With an abundance of fruits and vegetables at their peak right now, eating fresh, healthy produce couldn’t be easier. Fill your basket with these five nutrient all-stars, and try them in our easy recipes.
Rich in vitamins A and C, tomatoes are packed with folate, potassium and lycopene, a potent antioxidant. Mix things up and look for heirloom ones in different sizes and colours, including purple, green and yellow.
– For an effortless side dish, drizzle extra-virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar and coarse sea salt over tomato wedges.
– Use fresh tomatoes to make our Great Gazpacho, a chilled Spanish-style soup made with tomatoes, cucumbers, bell peppers and onion.
While often thought of as a vegetable, corn is actually a whole grain. When it’s not smothered in butter and salt, fresh corn on the cob is a healthy choice; one piece of corn has less than 80 calories and is an excellent source of beta-cryptoxanthin, an antioxidant thought to protect against lung cancer.
– Skip the artery-clogging butter and salt. Instead dip a lime wedge in freshly ground black pepper and rub onto hot corn on the cob.
– Make your own rub for corn on the cob by combining extra-virgin olive oil, coarse sea salt, black pepper, cumin seeds and chili powder. Rub onto corn just before serving.
Grab these while you can: they have a short growing season in Canada. Their intake helps fight aging and protect against Alzheimer’s, cancer and heart disease.
– Use fresh blueberries in place of croutons on salad for a boost of nutrients.
– Quench your thirst with an antioxidant packed smoothie: blend ½ cup each low-fat milk, cranberry juice and fresh blueberries with 1 tsp grated fresh gingerroot.
This quintessential hot-weather food is sweet, juicy and refreshing, at less than 40 calories per peach. Look for freestone ones – their flesh peels easily away from the stone, so they’re ideal to eat fresh.
– Make a zesty salsa by combining equal parts diced peaches and sweet red pepper. Toss with sliced green onions and chopped jalapeno, to taste. Season with extra-virgin olive oil, lime juice, chopped garlic, salt and pepper.
– Serve chilled peach soup as a starter or for dessert.
Swiss chard is a real head-turner with its vibrant yellow, red, orange and white stalks. It’s packed with nutrients too, including vitamins K, A and C, magnesium, potassium, iron and fibre.
– Sauté crushed garlic in olive oil; add washed and trimmed Swiss chard; cover and steam for five to six minutes or until greens are wilted. Season with balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper.
– Toss whole grain pasta with steamed Swiss chard, garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper.