Pasta with Veggie Confetti

For this South Arm Older Adults Cooking Club meet, Michelle shared a few recipes rich in vegetables and fruits for a heart healthy meal.  She shared with us that a recent studies reviewed a daily intake of 5 to 7 servings of vegetables and fruits reduce the risk of heart disease by 50%.

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This Pasta with Veggie Confetti recipe utilizes asparagus which is in season.

Ingredients

  • 12 oz dried whole wheat pasta, such as penne
  • 2/3 cup low sodium chicken broth
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 9 medium asparagus spears, trimmed and cut into 1″ pieces (about 1 cup)
  • 1/4 cup diced red bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup coarsely shredded carrot
  • 2 tablespoons fresh basil
  • 1 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese

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Source: Healthy Family Meals, American Heart Association

Serves 4

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Simple Asparagus Soup

The Older Adults Cooking Club met again at the South Arm Kitchen. Michelle prepared four new recipes for this kitchen.

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The first recipe is Asparagus Soup. This non-dairy creamy soup is simple to prepare and can be made a day ahead of time. It freezes well for future use.

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon all purpose flour
  • approximately 4 cups vegetable or chicken broth or bouillon to make 4 cups of broth
  • 1 pound asparagus, cut into 1″ pieces
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • optional: yogurt, cream or sour cream to drizzle on top

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Asparagus information:

Stem thickness indicates the age of the plant, with the thicker stems coming from older plants. Older, thicker stalks can be woody and peeling the skin at the base will remove the tough layer. Peeled asparagus will poach much faster. The bottom portion of asparagus often contains sand and dirt, so thoroughly cleaning is generally advised before cooking.

Source: this recipe is adapted from epicurious.com.

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Roasted Asparagus with Orange Juice

Minoo prepared a Roasted Asparagus with Orange Juice for the side dish to go with the Zucchini Meat Loaf.  Aparagus is a spring vegetable.

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You may check up this post for the nutritional values of asparagus.

Ingredients

  • 1 pound fresh asparagus
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/3 cup orange juice
  • 3 garlic cloves, minces
  • 2 teaspoons poppy seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

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Source: this recipe is adapted from Taste of Home

Yield: 4 servings.

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Pasta with Asparagus

In the South Arm Community Kitchen, Minoo prepared three recipes. They are simple recipes for a lazy hot summer day which we eagerly anticipate. It has been a cool spring this year.

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For the main dish, Minoo selected a Pasta with Asparagus recipe because asparagus is in season.

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Asparagus is one of the most nutritionally well-balanced vegetables in existence. It leads nearly all produce items in the wide array of nutrients it supplies in significant amounts for a healthy diet.

Asparagus is the leading supplier among vegetables of folic acid. A 5.3 ounce serving provides 60% of the recommended daily allowance for folacin which is necessary for blood cell formation, growth, and prevention of liver disease. Folacin has been shown to play a significant role in the prevention of neural tube defects, such as spinal bifida, that cause paralysis and death in 2,500 babies each year.

Besides folic acid, asparagus is a also a good source of potassium, a significant source of thiamin and vitamin B6. It is also one of the richest source of rutin, a component which strengthens capillary walls.

It’s wealth of nutrients, fiber and very low sodium, no fat or cholesterol and low calorie content make asparagus a nutritionally wise choice for today’s health-conscious consumer.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 pounds fresh asparagus
  • 1/4 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 pound fresh mushrooms
  • 8 ounces angel hair pasta
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste

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Source: Minoo

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Orange Glazed Asparagus

Asparagus is a seasonal vegetable and spring is the best time to enjoy it.

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This Orange Glazed Asparagus is easy to prepare and the orange juice reduction adds sweetness to it.

Ingredients

  • 1 bunch medium thick asparagus
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1/4 cup orange juice

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Source: adapted from Pam Anderson

Prep time: 10 minutes;  Cook time: 10 minutes;  Serves 3

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