Heart-smart Valentines

OK, it's time to write about food again.  I haven't written about food since Number 3 on my "29 days of Valentines" list.

I'm getting a little hungry, so Number 14 is my favorite vegetable.  Number 15 is my favorite breakfast.  Sadly, there is no bacon involved.

I've written about roasted veggies before, so it's not news that I love them.  Broccoli and carrots, in particular.   Between these two, I go back and forth on what is my absolute favorite - the veggie that, if I was going to be hanged the next day, would be part of my last meal.

Carrots eke ahead of broccoli by just a peel.  They take more work than broccoli, but not much.  They are worth it.

My Trinity-sprinkle roasted carrots are simply peeled, sliced, tossed in herbs/olive oil and roasted an 400 degrees until tender.  Pick any herbs you like, but my choice is parsley, basil and SeasonAll.  I've never had them prepared in a better way.   Particularly in restaurants, where they typically serve baby carrots, which are not sweet.  They have not developed any real flavor.  They're too young.  Buy adult carrots.

These are just the best.  End of story.

My favorite breakfast is steel-cut oatmeal with nuts and berries. 

I've eaten oatmeal off and on over my adult life, mainly for health reasons.  It's not the most interesting cereal, it's certainly not in the Lucky Charms category, but part of being 50-something is leaving behind sugary fun and incorporating foods that are organ friendly.   This is not something you think about as a child.   But, once you reach the top of the proverbial hill, your heart and your colon start to dictate what's going to be coming down the hatch. 

Dr. Oz is always raving about steel-cut oats.  Because I'm always battling my cholesterol, I bought some. They're very interesting little grains...

What I've learned is that steel-cut oats are whole grain groats (the inner portion of the kernel) that are cut, not crushed or mashed (crushing the oats makes rolled oats.)  Because the grains are less processed, they are nutritionally superior to rolled oats.  And, when cooked, less like wallpaper paste.

Steel-cut oats take longer to cook, but I make extra and reheat servings in the microwave on other days.  They are nuttier and chewier than rolled oats, and I really like them.  They are hearty and filling and inexpensive. 

I dress them up with a teaspoon of brown sugar (or honey) and fruit (blueberries are my favorite.)  I toss in some SQUIRREL MIX and enough soy milk to create the texture I want.  Viola!  A really yummy bowl of goodness.

Of course, you can add anything you want.  They might be very tasty with crumbled bacon.

I'm very grateful for roasted carrots and steel-cut oats.  They are valentines I give my heart and colon on a regular basis.

My eyeballs would rather have brownies, but they're not the boss of me.  

No comments: