For those of you that don’t know, this month is National Heart Month. Not to get too Debbie Downer about it but heart disease is the country’s no. 1 killer. We all know the co-relation between food and a healthy heart. Making wise food choices is so important and with childhood obesity on the rise reaching epidemic proportions we need to take back control of what we put in our bodies. We only have the one!
According to the American heart assoc. living a heart healthy lifestyle includes making wise daily food choices. Here are some of their recommendations:
- Choose lean meats and poultry without skin and prepare them without added saturated and trans fat.
- Select fat-free, 1% fat and low-fat dairy products.
- Cut back on foods containing partially hydrogenated vegetable oils to reduce trans fat in your diet.
- Cut back on foods high in dietary cholesterol. Aim to eat less than 300 mg of cholesterol each day.
- Cut back on beverages and foods with added sugars.
- Choose and prepare foods with little or no salt. Aim to eat less than 2,300 mg of sodium per day (or less than 1,500 mg if you are in a higher risk group for high blood pressure).
- If you drink alcohol, drink in moderation. That means no more than one drink per day if you’re a woman and two drinks per day if you’re a man.
- Keep an eye on your portion sizes.
In addition to healthy eating habits, the American Heart Association also recommends doing the following to lead a heart healthy lifestyle:
- Avoid use and exposure to tobacco products.
- Achieve and maintain healthy cholesterol, blood pressure and blood glucose levels.
- Emphasize physical activity and weight control.
One of the best foods you can eat is oatmeal, or porridge as we called it when I was growing up. Not only is it full of fiber but it helps reduce bad cholesterol, which is what blocks the arteries and leads to heart attacks. I’ve been eating a bowl every morning since I was young, totally true. I love the stuff. Here I decided to crumb some fish with it in place of bread crumbs and bake it. Serve with my homemade tartar sauce and you’re golden…..and heart healthy.
4 x 4-5 oz Pacific Sole (an eco-OK fish)
2 organic egg whites, beaten (for breadcrumbing fish)
1 cup old fashioned porridge (oatmeal)
1 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp lemon pepper
2 egg yolks
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 cup canola oil
1/2 lemon – zested
1 tsp capers – chopped
1 tbsp parsley – chopped
3 gherkins (cornichons) – chopped
1/4 tsp black pepper
Preheat skillet on medium heat for 30 seconds. Add oatmeal and brown oats, tossing occasionally until golden, 7-8 minutes approx. Do not burn.
Once golden brown place in food processor along with paprika and pepper. Pulse to breadcrumb consistency but not too fine.
Now we’re ready to coat the fish. To do this simply dip the sole in the egg whites and let drain over the egg bowl to catch any excess drippings and then coat gently in the oatmeal crust on all sides. Once coated lay on a foiled or parchment paper lined tray until ready to cook.
To Make Tartar:
Tartar sauce is a mayo-based sauce. Homemade mayo is one of the easiest condiments to make and is way more healthier and tastier than store bought. When making homemade mayo you’ll notice it’s colour right off the bat–it’s not white, it’s yellow.Who knew egg yolks were yellow, crazy that!
Place the egg yolks in the food processor along with the mustard & zest. With the machine running slowly add the oil to emulsify. If the mayo looks too thick add a drizzle of cold water to smooth it out. Once all the oil has been incorporated fold in the capers, gherkins, parsley & salt and pulse for 20 seconds. Done. Pop in the fridge until ready to eat.
From aioli to tartar sauce
To Cook Fish:
Preheat oven to 420°F.
Lay fish on foiled oven tray and spray both sides liberally with olive oil spray. Pop in oven for 8-10 minutes until crispy and firm to touch.
Cheers to healthy hearts!
All recipes are made with the finest quality farmers market whole foods, natural and non-processed ingredients as much as possible.