February is Heart Health Month and here, at Auburn Lane, we are focused on women’s health issues. Libby and I shared a bit about Women’s Heart Health and tips on healthy eating here.
Because I have a loved one who has to maintain a heart-healthy lifestyle, I have become a bit obsessed with changing our diet to reflect those needs but that doesn’t mean we have to sacrifice flavour and general deliciousness. So, we can no longer have a meat lover’s three-cheese grease wheel from Pizza Nova but a homemade Neapolitan style pizza with whole wheat/red fife crust, crushed tomatoes, olive oil, fresh buffalo mozzarella and a handful of fresh basil is not only more nutritious, but it’s more delicious in every way.
We are now aiming for fish twice a week and a vegetarian dinner at least twice a week with one night of “what’s for chicken“. We are expanding our consumption of grains to include things like freekah, barley and bulgar in place of white rice, potatoes and white pasta. Polenta has replaced mashed potatoes in many instances and beans and other legumes have become the stars of the show instead of a side piece.
First up is this rich and delicious braise of lentils that we like to top with a poached egg (poached right in the stew because I am lazy and it works), topped with some roasted tomatoes with just a smattering of feta – you can’t eat a ton of it but a bit of sheep’s milk feta is a great way to trick your brain into thinking it’s getting more salt than it really is. Feta is low in saturated fat but high in sodium so don’t use a ton but with a good feta, you get a lot of bang with your buck. You can even drain the brine and fill the tub with tap water if it’s too salty and it will keep for another week or so in the fridge OR you can even pack feta cubes into a glass jar with some herbs and cover it with some heart-healthy olive oil.
This recipe derives its richness from olive oil, it’s saltiness from a bit of feta, crunch from the crispy garlic slices and it’s sexiness from a creamy, runny egg yolk. All that and it’s good for you – just don’t tell anyone.
*more heart-healthy recipes can be found on my blog, The Yum Yum Factor
More adventures in adopting a more heart-healthy diet mean more vegetarian meals with less sodium, healthier fats and a soupçon of cheese to punch it up. We have been having a lot of braised beans like the braised romano beans on polenta that I did for Ontario Beans.
|these beans have become a weekly thing in our house|