A foodie's quest to turn up the heat through strength and conditioning with whole food and a hungry mind.

Friday, May 20, 2011

The Tasty Tomato

Sliced, diced, crushed, or whole, tomatoes complement many meals with flavor and nutrition! We all see the word Lycopene tossed around when tomatoes are involved, and for good reason! Tomatoes offer a whopping dose of lycopenes that help protect against prostate, cervical, colon, stomach, mouth, throat, and rectal cancers. Studies have shown that when lycopenes were introduced to pre-existing cancer cell cultures, the cultures were unable to grow anymore. Not a fan of tomatoes? No problem, it only takes 540mL of tomato product to benefit from lycopenes, that is equivalent to just one glass of tomato juice.
Aside from lycopenes, tomatoes are an excellent source of vitamin C, vitamin A, and vitamin K. They are also a very good source of molybdenum, potassium, manganese, dietary fiber, chromium, and vitamin B1. In addition, tomatoes are a good source of vitamin B6, folate, copper, niacin, vitamin B2, magnesium, iron, pantothenic acid, phosphorus, vitamin E and protein.


This fruit that poses as a veggie comes in over a thousand diverse varieties and can be red, yellow, orange, green, purple, brown, or a mixture of colors. In its raw form, the tomato lacks much sweetness and tastes more like a veggie, but cooking will reduce the acidic and bitter traits to bring out a rich and sweet product. As I’ve said before, just roasting veggies is easy and makes for great flavor, this goes for tangy tomatoes too.

You could be boring and just drink 540mL of tomato juice and be done with it, but here are three recipes I recommend you try instead:
Gazpacho – this is an easy to make cold soup and very customizable to your liking. Here’s a simple plan to get you started…. Purée tomatoes, cucumbers, bell peppers and scallions together in a food processor and season with herbs and spices of your choice to make this refreshing cold soup.

Quinoa Stuffed Tomatoes - Two tasty and nutritious foods come together for something real satisfying!

Homemade Sundried Tomatoes – These are great in pasta dishes or salads, easy to make, just a long time in the oven. Nothing beats homemade; the store bought varieties can become costly.

You can never go wrong with tomatoes; hope you try one of these interesting but easy recipes soon! Be warned, the acid in tomatoes does not mix well with aluminum cookware. Your meal will become bitter and will have some aluminum contamination, please use something other than aluminum when cooking tomatoes on the stovetop.
For a little extra kick in any of the three recipes above, Just Add Cayenne to your liking!

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