Fresh fruit and vegetables are at the top of every health and diet wishlist. It is easy to see why. They are full of nutritious vitamins and minerals. Both fruits and vegetables have a healthy dose of antioxidants. They are easy to obtain and eaten in season can be relatively cheap. Perhaps the best thing about both is the fact that they are easy to put together. They also require a minimum amount of preparation and little if any cooking.
That means most if not all of the nutrients stay intact. Perhaps the best and easiest way to get your daily dose is to use your vegetables or fruit in soups, smoothies or juices. All three are easy to make and require a small amount of equipment, making them perfect for today’s busy lifestyle. In each case, it is a simple matter to make more in advance and refrigerate the rest for later.
Hot or cold, soups will nourish and sustain you for hours. They can be made thin or thick, and often you will find that soup tastes even better the next day when the flavors have had time to improve and develop.
The basis for any hot soup recipe begins with an onion. It does not matter too much whether the onion is brown or even red. Brown onions have a stronger taste. Red tend to be milder. Chop the onion and sweat it in a little butter or olive oil until it softens and is slightly translucent. Now take the vegetables of your choice and peel and chop them up into fine slices. You really can use anything you have to hand. A good vegetable soup base might use, celery, potato, carrot, and any other root vegetables. Parsnips and Turnips work particularly well.
Add the vegetables of your choice and continue to cook for a minute or two. If you wanted to add garlic, this would be a good time. Herbs and spices can all be great additions. Rosemary, thyme and sage work very well in a country vegetable soup. If you wanted to focus on one particular vegetable, say leek or parsnip then simply up the amount of these and balance with potato.
Finally add a pint or two or vegetable stock and bring to the boil. Once it is boiling, reduce to a simmer until all the vegetables are cooked through. This should take no more than twenty minutes at the most. Blend your soup and season to taste!
Smoothies and Juices.
These are the best way of getting fresh fruit and vegetables into your system. In many cases, it is possible to combine amazing combinations that can be pressed, mixed or blended easily. Unlike most soups a smoothie or juicer will allow you to mix in say fresh berries, banana, carrots, pears, spinach and avocado. The resulting combination will a fresh and nutritious drink that will do wonders for you and your health. A cold pressed juicer takes today’s technology even further. Cold pressing itself ensure that nutrients are not lost as a result of friction in the extraction process.
Perhaps the best thing about these approaches is not only are the results easy to achieve, but they are tasty and nutritious. It is easy to prepare and clean up, and the combinations are endless. Both offer you fantastic healthy combinations that will make you feel truly alive.