Posted by Peggy Farber on 10/19/2016

UnknownOkinawan Sweet Potatoes Compliment Summer Cookouts Have you tasted purple sweet potatoes? Featured in area Asian markets and local neighborhood fresh markets, purple sweet potatoes, also known as Okinawan sweet potatoes, are quickly gaining in culinary popularity. Native to Central and South America, purple sweet potatoes were introduced in Asia and from there spread in popularity all around the world. If you are lucky enough to find organically grown purple sweet potatoes: you are in for an incredible taste treat. Like other types of sweet potatoes, purple sweet potatoes can be baked, grilled, broiled, boiled, steamed or fried. Children of all ages love them mashed and seasoned to taste with butter, honey, maple syrup or brown sugar. Prepared this way, they are a fine side dish to serve with barbecued pork ribs. A dicotyledonous plant in the family Convolulaceae, the purple sweet potato is a sweet-tasting, starchy root vegetable. All varieties of sweet potatoes grow from herbaceous, perennial vines. The sturdy vines exhibit large heart shaped leaves and trumpet-shaped flowers. There are dozens of different varieties of sweet potatoes. The smooth skinned tubers range in color from pale beige, brown, yellow, orange, red and purple. Sweet potato varieties that present pale colored flesh are not as sweet or moist as those with vibrantly colored orange, red or purple flesh. Purple sweet potatoes obtain their brilliant coloration from anthocyanin compounds, the same heath boosting pigment that causes the purple coloration of red cabbage, blueberries, strawberries, cherries, and grapes. Over the past 40 years, Japanese sweet potato growers have developed several different varieties of purple sweet potatoes, primarily for use in the nutraceutical market and as a natural replacement for synthetic red and blue food dyes. Exceptionally rich in natural color and nutrients, purple sweet potatoes are an excellent addition to a healthy diet, providing a good source of: • Iron • Calcium • Dietary Fiber • Complex carbohydrates • Vitamin A • Vitamin C • Antioxidants from polyphenolic and anthocyanin compound A 4 ounce serving of purple sweet potato contains only 130 calories yet offers 2 grams of protein and 4 grams of fiber: nutrients and color are retained after cooking. Savory Apple, Sweet Potato, Cranberry Compote This sweet and spicy compote is a perfect accompaniment to grilled pork chops or barbecued ribs. The compote can be served alone, over ice cream or used as a delicious pie filling. Serve hot or cold. Ingredients: • 2 pounds purple sweet potatoes • 2 pounds cored and peeled cooking apples • 1 cup fresh washed and culled cranberries • ½ cup honey • ½ cup brown sugar • 1-teaspoon cinnamon • ½ teaspoon nutmeg • ½ teaspoon cardamom • 2 cups apple juice or non-alcoholic apple cider Pre-bake sweet potatoes for 45 minutes at 325 degrees F. Allow potatoes to cool. When cool, peel and cut into 1-inch cubes. Combine sweet potatoes and remaining ingredients in a heavy saucepan. Cook at low heat until all ingredients are soft and tender, and liquid is reduced. Stir regularly while cooking to keep from burning.

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Posted by Peggy Farber on 8/24/2016

Did you know that there are foods that are super? No drugs needed there are actually foods that will help keep you healthy and boost your energy. Here are just a few of the foods known to lower your cholesterol, reduce your risk of heart disease, cancer, and even put you in a better mood. Blueberries-Blueberries are not just yummy they are a natural antioxidant.  Blueberries are also high in potassium and vitamin C.  They lower your risk of heart disease and cancer, and have also been proven as an anti-inflammatory. Sweet potatoes- Sweet potatoes are packed with vitamins, minerals and fiber. If you are looking to shed some pounds sweet potatoes have been known to curb appetites by stabilizing blood sugar levels. Like blueberries, sweet Potatoes are also rich in antioxidants and boast anti-inflammatory properties. Salmon-Salmon and other cold-water fish like herring, sardines, and mackerel contain omega-3s. Foods with omega-3s are high in monounsaturated fats, which can lower cholesterol. Two-to-three servings a week should do the trick. Tea-Green tea can help lower cholesterol and prevent cancer. Green tea contains ECGC. ECGC is a powerful antioxidant that has been shown in studies to inhibit the growth of cancer cells. Dark Chocolate-Go ahead and indulge in some dark chocolate! Dark chocolate is packed with antioxidants and can lower blood pressure. When choosing chocolate, the darker the chocolate the better. Dark chocolate is lower in fat and sugar content. Look for chocolate with 60% or higher cocoa content What are some of your favorite super foods?