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A Twofer: Sautéed Zucchini & Roasted Carrots

Recipes at the top, sweet blog post below.

Oven Roasted Carrots

Ingredients

Preheat oven to 400°F. Peel carrots and cut into sticks, about 4-5 inches in length. Place carrots on a baking sheet and drizzle carrots with olive oil. Sprinkle salt, pepper and herbs over carrots. Toss and bake for about 40-45 minutes* until cooked through. 

*If using asparagus you will only need to bake for about 25-30 minutes.

Sautéed Zucchini & Yellow Squash

Ingredients

Melt 2 tbsp butter in a pre-heated pan over medium heat. Add garlic and onion. When fragrant, add the squash and zucchini. Season with spices to cover top. Stir. Repeat twice.* Turn up heat to medium high and add in last tbsp of butter. Stir. Continue to cook until there is no fluid in the pan and the zucchini/squash are translucent. 

*This should be to taste, so it is really your preference on how much seasoning you add.

Roasted Carrots Nutrition
Carrots Nutrition
Sautéed Zucchini Nutrition
Zucchini Nutrition
Roasted Carrots Nutrition
Carrots Nutrition
Sautéed Zucchini Nutrition
Zucchini Nutrition

Valentine’s day... is HERE!

So last week was technically my Valentine’s day post, but I feel like spreading the love so this week you get TWO recipes!

Dudes, these are both so flippin’ delicious. So that carrot recipe, you can totally use about 2 lbs of asparagus and it is like CRACK it is so addictive. And really, there are worse things to be addicted to than asparagus… like crack. 

Now for that zucchini dish, you can swap out the butter to lower your saturated fat intake. Saturated fats are sort of an in-between fat as far as how bad it is for you. Having a diet rich in these can drive up your cholesterol and “tip the balance toward more harmful LDL cholesterol.”¹ This is what can cause blockages in your arteries. I mean you can still eat saturated fat, but you should limit it to about 10% of calories a day.  Instead, use a healthier fat to cook it in such as regular olive oil, canola oil or avocado oil. These oils are good sources of monounsaturated fats. You could also use an oil that has polyunsaturated fats, such as corn oil, safflower oil or sunflower oil. Polyunsaturated fats are actually essential for your body to function and are used to build cell membranes and covering of nerves. You need them for blood clotting, muscle movement and inflammation. When people talk about omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, they are talking about polyunsaturated fats. I know that’s a buzzword, but they do reduce the harmful LDL cholesterol and triglycerides. They have been said to help prevent and treat heart disease and stroke, reduce blood pressure, and raise HDL. Omega-6’s can “keep your blood sugar in check by improving the body’s sensitivity to insulin,”² lower LDL, boost protective HDL, reduce risk of heart disease and heart attacks.

So after that explanation, you’re probably wondering why I used butter – a saturated fat – rather than an oil. Well, I did this purely for the flavor profile. As I say above, you can have some saturated fats, just don’t overdo it. If you have some from time to time, it should not be enough to negatively impact your health.

Anyway, Steve asks me to make these sides A LOT and what’s super great about them is they are really easy and you can make them year round if you’re lucky enough to find good veggies out of season. I’d love to someday have my own garden to grow these veggies, but I have no green thumb. Sadly, it’s more like a black thumb. I’ve killed at least 5 basil plants, a rosemary and one aloe. Yeah, really. An aloe. A desert plant. O.o

Bruh, some days you just don’t feel like cooking but you still want to eat good food that isn’t smothered in grease. I mean there are days when I’m just laying there like a slug and just think to myself… EVERYTHING IS HARD. I guess I’ll make those carrots and slap together some sort of meat to go with it.

So I slink off to the kitchen and spend like a half hour of actually doing anything productive. You’re like – WAIT… A HALF HOUR??

The rest of the time I can go watch an episode of something on Netflix (we’re going through Arrow again) and as the credits roll on the episode, the carrots are done in the oven. Golden.

SEE? You got this, man. I mean if Oliver Queen can survive on Lian Yu for 5 years plus super villains including Malcolm Merlyn, Slade Wilson, Ra’s al Ghul, and Damien Darhk AND if Thea Queen can survive DYING, than you can get in the kitchen for a half hour and make some carrots or zucchini and keep that health train running!

¹”The truth about fats: the good, the bad, and the in-between.” Harvard Health Publishing, 11 Dec. 2019, https://health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/the-truth-about-fats-bad-and-good.

²”No need to avoid healthy omega-6 fats.” Harvard Health Publishing, 20 Aug. 2019, https://health.harvard.edu/newsletter_article/no-need-to-avoid-healthy-omega-6-fats

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