Now that the harsh winter weather is behind us, we may feel the need to drop a few pounds or just refocus on eating healthier. But when it’s still cold outside, a plate of salad greens may not be as appealing to our palates as it was in August. How do we get our fill of fruit and vegetables when the temperature’s still cold and all we crave are carbs?
One easy way to get greens is with hearty soups. Start with a stock and add seasonal greens like kale or spinach and then layer with legumes or beans to give a protein boost and filling fiber. Soup can be made quickly with frozen vegetables or stew for hours depending on your schedule. Flavors can be customized according to your pantry and preferences. Tomatoes, carrots, onions and peas are all staples we have on hand and can be used in most recipes while adding texture, flavor and essential vitamins. Get creative with seasonal squashes and global spice accents like cumin or cinnamon for an anti-oxidant boost.
If a bowl of cornflakes leaves you chilly in the morning, switch to a steaming bowl of oatmeal. This is a great chance to add dried or frozen berries to your morning meal. Berries in all forms are a rich source of vitamins, anti-oxidants and flavinoids, all proven to boost immune systems and fend off disease.
While the produce aisle may not feel as lush as in summer, there are nutrient rich seasonal citrus fruits to be found all season long. Break out of the orange and grapefruit rut and try a tangy Meyer lemon or a tangelo to give your taste buds a sneak peak at summer…it is just around the corner after all. Until the weather warms, spring can still be a healthy and tasty season with its own unique flavor.