Blue Sky Eco Cafe experimented with a stall on the Abingdon Market of Excellence in July to raise money for, and awareness of, the social enterprise project. Sadly our nutritious and delicious breakfasts (porridge with quinoa, smoothies,granola with fruit compote, vegan french toast, bircher muesli) were a flop as all passersby had had their breakfast before leaving home!
However our lunch menu of salads and Thai curry, roast aubergine and halloumi pittas, roast vegetable & coconut yogurt tzatziki were popular.
This ancient grain is beginning to gain recognition for its health benefits and ability to adapt to different recipes. In a similar vein as kamut, or bulgur wheat, farro makes a good alternative grain addition to several dishes. It does contain gluten however.
High in Fibre
A very high level of fibre in farro makes it heart-healthy, good for digestion, and beneficial for preventing blood sugar or insulin spikes and dips
Good Source of Protein
High in B Vitamins
Farro contains multiple B vitamins, especially vitamin B3 niacin, which is important for metabolic health and breaking down or converting carbohydrates, fats and proteins from the foods we eat into energy.
Good Source of Antioxidants
Most people think of vegetables or fruits as being the only high-antioxidant foods, but unprocessed grains also provide antioxidants.
Provides Iron, Magnesium and Zinc
Iron is important for preventing anemia and helping to improve energy, while zinc is crucial for brain function, Magnesium has numerous benefits — preventing muscle cramps and PMS symptoms, helping you sleep better, helping with digestion — many people actually have a magnesium deficiency and don’t even realise it.
Farro is a perfect addition to salads, stews, soups. Soak for 20 minutes, drain, cover with fresh cold water and bring to the boil. Simmer for 20 mins, or until tender. Drain well.
“Brussels sprouts!” I hear you say, “who likes those!” and I felt exactly the same way. Either boiled or steamed I never liked them until …. I tried them roasted. Halved and tossed in a little oil and roasted either on their own or with other root veg and I discovered they were delicious!! Taste for yourselves in the salad dishes this month and then read about their health qualities!
In 75grams of cooked Brussels sprouts you get
Protein: 2 grams
Carbs: 6 grams
Fibre: 2 grams
Vitamin K: 137% of the RDI
Vitamin C: 81% of the RDI
Vitamin A: 12% of the RDI
Folate: 12% of the RDI
Manganese: 9% of the RDI
Brussels sprouts contain kaempferol, an antioxidant that may reduce cancer growth, decrease inflammation and promote heart health. They are high in vitamin K, a nutrient important for blood clotting and bone metabolism, and vitamin c
Brussels sprouts are a good source of ALA omega-3 fatty acids, which can reduce inflammation, insulin resistance and cognitive decline
In short, Brussels sprouts are high in fibre, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, making them a nutritious addition to your diet.
Give them another try… roasted or raw, thinly sliced as an addition to salad.
Spelt is an ancient grain that has been grown in Somerset since the start of the Iron Age. It has a unique gluten structure which makes it easier to digest than modern wheat.
It has a delicious nutty taste, not dissimilar to barley. High in protein and fibre, spelt is a good source of slow release energy. So much so, that the Roman army called it their marching grain.
Spelt in common with other nuts, grains and seeds, contains phytic acid, a unique natural substance which can impair the absorption of iron, zinc and calcium. Soaking the grain for several hours or overnight can reduce phytate content substantially.
According to Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, while pearled barley and spelt are “whole” in the sense of not being rolled, broken or ground down, they are not “wholegrains” but refined: the “pearling” that gives them their name is the process of polishing off the outer bran layer. Soaking is not necessary therefore.
Spelt can be used in soups, stews and salads. It also makes a delicious risotto.