Sunday, January 23, 2011

Spinach will keep you lean

Growing up we had a big garden in our backyard. I used to love this garden and I especially couldn't wait to eat all the fresh vegetables, either could my dad. He used to care for the garden like a fourth child and prepare all the veggies on the table for Saturday dinner. For some reason I remember the radishes, leeks and chives the most. But there was spinach and it always tasted so good. It was a great summer tradition - one I obviously remember and want to have myself one day. My grandparents also used to have a garden that was ten times as big as my dad's. It was the coolest ever - now it's a postage stamp but there are reasons for that. My grandpa and I would go out and pull carrots from the ground, wash them off with a hose and eat them. There was nothing quite like like it.

Today's recipe focuses on Spinach! It fights cancer, heart disease, stroke, obesity and osteoporosis. It's loaded with Vitamins A, C, K, folate and minerals: calcium, magnesium, fiber and beta-carotene. It's supposed to help fight aging too! Yeah! Why wouldn't you want to eat it? I always substitute spinach on my Subway sandwich too rather than iceberg.

Savory Seafood Penne
serves 4
(Found in Women's Health - March 2010)

2 oz mulitgrain penne (we actually used this and it was good!)
12-14 medium precooked peeled shrimp (oops, I didn't peel ours)
2 Tbsp crumbled Gorgonzola
3 c chopped baby spinach (I put a whole 5 ounce box in)
1 tomato (I cut up grape tomatoes)
2 TBS chopped walnuts
3 TBS ready-made pesto

I also added:
  • Mushrooms (according to Women's Health, December 2010, and The Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University, fungi may fight colds and the flu. Compounds in the white button variety boost the activity of immune-system cells that help wipe out infections. Researchers believe shiitake, cremini, and other species have the same effect, so add them to salads, soups, and stir-fries.)
  • Kalamata olives
  • whole pack of basil

Cook pasta according to directions, drain and transfer to large bowl. Add shrimp, cheese, spinach, tomato, shrooms, kalamata olives, walnuts, and pesto, stirring well to help wilt the spinach and distribute the pesto.

I grabbed a large wok, heated it up, poured in some olive oil and warmed the shrimp, spinach, mushrooms and mixed in some pesto too. I like getting the flavor over everything.

Karl's reaction: "I really like this little dish a lot. The olives are a nice addition. Mmmm, good babe."


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