Spring Vegetable Recipes and Tips (cont.)

Ingredients:
Canola or olive oil cooking spray
1 bunch long asparagus spears (about 16 spears about 8 inches long), trim the white ends off, rinsed and dried well
1 1/2 teaspoons flavored extra-virgin olive oil (lemon or orange or garlic flavors work well)
Salt and freshly ground pepper as desired (optional)

Preparation:

  1. Start preheating oven broiler. Cover a cookie sheet with foil. Coat with olive oil or canola cooking spray. Spread asparagus spears across the prepared pan.
  2. Using a silicon brush, lightly coat tops of asparagus spears with olive oil. Turn spears over and lightly coat other side with remaining olive oil.
  3. Broil about 4 minutes, watching carefully. Turn asparagus spears over using a fork or prongs. Broil other side until desired doneness (about 3 minutes more), watching carefully. Add salt and pepper, if desired. Serve.

Yield: Makes about 4 side servings.

Nutrition Information per serving: 37 calories, 2 g protein, 3 g carbohydrate, 2.4 g fat, 0.4 g saturated fat, 0 mg cholesterol 2 g fiber, 2 mg sodium (without adding salt). Calories from fat: 58%.

Sauteed Chard With Goat Cheese Topping
This can be served as a side dish or used as a filling for an omelet.

Ingredients:
1 bunch of Swiss chard leaves (either red or green), stalks removed
1 cup water
2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon minced or chopped garlic
Salt and freshly ground pepper as desired (optional)
1/8 cup crumbled goat cheese
1 tablespoon toasted pine nuts (toast by lightly browning in a nonstick frying pan over medium heat, stirring frequently)

Preparation:

  1. Stack chard leaves, then cut into thin strips. Add to colander and rinse, draining well. Add to a large nonstick skillet with 1 cup of water. Cook on medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until leaves are tender (about 4 minutes). Drain in a colander.
  2. Add olive oil to the same skillet over medium-high heat. Add a teaspoon of minced garlic and stir for about 30 seconds. Add the chard and saute until heated through, about 2 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste if desired.
  3. Turn off heat, sprinkle goat cheese and toasted pine nuts over the top, cover skillet and let sit about 1 minute before serving.

Yield: Makes about 4 side servings.

Nutrition Information per serving: 75 calories, 3 g protein, 3 g carbohydrate, 5.5 g fat, 1.8 g saturated fat, 5 mg cholesterol 2 g fiber, 190 mg sodium (without adding salt). Calories from fat: 68%.

Published May 1, 2008.


Recipes provided by Elaine Magee; © 2008 Elaine Magee

Elaine Magee, MPH, RD, is the "Recipe Doctor" for the WebMD Weight Loss Clinic and the author of numerous books on nutrition and health. Her opinions and conclusions are her own.

SOURCES: Produce Marketing Association web site. Nutritional analysis by Food Processor SQL software, ESHA Research 2008. Thomas, C. Melissa's Great Book of Produce, 2006.

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