–by Jennifer Ruple
PUBLICATION DATE: 11.15.16
The most wonderful time of year is quickly approaching. We’ll soon be busy giving and receiving gifts, volunteering for favorite charities and celebrating with family and friends. Unfortunately, it’s also the time of year when stress can get the best of us, making us more vulnerable to sickness and fatigue.
No need to panic. Fresh Thyme Farmers Market, located at 5105 Monroe St., offers a plethora of superfoods that can help ward off colds and flus, assist in maintaining weight, and boost energy levels needed to shop, wrap, bake, entertain and anything else on your holiday list.
Look for these seasonal favorites in the store, and be sure to check out these recipes and more from freshthyme.com:
Brussels Sprouts – packed in fiber and offering some satiating protein, these nutrient-dense sprouts offer many antioxidants, folate, vitamin C and more.
Sweet Potato – a staple of the season, this tuber helps regulate blood sugar curbing your appetite and helping you digest with healthy fiber.
Cinnamon – Call it a super spice, cinnamon packs a lot of flavor and health benefits including regulating blood sugar, boosting metabolism, lowering cholesterol and helping you shed some unwanted pounds.
Cauliflower – it may be the vegetable of 2016 for a reason! This low-carb, high-fiber, omega-3-packed super food is the perfect potato substitute.
Pumpkin Seeds – a special bonus for your favorite fall pumpkin patch trip, these seeds are high in protein and fiber, rich in omega-3s and loaded with tryptophan, reducing stress and helping you sleep.
Spaghetti Squash – this low-carb, low-calorie substitute for pasta also has antioxidants, beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin, all linked to healthy eyes and vision.
Maple Syrup – a sweetener that doesn’t cause bloating or digestive problems? Sign us up! Plus, it’s high in magnesium, which lowers levels of cortisol and reduces belly fat.
Pomegranate – These seeds offer digestion-aiding fiber and cancer-fighting antioxidants, while also being delicious.
Fire Cider – They say an apple a day keeps the doctor away but so does a tablespoon of Fire Cider. This year-round staple is necessary for beating off a change of season cold and packs a punch of orange, lemons, onions, ginger, horseradish, habanero pepper, garlic and turmeric in each spoonful.
Creamy Cauliflower and Leek Gratin
2 tablespoons coconut oil or unsalted butter
2 large leeks, washed, sliced into thin rounds
¼ teaspoon sea salt
½ teaspoon ground pepper
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 tablespoon chopped fresh
2 tablespoons arrowroot flour
2 cups unsweetened soy milk or 2% milk
1 medium head cauliflower, cut into bite-sized pieces
¾ cup grated Parmesan cheese
Heat oven to 350 F. In a large pot, melt oil or butter over low heat. Add leeks, salt, pepper, nutmeg and tarragon. Sauté over medium-low heat for 10 minutes, or until leeks are softened.
Add arrowroot, stirring constantly for 1 minute. Slowly drizzle in milk, stirring constantly (a large whisk is helpful), being sure to eliminate any lumps. Increase heat, continuing to stir until milk bubbles.
Add cauliflower, stirring to combine. Cover and cook over medium-low until cauliflower becomes slightly tender, about 5 minutes. Pour into casserole dish and top with cheese. Bake for 20-30 minutes, or until cauliflower is tender and cheese bubbles.
(Recipe adapted from freshthyme.com)
Butternut Squash Noodles with Kale, Chickpeas and Pumpkin Seeds
1 medium butternut squash
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
½ small red onion, diced
2 ¼ cups canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 bunch fresh kale, stems removed, washed and coarsely chopped
¼ cup chopped Italian parsley
2 tablespoons ponzu sauce
⅓ cup toasted pumpkin seeds
Heat oven to 400 F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
Cut off bulbous end of squash. Place in reusable container and refrigerate for another use. Trim end off remaining piece of squash and peel. Cut in half to make 2 pieces about 3” long. Process each piece through spiralizer or mandoline, cutting squash into long, thin noodles.
Toss squash noodles with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and spread out in single layer on baking sheet. Season lightly with pepper. Add a little more oil if noodles appear too dry. Bake for 5 minutes, or until squash is tender but still firm when pierced with a fork.
Meanwhile, heat remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil in large, heavy saucepan or deep frying pan. Add onion and sauté just until soft. Add chickpeas and stir. Remove from heat.
When squash is ready, gently fold into chickpea mixture along with kale and return to burner. Gently toss over high heat for 1 to 2 minutes, or until kale wilts and ingredients are piping hot.
Fold in parsley. Spoon into heated serving bowls, drizzle with a little ponzu sauce, and sprinkle with toasted pumpkin seeds.
(Recipe adapted from freshthyme.com)