Per Calorie, Spinach Has More Protein Than Beef!

Photo by timsackton from Flickr.com

I am so over Popeye. I mean, really, telling me to eat my spinach while puffing on a cancer-inducing pipe that may even be filled with an illegal recreational substance. Think about it. What else could cause those delusions and momentary episodes of crazy strength? So, there will be no Popeye quips as we consider spinach. Rather, we ask that you and Popeye put down the pipe.

Prepare yourself for a crazy fact about spinach. Per 100 calories, spinach has 12 grams of protein versus beef which has 10 grams. What the heck? Tis true, tis true.

But, you ask, “Well, how much spinach exactly is 100 calories?” 100 calories of the green leafy vegetable is about a pound. That, admittedly, is a lot of spinach. You may think there is no way you could pound a pound of spinach to get all that plant-based protein, particularly when it takes just a nibble of beef to obtain the same amount. So for now, you think it best to sprinkle your meals with spinach when possible to get the benefits of its protein, fiber, calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, copper, manganese, and vitamins A, C, K and B6! But, it’s not that difficult, lovely reader!

Buy yourself a pound of spinach and make the following wilted spinach recipe. If you are on a low-sodium diet, do be aware that spinach has a naturally high salt content. Much like you, me, and Popeye, spinach is great, but not perfect.

Grow your own! Photo by OakleyOriginals from Flickr.com

Jenna’s Wilted Spinach

Ingredients:
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon sesame oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 pound pre-washed spinach (remove tough stems)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions:
Heat a skillet over medium heat. Add oil and garlic. Saute garlic in oil 2 or 3 minutes. Add spinach to the pan in stages. Fill the pan with leaves and turn leaves in warm oil until they wilt. Add more spinach to the skillet and repeat the process until all of the spinach is incorporated. Season the wilted spinach with salt and pepper. I serve this dish either over brown rice with a splash of soy sauce, or as a side to salmon, or gasp, a bit of beef.

Consider:
Topping spinach with slivered almonds or sesame seeds. Some cooks use nutmeg, but nutmeg makes my stomach churn… so you’ll never get me to add it to something as good as wilted spinach.

Mama Wants an Egg! Crack a Few for a Healthy and Tasty Treat

Photo by bgottsab from Flickr

Fat shmat! I know those of you with burgeoning baby bellies such as mine may be worried about gaining unnecessary weight. Don’t fret. At least don’t fret when you’re wanting an egg or two, but are concerned about fat and cholesterol. It turns out that an egg’s nutrients far outweigh the fat that’s sidetracked our love affair with this perfectly-packed powerhouse. Don’t forget, we need fat to increase our resistance to infections, absorb vitamins, and heal wounds properly. Why not get your fat from a great source like an egg, rather than chips or cookies?

So, what nutrients does an egg actually hold? They supply all of the essential amino acids people need (See the Oats entry. Hit me!). They also provide vitamins A, B2, B6, B9, B12, D, E as well as choline, iron, calcium, lycine, phosphorus and potassium. Goodness, gracious. The list could go on but let’s stop here and think about the necessity of these little goodies. Vitamin A (retinol) is needed for vision and bone growth. Vitamin B2 is invaluable for our metabolism and vitamin B6 is also needed for metabolism as well as gene expression. The good of folic acid (B9) is mind-numbing, seriously. If you don’t eat folic acid you can experience limb numbness, neuropathy, and cognitive decline just to name a few degenerative states. B12 helps to prevent autoimmune diseases and vitamin D prevents many disease states. My head is spinning. I think I need an egg before I can go on…

Photo by she always was the softest thing from Flickr

So, how are you going to cook an egg once it’s cracked? I personally don’t cook eggs at home anymore as my son is anaphylactic to all egg products. Scrambling is fun, but don’t do it every time as breaking down the yolk and completely cooking it can cause your eggs to lose important nutrients. Also, as I don’t cook these crave-worthy morsels at home anymore, I am going to link you to a fantastic recipe from About.com. My university roommate made me this delightful dish most every late night we spent studying. It is the dish I am craving most. Ice cream and pickles be damned! Also, please post your yummy suggestions as well.

Kimchi Fried Rice (Kimchi Bokumbap) Recipe
Kimchi Fried Rice (Bokumbap) is humble food that is mostly enjoyed at home, but you might also see it in some casual Korean eateries. Quick, easy, and cheap to make, kimchi bokumbap is simple Korean homecooking at its best.