare the rest of the dish.  If it tastes a bit bitter I will add a tiny amount of honey until it tastes smoother.

Enchilada Filling

  • 2 med. diced onion
  • 2 diced red pepper
  • 1 med. diced zucchini
  • 4 cloves minced garlic
  • 150g (5 oz) crimini or button mushrooms (really you can use any kind you want)
  • 454 g (1 lb) diced swiss chard
  • 1 pkg. yves veggie ground round (optional)
  • 454 g (1 lb) cooked or canned black beans
  • 1 tbsp basil
  • .5 tsp celery seed
  • pinch of cinnamon
  • 1tsp thyme

In a large skillet, saute the vegetables on medium high heat in the order they are presented above.  Leave each enough time to soften a little before you add the next.  The herbs can go in at anytime after the onions have been done.   Lastly add the veggie ground and the beans,mixing it all together until warmed through. Set this aside off the heat and check on your sauce to make sure it tastes right.

Other Ingredients

  • 225 g (.5 lb) grated old cheddar (or the melty cheese of your choice)
  • 6 tortilla  (I like Ezekiel 4:9 sprouted grain, but you can use plain old flour or rice flour ones)

You are also going to want a medium large Pyrex casserole dish and the oven heated to 350°.  A tip,  the enchiladas should be able to fit closely in the pan.

To assemble, start with a tortilla sprinkle a bit of cheese on (~2 tbsp), then scoop on 1/6th of the veggie mix.  Roll up the bundle and put it in the Pyrex dish so that all the bundles will fit in the dish.  Repeat for all the tortillas.  Cover in the enchilada sauce and bake in the oven for 30 minutes.  Spread the remaining cheese on top and carefully brown it under the broiler. Enjoy.

 

Fiber, Not Just for Pooping

Sunday, May 13th, 2012

fibre-picFor those of us with weight issues fiber is amazingly important.  We all know that fiber will keep your guts moving; but did you that fiber also helps regulate insulin and fat absorption.  There are 2 types of fiber, soluble and insoluble.  It is not absorbed by the body and therefore acts to collect intestinal debris on its way through your body.

Soluble fiber is the stuff that goes all slimy when mixed with water (I know slimy sounds gross but I can’t come up with a better descriptor).  Legumes, nuts, psyllium husk, flax seed and oats, as well a number of fruits and vegetables fit into the soluble fiber category.  It helps by moving slowly through the intestinal track to remove build-ups and will absorb fatty acids so they can’t enter your blood stream.   Soluble fiber is much gentler on the system than insoluble fiber and is therefore recommended for people with issues such as IBS, diverticulitis, and any inflammatory bowel diseases.

Insoluble fiber is commonly known as “roughage”  or the “intestinal broom”.  Basically it’s a harder fiber that will scrape build-up off the intestinal walls.  Anything with a husk such as bran, barley, brown rice and cous-cous are high in insoluble fiber.  Cellulose, contained in many fruits and vegetables, is basically insoluble fiber and therefore should be eaten regularly.  Apples, berries with small seeds (strawberry, blueberry, cranberry, raspberry, etc.), oranges, carrots, celery and, cucumber and zucchini with the peel, are excellent sources.

If you are able it is important to get both of these types of fiber into your diet.  The best sources will always come from whole foods.  In other words make food that contains high fiber amounts rather than taking a supplement.  Supplements are just that; they are meant to give a boost to your regular diet as opposed to being your only source.  Up to the age of 50 we should be getting between 25g and 38g of fibre a day.  After 50 it drops to between 21g and 30g.  Most importantly remember to drink LOTS of water when raising your fiber intake as fiber absorbs water and it could make the “passage” more difficult with too little.

According to John Hopkins “The researchers note that many fruits and vegetables that are high in carbohydrates are also high in fiber. The fiber slows digestion and helps to prevent a rapid rise in blood sugar. This protective effect may explain the benefits of a high fiber diet, according to this report.  These results support the current belief that increasing the intake of fiber-rich carbohydrates can help to prevent insulin resistance.”

 

A fiber short-list.