Use your head — of cauliflower, that is

shutterstock_298189727October 17 — Yesterday we taught you how to make fun and easy cauliflower rice. But this nutritious veggie is also delicious roasted. Try it as a side dish for dinner tonight!

Here’s how: Preheat to 375°F. Rinse the beautiful cauliflower and cut off the stalk so the head sits flat on a big baking sheet. Rub the veggie all over with about 2 tablespoons of the oil (olive, canola, or whatever you like best). Season with salt and pepper, or go wild and add other seasonings (like taco seasoning or fresh herbs). To make buffalo cauliflower, add spicy Sirachi sauce, toss until coated. Either way, roast until the outside starts to brown, about 30 minutes. Let cool, break into smaller bits, and serve!

Did you know: Just as green vegetables contain chlorophyll, cauliflower is rich in nutrients and, like its cousins, cabbage, kale, and broccoli. And, it provides health-promoting compounds not found in many other vegetables.Plus, it’s crunchy and fun to prepare. Source: whfoods

Meet the new rice

shutterstock_271465463October 16 — While having a cup of rice is always nice, here’s a great way to add more veggies to your diet.

Here’s how: Cut the fresh cauliflower into large pieces by cutting into quarters and trimming out the inner core from each quarter. Lightly steam the cauliflower to make it easier to break apart. Now pop the florets into a food processor, being careful not to fill it more than 3/4 of the way. Pulse slowly until the big chunks are broken down into tiny couscous-sized grains. Serve as a side dish, or add it to pasta dishes, soups, and stews to get a hidden fiber bonus.

Did you know: Cauliflower contains sulforaphane, a sulfur compound that has also been shown to kill cancer stem cells, thereby slowing tumor growth. Sulforaphane in cauliflower and other cruciferous vegetables has been found to significantly improve blood pressure and kidney function. And, it contains a wealth of anti-inflammatory nutrients to help keep inflammation in check, including indole-3-carbinol or I3C, an anti-inflammatory compound that may operate at the genetic level to help prevent the inflammatory responses at its foundational level. Source: mercola.com

Enjoy the gift of Greek yogurt

shutterstock_247615765October 15 — Want to cut out a few calories and increase versatility in your cooking? Try using Greek yogurt instead of sour cream. Yogurt can also be used in smoothies, for cooking cream-based sauces, and in breakfast parfaits.

Try it out today by whipping up this delicious, nutritious smoothie: You’ll need 1/2 cup nonfat or 1 percent low fat milk, 1/2 cup nonfat Greek yogurt, 1 cup blueberries, and 1 teaspoon of honey.  Simply pour all of the ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth. In 5 minutes, you’ll be sipping a delicious drink! And do pop handful more of those blueberries in your mouth for even more yummy goodness. Note: Always buy unflavored yogurt and add your own fruit to sweeten it.

Take the skin off a potato in 30 seconds — or less

shutterstock_83967187October 14 — If you like your mashed potatoes without the skin on, but hate the process of peeling them by hand, try this trick.

Here’s how: Boil the potatoes with the skin on. When they are done cooking transfer them to a bowl filled with ice and water (aka: an ice bath) and let them soak for 3-5 minutes. The skin will easily peel right off.

To make perfect mashed potatoes, you’ll need: 1 1/2 lbs (680 g) Yukon Gold potatoes, 1/2 teaspoon salt. 4 Tbsp cream or milk, 2 Tbsp. butter, 1 Tbsp. milk, salt and pepper to taste. Cut potatoes and place into a medium saucepan with an inch of cold water and salt. Boil until bubbling, and simmer, and cover for about 15 minutes until potatoes are soft. Drain water and in a bowl add butter and cream. Mix and mash the potatoes with a fork or potato masher. Don’t over-mix or they’ll get ooey and gluey. Add salt and pepper to taste. Yum!

Save time on your next batch of potato salad

shutterstock_203854963October 13 — Who doesn’t like to be a little lazy sometimes? While that’s not always the best plan when it comes to cooking real food, it can work in your favor when it comes to preparing your next batch of potato salad. How? Don’t peel the potatoes! Right under the skin is the most nutritious part of the vegetable — and no peeling equals saved time. And, about 20% of the nutrition of a potato is in the skin, as well as good-for-you fiber. Plus, potatoes offer 45 percent of your daily dose for vitamin C, and have more potassium (620 mg) than bananas, spinach, or broccoli. So eat your potatoes!

Here’s how: Cook about a half-pound of red or Idaho potatoes (ask your parents for help with the boiling part if you are under 12). Let them cool and leaving skin on, pop them into a large bowl, along with the eggs, bacon, onion and celery. Add mayonnaise, salt and pepper to taste. Chill for an hour before serving. Photo: Shutterstock

Did you know: Whether mashed, baked or roasted, this comfort food is the number one vegetable crop in the world. Belonging to the nightshade family, potatoes are available year-round as they are harvested somewhere every month of the year. If allowed to flower and fruit, the potato plant will bear an inedible fruit resembling a tomato. Source: whfoods.com

Make a fun, quick, easy breakfast that tastes as good as it looks

shutterstock_221597089October 12 — Want to whip up a delectable gourmet breakfast this morning?

You’ll need: 5 wonton wrappers, a cupcake/muffin baking pan, scrambled eggs (using 5 eggs, prepared), 5 teaspoons of your favorite cheese, 5 teaspoons of cooked spinach.

Here’s how: Place the wrappers in the muffin cups, add into each wrapper add some egg, cheese, and the spinach. Then pop into a 350-degree over and bake until the egg is set (it should take about 15 minutes). Voila! You have prepared a Wonton Mini Quiche. (Makes 5). Find more cooking tips here.

Serve stunning dishes in stylish glassware

shutterstock_143867686October 11 — At Edible Education, we think that anything served in fancy glassware looks great. Martini glasses are one of our favorites. While we certainly aren’t encouraging kids to imbibe, it’s fun to offer a taste of elegance.

Here’s why: Not only do these pretty glasses provide the perfect vessel for serving a simple mixture of crushed graham cracker, cream cheese, and honey with fresh berries (an Edible Education favorite), they are also a fun container for serving mashed potatoes, chocolate pudding. Find more Cooking Tips for Kids here.

Try this egg-cellent way to separate the white from the yolk

egg yolkOctober 10 — Kids: If you love preparing egg-white omelets — and other egg-white recipes — but struggle to separate the yolk from the whites, here’s a simple approach that is also a fun science experiment: 1. Crack eggs and place them in a container. 2. Grab an empty plastic water bottle and easily extract an egg yolk by sucking up the yolk. 3. Slightly crush the bottle creating some suction action. 4. Place the bottle directly over the yolk, then “release.” 5. Finally, “squirt” yolk into your bowl and leave the whites behind. Neato, right? Click here for more Cooking Tips for Kids.

Pick a pear — there are 5,000 varieties!

Screen Shot 2015-10-12 at 2.44.18 PMOctober 9 — Believe it or not, there are more than 5,000 varieties of pears grown around the world … in Asia, Europe and here in America.

Did you know: 

  • Asian pears are round, crunchy, and sweet fruit, quite different from what many tend to mean when we think of this word. They are, however, gaining in popularity, although their season is quite limited.
  • In the US, the most commonly grown variety of pears is the Bartlett. In fact, it accounts for about 70% of the US market, and the majority are grown in California, Washington and Oregon. Many never see the stores and are quickly sold to large canning companies. In fact, Americans can more of this fruit than they eat fresh. In Europe, it’s less common to can the fruit, and it is often eaten fresh for dessert. Its sweetness makes an excellent contrast to sharp cheese.
  • The Bartlett pear actually comes in green and red varieties. The fully ripe Bartlett may be somewhat yellow, but the Red Bartlett develops its color prior to being fully ripe. Similarly, the D’Anjou, often just called the Anjou, can be either red or yellow, or like an apple. It can have a red blush when fully ripe. Sources: usapears.orgwisegeek.org

How do you know if your pear is ripe? Click here to find out! 

 

Don’t peel your pears

shutterstock_212371069October 8 — Have you ever heard of Quercetin? How about antioxidants? Here’s a fun bit of information that might come in handy in science class:

  • Antioxidants are molecules that inhibits a chemical reaction involving the loss of electrons or an increase in oxidation state.
  • Quercetin belongs to a group of plant pigments called flavonoids that give many fruits, flowers, and vegetables their color — which means it’s often in the skin of a fruit.

Did you know: Pears — with the skin on — have both, so eating them can helps prevent cancer — and it can help reduce blood pressure. So don’t peel your pears! And here’s more good news: Pears are a hypoallergenic fruit, so if you have food sensitivities can usually eat pears with no adverse effects. Eating three or more servings of fruits a day, such as pears, may also lower your risk of age-related macular degeneration (ARMD), the primary cause of vision loss in older adults. Click here for Edible Education’s recipes for cooking with pears.