(NAPS)—Today’s chefs and nutritionists are elevating produce to “rock star” status. Making vegetables center stage is a delicious way to eat healthier with their juicy flavors, satisfying substance and essential nutrients.
Eating veggies as the main course can be simple to do—just focus on the garden. For example, try mixing chopped fresh mushrooms or roasted cauliflower into ground meat or turkey in home-cooked burgers. Or, prepare a full-of-vegetables salad sprinkled with grilled chicken or salmon.
The key to making a rock star dish is to use canola oil. It’s light in color and taste, allowing the other foods’ flavors to shine through. Canola oil is a good source of omega-3 fats, has no trans fat and can be used in any recipe, from appetizers to desserts.
Soon it may be easier to eat healthier in restaurants, too, as the Harvard School of Public Health and the Culinary Institute of America are encouraging chefs to move vegetables into the spotlight and flipping meat to a supporting role. Here’s a star-studded veggie salad to try:
Herb Tomato-Watermelon Salad
¼ cup canola oil
Zest and juice from 1 medium lime
¼ tsp. salt
5-lb. piece seedless watermelon
3 large yellow and/or red tomatoes, cored, thickly sliced and quartered
1 cup mixed chopped fresh herbs such as mint, cilantro and parsley
¾ cup peeled, diced jicama
2 Tbsp. diced red onion
Freshly ground black pepper
Combine canola oil, zest, juice and salt; set aside.
Remove rind from watermelon. Cut into ½-inch thick slices; then cut into triangles. Place in large serving bowl; gently stir in remaining ingredients except black and cayenne pepper.
Stir in reserved canola vinaigrette. Serve cold or room temperature, sprinkled with black and cayenne pepper as desired. Try with a small side of fish, chicken or pork.
Makes 4 to 6 servings.
For other sensational recipes from the Northern Canola Growers Association, visit www.northerncanola.com.