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Eat a Rainbow

 

You know, there are a lot of nutrition and diet books, plans, and information out there. I mean some times I have to wonder how the human species survived for all these millennia without all of this printed diet matter consisting of rules and lists of shoulds and shouldn’ts. How did we ever manage?

Most of the information and plans costs a lot of money. I saw one plan on the internet the other day. First you have to purchase expensive software, install it on your computer, and then input and keep track of every tiny speck of food you eat on their charts and graphs. Now if that works for you and you have the money and the time, go for it.

But in my humble opinion; what a sad way to suck every ounce of joy from eating delicious food. In her book, What French Women Know, Debra Ollivier discusses what the French call, art de vivre, which translate to “art of living.”

Maybe it comes from our Puritan heritage. I don’t know. But some times I think we Americans try to get everything down to charts and numbers. And in many ways that tendency has served us well. For years we had the highest standard of living the world has ever known.

But like all good things, there was a trade off. There was a down side.There was no French “art of living.”  With food it seems we often forgot to just simply enjoy our food and enjoy the people we share a meal with.

Joy! Joy!!! Joy!!!!!!!!

For me, eating is an experience to savor. Food is not just necessary to remain alive and for nutrition. Eating is for camaraderie, laughter, fun, lively debate, love, hugs, smiles, and sharing life’s ups and downs.

In America we see how fast we can do everything, including eating a meal. I think a good meal means eating slowly and lingering over the tastes, the food, and the company. For me it is about seeing how long I can make the joy last.

Now I know in today’s modern world that is not possible every single night of the week. But I like for it to be at least once a week.

But I digress as I so often do. Eating slowly and lingering over a meal is a subject for another day.

Rainbow Eating

I believe we can eat nutritiously without having to track what we eat on charts, graphs, and a computer program and without having to spend a lot of money. And I believe we can eat nutritiously without having to give up meat!!

With the money I save you here today, go out and buy a steak, cook it and eat it with love.

I first read about this new research ten or more years ago in a newspaper article titled, “Colorful Diet Best.” The gist of the article was if you want to be healthy and eat nutritiously it is best to eat food that is a lot of different colors.

Variety. That is what the article said. Eat five different colors every single day. The more colors the better.

Now isn’t that easy? No charts. No graphs. No computer. No money. Just eat five different colors a day. How hard can that be?

I did an internet search for, “colorful diet best,” and I got almost one-million hits – 884,000 to be exact.

A brief look at some of the headlines – links:

A Colorful Diet is Best for Vitamins, Minerals and Supplements

“So how do you know if you are getting enough of these food superheroes? Think color!”

Ask a Chef: Colorful food nutrition

“Very important. Interesting research in last 10 years reveals that probably the most potent and active constituents in foods are not the vitamins/minerals but are, in fact, the compounds that give food their color.” [Emphasis all mine.]

Eat Healthier by Eating Colorful Foods

“All-cookie, all-meat, all-liquid……..whatever the diet trend may be, the best nutritional guide will always be your own common sense. Any diet composed of a fraction of what nature has to offer can’t be as healthy as one drawing from the whole spectrum of foods.

It may seem simple, but studies repeatedly show that consuming a “rainbow of foods” is the most efficient way to eat healthier.” [Emphasis all mine.]

I won’t go through all of the research and what color fruit has which health benefits and which nutrients.  If so inclined, I’ll let you read the other 881,000 articles I did not cite.

Me??? Well I have a delicious pork chop with white garlic and green oregano, green zucchini, red tomatoes, white mushrooms, and yellow peppers to lovingly linger over.

Oh!!!!  And a dessert made of green pear, orange cantaloupe, and purple plums with a touch of red raspberry sorbet.

See how easy it is to get five colors a day!!!!!!!

Oh be still my heart!!!!

Featured Recipe           Broiled Fruit with Brown Sugar Skewers

At MTTD you can have your dessert and eat it too!!

I am starting with dessert. I will share the other half of the meal mentioned above on Friday.

This is as simple as simple can be. Just get some colorful fruits of your choice. They should be large enough and some what sturdy enough to skewer. Even large strawberries can be used.

You can use metal or wooden skewers. If using wooden, soak in water 10-15 minutes  first to keep them from catching fire.

Here is what you will need for 3 servings:

Fruit of your choice: (cantaloupe, pear, plum)

Brown sugar

Here is what you do:

Wash then cut the fruit into medium chunks.  Cut the melon in half and scoop out the seeds. Save the other half for another time.

 Then lay melon  flat side down. Cut in half. Here is where picture starts. Cut one of the halves into thick slices. Then do the other half.

Then lay each slice flat and cut into four chunks.

Then cut off the rind.

NOTE: I am not a professional chef. I have no formal knife training. I do not know of this is the ‘correct’ way to cut a melon. It works for me. I still have all ten fingers which is quite an accomplishment when you remember I flunked scissor cutting in 5th grade. Cut your melon any way you are comfortable.

Cut the rest of your fruit into chunks as well.

Skewer the fruit. I had left over fruit. You could make a 4th skewer or use the fruit for breakfast the next morning.

Place the skewers on a foil lined broiler pan.

Sprinkle with about 1 generous tablespoon of brown sugar before broiling, and a second tablespoon of sugar when you turn the skewers.

Put under a broiler for about 2-4 minutes per side. Or bake in a 500 degree oven for about 3-4 minutes turning several times. Or you could grill the fruit skewers as well.

The fruit should be heated and the brown sugar should be some what melted and bubbly. Don’t let the fruit become over cooked and soggy though. The longer you cook the fruit the more nutrients you lose. It should look something like this whenn you turn the skewers.

You can serve alone or with a scoop of ice cream or sorbet as I did. What a lovely, easy, quick, and delicious dessert.

Bon Appetit!!!

My Costs

Cost of this dessert with vary wildly depending on what fruits you use.

NOTE: I used most of the pear and the plum, but had some left overs. I used ¼ of the cantaloupe but had some of that left over as well.
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¼ cantaloupe              $0.64

1 pear                         $0.85

1 plum                         $0.37

2 tbs brown sugar         $0.15

Total cost = $2.01

Cost per person = $0.67

Quote of the Day

An apple a day keeps the doctor away.      

Old Saying        

 

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