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2 Simple and Healthy Dishes Celebrating the American Heart Month

Healthy nutrition for American Heart Month

February is American Heart Month, and it is a great opportunity to create awareness and take steps to improve our heart health. While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) lists various toolkits for people to focus on their cardiovascular health, we came up with 2 healthy and delicious recipes for a healthy heart.

Did you know that a healthy diet rich in fresh fruits and vegetables can help in preventing heart diseases? February is the season for some fresh produce that is healthy for the heart and overall health. Be it the cauliflower, broccoli, Bok Choy, beets, Brussels sprouts, asparagus, and fruits like apples, oranges, and other citruses – you can find them all fresh and colorful in your local farmer’s market.

In this blog, we give you two delicious recipes – one savory and one dessert that are good for the heart and soul.

Beet and Asparagus Salad with Honey Lemon Vinaigrette

This wholesome and yummy salad can make a great side dish. This mini appetizer includes fresh February seasonal produce like beets and Asparagus, dressed with a flavorful vinaigrette made with lemon and honey.

Ingredients:

  • Asparagus – 2 pounds, cut into 3/4th inch pieces
  • Beets – 2 pounds, diced
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil – 2 tbsp
  • Ground Black Pepper – 1 tsp
  • Salt – to taste

For the Vinaigrette:

  • Onions – 1 tbsp, chopped
  • Lemon – 2 tbsp juiced and zested
  • Orange – 2 tbsp juiced and zested
  • Honey – 2 tbsp
  • White Vinegar – 1 tbsp
  • Dijon Mustard – 1 tbsp
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil – 1/2 cup
  • Salt – to taste
  • Ground black pepper – to taste

Method:

  • Preheat the oven to 375°.
  • Combine the asparagus, olive oil, salt, and pepper in a bowl. Spread it out on a baking tray and bake for roughly 8 – 10 minutes or till it is tender.
  • Roast the beets also separately until tender.
  • Allow both the vegetables to cool down.
  • Take a blender and combine all the ingredients of the vinaigrette, except the olive oil.
  • After pureeing it smoothly, set the blender on medium speed and slowly add the oil.
  • Take a bowl and combine the beets, asparagus, and vinaigrette.
  • Toss the vegetables until they are well-coated.
  • You can top it with crumbled goat cheese or feta cheese.

This recipe makes 8 side portions.

Note:

  • You can also add other vegetables like potatoes, carrots, celery, Brussels sprouts, greens, or cauliflower too.
  • You can also add thinly sliced fish, cooked chicken, or boiled eggs to amp up the protein quotient.
  • The crumbled cheese topping can be substituted with walnuts or seeds for the crunchy texture.

Nutritional Facts (per serving):

  • Calories – 160
  • Total Fat – 12g
  • Carbohydrate – 10g
  • Fiber – 2g
  • Protein – 4g

Banana Cake

February brings some amazing seasonal fruits, especially bananas. Bananas are rich in nutrients and potassium that are good for heart health. They help in regulating blood pressure and maintaining a healthy heart. Here is a quick low-cholesterol banana cake recipe for your guilt-free indulgence.

Ingredients:

  • Yellow cake mix – 1 (18.25 ounce) pack
  • Bananas – 2 very ripe, mashed
  • Baking soda – 1 teaspoon

Method:

  • Follow the instructions and prepare the yellow cake batter mix.
  • Mash the bananas well.
  • Add the baking soda and the mashed bananas to the cake mix batter.
  • Pour the batter into a greased and floured baking pan. A baking pan of 9 x 13 inches is good.
  • Place the uncooked cake into the oven and cook at 175 degrees C (350 degrees F) for around 1 hour.
  • Cool the cake thoroughly and refrigerate.

This recipe makes one 9 x 13 inch cake, enough for 24 servings.

Note:

  • Do not preheat the oven before cooking.
  • You add chunks of bananas or berries in the cake.
  • You can also add walnuts, cinnamon, oats, chocolate chips, or seeds for extra texture and flavor.
  • You can frost with low-fat whipped cream if you wish.

Nutritional Facts (per serving):

  • Calories – 102
  • Total Fat – 2.5 g
  • Carbohydrate – 19.1 g
  • Fiber – 0.5 g
  • Protein – 1.1 g

Recipe idea and method -Allrecipes, Recipe Courtesy of Chef Michelle, ALDI Test Kitchen

Post Author: Admin