I bought a boat-load of raspberries and have been eating them in everything from oatmeal to smoothies to dinner salads. Here's a delicious whole-grain salad recipe with a hint of sweet and tart from the berries from the latest IDEA Fitness Journal.
"Nutrition research suggests that eating more dietary fiber provides lots of health benefits, from weight-control to better blood sugar and lower cholesterol levels. Eating a wide range of high-fiber foods also feeds the microbiome in our digestive tracts. And when our microbial friends are well-fed, research suggest we are less prone to health woes like heart disease, diabetes and even depression." That's cool!
"On the flip side, a diet low in fiber, as many diets full of processed foods tend to be, may promote the loss of certain beneficial species of bacteria in our guts over time, and it can be hard to get them back. To get your fill of bug-nurturing fiber, eat plenty of vegetables, fruits, beans, lentils, seeds and whole grains."
This salad lasts a while and is great for take-along lunches.
***Raspberry Quinoa Lentil Salad***
¾ C black (beluga) lentils or French green lentils
¾ C quinoa
1 ½ C low-sodium vegetable broth
2 C fresh raspberries
1 cucumber, diced
⅓ C finely chopped fresh mint
3 chopped scallions (green onions)
½ C sliced kalamata olives
½ C crumbled feta cheese
⅓ C roasted sunflower seeds
3 T extra-virgin olive oil
2 T fresh lemon juice
Place lentils in a medium-sized saucepan and cover with about 2 inches of water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer until tender but not mushy, about 20 minutes. Drain lentils and place in a large bowl; let cool.
In a separate saucepan, bring quinoa and broth or water to a simmer, reduce heat, and simmer covered until quinoa is tender and water has been absorbed, about 12 minutes. Set aside covered for 5 minutes and then fluff with a fork. Add to bowl with lentils.
Place raspberries, cucumber, mint, scallions, olives, feta and sunflower seeds in the bowl with the lentils and quinoa; toss gently to combine.