Red Bell Pepper Salsa (antioxidant packed appetizer)


I am very fond of bell peppers and so, I try to develop recipes to incorporate them one way or the other. Their vibrant color, flavor (and nutrient profile) probably make them one of my favorite choices. You probably think that my taste buds are “biased towards the healthy foods”…but you can try and taste these dishes yourself! 😉 I know, bell peppers show up in a lot of my dishes. And here is yet another dish – a low fat dish packed with anti-oxidants – lots of vitamin C and some vitamin A, that you can serve over some healthy crackers as an appetizer or a snack. You can creatively use it as an additional filling in your sandwich or burrito or wrap. If you prepare it in larger quantity, don’t worry, it can last in the refrigerator for 3-4 days like hummus. Although, its better when its fresh, as some vitamin C is lost during storage. Enhance this dish by adding some home-made low fat paneer crumbs or firm tofu crumbs & make it more nutritious (proteins, some vitamins and minerals). And, of course garnishing with chopped fresh basil will take it to a whole new level. In fact, the salsa tastes better with tofu & basil combination! Surprise your guests with this appetizer and I am sure they will remember you for serving a lovely dish. Don’t forget to tell them how you found this recipe! 😉 And, by the way, feel free to replicate this recipe with mixed bell peppers! For those who can’t eat anything without the heat…go ahead and add some red chili flakes! 🙂 Enjoy~

Know your nutrients:

Per serving without the crackers : 21 cals | 1 g total fat | 67 mg vitamin C | 57 ug RAE vitamin A

Per serving with 2 oz (1/2 cup) firm tofu : 43 cals | 3 g protein | 2 g total fat | 63 mg Calcium | 67 mg vitamin C | 57 ug RAE vitamin A

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PHO (Noodle soup with your choice of protein)




This is my take on the Vietnamese Pho! I really like the concept and its easy to make it very nourishing by adding lots of vegetables. I have used lots of bell peppers in this recipe to come up with the most basic and quickest yet flavorful soup. But you can easily add vegetables of your choice- broccoli, carrots, pak choi, green beans, tomatoes, sprouted beans etc depending on the vegetables and time you have. The ginger, garlic and cilantro combination impart a very cleansing effect to the soup. I would prefer to use whole wheat vermicelli or partial whole grain pasta next time with this soup, not just for the fiber content but for a better taste. However, I tried this soup for the first time with the regular egg noodles. It’s best to cook them a little al dente. You can serve this with pan-fried tilapia or shrimp. Vegetarians can add 1½ cup of cooked kidney beans or any other beans to the vegetables to incorporate some proteins in the meal.

Per serving: 243 cals | 16 g protein | 4 g fiber | 15 g total fat

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Penne with beans and bell pepper

This is a beautiful and simple recipe to cook a quick dinner for your family. The other day, I got a good deal on the orange bell peppers from a local produce store and wanted to toss it in a pasta dish. Last evening, I decided to experiment with the pepper. Do try it and let me what you think!

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