Seasonal changes - appetising and healthy eating for autumn
Released: Thursday, 11 October 2018
As autumn brings us the cooler days and the darker mornings and evenings, nature is telling us that things are changing. Our body notices these small but significant changes which often result in subtle adjustments to what we feel like eating.
The salads we loved during summer seem far less appealing and we lean towards more substantial and satisfying foods. The trick is not to go mad with the stodge and the 'treats'. Try satisfying a sweet tooth with fresh fruit or dried fruit and nuts which are a great combo from a nutritional point of view. If you are more of a savoury person try nut butters (unsalted ones if you can) on oat cakes or crackers.
Remember that 'treats' like crisps, biscuits, chocolate and sweets are actually far from being a treat to your body. In fact they are the opposite: high in fat, salt, sugar, low in nutrients and difficult to digest. They are also likely to have preservatives, stabilisers and various additives that are not recognisable as food. Frankly, your body would probably prefer not to have them!!
This month's Eat Out Eat Well (EOEW) recipe comes from The Fat Greek Taverna in Portland Road, Worthing, and is for Turkey meatballs. This relaxed and friendly restaurant is owned by Andy Sparsis and has a rating of 5 from the Food Hygiene Rating Scheme. Andy is always looking for healthy recipes and is extremely passionate about eating food that's good for both adults and children. Andy said:
“Keftedes are the Cypriot street food version of meatballs and are often eaten cold as a snack or on any meze table in Cyprus. Traditional meatball recipes are often with pork and beef, but our recipe uses Turkey as a healthier option. Vegan options are really easy, just swap meat for Quorn or tofu. Just be sure no Cypriot old ladies see you do this ... Kali Orexi (healthy appetite)!!”
The Fat Greek Taverna's recipe for Keftedes
Keftedes means 'small balls'
- 500 grams turkey mince
- 2 onions, peeled and grated
- 2 potatoes, peeled and grated (remove most of the water though before adding to the mixture)
- 1 tablespoon of ground coriander
- 1 tablespoons of dried mint
- ½ teaspoon of salt
- 1 fresh chilli chopped (optional, keep the seeds in for extra zing!)
- Groundnut oil to cook with
- Grate the onions and the potatoes and squeeze out most of the juice
- Place the remaining ingredients in a large bowl and then add the grated onions and potatoes
- Mix well but gently, and roll into 8oz meatballs
- Shallow fry in the groundnut oil until thoroughly cooked and browned
Turkey - Turkey is a fabulous source of low fat animal protein, and is rich in the amino acid tryptophan. Tryptophan is needed to make the neurotransmitter serotonin which helps with mood and healthy sleep patterns. Turkey also contains vitamins B5 and B6. These vitamins help with releasing energy from food and also support neurotransmitter production. Vitamin B5, also known as pantothenic acid is great for helping to keep hair in good condition (often added to hair care products).
Potatoes - The humble potato is a source of potassium which is needed for heart health and fluid balance. They also contain vitamin B1 (thiamin) which the body uses to help release energy from food, and thiamine also helps to produce enzymes that the body needs for numerous functions. To enjoy these benefits eat unprocessed potatoes and eat the skin, as it's a good source of fibre and also chromium, which is needed for blood sugar control. Eating potato cooked with warming spices helps the body to absorb the goodies that they contain. Do keep a check on portion size though as it is very easy to over do this source of carbohydrate which then has a negative effect on blood sugar - a cupped handful is a good measure.
Chilli - these bright coloured members of the pepper family have a host of health benefits. They warm up the body, increase metabolism and are very high in certain antioxidants, including vitamin C and beta carotene (the precursor to vitamin A). Chillis rev up the circulation, help to release trapped fluids from the respiratory system and aid the absorption of nutrients from food, so make a perfect addition to meals during the winter months.
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