- Food and Cooking
Spinach with Leeks and Fennel
Ingredients for Sauted Spinach with Leeks and Fennel
Healthy and Easy Dish
This is a great dish to make when you want some greens in your diet and it is very easy to make. There are many health benefits of spinach, leeks, and fennel bulbs. To enhance the flavor use garlic, lemon juice, and parmesan cheese. You can give it an Asian flavor by using ginger, garlic, and oyster sauce. The choices are endless. Pick whatever flavor combination you want with these three vegetables. The following recipe uses garlic, lemon juice, a small bit of butter, and parmesan cheese and results in a very flavorable dish.
Benefits of Spinach
Spinach is an excellent source of Iron, Calcium, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, Folate, and Manganese. Eating folate on a regular basis is believed to help reduce the risk of heart disease, and also can reduce the risk of spina bifida, a defect of the spinal column. Spinach strengthens the blood and cleanses it of toxins that can cause skin disease. In China, people believe that spinach helps bowel movements, the flow of urine, and relieves herpes irritations.
Key Nutrients of the Onion Family (per about 2 cups 100g)
Beta Carotene (mcg)
Vitamin C (mg)
Vitamin E (mg)
Leeks and Fennel BulbClick thumbnail to view full-size
The Benefits of Leeks
The onion family includes chives, shallots, and leeks. Onions have been traditionally used as a home remedy for coughs and colds. Recent discoveries of the onion family include its antioxidant effects. Onions contain quercetin which helps prevent heart disease. Quercetin is a phytonutrient which is a strong antioxident. It appears that it can "mop up" potentially harmful free radicals in the body, which if left alone can cause cancerous changes in the body.
Research has shown that the absorption of quercetin from onions may be 32% quicker than other sources such as apples and tea. Quercetin absorbed from onions was found to remain in the body for approximately 24 hours. This buildup of quercetin in the blood plasma can be a significant contribution to antioxidant defences in the blood and protect against several different kinds of disease.
Tobacco smoking is one of the major causes of bladder cancer in humans. It is believed that flavonoids such as quercetin present in onions are converted into a substance that protects the bladder lining from carcinogents. Regular intakes of onions may assist in the prevention of cancer.
- Prep time: 15 min
- Cook time: 15 min
- Ready in: 30 min
- Yields: As a side will serve 4; as a main will serve 2
- 2 Leeks, sliced
- 1 Fennel Bulb, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 6 oz Bag Ready to Eat Spinach
- Each Salt and Pepper to Taste
- 2 TBSP Grated Parmesan Cheese
- 2 TSP Olive Oil
- 1 TSP Butter
- Heat a 12-inch saute pan on Medium Heat with 2 TBSP olive oil and 1 teaspoon butter. If you are concerned about the calories, omit the butter. Add the sliced leeks, diced fennel, and minced garlic and saute until slightly tender. I like my vegetables to be half cooked for some crunch. If you like yours more soft keep an eye on the vegetables until they are at the consistently which you prefer.
- Add the spinach and mix well together. The spinach will start to wilt. When half the spinach is wilted, add the salt and pepper, plus the parmesan cheese and mix. Remove from heat and enjoy.
Which of the following is your favorite?
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- Portobello mushrooms
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- Brussel Sprouts with Parmesan Recipe
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Key Nutrients per 1 large head (100g) of Garlic
Benefits of Eating Garlic
The medicinal benefits of garlic have been recorded since ancient times. Archaeological evidence indicates that garlic has been cultivated in Central Asia from at least 3000BC. A member of the onion family, garlic has been used to treat bronchitis, colds, whooping cough, and influenza. An average serving of garlic is less than ½ ounce. The quantity of nutrients supplied is low compared to the daily recommended intakes. However every clove is full of sulfurous compounds that fight infections.
Choose plump, unbruised bulbs that are neither soft and soggy, nor starting to dry. Avoid torn skins and bulbs with sprouts. Keep for several weeks in a dry place where air can circulate, and away from other vegetables.
Garlic is well known for its ability to help circulation and inhibit colds. Garlic’s antibacterial effects are also well documented. In World War I surgeons used garic juice to stop wounds from becoming septic.
Garlic may reduce levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, increase levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, and decrease blood fats. The allicin and other compounds appear to bring about this effect. Studies have found that low blood fats and high garlic consumption are common, and that adding fresh garlic to cooking may help decrease the risk of heart disease.
When garlic is crushed, it produces Ajone, one of the volatile substances produced, and appears to reduce the formation of blood clots. Powdered garlic (equal to 2.5g of fresh garlic) has been shown to lower blood pressure. Garlic has also been shown to fight many of the bacteria that cause food poisoning, including Salmonella. Since garlic has antifungal properties, it has been reported it is more effective than drugs against fungal infections such as yeast infections.
Due to allicin compounds, it is thought that garlic can prevent stomach cancers in the stomach wall. Because garlic’s antibacterial effect is so important, it can help act against Helicobacter pylor, the bacteria that causes stomach ulcers, which in turn can become cancerous.
Caution: garlic may interfere with diabetic drugs. Doses of garlic should not be given as a remedy to those on anticoagulant therapy, or to pregnant women, as they may cause contractions.
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