In honor of Meatless Monday…

Posted on February 27, 2012 | by

Despite what many of you might think, it’s not PROTEIN that Americans don’t get enough of. It’s the Big 3: fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. That’s why so many of us have a problem with getting in adequate fiber (which these foods are high in), managing our weight (these are the foods that keep us lean), and staying healthy (these are the main disease-fighting phytochemical-packed food groups). So think fruit, veggies, and whole grains AT EVERY MEAL and eat more plants and less animals and your body and the planet will thank you for it.

Ratatouille–a Vegetable Cornucopia

Yield: 12 servings (serving size: 1/12th of the recipe, 240 grams or ~ 1 cup)

5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 pounds or 2 (28 ounce) cans of whole tomatoes, peeled, drained and chopped
1 bay leaf
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
4 large garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, chopped
1 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped
1 large onion, halved and sliced
1 red pepper, cut into ½” strips
1 green pepper, cut into ½” strips
4 small zucchini, cut into ½” slices
1 eggplant, diced into 1” cubes
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped

In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil. Add tomatoes, salt, pepper and bay leaf and bring to a boil over medium high heat. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes. Remove bay leaf, add rosemary and thyme, stir and continue to simmer. In the meantime, in another large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons oil. Add onions and sauté over low heat for 5 minutes. Add red and green peppers and continue to cook an additional 7 minutes over medium heat. Add zucchini and continue to sauté for 5 additional minutes. In the meantime, in a large Dutch oven (or stockpot with a cover), heat 2 tablespoons oil and add eggplant cubes, salt and pepper. Cook over medium heat for 3 minutes. Add zucchini and pepper mixture to eggplant and cook over medium heat for 7 minutes. Add tomato mixture and sugar, stir and bring to a boil over medium high heat. Reduce heat to a simmer, cover, and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Uncover and cook 5 more minutes until tender. Stir in basil and serve.

Nutritional Information Per Serving (240 grams or ~ 1 cup):
Calories: 109, Fat: 6 g, Cholesterol: 0 mg, Sodium: 439 mg,
Carbohydrate: 12 g, Dietary Fiber: 2 g, Sugars: 6 g, Protein: 2 g


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