The poor potato has gotten quite the bad rap over the last couple of decades, but it is not as bad as it seems.
A Little Potato History
The lowly potato hails from the South American regions of Peru and Bolivia, and has been a staple in the diets of these regions for over 10,000 years. Traditionally potatoes were naturally freeze dried into Chuno.
It was only after the Spanish conquistadors arrived in South America, that the Potato made it's way to the rest of the world.
A Little Potato Nutrition
Yes, potatoes are a super starchy vegetable, that has a high glycemic index. And, sadly, that is what is it is most known for. Probably because we peel them, and fry them more often than using them whole.
Nutritionally they are full of Vitamins, Minerals and Phytonutrients
Potatoes Contain 30+% of your daily B6
B6 is necessary in the formation of blood cells, metabolism of carbohydrates, production of neurotransmitters, and aid in Liver detoxification processes
Potatoes Contain 25+% of your daily Potassium
Potassium is necessary for regulating blood pressure, reduced risk of kidney stones, neutralizes acidic food in your diet, and is an important electrolyte for the cells
Potatoes Contain 20+% of your daily Vitamin C
Vitamin C is necessary for proper immune function, in the formation of collagen, in the production of neurotransmitters, and in reducing inflammation
Potatoes Contain 20+% of your daily Copper
Copper is necessary to reduce nerve inflammation, in the formation of enzymes, in the formation of collagen, in the formation of red blood cells, and carbohydrate metabolism
Potatoes Contain 15+% of your daily Manganese
Manganese is necessary for proper bone formation, in the formation of collagen, skin protection from UV rays, and in the formation of enzymes used to regulate blood sugar
Potatoes Contain 15+% of your daily Phosphorus
Phosphorus is necessary in the formation of DNA and gene expression, for the strength of bones, and in the processes of cell energy, balancing body pH
Potatoes Contain 15+% of your daily Vitamin B3 Niacin
Vitamin B3 Niacin is necessary in the metabolism of proteins, fats and carbohydrates, in DNA repair, for stress responses, for balancing blood cholesterols, and in skin formation and healing
Potatoes Contain 15+% of your daily Vitamin B5 Pantothenic Acid
Vitamin B5 Pantothenic Acid is necessary for the metabolism of carbohydrates and fats, in the formation of cholesterol based hormones, in blood cell formation, in the formation of adrenal hormones, for moisturizing the skin and skin healing, in the formation of neurotransmitters, and in the metabolism of drugs and medication
Potatoes Contain 15+% of your daily Fiber
Fiber is necessary for proper digestion, probiotic balance and growth, as fuel for intestinal cells, for balancing blood cholesterol, and for balancing the digestion of fats and carbohydrates
Potatoes Contain Kukoamines
Kukoamines are phytochemicals that are being researched for the their effects on reducing blood pressure. Kukoamines were previously only discovered in Goji Berries (a TCM herb). They are also shown to protect your body from the harmful compounds formed from high temperature cooking meat.
Crockpot Dairy Free Potato and Leek Chowder
In a crockpot, add the leeks, potatoes, thyme, garlic, and cover with chicken broth. Set on low for 8 hours.
Stir, and slightly mash potatoes. Season with salt and pepper. Add in Potato Flakes and let sit 15 minutes.
Top with fresh parsley, bacon, and green onions.
If you are following along on my newest article series "Planning Nutritionally for Labor and Delivery Part 2" this is the recipe for my Miso Wonton Soup.
We love soup at our home. The kids get very excited about wonton soup too. Who doesn't like sesame ginger broth with doughy dumplings? Of course, nothing with me is simple. I always have to up it a little, nutritionally speaking.
So, I took the simple wonton soup and make it dense with fermented miso, and added veggies.
This would be a good soup, not only for those who are gearing up for Labor and Delivery, but for those who are postpartum, or just looking for a healthy, easy soup recipe the kids will love.
Miso Wonton Soup
**I used carrots and zucchini in this version, but you could use any that you have on hand; asparagus, broccoli, kale, etc...
*** Need a recipe for GOOD Kim Chi....CLICK HERE
Makes 4 servings
Finding recipes that incorporate natural, wild, and healthy whole grains is difficult. Wild rice is one of those grains for me. I love it's nutty, aromatic flavor, but have a difficult time finding unique ways to serve it.
This recipe has become a staple for us. It is easy to make, delicious, and even the kiddos enjoy it.
There are some steps to this, but nothing elaborate. It is best if left to marinate in the fridge for a couple of hours/overnight before serving. It also makes a an easy make ahead lunch idea for adults and kids alike.
Wild Rice is not technically a rice, although it is a distant cousin. It is the seed of a marsh grass found in the northern regions of the world. The most commonly eaten species come from North America and China. Wild Rice is an ancient grain that has been eaten since the primitive times. Native American culture of North America used the grain for trade, and as a staple in cooking. They used it in soups and doughs. One Traditional recipe stewed Wild Rice grains in Venison broth and Maple Syrup…actually sounds pretty tasty.
Wild Rice use to be a popular wild grain. It has lost a little favor over the years to some other exotic grains (Quinoa). Unlike Quinoa, Wild Rice is cultivated here in the US and does not need to imported. Like Quinoa, Wild Rice is a rich, whole grain source of protein, fat, fiber, minerals, vitamins, and phytonutrients. Wild Rice has double the protein of brown rice, the same amount as Quinoa, specifically high in Lysine. Here are some more Wild Rice Nutrition Highlights:
Wild Rice is a super nutritious, whole grain option. For those of you who want the nutritional benefits of Quinoa, but are concerned about the political complications and the importation, should try homegrown Wild Rice.
Sweet Potato and Wild Rice Salad
I have a love affair with all foods Asian. Mongolian Beef is one of those foods that I know is NOT a traditional dish, but an americanized version…Nonetheless, I still love it, and on occasion crave its delicious sweetness. This craving hit me recently, but as I have been trying REALLY HARD to stay true to a low sugar diet, I knew that I needed to get creative. This is the concoction that came up with. My family couldn't tell the difference, and ate it up.
In a bowl mix Bragg's, Water, Ginger, Garlic, and Coconut Sugar, set aside.
Put Tapioca Starch in a container with a lid. Add sliced steak and shake to coat with flour (discard extra).
Heat oil over medium-high heat and add steak. Cook thoroughly.
Add sauce and scallions. Cook until thickened.
Makes 4 servings.
I served mine in lettuce wraps with my Grandma's Homemade Kim Chi.
Kale is one of my favorite vegetables, and one of the staples in my garden. It is a perennial and can be grown in your landscaping, and cut back in the fall it will return every spring.
Kale is a super vegetable, and should find its way into your diet at least once a week. Especially if you are pregnant.
This recipe is a modification of the recipe found in the Whole Foods Cookbook. I've tweaked it slightly to my own tastes and preferences.
Kale is rich in Vitamins K (684% DV), A (206% DV), and C (134% DV), Mineral Manganese (26% DV), and provides 121mg of Omega 3 per cup.
This recipe uses Naturally Brewed Soy Sauce. Make sure you are buying the real deal, as many of the store bought brands are over preserved and full of sodium.
Soy Sauce is traditionally the juice left over from the processing of Miso. It is a good source of Folate, and naturally brewed soy sauce is a source of probiotics, enzymes, and antioxidants. If you have an estrogen dominant health condition, please be aware that soy in your diet an make symptoms worse, although fermented soy products are lower in phytoestrogens.
Garlic (Allium sativum) is an indispensable culinary herb that not only ads great depth of flavor, but also provides high amounts of B vitamins and Vitamin C, Mineral Manganese and lower amounts of Minerals Copper, Selenium, Phosphorus and Iron.
Medicinally Garlic has the benefits of...
Ginger (Zingiber officinale) is best bought and used fresh, as its flavor and medical quality is much better. Ginger provides low amounts of B Vitamins, and Mineral Copper, Magnesium, and Manganese.
Medicinally Ginger has the benefits of...
Remove stems from Kale leaved and roughly chop into bite sized pieces.
Over Medium heat, add Garlic and Ginger and sauté until aromatic. Add chopped Kale and sauté until wilted, add carrots and warm.
In a separate bowl, mix soy sauce, sesame oil. Remove Kale from heat and mix soy/sesame mixture into Kale. Top with Toasted Sesame Seeds and greed onion. Serve either hot or cold.
My 4 year old loves this recipe, and I usually double the batch and keep in the fridge for lunch, or snack time.
Makes 8 servings