Foodie Tuesday is almost here!


Foodie Tuesday has returned! …Except we’re a day late…so we would like to introduce Foodie Wednesday this week!

Fall is here, but not for much longer. In nearly one month winter will have set in, and unhealthy eating & laziness will also be setting in… NOT! Wait a minute……. Just because the months of notorious unhealthy eating are creeping up on us doesn’t mean we have to let all of our hard work with our bodies go to waste. Beginning this coming Tuesday, November 25, we will provide you with yummy recipes for eating healthy throughout the cold months to come.

We wanted to warm you up this week with an overview of some of the fresh, rich in folate, produce our beautiful state of California provides us, in the fall and winter months.  california-dreaming-panoAnd to the rest of the world outside of California, all of these foods still apply to you (but you may have to be a little more creative)!

FYI: We will be using the words folic acid and folate interchangeably, like we explained two weeks ago, folic acid and folate are essentially the same, the difference is how the body recognizes it.

Dark Leafy Greens
-Spinach- 1cup= 263 mcg of folate
-Collard Greens- 1cup= 177mcg of folate
-Romaine Lettuce- 1cupe= 76 mcg of folate
Broccoli– 1cup= 24% of daily folic acid recommendation
Citrus Fruits
-Papaya- 1 papaya= 115mcg of folate
-Oranges- 1 orange= 40mcg of folate
-Grapefruit- 1 grapefruit= 30mcg of folate
Brussels Sprouts– 1cup= 25% of daily folic acid recommendation
Cauliflower– 1cup= 55mcg of folate and approx. 14% of daily folic acid recommendation
Beets– 1cup= 76mcg of folate and approx. 20% of daily folic acid recommendation
Celery– 1cup= 34mcg of folate and approx. 8% of daily folic acid recommendation
Winter Squash– 1cup= 57mcg of folate and approx. 14% of daily folic acid recommendation.

vegetables-to-grow-in-winter-640x360

Now that we are all aware of some of the folate rich produce available in the fall and winter months, we can let the information marinate until Tuesday. Make sure to stay tuned and bring your appetite next week!

Until next time, keep folicin’ San Francisco.

Foodie Tuesday: Green Bean Salad with Asian Pear


Green bean, fennel and asican pear saladThe combination of green beans and Asian Pears may seem novel.  However, when we saw the beautiful beans at the farmer’s market this Sunday, and then found the season’s first Asian pears, we knew that we had to do something with them.

Getting our inspiration from this recipe for green bean and fennel salad on Epicurious.com, we tweaked it to get this supper tasty recipe! The sweetness and crunch of the pear provided great contrast to the acidity of the dressing and the bitterness of the parsley.  If you don’t like the taste of parsley, try mixing it with baby lettuce greens.

Have it with a rotisserie chicken and either a nice bread or marble potatoes sprinkled with salt, pepper and thyme, and then sautéed in olive oil & butter, and you have a great meal!

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons flax seed oil
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoons water
  • 2 teaspoons finely grated lemon peel
  • 1/2 pound green beans, trimmed, cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces (about 2 cups
  • 1 large fennel bulb, trimmed, quartered lengthwise, thinly sliced crosswise
  • 1 medium Asian pear, cored, quartered and cut into thin slices
  • 1 cup fresh Italian parsley leaves, removed from stalks
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives

Instructions

  1. Whisk first 6 ingredients in medium bowl to blend. Season with salt and pepper.
  2. Cook green beans in large pot of boiling water until crisp-tender, about 5 minutes. Drain. Transfer to large bowl of ice water. Drain beans. Pat dry. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill dressing. Wrap green beans in paper towels and chill.)
  3. Place beans in large bowl. Add fennel, Asian pear, parsley, chives and lemon peel. Drizzle dressing over; toss. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and chill 30 minutes. Toss again and serve.

National Nutrition Month Post: How Can You Eat Healthy on a Budget?


These days, we are all living on a budget. Here are some tips to eating healthy on a budget.

  1. First all of, plan, plan, plan! It’s easiest to budget when you plan your shopping list and meals for the week. I try to do this on Sunday.
  2. Buy whats in season. To see what’s in see click here. Getting vegetables that aren’t in season shipped to the grocery store is expensive, and costs you more!
  3. Buy local. Go your local farmers markets. A list San Francisco farmers markets is here.
  4. Buy in bulk. Then can and freeze everything else! Jams, sauces, pickling, the world is your oyster! You can even freeze fresh herbs in olive oil in ice trays. This idea can also apply to buying a whole animal and then freezing meat. But if you live in the city, with a small freezer like me, this may be impossible.
  5. Buy smart. Choose and prioritize which items you buy on a budget. Buy organic only of the dirty dozen and buy nonorganic of the clean 15. More information here.
  6. Buy cheaper proteins. What does that mean? Beans and lentils! Canned or dry, they definitely save $$. Organic eggs are also a budget friendly option as well
  7. Buy cheaper vegetables. Focus on carrots, celery, potatoes, sweet potatoes, cabbage that are cheaper in bulk and can be used in a lot of recipes.
  8. Buy cheaper carbohydrates. Focus on brown rice and whole grain pastas. These will last a long time and are great sides.
  9. Last but not least, look for coupons!
  10. And if you are ambitious, grow your own food! I lack light in my current apartment. But in the past, I used to grow herbs.

How do you eat healthy on a budget?

~janis

Foodie Tuesday: Primavera Potato Salad


Potato Salad Primavera with Asparagus, Corn, Radish and Baby Spinach“Primavera” means spring in Italian, and today’s recipe celebrates the Summer Solstice and the transition from spring to summer.  It takes advantage of three seasonal folate-rich veggies. The first is asparagas, which you can still find at some farmer’s markets.  Corn and green beans are just coming into season.  Two other folate-rich foods – potatoes and spinach – are available year round.  WIth carrots and radishes, you’ve got a dish that meets yesterday’s “eat your veggies” challenge to include a range of colors in your diet.

This recipe was inspired by a recipe from Food.com.  We’ve added the corn to boost folate and to add another color.  We’ve also browned some of the vegetables over the stove to deepen the flavor.  DON’T peel the potatoes, as most of the nutrition is in the layer directly under the skin. Top the salad with grilled salmon, lean steak or tofu and you’ve got a complete meal.

The best part about this recipe (aside from the folate)?  You can get a whole meal on the table in 40 minutes without turning on the oven and heating up your kitchen!  To cut down on prep time, use a prepared dijon vinaigrette instead of making your own.

Primavera Potato Salad with Grilled Veggies
Serves 4  |  Folate (without salmon, steak or tofu): 122 mcg / 31% RDA
Total prep and cooking time: 40 minutes

INGREDIENTS: DRESSING/MARINADE

  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoonsred wine vinegar
  • 1 garlic clove, grated or minced
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper

INGREDIENTS: SALAD

  • 1 1/2 lbs marble or tiny new potatoes, peels on
  • 1/2 cup diagonally thinly sliced carrot
  • 1 cup green beans, sliced on the diagonal
  • 1 cup asparagus, sliced on the diagonal
  • 1 TBS olive oil
  • corn kernals from 2 ears of fresh corn or 1 1/2 cups frozen
  • 2 cups baby spinach
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced radish
  • 1/2 cup diagonally thinly sliced green onion
  • salad dressing

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Make dressing by whisking all ingredients together; alternately, place all ingredients in a glass jar and shake until well-mixed.
  2. Place marble potatoes in a steamer and steam 10 minutes; add carrots and steam 10 minutes more. Remove and drain.
  3. While potatoes and carrots are steaming, fill a bowl with ice water.  Bring a pot of lightly salted water to a boil.  Parboil asparagus for about 1 minute (until it just turns a slightly brighter green), then plunge into ice water to stop the cooking.  Repeat with green beans.  Drain both in colander or large strainer.
  4. Heat olive oil in large saute pan.  When hot, add potatoes, carrots and corn.  Reduce heat to medium.  Cook, stirring until vegetables begin to brown on all sides (2-3 minutes).  Let cool for 5 minutes.
  5. Combine all salad ingredients in a bowl. Toss with salad dressing, top with grilled protein (if using), and serve.

Foodie Tuesday – Mixed Berry Crisp


As you may have heard, we here at Go Folic recently created our own Savory & Soulful recipe brochure.  Here’s another tasty dish from our new brochure, just in time for summer!  Our mixed berry crisp features strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries, which are all high in folate – and currently in season at a grocery store or farmers’ market near you!

Here’s a Go Folic tip: if you can find “fortified” or “enriched” whole wheat flour, use that in place of white flour for added fiber.  It will taste just as good!

Mixed Berry Crisp

75 mcg Folate (19% RDA)

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 45 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 7 cups unsweetened frozen and thawed strawberries, raspberries, and/or blackberries
  • 1/2 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
  • nonstick cooking spray
  • 3/4 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1/4 cup enriched all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons chilled butter, cut into small pieces

Preparation

  1. Place an oven rack in the middle of the oven.  Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. In  medium bowl, mix berries, sugar, all-purpose flour, and cornstarch.
  3. Spray a 9×9-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.  Pour fruit mixture into the baking dish.
  4. In a medium bowl, combine oats, enriched flour, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon, and vanilla extract.  Mix in butter until crumbly.
  5. Sprinkle oat mixture over berry mixture.
  6. Bake until topping is golden brown, about 45 minutes.  Serve warm or at room temperature.

Makes 6 servings, 1 cup per serving.

Upcomg Events – Where to find Go Folic! in May


May is here!  Which means a new schedule of events – starting with Mother’s Day and National Women’s Health Week, from May 8-14.  It is going to be busy but fun.  We are planning art activities, raffles for movie tickets and Safeway gift cards, and free vitamins.

On Mother’s Day weekend, write a message to your mom on our graffiti wall; we’ll take a photo of your drawing or quote that you can tag on Facebook and send as a Mother’s Day greeting.  (Or we’ll take a photo of you standing in front of your quote and you can email it to her yourself!)

The theme of this year’s Women’s Health Week is “It’s your time!” As women, we always put our family, friends and romantic partners before ourselves.  So when you come by our booth, put yourself first – pick up a bottle of FREE vitamins – it’s on us!

Notes from the Field – Go Folic! at the Fillmore Farmer’s Market


Last weekend I went out to the Fillmore Farmer’s Market to hand out multivitamins in celebration of Folic Acid Awareness Week.  It was a cold morning and there were fewer shoppers than usual.  People walked around the stalls, checking out the week’s fresh produce, talking with the farmers and their neighbors.  One shopper took off warm mittens to pick up an apple at the table next door.  Another lowered their scarf to ask a question about a big bundle of beets.  All the shoppers at the market seemed happy to leave behind weeks of unhealthy holiday eating and focus on fresher, healthier food.

My table was set up next to the Market Information table.  My neighbors were two friendly women who answered market questions and handed out free recipes.  One told me that the Fillmore Market is happy to accept EBT, and will be offering users promotional credits in spring.   The woman also told me about her work with the Cooking Matters program.  The program brings six weeks of cooking classes and materials to community groups and shares lessons on how to cook healthfully without spending a lot of money.  I was glad to hear that little things like these exist to help make fresh eating easier for those of us on tight budgets. 

Even though the cold meant less stops at the Go Folic! table, it was great to talk to women who wanted to learn about folic acid.  One mother brought her two twin daughters to the table to get free vitamins.  At 14, both girls had already outgrown their smiling mother, towering over her by several inches.  I thought it was great that they were starting good habits early, getting their daily dose of nutrients through a multivitamin, and through the delicious vegetables they had picked up at the market.

Every time I go to an event for Go Folic!  I learn something new about the neighborhoods around us and the ways people care for their health.  It’s the best part of this job, because every time is different and meaningful.  Next week we’ll go to a Family Resource Center in Potrero.  I can’t wait to share more stories with all of you!

Till next time,

Cristina