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Seasonal Vegetables For Winter

First of all... potatoes! We know they're a year round staple, but they are particularly delicious in November. Try mashing them with a little butter, a slug of olive oil and seasoning, perfect with gravy!  They're also great in a range of soups or curries. Try a potato layer bake for a warming winter meal. Or why not try the pink fir variety of potato, an old favourite that has made a big comeback in recent years.

Red cabbages are brilliant throughout winter, but particularly November, whilst the white cabbages come into their own in December (not that we stop you eating them before!). With red cabbage their distinctive colour and mellow flavour add a splash of colour to a variety of savoury dishes. Whilst researchers have shown that different types of cabbage (red, green, and Savoy) contain different patterns of antioxidants, there is no doubt that all varieties contain a superb array of vitamins, minerals and more recently understood antioxidants and phytonutrients. Cancer prevention tops all other areas of health research with regard to cabbage and its outstanding benefits. More than 475 studies have examined the role of this cruciferous vegetable in cancer prevention (and in some cases, cancer treatment). Try braising shredded cabbage with apple and balsamic vinegar for a refreshing side dish, stir fry it with winter spices or make your own brightly coloured coleslaw. With white cabbage, try shredding it into some mash, adding it to soup or simply have it as a side dish with a nut roast.
Brussels sprouts are a notorious staple at the Christmas table probably because so many people used to cook them incorrectly. if you boil them for more than 7 minutes they produce a sulphurous odour. Thankfully our cooking skills have vastly improved and these delicious cruciferous vegetables can be cooked in a variety of ways – try them as a stir fry with some chilli, cook them with butter and chestnuts or try mashing with a little parmesan and soy cream. Again as a cruciferous vegetable they have been linked to cancer prevention and are believed to protect against colon cancer.
Moving into the New Year, the kale is a nutritional standout in three basic areas; antioxidant and anti-inflammatory nutrients, much-needed macronutrients, and cancer-preventive nutrients called glucosinolates. In addition to conventional antioxidants like vitamin C, beta-carotene, and manganese, kale also provides us with at least 45 different recently discovered flavonoids, including kaempferol and quercetin. Many of the flavonoids in kale are also now known to function not only as antioxidants, but also as anti-inflammatory compounds. Basically, it's brilliant! It works well in stews and soups or sautéed with chilli and garlic. Chew it, blend it or mash it up to release all the goodness.
Fibre is an important part of everyone's diet - here's a link to a breakdown of the fibre in various foods and it's role in your diet.

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